A Cain Kickback, Patterson in Paris, & the Art of the Thriller | Fiction Previews, Jan. 2016, Pt. 4

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Abbott, Jeff. The First Order. Grand Central. Jan. 2016. 480p. ISBN 9780316268424. $26; ebk. ISBN 9781455558407. lib. ebk. ISBN 9781455591855. Downloadable: Hachette Audio. THRILLER Three-time Edgar Award nominee Abbott returns with the fifth in his high-octane, newly formatted Sam Capra series. No word on plot yet, but this book is being positioned as a breakout; […]

Five Key Literary/Historical Debut Novels | Fiction Previews, Jan. 2016, Pt. 1

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Brown, Taylor. Fallen Land. St. Martin’s. Jan. 2016. 288p. ISBN 9781250077974. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9781466893078. LITERARY/HISTORICAL Montana Prize winner Brown has published short fiction in venues like the Baltimore Review and  storySouth but makes the leap to full-blown novelist with a work set in Georgia in the final years of the Civil War. Callum, a […]

Five Essential Thrillers | Fiction Previews, Dec. 2015, Pt. 2

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Greaney, Mark. Tom Clancy Commander-in-Chief. Putnam. Dec. 2015. 688p. ISBN 9780399176760. $29.95; ebk. ISBN 9780698410619. CD/downloadable: Penguin Audio. SUSPENSE Coauthor of three No. 1 best sellers with Tom Clancy and sole author of the No. 1 best seller Tom Clancy Full Force and Effect, Greaney gives Jack Ryan more headaches in this latest thriller. Actually, […]

Bagshawe Gets Reckless, Donaldson Does Novellas, Sandford Goes SF, & More | Fiction Previews, Oct. 2015, Pt. 4

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Bagshawe, Tilly. Sidney Sheldon’s Reckless: A Tracy Whitney Novel. Morrow. Oct. 2015. 400p. ISBN 9780062304056. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062304070. THRILLER New York Times best-selling author Bagshawe has done a half-dozen Sidney Sheldon novels, including Sidney Sheldon’s Chasing Tomorrow, which picked up powerhouse heroine Tracy Whitney from 1985’s If Tomorrow Comes. Here, Tracy is back, having […]

Eight Essential Memoirs from Barrymore, Cisneros, Fraser, & More | Nonfiction Previews, Oct. 2015, Pt. 4

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Barrymore, Drew. Wildflower. Dutton. Oct. 2015. 320p. ISBN 9781101983799. $28; ebk. ISBN 9781101983805. CD/downloadable: Penguin Audio. MEMOIR While 1990’s Little Girl Lost details Barrymore’s drug and alcohol abuse as a very young actress, this book covers the durable actress’s life since age 14, when she found herself living on her own. How it’s all come […]

Best Seller Diffenbaugh, Nobel Prize Winner Modiano, & More | Barbara’s Fiction Picks, Sept. 2015, Pt. 4

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Diffenbaugh, Vanessa. We Never Asked for Wings. Ballantine. Aug. 2015. 320p. ISBN 9780553392319. $27; ebk. ISBN 9780553392326. CD: Random Audio. LITERARY/FAMILY LIFE Everyone who loves Diffenbaugh’s The Language of Flowers—and that’s plenty of people, as it was a New York Times best seller—knows that she grapples forthrightly with social issues. Here, Letty Espinosa lives in […]

Reed Farrel Coleman, Louise Penny, Anne Perry, & More | Mystery Previews, Sept. 2015, Pt. 3

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Beaton, M.C. Dishing the Dirt: An Agatha Raisin Mystery. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Sept. 2015. 304p. ISBN 9781250057426. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9781466861183. MYSTERY New York Times best-selling sleuth Agatha Raisin is used to thwarting murderers, but in her latest case she’s the suspect. New-in-town therapist Jill Davent had snickered about Agatha’s humble origins, pursued her ex-husband, […]

Jan Karon, Jojo Moyes, Nicholas Sparks, & More | Pop Fiction Previews, Sept. 2015, Pt. 3

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Dallas, Sandra. The Last Midwife. St. Martin’s. Sept. 2015. 336p. ISBN 9781250074461. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9781466886148. HISTORICAL Dallas, a New York Times best-selling author, follows up A Quilt for Christmas with another historical. Gracy Brookens, the only midwife in a small 1880s Colorado mining town, has delivered hundreds of babies but now has been accused […]

Best-Selling Thrillers from Jussi Adler-Olsen to Kathy Reichs | Fiction Previews, Sept. 2015, Pt. 2

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Adler-Olsen, Jussi. The Hanging Girl. Dutton. Sept. 2015. 432p. ISBN 9780525954941. $28. CD: Penguin Audio. THILLER In the sixth Department Q thriller (after The Marco Effect), a cold case involving a 17-year-old girl found hanging in a tree leads Det. Carl Mørck and his assistants, Assad and Rose, to a sun-worshipping cult on the remote […]

Final Summer Sweep: Louis de Bernières, Ernest Cline, & More

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This newsletter opens coverage of September titles, before you even have a chance to shimmy into your bathing suit and head to the pool, and it’s the last chance to cite a few big summer titles that have come to my attention late. Note, for instance, Louis de Bernières’s The Dust That Falls from Dreams […]