Today marks the one-year anniversary of legendary singer, songwriter and guitarist Lou Reed's death. Victor Bockris, best known for his biographies of William S. Burroughs and—perhaps Reed's most influential patron and collaborator—Andy Warhol, has updated his 1995 biography, Transformer: The Complete Lou Reed Story with new interviews from Reed's innermost circle (most notably with his wife, Laurie Andersen) along with an array of previously unseen photographs.
Beginning with Reed's childhood in Long Island, New York, and the harrowing details of his electroshock therapy that was meant to "cure" him of his bisexuality, Bockris goes on to chronicle the artistic and personal milestones in his life. From The Velvet Underground's initial conception in the mid '60s and Warhol's enthusiastic mentorship to his thriving, multifaceted solo career—Bockris digs deep, past Reed's intentionally difficult public persona, and reveals the layers behind the incredibly complicated and deeply conflicted icon.
For the big-time music nerds, this is a must-read biography of "the godfather of punk," as very few musicians can be accredited with the deep and far-reaching influence that Reed's career inspired, and still continues to inspire today.
Autumn is here! And so is the November LibraryReads list, featuring the 10 books coming out next month that librarians across the country are the most excited about sharing with their patrons.
Coming out on top is Us, and we were luck enough to talk to the author, David Nicholls, this month! You can read the interview here. We also got to chat with Lydia Millet about her highly anticipated Mermaids in Paradise, and Bradford Morrow wrote a Behind the Book essay about his new novel, The Forgers. The mystery The Burning Room by Michael Connelly, which picks up on long-delayed murder trial, also makes the list.
You can see the full LibraryReads list for November here!
Australian author Richard Flanagan is the winner of the 2014 Man Booker Prize for his novel The Narrow Road to the Deep North. The Man Booker Prize is awarded to the author of the year's best novel written in the English language, as determined by an esteemed panel of judges. The Narrow Road to the Deep North, Flanagan's sixth novel, centers on Dorrigo Evans, an Australian POW captured by the Japanese during World War II. As he struggles to survive horrendous conditions, he is haunted by the love he left behind. See who Flanagan was up against for the prize here.
Emily St. John Mandel, Station Eleven
Marilynne Robinson, Lila
Rabih Alameddine, An Unnecessary Woman
Anthony Doerr, All the Light We Cannot See
Phil Klay, Redeployment
Roz Chast, Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant?
Edward O. Wilson, The Meaning of Human Existence
Anand Gopal, No Good Men Among the Living: America, the Taliban, and the War through Afghan Eyes
Evan Osnos, Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth and Faith in the New China
John Lahr, Tennessee Williams: Mad Pilgrimage of the Flesh
Maureen N. McLane, This Blue
Louise Glück, Faithful and Virtuous Night
Fanny Howe, Second Childhood
Fred Moten, The Feel Trio
Claudia Rankine, Citizen: An American Lyric
Jacqueline Woodson, Brown Girl Dreaming
John Corey Whaley, Noggin
Deborah Wiles, Revolution
Eliot Schrefer, Threatened
Here's some timely news as we approach Halloween: Mary Downing Hahn's spooky 1980s classic, Wait Till Helen Comes, is heading to the big screen. The story of two fractious stepsisters, Molly and Heather, who move to an isolated old home where one of them is befriended by a ghost is deliciously creepy, and contains real emotional heart. Eight-year-old me must have read this book a dozen times—each time, I was scared by but also sorry for Helen, whose loneliness allows her to connect to the similarly isolated and unhappy Heather. Wait Till Helen Comes is a true classic—it's been in print since it was first published in 1986—and Hahn is still writing today.
The sisters will be played by real-life sisters Isabelle (Mama) and Sophie (The Book Thief) Nelisse, and Maria Bello has been cast as the mother/stepmother.
In spite of the fact that it's directed by Jennifer Love Hewitt, I'm still hoping this adaptation turns out better than the one for another of my childhood favorites, Betty Ren Wright's The Dollhouse Murders (aka Secrets in the Attic). Now if someone will just make a movie of Christopher Pike's Remember Me, Zilpha Keatley Snyder's Cupid series or some of Richard Peck's Blossom Culp novels, I can relive my childhood ghost story addiction in full . . .
What's your favorite ghost story?
Author Kimberly McCreight had a hit on her hands with her suspenseful 2013 debut, Reconstructing Amelia, the story of a grieving mother trying to figure out what made her teenaged daughter leap from the roof of her exclusive private school.
McCreight's second novel, Where They Found Her, which Harper will publish on April 14, also starts with the discovery of a body. But this time, instead of a teenager, it's an unidentified infant. Freelance journalist Molly, a new local resident, is hired to cover the story, but her search for answers uncovers some dangerous small-town secrets.
The publisher describes the book as "another harrowing, gripping novel that marries psychological suspense with an emotionally powerful story about a community struggling with the consequences of a devastating discovery."
Sounds like an intriguing follow-up to an Edgar- and Anthony-award nominee to us! And that's not all: McCreight also has a YA trilogy in the works, set for a 2016 release, so fans have a lot to look forward to.