Bright Days, Dark Thrills | Fiction Previews, Jul. 2018

Abbott, Jeff. The Three Beths. Grand Central. Jul. 2018. 400p. ISBN 9781538728697. $26; ebk. ISBN 9781538728673. lib. ebk. ISBN 9781538745038. lrg. prnt. Downloadable. THRILLER Odd that teenage Mariah Dunning thinks she spots her vanished mother across a crowded food court; her mom, Beth, has been presumed murdered, with suspicions falling on her husband. What’s odder: […]

Literary Glitter | Fiction Previews, Jul. 2018

Christensen, Kate. The Last Cruise. Doubleday. Jul. 2018. 304p. ISBN 9780385536288. $26.95; ebk. ISBN 9780385536295. Downloadable. LITERARY PEN/Faulkner Award winner Christensen takes us on the final voyage of the 1950s-era ocean liner Queen Isabella, as guests nostalgically enjoy fine dining, retro drinks, and luscious jazz, with both cell phones and children banned. Belowdecks, tensions simmer […]

Memoirs with More | Nonfiction Previews, Jul. 2018

Daley-Ward, Yrsa. The Terrible: A Storyteller’s Memoir. Penguin. Jun. 2018. 224p. ISBN 9780143132622. pap. $16; ebk. ISBN 9780525504535. Downloadable. MEMOIR Born in England of West Indian and West African heritage, actress/model-turned-poet Daley-Ward had a big hit with bone, self-published in 2014 and given a trade-house publication in 2017 that won strong reviews. This memoir addresses […]

LJ Talks to Mira T. Lee | Debut Spotlight

In Mira Lee’s first novel, Everything Here Is Beautiful, the author calls on characters from her short stories, filling out the lives of sisters Miranda and Lucia. Here, Lee discusses crafting these women, her own sibling experiences, and more.

Five Essential Poetry Titles | Poetry Previews, Apr. 2018

Dennis, Carl. Night School. Penguin. Apr. 2018. 112p. ISBN 9780143132356. pap. $20; ebk. ISBN 9780525504337. POETRY The author of plainspoken verse that presents everyday life, then looks beneath the surface to see what’s grinding away beneath, Dennis returns with a substantive 13th collection (after Another Reason) exploring how we grapple with the world through imagination. […]

New Writers To Watch | Fiction Previews, Feb. 2018

Andreasen, Michael. The Sea Beast Takes a Lover: Stories. Dutton. Feb. 2018. 240p. ISBN 9781101986615. $25; ebk. ISBN 9781101986622. Downloadable: Penguin Audio. SHORT STORIES A little sister born without a head turns out to be quite annoying. A lovelorn kraken pulls a ship into the deep. A man longs for his wife even as his […]

Winter with Knausgaard & Ali Smith, Cornwell Revisits Shakespeare, & More | Barbara’s Picks, Jan. 2018

Benjamin, Melanie. The Girls in the Picture. Delacorte. Jan. 2018. 448p. ISBN 9781101886809. $28; ebk. ISBN 9781101886816. CD/downloadable: Random Audio. LITERARY/HISTORICAL FICTION Mary Pickford was full of the firsts: the first to have her name above the marquee, to win Academy Award for Best Actress in a Talkie, and to place her hand- and footprints […]

Worldwide Mystery | Fiction Previews, Jan. 2018

Camilleri, Andrea. The Pyramid of Mud. Penguin. Jan. 2018. 272p. tr. from Italian by Stephen Sartarelli. ISBN 9780143128083. pap. $16; ebk. ISBN 9780698195882. MYSTERY When storms flood a construction site, a man shot in the back is found in one of the huge pipes, effectively a tunnel, that forms part of the site’s water supply […]

Coming of Age in Apartheid-era South Africa | Debut Spotlight

South African–born, Toronto-based first novelist Bianca Marais’s Hum If You Don’t Know the Words tells the absorbing coming-of-age story of nine-year-old Robin Conrad. Living as a young white girl in Apartheid-era South Africa, Robin forms a new family after losing her own.

Cleeves, Muller, & More | Mystery Previews, Aug. 2017

Andrews, Donna. Gone Gull: A Meg Langslow Mystery. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Aug. 2017. 320p. ISBN 9781250078568. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9781466890886. MYSTERY An Agatha, Anthony, and Barry Award winner, Andrews takes us to the Biscuit Mountain Craft Center, where series heroine Meg Langslow is helping out her grandmother for the summer. Vandalism and a dead body […]