Fiction & Literature Book Reviews

GIRL UNDERWATER by Claire Kells
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 31, 2015

"With its subzero temperatures that will make you reach for a blanket and a wounded but never weakened heroine, Kells' assured debut is a winner."
A plane crash in the Rockies leaves more than physical scars on an up-and-coming competitive college swimmer. Read full book review >
PRETTY UGLY by Kirker Butler
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 31, 2015

"Butler's excellent observational skills and hilarious prose make this a simultaneously funny and awful satire of thwarted ambition."
Aging beauty queen Miranda forces her preteen daughter to compete in pageants while her pill-popping husband, Ray, a nurse, conducts an affair with the teenage granddaughter of a hospice patient in this first novel from TV writer and producer Butler (Family Guy, etc.). Read full book review >

THE WORLD BEFORE US by Aislinn Hunter
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 31, 2015

"Not an easy read but a compelling exploration of how memory shapes and is shaped by individuals and society."
Hunter's haunting—if sometimes elusive—second novel (Stay, 2005) wavers between practical life in the present and the unplumbed memories of a British archivist and her long-dead research subjects.Read full book review >
WHISKERS OF THE LION by P.L. Gaus
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 31, 2015

"Out of the peaceful world of buggies and prayer caps, Gaus conjures a nail-biter that doesn't give up its secrets any quicker than the Amish."
The murder of Ruth Zook (The Names of Our Tears, 2013) continues to take its toll on the Amish community of Holmes County, Ohio.Read full book review >
BLACK DOVE, WHITE RAVEN by Elizabeth Wein
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 31, 2015

"Unforgettable. (Historical fiction. 12 & up)"
Wein returns to Ethiopia, the setting of her Arthurian adventures, for a high-flying novel about the 1935 Italian invasion. Read full book review >

Second Helpings at the Serve You Right Café by Tilia Klebenov Jacobs
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 2015

"A charming story for those who enjoy a quick, action-packed, romantic fairy tale."
A quirky romantic novella about a reformed ex-con and the enterprising young woman who helps him rediscover his self-worth. Read full book review >
Freaks I've Met by Donald Jans
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 2, 2015

"An engrossing but tongue-in-cheek drama that, even at its most dramatic, will leave readers smiling."
A Spokane college graduate searches for wealth and fame in LA but finds only a string of dead-end jobs and outlandish individuals in Jans' witty debut drama. Read full book review >
FALSE TONGUES by Kate Charles
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 7, 2015

"Callie has never been more appealing than in this sensitive exploration of love and loss."
A trip to her old college offers deacon Callie Anson (Deep Waters, 2009, etc.) both challenges and opportunities.Read full book review >
HOUSE OF ECHOES by Brendan Duffy
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 7, 2015

"A wonderfully tense and heart-wrenching debut."
In an isolated village in upstate New York, a young family finds "[d]emons in the wood and devils at the door." Read full book review >
SISTERS OF HEART AND SNOW by Margaret Dilloway
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 7, 2015

"In this enjoyable novel, imperfect and at times unlikable women become lovable."
In Dilloway's third novel (The Care and Handling of Roses with Thorns, 2012, etc.), two estranged sisters wonder what they can learn from a 12th-century female samurai.Read full book review >
ACADEMY STREET by Mary Costello
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 7, 2015

"Costello renders her homely, knowing heroine with craft and compassion in this sad, slim, rich novel."
In this darkly beautiful first novel, a girl finds happiness elusive and short-lived as she comes of age in Ireland and becomes a mother in the U.S. in the last century's latter half. Read full book review >
THE AMERICAN PEOPLE by Larry Kramer
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 7, 2015

"Breathtakingly well-written. And how could one not keep reading, no matter how endless, a book with a line such as 'You don't just drop a penis like Tibby's into the narrative and let it go'?"
Vast opening salvo in a thunderous assault on the prideful prejudice that separates "us" from "them" in the time of AIDS. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Bill Browder
author of RED NOTICE
March 24, 2015

Bill Browder’s Red Notice is a nonfiction political thriller about an American financier in the Wild East of Russia, the murder of his principled young tax attorney, and his mission to expose the Kremlin’s corruption. In 2007, a group of Russian law enforcement officers raided Browder’s offices in Moscow and stole $230 million of taxes that his fund’s companies had paid to the Russian government. Browder’s attorney Sergei Magnitsky investigated the incident and uncovered a sprawling criminal enterprise. A month after Sergei testified against the officials involved, he was arrested and thrown into pre-trial detention, where he was tortured for a year. On November 16, 2009, he was led to an isolation chamber, handcuffed to a bedrail, and beaten to death by eight guards in full riot gear. “It may be that ‘Russian stories never have happy endings,’ ” our reviewer writes about Red Notice, “but Browder’s account more than compensates by ferociously unmasking Putin’s thugocracy.” View video >