Honoring the Work of Tom Wolfe | Book Pulse

Remembering Tom Wolfe

Author Tom Wolfe, winner of the National Book Award, has died. He wrote Bonfire of the Vanities, The Right Stuff, and The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test among other works. He was a pioneer of New Journalism, a form of narrative nonfiction he helped invent. The NYT daily reviewer Dwight Garner writes an appraisal and the paper provides a reading guide. There is also a report on Wolfe’s noted sartorial style.

Ron Charles of The Washington Post writes “How Tom Wolfe saved American fiction” and offers a video tribute.

Among other coverage, there are pieces in USA Today, the Los Angeles Times, and The Guardian. Entertainment Weekly has two reports, along with a feature about Wolfe’s “most stylish suits.” Vanity Fair also has dual coverage as does Vogue (here and here). PBS NewsHour has two reports as well. NPR has three. Esquire has a list of Wolf’s five essential books.


The NYT reviews When Einstein Walked with Gödel: Excursions to the Edge of Thought by Jim Holt (FSG: Macmillan): “a bouquet of defiantly loose strands.” Also a dual review of Amy Bloom’s White Houses (Random; LJ starred review) and Undiscovered Country: A Novel Inspired by the Lives of Eleanor Roosevelt and Lorena Hickok by Kelly O’Connor McNees (Pegasus: Norton). Of Rocket Men: The Daring Odyssey of Apollo 8 and the Astronauts Who Made Man’s First Journey to the Moon by Robert Kurson (Random; LJ starred review), “a riveting introduction to the flight.” Also, Things That Make White People Uncomfortable by Michael Bennett, Dave Zirin (Haymarket): “This book is the necessary prelude to the serious work of Bennett’s life, which will take place once he’s done with football.”

NPR reviews Fuminori Nakamura’s Cult X, translated by Kalau Almony (Soho Crime: Random): “you’ll think about Nakamura’s questions long after you’ve closed his book’s covers. He uses the conventions of a genre to prop up a tent for big ideas about groupthink and individual responsibility.” Also A View of the Empire at Sunset by Caryl Phillips (FSG: Macmillan): “a lush exploration of the costs of colonialism, the limited possibilities for non-conformist women, and egregious power imbalances between genders and races.”

The Atlantic reviews That Kind of Mother by Rumaan Alam (Ecco), writing “Alam … treads complicated territory with a deft hand. In doing so, he renders an intricate, sometimes uncomfortable family portrait.”

Briefly Noted

Using new technology, researchers have revealed two additional pages of Anne Frank’s diary. The NYT reports she had covered up the pages by pasting brown paper over them.

Three Percent announces the Best Translated Book Awards finalists in fiction and poetry.

LitHub has the list of the O. Henry Prize Stories for 2018. Fiona McFarlane, Ottessa Moshfegh, and Elizabeth Tallent made up the prize jury. The stories will be published in The O. Henry Prize Stories 2018, edited by Laura Furman (Anchor: Random).

Esquire picks “20 Smart Books … To Read at the Beach This Summer.”

The NYT offers “3 Books to Help You Understand Why Moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem Prompted Protests.”

Michael Dirda surveys his TBR pile for The Washington Post.

Electric Lit has a feature on Zora Neale Hurston and Barracoon: The Story of the Last “Black Cargo(Amistad: Harper).

Bustle features Jessica Knoll, The Favorite Sister (S. & S.).

Entertainment Weekly reports that Tan France, from Netflix’s Queer Eye, will publish a memoir in 2019. No title or ordering information as of yet.

Salon interviews Stacy Horn, Damnation Island: Poor, Sick, Mad, and Criminal in 19th-Century New York (Algonquin: Workman).

Shondaland interviews Raquel Salas Rivera, Lo terciario/The Tertiary (Timeless, Infinite Light) and has an excerpt of  Well, That Escalated Quickly: Memoirs and Mistakes of an Accidental Activist by Franchesca Ramsey (Grand Central).

nprED interviews Sarah-Jayne Blakemore, Inventing Ourselves, The Secret Life of the Teenage Brain (PublicAffairs: Hachette).

Electric Lit interviews Aja Gabel, The Ensemble (Riverhead: Penguin; LJ starred review).

Austin Channing Brown, I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness
(Convergent: Random; LJ starred review) tracks her opening day sales on Twitter, the book is soaring on Amazon. Signature has an interview.

Romance Writers of American is considering ceasing their Golden Heart Award, a contest recognizing unpublished authors that offers feedback from editors and agents.

Penzler Publishers is starting a new imprint, American Mystery Classics, “devoted to print editions of America’s greatest writers of the Golden Age of detective fiction.”

Authors on Air

Eater reports that Molly Yeh, Molly on the Range: Recipes and Stories from An Unlikely Life on a Farm (Rodale: Macmillan), will get a series on Food Network starting June 24.

The NYT reviews On Chesil Beach, based on the novel by Ian McEwan (who wrote the screenplay): “It’s a good movie. The book is something more — close to perfect, I would say — but since both incarnations emphasize the importance of tolerating human fallibility, I won’t make too much of the discrepancy.”

BookRiot starts season 2 of their Recommended podcast with interviews with Rumaan Alam and Seanan McGuire.

Interview has a story on How To Talk to Girls at Parties, based on the short story by Neil Gaiman.

Michael Pollan, How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence (Penguin), featured on NPR’s Fresh Air yesterday.

Chrissy Metz, This Is Me: Loving the Person You Are Today (Dey Street: Harper), will be on The Tonight Show.

Queen Sugar gets a trailer:

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Neal Wyatt About Neal Wyatt

Neal Wyatt is LJ's reader's advisory columnist. She writes The Reader's Shelf, RA Crossroads, Book Pulse, and Wyatt's World columns. She is currently revising The Readers' Advisory Guide to Genre Fiction, 3d ed. (ALA Editions, 2018). Contact her at nwyatt@mediasourceinc.com.

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