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The holidays are a wonderful time, full of family and friends, but they can also be a bit…overwhelming. Caroline Leavitt has a rather simple and time-honored solution: read a book. Here, the New York Times bestselling author --- most recently of the acclaimed (and Bookreporter favorite) CRUEL BEAUTIFUL WORLD --- shares her strategy for avoiding holiday stress, plus how to pull it off with minimal insult to your loved ones.  
Every December, readers, writers and booklovers gather at Random House’s Open House event, a day when readers are invited to meet their favorite authors and Random House’s staffers to learn more about new and upcoming titles. (There are additional events like this hosted throughout the year.) The event is typically hosted at the Random House offices, but last week for their 10th Open House event, they celebrated by taking things out of house, to the nearby Kaye Theater at Hunter College.
December 16, 2016

Ann Hood: Still Life With Books

Posted by emily
Ann Hood is an award-winning author, most recently of the bestselling THE BOOK THAT MATTERS MOST, which we haven’t stopped raving about since it released in August. That book tells a story of love, loss and the redemptive power of books. Here, Ann continues on those themes with a touchingly personal recounting of a difficult day in her own life --- and the extraordinary way books can make your heart ache and help your heart heal.  
We’re excited to kick off this year’s Holiday Author Blog series with award-winning mystery author and groundbreaking journalist Hank Phillippi Ryan. Her latest novel, SAY NO MORE, is the fifth book in her bestselling Jane Ryland series and already is a Library Journal Best of 2016. It seems Hank could do no wrong even from an early age, when she and her sister decided to take Christmas into their own little hands --- as she describes here --- to miraculous results.  
The Texas Book Festival was held on November 5—6, in Austin, TX. The annual festival is one of the largest and most prestigious in the country and boasts over 250 authors, over 20 venues including the State Capitol, and more than 80 exhibitors --- not to mention live music, local food trucks and plenty of family activities. We were not fortunate enough to make it out there this year, but two fabulous readers, Anne Glasgow and Kathy Bigelow, were kind enough to share their experience with us. Below, they talk about their favorite panels, unexpected author encounters, and which books they are most looking forward to reading.
This past August, Edinburgh was host to their very own international book festival, set in a specially created tent village in Charlotte Square Gardens. They welcomed more than 800 authors in over 700 events, including novelists, poets, scientists, philosophers, sportsmen, illustrators, comics creators, historians, musicians, biographers, environmentalists, economists, Nobel and Booker prize-winners and many more besides. Jani Brooks from Rhode Island was lucky enough to attend, and here she shares her experience with us, including amazing descriptions of Scotland's sights and sounds and her very special Outlander-themed trip.
FOOD AND FEAST is a light-hearted culinary adventure offering a delightful taste of history through the foods, music and wisdom of the medieval table. While the book is the table companion to The Blue Bells of Scotland novels, it also serves as a stand-alone for anyone who wants to “simply” spice up their recipe repertoire while enjoying entertaining --- and sage --- bites on the chivalry, wisdom and historical significance of the Middle Ages.
October 24, 2016

Hachette’s 2016 Book Club Brunch

Posted by emily
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On Saturday, October 22nd, almost 300 book lovers joined authors and publishing professionals for Hachette’s annual Book Club Brunch --- now in its fifth year. Boasting a variety of authors, books and snacks, this event is highly anticipated by readers and sells out nearly every year. The Book Report Network staffers were unable to make it, but we had seven generous readers share their experiences with us, including which authors they connected to most, which books they can’t wait to read, and how the discussion of Min Jin Lee’s PACHINKO --- which readers were given the opportunity to read before the event --- played out in such a large group.
Following the wild success of their Open House program, Random House has expanded their event list to include Big Ideas Night: evenings dedicated to a single book that asks readers to consider big, important themes, motifs and questions. This month, bestselling author Jodi Picoult discussed her latest book, SMALL GREAT THINGS, which shines a light on racial tensions, justice, and the gray area between our morals and our actions. Given the timely subject of her book, Jodi seemed like a natural choice, and her fans couldn't have been happier to meet up at Random House's beautiful NYC office to enjoy wine, hors d'ouvres and time to speak with the author.
Tasha Alexander is the author of the beloved, bestselling Lady Emily series. The latest installment, A TERRIBLE BEAUTY, brings Lady Emily to the beautiful, gripping land of Greece. There, she finds herself haunted by history: ancient history, in all its mystery and lore, and history a bit more recent, when her first husband, Lord Philip Ashton, makes an appearance. To celebrate the release of this 11th book in the series, Tasha has written a wonderful piece for us exploring her inspirations for the series, Lady Emily's trajectory as a character, and where her protagonist may venture next.