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April 8, 2016 Newsletter April 8, 2016
My Postcard from Denver!

I'm back from an all-too-quick trip to Denver, where I thoroughly enjoyed presenting our Book Group Survey to an engaged crowd of librarians at the Public Library Association Conference, along with suggestions on how libraries and book groups can work better together. After sharing the stats, I interviewed Ariel Lawhon about her book, FLIGHT OF DREAMS, which was a perfect book to chat about as historical fiction is trending so strongly with book groups. Confession: Until I read this book, I did not know that anyone survived the Hindenburg disaster, which is the subject of Ariel’s book. Where was I in history class? Clearly I would have flunked Trivial Pursuit on this topic. The book is written from five points of view, which enhanced the reading experience. You can see a picture of the two of us above.

Anderson Cooper was the opening keynote speaker at the conference; his talk was candid and such fun. Amusing for me, on Tuesday night I was watching him anchor election results on CNN, and I was thinking Hope he makes his flight! Curious as to what his book, THE RAINBOW COMES AND GOES (which he co-wrote with his mother, Gloria Vanderbilt), is about? I loved this piece from the New York Times. Also, you can watch this piece from "CBS News Sunday Morning." Starting this Saturday, HBO will air a documentary, "Nothing Left Unsaid," about their journey to get to explore each other’s lives during the span of a year. I am looking forward to listening to the book on audio as they narrate it, and I feel that will enhance the experience.

Speaking of flying, I know people diss airlines a lot, but I had a great flight on Tuesday on United. The crew was fabulous, super attentive and really upbeat (I joked they must be from the ex-Continental team). And the pilot landed so smoothly in really, really gusty winds that I was impressed. There was an adorable little boy in my row, 2 1/2 years old, on his first flight propped up in a great car seat. His mom was soooo attentive and full of ways to keep him occupied that it was a delight to watch them.

The one downside: I did not upgrade my seat, which meant NO legroom. Thus I never opened my laptop and instead read the whole flight, which was a nice treat. I'm reading GEORGIA: A Novel of Georgia O'Keeffe by Dawn Tripp; I'm interviewing Dawn at the end of the month, and it was lovely to escape with this book instead of answering upside to not upgrading! And I did the same on the return flight, though it was delayed, cramped and not as much fun. I escaped with Mary Kubica's DON'T YOU CRY, which will be in stores on May 17th. I barely had room to turn the pages, but it is a page-turner. I love her writing.

On Wednesday evening, I was lucky enough to catch up with my friend, Caroline Fisher, who lives in Denver. After dinner we meandered over to the Tattered Cover, where I acted as her book concierge, which was tremendously fun. I so envy that she lives a block away from this brilliant bookstore, which she calls “her happy place.”

Now to this week’s update…

Kathleen Grissom continues the story of Jamie Pyke in GLORY OVER EVERYTHING, the long-awaited follow-up to THE KITCHEN HOUSE and the latest title to be featured in our New Release Spotlight. As the novel opens in 1830, Jamie is living in Philadelphia as a wealthy white silversmith after fleeing the Virginian plantation he once called home. Before he can reveal his true identity to his aristocratic lover, Caroline, he learns that his beloved servant Pan has been captured and sold into slavery in North Carolina. Owing Pan’s father a great debt, Jamie embarks on a dangerous trip along the Underground Railroad to save Pan.

Norah Piehl has our review and says, "Grissom clearly has done her research and, more importantly, has continued to capture the strong emotions and tense, life-changing circumstances in which these characters find themselves." We’d also like to share an interview with Grissom that will give you plenty of insight into the creation of this much-talked-about stand-alone sequel.

We’re awarding the audio version of GLORY OVER EVERYTHING (read by Santino Fontana, with Kyle Beltran, Madeleine Maby and Heather Alicia Simms), along with Mary Higgins Clark’s AS TIME GOES BY (read by Jan Maxwell), in this month’s Sounding Off on Audio contest. Let us know by Monday, May 2nd at noon ET what audiobooks you’ve finished listening to, and you’ll be in the running to win both titles.

Inspired by the life of a real WWII heroine, Martha Hall Kelly’s powerful debut, LILAC GIRLS, weaves together the story of three remarkable women. Caroline Ferriday is a New York socialite whose life changes when Hitler’s army invades Poland and then sets its sights on France. An ocean away, Kasia Kuzmerick is a Polish teenager who takes on a prominent role in the underground resistance. Herta Oberheuser, a young German doctor, finds herself trapped in a male-dominated realm of Nazi secrets and power. Their lives collide when Kasia is sent to a notorious Nazi concentration camp for women.

Rebecca Munro has this to say in her review: "LILAC GIRLS is truly an incredible novel, and I commend Kelly’s bravery in sharing her characters’ stories past the point where many authors would conclude. Even more incredible is Kelly’s extensive author’s note, which includes her discovery of Caroline, a woman she quickly recognized as an unsung hero. This is easily the most affecting book I have read about World War II and the Holocaust, and I recommend it to any reader."

GLORY OVER EVERYTHING and LILAC GIRLS will be my next Bets On selections. Find out why in next week’s newsletter!

We gave away LILAC GIRLS in this week’s Spring Preview contests, in addition to THE INHERITANCE: Secrets of the Shetlands, Book 1 by Michael Phillips, MY SUNSHINE AWAY by M.O. Walsh, and NIGHT WORK: A Michael Cassidy Novel by David C. Taylor. Next week’s prizes will be A CERTAIN AGE by Beatriz Williams (Beatriz is an author whose work I have enjoyed), FEVER AT DAWN by Péter Gárdos, and ONLY BELOVED: A Survivors' Club Novel by Mary Balogh. We’ll announce the first contest of the week on Tuesday, April 12th at noon ET.

In Steve Berry’s latest thriller, THE 14th COLONY, ex-Justice Department agent Cotton Malone is caught in a race against time when he faces off against Aleksandr Zorin, an ex-KGB officer who plans to bring complete chaos to the U.S. Malone discovers that Zorin is aided by America’s oldest fraternal organization --- the Society of the Cincinnati --- a group that once lent out its military savvy to presidents, including helping to formulate three invasion plans of what was intended to be America’s 14th colony: Canada.

Ray Palen has our review and says, "Berry's novels always make you think and will leave you walking away with several 'what if' scenarios playing around in your head. THE 14th COLONY is no exception, and the pulse-pounding action and intrigue do not let up until the fateful confrontation between Cotton Malone and his team and the maniacal Zorin."

THE 14th COLONY is one of the books we’re awarding to our Word of Mouth winners; the others are the aforementioned LILAC GIRLS and Anna Quindlen’s MILLER’S VALLEY. Let us know by Friday, April 15th at noon ET what books you’ve finished reading for your chance to win all three novels.

Last week, I teased that I had read two great psychological thrillers. I now have read three, all of which are psychological suspense debuts releasing this summer: THE COUPLE NEXT DOOR by Shari Lapena (August 23rd), BEHIND CLOSED DOORS by B. A. Paris (August 9th) and ALL IS NOT FORGOTTEN by Wendy Walker (July 12th). Read more about these outstanding books later in this newsletter. I have not forgotten that I owe you all a list of 2016 titles that I have recommended, beyond Bets On selections. I promise to get to that soon!

Our Mother's Day Contest is back for an 11th year! Once again, we’re featuring a number of fiction and nonfiction titles that are perfect for gift giving for moms. Over the next four weeks, readers will have the chance to win one of our prize packages, which includes all of these books, along with some wonderful gifts to treat yourself or Mom. The deadline for your entries is Monday, May 9th at noon ET. Click here to take a look at our featured titles and enter to win.

We’ve updated our New in Paperback roundups for April. Some notable titles include mysteries and thrillers from James Patterson, Mary Higgins Clark, Stuart Woods and John Sandford; the nonfiction bestseller A FINE ROMANCE by Candice Bergen (a Bets On pick from me in audio); and IN A DARK, DARK WOOD by Ruth Ware, one of the most talked-about books of 2015. It was a Bets On pick when it released in hardcover and is the current prize in our What's Your Book Group Reading This Month? contest on

We’ve also posted April’s Books on Screen feature. Theatrical releases include A Hologram for the King and The Family Fang; on the small screen are the season premieres of “Outlander” and “Game of Thrones,” along with the series premiere of “Hunters” on Syfy (based on Whitley Strieber’s Alien Hunter series); and The Revenant will be out on DVD.

Our poll question continues to ask: “Do you try to reach the end of a chapter before setting aside a book to do other things?” Click here to let us know!

As we mentioned in the March 25th newsletter, Beverly Cleary will turn 100 this coming Tuesday. In honor of this milestone event, Oregon Public Broadcasting has produced “Celebrating Beverly Cleary,” the only documentary ever made about the author. It features an extremely rare, new interview with Cleary herself as she approaches the big day, and takes a look at her life, work and enduring legacy in the world of children’s literature. You can watch the documentary here. Many thanks to our reader Carol for bringing this to our attention! I look forward to watching it myself.

The International Thriller Writers have announced the nominees for the 2016 Thriller Awards. You can see them here. The winners will be revealed at ThrillerFest XI on July 9th in New York City. In other awards news, James Hannaham has won the PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction for his novel, DELICIOUS FOODS.

News and Pop Culture:

Reader Mail:
Linda kindly wrote to congratulate Tom and me on our 31st anniversary. She was married on September 14, 1985. She went on to say, “Love Bookreporter! Keep up your great team's work with your fantastic newsletter. I get so many reading ideas from the weekly newsletter.” In a PS, she reminded me that “I am the one who wrote to you about printing each week's Bookreporter and placing it in the three-ring binder bedside for future reference. I am now on binder #2.” I am clearing out some binders in the office and feel like I should send one her way!

Katharine wrote and shared a picture of her finished Architexture shawl, the pattern I have been struggling with. It’s gorgeous, and it did inspire me to keep going on mine! We both agreed that this was not an easy pattern; she, too, has done some "reverse knitting."

"Bosch" Season 3 Ordered: I read this from Michael Connelly on Facebook: "I just got the word that season 3 of 'Bosch' is a go. We are going to adapt THE BLACK ECHO and elements of A DARKNESS MORE THAN NIGHT this time around. Thank you to everybody who watched Season 2. Amazon makes their decisions based on viewer support. It’s been there from the start and I greatly appreciate every viewer of the show. Now we’ll get to work on making season 3 better than season 2 and a deeper look at Harry Bosch and his colleagues."

"Billions": Season finale this Sunday. I have enjoyed this show; I like the way they write episodes out of sequence as that keeps the action compelling.

The Danish Girl: Wonderful film…wish I had read the book first. Shame on me!

"The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story" on FX: Though I know the way this ends, I'm looking forward to watching the finale on DVR.

New Paul Simon Album --- "Stranger to Stranger": Coming June 3rd. First single here called "Wristband," as well as more on the album.

"Sounds of Silence" Cover: The official music video of the Simon & Garfunkel classic performed by the band Disturbed. Well done!

Mary Kay Andrews Fans: A special treat for you. She has an eBook called CHANGE OF SCENE, which is a prequel to last summer’s novel, BEACH TOWN (which will be out in paperback on May 3rd). It’s a nice fix for her readers as they wait for THE WEEKENDERS to release on May 17th.

Coloring With Style: VOGUE COLORS A TO Z: A Fashion Coloring Book. This is on my desk, and it’s really fabulous. Here’s a piece about it.

PRIVATE PARIS Behind the Scenes: Check out this fascinating blog post from travel writer and private tour guide Heather Stimmler-Hall. Three years ago, she arranged a research trip in and around Paris for Mark Sullivan, who was conducting research for PRIVATE PARIS (co-authored with James Patterson), which just released last month.

L.A. Times Festival of Books: Please note that it's happening this weekend, April 9th and 10th, a few weeks earlier than usual. Live streaming coverage of the Festival courtesy of "PBS Book View Now" can be found here.

National Licorice Day is April 12th: Hankering for some licorice to celebrate? Check out this site for all things licorice!

Cory’s fundraiser last weekend was a huge success. They raised $20,250. Tom and I stopped by on Saturday, and it was heartwarming to see the students’ enthusiasm and to meet some of the children who will be benefiting from their efforts. Truly a special day!

Greg has curling events all weekend. Hoping for a Cory appearance on Saturday after his semi-formal event tonight.

The Masters on CBS: I know where I will find my husband this weekend. It will be a golf golf golf weekend. I will be making pimento cheese sandwiches while reading and knitting.

I'm still in awe of the end of the NCAA Championship game the other night…love moments like that where two teams slug it out right to the end. We will look back on that as a “remember when” for many years to come. We still remember the overtime game involving Seton Hall in 1989 that we watched from a condo in Beaver Creek. Michigan won, but we still remember that night!

By the way, I often remember where I was when I read certain books. Do you do that as well?

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!

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Indiebound

New Release Spotlight: GLORY OVER EVERYTHING by Kathleen Grissom --- the Highly Anticipated Follow-up to THE KITCHEN HOUSE
GLORY OVER EVERYTHING: Beyond The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom (Historical Fiction)
Audiobook available; narrated by Santino Fontana, with Kyle Beltran, Madeleine Maby and Heather Alicia Simms
Published in 2010, THE KITCHEN HOUSE became a grassroots bestseller. Fans connected so deeply to the book’s characters that the author, Kathleen Grissom, found herself being asked over and over “what happens next?” The wait is finally over.

This new, stand-alone novel opens in 1830, and Jamie Pyke, who fled from the Virginian plantation he once called home, is passing in Philadelphia society as a wealthy white silversmith. After many years of striving, Jamie has achieved acclaim and security, only to discover that his aristocratic lover Caroline is pregnant. Before he can reveal his real identity to her, he learns that his beloved servant Pan has been captured and sold into slavery in the South. Pan’s father, to whom Jamie owes a great debt, pleads for Jamie’s help, and Jamie agrees, knowing the journey will take him perilously close to Tall Oakes and the ruthless slave hunter who is still searching for him. Meanwhile, Caroline’s father learns and exposes Jamie’s secret, and Jamie loses his home, his business, and finally Caroline.

Heartbroken and with nothing to lose, Jamie embarks on a trip to a North Carolina plantation where Pan is being held with a former Tall Oakes slave named Sukey, who is intent on getting Pan to the Underground Railroad. Soon the three of them are running through the Great Dismal Swamp, the notoriously deadly hiding place for escaped slaves. Though they have help from those in the Underground Railroad, not all of them will make it out alive.

GLORY OVER EVERYTHING will be a Bets On selection. Read Carol's commentary about the book in the April 15th newsletter.

-Click here to read a review.
-Click here to read an interview with Kathleen Grissom.
-Click here to read Kathleen’s Grissom’s bio.
-Visit Kathleen Grissom’s official website and Instagram.
-Click here to connect with Kathleen Grissom on Facebook.

Click here to read more in our New Release Spotlight.
Featured Review: LILAC GIRLS by Martha Hall Kelly --- an Upcoming Bets On Selection
LILAC GIRLS by Martha Hall Kelly (Historical Fiction)
Audiobook available; narrated by Cassandra Campbell, Kathleen Gati and Kathrin Kana
New York socialite Caroline Ferriday's world is forever changed when Hitler’s army invades Poland in September 1939 --- and then sets its sights on France. Kasia Kuzmerick, a Polish teenager, is drawn deeper into her role as courier for the underground resistance movement. For the ambitious young German doctor, Herta Oberheuser, an ad for a government medical position seems her ticket out of a desolate life. Once hired, though, she finds herself trapped in a male-dominated realm of Nazi secrets and power. The lives of these three women are set on a collision course when the unthinkable happens and Kasia is sent to Ravensbrück, the notorious Nazi concentration camp for women. Reviewed by Rebecca Munro.

LILAC GIRLS will be a Bets On selection. Read Carol's commentary about the book in the April 15th newsletter.

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

Click here to read the review.
Featured Review: THE 14th COLONY --- Steve Berry's 11th Cotton Malone Thriller
THE 14th COLONY by Steve Berry (Thriller)
Audiobook available, narrated by Scott Brick
Ex-Justice Department agent Cotton Malone is forced into a fight for survival against Aleksandr Zorin, a man whose loyalty to the former Soviet Union has festered for decades into an intense hatred of the United States. Armed with a weapon left over from the Cold War, Zorin plans to attack. He’s aided by a shocking secret hidden in America’s oldest fraternal organization --- the Society of Cincinnati --- a group that once lent out its military savvy to presidents, including helping to formulate three invasion plans of what was intended to be America’s 14th colony: Canada. In a race against the clock, Malone must not only battle Zorin, he must also confront a crippling fear that he’s long denied, but that now jeopardizes everything. Reviewed by Ray Palen.

-Click here to read more about the book.
-Click here to read an excerpt.
Click here to read the review.
Featured Review: THE STORY OF KULLERVO --- a Previously Unknown Work of Fantasy from J.R.R. Tolkien Now Published for the First Time
THE STORY OF KULLERVO written by J.R.R. Tolkien, edited by Verlyn Flieger (Fantasy)
Brought up in the homestead of the dark magician Untamo, who killed his father, kidnapped his mother and tried three times to kill him when he was still a boy, Kullervo is alone save for the love of his twin sister, Wanona, and the magical powers of the black dog Musti, who guards him. When Kullervo is sold into slavery, he swears revenge on the magician. But he will learn that even at the point of vengeance, there is no escape from the cruelest of fates. Published here for the first time with J.R.R. Tolkien’s drafts, notes and lecture essays on its source work, the Kalevala, THE STORY OF KULLERVO is a foundation stone in the structure of Tolkien’s invented world. Reviewed by Stephen Hubbard.

-Click here to read more about the book.

Click here to read the review.'s 11th Annual Mother's Day Contest: Books Mom Will Love
Mother’s Day is a time to recognize the woman who raised and nurtured us. To celebrate, we're giving you the opportunity to win books and goodies for you or the special lady in your life in our 11th annual "Books Mom Will Love" contest. From now through Monday, May 9th at noon ET, readers can enter to win one of our five prize packages, which includes the books listed below, along with some Mom-themed treats. With books that are moving, uplifting, humorous and informative, look no further than for the perfect gift for Mom.

This year's featured titles are:

Click here to read more about the prize books and enter the contest.
April's New in Paperback Roundups
When reclusive writer Leonora is invited to the English countryside for a weekend away, she reluctantly agrees to make the trip. But as the first night falls, revelations unfold among friends old and new, an unnerving memory shatters Leonora’s reserve, and a haunting realization creeps in: the party is not alone in the woods. That's the chilling premise of Ruth Ware's suspenseful, compulsive and darkly twisted psychological thriller, IN A DARK, DARK WOOD. April’s roundup of New in Paperback fiction titles also includes THE CHILDREN'S CRUSADE by Ann Packer, which explores the secrets and desires, the remnant wounds and saving graces of one California family over the course of five decades; and Matthew Pearl's THE LAST BOOKANEER, the story of an epic literary heist by a forgotten class of consummate criminals.

Among this month’s nonfiction offerings are A FINE ROMANCE, a follow-up to KNOCK WOOD, in which Candice Bergen talks about her marriage to a famous French director, the birth of her daughter, "Murphy Brown," widowhood, falling in love again, and watching her daughter blossom; CAPITAL DAMES, in which Cokie Roberts marks the sesquicentennial of the Civil War by offering a riveting look at Washington, D.C. and the experiences, influence and contributions of its women during this momentous period of American history; and MY JOURNEY WITH MAYA, a memoir by Tavis Smiley, who shares his personal memories of his decades-long friendship with Maya Angelou, who left as indelible an imprint on American culture as she did on him.

-Find out what's New in Paperback for the weeks of April 4th, April 11th, April 18th and April 25th.
April's Books on Screen Feature
Happy “Game of Thrones” month, Books on Screen readers! It feels like a lifetime ago that the season five finale aired, and now we’re finally going to learn the fates of our favorite characters (JON SNOW JON SNOW JON SNOW), come hell or Ramsay Bolton. I was strictly told that I couldn’t devote this entire column to “Game of Thrones,” but --- as someone who, against all odds, was able to write about GONE WITH THE WIND in every single ninth grade English paper --- there are always loopholes. So welcome to Books on Screen, Thrones Edition!

In theaters this month is The Jungle Book, a technical marvel of CGI and the magic of Disney that elevates the classic boy-raised-by-wolves story to soaring new heights. Mowgli is an orphan who must learn to navigate the jungle --- a place both wondrous and cruel, and as infested with snakes as King’s Landing. A Hologram for the King, also out this month, is not the story of how Elon Musk resurrects Jon Snow, although you wouldn’t be crazy for thinking that. It’s actually based on the Dave Eggers book about a desperate man seeking a last-ditch opportunity on foreign shores. Get that man a disappointed father and an idealistic queen, and his Jorah Mormont arc is complete.

On TV this month is “Game of Thrones,” if you hadn’t heard, but also “Outlander,” which is back for a second season. It’s bringing Claire and Jamie to Paris, and the luscious court of King Louis the XV, where they preen and plot to prevent the Jacobite uprising. Sadly we'll be losing some fan-favorite shows to season finales this month, including the stellar “The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story,” the tenacious “The Magicians” and the fresh-faced “Shadowhunters.” As they say in Essos, “valar morghulis,” roughly translated as “all TV shows must die for 10 months or so.”
Click here to see all the movies, TV shows and DVDs featured in April's Books on Screen.'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 Tuesday, April 12th at noon ET.

This year's featured titles include:

Click here to read all the contest details and see our featured titles.
More Reviews This Week
THE GANGSTER: An Isaac Bell Adventure by Clive Cussler and Justin Scott (Historical Thriller/Adventure)
Audiobook available, narrated by Scott Brick
It is 1906, and in New York City, the Italian crime group known as the Black Hand is on a spree: kidnapping, extortion, arson. Detective Isaac Bell of the Van Dorn Agency is hired to form a special “Black Hand Squad,” but the gangsters appear to be everywhere --- so much so that Bell begins to wonder if there are imitators, criminals using the name for the terror effect. And then the murders begin, each one of a man more powerful than the last. As Bell discovers, to his dismay, the ultimate target may be the most powerful man of all. Reviewed by Judy Gigstad.

LOVE, LOSS, AND WHAT WE ATE: A Memoir by Padma Lakshmi (Memoir)
Audiobook available, narrated by Padma Lakshmi
Long before Padma Lakshmi ever stepped onto a television set, she learned that how we eat is an extension of how we love, how we comfort, how we forge a sense of home --- and how we taste the world as we navigate our way through it. LOVE, LOSS, AND WHAT WE ATE is Lakshmi’s account of her journey from her grandmother’s kitchen in South India to the judges’ table of “Top Chef” and beyond. It chronicles the fierce devotion of the remarkable people who shaped her along the way. Reviewed by Pauline Finch.

ALLIGATOR CANDY: A Memoir by David Kushner (Memoir)
David Kushner grew up in the suburbs of Florida in the early 1970s, running wild with his friends, exploring, riding bikes and disappearing into the nearby woods for hours at a time. One morning in 1973, however, everything changed. David’s older brother Jon, making a trip to the local convenience store, vanished. This is the story of Jon’s murder at the hands of two sadistic drifters…and everything that happened after. Reviewed by Alex Bowditch.

DODGERS by Bill Beverly (Thriller)
Audiobook available, narrated by J.D. Jackson
Bill Beverly’s debut novel is the story of a young LA gang member named East, who is sent by his uncle along with some other teenage boys --- including East's hothead younger brother --- to kill a key witness hiding out in Wisconsin. The journey takes East out of a city he's never left and into an America that’s entirely alien to him, ultimately forcing him to grapple with his place in the world and decide what kind of man he wants to become. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

THE ONE-IN-A-MILLION BOY by Monica Wood (Fiction)
Audiobook available, narrated by Chris Ciulla
Quinn Porter has been on the road for years, chasing gig after gig, largely absent from the lives of his twice-ex-wife Belle and their odd, Guinness records-obsessed son. When the boy dies suddenly, Quinn seeks forgiveness for his paternal shortcomings by completing the requirements for his son’s unfinished Boy Scout badge. For seven Saturdays, Quinn does yard work for Ona Vitkus, the wily 104-year-old Lithuanian immigrant the boy had visited weekly. Quinn picks up where his son left off, forging a friendship with Ona that allows him to know the son he never understood, a boy who was always listening and learning. Reviewed by Kate Ayers.

-Click here to read an excerpt.

I'M GLAD ABOUT YOU by Theresa Rebeck (Fiction)
Audiobook available, narrated by Julia Gibson
When Alison and Kyle meet in high school, it is both completely forgettable and utterly life-changing. Each has big dreams: Alison wants to be a great actress, while Kyle yearns for a life of service as a doctor in the third world. But as their fates rocket them apart, neither can fully let go of the past. And when their lives inevitably intersect, they must face each other in the revealing light of their decisions. Reviewed by Jana Siciliano.

THE FATHER: Made in Sweden, Part I written by Anton Svensson, translated by Elizabeth Clark Wessel (Thriller)
THE FATHER is inspired by the extraordinary true story of three brothers who committed 10 audacious bank robberies in Sweden over the course of just two years. None had committed a crime before, and all were under 24 years old. When their incredible spree had come to an end amid the glare of the international media, all of them would be changed forever as individuals and as a family. This intoxicating, heartbreaking thriller tells the story of how three boys are transformed over the course of their lives from innocent children to the most wanted criminals in Sweden. And of the man who made them that way: their father. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

MORTAL DILEMMA: A Matt Royal Mystery by H. Terrell Griffin (Mystery)
Audiobook available, narrated by Steven Roy Grimsley
Jock Algren arrives on Longboat Key in a state of depression and hopelessness. His most recent mission for his secretive U.S. government intelligence agency has been disastrous, and his friends Matt Royal and J. D. Duncan aren’t sure they’ll be able to pull him out of his despair. Duncan is investigating a cold case when the brother of the victim shows up on the island and complicates the investigation. A grizzled sailor brings his boat into a local marina, and bodies begin to accumulate. A Middle East jihadist intent on revenge locks on to Jock’s clandestine past, bringing a deadly chase to the last outpost in the continental U.S. --- Key West. Reviewed by L. Dean Murphy.

THE ADVOCATE'S DAUGHTER by Anthony Franze (Legal Thriller)
Audiobook available, narrated by Robert Petkoff
Supreme Court lawyer Sean Serrat’s life is changed forever when his daughter, Abby --- a talented and dedicated law student --- goes missing. When her body is found in the library of the Supreme Court, her boyfriend, Malik Montgomery --- a law clerk at the high court --- is immediately arrested. While the Serrat family works through their grief, Sean begins to suspect that the authorities arrested the wrong person. Stumbling over family secrets and the lies of some of the most powerful people in the country, Sean discovers that there are those who will stop at nothing to ensure that he never exposes them. Reviewed by Christine M. Irvin.

COUNTRY OF RED AZALEAS by Domnica Radulescu (Fiction)
Audiobook available, narrated by Yelena Shmulenson
From the moment Marija walks into Lara's classroom, freshly moved to Serbia from Sarajevo, Lara is enchanted by her vibrant beauty, confidence and wild energy. Closer than sisters, the girls share everything. But when the Bosnian War pits their homelands against each other in a bloodbath, Lara and Marija are forced to separate for the first time. In America, Lara seeks fulfillment through work and family, but when news from Marija ceases, the uncertainty torments Lara, driving her on a quest to find her friend. As Lara travels through war-torn Serbia and Bosnia, she must also wrestle with truths about her own identity. Reviewed by Maya Gittelman.

KILL AND BE KILLED by Louis Begley (Thriller)
Audiobook available, narrated by R. C. Bray
The man who brutally murdered Uncle Harry is dead. In an effort to recover from the confrontation and collect himself, Jack Dana takes refuge on Torcello, a small island in the Venetian lagoon, to return to his writing career. Even more urgently, he wants to win back Kerry, the beautiful lawyer who rejected him after the bloody episode with Harry's assassin. But events beyond Jack's control intervene: Kerry loses her life in circumstances that contradict everything Jack thinks he knew about her. Soon death begins to stalk Jack himself. It is impossible not to recognize in its drumbeat the machinations of Abner Brown, the man who orchestrated Harry's demise. Reviewed by Stuart Shiffman.

HARD COLD WINTER: A Van Shaw Novel by Glen Erik Hamilton (Thriller)
Audiobook available, narrated by R. C. Bray
When an old crony of Van Shaw’s late grandfather calls in a favor, the recently discharged Ranger embarks on a dangerous journey to the Olympic Mountains, in search of a missing girl tied to Van’s own criminal past. What he finds instead is a brutal murder scene, including a victim from one of Seattle’s most influential families. But the dead bodies are only the start of Van’s troubles. A fellow Ranger from Afghanistan turns up at Van’s doorstep, seeking support from his former sergeant even as Van wrestles with his own reemerging symptoms of PTSD. The murder investigation leads to heavy pressure, with a billionaire businessman on one side and vicious gangsters on the other, each willing to play dirty to get what they want. Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub.

RED FLAGS: A Kate Reilly Mystery by Tammy Kaehler (Mystery)
Audiobook available, narrated by Nicole Vilencia
Kate Reilly is thrown into a new social scene and a murder investigation when she arrives in Long Beach, CA, a week before the Grand Prix. Her cousin Billy is found dead, with her card in his pocket. At the same time Kate is called to investigate, she’s coaching a gorgeous actress for a celebrity race and meets Hollywood’s hottest bachelor. Her professional dreams are also coming true: she’s racing in the upcoming Grand Prix. Kate must juggle her social life as she juggles her suspects, all while staying out of a killer’s grasp. Reviewed by Maggie Harding.
Next Week's Notables: Noteworthy Books Releasing on April 12th
Below are some notable titles releasing on April 12th 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 April 11th, see our “On Sale This Week” newsletter here.

FIRST WOMEN: The Grace and Power of America's Modern First Ladies by Kate Andersen Brower (Social History)
From the author of the groundbreaking backstairs look at the White House, THE RESIDENCE, comes an intimate, news-making look at the true modern power brokers at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue: the First Ladies, from Jackie Kennedy to Michelle Obama.

KICK KENNEDY: The Charmed Life and Tragic Death of the Favorite Kennedy Daughter by Barbara Leaming (Biography)
Through firsthand accounts, extensive conversations with many key players and previously unseen sources, Barbara Leaming brings to life the coming-of-age story and romantic tragedy of a female star in the Kennedy family.

THE LADY WITH THE BORZOI: Blanche Knopf, Literary Tastemaker Extraordinaire by Laura Claridge (Biography)
As Knopf celebrates its centennial, Laura Claridge looks back at the firm’s beginnings and the dynamic woman who helped to define American letters for the 20th century.

MOST WANTED by Lisa Scottoline (Thriller)
When a woman and her husband --- desperate for a baby --- find themselves unable to conceive, the heroine decides to use a donor, only to discover that a man arrested for a series of brutal murders is her donor, and the biological father of the child she is carrying.

THE OBSESSION by Nora Roberts (Romantic Suspense)
Naomi Bowes lost her innocence when she followed her father into the woods and freed a girl trapped in a root cellar, revealing the extent of his horrible crimes. Now a successful photographer, Naomi finds that the sins of her father can become an obsession, and her past is never more than a nightmare away.

TITANS by Leila Meacham (Historical Fiction)
In the midst of a changing Texas in the 1900s, the fates of Samantha Gordon and Nathan Holloway irrevocably intertwine, and their connection drives this narrative compulsively forward as they love, lose and betray.
Click here to see the latest "On Sale This Week" newsletter.
Future Bets On Selections: Three Compulsive Psychological Thrillers Releasing This Summer

THE COUPLE NEXT DOOR by Shari Lapena (Psychological Thriller)
Release Date: August 23rd
Anne and Marco Conti seem to have it all --- a loving relationship, a wonderful home, and their beautiful baby, Cora. But one night when they are at a dinner party next door, a terrible crime is committed. Suspicion immediately focuses on the parents. But the truth is a much more complicated story. Inside the curtained house, an unsettling account of what actually happened unfolds. Detective Rasbach knows that the panicked couple is hiding something. Both Anne and Marco soon discover that the other is keeping secrets, secrets they've kept for years.

-Click here to read more about the book.

BEHIND CLOSED DOORS by B. A. Paris (Psychological Thriller)
Release Date: August 9th
Everyone knows a couple like Jack and Grace: he has looks and wealth, she has charm and elegance. Picture this: a dinner party at their perfect home, the conversation and wine flowing. They appear to be in their element while entertaining. And Grace's friends are eager to reciprocate with lunch the following week. Grace wants to go, but knows she never will. Her friends call --- so why doesn't Grace ever answer the phone? And how can she cook such elaborate meals but remain so slim? And why are there bars on one of the bedroom windows?

-Click here to read more about the book.

ALL IS NOT FORGOTTEN by Wendy Walker (Psychological Thriller)
Release Date: July 12th
In the small, affluent town of Fairview, Connecticut, everything seems picture perfect. Until one night when young Jenny Kramer is attacked at a local party. In the hours immediately after, she is given a controversial drug to medically erase her memory of the violent assault. But, in the weeks and months that follow, as she heals from her physical wounds, and with no factual recall of the attack, Jenny struggles with her raging emotional memory. As they seek help for their daughter, the fault lines within Tom and Charlotte's marriage and their close-knit community emerge from the shadows where they have been hidden for years.

-Click here to read more about the book.

Click here for more upcoming " Bets On" selections.
Our Latest Poll: Finishing Chapters…or Not
Do you try to reach the end of a chapter before setting aside a book to do other things (sleeping included!)?
  • Yes, I prefer to finish reading a chapter before taking a break.
  • I would like to do this, but I am not always able to.
  • No, I am able to stop in the middle of a chapter and go back to the book later.
  • It depends on certain factors (my level of interest in the book, how much time I have, the book’s genre, etc.)
Click here to vote in the poll.
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 April 1st to April 15th at noon ET, three lucky readers each will be randomly chosen to win a copy of THE 14th COLONY by Steve Berry, LILAC GIRLS by Martha Hall Kelly, and MILLER'S VALLEY by Anna Quindlen.

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 April 1st to May 2nd at noon ET, two lucky readers each will be randomly chosen to win the audio versions of Mary Higgins Clark’s AS TIME GOES BY, read by Jan Maxwell, and Kathleen Grissom’s GLORY OVER EVERYTHING: Beyond The Kitchen House, read by Santino Fontana, with Kyle Beltran, Madeleine Maby and Heather Alicia Simms.

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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