Jun 21

A preview of non-fiction titles coming in the next eight months.

 

Information on our special Two Dozen Books We Can’t Wait For You to Read Sweepstakes is available here. Be sure to enter now!

If you’d like to join the mailing list for possible future BOTNS news, but can’t enter the sweepstakes because you live outside the US, you can sign up here. We can’t guarantee what we will be sending out via this list other than that we will share our two monthly selections that will go to the winners of the sweepstakes. (Something many of you asked for!)

 

Tell me what to read this summer! Go here to vote on which of  six titles I’m embarrassed to say I still haven’t read I should read before Labor Day.

 

audiobooksAudiobook of the week (03:35) 

Before the Fall, Noah HawleyBefore the Fall by Noah Hawley, narrated by Robert Petkoff, is my pick for this week’s Audiobooks.com Audiobook of the Week.

Special thanks to Audiobooks.com for sponsoring this episode of Books on the Nightstand.

Audiobooks.com allows you to listen to over 100,000 audiobooks, instantly, wherever you are, and the first one is free. Download or stream any book directly to your Apple or Android device. Sign up for a free 30-day trial and free audiobook download by going to www.audiobooks.com/freebook

 

Non-Fiction Preview (06:52)

 

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Lots of great non-fiction titles coming out in the next 8 months or so. Here are our picks:

Jun 14

We recommend tons of podcasts, then rave about Anatomy of a Solder by Harry Parker, and The Girls by Emma Cline.

 

The Summer reading packet came home from Ann’s daughters’ school. In addition to reading David Copperfield, the students must choose one of the following contemporary books: The Handmaid’s Tale, The Interestings, or The Poisonwood Bible. They also must read selected chapters from How to Read Literature Like a Professor, and also must keep a reading journal using the prompts included in the handout

Information on our special Two Dozen Books We Can’t Wait For You to Read Sweepstakes is available here. Be sure to enter now!

If you’d like to join the mailing list for possible future BOTNS news (no promises!), but can’t enter the sweepstakes because you live outside the US, you can sign up here.

 

audiobooksAudiobook of the week (10:30) 

Man Called Ove, Fredrik BackmanA Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman, narrated by George Newbern, is Ann’s pick for this week’s Audiobooks.com Audiobook of the Week.

Special thanks to Audiobooks.com for sponsoring this episode of Books on the Nightstand.

Audiobooks.com allows you to listen to over 100,000 audiobooks, instantly, wherever you are, and the first one is free. Download or stream any book directly to your Apple or Android device. Sign up for a free 30-day trial and free audiobook download by going to www.audiobooks.com/freebook

 

Podcasts to Keep Your Nightstand Full (14:07)

When we announced the end of BOTNS, a common cry from listeners was, “What will I listen to now?” This podcast is your resource. Here are many bookish podcasts for you to check out! (Keep in mind, what’s included here is just the list. For descriptions of the podcasts, be sure to listen to this episode.)

Lastly, we recommend several non-bookish podcasts:

 

Two Books We Can’t Wait For You to Read (39:55)

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Ann recommends Anatomy of a Soldier by Harry Parker. The novel follows British soldier Captain Tom Barnes, but, in a unique twist, the story is told from the points of view of objects that interact with Barnes: dog tags, boots, medical instruments used to keep him alive after an explosion powered in part by another “narrator” – a bag of fertilizer.

I wholeheartedly recommend The Girls by Emma Cline. This debut novel follows a young teen in Northern California of the late 1960s, who gets pulled into a Charles Manson-like cult. The writing is astonishingly good and it will surely be one of my favorite books of 2016.
Ann also loved The Girls, and mentions listening to You Must Remember This, a podcast about old Hollywood, that did several episodes about the Manson murders.

Jun 07

We answer your burning questions, and then recommend The Happiness Equation by Neil Pasricha, and Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi.

 

Thank you to everyone who sent us messages, tweets, comments, etc. about the ending of Books on the Nightstand. Though you all shared your disapointment, nearly all of you said you understood why were bowing out now, and thanked us for the nearly 400 episodes. 

Information on our special Two Dozen Books We Can’t Wait For You to Read Sweepstakes is available here. Be sure to enter now!

 

audiobooksAudiobook of the week (14:38) 

Imagine Me Gone, Adam HaslettImagine Me Gone by Adam Haslett, narrated by Ellen Archer and Robert Fass, is my pick for this week’s Audiobooks.com Audiobook of the Week.

Special thanks to Audiobooks.com for sponsoring this episode of Books on the Nightstand.

Audiobooks.com allows you to listen to over 100,000 audiobooks, instantly, wherever you are, and the first one is free. Download or stream any book directly to your Apple or Android device. Sign up for a free 30-day trial and free audiobook download by going to www.audiobooks.com/freebook

 

The Final Interrogation (18:35)

When we announced the end of BOTNS, we encouraged you all to write in with final Q&A questions. I won’t recount every question and answer in these show notes (you can listen to the podcast for that!), but here are a few questions for which the answers have links:

  • Jessie from Maine asked if we’ll continue to recommend books via social media (yes – twitter: @AnnKingman and @mkindness, and Michael is using Litsy more).
  • Yes, Heidi, the Books on the Nightstand Goodreads group will continue to exist!
  • Joanne asked about becoming a more focused reader. Ann recommends taking a creative writing class (like the one she took at Grub Street in Boston), and also reading Francine Prose’s Reading Like a Writer.
  • Anne asked about how we create the podcast. Awhile back we wrote up our workflow for a presentation we did at BEA. You can find that info at the very end of these show notes.

 

Two Books We Can’t Wait For You to Read (51:44)

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I recommend The Happiness Equation by Neil Pasricha. It is one book in a sea of books about happiness, but it is speaking to me in a way that other books haven’t. Filled with 9 secrets informed by insights gleaned by the author as well as wisdom from past great thinkers, The Happiness Equation is showing me simple things I can do (and am doing) to be happier every day.

Ann recommends Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi. It’s the story of two half-sisters (each unaware of the other) in 18th-century Ghana. One is married off to an Englishman who is a slave trader, and the other is slave, sold by this man. The book then moves forward, tracing the descendants of these two women. Ann knows that this will end up being one of her favorite books of 2016.

 


 

Books on the Nightstand Podcast Workflow

  1. Michael and Ann each record on Zoom H2 microphones in their own home offices, while talking on the phone with headsets. Each uses a pop filter while recording to cut down on hard p and s sounds.
  2. We alternate editing duties on a weekly basis. The person who is not editing sends their .wav file to the one who is editing.
  3. Editor uses Audacity to combine the two files. Editor tightens the file by removing mistakes, coughs, etc. Intro music and intermission tracks are added.
  4. File is exported into MP3 format and uploaded to Libsyn (podcast host).
  5. Show notes are written in WordPress, hosted at HostGator. URL of Libsyn file is plugged into WordPress post, and post is published. Post is automatically distributed to iTunes, Instacast, Stitcher, etc.
  6. Show is linked and promoted through Twitter, and other social media networks.

Approximate time – Recording: 1 hour  – Editing: 1 hour. – Show notes – 30 minutes.

May 31

Author talks from Booktopia Petoskey, including W. Bruce Cameron, Janis Cooke Newman, and Luis Alberto Urrea.

 

This week we have an amazing lineup of author talks from our final Booktopia event. These talks were recorded in September 2015 at the fabulous McLean & Eakin bookstore in Petoskey, MI.

Authors featured this week:

   The Dog Master

W. Bruce Cameron, author of The Dog Master

 

Janis Cooke Newman   A Master Plan for Rescue

Janis Cooke Newman, author of A Master Plan for Rescue

 

Luis Alberto Urrea   The Water Museum

Luis Alberto Urrea, author of The Water Museum

 

We’ll be back next week with a new episode. Until then, happy reading!

May 24

A big announcement. The start of BOTNS Book Bingo. We recommend Everything is Teeth by Evie Wyld and Joe Sumner, and Sweetbitter by Stephanie Danler. 

 

Listen to the podcast for a big announcement about Books on the Nightstand!

 

audiobooksAudiobook of the week (11:15) 


Assistants, Camille PerriThe Assistants by Camille Perri, narrated by Jorjeana Marie, is Ann’s pick for this week’s Audiobooks.com Audiobook of the Week.

Special thanks to Audiobooks.com for sponsoring this episode of Books on the Nightstand.

Audiobooks.com allows you to listen to over 100,000 audiobooks, instantly, wherever you are, and the first one is free. Download or stream any book directly to your Apple or Android device. Sign up for a free 30-day trial and free audiobook download by going to www.audiobooks.com/freebook

 

The Beginning (16:22)

Memorial Day weekend is days away which means the start of Books on the Nightstand Summer Book Bingo! Go to http://tinyurl.com/BOTNSBingo2016, and hit refresh to get a brand new card.

As in the past, the “rules” are what you make them. However, we suggest you:

  • Interpret the categories as you see fit
  • Not use a book for more than one square
  • Use the Free Square for any book that you read that won’t fit in another category

 

Some of the categories and books Ann and I discuss in this episode:

 

Two Books We Can’t Wait For You to Read (32:50)

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I recommend Everything is Teeth, a graphic memoir by Evie Wyld, illustrated by Joe Sumner. It’s the story of Evie’s childhood, some of which she spent visiting family in Australia. She was obsessed with sharks and shark attacks, and those memories and experiences are brought to vivid life via that unusual juxtapositions of art style and color.

Ann recommends Sweetbitter by Stephanie Danler. It’s the story of a young woman indoctrinated into working at a high-end NYC restaurant (based on the real-life Union Square Cafe). Stephanie Danler actually did work at the Union Square Cafe and that background brings a level of reality to this work of fiction.

May 18

Sad author news, a roundup of book news featuring girls and women, and two books we can’t wait for you to read.

 

Booklovers, especially Michael,  are mourning the passing of two authors that have touched many with their work.

Katherine Dunn, author of Geek Love, died at age 70.

Darwin Cooke, writer and artist of Michael’s favorite superhero graphic novel ever, DC The New Frontier, passed away at the age of 53.

 

audiobooksAudiobook of the week (04:49):



Be Frank With Me   Be Frank With Me by Julia Claiborne Johnson, narrated by Tavia Gilbert, is my pick for this week’s Audiobooks.com Audiobook of the Week.

Special thanks to Audiobooks.com for sponsoring this episode of Books on the Nightstand.

Audiobooks.com allows you to listen to over 100,000 audiobooks, instantly, wherever you are, and the first one is free. Download or stream any book directly to your Apple or Android device. Sign up for a free 30-day trial and free audiobook download by going to www.audiobooks.com/freebook

 

Women and girls in books and bookstores (09:49):

 

This week, we wanted to talk about three unrelated stories, and Michael realized that they all had women at the center.

The winner of Best Novel, Uprooted by Naomi Novik, was an Audiobooks.com Audiobook of the Week in episode #337, chosen by Michael.

Other winners:

Best Novella: Nnedi Okorafor for Binti

Best Novelette: Sarah Pinsker for “Our Lady of the Open Road,” featured in the June 2015 issue of Asimov’s Science Fiction

Best Short Story: Alyssa Wong for “Hungry Daughters of Starving Mothers,” featured in the Oct. 2015 issue of Nightmare Magazine

Winner of the Andre Norton Award for Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy: Fran Wilde for Updraft

 

Two books we can’t wait for you to read (20:41):

 

Smoke   Vitamin N

 

Smoke by Dan Vyleta goes on sale Tuesday May 24th, but march down to your bookstore or library now and reserve your copy. It begins in an exclusive boarding school, and is set in a world that looks a lot like 1900 London, with one exception: when people think bad thoughts or do bad deeds, their body starts to emit thick black smoke. It’s atmospheric, compelling, and full of suspense and adventure.

Michael talks about Vitamin N: The Essential Guide to a Nature-Rich Life by Richard Louv. It’s a book of ideas of things to do outdoors with your family, and talks about the importance of being in nature for family togetherness and other benefits. It’s full of resources and ways to enrich your family life through nature.

 

May 10

Misconstruing the Man Book Club, and we recommend Paper Girls by Brian K. Vaughan and Cliff Chiang, and Everybody’s Fool by Richard Russo.

 

Booktopia was this past weekend, and it was the first Booktopia not organized by us. Northshire Bookstore and the Inn at Manchester put together a wonderful weekend, judging by the comments and photos we saw online. If you weren’t able to attend, but want to read some of the books that were featured, here’s a list.

 

audiobooksAudiobook of the week (02:42) 



Wild Robot, Peter BrownThe Wild Robot by Peter Brown, narrated by Kate Atwater, is my pick for this week’s Audiobooks.com Audiobook of the Week.

Special thanks to Audiobooks.com for sponsoring this episode of Books on the Nightstand.

Audiobooks.com allows you to listen to over 100,000 audiobooks, instantly, wherever you are, and the first one is free. Download or stream any book directly to your Apple or Android device. Sign up for a free 30-day trial and free audiobook download by going to www.audiobooks.com/freebook

 

No Women Allowed? (07:18)

A recent New York Times article, called Men Have Book Clubs, Too, led to a bit of discussion on my Facebook page. I made a pretty harsh pronouncement about the members of The Man Book Club, however my opinion was very much colored by the article and by my slight misreading of it. One of their rules (which they admittedly don’t always follow) is no books by a woman about a woman.

Ann and I discuss the possible reasons for this rule and whether it could ever be considered a good thing to limit one’s reading this way.

Be sure to read the group’s blog post, titled An Apologia, where they respond to the omissions in, and misconceptions perpetrated by, the NYT article. And do check out the list of books they have read thus far.

I officially apologize for my original comment!

 

Two Books We Can’t Wait For You to Read (22:24)

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I recommend Paper Girls, Vol. 1, written by Brian K. Vaughan, with art by Cliff Chiang. It’s the story of 4 twelve-year-old paper girls in 1988. It’s the morning after Halloween, and strange “people” are wandering their neighborhood. Are they teenagers still in costume from the night before, or are they something more sinister?

A few weeks ago, Ann recommended Nobody’s Fool for our Don’t You Forget About Me. She read it recently to prepare for reading Richard Russo’s newest book Everybody’s Fool. The new book returns to North Bath, NY. It’s both funny and tragic, and it revisits many of the characters from the first book, as well as introducing some new ones. Ann promises that you don’t have to have read the older book to enjoy the new one!

May 03

So many books, in praise of novellas, and we recommend a new novella by Graham Swift and a novel that is the first in a new science-fiction trilogy.

audiobooksAudiobook of the week (03:12)


Hidden BodiesHidden Bodies
by Caroline Kepnes, performed by Santino Fontana, is my pick for this week’s Audiobooks.com Audiobook of the Week.
Special thanks to Audiobooks.com for sponsoring this episode of Books on the Nightstand.

Audiobooks.com allows you to listen to over 100,000 audiobooks, instantly, wherever you are, and the first one is free. Download or stream any book directly to your Apple or Android device. Sign up for a free 30-day trial and free audiobook download by going to www.audiobooks.com/freebook

 

One-sit Wonders (07:30)

This week’s episode was inspired by an article on Publishersweekly.com by Cynan Jones called “The Case for Very Short Novels.”

Michael and I talk a bit about the terminology (“novella,” specifically), our relationship to short novels, and how we approach them.

Titles discussed:

  • On Chesil Beach by Ian McEwan
  • The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes
  • The Clothes They Stood Up In by Alan Bennett
  • Bartleby the Scrivener
  • Animal Farm by George Orwell
  • A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
  • Coraline by Neil Gaiman
  • The Time Machine by HG Wells
  • Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton
  • Breakfast at Tiffany’s by Truman Capote
  • The Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
  • The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway

More titles are listed on the Wikipedia page for “Novella.”

Please let us know your thoughts on novellas, and share some of your favorites.

 

Two books we can’t wait for you to read (22:55)

 

Mothering Sunday   Sleeping Giants

 

My pick this week is a novella, Mothering Sunday by Graham Swift. Just 177 pages, it packs a punch that belies its small size. Most of the novel is set in just 5 hours in the spring of 1924, with the story of a young housemaid who spends her day off in an illicit assignation with the son of the wealthy neighbors. There, her life changes in an instant.

Michael takes a different direction, telling us about the first book in a science fiction trilogy. Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Nouvel starts with a young girl, Rose, who falls off her bicycle into a hole in the ground that turns out to be a chamber that is actually a metal hand. Fast forward 20 years, and Rose is a physicist who is helping to investigate the origin of this hand and what it means.

 

 

 

 

 

Apr 26

Litsy, Book Awards,  plus, don’t you forget about 84, Charing Cross Road and Nobody’s Fool.

Ann and I are both on Litsy, a new photo-focused book-based social media app (usernames AnnKingman and mkindness). The one problem we’re encountering is posting about a book that we’re reading electronically in manuscript form; they’re not very photogenic!
So, check out Litsy and let us know what you think!

audiobooksAudiobook of the week (04:17)

Mr. Splitfoot, Samantha HuntMr. Splitfoot by Samantha Hunt, narrated by Cassandra Campbell and Emily Woo Zeller, is my pick for this week’s Audiobooks.com Audiobook of the Week.
Special thanks to Audiobooks.com for sponsoring this episode of Books on the Nightstand.

Audiobooks.com allows you to listen to over 100,000 audiobooks, instantly, wherever you are, and the first one is free. Download or stream any book directly to your Apple or Android device. Sign up for a free 30-day trial and free audiobook download by going to www.audiobooks.com/freebook

 

A New Batch of Book Awards (07:42)

Unlike movie awards, awards for books seem to be given out throughout the year. Recently announced were the Indies Choice Awards and the E.B. White Read-Aloud Awards for 2016, both of which were voted on by Independent Booksellers around the US. The full list of winners and honor books can be found here. Below are the winners we mentioned on the podcast.

Congratulations to all the winners and the runners-up!

 

Don’t You Forget About Me (18:36)

 

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Within the past few weeks, posts from two different book lovers wrote statuses that showed in my Facebook feed. They had each read, for the first time, 84, Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff. It’s something that all book lovers should read, and a book I only read myself a few years ago.

Though it’s an older book, Ann only recently read Nobody’s Fool by Richard Russo. On paper, Donald “Sully” Sullivan doesn’t seem like a character you’d fall in love with. He’s a drinking, gambling, womanizer who lives in a dying town in upstate New York. But Ann says he’s a character that you’ll long remember.

Apr 19

This week, we bring you three authors from Booktopia Petoskey (September 2015), each of whom gives a short talk about their work (or other things).

These are always very entertaining, so please do listen and check out these wonderful authors’ books. Many thanks to our authors and to the fabulous McLean & Eakin Bookstore for hosting us.

 

Lauren Fox   

 

   

   Official author photo of Jim Ottaviani, who says, “More serious author photos than this self-portrait are available, as are print-ready images from any of our books — please contact us for more information. But I’m fond of this one, and hope you’d at least consider using it, since it’s the closest I’ll ever get to the moon.”

 

   

 

 

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