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Book Blog - Likely Stories, by Keir Graff - Booklist Online

Likely Stories

A Booklist Blog
Keir Graff and editors from Booklist's adult and youth departments write candidly about books, book reviewing, and the publishing industry

Archive for May, 2011

Fri, May 27th, 2011
Happy Birthday, Dear Dashiell . . .
Posted by: Keir Graff

As the Writer’s Almanac reminds us, today is the birthday of Dashiell Hammett. Even if you think you know his story, give it a read: In 1931, Hammett began a 30-year affair with a script girl who would eventually become a playwright: Lillian Hellman. Their relationship inspired the characters of Nick and Nora Charles, the […]


Wed, May 25th, 2011
Two Top-Notch Reads from Andrew Gross
Posted by: Keir Graff

Andrew Gross learned a lot about the writing craft by working with James Patterson, a process he has called “like a combination MFA and MBA rolled into one.” After coauthoring six books in seven years, he struck out on his own and has since made a name for himself with well-plotted, fast-moving thrillers such as Eyes Wide Open (which […]


Tue, May 24th, 2011
Karin Slaughter Had One Big Problem with This Book: It Had to End
Posted by: Keir Graff

In case you’re just joining us, May is Mystery Month at Booklist and, all month long, we’ve featured wonderful reading recommendations from some of the best mystery, crime fiction, espionage, and thriller writers currently working. Today we hear from Karin Slaughter, a number-one international bestselling author who just the other day received a starred Booklist review […]


Tue, May 24th, 2011
Minority Report: Gang Reflections
Posted by: Vanessa Bush

Some fifty years and nearly twenty miles from the site of operation of the notorious Chicago gang the Almighty Black P Stone Nation, nearly sixty people gathered recently to discuss the book of same title that examines the rise and fall of that gang and its leader. The setting was the main library in Oak […]


Mon, May 23rd, 2011
John Lescroart Shares the Spotlight
Posted by: Keir Graff

Fans of legal thrillers will need no introduction to John Lescroart. The creator of the characters Dismas Hardy, Abe Glitsky, and Wes Farrell has sold more than 8.5 million books in the past decade; those books have been translated into 16 languages in more than 75 countries. His most recent book, Damage (2011), delivers what his many […]


Sun, May 22nd, 2011
Tasha Alexander on a Book That Makes Even a Transatlantic Flight Fly By
Posted by: Keir Graff

We’ve described Tasha Alexander‘s protagonist, Lady Emily Ashton, as “an irresistible Victorian iconoclast”; from the series debut, And Only to Deceive (2005), to the most recent installment, Dangerous to Know (2010), our reviewers have consistently complimented Alexander’s engaging blend of mystery, romance, and humor. But what does Alexander read for fun—does she like to take a break from […]


Sat, May 21st, 2011
Craig Johnson Invites You to Travel the Spirit Road
Posted by: Keir Graff

I’ve been a fan of Craig Johnson ever since I read the first Walt Longmire mystery, The Cold Dish (2005). I called it, “A thoughtful page-turner, wry and sober in good measure, that proves there’s more to Wyoming crime fiction than just C. J. Box.” (His next one, Hell Is Empty, comes out next month.) And […]


Sat, May 21st, 2011
Reading the Screen: The Thin Man
Posted by: David Pitt

In case you didn’t hear the news, Johnny Depp and his Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides director Rob Marshall are working on a movie based on Dashiell Hammett’s 1934 novel The Thin Man. You might be tempted to think there were a series of Thin Man novels. But it was a stand-alone (Hammett’s […]


Fri, May 20th, 2011
Awards Round Up: Locus, Christopher, Independent Publisher Awards
Posted by: Courtney Jones

There are five contenders in the Fantasy novel category for the 2011 Locus Awards presented by the  Locus Science Fiction Foundation: Under Heaven, by Guy Gavriel Kay Kraken, by China Miéville Who Fears Death, by Nnedi Okorafor The Fuller Memorandum, by Charles Stross The Sorcerer’s House, by Gene Wolfe Winners in fifteen categories, including science […]


Fri, May 20th, 2011
Olen Steinhauer: This Book Isn’t Lost in Translation
Posted by: Keir Graff

Two days ago I wrote that Tana French was the only author on Likely Stories this month to bat 1.000 with Booklist starred reviews. But, just now, I looked up Olen Steinhauer‘s track record and realized that Ms. French is not alone. Of the six Steinhauers we’ve reviewed (I regret to say we missed one), six received stars. […]





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