Literary (Couto, Gladstone), Historical (Forsyth, Iggulden), & Women’s (Harbison, Hopkins) | Fiction Previews, Jul. 2015, Pt. 3

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Couto, Mia. Confession of the Lioness. Farrar. Jul. 2015. 208p. tr. from Portuguese by David Brookshaw. ISBN 9780374129231. $25; ebk. ISBN 9780374710958. LITERARY Winner of the 2014 Neustadt International Prize for Literature, among other awards, and one of the major writers of Portuguese-speaking Africa, Couto sets this dark and mysterious tale in the isolated village […]

Five Don’t-Miss Fiction Debuts | Fiction Previews, Jul. 2015, Pt. 2

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Kirman, Robin. Bradstreet Gate. Crown. Jul. 2015. 320p. ISBN 9780804139311. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780804139328. CD/downloadable: Random Audio. PSYCHOLOGICAL Kirman may have a BA in philosophy from Yale College and an MFA in fiction from Columbia University, but she sets her first novel at Harvard, where a senior’s murder profoundly affects Georgia, Charlie, and Alice—three students […]

Brian Doyle, Bruce Holsinger, Ann Packer, & Three Essential World War II Titles | Barbara’s Picks, Apr. 2015, Pt. 2

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Doyle, Brian. Martin Marten. Thomas Dunne: St. Martin’s. Apr. 2015. 320p. ISBN 9781250045201. $24.99; ebk. ISBN 9781466843691. LITERARY Published by an academic press, the luminously written Mink River was a dead giveaway that Doyle had a big literary future ahead of him, and he proved himself nicely with last year’s The Plover. His new novel […]

Saul Bellow, Scott Ellsworth, Caryl Phillips, & More | Barbara’s Picks, Mar. 2015, Pt. 4

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Bellow, Saul. There Is Simply Too Much To Think About: Collected Nonfiction. Viking. Mar. 2015. 608p. ed. by Benjamin Taylor. ISBN 9780670016693. $35. LITERATURE Issued in time for the centenary of Bellow’s birth and the tenth anniversary of his death, this work collects the Nobel laureate’s nonfiction, including criticism, interviews, speeches, and other pieces ranging […]

From Steinhauer to Steel, More Than 30 Big Commercial Fiction Titles | Fiction Previews, Mar. 2015, Pt. 3

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Thrillers Berry, Steve. The Patriot Threat. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Mar. 2015. 352p. ISBN 9781250056238. $27.99; ebk. ISBN 9781466862609. CD: Macmillan Audio. THRILLER When his former boss in the Justice Department asks him to track down a rogue North Korean possibly in possession of some hush-hush Treasury Department files, beloved Berry protagonist Cotton Malone finds himself […]

Science, Creativity, Animal Rights, & AIDS | Nonfiction Previews, Jan. 2015, Pt. 3

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Ashton, Kevin. How To Fly a Horse: The Secret History of Creation, Invention, and Discovery. Doubleday. Jan. 2015. 304p. ISBN 9781594204340. $26.95; ebk. ISBN 9781594204340. CD/downloadable: Random Audio. SUCCESS Invention: it’s not a sudden, blazing act of genius but the accumulation of many small steps, minus many small setbacks, and the turning of chance insight […]

Interesting People from Chen Guangcheng to Bob Dylan to Pat O’Brien | Nonfiction Previews, Sept. 2014, Pt. 4

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Callahan, Maureen. Champagne Supernovas: Kate Moss, Marc Jacobs, Alexander McQueen, and the 90s Renegades Who Remade Fashion. Touchstone. Sept. 2014. 304p. ISBN 9781451640533. $26. FASHION Style and pop culture journalist Callahan offers a history of fashion in the 1990s, when mere glamor morphed into culturally significant cutting-edge artistry, touching on dozens of personalities but using […]

Technology in Love & War | Nonfiction Previews, Sept. 2014, Pt. 3

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Rudder, Christian. Dataclysm: Who We Are (When We Think No One’s Looking). Crown. Sept. 2014. 368p. ISBN 9780385347372. $28; ebk. ISBN 9780385347389. CD/downloadable: Penguin Random Audio. SOCIAL SCIENCE/DATA MODELING When it’s not being used to manipulate us, data mining can tell us reams of interesting information about human nature. Rudder plunders sites like Twitter, Facebook, […]

Ann Hood, Jonathan & Jesse Kellerman, Hilary Mantel, & More | Barbara’s Fiction Picks, Sept. 2014, Pt. 3

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Hood, Ann. An Italian Wife. Norton. Sept. 2014. 272p. ISBN 9780393241662. $25.95. LITERARY/HISTORICAL Winner of the Paul Bowles Prize for Short Fiction and the Best American Spiritual Writing Award, among other honors, Hood seems primed to write a multigenerational saga with a quest at its heart. At the turn of the 20th century, Josephine Rimaldi […]

History, Science, & Politics | Nonfiction Previews, Jun. 2014, Pt. 1

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Baime, A.J. The Arsenal of Democracy: FDR, Ford Motor Company, and Their Epic Quest To Arm an America at War. Houghton Harcourt. Jun. 2014. 368p. ISBN 9780547719283. $27; ebk. ISBN 9780547834443. HISTORY As Detroit faces bankruptcy, you’ll want to read this instructive title about its crucial role during World War II, when Edsel Ford defied […]

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