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Friday, January 14, 2011

January 14, 2011

The following interviews, reviews and features began running on the website on Friday, January 14th.

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



EMILY, ALONE by Stewart O'Nan


TALES OF THE CITY by Armistead Maupin

MARY ANN IN AUTUMN: A Tales of the City Novel by Armistead Maupin

VIRALS by Kathy Reichs

ROOM by Emma Donoghue

BREAKING NIGHT: A Memoir of Forgiveness, Survival, and My Journey from Homeless to Harvard by Liz Murray

THE PARIS WIFE by Paula McLain

LITTLE PRINCES: One Man's Promise to Bring Home the Lost Children of Nepal by Conor Grennan

THE SILVER BOAT by Luanne Rice

ORIGINAL SIN: A Sally Sin Adventure by Beth McMullen





Reviews and Excerpts

THE INNER CIRCLE by Brad Meltzer (Political Thriller)

As an archivist, Beecher White has always been a keeper of stories…until he accidentally discovers a priceless artifact. Caught up in a web of conspiracy and murder, Beecher and his childhood crush must find the truth behind this national treasure. Their search will lead them to a disturbing secret --- one that some believe is worth killing for. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

-Click here to read an excerpt from THE INNER CIRCLE.

THE SENTRY: A Joe Pike Novel by Robert Crais (Thriller)

After fleeing Hurricane Katrina, Dru Rayne and her uncle face a different danger. When Joe Pike witnesses Dru’s uncle being beaten by a protection gang, he offers his help. But Dru and her uncle aren’t who they seem. A vengeful and murderous force from their past catches up to them…and only Pike and Elvis Cole stand in the way. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

-Click here to read an excerpt from THE SENTRY.

CLARA AND MR. TIFFANY by Susan Vreeland (Historical Fiction)

Tiffany glass --- those gorgeously colored turn-of-the-century lamps and other collectibles --- was, it turns out, often designed and produced by a band of unsung female artisans. Their leader, Clara Driscoll, emerges from obscurity in another art-themed historical novel from the author of GIRL IN HYACINTH BLUE and THE PASSION OF ARTEMISIA. Reviewed by Kathy Weissman.

-Click here to read an excerpt from CLARA AND MR. TIFFANY.

THE BORDER LORDS: A Charlie Hood Novel by T. Jefferson Parker (Thriller)

ATF agent Sean Ozburn is undercover supporting the sicarios of the Baja Cartel, when he goes completely dark --- his only communications being a series of haunting digital videos. Now Charlie Hood must find out if Oz is just in deeper than anyone has gone, or if he has broken permanently with his mission --- and his moral compass. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

THE OUTLAWS: A Presidential Agent Novel by W. E. B. Griffin and William E. Butterworth IV (Military Thriller)

Even though Charley Castillo's secret unit has been disbanded, he isn’t out of business. A mysterious package arrives, bearing photos of barrels of some of the most dangerous biohazards on earth --- all of which were supposed to be destroyed. Who has them, and what do they want? Castillo doesn’t think he’ll like the answers. Reviewed by Judy Gigstad.

BIRD CLOUD: A Memoir by Annie Proulx (Memoir)

BIRD CLOUD, Annie Proulx’s first nonfiction book in over 20 years, is the story of her house --- a house in harmony with her work and her character. Built on 640 acres of Wyoming wetlands and prairie-punctuated 400-foot cliffs, its story is also an enthralling natural history and archaeology --- and a family saga that dates back to riverboat captains and Canadian settlers. Reviewed by Sarah Rachel Egelman.

HELL’S HORIZON by Darren Shan (Horror/Urban Fantasy)

The privileged guards of the villainous Cardinal are no strangers to a life of crime. Yet when a girlfriend of the Cardinal's guard is found mutilated and viciously murdered, the boss becomes enraged and unsettled about the unordered killing. Grieving her death, young Al Jeery finds himself instantaneously removed from duty and assigned to hunt down her killer and discover the truth. Reviewed by Melanie Smith.

PICTURES OF YOU by Caroline Leavitt (Fiction)

Two women fleeing their marriages collide on a fog-shrouded Connecticut road. A nine-year-old boy, his father, and the woman who killed their mother and wife are left behind to deal with the repercussions of that tragedy that spread outward like ripples on a pond. That premise teems with possibilities, which Caroline Leavitt explores with deftness and consummate sensitivity in her ninth novel. Reviewed by Harvey Freedenberg.

THE EMPTY FAMILY: Stories by Colm Tóibín (Fiction/Short Stories)

In this collection of captivating stories, Colm Tóibín delineates lives of unconscious longing, of individuals willingly cast adrift from their history. From the story of a young Pakistani immigrant to an Irish woman’s reluctant return to Dublin, each tale contains a whole world --- of fleeing and going home, of family ties lost and regained. Reviewed by Stuart Shiffman.

KHAN: EMPIRE OF SILVER: A Novel of the Khan Empire by Conn Iggulden (Historical Fiction)

By 1230 A.D., Genghis is dead and the Mongolian Empire rests in the hands of Ogedai Khan, his son. A hardened warrior and careful thinker, Ogedai is as bloodthirsty as Genghis and consumed with the same dreams of conquest. Over the 12 years that follow, the Empire will enjoy a promising future under Ogedai's rule, and the Mongol hordes will look to the West to conquer the World. Reviewed by Melanie Smith.

THE METROPOLIS CASE by Matthew Gallaway (Fiction)

With only Richard Wagner’s masterpiece opera, Tristan and Isolde, apparently linking them, four diverse people come together in a very unlikely way through a sad yet wondrous event, forever changing their lives --- and their deaths. Reviewed by Kate Ayers.

Author Talk

Brad Meltzer

Brad Meltzer is the bestselling author of eight critically acclaimed thrillers, including his latest, THE INNER CIRCLE, which follows a young government archivist who stumbles across a long-lost treasure, only to find himself caught in a deadly web of deception, conspiracy and murder --- one that leads to a secret dating back to the birth of America itself. In this interview, Meltzer gives the scoop on the conversation with a former President that inspired his new novel, elaborating on national security issues and George Washington’s top-secret civilian spy group --- which may or may not exist today. He also shares the story of how he got to hold the Declaration of Independence (and why he deliberately left it out of THE INNER CIRCLE), reveals how he got several ex-Presidents to help him with his research, and explains why he believes that our everyday choices are the most important ones we make.

Romantic Suspense Author Spotlight

SENSELESS by Mary Burton (Romantic Suspense)

The vicious burns scarring the victims’ flesh reveal the agony of their last moments. Each woman was branded with a star, then stabbed through the heart. With every death, a vengeful killer finds a brief, blissful moment of calm. But soon it’s time for the bloodshed to start again…

Ten years ago, Eva Rayburn and her sorority sisters were celebrating the end of the school year. That party turned into a nightmare Eva can’t forget. Now she’s trying to start over in her Virginia hometown, but a new nightmare has begun. Every victim is linked to her. And Detective Deacon Garrison isn’t sure whether this mysterious woman needs investigating --- or protecting…

-Click here to read a second excerpt from SENSELESS.

-Click here to read Mary Burton's bio.

-Click here to see Mary Burton's backlist.

-Click here to read critical praise for SENSELESS.

-Click here to read more about SENSELESS.

-Visit Mary Burton's official website,

-Click here to see the winners of the ARC mailing contest.

One to Watch Author Spotlight

PRAYERS AND LIES by Sherri Wood Emmons (Fiction)

When 7-year-old Bethany meets her 6-year-old cousin Reana Mae, it’s the beginning of a kinship of misfits that saves both from a bone-deep loneliness. Every summer, Bethany and her family leave Indianapolis for West Virginia’s Coal River Valley. For Bethany’s mother, the trips are a reminder of the coalmines and grinding poverty of her childhood, of a place she’d hoped to escape. But her loving relatives, and Bethany’s friendship with Reana Mae, keep them coming back.

But as Bethany grows older, she realizes that life in this small, close-knit community is not as simple as she once thought…that the riverside cabins that hold so much of her family’s history also teem with scandalous whispers…and that those closest to her harbor unimaginable secrets.

-Click here to read a second excerpt from PRAYERS AND LIES.

-Click here to read Sherri Wood Emmons's bio.

-Click here to read critical praise for PRAYERS AND LIES.

-Click here to see the reading group guide for PRAYERS AND LIES.

-Click here to read more about PRAYERS AND LIES.

-Visit Sherri Wood Emmons's official website,

-Click here to see the winners of the ARC mailing contest.

Debut Suspense Thriller Author Spotlight

DELIRIOUS by Daniel Palmer (Psychological Thriller)

Charlie Giles is at the top of his game. An electronics superstar, he’s sold his startup company to a giant Boston firm, where he’s now a senior director. With his dog, Monte, at his side, Charlie is treated like a VIP everywhere he goes.

Then one day, everything in Charlie’s neatly ordered world starts to go terrifyingly wrong. His prestigious job and his inventions are wrenched away from him. His family is targeted, and his former employers are dying gruesomely, picked off one by one. Every sign, every shred of evidence, points to Charlie as a cold-blooded killer. And soon Charlie is unable to tell whether he’s succumbed to the pressures of work and become the architect of his own destruction, or whether he’s the victim of a relentless, diabolical attack.

-Click here to read a second excerpt from DELIRIOUS.

-Click here to read Daniel Palmer's bio.

-Click here to read critical praise for DELIRIOUS.

-Click here to read more about DELIRIOUS.

-Visit Daniel Palmer's official website,

-Click here to see the winners of the ARC mailing contest.

Click here to read the full newsletter.

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