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Week of October 31, 2022

New in Paperback

Week of October 31, 2022

Paperback releases for the week of October 31st include THESE PRECIOUS DAYS, a deeply personal collection of essays from Ann Patchett, who talks about home, family, friendships and writing; COKIE, Steven V. Roberts' loving tribute to his wife of 53 years, legendary journalist Cokie Roberts, in which he reflects not only on her many accomplishments, but on how she lived each day with a devotion to helping others; BEWILDERMENT by Richard Powers, an Oprah's Book Club pick that poses the intriguing question: How can we tell our children the truth about this beautiful, imperiled planet?; BURNING BOY, Paul Auster's comprehensive, landmark biography of the great American writer Stephen Crane; and the paperback original LAWS OF DEPRAVITY, the first installment in a heart-pounding crime thriller series from actor, director and producer Eriq La Salle, which follows two NYPD detectives and an FBI agent as they race to catch a serial killer before he completes his last cycle of kills and disappears forever.

All About Me!: My Remarkable Life in Show Business by Mel Brooks - Autobiography

November 1, 2022

ALL ABOUT ME! charts Mel Brooks’ meteoric rise from a Depression-era kid in Brooklyn to the recipient of the National Medal of Arts. Whether serving in the United States Army in World War II, or during his burgeoning career as a teenage comedian in the Catskills, Mel was always mining his experiences for material and looking for the perfect joke. His book offers fans insight into the inspiration behind the ideas for his outstanding collection of boundary-breaking work, and includes details about the many close friendships and collaborations Brooks had, including those with Sid Caesar, Carl Reiner, Gene Wilder, Madeline Kahn, Alfred Hitchcock and the great love of his life, Anne Bancroft.

The Appeal by Janice Hallett - Mystery

November 1, 2022

The Fairway Players, a local theater group, is in the midst of rehearsals when tragedy strikes the family of director Martin Hayward and his wife Helen, the play’s star. Their young granddaughter has been diagnosed with a rare form of cancer, and with an experimental treatment costing a tremendous sum, their fellow castmates rally to raise the money to give her a chance at survival. But not everybody is convinced of the experimental treatment’s efficacy --- nor of the good intentions of those involved. As tension grows within the community, things come to a shocking head at the explosive dress rehearsal. The next day, a dead body is found, and soon an arrest is made. In the run-up to the trial, two young lawyers sift through the material with a growing suspicion that a killer may be hiding in plain sight.

The Banned Bookshop of Maggie Banks by Shauna Robinson - Fiction

November 1, 2022

When Maggie Banks arrives in Bell River to run her best friend's struggling bookstore, she expects to sell bestsellers to her small-town clientele. But Bell River's literary society insists on keeping the bookstore stuck in the past, and Maggie is banned from selling anything written this century. So when a series of mishaps suddenly tip the bookstore toward ruin, Maggie will have to get creative to keep the shop afloat. To help save the store, Maggie starts an underground book club, running a series of events celebrating the books readers actually love. But keeping the club quiet, selling forbidden books and dodging the literary society is nearly impossible. Especially when Maggie unearths a town secret that could upend everything.

Bewilderment by Richard Powers - Fiction

November 1, 2022

The astrobiologist Theo Byrne searches for life throughout the cosmos while single-handedly raising his unusual nine-year-old, Robin, following the death of his wife. Robin is a warm, kind boy who spends hours painting elaborate pictures of endangered animals. He’s also about to be expelled from third grade for smashing his friend in the face. As his son grows more troubled, Theo hopes to keep him off psychoactive drugs. He learns of an experimental neurofeedback treatment to bolster Robin’s emotional control, one that involves training the boy on the recorded patterns of his mother’s brain.

The Bone Records by Rich Zahradnik - Mystery/Thriller

November 1, 2022

NY Police Academy washout Grigg Orlov discovers an eerie piece of evidence at the scene of his father's brutal murder: a disc-shaped X-ray of a skull. It's a bone record --- what Soviet citizens called banned American songs recorded on used X-rays. But the black-market singles haven't been produced since the ’60s. What's one doing in Coney Island in 2016? Grigg uncovers a connection between his father and three others who collected bone records when they were teenage friends growing up in Leningrad. Are past and present linked? Or is the murder tied to the local mob? Grigg has too many suspects and too little time. He must get to the truth before a remorseless killer takes everything he has.

BOX 88 by Charles Cumming - Thriller

December 6, 2022

Lachlan Kite is a member of BOX 88, an elite transatlantic black ops outfit so covert that not even MI6 and the CIA are certain of its existence. But even the best spy can’t anticipate every potential threat in a world where dangerous actors lurk around every corner. At the funeral of his childhood best friend, Lachlan falls into a trap that drops him into the hands of a potentially deadly interrogation, with his pregnant wife, also abducted, being held as collateral for the information he’s sworn on his own life to protect. In order to save his family, Lachlan will be forced to revisit painful memories of a special assignment from 30 years ago that allowed him special access to one of Iran’s most dangerous men.

Burning Boy: The Life and Work of Stephen Crane by Paul Auster - Biography

November 1, 2022

With BURNING BOY, celebrated novelist Paul Auster tells the extraordinary story of Stephen Crane, best known as the author of THE RED BADGE OF COURAGE, who transformed American literature through an avalanche of original short stories, novellas, poems, journalism and war reportage before his life was cut short by tuberculosis at age 28. Auster’s probing account of this singular life tracks Crane as he rebounds from one perilous situation to the next.

Carry the Dog by Stephanie Gangi - Fiction

November 1, 2022

Bea Seger has spent a lifetime running from her childhood. The daughter of a famous photographer, she and her brothers were the subjects of an explosive series of images in the 1960s known as the Marx Nudes. Disturbing and provocative, the photographs shadowed the family long past the public outcry and media attention. Now, decades later, both the Museum of Modern Art and Hollywood have come calling, eager to cash in on Bea’s mother’s notoriety. Twice divorced from but still entangled with aging rock star Gary Going, Bea lives in Manhattan with her borrowed dog, Dory, and sort-of sister, Echo. After years of avoiding her past, Bea must make a choice: let the world in --- and be compensated for the trauma of her childhood --- or leave it all locked away in a storage unit forever.

Cokie: A Life Well Lived by Steven V. Roberts - Biography

November 1, 2022

Through her visibility and celebrity, Cokie Roberts was an inspiration and a role model for innumerable women and girls. A fixture on national television and radio for more than 40 years, she also wrote five bestselling books focusing on the role of women in American history. In this loving tribute, Cokie’s husband of 53 years, Steve Roberts, reflects not only on her many accomplishments, but on how she lived each day with a devotion to helping others. For Steve, Cokie’s private life was as significant and inspirational as her public one. Her commitment to celebrating and supporting other women was evident in everything she did, and her generosity and passion drove her personal and professional endeavors.

Dr. No by Percival Everett - Fiction

November 1, 2022

A brilliant professor of mathematics who goes by Wala Kitu is an expert on nothing. That is to say, he is an expert, his area of study is nothing, and he does nothing about it. This makes him the perfect partner for aspiring villain John Sill, who wants to break into Fort Knox to steal a shoebox containing nothing. Once he controls nothing, he’ll proceed with a dastardly plan to turn a Massachusetts town into nothing. Or so he thinks. With the help of the brainy and brainwashed astrophysicist-turned-henchwoman Eigen Vector, our professor tries to foil the villain while remaining in his employ. In the process, Wala Kitu learns that Sill’s desire to become a literal Bond villain originated in some real all-American villainy related to the murder of Martin Luther King Jr.

Five Tuesdays in Winter: Stories by Lily King - Fiction/Short Stories

November 1, 2022

Told in the intimate voices of complex, endearing characters, FIVE TUESDAYS IN WINTER --- Lily King's first book of short fiction --- intriguingly subverts expectations as it explores desire, loss, jolting violence and the inexorable tug toward love at all costs. A reclusive bookseller begins to feel the discomfort of love again. Two college roommates have a devastating middle-aged reunion. A proud old man rages powerlessly in his granddaughter's hospital room. A writer receives a visit from all the men who have tried to suppress her voice.

The Fortune Men by Nadifa Mohamed - Historical Fiction

November 1, 2022

In Cardiff, Wales, in 1952, Mahmood Mattan, a young Somali sailor, is accused of a crime he did not commit: the brutal killing of Violet Volacki, a shopkeeper from Tiger Bay. At first, Mahmood believes he can ignore the fingers pointing his way; he may be a gambler and a petty thief, but he is no murderer. But as the trial draws closer, his prospect for freedom dwindles. Now, Mahmood must stage a terrifying fight for his life, with all the chips stacked against him: a shoddy investigation, an inhumane legal system, and, most evidently, pervasive and deep-rooted racism at every step. Under the shadow of the hangman's noose, Mahmood begins to realize that even the truth may not be enough to save him.

Girl in Ice by Erica Ferencik - Thriller

November 1, 2022

Valerie “Val” Chesterfield is a linguist trained in the most esoteric of disciplines: dead Nordic languages. Despite her successful career, she leads a sheltered life and languishes in the shadow of her twin brother, Andy, an accomplished climate scientist stationed on a remote island off Greenland’s barren coast. But Andy is gone: a victim of suicide, having willfully ventured unprotected into 50 degree below zero weather. Val suspects foul play. When Wyatt, Andy’s fellow researcher in the Arctic, discovers a scientific impossibility --- a young girl frozen in the ice who thaws out alive, speaking a language no one understands --- Val is his first call. Under the auspices of helping Wyatt interpret the girl’s speech, Val journeys to the Arctic to solve the mystery of her brother’s death.

Good Rich People by Eliza Jane Brazier - Psychological Thriller

November 1, 2022

Lyla has always believed that life is a game she is destined to win, but her husband, Graham, takes the game to dangerous levels. The wealthy couple invites self-made success stories to live in their guesthouse and then conspires to ruin their lives. After all, there is nothing worse than a bootstrapper. Demi has always felt like the odds were stacked against her. At the end of her rope, she seizes a risky opportunity to take over another person’s life and unwittingly becomes the subject of the upstairs couple’s wicked entertainment. But Demi has been struggling forever, and she’s not about to go down without a fight. In a twist that neither woman sees coming, the game quickly devolves into chaos and rockets toward an explosive conclusion.

The Great Witch of Brittany by Louisa Morgan - Historical Fiction/Magical Realism

November 1, 2022

Brittany, 1762. There hasn’t been a witch born in the Orchière clan for generations. Ursule Orchière has been raised on stories of the great witches of the past. But the only magic she knows is the false spells her mother weaves over the gullible women who visit their fortune-telling caravan. Everything changes when Ursule comes of age and a spark of power flares to life. Thrilled to be chosen, she has no idea how magic will twist and shape her future. Guided by an ancient grimoire and the whispers of her ancestors, Ursule is destined to walk the same path as the great witches of old. But first, the Orchière magical lineage must survive. And danger hovers over her, whether it’s the bloodlust of the mob or the flames of the pyre.

Keeper of Enchanted Rooms by Charlie N. Holmberg - Historical Fantasy

November 1, 2022

Rhode Island, 1846. Estranged from his family, writer Merritt Fernsby is surprised when he inherits a remote estate in the Narragansett Bay. Though the property has been uninhabited for more than a century, Merritt is ready to call it home --- until he realizes he has no choice. With its doors slamming shut and locking behind him, Whimbrel House is not about to let Merritt leave. Ever. Hulda Larkin of the Boston Institute for the Keeping of Enchanted Rooms has been trained in taming such structures in order to preserve their historical and magical significance. She advises that it’s in Merritt’s best interest to make Whimbrel House their ally. To do that, she’ll need to move in, too. But the house’s secrets run deeper than they anticipated.

Kiss Her Once for Me by Alison Cochrun - Romantic Comedy

November 1, 2022

One year ago, recent Portland transplant Ellie Oliver had her dream job in animation and a Christmas Eve meet-cute with a woman at a bookstore that led her to fall in love over the course of a single night. But after a betrayal the next morning and the loss of her job soon after, she finds herself adrift, alone and desperate for money. Finding work at a local coffee shop, she’s just getting through the days until Andrew, the shop’s landlord, proposes a shocking, drunken plan: a marriage of convenience that will give him his recent inheritance and alleviate Ellie’s financial woes and isolation. But when Andrew introduces his new fiancée to his sister, Ellie is shocked to discover it’s Jack --- the mysterious woman she fell for the year before.

Laws of Depravity: A Martyr Maker Novel by Eriq La Salle - Thriller

November 1, 2022

Every 10 years, for the past 30 years, a dozen clergymen are killed, brutally murdered in twisted scenes emulating the deaths of Jesus and his disciples. Now, "The Martyr Maker" has set his mark on New York City. LAWS OF DEPRAVITY follows two NYPD detectives and an FBI agent as they race to catch a serial killer before he completes his last cycle of kills and disappears forever.

The Least of Us: True Tales of America and Hope in the Time of Fentanyl and Meth by Sam Quinones - Social Science

November 1, 2022

Sam Quinones traveled from Mexico to main streets across the US to create DREAMLAND, a groundbreaking portrait of the opioid epidemic. As the nation struggled to put back the pieces, Quinones was among the first to see the dangers that lay ahead. In fentanyl, traffickers landed a painkiller a hundred times more powerful than morphine, causing tens of thousands of deaths. At the same time, Mexican traffickers made methamphetamine cheaper and more potent than ever, creating swaths of mental illness and a surge in homelessness across the United States. Quinones hit the road to investigate these new threats, discovering how addiction is exacerbated by consumer-product corporations.

The Missing Piece by John Lescroart - Thriller

November 1, 2022

No one mourned when San Francisco DA Wes Farrell put Paul Riley in prison 11 years ago for the rape and murder of his girlfriend. And no one is particularly happy to see him again when he’s released after The Exoneration Initiative uncovered evidence that pinned the crime on someone else. In fact, Riley soon turns up murdered, surrounded by the loot from his latest scam. But if Riley was really innocent all along, who wanted him dead? To the cops, it’s straightforward: the still-grieving father of Riley’s dead girlfriend killed the former prisoner. Farrell, now out of politics and practicing law with master attorney Dismas Hardy, agrees to represent the defendant, Doug Rush --- and is left in the dust when Rush suddenly vanishes.

Navigating Grief and Loss: 25 Buddhist Practices to Keep Your Heart Open to Yourself and Others by Kimberly Brown - Self-Help/Mental Health

November 1, 2022

NAVIGATING GRIEF AND LOSS is a book for anyone who has experienced the pain of mourning, struggled to find a job, or is devastated by a bad breakup. It's a guidebook filled with relatable stories and practical meditations to help navigate the profound experience of death and loss. Filled with traditional Buddhist wisdom into the nature of life, each short chapter honestly describes a personal experience dealing with death or grief, followed by compassionate and mindful practices --- meditations, exercises or contemplations that readers can use to discover insights and truths, and bring comfort and friendship to their own struggles and sorrow.

The Quarry Girls by Jess Lourey - Psychological Thriller

November 1, 2022

Minnesota, 1977. For the teens of one close-knit community, summer means late-night swimming parties at the quarry, the county fair, and venturing into the tunnels beneath the city. But for two best friends, it’s not all fun and games. Heather and Brenda have a secret. Something they saw in the dark. Something they can’t forget. They’ve decided to never tell a soul. But their vow is tested when their friend disappears --- the second girl to vanish in a week. And yet the authorities are reluctant to investigate. Heather is terrified that the missing girls are connected to what she and Brenda stumbled upon that night. Desperately searching for answers on her own, she learns that no one in her community is who they seem to be.

The Rewind by Allison Winn Scotch - Romantic Comedy

November 1, 2022

When college sweethearts Frankie and Ezra broke up before graduation, they vowed never to speak to each other again. Ten years later, on the eve of the new millennium, they find themselves back on their snowy, picturesque New England campus together for the first time for the wedding of mutual friends. Frankie is on the rise as a music manager for the hottest bands of the late ’90s, and Ezra is ready to propose to his girlfriend after the wedding. Everything is going to plan. But when they wake up in bed next to each other the following morning with Ezra’s grandmother’s diamond on Frankie’s finger, they have zero memory of how they got there --- or about any of the events that transpired the night before.

The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida by Shehan Karunatilaka - Fiction/Satire

November 1, 2022

Colombo, 1990. Maali Almeida --- war photographer, gambler and closet queen --- has woken up dead in what seems like a celestial visa office. His dismembered body is sinking in the serene Beira Lake, and he has no idea who killed him. In a country where scores are settled by death squads, suicide bombers and hired goons, the list of suspects is depressingly long, as the ghouls and ghosts with grudges who cluster round can attest. But even in the afterlife, time is running out for Maali. He has seven moons to contact the man and woman he loves most and lead them to the photos that will rock Sri Lanka.

The Stolen Book of Evelyn Aubrey by Serena Burdick - Fiction

November 1, 2022

England, 1898. When Evelyn first married the famous novelist William Aubrey, she was dazzled by his brilliance. But their newlywed bliss is brief when William is gripped by writer’s block, and he becomes jealous of Evelyn’s writing talent. When he commits the ultimate betrayal --- stealing a draft of her novel and passing it off as his own --- Evelyn decides to write her way out of their unhappy marriage. California, 2006. Abigail always wondered about her father, his identity forever lost when her mother unexpectedly died. Or so Abigail thought, until she stumbled upon his photo and a message that her great-great-grandmother was the author Evelyn Aubrey, leading Abigail on a journey to England in search for answers.

The Stroke of Winter by Wendy Webb - Gothic Thriller

November 1, 2022

In the tourist town of Wharton, on the coast of Lake Superior, Tess Bell is renovating her old family home into a bed-and-breakfast during the icy dead of winter. As the house’s restoration commences, a shuttered art studio is revealed. Inside are paintings Tess’ late grandfather, beloved and celebrated artist Sebastian Bell, hid away for generations. But these appear to be the works of a twisted mind, almost unrecognizable as paintings she and others familiar with his art would expect. The sinister canvases raise disturbing questions for Tess, sparking nightmares and igniting in her an obsession to unearth the truth around their origins. What evil has been locked away for so many years?

Thank You, Mr. Nixon: Stories by Gish Jen - Fiction/Short Stories

November 1, 2022

Beginning with a cheery letter penned by a Chinese girl in heaven to “poor Mr. Nixon” in hell, Gish Jen embarks on a fictional journey through U.S.-China relations, capturing the excitement of a world on the brink of tectonic change. Opal Chen reunites with her Chinese sisters after 40 years; newly cosmopolitan Lulu Koo wonders why Americans “like to walk around in the woods with the mosquitoes”; Hong Kong parents go to extreme lengths to reestablish contact with their “number-one daughter” in New York; and Betty Koo, brought up on “no politics, just make money,” finds she must reassess her mother’s philosophy.

These Precious Days: Essays by Ann Patchett - Essays

November 1, 2022

“Any story that starts will also end.” As a writer, Ann Patchett knows what the outcome of her fiction will be. Life, however, often takes turns we do not see coming. Patchett ponders this truth in these wise essays that afford a fresh and intimate look into her mind and heart. At the center of THESE PRECIOUS DAYS is the title essay, a surprising and moving meditation on an unexpected friendship. When Patchett chose an early galley of actor and producer Tom Hanks’ short story collection to read one night before bed, she had no idea that this single choice would be life-changing. It would introduce her to a remarkable woman --- Tom’s assistant, Sooki --- with whom she would form a profound bond that held monumental consequences for them both.

A Very Merry Bromance by Lyssa Kay Adams - Romantic Comedy

November 1, 2022

Country music star Colton Wheeler felt the most perfect harmony when he was with Gretchen Winthrop. But for her, it was a love him and leave him situation. A year later, Colton is struggling to push his music forward in a new direction. Gretchen, an immigration attorney, has clients who are scrambling to afford their rent. So when her estranged family reaches out with an offer that will allow her to better serve the community, she’s unable to say no. She just needs to convince Colton to be the new face of her family’s whiskey brand. Colton agrees to consider Gretchen’s offer in exchange for three dates before Christmas. With the help of the Bromance Book Club, Colton throws himself into the task of proving to her that there’s a spark between them.

When Franny Stands Up by Eden Robins - Historical Fiction

November 1, 2022

With the men of Chicago off fighting WWII on distant shores, Franny Steinberg has watched the women of the city taking charge of the war effort. But amidst the war bond sales and factory shifts, something surprising has emerged. A new marvel that has women flocking to comedy clubs across the nation: the Showstopper. When Franny steps into Chicago's Blue Moon comedy club, she realizes the power of a Showstopper --- that specific magic sparked when an audience laughs so hard, they are momentarily transformed. And while each comedian's Showstopper is different, they all have one thing in common: they only work on women. After a traumatic flashback propels her onstage in a torn bridesmaid dress, Franny discovers her own Showstopper is something new.

Zorrie by Laird Hunt - Fiction

November 1, 2022

After losing both her parents, Zorrie moved in with her aunt, whose own death orphaned Zorrie all over again, casting her off into the perilous realities and sublime landscapes of rural, Depression-era Indiana. Drifting west, Zorrie survived on odd jobs, sleeping in barns and under the stars, before finding a position at a radium processing plant. At the end of each day, the girls at her factory glowed from the radioactive material. But when Indiana calls Zorrie home, she finally finds the love and community that have eluded her in and around the small town of Hillisburg. And yet, even as she tries to build a new life, Zorrie discovers that her trials have only begun.