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Tuesday, June 3, 2014

My Favorite BEA14 Books

One of the most exciting things about going to the Book Expo is the chance to get advanced copies of upcoming books. This year I got books from some of my favorite authors, including Dorothea Benton Franks' The Hurricane Sisters, which publishes this month and is certain to be in everyone's beach bags this summer. I saw her at the Harper Bloggers Bash and then ran into a few times on the BEA floor; she is such a fun, genuine person. (My review of The Hurricane Sisters will be posted on June 19th.)

Another terrific Harper author, Stephanie Evanovich, was at the party as well and the followup to her debut novel Big Girl Panties is called The Sweet Spot and is a worthy sequel. The story centers on baseball superstar and ladies man Chase Walker (think Derek Jeter) who pursues restauranteur Amanda, trying to convince her that he is a good guy. But he is hiding something. It's sassy and sexy and if you like baseball like me, this is a must-read. This one publishes in July and my review will be posted on July 8th.

I was so thrilled to meet Jane Smiley, who wrote one of my all-time favorites A Thousand Acres. Her new book is Some Luck, about three decades in the life of an American farm family, and it will be out in October.

Australian Liane Moriarty is an Amy Einhorn find, and I loved two of her novels, What Alice Forgot and The Husband's Secret, which I recommended to everyone and which got rave reviews from many publications. I got to meet her as well and get an autographed copy of her upcoming novel, Big Little Lies about parents at a primary school and a dead body at School Trivia Night. It publishes on July 29th.

Colm Toibin wrote a beautiful novel, Brooklyn, about an Irish woman who comes to America and how she made a life in Brooklyn. His new book, Nora Webster, features a character from Brooklyn and I can't wait to read this October release.

Actor Alan Cumming, from TV's The Good Wife and currently on Broadway in Cabaret, wrote a memoir, Not My Father's Son, and after hearing him talk about it at the Author Breakfast on Saturday, I'm moving this book up on my TBR list.

Gone With The Wind is my favorite book, and I'm intrigued by Daniel McCaig's novel, Ruth's Journey, which tells the story of the slave known as Mammy in the book. It is sanctioned by the Margaret Mitchell estate.

Empty Mansions is a book I have had my eye on for awhile, so I was happy to find a paperback edition at BEA. It tells the true story of heiress Hugette Clark, who recently died and left her fortune to a nurse who worked at the hospital she lived in.

One of the books that had everybody talking at BEA is Matthew Thomas' We Are Not Ourselves, a debut novel that sold for one million dollars at auction. The novel is about an Irish-American family and their matriarch's struggle to get them into the middle-class where their dreams can come true.

I've got a lot of reading ahead of me, I'll keep you posted on the good ones.
What books are you looking forward to reading this summer? Let me know in comments.

My review of Big Girl Panties is here.
My review of Brooklyn is here.
My review of What Alice Forgot is here.
My review of The Husband's Secret is here.

1 comment:

  1. Some great books, Diane! I'm especially interested in Colm Toibin and Liane Moriarty. I'm at the halfway mark in Empty Mansions now - fascinating story!