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November 7, 2003 Newsletter November 7, 2003
This Week on
One to Watch...and Laughing Out Loud...
BLOW FLY by Patricia Cornwell
Suspense/Thriller Spotlight: Read Advance Reader Comments on THE CONSPIRACY CLUB by Jonathan Kellerman; Plus More Excerpts
Chick Lit: An Interview With Kim Green, A Review of IS THAT A MOOSE IN YOUR POCKET? and Our New Author, Sophie Kinsella, author of CONFESSIONS OF A SHOPAHOLIC
Debut Author --- One To Watch: Jilliane Hoffman, author of RETRIBUTION
Author Talk: Margo Howard, author of A LIFE IN LETTERS: Ann Landers' Letters to Her Only Child
This Week's Book Reviews and Features
Poll: All About Audiobooks
Question of the Week
Word of Mouth: Tell Us What You're Reading -- TWO Prizes This Week!
On The Book Report Network
Past Reviews
Can't See the Graphics? Read This Newsletter Online
Past Poll: Have you been reading more nonfiction books in the past year?
Past Question: Name up to three books you might have missed that you discovered by reading our newsletter or website.
One to Watch...and Laughing Out Loud...
Quick reminder as you start your holiday shopping. You can support by making your Amazon holiday purchases via the links on our website. We receive a percentage of those sales, which allows us to continue to deliver the quality editorial we do each week. The link right below this letter is another way to access Amazon and support us!

We are kicking off a new feature this week --- "Debut Author: One to Watch." While there are many established writers whose work we examine in depth in our Suspense/Thriller and Chick Lit promotions there are some debut authors who we think should be on your radar screens as well. The first is Jilliane Hoffman whose thriller RETRIBUTION is getting great buzz. I read it over the summer and I will tell you it's worth the praise it's receiving. Others I know who have read it have the same reaction. Bethanne Patrick, one of our reviewers IMed me right after she finished it and said, "we have to interview Hoffman." It will be in stores on January 6th, but we are offering 10 readers a chance to read it now. Send your name and snail mail address (we MUST have your address to consider you) to by Friday, November 21st to be entered to be one of our 10 winners.

I love books that make me laugh. I read CONFESSIONS OF A SHOPAHOLIC by Sophie Kinsella this summer and could not stop laughing picturing Becky Bloomwood and her debt-producing shopping adventures. I found myself telling the stories from the book to anyone who would listen! And they would laugh just as hard. One friend read all three books in the series and called me on vacation to tell me they were the wittiest pieces of writing that she had read. We knew Sophie Kinsella had to be our next Chick Lit author to celebrate. This week CONFESSIONS OF A SHOPAHOLIC was released in mass market paperback.

To celebrate we are sponsoring a special contest. Between now and December 5th write us at and tell us your favorite shopping story. This can be a story about something you enjoyed the experience of buying, or a time where your shopping habits, like Becky Bloomwood's got WAY ahead of your financial means. One lucky winner will be awarded a $100 American Express gift cheque, which which can come in mighty handy for holiday shopping, especially shopping in the "to me/from me" category. See further details below.

Last weekend I finally got to see Mystic River. Whoa, does that one have Oscar nomination written all over it! I appreciated that the movie tracked the book so brilliantly; it reminded me again of what an incredible book this is.

More than 418 of you have voted in our poll about Audiobooks. This is the last week for you to vote in this poll. If you did not yet weigh in, please see below for details on how to vote.

Have a great week.

Carol Fitzgerald (
Support by shopping with this link.
Read more about our October Author of the Month here. Read about books that have won awards here. Read about this fall's movies that are based on books here.
BLOW FLY by Patricia Cornwell
BLOW FLY by Patricia Cornwell (Thriller)
Reviewed by Barbara Lipkien Gershenbaum
Dr. Kay Scarpetta has left Virginia for some rest and relaxation but instead finds herself drawn into baffling and horrific murders in Florida, where she becomes entangled in an international conspiracy that confronts her with the shock of her life.
Read our review of BLOW FLY.
Read more about THE CONSPIRACY CLUB here. Read more about Jonathan Kellerman here. Read a review of A COLD HEART here.
Suspense/Thriller Spotlight: Read Advance Reader Comments on THE CONSPIRACY CLUB by Jonathan Kellerman; Plus More Excerpts
Jonathan Kellerman, author of THE CONSPIRACY CLUB (due in stores on November 25th)
New This Week:
-Read Chapters Two and Three from THE CONSPIRACY CLUB
-Read our Advance Readers' comments on THE CONSPIRACY CLUB

In Case You Missed Previous Weeks:
-Read Fast Facts about Kellerman
-Read about Jonathan Kellerman

Read our Suspense/Thriller feature here.
Read more about IS THAT A MOOSE IN YOUR POCKET? here. Read more about Kim Green here.
Chick Lit: An Interview With Kim Green, A Review of IS THAT A MOOSE IN YOUR POCKET? and Our New Author, Sophie Kinsella, author of CONFESSIONS OF A SHOPAHOLIC
New This Week
-Read our interview with Kim Green.
-Read our review of IS THAT A MOOSE IN YOUR POCKET?
Reviewed by Carol Fitzgerald
After being passed over for a promotion and currently between boyfriends, Jen Brenner realizes it's time for a major life change. So she leaves both San Francisco and her ex-boyfriend and heads to Montana, where she meets EPA agent Bruce Mortensen, the man of her dreams --- or is he?

-Read our Advance Readers' comments on IS THAT A MOOSE IN YOUR POCKET?

-Kim Green announces our next featured Chick Lit author, Sophie Kinsella.

Read our Chick Lit feature here.
Debut Author --- One To Watch: Jilliane Hoffman, author of RETRIBUTION
We have 10 advanced reading copies of RETRIBUTION by Jilliane Hoffman to give away to readers who would like to preview the book and comment about it. A description can be found by clicking the link below. If you are interested, please send your name and mailing address to by Friday, November 21st.

-Read an excerpt from RETRIBUTION
Read more about Jilliane Hoffman and RETRIBUTION here.
Author Talk: Margo Howard, author of A LIFE IN LETTERS: Ann Landers' Letters to Her Only Child
Margo Howard is the daughter of Ann Landers, one of America's most beloved advice columnists, who passed away in 2002. A LIFE IN LETTERS is a collection of wise, witty and heartfelt letters that Landers wrote to her only child. In these correspondences, Landers offers insight and practical advice on everything from marriage and divorce to growing up and growing old. In this interview Howard reveals why she decided to write the book, what she learned from her mother about writing columns, and her most memorable Ann Landers column.

A LIFE IN LETTERS: Ann Landers' Letters to Her Only Child by Margo Howard (Nonfiction)
Reviewed by Carol Fitzgerald
Margo Howard, the daughter of the legendary advice columnist Ann Landers, compiled the wise, witty and moving letters that Landers wrote her over forty four years into a moving tribute. Readers will see a whole other side of Landers

For more about Margo Howard, go to
Read the interview with Margo Howard and a review of A LIFE IN LETTERS here.
This Week's Book Reviews and Features
LOVE by Toni Morrison (Fiction)
Toni Morrison, winner of the 1993 Nobel Prize for Literature, explores the phenomenon known as love in her latest novel about a man named Bill Cosey and the women who jostle for his affections and whose enmity perseveres through several decades of backstabbing and recriminations.

REMEMBER WHEN by Nora Roberts/J.D. Robb (Mystery)
Reviewed by Kate Ayers
Roberts and Robb fans, rejoice! At last, a great opportunity to read both authors --- rather, both author's personae. The Nora Roberts part leans more toward the romantic sides of the story, leaving J.D. Robb to handle the rough and tumble police aspects. It all comes together in one steamy mystery.

STONE COLD by Robert B. Parker (Suspense)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
Jesse Stone must accomplish three tasks in Robert B. Parker's fourth novel featuring the police chief of Paradise, Massachusetts: capture a pair of serial killers who are murdering victims at random, bring to justice the three high school students who gang-raped their fellow schoolmate, and come to terms with both his drinking and his feelings toward his ex-wife.

PRIVATE SECTOR by Brian Haig (Suspense)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
In Brian Haig's fourth novel featuring Sean Drummond, the military lawyer is loaned out to a law firm whose #1 client may have ties to a vicious serial killer and a massive international crime ring.

LIKE NO OTHER TIME: The 107th Congress and the Two Years That Changed America Forever by Senator Tom Daschle, with Michael D'Orso (Current Events)
Reviewed by Stuart Shiffman
South Dakota Senator Tom Daschle, the Majority Leader of the historic 107th Senate, presents a candid insider's account of the workings of the U.S. government during two of the most tumultuous years in the nation's history.

FRANKLIN AND WINSTON: An Intimate Portrait of an Epic Friendship by Jon Meacham (History/Biography)
Reviewed by Ron Kaplan
Jon Meacham explores the fascinating relationship between Franklin Roosevelt and Winston Churchill --- a vital friendship that emerged during World War II, when Great Britain was facing its darkest hours.

BRAVE MEN, GENTLE HEROES: American Fathers and Sons in World War II and Vietnam by Michael Takiff (Military History/Biography)
Reviewed by Andi Shechter
Michael Takiff presents the frank, moving and harrowing stories of men who served in World War II and of their sons who served in Vietnam --- fathers and sons bonded as deeply by their common experience in war as by blood.

THE RED HAT CLUB by Haywood Smith (Fiction)
Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon
Georgia, SuSu, Teeny, Diane and Linda have been best friends since high school. When Diane discovers her husband has a mistress, and that they're living in a cabin he bought with their retirement funds, the girls come together to take matters into their own hands.

ALFRED HITCHCOCK: A Life in Darkness and Light by Patrick McGilligan
Reviewed by Ron Kaplan
Patrick McGilligan has produced a definitive portrait of one of the most legendary figures in the film industry --- the first major biography of Alfred Hitchcock to be written in the past 20 years.

THE GREAT HUSBAND HUNT by Laurie Graham (Fiction)
Reviewed by Vin Patel
In this funny and moving novel, we meet Poppy Minkel --- a steadfast, high-spirited and unconventional woman whose life, loves and tribulations we follow from childhood to adulthood.
Read this week's reviews and features here.
Go to Search here Read about upcoming books here.
Poll: All About Audiobooks
Do you listen to audiobooks?

Yes, I listen to them all the time.
Yes, I listen to them, but only when I am doing select activities
No, I have tried them and I do not like them.
I have never listened to an audiobook.

Where do you listen to audiobooks?

On car trips
While exercising
While working
While walking
While doing hobbies like gardening and painting
While doing mundane tasks like laundry, ironing and mowing the lawn
I listen while doing other activities than those you have listed
I do not listen to audiobooks.

What kind of books do you listen to?

The same kinds of books that I typically read
Different genres than I usually read
I am not sure what I do
I do not listen to audiobooks

How do you listen?

Using CDs or tapes
Using Mp3 player
Using iPod

Have you ever downloaded a book?

Yes, I have.
No, but that would be interesting to me.
I am not sure.
I have no interest in audiobooks.
Answer the Poll here.
Question of the Week
Here's our question of the week:

Tell us about one of your best audiobook experiences --- either a book you listened to, or a trip or moment that was made more special by listening to an audiobook while you were experiencing it.
Answer the Question of the Week.
Read about BALANCE OF POWER here. Read about HELLO, DARKNESS here.
Word of Mouth: Tell Us What You're Reading -- TWO Prizes This Week!
Tell us what books YOU are reading and loving --- or even those you don't.

This week we have some great prizes:

FIVE readers each will win a copy of BALANCE OF POWER by Richard North Patterson and HELLO, DARKNESS by Sandra Brown.

Please note that our next Word of Mouth update will be on November 14th.
Need more details about Word of Mouth? Click here.

As always, here are a few housekeeping notes. If you are seeing this newsletter in a text version, and would prefer to see the graphics, you can either read it online (see the link on the upper right) or change your preferences below.

Those of you who wish to send mail to the general mailbox at, please write to: If you would like to reach me, please write Writing any of the respond buttons below will not get to us.

Quick observation --- we have noticed that many of you have been changing your Internet providers in the past month. If you do, please be sure to "take us along" by signing up for the newsletter in your new name!

Happy reading....and don't forget to forward this newsletter to a friend.

--- Carol Fitzgerald (