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Friday, May 20, 2011

The following interviews, reviews and features began running on the website on Friday, May 20th.

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

CLEOPATRA: A Life by Stacy Schiff
A TURN IN THE ROAD by Debbie Macomber

Four United States presidents have been assassinated, each murder seemingly unrelated and separated by time. But what if they were all killed for the same reason: a clause in the Constitution that would shock Americans? This question is what faces former Justice Department operative Cotton Malone as he finds himself at dangerous odds with the Commonwealth. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

Detective Lindsay Boxer is called to investigate a horrendous crime: a badly injured teenage girl is left for dead, and her newborn baby is nowhere to be found. At the same time, Assistant District Attorney Yuki Castellano is prosecuting the case of a woman accused of murdering her husband in front of her two young children. When Lindsay finds evidence that could save the defendant, Yuki must choose between trusting her friend and following her instinct. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

A house demolition leads to the discovery of the bodies of two girls wrapped in plastic. It looks like they've been there a long time, and Lucas Davenport knows exactly how long. They disappeared in 1985, when he was a young cop, and his bosses ultimately declared the case closed, though he never agreed. Now Davenport has a chance to investigate and finally learn the truth. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.
As World War II winds down in the wake of the Normandy invasion, the United States turns its vast military resources toward an all-out effort against the Japanese. Jeff Shaara tells the story of the three-month battle for Okinawa through the eyes of combatants on both sides. With the fights raging across the Pacific, a different kind of campaign is being waged: the development of a weapon so powerful, not even the scientists know just what they’re about to unleash.Reviewed by Stephen Hubbard.

It is 1968. Lynnie, a young white woman with a developmental disability, and Homan, an African American deaf man, are locked away in an institution. They escape and find refuge --- along with their newborn girl --- in the farmhouse of Martha, a retired schoolteacher and widow. When the authorities catch up to them that same night, Homan escapes into the darkness, and Lynnie is caught. But before she is forced back into the institution, she whispers two words to Martha: "Hide her." Reviewed by Norah Piehl.

China Mieville’s latest novel is a story about colonialism and diplomacy; about the truly alien worlds that await us beyond the stars; and about the acceptance of personal agency and responsibility. But it’s also an exploration of language: what it really means to us, and its consequences for how we understand the world and ourselves. Reviewed by Max Falkowitz.

Ian O’Connor draws on extensive reporting and unique access to Derek Jeter that has spanned some 15 years to reveal how a biracial kid from Michigan became a beloved sports figure in New York and the enduring symbol of the steroid-free athlete. He takes us behind the scenes of a legendary baseball life and career, from Jeter’s early struggles in the minor leagues, to his heady days as a Yankee superstar. Reviewed by Ron Kaplan.

When Alice was in fourth grade, she and her father decided to see if he could read aloud to her for 100 consecutive nights. After the 100th night, it soon became evident that neither wanted to let go of their storytelling ritual. So they decided to continue what they called "The Streak." Alice has written a series of vignettes about her relationship with her father and the life lessons learned from the books he read to her. Reviewed by Jana Siciliano.

In a vacant lot in Tombstone, Arizona, a confrontation between eight armed men erupted in a deadly shootout. The gunfight at the O.K. Corral shaped how future generations came to view the old West. But as THE LAST GUNFIGHT makes clear, the real story of the O.K. Corral and the West is far different from what we’ve been led to believe by TV westerns and Hollywood films. Reviewed by Stuart Shiffman.

THE GOODBYE QUILT by Susan Wiggs (Fiction)
Lynda Davis and her daughter, Molly, take a cross-country road trip to the east coast, where Molly will start her first year of college. It’s a journey of time and memories as Lynda reminisces about Molly’s best and worst moments and ponders her own future without her only child. Reviewed by Marie Hashima Lofton.

Doc Ebersole lives with the ghost of Hank Williams, and not just because he is rumored to have given Hank the final morphine dose that killed him. Ten years after Hank's death, Doc himself is wracked by addiction. Having lost his license to practice medicine, his morphine habit is no longer easy to support. But when a young Mexican immigrant appears in the neighborhood, miraculous things begin to happen. Reviewed by Curtis Edmonds.

DON’T BREATHE A WORD by Jennifer McMahon (Paranormal/Psychological Thriller)
Jennifer McMahon, the New York Times bestselling author of ISLAND OF LOST GIRLS andPROMISE NOT TO TELL, returns with a dark and twisty tale in which a couple finds themselves in a seemingly supernatural web that ties them to a young girl’s disappearance 15 years ago. Reviewed by Sarah Rachel Egelman.

AMERICA PACIFICA by Anna North (Dystopian Fiction)
Darcy lives in a future we can't even imagine, taking place after another ice age has destroyed North America. America Pacifica is a desolate island in the Pacific Ocean where Darcy and her mother eke out a miserable existence, made bearable only by their closeness…until Darcy's mother vanishes. Darcy's yearning to find her brings a breathless urgency to this page-turner. Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon.

Accusations of an affair with a student cost Mark Bradley his teaching job last year and made him and his wife Hilary outcasts in their remote island town. Now another teenage girl is found dead on a deserted beach, and once again, Mark faces a hostile town convinced of his guilt. Hilary is determined to prove that Mark is innocent, but only a quirky detective named Cab Bolton seems willing to believe her story. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

SUMMER RENTAL by Mary Kay Andrews (Fiction)
Ellis, Julia, and Dorie. Best friends since Catholic grade school, they now find themselves, in their mid-thirties, at the crossroads of life and love. Ellis, recently fired from a job she gave everything to, is rudderless and now beginning to question the choices she's made over the past decade of her life. Julia --- whose caustic wit covers up her wounds --- has a man who loves her and is offering her the world, but she can't hide from how deeply insecure she feels about her looks, her brains, her life. And Dorie has just been shockingly betrayed by the man she loved and trusted the most in the world…though this is just the tip of the iceberg of her problems and secrets. A month in North Carolina's Outer Banks is just what they each of them needs.

We have 20 copies of SUMMER RENTAL, which will be in stores June 7th, to give away to readers who would like to preview the book and comment about it. If you are interested, please fill out this form by Friday, May 27th at noon ET.

-Click here to read an excerpt from SUMMER RENTAL.
-Click here to read critical praise for SUMMER RENTAL.
-Click here to read Mary Kay Andrews’s bio.
-Click here to read Mary Kay Andrews’s backlist.
-Visit Mary Kay Andrews’s official website,

Romantic Suspense Author Spotlight

WICKED LIES by Lisa Jackson and Nancy Bush (Romantic Suspense)
For two years, Justice Turnbull has paced his room at Halo Valley Security Hospital, planning to escape. Justice has a mission --- one that began with a vicious murder two decades ago. And there are so many others who must be sent back to the hell that spawned them…

Laura Adderley didn’t plan to get pregnant by her soon-to-be ex-husband, though she’ll do anything to protect her baby. But now reporter Harrison Frost is asking questions about the mysterious group of women who live at Siren Song lodge. Harrison hasn’t figured out Laura’s connection to the story yet. But Justice knows. And he is coming…

All her life, Laura has been able to sense approaching evil. But that won’t stop a psychopath bent on destroying her. Justice has been unleashed, and this time, there will be no place safe to hide...

-Click here to read a second excerpt from WICKED LIES.
-Click here to read critical praise for WICKED LIES.
-Click here to watch a special trailer for WICKED LIES.
-Read bios of Lisa Jackson and Nancy Bush.
-Read the backlists of Lisa Jackson and Nancy Bush.
-Visit the official websites of Lisa Jackson and Nancy Bush.
-Click here to see the 20 winners selected to read and comment on WICKED LIES.

Everybody knows everybody in The Hollows, a quaint, charming town outside of New York City. It’s a place where neighbors keep an eye on one another’s kids, where people say hello in the grocery store, and where high school cliques and antics are never quite forgotten. As a child, Maggie found living under the microscope of small-town life stifling. But as a wife and mother, she has happily returned to The Hollows’s insular embrace. As a psychologist, her knowledge of family histories provides powerful insights into her patients’ lives. So when the girlfriend of her teenage son, Rick, disappears, Maggie’s intuitive gift proves useful to the case --- and also dangerous.

-Click here to read a review of FRAGILE.
-Click here to read an excerpt from FRAGILE.
-Click here to read critical praise for FRAGILE.
-Click here to read Lisa Unger’s bio.
-Click here to see Lisa Unger’s backlist.
-Visit Lisa Unger’s official website,

Special Contest
When THE ART OF RACING IN THE RAIN --- Garth Stein's novel about Enzo and his owners --- was published in 2008, readers immediately fell in love with Enzo, and the book has been a New York Times bestseller ever since. That's because, once people finish reading the novel, they want to tell everybody about it. Now the whole family can read about Enzo together --- RACING IN THE RAIN: My Life as a Dog is now available in an edition for junior readers.

Consider this site your “Enzo pit stop” with information about the books as well as a special RACING IN THE RAIN contest, where your family can win a chat with Garth Stein, signed books and “I Heart Enzo” T-shirts and “Go Enzo” baseball caps from the Enzo Store.

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