Friday, April 19, 2013

April Showers Paperback Roundup

They say that April showers bring May flowers, but that doesn’t do much to distract from the rainy woes of spring. With every week bringing at least a couple days of rain, it seems we are doomed to spend a fair portion of these April days indoors. But your time nesting inside doesn’t have to be wasted perched on your windowsill, sighing over the cloudy skies. At Overlook, we have a little trick that cures the rainy-day blues every time: reading. And just in case you are at a loss for what to curl up with, we can suggest four engrossing paperbacks (on sale this month) with the power to distract you from even the most hellacious storm. So step away from that window, close the blinds, and bury your nose in these books until those May flowers have bloomed.

By R.M. Koster
 This National Book Award nominee takes us to a not-so-fictional place, Tinieblas, where intrigue, violence, and military coups occur as often as fruit falls from the trees. Kiki, the son of a twice-ex-president, has inherited his father’s thirst for power and the presidency. But to become president of Tinieblas takes a Machiavellian intelligence, for one must outwit not only political foes but also the strong American interests. An insightful, furious, and funny depiction of twentieth-century Latin America, The Prince is an essential novel for readers of history and magical realism alike.

“There is art here. Mr. Koster has created a world which no one has ever seen before.” –The Washington Post

                                                                                                           Titus Awakes
                                                                                                   By Maeve Gilmore, Mervyn Peake

Mervyn Peake’s Gormenghast novels are widely acknowledged to be classic works of high fantasy, on par with Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings trilogy. In this series, Peake created the vividly detailed world—at once gothic and surreal—of Castle Gormenghast. When Peake died in 1968, he left behind the tantalizing pages and clues for the fourth and concluding book in the series.

Maeve Gilmore, Mervyn Peake’s widow, wrote Titus Awakes, based on those pages left behind by Peake. Fans of the Gormenghast novels will relish this continuation of the world Peake created and of the lives of unforgettable characters from the original novels, including the scheming Steerpike, Titus’s sister Fuchsia, and the long-serving Dr. Prunesquallor. Published a century after Peake’s birth, this strikingly imaginative novel provides a moving coda to Peake’s masterwork.

By Ross Thomas

Clinton Shartelle doesn’t seem like a good choice to run a political campaign in Albertia. For one thing, he’s American, and Albertia is a small coastal republic in Africa, about to be cut loose from the English Crown. For another, Shartelle is Southern and fiercely proud of it, and his ideas about racial politics veer unpredictably from progressive to rigidly old-fashioned. Rich natural resources make Albertia attractive to businessmen on both sides of the Atlantic, opening it up to political corruption. For his part, Shartelle is hired to make sure that a British industrialist’s favored candidate wins the presidency. But the opposition is backed by the CIA, for whom murder is just another political tool.

                                                                                                                   A Quiet Vendetta
                                                                                                                   By R.J. Ellory

By award-winning and bestselling novelist R. J. Ellory, this thriller takes his skill for suspense to a higher level. When Catherine Ducane disappears in New Orleans, the cops react fast—she is the Governor’s daughter, after all. But the case quickly grows very strange. Her bodyguard turns up horribly mutilated, and when the kidnapper calls, he doesn’t want money: he wants time alone with a minor government functionary. By the time the pieces fall into place, it’s already too late...

A Quiet Vendetta is both the epic story of one mobster’s life—following him from Cuba to Chicago—and equally a powerful thriller of rage, love, and loss. With tension to top Cussler, Patterson, and Ellory’s own bestselling work, it confirms R. J. Ellory’s place at the forefront of the genre.

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