Saturday, April 23, 2011

Book News: Goon Squad Wins Pulitzer, Lauren Graham Turns Author, and The Help Trailer

Boy, I hate to pat myself on the back (it's just unbecoming, isn't it?), but let's look back at my Book News post from two weeks ago:
"The Morning News wrapped up their 2011 Tournament of Books with Jennifer Egan's A Visit from the Goon Squad beating out the other finalist, Freedom by Jonathan Franzen. Egan's Goon Squad has made big headlines recently. I first heard about the book on the Book Lady's Blog. Then Egan was in the running for the National Book Critics Circle Award, in which she also beat Franzen's Freedom to win."
Now Egan's Goon Squad vaulted itself into world news headlines this week (yet again) by winning the Pulitzer Prize for fiction. Egan spoke with Wall Street Journal blog Speakeasy about what being awarded this prestigious honor means to her. So basically? You can rely on me for all your book-related news, as I must have my fingers on the pulse. And, I'm going to have to pick up a copy of this book! As should you, obviously. Also, Galleycat reported this week that HBO is creating a series based on the novel. 

A bit less exciting, but if you are fan of either Gilmore Girls or NBC's current drama Parenthood, you should be excited about this: Lauren Graham is writing a semi-autobiographical novel titled You'll Never Make It. I have long been a Graham fan; I've seen every Gilmore Girls episode ever made. Then she was fantastically funny in the (not-family-friendly) Billy Bob Thornton movie Bad Santa. Now she absolutely rocks in one of my favorite shows (Parenthood). Her witty manner and clever way of delivering lines should translate into excellent writing.

I was fortunate this week to be able to review Marcia Clark's new crime novel Guilt By Association for new imprint Mulholland Books of Little, Brown and Company, and the book has made news headlines all over the place. I don't generally re-visit books I've already written about, but I wanted to give you the chance to see where else this book was gaining buzz:

    Sadly, the New England mansion that inspired F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby was razed this week. The 20,000 square foot home had fallen to disrepair, and the community sold it to make way for new mansions to be built. According to the LA Times book blog Jacket Copy, many famous celebs partied there, including Fitzgerald himself, Winston Churchill, the Marx brothers, and Dorothy Parker. To see more pictures taken in recent years (and right before its demolition), click here.

    Last but not least, the trailer for The Help was finally released:

    What do you think? The music seems a little upbeat to me. Then again, there are some very funny parts in the book. I just don't want the important themes in the book to be trivialized by Hollywood. It did give me chills to see some scenes brought to life.

    You may have noticed that this week's Book News is a day late. Good Friday was a day off for me, but a busy day. As a result, you get a Saturday post rather than a Friday one. I am almost finished listening to A.S. King's knock-out novel Please Ignore Vera Dietz, but I am listening veeeeerrrry sloooowly, as I do not want it to end (or to have to say goodbye to Vera). I am also reading Slow Dancing on Price's Pier by Lisa Dale. It is an easy, fun read, which I am enjoying more for its sporadic coffee tidbits and facts as much as anything else. Dale begins each chapter with an excerpt from a coffee column the main character writes for the local paper, and they are both interesting and informative. Have a fabulous weekend, and happy reading!

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