Barbara’s Picks, Aug. 2012, Pt. 2: Kelley Armstrong, Laurie Frankel, Laura Lippman, Jenny Brown

Armstrong, Kelley. Thirteen. Dutton. Aug. 2012. 400p. ISBN 9780525952831. $26.95; CD/Downloadable: Penguin Audio. PARANORMAL THRILLER
Bittersweet news, Otherworld fans: after a dozen books, here’s the grand finale of the series. Savannah Levine has rescued her brother from supernatural medical testing, though he’s not exactly back on his feet, and with supernaturals battling one another‚ and in danger of exposure to the general population‚ she’s dredging up all her strength to summon spells that will keep her world intact. You bet that Otherworld familiars Adam, Paige, Lucas, Jaime, and Hope will be making appearances, along with hellhounds, genetically modified werewolves, and other creepy pleasers. This will be big; with a five-city tour and Comic-Con promotion.

Frankel, Laurie. Good-Bye for Now. Doubleday. Aug. 2012. 228p. ISBN 9780385536189. $25.95; eISBN 9780385536196. POP FICTION
Sam Elliot meets love-of-his-life Meredith at the Internet dating company where they both work, then gets fired when a competitor starts getting all the business. To comfort Meredith when her grandmother dies, Sam draws on all of grandma’s emails, Facebook posts, and Skype to create a computer program that simulates one last conversation between her and Meredith. Hence the couple’s new company, RePose, is born. It helps customers to assuage their grief, but it soon presents some sticky problems of its own. Now there’s a fresh premise, and this novel was the talk ofFrankfurt, selling to over 20 territories. Don’t miss out.

Lippman, Laura. Untitled. Morrow. Aug. 2012. 384p. ISBN 9780061706875. $25.99. THRILLER
Mega-award-winning author Lippman, always a best seller, here offers a standalone novel with a compelling plot: Heloise, a suburban madam, is worried when a man she helped put on death row is released after his sentence is overturned. That the man is her former pimp and the father of her son makes things even worse. The novel is based on a short story, Scratch a Woman, taken from Lippman’s 2008 collection Hardly Knew Her and nominated for both an Edgar and an Anthony. Currently, it’s a popular ebook, which should help with promotion. Note the 150,000-copy first printing and the official September 1 pub date; I’m including here because the book goes on sale August 14.

Brown, Jenny with Gretchen Primack. The Lucky Ones: My Passionate Fight for Farm Animals. Avery: Penguin Group (USA). Aug. 2012. 304p. ISBN 9781583334416. $26. MEMOIR/ANIMAL RIGHTS
Having been comforted by her cat when she lost a leg to bone cancer at age ten, Brown grew up enamored of animals and eventually became concerned about those on farms. Soon she quit her job as a film and TV producer to document awful animal abuses in the Texas stockyards; as Brown emphasizes here, agribusiness treats domesticated animals like products, not living creatures. Brown went on to found the Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary, which has garnered coverage from top venues like the New York Times and Cosmopolitan. Here’s your chance to visit the sanctuary and meet Albie, the three-legged goat, and abandoned Easter duckling Quincy. Go, animals!

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.