Tuesday, May 14, 2013


This information came from an e-mail I received from Oprah (she didn’t send it herself!) and I thought I would pass on the information to my readers.

Books to Read Before You See the Movie This Summer

Because all those juicy descriptions, extravagant costumes and secret thoughts of the leading lady (or man) just won't fit into a 90-minute film.  READ MORE HERE

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott FitzgeraldThe Great Gatsby
By F. Scott Fitzgerald
192 pages; Scribner
Available at: Amazon.com | Barnes & Noble | iBookstore | IndieBound

Just about everybody and their second cousin knows that this mind-blowing film had its debut recently. However, grab yourself a few hours of quiet, pick up the just-as-juicy novel and lose yourself to the excesses of the Jazz Age—and the heartbreak of unrequited love. — Leigh Newman       READ MORE HERE

Austenland by Shannon HaleAustenland
By Shannon Hale
208 pages; Bloomsbury
Available at: Amazon.com | Barnes & Noble | iBookstore | IndieBound

Sometimes you think a book was written just for you. And sometimes you know it was. This hysterical romp through the world of Austen lovers takes our heroine, Jane (ha!) Hayes, to England where she gets to enter the world of Austen re-enactment, dressing in Empire-waist gowns, dancing by candlelight and falling—in a stumbling, staggering, lose-your-fan-and-sash kind of way—in love with a certain tall, dark Mr. Almost Darcy. Hilarious, tender, smart and semiperiod! What more could we want? The movie comes out in August. Until then, our plan is to reread the novel over and over. — Leigh Newman   READ MORE HERE

The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin HamidThe Reluctant Fundamentalist
By Mohsin Hamid
192 pages; Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Available at: Amazon.com | Barnes & Noble | iBookstore | IndieBound

This page-turner—about a young Pakistani man who rises to wealth and privilege in the United States but who returns to Pakistan, not to become a fundamentalist but a professor—has a plot so compelling that you may need to keep a heart monitor on hand. It also presents one of the most bedeviling endings ever, the kind that makes you long for (in the best way) a short dumb answer where none will ever exist. The cinematic version stars Kiefer Sutherland, Liev Schreiber and Kate Hudson. The book stars gorgeous, risky, intelligent prose. — Leigh Newman       READ MORE HERE

What Maisie Knew by Henry JamesWhat Maisie Knew
By Henry James
352 pages; Penguin Classics
Available at: Amazon.com | Barnes & Noble | IndieBound

We're swooning! This exquisite, ahead-of-its-time novel, set in the 1890s, follows the story of young Maisie as she shuttles between her divorced mother and father until she's finally forced to choose a future of her own making. The modern-day film version stars Julianne Moore (yes!) and Alexander Skarsgard (double yes!) but lacks the turn-of-the-20th-century lace, carriages and fraught, terrifying innuendos of supposedly polite high society. — Leigh Newman     READ MORE HERE

Much Ado About Nothing by William ShakespeareMuch Ado About Nothing
By William Shakespeare
304 pages; Simon & Schuster
Available at: Amazon.com | Barnes & Noble | iBookstore | IndieBound | Target

The classic comedy, which involves multiple disguises, witty barbs and a truly agonizing wait for Beatrice and Benedick to fall for each other, is coming to life as a contemporary indie film by Joss Whedon, the genius behind Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Then again, the book features the musings of a pretty talented guy named William Shakespeare, who knew how to toss off one-liners about love and the human condition, such as, "Let me be that I am and seek not to alter me." A bit of wisdom that, in the print version, is worth folding down the page for. — Leigh Newman      READ MORE HERE

World War Z by Max BrooksWorld War Z
By Max Brooks
352 pages;
Available at: Amazon.com | Barnes & Noble | iBookstore | IndieBound | Target

We're not going to lie to you. The book doesn't have Brad Pitt. But it does have zombies, a dystopian world in which a brave few fight off the living dead, and the kind of page-turning, nail-biting, mind-twisting story that will give you goose bumps, even while you're lying out under the broiling summer sun. — Leigh Newman    READ MORE HERE