Thursday, May 26, 2011

RIN TIN TIN: THE LIFE, THE LEGEND by Susan Orlean



Publisher's Description:
He believed the dog was immortal.
So begins Susan Orlean’s sweeping, powerfully moving story of Rin Tin Tin’s journey from orphaned puppy to movie star and international icon. From the moment in 1918 when Corporal Lee Duncan discovers Rin Tin Tin on a World War I battlefield, he recognizes something in the pup that he needs to share with the world. Rin Tin Tin’s improbable introduction to Hollywood leads to the dog’s first blockbuster film and over time, the many radio programs, movies, and television shows that follow. The canine hero’s legacy is cemented by Duncan and a small group of others who devote their lives to keeping him and his descendants alive.
    

Something for Nothing by David Anthony



Publisher's Description:
Martin Anderson has a racehorse, a deep-sea fishing boat, a vacation home in Tahoe, and a Caddy in the garage. But his life is in freefall. It’s the 1970s, and with the arrival of the oil crisis and gas rationing, his small aircraft business is tanking, as is his extravagant suburban lifestyle. Martin keeps many secrets from his wife, such as his mounting debt and his penchant for sneaking into neighborhood homes and making off with small keepsakes. So when he’s given the opportunity to clear his debt by using one of his planes to make a few drug runs between California and Mexico, Martin doesn’t think twice . . . or at all, for that matter.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Unlikely Brothers by John Prendergast and Michael Mattocks



Publisher's Description:
But the not-so-public face of J.P. is the life he’s led as a Big Brother to Michael Mattocks. As a curious, driven, and emotionally wounded twenty-year-old, J.P. made the life-changing decision to form a “Big Brother/Little Brother” relationship with then seven-year-old Michael, who was living out of plastic bags and drifting from one homeless shelter to the next with his mother and siblings. Lacking a connection with his own brother and distancing himself from a disastrous relationship with his father, J.P. formed a unique bond with Michael the moment they met. Michael and J.P. became like family, with Michael and some of his siblings even living with J.P. one summer. In the years that followed, J.P. took Michael and his brothers on outings, whether it was fishing, playing basketball, patronizing cheap restaurants, or going on road trips. This friendship would continue for over twenty-five years as the two coped with varying degrees of violence, instability, and trauma in their own lives. 


Unlikely Brothers is available now from Random House

Man with a Pan edited by John Donogue



Publisher's Description:
Look who’s making dinner! Twenty-one of our favorite writers and chefs expound upon the joys—and perils—of feeding their families.

Mario Batali’s kids gobble up monkfish liver and foie gras. Peter Kaminsky’s youngest daughter won’t eat anything at all. Mark Bittman reveals the four stages of learning to cook. Stephen King offers tips about what to cook when you don’t feel like cooking. And Jim Harrison shows how good food and wine trump expensive cars and houses.

This book celebrates those who toil behind the stove, trying to nourish and please. Their tales are accompanied by more than sixty family-tested recipes, time-saving tips, and cookbook recommendations, as well as New Yorkercartoons. Plus there are interviews with homestyle heroes from all across America—a fireman in Brooklyn, a football coach in Atlanta, and a bond trader in Los Angeles, among others.

What emerges is a book not just about food but about our changing families. It offers a newfound community for any man who proudly dons an apron and inspiration for those who have yet to pick up the spatula.



Man with a Pan is now available from Algonquin Books

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Life and Other Stuff I Made Up by Tristan Banks



Publisher's Description:
Have you ever been kissed by a dog? Ever had to eat Vegemite off your sister's big toe? Have you had a job delivering teeth? Has a bloodthirsty magpie ever been out to get you? Ever woken up to discover that everything hovers? And have you eaten 67 hot dogs in ten minutes?

I have. I'm Tom Weekly. This book is full of my stories, jokes, cartoon characters, ideas for theme park rides and other stuff I've made up. It's where I pour out whatever's inside my head. It gets a bit weird sometimes but that’s how I roll.



For more information, visit the publisher's site. 

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Wire to Wire: A Novel by Scott Sparling



Publisher's Description:

Wire to Wire assembles a cast of train-hopping, drug-dealing, glue-huffing lowlifes, in a stunning homage to one of our most popular enduring genres—the American crime novel.
While riding a freight car through Detroit, Michael Slater suffers a near-fatal accident—a power line to the head. After a questionable recovery and a broken relationship, he abandons his new home in the Arizona desert, though not before leaving a man for dead. Slater returns to Michigan in a busted-up Ford to reunite with an old train-hopping pal, but quickly discovers that the Pleasant Peninsula of his youth is none too pleasant. As Slater’s past catches up with his present—a love triangle, a local drug dealer, the damaged residents of a destitute Northern Michigan town—rock bottom keeps slipping farther away.
Three years later, Slater sits in a dark video-editing suite, popping speed like penny candy, attempting to reconcile himself with the unfilmed memories that haunt his screens and his conscience.
Wire to Wire will be available June 1 from Tin House. More information at the publisher's website.

Friday, May 6, 2011

No Biking in the House without a Helmet by Melissa Fay Greene



From the Publisher's Description:

A celebration of parenthood; an ingathering of children, through birth and out of loss and bereavement; a relishing of moments hilarious and enlightening—No Biking in the House Without a Helmet is a loving portrait of a unique twenty first-century family as it wobbles between disaster and joy.

No Biking in the House without a Helmet is now available. Read more at the publisher's website

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Nom de Plume by Carmela Ciuraru



Three Guys, One Book on Nom de Plume:
It is wildly entertaining, almost gossipy, but travels on the high end of the literary landscape. In this collection of biographical essays we get a glimpse at some of the most important and well respected writers of modern history. Carmela investigates their lives, and why they chose to write under a pseudonym. She writes about Patricia Highsmith, Bronte Sisters, Samuel Clemens just to name a few. What is more interesting to me is not why they chose to write under a pseudonym, it is how they lived their lives.


Nom de Plume will be available June 14, 2011 from HarperCollins. 

Super Sad True Love Story by Gary Shteyngart: Out Today in Paperback



From The New York Times Review of Super Sad True Love Story:

Gary Shteyngart’s wonderful new novel, “Super Sad True Love Story,” is a supersad, superfunny, superaffecting performance — a book that not only showcases the ebullient satiric gifts he demonstrated in his entertaining 2002 debut, “The Russian Debutante’s Handbook,” but that also uncovers his abilities to write deeply and movingly about love and loss and mortality. It’s a novel that gives us a cutting comic portrait of a futuristic America, nearly ungovernable and perched on the abyss of fiscal collapse, and at the same time it is a novel that chronicles a sweetly real love affair as it blossoms from its awkward, improbable beginnings.


Super Sad True Love Story is now available in paperback

Caleb's Crossing by Geraldine Brooks



Publisher's Description:
Once again, Geraldine Brooks takes a remarkable shard of history and brings it to vivid life. In 1665, a young man from Martha's Vineyard became the first Native American to graduate from Harvard College. Upon this slender factual scaffold, Brooks has created a luminous tale of love and faith, magic and adventure.

The narrator of Caleb's Crossing is Bethia Mayfield, growing up in the tiny settlement of Great Harbor amid a small band of pioneers and Puritans. Restless and curious, she yearns after an education that is closed to her by her sex. As often as she can, she slips away to explore the island's glistening beaches and observe its native Wampanoag inhabitants. At twelve, she encounters Caleb, the young son of a chieftain, and the two forge a tentative secret friendship that draws each into the alien world of the other. Bethia's minister father tries to convert the Wampanoag, awakening the wrath of the tribe's shaman, against whose magic he must test his own beliefs. One of his projects becomes the education of Caleb, and a year later, Caleb is in Cambridge, studying Latin and Greek among the colonial elite. There, Bethia finds herself reluctantly indentured as a housekeeper and can closely observe Caleb's crossing of cultures.

Like Brooks's beloved narrator Anna in Year of Wonders, Bethia proves an emotionally irresistible guide to the wilds of Martha's Vineyard and the intimate spaces of the human heart. Evocative and utterly absorbing, Caleb's Crossing further establishes Brooks's place as one of our most acclaimed novelists.



Available now from Viking Books.