Three Books Make Waves | Book Pulse

Three Books To Know Today

Thanks to a review in the NYT, Sameen Rushdie’s Indian Cookery by Sameen Rushdie (Picador: Macmillan) has skyrocketed on Amazon, jumping from #2,778,372 to #167. Published in 1988 in the U.K., it is now publishing in the U.S. for the first time. The paper writes: “That cover might suggest a kind of cushy, dated charm, but in her writing, Ms. Rushdie was sharp and ahead of her time as she aimed to dismantle the stereotypes that had shaped outsiders’ perceptions of Indian cuisine for centuries — stereotypes that persist today.” She is Salman Rushdie’s sister and he writes a forward for the book.

Twitter gives To Shake the Sleeping Self: A 14,000-Mile Bike Trip, and One Man’s Quest to Live a Life with No Regrets by Jedidiah Jenkins (Convergent Books: Random) a huge boost. It is likely under the radar for libraries, but as it does not come out until October there is time to get it on order.

After a feature on PBS NewsHour, Portraits of Resilience by Daniel Jackson, David A. Karp (MIT), also goes skyrocketing on Amazon. It was published last year, bought largely by academic libraries.


The NYT 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): “A book about a blurry subject, it is clear-eyed and assured.” Slate has a story too. Love That Bunch (Drawn and Quarterly: Macmillan), is a new collection showcasing Aline Kominsky-Crumb’s work which was “nakedly self-revealing and self-obsessed years ahead of the rest of the culture … her messy self-examinations seem even more relevant today.” Simon Winchester’s The Perfectionists: How Precision Engineers Created the Modern World (Harper; LJ starred review): “celebrates the unsung breed of engineers who through the ages have designed ever more creative and intricate machines.” Alan Lightman reviews the audio edition of The Order of Time by Carlo Rovelli (Penguin Audio), read by Benedict Cumberbatch, deciding he “possesses a deep and rich voice and reads the text in a precise but unhurried manner, with the result that we feel as if we are getting an exposition by an erudite but gentle teacher.” Also, Dave Itzkoff’s, Robin (Holt: Macmillan; LJ starred review): “undertaken in [a] generous, appreciative spirit.”

The Washington Post reviews Captive Audience: On Love and Reality TV by Lucas Mann (Vintage: Random), “a multifaceted defense, part scholarship, part memoir” about reality TV. Ron Charles reviews Kevin Powers’s A Shout in the Ruins (Little, Brown; LJ starred review), calling it “overwrought” and writing, “Powers has curdled the gothic tradition into a thick paste and spread it all over these pages.” The paper also reviews Spring by Karl Ove Knausgaard (Penguin), deciding that of his seasonal works, it “may prove the best of the lot … Knausgaard’s assets are on full display, including his precise writing style and his unerring sense of detail.”

USA Today reviews The Favorite Sister by Jessica Knoll (S. & S.), giving it 3 out of 4 stars: “a binge-worthy beach read complete with the provocative twists and turns of a whodunit.” Entertainment Weekly has a profile of Knoll.

Briefly Noted

Pascale Petit’s Mama Amazonica (Bloodaxe Books) wins the Ondaatje prize “for books that best evoke the spirit of a place,” reports The Guardian.

Netflix is hiring Guillermo del Toro to create an “original horror anthology series” for the streaming service, according to Deadline Hollywood. Del Toro will both write and direct some episodes and “hand-pick a team of top horror writers and new filmmakers to bring his selection of stories to life.”

Entertainment Weekly reports that Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles world will get an illustrated guide, Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles An Alphabettery by Becket, Anne Rice (Anchor: Random).

BuzzFeed gets a jump on the Summer Reading lists, with “30 Summer Books to Get Excited About.”

Esquire lists the “Best Books of 2018 (So Far).”

Signature has a list of “11 Suspenseful Thrillers to Listen to on Audio.”

Bustle lists 9 True Crime Books that do not involve murder.

Entertainment Weekly reveals the cover and publishes an excerpt of Marie Lu’s Wildcard ( G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers). The magazine also has an excerpt from Emily Giffin’s All We Ever Wanted (Ballantine: Random).

Entertainment Weekly interviews Rochelle B. Weinstein, Somebody’s Daughter (Lake Union).

The Guardian podcast features Madeline Miller, Circe (Little, Brown). The paper also interviews Instapoet Hera Lindsay Bird.

Salon interviews Randi Zuckerberg, Pick Three: You Can Have It All (Just Not Every Day) (Dey Street: Harper).

The Atlantic interviews Raj Raghunathan, If You’re So Smart, Why Aren’t You Happy? (Portfolio: Penguin).

Signature has an essay by Sally Franson, A Lady’s Guide to Selling Out (Dial Press: Random).

Authors on Air

NPR’s Fresh Air featured Dave Itzkoff, Robin (Holt: Macmillan; LJ starred review).

PBS NewsHour spotlights Jason Reynolds’s graduation advice.

1A features Brothers of the Gun: A Memoir of the Syrian War by Marwan Hisham and Molly Crabapple (One World: Random; LJ starred review). BuzzFeed has an excerpt.

The Atlantic is glowing over Deadpool 2, writing it “is even better than the original.”

Deadline Hollywood reports that Jake Bernstein’s Secrecy World: Inside the Panama Papers Investigation of Illicit Money Networks and the Global Elite (Picador: Macmillan) is currently a hot ticket as Gary Oldman, MerylStreep and Antonio Banderas are in conversations to star in a feature directed by Steven Soderbergh.

The Sundance TV series Hap and Leonard, based on the books by Joe R. Lansdale, has been canceled. So has Lucifer, based on the comic series by Neil Gaiman, Sam Kieth, and Mike Dringenberg. Esquire has a full list of what has been renewed, cancelled, and newly ordered.

Dave Itzkoff, Robin (Holt: Macmillan; LJ starred review) will be on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.

Ronan Farrow, War on Peace: The End of Diplomacy and the Decline of American Influence (W.W. Norton), will be on Late Night with Seth Meyers.

Gayle King, Note to Self: Inspiring Words From Inspiring People (S. & S.), will be on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah.

Mark Bittman, How to Grill Everything: Simple Recipes for Great Flame-Cooked Food (HMH) will be on Live with Kelly and Ryan.

A teaser trailers is out for George R.R. Martin’s Nightflyers.

There is one as well for Deadly Class, based on the comics by Rick Remender and Wesley Craig

I Feel Bad has a trailer too. It is based on Orli Auslander’s I Feel Bad: All Day. Every Day. About Everything (Blue Rider: Penguin).

The Passage gets its full trailer.

CLICK HERE to receive daily Book Pulse alerts in your inbox

SELF-eLearn More
SELF-e is an innovative collaboration between Library Journal and BiblioBoard® that enables authors and libraries to work together and expose notable self-published ebooks to voracious readers looking to discover something new. Finally, a simple and effective way to catalog and provide access to ebooks by local authors and build a community around indie writing!
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

Comment Policy:
  1. Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  2. Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  3. Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  4. Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media, per our Terms of Use.

We are not able to monitor every comment that comes through (though some comments with links to multiple URLs are held for spam-check moderation by the system). If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.

We accept clean XHTML in comments, but don't overdo it and please limit the number of links submitted in your comment. For more info, see the full Terms of Use.

Speak Your Mind