Fiction & Literature Book Reviews

THE STRIVERS' ROW SPY by Jason Overstreet
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 30, 2016

"Overstreet's debut novel could use a little more pace and a little less embellishment, but he successfully immerses the reader in a fascinating and little understood era in the nation's history."
During the days of the Harlem Renaissance, the nascent FBI's first African-American agent gets a daunting and dangerous assignment. Read full book review >
ASHES OF FIERY WEATHER by Kathleen Donohoe
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 30, 2016

"This is dangerously fertile ground for stereotypes and clichés, both of which Donohoe largely avoids in a sympathetic tale full of well-shaped vignettes."
Four generations of women tied to Irish-American firefighters in Brooklyn move through this sprawling debut as it renders a family and community held together by the threat of sudden loss and the burdens of new lives. Read full book review >

SALVAGE by Stephen Maher
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 30, 2016

"Maher (Deadline, 2013) keeps the pot boiling by forgoing character development, moral complexity, and plot twists in order to churn out one fast-paced action scene after another. It's all one-dimensional but highly effective if you're in the mood."
A Nova Scotia waterman risks his life to salvage an abandoned vessel, then finds that no good deed goes unpunished. Read full book review >
THE DARKEST SECRET by Alex Marwood
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 30, 2016

"Marwood's tale proves unsatisfying and unsettling in equal measures."
For readers who prefer their psychological thrillers dark, twisty, and filled with loathsome people, Marwood serves up the perfect dish in this story of very rich people, a missing twin, and an ill-fated weekend. Read full book review >
THE ENGLISH TEACHER by Yiftach R. Atir
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 30, 2016

"Atir appreciates subtle spycraft and knows his business, but this tale is often morose and features a woman who can be less likable than the people she seeks to best in her subterfuge."
An ex-Mossad agent sets off a scramble at the agency when she disappears. Read full book review >

BLOOD ON THE TRACKS by Barbara Nickless
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 30, 2016

"Nickless' writing admirably captures the fallout from a war where even survivors are trapped, forever reliving their trauma."
Leaving Iraq has never really meant leaving the battlefield for a veteran whose ghosts still follow her in her new role as a railroad cop. Read full book review >
A GREAT RECKONING by Louise Penny
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 30, 2016

"A chilling story that's also filled with hope—a beloved Penny trademark."
Within a police force, some members must be trained in the science, and art, of solving murders. But does this training create people highly capable of committing them? Read full book review >
THE LEGEND OF JESSE SMOKE by Robert Bausch
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 30, 2016

"Those unfamiliar with football will be heartened to learn that the game's moves, strategy, and terminology are explained well enough that they'll be able to appreciate just how thoroughly la femme here kicks male derrière."
This sports-hero entertainment conjures up a woman who can play professional football in a book that isn't overly serious about such social issues. Read full book review >
HELL FIRE  by Karin Fossum
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 30, 2016

"Fossum traces the parallels between the mothers and sons so patiently, precisely, and compassionately that even fans who know all too well what's bound to happen when their paths converge will be shocked into fresh grief themselves."
Inspector Konrad Sejer investigates an apparently pointless double murder while the interspersed flashbacks that make up the greater part of this sad tale show the victims inching ever closer to a remorseless fate. Read full book review >
TWILIGHT DREAMS by Amanda Ashley
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 30, 2016

"An afternoon's worth of readable, predictable entertainment."
Holly mistakes a vampire for a business associate and ends up on the run for her life. Read full book review >
THE JEALOUS KIND by James Lee Burke
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 30, 2016

"Burke's gritty coming-of-age tale is a typically entertaining read that may cap a trilogy but also begs for a sequel."
The Holland clan that features in various series by the prolific author appears this time in 1952 Houston, where street gangs, mobsters, and class conflict offer a grim view of postwar America. Read full book review >
A SCOT IN THE DARK by Sarah MacLean
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 30, 2016

"Highly recommended."
When a duke's forgotten ward embroils herself in a scandal, the duke decides to deal with her himself. That's easier said than done. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Jennifer Keishin Armstrong
author of SEINFELDIA
August 22, 2016

Jennifer Keishin Armstrong’s new bestseller Seinfeldia is the hilarious behind-the-scenes story of two guys who went out for coffee and dreamed up Seinfeld —the cultural sensation that changed television and bled into the real world. Comedians Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld never thought anyone would watch their silly little sitcom about a New York comedian sitting around talking to his friends. NBC executives didn’t think anyone would watch either, but they bought it anyway, hiding it away in the TV dead zone of summer. But against all odds, viewers began to watch, first a few and then many, until nine years later nearly 40 million Americans were tuning in weekly. In Seinfeldia, TV historian and entertainment writer Armstrong celebrates the creators and fans of this American television phenomenon, bringing readers behind-the-scenes of the show while it was on the air and into the world of devotees for whom it never stopped being relevant, a world where the Soup Nazi still spends his days saying “No soup for you!” “Armstrong’s intimate, breezy history is full of gossipy details, show trivia, and insights into how famous episodes came to be,” our reviewer writes. “Perfect for Seinfeldians and newcomers alike.” View video >