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October 12, 2007 Newsletter

October 12, 2007

This Week on

Turquoise Cowboy Boots for Reading... Talks to Peter Pezzelli, Author of ITALIAN LESSONS Talks to David Gibbins, Author of CRUSADER GOLD

New Featured One to Watch Author: Marie Bostwick, Author of ON WINGS OF THE MORNING


Featured Suspense/Thriller Author: John Lutz, Author of IN FOR THE KILL

Featured Suspense/Thriller Author: J.D. Robb Celebrates the Release of the 25th Book in Her In Death Series

Featured Suspense/Thriller Author: John Hart, Author of DOWN RIVER

Now in Stores: YOU'VE BEEN WARNED by James Patterson and Howard Roughan

Now in Stores: THE WHEEL OF DARKNESS by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child

What's New This Month on

What's New This Month on

This Week's Reviews and Features

Poll and Question of the Week: Audiobooks

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
Suspense/Thriller Author Spotlight Promotion
Debut Suspense/Thriller One to Watch Promotion
Mystery Mayhem Promotion

Historical Fiction Promotion

One to Watch Promotion
Books Into Movies
Bestseller Lists
Coming Soon
New in Paperback

Summer Beach Bag of Books Promotion

Turquoise Cowboy Boots for Reading...

Last Saturday morning, after getting up earlier than I would have liked to see my older son off to the SATs, I sat down in my home office and started "wandering around" on the Internet. You know what I mean by this. You sit down and think about something. From there you start clicking, and you keep clicking, and all of a sudden you are searching things you never thought about looking for online, like turquoise cowboy boots.

For years now I have said that I wanted turquoise cowboy boots. I have no idea why I wanted these so much, but it's been an idea stuck in my head for a while. When I really want my way I think about stamping my foot, and I think this moment would be a lot more dramatic in cowboy boots. Mind you, I never do stamp my foot, but thinking about it is empowering. As many of you know, turquoise is my favorite color, and finding these boots became my mission for the morning, probably because I was too half asleep to do much else before I headed to my younger son's game. Actually I had a zillion things to do, and this probably was really about procrastinating. But somehow I decided that, no matter what, I was "allowing myself" this time.

I googled and trolled around looking at various styles and prices. Finally on eBay I saw a pair of "gently worn" boots that looked perfect. I have never bid on eBay, so I consulted my husband, who has bought LOTS of golf clubs and equipment via eBay, on how to do this. There was one bid on the boots at $14.99. I decided to hang back and watch the bidding over the weekend and plot my move. Watching this auction I became addicted to this page, and I started to understand my author pals who monitor their Amazon numbers hourly! The bidding got up to $24.99 on Monday with four bids. By that night I realized I REALLY wanted these boots, and I went into a frenzy that someone else was going to get them. I know, soooo not the eBay mentality that one needs to have. I entered a bid of $50.00 hoping to preempt all other bidders. Tuesday I was sweating that someone would bid at the last minute. I was in the middle of a meeting when my husband called to let me know...the boots were mine! I now am waiting for them to arrive so I can try them on. Many people have asked what I will do if they do not fit. My reply: then they will go up on a shelf in my office where I can look at them and smile and remember my "winning" bid, and just looking at them will be like stamping my foot a whole new way.

What is funny about this whole experience is that I am not someone who is shoe crazy. Earlier this week I quipped that I reacted to the new Richard Russo book, BRIDGE OF SIGHS, like some women react to a new pair of Jimmy Choos. But I AM book crazy. Last weekend I spent a huge chunk of time moving books from my office and bedroom to the bookshelves in our family room, which are now three rows deep in places. I clearly need more shelves because these books are not going away. Looking at my shelves I see stories about these books. I can remember where I was when I read many of them more than I can remember the characters or plots. The shelves reflect how my reading tastes have changed and matured over the years, but those older titles still have a home here since they remind me of who I was in another time. Many of these books were written by authors who I have heard speak or come to know, while others remind me of how many authors I still would love to hear or meet. This weekend take some time to gaze at your own shelves and see what the books there say about you.

This weekend I am off to Baltimore for the North Atlantic Independent Booksellers Association trade show. It's a nice chance to catch up with author pals like William Lashner and Laura Lippman, and meet authors with whom I have been corresponding, like Eric Weiner, whose book THE GEOGRAPHY OF BLISS will be in stores in January. Also, I will get to chat with booksellers and hear about their customers and the books that they love --- and yes, I also will pick up LOTS of new books to read. Monday night I am attending a screening of The Kite Runner before I drive home, and I will share my thoughts on that next week.

Readers last week told us how much they enjoyed CRUSADER GOLD by David Gibbins. This week we have an interview with Gibbins that will give them insight into how this marine archaeologist came to write fiction. We also talk to Peter Pezzelli, whose book ITALIAN LESSONS will have you inspired to travel to Italy or create an Italian experience for yourself here at home.

We are launching a new One to Watch feature this week for Marie Bostwick, author of ON WINGS OF THE MORNING. In her new novel, which comes out on November 6th, Bostwick explores how love perseveres during times of national struggle. Given all the attention that THE WAR gave to this subject, Bostwick's book is oh so timely. I enjoy Marie's writing, and I look forward to our interview with her since I have had the pleasure of speaking with her on a number of occasions. We have 20 copies of ON WINGS OF THE MORNING to give away to readers who would like to preview the book and comment about it. If you are interested, please fill out this form by Friday, October 19th.

We also have received advance readers’ comments for MATRIMONY by Joshua Henkin (Did you see the wonderful review of this book in the New York Times this week?) and THE DOWRY BRIDE by Shobhan Bantwal, both of which readers enjoyed. Speaking of interviews, I enjoyed listening to podcasts this week from Linwood Barclay, who talked about his book NO TIME FOR GOODBYE, which we reviewed a couple of weeks ago, and Sarah Addison Allen, the author of GARDEN SPELLS, who was one of our recent One to Watch authors. You can listen to both of these podcasts here.

This morning as I swam I was skimming leaves from the top of the pool that had not yet made their way to the skimmers. As I was counting 10 to 12 leaves a lap, I knew that my backyard pool days would be wrapping up this weekend. It got me swimming a few extra laps as I tried to make this moment last, as I am sure that by the time my car gets to the top of the driveway on Saturday my husband will have the winterizing kit out. Ah well, I will exchange my floating chair for the couch in the family room with a view of the bookshelves to continue reading Nicholas Sparks's new one, THE CHOICE. By the way, I am enjoying this one and I already see where this book is going to shelved when I am done.

Here's hoping you find a few books for your bookshelves this week. And when you gaze upon them in future years, you will remember that you first heard about them on Read on...

Carol Fitzgerald ( Talks to Peter Pezzelli, Author of ITALIAN LESSONS

Peter Pezzelli has made a name for himself writing poignant works of fiction about everyday Italian-American families, such as EVERY SUNDAY, FRANCESCA'S KITCHEN and HOME TO ITALY. In this interview with's Alexis Burling, Pezzelli explains what prompted him to write his latest book, ITALIAN LESSONS, and elaborates on the recurring theme of love's unpredictability, which is predominant in his work. He also discusses what he hopes readers will learn about life and love from his novels, recounts his bold decision to pursue a career as an author and shares what he thinks Americans can learn from Italian culture.

ITALIAN LESSONS by Peter Pezzelli (Fiction)
With his trademark warmth, humor and wisdom, Peter Pezzelli’s ITALIAN LESSONS weaves an unforgettable tale of Italian-American life and family, hope and heartbreak, lessons learned and lessons deferred, and a love that can heal time’s greatest wounds. Reviewed by Alexis Burling.

-Click here to read a review of ITALIAN LESSONS.
-Click here to read an excerpt from ITALIAN LESSONS.

Click here to read our interview with Peter Pezzelli. Talks to David Gibbins, Author of CRUSADER GOLD

Bestselling author David Gibbins drew from his experiences as a marine archaeologist to write his latest work of fiction, CRUSADER GOLD, in which a group of scientists set out to find one of the great lost treasures of the world --- a gold menorah looted from the Temple of Jerusalem in 70 A.D. In this interview with's Colleen Quinn, Gibbins describes why he chose to tell this historically-based tale through the perspective of characters living in the present day and provides background information on some of the elements that figure greatly in the book, such as the Norse King Harald Hardrada and the practices of the Nazis' Department of Ancestral Heritage. He also compares archaeology to writing fiction and shares details about future projects.

CRUSADER GOLD by David Gibbins (Fiction/Action & Adventure)
From the fall of the Roman Empire to the last days of Nazi power, marine archaeologist Jack Howard and his team of adventurers are hot on the trail of history’s most elusive and desired treasure: the lost golden menorah of Jerusalem. And what they discover could change the world forever. Reviewed by Colleen Quinn.

-Click here to read a review of CRUSADER GOLD.
-Click here to read an excerpt from CRUSADER GOLD.


Click here to read our interview with David Gibbins.


New Featured One to Watch Author: Marie Bostwick, Author of ON WINGS OF THE MORNING

Marie Bostwick’s FIELDS OF GOLD introduced readers to Eva Glennon, the young woman from Oklahoma who finds love while America fights a great war. In her new book, ON WINGS OF THE MORNING (which hits stores on October 30th), Bostwick tells the story of Eva’s son Morgan and delivers a captivating tale about love while the country faces its greatest challenge --- World War II.

We have 20 copies of ON WINGS OF THE MORNING to give away to readers who would like to preview the book and comment about it. If you are interested, please fill out this form by Friday, October 19th.

-Click here to read Marie Bostwick’s bio.
-Visit the author’s official website,

Morgan Glennon always dreamed of being a pilot like his father. Soon after he enlists as a Navy pilot, America goes to war. Watching his friends fall in battle robs Morgan of the joy he always felt in the air. It will take one very unusual woman to help him get it back...

Georgia Jean Carter learned early that flying could take her places most boyfriends can’t. Remarkably, the war makes it possible for Georgia to do her part as a pilot. Yet there's something missing in her life that she doesn't recognize --- until a brief encounter sets her dreaming about a young flyboy she barely knows…


Click here to read more about Marie Bostwick and ON WINGS OF THE MORNING.

THE YEAR OF LIVING BIBLICALLY: One Man's Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible by A.J. Jacobs (Memoir)
Raised in a secular family but increasingly interested in the relevance of faith in our modern world, A.J. Jacobs decides to dive in headfirst and attempt to obey the Bible as literally as possible for one full year. He vows to follow the Ten Commandments. To be fruitful and multiply. To love his neighbor. But also to obey the hundreds of less publicized rules: to avoid wearing clothes made of mixed fibers; to play a ten-string harp; to stone adulterers. The resulting spiritual journey is at once funny and profound, as Jacobs's extraordinary undertaking yields unexpected epiphanies and challenges. Reviewed by Barbara Bamberger Scott.

-Click here to read an excerpt from THE YEAR OF LIVING BIBLICALLY.
-Visit A.J. Jacobs's official website,


Click here to read a review of THE YEAR OF LIVING BIBLICALLY.


Featured Suspense/Thriller Author: John Lutz, Author of IN FOR THE KILL

Edgar and Shamus Award-winning author John Lutz has written over 40 books, including SWF SEEKS SAME, which became the film Single White Female, and THE EX, a critically acclaimed feature for HBO. Lutz's newest thriller, IN FOR THE KILL, is set to release on November 6th. After making his first appearance in DARKER THAN NIGHT, Detective Frank Quinn returns to face his toughest --- and most personal --- case yet. Hunting down killers is what he does best. But this time, Quinn is up against a psychopath who will test him as never before.

We have 20 copies of IN FOR THE KILL to give away to readers who would like to preview the book and comment about it. If you are interested, please fill out this form by Friday, October 19th.

-Click here to read John Lutz’s bio.

More about IN FOR THE KILL:
A madman is stalking women in the city. By the time his victims are found, they’ve been dismembered with careful precision. Accustomed to working on the most grisly homicides, detective Frank Quinn’s nerves don’t rattle easily. But when the last names of a serial killer’s victims spell out “Q-u-i-n-n,” the veteran cop feels a chill run down his spine. When one of the victims is linked to a woman he desires, Quinn realizes that he will be tested as never before.


Click here to read more about John Lutz and IN FOR THE KILL.

Featured Suspense/Thriller Author: J.D. Robb Celebrates the Release of the 25th Book in Her In Death Series

J.D. Robb, aka Nora Roberts, has written over 100 books in her illustrious career. On November 6th, CREATION IN DEATH, the 25th installment in her bestselling In Death series, will be released. As Eve Dallas --- a lieutenant in the New York Police and Security Department --- hunts for a killer known as “The Groom,” who plagued the city nine years earlier, she realizes that this new wave of attacks is becoming alarmingly personal.

-Click here to read fast facts about J.D. Robb.
-Click here to read J.D. Robb’s bio.
-Click here to see J.D. Robb's backlist.
-Visit the author’s official website,
-Click here to see our advance copy winners.

NYPSD Lieutenant Eve Dallas keeps the streets of a near-future New York City safe in this extraordinary series. But even she makes mistakes, and is haunted by those she couldn't save --- and the killers she couldn't capture. When the body of a young brunette is found in East River Park, artfully positioned and marked by signs of prolonged and painful torture, Eve is catapulted back to a case nine years earlier. When it becomes apparent that a gruesome killer known as “The Groom” has returned, Eve is determined to finish him once and for all.


Click here to read more about J.D. Robb and CREATION IN DEATH.


Featured Suspense/Thriller Author: John Hart, Author of DOWN RIVER

John Hart's first novel, THE KING OF LIES, was a bestseller when it was released in 2006. His second work of fiction, which is now in stores, is DOWN RIVER. It tells the haunting story of Adam Chase as he returns to the hometown he was exiled from to reclaim his life.

-Click here to read a review of DOWN RIVER.
-Click here to read an excerpt from DOWN RIVER.
-Click here to read an interview with John Hart.
-Click here to read fast facts about John Hart.
-Click here to read John Hart’s bio.
-Click here to see John Hart's backlist.
-Visit the author’s website,
-Click here to see our advance copy winners.
-Click here to read advance readers' comments about DOWN RIVER.

More about DOWN RIVER:
Adam Chase has a violent streak, and not without reason. As a boy growing up in Rowan County, North Carolina, he saw things that no child should see, suffered wounds that cut to the core and scarred thin. The trauma left him passionate and misunderstood --- a fighter. After being narrowly acquitted of a murder charge, Adam is hounded out of the only home he’s ever known, exiled for a sin he did not commit. For five long years he disappears, fades into the faceless gray of New York City. Now he’s back and nobody knows why, not his family or the cops, not the enemies he left behind.


Click here to read more about John Hart and DOWN RIVER.


Now in Stores: YOU'VE BEEN WARNED by James Patterson and Howard Roughan

YOU’VE BEEN WARNED by James Patterson & Howard Roughan (Thriller)
Kristin Burns is making her way in New York City. But just as everything she has ever wanted is finally within reach, her life changes forever with one murderous nightmare. Kristin wakes up every morning from the same chilling, unforgettable dream. And suddenly, it's visiting her during the day too. Is it all in her head? Or is the nightmare becoming her life? Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

-Click here to read an excerpt from YOU'VE BEEN WARNED.

Click here to read a review of YOU'VE BEEN WARNED.


Now in Stores: THE WHEEL OF DARKNESS by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child

THE WHEEL OF DARKNESS by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child (Supernatural Thriller)
FBI Special Agent Pendergast and his ward, Constance, head to Tibet, where he intensively trained in martial arts and spiritual studies. At a remote monastery, they learn that a rare and dangerous artifact the monks have been guarding for generations has been mysteriously stolen. A twisting trail of bloodshed leads Pendergast and Constance to the maiden voyage of the Britannia, the world's largest and most luxurious ocean liner --- and to an Atlantic crossing fraught with terror. Reviewed by Roberta O’Hara.

-Click here to read an excerpt from THE WHEEL OF DARKNESS.


Click here to read a review of THE WHEEL OF DARKNESS.


What's New This Month on is our website for Christian readers with monthly updates of reviews and interviews, as well as discussion guides, book excerpts, a monthly newsletter and more. A special feature on the site is the Faithful Fifteen, in which authors answer a series of questions about writing and faith.

Here are some of the titles being featured this month on

AND IF I DIE: The Black or White Chronicles, Book Three by John Aubrey Anderson
FINDING HOME: An Imperfect Path to Faith and Family by Jim Daly with Bob DeMoss
FOR PARENTS ONLY: Getting Inside the Head of Your Kid by Shaunti Feldhahn and Lisa A. Rice
THE PARTING: The Courtship of Nellie Fisher #1 by Beverly Lewis
PRICED TO MOVE: Shop-Til-U-Drop Series #1 by Ginny Aiken
A PROMISE TO REMEMBER by Kathryn Cushman
SCREAMFREE PARENTING: The Revolutionary Approach to Raising Your Kids by Keeping Your Cool by Hal Edward Runkel


Click here to visit


What's New This Month on

With more than 2,200 discussion guides now available, is the leading place for book clubs to find all the resources they need on the web. Here is a list of recently added guides.

The following guides are now available on

AFTER THIS by Alice McDermott
BRIDGE OF SIGHS by Richard Russo
CASPIAN RAIN by Gina B. Nahai
MATRIMONY by Joshua Henkin
MENDING FENCES by Sherryl Woods
MYSTERIES OF THE LIFE FORCE: My Apprenticeship with a Chi Kung Master by Peter Meech
OUTSIDE IN by Courtney Thorne-Smith
PAINT IT BLACK by Janet Fitch
THE REST OF HER LIFE by Laura Moriarty
TRESPASS by Valerie Martin
WATERCOLOR PEARLS by Stacy Hawkins Adams
WOMEN'S RITES OF PASSAGE: How to Embrace Change and Celebrate Life by Abigail Brenner, MD

Please note that these titles, for which we already had the guides when they appeared in hardcover, are now available in paperback:

KABBALAH: A Love Story by Rabbi Lawrence Kushner
SHOOTING WATER by Devyani Saltzman
THE THIRTEENTH TALE by Diane Setterfield

We have the following new guides for Christian book groups:

PRICED TO MOVE by Ginny Aiken
A PROMISE TO REMEMBER by Kathryn Cushman
THE SCRIBE: Sons of Encouragement #5 by Francine Rivers


Click here to visit


This Week's Reviews and Features

SHOOT HIM IF HE RUNS: A Stone Barrington Novel by Stuart Woods (Thriller)
Teddy Fay, a rogue agent last seen escaping an imploding building in IRON ORCHID, has been considered dead for some time now. But President Will Lee thinks Teddy may still be alive. In a top-secret Oval Office meeting, Stone learns that he and his cohorts, Holly Barker and Dino Baldachetti, are being sent to the beautiful Caribbean island of St. Marks, courtesy of the CIA, to track down Teddy once and for all. Reviewed by Marge Fletcher.

BLONDE FAITH by Walter Mosley (Mystery)
In Walter Mosley’s 10th Easy Rawlins thriller, L.A.'s most reluctant detective comes home one day to find Easter, the daughter of his friend Christmas Black, left on his doorstep. Easy knows this could only mean that the ex-marine Black is probably dead, or will be soon. Easter's appearance is only the beginning, as Easy faces a host of problems. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

TREE OF SMOKE by Denis Johnson (Fiction)
Denis Johnson’s first full-length novel in nine years tells the story of Skip Sands --- spy-in-training, engaged in Psychological Operations against the Vietcong --- and the disasters that befall him thanks to his famous uncle, a war hero known in intelligence circles simply as the Colonel. This is also the story of the Houston brothers, who drift out of the Arizona desert into a war in which the line between disinformation and delusion has blurred away. Reviewed by Eileen Zimmerman Nicol.

EUREKA by Jim Lehrer (Fiction)
Jim Lehrer, editor and anchor of “The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer” on PBS, and the author of 16 prior novels, has constructed a warm, humorous and poignant story of a nice man who thinks he has everything --- until a late-life odyssey on a motor scooter leads him to discover that there is more to life than success. Reviewed by Roz Shea.

YOU CAN LEAD A POLITICIAN TO WATER, BUT YOU CAN'T MAKE HIM THINK: Ten Commandments for Texas Politics by Kinky Friedman (Memoir)
Country music singer, mystery author and iconoclast Kinky Friedman waged an independent campaign for governor of Texas in 2006. Texas may have survived, barely, but did Kinky? That is the question answered in this book, which is both funny and serious about the state of American politics. Reviewed by Tom Callahan.

by Andrea Barrett
National Book Award-winning author Andrea Barrett (SHIP FEVER) returns with a new novel that continues her interconnected explorations of science and history, this time probing into love, personal history and tuberculosis in THE AIR WE BREATHE. Reviewed by Norah Piehl.

by Paul Sussman
Traveling from ancient Jerusalem to contemporary Egypt, and involving Cathar heretics, coded medieval manuscripts and hidden Nazi treasures, THE LAST SECRET OF THE TEMPLE is an engrossing thriller set against the tumultuous politics of the present-day Middle East. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

CARLISLE VS. ARMY: Jim Thorpe, Dwight Eisenhower, Pop Warner and the Forgotten Story of Football’s Greatest Battle
by Lars Anderson
CARLISLE VS. ARMY recounts the fateful 1912 gridiron clash that pitted one of America’s finest athletes, Jim Thorpe, against the man who would become one of the nation’s greatest heroes, Dwight D. Eisenhower. But Lars Anderson also reveals the broader social and historical context of the match, lending it his unique perspectives on sports and culture at the dawn of the 20th century. Reviewed by Stuart Shiffman.


Read this week's reviews and features here.


Poll and Question of the Week: Audiobooks


If a book by one of your FAVORITE authors was available as an audiobook before it was out as a print book, would you buy it?

Yes, I would buy the audiobook.
Yes, I would buy the audiobook and then later buy the print book.
I would just wait for the print book as I do not listen to audiobooks.
I am not sure what I would do.

-Click here to answer our poll.


What was the last audiobook that you listened to?

-Click here to answer our question of the week.


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 two great prizes: FIVE readers each will win a copy of
EXIT GHOST by Philip Roth and WORLD WITHOUT END by Ken Follett. Tell us what you are reading and rate the titles 1-5 by noon on October 19th to ensure that you are in the running to win these books.

Please note that our next Word of Mouth update will be on October 19th.


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 or change your preferences below.

Those of you who wish to send mail to, please see the form on the
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Those who are subscribed to the newsletter by October 31, 2007 automatically are entered in our Monthly Newsletter Contest. This month one winner will be selected to win the following five books: BOOK OF THE DEAD by Patricia Cornwell, EXIT GHOST by Philip Roth, NOW AND THEN: A Spenser Novel by Robert B. Parker, PANDORA'S DAUGHTER by Iris Johansen and PROTECT AND DEFEND by Vince Flynn
. Jo from Makakilo, HI was last month's newsletter winner. She won THE BONE GARDEN by Tess Gerritsen, THE CHOICE by Nicholas Sparks, PLAYING FOR PIZZA by John Grisham, RUN by Ann Patchett and YOU'VE BEEN WARNED by James Patterson and Howard Roughan.

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

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