Fiction Previews, Oct. 2013, Pt. 5: Five Hot Debut Titles

DUFFY

Bonert, Kenneth. The Lion Seeker. Houghton Harcourt. Oct. 2013. 576p. ISBN 9780547898049. $28; ebk. ISBN 9780547898414. LITERARY The grandson of Lithuanian immigrants, South African Bonert was inspired to write this work by the photo of an uncle with Nadine Gordimer. This portrait of South Africa’s small Jewish community doubles as the portrait of a mother-son […]

Barbara’s Picks, Oct. 2013, Pt. 3: Basbanes, Boyle, Cahill, Drabble, Goleman, Holmes, Lepore, MacGregor, Venter, & Winterson

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Basbanes, Nicholas A. On Paper: The Everything of Its Two-Thousand-Year History. Knopf. Oct. 2013. 448p. ISBN 9780307266422. $35. HISTORY Having given us a much-loved trilogy of books about books—A Gentle Madness, Patience and Fortitude, and A Splendor of Letters—Basbanes has written a thoroughgoing chronicle about the stuff books are traditionally made of: paper. He starts […]

Barbara’s Picks, Oct. 2013, Pt. 1: David Finkel, Elizabeth Gilbert, Adam Mansbach, Donna Tartt, Scott Turow, Simon Winchester

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Finkel, David. Thank You for Your Service. Sarah Crichton Bks: Farrar. Oct. 2013. 272p. ISBN 9780374180669. $27. POLITICAL SCIENCE/INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS Head of the Washington Post’s national reporting team and both a Pulitzer Prize winner and a MacArthur Fellow, Finkel did an extraordinary job of explaining the Iraq War to us in The Good Soldiers, a […]

Fiction Previews, Sept. 2013, Pt. 3: Four Hot Debut Authors; Bodden, Kent, Smith, & Zailckas

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Bodden, Marlen Suyapa. The Wedding Gift. St. Martin’s. Sept. 2013. 320p. ISBN 9781250026385. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9781250026125. CD: Macmillan Audio. LITERARY/HISTORICAL Not every debut author sells thousands of copies of her self-published novel online before it’s snapped up by a major publisher, and not every debut author gets blurbed by Tom Wolfe and Henry Louis […]

Fiction Previews, Sept. 2013, Pt. 5: Essential Reading Beyond the Commercial Blockbusters: Baker, Horn, Perrotta, & More

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Baker, Nicholson. Traveling Sprinkler. Blue Rider: Penguin Group (USA). Sept. 2013. 288p. ISBN 9780399160967. $26.95. LITERARY Baker’s The Anthologist, in which Paul Chowder tries valiantly to get started on a collection of formal verse, won best-book nods from a half-dozen venues. This new novel again features the hapless Chowder, here eager to jump-start his life […]

Barbara’s Picks, Feb. 2013, Pt. 2: Fiction from Kelley Armstrong to Paul Yoon

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Armstrong, Kelley. Omens: A Cainsville Novel. Dutton. Aug. 2013. 416p. ISBN 9780525953043. $26.95. FANTASY In this launch of a new series from the author of the hugely popular “Otherworld” books, wealthy, 24-year-old Ivy Leaguer Olivia Taylor Jones is happily engaged when she discovers that she is adopted—and that her biological parents are serial killers imprisoned […]

Barbara’s Picks, Jun. 2013, Pt. 4 & Jul. 2013, Pt. 1: Greer, Keneally, Walls, and More

GREER

Evanovich, Stephanie. Big Girl Panties. Morrow. Jul. 2013. 336p. ISBN 9780062224842. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062224866. lrg. prnt. CD: HarperAudio. POP FICTION Rather too zaftig after turning to food for comfort during her husband’s illness and death, 32-year-old Holly Brennan is chagrined to be occupying the plane seat next to Logan Montgomery, personal trainer to star […]

Fiction Previews, Jul. 2013, Pt. 1: Nine Debuts from Butler’s Ten Things I’ve Learnt About Love to Zambrano’s Lotería

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Butler, Sarah. Ten Things I’ve Learnt About Love. Penguin Pr: Penguin Group (USA). Jul. 2013. 320p. ISBN 9781594205330. $26.95. LITERARY Unconventional Alice, the youngest of three sisters and a frequent traveler to far-off climes, returns home just in time to say good-bye to her dying father, with whom she’s never been close. Daniel, who’s been […]

The Uninvited, The Bookseller, Brain on Fire, and a Few Colorful Lies | Books for Dudes

Brain on Fire

It’s December with temps in the 30s; I guess autumn really is over. I had fun extending my triathlon season into October, but all good things must end, including the only book I really sat down with over the past few months, Color Stories by Benjamin Moore (covered below). I relied on my minions to […]

Barbara’s Picks, Jun. 2013, Pt. 1: Caputo, Koppel, Mead, Meyer, Robinson

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Caputo, Philip. The Longest Road: Overland in Search of America, from Key West to Deadhorse. Holt. Jun. 2013. 520p. ISBN 9780805094466. $28; eISBN 9780805096965. MEMOIR What connects the mainly Inupiat children on snow-swept Barter Island off Alaska’s Arctic coast and the children of Cuban immigrants on Key West? As Caputo realized while visiting Barter Island […]

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