Categories
Book Radar

The New Mythic Heroes Anthology from Rick Riordan and More Book Radar!

It’s Monday!!! Wow, that was fast. I hope everyone had a successful weekend of reading. I managed to get a few new books under my belt, and I watched a couple of documentaries on Netflix. (Why didn’t anyone tell me there was a He-Man documentary???) My plans for the week are to read more books (of course), find more wild documentaries to watch, and to keep watch on the burrows under the bushes in my yard to see if there are any baby woodchucks yet!

Before I jump into today’s newsletter, I want to thank you for joining me each week. Wring Book Radar is so much fun, and I appreciate everyone who reads it. (Socially distanced hugs for you all!) And if you’re so inclined, it would be a great help if you shared the sign up link with other people you think would enjoy it too. Your support means a lot to me, and I thank you.

Moving on: I have some exciting book news for you today and a look at a fun space opera, plus cover reveals, a terrible pun, a naughty orange gremlin, and trivia! Let’s get started, shall we?

Here’s Monday’s trivia question: Who wrote the ten-volume novel Jean-Christophe? (Scroll to the bottom for the answer.)

Deals, Reals, and Squeals!

The cover of The Downstairs Girl by Stacey Lee

Stacey Lee’s The Downstairs Girl to be developed as a series.

Here are the 2021 Young Lions Fiction Award finalists.

And here are the winners of the 2021 PEN America Literary Awards.

Here’s the first look at I Love You but I’ve Chosen Darkness, the new novel by Claire Vaye Watkins.

Two books by Kennedy Ryan are going to be made into limited series.

Here’s the cover reveal of The Cursed Carnival and Other Calamities: New Stories About Mythic Heroes edited by Rick Riordan.

Here’s the final trailer for The Woman in the Window with Amy Adams.

Here’s the cover reveal of People from My Neighborhood: Stories by Hiromi Kawakami and translated by Ted Goossen.

Here’s the trailer for the new adaptation of The Mosquito Coast.

Tom Holland will star in a new series based on The Minds of Billy Milligan by Daniel Keyes.

And Benedict Cumberbatch will star in a remake of The 39 Steps.

Book Riot Recommends 

At Book Riot, I work on the New Books! email, the All the Books! podcast about new releases, and the Book Riot Insiders New Release Index. I am very fortunate to get to read a lot of upcoming titles, and learn about a lot of upcoming titles, and I’m delighted to share a couple with you each week so you can add them to your TBR! (It will now be books I loved on Mondays and books I’m excited to read on Thursdays. YAY, BOOKS!)

Loved, loved, loved: 

You Sexy Thing by Cat Rambo (Tor Books, September 7)

I had been trying to get my hands on this for months, ever since I read that it was like “Farscape meets The Great British Bake Off.” And now I have read it, and it is indeed great! But I would say it is more like Farscape meets the movie Big Night.

Niko Larson is a former Admiral in the Grand Military of the Hive Mind. She now runs a restaurant, The Last Chance, with several others who had been under her command at the TwiceFar space station on the edge of the galaxy. When the book opens, the restaurant is getting ready to receive a very important food critic, whose glowing recommendation could launch their restaurant into the stratosphere. So of course, it’s going to be one of those days. While trying to get the foods needed to impress the critic, Niko also receives a mysterious package, and a huge party including Niko’s former boss requests a last-minute reservation that she can’t turn away. Could anything else go wrong?

Yes, it can! Because just as dinner gets underway, the space station is attacked and Niko and her crew wind up on a sentient spaceship called You Sexy Thing. The ship thinks Niko and her crew are stealing it, so it charts a course for the galactic prison. Niko and her crew have four days to convince the ship not to take them to jail, while also dealing with the contents of that mysterious package AND an evil space pirate. Will they ever get back to their restaurant?

This book is a lot of fun. It wasn’t quite as silly as I was expecting from the description, and the plot was a lot more intricate, but it was still plenty funny and fun! There’s lots of wisecracks, action, ghosts, pirates, aliens, politics, and foodie talk. Niko’s crew is comprised by beings from other worlds, including a 12-tentacled alien, a Jawa-like little priest with a big prophecy for Niko, and rambunctious twin brothers who shape-shift into lions. There’s also a lot of backstory involving Niko and her time in the Hive Mind, and a particular incident.

If you like space operas, talking ships, and lots of outer space action, this is a perfect read to mark down on your TBR now!

(CW for space violence and action, war, and death.)

What I’m reading this week.

Somebody’s Daughter: A Memoir by Ashley C. Ford

Bath Haus by PJ Vernon

The Library of the Dead by T.L. Huchu

The Maid by Nita Prose

Witches Steeped in Gold by Ciannon Smart

Groan-worthy joke of the week: 

Why do bees have sticky hair? Because they use a honeycomb.

And this is funny:

I wish my cats would do this.

Happy things:

Here are a few things I enjoy that I thought you might like as well:

And here’s a cat picture!

There is no place in my house that Zevon hasn’t conquered.

Trivia answer: Romain Rolland.

Remember that whatever you are doing or watching or reading this week, I am sending you love and hugs. Please be safe, and be mindful of others. It takes no effort to be kind. I’ll see you again on Thursday. xoxo, Liberty

Categories
Book Radar

Dave Grohl’s Memoir Coming in October and More Book Radar!

Happy Thursday, star bits! I hope you all had a chance to check out all the absolutely fabulous new releases that dropped on Tuesday. One could just read April 6th releases for the rest of the year and never run out! I’m giddy just thinking about it. WELL DONE, AUTHORS!

Moving on to today’s newsletter: I don’t have a lot of news for you today, but what I do have is exciting. There’s adaptation news and book talk, plus I’ve included a picture of one of my sassy orange monsters, some trivia, and more! Whatever you are doing or watching or reading this week, I hope you good bob and we same place again very now. I’ll see you again on Monday. – xoxo, Liberty, Your Friendly Neighborhood Velocireader™

Trivia question time! How many times does the word “castle” appear in the text of We Have Always Lived in the Castle? (Scroll to the bottom for the answer.)

Deals, Reals, and Squeals!

Deesha Philyaw’s The Secret Lives of Church Ladies has won the 2021 PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction.

Elin Hilderbrand’s Summer of ’69 is being made into a series.

Dave Grohl is publishing a memoir.

Ntare Guma Mbaho Mwine has joined the cast of The Lincoln Lawyer.

Here’s the first look at Ace of Spades by Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé.

Queen Sugar season 6 adds new cast members.

Here’s the first look at the cover of Oh William! by Elizabeth Strout.

Blindness by José Saramago has been adapted for Broadway.

The Walking Dead‘s final season will premiere in August.

Four more actors have been added to the cast of Killers of the Flower Moon, including singers Jason Isbell and Sturgill Simpson.

Book Riot Recommends 

At Book Riot, I work on the New Books! email, the All the Books! podcast about new releases, and the Book Riot Insiders New Release Index. I am very fortunate to get to read a lot of upcoming titles, and learn about a lot of upcoming titles, and I’m delighted to share a couple with you each week so you can add them to your TBR! (It will now be books I loved on Mondays and books I’m excited to read on Thursdays. YAY, BOOKS!)

Excited to read: 

Fan Fiction: A Mem-Noir: Inspired by True Events by Brent Spiner with Jeanne Darst (St. Martin’s Press, October 5)

A noir novel based on actual events that happened to Brent Spiner, aka Data on Star Trek: The Next Generation, written by the actor himself, was not something I knew I wanted until I learned about it.

It’s a fictionalization of a series of disturbing letters and a mysterious package that Spiner received in 1991. It ended up involving Paramount Security, the LAPD, and even the FBI. And the book supposedly features appearances by all his beloved costars. I am first and foremost glad that nothing bad happened to him. And now I am wildly curious to find out all the details!

What I’m reading this week.

Witches Steeped in Gold by Ciannon Smart

The Rock Eaters: Stories by Brenda Peynado  

Open Water by Caleb Azumah Nelson

Gutter Mage by J.S. Kelley

A Calling for Charlie Barnes by Joshua Ferris

Song stuck in my head:

On the Radio by Chip Taylor. This Regina Spektor cover has broken my brain. (Also, I’m still really into listening to songs I loved when I was young. You can listen to a lot of them in this playlist I made!)

And this is funny:

Someone has been adding Paddington to movies.

Happy things:

Here are a few things I enjoy that I thought you might like as well:

  • Nailed It! The fifth season of this baking competition show is up on Netflix now and I can feel my blood pressure dropping just writing about it.
  • 3rd Rock from the Sun: I have spent the last few years rewatching shows from when I was younger. But I am now starting the fourth season of 3rd Rock, of which I had only seen the first season previously, and I’m delighted. It isn’t that it’s a great show—because it isn’t—but it’s fun to see all the young actors (Baby Jim Beaver! Baby Linda Cardellini! Younger Garry/Jerry/Larry/Terry/Barry from Parks and Recreation!) and the pop culture references, many of which make no sense now if you weren’t alive in the 1990s. Nostalgia has a scientifically proven calming effect on your brain. I’m having so much fun, I may only watch old shows I haven’t seen for the next several months.
  • Purrli: This website makes the relaxing sounds of a cat purring.

And here’s a cat picture!

Strike a pose.

Trivia answer: One.

You made it to the bottom! High five. Thanks for reading! – xo, L

Categories
New Books

First Tuesday of April Megalist!

Happy Tuesday, star bits. Guess what??? I saw my first woodchuck of the season this weekend! And if you think I didn’t whip my shirt off like Brandi Chastain and cheer in my living room when I saw it, you would be wrong. Moving on: It’s an amazing book day! If I had to choose one book to tell you about today, it would be The Five Wounds by Kirstin Valdez Quade. It’s an incredible multigenerational dysfunctional family saga set in New Mexico, and it is big and substantial and delicious. I could have easily read another 400 pages.

I did also read and love several more of today’s books, but there are still soooo many more on this list that I can’t wait to read, like Gold Diggers by Sanjena Sathian, Paradise, Nevada by Dario Diofebi, Poison Priestess by Lana Popovic, and Blow Your House Down by Gina Frangello.

As with each first Tuesday megalist, I am putting a ❤️ next to the books that I have had the chance to read and loved. You can also hear about several new releases on this week’s episode of the All the Books! Danika and I discussed The Five Wounds, Zara Hossain Is Here, Caul Baby, and more. Okay—everyone buckled in? Get ready to click your little hearts out, because here come the books! – XO, Liberty

The Five Wounds by Kirstin Valdez Quade ❤️

Allegorizings by Jan Morris

Zara Hossain Is Here by Sabina Khan

Crowe’s Requiem by Mike McCormack

The Madman’s Library: The Strangest Books, Manuscripts and Other Literary Curiosities from History by Edward Brooke-Hitching

The Night Always Comes by Willy Vlautin ❤️

An Indian among Los Indígenas: A Native Travel Memoir by Ursula Pike 

Caul Baby by Morgan Jerkins ❤️

Gold Diggers by Sanjena Sathian

My Good Son by Yang Huang

Pride and Premeditation by Tirzah Price ❤️

The Outdoor Scientist: The Wonder of Observing the Natural World by Temple Grandin, Ph.D.

The Bookstore on the Beach by Brenda Novak

Aru Shah and the City of Gold (Pandava Quartet) by Roshani Chokshi ❤️

Good Company by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney 

Merci Suárez Can’t Dance by Meg Medina

Aven Green Sleuthing Machine (Volume 1) by Dusti Bowling ❤️

Whisper Down the Lane: A Novel by Clay McLeod Chapman

First, Become Ashes by K.M. Szpara

Broken (in the best possible way) by Jenny Lawson ❤️

The God Equation: The Quest for a Theory of Everything by Michio Kaku 

Heart of Fire: An Immigrant Daughter’s Story by Mazie K. Hirono 

The Drowning Kind by Jennifer McMahon

The Girl with Stars in Her Eyes by Xio Axelro

Zoe Rosenthal Is Not Lawful Good by Nancy Werlin

Hummingbird Salamander by Jeff VanderMeer ❤️

Tower of Babel by Michael Sears

Getting It in the Head: Stories by Mike McCormack

The Light of Days: The Untold Story of Women Resistance Fighters in Hitler’s Ghettos by Judy Batalion

Peaces by Helen Oyeyemi ❤️

Your Mama by NoNieqa Ramos and Jacqueline Alcántara

Maxwell’s Demon by Steven Hall ❤️

The Nine Lives of Rose Napolitano: A Novel by Donna Freita

Face: One Square Foot of Skin by Justine Bateman

Cruella: Hello, Cruel Heart by Maureen Johnson ❤️

An Apprenticeship, or The Book of Pleasures by Clarice Lispector, Stefan Tobler (translator)

The Elephant of Belfast: A Novel by S. Kirk Walsh

Broken Horses: A Memoir by Brandi Carlile

Last Chance Texaco: Chronicles of an American Troubadour by Rickie Lee Jones

Somewhere Between Bitter and Sweet by Laekan Zea Kemp

A River Called Time by Courttia Newland

The Bohemians by Jasmin Darznik

Girl Warriors: How 25 Young Activists Are Saving the Earth by Rachel Sarah

The Last Bookshop in London: A Novel of World War II by Madeline Martin  

Lucky by Marissa Stapley

My Broken Language: A Memoir by Quiara Alegría Hudes 

Our Work Is Everywhere: An Illustrated Oral History of Queer and Trans Resistance by Syan Rose

The Cost of Knowing by Brittney Morris 

A Better Life: Poems by Randall Mann

Paradise, Nevada by Dario Diofebi

Beeswing: Losing My Way and Finding My Voice 1967-1975 by Richard Thompson

The Duke Undone by Joanna Lowell

The Hard Crowd: Essays 2000-2020 by Rachel Kushner 

Mother May I: A Novel by Joshilyn Jackson

I Have Been Buried Under Years of Dust : A Memoir of Autism and Hope by Valerie Gilpeer and Emily Grodin

We Are Each Other’s Harvest: Celebrating African American Farmers, Land, and Legacy by Natalie Baszile

From a Whisper to a Rallying Cry: The Killing of Vincent Chin and the Trial that Galvanized the Asian American Movement by Paula Yoo

I’m Waiting for You: And Other Stories by Bo-Young Kim

The Infinity Courts by Akemi Dawn Bowman

First Person Singular: Stories by Haruki Murakami, Philip Gabriel (translator)

Leonora in the Morning Light by Michaela Carter

Between the Bliss and Me by Lizzy Mason 

Blow Your House Down: A Story of Family, Feminism, and Treason by Gina Frangello

Poison Priestess (Lady Slayers) by Lana Popovic

First Responder: A Memoir of Life, Death, and Love on New York City’s Frontlines by Jennifer Murph

Categories
Book Radar

It’s HOT PINK for Sarah Michelle Gellar and More Book Radar!

Happy Monday! I hope you all had a lovely weekend. Can you tell that I am typing this even faster than normal? That’s because I am racing to finish my work so I can start reading You Sexy Thing by Cat Rambo! I have been clamoring for this book since I first learned of its existence eight months ago. It’s being called “Farscape meets The Great British Bake Off” and I could not be more excited if I swallowed a cat and broke out in kittens! If it is as amazing as it sounds, I’ll be sure to tell you about it in next Monday’s newsletter.

Moving on: I have some exciting book news for you today and a look at a delightfully demented thriller, plus cover reveals, a terrible pun, an upside-down orange monster, and trivia! Let’s get started, shall we?

Here’s Monday’s trivia question: Who was the historical figure who inspired the poet Percy Shelly to write his poem Ozymandias?(Scroll to the bottom for the answer.)

Deals, Reals, and Squeals!

station eleven

Six more cast members, including Lori Petty, Daniel Zovatto, and David Cross, have been added to the Station Eleven series.

Regé-Jean Page will not appear in season 2 of Bridgerton; Charithra Chandran and Rupert Young have joined the cast.

Join in to support the Asian American Writers’ Workshop’s upcoming events.

Join Rioter Tirzah Price for the launch of her first book, Pride and Premeditation!

Sarah Michelle Gellar will star in the series Hot Pink, which is based on What Girls Are Made Of by Elana K. Arnold.

A Breaking Bad art book is on the way.

Here’s the cover reveal of The Lost Girls: A Vampire Revenge Story by Sonia Hartl.

Andrea Riseborough, Stephen Graham and Sindhu Vee have joined the Matilda remake.

Patti Smith will share new writing in a substack newsletter.

Diana Gabaldon has finished the ninth book in the Outlander series.

Noah Emmerich and Kim Dickens have joined the cast in Netflix’s adaptation of The Good Nurse.

Book Riot Recommends 

At Book Riot, I work on the New Books! email, the All the Books! podcast about new releases, and the Book Riot Insiders New Release Index. I am very fortunate to get to read a lot of upcoming titles, and learn about a lot of upcoming titles, and I’m delighted to share a couple with you each week so you can add them to your TBR! (It will now be books I loved on Mondays and books I’m excited to read on Thursdays. YAY, BOOKS!)

Loved, loved, loved: 

For Your Own Good by Samantha Downing (Berkley, July 20)

This is a viciously fun little read! Teddy Crutcher has won Teacher of the Year at the esteemed Belmont Academy, but he secretly hates most of his students and coworkers. He has single-handedly plotted behind the scenes to ruin the future prospects of a few students and a couple of his coworkers.

And then one of the parents of a student is poisoned at a school event. Were they the intended victim? Was Teddy the poisoner? It’s hard to say because HOLY CATS, there are so many people hiding secrets and so many revenge plots being carried out in this book! It’s told from five points of view, including another teacher, a former student, and a current student, but it doesn’t make it confusing at all. It makes it fun, really. It’s almost like a reality show, where the most horrible person gets away with murder.

I thought Downing’s last two books were really ridiculous, but fun, but I found this one to be even better. It’s superbly plotted and paced, and also still ridiculous. But in an awesome way. What a bunch of devious people! And there are so many reveals, you will get to the end of the book not even realizing you had heard a bunch of clues and significant details along the way and then SURPRISE! If you’re looking for a deliciously nasty thriller, this is it!

(I’m sorry, I read this a long time ago and somehow forgot to mark down my notes, so off the top of my head, content warnings for violence, murder, home invasion, illegal surveillance, poisoning, black mail, and infidelity. But you should do more research before reading it if you are worried about more possible warnings.)

What I’m reading this week.

You Sexy Thing by Cat Rambo 

A Calling for Charlie Barnes by Joshua Ferris

Reprieve by James Han Mattson

Tell Me How to Be by Neel Patel

Moon and the Mars by Kia Corthron

Groan-worthy joke of the week: 

Dogs can’t operate MRI machines. But catscan.

And this is funny:

I feel attacked.

Happy things:

Here are a few things I enjoy that I thought you might like as well:

  • Nailed It! The fifth season of this baking competition show is up on Netflix now and I can feel my blood pressure dropping just writing about it.
  • 3rd Rock from the Sun: I have spent the last few years rewatching shows from when I was younger. But I am now starting the fourth season of 3rd Rock, of which I had only seen the first season previously, and I’m delighted. It isn’t that it’s a great show—because it isn’t—but it’s fun to see all the young actors (Baby Jim Beaver! Baby Linda Cardellini! Younger Garry/Jerry/Larry/Terry/Barry from Parks and Recreation!) and the pop culture references, many of which make no sense now if you weren’t alive in the 1990s. Nostalgia has a scientifically proven calming effect on your brain. I’m having so much fun, I may only watch old shows I haven’t seen for the next several months.
  • Star vs. the Forces of Evil: My love of all things Alan Tudyk right now has led me to another rewatch of this fabulous cartoon.
  • Purrli: This website makes the relaxing sounds of a cat purring.

And here’s a cat picture!

A special order of upside-down air biscuits.

Trivia answer: Ramesses II.

Remember that whatever you are doing or watching or reading this week, I am sending you love and hugs. Please be safe, and be mindful of others. It takes no effort to be kind. I’ll see you again on Thursday. xoxo, Liberty

Categories
Book Radar

Snow-tunes: Game of Thrones Is Headed for Broadway and More Book Radar!

Happy Thursday, book lovers. I hope you’re all having a decent week and have a lot of good things to read. I am hip-deep in the new 700-page Led Zeppelin biography, which makes me happy, and I also discovered a new season of Nailed It!, so it was like a bonus happy surprise! I also recently heard that there’s a new season of The Great Pottery Throw Down just around the corner. Hooray for gentle television!

Moving on to today’s newsletter: I have exciting adaptation news and book talk, plus I’ve included a picture of one of my ridiculous orange monsters, some trivia, and more! Whatever you are doing or watching or reading this week, I hope you good bob and we same place again very now. I’ll see you again on Monday. – xoxo, Liberty, Your Friendly Neighborhood Velocireader™

Trivia question time! In The 7½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle, what costume is worn by the enigmatic figure that offers Aiden advice and guidance? (Scroll to the bottom for the answer.)

Deals, Reals, and Squeals!

The full Shadow and Bone trailer has dropped.

Tiffany D. Jackson announced her new YA novel, White Smoke, which is releasing in September.

Randall Park will make his directorial debut with an adaptation of Adrian Tomine’s graphic novel Shortcomings.

Game of Thrones is headed to Broadway.

The International Booker Prize has announced its 2021 longlist.

Ken Follett’s The Evening And The Morning is being developed as a show.

Here’s the first trailer for The Irregulars on Netflix.

Amanda Seyfried is replacing Kate McKinnon as Elizabeth Holmes in the limited Hulu series.

Of Women and Salt is the GMA April 2021 Book Club pick.

Here’s the cover reveal of Dragonblood Ring by Amparo Ortiz.

A Court of Thorns and Roses is going to be a Hulu series.

American Gods has been canceled after three seasons, but it may return as a TV movie.

Here’s the cover reveal of Dear Diaspora (The Raz/Shumaker Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Poetry) by Susan Nguyen.

The adaptation of Our Kind of People: Inside America’s Black Upper Class from Lee Daniels and Karen Gist has been ordered to series.

Book Riot Recommends 

At Book Riot, I work on the New Books! email, the All the Books! podcast about new releases, and the Book Riot Insiders New Release Index. I am very fortunate to get to read a lot of upcoming titles, and learn about a lot of upcoming titles, and I’m delighted to share a couple with you each week so you can add them to your TBR! (It will now be books I loved on Mondays and books I’m excited to read on Thursdays. YAY, BOOKS!)

Excited to read: 

The Hawthorne Legacy by Jennifer Lynn Barnes (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, September 7)

I am really excited about this sequel, but also mentioning it here to bring your attention to the first book. Because it’s so much fun and I think more people need to know about it! The first book is called The Inheritance Games and it’s available now. It’s about a high school student named Avery Grambs, who doesn’t foresee anything remarkable happening in her future—and then she finds out that billionaire Tobias Hawthorne has died and left her his fortune. And Avery is like “Tobias who? Inheritance what now?”

Because, you see, Avery has never met Tobias Hawthorne, so she has no idea why he’d leave her everything. HIs family has never heard of Avery, and they are Not Pleased™ that the fortune they assumed was theirs is going to a stranger. And there’s a catch (there’s always a catch): Avery must move into the Hawthorne mansion with the Hawthorne family in order to collect the money. Avery agrees to this, because billions, but the Hawthorne family sees this as an opportunity to solve Avery like she’s a puzzle. They think that maybe she’s just another puzzle that game-loving Tobias Hawthorne has left for them to solve.

This book is a delight! If you love The Westing Game, like I do (but not as much as I do, because no one else can love it that much, I will fight you) then The Inheritance Games is a perfect read for you, and you should marl this second one down now.

What I’m reading this week.

The Five Wounds by Kirstin Valdez Quade

The Collective by Alison Gaylin

Razorblade Tears by S.A. Cosby

Because of You by Dawn French

Moon and the Mars by Kia Corthron

Song stuck in my head:

Song for Zola by Phosphorescent. This was the last song of the very last episode of Superstore. Goodbye, Superstore. You were only funny once in a while, but you had a great soundtrack. (Also, I’m still really into listening to songs I loved when I was young. You can listen to a lot of them in this playlist I made!)

And this is funny:

I laughed at this for a long time.

Happy things:

Here are a few things I enjoy that I thought you might like as well:

  • Nailed It! The fifth season of this baking competition show is up on Netflix now and I can feel my blood pressure dropping just writing about it.
  • Star vs. the Forces of Evil: My love of all things Alan Tudyk right now has led me to another rewatch of this fabulous cartoon.
  • 3rd Rock from the Sun: This show is dumb and certainly problematic at times, like most old shows, but it is just the right of mindless silly my brain needs right now. I’m not big on reality these days. And everyone in it is fantastic. It’s streaming for free on Peacock. Also, I still want Harry’s coat.
  • Purrli: This website makes the relaxing sounds of a cat purring.

And here’s a cat picture!

Same, tbh.

Trivia answer: A plague doctor.

You made it to the bottom! High five. Thanks for reading! – xo, L

Categories
New Books

Hooray, It’s Time for New Books!

Happy Tuesday, readers! It’s been beautiful here in Maine (for the most part) the last few days. It’s nice to sit inside and read a book by the open window while listening to all the birds make noises at our feeders. They’re probably saying terrible things to one another and calling each other awful names, but, hey, it sounds pretty!

Moving on to books: I’m looking forward to a lot of today’s new releases and I hope that very soon I’ll be able to get my hands on Girlhood by Melissa Febos, All You Knead Is Love by Tanya Guerrero, and Empire of Ants: The Hidden World and Extraordinary Lives of Earth’s Tiny Conquerors by Susanne Foitzik and Olaf Fritsche. (There are actually a surprising number of nature books coming out from big publishers today, including The Nation of Plants, Rescuing the Planet, A World on the Wing, The Bedside Book of Birds, A Most Remarkable Creature, and Second Nature.)

And speaking of today’s great books, for this week’s episode of All the Books! Patricia and I discussed some of the wonderful books that we’ve read, such as The Final Revival of Opal & Nev, Of Women and Salt, Black Girl, Call Home, and more.

And now, it’s time for everyone’s favorite gameshow: AHHHHHH MY TBR! Here are today’s contestants:

Libertie: A Novel by Kaitlyn Greenidge

I was a big fan of Greenidge’s debut novel, We Love You, Charlie Freeman, so I was over the moon when I was able to read her new one! Set during the American Civil War, it’s about a young Black woman named Libertie. Libertie and her mother live in Brooklyn, where her mother is a doctor. Because her mother is light-skinned, she is able to pass as white, and she has high hopes that Libertie will follow in her footsteps as a doctor. But because Libertie’s skin is darker than he mother’s, she is subject to the racism of the times. And Libertie isn’t sure she actually wants to be a doctor, even though she is going to school for it. So when she meets a charming man from Haiti who tells her she would be free to live her life as she wants and as his equal if she marries him and moves back to his country, she accepts his offer. But Libertie quickly learns that life for a Black woman in Haiti is still a life of subservience. This is a wonderful novel about a young Black woman trying to find herself and freedom in a world that opposes her at every turn. And it was inspired in part by the life of one of the first Black women doctors in the United States.

Backlist bump: We Love You, Charlie Freeman by Kaitlyn Greenidge

A Little Devil in America: Notes in Praise of Black Performance by Hanif Abdurraqib

Abdurraqib is one of today’s most incredible nonfiction writers. He’s previously released collections of essays about music and pop culture as well as a National Book Award-nominated book on a Tribe Called Quest. Now, in A Little Devil in America, he covers Black performances in America through history, such as Josephine Baker and Merry Clayton. Each performance is thoroughly examined, and its impact and significance at the time is explained. It’s a fascinating, important look at parts of history that often go unremarked. And as with all his work, Abdurraqib elegantly explains why these works resonate with him personally. I could read a million more of his essays. Abdurraqib is my new ‘automatic buy’ author, and I hope he becomes yours, too.

Backlist bump: Go Ahead in the Rain: Notes to A Tribe Called Quest by Hanif Abdurraqib

North by Shakespeare: A Rogue Scholar’s Quest for the Truth Behind the Bard’s Work by Michael Blanding

I want to say up front that I have not read much Shakespeare and I don’t have a favorite dog in the ‘Shakespeare didn’t actually write his plays’ fight, but I do love reading about it! Over the centuries, a few people have been credited with his work, most famously Christopher Marlowe. This book is a look at self-taught Shakespearean scholar Dennis McCarthy and his 15-year quest to prove that Shakespeare’s works were actually written by Sir Thomas North, an Elizabethan courtier. Using technology, McCarthy claims to have found links between Will’s plays and North’s unpublished works that he says proves the bard is a fraud. Blanding presents the story in a way that lets readers decide for themselves, and whether or not you decide it’s true, the book is an epic nerdpurr about one of history’s longest-running literary mysteries.

Backlist bump: Banvard’s Folly: Thirteen Tales of People Who Didn’t Change the World by Paul Collins (This is one of my favorite nonfiction books, and includes a chapter about a Shakespeare denier, as well as many other fascinating people.)


Thank you, as always, for joining me each week as I rave about books! I am wishing the best for all of you in whatever situation you find yourself in now. – XO, Liberty

Categories
Book Radar

Oprah Winfrey Will Interview Poet Amanda Gorman and More Book Radar!

Happy Monday! Did you have a good weekend? I spent mine—wait for it—reading books. I have reached a point in my life where I am suddenly panicking about how many unread books I have in my house. My unread physical book numbers have gone waaaaaay up since most of my work reading became electronic. I used to get a lot of physical galleys but since the pandemic, I get PDFs almost exclusively. So the only physical books coming into the house now are I buy books that I want to read, but I never seem to get to them. So this weekend I have decided I am going to dedicate one day a week just to backlist to try and tackle this Cadillac problem. I love a reading challenge!

Moving on: I have some exciting book news for you today and a look at a wonderful witchy book, plus cover reveals, a terrible pun, my kitty queen, and trivia! Let’s get started, shall we?

Here’s Monday’s trivia question: What dish is served on New Year’s Day at a buffet at Una and Geoffrey Alconbury’s house in Bridget Jones’s Diary? (Scroll to the bottom for the answer.)

Deals, Reals, and Squeals!

Oprah Winfrey to interview The Hill We Climb poet Amanda Gorman on Apple TV Plus.

For the first time, a new edition of Lord of the Rings will include J.R.R. Tolkien’s own art.

Congratulations to Rioter Adiba Jaigirdar, who has not one but TWO upcoming books!

Here’s the cover reveal of Black Boy Joy edited by Kwame Alexander.

David Duchovny will star in the series adaptation of his Truly Like Lightning book.

Here are the six writers on the Dylan Thomas prize shortlist.

Nnamdi Asomugha, Jessica Chastain, and Eddie Redmayne will star in the adaptation of The Good Nurse by Charles Graeber.

Here’s the cover reveal of City of Illusion by Victoria Ying.

Matthew McGough’s book The Lazarus Files: A Cold Case Investigation is being adapted for television.

The #DVPit founder has launched a nonprofit to better serve diverse authors and illustrators.

in the dream house

Carmen Maria Machado has won the £30,000 Rathbones Folio Prize for In the Dream House.

Here’s the cover reveal of Dark and Shallow Lies by Ginny Myers Sain.

Here are the 2020 National Book Critics Circle Award winners.

Alexander Siddig has joined the cast of Apple’s Shantaram.

Christopher Gorham has joined Netflix’s adaptation of The Lincoln Lawyer.

Book Riot Recommends 

At Book Riot, I work on the New Books! email, the All the Books! podcast about new releases, and the Book Riot Insiders New Release Index. I am very fortunate to get to read a lot of upcoming titles, and learn about a lot of upcoming titles, and I’m delighted to share a couple with you each week so you can add them to your TBR! (It will now be books I loved on Mondays and books I’m excited to read on Thursdays. YAY, BOOKS!)

Loved, loved, loved: 

Slewfoot: A Tale of Bewitchery by Brom (Tor Nightfire, September 14)

If I had to do an elevator pitch for this book, I would call it The Witch movie meets Carrie. Abitha is a young woman in Connecticut in 1666, where she was sent my her parents to marry a farmer. She and her husband, Edward, live on the farm and attend church with their Puritan neighbors, and not much else.

At the beginning of the book their goat, Samson, goes missing, and it turns out it has something to do with the reanimation of—Church Lady voice—Satan. That’s right, the wilderness demons have brought Satan back to life (you’ll later find out what happened to him the first time around), although he’s having an identity crisis. Could he really be the bad creature everyone tells him he is?

Meanwhile, Edward’s horrible brother Wallace has lost Edward and Abitha’s farm in a bet. They were renting to own and only had one payment left, but now their dreams are shattered. And then, Edward dies. But not before the town elders rule in favor of Abitha and Edward keeping their land, which enrages his brother.

Wallace sees Edward’s death as a chance to take his land back, but Abitha is not as easily bossed around as the other women in the village, nor is she afraid of speaking her mind. While Wallace threatens to do everything he can to get his land back from Abitha, and the people of the village are starting to gossip about what kind of woman would live alone with a cat (SPOILER: It rhymes with pitch), Abitha’s busy making an ally of a cloven-footed gentleman she met in the woods named Slewfoot. And she’s not going down without a fight.

I thought this book was great fun! I loved how Abitha refused to back down, standing up for herself and doing the right thing, even in the face of the threat of the stockades and imprisonment. I also loved how Slewfoot was not behaving like the bad guy that everyone says he should be. It’s wild to think how people were so scared all the time in Colonial New England, and how they also turned on each other so quickly. And the ending is one long action-packed revenge scene, à la Carrie.

(CW for murder, gore, violence, fire, animal death, religious abuse, and misogyny)

What I’m reading this week.

Razorblade Tears by S.A. Cosby

Because of You by Dawn French

Chouette by Claire Oshetsky

Moon and the Mars by Kia Corthron

Aquarium by Yaara Shehori, Todd Hasak-Lowy (translator)

Groan-worthy joke of the week: 

Why do seagulls fly over the ocean? Because if they flew over the bay, we’d call them bagels.

And this is funny:

You have to love a sassy bird.

Happy things:

Here are a few things I enjoy that I thought you might like as well:

  • 3rd Rock from the Sun: This show is dumb and certainly problematic at times, like most old shows, but it is just the right of mindless silly my brain needs right now. I’m not big on reality these days. And everyone in it is fantastic. It’s streaming for free on Peacock. Also, I still want Harry’s coat.
  • Gravity Falls: Okay, but seriously, have you watched this show? It’s my favorite cartoon. Yes, I just rewatched it three weeks ago. Yes, it has been many times. No, I’m not sorry. I also made a playlist with 64 versions of the theme song.
  • Star vs. the Forces of Evil: My love of all things Alan Tudyk right now has led me to another rewatch of this fabulous cartoon.
  • Purrli: This website makes the relaxing sounds of a cat purring.

And here’s a cat picture!

Zevon tilts his head when he’s thinking, as if putting his brain up on its side helps him. In this photo, he’s trying to decide if he should investigate my dinner.

Trivia answer: Turkey curry.

Remember that whatever you are doing or watching or reading this week, I am sending you love and hugs. Please be safe, and be mindful of others. It takes no effort to be kind. I’ll see you again on Thursday. xoxo, Liberty

Categories
Book Radar

A New Book by Douglas Adams and More Book Radar!

Happy Thursday, book lovers. I hope you are doing as well as can be expected. It has been an extra-difficult couple of weeks, and I am sending love to everyone out there who needs it. Be kind to yourself, and reach out to friends and family if you need help. It seems like I have to say this all the time now, and it breaks my heart.

So I’m going to talk about happier things now: I have exciting adaptation news and book talk. Plus I’ve included a picture of one of my ridiculous orange monsters, some trivia, and more! Whatever you are doing or watching or reading this week, I hope you good bob and we same place again very now. I’ll see you again on Monday. – xoxo, Liberty, Your Friendly Neighborhood Velocireader™

Trivia question time! Who wrote Rip Van Winkle? (Scroll to the bottom for the answer.)

Deals, Reals, and Squeals!

Hulu is making a TV adaptation of Margaret Atwood’s MaddAddam trilogy.

Independent Bookstore Day will be on April 24th this month.

A book of unseen writing by Douglas Adams is being crowdfunded.

And Alex Segura, Elizabeth Little and David Hahn’s crimefighter comic, The Dusk, is being Kickstarted.

Ijeoma Oluo announced Be a Revolution, her upcoming book.

The 2021 Windham-Campbell prize winners have been announced.

Here are the the 2021 Audie Award winners.

Susan Orlean’s next book is going to be On Animals.

Nicole Lesperance revealed the cover of The Dream Spies, the sequel to The Nightmare Thief.

Surrender Your Sons author Adam Sass announced a new book.

Here’s the cover reveal for The Red Palace by June Hur.

Author Julie Berry has bought an independent bookstore.

Seven more actors have joined the second season of The Witcher.

Zac Efron and Russell Crowe are set to star in the adaptation of The Greatest Beer Run Ever: A True Story of Friendship Stronger Than War.

Made for Love, the adaptation of Alissa Nutting’s novel, will premiere on HBO Max in April.

Here’s the cover reveal for The Bookshop of Dust and Dreams by Mindy Thompson.

Book Riot Recommends 

At Book Riot, I work on the New Books! email, the All the Books! podcast about new releases, and the Book Riot Insiders New Release Index. I am very fortunate to get to read a lot of upcoming titles, and learn about a lot of upcoming titles, and I’m delighted to share a couple with you each week so you can add them to your TBR! (It will now be books I loved on Mondays and books I’m excited to read on Thursdays. YAY, BOOKS!)

Excited to read: 

The Donut Trap by Julie Tieu (Avon, November 2)

I am a big fan of stories where the main character has to work in their family’s restaurant. (See Death by Dumpling and A Deadly Inside Scoop.) So I was totally on board when I read about this upcoming romantic comedy! It’s about Jasmine Tran, who returns home to work in her parents’ donut shop when times get tough. Although it isn’t her idea of a fulfilling life, things get more interesting when her college crush, Alex Lai, shows up on the scene. He’s everything she thought she wanted and the husband material her parents want for her, but when Alex reveals himself to not be the ideal boyfriend Jasmine thought he was, can she figure out a way to get out of her obligations without hurting anyone’s feelings? This is being compared to the show Kim’s Convenience, which is finishing up this season, so it might be nice to have this on deck. And a donut. Mmmmm…donut.

What I’m reading this week.

Chouette by Claire Oshetsky

Moon and the Mars by Kia Corthron

Garlic and the Vampire by Bree Paulsen 

Aquarium by Yaara Shehori, Todd Hasak-Lowy (translator)

All of Us Villains by Christine Lynn Herman & Amanda Foody

Song stuck in my head:

Dance Hall Days by Wang Chung. This was one of my favorite songs when I was young. And I sang the chorus as “dance all day” every time, even though the correct words were right there in the title. Ah, youth. (Also, I’m still really into listening to songs I loved when I was young. You can listen to a lot of them in this playlist I made!)

And this is funny:

Poor doggo lolololol.

Happy things:

Here are a few things I enjoy that I thought you might like as well:

And here’s a cat picture!

This is what happens when you fold them and put them in the drawer while they’re still damp.

Trivia answer: Washington Irving.

You made it to the bottom! High five. Thanks for reading! – xo, L

Categories
New Books

Hooray, It’s Time for New Books!

It’s Tuesday—time to party! And by party, I mean talk about new books. Not that I need it to be Tuesday to do that, but today is like a weekly holiday, because of all the new releases. And it’s also like a holiday, because think of all the authors having book birthdays each week! HAPPY BIRTHDAY. I’m looking forward to a lot of today’s new releases and I hope that very soon I’ll be able to get my hands on Red Island House by Andrea Lee, Renegade Flight by Andrea Tang, and Bruised by Tanya Boteju.

And speaking of today’s great books, for this week’s episode of All the Books! Patricia and I discussed some of the wonderful books that we’ve read, such as Lost in the Never Woods, Mixed Plate, and The Ladies of the Secret Circus, and more.

And now, it’s time for everyone’s favorite gameshow: AHHHHHH MY TBR! Here are today’s contestants:

Red Widow by Alma Katsu 

Many of you are familiar with Katsu and her supernatural/horror novels, but this new book is subject Katsu is intimately familiar with: national security. Katsu has been an intelligence officer for over 30 years, and she has channeled her expertise into an exhilarating spy thriller! Red Widow is about two CIA agents working in the Russian division to stop a threat to national security that is coming from inside the agency. Agents Lyndsey Duncan and Theresa Warner must work around the clock to ferret out the mole (ha, rodent puns) before more people lose their lives.

Backlist bump: Red Sparrow by Jason Matthews

Delicates (Sheets) by Brenna Thummler

This is another one of those “I am mentioning the sequel’s release to draw your attention to the first book” recommendations. These are wonderful graphic novels written with middle grade readers, but perfect for anyone who wants a lovely haunting story. In Sheets, the first book, we meet Marjorie Glatt, a teenager trying to get through school and run her parents’ laundromat. While Marjorie deals with her daytime problems, at night the laundromat is visited by Wendell, the ghost of a young boy who is having a hard time adapting to the afterlife. It soon becomes apparent that these two are in need of each other’s friendship to help them get through the tough times. The second book, Delicates, is also wonderful and is about friends and fitting in. I highly recommend these books for both personal and classroom reading.

Backlist bump: Sheets by Brenna Thummler

The Unbroken by C. L. Clark

And last, but not least, this is an excellent new debut fantasy filled with action! Touraine was conscripted into her country’s army as a child ad raised to be the perfect soldier. But when her company is sent back to her homeland, she is contacted by Luca, who is looking for a traitor. Luca needs someone to help her rebel against her cruel uncle, who sits on the throne. Touraine is at first against Luca’s request, but things become more complicated when she becomes the princess’s lover. Can Touraine go against everything she’s been trained to do—and even if she can, will it be enough to lead a rebellion? This is a taut novel of revolution and responsibility, filled with hard choices and heart!

Backlist bump: The Tiger’s Daughter by K Arsenault Rivera

Thank you, as always, for joining me each week as I rave about books! I am wishing the best for all of you in whatever situation you find yourself in now. – XO, Liberty

Categories
Book Radar

Dolly Parton To Star in Her Own Comic and More Book Radar!

Happy Monday, readers! I hope you had an enjoyable weekend. Let’s see, what have I been doing lately? Oh yes! I am all caught up on Resident Alien, which I have been enjoying very much. And my orange monsters went for their yearly checkup on Friday and the vet said they need to go on a diet, so I am preparing for them to be extra-annoying about food. They’re just so cute, how can I not give them a million treats???

Moving on: I have some exciting book news for you today and a look at an exciting space western adventure, plus cover reveals, a terrible pun, my kitty queen, and trivia! Let’s get started, shall we?

Here’s Monday’s trivia question: What is the name of the thousand-year-old secret society depicted in The Da Vinci Code? (Scroll to the bottom for the answer.)

Deals, Reals, and Squeals!

Kwame Alexander’s The Crossover will be a Disney+ series.

Phoebe Robinson shared the cover of her upcoming book Please Don’t Sit on My Bed in Your Outside Clothes.

A Spanish language spinoff of Bird Box is in the works at Netflix.

Dolly Parton will star in her own comic book.

Let the Right One In will now also be a television series.

Here’s the cover reveal of Sankofa by Chibundu Onuzo.

Justified‘s Raylan Givens may be back in another series.

Here’s the cover reveal of The Donut Trap by Julie Tieu.

Matthew McConaughey is returning for the sequel series to A Time For Mercy.

HBO is once again developing three more Game of Thrones spinoffs.

Here are the new series tie-in covers for Leigh Bardugo’s Shadow and Bone series.

Book Riot Recommends 

At Book Riot, I work on the New Books! email, the All the Books! podcast about new releases, and the Book Riot Insiders New Release Index. I am very fortunate to get to read a lot of upcoming titles, and learn about a lot of upcoming titles, and I’m delighted to share a couple with you each week so you can add them to your TBR! (It will now be books I loved on Mondays and books I’m excited to read on Thursdays. YAY, BOOKS!)

Loved, loved, loved: 

Ten Low by Stark Holborn (Titan Books, June 1)

Holy cats, was this book fun! The blurb promised “Dune meets Firefly” and it did not disappoint. I would even add “with a side of Mad Max” to that comparison. Bottom line: It’s an epic nerdpurr.

Ten Low about an ex-army medic named, well, Ten Low, who lives on one of the desert wasteland planets at the edge of the universe after fighting in an interstellar war years ago. She travels alone and keeps to herself, but then a spaceship falls from the sky and crashes right in front of her.

The survivor of the wreckage is a 13-year-old girl with markings that Ten recognizes immediately: this is a child soldier, modified and trained to be a deadly weapon by the side Ten fought against in the war. The child is Gabriella Ortiz, a decorated general, and she’s ready to fight Ten, even though she’s lost and injured. But Ten strikes a deal with her, because she’s still a child and Ten is a medic: Ten will help her find the military base she was looking for before the crash in return for medical supplies.

But it’s not long, minutes really, before they’re being chased by deadly scavengers, and things just get worse from there. The General’s rendezvous point turns out to be an assassination attempt—the army is ready to decommission its child soldiers. Now the duo is on the run from the army and scavengers, and they will make a few more enemies along the way before the book is over, when the secrets Ten is hiding also come to light. Will they ever find a place they feel safe again?

I LOVED THIS BOOK. The action is nonstop and lots of fun, with many gunfights and cruiser chases, and there’s lots of dirty dealings and double-crossings. It’s a futuristic Wild West! I also loved the General. Just because Ten is helping her doesn’t mean she has to like her, and she’s a surly a-hole to Ten the whole book, which I found funny, too. I love a reluctant partner-road trip story. (Which is why Midnight Run is one of my favorite movies. RIP Yaphet Kotto.)

(CW for crashes, fires, war PTSD, physical violence, murder, and mention of assault.)

What I’m reading this week.

The 22 Murders of Madison May by Max Barry 

The Final Revival of Opal & Nev by Dawnie Walton

Matrix by Lauren Groff 

Lakesedge by Lyndall Clipstone

Girl Giant and the Jade War by Van Hoang

Groan-worthy joke of the week: 

Did you know corduroy pillows are in style? They’re making headlines.

And this is funny:

Well, they’re not wrong.

Happy things:

Here are a few things I enjoy that I thought you might like as well:

And here’s a cat picture!

Where’s Millay, lol?

Trivia answer: Priory Of Sion.

Remember that whatever you are doing or watching or reading this week, I am sending you love and hugs. Please be safe, and be mindful of others. It takes no effort to be kind. I’ll see you again on Thursday. xoxo, Liberty