Best Sellers

Friday, August 29, 2014

Last of September Titles Before September Arrives

There are a handful of titles that might interest some of you that I want to tell you about before September actually gets here.

Lauren Beukes has another genre blending fantasy-thriller title, Broken Monsters. coming on September 16th. Beukes who gave us The Shining Girls about a time travelling serial killer, now visits a Detroit detective who discovers the body of a half-boy/half deer or rather, half a boy sewn to half a deer. It is violent and dark but some say it is a timely portrait of the death of the American dream.

Jens Lapidus has Life Deluxe coming also on September 16th. This is the last of his Stockholm Noir trilogy. Lapidus is a Swedish defense lawyer so he knows his Swedish crime. This is also a fairly dark and violent book. Someone is trying to knock down the top dog of the Swedish underworld. You can only imagine what happens after that.

Andrew Mayne, a magician and star of an A & E show, has Angel Killer coming on September 23rd. This title was a best seller as a self published ebook. Someone hacks into the FBI's website to post a code disclosing the coordinates of a cemetery where a dead girl's body is seen rising from the grave. Jessica Blackwood was a talented illusionist before leaving that career behind to become an FBI agent. Magic and murder. Sounds interesting.

Another self-published ebook author who has transitioned to a publishing house, Darcie Chan has The Mill River Redemption coming on August 26th - yes - it has already been published but is still on order in our catalog so I'm including it. Her first in the Mill River series,  The Mill River Rescue, was the self published ebook that got her noticed. A mother stipulates in her will that her two estranged daughters must work together to find the key that will open her lock box. Recommended for fans of Maeve Binchy.

Alix Christie is a first time novelist and Gutenberg's Apprentice arrives on September 23rd. For those who enjoy historical fiction, this novel is about Peter Schoeffer who was an apprentice to Johann Gutenberg and the founder of the Frankfurt Book Fair.  Really for those who want to read about this time period and the invention of the printing press. The author stays true to fact and perhaps isn't as much into character development.

Lastly, Lin Enger, a James Michener Award winner, has The High Divide also coming on September 23rd. Another work of historical fiction but this one has much more emotional content and character development.  Gretta Pope awakes one morning in 1886 Minnesota to find her husband, Ulysses, gone with just a brief note saying nothing about the why and the where. Shortly after that, her two boys disappear, leaving to go in search of their father. Gretta has to find her sons and the reason for the leaving. This tale stretches from Minnesota, across the Dakotas and Montana plains. This work is not just a western but the story of a family. It has been highly recommended by all the reviewers who have read it. If you are missing the works of James Michener, try this one. It is suppose to be GOOD.

Next week, we will move to the October releases. I hope you find something you want to read during September.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

More September Titles

There are some interesting titles coming out in September by some lesser known authors.

David Cronenberg is a Canadian move director who specializes in 'body horror' or psychological horror. He has directed two of Robert Pattinson's  latest films. On September 30th he has a debut novel arriving, Consumed. I am always kind of fascinated by these successful people in one field who late in life, decide to become authors. This one sounds kind of like a horror film and I don't suggest reading it if extreme, off color incidents bother you. Two competing photojournalists, Naomi and Nathan, are in some sort of relationship. At least, they meet in hotel rooms when they are in the same city. Both go their separate ways, Nathan to do a story on breast surgery in Budapest and Naomi to focus on a French philosophy professor who has apparently killed and eaten his wife. Strangely enough, their stories are closely intertwined. That should give you a flavor of what you are getting into if you decide you want to read this one.

On September 9th, James Ellroy has Perfidia coming out. This is his first book in a second "L.A. Quartet" for those who read 'The Black Dahlia; The Big Nowhere; L.A. Confidential; and White Jazz). This one actually starts before the first, on December 6, 1941 and the bombing of Pearl Harbor and internment of Japanese Americans. It blends together war, romance and mystery. The story revolves around the brutal murder of a Japanese family on the day BEFORE the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor. He explores the theses of fidelity and betrayal on many levels. If you liked the 1st Quartet - this one will be a must read.

Tedd Moss was the deputy assistant secretary of state in the Bureau of African Affairs when he was attempting to write his first novel, The Golden Hour. The title, which comes out on September 4th, concerns the 100 hours after a coup takes place when diplomacy or military action MIGHT make a difference. It features Judd Ryker, appointed director of the newly formed State Department Crisis Reaction Unit when a coup erupts in Mali.  Ryker races from location to location, not know who to trust or what is REALLY going on. Suspenseful and a quick read according to reviewers.

On September 2nd, Faye Kellerman's next Peter Decker novel, Murder 101, finally arrives. Peter Decker has left L.A. for the upstate New York's Greenbury Police Department. Wanting a slower way of life, he was becoming bored until some Tiffany panels at the town mausoleum were replaced by forgeries AND a college co-ed was found dead.

Lastly for this week, Jussi Adler-Olsen has the next Department Q story, The Marco Effect coming on September 9th. Adler-Olsen is one of those Danish crime writers that have become so popular in this country. In this title, Detective Carl Morck and his colleagues get caught up in a missing persons case that touches on Marco Jameson, a 15 year old teen rebelling against his powerful Gypsy uncle.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

September Titles

I am going to start off this week talking about 2 nonfiction titles. I am not a big nonfiction reader but these two titles have caught my interest.

On September 25, Terry Pratchett, the creator of Discworld, is coming out with a collection of nonfiction essays, A Slip of the Keyboard. This is a man who has stepped out from the shadows in support of some causes to include Alzheimer's research and animal rights. He writes with passion for causes, humor, and humanity about things as varied as mushrooms, banana daiquiris and the writing life. I might have to read this one.

The next nonfiction is written by Tavis Smiley. I heard him speak and was entranced - no surprise as he speaks on television and NPR, but he is very approachable in person. His title, Death of a King: The Real Story of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s Final Year, comes out on September 9th. I had not realized how discouraging that last year must have been for him. He was brushed aside by President Johnson and was being challenged by the press, African American militants and members of the middle class. I believe it will be eye opening.

Robert Jackson Bennett may not be a name you are familiar with but then again, maybe you are. He has won an Edgar Award, the Shirley Jackson Award and a Philip K Dick citation. On September 9th, he has City of Stairs coming which is both high fantasy and suspense. Once a conquering city, Bulikov has become a colonial outpost. The powers that be send Shara Divani to take up a modest post but in actuality, she is a spy sent to investigate the murder of a historian.

Christina Dodd is probably best known for her romance but on September 9th, she definitely is taking a step to suspense with Virtue Falls. Elizabeth Banner has grown up believing that her father murdered her mother when she was only 4. When she comes home to Virtue Falls as an adult, she does some investigating and decides her father was innocent and that her mother was the victim of a serial killer who is still at large.

How I didn't put this on the big name list for September, I don't know but Philippa Gregory has the final entry in the "Cousins' War" series coming on September 9th. The King's Curse has Margaret Pole becoming lady-in-waiting to Katherine of Aragon as she marries her dead husband's brother, Henry VIII. A really popular series with those who read historical fiction.

Deborah Crombie gives us To Dwell in Darkness on September 23rd. This is the latest in the Duncan Kincaid-Gemma James series for those who enjoy mysteries with a British touch. Duncan investigates a lethal bombing at St. Pancras Station.

Lastly, for this time, Julie Lawson Timmer has a debut novel, Five Days Left coming on September 9th. It is a novel about love and loss and has attracted all sorts of raves. Mara, a lawyer, is losing her battle with a fatal disease and plans to say good-bye quickly. Scott, a middle school teacher, has been raising an 8 year old boy whose mother was in prison. The mother is being released and Scott is dreading saying good-bye. Both Mara and Scott have five days left with their loved ones. This one sounds like it might make me cry so I don't know. However one reviewer said that it was "profoundly affecting, memorable and insightful". She also said it made a big impression on her and that she wasn't going to be able to get it out of her head for a really long time. Almost makes me want to try it. How about you?

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

LibraryReads for September

The top 10 titles being released in September according to librarians across the country were announced Monday. There are a few in this list that surprised me. Particularly the top vote getter - not because I had not ordered it but just because......

Top title went to Smoke Gets In Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory by debut author Caitlin Doughty comes out on September 15th. Part memoir, part expose of the death industry and part instruction manual for aspiring morticians - a quirky, humorous in part story for fans of Mary Roach.

The remaining nine in no particular order are:

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel comes on September 9th. I am amazed that this did not get top listing. Every reviewer who has read it, praises it dramatically. People have said things like " This is a beautiful, gripping novel told by a masterful hand." It is dystopian fiction when a strain of the swine flu (called Georgia flu by the way) wipes out 99% of the world's population. The remaining people settle in outposts but the story centers on a troupe of traveling Shakespearean actors that perform at the outposts. There is the feeling that just to survive is not enough and that the apocalypse is a way to reinvent freedom.

Tana French publishes The Secret Place on August 28th (that's almost September). This is the fifth in the Dublin Murder Squad series. In this one the murder squad takes on the world of teenage girls when one comes forward with evidence from a murder. Tension-filled - really makes you look at friendship.

Lauren Oliver has written several very popular teen books but on September 23rd, she comes out with her first adult novel, Rooms. When an estranged family comes back to a home after the father's death, they must learn to deal with the past and move on BUT in on the whole conversation are two ghosts who live in the walls of the old house. Both the living and the dead are haunted by painful truths. Said to be a searing family drama.

Ian McEwan gives us The Children Act on September 9th. Most except this to win a Booker nomination (it will not qualify this year as the long list is already out) so literary fiction lovers give this a try. Judge Fiona Maye is having marriage problems and her husband has moved out because she refused the idea of an open marriage. She concentrates on her work and becomes deeply involved - maybe too involved. A 17 year old boy and his parents are refusing allowing doctor's to give the boy a blood infusion for religious reasons. A poignant tale.

Helen Giltrow has The Distance, her debut, coming on September 9th. A tense thriller about a socialite who is a hidden tech guru in secret. Only one person has ever seen her in her 'secret' persona - and that person needs her for a job that could get them both in trouble or even dead. Everyone has layers, everyone is living some kind of double life, and everyone says that this is an edge of your seat read.

Horrorstor by Grady Hendrix arrives on September 23rd. It takes place in an IKEA type store where things are being damaged at night. 5 young employees are asked to work a dusk to dawn shift to find out what or who is happening. This is a horror story which is laid out like an IKEA catalog. Everyone has praised the inventiveness of the layout and the growth of the characters over the night. One reviewer said "This story is super creepy, has a lot of surprises, is clever and funny, AND left me in deep thought." Sounds like a winner to me.

The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters comes on September 16th. Waters has been short listed for the Booker prize 3 times so perhaps we have another possible nominee here. Her specialty is historical fiction and this one fits the bill. After WWI, many homes lost their husbands and brothers. An impoverished widow, Mrs. Wray, and her 'spinster daughter, Frances are forced to take in lodgers. The arrival of Lilian and Leonard Barber, a lower class couple with marriage problems, shake up the house in unexpected ways. One reviewer says "A love story, a tension-filled crime story, and a beautifully atmospheric portrait of a fascinating time and place, The Paying Guests is Sarah Waters's finest achievement yet."

Kim Harrison's The Witch with No Name which arrives on September 9th is another surprise for me. I think it is unusual for an urban fantasy novel to make the list but I guess there are a lot of people who like it and this is the very last book in her Hollows series so perhaps it is the ending of the series that made it this popular. Rachel Morgan and all her friends face their toughest battle yet.

Lastly, Season of Storms by Susanna Kearsley is being republished on September 2nd. Originally, this was published back in 2001. More of a romance than a suspense, actress Celia Sands takes a role in the modern day, that another Celia Sands (no relation) was suppose to play. Italy, romance and a small amount of suspense.

OK - hopefully there are a few in here for you. I have 3 more on my TBR pile.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Big Names in September

I am starting with a nonfiction title this month because Steve Harvey has been so tremendously popular with Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man that his new one Act Like a Success, Think Like a Success may get the same reaction. This title is coming on September 8th and tries to help readers identify their particular talents and use them well.

Margaret Atwood is coming out with her first collection of short stories since 2006. This one, Stone Mattress: Nine Tales arrives on September 16. Atwood has been very popular with The Handmaid's Tale and Alias Grace among many others and is sure to be popular with those who read literary fiction.

Ken Follett wraps up his "Century" trilogy with Edge of Eternity on September 16. It follows the five entwined families (American, German, Russian, English and Welsh) up through the end of the century. His eye for historical detail is amazing and the plots are always fast moving. Those who have read the first two are sure to want this one.

Walter Mosley gives us another Easy Rawlins mystery with Rose Gold which arrives on September 23. Think Patty Hearst era when a black ex-boxer heads a revolutionary cell, Scorched Earth, that kidnaps the daughter of an arms manufacturer. The FBI asks Easy to get involved.

James Patterson and Michael Ledwidge have another Michael Bennett thriller coming on September 29. Burn has Bennett coming back to New York City to take over the Outreach Squad in Harlem. A call reports well dressed men attending a party in a condemned building and then a charred body is found inside. Fast paced as usual.

Blood on the Water by Anne Perry continues her William Monk series. For those who like British historical mysteries, Perry is a must read. Monk views the explosion of a pleasure boat carrying over 200 people who die. Monk should have handled the investigation but it was turned over to the commissioner of the Metro Police who quickly caught and tried an Egyptian man who is sentenced to die. Monk presents evidence that he was not the one who committed the crime. The investigation is then turned over to Monk but is in horrible disarray. Perry has made the bestseller list with her last 3 Monk titles. Will this one make it too?

We have not heard from Jan Karon for a while and on September 2, she gives us Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good: The New Mitford Novel. Father Tim returns to Mitford after his retirement and vacation in Ireland. He brings and attracts those who are struggling with issues. There hasn't been a Mitford novel since 2005. Let's see how this goes.

Jonathan Kellerman joins his son, Jesse Kellerman to give us The Golem of Hollywood on September 16.
This is still a fast paced thriller but it adds in some mystical incidents dealing with The Golem of Prague (created by a 16th century rabbi to avenge the Jews). Detective Jacob Lev is the new protagonist and he is assigned to a murder in the Hollywood Hills that has left behind only the severed head. He ties this into a serial killer who practices his killing across the country.

Hilary Mantel has won award after award for her Thomas Cromwell series (Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies). On September 30, she gives us some short stories in The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher and Other Stories. While waiting for her completion of the series, you might want to give these a try.

Lee Child has another Jack Reacher novel coming on September 2. Personal has the army tracking Reacher down again because someone is taking shots at the French President. There is only one person who could be doing it and Reacher is the only one who can stop him. Reacher fans rejoice.

Clive Cussler also has The Eye of Heaven coming on September 2. Sam and Remi Fargo uncover a Viking ship preserved in ice and carrying pre-Colombian artifacts from Mexico. As they try to figure out how this could be, they find themselves being chased through the jungles of Central America by all sorts of people up to no good.

Catherine Coulter has another 'Brit in the FBI' titles written with J.T. Ellison coming out on September 30. The Lost Key has FBI Agent Nicolas Drummond and partner Mike Caine investigating a Wall Street stabbing death.

Finally, and perhaps this isn't the biggest name but an interesting idea that puts her on this list, Sophie Hannah. Hannah was approached by Agatha Christie's estate about writing a new Christie mystery. The Monogram Murders arrives on September 9. Hannah has chosen to write a Hercule Poirot novel. A puzzle mystery indeed which starts when a young women interrupts Poirot's supper to tell him she is going to be killed. Sounds interesting to me and I have put it on my list.