2010 Spring Arts Preview: Books

  • Spiegel & Grau (April)

    Early reports had it that Mr. Martel's follow-up to Life of Pi was about a donkey and a monkey who survive a genocide. Instead, it's about a novelist and taxidermist who write a play about a donkey and a monkey who survive a genocide. Meta does not necessarily mean better.

     

  • Norton (April)

    Mr. Wilson, a distinguished Harvard biologist, answers the oft-asked question, why don't scientists write novels?

     

  • Knopf (June)

    The spectacle of the '80s teen stars of John Hughes' movies paying tribute to their mentor at the Oscars was equal parts awkward and depressing. Could Mr. Ellis' attempt to follow the characters of Less Than Zero into middle age be any different?

     

  • Knopf (May)

    Once the crown prince of the British comic novel, Mr. Amis has been in a transitional phase for at least the past decade. It's a good sign that he's gone back to the '70s for his subject matter, but we're still waiting for a return to form, à la his father's Booker winner The Old Devils.

     

  • Knopf (June)

    Ms. Egan's requiem for aging hipsters follows members of a band called the Flaming Dildos into middle age. See Mr. Ellis.

  • Riverhead (April)

    Who set the Bronx aflame in the '70s? Turns out it was the best and brightest of the RAND Corporation.

     

  • Yale (May)

    One of our premier novelists contemplates the mystery of human consciousness.

     

  • Little Brown (May)

    Mr. Clegg was one of the top literary agents in town until his crack habit brought him low. He returned to win back his clients and tell the tale.

     

  • W.W. Norton (April)

    Texas Monthly editor Mr. Silverstein attempts a high-wire hybrid act, weaving together his incandescent journalism--he wrote the classic Harper's feature "What Is Poetry? And Does It Pay?"--within a fictional framework about the reporter hunting down the stories.

     

  • Twelve (June)

    The columnist you hate to love takes a break from beating the drum for war and shaking his fist at (the nonexistent) God and turns his attention to his best subject, himself.