Philip Roth Has Died | Book Pulse

Philip Roth has died. He wrote, among other lauded works, American Pastoral  and Portnoy’s Complaint (both from Vintage). The NYT, The Washington Post, NPR, The Guardian, The L.A. Times, and Entertainment Weekly have remembrances. Esquire has a list of Roth’s essential works. The NYT has an appraisal.


Sarah MacLean picks the best romances to read in May for The Washington Post. The paper has reviews of Facts and Fears: Hard Truths from a Life in Intelligence by James R. Clapper, Trey Brown (Viking: Penguin). It has gotten some fast coverage and is soaring on Amazon. Also Brother in Ice by Alicia Kopf: “Written in short bursts, like dispatches from the Arctic, … The table of contents looks like Kopf went down a Wikipedia rabbit hole and ended up with 20 tabs on subjects ranging from British explorer Ernest Shackleton to snow globes.”

The NYT reviews Mirror, Shoulder, Signal by Dorthe Nors (Graywolf: Macmillan): “Nors at her most unassuming and ambitious.” Insane: America’s Criminal Treatment of Mental Illness by Alisa Roth (Basic: Hachette): “a chilling book that argues that American jails and prisons have become de facto warehouses for the mentally ill.”

NPR reviews Nick Drnaso’s Sabrina (Drawn and Quarterly).

Time reviews The Restless Wave: Good Times, Just Causes, Great Fights, and Other Appreciations by John McCain with Mark Salter (S. & S.): “It’s like a book-length subtweet aimed squarely at Trump.”

USA Today reviews Michael Pollan’s How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence (Penguin), giving it 2.5 stars out of four.


Polish author Olga Tokarczuk wins the Man Booker International Prize for Flights, translated by Jennifer Croft (Riverhead: Penguin). The Guardian also has a report.

The Miles Franklin Literary award longlist is out. The award is Australia’s most important literary prize.

Briefly Noted

Reese Witherspoon has started a new audio book club with Audible, Reese’s Book Club x Hello Sunshine on Audible. The first pick will be announced in early June. The focus, according to Paste, quoting Hello Sunshine CEO Sarah Harden is “to bring to life female-centered narratives that are best told in, and created specifically for, audio.”

John Grisham announces his newest book, The Reckoning (Doubleday), sending it soaring on Amazon.

Time lists “22 New Books To Read This Summer.”

Vulture lists “90 Books Every Comedy Fan Should Read.”

Signature has “19 Newly Translated Books to Add to Your Reading List This Summer.”

Time features Rachel Cusk’s Kudos (FSG).

Entertainment Weekly interviews Aimee Agresti, Campaign Widows (Graydon House: Harper).

USA Today interviews Al Roker, Ruthless Tide: The Heroes and Villains of the Johnstown Flood, America’s Astonishing Gilded Age Disaster (William Morrow: Harper).

Shondaland interviews Emma Koenig, Moan: Anonymous Essays on Female Orgasm
(Grand Central: Hachette) and Patricia Williams, Rabbit: A Memoir (Dey Street: Harper).

Time hosts a conversation between Terese Marie Mailhot and Tommy Orange.

Entertainment Weekly has a pictorial inside look at D.B. John’s research for Star of the North (Crown; LJ starred review).

The Atlantic has a story about Sylvia Plath’s college thesis.

PBS NewsHour has a poem for Ramadan.

Michelle Obama posts a childhood photo in support of her forthcoming memoir, Becoming (Crown), boosting it nicely on Amazon.

The Los Angeles Review of Books asks if Motherhood is a genre?

Authors on Air

C.B. Strike, the adaptation of Robert Galbraith/J.K. Rowling’s Cormoran Strike mystery series will air on Cinemax June 1. Entertainment Weekly has a short story on Rowling’s reaction to the show and a behind the scenes video. Here is the trailer:

Stephen King, The Outsider (Scribner: S. & S.), is scheduled for The Late Show with Stephen Colbert tonight.

Isla Fisher, Marge in Charge and the Stolen Treasure, illustrated by Eglantine Ceulemans (Harper) is set for The Talk today.

Ronan Farrow, War on Peace: The End of Diplomacy and the Decline of American Influence (Norton) is scheduled for NPR’s Fresh Air today.

NPR’s Fresh Air featured Angela Garber, Like a Mother:  A Feminist Journey Through the Science and Culture of Pregnancy (Harper Wave), sending it soaring on Amazon.

NPR’s All Things Considered interviews Terrance Hayes, American Sonnets for my Past and Future Assassin (Penguin; LJ starred reviews).

The Hollywood Reporter says the SF comic Analog by Gerry Duggan, David O’Sullivan (Image) is getting adapted.

Diane Setterfield’s new novel Once Upon a River (Atria/Emily Bestler Books: S. & S.; forthcoming Jan 2019), has sold TV rights.

The Great American Read is already having an effect, sending John Irving’s A Prayer for Owen Meany (William Morrow: Harper) skyrocketing on Amazon.

Three new book based film trailers arrive:

Papillon, based, in part, on the book of the same name.

The Little Mermaid, based, in part, on the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale.

Down a Dark Hall, based on the novel of the same name.

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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

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