Friday, June 5, 2015

BEA 15- Harper Bloggers Fall Preview

One of my favorite events every year at the Book Expo of America, the annual publishing conference held at the Javits Center, is HarperCollins Blogger Fall Preview. Publicists and marketing directors from the many HarperCollins imprints share the upcoming books that they are most excited about, and I enjoy this event because we get to talk to the Harper folks outside of the BEA craziness and we get to see our blogger friends whom we usually only see once a year.

 Harper started off the presentation, and they had lots of books that I can't wait to read. The big one, of course, is Harper Lee's Go Set A Watchman, her sequel to To Kill A Mockingbird, which Lee actually wrote before Mockingbird. I don't know of one person who cannot wait to read this one.

Author Meg Waite Clayton is going in a new direction with her next book, The Race for Paris, the story of two women, one a reporter and the other a photographer, who are trying to make it to Paris to cover the end of WWII. This one is aimed at fans of books like Paula McClain's The Paris Wife. 

Mary Karr's last memoir Lit, is one of my all-time favorite books, and her newest is The Art of Memoir. She shares insights into the struggles and triumphs in the craft of writing, and finding yourself and your voice in the process.

I always look forward to Adriana Trigiani's books, and her new one is All The Stars in The Heavens, which goes back to the Golden Age of Hollywood, basing her her book on a true story. If you love old movies, this is for you.

Harper Perennial shared some books that intrigued me as well. Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor have the #1 podcast on Itunes called Welcome to Night Vale, which has been described as "Lake Wobegon meets Stephen King", and is a hit with 20-somethings. They had a huge signing line at BEA, and this book is sure to be big.

 Rachel B. Glaser's debut novel, Paulina and Fran, is about two art school students. This is a sexy, funny, fast read with YA crossover appeal, and the cover art is very eye-catching and 1970s retro.

Melissa DeCarlo's debut novel, The Art of Crash Landing is one for fans of Lianne Moriarty and Jojo Moyes. It was described as "smart, sweet, hilarious and difficult not to fall in love with."

Harper 360 showed a video made by spoken word poet Steven Camden (whose stage name is Polar Bear) talking about his novel It's About Love. Luke is young man living in the shadow of his brother who goes away to school to follow his passion and find a fresh start. He meets a young woman named Leia and it's all about love. This video really intrigued me and made me want to read this book.

Goddess is Kelly Gardiner's novel based on real 17th century woman, Julie d'Aubigny, who is described as "a cross between Kate Middleton and Lady Gaga". This one is for fans of Sarah Waters and Hilary Mantel, and again, the cover art is mesmerizing.

Morrow Paperbacks had lots of great stuff, especially for book clubs. Kim van Alkemade's debut novel Orphan #8 tells the story of a young orphan girl in 1919 New York City who is sent to a home for orphans where a doctor performs medical experiments on her that disfigure her. Years later she grows up, becomes a nurse and ends up working at the same place the doctor is now practicing. Does she forgive or seek vengeance? This one is tops on my TBR list.

The Sparrow Sisters by former publicist Ellen Herrick is mystical love story along the lines of Practical Magic and Saving Cee Cee Hunnicutt, and lots of us were interested in this one.

Lisa Ballantyne's Everything She Forgot is suspense mystery about a woman who gets into a car accident and is rescued by a stranger who then disappears. In the aftermath, childhood memories come to her and a family mystery is revealed.

From William Morrow, Stephen P. Kiernan's The Hummingbird tells the story of a hospice nurse dealing with two men- her husband, a veteran who has PTSD and a patient of hers, an elderly old curmudgeonly professor. It's a lovely story about relationships, marriage, friendship and human dignity.

Ben McPherson's A Line of Blood is a thriller about a family- father, mother and son- who find their neighbor's dead body and when the police suspect them, the family crumbles. This is more of a domestic drama than psychological thriller.

Homer Hickam, who wrote a memoir October Sky, wrote a Depression-era novel titled Carrying Albert Home, about a couple who drive 1000 miles with their alligator in their car. Along the way they encounter John Steinbeck and bank robbers, among others. It's called a 'cross between Big Fish and The Notebook', and that sounds irresistible to me.

I've got a lot of reading ahead of me, I hope you've found something here that interests you as well.


  1. So many great books!! I really need a copy of Paulina and Fran!

  2. Oooh, so many good books. Orphan #8 would be at the top of my list too. For some reason, the cover reminds me Madeline.

  3. I love that event too. I cannot wait to get the new Trigiani book!!