Welcome to Book Pulse, a daily update designed to help collection development and readers’ advisory librarians navigate the never-ending wave of new books and book news.
Here you will find highlights of titles moving in the marketplace and getting buzz, bookish stories making news, and key items from the literary web.
Book Pulse owes its existence to the legacy of Nora Rawlinson and EarlyWord as well as the work of Cindy Orr and Sarah Statz Cords at the RAOnline Blog. Book Pulse takes their vital work onward, continuing to nurture a community of librarians learning from and supporting each other and providing resources that help us excel at our jobs.
I look forward to your input—what works, what does not, what helps, what is needed? Write me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Celebrity Book Club News
The NYT reviews The Prison Letters of Nelson Mandela by Nelson Mandela, edited by Sahm Venter (Liveright: Norton): “This book confronts readers with the most direct evidence yet of Mandela’s intellectual evolution into one of the great moral heroes of our time.” The paper headlines The Price You Pay by Aidan Truhen (Knopf) with “A Novel That Reads Like Martin Amis on Mescaline” and writes it is “a slim, superbly intelligent, intensely vicious panorama of white-collar drug world mayhem.” Also, A Terrible Country by Keith Gessen (Viking; LJ starred review): “this earnest and wistful but serious book gets good, and then it gets very good…artful and autumnal…a gift for those who wish to receive it.” Lynne Tillman’s “intricate new novel” Men and Apparitions (Soft Skull) rounds up reviews while the Shortlist provides helpful reading for when the “Robots Take Over.” After getting boos for their coverage of Batman, the paper writes about Archie.
Maureen Corrigan reviews Hope Never Dies: An Obama Biden Mystery by Andrew Shaffer (Quirk: Random) for The Washington Post, calling it “sweetly goofy” but acknowledging a little goes a long way. The paper considers No One Tells You This by Glynnis MacNicol (S. & S.) “beguiling.” Also, My Year of Rest and Relaxation by Ottessa Moshfegh (Penguin): “wickedly funny.”
USA Today says Hope Never Dies: An Obama Biden Mystery by Andrew Shaffer (Quirk: Random) is “a breezy partisan romp” and reviews The Summer Wives by Beatriz Williams (William Morrow: Harper), finding it “a satisfying simmer of a read about stepsisters, passion and murder.” Entertainment Weekly gives Williams’s book a B+ and calls it “an elegiac tale of romance, regret, and second chances.”
Tor.com interviews Andy Weir, who suggests novels for anyone who has not yet read SFF. His picks: I, Robot by Isaac Asimov; Tunnel in the Sky by Robert Heinlein; by Arthur C. Clarke.
Vanity Fair offers summer reading (and tote bags).
The Guardian picks more summer reading by genre and type.
The Bookseller reports that films based on books “take 53% more [at the box office] worldwide” than original screenplays, based on the findings of the Publishers Association. The study also looked at how films help book sales.
A UK book club venture that reliably pushes titles up the book charts is getting negative attention, accused of cashing in.
Authors on Air
NPR interviews James Crabtree, The Billionaire Raj: A Journey Through India’s New Gilded Age (Tim Duggan: Random).
Fresh Air features Paul Greenberg, The Omega Principle: Seafood and the Quest for a Long Life and a Healthier Planet (Penguin; LJ starred review).
Alan Dershowitz, The Case Against Impeaching Trump (Hot Books), will be on The View today.
Orange is the New Black, season six, gets a trailer: