The Memorial Day Weekend Update

Happy weekend, everybody – it’s been positively fantastically gorgeous in this fair New York City, which is why I’m doing my best to spend as much time outside as humanly possible.

But before I go back out again, here forthwith is my new column, featuring new releases by Ariana Franklin, Elaine Viets, C.J. Box, Robert S. Levinson and Kathryn Fox.

NYTBR: The Food Issue. Sorry, I should care more, but I really don’t. But Charles McGrath has his say on the whole confessional anthology boom, which is now officially over since the NYT has discovered it.

WaPo Book World: Laila Lalami finds Meg Mullins’ debut novel to be “sensitive but flawed”; A man and a woman review a novel by a man and a woman; and Tamar Jacoby wishes Michele Wucker could be more optimistic about immigration.

G&M: The baby business is a mighty big one, as Abby Lippman finds out reading a new book on the subject; John Bentley Mays is charmed by a new tome on the Empire State Building, now 75 years old; and Margaret Cannon reviews new crime fiction by Matthew Pearl, Lee Child, Ken Bruen, Craig Russell and Lou Allin.

Guardian Review: Lionel Shriver’s earlier novel uses tennis as a metaphor for marriage with compulsive success; Andrew Rosenheim’s “Anglo-American thriller” is a real page turner, according to Jay Parini; and who would have thought to judge a literary prize in Mauritius? Well, that’s just what Blake Morrison did.

Observer: Has the UK literary novel lost its way? Robert McCrum makes a case for the form’s decline and fall; the true story of Hotel Rwanda is told in a new book; Steven Isserlis’s take on composers is totally, utterly, up my alley if this review is to be believed.

The Times: Peter Millar explains some of the reasons why Frank Schatzing’s SWARM is poised to be a monster hit; Michael Fishwick is impressed and alternately troubled by David Lodge’s essay collection on writing about Henry James when everyone else did, too; and Tom Cox loves, loves, loves Daniel Woodrell’s new novel – as well he should, because it’s freaking fantastically brilliant.

The Scotsman: Peter Carey addresses those pesky allegations of life-raiding to Jackie McGlone; Denise Mina talks about why she went for a series, the second of which is the marvelous THE DEAD HOUR; Stuart Kelly ponders the media tie-in phenomenon; and Roger Cox is curiously unsatisfied with Christopher Brookmyre’s new crime novel.

The Rest:

The Sydney Morning Herald’s Susan Wyndham shines a light on some of Australia’s most promising new authors, including Leigh Redhead, whose stripper-turned-PI books really, really ought to be published by someone in the US.

Regis Behe chats with Louis Bayard, who puts a neat spin on the Edgar Allan Poe mythos with THE PALE BLUE EYE.

Oline Cogdill looks at Michael Connelly’s earlier journalism writings as set down in CRIME BEAT for the Sun-Sentinel.

Hallie Ephron reviews new crime fiction by Cornelia Read, Ira Berkowitz and Joseph K. Loughlin and Kate Clark Flora for the Boston Globe.

Myles Knapp’s Grit Lit column for the Contra Costa Times reviews the latest by Lee Child, Mike Stewart, James Swain and Marshall Karp.

Is Patricia Cornwell’s AT RISK the best novel she’s written? That’s what the Denver Post’s Dorman Shindler believes.

Henry Kisor – Chicago Sun-Times books editor and mystery novelist – is hanging it up after 33 years. He’ll definitely be missed in this corner.

As if her NY Times’ Crowd Pleasers column wasn’t enough, Janet Maslin also recommends summer reads for CBS News.

Amidst all the Sallis mania, Frank Wilson of the Philly Inquirer sounds a cautionary note when reviewing the author’s latest, CRIPPLE CREEK.

The Melbourne Age talks to Sonya Hartnett, who reveals what it’s like to be unmasked as Cameron Redfern, erotic novelist.

Leslie Larson’s SLIPSTREAM examines post 911 paranoia with a deft touch, as the SF Chronicle’s Rachel Elson discovers.

The San Diego Union-Tribune chats with David Mitchell, whose new novel BLACK SWAN GREEN I really have to read one of these days.

Peter Robinson continues to tour for his newest novel, PIECE OF MY HEART, and the Nova Scotia Chronicle Herald catches up with him.

Two authors for the price of one: Karen Olson, wearing her Connecticut New Register reporter hat, interviews Daniel Judson, whose long and winding road resulted in his brooding new standalone THE DARKEST PLACE.

Cornelia Read gets some attention from her old stomping grounds, specifically the Syracuse New Times.

And finally, Cambridge University is finally making public those hundreds of thousands of tomes considered “too lowbrow” for academic research. In other words, the Porn Reading Room’s going public!