Shelf Life Magazine – November 2018

Shelf Life November coverNo matter what profession a person may be in, criticism makes one wiser and more aware of the likes and dislikes aimed at them. Shelf Life has always welcomed criticism and we enjoy receiving both positive and negative, though in honesty the positives do outnumber the negatives. Comments keep us on our toes and don’t think simply because we recently celebrated our twentieth anniversary, that we are simply resting on our laurels. No sure. The reason I noted this is the October 2018 issue generated above-average comments simply because of the front cover and new Shelf Life logo and we felt it was time for a change.  Most people like the new type style. One person even commented they thought it was a new publication because the logo was different. We hope they were not disappointed it was still us. The bottom line is, please continue conversing with us about the books we feature, what you like to see, and anything else on your mind. We thank you for all feedback.  Now on to the books!

Enjoy this issue!

Paul Sutter

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*** Fiction Section ***
*** Best November Fiction ***

Exhibit Alexandra
by Natasha Bell
(Crown – $36.00 – 312 pages)
“…like the classic whodunit of mystery novels.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

Let Me Lie
by Clare Mackintosh
(Berkley – $35.00 – 386 pages)
“This is a powerful voice in the world of mystery writing, and that is no lie.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

After Anna
by Lisa Scottoline
(St. Martin’s Pres – $36.00 – 390 pages)
“…even the most hard-to-please reader out there would have to admit there is so much to like about the book.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

*** Rest of November Fiction ***

by Daniel Cole
(Ecco – $34.99 – 384 pages)
“Daniel Cole does a superb job of keeping the identity of the killer intact, making the reader guess continually just who might be the murderer.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Accidental Heroes
by Daniel Steel
(Delacorte Press – $38.99 – 255 pages)
“… a different sort of tale, backing off slightly from what is considered a total love story.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Pretty Girls Dancing
by Kylie Brant
(Thomas & Mercer – $35.95 – 356 pages)
“PRETTY GIRLS DANCING has you hanging on every word, as we learn about the killer’s movies and more.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

How It Happened
by Michael Koryta
(Little Brown – $35.00 – 356 pages)
“Michael Koryta writes the sort of mystery that leaves you captivated. It makes HOW IT HAPPENED one of the best books of his stellar writing career.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Closer Than You Know
by Brad Parks
(Dutton – $37.00 – 404 pages)
“…the slower pace gives the reader the opportunity to savor the book all the more.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Dead If You Don’t
by Peter James
(Macmillan – $24.99 – 420 pages)
“This is the sort of sophisticated thriller we have come to expect from Peter James.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Robert B. Parker’s The Hangman’s Sonnet
by Reed Farrel Coleman
(Putnam – $36.00 – 355 pages)
“…Coleman gives the reader a lot to enjoy.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Monster: The Graphic Novel
by Jonathan Kellerman – Art by Michael Gaydos – Adapted by Ande Parks
(Ballantine – $35.00 – 166 pages)
“…Monster seemed to stand out from the crowd. Put in graphic form, it stands out all the more”
Rating: 3 bookmarks

The Undertaker’s Daughter
by Sara Blaedel
(Grand Central – $34.00 – 326 pages)
“The book and characters may take some time getting used to.”
Rating: 3 bookmarks

A Darkness of the Heart
by Gail Bowen
(McClelland & Stewart – $32.00 – 272 pages)
“…shows another side of Bowen’s writing prowess, adding new dynamics to her life and times…”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

In Her Bones
by Kate Moretti
(Atria – $22.50 – 310 pages)
“The plot swings wildly like a lock pendulum from one twist to another.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Drop by Drop
by Morgan Llywelyn
(Tor – $33.99 – 320 pages)
“It is a definite beginning that the author is sure to flesh out in the next two books of the series.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

The Amateurs
by Liz Harmer
(Knopf Canada – $32.95 – 330 pages)
“…a thinking person’s novel, a true treat from start to finish.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

by Junie Coffey
(Lake Union – $21.95 – 262 pages)
“…bound to catch your interest for a light read, with some very diverse characters…”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Baby You’re Gonna Be Mine
by Kevin Wilson
(Ecco – $31.99 – 288 pages)
“… a book for lovers of short stories, but especially ones that are filled with insight and depth.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

On a Beautiful Day
by Lucy Diamond
(Macmillan – $24.99 – 480 pages)
“This creates a story in which we care for each character because of their desire to face life and its hurdles for better or worse.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Blood Highway
by Gina Wohlsdorf
(Algonquin Paperbacks – $21.95 – 310 pages)
“…we find an even more intense tale with a heroine we root for on every page.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks


*** Non-Fiction Section ***
*** Best November Non-Fiction ***

Smithsonian World War I The Definitive Visual History
by R.G. Grant
(DK Books – $52.00 – 372 pages)
“…brings the War to life in ways old school textbooks never could.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

Rick Hansen’s Man in Motion World Tour
by Jake Macdonald
(Greystone – $34.95 – 164 pages)
“…takes us back to that time when Canadians and those in other countries around the world were able to meet one amazing Canadian.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

**** Rest of November Non-Fiction ****

You’re On An Airplane
by Parker Posey
(Blue Rider Press – $37.00 – 312 pages)
“The stories are told most matter-of-factly, as we listen in rapt attention.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

George Michael Freedom: The Ultimate Tribute 1963-2016
by David Nolan
(Carlton – $40.00 – 144 pages)
“…making George Michael stand very tall with this informative and very moving tribute.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

With Hitler and Mussolini Memoirs of  A Nazi Interpreter
by Eugen Dollman
(Skyhorse – $38.99 – 352 pages)
“The author writes with a flair for detail, and it is this detail that makes the book work so well.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Rogues’ Gallery The Rise (and Occasional Fall) of Art Dealers, The Hidden Players in the History of Art
by Philip Hook
(The Experiment – $37.99 – 297 pages)
Reviewed by Tori Levang
“The reader is introduced to a variety of colorful individuals involved in trade throughout history.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

I’ve Got This Round – More Tales of Debauchery
by Mamrie Hart
(Plume – $32.00 – 294 pages)
“Mamrie Hart puts heart and soul into this work.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Marvel Black Panther: The Ultimate Guide
by Stephen Win Wiacek
(DK Books – $31.99 – 200 pages)
“DK Books continues their exceptional tribute guides to the best characters from Marvel…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Judgment Detox
by Gabrielle Bernstein
(North Star Way – $34.99 – 230 pages)
“Those who are quick to judge will find positives in the book.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Awesome Ancient Grains and Seeds (A Garden to Kitchen Guide)
by Dan Jensen & Michelle Genest
(Douglas McIntyre – $24.95 – 196 pages)
“There is much to learn in the book about grains and seeds, giving us true grains of wisdom.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

by David Sedaris
(Little Brown – $34.99 – 272 pages)
“…he looks at life in his sixth decade. It is definitely a time for introspection and facing one’s mortality.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Over and Above
by Captain John E. Gurdon
(Grub Street – $29.95 – 182 pages)
“The writing is polished and the description sometimes poetic in nature.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

The Book of Highs 252 Ways to Alter Your Consciousness Without Drugs
by Edward Rosenfeld
(Workman – $25.95 – 302 pages)
“The book is a curiosity to say the least, one that depending on your consciousness needs may be beneficial.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

The Complete Guide to Nutrients
by Dr. Michael Sharon
(Carlton Books – $25.95 – 344 pages)
“…gives the reader a complete guide to the best foods for your body.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks