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October 14, 2004 Newsletter

October 14, 2005

This Week on

Books Get Glamorous --- And Serious Talks to Brian Strause, Author of MAYBE A MIRACLE

Now In Stores: THE MARCH by E.L. Doctorow

Now In Stores: A WEDDING IN DECEMBER by Anita Shreve

Our Newest Suspense/Thriller Author: David Morrell, Author of CREEPERS

Suspense/Thriller Author Spotlight: Greg Rucka, Author of PRIVATE WARS

Now in Stores: SHE, MYSELF & I by Whitney Gaskell

A Special Message from Barbara Delinsky, the Author of UPLIFT: Secrets from the Sisterhood of Breast Cancer Survivors New Guides For Your Book Group

Heads Up! Teen Read Week is October 16th thru the 22nd.

This Week's Reviews and Features Blog

Poll: Reading Memoirs
Question of the Week: If You Wrote a Memoir....
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: Right now what book are you most looking forward to reading?
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

Books Get Glamorous --- And Serious

Tuesday night this week, books got glamorous with the Quill Awards, which was the most fun book award ceremony that I've attended. It was star-studded with Jon Stewart doing opening remarks and Brian Williams as Master of Ceremonies. There was a red carpet, camera crews and authors, publishers and agents in black tie. Here's what I really loved --- I had heard of or read MOST of the books that were nominated. In fact, I kept picking the winners. Since they were reader-voted awards, I just sat there and thought about what I thought would win, based on what I know from our readers!
Sue Monk Kidd gave a wonderful --- and very much from the heart --- acceptance speech for General Fiction and Debbie Macomber did the same with her win in the Romance category. Taped acceptance speeches from J.K. Rowling, who won for Best Children's Book and Book of the Year categories, and Neil Gaiman, who won in the graphic novel category, also got my raves. My favorite presenter? Hands down it was Elmo! Other presenters included Erica Jong, Candace Bushnell, Kim Cattrall, Matthew Modine (who was at my table) and Len Berman. Like I said, star-studded. You can see the winners here
The show was taped for television and will air in 14 NBC markets on Saturday, October 22nd. Check your local listings.

I am pleased to share that, one of the websites in The Book Report Network, is a proud sponsor of Teen Read Week, which kicks off on Sunday. We are firm believers in offering both kids and teens great opportunities to get themselves wrapped around books. See details below on this very special program.
This is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, thus our newsletter "goes pink" with a special message from Barbara Delinsky, author of UPLIFT: Secrets from the Sisterhood of Breast Cancer Survivors. This year marks the 5th year since Delinsky asked women to share their stories, many of which became part of this book. She is considering a new edition with new chapters --- or perhaps even a new book. See details below on what she is looking for from survivors. By the way, we all know the stats: 1 out of 9 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. That means that 8 of 9 women can support (and yes I am getting the double entendre here) their friends who are battling the disease. Books like UPLIFT, with its encouraging stories, tells readers how to do just that. I know I learned a lot from reading it!
I am off to Atlantic City on Sunday for the Mid-Atlantic Booksellers Conference. William Lashner, Lisa Tucker and Laura Lippman are among the authors who I plan to see there. Like the conference in Winston-Salem a few weeks ago, this one has an event Sunday evening called The Moveable Feast. Authors will go from table to table and share commentary about their books. I enjoy events like this since it's a nice way to find new authors --- and talk books.
Speaking of bookish trips, I am going to the Miami Book Fair from November 17-20. If any of you are going to be there, let me know. I'd love to say hello.
This has been the soggiest week that I can remember. Coming home from the book awards the other night there were cars hydroplaning all over the highway. I hear the skies will brighten tomorrow, which I look forward to. Oh, what am I reading? A few things. A new book from Anne Rice, called CHRIST THE LORD, which is written from the perspective of Christ as a child. I have never read Rice, not being one who likes vampires. I am enjoying this one. Also, I'm reading two other books that will be published next year --- THE LAST TEMPLAR by Raymond Khoury (February) and LABYRINTH by Kate Mosse (March). Both are thrillers that have been bought by publishers around the world. I am wishing I had more time to read as I juggle these three!
Have a nice week...

Carol Fitzgerald (

List of titles reviewed and featured on October 14th

List of titles reviewed and featured on October 7th Talks to Brian Strause, Author of MAYBE A MIRACLE's Carol Fitzgerald, Shannon McKenna and Jennifer Krieger interviewed screenwriter and novelist Brian Strause about his debut work of fiction, MAYBE A MIRACLE. Strause discusses the shaping of his characters and the act of self-discovery that emerges from writing. He also shares his thoughts on constructing a script versus penning a novel, as well as comparisons made between his protagonist, Monroe Anderson, and J.D. Salinger's quintessential troubled teen, Holden Caulfield. 

MAYBE A MIRACLE by Brian Strause (Fiction)
Reviewed by Jennifer Krieger
Brian Strause's debut novel is about an American family transfixed by a series of mysterious events. From a comfortable suburb of Columbus, Ohio, emerges a story of rebellion, faith and hope, bridging the cultural gap between those who believe in miracles and those who wish they could.

-Click here to read Advanced Reader Comments about MAYBE A MIRACLE.
-Click here to read the Reading Group Guide for MAYBE A MIRACLE.

Click here to read our interview with Brian Strause and a review of MAYBE A MIRACLE.


Now In Stores: THE MARCH by E.L. Doctorow

THE MARCH by E.L. Doctorow (Historical Fiction)
Reviewed by Roberta O'Hara
E.L. Doctorow's tenth novel is the powerful retelling of one of the most infamous military campaigns in American history --- that of Union General William Techumseh Sherman's destructive march in the final months of the Civil War through Georgia and South Carolina.

-Click here to read an excerpt from THE MARCH.

Click here to read our review of THE MARCH.


Now In Stores: A WEDDING IN DECEMBER by Anita Shreve

A WEDDING IN DECEMBER by Anita Shreve (Fiction)
Reviewed by Bronwyn Miller
In this latest novel from the acclaimed author of SEA GLASS and ALL HE EVER WANTED, Anita Shreve tells the tale of seven former schoolmates who gather for a wedding in the Berkshires. Throughout the nuptial weekend, the characters begin to examine the many choices they have made since they left school and where those decisions have brought them.

-Click here to read an excerpt from A WEDDING IN DECEMBER.

Click here to read our review of A WEDDING IN DECEMBER.

Our Newest Suspense/Thriller Author: David Morrell, Author of CREEPERS

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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 an excerpt from CREEPERS here.

Previous Weeks:
-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.

Suspense/Thriller Author Spotlight: Greg Rucka, Author of PRIVATE WARS

Greg Rucka, author of A GENTLEMAN'S GAME, A FISTFUL OF RAIN and the QUEEN & COUNTRY graphic novel series, has been making a name for himself in both the suspense and graphic novel genres for several years. His newest title PRIVATE WARS hits bookshelves October 25th, reuniting readers with the edgy, explosive and sexy spy Tara Chace.

New This Week:
-Read a new excerpt from PRIVATE WARS here.

Previous Weeks:
-See our Advanced Copy Winners here.
-Read Fast Facts about Greg Rucka here.
-Read Greg Rucka's bibliography here.

Read more about PRIVATE WARS here:
Tara Chace was once the most dangerous woman alive. And now that the international spy network thinks she's as good as dead, she's even more dangerous than ever.

Combine a thriller that defies every expectation with a heroine for whom nothing is out of bounds, and the result is PRIVATE WARS, a suspense novel so explosively realistic, it should be classified.

Click here to read more about Greg Rucka and PRIVATE WARS.

Now in Stores: SHE, MYSELF & I by Whitney Gaskell

SHE, MYSELF & I by Whitney Gaskell (Chick Lit)
Reviewed by Jennifer Krieger
The Cassel sisters --- a driven divorce attorney, an expectant mom, and an up-and-coming medical student --- have little in common besides a pair of wacky parents and a maddening knack for eluding happily-ever-after endings. But when their lives require damage control, only a dose of sisterhood will do.

-Click here to read an excerpt from SHE, MYSELF & I.

Click here to read our review of SHE, MYSELF & I.


A Special Message from Barbara Delinsky, the Author of UPLIFT: Secrets from the Sisterhood of Breast Cancer Survivors






Hard to believe, but it's been five years since I first asked readers to participate in UPLIFT: Secrets from the Sisterhood of Breast Cancer Survivors by sharing their personal stories. They've been good years for me - and, I'll bet, for many other survivors, too. I suspect that the stories that many survivors have to tell five years later are uplifting, indeed. I am considering a new chapter to UPLIFT or perhaps even a whole new book. All I know is that when I was first diagnosed, I would have loved to hear from a large group of survivors.

Interested in sharing your news, or do you have friends who have survived five or more years and have good thoughts to share? I want to hear about new activities, personal growth, family events that were particularly sweet. Send me insights on surviving breast cancer, on learning to conquer the fear, on living with hope.

-Please send this link to every survivor you know

Click here to post 5th Anniversary Volume entries. New Guides For Your Book Group

These discussion guides are now available on

Broken for You by Stephanie Kallos
Case Histories by Kate Atkinson
The Covenant by Naomi Ragen
A Dictionary of Maqiao by Han Shaogong
The Distance Between Us by Masha Hamilton
The Divide by Nicholas Evans
Liberating Paris by Linda Bloodworth Thomason
Lilla's Feast by Frances Osborne
Maybe a Miracle by Brian Strause
New Town by Harry Blamires
Nightingales by Gillian Gill
The Priest of Blood by Douglas Clegg
Sex & Sensibility by Rosemarie Santini
The Singing and Dancing Daughters of God by
Timothy Schaffert
The Widow of the South by Robert Hicks

Click here to read our newest guides.


Heads Up! Teen Read Week is October 16th thru the 22nd.

For those of you with teenage children or grandchildren --- or those of you who just know teens --- here's a heads up that Teen Read Week is October 16th-22nd., one of the other websites in The Book Report Network, is one of the sponsors of this event.

The idea behind Teen Read Week: To get thousands of teens across the country geared up to make time to read for the fun of it. This year's theme is "Get Real! @ your library" and the focus is on great nonfiction reads, such as biographies, strange but true stories, how-to books, magazines and much more.

During Teen Read Week teens (and yes, teens only please) can vote for their favorite new books as part of the Teens' Top Ten List.

For more information about Teen Read Week, or to send a teen you know to vote for his or her favorite books or next year's theme, log on to

Click here to learn more about Teen Read Week.


This Week's Reviews and Features

EVERYONE WORTH KNOWING by Lauren Weisberger (Fiction)
Reviewed by Hillary Wagy
"The guest list makes the party" is the mantra of Kelly & Company's Manhattan public relations and event planning firm. Guest lists that attract media attention, gossip columnists, and everyone worth knowing provide daily "dish" about the Gucci-clad crowd for New York Scoop, Page Six and Dirt Alert.

CONSENT TO KILL by Vince Flynn (Thriller)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
The powerful father of a dead terrorist demands vengeance in its simplest form --- an eye for an eye, and CIA operative Mitch Rapp instantly becomes the target of an international conspiracy. This time, he must use all of his vigilance and determination to save himself before he can turn his fury on those who have dared to betray him.

CRACKS IN MY FOUNDATION: Bags, Trips, Make-up Tips, Charity, Glory, and the Darker Side of the Story by Marian Keyes (Essay/Story Collection)
Reviewed by Amie Taylor
Marian Keyes, author of UNDER THE DUVET, does it again with CRACKS IN MY FOUNDATION, a brilliant and humorous collection of essays and stories that allow us to share her thoughts on topics from travel to health and beauty to family and friends.

SPOOK: Science Tackles the Afterlife by Mary Roach (Science)
Reviewed by Robert Finn
The author of STIFF: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers takes a lighthearted look at some very heavyweight subjects: reincarnation, the soul, mediumship, communication with the dead, near-death experiences. What's it like up there in heaven, anyway?

MAGIC STREET by Orson Scott Card (Fantasy/Science Fiction)
Reviewed by Pauline Finch
In this novel of constantly surprising entertainment and breathtaking literary power, award-winning author Orson Scott Card offers something excitingly different that challenges bland political correctness and sends the reader deep inside the psyche, where magic really happens.

WOLF POINT by Edward Falco (Fiction)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
Tom "T" Walker, a 57-year-old businessman, knows better than to pick up a beautiful young woman hitchhiking with her dangerous-looking boyfriend, but he stops for them anyway. As T finds himself pulled into the chaos of their world in a way he will barely survive, he comes to see his personal history and experiences in an altered and troubling light.

CHURCHILL AND AMERICA by Martin Gilbert (History)
Reviewed by Robert Finn
Winston Churchill, whose wartime leadership saved England during World War II, was half-American on his mother's side. Englishman Martin Gilbert, who has probably written more than anyone else about Churchill, summarizes the great statesman's relations with his mother's homeland over a life of almost 90 years. It was a long and not always smooth journey.

UNCOMMON GROUNDS by Sandra Balzo (Mystery)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
Patricia Harper is killed in Uncommon Grounds, her gourmet coffee store. Maggy Thorsen wants to know who took the life of one of her partners, so she joins forces with her closet friend to investigate the murder. Together, they uncover unsavory small-town politics, bribes, kickbacks, and rampant infidelity.

Click here to read our reviews and features. Blog

September 9th Entry:
Carol's Vacation Reading --- My Report
Happy Anniversary,
Why I Loathe...Abhor and Out-and-Out Hate Required Summer Reading For Kids
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: Reading Memoirs
Do you like to read memoirs?
Not sure

What kind of memoirs do you like to read? (Check as many as apply.)
Renowned political figures
War experiences
Travel Stories
Spiritual Awakening
I do not read memoirs.
Answer the Poll here.

Question of the Week: If You Wrote a Memoir....

If you wrote a memoir, what do you think it would be about?

Please note: Our question of the week will update October 21st.

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 A WEDDING IN DECEMBER by Anita Shreve and CONSENT TO KILL by Vince Flynn.

Please note that our next Word of Mouth update will be on October 21st. 

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

--- Carol Fitzgerald (

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