This Just In: Berry and Joel Surprise Us

What you’ll be reading in the early months of summer….Steve Berry’s The Jefferson Key (Ballantine. May 2011. 448p. ISBN 9780345505514. $26.) was originally scheduled for the fall season, and I would have been writing about it in the next few weeks. But there’s been a change of plans. The latest Cotton Malone thriller has been moved way up to May (with a release date of May 17) to get it out in time for Father’s Day. Here, Malone sets out to stop the assassination of President Danny Daniels, planned by a group deeply rooted in American history. He just needs to find a document protected by a code Thomas Jefferson himself secured. Malone’s sixth adventure is his first set in America and will likely be another New York Times best seller; his books have been sold to 50 copies. Order multiples now.
And what you won’t be reading, now or ever‚Ķ.Back in November 2010, I reported that Billy Joel would be releasing a memoir in May, with a one-day laydown on April 19. Well, no more. HarperCollins has just announced that Joel has canceled his memoir, having discovered in the writing that he was not interested in reconsidering the past after all. But he had turned in a completed manuscript, which makes me wonder. It wasn’t what the publisher wanted? He didn’t want to come clean on certain aspects of the past? Whatever, in seems that in terms of readability and refreshing forthrightness Keith Richards’s Life has set a high bar.

Barbara Hoffert About Barbara Hoffert

Barbara Hoffert (, @BarbaraHoffert on Twitter) is Editor, LJ Prepub Alert; past chair of the Materials Selection Committee of the RUSA (Reference and User Services Assn.) division of the American Library Association; and past president, treasurer, and awards chair of the National Book Critics Circle.