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March 25, 2016 Newsletter March 25, 2016
Sooooo Ready for Spring!

We closed the office early today in observance of Good Friday, thus our newsletter is arriving in your mailboxes earlier than usual. I hope this does not interfere too much with your regular reading habits! I hear from many of you that you have rituals for reading us on Friday night or Saturday morning. Apologies for tugging you from your comfort zones!

I also need time to shop for pre-dyed eggs (which were a huge hit last year) and jellybeans (the black ones are my favorites). Yet another amaryllis bloomed (see the photo above), and it’s in a perfect Easter pink! It’s also time to walk into the attic to hunt down Easter decorations, with a vow to practice the same restraint that I practiced at Christmas. The concept: Hold each item in your hand and think, “Will I want to put this away in April?” It’s amazing how many bunnies will be left behind with this mantra in practice. Move over, Marie Kondo! I think I have a whole new franchise idea for holiday decorating. Oh, but wait, it’s only one line of questioning. Maybe I can invent a few more to say to the decorations left behind in the attic.

It has been a very hectic week; last night, I sat down to eat dinner around 8pm and realized that I had not had lunch. The even stranger thing: I didn't even realize that I had skipped lunch, and this is not my normal habit! Luckily, there were still St. Patrick’s Day chocolates from the presents bestowed on all staffers by our newest employee Rebecca, who packaged them in Ball jars with adorable tiny green hats. Chocolate is a food group, right?

Now to this week’s update…..

In her highly anticipated first novel, THE NEST, Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney introduces us to the dysfunctional Plumb family. As tensions finally reach a breaking point, Melody, Beatrice and Jack Plumb gather on a cold afternoon in New York City to confront their older brother, Leo, fresh out of rehab. Leo’s car accident months earlier has endangered the family’s joint trust fund --- “The Nest” --- which they are months away from finally receiving. Brought together as never before, Melody, Jack, Beatrice and Leo must grapple with old resentments, present-day truths, and the significant emotional and financial toll of the accident, as well as acknowledge the choices they have made in their own lives and the consequences.

Eileen Zimmerman Nicol raves about the book in her review: “From page one, it’s evident that we’re in the capable hands of a juicy storyteller and brilliant wordsmith. Sweeney is adept at describing the nuances of relationships…. THE NEST is a delicious novel, one to be savored, if only you could stop reading it.” Ahhh, "The Nest" and the siblings who long for their part of it; it’s great family drama.

The bestselling author of MAJOR PETTIGREW’S LAST STAND, Helen Simonson, brings us love and loss in her latest novel, THE SUMMER BEFORE THE WAR. Hugh Grange visits his aunt Agatha in Rye, a small town in East Sussex, 1914. Agatha has just appointed Beatrice Nash to replace the Latin master. But just as Beatrice comes alive to the beauty of the Sussex landscape and the colorful characters who populate Rye, the perfect summer is about to be overshadowed by war.

Katherine B. Weissman delivers much praise for the book in her review: “I am heartily grateful that Simonson doesn’t fall into the common historical-novelist mistake of projecting a modern feminist sensibility onto characters of a different era.... Agatha reminds me of a younger version of Isobel Crawley in 'Downton Abbey': passionate, practical, open-hearted --- a thoroughly sensible rebel. Mourners for that beloved miniseries would do well to hope that somebody options THE SUMMER BEFORE THE WAR for television. I’ll bet it would be a hit on both sides of the pond.” I sooooo agree with Kathy!

THE NEST and THE SUMMER BEFORE THE WAR will be my next Bets On selections. Check back next week to find out why!

Harlan Coben delivers his next impossible-to-put-down thriller in FOOL ME ONCE. Maya, a former special ops pilot, returns home only to see a haunting image on her nanny cam: her two-year-old daughter playing with Maya’s deceased husband, Joe, who had been brutally murdered two weeks earlier. Surrounded by illusions, Maya must figure out the truth about her husband, while facing secrets within her own past.

Joe Hartlaub has our review and says, “The book is built on the premise that everyone has a past and that it’s often worth knowing what that past is before becoming involved with someone to any great extent. Throw in a whole potful of interesting characters --- some important, others red herrings --- and you have a thriller that ultimately will leave you stunned.” If Joe is stunned, I want to read it.

THE CHARM BRACELET by Viola Shipman tells the story of three women whose lives are changed by the magic of an heirloom charm bracelet. Lolly still lives in her family cabin on Lost Land Lake, where her mother gave her the charm bracelet that would become Lolly’s connection to her family’s past. Lolly hasn’t seen her daughter, Arden, or granddaughter, Lauren, in years. However, when Arden receives an unexpected phone call about her mother, she must decide if she can face going home.

Reviewer Carole Turner calls THE CHARM BRACELET “a charming novel (no pun intended) about family and what matters most. That this story of three generations of women was written by a man makes it all the more fascinating and believable." Viola Shipman is actually the pen name for award-winning memoirist Wade Rouse. According to the newly launched, “Rouse chose his grandmother’s name to honor the woman whose charm bracelet and family stories inspired him to write his debut novel, which is a tribute to all of our elders.” Click here to read more about the woman who served as the inspiration for Rouse’s first novel and here for a terrific piece he wrote for Good Housekeeping.

THE SUMMER BEFORE THE WAR, FOOL ME ONCE and THE CHARM BRACELET are our current Word of Mouth prizes. Submit your comments about the books you’ve finished reading, and you’ll be in the running to win all three novels. Enter by Friday, April 1st at noon ET (no joke!).

We have two new Paperback Spotlights to share with you. First up is Philippa Gregory’s THE TAMING OF THE QUEEN, which transports readers back to the reign of Henry VIII. At 33, Kateryn Parr already had been married and widowed twice. She was free to do as she pleased and embarked on a passionate affair. However, when she finds herself targeted by King Henry, she reluctantly agrees to marry the reigning monarch while giving up her independence and her lover. For a while, Kateryn uses her wit and beauty to charm Henry, but his advisers would eventually use Kateryn’s interest in spiritual pursuits to turn him against her. THE TAMING OF THE QUEEN will be available in paperback this Tuesday the 29th.

Our second featured paperback is THE LITTLE PARIS BOOKSHOP by Nina George, which is now available. Monsieur Perdu is a self-proclaimed literary apothecary, who mends hearts and souls in his floating Parisian bookshop. The only person he can’t seem to heal through literature is himself. He is still mourning his great love, who disappeared from his life after leaving him a letter, which he never read. After finally opening the letter, he embarks on a mission to the south of France, hoping to heal himself. Joined by a lovelorn Italian chef, Perdu journeys along France to make peace with his loss.

In this week’s Spring Preview contests, we gave away DIMESTORE: A Writer’s Life (Lee Smith’s first work of nonfiction) and the aforementioned THE SUMMER BEFORE THE WAR. Next week’s prizes will be THE ONE-IN-A-MILLION BOY by Monica Wood and THE SPACE BETWEEN SISTERS: A Butternut Lake Novel by Mary McNear, with the first contest going up on Wednesday, March 30th at noon ET. I wanted to take a moment to give a shout-out to Nicole Sherman, who pulled together all the details for our Spring Preview feature pre-launch and continues to ensure that the feature and contests run smoothly. It’s a ton of details, but she manages them brilliantly!

We’ve updated our Young Adult Books You Want to Read feature, reviews we’ve posted on that we think will appeal to our adult readers. This month’s titles are UNBECOMING by Jenny Downham, CHARACTER, DRIVEN by David Lubar, THANKS FOR THE TROUBLE by Tommy Wallach, and ALL BETTER NOW by Emily Wing Smith.

In our poll we’re asking, “If you’re not enjoying a book, are you more likely to stop reading it if you haven’t paid for it?” We’re curious about this, so please let us know by sharing your vote here!

There are just a few days left to enter this month’s Sounding Off on Audio contest. Let us know what audiobooks you’ve finished listening to, and you’ll have the chance to win the audio versions of A MOTHER'S RECKONING: Living in the Aftermath of Tragedy, written and read by Sue Klebold, and Chris Pavone's THE TRAVELERS, read by Paul Michael. Enter by Friday, April 1st at noon ET.

News and Pop Culture:

Reader Mail: Ann wrote, “I wondered if you have heard of TITANS by Leila Meacham, coming out April 12? She is the author of ROSES, TUMBLEWEEDS and SOMERSET…. It's a typical Leila Meacham book: excellent character development, much well-researched history is written into the story, and the descriptions are the kind that awaken our senses. She was once an English teacher, and her writing is the best…. You and your amazing staff do the best work! I have been introduced to several new authors through your sites and look forward to reading each newsletter. My book club members are huge fans also. We depend greatly on all the information you share with us readers! Thank you, and KUDOS to you Carol!!” We have, and we'll have more about TITANS when it is published.

From another reader named Ann: “First of all, let me tell you how much I look forward to your letter every Friday. I honestly don't know how you can put out such a detailed letter with all the many things you do. It feels like I am hearing from a friend, especially when you talk about what is going on with your family. I am having a problem finding large print books, and I thought maybe you could give me some advice on where to go. I have been experiencing some problems with the clarity in which I see, and since I am such an avid reader, this is very frustrating. So if you could steer me in a direction to find current books in large print, I would so appreciate it. Again, thank you for your letters.” I did some research and found that a company called Thorndike Press publishes many titles in large print, including the aforementioned Harlan Coben novel that Ann told me in another note that she was looking for. If you, too, are looking for large print titles, may I suggest that you Google the title you want and Thorndike Press to see if they are available? Your local library also can be a terrific resource for finding these selections.

Mary wrote, “Thanks for the information about the new book by Liane Moriarty. Our book club is currently reading BIG LITTLE LIES. We already read THE HUSBAND’S SECRET, and Liane is becoming one of our favorites. She gives us much to discuss as we read her books with characters both amusing and appalling.” By the way, if you are in a book group, check out our website where the poll this month asks, "Which of the following authors has your group read at least one book by?"

Gearing Up to Turn 100: Beverly Cleary turns 100 on April 12th, but the celebration of her life already has begun. You can click on the link here to watch a wonderful interview with her --- and comments from some children and authors who were inspired by her!

TSOP: What does this stand for? Time Spent on Phone! Note to cut back on this and instead pick up a book and read. It’s a lot more relaxing!

Backlist Title Recommendations from Indie Booksellers: When I was at the American Booksellers Association’s Winter Institute, I shared that there was a book swap. To get an idea of the vibe that happened that night, here is the OFF THE SHELF video from the Winter Institute’s Backlist Book Swap with independent booksellers talking about their favorite backlist books. As Wendy, who shared this with us, said, “The regionality and taste of the booksellers are as varied as the books they love, which are published by a wide range of publishers.”

Max: Watched this movie last weekend and enjoyed it.

Basketball: Have not picked a favorite team yet, but will have someone in mind after this weekend!

Around our house, we measure the arrival of spring by the blooms of the forsythia at the end of our driveway. Usually they pop by my husband’s birthday on April 16th, but this year there already have been bursts of yellow color for a few days now, which is lovely --- especially since Easter is breaking so early.

My son, Cory, is raising money here for Children's Specialized Hospital by participating in a 12-hour dance marathon at his school. He went out to the hospital to take a tour and meet with the staff there, as well as some of the kids. It made a big impression on him. Many of the kids at the hospital have no where to turn for the help that they need as they have been abandoned by their families. I was so impressed that he took the time to do that. He said he wanted to know more about the place he was contributing toward. Oh, and his hair is growing back...slowly!

Last night, Greg did a Holy Thursday Walk of Seven Churches in New York City; he attempted to do seven, but only got to five as we were cranking on a work project 'til later than we both planned and thus he got a late start. A friend of his in Louisiana was doing this ritual, and he thought it would be interesting to see how Catholics in New York City all celebrate the same religious event. Next year he is vowing to make all seven, and I am vowing to be sure he has time to do that.

My parents are joining us for Easter dinner; I am making a butterflied leg of lamb from THE SILVER PALATE GOOD TIMES COOKBOOK. Curious about the recipe? I found it online here. My dad does not like lamb, so he is getting a steak! One year when we were on the Outer Banks for Easter, we could not find mint jelly anywhere. We literally went up and down the island looking for it. The following year we brought it with us, and, of course, there was a display of it as soon as we walked into the first grocery store. Mom is bringing her amazing cheesecake for dessert.

For the upcoming 11(!) author interviews that I am doing between late April and early May, I will be reading this weekend; it’s like I am studying for finals. Every time I read a book that is not for one of the interviews, I feel as though I am cheating, like when I used to read novels instead of required reading for my college classes.

Knitting continues to be all over the place. I have one mohair scarf that needs I-cord sewn onto it. I have a linen scarf that needs its ends woven in. Neither is a project that I am looking forward to. The Architexture Shawl requires concentration, and I fear I forgot to add stitches at some point on either end. The answer? A NEW project. I started a simple skirt this week since stockinette stitch relaxes me. Some people do yoga or Pilates; I do the stockinette stitch. Of course, the gauge was wrong and I had to start over. Reverse knitting!

Here’s wishing those of you who celebrate Easter a wonderful holiday. Read on, and have a great week!

Carol Fitzgerald (

P.S. For those of you who are doing online shopping, if you use the store links below, gets a small affiliate fee on your purchases. We would appreciate your considering this!

Featured Review: THE NEST by Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney
THE NEST by Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney (Fiction)
Audiobook available, narrated by Mia Barron
The Plumb family is spectacularly dysfunctional. Years of tensions finally reach a breaking point as Melody, Beatrice and Jack Plumb gather to confront their older brother, Leo, freshly released from rehab. Months earlier, an inebriated Leo got in a car accident that has endangered the Plumbs' joint trust fund, “The Nest,” which they are months away from finally receiving. Now, the siblings must grapple with old resentments, present-day truths and the significant emotional and financial toll of the accident, as well as finally acknowledge the choices they have made in their own lives. Reviewed by Eileen Zimmerman Nicol.

-Click here to read more about the book.
Click here to read the review.
Featured Review: THE SUMMER BEFORE THE WAR by Helen Simonson
THE SUMMER BEFORE THE WAR by Helen Simonson (Historical Fiction)
Audiobook available, narrated by Fiona Hardingham
East Sussex, 1914. Hugh Grange, down from his medical studies, is visiting his Aunt Agatha, who has just risked her carefully built reputation by pushing for the appointment of a woman to replace the Latin master. But just as Beatrice Nash, the teacher, comes alive to the beauty of the Sussex landscape and the colorful characters who populate Rye, the perfect summer is about to end. For despite Agatha’s reassurances, the unimaginable is coming. Soon the limits of progress, and the old ways, will be tested as this small Sussex town and its inhabitants go to war. Reviewed by Katherine B. Weissman.

-Click here to read more about the book.
-Click here to read an excerpt.

Click here to read the review.
Featured Review: FOOL ME ONCE by Harlan Coben
FOOL ME ONCE by Harlan Coben (Thriller)
Audiobook available, narrated by January LaVoy
Former special ops pilot Maya, home from the war, sees an unthinkable image captured by her nanny cam while she is at work: her two-year-old daughter playing with Maya’s husband, Joe --- who had been brutally murdered two weeks earlier. The provocative question at the heart of the mystery: Can you believe everything you see with your own eyes, even when you desperately want to? To find the answer, Maya must finally come to terms with deep secrets and deceit in her own past before she can face the unbelievable truth about her husband --- and herself. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

-Click here to read more about the book.
-Click here to read an excerpt.
Click here to read the review.
Featured Review: THE CHARM BRACELET by Viola Shipman
THE CHARM BRACELET by Viola Shipman (Fiction)
Audiobook available, narrated by Andi Arndt
On her birthday each year, Lolly’s mother gave her a charm, along with the advice that there is nothing more important than keeping family memories alive. Now 70 and starting to forget things, Lolly knows time is running out to reconnect with a daughter and granddaughter whose lives have become too busy for Lolly or her family stories. But when Arden, Lolly’s daughter, receives an unexpected phone call about her mother, she and granddaughter Lauren rush home. Over the course of their visit, Lolly reveals the story behind each charm on her bracelet. One by one the family stories help Lolly, Arden and Lauren reconnect in a way that brings each woman closer to finding joy, love and faith. Reviewed by Carole Turner.

-Click here to read more about the book.
-Click here to read an excerpt.
-Click here to visit Viola Shipman’s official website.
Click here to read the review.
New Paperback Spotlight: THE TAMING OF THE QUEEN by Philippa Gregory
THE TAMING OF THE QUEEN by Philippa Gregory (Historical Fiction)
Audiobook available, narrated by Bianca Amato
Kateryn Parr, a 30-year-old widow with a secret new lover, has no choice when Henry VIII --- a man who has buried four wives --- commands her to marry him.

Kateryn knows the danger she faces: the previous queen lasted 16 months, the one before barely half a year. But Henry adores his new bride, and Kateryn’s trust in him grows as she unites the royal family, creates a radical study circle at the heart of the court, and rules as regent.

But is this enough to keep her safe? Kateryn stands out as an independent woman with a mind of her own. As a leader of religious reform and the first woman to publish under her own name in English, she is an easy target for the traditional churchmen and rivals for power who accuse her of heresy --- the punishment is death by fire and the king’s name is on the warrant.

THE TAMING OF THE QUEEN releases on March 29th.

-Click here to read a review.

-Click here to read an excerpt.
-Click here for the discussion guide.
-Click here to read Philippa Gregory's bio.
-Click here to visit Philippa Gregory's official website.
-Connect with Philippa Gregory on Facebook and Twitter.

Click here to read more in our Paperback Spotlight.
New Paperback Spotlight: THE LITTLE PARIS BOOKSHOP by Nina George
THE LITTLE PARIS BOOKSHOP by Nina George (Fiction)
Audiobook available; narrated by Steve West and Emma Bering, with Cassandra Campbell
Monsieur Perdu calls himself a literary apothecary. From his floating bookstore in a barge on the Seine, he prescribes novels for the hardships of life. Using his intuitive feel for the exact book a reader needs, Perdu mends broken hearts and souls. The only person he can't seem to heal through literature is himself; he's still haunted by heartbreak after his great love disappeared. She left him with only a letter, which he has never opened.

After Perdu is finally tempted to read the letter, he hauls anchor and departs on a mission to the south of France, hoping to make peace with his loss and discover the end of the story. Joined by a bestselling but blocked author and a lovelorn Italian chef, Perdu travels along the country’s rivers, dispensing his wisdom and his books, showing that the literary world can take the human soul on a journey to heal itself.

-Click here to read a review.

-Click here to read an excerpt.
-Click here for the discussion guide.
-Click here to read Nina George's bio.
-Click here to visit Nina George's official website.
-Click here to connect with Nina George on Twitter.

Click here to read more in our Paperback Spotlight.'s Fifth Annual Spring Preview Contests and Feature
Spring has sprung! We’ve caught the fever --- and it’s being fueled by some wonderful new and upcoming releases. Our fifth annual Spring Preview Contests and Feature spotlights many of these picks, which we know people will be talking about over the next few months. We are hosting a series of 24-hour contests for these titles on select days through April 21st. You will need to check the site to see the featured book and enter to win. We also are sending a special newsletter to announce each title, which you can sign up for here.

Our next prize book will be announced on Wednesday, March 30th at noon ET.

This year's featured titles include:

Click here to read all the contest details and see our featured titles.
What's New This Month on
We currently are giving away the following books on

  • HEART OF GLASS: A Memoir by Wendy Lawless
    Deadline for entries: Wednesday, April 20th at noon ET.
  • THE KITCHEN HOUSE by Kathleen Grissom
    Deadline for entries: Wednesday, April 6th at noon ET.
  • A PLACE FOR US by Harriet Evans
    Deadline for entries: Wednesday, April 6th at noon ET.
The following guides are now available:

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

Click here to visit
More Reviews This Week
AT THE EDGE OF THE ORCHARD by Tracy Chevalier (Historical Fiction)
Audiobook available, narrated by Mark Bramhall, Hillary Huber, Kirby Heyborne and Cassandra Morris
1838: James and Sadie Goodenough have settled where their wagon got stuck --- in the muddy, stagnant swamps of northwest Ohio. They and their five children work relentlessly to tame their patch of land, buying saplings from a local tree man known as John Appleseed so they can cultivate the 50 apple trees required to stake their claim on the property. But the orchard they plant sows the seeds of a long battle. James loves the apples, reminders of an easier life back in Connecticut, while Sadie prefers the applejack they make, an alcoholic refuge from brutal frontier life. Reviewed by Jana Siciliano.

-Click here to read an excerpt.

TREACHERY AT LANCASTER GATE: A Charlotte and Thomas Pitt Novel by Anne Perry (Historical Mystery)
Audiobook available, narrated by Jenny Sterlin
When an explosion in London kills two policemen and seriously injures three more, many believe that anarchists are the culprits. But Thomas Pitt knows the city’s radical groups well enough to suspect that someone with decidedly more personal motives lit the deadly fuse. As he investigates the source of the fatal blast, Pitt is stunned to discover that the bombing was a calculated strike against the ranks of law enforcement. But still more shocking revelations await. As he pursues each increasingly threatening lead, Pitt finds himself impeded at every turn by the barriers put in place to protect the rich and powerful. Reviewed by Ray Palen.

SWITCHED ON: A Memoir of Brain Change and Emotional Awakening by John Elder Robison (Memoir)
Audiobook available, narrated by John Elder Robison
In 2007, John Elder Robison wrote the international bestseller LOOK ME IN THE EYE, a memoir about growing up with Asperger’s syndrome. Amid the blaze of publicity that followed, he received a unique invitation: Would John like to take part in a study led by one of the world’s foremost neuroscientists, who would use an experimental new brain therapy known as TMS, or transcranial magnetic stimulation, in an effort to understand and then address the issues at the heart of autism? SWITCHED ON is the extraordinary story of what happened next. Reviewed by Barbara Bamberger Scott.

NO ONE KNOWS by J.T. Ellison (Psychological Thriller/Mystery)
Audiobook available, narrated by Teri Schnaubelt and Nick Podehl
The day Aubrey Hamilton’s husband is declared dead by the state of Tennessee should bring closure so she can move on with her life. But Aubrey doesn’t want to move on; she wants Josh back. It’s been five years since he disappeared, since their blissfully happy marriage screeched to a halt and Aubrey became the prime suspect in his disappearance. Why didn’t Josh show up at his friend’s bachelor party? Was he murdered? Did he run away? And now, all this time later, who is the mysterious yet strangely familiar figure suddenly haunting her new life? Reviewed by Kate Ayers.

HIGH DIVE by Jonathan Lee (Fiction)
In September 1984, a bomb was planted at the Grand Hotel in the seaside town of Brighton, England, set to explode in 24 days when the British prime minister and her entire cabinet would be staying there. HIGH DIVE not only takes us inside this audacious assassination attempt --- a decisive act of violence on the world stage --- but also imagines its way into a group of unforgettable characters, nimbly weaving together fact and fiction, comedy and tragedy. Reviewed by Norah Piehl.

READER, I MARRIED HIM: Stories Inspired by Jane Eyre edited by Tracy Chevalier (Fiction/Short Stories)
A fixture in the literary canon, Charlotte Brontë is revered by readers all over the world. Her novels featuring unforgettable, strong heroines still resonate with millions today. Part of a remarkable family that produced three acclaimed female writers at a time in 19th-century Britain when few women wrote, and fewer were published, Brontë has become a great source of inspiration to writers, especially women, ever since. Now in READER, I MARRIED HIM, 20 of today’s most celebrated female authors have spun original stories, using the opening line from JANE EYRE as a springboard for their own flights of imagination. Reviewed by Sarah Rachel Egelman.

SUDDEN DEATH written by Álvaro Enrigue, translated by Natasha Wimmer (Historical Fiction)
Audiobook available, narrated by Robert Fass
SUDDEN DEATH begins with a brutal tennis match between the bawdy Italian painter Caravaggio and the loutish Spanish poet Quevedo that could decide the fate of the world. In England, Thomas Cromwell and Henry VIII behead Anne Boleyn, and her crafty executioner transforms her legendary locks into the most sought-after tennis balls of the time. Across the ocean in Mexico, conquistador Hernán Cortés and his Mayan translator and lover, La Malinche, scheme and conquer, not knowing that their domestic comedy will change the world. And in a remote Mexican colony, a bishop reads Thomas More’s UTOPIA and thinks it’s a manual. Reviewed by Matthew Mastricova.

ONLY EVER YOU by Rebecca Drake (Psychological Thriller)
Audiobook available, narrated by Eva Kaminsky
Three-year-old Sophia Lassiter disappears at the playground only to return after 40 frantic minutes --- but her mother Jill's relief is short-lived. Jill is convinced that the tiny dots on Sophia’s arm are puncture marks. When doctors find no trace of drugs in her system, Jill accepts that she won't ever know what happened during her absence and is simply grateful to have her home safely. Three months later, though, Sophia disappears again --- and then information turns up suggesting she was murdered, causing the police to turn their suspicions on the parents. Reviewed by L. Dean Murphy.

JUST FALL by Nina Sadowsky (Psychological Thriller)
Audiobook available; narrated by Johnathan McClain, Beresford Bennett and Emily Rankin
On the night of her wedding to Rob, Ellie’s perfect world suddenly collapses. Her suave, charming, sophisticated husband is not the man she believed him to be. Could he really be a killer? Ellie is rapidly swept into a lethal vortex of betrayal, lies and uncertainty: Who is the man she married, really? And how far will she go to protect him? When faced with a terrible choice --- to become a murderess herself to save the man she loves, or to let him die --- Ellie’s decision propels her into a whiplash-paced adventure. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

TWISTED RIVER by Siobhan MacDonald (Psychological Thriller)
Kate and Mannix O’Brien’s autistic son Fergus is bullied at school, and their daughter Izzy wishes she could protect him. Kate is convinced her luck is about to change when she spots a gorgeous Manhattan apartment on a home-exchange website. Hazel and Oscar Harvey and their two children live on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. Though they seem successful and happy, Hazel has mysterious bruises, and Oscar is hiding things about his dental practice. Hazel has always wanted her children to see her native Limerick, and the house swap offers a perfect chance to soothe two troubled marriages. But this will be anything but a perfect vacation. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

DOUBLE SWITCH by T. T. Monday (Mystery/Thriller)
Audiobook available, narrated by Bruce Thomas
Johnny Adcock is an aging major-league relief pitcher who moonlights as a private investigator. Tiff Tate, the enigmatic, career-making PR/stylist behind the most highly marketable looks in baseball, needs Adcock’s special brand of expertise. Her new client is Yonel Ruiz, the rookie phenom who courageously fled his native Cuba. Now that Ruiz has signed a record-setting contract, the Venezuelan cartel that smuggled him out is squeezing him for a bigger slice of the action, and they’ve unleashed a ruthless assassin to collect. Adcock is immediately swept up in a high-pressure game full of surprising twists, double crosses and deadly gambits that will leave him fighting for his life. Reviewed by Stuart Shiffman.
Next Week's Notables: Noteworthy Books Releasing on March 29th
Below are some notable titles releasing on March 29th that we would like to make you aware of. We will have more on many of these books in the weeks to come. For a list of additional hardcovers and paperbacks releasing the week of March 28th, see our “On Sale This Week” newsletter here.

DARKNESS by Karen Robards (Romantic Suspense)
Dr. Gina Sullivan, a renowned ornithologist, becomes trapped on a remote Attu island in Alaska, fighting for her life and that of a handsome stranger.

FLAWLESS by Heather Graham (Romantic Suspense)
Criminal psychologist Kieran Finnegan and FBI agent Craig Frasier are thrown together to investigate a murder case in New York’s Diamond District.

JOURNEY TO MUNICH: A Maisie Dobbs Novel by Jacqueline Winspear (Historical Mystery)
Maisie Dobbs encounters unexpected dangers when she is called by the German Secret Service to retrieve a British prison subject from Dachau.

THE LITTLE RED CHAIRS by Edna O'Brien (Fiction)
Fidelma McBride is drawn to Vlad, a stranger from Eastern Europe masquerading as a healer. But when Vlad is arrested and his identity as a war criminal is revealed, Fidelma’s world is shattered.

LUST & WONDER: A Memoir by Augusten Burroughs (Memoir)
Augusten Burroughs examines what it means to be in love by documenting the development and demise of the different relationships he’s had while living in New York.

THE OTHER SIDE OF SILENCE: A Bernie Gunther Novel by Philip Kerr (Historical Thriller)
After the war, Bernie Gunther --- a former Berlin homicide detective and an unwilling SS officer --- is living on the French Riviera when famous writer W. Somerset Maugham seeks his help.

THE TAXIDERMIST'S DAUGHTER by Kate Mosse (Supernatural/Historical Thriller)
When a woman is found dead in the mansion of Constantia Gifford and her father --- cluttered with the remains of his once world-famous museum of taxidermy --- long-lost memories begin to tease through Connie’s mind.

THURSDAY'S CHILDREN: A Frieda Klein Mystery by Nicci French (Psychological Thriller)
Frieda Klein is forced to face her own dark past when she learns from her former classmate, Maddie Capel, that Maddie’s teenage daughter claims she was raped in her own bed one night.
Click here to see the latest "On Sale This Week" newsletter.
Young Adult Books You Want to Read
Here are this month's books we reviewed on that we think will appeal to an adult audience:

UNBECOMING by Jenny Downham (Fiction)
Katie's life is falling apart: her best friend thinks she's a freak; her mother, Caroline, controls every aspect of her life; and her estranged grandmother, Mary, appears as if out of nowhere. Mary has dementia and needs lots of care, and when Katie starts putting together Mary's life story, secrets and lies are uncovered. As the relationship between Mary and Caroline is explored, Katie begins to understand her own mother's behavior, and from that insight, the terrors about her sexuality, her future and her younger brother are all put into perspective.

CHARACTER, DRIVEN by David Lubar (Fiction)
With only one year left of high school, 17-year-old Cliff Sparks is desperate to “come of age” --- a.k.a., lose his virginity. But he’s never had much luck with girls. So when he falls for Jillian, a new classmate, at first sight, all he can do is worship her from afar. At the same time, Cliff has to figure out what to do with the rest of his life, since he's pretty sure his unemployed father plans to kick him out of the house the minute he turns 18. Time is running out. Cliff is at the edge, on the verge, dangling --- and holding on for dear life.

THANKS FOR THE TROUBLE by Tommy Wallach (Fiction)
Parker Santé hasn’t spoken a word in five years. While his classmates plan for bright futures, he skips school to hang out in hotels, killing time by watching the guests. But when he meets a silver-haired girl named Zelda Toth, a girl who claims to be quite a bit older than she looks, he’ll discover there just might be a few things left worth living for.

ALL BETTER NOW: A Memoir by Emily Wing Smith (Memoir)
All her life, Emily has felt different from other kids. Between therapist visits, sudden uncontrollable bursts of anger, and unexplained episodes of dizziness and loss of coordination, things have always felt not right. For years, her only escape was through the stories she’d craft about herself and the world around her. But it isn’t until a near-fatal accident when she’s 12 years old that Emily and her family discover the truth: a grapefruit sized benign brain tumor at the base of her skull.

Click here for more young adult books we recommend you read.
Our Latest Poll: Reading Books You Haven't Paid For
If you are not enjoying a book, are you more likely to stop reading it if you haven’t paid for it? Please check as many as apply.

  • Yes, I do this with library books.
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  • Yes, I do this with books I receive as gifts.
  • Yes, I do this with books I win in contests.
  • Yes, I do this with advance reading copies.
  • No, that does not have any influence on my finishing a book.
  • I buy all my books.
  • I finish every book I start.
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Word of Mouth Contest: Tell Us What You're Reading --- and You Can Win Three Books!
Tell us about the books you've finished reading with your comments and a rating of 1 to 5 stars. During the contest period from March 18th to April 1st at noon ET, three lucky readers each will be randomly chosen to win a copy of THE CHARM BRACELET by Viola Shipman, FOOL ME ONCE by Harlan Coben, and THE SUMMER BEFORE THE WAR by Helen Simonson.

To make sure other readers will be able to find the books you write about, please include the full title and correct author names (your entry must include these to be eligible to win). For rules and guidelines, click here.

-To see reader comments from previous contest periods, click here.
Click here to enter the contest.
Sounding Off on Audio Contest: Tell Us What You're Listening to --- and You Can Win Two Audiobooks!
Tell us about the audiobooks you’ve finished listening to with your comments and a rating of 1 to 5 stars for both the performance and the content. During the contest period from March 1st to April 1st at noon ET, two lucky readers each will be randomly chosen to win the audio versions of A MOTHER'S RECKONING: Living in the Aftermath of Tragedy, written and read by Sue Klebold, and Chris Pavone's THE TRAVELERS, read by Paul Michael.

To make sure other readers will be able to find the audiobook, please include the full title and correct author names (your entry must include these to be eligible to win). For complete rules and guidelines, click here.

-To see reader comments from previous contest periods, click here.
Click here to enter the contest.

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