Skip to main content

November 21, 2003 Newsletter November 21, 2003
This Week on Launches!
THE BIG BAD WOLF by James Patterson
Suspense/Thriller Spotlight: Read our Interview with Jonathan Kellerman and our Review of THE CONSPIRACY CLUB, and See our Joseph Finder/PARANOIA Advance Readers
Chick Lit: Sophie Kinsella answers the Chick Lit 12; Read an Excerpt of Kinsella's Upcoming Release; and Enter to Win A $100 American Express Gift Cheque
Julia Leigh is Toni Morrison's Protégée in the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative
John F. Kennedy Feature
This Week's Book Reviews and Features
Poll: Holiday Shopping
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: Tell us what you think about audiobooks.
Past Question: Tell us about one of your best audiobook experiences. Launches!
This week we launched, the 7th website in The Book Report Network. This website, which is edited for Christian readers, has many of the same features that you have come to appreciate on --- reviews, author interviews, a monthly poll, question and even Word of Mouth. Check it out when you get a moment --- and may we ask you to forward the link to friends who you think may enjoy this website? Thank you!

Wednesday night was National Book Awards ceremony. Stephen King was honored with an award for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. The award had been controversial in the publishing community as people complained that King was not "literary enough" to receive this award. We here at applauded this recognition. We are a tad bored with authors who are deemed "not literary enough" not being recognized for major prizes. We pride ourselves on the range of titles that we review --- and the authors that we promote, and from your letters, we know you appreciate this "eyes-open" look at the world of books. For information on the rest of the prizes award that evening please see the Awards link on the left hand side of

This week we have an interview with Jonathan Kellerman whose new book, THE CONSPIRACY CLUB will be out on Tuesday. We also announce the advance readers of Joseph Finder's PARANOIA and Jilliane Hoffman's RETRIBUTION. We had a record number of readers requesting these titles, so be sure to stay with us in the weeks to come to learn more about them!

This weekend marks the 40th Anniversary of the Kennedy assassination. We have reviews of a number of titles that commemorate and reflect on this event as well as a review of SWEET CAROLINE, the new Christopher Anderson book about Caroline Kennedy.

Lots more this week including a review of the new James Patterson, Sophie Kinsella answering the Chick Lit 12, details about our Contest where you can win a $100 American Express Gift Cheque and new reviews.

Our next newsletter will come to you next Tuesday as we will be closed at the end of the week to celebrate Thanksgiving.

Until then....happy reading.

Carol Fitzgerald (
Check out here.
Browse through Author Bibliographies here. Read about books that have won awards here. Read about this fall's movies that are based on books here.
THE BIG BAD WOLF by James Patterson
THE BIG BAD WOLF by James Patterson (Thriller)
Reviewed by Barbara Lipkien Gershenbaum
A team of kidnappers is abducting women and selling them. In his latest thriller James Patterson sets his well-known detective, Alex Cross, against the "Wolf," a predatory Russian mobster who sells drugs, arms and people with the same cold, calculating indifference.
Read our review of THE BIG BAD WOLF here.
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 our Interview with Jonathan Kellerman and our Review of THE CONSPIRACY CLUB, and See our Joseph Finder/PARANOIA Advance Readers
Jonathan Kellerman, author of THE CONSPIRACY CLUB (due in stores on November 25th)

New This Week:
-An interview with Jonathan Kellerman

Jonathan Kellerman has brought his expertise as a clinical psychologist to a number of his bestselling suspense novels, including those that feature psychologist Alex Delaware. His latest effort, THE CONSPIRACY CLUB, introduces readers to a new character --- a dedicated young psychologist named Jeremy Carrier.

In this interview with's Suspense/Thriller Author Spotlight team (Carol Fitzgerald, Joe Hartlaub, and Wiley Saichek), Kellerman talks about his decision to depart briefly from Alex Delaware, the working relationship he has with his wife Faye, and a memorable encounter he had with one of his fans.


THE CONSPIRACY CLUB by Jonathan Kellerman (Suspense)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
Dr. Jeremy Carrier is a dedicated young psychologist whose life is shattered by the grisly killing of nurse Jocelyn Banks, with whom he had a passionate but brief affair. As more women turn up murdered in the same gruesome fashion as Ms. Banks, the suspicion surrounding Jeremy intensifies. Now, the only way to prove his innocence and put his torment to rest is to follow the trail of a cunning psychopath.

In Case You Missed Last Week:
-Read Chapters Two and Three from THE CONSPIRACY CLUB
-Read our Advance Readers' comments on THE CONSPIRACY CLUB

This week we announce the advance copy winners of Joseph Finder's PARANOIA (due in stores on January 20th).

In Case You Missed Last Week:
-Read about PARANOIA
-Read about Joseph Finder
-Visit to play the Paranoia game, take a quiz to find out how paranoid you are and get details on how to win a Paranoia T-shirt by pre-ordering your copy of PARANOIA now!
Read our Suspense/Thriller feature here.
Read more about Paranoia here. Read more about Joseph Finder here.
Chick Lit: Sophie Kinsella answers the Chick Lit 12; Read an Excerpt of Kinsella's Upcoming Release; and Enter to Win A $100 American Express Gift Cheque
New This Week:

-Sophie Kinsella answers the Chick Lit 12
-Read an excerpt of Kinsella's forthcoming release, CAN YOU KEEP A SECRET? (in stores March 2004)

Sophie Kinsella's next book has a new protagonist, Emma Corrigan, a young woman with a huge heart, an irrepressible spirit, and a few little secrets. Read a preview chapter of this book, which will be released in March 2004.

In Case You Missed Last Week:
Interview with Sophie Kinsella: Sophie Kinsella reveals her inspiration for her bestselling Shopaholic series, shares a few of the most memorable letters she has received from readers and talks about her future writing plans --- which include a new stand-alone novel and a fourth Shopaholic book.

To celebrate the mass market release of CONFESSIONS OF A SHOPAHOLIC, is hosting a special contest sure to delight readers --- and shoppers! One lucky reader will win a $100 American Express Gift Cheque for holiday shopping.

To enter the contest, please send an email to sharing a favorite shopping story by December 5, 2003. The subject line should read CHICK LIT CONTEST. 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.
Read our Chick Lit feature here.
Read more than CONFESSIONS OF A SHOPAHOLIC here. Read more about SHOPAHOLIC TAKES MANHATTAN here. Read more about SHOPAHOLIC TIES THE KNOT here.
Julia Leigh is Toni Morrison's Protégée in the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative
Literature may soon have a new star. She is Julia Leigh, a 33-year-old Australian novelist who has just completed a year as the Protégée of Nobel Prize-winner Toni Morrison as part of the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative. Launched in 2002, this international philanthropic programme pairs extraordinarily gifted young artists with renowned artists in their fields, allowing them to working closely together over the course of a year.
Read more about the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative, and Toni Morrison's Protégée here.
John F. Kennedy Feature
The assassination of John F. Kennedy is one of the most tragic and shocking events in U.S. history. Those who did not live through it need only watch the footage --- the wall-to-wall news coverage, the emotions displayed by CBS anchorman Walter Cronkite, the stunned expressions on the faces of citizens and the funeral itself --- to fully comprehend the magnitude of what occurred in Dallas on the afternoon of November 22, 1963.

To commemorate the 40th anniversary of the assassination, we have assembled five books that pay special tribute to our 35th President, and one that provides a compelling portrait of Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg, JFK's beloved daughter.
Read our John F. Kennedy feature here.
This Week's Book Reviews and Features
POMPEII by Robert Harris (Fiction)
Reviewed by Eileen Zimmerman-Nicol
All along the Mediterranean coast, the Roman empire's richest citizens are relaxing in their luxurious villas, enjoying the last days of summer, and the tourists are spending their money in the seaside resorts of Baiae, Herculaneum and Pompeii. But the carefree lifestyle and gorgeous weather belie an impending cataclysm, and only one man --- young engineer Marcus Attilius Primus --- is worried.

BLACK SHEEP by R. J. Kaiser (Fiction)
Reviewed by Bob Rhubart
Jonas Lamb is a lost sheep. He has always taken risks and played by his own rules. Now, after a trail of broken marriages and an endless rollercoaster ride from fortune to bankruptcy and back again, Jonas has one last chance to turn his life around.

THE LITTLE WOMEN by Katharine Weber (Fiction)
Reviewed by Melissa A. Martin
The adolescent Green sisters --- Meg, Jo and Amy --- lead a charmed life until they discover that their apparently perfect family is far more fragile than they had ever thought.

TO PUNISH & PROTECT: A DA's Fight Against a System That Coddles Criminals by Jeanine Pirro, with Catherine Whitney (Current Affairs)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
Jeanine Pirro, the District Attorney of Westchester County, New York, takes us inside the violent world of modern crime fighting. She brings readers face to face with the gruesome realities of her daily battles and tells the true, heartbreaking stories of the victims.

THE STRANGER AND THE STATESMAN: James Smithson, John Quincy Adams, and the Making of America's Greatest Museum: The Smithsonian by Nina Burleigh (History)
Reviewed by Ron Kaplan
In this illuminating and dramatic biography, Nina Burleigh reveals a little-known slice of social and intellectual history in the life and times of the man responsible for the creation of the United States' principal cultural institution, the Smithsonian.

SONGBOOK by Nick Hornby (Current Affairs)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
Nick Hornby, who has a passion for music, provides readers with his ultimate list of 31 all-time favorite songs, along with smart, funny and very personal essays about them.

BECKHAM: Both Feet on the Ground - An Autobiography by David Beckham and Tom Watt (Autobiography)
Reviewed by Vin Patel
Legendary soccer player David Beckham talks candidly about the pressures of celebrity, his roles as a husband and father, the behind-the-scenes stories of his most memorable career moments, and his love of America.

THE BREATHTAKER by Alice Blanchard (Suspense)
Reviewed by Kate Ayers
A serial killer uses the chaos of tornadoes to mask his murders, and the local police chief battles almost superhuman odds to try to catch him.
Read this week's reviews and features here.
Go to Search here Read about upcoming books here.
Poll: Holiday Shopping
Do you buy books as holiday presents?

Not sure

When do you start your holiday shopping?

At the last possible moment
Sometime in mid-December
Sometime in early December
Right after Thanksgiving
I already started shopping.
(And for those of you who do this, go ahead and tell us) I already am finished shopping.
I do not buy holiday presents.
Other (Please specify)
Answer the Poll here.
Question of the Week
Here's our question of the week:

Name a book that you are planning to give this holiday season.
Answer the Question of the Week.
Read about WOLVES OF THE CALLA here. Read about THE BIG BAD WOLF re.
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 WOLVES OF THE CALLA: The Dark Tower V by Stephen King and THE BIG BAD WOLF by James Patterson.

Please note that our next Word of Mouth update will be on December 5th.
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, please see the form on the Write to Us page. We were forced to move to this format after we were inundated with SPAM at the other address. 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 (