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October 28, 2005 Newsletter

October 28, 2005

This Week on

How Many Pages Can You Read in An Hour? Talks to Greg Rucka, Author of PRIVATE WARS

Our Newest Debut Suspense/Thriller Author: Peter Temple, Author of BAD DEBTS and BLACK TIDE

Now In Stores: THE CAMEL CLUB by David Baldacci

Now In Stores: ANANSI BOYS by Neil Gaiman

Suspense/Thriller Author Spotlight: David Morrell, Author of CREEPERS

Now In Stores: HOSTILE MAKEOVER by Wendy Wax

What's New On

In a Book Group? Register Your Group With November is a Month You Will Not Want to Miss!

New In Paperback

This Week's Reviews and Features Blog

Poll: Listening to Authors
Question of the Week: Logging in, Listening up
Word of Mouth: Tell Us What You're Reading -- TWO Prizes!
Quick Links to Features On The Book Report Network
Past Reviews
Can't See the Graphics? Read This Newsletter Online
Past Question of the Week: If you wrote a memoir, what would it be about?
Suspense/Thriller Author Spotlight Promotion
Debut Suspense/Thriller One to Watch Promotion
Mystery Mayhem Promotion

Fantasy Author Spotlight Promotion

One to Watch Promotion
Chick Lit Promotion
Summer Beach Bag Promotion

How Many Pages Can You Read in An Hour?

The clocks change this weekend. The good thing about this is that starting Monday I will not have to wake my older son for school and send him to the school bus in the dark. I have never been a morning person, but this time of year it's a real struggle to get going. Of course, I loathe leaving the office in the dark, but then again most nights even in summer I leave when it's dark. I get caught up in what I am doing and suddenly it's after 7!
Of course, I have scheduled 64 things to do in my extra hour. Just how many pages COULD I read in that hour? Hmmm...I may just have to make that my priority. I am just finishing a debut suspense/thriller called THE AMERICAN by Andrew Britton, which will be out in March 2006. It's the story of a maverick ex-CIA agent who returns to the force to find a killer who is out to destroy the United States. The killer is someone he knows. While he was in the Marines this killer was a soldier under his command, who killed his entire company and then disappeared. Britton is just twenty-four years old, but writes like a veteran. I've been enjoying reading pages here and there during what has been a VERY busy week.
Next week we are kicking off our Holiday Gift Basket promotion where we will spotlight eight great titles for holiday giving. There's going to be a fun twist to these prizes, so be sure to read your newsletter or the site next week.
Reading and answering reader mail is something I do each day. Okay, often I read a lot faster than I reply, but I do stay on top of what you are writing. A few months ago Steve Hubbard wrote to tell me we were not covering fantasy. I agreed, we chatted and now he is reviewing for us. His review of Neil Gaiman's latest, ANANSI BOYS, is running this week. As I read the review yesterday I was very glad that Steve wrote me and started up a dialogue.
I have not met many of our reviewers. Yes, some are pals from my past, or people I met along the way, but most of our reviewers I do not know personally except through their writing. Roberta O'Hara sent a darling picture of herself with her son this week. I smiled when I opened it since the picture on our site is Roberta photographed from the back! See what kids can make you do?
Halloween is Monday --- any of you with children around know that this is almost as big a holiday as Christmas! My younger son is still on the fence about what to wear. He was telling me he thought he would go out as a Fifth Grade Boy. Given the way he reads I was suggesting he go as Book Boy since he is reading non-stop. I suggested we scan covers and create a costume from them. He is not buying it. My backup plan is more simple: A sheet with eyes cut out. A ghost! How novel!
Sad news to hear that Rosa Parks passed away this week. It's hard to believe that nearly 50 years had passed since this momentous bus ride. Since the anniversary was upcoming there are a number of books on the subject for readers to explore. Here are three that we thought to be noteworthy. The first is for adults while the second two are for kids: SHE WOULD NOT BE MOVED: How We Tell the Story of Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus Boycott by Herbert Kohl, DON'T KNOW MUCH ABOUT ROSA PARKS by Kenneth C. Davis and ROSA by Nikki Giovanni. You can click on the titles to find out more about them!
We have links to two author videos that I enjoyed watching. One for Tess Gerritsen, the author of VANISH; the other for Tab Hunter, whose autobiography TAB HUNTER CONFIDENTIAL just hit the stands. By the way I learned something about Warner Music that I did not know when watching the latter video. Also, for those of you who did not catch the David Morrell video last week, we have that, as well along with advance reader comments about CREEPERS. The videos all have :30 commercials before they run. Just bear with them. It's worth sticking around.
Enjoy your extra hour...for the record since I told everyone the wrong way to turn the clocks in 1996 I will leave it to you to find out which way to move them from another source. I got so much reader mail that time that I decided never again will I advise on this.


-View Tess Gerritsen's Video here.
-View Tab Hunter's Video here.
-View the CREEPERS Video here.

Carol Fitzgerald (

List of titles reviewed and featured on October 28th

List of titles reviewed and featured on October 21st Talks to Greg Rucka, Author of PRIVATE WARS's Joe Hartlaub and Wiley Saichek interviewed Greg Rucka about PRIVATE WARS, the sequel to his 2004 spy thriller A GENTLEMAN'S GAME. Rucka compares and contrasts the function of novels with that of comics, and explains how he utilizes the two to create one large and multifaceted story. Read on to learn more about the initial inspiration behind PRIVATE WARS, the thought that goes into creating literary villains, and what the future has in store for protagonist Tara Chace.

PRIVATE WARS by Greg Rucka (Thriller)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
Tara Chace, a Special Operations Officer for British Intelligence, is still reeling from the events that took place at the close of A GENTLEMAN'S GAME. In this explosive sequel, Chace returns to service in order to extricate the pro-Western heir to power in Uzbekistan before he is assassinated.

Click here to read our interview with Greg Rucka and a review of PRIVATE WARS.


Our Newest Debut Suspense/Thriller Author: Peter Temple, Author of BAD DEBTS and BLACK TIDE

This week we're introducing readers to Peter Temple, the newest author in our Debut Suspense/Thriller feature. Temple is one of Australia's most acclaimed writers, and has worked as a journalist, magazine editor and teacher. He is the author of eight novels, four of which have received the Ned Kelly Award for crime fiction. BAD DEBTS and BLACK TIDE are the first and second titles in his celebrated Jack Irish series, which is just being released in the States.

For this very special Debut Suspense/Thriller feature we are giving away 10 copies of both BAD DEBTS and BLACK TIDE. Readers will be asked to comment on BAD DEBTS. If you are interested please send your name and mailing address to by Friday, November 4th, 2005.

More about BAD DEBTS:
Jack Irish doesn't immediately remember ex-client Danny McKillop when he picks up an unexpected voicemail message - his life is hard enough without having to dredge up old problems. But when Danny turns up dead, Jack has no choice but to take a walk back into the dark and dangerous past.

With suspenseful prose and black humor, Peter Temple builds an unforgettable character in Jack Irish and brings the reader on a journey that is as intelligent as it is exciting.

More about BLACK TIDE:
Jack Irish is recovering from his last foray into the criminal underworld when he agrees to look for the missing son of Des Connors, the last living link to Jack's father. It's an offer he soon regrets, as he discovers that prodigal sons often go missing for a reason, and they always have something to hide.

The second book in Peter Temple's Jack Irish series, BLACK TIDE takes us back into a brilliantly evoked world of pubs, racetracks, and sports -- not to mention intrigue, corruption, and violence.

Click here to read more about Peter Temple, BAD DEBTS and BLACK TIDE.


Now In Stores: THE CAMEL CLUB by David Baldacci

THE CAMEL CLUB by David Baldacci (Thriller)
Reviewed by Kate Ayers
One man's belief that the planet's time is running out sets in motion an audacious plot against the U.S. president. A body found in a Washington D.C. park and a couple of Middle Eastern corpses in a farmer's field are somehow involved. And it's up to Secret Service Agent Alex Ford and a group of brilliant societal dropouts to save the world from unthinkable disaster.

-Click here to read an excerpt from THE CAMEL CLUB.

Click here to read our review of THE CAMEL CLUB.


Now In Stores: ANANSI BOYS by Neil Gaiman

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ANANSI BOYS by Neil Gaiman (Fantasy)
Reviewed by Stephen Hubbard
Mythology and modern times collide again in this new masterpiece from Neil Gaiman. A work of compelling quality, ANANSI BOYS is equal parts humorous, terrifying, adventurous, and epic in the standard mythological style --- but it is also an intimate story about the beauty, and danger, of family.

-Click here to read an excerpt from ANANSI BOYS.

Click here to read our review of ANANSI BOYS.


Suspense/Thriller Author Spotlight: David Morrell, Author of CREEPERS

New York Times bestselling author David Morrell, who has written FIRST BLOOD, THE BROTHERHOOD OF THE ROSE, THE FIFTH PROFESSION and EXTREME DENIAL, is our newest featured Suspense/Thriller author. CREEPERS, Morrell's new thriller, hit bookshelves on September 6th and is sending chills down the spine of Morrell's longtime fans and new readers alike with its dark storyline.

New This Week:
-Read our Advanced Reader Comments for CREEPERS here.

Previous Weeks:
-Read a new excerpt from CREEPERS here.
-Watch a video of Morrell talking about CREEPERS here.
(Quick note here: the video is on Yahoo and they air a fast commercial before it. Just sit back and wait for the's worth waiting for.)
-See our Advanced Copy Winners here.
-Read Fast Facts about David Morrell here.
-Read an essay by David Morrell about exploring abandoned buildings here.
-Learn more about David Morrell by visiting his website at
-Visit CREEPERS online at
-Read David Morrell's thoughts on writing CREEPERS in real time here.
-Click here to play the "Be A Creeper" Game for a chance to win some chilling prizes.

Read more about CREEPERS here:
On a cold October night, five people gather in a run-down motel on the Jersey shore and begin preparations to break into The Paragon Hotel.  Built in the glory days of Asbury Park by a reclusive millionaire, the magnificent structure, which foreshadowed the beauties of Art Deco architecture, is now boarded-up and marked for demolition.
The five people are "creepers," the slang term for urban explorers: city archeologists with a passion for investigating abandoned buildings and their dying secrets. CREEPERS, David Morrell's gripping joy-ride of a thriller, depicts every harrowing second in eight hours of relentless suspense. It will haunt readers for many nights to come.

Click here to read more about David Morrell and CREEPERS.

Now In Stores: HOSTILE MAKEOVER by Wendy Wax

Business before pleasure -- what's the fun in that?

Shelley Schwartz has never faked it during a tryst, but she's late for a career-saving meeting at her father's Atlanta advertising agency, and her options are limited.  Shelly skids into the boardroom . . . late, blouse inside out. Classic behavior on her part, her father thinks, and instead of turning over the agency to Shelley, he makes the company golden boy, Ross Morgan, the new CEO.

Now her new boss, Ross sticks Shelley with the client list from hell. But if he thinks he's going to chase Shelley out of her family legacy, he's got another thing coming. And if Shelley thinks she can resist Ross's charms, she's got some surprises in store as well. Because no one knows the real Shelley Schwartz -- and her capable older sister -- until the family chips are on the table.  

-Read an excerpt from HOSTILE MAKEOVER here.

-Visit Wendy's website here.



Click here to read more about HOSTILE MAKEOVER.

What's New On


, The Book Report Network's website for Christian readers, has been updated this week. Our features include interviews with Larry Julian and Bruce Feiler as well as an interview with Kristin Billerbeck, who responded to the Faithful Fifteen, a list of questions developed to give readers insight into Christian authors --- and what they write. Also, we have added 22 new reviews in three different categories: Fiction, Christian Living, and Marriage & Family Life.

Visit here.


In a Book Group? Register Your Group With November is a Month You Will Not Want to Miss!

Each month book clubs that are registered with are offered exciting opportunities that include chats with authors like Robert Hicks, author of THE WIDOW OF THE SOUTH, and Carlos Ruiz Zafon, author of THE SHADOW OF THE WIND, book giveaways --- and more. offers registered groups the chance to enhance the experience of being part of a book club with these kinds of exclusive offers. Also, beginning in Spring 2006 Registered Groups will receive additional exclusive content each month in their Registered Book Club newsletters.

In November will be featuring an unprecedented FIVE offers for registered readers. Don't let you or your book group miss out on the chance to connect with some of your favorite authors, receive free books --- or win a very special offer that is bookishly entertaining.  It's so special that we're keeping the details under wraps for now, but by registering your group, you'll not only be the first to know all about this special gift, but you'll also be eligible to win it!

More than 3,100 groups already are registered with us. Registration is free and easy. Along with the regular newsletter, registered readers receive an exclusive monthly mailing with descriptions for all the giveaways going on that month and details on how to enter.

Click here to register your book group.


New In Paperback

October's roundup of New in Paperback titles includes METRO GIRL, a stand-alone novel written by Janet Evanovich that features a new heroine, Alexandra (Barney) Barnaby; COOKING WITH MY SISTERS, in which Adriana Trigiani joins forces with her four sisters and their mother to bring readers a collection of the family's recipes and stories; INDELIBLE, a harrowing addition to Karin Slaughter's popular and critically acclaimed Grant County suspense series; TOOL & DIE by Sarah Graves, the eighth installment in her "Home Repair is Homicide" mystery series; Kate Atkinson's CASE HISTORIES, an intriguing mix of literary thriller and family saga; and THE KNOW-IT-ALL, which chronicles A.J. Jacobs's seemingly impossible quest to read the Encyclopaedia Britannica from A to Z.


Click here to read our New In Paperback feature.

This Week's Reviews and Features

AT FIRST SIGHT by Nicholas Sparks (Fiction)
Reviewed by Judy Gigstad
In this follow-up to Nicholas Sparks's TRUE BELIEVER, journalist Jeremy Marsh moves from New York City to Boone Creek, North Carolina as he and librarian Lexie Darnell plan for their wedding and anticipate the birth of their daughter. But Jeremy is having a difficult time adjusting to his new life.

-Click here to read an excerpt from AT FIRST SIGHT.

ON BEAUTY by Zadie Smith (Fiction)
Reviewed by Norah Piehl
Brilliant storyteller Zadie Smith, author of WHITE TEETH and THE AUTOGRAPH MAN, returns with her third novel --- a brilliant analysis of family life, the institution of marriage, intersections of the personal and political, and an honest look at people's deceptions.

PANIC by Jeff Abbott (Thriller)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
Following the brutal murder of his mother and narrowly escaping an attempt on his own life, Evan Casher is confronted with a shocking fact: his entire life has been little more than a carefully constructed lie. Pursued by a powerful, ruthless organization of killers who will stop at nothing to keep old secrets buried, Evan's only hope for survival is to uncover the truth about his family...and his own past.

MEMORIES OF MY MELANCHOLY WHORES by Gabriel Garcia Marquez (Fiction)
Reviewed by Scott Handwerker
Gabriel García Márquez's first work of fiction in ten years is a memorable, beautiful and inspiring novella about an unnamed protagonist --- an undistinguished journalist and lifelong bachelor --- who, on the eve of his 90th birthday, falls in love with an unlikely girl.

DEAN & ME (A LOVE STORY) by Jerry Lewis and James Kaplan (Memoir)
Reviewed by Carole Turner
By turns moving, tragic and hilarious, this memoir is a no-holds-barred, painfully honest look at one of the most successful partnerships in the history of show business: Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis. Who knew then that their unlikely pairing in July 1946 would take the entertainment world by storm?

BETWEEN YOU AND ME by Mike Wallace, with Gary Paul Gates (Memoir)
Reviewed by Ron Kaplan
After 60 years of reporting on important events around the world, legendary journalist Mike Wallace shares his personal stories about the incredible range of celebrities, newsmakers, criminals, and world leaders who have subjected themselves to his unique brand of questioning.

NOW YOU SEE ME... by Rochelle Krich (Mystery/Suspense)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
At a book signing, Los Angeles crime reporter Molly Blume encounters Reuben Jastrow; he desperately needs her help in finding his 18-year-old daughter, who has run away from home to be with a man she met on the Internet. Molly hesitantly agrees --- and immediately has regrets.

THE PLOT AGAINST AMERICA by Philip Roth (Fiction)
Reviewed by Tom Callahan
In one of the most talked about and important books released in 2004, Philip Roth imagines an alternate version of American history in which heroic aviator and rabid isolationist Charles A. Lindbergh is elected President in 1940. Shortly thereafter, he negotiates a cordial "understanding" with Adolf Hitler while the new government embarks on a program of folksy anti-Semitism.

BETWEEN TWO WORLDS: Escape From Tyranny: Growing Up in the Shadow of Saddam by Zainab Salbi with Laurie Becklund (Memoir)
Reviewed by Alexis Burling
Zainab Salbi was eleven years old when her father was chosen to serve as Saddam Hussein's personal pilot, her family often forced to spend weekends with Saddam where he watched their every move. As a palace insider, Zainab offers a singular glimpse of what it is like to come of age under a dictator and provides an intimate portrait of the man she was taught to call "uncle."

MICHAEL MARTONE by Michael Martone (Fiction)
Reviewed by Brandon M. Stickney
This has to be one of 2005's best, most interesting and hilarious collections of short stories --- not only because of its bizarre, deconstructionist format, but (for true lovers of literary fiction) its unique narrative as well.

Click here to read our reviews and features. Blog

October 21st Entry:
My Role as a Book Concierge to My Friends
Note: You can read past blogs here as well.
Sign up here to get notified each time this blog is updated.
Click here to read the blog.
Read a list of upcoming books here. Browse our author bibliographies by clicking here. Sign up for Author Newsletters here.
Poll: Listening to Authors
Would you like to listen to online audio interviews of authors talking about their books?

I already have listened to online audio interviews of authors and enjoyed the experience.
Yes, I would be interested in this.
No, I would not be interested in this.
I have listened to online audio interviews of authors, but I did not enjoy the experience.

Would you be interested in listening to up-and-coming authors as well as bestselling ones?

I would prefer listening to new authors.
I would prefer listening to established authors.
I would be interested in listening to both new and established authors.
I am not interested in listening to audio interviews of authors.
Have you ever listened to a podcast?

I have no idea what a podcast is.
I have no idea what a podcast is, but I hear about them all the time and I am curious about them.
Answer the Poll here.

Question of the Week: Logging in, Listening up

Name up to five authors you would like to hear give online audio interviews.

Please note: Our question of the week will update November 4th.

Answer the Question of the Week here.

Word of Mouth: Tell Us What You're Reading -- TWO Prizes!

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 THE CAMEL CLUB by David Baldacci and ORDINARY HEROES by Scott Turow.

Please note that our next Word of Mouth update will be on November 4th. 

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.

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Happy reading! Don't forget to forward this newsletter to a friend or to visit our other websites from,,,,, and

--- Carol Fitzgerald (

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