On Sale This Week
Our Igloo feature On Sale This Week previews a selection of Penguin Random House fiction, nonfiction, poetry and young readers books being published each week. The choices are a mix of titles by both bestselling and emerging authors. We hope this serves as a useful reference for hot new reads hitting shelves everywhere.
RAZOR GIRL by Carl Hiaasen (Knopf)
RAZOR GIRL is the new full-tilt, unstoppably hilarious and entertaining novel from the best-selling author of SKINNY DIPand BAD MONKEY, Carl Hiaasen. When Lane Coolman’s car is bashed from behind on the road to the Florida Keys, what appears to be an ordinary accident is anything but (this is Hiaasen!). Behind the wheel of the other car is Merry Mansfield–the eponymous Razor Girl–and the crash scam is only the beginning of events that spiral crazily out of control while unleashing some of the wildest characters Hiaasen has ever set loose on the page.
A GENTLEMAN IN MOSCOW: A Novel by Amor Towles (Viking)
A GENTLEMAN IN MOSCOW immerses us in an elegantly drawn era with the story of Count Alexander Rostov. When, in 1922, he is deemed an unrepentant aristocrat by a Bolshevik tribunal, the count is sentenced to house arrest in the Metropol, a grand hotel across the street from the Kremlin. Rostov, an indomitable man of erudition and wit, has never worked a day in his life, and must now live in an attic room while some of the most tumultuous decades in Russian history are unfolding outside the hotel’s doors. Unexpectedly, his reduced circumstances provide him a doorway into a much larger world of emotional discovery.
DEAR MR. M by Herman Koch (Hogarth)
Once a celebrated writer, M had his greatest success with a suspense novel based on a real-life disappearance. Upon publication, M’s novel was a runaway bestseller, one that marked his international breakthrough. That was years ago, and now M’s career is fading. But not when it comes to his bizarre, seemingly timid neighbor who keeps a close eye on him and his wife. Why? From alternating points of view, where no one is to be trusted, Herman Koch weaves together an intricate tale of a writer in decline, a teenage couple in love, a missing teacher, and a single book that entwines all of their fates.
APPRENTICE IN DEATH by J.D. Robb (Berkley)
The shots came quickly, silently, and with deadly accuracy. Within seconds, three people were dead at Central Park’s ice-skating rink. Eve Dallas has seen a lot of killers during her time with the NYPSD but never one like this. When Eve’s husband, Roarke’s computer program leads her to the location of the sniper, she learns a shocking fact: There were two—one older, one younger. Someone is being trained by an expert in the science of killing, and they have an agenda. Central Park was just a warm-up. And as another sniper attack shakes the city to its core, Eve realizes that though we’re all shaped by the people around us, there are those who are just born evil.
THE PIGEON TUNNEL: Stories from My Life by John le Carré (Viking)
From his years serving in British Intelligence during the Cold War, to a career as a writer that took him from war-torn Cambodia to Beirut on the cusp of the 1982 Israeli invasion to Russia before and after the collapse of the Berlin Wall, bestselling author John le Carré has always written from the heart of modern times. In this, his first memoir, le Carré is as funny as he is incisive, reading into the events he witnesses the same moral ambiguity with which he imbues his novels. Best of all, le Carré gives us a glimpse of a writer’s journey over more than six decades.
WEAPONS OF MATH DESTRUCTION by Cathy O’Neil (Crown)
A former Wall Street quant sounds an alarm on the mathematical models that pervade modern life — and threaten to rip apart our social fabric. We live in the age of the algorithm. Increasingly, the decisions that affect our lives—where we go to school, whether we get a car loan, how much we pay for health insurance—are being made not by humans, but by mathematical models. In theory, this should lead to greater fairness: Everyone is judged according to the same rules, and bias is eliminated. But as Cathy O’Neil reveals in this urgent and necessary book, the opposite is true.
MARTHA STEWART’S VEGETABLES by Editors of Martha Stewart Living (Clarkson Potter)
In this beautiful book, Martha Stewart—one of America’s best-known cooks, gardeners, and all-around vegetable lovers—provides home cooks with an indispensable resource for selecting, storing, preparing, and cooking from the garden and the market. The 150 recipes, many of which are vegetarian, highlight the flavors and textures of everyday favorites and uncommon varieties alike. Martha Stewart’s Vegetables makes eating your greens (and reds and yellows and oranges) more delicious than ever.
THE RED BANDANNA by Tom Rinaldi (Penguin Press)
When Welles Crowther was a young boy, his father gave him a red handkerchief for his back pocket. Welles kept it with him that day, and just about every day to come; it became a fixture and his signature. Fresh from college, he took a Wall Street job on the 104th floor of the South Tower of the World Trade Center, with the dream of becoming a firefighter with the FDNY. When the Twin Towers fell, Welles’s parents had no idea what happened to him. Eight months after the attacks, Welles’s mother read a news account from several survivors, badly hurt on the 78th floor of the South Tower, who said they and others had been led to safety by a stranger, carrying a woman on his back, down nearly twenty flights of stairs. The survivors didn’t know his name, but despite the smoke and panic, one of them remembered a single detail clearly: the man was wearing a red bandanna.
SUBSTITUTE by Nicholson Baker (Blue Rider Press)
In 2014, after a brief orientation course and a few fingerprinting sessions, Nicholson Baker became an on-call substitute teacher in a Maine public school district. He awoke to the dispatcher’s five-forty a.m. phone call and headed to one of several nearby schools; when he got there, he did his best to follow lesson plans and help his students get something done. What emerges from Baker’s experience is a complex, often touching deconstruction of public schooling in America: children swamped with overdue assignments, overwhelmed by the marvels and distractions of social media and educational technology, and staff who weary themselves trying to teach in step with an often outmoded or overly ambitious standard curriculum.
BEST. STATE. EVER. By Dave Barry (Putnam)
We never know what will happen next in Florida. We know only that, any minute now, something will. Every few months, Dave Barry gets a call from some media person wanting to know, “What the hell is wrong with Florida?” Somehow, the state’s acquired an image as a subtropical festival of stupid, and as a loyal Floridian, Dave begs to differ. Sure, there was the 2000 election. And people seem to take their pants off for no good reason. And it has flying insects the size of LeBron James. But it is a great state, and Dave is going to tell you why. Join him as he celebrates Florida from Key West at the bottom to whatever it is that’s at the top, from the Sunshine State’s earliest history to the fun-fair of weirdness that it is today.
POEMS ABOUT SCULPTURE Foreword by Robert Pinsky, Edited by Murray Dewart (Everyman’s Library)
Sculpture has the longest memory of the arts: from the Paleolithic era, we find stone carvings and clay figures embedded with human longing. And poets have long been fascinated by the idea of eternity embodied by the monumental temples and fragmented statues of ancient civilizations. From Keats’s Grecian urn and Shelley’s “Ozymandias” to contemporary verse about Maya Lin’s Vietnam Veterans Memorial and Janet Echelman’s wind-borne hovering nets, the pieces in this collection convert the physical materials of the plastic arts—clay, wood, glass, marble, granite, bronze, and more—into lapidary lines of poetry.
COME OVER TO MY HOUSE by Dr. Seuss (Random House Books for Young Readers)
This delightful Dr. Seuss book has come back—with a brand new look! Written in 1966, this multi-cultural Beginner Book about home and friendship features the good doctor’s signature rhyme and all-new, charming artwork by award-winning illustrator Katie Kath. A great choice for beginning readers as well as for read-alouds, the message of the book—that kids are the same all over the world—is as true today as it was 50 years ago. Perfect for expanding a child’s worldview—and home library—it’s ideal for birthdays, holidays, and happy occasions of all kinds!
TALES OF THE PECULIAR by Ransom Riggs (Dutton Books for Young Readers)
Wealthy cannibals who dine on the discarded limbs of peculiars. A fork-tongued princess. These are but a few of the truly brilliant stories in Tales of the Peculiar—the collection of fairy tales known to hide information about the peculiar world, including clues to the locations of time loops—first introduced by Ransom Riggs in his #1 bestselling Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children series. Riggs now invites you to share his secrets of peculiar history, with a collection of original stories as collected and annotated by Millard Nullings, ward of Miss Peregrine and scholar of all things peculiar.
SIX DOTS: A STORY OF YOUNG LOUIS BRAILLE by Jen Bryant (Knopf Books for Young Readers)
Louis Braille was just five years old when he lost his sight. He was a clever boy, determined to live like everyone else, and what he wanted more than anything was to be able to read. Award-winning writer Jen Bryant tells Braille’s inspiring story with a lively and accessible text, filled with the sounds, the smells, and the touch of Louis’s world. Boris Kulikov’s inspired paintings help readers to understand what Louis lost, and what he was determined to gain back through books.
I AM GEORGE WASHINGTON by Bred Meltzer; illustrated by Christopher Eliopolous (Dial Books for Young Readers)
We can all be heroes. That’s the inspiring message of this New York Times Bestselling picture book biography series from historian and author Brad Meltzer. Learn all about George Washington, America’s first president. George Washington was one of the greatest leaders the world has ever known. He was never afraid to be the first to try something, from exploring the woods around his childhood home to founding a brand new nation, the United States of America. With his faith in the American people and tremendous bravery, he helped win the Revolutionary War and became the country’s first president.
LUCY AND LINH by Alice Pung (Knopf Books for Young Readers)
Lucy is a bit of a pushover, but she’s ambitious and smart, and she has just received the opportunity of a lifetime: a scholarship to a prestigious school. She is soon welcomed into the Cabinet, the supremely popular trio who wield influence over classmates and teachers alike. Linh is blunt, strong-willed, and fearless—everything Lucy once loved about herself. She is also Lucy’s last solid link to her life before private school, but she is growing tired of being eclipsed by the glamour of the Cabinet. As Lucy floats further away from the world she once knew, her connection to Linh—and to her old life—threatens to snap. Sharp and honest, Alice Pung’s novel examines what it means to grow into the person you want to be without leaving yourself behind.
UGLY by Robert Hoge (Viking Books for Young Readers)
When Robert Hoge was born, he had a tumor the size of a tennis ball in the middle of his face and short, twisted legs. Surgeons removed the tumor and made him a new nose from one of his toes. Amazingly, he survived—with a face that would never be the same. Strangers stared at him. Kids called him names, and adults could be cruel, too. Everybody seemed to agree that he was “ugly.” But Robert refused to let his face define him. This poignant memoir about overcoming bullying and thriving with disabilities shows that what makes us “ugly” also makes us who we are.