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March 5, 2004 Newsletter March 5, 2004
This Week on
A Bookish Life and Wiseguys Talks to Laurie R. King, Author of THE GAME
Clinton McKinzie, Author of CROSSING THE LINE -- Fast Facts and Critical Praise
One to Watch --- Jonathan Tropper, Author of THE BOOK OF JOE
Our Mystery Mayhem Author, Rita Mae Brown, Author of WHISKER OF EVIL
3RD DEGREE by James Patterson -- Read Our Review
This Week's Book Reviews and Features
Poll: Which do you remember most in the books you read?
Question of the Week and a Special Contest!
Word of Mouth: Tell Us What You're Reading -- TWO Prizes!
On The Book Report Network
Past Reviews
Can't See the Graphics? Read This Newsletter Online
Past Poll: Which of these things do you remember most when you read a book?
Past Question of the Week: Write us one line about the book you last read.
Read more about THE WAY OF THE WISEGUY here. Read the Chick Lit Roundtable here. Read more about the Light Wedge here.
A Bookish Life and Wiseguys
I live in a world where everyone talks about books. I have breakfasts about books, lunches about books and endless e-mails and phone calls about books. By the time a week ends I have a stack of books that I am salivating to read, a stack that I have read at least 50 pages of and plan to finish, a smaller stack of what I have read and finished and need to get onto my bookshelves and at least 1-2 books that I have hurled against the wall and pledged never to tell you about since they were such disappointments.

On my list of "books I started" this week that I WILL finish: GOOD GRIEF by Lolly Winston (March 24th), GARDEN OF BEASTS by Jeffery Deaver (a new direction for him --- historical thriller due out in July 2004), THE HUNDRETH MAN by Jack Kerley (June), THE MATZO BALL HEIRESS by Laurie Gwen Shapiro (April 1st) and THE DOG WALKER by Leslie Schnur (July). Plan to hear more about all of these titles in the weeks to come.

This week we have a review and excerpt of a book that I read months ago and really enjoyed -- THE DEATH AND LIFE OF CHARLIE ST. CLOUD. The author, Ben Sherwood, is available to talk to book clubs. See details about this on the home page of

This weekend The Sopranos are back. Sunday nights I am torn between wanting to watch this show and being horrified by the violence and utter rawness of it when I do. Want to know more about the real-life world of wiseguys? A new book from Donnie Brasco AKA Joseph D. Pistone called THE WAY OF THE WISEGUY has all you'd want to know. Brasco "lived the life" in the '80s sending more than 100 gangsters to prison in his six years undercover. He has more than a few tales to tell. So if you don't get enough of "the Family" watching TV on Sunday nights, this is the book for you. See more about it by clicking on the link above. case you missed our Chick Lit Roundtable, which gives you a chance to hear from 16 of the best-known --- and soon-to-be-known --- authors in this genre, click on the link above.

Have a great week and here's hoping you find a book you love here!

Carol Fitzgerald ( Talks to Laurie R. King, Author of THE GAME
In this interview with's Andi Shechter and Wiley Saichek, Laurie R. King talks in-depth about the setting and characters in her latest Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes mystery, THE GAME. She also explains the difficulties in keeping a series "fresh" and how she incorporates her extensive research into her books.

THE GAME by Laurie R. King (British Mystery)
Reviewed by Kate Ayers
Laurie R. King's bestselling mystery series featuring Mary Russell and her husband and partner, Sherlock Holmes, is beloved by readers and acclaimed by critics all over the world. Now the illustrious duo returns for their most dangerous exploit yet, in a rich and atmospheric tale that takes them to India to save the life of one of literature's most fabled heroes.
Read an interview with Laurie R. King, our review of THE GAME and our advance reader comments.
Read about CROSSING THE LINE here. Read about Clinton McKinzie here. Read about TRIAL BY ICE AND FIRE here.
Clinton McKinzie, Author of CROSSING THE LINE -- Fast Facts and Critical Praise
CROSSING THE LINE by Clinton McKinzie is on-sale 4/27. New this week: Read Fact Facts and Praise about McKinzie

In CROSSING THE LINE, FBI agent Mary Chang is hot on the trail of Hidalgo, a murderous drug lord who recently relocated to a Wyoming canyon. Determined to bring Hidalgo to custody, Chang enlists Special Agent Antonio Burns and his renegade brother, Roberto. Despite Mary's and Anthony's efforts, their plans soon descend into a world of loss, betrayal and terror.
Read our Suspense/Thriller Spotlight here.
One to Watch --- Jonathan Tropper, Author of THE BOOK OF JOE
Jonathan Tropper is an author we are watching. Here's the plot of his latest: Right after high school, Joe Goffman left sleepy Bush Falls, Connecticut, and never looked back. Fifteen years later, he wrote a novel that savaged everyone in his hometown --- then became a national best seller and huge hit movie. Lucky for Joe, he never planned on going home --- until now...

Here are our ARC winners and a second excerpt from THE BOOK OF JOE.
Read more about Jonathan Tropper and THE BOOK OF JOE.
Read more about WHISKER OF EVIL here. Read more about Rita Mae Brown here. Read more about THE TAIL OF THE TIP-OFF here.
Our Mystery Mayhem Author, Rita Mae Brown, Author of WHISKER OF EVIL
Rita Mae Brown is the author of the Sneaky Pie mystery series. Her latest WHISKER OF EVIL will be in stores on March 30th along with the paperback of the THE TAIL OF THE TIPOFF.

Here's the plot of WHISKER OF EVIL: A mysterious death in a Virginia farm town has the locals scratching their heads --- while frisky feline Mrs. Murphy and her friends, fat-cat Pewter and a corgi named Tee Tucker, uncover clues as they curl their way around a cold-blooded killer.

Read more about this book and Rita Mae Brown by clicking on the links below. This week we add second excerpt from WHISKER OF EVIL to our feature and announce our advance reading copy winners.
Read our Mystery Mayhem feature here.
3RD DEGREE by James Patterson -- Read Our Review
3RD DEGREE by James Patterson and Andrew Gross (Thriller)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
An exploding townhouse, a missing infant's body, a sinister note and a series of violent incidents, all linked to political terrorists, are just some of the plot points of James Patterson's third novel featuring the Women's Murder Club, who must get to the bottom of all this violence before it's too late.
Click here to read our review of 3RD DEGREE here.
This Week's Book Reviews and Features
Reviewed by Brandon M. Stickney
Ben Sherwood, author of the national bestseller THE MAN WHO ATE THE 747, tells the haunting story of a young man who narrowly survives a terrible car crash that kills his little brother. Years later, the brothers' bond remains so strong that it transcends the normal boundaries separating life and death.

A QUESTION OF BLOOD: An Inspector Rebus Novel by Ian Rankin (Mystery)
Reviewed by Barbara Lipkien Gershenbaum
This latest novel from Ian Rankin is a timely police procedural featuring Detective Inspector John Rebus, who has an injury that makes him the prime suspect in a murder. At the same time, he is called upon to help solve a Columbine-like murder-suicide involving one of his relatives.

FLIM-FLAM MAN: A True Family History by Jennifer Vogel (Biography)
Reviewed by Sarah Rachel Egelman
One morning, Jennifer Vogel opened the newspaper and read that her estranged father was on the run. John Vogel had been arrested for single-handedly counterfeiting nearly $20 million in U.S. currency. Framed around the six months her father eluded authorities, Jennifer's memoir documents the police chase and vividly chronicles her tumultuous childhood while examining her father's legacy.

COTTONWOOD by Scott Phillips (Historical Fiction)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
The town of Cottonwood, Kansas is forever changed by the arrival of Marc Leval, a wealthy Chicago developer who has major plans for the small town. While many of its citizens distrust Leval's motives, self-educated saloon owner and photographer William Ogden finds himself dangerously obsessed with Leval's wife.

THE CUTTING ROOM by Laurence Klavan (Mystery)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
In this witty and suspenseful novel Roy Milano, a New York City film aficionado, finds his ordinary life suddenly transformed when he's plunged into a harrowing game of intrigue, duplicity and danger.

NERVE'S GUIDE TO SEX ETIQUETTE FOR LADIES AND GENTLEMAN by Emma Taylor and Lorelei Sharkey (Human Sexuality)
Reviewed by Bethanne Kelly Patrick
The spirit of Emily Post meets the soul of Suzy Bright in this tell-it-like-it-is new volume of "sexiquette" from the women who brought you the sex column "The Em and Lo Down: Advice from Near Experts," as well as, the Web site devoted to the new sexual universe.

HOWLING AT THE MOON by Walter Yetnikoff with David Ritz (Memoir)
Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub
As President of CBS Records Group from 1975 through 1990, Walter Yetnikoff created the most profitable stable of artists in music history. Revealing the complete star-studded story, this memoir gives center stage to a man who led one of the most remarkable runs of success --- and self-destruction --- ever seen in the entertainment industry.
Read the reviews and features here.
Read Author Bibliographies here. Search here Read about upcoming books here.
Poll: Which do you remember most in the books you read?
Which of the following books are you most looking forward to reading?

Bad Business: A Spenser Novel by Robert B. Parker
Bad Men by John Connolly
Bet Me by Jennifer Crusie
Black Creek Crossing by John Saul
The Burglar on the Prowl by Lawrence Block
A Death in Vienna by Daniel Silva
The Forgotten Man by Robert Crais
The Game by Laurie R. King
High Country by Nevada Barr
Holy Fools by Joanne Harris
The Last Goodbye by Reed Arvin
The Last Juror by John Grisham
The True and Outstanding Adventures of the Hunt Sisters by Elisabeth Robinson
Whisker of Evil by Rita Mae Brown
I am not interested in reading any of these titles.
Answer the Poll here.
CINEMATHERAPY FOR THE SOUL: The Girl's Guide to Finding Inspiration One Movie at a Time, by Nancy Peske and Beverly West here. Read our Books Into Movies feature here.
Question of the Week and a Special Contest!
Special Question Prize This Week!

What is your favorite book that was made into a movie?

FIVE winners each will receive a copy of CINEMATHERAPY FOR THE SOUL by Nancy Peske and Beverly West. To qualify send your reply to our Question of the Week to by Thursday, March 11th at 11:59PM.
Answer the Question of the Week.
Read more about A DEATH IN VIENNA here. Read more about 3RD DEGREE here.
Word of Mouth: Tell Us What You're Reading -- TWO Prizes!
Tell us what books YOU are reading and loving --- or even those you don't.

This week we have some great prizes: FIVE readers each will win a copy of A DEATH IN VIENNA by Daniel Silva and 3rd DEGREE by James Patterson. Please note that our next Word of Mouth update will be on March 12th.
Need more details about Word of Mouth? Click here.

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--- Carol Fitzgerald (
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