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Friday, August 20, 2010

August 20, 2010

The following reviews, interviews and features began running on on Friday, August 20th.

The titles below are discussed in the Newsletter Opener, which can be read here:

THE PARIS WIFE by Paula McLain
LOVING FRANK by Nancy Horan
HER MOTHER'S HOPE by Francine Rivers
HOSTILE INTENT by Michael Walsh

Reviews and Excerpts
THE LAST LIE by Stephen White (Thriller)
Clinical psychologist Alan Gregory’s new neighbors host a housewarming party that ends in quiet disaster. Alan’s wife Lauren, a deputy district attorney, and detective Sam Purdy are both privy to facts they can't share with Alan, but Alan soon discovers that he has a most unusual perspective into what truly happened after the housewarming. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.
- Click here to read an excerpt from THE LAST LIE.

THREE STATIONS: An Arkady Renko Novel by Martin Cruz Smith (Mystery)
In THREE STATIONS, investigator Arkady Renko’s skills are put to their most severe test. Though he has been technically suspended from the prosecutor’s office for once again turning up unpleasant truths, he strives to solve a last case: the death of an elegant young woman whose body is found in a construction trailer on the perimeter of Moscow’s main rail hub. Reviewed by Barbara Bamberger Scott.

I’D KNOW YOU ANYWHERE by Laura Lippman (Mystery)
In 1973, a bank robber and his accomplice held four people hostage in Stockholm, Sweden, and the bizarre incident inspired Nils Bejerot, a psychiatrist and criminologist, to coin the term “Stockholm syndrome” to describe the phenomena of captives beginning to have positive and even caring feelings toward their captors. In her latest novel, Laura Lippman at once explores Stockholm syndrome and turns it on its head. Reviewed by Sarah Rachel Egelman.

LAST NIGHT AT CHATEAU MARMONT by Lauren Weisberger (Fiction)
Lauren Weisberger’s debut novel, THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA, exposed the catwalks of the fashion industry. She then took us behind the velvet ropes in EVERYONE WORTH KNOWING and indulged us in CHASING HARRY WINSTON. LAST NIGHT AT CHATEAU MARMONT is Weisberger’s most romantic endeavor. Global stardom is no longer a fantasy for aspiring songwriter Julian Alter and his wife, Brooke. Chateau Marmont is synonymous with fame, and Julian and Brooke are on their way. Reviewed by Hillary Wagy.
- Click here to read an excerpt from LAST NIGHT AT CHATEAU MARMONT.

THE POSTCARD KILLERS by James Patterson and Liza Marklund (Thriller)
NYPD detective Jacob Kanon's daughter and her boyfriend were murdered while on vacation in Rome. Since then, young couples in various cities have been found dead. Little connects the murders, other than a postcard to the local newspaper that precedes each new victim. Now Kanon teams up with a Swedish reporter who has just received a postcard in Stockholm --- and they think they know where the next victims will be. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

THE VIGILANTES: A Badge of Honor Novel by W. E. B. Griffin and William E. Butterworth IV (Thriller)
There's a sudden spike in murders in Philadelphia, but no one seems to mind much because the victims all appear to be lowlifes. The more Homicide Sergeant Matthew Payne investigates, however, the more he gets a bad feeling --- one that only gets worse when vigilante groups spring up claiming credit for some of the hits, even though Payne knows it can't be true. Reviewed by Judy Gigstad.

COMPOSED: A Memoir by Rosanne Cash (Memoir)
Singer and songwriter Rosanne Cash is a Grammy Award winner and the daughter of Johnny Cash. She is also a mother, sister, wife, friend, businesswoman and stepdaughter --- not to mention the fact that she is quite a fine author. In this beautifully written memoir, Cash shares her creative and personal journey with humor and insight. Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon.

TEMPTED BY TROUBLE by Eric Jerome Dickey (Fiction)
Dmytryk Knight was once a respectable man --- college educated, happily married, with a stable job at a car factory in Detroit. But when a crippling recession annihilates the auto industry, he and his wife Cora are suddenly without jobs. Spurred on by Cora, Dmytryk finds an alternate way of making a living: robbing banks. Reviewed by Marie Hashima Lofton.

HAILEY’S WAR by Jodi Compton (Thriller)
Hailey Cain has a history of testing the limits of her fate, but she also has secrets --- the biggest of which led her to leave West Point just two months short of graduation. As a favor for an old friend from her former life in Los Angeles, Hailey agrees to escort a young Mexican woman across the border to a remote mountain town in Sierra Madre. But what happens there will alter Hailey's life irrevocably. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

DOG BLOOD by David Moody (Thriller)
The Earth has been torn into two parts by an irreversible division. Whether due to nature, or the unknown depths of the mind itself, everyone is now either Human or Hater. Victim or killer. Amidst this indiscriminate carnage, Danny McCoyne is on a mission to find his daughter Ellis, convinced that her shared Hater condition means her allegiance is to people like him. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

BLIND MAN’S ALLEY by Justin Peacock (Legal Thriller)
Justin Peacock’s follow-up to his Edgar Award-nominated debut novel, A CURE FOR NIGHT, is a taut, topical and socially alert thriller set in the cutthroat world of New York City real estate. BLIND MAN’S ALLEY is a suspenseful and kaleidoscopic journey through a world where the only rule is self-preservation. Reviewed by Ray Palen.

BEAUTIFUL MALICE by Rebecca James (Psychological Suspense)
BEAUTIFUL MALICE, Australian novelist Rebecca James's first book to be published in the United States, is as much about grief and recovery as it is about murder, revenge and, yes, malice. It unfolds a haunting story in which people, motives and circumstances are never what they seem. Reviewed by Norah Piehl.

Author Talk
Stephen White
Psychologist turned author Stephen White brings the protagonist of his bestselling Alan Gregory series back to center stage in his latest novel, THE LAST LIE, which finds his main character probing into the assault of a woman under his own roof. In this interview, White discusses some of the recent media events that inspired the plot of the book, and explains why he chose to risk altering the relationship between his main characters in such a long-running series. He also describes how he recharges his creative batteries, and reflects on what may be in store for Alan and company in future installments.

Young Adult Books You Won't Want to Miss

DANIEL X: DEMONS AND DRUIDS by James Patterson and Adam Sadler (Science Fiction)
Daniel X's hunt to eliminate each and every intergalactic criminal on Earth is always relentless, but this time, it's getting personal. Number Three on the List of Alien Outlaws takes the form of raging, soul-possessing fire. And fire transports Daniel back to the most traumatic event of his life --- the death of his parents.

THE THIN EXECUTIONER by Darren Shan (Fantasy/Horror)
In this daring adventure inspired by a well-known classic, a scrawny young man seeks to become the high executioner of his people --- an esteemed title achieved through trial in battle. Jebel Rum's best hope for winning is in gaining invincibility, and herein lies his story of a year-long quest to the mountain of Tubaygat, where he searches for the herculean gifts bestowed on those willing to sacrifice a slave's life --- in Jebel's case, a friend.

GLIMPSE by Carol Lynch Williams (Fiction)
Twelve-year-old Hope's life is turned upside down when her older sister, Lizzie, becomes an elective mute and is institutionalized after trying to kill herself. Throughout the course of this lyrical and heartbreaking narrative, readers and Hope discover that the mother is prostituting Lizzie, and it’s up to Hope to bring the truth to light to save her sister.

THE FOOL’S GIRL by Celia Rees (Historical Fiction)
Young and beautiful Violetta may be of royal blood, but her kingdom is in shambles when she arrives in London on a mysterious mission. Her journey has been long and her adventures many, but it is not until she meets the playwright William Shakespeare that she gets to tell the entire story from beginning to end.

FAT VAMPIRE: A Never Coming of Age Story by Adam Rex (Fiction)
Doug Lee is not your typical vampire. He is short, overweight, and feeds on the blood of cows. It doesn’t help that he can’t score with any high school girl, especially the new exchange student, or that the host of “Vampire Hunters” is desperate to hunt him down to improve ratings.

Beach Bag of Books
Whether your "beach" is on sand, your backyard deck, or a grassy meadow in the country, the summer months mean it's time for "beach reading." is celebrating the lazy days of summer reading with our Sixth Annual Beach Bag of Books feature and contests.

During select weeks from May 28th through September 3rd, we will highlight a different book or collection of books from these featured titles with a contest prize --- a beach bag stocked with the featured book(s) and summertime essentials. Five FABULOUS beach bags will be given away each week, as well as five copies of the featured book(s) to additional winners.

We are currently spotlighting five works of literary fiction:

CHEF by Jaspreet Singh (Fiction)
Mesmeric, mournful and intensely lyrical, CHEF is a brave and compassionate debut about hope, love and memory set against the devastatingly beautiful, war-scarred backdrop of occupied Kashmir.

THE FAMILY MAN by Elinor Lipman (Fiction)
In this warm-hearted comedy, Henry Archer reunites with Thalia, the stepdaughter he adopted and then lost 25 years before during his divorce. Henry is delighted to assist his newfound, highly cherished daughter as she negotiates love interests --- both genuine and false, complete with tabloid appearances and paparazzi.

THE GO-BETWEEN: A Novel of the Kennedy Years by Frederick Turner (Fiction)
One day, a faded newspaperman finds the scoop of a lifetime in a Chicago basement: diaries belonging to the infamous Judith Campbell Exner. As our Narrator pieces the notebooks into a coherent story, he finds mob connections, rigged primaries, assassination plots and trysts.

THE LIES WE TOLD by Diane Chamberlain (Fiction)
When they were teenagers, Rebecca and Maya’s parents were murdered. That incident --- and the lies each of them told about what happened --- will always haunt them. Now, while working as part of a medical aide team after a hurricane destroys part of Wilmington, North Carolina, Maya is in a helicopter crash. Rebecca and Maya’s husband, Adam, believe she is dead, but Maya is actually trapped in an area with a few people who, for some reason, seem intent on keeping her there.
OUTSIDE THE ORDINARY WORLD reveals what lies beneath the surface of infidelity. But at its heart, it is the story of the powerful, sometimes disturbing bond between mothers and daughters, and the shimmering line between self-revelation and self-destruction.'s Sneak Peak
At, we have the opportunity to read many great books well in advance of their release dates. Now, with our Sneak Peek Feature/Contest, we are offering our readers the chance to preview select early picks --- and share feedback on them. We know that readers champion books that they love, and we want you to be part of the excitement of upcoming releases as early as possible.

Our latest Sneak Peek Feature spotlights NIGHT ROAD by Kristin Hannah, a novel that raises profound questions about motherhood, loss, identity and forgiveness, which releases in March 2011. We have 100 specially formatted early reader editions to give away to readers who would like to preview the book and share their comments about it.

More about NIGHT ROAD:
Jude Farraday is a happily married, stay-at-home mom who puts everyone’s needs above her own. Her twins, Mia and Zach, are bright and happy teenagers. When Lexi Baill enters their lives, no one is more supportive than Jude. A former foster child with a dark past, Lexi quickly becomes Mia’s best friend. Then Zach falls in love with Lexi and the three become inseparable. But senior year of high school brings unexpected dangers, and one night Jude’s worst fears are confirmed: there is an accident. In an instant, her idyllic life is shattered and her close-knit community is torn apart. People --- and Jude --- demand justice, and when the finger of blame is pointed, it lands solely on 18-year-old Lexi Baill.

Historical Fiction Author Spotlight
HER DAUGHTER'S DREAM by Francine Rivers
Growing up isn’t easy for little Carolyn Arundel. With her mother, Hildemara, quarantined to her room with tuberculosis, Carolyn forms a special bond with her oma, Marta, who moves in to care for the household. But as tensions between Hildie and Marta escalate, Carolyn believes she is to blame. When Hildie returns to work and Marta leaves, Carolyn and her brother grow up as latchkey kids in a world gripped by the fear of the Cold War. College offers Carolyn the chance to find herself, but a family tragedy shatters her newfound independence. Rather than return home, she cuts all ties and disappears into the heady counterculture of San Francisco. When she reemerges two years later, more lost than ever, she reluctantly turns to her family to help rebuild a life for her and her own daughter, May Flower Dawn.
- Click here to read Francine Rivers's bio.
- Click here to see Francine Rivers's backlist.
- Click here to read more about HER DAUGHTER'S DREAM.

One to Watch Author Spotlight
A SECRET KEPT by Tatiana de Rosnay
This stunning new novel from Tatiana de Rosnay, author of the acclaimed New York Times bestseller SARAH’S KEY, plumbs the depths of complex family relationships and the power of a past secret to change everything in the present. It all began with a simple seaside vacation, a brother and sister recapturing their childhood. Antoine Rey thought he had the perfect surprise for his sister Mélanie’s birthday: a weekend by the sea at Noirmoutier Island, where the pair spent many happy childhood summers playing on the beach. But on the drive home to Paris, Mélanie finally summons the courage to reveal a dark secret to Antoine, her emotions overcome her and she loses control of the car.
- Click here to read an excerpt from A SECRET KEPT.
- Click here to read Tatiana de Rosnay’s bio.
- Click here to see Tatiana de Rosnay’s backlist.
- Click here to read more about A SECRET KEPT.

Suspense Thriller Author Spotlight
EARLY WARNING by Michael Walsh
"All Enemies Foreign And Domestic" is the National Security Agency's motto. The NSA's most lethal weapon is back. Codenamed Devlin, he operates in the darkest recesses of the US government. When international cyber-terrorists allow a deadly and cunning band of radical insurgents to breach the highest levels of national security, Devlin must take down an enemy bent on destroying America --- an enemy more violent and ruthless than the world has ever known.
- Click here to read an excerpt from EARLY WARNING.
- Click here to read Michael Walsh’s bio.
- Click here to see Michael Walsh’s backlist.
- Click here to read critical praise for EARLY WARNING.
- Click here to watch a trailer for EARLY WARNING.
- Click here to read more about EARLY WARNING.

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