The August Book Sense Picks & Notables Preview

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Here is the full listing of August Book Sense Picks, with booksellers' comments, as well as a preview of the month's Notables. Independent booksellers in the Book Sense program will be receiving their August Picks fliers in the July Red Box.

The August 2007 Book Sense Picks

1.** THE REST OF HER LIFE: A Novel, by Laura Moriarty (Hyperion, $24.95, 9781401302719 / 1401302718) "Laura Moriarty has captured the fears and reality of how a single, innocent action can send our lives into a tailspin. Written with grace and honesty, the story does not shy away from exposing the reader to very difficult questions. This will be an excellent book group selection."   -- Amy Gillard, McLean & Eakin Booksellers, Petoskey, MI

HERE IF YOU NEED ME: A True Story, by Kate Braestrup (Little, Brown, $23.99, 9780316066303 / 0316066303) "God may have a sense of humor, but calling Kate Braestrup into service was no joke.  While traversing her own wilderness of loss and faith, a newly single mother of four takes on the spiritually treacherous work of chaplain to Maine's toughest rescuers.  Giving of herself with great humor and heart, Kate's story emanates hope and inspires a belief in miracles." --Stacie Williams, Harry W. Schwartz Bookshop, Milwaukee, WI

THE SEPTEMBERS OF SHIRAZ: A Novel, by Dalia Sofer (Ecco, $24.95, 9780061130403 / 0061130400) "This gripping and heartfelt novel set in Tehran in the early 1980s, shortly after the Islamic Revolution, follows the fates and dreams of a family of affluent, secular Jews struggling to adapt to their rapidly changing, and unforgiving, world. An unforgettable debut." --Tova Beiser, Brown University Bookstore, Providence, RI

THE WORLD WITHOUT US, by Alan Weisman (Thomas Dunne, $24.95, 9780312347291 / 0312347294) "This examination of an earth without us is a fascinating blend of the sciences, history, and quite plausible speculation. This engrossing book will enable readers to see humans' place in the planet's natural order in an entirely new light. An engrossing read." --Tom Williams, Mendham Books, Mendham, NJ

HOW TO TALK TO A WIDOWER: A Novel, by Jonathan Tropper (Delacorte, $20, 9780385338905 / 0385338902) "Wallowing in grief and guilt over his wife's accidental death, widower Doug Parker looks for relief in all the wrong places: with his neighbor's wife, at the bottom of a bottle, and on a long run from family and responsibility -- and he takes us along for the tearful, tender, laugh-out-loud ride." --Anne Wagner, Porter Square Books, Cambridge, MA

ON KINGDOM MOUNTAIN: A Novel, by Howard Frank Mosher (Houghton, $24, 9780618197231 / 0618197230) "On Kingdom Mountain brims with humor, history, intrigue, and romance while addressing the issues of love of the land and home (Vermont, in particular), rampant development, environmental degradation, and a vanishing way of life." --Mary Gleysteen, Eagle Harbor Book Company, Bainbridge Island, WA

BAD MONKEYS: A Novel, by Matt Ruff (HarperCollins, $20, 9780061240416 / 0061240419) "Jane Charlotte is an assassin for the Bad Monkeys, a squad dedicated to stopping evil. Or is she? This hilarious, fast-paced novel will leave you checking your dollar bills and posters for mini-cameras and wondering just who is on the other end of the phone line." --Gadiel Schultz, Joseph-Beth Booksellers, Cincinnati, OH

LOVING FRANK: A Novel, by Nancy Horan (Ballantine, $23.95, 9780345494993 / 0345494997) "Frank Lloyd Wright and his mistress faced insurmountable obstacles in creating a life together. Seeing their love through the eyes of this talented, educated, and strong 'other woman' is a revelation when set against the simmering suffragette movement of the era, and it raises questions still being argued today." --Candy Purdom, Anderson's Bookshop, Naperville, IL

KILLER WEEKEND, by Ridley Pearson (Putnam, $24.95, 9780399154072 / 0399154078) "Pearson's latest -- set in Sun Valley, Idaho -- will grab you by the throat on the first page and hold you until the final sentence. Local lawman Walt Fleming must nab an assassin poised to murder presidential candidate Liz Shaler. You won't want to put this thriller down." --Lillian Kinsey, Bohannons' Books With a Past, Georgetown, KY

MISTER PIP: A Novel, by Lloyd Jones (Dial, $20, 9780385341066 / 0385341067) "A teacher introduces a group of island children to the world of Charles Dickens through Great Expectations and offers them a world set apart from their own war-torn universe. First internally, then externally, lives are transformed magically through imagination inspired by both 18th-century London and their humble teacher." --Elizabeth G. Plante, Water Street Books, Exeter, NH

ALONE IN THE KITCHEN WITH AN EGGPLANT: Confessions of Cooking for One and Dining Alone, edited by Jenni Ferrari-Adler (Riverhead, $22.95, 9781594489471 / 1594489475) "Twenty-six different contributors (some well-known food writers, others better know for their fiction) talk about their experiences of cooking and dining alone, each exploring the guilty pleasure of not having to explain one's sometimes bizarre choice of foods. Interlaced with recipes, this is great fun to read." --Jan Sloan, The King's English, Salt Lake City, UT

RED ROVER: A Novel, by Deirdre McNamer (Viking, $24.95, 9780670063505 / 0670063509) "It's impossible for me to sort out what I liked best about this novel, set in Montana between the 1920s and 2000 -- the appealing characters, the peel-an-onion structure, or McNamer's almost-invisible style, so good you almost don't notice it. Ultimately, it comes down to a story, about the once-youthful, self-styled gauchos, lovers of the long ride, who take us on a memorable one." --Russ Lawrence, Chapter One Book Store, Hamilton, MT

THE ISLAND: A Novel, by Victoria Hislop (Harper, $14.95 paper, 9780061340321 / 0061340324) "The island of the title is Spinalonga, where lepers from all over Greece were sent to live out their lives. The stories of four generations of the Petrakis family are interwoven with the story of the community on Spinalonga and the eventual discovery of a cure for leprosy in this very satisfying first novel. The unspoken is filled in, old pain is eased, and the right decisions are made." --Julie Leonard, Troubadour Books, Boulder, CO

UP HIGH IN THE TREES: A Novel, by Kiara Brinkman (Grove, $23, 9780802118479 / 080211847X) "Through the spare narration of eight-year-old Sebby Lane, Kiara Brinkman manages to tell a rich, nuanced story that deeply delves into the adult themes of grief, family ties, and friendship." --Arsen Kashkashian, The Boulder Book Store, Boulder, CO

A PECULIAR GRACE: A Novel, by Jeffrey Lent (Atlantic, $25, 9780871139658 / 0871139650) "Hewitt Pearce, a 43-year-old blacksmith living alone in the wilds of Vermont, is beginning to come to terms with his past when Jessica, a young women with her own demons, appears in his yard and Hewitt's solitary days give way to reconnecting with both himself and his community." --Penny McConnel, Norwich Bookstore, Norwich, VT

DIRTY MARTINI: A Jacqueline "Jack" Daniels Mystery, by J.A. Konrath (Hyperion, $23.95, 9781401302795 / 1401302793) "While mulling over a marriage proposal from her accountant boyfriend, as well learning that the father who she once thought was dead is not, Jacqueline 'Jack' Daniels has to deal with her most deadly foe to date, The Chemist, who has been terrorizing Chicago with his own deadly mixture of toxins." --Bob Connolly, Jabberwocky Bookshop & Cafe, Newburyport, MA

LETTER FROM POINT CLEAR: A Novel, by Dennis McFarland (Holt, $25, 9780805077667 / 0805077669) "After learning that their sister has married an evangelical preacher, an older brother and sister head home to Point Clear, Alabama, to see what is going on. The coming together of the siblings and other assorted characters results in a story that you will think about long after you finish the novel." --Penny McConnel, Norwich Bookstore, Norwich, VT

NIGHT BIRDS: A Novel, by Thomas Maltman (Soho, $24, 9781569474624 / 1569474621) "Based on the 1862 Sioux uprising in Minnesota, Maltman's novel is a gripping tale of this sad event, which ended with the mass hanging of 38 Sioux. Reading Maltman I am reminded of Ivan Doig or Larry Watson: great style, great narrative, and a stunning portrait of the times." --Richard Taber, Village Books, Bellingham, WA

SWIM TO ME: A Novel, by Betsy Carter (Algonquin, $23.95, 9781565124929 / 1565124928) "Sixteen-year-old Delores Walker leaves her troubled family behind in the Bronx and rides the bus to Florida, where she has the tentative offer of a job as a mermaid at Weeki Wachee Springs, a somewhat down-at-the-heels roadside attraction. Hope springs eternal! Betsy Carter's characters understand this -- their efforts to reinvent themselves make this a lively and very funny novel." --Marian Nielsen, Orinda Books, Orinda, CA

THE RIVER WIFE: A Novel, by Jonis Agee (Random House, $24.95, 9781400065967 / 1400065968) "In The River Wife, Agee presents us with a sweeping epic covering 140 years and several generations of tantalizingly interwoven characters who leap off the page into your mind. This is one of those enticing books that will have you saying, 'just one more page' far into the night." --Nancy Simpson, The Book Vault, Oskaloosa, IA

The August 2007 Book Sense Notables



CONFESSIONS OF A JANE AUSTEN ADDICT, by Laurie Viera Rigler (Dutton, $24.95, 9780525950400 / 0525950400)
CROOKED LITTLE VEIN, by Warren Ellis (Morrow, $21.95, 9780060723934 / 0060723939)
FULL CIRCLE, by Michael Thomas Ford (Kensington, $15 paper, 9780758210586 / 0758210582)
GETTING RID OF MATTHEW, by Jane Fallon (Voice/Hyperion, $23.95, 9781401303204 / 140130320X)
THE LADY IN BLUE, by Javier Sierra (Atria, $25.95, 9781416532231 / 1416532234)
MARY MODERN, by Camille DeAngelis (Shaye Areheart, $24, 9780307352583 / 0307352587)
VIVALDI'S VIRGINS, by Barbara Quick (HarperCollins, $24.95, 9780060890520 / 0060890525)


ANTONIO'S GUN AND DELFINO'S DREAM: True Tales of Mexican Migration, by Sam Quinones (University of New Mexico Press, $24.95, 9780826342546 / 082634254X)
BRIGHT FROM THE START: The Simple, Science-Backed Way to Nurture Yor Child's Developing Mind From Birth to Age 3, by Jill Stamm and Paula Spencer (Gotham, $26, 9781592402854 / 1592402852)
THE GIRLS WHO WENT AWAY: The Hidden History of Women Who Surrendered Children for Adoption in the Decades Before Roe v. Wade, by Ann Fessler (Penguin, $15 paper, 9780143038979 / 0143038974)
THE MAN IN THE WHITE SHARKSKIN SUIT: My Family's Exodus From Old Cairo to the New World, by Lucette Lagnado (Ecco, $25.95, 9780060822125 / 0060822120)
NINE WAYS TO CROSS A RIVER: Midstream Reflections on Swimming and Getting There From Here, by Akiko Busch (Bloomsbury, $19.95, 9781596910454 / 1596910453)
SHADOW OF THE SILK ROAD, by Colin Thubron (HarperCollins, $25.95, 9780061231728 / 006123172X)
A SLICE OF ORGANIC LIFE, Sheherazade Goldsmith, editor in chief, (DK Publishing, $25, 9780756628734 / 0756628733)
TESTED: One American School Struggles to Make the Grade, by Linda Perlstein (Holt, $25, 9780805080827 / 0805080821)
28: STORIES OF AIDS IN AFRICA, by Stephanie Nolen (Walker & Co, $25.95, 9780802715982 / 0802715982)


THE CRIME WRITER, by Gregg Hurwitz (Viking, $24.95, 9780670063215 / 0670063215)
THE NIGHT FERRY, by Michael Robotham (Doubleday, $24.95, 9780385517904 / 0385517904)
OLD WOUNDS, by Vicki Lane (Dell, $6.99 paper, 9780440243595 / 0440243599)
QUEENPIN, by Megan Abbott (Simon & Schuster, $13 paper, 9781416534280 / 1416534288)

# 1 August Book Sense Pick
from Hyperion
Thank you for helping to make Laura Moriarty's new novel The Rest of Her Life the #1 Book Sense pick for August! We are offering promotional easels to celebrate. Look for one in the July Red Box mailing or order one from us by e-mailing [email protected].
Available while supplies last.