Shelf Awareness for Tuesday, May 23, 2017


Flatiron Books: Oliver Loving by Stefan Merrill Block

Scholastic Press: All the Crooked Saints by Maggie Stiefvater

Riverhead Books: My Absolute Darling by Gabriel Tallent

Barron's Educational Series: Dear Dinosaur: With Real Letters to Read! by Chae Strathie, illustrated by Nicola O'Byrne

Timber Press: Saving Tarboo Creek: One Family's Quest to Heal the Land by Scott Freeman

News

For Sale: Two Sisters Bookery, Wilmington, N.C.

Barbara Galvin, owner of Two Sisters Bookery, Wilmington, N.C., has decided to retire and is putting the bookshop up for sale. In a note to friends and customers posted on the store's Facebook page yesterday, Galvin wrote: "Don't be alarmed... I'm the fourth owner over 40 years, so I'm confident the tradition of our Wilmington Independent Bookseller will continue. I thank you for all your support and loyalty over the years. Your visits in person and comments on Facebook have meant so very much to me. It was difficult to make this decision, however, I am looking forward to new adventures as they say and lots of time for reading! I may even offer some time as an employee to the new owner.... In the meantime, I'll be behind the counter most days and look forward to seeing you."

For more information, contact Joan Loch, Momentum Companies, at 732-691-7834;  joanloch@momentumprojects.com.


Conari Press: Swimming with Elephants: My Unexpected Pilgrimage from Physician to Healer by Sarah Bamford Seidelmann


Post Hill Press Creates Bombardier Books Imprint

Founded in 2013 as a publisher of pop culture, business, self-help, health, current events, Christian and conservative political books, Post Hill Press has created Bombardier Books, an imprint that will focus on conservative nonfiction and eventually publish most of Post Hill's political titles. Bombardier will also publish books for the military market in partnership with American Military News, an online community for service members and veterans.

Bombardier Books will be led by David S. Bernstein, who is joining the imprint as associate publisher. He is and will continue as publisher and COO of Liberty Island Media and has been an editor at Wiley and the Free Press. He was founding editor of Diversity & Division, a political journal, and was co-founder of iConnect.com.

Titles to be published under the Bombardier label include Confessions of an Islamophobe by Robert Spencer, The Case Against BDS by Alan Dershowitz, Human Wrongs by Anne Bayefsky, Embrace the Suck by Austin Bay and The Most Scandalous President in History by Matt Margolis.


Avery Publishing Group: The End of Alzheimer's: The First Program to Prevent and Reverse Cognitive Decline by Dale Bredesen


Obituary Note: Beatrice Trum Hunter

Beatrice Trum Hunter, author of The Natural Foods Cookbook, "heralded as the nation's first healthful natural foods cookbook," died last Wednesday, the New York Times reported. She was 98.

"Inspired in high school by a book [100,000,000 Guinea Pigs by Arthur Kallet and Frederick J. Schlink] that described American consumers as unwitting guinea pigs for the food, pharmaceutical and cosmetics industries, Mrs. Hunter became an autodidactic apostle of whole grains, honey and vegetable oils as substitutes for refined flours, sugars and animal fats," the Times wrote.

Hunter published The Natural Foods Cookbook in 1961, and followed it with 37 other books, including Gardening Without Poisons and Our Toxic Legacy: How Lead, Mercury, Arsenic, and Cadmium Harm Our Health. She was also food editor of Consumers' Research Bulletin magazine and for a short time had a nutrition show on WGBH called "Beatrice Trum Hunter's Natural Foods."


Soho Teen: No Saints in Kansas by Amy Brashear


BookExpo 2017: Adult Editors' Buzz Panel

With BookExpo 2017 beginning next week at the Javits Center in New York City, Shelf Awareness is taking a look at one of the show's signature events. Chosen by three committees of booksellers, librarians and publishing professionals, the annual Editors' Buzz panels provide a glimpse of eagerly anticipated books coming out in the second half of 2017 and early 2018. Today's list features the six titles selected for the Adult Editors' Buzz Panel, along with comments from editors and booksellers.

On August 22, Irish author Liz Nugent will make her American debut with the publication of Unraveling Oliver, originally released abroad in 2014. It is the story of Oliver Ryan, who writes and illustrates children's books with his wife, Alice. By all appearances, Oliver is a successful, charming man, and his and Alice's marriage is a happy, fulfilling and often enviable one. One night that facade abruptly shatters when Oliver hits Alice and beats her so savagely she falls into a coma. Those who thought they knew the couple are forced to try to make sense of how something so shocking and horrible could have happened, and the ensuing examination of Oliver's life, told from a variety of viewpoints and perspectives, exposes a truth darker and more sinister than they could have imagined.

Gallery Books senior editor Jackie Cantor said she was hooked on Unraveling Oliver the minute she read the first line, as Oliver dispassionately reflects that he "expected more of a reaction" the first time he hit his wife. Cantor likened the novel to Patricia Highsmith's The Talented Mr. Ripley, for its "dark look at how a sociopath makes his way in the world," and Lionel Shriver's We Need to Talk About Kevin, about a mother's relationship with her "irredeemable" son, adding that her favorite thing about Unraveling Oliver was the way Nugent creates such a compassionate, human portrait of a truly terrible character. Said Cantor: "As soon as I finished it, I knew it was something I wanted to publish." The book appears August 22.

In Stay with Me, the debut novel from Nigerian writer Ayobami Adebayo, Yejide and Akin are a young married couple living in Nigeria in the 1980s. They met and fell in love at university, and though they both agreed that polygamy wasn't right for them, it's been four years since they got married and Yejide still hasn't been able to get pregnant. Facing mounting pressure from Akin's family, Yejide has gone to increasingly elaborate lengths to get pregnant, including visits to fertility doctors and the use of folk remedies. One day she is introduced to a woman whom she is told is her husband's new second wife. Consumed by anger and jealousy, desperate to save her marriage, Yejide resolves to get pregnant, whatever the cost.

Abby Fennewald, director of marketing and publicity at BookPeople in Austin, Tex., said that Yejide and Akin's struggles with love and identity make for a "beautiful and compelling story" that fully explores the many, complicated layers of family life and what happens when a person's wants collide with society's demands. "My heart was breaking over and over for Yejide, and the ending truly caught me by surprise," said Fennewald. "I can't wait to keep reading books by Ayobami Adebayo." Stay with Me will be published by Knopf on August 22.

Arriving from Riverhead on August 29, My Absolute Darling marks the debut of writer Gabriel Tallent and tells the story of 14-year-old Turtle Alveston, who finds refuge from her isolated home life and dangerous father by wandering the rugged landscape of the northern California coast. At school, she refuses to make a connection with anyone, until she meets a high school boy named Jacob. Through her friendship with Jacob, Turtle is exposed to a different way of life, one that is happy, safe and not shut away from the world at large. Gradually she realizes that in order to protect herself, she must escape from her father and create a new life.

"This is the most difficult and best book I've read in a very long time," said Anne Holman, co-owner of the King's English Bookshop in Salt Lake City, Utah. "Everything about this story is lodged in my heart forever: the people, the action, the Mendocino countryside, and especially Turtle [and] her ability to survive the worst that life has to offer and still get up every morning and hope that something will be different."

Brendan Mathews's debut, The World of Tomorrow, opens in June of 1939, just months before World War II breaks out in Europe, as two brothers flee from Ireland to New York City after stealing a huge amount of money from the Irish Republican Army. Their names are Francis and Michael Dempsey, and they hope to hide out at the home of their brother Martin and his wife, Rosemary. Over the coming days, the Dempsey brothers explore prewar New York from Hell's Kitchen to Harlem, encountering mob bosses, artists, jazz musicians and more, all while an assassin hired by the IRA attempts to track them down. Though they hope for a better future, another war is imminent and there is danger at every turn.

Sarah Bagby, co-owner of Watermark Books & Cafe in Wichita, Kan., called The World of Tomorrow a "different kind of big, rich 'New York City' novel." She praised Mathews's playful language, the novel's multi-faceted and unpredictable story, and its flawed, compelling and "all-too-human" characters. The World of Tomorrow will be out September 5 from Little, Brown.

Coming January 9, 2018, from Putnam is Chloe Benjamin's second novel, The Immortalists. In 1969, an itinerant psychic arrives in Manhattan's Lower East Side claiming to be able to tell people the exact day they'll die. Four siblings, Simon, Klara, Daniel and Varya, sneak out together to see the psychic, and what they learn that night will influence them for the rest of their lives. The novel follows the four Gold children over the next 50 years as they branch out in adulthood and contend with the notions of free will and fate: one heads to San Francisco in the 1980s, another becomes a magician in Las Vegas, a third joins the army after 9/11, and the last pursues the dream of immortality through medical research.

According to Daniel Goldin, owner of Boswell Book Company in Milwaukee, Wis., readers will "likely fall in love with the Gold family and Chloe Benjamin's novel," and though each of the book's four sections has its own feel, they all come together into a seamless whole. He called The Immortalists a "whip-smart and unexpectedly philosophical story of fate, faith and family."

Rounding out today's list is A.J. Finn's debut thriller, The Woman in the Window, out January 23, 2018, from Morrow. Anna Fox is a recluse. She lives by herself in New York City, and though she hardly ever goes outside, she keeps a keen eye on the goings-on around her. After a married couple with a teenage son moves in across the street, Anna begins observing them too. One night while looking across the street, she sees something so shocking she can't believe it's real, and as she continues to spy on her neighbors, a Hitchcockian descent into paranoia and madness ensues.

"I have never had so much fun being submerged in a world of fear and suspense," said Luisa Smith, director of buying for Book Passage in Corte Madera, San Francisco and Sausalito, Calif. The book will appeal to "fans of both classic noirs and contemporary thrillers," and more than just a thrilling read, The Woman in the Window features writing that is "perfectly paced throughout, allowing the host of unforgettable characters space to draw us even deeper into this unrelenting mystery." --Alex Mutter


She Writes Press: Things Unsaid by Diana Y. Paul


Notes

Image of the Day: YA Fun at Trident

Trident Booksellers & Café, Boston, Mass., hosted a group of YA authors last week. The reading and conversation, led by events coordinator (and author of Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue) Mackenzi Van Engelenhoven (far right), included (l.-r.) Emery Lord (The Names They Gave Us), Ashley Herring Blake (How to Make a Wish) and Katie Cotugno (Fireworks). 


Shelf Awareness Sign-up Giveaway: Without Merit by Colleen Hoover


Jeffrey Tambor, Skylight Books & 'Watching People Browse'

Jeffrey Tambor, actor, author (Are You Anybody?: A Memoir) and an investor in Skylight Books, Los Angeles, Calif. is this week's "By the Book" guest in the New York Times Sunday Book Review. Our favorite from the q&a:

As part owner of a bookstore in Los Angeles, what's your favorite part of the book business? Your least favorite? Which section of the bookstore do you frequent most often?

Full disclosure: I now live in New York, so I haven't been able to visit the store in person as much as I would like--but I still have "bragging rights." Owning a bookstore was right up there with acting in life goals, but other than swaggering around the store, I'm not much use. The manager and staff are devoted and steeped in reading and literature. I love standing in the aisles and watching people browse, especially the younger crowd--the millennials, Xers and Yers are off their equipment and opting for paper, I'm here to tell you! And my very favorite is the Skylight readings, where writers come and share from their books. (Did I mention that I will be doing this in May--can you say "bucket list"?) We have had authors from all fields--and one can even hear these on iTunes. But the power of an author standing at a podium opening the pages of their book and reading to a live audience in a bookstore--very, very powerful. Yep, it's theater. Different venues--same goal--as E. M. Forster wrote: 'Connect!... Only connect.' " 

By the way, Tambor will make an appearance at Skylight tomorrow evening, at 7:30 p.m., to launch his book. See Tambor's hilarious book trailer, in which his children interview him talk show-style.


Lerner to Distribute Lantana Publishing

Effective in August, Lerner Publisher Services will be exclusive distributor in the U.S. and Canada for Lantana Publishing, the U.K. children's book publisher with an emphasis on diverse and inclusive titles.

Lerner will distribute four new Lantana Publishing picture books in hardcover and e-book formats this fall: Chicken in the Kitchen; Sleep Well, Siba and Saba; The Tigon and the Liger; and The Wooden Camel.


Personnel Changes at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; Random House

In the Houghton Mifflin Harcourt sales department:

Cheryl Dickemper has been promoted to director, school supply/reference sales.

Olivia Wilson has been promoted to sales manager, specialty retail and international.

Carissa Ray, recently promoted to sales representative, now manages HMH's relationship with Raincoast Distribution in Canada.

Jackie Sassa, has been promoted to lead sales coordinator, national accounts.

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At Random House:

Michelle Jasmine has been promoted to assistant director of publicity. She joined the company in 2012.

Allyson Lord has been promoted to associate publicist.



Media and Movies

Media Heat: Richard Barnett on Fresh Air

Today:
Fresh Air: Richard Barnett, author of The Smile Stealers: The Fine and Foul Art of Dentistry (Thames & Hudson, $35, 9780500519110).

Tomorrow:
Daily Show repeat: Gabourey Sidibe, author of This Is Just My Face: Try Not to Stare (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $25, 9780544786769).


Books & Authors

Awards: Plutarch Winner; Theakston Old Peculier

Shirley Jackson: A Rather Haunted Life by Ruth Franklin (Norton) has won the 2017 Plutarch Award, sponsored by the Biographers International Organization and honoring the best biography of the year.

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The shortlist for the £3,000 (about $3,900) Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year is:

Black Widow by Chris Brookmyre
After You Die by Eva Dolan
Lie With Me by Sabine Durrant
Real Tigers by Mick Herron
Out of Bounds by Val McDermid
Missing, Presumed by Susie Steiner

The winner will be announced July 20.


Top Library Recommended Titles for June

LibraryReads, the nationwide library staff-picks list, offers the top 10 June titles public library staff across the country love:

Favorite:
Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz (Harper, $27.99, 9780062645227). "Susan Ryeland is a London book editor who has just received the latest manuscript from one of her most irascible authors, Alan Conway. But the manuscript's ending appears to be missing and she learns that Conway has committed suicide. As Ryeland learns more about his death, she starts to question whether a murder has occurred and begins to investigate. Magpie Murders is a delightful, clever mystery-within-a-mystery. Horowitz shows real mastery of his craft. This is a terrific, modern take on the traditional mystery with ingenious puzzles to solve." --Andrea Larson, Cook Memorial Library, Libertyville, Ill.

Silver Silence by Nalini Singh (Berkley, $27, 9781101987797). "Silver Silence is a new chapter in the Psy/Changeling series. As the world tries to adjust after a peace accord, Silver Mercant takes center stage. As head of an aid organization reacting to rampant terrorism, she's an obvious target. But Alpha Valentin Nikolaev has already decided she's his to protect. Valentin and Silver start tracking down deadly shadow factions that want to undermine the Trinity Accords. Diverse and fascinating world-building are on full display along with a bumped up level of humor in the face of adversity." --Jessica Trotter, Capital District Area Libraries, Lansing, Mich.

The Waking Lands by Callie Bates (Del Rey, $27, 9780425284025). "Lady Elanna Voltai flees her adopted homeland when the king, who raised her like a daughter, dies under mysterious circumstances and Elanna is accused of murder. Forced to return to the magical homeland of her birth and her estranged father who was branded a traitor for inciting rebellion, Elanna must come to terms with the life she left behind and her destiny. I loved watching Elanna find her voice and her strength, and the rich world of magic around her makes this story even more fantastic!" --Jessica Perham, Schaumburg Township Library, Schaumburg, Ill.

Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire (Tor, $17.99, 9780765392039). "In Every Heart a Doorway we met Jack and Jill, two sisters bound together yet alienated. In this installment, we learn how these two girls escape their parents when they exit the world we know for a realm of fairy-tale horror via a magic stairway, appearing in a trunk in a locked room. This is a story about two young women and the trauma that shapes them; a story about love, hate, and the thin line between. A captivating and emotional novella that irresistibly sweeps the reader along." --Tegan Mannino, Monson Free Library, Monson, Mass.

Do Not Become Alarmed: A Novel by Maile Meloy (Riverhead, $27, 9780735216525). "Liv and Nora, who are cousins, decide to take their families on a cruise. Both have an eleven-year-old and a younger child as well. At one of the ports, the moms take the children out with another family they met on the ship. All goes well until the children, in a brief moment, aren't observed and disappear. From here the nightmare begins, and the story alternates between what is happening to the children and the adults. The story is gripping and the characters are well-developed. The book explores family and marital dynamics, race, privilege, guilt, and responsibility." --Mary Bennett, Carmel Clay Public Library, Carmel, Ind.

The Alice Network: A Novel by Kate Quinn (Morrow, $16.99, 9780062654199). "Outstanding fictional account of the Alice network, women spies in World War I, tough and determined to defeat the Germans. The story centers on Eve Gardiner, aka Marguerite, a young woman trained to spy on the Germans, and Charlie St. Clair, a young woman post World War II, pregnant, lost and finding her direction. The two meet and the story alternates chapters as Charlie is determined to find her cousin, Rose presumed dead after the war, while Eve's story of the Alice network unfolds. A fantastic book with strong female characters." --Ellen Firer, Merrick Library, Merrick, N.Y.

The Child by Fiona Barton (Berkley, $26, 9781101990483). "When a baby skeleton is unearthed at a construction site, reporter Kate Waters thinks it is a story worth investigating. As she digs into the mystery of the child, she uncovers more than she bargained for. Told from the viewpoints of various characters, Barton tells an intriguing tale about the newborn baby and all the characters involved, leaving it up to the readers to put together the connections until the very end." --Annice Sevett, New Hanover County Public Library, Wilmington, N.C.

The Little French Bistro: A Novel by Nina George (Crown, $26, 9780451495587). "Terribly depressed by the emptiness of her long marriage, Marianne decides to end it all by jumping off a Paris bridge. Her unwanted rescue and ensuing marital abandonment jolt Marianne into ditching her tour group and setting out for Finistère, the westernmost coast of Brittany. Keeping body and soul together by working at a seaside bistro, Marianne finds herself healing through the company of a diverse group of quirky locals. The Little French Bistro is merveilleux. It refreshes like the sea breeze sweeping the Breton coast." --Sarah Nagle, Carver County Library, Chaska, Minn.

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo: A Novel by Taylor Jenkins Reid (Atria, $26, 9781501139239). "The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo is a delightful tale of old Hollywood, so full of detail, that you'll swear Evelyn was a real actor. Monique Grant is tasked with writing an article about the famous woman, so she interviews Evelyn who tells us all about her career, starting in the 1950s--and her many marriages. This novel will enchant you, and Evelyn will stay with you long after you finish reading." --Lauren McLaughlin, Wilton Library Association, Wilton, Conn.

Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore: A Novel by Matthew Sullivan (Scribner, $26, 9781501116841). "Lydia Smith is enjoying her comfortable life. She has a job she loves at the Bright Ideas Bookstore. Then one of her favorite 'bookfrogs' (code word for eccentric bookstore regulars) commits suicide and leaves her his small horde of books. She discovers a strangely methodical defacement which is a kind of code. A delicate spiderweb of connections leading back to a murderous incident in Lydia's childhood is revealed. This pushed me into reading 'just one more chapter' until late into the night." --Joan Hipp, Florham Park Public Library, Florham Park, N.J.


Book Review

Review: The Windfall

The Windfall by Diksha Basu (Crown, $26 hardcover, 304p., 9780451498915, June 27, 2017)

New Delhi native Diksha Basu's first novel, The Windfall, is a comedy of manners that riffs on the universal theme of keeping up with the neighbors.

When Mr. Anil Jha sells his website for a vast sum of money, he and his wife, Bindu, decide to leave their longtime home of Mayur Palli in East Delhi for a beautiful two-story house in Gurgaon, a swank district on the other side of the city. While their neighbors react to news of the relocation with suspicion (one worries the tenants who replace the Jhas will open a brothel), Mr. Jha happily greets the dawn of a new era--one filled with the right people, couches dotted with Swarovski crystals and the possibility of a swimming pool. Mrs. Jha, on the other hand, clings to a simpler life, worrying that the new house's showers aren't environmentally friendly and putting her foot down against installing bathtubs. The Jhas attempt to build rapport with their chic and condescending neighbors the Chopras, while their friend Mrs. Ray, a widow at 40, becomes better acquainted with Mr. Chopra's handsome brother.

Meanwhile, in New York, their son Rupak is concerned that he will let his parents down when they find out he's failing his business classes at Ithaca College. Worse, he hasn't told them about Elizabeth, his white American girlfriend. When he meets Serena, a gorgeous Indian girl from another part of Delhi who attends Cornell, Rupak gets caught up in the idea of the life his parents expect him to lead.

Though occasionally frothy (particularly in scenarios featuring Mr. Jha's attraction to extravagances like a shoe-polishing machine and Mr. Chopra's subsequent passive-aggressive putdowns), Basu's story also strikes serious notes. Rupak's struggle to balance family expectations with the allure of the American lifestyle echoes every young person's quest for harmony between self-discovery and social acceptance. Mrs. Ray faces an awkward existence as a young, childless widow in a society that still often expects a woman to mourn her husband's death until the day of her own, so her budding romantic feelings conflict with her adherence to propriety. The major characters, with the possible exception of Mrs. Jha, feel great pressure to force themselves into a predestined mold rather than living as they want. While Basu spotlights the expected perils of trying to buy class, The Windfall looks warmly on the forgiving nature of strong families and friendships for an ultimately delightful outing filled with laughs. --Jaclyn Fulwood, blogger at Infinite Reads

Shelf Talker: When Mr. Jha sells his website for a small fortune, he and his family face the triumphs and pratfalls of becoming nouveau riche in Delhi.


The Bestsellers

Top-Selling Self-Published Titles

The bestselling self-published books last week as compiled by IndieReader.com:

1. Until Sage by Aurora Rose Reynolds
2. The Best Is Yet to Come by Bella Andre
3. Going in Deep (Billionaire Bad Boys Book 4) by Carly Phillips
4. Real Dirty by Meghan March
5. Beast by Jordan Marie
6. Worship Me (Men of Inked Book 7) by Chelle Bliss
7. Bayside Desires by Melissa Foster
8. Lone Star Lovers Boxed Set by Jean Brashear
9. Our Options Have Changed by Julia Kent and Elisa Reed
10. Silent Child by Sarah A. Denzil

[Many thanks to IndieReader.com!]


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