Literature

Literature

A Beautiful Book, Whether Or Not It Makes You 'Happy'

Aug 11, 2014

Lies! Deceit and rank mendacity! Eleanor Davis promises what current pop music insists is perfectly possible — that you can be happy — and then she doesn't deliver. Instead she draws comics full of hilarious surrealism, gut-tugging tropes and eloquent despair. How dare she?

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin settles in for suspense in Sweden with Tom Rob Smith’s The Farm.

Title: The Farm

Author: Tom Rob Smith

Pages: 316

Publisher: Grand Central Publishing

ISBN: 978-0446550734

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

For months now the Ebola virus has been wreaking havoc in the West African countries of Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone. More than 700 people have died, and it seems that doctors are near-powerless to help. With the threat of the disease tearing communities apart, it's hard not to think of a legendary novel from almost 70 years ago.

Nearly two dozen diaries and notebooks of Siegfried Sassoon — among a handful of prominent soldier-poets whose artistic sensibilities were forged in the trenches of World War I — are being published online for the first time by the Cambridge University Library.

Sassoon, who served in the British Army, was a "gifted diarist [who] ... kept a journal for most of his life," the library says.

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin hits the high seas with Oliver and the Seawigs by author Philip Reeve and illustrator Sarah McIntyre.

Title: Oliver and the Seawigs

Author: Philip Reeve, Sarah McIntyre

Pages: 193

Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers

ISBN: 978-0385387880

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

Five years ago, printing your own book was stigmatized and was seen as a mark of failure.

"But now," says Dana Beth Weinberg, a sociologist at Queens College who is studying the industry, "the self-published authors walk into the room, and they say, oh, well, 'I made a quarter million dollars last year, or $100,000, or made $10,000.' And it is still more than what some of these authors are making with their very prestigious contracts."

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin journeys back in time to learn about the life and death of a president with Bill O’Reilly’s Kennedy’s Last Days.

Title: Kennedy’s Last Days

Author: Bill O’Reilly

CDs: 4 (4 1/2 hours)

Publisher: Macmillan Young Listeners

ISBN: 978-1427235169

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

A Shot And A Book: How To Read In Bars

Jul 21, 2014

As a critic, I read for work. Or rather, I read and then work to translate that experience into something others might read. The hope is that they'll then be compelled enough to also read, if it's any good, the thing I wrote about me reading. That's a pretty meaningful exchange for a reviewer.

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin tracks down danger with a talented budding musician in The City.

Title: The City

Author: Dean Koontz

Pages: 259

Publisher: Bantam

ISBN: 978-0345545930

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin goes on an emotional journey with the audio version of Jane Green’s Tempting Fate.

Title: Tempting Fate

Author: Jane Green

CDs: 9 (11 hours)

Publisher: Macmillan Audio

ISBN: 978-1427236173

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin reunites with a reformed killer in The Red Hot Fix by T. E. Woods

Title: The Red Hot Fix

Author: T. E. Woods

Pages: 278

Publisher: Alibi

AISN: B00F1W0EGW

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin goes on a seaside vacation with a rich and fabulous author in Tatiana De Rosnay’s The Other Story.

Title: The Other Story

Author: Tatiana De Rosnay

CDs: 8 (10 hours)

Publisher: Macmillan Audio

ISBN: 978-1427239525

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

Journalist and essayist David Giffels has written for the New York Times Magazine, the Wall Street JournalGrantland, and Redbook among others. His most recent book is The Hard Way on Purpose, a collection of essays about growing up near Akron and Cleveland, an area he sees as embodying a sense of place, but “a weird, surreal place,” The Rust Belt.

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin ventures into the wilderness for Michael Koryta’s latest thriller, Those Who Wish Me Dead.

Title: Those Who Wish Me Dead

Author: Michael Koryta

Pages: 296

Publisher: Little, Brown and Company

ISBN: 978-0316122559

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin goes on the run with an extraordinary young girl in Patrick Lee’s audio thriller Runner.

Title: Runner

Author: Patrick Lee

CDs: 7 (8 1/2 hours)

Publisher: Macmillan Audio

ISBN: 978-1427236074

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin plans a heist with Matthew Quirk’s second Mike Ford novel, The Directive.

Title: The Directive

Author: Matthew Quirk

Pages: 354

Publisher: Little, Brown and Company

ISBN: 978-0316198646

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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