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Book Review: DEADLINE by John Sandford

Book Review: DEADLINE by John Sandford

October 23, 2014 – 4:36 pm | 5 Comments

This review originally appeared in Shelf Awareness for Readers and is reprinted here with permission.
As a favor for a friend, Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension agent Virgil Flowers looks into multiple dognappings that have occurred …

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Nerdy Special List October 2014

October 8, 2014 – 9:44 pm | 4 Comments

We have books to recommend this month! So, just sit back with your cider and throw blanket and…oh, who am I kidding? I’m running the A/C right now because it’s hotter than Colin Firth in a Tom Ford suit around here. Hope it’s more fall-ish where you are.

Here are the October books my blogger friends and I found noteworthy.

From Jen at Jen’s Book Thoughts:

Hand to Mouth: Living in Bootstrap America by Linda Tirado (Putnam, October 2)

hand to mouthLinda Tirado made waves around the world when she responded to a question one night in an online forum. The question was “why do poor people do things that seem so self-destructive?” As a member of the working poor, she felt qualified to answer. Her response went viral and now she’s telling the world in a full-length book what it’s like to be living near or below the poverty line in the United States.

Tirado pulls no punches in this frank self-portrait. She debunks many myths and stereotypes about the poor, starting with the idea that they are ignorant and lazy. Tirado is extremely intelligent, caustically witty, and very hardworking. Entertaining and informative, Hand to Mouth is likely to make many readers look closely at their own preconceived notions about this ever-growing segment of our nation’s population.

Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson (Spiegel & Grau,  October 21)

just mercyBryan Stevenson is the director of the Equal Justice Initiative, a nonprofit organization in Montgomery, Alabama, that works to provide legal assistance to those who are most in need: poor death-row inmates, children, the mentally ill, etc. Just Mercy is a product of his work with EJI.

Written in the style of a fictional legal thriller, Stevenson tells the true story of Walter McMillian, a young black man wrongly sentenced to die in—of all places—Monroeville, Alabama, the childhood home of Harper Lee. As Stevenson unfolds McMillian’s tragic story, he also highlights other equally horrifying cases he’s encountered.

This is a moving tale, written with superb storytelling skills, about the injustice overwhelming the current American legal system. In the newest book from Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner, Think Like a Freak, the authors advocate using story as a tool to convince people to change their views. Stevenson has done just that. Just Mercy is a riveting, suspenseful, emotional story readers won’t be able to walk away from without knowing our justice system is horribly and life-threateningly flawed.

From Rory at Fourth Street Review:

Brood by Chase Novak (Mulholland Books, October 7)

broodI’m happy to admit that I’m the type of person who looks forward to October every year—pumpkins, cooler weather, and ALL the scary books I can read. In this case, it’s the sequel to Chase Novak’s Breed, a disturbing and gruesome tale of a couple who go through great lengths to conceive their twins, Adam and Alice. Brood, the follow-up, is the story of the now adolescent children and what they must go through to live a moderately normal life.Reading this book is like giving yourself permission to tune out of the grim reality of the world. It’s fun, disturbing, and perfect for those looking for an autumnal read that’s not too scary. Brood is not for everyone (squeamish readers beware!), but for those looking for a lighter alternative to Stephen King, this is a good option.

From PCN:

maliceBestselling Japanese author Keigo Higashino’s latest mystery, Malice, is about a bestselling Japanese author who’s found murdered in his locked home office. Detective Kaga zeroes in on a suspect right away and the suspect surprisingly confesses without much coercion. But the confessed killer refuses to give a motive, and some of his story doesn’t align with the evidence, forcing Kaga to dig deeper to discover the truth. Malice is twisty and psychologically complex, and will keep you guessing about its dark secrets until almost the last page.

Which October books are you looking forward to?

Book Review: THE DISTANCE by Helen Giltrow

September 16, 2014 – 10:39 pm | One Comment
Book Review: THE DISTANCE by Helen Giltrow

This review originally appeared in Shelf Awareness for Readers and is reprinted here with permission.
Charlotte Alton may seem like a well-bred London socialite, but her alter ego, Karla, operates in the shadows, gathering information that …

Book Giveaway: WE ARE NOT OURSELVES by Matthew Thomas

September 8, 2014 – 8:43 pm | 7 Comments
Book Giveaway: WE ARE NOT OURSELVES by Matthew Thomas

If you’re a big reader and frequent a lot of bookish sites, you may not have been able to avoid hearing about one of the buzziest books this year—Matthew Thomas’s debut novel, We Are Not …

Book Review: THE FURIES by Natalie Haynes

September 3, 2014 – 10:08 pm | One Comment
Book Review: THE FURIES by Natalie Haynes

This review originally appeared in Shelf Awareness for Readers and is reprinted here with permission.

Grieving after the violent death of her fiancé, theater director Alex Morris leaves London for Edinburgh to take a job …

Movie Review: THE GIVER

August 14, 2014 – 8:38 pm |
Movie Review: THE GIVER

The Giver, adapted from Lois Lowry’s Newbery Medal-winning novel, opens in black and white, with best friends Jonas (Brenton Thwaites), Fiona (Odeya Rush), and Asher (Cameron Monaghan) living in a dystopian community free of strife. Every …

Book Review & Giveaway: ONE PLUS ONE by Jojo Moyes

July 16, 2014 – 7:55 pm | 4 Comments
Book Review & Giveaway: ONE PLUS ONE by Jojo Moyes

This review originally appeared in Shelf Awareness for Readers and is reprinted here with permission.
British novelist Jojo Moyes (Me Before You) examines the different shapes of families and the widening gap between rich people and those who …

Book Review: LANDLINE by Rainbow Rowell

July 13, 2014 – 8:31 pm |
Book Review: LANDLINE by Rainbow Rowell

TV writer Georgie McCool finally gets a shot at writing her dream show. The problem: She needs to stay in L.A. and work on it over Christmas. Georgie’s husband Neal decides to take their young …

Giveaway: THE BOOK OF LIFE by Deborah Harkness

July 7, 2014 – 9:57 pm | 11 Comments
Giveaway: THE BOOK OF LIFE by Deborah Harkness

On the July Nerdy Special List posted last week, one of the recommendations was Deborah Harkness’s The Book of Life, the finale to her Book of Souls trilogy. I now have a giveaway of that book (out July 15), …

Giveaway: WAYFARING STRANGER by James Lee Burke

June 30, 2014 – 6:00 pm | 9 Comments
Giveaway: WAYFARING STRANGER by James Lee Burke

The good people at Simon & Schuster are letting me give away two copies of James Lee Burke’s new novel, Wayfaring Stranger, which comes out July 15. Here’s the book description from the author’s website:
From …

Book Review: MAMBO IN CHINATOWN by Jean Kwok

June 22, 2014 – 4:56 pm | 2 Comments
Book Review: MAMBO IN CHINATOWN by Jean Kwok

In Jean Kwok’s follow-up to Girl in Translation, twenty-two-year-old Charlie Wong starts out as a dishwasher at a restaurant in Chinatown, where her father is a noodle maker. She has an eleven-year-old sister, Lisa, and …

Book Review: THOSE WHO WISH ME DEAD by Michael Koryta

June 12, 2014 – 7:23 pm |
Book Review: THOSE WHO WISH ME DEAD by Michael Koryta

This review originally appeared in Shelf Awareness for Readers and is reprinted here with permission.
At the start of Michael Koryta’s Those Who Wish Me Dead, 13-year-old Jace Wilson tries to conquer his fear of heights by …

Book Review: THE SECRET LIFE OF VIOLET GRANT

June 9, 2014 – 9:55 pm |
Book Review: THE SECRET LIFE OF VIOLET GRANT

This review originally appeared in Shelf Awareness for Readers and is reprinted here with permission.
Like her previous historical novels (Overseas and A Hundred Summers), Beatriz Williams’s The Secret Life of Violet Grant alternates between time …

Movie Reviews: THE FAULT IN OUR STARS & EDGE OF TOMORROW

June 7, 2014 – 12:21 am | 3 Comments
Movie Reviews: THE FAULT IN OUR STARS & EDGE OF TOMORROW

Movie-studio execs must’ve thought releasing a sad teenage romance and a big sci-fi action thriller on the same weekend meant they were targeting different audiences, but I don’t belong to any one group so I …

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