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Category: Books (71-80 of 1850)

Cover for new Agatha Christie novel, 'The Monogram Murders'


Agatha Christie may no longer be with us, but her works are still being published — sort of. Thirty-nine years after the last Hercule Poirot novel, Sophie Hannah is adding a new twist to the story of the famous detective.

Hannah, the author of six mystery novels, is adding a new book to the Poirot canon: The Monogram Murders. The book will be set in 1920s London, around the time of The Murder of Roger Ackroyd. HarperCollins, releasing the book on September 9th, describes it as “a diabolically clever puzzle that will test [Poirot's] brilliant skills and baffle and delight longtime Christie fans and new generations of readers discovering him for the first time.”

Resurrecting popular book franchises is a new trend in literature. Last year, William Boyd penned a new James Bond book, Solo, with the approval of Ian Fleming’s estate, and the Conan Doyle estate recently approved a new Sherlock Holmes take to be written by Anthony Horowitz. Christie is one of the best-selling writers of all time, so it makes sense for her estate to keep her most popular character alive. Poirot has been in 45 of her books and short stories, the most famous being Murder on the Orient Express in 1934.

Check out an exclusive pic of the U.S. cover of The Monogram Murders below: READ FULL STORY

Your 'Orange Is the New Black' season 2 reading list

Spoilers Ahead! Do not read if you haven’t finished Season 2 of OITNB. What’s taking you so long?

A friend once joked that if I went to prison, my lifestyle wouldn’t change that much because I spend so much time sitting around reading anyway. Indignities and dangers of incarcerated life aside, that’s kind of spot-on. A natural theme of Orange Is the New Black is how the ladies of Litchfield pass time, and a big part of that is reading books they normally wouldn’t. Sounds blissful, doesn’t it?

Season 2 features books even more prominently than the first. Some of the most dramatic scenes take place in the Litchfield library, and books serve as plot points, punchlines, insights into character, sexual gratification, and weapons. Here are just some of the most important book-related moments from OITNB and what they may represent. You might want to check a few out, but be careful re-shelving the books once you’re done — you know Poussey is a stickler for the Dewey Decimal System. READ FULL STORY

'Where's Spot?' creator Eric Hill dies at 86

Eric Hill, the author and illustrator of a beloved series of children’s books featuring Spot the Dog, has died. He was 86.

Born on September 7th, 1927 in London, Hill began his career as a teenager, working as an errand boy for an illustration studio while drawing comics in his spare time. By 1976, he invented the character Spot the Dog for his son, Christopher. In 1980, the first Spot book — Where’s Spot? — was published. The book included a lift-the-flap concept, which Hill modeled after a flyer he worked on as a freelance advertising designer.

Spot topped bestseller lists within weeks, and Hill followed up his initial success with Spot’s Birthday Party, Spot Goes to the Farm, and Spot Loves His Friends. Altogether, the books have sold over 60 million copies around the world and have been translated into 60 languages. Various animated television series based on the book’s characters were launched between 1986 and 2000. READ FULL STORY

Diana Gabaldon: Books of My Life

The breathlessly anticipated eighth installment of Diana Gabaldon’s sweeping Outlander series has finally hit shelves. In honor of the publication of Written in My Own Heart’s Blood, we talked to Gabaldon about her favorite books.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: What was your favorite book as a child?
DIANA GABALDON: You got me. I learned to read at age 3 and never stopped, so there are dozens of books I remember fondly from childhood: Alice in Wonderland, Daddy Long-Legs (which was not about a spider), all the OZ books, all of the biographies for “young people” that the local library had, Man-Eater (which was about tigers), The Moon-Spinners… Now, I do recall going to kindergarten, being given a copy of See Dick Run, flipping through it and tossing it on the table, saying — aloud, I was not a tactful child — “Who wants to read that?”

What is your favorite book that you read for school?
I don’t think I ever consciously separated “school” books from any others; I just read anything that came across my path. I do recall loving All Quiet on the Western Front, and I know I read it in a schoolroom, but I think I was in the sixth grade at the time, so it probably wasn’t assigned reading.

What’s a book that really cemented you as a writer?
Personally, I learned to read at the age of three, and have read non-stop ever since. You can read a lot of books in 59 years. I’m sure that every single book I’ve ever read has had some influence on me as a writer, whether negative (I’ve read a lot of books with the mounting conviction that I would never in my life do something like that) or positive.

Is there a book you’ve read over and over again?
Yes, hundreds of them. Most recently, I’ve re-read Phil Rickman’s Merrily Watkins series (for the third time) as additional enjoyment of his new volume in that series, The Magus of Hay. Great stuff!

What’s a classic that you’re embarrassed to say you’ve never read?
Can’t think of any. I’ve read a lot of classic literature from assorted cultures, and always glad to read more when one comes across my path — but why be embarrassed by the fact that flesh and blood has limits? Nobody’s read everything.

What’s a book you’ve pretended to have read?
I don’t usually do this, but if it’s small-talk in a social context, I’ll just nod and smile when someone mentions a book I’ve not read, and let them talk about it, in case it’s something I might want to read.

What’s a recent book you wish you had written?
Oh, Pandaemonium, by Chris Brookmyre! Just fabulous — such a layered, beautifully structured, engaging, intelligent book. I love all Chris’s stuff, but this was remarkable.

What’s a movie adaptation of a book that you loved?
Kipling’s The Man Who Would Be King; beautiful, lovely adaptation, and very faithful, too. And The Last of the Mohicans, which is somewhat more flexible, but still a good adaptation and a terrific movie. Good soundtrack, too.

What’s a book that people might be surprised to learn that you loved?
About half of what I read, probably. I really will read anything, from nonfiction to comic books, and like it all.

If there were only one genre you could read for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Probably mystery and crime. That genre unfailingly provides a coherent structure and guarantees moral content, which you need for a truly good book, while having enough flexibility for almost anything the writer wants to do.

What was the last book that made you laugh out loud, and what was the last one that made you cry?
Well, it was the one I was writing — Written in My Own Heart’s Blood — so I don’t know if that counts.

Do you read your books post-publication?
Absolutely! It wasn’t a Book when it left my hands, and it’s a huge thrill to open the package and find one, all fine and crisp and smelling new. I carry it around for days, fondling it at stop-lights and reading it in lines.

What are you reading right now?
Oh, let’s see… Hunting Shadows by Charles Todd and Deanna Raybourn’s City of Jasmine and rereading Shilpa Agarwal’s Haunting Bombay.

See the cover for 'We Are Pirates,' an upcoming novel by Daniel Handler

Daniel Handler is still working on the All the Wrong Questions series, but he’s also taken his Lemony Snicket hat off to work on another project. We’ve got an exclusive cover reveal for We Are Pirates, his upcoming novel for adults (above), to be released on February 3rd, 2015. The book follows the story of a couple of high school girls who steal a ship and attack other boats in San Francisco bay. We’ve also got an exclusive Q&A with the author — check it out below.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Why did you choose piracy as the topic for your new novel?

DANIEL HANDLER: When I was in high school, everyone had to take a survey on what careers they had in mind.  Every occupation you could possibly imagine was listed, and at the very bottom was a box marked “other.”  A friend and I got everyone in our homeroom to check “other” and then, in the blank, write “pirate.”  The authorities were not amused, but since then the idea of piracy, how impractical and unusual it is in our era, has burned in my mind.

You were born in and live in San Francisco, the same place as the girls in the novel. How important is the setting to you, as an author?

Setting’s always a crucial part of a story.  While there are other cities in which We Are Pirates could have been set, I’m in an informal competition with Andrew Sean Greer over writing the great San Francisco novel.

What can you tell us about the next book in the All the Wrong Questions series?

The four volumes in All The Wrong Questions center around crimes arranged in ascending evil.  The first volume centers on a theft; the second on an abduction; and the third, Shouldn’t You Be In School?, on arson.

What are you reading and recommending now?

I am wandering the streets telling people to read Kathryn Davis’s eerie and wondrous novel Duplex, although lately I have been further distracted by the poetry of Dorothea Lasky and a comic I just discovered called Sex Criminals.

What would your name be if you were a pirate?

“The One Who Stays Below Board During All The Mayhem And Then Serves Gimlets To The Survivors.”

On the Books: Reviews are in for Hillary Clinton's new memoir


Reviews are pouring in for Hillary Clinton’s new memoir Hard Choices, and they’re all over the map. Robin Abcarian at the Los Angeles Times writes that the book “leaves no room for doubt about how she might conduct foreign policy (pragmatically), how she will defend herself against charges that she mishandled the attack on the American compound in Benghazi, Libya (robustly) and about how much she regrets giving President George W. Bush carte blanche to wage war against Iraq (deeply and eternally).” Michiko Kakutani over at the New York Times calls it “a subtle, finely calibrated work that provides a portrait of the former secretary of state and former first lady as a heavy-duty policy wonk” and compares it favorably to Clinton’s 2003 book, Living History. On the other hand, Isaac Chotiner at The New Republic refutes Kakutani, saying her review is filled with generalizations. He writes, “if Kakutani is going to make claims for the book’s merits, she must follow through on her generic praise, and offer some sense of what is valuable in the book, or at least some sense of what she enjoyed about it.” And at Slate, critic John Dickerson says it’s filled with “safe, methodical writing.” In keeping with tradition, Clinton doesn’t reveal whether she’s running for president in 2016. Okay, Hillary; whatever you say. READ FULL STORY

'Brutal Youth': EW's Anthony Breznican reveals inspiration behind his dark coming-of-age novel


EW senior writer Anthony Breznican’s first novel, Brutal Youth, hits shelves and e-readers on June 10. As part of the release, we asked Breznican to write about his teen years and how they inspired his coming-of-age debut.

I never liked to fight. Maybe that’s because I was bad at it.

I didn’t like to get beaten up.

One time while riding the bus home in seventh grade, some guys who were getting bored of picking on me decided I might be a good candidate for one of their younger brothers to pulverize. That kid was three or four years younger than I was — and eager to kick my ass for no good reason. When we came to my street, the whole gang got up and walked off the bus, making a little semi-circle on the street corner. I trudged down the aisle behind them with my head down, then stopped short of the door and sat down in the front seat. The driver looked at me. “I’ll get off at the next stop,” I said. The guys on the street corner whooped and screamed with fury as the door hissed shut and I rolled safely away. (I’m not sure why they didn’t beat me up the next day. Maybe they were really bored.)

If I could find a way to get out of a fight, I would take it. Maybe I was a coward, but I also didn’t like the feeling of hitting another person. When you’ve been on the business end of enough fists, you’re not so quick to make one. I’m sure I said tons of mean and cruel things to other students over the years, which is its own form of bullying. But I never beat anyone up.

That’s kind of ironic, because in my new novel, Brutal Youth, I beat up a lot of kids. READ FULL STORY

Maria Bello to author 'modern-family' book in 2015

Maria Bello is working on a book based on her 2013 New York Times column, “Coming Out as a Modern Family.” HarperCollins imprint Dey Street will publish Miracles and Madness, which will “weave together stories of family, love, sex and faith, chronicling the lessons of her life with honesty and courage,” according to a release. READ FULL STORY

Hey grown-ups: should you be embarrassed to read YA books?


Should adults be embarrassed about loving books meant for teens? With The Fault in Our Stars expected to take in as much as $45 million this weekend at the box office — in no small part due to the swarm of grown-ups eager to see Hazel Grace Lancaster and Augustus Waters live on the big screen — Slate writer Ruth Graham poses a question that might make some fans squirm: Should adults be ashamed about indulging in “literature” meant for the school-aged set? READ FULL STORY

Over John Green, miss Maya Angelou? 5 authors to follow on Twitter now

Authors on Twitter often display their personalities and artistry on the social media platform in a way that the written page doesn’t provide. Their conversational tweets are often witty, inspirational and endearing. (Bonus: sometimes they’ll drop the occasional hint about their upcoming work). Take John Green, author of the YA best seller The Fault in Our Stars, whose 2 million-plus followers eagerly devour his musings on everything from the World Cup to the upcoming TFIOS film. Author Maya Angelou was another favorite on Twitter. In fact her last tweet, “Listen to yourself and in that quietude you might hear the voice of God” — posted May 23, just five days before her passing — has since been retweeted nearly 100,00 times. So it seems appropriate — whether you are over John Green or missing Dr. Angelou — that we share a list of oh-so-hot authors to follow on Twitter. READ FULL STORY

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