The Subway-Bound Weekend Update
NYTBR: Marilyn Stasio returns with her crime fiction column, reviewing the latest by Tana French, Kjell Eriksson, Donna Leon and Ruth Dudley Edwards; Susann Cokal compares Tim Willocks’ epic historical to bloated movies like EL CID; R.N. Morris’s “sequel” to CRIME AND PUNISHMENT wasn’t quite what Liesl Schillinger expected; and Bryan Burrough entertained the shit out of me with his review of Vincent Bugliosi’s mammoth, arguably definitive JFK book, though I wish someone would have clued him in that the author never intended anyone – probably not even the reviewer – to read the whole thing. Because if so…oy gevalt.
WaPo Book World: Jonathan Yardley is won over by Khaled Hosseini’s surefire bestseller sophomore effort; Michael Dirda goes along for the suspense ride of Haruki Murakami’s new novel; Ron Charles is somewhat spellbound by Rebecca Stott’s Newtonian brand of book; John Simon in Book World’s pages adds a certain je ne sais quoi; and Ethan Mordden has a new Broadway book? I am SO there.
G&M: Merilyn Simonds sifts through for the best gardening-themed books; Richard Bausch has plenty to say about Don DeLillo’s FALLING MAN; Paul Quarrington’s review of Elmore Leonard’s latest pretty much nails everything that is right and wrong with the author’s work; and Margaret Cannon reviews new mysteries by Maureen Jennings, John McFetridge, Kjell Eriksson, David Baldacci and Donna Leon.
Guardian Review: Pankaj Mishra evaluates a slew of 9⁄11-influenced novels; Ian Rankin reveals his office space; Tibor Fischer enjoys a novelistic tale of a musical mid-life crisis; and Simon Sebag Montefoire uncovers Stalin’s early attempts at…romantic poetry?!
Observer: Kate Kellaway is skeptical about what will get boys reading; Louise Millar explores what happens when memoir-seeking people meet ghostwriters; and Dave Eggers gets the UK interview treatment from Tim Adams.
The Times: John Freeman talks politics and feminism with Sara Paretsky; Erica Wagner delves into the secret writing lives of authors; Tom Deveson is underwhelmed by A THOUSAND SPLENDID SUNS; Andrew Wilson’s Highsmith-esque novel of suspense grips Peter Millar;
The Scotsman: Catherine Deveney chats with Gene Wilder about writing, Gilda and being funny; Martina Cole offers a glimpse into her world; Lesley MacDowell adores the way Lesley Glaister depicts those on the fringes; and Candia McWilliam talks about judging novels and writing her own.
This weekend marks the first time the Chicago Tribune’s books section appears on a Saturday, and while it’s great to see the pages intact, WTF is up with the PDF format of the print edition? One hopes the website redesign will allow for linkable single reviews eventually…Also, for those keeping score, the crime fiction column has been taken over by Paul Goat Allen, who can often be found penning Barnes & Noble’s “Ransom Notes” newsletter of mystery reviews.
Oline Cogdill has great things to say about a debut by Anthony Gagliano and the latest from Michael Connelly.
At the Telegraph, Susanna Yager reviews new crime offerings from Stuart MacBride and Peter Spiegelman.
Jack Batten’s Whodunit column at the Toronto Star focuses its attention on Elmore Leonard’s latest.
The Cleveland Plain Dealer’s Michele Ross reviews new stuff from John Sandford, Lee Child, Michael Connelly, Donna Leon and Cody McFadyen.
Adam Woog reviews new crime fiction by Tana French, Natsuo Kirino, Declan Hughes, Charles McCarry and Donna Leon for the Seattle Times.
The Sydney Morning Herald meets Sophie Gee, whose debut novel THE SCANDAL OF THE SEASON is reported to be both “atypical and audacious.”
The Palisadian Post talks to Bill Bryan, who reveals how his battle with cancer spurred him to complete the manuscript that would become KEEP IT REAL.
Helen Oyeyemi talks with Wole Soyinka about why literature’s primary goal is to battle injustice.
Mark Sarvas finds that Steven Hall’s THE RAW SHARK TEXTS isn’t quite his cup of tea.
And finally, RIP Lloyd Alexander. Goddamn, I really loved THE BLACK CAULDRON and always meant to read the rest of the series.