First, the two biggest new releases. These will sell boatloads of copies no matter what anybody does, no matter what any critic says.
Vince Flynn's eleventh novel featuring Mitch Rapp, American Assassin, has already generated lots of excitement. When I googled it just now, on the morning of its release, I came up with a Twitter feed showing me that thriller readers are indeed atwitter about getting their hands on it. And dig this: for the collectors out there it's being released with the red cover seen here and with a silvery version as well. Ooh, pretty!
For the independent reader set--and for those who are young at heart and enjoy a rip-roaring good tale--The Lost Hero, the first book in Rick Riordan's new Heroes of Olympus series, itself a spinoff from his outrageously popular (and really very good) five book Percy Jackson and the Olympians. Modern day kids who are the bastard children of ancient Greek gods and present-day mortals, battling monsters on an epic scale while still trying to get ready to take their SATs in a few years? Good stuff. I predict the kids will be beating down the doors to get to this one (and I'll be happy to sell it to them).
There's a big crop of biographies and memoirs out today.
Some have some broader significance in our culture, and will probably live on and be read beyond this publishing year.
The biography of my state's current governor contains sex, drugs, really big muscles, and Kennedys.
Some fall fairly firmly into the category of celebrity drivel, possibly good for a few juicy tidbits or a few uplifting yes-I-can stories, but ultimately destined--and sooner rather than later--for the remainders bins.
And at least one is the worst kind of insult-your-intelligence trash. Justin Bieber First Step 2 Forever: My Story...really? You know how many sixteen year olds deserve a biography? One. You know who that is? Anne Frank. And hey--you kids get off my lawn! What are you laughing at? I know your mothers...
The first of the season's gorgeous coffee table books is out, this one from the ever reliable National Geographic. Great Migrations is the tie-in to the "7-hour HD epic television event from National Geographic" which will air next month.
A few more mystery/thrillers, from some reliable names. Elmore Leonard's Djbouti is about pirates, and has been getting some good pre-pub press. Read the New York Times review here. The Charming Quirks of Others by Alexander McCall Smith is the seventh of his Isabel Dalhousie books. James Naughtie, writing in the UK's Telegraph calls John LeCarre's Our Kind of Traitor " a compelling tale of deceit, dialogue and the author’s own despair." As for Fatal Error, New Jersey doctor F. Paul Wilson's fourteenth Repairman Jack novel...well, those who love him, love him. He's got a small but extremely rabid fan base--you know who you are--who will snatch this one up. As for the rest of us, meh.
Finally, Nicholas Evans, who brought us The Horse Whisperer fifteen years ago, today sees the release of The Brave. PW calls it his "latest outdoor soap opera." And there you have it.
Have you reviewed any of this week's many new releases? Link your review here.