It's Jane Austen week on the paperback aisle, with a sparkling new edition of one of her classic novels and a charming new story about young Jane herself:
By Charlie Lovett
Penguin • $16 • ISBN 9780143127727
In two parallel narratives, Lovett portrays Jane Austen's friendship with a young clergyman in Hampshire in 1796 and a modern-day bookseller in Oxfordshire who begins to suspect that Austen was not the actual author of Pride and Prejudice. This inventive novel is a treat for Austen fans and readers who enjoy literary mysteries.
Smoke Gets in Your Eyes
By Caitlin Doughty
Norton • $15.95 • ISBN 9780393351903
As Doughty points out, we all die, so there's no use shrouding the process in secrecy. In this thoughtful and engaging memoir, the licensed mortician pulls back the curtain to reveal all the details of what happens to a corpse between death and burial (or cremation).
By Jane Austen
Penguin • $17 • ISBN 9780143107712
This Penguin Classics Deluxe edition honors the 200th anniversary of the original publication of Jane Austen's beloved novel in 1815. The paperback has a new cover by illustrator Dadu Shin, an introduction by Austen scholar Juliette Wells, maps of England, a glossary of 18th-century words and other materials to provide context for today's readers.
These four notable books published in hardcover in 2014 are available today in new paperback editions:
On Immunity: An Inoculation
By Eula Biss
Graywolf • $16 • ISBN 9781555977207
In a slender, beautifully written volume that was named one of the best books of 2014 by publications ranging from the New York Times to Entertainment Weekly, Bliss explores our long-standing fear of vaccines and our cultural myths about the nature of immunity.
Treat Us Like Dogs and We Will Become Wolves
By Carolyn Chute
Grove • $17 • ISBN 9780802124180
The second book in Chute's series about a Maine off-the-grid community and its charismatic leader won the PEN New England Award in Fiction. With an 11-page character list and icons scattered throughout the text to help readers keep track of who's who, Chute's novel offers a bold and inventive look at a sect marginalized by the mainstream.
The Human Age: The World Shaped by Us
By Diane Ackerman
Norton • $15.95 • ISBN 9780393351644
The naturalist and best-selling author (The Zookeeper's Wife) offers an illuminating exploration of the ways in which human beings have changed our planet—for better, and for worse.
A Sudden Light
By Garth Stein
Simon & Schuster • $15.99 • ISBN 9781439187043
The author of the 2008 mega-hit The Art of Racing in the Rain spins an atmospheric story about a spooky mansion on Puget Sound and the troubled family whose fortune is tied to the property.
Sadly, summer—and summer reading—are officially over, but that doesn't mean it's time to cut back on reading! These six paperbacks, on sale today, are an excellent way to kick off the fall reading season. Leading the list are two books that are being adapted into highly anticipated films:
By Bruce Cook
Grand Central • $15.99 • ISBN 9781455564989
Almost 40 years after it was first published, Grand Central is bringing out two new paperback editions of Bruce Cook's 1977 biography of Dalton Trumbo, the Hollywood screenwriter blacklisted after refusing to testify before the House Un-American Activities Committee. The two new editions, this trade paperback and a movie tie-in, are linked to the November 6 release of Trumbo, a film version with a star-studded cast that includes Bryan Cranston in the title role, along with Helen Mirren, Louis C.K. and Elle Fanning.
By Mitchell Zuckoff
Twelve • $16.99 • ISBN 9781455582280
A #1 bestseller in hardcover, Zuckoff's account of the controversial 2012 attack on the American Embassy in Benghazi, Libya, is told from the perspective of the Annex Security Team—six Americans who attempted to avert the tragedy that claimed the life of the ambassador and a foreign service officer. A movie adaptation by director Michael Bay (Armageddon, Transformers) is set to premier in January.
Liar Temptress Soldier Spy
By Karen Abbott
Harper Perennial • $16.99 • ISBN 9780062092908
In a history book that reads like a suspense novel, Abbott portrays four women who operated as spies during the Civil War—two for the Union and two for the Confederacy. Abbott's vivid writing earned the book slots on best books of the year lists from Library Journal and the Christian Science Monitor.
By Kim Zupan
Picador • $16 • ISBN 9781250074782
This arresting debut novel from Montana native Zupan captures the unexpected bond that develops between a lonely Montana sheriff's deputy and a convicted killer locked in the county jail. When their friendship leads to an act of violence, the poignant story takes a harrowing turn.
By Alix Christie
Harper Perennial • $15.99 • ISBN 9780062336026
Christie offers a masterful portrait of the brilliant inventor through the eyes of a reluctant apprentice in Gutenberg's workshop. It is young Peter who must oversee the printing of Bibles on a secret printing press—an act that will shock the world and change the course of history.
The Paying Guests
By Sarah Waters
Riverhead • $17 • ISBN 9781594633928
When a financially strapped London widow and her daughter take a young couple into their home as boarders, it changes their lives in ways they never imagined. Waters' tense psychological novel ranked #48 on the BookPage list of Best Books of 2014.
A riveting real-life survival story and an inventive debut novel by a musician are among the paperbacks on sale today:
Deep Down Dark
By Héctor Tobar
Picador • $16 • ISBN 978125007485
Championed by novelist Ann Patchett, among others, Tobar's account of the 33 Chilean miners trapped more than 2,000 feet below the surface is meticulously researched and often heartrending. Antonio Banderas will star in a film adaptation, The 33, set to debut in theaters on November 13.
Wolf in White Van
By John Darnielle
Picador • $16 • ISBN 9781250074713
A finalist for the L.A. Times Book Prize for First Fiction, this wildly original novel from the singer for the indie band the Mountain Goats explores the aftermath of trauma through the experiences of a reclusive game designer.
By Amy FitzHenry
Berkley • $15 • ISBN 9780425281116
When Emma's career-minded mother announces that she's too busy to attend her daughter's rehearsal dinner, the bride-to-be finds all her doubts about marriage and forever overcoming her hopes for a happily-ever-after. Taking the advice of her best friend, Emma heads to San Francisco to track down the father who skipped out on her and to confront at last the emotions she can no longer hide. This charming debut novel by a Los Angeles lawyer is a trade paperback original.
Fire Shut Up in My Bones
By Charles M. Blow
Mariner • $14.95 • ISBN 9780544570115
In a powerful memoir, the New York Times columnist recalls the poverty and abuse of his Louisiana childhood and reveals the echoes of his tramautic past in a long, painful search for his personal and sexual identity.
A self-published sci-fi novel that became a bestseller tops our selection of paperbacks on sale today:
By Andy Weir
Broadway • $15 • ISBN 9781101903582
Who wants to see Matt Damon in the role of an astronaut stranded on Mars, using his scientific smarts and ingenuity to survive? Or Kristen Wiig as the snarky NASA spokeswoman trying to explain what went wrong with the botched Mars mission? In a film adaptation directed by Ridley Scott? Picture me wildly waving my hand. This new movie tie-in edition of Weir’s absorbing and thoroughly convincing SF tale should give you plenty of time to enjoy the book before the film hits theaters on Oct. 2.
By Bryan Stevenson
Spiegel & Grau • $16 • ISBN 9780812984965
In a powerful memoir that was included on several best books of the year lists in 2014, the Harvard Law grad and founder of the Equal Justice Initiative recounts his efforts to represent the poor and wrongly condemned, focusing on the disturbing case of a young black man sentenced to death for the murder of a white woman in Monroeville, Alabama (Harper Lee's hometown).
The Moor's Account
By Laila Lalami
Vintage • $15.95 • ISBN 9780804170628
A finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in fiction, Lalami's searing historical novel was also named a Top 10 Book of the Year by the Wall Street Journal. The Moor of the title is Mustafa, who is sold into slavery and sent on a mission to the Americas in 1527 with the Spanish explorer Narváez. Lalami brings the conflicts of the era to life through extensive research and an entirely new perspective.
A best-selling novel that’s sure to appeal to book clubs and two short story collections by Southern masters of the form top the list of new paperbacks on sale today:
Big Little Lies
By Liane Moriarty
Berkley • $16 • ISBN 9780425274866
Attention, book clubs: The latest novel from the author of The Husband's Secret is out in paperback, with a page-turning plot and a juicy satire of suburban scandal. Book clubs will find plenty to talk about, from cliques and bullying to parenting and infidelity. The paperback includes a list of discussion questions worthy of an AP English exam.
By Tony Earley
Back Bay • $14.99 • ISBN 9780316246149
In his first collection in 20 years, the author of the lluminous novel Jim the Boy offers a novella and six short stories that showcase his talent for capturing the rhythms and characters of Southern life. Many of the stories explore the poignant complexities of relationships, including the moving title story in which a newly married mountain woman has a fateful encounter with a grieving neighbor. The paperback includes a reading group guide.
Something Rich and Strange
By Ron Rash
Ecco • $16.99 • ISBN 9780062349354
If I had to choose one word to describe Rash's stories, it would be "powerful." Set mostly in the mountains of western North Carolina, the 34 stories here constitute a "best of" collection drawn from his four previous volumes of stories. (Rash is also the author of five novels, including Serena and The Cove). Spare, poetic and compelling, many of these stories will take your breath away. As evidence, we refer you to "The Trusty," first published in The New Yorker in 2011.
A selection of the best new paperbacks on sale today:
Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good
By Jan Karon
Berkley • $16 • ISBN 9780425276211
The 10th installment of Karon's beloved series finds Father Tim back in Mitford, trying to figure out his place in the village since his retirement as parish priest.
The Ogallala Road
By Julene Bair
Penguin • $17 • ISBN 9780143127079
In this compelling and beautifully written memoir, Bair recounts the rewards and challenges of returning to her family's farm on the Great Plains, where she finds both a promising new romantic relationship and a troubling legacy of environmental transgressions.
The Boston Girl
By Anita Diamant
Scribner • $16 • ISBN 9781439199367
Diamant offers a tour of 20th-century American history through the eyes of her novel's narrator—a spunky Jewish woman relating the gripping events of her life story to an adoring granddaughter.
The Secret Place
By Tana French
Penguin • $17 • ISBN 9780143127512
The latest entry in French's acclaimed Dublin Murder Squad series revolves around a deliciously twisted murder case at a prestigious Irish girls school.
By Cecilia Galante
Morrow • $14.99 • ISBN 9780062363510
The author of several popular YA and children's books makes her adult fiction debut with the moving story of four young women—close friends when they lived together at a group home for teens—who reunite 15 years later and confront the troubles from their past.
By Paul Ham
Picador • $20 • ISBN 9781250070050
A journalist and historian, Ham investigates the World War II nuclear bombings of two Japanese cities, which claimed the lives of more than 100,000 people, and concludes that the bombings did little to change the course of the war.
Here's an after-hours summer reading plan—open a bottle of wine and curl up with one of these new paperbacks, on sale today:
By Elizabeth Little
Penguin • $16 • ISBN 9780143127369
Little made a big splash—and earned (inevitable) comparisons to Gone Girl—with this debut mystery narrated by a sassy socialite convicted of killing her mother. When her conviction is overturned 10 years later, Jane leaves prison with one goal: finding the real killer.
The Long Way Home
By Louise Penny
Minotaur • $15.99 • ISBN 9781250022059
The 10th entry in Penny's acclaimed series finds Chief Inspector Gamache happily retired in the Québec village of Seven Pines—until a neighbor solicits his help in solving the mystery of her husband's disappearance.
The Story Hour
By Thrity Umrigar
Harper Perennial • $15.99 • ISBN 9780062259318
In her sixth novel, the author of The World We Found captures the emotional turmoil of two very different women—African-American psychologist Maggie and her patient Lakshmi, an Indian immigrant—and the crisis that ensues when their friendship crosses professional lines.
Shadows in the Vineyard
By Maximillian Potter
Twelve • $16 • ISBN 9781455516094
Expanding on a story he first reported for Vanity Fair, Potter travels to a legendary vineyard in Burgundy to ferret out the intriguing details of a plot to poison some of the region's most valuable grapevines. For oenophiles, Francophiles and true crime fans, this suspenseful story is a well-balanced summer diversion.
A highly anticipated sequel and two promising debut novels are on sale in paperback today:
The Rosie Effect
By Graeme Simsion
Simon & Schuster • $15.95 • ISBN 9781476767321
This sequel to Simsion's 2013 hit The Rosie Project (which is set to be adapted to film with Jennifer Lawrence in the starring role) follows odd couple Rosie and Don to New York City as they begin married life—and await the birth of their first child. This winning look at the anxieties of fatherhood was the BookPage Top Pick in fiction in January when it was released in hardcover.
The Story of Land and Sea
By Katy Simpson Smith
Harper Perennial • $15.99 • ISBN 9780062335951
Smith's powerful and poetic debut, set in the South during the Revolutionary War era, drew considerable critical acclaim when it was published in hardcover last year. The paperback includes an essay by the author about the novel's origins and her research into 18th-century events and figures.
The Coincidence of Coconut Cake
By Amy E. Reichert
Gallery • $16 • ISBN 9781501100710
What happens when a talented Milwaukee chef finds herself falling for the very reviewer who skewered her restaurant? In this paperback original, Reichert cooks up a tasty mix of comedy and romance as the two take the first steps toward an unlikely relationshlp. The book includes a readers group guide—and a recipe for coconut cake.
Today's new paperback releases range from a captivating novel about the recent past to a frightening portrait of our possible future.
By Jane Smiley
Anchor • $15.95 • ISBN 9780307744807
With this volume, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author launches a trilogy that will follow the members of one Iowa family for 100 years, with each chapter covering a single year. Capturing the rhythms of life, the pull of family and the hardships of farming, Smiley's luminous first entry in the series ranked #2 on our list of the Best Books of 2014.
The Ice Cream Queen of Orchard Street
By Susan Jane Gilman
Grand Central • $15 • ISBN 9780446696944
The first work of fiction from the author of Undress Me in the Temple of Heaven (2009) and two other best-selling memoirs is a rich historical novel about a Russian immigrant who uses all her charms (and wiles) to become a successful entrepreneur in America. The paperback includes a reading group guide.
The Secret History of Wonder Woman
By Jill Lepore
Vintage • $16.95 • ISBN 9780804173407
Researching the private papers of Wonder Woman's creator, William Moulton Marston, the New Yorker staff writer and Harvard historian uncovered evidence of Marston's highly unusual family life. The paperback includes an afterword with new disclosures.
By Amy Bloom
Random House • $16 • ISBN 9780812978940
A bestseller in hardcover, Bloom's distinctly American story of two half-sisters on a riotous road trip to Hollywood was named one of the best novels of 2014 by the Washington Post. The paperback includes a reader's guide.
Season of the Dragonflies
By Sarah Creech
Morrow • $14.99 • ISBN 9780062307538
Set in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, Creech's enchanting debut follows the fortunes of the Lenore family, known for creating a much sought-after perfume with special powers. The paperback includes a reading group guide.
By Edan Lepucki
Back Bay • $16 • ISBN 9780316250832
Lepucki's post-apocalyptic debut novel became a cause célèbre almost by accident when it happened to hit the market last summer just as Hachette's battle with Amazon was heating up. Used by Stephen Colbert as the centerpiece of a protest against the online bookselling giant, the book drew readers who might otherwise have overlooked this disturbing look at one couple trying to survive in the wilderness after fleeing L.A. The paperback includes a reading group guide.