Shelf Life Magazine – June 2017

Editor’s Notes for Issue #1942017JuneShelfcover

When they mention time waits for no man (or woman) that is definitely true. It is hard to believe that we are already near the summer months. Wasn’t it New Year’s not that long ago? June is the courier for many things including the longest days of the year and the end of the school year. That means one looks to leisure summer activities which of course include reading.

This issue offers lots of material for your book choices, and whether they lean to fiction or no-fiction we have you covered in all departments. As usual, Shelf Life tries to appeal to as many reading interests as possible whether mystery, romance, autobiography and more. So sit back, soak up some sun and enjoy the best in books.

Paul Sutter

Best June Fiction

Out of Bounds
by Val McDermid
(Atlantic Monthly Press – $35.50 – 424 pages)
“It has a little bit of everything, but above all, most superior writing.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

The Black Widow
by Daniel Silva
(Harper Collins – $21.99 – 530 pages)
“All readers can do is keep their fingers crossed this is not the final time we have seen the super spy and art restorer in action.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

Rest of June Fiction

Surrender, New York
by Caleb Carr
(Random House – $40.00 – 600 pages)
“…most ambitious, and highly addictive.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Night Watch
by Iris & Roy Johansen
(St. Martin’s Press – $38.99 – 342 pages)
“The tension turns exhaustive, making the book impossible to put down.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

First Comes Love
by Emily Giffin
(Doubleday Canada – $32.00 – 384 pages)
“Then, suddenly like a switch had been turned on, the book accelerates into classic Giffin…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Woman of God
by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro
(Little Brown – $36.50 – 363 pages)
“…a most interesting story, a tale that grows on the reader the deeper they get into the book.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

When the Music’s Over
by Peter Robinson
(McClelland & Stewart – $29.95 – 482 pages)
“Peter Robinson keeps creating top-notch mysteries that have readers coming back for more.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

The Final Day
by William R. Forstchen
(Forge – $36.95 – 348 pages)
“The pace is exhausting and the reader is drawn totally into the premise.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

by Arnaldur Indridason
(Harvill Secker – $27.99 – 345 pages)
Reviewed by Ron Heimpel
“…no matter how many times we encounter this clever Police Inspector, he manages to bring something new to the table…”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Night School
by Lee Child
(Delacorte Press – $37.00 – 372 pages)
“…what you will find is the same sort of quality work that has become a trademark of the series and has endeared Jack to millions of fans.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Unnoticeables
by Robert Brockway
(Tor – $28.99 – 286 pages)
Reviewed by John M. Milner
“…an amazing blend of action, excitement, horror and humour…”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

The Girls
by Emma Cline
(Random House – $34.99 – 360 pages)
“…haunting in spots, a book where we care more about what happens before the violence than what happens during it.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks


Non-Fiction Section
Best June Non-Fiction

Ojibwa People of Forests and Priaries
by Michael G. Johnson
(Firefly – $35.00 – 160 pages)
“…the perfect coffee table book for those who want to learn about not only about important history but also about Native North American culture as it pertained to the Ojibwa.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

The Occult, Witchcraft and Magic An Illustrated History
by Christopher Del
(Thames and Hudson – $53.95 – 400 pages)
“…all the more entertaining (because of) its comprehensive nature…”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

Classic Car: The Definitive Visual History
(DK Books – $50.00 – 320 pages)
“…should be required reading for today’s consumer.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

I Know What I’m Doing And Other Lies I Tell Myself
by Jen Kirkman
(Simon & Schuster – $33.00 – 230 pages)
“…she adds even more tickle to the funny bone, by writing on a wide variety of subjects that every person can relate to.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

Rest of June Non-Fiction

Peace and Parsnips
by Lee Watson
(The Experiment – $38.00 – 326 pages)
“The author says vegan is all about creativity.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

A Death In the Islands (The Unwritten Law and the Last Trial of Clarence Darrow)
by Mike Farris
(Skyhorse – $36.99 – 320 pages)
“Law students will find this book informative along with those who wanted to see Clarence Darrow in action.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Kovels’ Antiques & Collectibles Price Guide 2017
by Terry & Kim Kovel
(Black Dog & Leventhal – $38.99 – 566 pages)
“…quite impressive how they manage to offer such a wide cross-section of items from different areas of the collecting world.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Just Getting Started
by Tony Bennett with Scott Simon
(Harper – $27.99 – 288 pages)
“…Tony Bennett at his most celebratory.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

The Blind Photographer
Edited by Julian Rothenstein and Mel Gooding
(Princeton Architectural Press – $64.00 – 210 pages)
“There are some books that deserve to be viewed. This is truly one of them…”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Sprinkle Glitter on My Grave
by Jill Kargman
(Ballantine – $35.00 – 226 pages)
“No matter what she discusses, you will often find yourself nodding with agreement.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Heart: The Inside Story of Our Body’s Most Heroic Organ
by Johannes Hinrich Von Borstel
(Greystone – $19.95 – 228 pages)
“Whether your heart is healthy or not, everyone should read this book.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Casey Stengel, Baseball’s Greatest Character
by Marty Appell
(Doubleday – $36.96 – 414 pages)
“Appell had access to previously unpublished material, taking the legend of Stengel to another level.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Hungry Heart (Adventures in Life, Love and Writing)
by Jennifer Weiner
(Atria – $34.99 – 404 pages)
“What makes the book so appealing is her honesty, leaving no subject taboo.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks


*** Recommended Books Worth A Look ***

In the past year, SHELF LIFE has received dozens of books for review. In fact, this past Winter and Spring, our shelves were filled with more titles than ever before. It would be ideal if we could offer full reviews for all books, but space does not permit that to happen. This is why we are again offering an extended section of books worthy of your attention and purchase. The reviews are shorter than the typical reviews found in the previous part of the issue, but suffice it to say they are highly recommended. Therefore, no bookmarks will be noted at review’s end. We are positive you will agree with our choices.

The Halo Effect
by Anne D. LeClaire
(Lake Union – $21.95 – 360 pages)
“…a most effective mystery that will have you frantically turning pages…”

Murder on the Serpentine
by Anne Perry
(Ballantine – $37.00 – 272 pages)
“This is truly another classic, but then again Anne Perry creates them so brilliantly and flawlessly.”

The Evening Road
by Laird Hunt
(Little Brown – $34.00 – 272 pages)
“You will marvel (pardon the pun) at the amazing cast of characters and how each person sees the events unfold, learning about life, hate and their own world.”

The Sleeping Beauty Killer
by Mary Higgins Clarke and Alafair Burke
(Simon & Schuster – $32.99 – 303 pages)
“This is book three of the UNDER SUSPICION series, with once again Mary Higgins Clarke and Alafair Burke creating a most satisfying work of mystery.”

The People’s Police
by Norman Spinrad
(Tor – $38.99 – 284 pages)
“Norman Spinrad’s books are different to the say the least and his latest, while not his greatest, in certainly unique from any other book of its kind out there.”

I Liked My Life
by Abby Fabiaschi
(St. Martin’s Press – $36.99 – 262 pages)
“…a book you will like from cover to cover”

The Sorcerer’s Daughter
by Terry Brooks
(Del Rey- $37.00 – 335 pages)
“…continues the Shannara magic, something that gets stronger each book out.”

Pulse Revolution
by Tami Hardeman
(DK Books – $31.00 – 269 pages)
“You will find 150 recipes in the book, which combine vegetarian, vegan and meat variations.”

The Legacy Tradition and Innovation In Northwestern Indian Art
by Peter L. McNair, Alan L. Hoover & Kevin Neary
(Royal B.C. Museum – $36.95 – 192 pages)
“…a classic publication that showcases First Nations art as found on the Northwest Coast.”

Make Trouble
by John Waters
(Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill – $21.95 – 78 pages)
“…does not hit us over the head with deep thought rather impresses us with how to both make a mark on society and to make trouble but in a good way.”

Next to the Ice
by Cam Cobb, Christopher J. Grieg & Kara Smith
(Mosaic Press – $27.99 – 160 pages)
“…looks at hockey in general in Canada with a series of essays covering a variety of topics.”

Paperback Picks

Space is limited in this issue, but we wanted to draw to your attention some recent paperback and trade paperback books. There will only be a very short mention of the book as we wanted to list as many as possible for your reading pleasures and hopefully ones you will want to add to your must read list.

  • Sweeter than Sin by Shiloh Martin (St. Martin’s Press – $9.99 – 342 pages)
  • Someone to Love by Donna Alward (St. Martin’s Press – $10.99 – 312 pages)
  • Nailed by Opal Carew (Griffin – $20.99 – 279 pages)
  • Beauty and the Weiner by Casey Griffin(St. Martin’s Press – $10.99 – 486 pages)