Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Best Seller Read-Alikes for the Week of July 30th

Can’t wait to get your hands on the latest best-seller, but the hold list is too long? To tide you over, every week we’ll offer similar titles and authors to the week’s fiction and nonfiction best sellers.


At #1 this week is The Fallen Angel by Daniel Silva. The twelfth book in the Gabriel Allon series finds the ex-Mossad agent and art restorer back in Rome and at work restoring a Caravaggio. When the Pope's personal secretary discovers the body of a young woman underneath Michelangelo's dome, the death is ruled a suicide. Allon has doubts, and as he begins to investigate, he uncovers a ring of antiquities smugglers seeking revenge. Silva evokes an atmospheric and melancholy tone and his attentional to detail - in the unfolding of the plot and the historical elements that frame it- create complex and engrossing stories.

Authors similar to Daniel Silva include:

John le Carre - Called "the master of the spy thriller," le Carre is the creator of British undercover agent George Smiley, main character of the book and 2011 movie Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy. Le Carre's stylish and sophisticated novels are character-driven, having as much to do with the inner struggles of the main character as the political intrigue he is enmeshed in. Try The Spy Who Came in from the Cold (1978).

Alan Furst - Furst writes compelling World War II spy thrillers set in Europe, often Paris. Atmosphere dominates, as does the sense of bleak melancholy that flavors Silva's plots. Try The World at Night (1996) for the claustrophobic feel of wartime Paris.

Barry Eisler - Eisler's most recent series features half-Japanese, half-American assassin John Rain who, alienated by both birth and profession, is looking to get out of the business. The series is rich in detail and the exotic locations the stories take place are richly rendered. The stories move at a fast pace and - like Silva's protagonist Allon - Rain struggles with the questionable morality that surrounds him. Start with the first in the series, Rain Fall (2002).

Click here for more fiction bestsellers...

Once again, there hasn't been much movement on the nonfiction best seller list. Still at #1 is Cheryl Strayed's Wild: From Lost to Found the Pacific Crest Trail, and you can find read-alikes for that title here. At #2 is Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand. (read-alikes here), and at #3 is The Amateur: Barack Obama in the White House by Edward Klein (read-likes here). 

At #4 is a book that has been on the top 10 best seller's list for 43 weeks - Killing Lincoln: The Shocking Assassination that Changed America Forever by Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard. Political commentator O'Reilly and author Dugard team up to create a blow-by-blow retelling of the events before and after Lincoln's assassination. Told in narrative style, the book is a fast-paced and descriptive imagining of events and reintroduces the theory of the secretary of war Edwin M. Stanton's involvement. O'Reilly and Dugard are currently working on a follow-up (due out in October), this time concerned with the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

Other books similar to Killing Lincoln include:

Manhunt: The Twelve-Day Chase for Lincoln's Killer by James L. Swanson (364.1524 SWA) - A fascinating and vivid account of the escape of John Wilkes Booth, Abraham Lincoln's assassin, takes readers along on the intensive search from the streets of Washington, D.C., through the swamps of Maryland, into the forests of Virginia, and into the lives of the men who pursued him.

The Destiny of the Republic: A Tale of Medicine, Madness and the Murder of a President by Candice Millard (973.84 MIL) - A narrative account of James Garfield's political career offers insight into his background as a scholar and Civil War hero, his battles against the corrupt establishment, and Alexander Graham Bell's failed attempt to save him from an assassin's bullet.

Reclaiming History: The Assassination of President John F. Kennedy by Vincent Bugliosi (973.922092 BUG) - Best known as the prosecutor of the Manson murders, Bugliosi presents a thorough analysis of the assassination of JFK and its surrounding conspiracy theories draws on forensic evidence, key witness testimonies, and other sources to explain what really happened and why conspiracy theories have become so popularized.

Click here for more nonfiction bestsellers ...

If you'd like more recommendations, stop by the Recommendations Desk on the first floor, check out NoveList Plus on the library's website, or visit W. 11th & Bluff next week for more reading suggestions. Or submit a Personal Recommendations request, and we'll create a reading list just for you!

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