Sunday, July 16, 2017

Boswell's annotated bestsellers for the week ending July 15, 2017, plus Journal Sentinel book reviews

Here's the Boswell bestseller list for the week ending July 15, 2017.

Hardcover Fiction:
1. Kiss Carlo, by Adriana Trigiani
2. House of Spies, by Adam Silva
3. A Gentleman in Moscow, by Amor Towles
4. Small Great Things, by Jodi Picoult
5. The Ministry of Utmost Happiness, by Arundhati Roy
6. Lincoln in the Bardo, by George Saunders
7. The Underground Railroad, by Colson Whitehead
8. The Witchwood Crown, by Tad Williams
9. Into the Water, by Paula Hawkins
10. Anything Is Possible, by Elizabeth Strout

Two fall 2016 hardcovers, Jodi Picoult's Small Great Things and the second novel for Amor Towles, continue to make regular appearances on the hardcover bestseller lists, and in both cases, the paperbacks were delayed until at least 2018. A Gentleman in Moscow had a big leap on The New York Times lists, reflecting sales from about three weeks ago, and sure enough, our numbers have also gone up. I haven't been able to pick out on the local front what created the uptick, though I'm sure the publisher knows. On our end, it is the first selection of the Pfister Hotel Book Club. How fitting, being that a hotel is almost a character in this novel. Check with the hotel to find out their next selection.

Hardcover Nonfiction:
1. Find a Way, by Diana Nyad
2. Raising Human Beings, by Ross W. Greene
3. Al Franken, Giant of the Senate, by Al Franken
4. The Death and Life of the Great Lakes, by Dan Egan
5. Killers of the Flower Moon, by David Grann (event Monday July 17, 7 pm, at Boswell)
6. Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Vance
7. Hunger, by Roxane Gay
8. The Hidden Life of Trees, by Peter Wohlleben
9. Janesville, by Amy Goldstein
10. Blood in the Water, by Heather Ann Thompson

The Frank P. Zeidler Lecture on Monday, November 6 features Heather Ann Thompson, author of Blood in the Water. I don't know if they are asking for registration, but here's the Facebook page, where you're sure to get more info. The original spring date had to be delayed as Thompson was receiving the Bancroft Prize that evening. This is the second time in two years because an event we were involved in had to be postponed because of a prize ceremony where the author won. The other was Marlon James and the Man Booker Prize. Wouldn't it have been funny if our updated date for Blood on the Water was the Pulitzer Prize ceremony, which Thompson also received, for history. The paperback comes out August 22.

Paperback Fiction:
1. My Mother Was a Freedom Fighter, by Aja Monet
2. Homegoing, by Yaa Gyasi
3. Here Comes the Sun, by Nicole Dennis-Benn (in-store lit group Tuesday, September 5, 7 pm)
4. Before the Fall, by Noah Hawley (in-store lit group, Monday, August August 7, 7 pm)
5. News of the World, by Paulette Jiles
6. The Handmaid's Tale, by Margaret Atwood
7. The Art Forger, by B.A. Shapiro
8. The Last Days of Night, by Graham Moore
9. The Shoemaker's Wife, by Adirana Trigiani
10. Lucia, Lucia, by Adriana Trigiani

It's book club week and once again I hoped that one of our blog posts this week would discuss our July selection. Maybe this coming week will be better. I'm excited about these upcoming books - Before the Fall is a quality summer thriller that won the Edgar, and Here Comes the Sun won a Lambda Literary Award and was shortlisted for two major first novel prizes (at least). Coincidentally Noah Hawley reviewed The Last Days of Night for The New York Times Book Review when the book was first published. It's a thriller about the electricity wars between Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse. Hawley writes about what makes a fictional novel feel true or not. In The Washington Post, Patrick Anderson called Moore's novel "a model of superior historical fiction."

Paperback Nonfiction:
1. Evicted, by Matthew Desmond
2. Lost and Found, by Ross W. Greene
3. Empowering Students with Hidden Disabilities, by Margo Vreeberg Izzo and Lede Horne
4. Just Give Him the Whale, by Paula Kluth
5. Pedro's Whale, by Paula Kluth
6. Lost at School, by Ross W. Greene
7. The Explosive Child, by Ross W. Greene
8. The Principal's Handbook for Leading Inclusive Schools, by Julie Causton
9. You're Going to Love This Kid, by Paula Kluth
10. No Is Not Enough, by Naomi Klein

Why so much Ross W. Greene and Paula Kluth? Wasn't that conference last June? Yes, and such are the mysteries of bestseller lists. Another mystery is that for her new book No Is Not Enough, about political convictions and activism, Naomi Klein went with Haymarket Books in the United States, even though it's published by Knopf in Canada. The page has recommendations from Junot Diaz, Michelle Alexander, Cornell West, and more. Gillian Tett in The Financial Times writes: "I hope that Klein’s book is read by more than just her (mostly) leftwing fan base. For whatever you think about her economic arguments, she makes a powerful and an important point: that you cannot understand Trump without looking at how he reflects bigger cultural and social dynamics."

Books for Kids:
1. I Am a Bunny, by Ole Risom, with illustrations by Richard Scarry
2. World's Collide, by Chris Colfer
3. A Is for Activist, by Innosanto Nagarara
4. Hammer of Thor, by Rick Riordan
5. Posted, by John David Anderson
6. Dog Man, by Dav Pilkey
7. Dog Man Unleashed, by Dav Pilkey
8. The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue, by Mackenzi Lee
9. The Sun Is Also a Star, by Nicola Yoon
10. She Persisted, by Chelsea Clinton, with illustrations by Alexandra Boiger

My guess is that Chris Colfer's Land of Stories appearance at Andersons (in conjunction with the release of Worlds Collide) has been long sold out, but here's the tour schedule anyway. The website also has a program to storify yourself, which seems like a good idea. We listened to Colfer on Ask Me Another yesterday, where Ophira Eisenberg quizzed him about fan fiction.

Jounal Sentinel TapBook page features!

1. Jim Higgins review Meddling Kids, the new novel from Edgar Cantero, with the title of his work being a reference to Scooby Doo. Higgins writes: "Cantero's novel, which can be considered either humor-laced horror or horror-laced humor, turns this formula inside out. In Meddling Kids, the former amateur child detectives return as troubled young adults to the spooky place where they once put a small-time crook away to confront the real supernatural evil embedded there. As the publicity pitch accurately puts it, it's Scooby-Doo meets H.P. Lovecraft. Cantero does justice to both sides of that equation." Not for kids, Higgins notes.

2. Mike Fischer reviews When the English Fall, the new novel from David Williams. It's a story set in the near future imagining "what would happen to such a seemingly isolated Amish enclave once everything and everyone around it slouch toward the sort of dystopia we see in Cormac McCarthy's The Road." Fischer's not a fan - I would have suspected Higgins might have liked it more. It also had great advance reviews from the trades, including this starred Kirkus, where the reviewer called this "a standout among post-apocalyptic novels, as simply and perfectly crafted as an Amish quilt."

3. Sheryl Sandberg is profiled by Andrea Januta in The Miami Herald.

4. Karla Huston "brings a playful spirit to Memory Cafe events," per Jim Higgins. She recently read at Poetry in the Park.

Is a new lower-case logo moving to the print edition?

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