Articles tagged "China"

Booklist Mystery Month 2017!

May is Mystery Month at Booklist! Check out our recent mystery award winners (plus Talia’s “Spring the Trap: Mysteries That Won’t Let Go” webinar titles) and see which Macmillan titles made Booklist‘s “Best of” reading lists for 2017.
The Year’s Best Crime Novels: 2017 (full list) — Top 10 Crime Novels & Best Crime Fiction Debuts

LET THE DEVIL OUT by Bill Loehfelm
New Orleans rookie cop and loose cannon Maureen Coughlin is tasked with helping the FBI track a white supremacist group. Will Maureen go rogue again, or will she channel what she calls her “killing feeling” into doing good police work? Not only has Loehfelm created the most compelling, complex patrol cop in the genre; he has also reenergized New Orleans as a setting for the best in crime fiction, edgy, dangerous, but pulsing with life.

THE DRY by Jane Harper
Harper’s small-town, big-secrets page-turner tells the story of Aaron Falk, who returns to his Australian hometown to attend the funeral of a friend believed to have shot his wife and son and then killed himself. Falk begins to question the details of the crime and, together with the town’s police sergeant, undertakes an investigation that unearths secrets new and old, some involving Falk’s father. A stunning debut reminiscent of Peter Corliss’ Cliff Hardy series.

Find out what inspired Jane Harper to write THE DRY in Booklist Reader’s “Clues to My Crime” column!

THREE YEARS WITH THE RAT by Jay Hosking
Neuroscientist Hosking turns in a startlingly fine performance with his first novel, about a man so determined to find his missing sister that he risks his own reality to solve the mystery of her disappearance. It’s quickly apparent that this is one of those mind-bending thrillers in which time and space are fluid concepts, but Hosking draws us in completely to his labyrinthine narrative.

For titles reviewed from May 1, 2016 through April 15, 2017.

Top 10 Crime Fiction Audiobooks: 2017 (full list)

BEHIND HER EYES by Sarah Pinborough, read by Bea Holland and others
A fine cast of narrators voices this complex, riveting story of a love triangle based on obsession and deceit.

A GREAT RECKONING by Louise Penny, read by Robert Bathurst
Using realistic voices and impeccable nuances, Bathurst portrays a cast of quirky characters in this atmospheric, multilayered mystery.

For titles reviewed from April 1, 2016 through April 15, 2017.

Plus, Benjamin Black’s EVEN THE DEAD, read by John Keating, is listed as a great listen-alike for Celtic Noir!

Trend Alert: Suburban Suspense (full list)

BEHIND CLOSED DOORS by B. A. Paris
The marriage of Grace Harrington and Jack Angel seemed perfect, except for what went on behind closed doors. On their honeymoon, Grace’s new husband, Jack, reveals his psychopathic nature, using Grace’s deep love for her special-needs sister, Millie, as leverage in concocting a depraved scheme that will ruin both women.

COME SUNDOWN by Nora Roberts
Alice Bodine turns up at her family’s Montana ranch and luxury resort battered, bruised, and with no memory of her old life, 25 years after running away. Her niece puts Alice’s return together with the recent murders of two women and suspects that someone very twisted may be living nearby.

TRULY MADLY GUILTY by Liane Moriarty
Moriarty handles neighborhood secrets, indiscretions, and twists like no one else. A spontaneous barbecue upends the lives of three couples in suburban Sydney. From the start, readers know that something terrible has happened—Erika can’t quite remember the details, Clementine doesn’t want to remember them, and their husbands are struggling with the aftermath. But it’s not until midway through the story that Moriarty shows her hand.

A Hard-Boiled Gazetteer to the Pacific Rim (full list)
AUSTRALIA

THE BROKEN SHORE by Peter Temple
This first in a series stars Melbourne homicide detective Joe Cashin, who has been temporarily reassigned to his hometown in rural Australia while he recovers from injuries only slowly explained. But despite its remote landscape, the little town of Port Munro generates some big-city crime. Evoking a view of the continent that is more Ian Rankin than Crocodile Dundee, Temple tells a troubling tale of race and class conflict—with an even darker crime at the heart of it. This deeply intelligent thriller starts slowly, builds inexorably, and ends unforgettably.

CRUCIFIXION CREEK by Barry Maitland
Sydney homicide detective Harry Belltree is as hard-boiled as they come, a kind of Australian Dirty Harry with a little of Lawrence Block’s Matt Scudder, who once said to a killer he was about to dispatch, “I just don’t want you to be alive anymore.” This installment in Maitland’s unsparingly dark series provides backstory, explaining how Harry got to be Harry and how he developed his investigative style: shake the tree, see who falls out, and kill them. So old school you can smell the cordite. readmoreremove

Happy #BookBday (11/29/16 Edition)

Happy #BookBday to three great new reads:

NORMAL by Warren Ellis
LR iconA November 2016 LibraryReads pick & December 2016 Indie Next pick! In this provocative near-future techno-thriller, a foresight strategist (a.k.a.: people who think about geoengineering and smart cities and ways to evade Our Coming Doom) arrives at Normal Head in the wilds of Oregon to unplug and recover, when a patient goes missing from his locked bedroom, leaving nothing but a pile of insects in his wake. “A crackling, funny, and frightening horror story from a unique voice in genre lit.” — Kirkus Reviews

TO CAPTURE WHAT WE CANNOT KEEP by Beatrice Colin
A December 2016 Indie Next pick & Maximum Shelf Awareness selection! Set against the construction of the Eiffel Tower, this novel charts the relationship between a young widow and an engineer who, despite constraints of class and wealth, fall in love. “Hauntingly melancholic in places, Colin’s story moves like wisps of fog through Parisian streets, capturing moments of both gaiety and tragedy. This exquisitely written, shadowy historical novel will appeal to a wide variety of readers, including fans of the Belle Époque.” — Library Journal, starred review readmoreremove

Elsa Hart’s Chinese Library Adventure

Two weeks ago, Elsa Hart‘s fabulous debut, JADE DRAGON MOUNTAIN, about an 18th-century exiled librarian who must learn the truth about a Jesuit priest’s death, arrived on shelves and is raking in rave reviews!

“In addition to being a satisfying mystery, JADE DRAGON MOUNTAIN also powerfully evokes the aesthetics of the time and place it describes. Its visual vistas often resemble centuries-old watercolors…” — The Wall Street Journal

“…perfectly melds history with the mystery genre for a lush look at China on the cusp of change…. one of the year’s most engrossing debuts and establishes Hart as an author to watch.” — Associated Press

“Hart’s sure command of historical complexities, conflicts between cultures, and plot twists leads to a satisfying conclusion.” — Publishers Weekly, starred review

“The mix of history, thriller, and layers of storytelling make for a complex and rewarding novel that deserves a wide readership.” — Library Journal

“Part mystery, part exploration of a culture fading into history’s shadows, Hart’s novel is a fascinating, intelligent debut…. Think Agatha Christie writing Shogun—Hart’s captivating debut has solid cross-genre appeal.” — Kirkus Reviews

“Decorated with a careful attention to detail, this old-fashioned mystery suits its setting in atmosphere and pacing, drawing the reader into an exotic territory. …the first in a series sure to please fans of Laura Joh Rowland’s Sano Ichiro mysteries, set in Japan, and those who enjoyed the magical Malaysian setting of Tan Twan Eng’s Garden of Evening Mists.” — Booklist

How did Elsa Hart get such fabulous detail in her book? Why, research on location, natch! Here’s a piece she wrote about an encounter in the out-of-date foreign language collection of a provincial Chinese library…

I am sitting in my quiet little corner of the library. My chair is in a recess so all anyone can see of me is a dirty blue converse sneaker. I can hear Sherlock Holmes: “But the shoes reveal everything, Watson. Observe the heels, emblazoned ALI STRS, an approximation of the authentic ALL STAR logo. They were obviously purchased in China. They are dirty, which means she has had them for a while, but not long enough to know that the accepted practice is to take shoes to the laundry in order to maintain their clean appearance. The style of the shoes, familiar and therefore comforting, suggests she anticipates homesickness. She is using a library card as a bookmark, which means she has established proof of residence in the city. Clearly she has not been in China long, but intends to stay for some time.” readmoreremove

Stars for SHANGHAI REDEMPTION

“The system has no place for a cop who puts justice above the interests of the Party. It’s a miracle that I survived as long as I did.”

Great news for fans of Qiu Xiaolong’s Chief Inspector Chen Cao series: the new book, SHANGHAI REDEMPTION, has THREE starred pre-publication reviews!

“Chinese exile Qiu once again movingly and convincingly portrays the plight of an honest cop in a police state, in his ninth novel featuring Insp. Chen Cao. The suspense is palpable, and Qiu gives readers a chilling vision of life under authoritarian rule.” — Publishers Weekly, boxed & starred review

“Character study, murder mystery, insider’s look into the hypocrisy and corruption that riddles contemporary China—this novel delivers on all of these, with side dishes of ancient Chinese poetry, Confucian sayings, and food criticism (especially of noodles). Another superb entry in an always outstanding series.”
Booklist, starred review

Atmospheric and rich in details about life in communist China, Qiu’s incisive portrait of a corrupt system is brilliant. Chen is an honorable man in a world full of deception and treachery. His ninth adventure features the usual mix of murder, poetry, Chinese philosophy, and food. Highly recommended for anyone interested in contemporary China.” — Library Journal, starred review

In SHANGHAI REDEMPTION, Chen Cao has been stripped of his titles and his job duties, under the guise of a brilliant promotion, to a new position with no power. But that’s still not enough, as it becomes increasingly clear that someone is attempting to have him killed—and quietly.

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2014 CALA Best Book Award Winners

The 2014/2015 Chinese American Librarians Association (CALA) Best Book Awards were recently announced and we have two winners in the Fiction category:

DECODED by Mai Jia
Both a riveting mystery and a metaphysical examination of the mind of an inspired genius, DECODED is the first novel to be published in English by one of China’s greatest and most popular contemporary writers. “It stands out among Chinese novels for its pace, liveliness and the sheer novelty of the tale it tells. It grips from the first page… [Jia] offers a beguiling and magical mystery tour of China. It is an absolute joy to read.” — The Economist (more praise here)

THE THREE-BODY PROBLEM by Cixin Liu
With the scope of Dune and the commercial action of Independence Day, this near-future trilogy is the first chance for English-speaking readers to experience this multiple-award-winning phenomenon from China’s most beloved science fiction author. “Remarkable, revelatory and not to be missed.” — Kirkus Reviews, starred review (more praise here) readmoreremove

JADE DRAGON MOUNTAIN Signed Galley & Poster Giveaway

ElsaHart-JadeDragonMtnFRIDAY FREE DAY!! Earlier this month author Elsa Hart dropped by the Flatiron Building to say hello and sign galleys and limited edition posters of her stunning debut novel, JADE DRAGON MOUNTAIN!

In JADE DRAGON MOUNTAIN, an exiled librarian(!) traveling through the 18th-century Chinese/Tibetan borderlands must learn the truth about a Jesuit priest’s death before the Emperor arrives. Early buzz is building—it was recently included in a Library Journal genre spotlight article and Anne talked about it at the Texas Library Association book buzz.

We’re giving away FIVE signed galleys and SEVEN signed posters to TWELVE lucky librarians! (Yes, it’s random & sorry you can’t pick which item you want.) To enter the giveaway, simply email Library@MacmillanUSA.com from your professional/library-issued e-mail address (subject: Jade Dragon Mountain) by Sunday, June 7. Make sure to include your library’s mailing address to be placed in the random drawing. Check out the fine print after the break.

Even if you don’t win, we’re giving out copies of this gem at BEA
Plus, you can download a PDF of the gorgeous poster here.

UPDATE 6/15/15: This giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to our winners!

Signed galleys:
Jean Anderson, South Central Library System (Madison, WI)
Paulette Brooks, Elm Grove Public Library (Elm Grove, WI)
Diane Dynan, York County Public Library (Yorktown, VA)
Susan Hayes, Chattahoochee Valley Libraries (Columbus, GA)
Sandy Long, Whittemore Public Library (Whittemore, IA)

Signed posters:
Sharon Cerasoli, Russell Library (Middletown, CT)
Catherine Coyne, Mansfield Public Library (Mansfield, MA)
Juanita Foster, Hennepin County Library (Crystal, MN)
Martha Iwan, Mt. Kisco Public Library (Kt. Kisco, NY)
Sarah Nagle, Carver County Library (Chaska, MN)
Karen Robinson, UMSL Library (St. Louis, MO)
Ashli Wells, Vise Library (Lebanon, TN)

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Happy #BookBday (3/10/14 Edition)

Hey hey, it’s time for another #BookBday! Today we celebrate:

BONES & ALL by Camille DeAngelis
A haunting coming-of-age story about a young outcast as she sets out on a journey to find her long-lost father, who can tell her why she does the bad thing she does—literally consuming anyone who gets too close to her. “Maren’s story also offers readers plenty to chew on: issues of feminism, family, and the very idea of flesh eating. What’s more, it’s a genuinely entertaining (though occasionally stomach-turning) story of a young ghoul’s coming of age. Delicious fun.” — Publishers Weekly, starred review

A FIREPROOF HOME FOR THE BRIDE by Amy Scheibe
Scheibe’s “spectacular” (Publishers Weekly, starred review) sophomore effort explores the coming of age of a young Minnesota woman in the late 1950s. “Fans of Kathryn Stockett will identify strongly with the agonizing choices Emmy must make as ugly family secrets concerning racial hatred emerge. The author artfully folds fashion, cars, and music references into the story, and readers will delight in the surprise twist on the 1950s-style love affair that at first appears to be the perfect solution to the heroine’s woes.” — Library Journal
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Happy #BookBday (2/3/14 Edition)

It’s a big day for #BookBdays!

THE NIGHTINGALE by Kristin Hannah
You’ve heard us buzzing about the February Indie Next pick for a while now, and at last it’s here! “Hannah’s latest is a page-turner that will no doubt have readers reaching for tissues. This moving, emotional tribute to the brave women who fought behind enemy lines during the war is bound to gain the already immensely popular Hannah an even wider audience.” — Booklist, starred review

WE ARE PIRATES by Daniel Handler
“Can a couple of teenagers, a befuddled old man, and a nursing home orderly really steal a boat and wreak havoc in San Francisco harbor? Sure, says Handler, crossing and mixing genres dark and light, YA yarn and midlife doldrum while making readers root for his 20th-century privateers A jaunty and occasionally jolting, and honest take on the discomforts of youth, midlife, and old age, and how ineffective we are at dealing with them.” – Publishers Weekly

HOLY COW by David Duchovny
David Duchovny’s (yes, THAT David Duchovny) debut novel is a “modern day dairy tale” about a conflicted cow, a Jewish pig and a debonair turkey seeking acceptance and enlightenment during a journey across the Middle East. “…a charming fable about dignity and tolerance, complete with anthropomorphized animals and replete with puns, double-entendres and sophisticated humor. Between the book’s sly humor, gently humanist (animalist?) message and wry illustrations by Natalya Balnova, this is a pseudo-children’s book that smart adults should greatly enjoy.” — Kirkus Reviews, starred review
(Watch a video interview with Kirkus! BONUS: Duchovny narrates the audiobook!)
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And The National Book Award Goes To… EVAN OSNOS!

We’re thrilled to share the news that the National Book Award in the Nonfiction category went to Evan Osnos for AGE OF AMBITION published by FSG.

The book explores China’s ongoing transformation into an economic superpower, and the clash between its economic progress and its authoritarian government’s crackdown on social freedoms.

Congrats to all involved!

Stars for THE THREE-BODY PROBLEM

Attention sci-fi readers: if you’re looking for a book with the scope of DUNE and the commercial action of Independence Day, look no further than THE THREE-BODY PROBLEM by China’s most beloved science fiction author, Cixin Liu.

Reviewers love this multiple-award-winning near-future trilogy:

Fans of hard SF will revel in this intricate and imaginative novel by one of China’s most celebrated genre writers… Liu impressively succeeds in integrating complex topics—such as the field of frontier science, which attempts to define the limits of science’s ability to know nature—without slowing down the action or sacrificing characterization.”
Publishers Weekly, starred review

“In concept and development, it resembles top-notch Arthur C. Clarke or Larry Niven but with a perspective—plots, mysteries, conspiracies, murders, revelations and all—embedded in a culture and politic dramatically unfamiliar to most readers in the West, conveniently illuminated with footnotes courtesy of translator Liu. Remarkable, revelatory and not to be missed.” — Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“The narrative will grab readers’ attention with its passionate and fascinating critique of early Communist China, augmented by translator Liu’s lean but informative footnotes for the likely uninformed English readers. But the high-minded premise is really just a vessel for a collection of surreal and hauntingly beautiful scenes that will hook you deep and drag you relentlessly across every page. This is a must-read in any language.” — Booklist

download review copy edelweiss   Download the e-galley on Edelweiss

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