Fiction & Literature Book Reviews

THE DAUGHTERS by Adrienne Celt
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 3, 2015

"A haunting novel with real emotional depth, Celt's psychologically nuanced debut continues to resonate long after the last page has been turned."
A family curse haunts four generations of women. Read full book review >
DRAGONFISH by Vu Tran
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 3, 2015

"Right off the bat, Tran displays the most admirable and worthwhile gift a serious thriller writer can have: compassion toward even the most disreputable of his characters."
A missing person mystery is delicately entwined with a heartbreaking story of migration and loss. Read full book review >

WINESBURG, INDIANA by Michael Martone
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 3, 2015

"The premise of co-opting a classic (Winesburg, Ohio) is suspect from the beginning, and in the end, this anthology is a sophomoric attempt at humor and social commentary."
An anthology of short fiction by multiple authors creates a town through its characters. Read full book review >
HOW TO WRITE A NOVEL by Melanie Sumner
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"Sweet, clever, and fun."
How a kid can help her broke, widowed, overwhelmed mom: write a novel! Read full book review >
SHETANI'S SISTER by Iceberg Slim
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"The latest posthumous publication from Iceberg Slim (Doom Fox, 1998, etc.) may satisfy readers hungry for the gritty street reality of an undefined historical time, but the storyline ends so abruptly that it feels as unfinished as the author's life."
The street war between a prostitution ring and the cop determined to take it down turns into a man-to-man fight. Read full book review >

FLOOD OF FIRE by Amitav Ghosh
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"At times slow-moving and repetitive, this novel still provides a satisfying sense of closure to the political and personal issues Ghosh opened up more than a thousand pages earlier."
Ghosh completes his epic Ibis trilogy with a book focusing on the First Opium War of 1839 to '41 and culminating in battles between the British navy and Chinese ports. Read full book review >
THE LAST DAYS OF RABBIT HAYES by Anna McPartlin
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"By turns laugh-out-loud funny and weep-into-your-hanky heartbreaking, Rabbit's story is a powerful catharsis."
Her cancer is back, and all the love, humor, and stubbornness in the world won't save Rabbit Hayes this time. Read full book review >
ALL THAT FOLLOWED by Gabriel Urza
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"The author's family is from Spain's Basque region, which helps explain why an American writer would venture into this fraught history, and Urza does so convincingly, revealing the human faces behind the masks of terrorism and its collateral damage."
A terrorist bombing in Madrid stirs up memories in a Basque town of a politician kidnapped and killed, an act that linked the political and the personal, in this thoughtful, ambitious debut. Read full book review >
VILLA AMERICA by Liza Klaussmann
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"Beautifully written and surprisingly fresh given the well-worn subject matter."
Another sensitive fictional portrait of a complicated marriage from the author of Tigers in Red Weather (2012).Read full book review >
LANDFALLS by Naomi J. Williams
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"Literary art of the first order, intelligent and evocative in the way of the best of historical fiction."
Williams makes an entertainingly erudite debut with a prismatic reimagining of the doomed French attempt to circumnavigate the globe in the 1780s. Read full book review >
INFINITE HOME by Kathleen Alcott
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"A luminous second novel from a first-class storyteller."
Under the right circumstances, even a dilapidated Brooklyn brownstone can save a collection of wounded souls. Read full book review >
BRIEF LOVES THAT LIVE FOREVER by Andreï Makine
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"Moving and thoughtful, this novel—despite its slight frame—has a lot to say."
Translated from the French in which he writes (The Life of an Unknown Man, 2012, etc.), Siberian-born Makine's slim novel portrays the dangers of communism from the point of view of a romantic man.Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Sara Paretsky
author of BRUSH BACK
July 28, 2015

No one would accuse V. I. Warshawski of backing down from a fight, but there are a few she’d be happy to avoid. High on that list is tangling with Chicago political bosses. Yet that’s precisely what she ends up doing when she responds to Frank Guzzo’s plea for help in Brush Back, the latest thriller from bestselling author Sara Paretsky. For six stormy weeks back in high school, V.I. thought she was in love with Frank. He broke up with her, she went off to college, he started driving trucks for Bagby Haulage. She forgot about him until the day his mother was convicted of bludgeoning his kid sister, Annie, to death. Stella Guzzo was an angry, uncooperative prisoner and did a full 25 years for her daughter’s murder. Newly released from prison, Stella is looking for exoneration, so Frank asks V.I. for help. “Paretsky, who plots more conscientiously than anyone else in the field, digs deep, then deeper, into past and present until all is revealed,” our reviewer writes. View video >