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April 29, 2011 Newsletter April 29, 2011
L.A. Is My Kind of Town...

Writing today from the Left Coast. I flew to L.A. Thursday morning for some meetings before the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, which is taking place this weekend. The venue for this event moved from the UCLA campus to that of USC this year. I, who has zip sense of direction, have been studying the event map trying to figure out where all of the events are being held like I am looking at a treasure map. Here’s to seeing how this event unfolds in a new venue; I will have my report for you next week.

My flight was delayed by four hours last night due to weather. Given the very sad weather-related destruction that has been sweeping across the country --- we hope our readers have been out of harm’s way --- there was little grumbling on the plane. Once I landed, I headed right to Book Soup on Sunset, as I had not had a chance to visit that store before. Happily, Sean Doorly, the first producer at, met up with me there for shopping before dinner. Really enjoyed poking around the store, and I was impressed not only with the titles one would expect to see on their shelves, but also with the wonderful collection of art and photography books (I leafed through one of just photos of Audrey Hepburn that reminded me I was in L.A. --- and it had an aqua cover) and their numerous handwritten notes that reminded me again and again how shopping in an Indie store is such a personal experience.

I am spending part of today with Lisa See, whose upcoming book DREAMS OF JOY (pre-order at Amazon or IndieBound) will be in stores on May 31st. Our Easter plans kept me from finishing the book before we got together, but I have read enough to look forward to hearing more from her on the background of the story. We had such fun sitting poolside chatting last year that we decided we HAD to do a repeat this year.

This trip meant that I was unable to attend the Edgar Awards for the first time in many years. I was sad I could not be there as it’s one of my favorite events of the year, and a nice way to see colleagues and friends from all over the country. Big congratulations are in order for all the nominees and especially Steve Hamilton, whose THE LOCK ARTIST won Best Novel. Click here to check out the winners list. You can also see the list of nominees for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize awards here, which will be announced tonight. We will have those winners for you next week. Tom Franklin --- author of CROOKED LETTER, CROOKED LETTER --- is nominated, so I hope he wins! This was one of my Bets On picks from 2010, and he is so deserving of the recognition. I’m really hoping to meet him in person here.

As I knew I was missing the Edgars, I made sure I was at The Mysterious Bookshopon Tuesday night to celebrate the release party for THE RICH AND THE DEAD, the latest Mystery Writers of America anthology, which was edited by Nelson DeMille. I was able to get a copy signed by 11 of the contributors, including Nelson, Michael Connelly, Ted Bell, David Morrell, S.J. Rozan and Jonathan Santlofer. You can see a photo of Nelson with Ted Bell above left. I thought it would be a nice springtime treat to give this signed edition to one lucky reader, but you’ll have to earn it! We’re cooking up a contest for you to enter to win that will be announced next week when we’ll also have our review of the book! It is in stores on Monday.

While I have enjoyed shopping in The Mysterious Bookshopin the past and love the atmosphere in the store, I got to talk to Otto Penzler, who owns the store, after the crowds left (the store was packed for this event). He prides himself on how this premier shop has a number of signed first editions that they stock for their customers, all of which they sell for regular price. The photo above right shows the shelves in one section of the store. Every book with a pink sticker has been signed. Otto reminded me that while online shopping can be convenient, the opportunity to be guaranteed to get a signed first edition is typically relegated to a specialty store like this. My son Greg was with me (he took these photos), and he picked up two signed copies of Ian Rankin books; he’s been working his way through them in order. Nice purchase and nice feeling to be able to support an indie store like this. Tonight in LA, in years past I would have been at the Mystery Bookstore in Westwood for a gathering with mystery and thriller authors, but sadly that store has closed. A group is gathering at Skylight Books, and I am going to try to make my way over there.

Moving back to the present, this week we have our review of THE BRIDE’S HOUSE by Sandra Dallas, which we’ve been featuring in our Women’s Fiction spotlight. Sandra hails from the great state of Colorado, a place I used to visit a lot and need to revisit soon, so I’m always interested in the history and geography she works into her books. Although I don’t think I could handle the snow in late April that the Rockies are getting! Reviewer Jamie Layton says, “Sandra Dallas is at the top of her game with THE BRIDE’S HOUSE, which will appeal to book clubs, historical fiction fans, anyone looking for an excellent read.” We have our interview with Sandra, who is also a guest blogger in our Mother's Day blog series. Click here to read her piece.

DISTURBED by Kevin O’Brien is our latest Suspense/Thriller spotlight title. Joe Hartlaub has our interview and review, and says, “[Kevin] O’Brien is a master at jerking the reader’s intellectual and emotional chains, so that just when one thinks that everything is resolved, something else is carefully and strategically tossed into the mix.” Few can do suburban suspense like Kevin!

We also have a review of DEAD BY MORNING by Beverly Barton, our latest Romantic Suspense feature title. We were shocked to learn of Beverly’s sudden death late last week, and it brought back a lot of fond memories as she was an author we featured several times over the years. I also got a chance to meet Beverly a few years ago, and she was so kind and friendly. Watching her interact with her scores of fans was truly special. She’ll be missed. Reviewer Donna Volkenannt says, “[Beverly] Barton, who passed away suddenly just days before the novel’s publication, knew how to build suspense and create intriguing characters while ratcheting up the romance, action and intrigue.” And for fans of this series, it’s being reported that the third book in the series --- DEAD BY NIGHTFALL (pre-order at Amazon or IndieBound) --- will be published on November 29th.

Also hitting stores this week is IN STITCHES by Anthony Youn with Alan Eisenstock. You may recognize Anthony from his appearances on "The Rachael Ray Show." In this book, he chronicles his years in medical school, as an intern and in residency, giving a poignant and also humorous look into the making of a doctor. The story near the end of the book where he writes about his calling to become a plastic surgeon will stay with me for a while. Reviewer Barbara Bamberger Scott says, “Tony Youn will keep you in stitches.”

This is our last call for our Mother’s Day contest, which ends Monday at noon ET. You can win one of our 10 gift baskets loaded with a collection of books from our 24 featured titles. We also threw in some gifts we thought mom would like, so enter fast, whether the basket is for your mom or secretly for you! Also, have you been keeping up with our Mother’s Day blog pieces? We’re posting a new, original piece from an author every day. We have such a diverse list this year, and all the pieces are such fun, like this one from Sally Gunning's mother, Nancy. Click here for that piece and check out that photo! Click here to read through the whole series.

I got a note from my colleague and friend, Carl Lennertz, at HarperCollins that I had to share since it’s such a cool idea. Carl was the editor on SEEDS: One Man’s Serendipitous Journey to Find the Trees That Inspired Famous American Writers from Faulkner to Kerouac, Welty to Wharton, by Richard Horan (order at Amazon or IndieBound), who traveled all over the country to research and write such a unique book. Since it’s Arbor Day today, Carl is offering indie booksellers a sapling grown from the seeds mentioned and gathered in the book in exchange for some in-store promotion. How neat! I wish I could qualify since I’d love to have a white pine from Ralph Waldo Emerson or Henry David Thoreau, or even a redbud from William Faulkner to add to my backyard. Check out more about the book here. Also, click here for a blog piece from Richard that was featured on the Blog this week.

My mom told me that this week my hometown library --- the library that was saved from being closed at this time last year --- was offering a screening of The King's Speech in honor of the Royal Wedding. Nice idea and a way to share this film, which came out on DVD on April 19th. She also told me that the library has started some new groups, including a bridge club and classes. I love hearing how the programming there continues to unite the community. I will be speaking on May 12th at my local library in New Jersey sharing a list of Hot Summer Titles. I started working on this today, and I realized that I am quite excited about the number of books I already have read!

Hot tip for those of you who, like me, like watching streaming video via Netflix or Amazon. I got my husband a Roku box for his birthday, and it’s one great setup. Instead of connecting a laptop or computer to watch videos, we now just click on the box. Which means we now have another remote on the end table. I am so tired of sorting out remotes and power cords. There are times when I sit down to watch a video that I feel like I am powering up the space shuttle. TV-on. Surround sound–on. Troll to get the connections all simultaneous. Roku-on. Search for selection. And one remote is always trapped between the seat cushions, thus hunting and gathering is involved! By the way, if you get a Roku box, you want the most expensive one if you want to be able to rewind…something you might want to consider.

Long day ahead…I got up to watch the recap of the Royal Wedding as I was not pulling an all-nighter to watch. As I tuned in they were recapping the vows, which for a moment I thought were LIVE. Lovely celebration, and there is a DVR of the coverage waiting for me at home.

Much more coverage from LA next week. Meanwhile, read on and have a wonderful week.

Carol Fitzgerald ( Talks to Sandra Dallas, Author of THE BRIDE'S HOUSE

A proud Coloradoan and self-proclaimed western writer, Sandra Dallas is the award-winning author of such bestsellers as WHITER THAN SNOW, PRAYERS FOR SALE, TALLGRASS and NEW MERCIES. Her 10th novel, THE BRIDE’S HOUSE, tackles the secrets and passions of three generations of women who have all lived in the same Victorian home called the Bride’s House. In this interview, conducted by’s Jamie Layton, Dallas discusses the real house that served as inspiration for her latest title. She also lists her favorite places in Colorado and explains how her journalism background --- covering events in her beloved Rocky Mountains --- served as a foray into fiction.

THE BRIDE’S HOUSE by Sandra Dallas (Historical Fiction)
From the New York Times bestselling author of WHITER THAN SNOW and PRAYERS FOR SALE comes a novel about the secrets and passions of three generations of women who have all lived in the same Victorian home called the Bride's House. Reviewed by Jamie Layton.

-Click here to read a review of THE BRIDE'S HOUSE.
-Click here to read an excerpt from THE BRIDE'S HOUSE.
-Click here to read a special Mother's Day blog post from Sandra Dallas.
-Click here to read Sandra Dallas’s bio.
-Click here to see Sandra Dallas’s backlist.
-Visit Sandra Dallas’s official website,


Click here to read our interview with Sandra Dallas.

Now in Stores: BEL-AIR DEAD by Stuart Woods
BEL-AIR DEAD: A Stone Barrington Novel by Stuart Woods (Thriller)
When Colombian billionaire Terry Prince wants to purchase Centurion Studios, raze it and build a multimillion-dollar Hollywood resort in its place, there's only one thing standing in his way: New York attorney Stone Barrington. Will the ruthless hotelier eliminate Stone, as he does all other obstacles in his path? Or will Stone use his wits, charisma and considerable resources to save the studio and his own life as well? Reviewed by Amie Taylor.

Click here to read a review of BEL-AIR DEAD.

Now in Stores: SWEET VALLEY CONFIDENTIAL by Francine Pascal

SWEET VALLEY CONFIDENTIAL: Ten Years Later by Francine Pascal (Fiction)
With this adult novel, millions of devoted Sweet Valley fans can return to the world Francine Pascal created in 1983. Except that this time around, there’s a rift between the identical Wakefield twins. Elizabeth is in New York; Jessica still on the West Coast. Ten years have passed since the last installment, and Jessica and Elizabeth are all grown up, dealing with the complicated adult world of love, careers, betrayal and sisterhood. Reviewed by Jana Siciliano.

-Click here to read an excerpt from SWEET VALLEY CONFIDENTIAL.

Click here to read a review of SWEET VALLEY CONFIDENTIAL.


Now in Stores: DEAD BY MORNING by Beverly Barton

DEAD BY MORNING by Beverly Barton (Romantic Suspense)
A demented killer is on the loose, targeting victims connected with the Powell Security Agency. He begins his work before dawn, slitting his victims’ throats and then carving pieces of flesh from their bodies. Powell agent Maleah Purdue and former FBI profiler Derek Lawrence team up to stop the madman and his deadly game. Reviewed by Donna Volkenannt.
br /> -Click here to read an excerpt from DEAD BY MORNING.
-Click here to read Beverly Barton’s bio.
-Click here to see Beverly Barton’s backlist.
-Visit Beverly Barton’s official website,


Click here to read a review of DEAD BY MORNING. Talks to Kevin O'Brien, Author of DISTURBED

In Kevin O’Brien’s 11th thriller, DISTURBED, a serial killer in suburban Seattle chooses homes, gains entrance, and methodically kills everyone inside.'s Joe Hartlaub talks to O’Brien about the ins and outs of writing murder --- and how television shows, social networking and communication devices all come into play, in both good ways and bad. O’Brien professes his love for Hitchcockian suspense, weighs in on bullying, offers a sneak peek of his next book, and enthusiastically discusses being a member of Seattle7Writers, a collective of Pacific Northwest authors who seek to raise awareness of Northwest literature and promote literacy.

DISTURBED by Kevin O’Brien (Thriller)
The houses in Willow Tree Court are sleek and modern --- the kind designed to harbor happy families and laughing children. But Molly Dennehy's stepson's school has just been rocked by a brutal slaying, and a psychopath known as the Cul-de-Sac Killer is murdering families in Seattle homes. Homes just like hers. With each passing day, Molly grows more convinced that someone is watching her family. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

-Click here to read a review of DISTURBED.
-Click here to read an excerpt from DISTURBED.
-Click here to read critical praise for DISTURBED.
-Click here to read Kevin O’Brien’s bio.
-Click here to see Kevin O’Brien’s backlist.
-Visit Kevin O’Brien’s official website,


Click here to read our interview with Kevin O'Brien.


2011 Spring Baseball Roundup: New Year, "Old" Books

The 2011 Major League Baseball season is in full swing. As of this writing, there is the usual set of surprises, with some teams and individual players exceeding preseason predictions while others are not living up to expectations.

One thing you can always count on: a variety of entertaining books to fill in those inevitable rain delays and interminable pitching changes. This year’s list includes plenty of New York-centric titles to keep Yankees, Mets and even Brooklyn Dodger fans busy.

Click here to read Ron Kaplan's roundup of spring baseball titles.'s Sixth Annual Mother's Day Contest: Books Mom Will Love

Mother’s Day is a time to recognize the woman who raised and nurtured us. Why not brighten her special day with some great books? Through Monday, May 2nd, readers will have the chance to win one of our 10 Mother’s Day gift baskets. Each basket is filled with a selection of 12 books from our 24 featured titles, giving Mom a book to read each month and making Mother’s Day truly a yearlong celebration. Also included are a variety of gifts to treat her: a rather large Godiva chocolate bar, a collection of body products from Crabtree & Evelyn, Tazo Tea, and a 4x6 picture frame.

With books that are moving, uplifting, humorous and informative, look no further than for the perfect gift for Mom.

-Click here to see our featured titles.


Click here to read all the contest details.

Mother's Day Author Blogs: Celebrating Authors and Their Mothers

Here at, Mother’s Day is a month-long celebration with the help of some of our author friends and their mothers. For the past few weeks, we've been featuring daily blog posts from authors, including Mary Higgins Clark and Carol Higgins Clark, Luanne Rice, Julia Spencer-Fleming, and many more. Reading these pieces will give you a new understanding and insight into the role Mom played as authors got their start or followed into the literary world.

Contributors have included:
-Mary Higgins Clark and Carol Higgins Clark
-Luanne Rice
-Julia Spencer-Fleming
-Victoria Brown
-Michelle Au
-Lorna Jane Cook
-Meg Waite Clayton
-Joanna Trollope
-Daphne Kalotay
-Sarah Addison Allen
-Kat Martin
-Darien Gee
-Nancy Abbott Carlson, Mother of Sally Gunning
-Jacqueline Luckett
-Sandra Dallas

Coming soon:

-Erica Bauermeister
-Chelsea Cain
-Therese Fowler
-Siri Hustvedt
-Rae Meadows
-Elizabeth Noble

We suggest you bookmark this page or set up an RSS feed so you can read these pieces every day!

Click here to read our Mother's Day Author Blogs.


Paperback Spotlight: FATHER OF THE RAIN by Lily King

Lily King's critically-acclaimed third novel, FATHER OF THE RAIN, follows Daley Amory as she watches the destruction of her parents' marriage against the backdrop of the last days of Richard Nixon's presidency. Long estranged from her charismatic, alcoholic father, Daley returns home to care for him as years of fast living finally take their toll.

-Click here to read a second excerpt from FATHER OF THE RAIN.
-Click here to read critical praise for FATHER OF THE RAIN.
-Click here to read Lily King’s bio.
-Click here to see Lily King’s backlist.
-Click here to see the winners of FATHER OF THE RAIN.

Winner of the New England Book Award for Fiction and a New York Times Editors' Choice, Lily King's masterful third novel received glowing critical praise upon its initial publication and is poised to make an even bigger splash in paperback.

Gardiner Amory is a New England WASP who's beginning to feel the cracks in his empire. Nixon is being impeached, his wife is leaving him, and his worldview is rapidly becoming outdated. His daughter, Daley, has spent the first 11 years of her life negotiating her parents' conflicting worlds: the liberal, socially committed realm of her mother and the conservative, decadent, liquor-soaked life of her father. But when they divorce, and Gardiner's basest impulses are unleashed, the chasm quickly widens and Daley is stretched thinly across it.

Click here to read more about FATHER OF THE RAIN.

Paperback Spotlight: THE GIRL'S GUIDE TO HOMELESSNESS by Brianna Karp
After a tumultuous childhood, Brianna Karp had finally made it, earning a nice salary and living in a beachside condo. That all changed when she abruptly lost her job in 2008 and took up residence in a camper she parked in a Walmart lot, as chronicled in her emotional memoir, THE GIRL'S GUIDE TO HOMELESSNESS.

-Click here to read an excerpt from THE GIRL’S GUIDE TO HOMELESSNESS.
-Click here to read critical praise for THE GIRL’S GUIDE TO HOMELESSNESS.
-Click here to visit the book’s official website.
-Click here to read Brianna Karp’s bio.
-Click here to see the winners of THE GIRL’S GUIDE TO HOMELESSNESS.

Brianna Karp entered the workforce at age 10, supporting her mother and sister throughout her teen years in Southern California. Although her young life was scarred by violence and abuse, Karp stayed focused on her dream of a steady job and a home of her own. By age 22 her dream became reality. Karp loved her job as an executive assistant and signed the lease on a tiny cottage near the beach. And then the Great Recession hit. Karp, like millions of others, lost her job. In the six months between the day she was laid off and the day she was forced out onto the street, Karp scrambled for temp work and filed hundreds of job applications, only to find all doors closed. When she inherited a 30-foot travel trailer after her father's suicide, Karp parked it in a Walmart parking lot and began to blog about her search for work and a way back.

Click here to read more about THE GIRL'S GUIDE TO HOMELESSNESS.


Celebrate Children's Book Week!

From May 2-8, the Children's Book Council (CBC) is sponsoring its 92nd annual Children's Book Week. Since 1919, Children's Book Week has been celebrated nationally in schools, libraries, bookstores, clubs, private homes --- any place where there are children and books. Educators, librarians, booksellers and families have celebrated children's books and the love of reading with storytelling, parties, author and illustrator appearances, and other book-related events.
Click here to learn more about Children's Book Week and how to celebrate in your area.


This Week's Reviews

THE PALE KING by David Foster Wallace (Fiction)
Unfinished at the time of David Foster Wallace’s death, THE PALE KING is a deeply compelling and satisfying novel. The agents at the IRS Regional Examination Center in Peoria, Illinois, appear ordinary enough to a newly arrived trainee named David Foster Wallace. But as he immerses himself in a routine so tedious and repetitive that new employees receive boredom-survival training, he learns of the extraordinary variety of personalities drawn to this strange calling. Reviewed by Stuart Shiffman.

THE TRAGEDY OF ARTHUR by Arthur Phillips (Fiction)
Throughout his youth, Arthur Phillips struggles with a larger-than-life father --- a con artist who works wonders of deception but is a most unreliable parent. Arthur is raised in an enchanted world of smoke and mirrors, where the only unshifting truth is his father’s deep and abiding love for the works of William Shakespeare. As his father is dying, Arthur takes on his mission to see a previously unknown Shakespeare play, The Tragedy of Arthur, published and acknowledged. But is this play nothing more than his father’s last great con? Reviewed by Norah Piehl.

THE TROUBLED MAN: A Kurt Wallander Novel by Henning Mankell (Mystery)
On a winter day in 2008, a retired high-ranking naval officer vanished during his daily walk in a forest near Stockholm. It has nothing to do with brooding detective Kurt Wallander --- officially. But he soon becomes involved in matters that aren’t his responsibility, making promises he won’t keep, and lying when it suits him. Continually haunted by his past, he will have no choice but to come face-to-face, this time, with his most intractable adversary: himself. Reviewed by Barbara Lipkien Gershenbaum.

IN STITCHES: A Memoir by Anthony Youn, M.D. with Alan Eisenstock (Memoir)
Tony Youn grew up one of two Asian-American kids in a small town of near wall-to-wall whiteness. Too tall and thin, he wore thick Coke-bottle glasses, braces, Hannibal Lecter headgear, and had a protruding jaw that required surgery. Ironically, it was this surgery that led him to his life's calling --- and the four years of angst, mishaps, triumphs, non-stop studying and intermittent heavy drinking that eventually earned him an MD, and the role of successful plastic surgeon. Reviewed by Barbara Bamberger Scott.

THE FALLEN ANGEL by David Hewsonstrong> (Thriller)
It’s August in Rome, and Nic Costa’s vacation is about to be cut short by a scream, a girl covered in blood, and a man lying dead in the Via Beatrice Cenci. It seems that Malise Gabriel, a scholar with an impressive list of enemies, stepped onto faulty scaffolding and fell to his death. On the surface, it’s no more than an unfortunate accident. But soon another body is discovered. Nic knows that something evil is circling Malise’s daughter Mina --- and now that something is closing in for the kill. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

22 BRITANNIA ROAD by Amanda Hodgkinson (Historical Fiction)
Silvana and her eight-year-old son Aurek spent World War II hiding in the forests of Poland. Wild, almost feral Aurek doesn't know how to tie his own shoes or sleep in a bed. Silvana’s husband, Janusz, fled to England and waited for them to arrive, at 22 Britannia Road. He was determined to forget Poland, forget his own ghosts, and begin a new life as a proper English family. But for Silvana, forgetting is not a possibility. Reviewed by Kate Ayers.

BULLFIGHTING: Stories by Roddy Doyle (Fiction/Short Stories)
Anyone looking for a guide to the psyche of the middle-aged man would do much worse than to settle down with Roddy Doyle’s outstanding new collection of 13 stories. Set, with one exception, in present-day Dublin and its environs, they offer the literary equivalent of an MRI of the souls of a troubled, yet sympathetic, group of men. Reviewed by Harvey Freedenberg.

THE BAYOU TRILOGY: Under the Bright Lights, Muscle for the Wing, and The Ones You Do by Daniel Woodrell (Crime Fiction)
In St. Bruno, sex is easy, corruption festers, and double-dealing is a way of life. Rene Shade is an uncompromising detective swimming in a sea of filth. As Shade takes on hit men, porn kings, a gang of ex-cons, and the ghosts of his own checkered past, Daniel Woodrell's three seminal novels pit long-entrenched criminals against the hard line of the law, brother against brother, and two vastly different sons against a long-absent father. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

Click here to read this week's reviews.


Young Adult Books You Won't Want to Miss

As you may or may not know, our company, The Book Report Network, has a number of websites about books and authors in addition to Throughout the year, features adult books on, our site for young adult readers, that we think will have definite appeal to a teen audience. In the spirit of sharing, we are now spotlighting a selection of titles each month from that we believe are great reads that you might enjoy.

Here are our latest featured titles:

STRINGS ATTACHED by Judy Blundell (Historical Fiction)
When Kit Corrigan arrives in New York City, she doesn't have much. She's fled from her family in Providence, Rhode Island, and she's broken off her tempestuous relationship with a boy named Billy, who's enlisted in the army. The city doesn't exactly welcome her with open arms. She gets a bit part as a chorus girl in a Broadway show, but she knows that's not going to last very long. She needs help --- and then it comes, from an unexpected source.

-Click here to read an excerpt from STRINGS ATTACHED.
-Click here to read's interview with Judy Blundell.

SUMMER AND THE CITY: A Carrie Diaries Novel by Candace Bushnell (Fiction)
Seventeen-year-old Carrie Bradshaw is finally in New York. But can she manage to prove herself as a writer so she can remain in the city of her dreams? As the countdown of her summer ticks away, she grapples with writer's block, men and friendships in another delightful installment of her adventures. Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon.

-Click here to browse inside SUMMER AND THE CITY.

VIOLA IN REEL LIFE by Adriana Trigiani (Fiction)
Viola doesn't want to go to boarding school, but somehow she ends up at an all-girls school in South Bend, Indiana far away from her home in Brooklyn, New York. There's no way she's going to survive the year. Boarding school, though, and her roommates and even the Midwest are nothing like she thought they would be. Reviewed by Lourdes Orive.

VIOLA IN THE SPOTLIGHT by Adriana Trigiani (Fiction)
Viola is back home in Brooklyn where she's free to be her spunky self. But the excitement of getting to hang with her two best friends comes to a screeching halt when Andrew starts acting strange and Caitlin ditches her for a new boy. Amid Viola's confusion --- should she stay or leave Brooklyn? --- a tragic event proves that friendships are her true foundation. Reviewed by Amy Alessio.

-Click here for a behind-the-scenes look at the cover photo shoot for VIOLA IN THE SPOTLIGHT and an interview with Adriana Trigiani.

WE ALL FALL DOWN: Living with Addiction by Nic Sheff (Memoir)
In his memoir TWEAK, Nic Sheff took readers on an emotionally gripping roller-coaster ride through his days as a drug addict. In this powerful follow-up about his continued efforts to stay clean, Nic writes candidly about eye-opening stays at rehab centers, devastating relapses, and hard-won realizations about what it means to be a young person living with addiction. Reviewed by Barbara Bamberger Scott.

Click here to see all the young adult books you won't want to miss.

Poll, Question and Word of Mouth

Are you on Facebook?

No, but I plan on joining
No, but I’m thinking of joining
I used to be on Facebook.
I have no interest in joining.

-Click here to answer our poll.


Name up to three authors you’re currently following, or would like to follow, on Facebook.

-Click here to answer our question.

Word of Mouth:

Tell us what books YOU are reading and loving --- or even those you don't.

This week we have three great prizes: FIVE readers each will win a copy of BLOOD TRUST: A McClure-Carson Novel by Eric Van Lustbader, THE JEFFERSON KEY by Steve Berry, and THE SNOWMAN by Jo Nesbø. Tell us what you are reading here and rate the titles 1-5 by noon ET on Friday, May 13th to ensure that you are in the running to win these books.

-Click here for more details about Word of Mouth.


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 Write to Us page. If you would like to reach me, please write Writing any of the respond buttons below will not get to us.

Those who are subscribed to the newsletter by April 30, 2011 automatically are entered in our Monthly Newsletter Contest. This month, one winner will be selected to win the following five books: CHASING FIRE by Nora Roberts, EVE by Iris Johansen, THE FIFTH WITNESS by Michael Connelly, I'LL WALK ALONE by Mary Higgins Clark, and THE SILVER BOAT by Luanne Rice. Michele from Midlothian, VA was last month's winner. She won A LESSON IN SECRETS: A Maisie Dobbs Novel by Jacqueline Winspear, LIVE WIRE by Harlan Coben, NIGHT ROAD by Kristin Hannah, THE SATURDAY BIG TENT WEDDING PARTY: The New No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency Novel by Alexander McCall Smith, and SILENT MERCY by Linda Fairstein.

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

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