Weekend Update on the Go

So first, the new column, which features reviews of new books by Peter Blauner, Dana Stabenow, Tom Gabbay, and TK.

Also spent the weekend reading everyone else’s short stories in DUBLIN NOIR once I got over the cool thrill of getting author copies. And I’m pleased to report (but take the bias for what it’s worth) that this is a great anthology that you all must buy when it’s out in March.

Now, to the update:

NYTBR: When I first heard that Garrison Keilor would be reviewing Bernard-Henri Levy’s new, superhyped book, I scratched my head. But reading the review puts things in better context, especially as he’s royally pissed at BHL’s condescending attitude. Otherwise, Leisl Schillinger looks at Olga Grushin’s attempt at ‘apparatchik lit’, Jeffrey Rosen examines the tricky task of judges writing memoirs, and are books on torture really necessary?

WaPo Book World: Michael Dirda reads John Carey’s extolling of the virtue of the arts with much interest; Ron Charles is somewhat underwhelmed by Kevin Baker’s newest novel, STRIVER’S ROW; and Rosemary Herbert, WaPo’s newest mystery columnist, looks at the latest by Howard Engel, PD James, Lolita Files,  Fredrich Glauser and Martin O’Brien.

G&M: Alan Turing’s life is a classic case of where too much knowledge can be a bad thing; Martin Levin gushes about Jane Gardam’s Orange Prize-shortlisted OLD FILTH; and Kathryn Davis continues her career as a novelist “impossible to ignore” with THE THIN PLACE.

Guardian Review: Sarah Waters explains why she left the Victorian era for the Blitz for her latest novel, NIGHT WATCH; Mark Bostridge explains why keeping a diary is a very good idea; Hilary Mantel talks about why she had to change her tune about psychics; and Matthew Lewin rounds up new thrillers by Tess Gerritsen, Michael Lawson and Philip Davison.

Observer: Tim Adams wonders, rightfully so, why misery memoirs are such big sellers; Gaby Wood remains haunted by the Black Dahlia case, nearly 60 years after the crime was committed; and Robert McCrum digs Chuck Klosterman? WTF?

The Times: David Baddiel tries to classify all novels as romantic fiction; Natascha Hildebrant mulls over the pros and cons of writers groups; Simon Callow finds the house where Verlaine and Rimbaud lived; and Marcel Berlins reviews new crime fiction by Pat McEnulty, Andrea Camilleri and Ann Cleeves.

The Scotsman: Ruben Gallego’s novel (shortlisted for the Russian Booker Prize in 2003) may be a story unlike any other;

The Rest:

Charles Ardai talks to Bookgasm about what Hard Case Crime likes to publish, the progress of his next novel and just how important Stephen King was to the imprint. (link via Lee Goldberg)

Scott Westerfield considers himself “bi-summeral,” splitting his time between New York and Australia with his partner, Justine Larbalestier.  His story is picked up on by the Melbourne Age.

With the parental pedigree she has, no wonder Linn Ullman pursued a career in the arts — specifically as a novelist. She tells the Independent what she’s working on and how being the daughter of Ingmar Bergman and Liv Ullman helped and hindered.