Excerpt (27)
Excerpt The Other Typist Suzanne Rindell (Amy Einhorn Books)
Excerpt Robert B. Parker’s Wonderland Ace Atkins (Putnam)
Excerpt Zero Hour Clive Cussler (Putnam)
Excerpt The Pocket Scavenger Keri Smith (Perigee)
Excerpt Parenting Without Borders Christine Gross-Loh (Avery)
Excerpt The World’s Strongest Librarian Josh Hanagarne (Gotham)
Excerpt The Book of Woe Gary Greenberg (Blue Rider Press)
Excerpt Original Skin David Mark (Blue Rider Press)
Excerpt Silken Prey John Sandford (Putnam)
Excerpt American Savage Dan Savage (Dutton)
Excerpt A Conspiracy of Faith Jussi Adler-Olsen (Dutton)
Excerpt The Plateau Effect Bob Sullivan and Hugh Thompson (Dutton)
Excerpt Appointment in Samarra John O’Hara (Penguin)
Excerpt Mom’s List St. John Greene (Plume)
Excerpt Calmer, Easier, Happier Parenting Noel Janis-Norton (Plume)
Excerpt A Map of Tulsa Benjamin Lytal (Penguin)
Excerpt Red Ruby Heart in a Cold Blue Sea Morgan Callan Rogers  (Plume)
Excerpt Darkness Unmasked Keri Arthur (Signet Select)
Excerpt Cooked Michael Pollan (The Penguin Press)
Excerpt Ransom River Meg Gardiner (Dutton Adult)
Excerpt Angel City Jon Steele Blue Rider Press
Excerpt The Enemy Tom Wood (Signet)
Excerpt The 5th Wave Rick Yancey (Putnam Juvenile)
Excerpt I’m Not Gonna Lie: And Other Lies You Tell When You Turn 50 George Lopez & Alan Eisenstock (Celebra)
Excerpt The Mist-Torn Witches Barb Hendee (Roc)
Excerpt The Time Between Karen White (NAL)
Excerpt Theodore Boone: The Activist John Grisham (Dutton Children’s)
Excerpt The Life of Ty: Penguin Problems  Lauren Myracle – Author; Jed Henry – Illustrator (Dutton Children’s)

Video (3)
Video Angel City Jon Steele (Blue Rider Press)
Video The Enemy Tom Wood (Signet)
Video I’m Not Gonna Lie: And Other Lies You Tell When You Turn 50 George Lopez & Alan Eisenstock (Celebra)

 

Posted by: Lindsay Jacobsen, Online Content Coordinator


whatonearthWhat are you doing this Earth Day?  Here are ten suggestions for fun ways to celebrate and explore the biological diversity of our remarkable planet. Earth Day is a time to reflect on the grandeur of Nature, the state of the environment, and ways in which we can be sure that biological diversity is sustained. It’s also a reminder we have only begun to discover and map the biosphere—the closer we look at the natural world, the more we appreciate the beauty and wonder of earth’s millions of species that call our planet home.

  1. Visit a Natural History Museum. Permanent exhibition halls are a fantastic way to see a cross section of biodiversity and, like a good movie, each time you see them, you discover something you didn’t see before. Pick one diorama or exhibition hall and see how many different species you can spot.
  2. Visit a Zoo or Botanical Garden. For friskier displays, visit your local zoo or botanical garden. Instead of a brisk walk through the whole park, pick one area of the garden or zoo and spend a few hours closely examining and comparing all the species of reptiles, mammals, azaleas, or trees.  Or, become an ethologist and take notes on animal behaviors;. watch a spider spin a web or wasp build a nest, .
  3. Take a Hike. Depending on where you live, this can be a spectacular time to dust off your field guide to wildflowers or birds or insects and take a hike to see how many species you can identify while communing with Mother Nature.
  4. Learn about the Birds and Bees (and Butterflies). Strategically add plants to your garden that will attract bees and butterflies or install bird feeders, then see how many species of each you can draw to your own garden throughout the season.
  5. Volunteer.   Share your passion for nature and volunteer at a museum, botanical garden, or not-for-profit.  Help with annual bird or butterfly counts.   Or, contact your state’s Fish and Game Department and see if they need volunteers to monitor water quality in lakes or creeks or rivers near you.
  6. Join a Club. Conservation organizations do good work and can use your support. Many clubs offer outdoor experiences, often with an expert guide, so you can access places you might not otherwise see. In addition, there are wonderful clubs focused on everything from dragonflies to snap dragons through which you can find kindred spirits to appreciate Nature.
  7. Visit a Park.  Whether it’s a city, state or national park, get outside. Many parks have lists of their common plants and animals. Find a copy of that list and see how many species you can spot in a day. It’s a good excuse to slow down and really look at the world around you. As Yogi Berra said, “You can observe a lot by just watching.”
  8. Leave no stone unturned. You don’t have to go somewhere exotic to see exotic creatures. Just turn over some rocks or some decaying vegetation in your back yard or in a nearby wild area. Take a magnifying glass and look closely at anything that moves. If you’re patient, many tiny invertebrates that initially play dead will come to life. See how many different classes, orders, and families of arthropods (insects or worms or spiders or centipedes) you can identify. Find one that fascinates or disgusts you that you didn’t recognize and track it down online or in field guides to find out about its ecology. Depending on where you live, however, don’t pick them up with your bare hands since some may be poisonous!
  9. Start a Life List. Pick a taxonomic group you like—birds, flowers, insects, whatever—and make an Earth Day resolution to keep a life list to see how many different species of the group you can see. Or go totally all-in and start an insect collection or flowering plant herbarium of your own.
  10. Pre-Order What on Earth? Finally, order our book, in which we pick our 100 favorite new species discovered over the past decade, among them our choices for the prettiest, strangest, deadliest, and those with the best names. There are nearly 2 million species that have been named to date and perhaps 10 million more yet to be found. With about 18,000 species new to science each year, what you didn’t know about life on earth will amaze you.

Read an excerpt from What on Earth?

Quentin Wheeler and Sara Pennak are both professors at Arizona State University and work at the International Institute for Species Exploration.


Excerpt (3)
Excerpt The Humanity Project Jean Thompson (Blue Rider Press)
Excerpt The Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls Anton DiSclafani (Riverhead)
Excerpt Loyalty Ingrid Thoft (Putnam Adult)

Reading Group Guide (8)
Reading Group Guide Breathless Anne Swärd (Viking)
Reading Group Guide The Burning Air Erin Kelly (Pamela Dorman Books)
Reading Group Guide Sonoma Rose Jennifer Chiaverini (Plume)
Reading Group Guide The Serpent and the Pearl Kate Quinn (Berkley)
Reading Group Guide The World’s Strongest Librarian Josh Hanagarne (Gotham)
Reading Group Guide The Bookman’s Tale Charlie Lovett (Viking)
Reading Group Guide The Other Typist Suzanne Rindell (Amy Einhorn Books)
Reading Group Guide No One Could Have Guessed the Weather Anne-Marie Casey (Amy Einhorn Books)

Video (2)
Video The River of No Return Bee Ridgway (Dutton)
Video Someone Could Get Hurt Drew Magary (Gotham)

Posted by: Lindsay Jacobsen, Online Content Coordinator


that_old_flameAround this time of year, we’re always thinking about grilling some nice spring veggies! Some onions are growing in the backyard and we have some nice little hot peppers and some carrots in the greenhouse. We wait until a warm, sunny day and fire up the grill!

Veggies are much better when you cook them on the grill. This is the best way to get kids to try eating their vegetables. That grilled flavor and texture make a huge difference.

Today, we have a friend who’s coming over. She grows cabbages over the winter, so we’ll have some cabbage for the grill. We’ll add everything, along with some buttered bread with garlic. Bread is awesome on the grill! If you don’t eat all of it, you can make croutons that are good later!

We have a secret sauce that we’ll share with you. We make it ourselves and use it for grilling but also for marinating and for salad dressing.

We call it ‘Whatever Sauce’peppers from my garden

1 cup olive oil

1 cup red wine vinegar

3 tablespoons Mrs. Dash Garlic and Herb seasoning

2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese

Mix together and eat!

We put the veggies on the grill after cleaning them well. We never peel anything – most of the nutrients are in the peelings! Cooking time depends on the size of the veggie.

Small onions only take a minute or so. Carrot fingerlings need about two minutes on each side. We make cabbage in chunks so that takes about three and a half minutes. Hot peppers take about two minutes. The bread only takes about a minute on each side.

Grilling Spring VeggiesYou don’t want the veggies too done or too black. You want them to maintain some of their crispness and color.

Use a brush to baste the veggies with whatever sauce you use as they cook. Turn frequently. Try not to have the flame so high that they burn. We’re not looking for incineration here!

Grilled veggies are good by themselves, or with anything from meat to macaroni and cheese. We try to stay in season with the veggies, switching from spring to summer as the weather gets warmer. And don’t forget fruit! Peach halves are good on the grill and so are apples and plums. Try your own ideas. Enjoy!

J.J. Cook is the author of That Old Flame of Mine from the Sweet Pepper Fire Brigade Mysteries. For more information visit www.jjcook.net.


Excerpt (16)
Excerpt The Alchemists Neil Irwin (Penguin Press)
Excerpt Decadence Eric Jerome Dickey (Dutton)
Excerpt Bunker Hill Nathaniel Philbrick (Viking)
Excerpt Give and Taken Adam Grant (Viking)
Excerpt The Tale of Raw Head and Bloody Bones Jack Wolf (Penguin)
Excerpt Pastors’ Wives Lisa Takeuchi Cullen  (Plume)
Excerpt The Iron Lady John Campbell (Penguin)
Excerpt The Mystery of Mercy Close Marian Keyes (Viking)
Excerpt Tuesday’s Gone Nicci French (Pamela Dorman Books)
Excerpt Flip Kevin Cook (Viking)
Excerpt Bristol House Beverly Swerling (Viking)
Excerpt Miss Julia Stirs Up Trouble Ann B. Ross (Viking)
Excerpt Beyond War  David Rohde (Viking)
Excerpt The Plantagenets Dan Jones  (Viking)
Excerpt Aunt Dimity and the Lost Prince Nancy Atherton (Viking)
Excerpt The Way of the Knife Mark Mazzetti (Penguin Press)

Q&A (1)
Q&A The World’s Strongest Librarian Josh Hanagarne (Gotham)

Reading Group Guide (5)
Reading Group Guide The Interestings Meg Wolitzer (Riverhead)
Reading Group Guide Above All ThingsTanis Rideout (Amy Einhorn Books/Putnam)
Reading Group Guide Movement of Stars Amy Brill (Riverhead)
Reading Group Guide River of No Return Bee Ridgway (Dutton Adult)
Reading Group Guide Pastors’ Wives Lisa Takeuchi Cullen (Plume)

Video (1)
Video Ol’ Mama Squirrel David Ezra Stein (Nancy Paulsen Books)

Posted by: Lindsay Jacobsen, Online Content Coordinator


At Tarcher/Penguin, our motto is: “Great lives begin with great ideas.” Some of the world’s greatest ideas can be found in poetry, distilled into a form where individual readers can interpret different meanings for themselves. In this way, poetry can be a like a Rorschach test for the soul, allowing us to discover a different meaning than our neighbor does while exploring the same poem. We hope you’ll read these three superb works, and discuss them with your literary friends. It’s a guaranteed way to learn more about yourself, and others. (Talk about a great idea!)

smallrumi smallhaiku smallrilke

Rumi: In the Arms of the Beloved, translated by Jonathan Star
A treasury of Rumi’s verse that spans the poet’s life and includes his most celebrated and poignant work. It is an enchanting volume of classic Eastern thought that creates an exhilarating experience for all readers.

Love’s Voice: 72 Kabbalistic Haiku, by Richard Zimler
Acclaimed novelist Richard Zimler uses the form of haiku to distill Kabbalistic philosophy into its most essential form, providing a rare and deeply affecting experience of the wisdom of the ages.

In the Company of Rilke: Why a 20th-Century Visionary Poet Speaks So Eloquently to 21st-Century Readers, by Stephanie Dowrick
Drawing on her deep understanding of the gifts of Rilke’s writings, as well as her own personal spiritual seeking, Stephanie Dowrick offers an intimate and accessible appreciation of this most exceptional poet and his transcendent work.

To find more great reads for the mind, body, and spirit, visit www.tarcherbooks.com.

Also follow the #PenguinPoetry thread on Twitter for daily poetry tweets & giveaways.

– Andrew Yackira, @acyackira


hand_me_downI didn’t dream of being a writer.

Before I could read or write on my own, music was how I accessed and expressed emotions; it was my first love. My mom says the only way she could get me to stop crying as a baby was to put me in the car and play Joni Mitchell. She also sang to me a lot, and some of my safest memories are filled with lullabies in her voice, soothing me after a fall or before bed. Later, I would sing those same lullabies to my little sister.

For most of my youth, I wanted to be a rock star or an actress; thought performing was my destiny. My dad was a drummer in a band and his best friend had a recording studio in his garage, so my sister and I recorded our first original song at the ages of six and four called, “I Got the Baby Blues, Baby.” I sang in choirs, acted in school plays, performed in musicals, and in sixth grade snagged the lead in a church play in which I was onstage for the entire show and had a six minute solo that I performed at a conference in LA for hundreds of people. It was exhilarating, the live performance, feeling the audience react, and I loved every minute of it.

Even with my focus on singing and theater, it’s not like I didn’t write. I wrote new lyrics to songs tunes I knew and sang them to myself in the shower. I kept a detailed journal. In junior high I started writing poetry, bad rhymes at first that morphed into prose poems that got published in my high school’s literary magazine. In college I took a few workshops in poetry and fiction, and I even wrote for a school paper for about five minutes, but I saw no way to make a career as a writer. An actress who sang seemed to have so much potential as a way to be creative and still make money, so I remained a theater major.

A few years into acting classes at UCSC, performing began to lose its luster. I became less interested in being the subject of the story and more interested in creating the story. More and more I took on the role of producer or writer in theater class projects—I penned one spoof of Waiting for Godot set in ancient Greece with the people waiting for the Gods that I’m particularly proud of—and I couldn’t stop taking creative writing classes or writing poems in the margins of my notebooks. Finally, it was my mom, after reading one of the stories I’d written for class who said, “Forget acting. This is what you should do.” She was right. Soon after, I changed my major to English.

Now, writing is primarily how I access and express my emotions, how I deal with the world, but music remains a close second. And luckily for me, I’ve been able to make a career out of being a writer.

 


When Elda Rotor asked me to work on illustrations for the Poems By Heart app, my initial idea moved towards making silhouettes of the various poets’ profiles. Very quickly, however, I realized that traditional silhouettes would not be very engaging. The circular frame got me thinking about cameos and shoebox dioramas and helped inspire the final look of the portraits and the poem illustrations.

“To My Last Duchess” stands out as a favorite for the visual challenge the poetry presented (ie: How do you convey “really creepy”?). duchess

Shelley and Whitman were two of my favorite portraits to work on because both poets were staunch social dissidents, iconoclasts in spirit and mind.

shelley_portrait

whitman_portrait

While the design principles remained the same, the details in the process made this experience distinct from designing print covers. For Poems By Heart, I was designing collaboratively with the Inkle development team, John L. Morgan, and Elda Rotor as opposed to flying solo on a cover design. The process was less linear; I could see how it looked before the product was finalized, and make modifications along the way.

—Jen Wang, jennifer wang designs.


realskinnyHaving trouble losing weight or keeping it off? If so, it’s likely that you’re sabotaging your diet with what we call “Fat Habits.” Taken from our new book, The Real Skinny: Appetite for Health’s 101 Fat Habits & Slim Solutions, we’ve listed below the 6 worst fat habits from the most common diet wreckers, and offer up our “Slim Solutions.”
1. Overdoing “diet” foods and sugar substitutes
There are no “special” or “manufactured” foods required to lose and maintain a healthy weight. In fact, good-for-you unprocessed foods like fruits, veggies, whole grains and lean proteins are probably the best foods to help you lose weight.

Many dieters get stuck on using pricey unhealthy “health” foods: diet foods, sugar substitutes, diet sodas and other calorie-reduced items that aren’t necessary and they aren’t always associated with diet success. Some studies even suggest sugar substitutes interfere with the body’s natural mechanisms to regulate caloric intake. Use diet foods and beverages sparingly and be mindful that they alone, will not equal diet success. A recent statement from health organizations say that if you use sugar substitutes as a replacement for foods and beverages with added sugars, they can help you cut calories. We suggest using sugar substitutes sparingly and limiting diet beverages.

2. Suffering from “perfect-eating syndrome”
Chronic dieters often adhere to strict all-or-nothing diets that are too restrictive and unrealistic. It’s like trying to walk on a tightrope for life, which explains their lack of success. We all will eventually fall off. Instead of thinking of a strict eating plan that doesn’t fit your lifestyle, focus on strategies that you can, with a little work, realistically live with.
You need to expect slip-ups to happen when you’re losing weight, so how you deal with a bad day, week or month helps predict success. Individuals who can lose and maintain weight loss can be flexible enough with themselves to bounce back to healthy eating. Think: Life Happens or as we like to say, #$%! Happens! And start fresh tomorrow.

3. Letting yourself slip & slide
We don’t know how many people tell us that they just can’t lose weight, and they’re eating perfectly. When we ask them, “What did you eat yesterday?” most can’t tell us what they ate 10 minutes ago! When we really delve in to their diet, they see all the little nibbles and extra calories that they’re mindlessly eating. To keep honest and win at losing, try to weigh yourself at least once a week and track everything you eat and drink at least 5 days a week. There are several great free online sources for tracking your diet, including MyFitnessPal and SparkPeople.

4. Eating while distracted
If you eat and do anything else at the same time, you’ve got a seriously bad habit to address. There’s significant research showing that adults and children who have the most screen time, (computer, smart phones, videos, TV) are more likely to be overweight or obese. But scientists say it’s not because they get less exercise.
Studies show that distracted eaters gobble up to 100% more after a meal compared to non-distracted eaters, and those who watch TV while eating consume 20-100% more calories compared to individuals who eat without distractions. And, at the same time, distracted eaters reported being less satisfied. To increase satisfaction of meals and snacks, you need to only eat. When the brain is distracted, it takes significantly more calories to get the same level of satiety.

5. Drinking too many liquid calories.
New research shows that we’re drinking a greater proportion of our calories than ever before. In fact, one-quarter of the population consumes nearly 300 calories a day from sugary drinks like soda, fruit drinks, energy drinks, flavored water and gourmet coffee drinks. The problem with drinking our calories is that they’re less satisfying than when we eat foods, so we’re unlikely to eat less even when we drink more calories. In addition, most beverages with calories get their calories from nothing other than sugar. This sugar is rapidly absorbed by the body and may increase risk for metabolic syndrome, type II diabetes and may increase hunger and cravings. It’s important to think before you drink.

6. Skimping on your zzzs.
This may be the easiest of all fat habits to break. All you need to do is get more sleep. Several studies have recently found that sleeping 6-8 hours a night was found to double dieters chances at losing at least 10 pounds over the 26-week study. If you really want to be a diet success story, make the changes needed in your life so you can get enough sleep.

 


hand_me_downOne of the most common questions I’ve received this year from readers is: “How much of Hand Me Down is true?” As a short answer, I say about 80%. But the truer answer is much more complicated.

The basic storyline of a mother choosing her convict husband over her daughters is actually true and did indeed happen to me and my sister. Most of the characters are based on real people, the places Liz and Jaime live are where my sister and I lived, so as I began writing, I started with my memories. I conjured up scenes and conversations from my past, from a time in my life I will never forget, and made tons of notes. I did research by reading old journals from when I was fourteen, reliving all the pain of those years, finding partial scenes written out in my messy cursive, snippets of dialogue that I’d actually formatted in quotes so I would know exactly what was said. At the time, I wanted a witness to the things the adults around me were saying, a record of the lines they used. Some of those lines made it into the published book.

At first, scenes very closely resembled my recollections. But as I revised, the story shifted in small ways. I added lines of dialogue and removed others; I exaggerated mannerisms, inserted character traits to supplement the ones the real people had; I changed timelines of events, when certain conversations took place, or who was involved. I studied with Pam Houston, who has made a career out of using personal experience as the basis for her fiction, so I learned to walk the line between fiction and non from a master. I’ve discovered that I love having a foot in both worlds, so I allowed myself to make the necessary adjustments for the good of the story. The details, the inconsequential daily minutia, were altered, but the emotional journey Liz makes is 100% true.

Over the years my continued work on the book organically created something that, while based on real events, is also indeed a work of fiction. Fiction that rings true, that reveals truths—what it means to be family, the power of forgiveness, the incredible bonds of sisterhood—is my favorite kind of writing. I hope that’s what I’ve accomplished with Hand Me Down.