14 Thrillers from Atkins to Toyne | Fiction Previews, Jul. 2017, Pt. 1

Atkins, Ace. The Fallen. Putnam. Jul. 2017. 384p. ISBN 9780399576713. $27; ebk. ISBN 9780399576737. lrg. prnt. THRILLER A former army ranger in Iraq and Afghanistan, County Sheriff Quinn Colson suspects that the robbers conducting precision raids on banks in and around his Mississippi base are themselves former rangers. Seventh in an Edgar-nominated series that sells […]

Beattie, Gabaldon, Gay, Sullivan, & More | Barbara’s Picks, Jun. 2017, Pt. 3

Beattie, Ann. The Accomplished Guest: Stories. Scribner. Jun. 2017. 224p. ISBN 9781501111389. $25; ebk. ISBN 9781501111402. SHORT STORIES Since her 1976 publishing debut with the story collection Distortions and the novel Chilly Scenes of Winter, Beattie has worked in both genres, but her gifts really belong to short fiction. Here’s her 11th story collection, following […]

Ford, Murakami, Shreve, & More | Barbara’s Picks, May 2017, Pt. 2

Bouman, Tom. Darling Cory: A Henry Farrell Novel. Norton. May 2017. 320p. ISBN 9780393249644. $NA. MYSTERY Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Mystery/Thriller and the Edgar Award for Best First Novel, as well as LibraryReads honors and a John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger, Bouman’s Dry Bones in the Valley featured a rural […]

Making History | Nonfiction Previews, May 2017, Pt. 2

Allison, Graham. Destined for War: America, China, and Thucydides’s Trap. Houghton Harcourt. May 2017. 368p. ISBN 9780544935273. $28; ebk. ISBN 9780544935334. POLITICAL SCIENCE/HISTORY Founding dean of Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, who has served in both the Reagan and the Clinton administrations and twice won the Pentagon’s highest civilian award, Allison coined the term the […]

Literature, Music, TV | Arts Previews, Apr. 2017, Pt. 4

Bloom, Harold. Falstaff: Give Me Life. Scribner. Apr. 2017. 176p. ISBN 9781501164132. $22; ebk. ISBN 9781501164156. LITERATURE Distinguished critic Bloom, known especially for his Shakespeare scholarship, shows us why Falstaff—central to the three Henry plays—is considered Shakespeare’s greatest comic character. As Bloom explains, readers experience Falstaff differently as they move through life, which clarifies how […]

Q&A: Alexandra Horowitz, Author of Being a Dog

Conducting research and learning how to rely on her own sense of smell, Alexander Horowitz took a nosedive into the canine domain to ­understand a dog’s point of view in her latest book, Being a Dog.

Books for Our Times | Nonfiction Previews, Apr. 2017, Pt. 1

Douthat, Ross. To Change the Church: Pope Francis and the Future of Catholicism. S. & S. Apr. 2017. 224p. ISBN 9781501146923. $26; ebk. ISBN 9781501146947. RELIGION As conservative New York Times columnist Douthat clarifies, Pope Francis’s stewardship as 266th pope of the Roman Catholic Church is not without controversy. His raising issues like communion for […]

Hot-Button Literary Fiction | Fiction Previews, Mar. 2017, Pt. 1

Atogun, Odafe. Taduno’s Song. Pantheon. Mar. 2017. 240p. ISBN 9781101871454. $24.95; ebk. ISBN 9781101871461. Downloadable: Random Audio. LITERARY/CULTURAL HERITAGE When Nigerian musician Taduno returns home from exile, he finds himself unrecognized in an unrecognizable land and learns that his girlfriend has been abducted by government agents. He faces a tough choice: to battle the powers […]

Award-Worthy Fiction | Fiction Previews, Feb. 2017, Pt. 1

Danielewski, Mark Z. The Familiar. Vol. 4: Hades. Pantheon. Feb. 2017. 880p. ISBN 9780375715006. pap. $26.95. LITERARY/FANTASY One Rainy Day in May, the first volume of National Book Award finalist Danielewski’s magnum opus, The Familiar, was published in 2015 and quickly hit the New York Times best sellers list, rising to No. 5. The entire […]

Barron, Jones, Rankin, & More | Mystery Previews, Jan. 2017, Pt. 3

Barron, Stephanie. Jane and the Waterloo Map. Soho Crime. Jan. 2017. NAp. ISBN 9781616957995. pap. $16.95; ebk. ISBN 9781616954260. MYSTERY Next in the articulate and lovingly researched mystery series starring Jane Austen, begun in 1996 with the publication of Jane and the Unpleasantness at Scargrave Manor, this mystery opens in November 1815 with Jane’s banker […]