Book Review: This short story collection confirms Stephen King as a master storyteller

You Like It Darker is a fantastically entertaining collection from the hugely successful American writer

book review of story

It’s been 50 years since Stephen King published his first novel, the one where Carrie gets her telekinetic revenge at the prom, recently given a deserved anniversary edition with an introduction by Margaret Atwood.

Since then, King’s sales have rivalled the bible (at least 400 million, probably) and, for many readers, he got better as he went along. “The King Of Horror” he may be, but forays outside the genre have been equally successful. His 11/22/63 , about a time traveller trying to save JFK, is particularly great, as is the more recent killer-on-the-run thriller Billy Summers .

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  • 16:55 Book Review: This short story collection confirms Stephen King as a master storyteller

book review of story

Book Review: Emil Ferris tackles big issues through a small child with a monster obsession

Emil Ferris follows up her visually stunning 2017 debut graphic novel with its concluding half, “My Favorite Thing Is Monsters Book 2.”

There are two types of monsters: Ones that simply appear scary and ones that are scary by their cruelty. Karen Reyes is the former, but what does that make her troubled older brother, Deeze?

Emil Ferris has finally followed up on her visually stunning, 2017 debut graphic novel with its concluding half, “My Favorite Thing Is Monsters Book 2.” It picks up right where Book 1 left off (spoilers for Book 1 … now), with 10-year-old Karen in a fever dream as she processes her mother’s death from cancer and the revelation that she had another brother named Victor before his twin Deeze killed him.

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'the last murder at the end of the world' is a story of survival and memory.

 Cover of The Last Murder at the End of the World

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Stuart Turton's The Last Murder at the End of the World is a wild amalgamation of genre elements that pulls readers into a unique postapocalyptic world in which another end is imminent. Told with surprising speed, given its depth and scope, this bizarre whodunit also works as a science fiction allegory full of mystery that contemplates the end of the world and what it means to be human.

After a deadly fog destroyed the world and killed most of humanity 90 years ago, the few remaining survivors established themselves on a small Greek island and began salvaging whatever they could. Now, 122 villagers and three scientists share life on the island, working the land, taking care of each other, and respecting a strange set of rules and a curfew that makes them all go to bed and wake up at the same time. They also share an AI voice that lives inside their head and operates like their conscience.

Outside the island, the same deadly fog that ended the world still exists, and it sometimes comes on land, which makes it a constant threat. When one of the scientists is murdered, the islanders lose the only protection they had against the fog. If they don't solve the murder soon, the fog will cover the island and kill everyone. Unfortunately, the same security system failure that could allow the fog to take over the island has also erased everyone's memories of what happened during the night before. This means that no one remembers seeing anything -- and that maybe even the person who committed the murder might not remember they did it.

The Last Murder at the End of the World works well, and it does so on two different levels. Right at the surface, this is a wonderful hybrid that blends postapocalyptic science fiction with a murder mystery. The elements of those genres never overpower each other. In fact, they complement each other and help Turton redefine the whodunit. The science fiction elements -- the end of the world, the AI inside everyone's head, the gems that can contain a person's memories, the way people can buy memories to experience things -- are interesting and make the narrative more engaging, while also placing the novel comfortably in the terrain of smart speculative fiction. Meanwhile, the murder mystery occupies center stage in a story where new revelations are always around the corner and where nothing is exactly at it seems.

While genre elements are right at the surface here, The Last Murder at the End of the World is also a deep novel about big ideas. Turton delves deep into the way humans tend to fight each other, for example. He also addresses the end of the world obliquely, with only short descriptions of how it happened and a few details about how some of the characters who were part of the original group of survivors fared after the fog killed almost everyone. Also, the narrative deals a lot with control -- who possesses it and why and how it often comes accompanied by some kind of dishonesty. The plethora of ideas Turton plays with makes this a wonderfully layered story that's about much more than a mysterious murder no one can remember.

Trekking into uncharted territory is always tricky, and that means narratives that do so might have slight flaws from their perilous journeys. In the case of The Last Murder at the End of the World , there are only two small blemishes, which isn't much when considering everything Turton accomplishes with the novel. The first one is that the large cast of characters prevented Turton from giving them all the same level of character development. The second is that despite short chapters and dialogue that carries the action well, the pacing isn't constant and the telling feels a tad mechanical in some passages, probably because of everything that's going on in the story, and the need to push things forward at all times while also engaging with big ideas.

The Last Murder at the End of the World is a gripping tale that reads like a Sherlock Holmes novel set in a broken future. This is a novel that explores what makes us human but that does so with characters that aren't all human and with a narrator that is an artificial intelligence that may or may not know more about the future than everyone else. Turton is an exciting writer with a knack for strange tales that push the envelope, and this strange story of murder, survival, and the importance of memory might be his best work yet.

Gabino Iglesias is an author, book reviewer and professor living in Austin, Texas. Find him on X, formerly Twitter, at @Gabino_Iglesias .

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What Should You Read Next? Here Are the Best Reviewed Books of the Week

Featuring new titles by claire messud, adam higginbotham, miranda july, hari kunzru, and more.

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Claire Messud’s This Strange Eventful History , Adam Higginbotham’s Challenger , Miranda July’s All Fours , and Hari Kunzru’s Blue Ruin all feature among the best reviewed books of the week.

Brought to you by Book Marks , Lit Hub’s home for book reviews.

This Strange Eventful History

1. This Strange Eventful History by Claire Messud (W. W. Norton & Company)

14 Rave • 2 Positive Read an interview with Claire Messud here

“This monumental novel, which is a work of salvage and salvation … Quilted from scraps of memory treasured in the author’s attic for decades … Regardless of how much Messud may have drawn from biographical details, though, this novel grips our interest only because of how expertly she shapes these incidents for dramatic effect … A novel of such cavernous depth, such relentless exploration, that it can’t help but make one realize how much we know and how little we confess about our own families. I strove to withhold judgment, to exercise a little skeptical decorum, but I couldn’t help finishing each chapter in a flush of awe.”

–Ron Charles ( The Washington Post )

2. All Fours by Miranda July (Riverhead)

7 Rave • 3 Positive • 1 Mixed

“About the binary of heterosexual love and the claustrophobia inherent in being a mother in a heteronormative family. More broadly, it’s a book about straddling two worlds … In a move that rejects the traditional arc of the hero’s journey, she never even leaves California. But transformation happens anyway. The narrator rediscovers herself not by driving across state lines, but by standing a shadow’s length away.”

–Jenessa Abrams ( The Los Angeles Review of Books )

3. Blue Ruin by Hari Kunzru (Knopf)

6 Rave • 2 Positive • 1 Pan Read an excerpt from Blue Ruin here

“…a lively, ever-intensifying story as Jay weaves in discussions of race, immigration, work, and what it means to earn a living. It’s a darkly ironic tale of two bubbles—an art world divorced from economic reality and a Covid era that segregated us from society. A dark, smart, provocative tale of the perils of art making.”

1. Challenger: A True Story of Heroism and Disaster on the Edge of Space by Adam  Higginbotham (Avid Reader Press)

“Adam Higginbotham provides the most definitive account of the explosion that took the lives of the seven-person crew. He also meticulously explores the missteps and negligence that allowed the tragedy to occur … The pace is so brisk that readers will be surprised when they realize the vivid account of the Challenger launch doesn’t occur until well after halfway through the book … Compelling, comprehensive.”

–Andrew DeMillo ( Associated Press )

2. Skies of Thunder: The Deadly World War II Mission Over the Roof of the World by Caroline  Alexander (Viking)

3 Rave • 3 Positive • 1 Mixed

“Alexander casts her story as an ‘epic,’ yet it is one in which the actors suffer like Job more often than they fight like Achilles. There are stirring episodes of British sang-froid, ‘American-style glamour’ and remarkable courage among the region’s remote tribal peoples, but it is perseverance that assumes heroic proportions … Alexander adroitly explicates technical concepts—flight mechanics, de-icing, night vision—but is at her best rendering pilots’ fear … Epic.”

–Elizabeth D. Samet ( The New York Times Book Review )

3. Rebel Girl: My Life as a Feminist Punk by Kathleen Hanna (Ecco)

3 Rave • 3 Positive

“Packed with harrowing stories and illuminating revelations … Utilizing a voice that’s often bitingly funny but never insincere, Hanna proves a captivating narrator.”

–Zach Ruskin ( The San Francisco Chronicle )

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6 New Books We Recommend This Week

Suggested reading from critics and editors at The New York Times.

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Monday is Memorial Day, when Americans pause to remember those who have lost their lives in the country’s wars, and if that somber occasion puts you in the mood to think about global politics and foreign policy, this would be a good weekend to settle in with “New Cold Wars,” in which my Times colleague David E. Sanger and his collaborator Mary K. Brooks evaluate the current state of tensions among China, Russia and America.

Elsewhere, we also recommend new fiction from Colm Tóibín, Juli Min and Monica Wood, along with a biography of the groundbreaking transgender actress Candy Darling and a book of photos by the incomparable Corky Lee, documenting moments in Asian American life. Happy reading. — Gregory Cowles

NEW COLD WARS: China’s Rise, Russia’s Invasion, and America’s Struggle to Defend the West David E. Sanger with Mary K. Brooks

In this compelling first draft of history, Sanger reveals how a generation of American officials have grappled with dangerous developments in great war competition, from the war in Ukraine to the technological arms race with China.

book review of story

“Vividly captures the view from Washington. But, as Sanger makes clear, … the fate of the U.S.-led order rests more than ever on the ideas, beliefs and emotions of people far outside the Beltway.”

From Justin Vogt’s review

Crown | $33

LONG ISLAND Colm Tóibín

More than a decade after Tóibín introduced us to Eilis Lacey, the finely wrought Irish émigré heroine of his novel “Brooklyn,” he’s conjured her again, this time as a married mother whose suburban New York life is disrupted by a crisis that propels her back to Ireland once more.

book review of story

“Eilis is hardly passive. She is an interesting and vivid character because she manages to make her destiny her choice. … In her own mind, and in the eyes of sympathetic readers, she is free.”

From A.O. Scott’s review

Scribner | $28

SHANGHAILANDERS Juli Min

Min’s debut is a sweeping story, told in reverse. The novel opens in 2040 with the Yangs, a wealthy family tense with frustrations and troubles. Then the novel gradually moves backward to 2014, revealing along the way the complex lives of each family member and how they got to their anguished present.

book review of story

“Having knowledge of these characters’ futures before we know about their past makes stumbling on their bygone days all the more touching.”

From Jean Kwok’s review

Spiegel & Grau | $28

HOW TO READ A BOOK Monica Wood

The latest from Wood (“When We Were the Kennedys”) brings together three lonely people in and around Portland, Maine — a retired teacher, a widower and a young woman recently released from prison — for a dextrous and warmhearted tale of unlikely redemption and connection.

book review of story

“A charming, openhearted novel, deceptively easy to read but layered with sharp observations, hard truths and rich ideas.”

From Helen Simonson’s review

Mariner | $28

CANDY DARLING: Dreamer, Icon, Superstar Cynthia Carr

Carr, an astute guide to the Manhattan demimonde, offers a compassionate and meticulous biography of the transgender actress, who flitted in and out of Andy Warhol’s orbit before dying of cancer at 29 in 1974, after being immortalized in a famous photograph by Peter Hujar and in the Lou Reed song “Walk on the Wild Side.”

book review of story

“There wasn’t really vocabulary to describe the territory Darling was exploring back then … and her biographer extends a sure hand across the breach. To push her from the Warhol wings to center stage, at a moment when transgender rights are in roiling flux, just makes sense.”

From Alexandra Jacobs’s review

Farrar, Straus & Giroux | $30

CORKY LEE’S ASIAN AMERICA: Fifty Years of Photographic Justice Photographs Corky Lee; edited by Chee Wang Ng and Mae Ngai

Several years after his death from Covid at age 73, the famed photographer’s work remains enduringly relevant. This new book, a sort of survey course in Asian Americans’ decades-long fight for social and political equality, offers both intimate, atomized portraits of the everyday and galvanizing visions of a larger unified movement.

book review of story

“A man with an intimate understanding of the invisible, turning his lens on behind-the-scenes fragments and people that the annals of history have largely ignored.”

From Wilson Wong’s review

Clarkson Potter | $50

Explore More in Books

Want to know about the best books to read and the latest news start here..

An assault led to Chanel Miller’s best seller, “Know My Name,” but she had wanted to write children’s books since the second grade. She’s done that now  with “Magnolia Wu Unfolds It All.”

When Reese Witherspoon is making selections for her book club , she wants books by women, with women at the center of the action who save themselves.

The Nobel Prize-winning author Alice Munro, who died on May 14 , specialized in exacting short stories that were novelistic in scope , spanning decades with intimacy and precision.

“The Light Eaters,” a new book by Zoë Schlanger, looks at how plants sense the world  and the agency they have in their own lives.

Each week, top authors and critics join the Book Review’s podcast to talk about the latest news in the literary world. Listen here .

Understanding and solving intractable resource governance problems.

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Writing the literature review chapter of a book

I was reviewing my Twitter feed after my website went down for a few days because of a coding error, and I found a request from Dr. Sara Chatfield regarding suggestions for how to write a literature review chapter for a book manuscript. Dr. Ryan LaRochelle suggested that she look through my website to see if I had written something about the topic.

Seems like something @raulpacheco would have a post about. — Ryan LaRochelle (@r_m_larochelle) July 22, 2019

Strangely enough, I haven’t. I have written about how to write introductory chapters and concluding chapters for book manuscripts, but I hadn’t written about how to write a literature review chapter within a manuscript intended to be published as a book.

Working at my campus office

To be perfectly honest, I could not recall at the time I got this request if I had ever read a book that had solely a literature review chapter (my doctoral dissertation has one, but I also have been revising it for publication as a book, so I can’t say that I will keep it as a stand-alone literature review.

So what I decided to do was to come to my office and check a few books and see whether they had a stand-alone literature review chapter or not, and if they did, how they wrote it, and if they didn’t, how did they incorporate the literature review into the entire manuscript.

For another of my book manuscripts, I am doing individual chapter literature reviews because it’s somewhat of a collection of individual pieces of scholarship about bottled water. For the book that is coming out of my doctoral dissertation, I have a major literature review in the first chapter, which is the introduction, and then I add a little bit here and there in the other chapters.

As I had promised Dr. Chatfield and Dr. LaRochelle, I’ve checked a few books to see if they had a dedicated literature review chapter. There’s a broad range of approaches, but the vast majority of books I reviewed put the literature review in the introduction and add in each chapter on an “as needed” basis. Since I already did a Twitter thread I am just going to paste my overview here.

While @hahriehan has a separate methods appendix, her chapter “Setting the Comparative Cases” explains the case selection process, what sets her research apart and makes it unique and (very importantly) what it all, taken in an integrated way, matters/means pic.twitter.com/rlvTf8wbzo — Dr Raul Pacheco-Vega (@raulpacheco) July 25, 2019
In @CristinaMBalboa ‘s book, having a separate, intensely researched theory chapter based on extensive literature review makes total sense. It IS the lens she uses to analyze her cases. Dispersing the LR throughout the chapter does not make any sense at all. pic.twitter.com/dDkeEQ1Lr8 — Dr Raul Pacheco-Vega (@raulpacheco) July 25, 2019
Fabiana Li’s Unearthing Conflict is a good example of “Intro with LR that explains why my book is important” with remnants of LR on specific contours of the same research question interspersed throughout the entire volume – each chapter touches upon a different issue she examines pic.twitter.com/u8VIJh8Di7 — Dr Raul Pacheco-Vega (@raulpacheco) July 25, 2019
Take Dr. @tammyl_lewis ‘ Ecuador’s Environmental Revolutions. Lewis offers a relatively odd approach that totally makes sense: she has an entire chapter on ideal types of environmentalism that is an in-depth LR BUT also sets up her own typology of 3 types. pic.twitter.com/xBiCMX2PJX — Dr Raul Pacheco-Vega (@raulpacheco) July 25, 2019
Now, compare my good friend Dr Natasha Borges Sugiyama’s Diffusion of Good Government. Again, for Borges Sugiyama it is fundamental to set up a contextual chapter discussing theories of policy diffusion. Hence her extended LR (though she does position her contribution in intro) pic.twitter.com/yUJEr8W2TQ — Dr Raul Pacheco-Vega (@raulpacheco) July 25, 2019
… those authors may follow the same model for their book (read @WMGermano ’s “From Dissertation to Book” if you are converting your thesis into a manuscript. I hope these examples help people decide about separate LR/sprinkled throughout LR approaches to LR in book manuscripts. — Dr Raul Pacheco-Vega (@raulpacheco) July 25, 2019

I am hopeful these notes I took from different books will achieve the goal that I intended: help other authors consider how they’ll frame their literature reviews in their manuscripts. I wanted to add a few comments and responses I got to a Twitter query. As shown below, other book authors vary their approaches and there is ample divergence in how people approach the literature review in their books (stand-alone chapter vs interspersed throughout the manuscript and having most of the literature review in the introductory chapter).

Our editor has asked us to split it up throughout the chapters- makes the chapters seem less like articles. Using many fewer articles in the review than in an article, and spending a lot more time on each. — Dan Cassino (@DanCassino) July 25, 2019
I needed to set up a larger argument so the story I wanted to tell would say something larger about the era, so I did my lit review in the extended introductory chapter. It was a history, not a social science study, however. — Marty Olliff (@MartyOlliff) July 25, 2019
I am in the earliest stages of planning a book manuscript but this is the model I plan on following as well. — Gretchen Sneegas, PhD (@GretchenSneegas) July 25, 2019
Agree. No chapter that is mainly about reviewing lit! You need some lit review in the intro (just to explain why anyone should care about your book, in context of prior scholarship). But otherwise, on as-needed basis only. — Matthew Shugart (@laderafrutal) July 25, 2019
Both. My Lit Review (thesis) was 22 pp so the rest was throughout the text. And I’ve copied that ever since. — Dr Gina van Raphael (@AliaGvR) July 25, 2019
Neither. I had about 2-3 page lit review in the theory chapter. Made the book so much easier to read. — Tanya Schwarz (@tanyabschwarz) July 25, 2019

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About Raul Pacheco-Vega, PhD

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Review: Stephen King knows 'You Like It Darker' and obliges with sensational new tales

book review of story

After 50 years, Stephen King knows his Constant Readers all too well. In fact, it’s right there in the title of the legendary master of horror’s latest collection of stories: “ You Like It Darker .” 

Heck yeah, Uncle Stevie, we do like it darker. Obviously so does King, who’s crafted an iconic career of keeping folks up at night either turning pages and/or trying to hide from their own creeped-out imagination. The 12 tales of “Darker” (Scribner, 512 pp., ★★★½ out of four) are an assortment of tried-and-true King staples, with stories that revisit the author’s old haunts – one being a clever continuation of an old novel – and a mix of genres from survival frights to crime drama (a favorite of King’s in recent years). It’s like a big bag of Skittles: Each one goes down different but they’re all pretty tasty.

And thoughtful as well. King writes in “You Like It Darker” – a play on a Leonard Cohen song – that with the supernatural and paranormal yarns he spins, “I have tried especially hard to show the real world as it is." With the opener “Two Talented Bastids,” King takes on an intriguing, grounded tale of celebrity: A son of a famous writer finally digs into the real reason behind how his father and his dad’s best friend suddenly went from landfill owners to renowned artists overnight.

That story’s bookended by “The Answer Man,” which weaves together Americana and the otherwordly. Over the course of several decades, a lawyer finds himself at major turning points, and the same strange guy shows up to answer his big questions (needing payment, of course), in a surprisingly emotional telling full of small-town retro charm and palpable dread.

With some stories, King mines sinister aspects in life’s more mundane corners. “The Fifth Step” centers on a sanitation engineer has a random and fateful meeting on a park bench with an addict working his way through sobriety, with one heck of a slowburn reveal. A family dinner is the seemingly quaint setting for twisty “Willie the Weirdo,” about a 10-year-old misfit who only confides in his dying grandpa. And in the playfully quirky mistaken-identity piece “Finn,” a truly unlucky teenager is simply walking home alone when wrong place and wrong time lead to a harrowing journey.

Check out: USA TODAY's weekly Best-selling Booklist

A couple entries lean more sci-fi: “Red Screen” features a cop investigating a wife’s murder, with her husband claiming she was possessed; while in “The Turbulence Expert,” a man named Craig Dixon gets called into work, his office is an airplane and his job is far from easy. There’s also some good old-fashioned cosmic terror with “The Dreamers,” starring a Vietnam vet and his scientist boss' experiments that go terrifyingly awry. The 76-year-old King notably offers up some spry elderly heroes, too. One finds himself in harm’s way during a family road trip in “On Slide Inn Road,” where a signed Ted Williams bat takes center stage, and “Laurie” chronicles an aging widower and his new canine companion running afoul of a ticked-off alligator.

'Carrie' turns 50: Ranking iconic author Stephen King's best books turned films

King epics like “It” and “The Stand” are so huge the books double as doorstops, yet the author has a long history of exceptional short fiction, including the likes of “The Body,” “Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption” and “The Life of Chuck” (from the stellar 2020 collection “If It Bleeds” ). And with “Darker,” it’s actually the two lengthier entries that are the greatest hits.

“Rattlesnakes” is a sequel of sorts to King’s 1981 novel "Cujo," where reptiles are more central to what happens than an unhinged dog. Decades after his son’s death and a divorce results from an incident involving a rabid Saint Bernard, Vic Trenton is retired and living at a friend’s mansion in the Florida Keys when a meeting with a neighbor leads to unwanted visits from youthful specters. It both brings a little healing catharsis to a traumatizing read ("Cujo" definitely sticks with you) and opens up a new wound with unnerving bite.

Then there’s the 152-page “Danny Coughlin’s Bad Dream,” which leans more into King’s recent noir detective/procedural era. School janitor Danny gets a psychic vision of a girl who’s been murdered and he tries to do the right thing by informing the police. But that’s when the nightmare really begins, as he becomes a prime suspect and has his life torn asunder by the most obsessed cop this side of Javert. Danny’s all too ready to be his Valjean, a compelling sturdy personality who fights back hard – and the best King character since fan-favorite private eye Holly Gibney .

“Horror stories are best appreciated by those who are compassionate and empathetic,” King writes in his afterword. And with “You Like It Darker,” he proves once more that his smaller-sized tales pack as powerful a wallop as the big boys.

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‘Cujo’ character returns in Stephen King’s latest story collection

Book review.

In Stephen King’s world, “It” is a loaded word. It’s hard not to picture Pennywise the Clown haunting the sewers of Derry, Maine, of course, but in the horror writer’s newest collection of stories, “You Like It Darker,” “It” ranges from a suspicious stranger on a park bench, to an extraterrestrial being bestowing a gift that helps best friends realize their potential, to telepaths whose sole job is to keep airplanes from falling out of the sky.

Twelve stories make up the book, with one of the longest (90 pages), “Rattlesnakes,” reintroducing readers to Vic Trenton, who King fans will remember as the father of Tad, the boy killed by the rabid St. Bernard Cujo in King’s 1981 novel of that name. Now 72, Trenton is riding out the pandemic at a friend’s waterfront property in the Florida Keys, where he meets a widow who also lost loved ones in a terrible accident. It’s fairly creepy, featuring long-dead twins trying to haunt their way back to life, but it’s hardly the darkest here.

I’d give that honor to “The Fifth Step,” which in just 10 pages should scare anyone who’s been paying attention to the true crime stories splashed across the screens of this country’s tawdrier news sources. But is it “darker,” really than any of the more than 60 books King has written in his illustrious career? Probably not, but perhaps the afterword quote from the author, also featured on the back of the hardcover — “You like it darker? Fine. So do I.” — helps sell books in today’s extreme world, even for a perennial bestseller like Mr. King.

The best of these stories, as is true with the best of King’s work, feature horror tempered with heart. I really enjoyed “On Slide Inn Road,” featuring a grandfather who’s still pretty accurate with a baseball bat, and “The Answer Man,” which poses the question, “If you could know anything about the future, what would it be?”

I’d like to know how much longer we’ll have to enjoy this uniquely American icon, who at the age of 76 continues to write and publish at a furious pace. This collection’s afterword reads like a recording from King’s therapist’s couch, or a confessional on a reality TV series. He admits “the only two times I ever came close to getting it all were in two prison stories: ‘The Green Mile’ and ‘Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption.’” Here’s hoping he keeps trying, because like millions of others around the world, I’ll read every word.

NEW FICTION

Stephen King, Scribner, 512 pp., $30

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  • Book review: Story within a story, with abortion as a…

Book review: Story within a story, with abortion as a unifying theme

‘Fis-Sajf ta’ zewgt’ibliet’ Author: Salv Sammut Publisher: Horizons /2024 Pages: 239

book review of story

This latest offering by one of Malta's most prolific authors is a rather unusual one - a story within a story, with abortion as a common theme.

Valeria Martinelli is an Italian gynaecologist who settles in Malta, lives in Mdina, campaigns against abortion and rather incongruously writes poetry and prose.

The second story is one written by Valeria and published with success by famous Italian publishing house Rizzoli.

It tells of the love story of Fabio and Gabriella, two fellow students at the Università La Sapienza.

She comes from a rich and conservative Roman Catholic family while he is the son of a pizza outlet owner at San Gimignano, up in Tuscany.

In no time at all, when the introductions are being made, he finds out that her mother, who he was told is dead, is very much alive but has been kicked out of the family.

Then, bit by bit he reconstructs the whole story. Adultery and treachery play their part, but not abortion so far. This comes in very heavily and in a surprising way towards the end.

In my opinion one cannot really say that the book is "against abortion" as some have said. The book exposes some of the moral aspects or reasons why some people have abortions and then expounds on the guilt feelings that come over after it's done.

But maybe it's rather reductive to describe the two stories as being "about abortion". They are two likeable stories about four protagonists just like us, caught up in the moral dilemmas of today's world.

Who can guarantee we would be better?

What is definitely lacking in this book is attention to detail, especially the place names in Italian - Piazza Pitti, Via del Babuino, Giardino Boboli...

And Rome's second university is La Sapienza, not belonging to a certain Mr Sapienza.

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Stephen King's Book Is Already Getting Rave Reviews

Stephen King's new book, You Like It Darker , has proven to be a smash hit in only a matter of days.

The critically acclaimed author is known for novels such as The Shining , It, and Carrie , which have all been turned into major motion pictures. King is no stranger to publishing short stories, with his new release delving "into the darker part of life."

You Like It Darker— released May 21—is a collection of 12 short stories, with "Rattlesnakes," reintroducing readers to Vic Trenton, the father of Tad, the boy who was killed by the rabid dog in King's hit 1981 book Cujo . "The Answer Man" is a short story that has taken King 45 years to write. The first few pages were written when the critically acclaimed author was 30. After long forgetting about the pages he wrote, it was rediscovered by his nephew, leading to King eventually finishing it when he was 75.

Some of the other stories included are "Two Talented Bastids," "The Fifth Step," "Willie the Weirdo," "Red Screen," "The Turbulence Expert," and "The Dreamers."

Even though the collection hasn't been available for long, it has already received a variety of rave reviews from readers. Newsweek emailed a spokesperson for King for comment on Friday.

On Amazon , the book only has 5-star ratings so far, with it being the #1 bestseller in the "Occult Horror" category at the time of writing.

"I feel this is vintage Stephen King . I have read every book he has ever written , and while he has a number of superb full-length books. I feel he is the absolute master of the short story great book highly recommended," one of the reviews reads.

Another reviewer said they "highly recommended to all Constant Readers, and newcomers alike."

It's not only on Amazon where the collection of stories is receiving excellent reviews from readers. On Goodreads , it sits at 4.34 out of 5 with over 230 ratings and 58 reviews.

The majority of reviewers, 56 percent, have given the book 5 stars.

"Stephen King is the absolute master of writing. I couldn't put it down. The writing is magic. I am immediately transported to wherever Mr. King leads me. I was captivated from the first paragraph. Stephen King does not disappoint," one person wrote.

"Always love Stephen King's collections of short stories and this one is great too! Interesting, thought-provoking and dark. My favorites were The Answer Man, Danny Coughlin's Bad Dream, Two Talented Bastids and Rattlesnakes, now you go read this book and find your favorites!" said another.

At the time of writing it had 5 1-star ratings, with the only written review being from someone who hasn't even read it. "If fans can rate it 5 stars without having even read the thing I can give it 1," the person posted.

However, a person who gave the book a 2-star rating wrote: "His worse [sic] collection of shorts IMO [in my opinion]. Rattlesnakes was good but I think that was mostly due to the constant Cujo references. Sadly, I found the rest of these stories forgettable."

Often referred to as the "King of Horror," King has authored numerous bestselling novels, short stories, and novellas that have captivated readers worldwide.

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Stephen King Signs Copies Of His Book "Revival" on November 11, 2014, in New York City. His latest book, a collection of short stories, is receiving rave reviews.

Book Review: Twin brothers, one religious, one not, go on a wild and wacky road trip through South

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In the beginning was… a lie. One day a rabbi knocked on the door of a woman with a Jewish-sounding last name in a small town in Georgia to recruit new members for his synagogue. When he asks if she knows of any Jews in the area, Ida Mae Belkin admits to being one herself. This comes as a shock to her 12-year-old twins Marty and David, who grew up believing in not much more than the national pastime of TV and fast food.

Fast forward some 20 years and Marty, who has become a religious scholar at a Brooklyn yeshiva and goes by the more Jewish-sounding name of Mayer, finds out via Ida Mae’s suicide note that she lied and he and David are not in fact Jewish. That means his marriage to devoutly Orthodox Sarah is effectively null and void since she never would have consented to marry someone outside the faith.

What to do? Clearly, the only solution is to convert to Judaism “on the down-low,” as Mayer’s pot-smoking rascal of a brother puts it, and in the meantime, take a road trip through the Deep South to, well, relax. So begins Reuven Fenton’s quirky debut novel, “Goyhood,” which takes the classic literary theme of the journey — think Homer’s “Odyssey” or Jack Kerouac’s “On the Road” — and gives it a decidedly unorthodox twist.

Over the course of their journey, the brothers will adopt a one-eyed dog, almost get blown up in a fireworks store and eventually scatter Ida Mae’s ashes in the Great Smoky Mountains. David’s good friend Charlayne, an Instagram influencer with issues of her own, wonders if their trip isn’t a kind of rumspringa, the Amish rite of passage when young people are encouraged to break the rules before joining the church.

At the beginning of their travels Mayer defines his newly discovered “goyhood” – that is, the condition of not being Jewish – as “the state of rebounding from one travesty to the next.” By the end, he has gained a glimmer of understanding about why the wife he adored was always so standoffish about sex.

Fenton, a longtime reporter for the New York Post whose previous book “Stolen Years” was a nonfiction study of 10 men and women wrongfully imprisoned, has written a big-hearted novel about the enduring importance of faith and family. While some of the plot twists are a little meshuga — the Yiddish word for crazy — overall, the book is a lot of fun.

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Jessica Stone, who knits Broadway and circus in thrilling ‘Water for Elephants,’ enjoys a Tony nod

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FILE - Richard Dreyfuss arrives at the Los Angeles premiere of "Murder at Yellowstone City" on Thursday June 23, 2022, at Harmony Gold Theater in Los Angeles. A venue issued an apology, Saturday, May 25, 2024, for comments made by Dreyfuss who showed up in a dress at a “Jaws”-themed event and made comments that were demeaning to women and the LGBTQ community. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP, File)

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Midwest City history remembered in new book by native Oklahoman who grew up there

The U.S Navy Blue Angels fly over the crowd during a performance at the 2023 Tinker Airshow at the Tinker Air Force Base in Midwest City.

"Tinkertown: A Wheatfield, an Airbase, and Us: The Story of Midwest City & Tinker AFB" by Jim Willis (ArtStrings, LLC, 457 pages, in stores)

At an early age, author Jim Willis demonstrated remarkable talent for writing and storytelling.

Growing up in Midwest City after World War II, Willis was having a tough time as a ninth grader at the now defunct Jarman Junior High School.

Forging his mother's signature on a typewritten note, he concocted a story about his family moving to Florida. He asked school officials to withdraw him from all classes and to provide him with the necessary papers to enroll in another school in Florida.

To Willis' shock and amazement, that's what they did.

Several weeks later, eventually bored and lonely, he finally confessed to his horrified parents and instead of punishing Willis, his parents and school officials helped him pass algebra so he could go on to high school.

Nearly 65 years later, Willis, a 1964 graduate of Midwest City High School and now a resident of Kentucky, never forgot that kindness, nor the town in which he grew up.

This story and others like it are included in Willis' recently published memoir, "Tinkertown: A Wheatfield, an Airbase, and Us."

Willis, who believes that “Tinkertown” is the first book published about Midwest City's earliest history, explains the unique synergy that existed between the town and Tinker Air Force Base, which has a $3.5 billion economic impact and is the largest of three Air Force maintenance depots in the country.

Tinker started out as the Midwest Air Depot in 1941 and in 1948 was designated as Tinker Air Force Base.

The air base was named in honor of Clarence L. Tinker, the first Native American to achieve the rank of general in the U.S Army, who was born near Pawhuska on the Osage reservation.

Tinker was also the first U.S. Army general to be killed in World War II when his plane developed engine problems and crashed in the Pacific in the Battle for Midway. The military facility bearing his name is dedicated to maintaining a plane's ability to fly safely.

In the '40s, thousands of workers were needed to ramp up the nation's defense efforts, including production of C-47s, the transport and cargo plane that dropped paratroopers behind enemy lines on the D-Day invasion of Normandy, France and later delivered food and fuel during the Berlin Air Lift.

As many as 38,000 Oklahomans worked at the Douglas Aircraft company plant, and more than half were women. Workers assembling these war planes needed houses in which to live.

Initially, the land wasn’t much more than wheat fields and mud. But there was talk of an airfield.

Early on, W.P. "Bill" Atkinson — an audacious home builder who was good with maps and worked as a journalist — used his reporting skills to snoop around and talk with area farmers on where that airfield might end up.

On speculation, his first land purchase was 160 acres of wheat field from Frank Trosper for what would become a portion of the town's first square mile; Atkinson would eventually own 320 acres total that would host the city’s first housing. Ground was broken for the first five homes on Turnbull Drive in 1942, about 11 months before Midwest City was incorporated in 1943.

But before the first house was ever built in 1942, Midwest City was a planned community, touted as a lifestyle, complete with a school, churches, and a shopping center, all designed to serve the needs of a family, rather than houses in isolated neighborhoods.

Built essentially at ground zero, right across the street from the base rather than miles away for safety, this proximity was unusual. But people working and living here felt safe and were optimistic for the future and grateful for a job.

Memories from growing up in Midwest City

Born in Ohio, Willis moved to Midwest City from Ohio with his family in 1949 when he was 3 years old. Willis' earliest memories include daily stops at the local library on his walk home from school, which he credits for instilling his love of books and writing. An OU journalism graduate, he's the author of 19 books. His first jobs as a journalist included being a nighttime copy editor and state desk reporter for the Daily Oklahoman newspaper.

What the town might have lacked in natural beauty, it compensated for with a rich sensory experience, perhaps even an overload at times.

Jets emitted deafening noise as they followed their final glide path and landed on one of Tinker's runways, skimming the tops of houses by only several hundred feet, Willis writes. One of those houses on Babb was Willis' first home, a modest duplex rented by his parents.

Sometimes the jets crashed into houses and fields, and people died. Sonic boom testing — during one period as often as eight times a day — broke windows, shook houses and rattled nerves for miles.

But for Willis, this cacophony of noise — especially from engines — was soothing.

"I came to feel the sound of airplanes was just another voice of nature, as much as the birds and crickets in the back yard, and frogs in a nearby creek," Willis writes.

Early streets and schools were named after defense contractors, generals, and politicians.

In keeping with a military theme, the town's only entertainment venue — a walk-in movie theater, also across from Tinker — was named the Skytrain, in honor of the C-47 Skytrain transport plane. At one time, 13 Skytrains were produced per day.

Thousands of workers poured into town with their families in the early '40s and 50s. Educating their children became a financial issue for the new school district, since the airfield occupied federal land tax exempt from property and sales taxes, which traditionally generate revenue for schools.

The 1943-44 school year started out with one single school, the Midwest City School, as it was known then, with 413 students in nursery through grade 12, but grew to about a thousand students by year's end. The amount of federal aid that first year was $192,406. Only seven years later, with more than 2,500 students, federal aid had grown to $2,304,344.

Current, former Tinker employees share experiences

Especially compelling in Willis’ book are interviews with current and former Tinker employees.

"Work... needs to be done properly. Because if it breaks down, you can't just pull over on the side of the road," says Clifton Chenevert, a mechanic on the B-1.

Three shifts work twenty-four hours a day. The pay in private aviation would be much more lucrative. Some leave and pursue that, while others stay.

It's stories like these that make “Tinkertown” an important book, and a reminder of what was achieved in the past by people collaborating together to work for a common goal.

Willis' classmate, retired four-star general Roger Brady, also a '64 MCHS alum who quarterbacked the Bombers football team, wrote “Tinkertown's” foreword.

A former commander of U.S. Air Forces in Europe with nearly 4,000 hours as a command pilot in various aircraft, Brady writes that since fewer Americans than ever are serving in the military, "we're becoming less connected to, or not even aware of, the community that protects our way of life."

Communities like Tinkertown, Brady writes, "give us models that provide hope for preserving an important heritage."

“Tinkertown” is a rich, exciting history which deserves to be read, and remembered, not for just the planes and their dramatic missions, but for the hearty men and women who came here to build them, and along the way, created a community which still flourishes today.

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Is this new author really the next Patricia Highsmith and does The Safekeep live up to the hype?

The dutch writer’s debut novel went to a nine-way book auction and yael van der wouden has been compared to patricia highsmith and sarah waters. but this tale of sex and guilt set in post-war holland is dominated by feelings rather than story and atmosphere over plot. welcome to the 21st-century novel, writes robert mccrum.

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‘The Safekeep’ by Yael van der Wouden is a new historical novel being published following a wave of hype

I t’s an iron law of the book trade that when the publicity for a first novel by an unknown writer praises its presumed affinity with the work of established contemporary masters – the “awesome pathos of X”; or the “highly charged beauty of Y”; even “the wild intimacy of Z” – there’s usually big money at stake.

The Safekeep by the Dutch writer Yael van der Wouden, festooned with breathless hyperbole, and comparisons to the work of Patricia Highsmith , Sarah Waters and Ian McEwan , is a case study of publishers’ ballyhoo. Indeed, in promoting The Safekeep , Penguin Viking actually declares, with rare bravado, that this debut novel was acquired in “a hotly-contested nine-way auction”. (Translation: We forked out big time for this one). Nothing, in such boasts, could be better calculated to inspire an atavistic longing for the pleasures of solitary reading, unmediated by considerations of money or fame.

Enough about the hype. Actually to compare The Safekeep with Atonement et al is a surprising misstep for a world-class publisher. Yes, Van der Wouden transports her readers to an eerie country house in a remote, brooding landscape – and she does indeed subject a family of orphans to the tormented aftermath of the Second World War. But – it’s a big “but” – unlike McEwan and Waters, Van der Wouden displays no natural command of narrative, beyond a shadowy, vaguely sinister, backstory.

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Tallahassee writer Melanie Rawls bends fairy tale genre to address grief | Book review

"Once upon a time . . . and they lived happily ever after” is the formula of the fairy tales and nursery rhymes that are stored in the treasure chest of our childhood memories. When our own children say, “Tell me a story,” Cinderella, Puss in Boots and Goldilocks all live happily in their dreams.

These beloved tales have an ancient lineage. Scholars think that “Beauty and the Beast,” for example, may be 5,000 years old. We have an innate need to tell stories about who we are and where we’ve come from. Myths and fairy tales endure because they encode truths about the human condition.

Still, as grown-ups, we may dismiss stories of talking animals and fairy godmothers as imaginative entertainments for children. Make-believe and magic are illusions that don’t belong in the disenchanted adult world of work and struggle. We can’t live happily or unhappily ever after, because we die.

The reality of death is exactly where local writer Melanie Rawls’s adult fairy tale begins: “Of course, they could not live happily forever after.” “Yes, of course,” we think, as we turn the page, curious to find out what happens next.

"After, Ever After, A Story for the Long Lived," just published by Apalachee Press and beautifully illustrated by Carol Lynne Knight, is a wise and serious delight.

Need a break? Play the USA TODAY Daily Crossword Puzzle.

Rawls, poet, short story writer and essayist, holds a master’s degree in rhetoric and composition from Florida State University and taught composition at Florida A&M University for over 20 years. Rawls is deeply rooted in the literature of folktale and fantasy, particularly the work of Tolkien.

Her collaborator, Carol Lynne Knight, is a Tallahassee artist, poet, editor, and teacher.

Barbara Hamby, poet and professor at Florida State University, comments, ”The paintings in this book are ethereal and earthy at the same time and transport you into the world of Melanie's tale.”

Rawls plays with the conventions of the fairy tale genre in ways that will surprise and charm her readers. There is a kingdom, naturally, but the great-great-grandfather king is devastated by the death of Beauty, his beloved queen.

Inconsolable grief drives him into the forest and renders him, well, beastly. His howling keeps the babies awake all night and disrupts the whole community. His huge extended family (characters from familiar tales, books and songs) searches for him, but he roars and refuses to come home. Finally, the pleas of the children persuade “Grampy” to return.

But the king just sits by a window and stares out at Beauty’s grave. His exasperated eldest daughter, now the queen, rebukes him. “Now, Papa, you must stop all this. You know Mama would not approve. And it isn’t good for the children!”

The family cares for the old king in his depression, and the children’s persistent affection gradually restores him. But not forever, and not ever after. This is an adult fairy tale.

In her aptly-named afterword, Rawls writes, “My story is about loss and grief. It is the tale of how one might survive the deaths of loved ones and of how, perhaps, one faces the prospect of one’s own end.”

"After, Ever After" is a fairy tale about very real things — birth, death, sorrow, change, hello and goodbye. Together, with gorgeous images and poetic prose, Rawls and Knight tell us a true story about the transformative power of love.

Marda Messick is an emerging Tallahassee poet who lives in Indianhead Acres. Her poetry chapbook, "Feral Princess," will be published by Apalachee Press in September 2024. 

What: Book reading with Melanie Rawls for "After, Ever After"

When : 3 p.m. Saturday, June 1

Where: Midtown Reader, 1123 Thomasville Road

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An unfinished love story : a personal history of the 1960s

An unfinished love story : a personal history of the 1960s

By Goodwin, Doris Kearns, author.

Genre Biographies.

Published 2024 by Simon & Schuster, New York

ISBN 9781982108663

Bib Id 1262384

Edition First Simon & Schuster hardcover edition.

Description 467 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 25 cm

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Rainbow Weaver / Tejedora del arcoíris

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Rainbow Weaver / Tejedora del arcoíris Hardcover – Picture Book, September 1, 2016

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Bilingual English/Spanish. A young Mayan girl isn't allowed to use her mother's thread to weave, so with a little ingenuity she discovers how to repurpose plastic bags to create colorful weavings. Based on an actual recycling movement in Guatemala.

Ixchel wants to follow in the long tradition of weaving on backstrap looms, just as her mother, grandmother, and most Mayan women have done for more than two thousand years. But Ixchel's mother is too busy preparing her weavings for market. If they bring a good price, they will have money to pay for Ixchel's school and books. And besides, there is not enough extra thread for Ixchel to practice with.

Disappointed, Ixchel first tries weaving with blades of grass, and then with bits of wool, but no one would want to buy the results. As she walks around her village, Ixchel finds it littered with colorful plastic bags. There is nowhere to put all the bags, so they just keep accumulating.

Suddenly, Ixchel has an idea! She collects and washes the plastic bags. Then she cuts each bag into thin strips. Sitting at her loom, Ixchel weaves the plastic strips into a colorful fabric that looks like a beautiful rainbow--just like the weavings of Mayan women before her.

  • Reading age 5 - 9 years
  • Print length 40 pages
  • Language English
  • Grade level Kindergarten - 4
  • Lexile measure AD580L
  • Dimensions 9.01 x 0.35 x 10.55 inches
  • Publisher Lee & Low Books
  • Publication date September 1, 2016
  • ISBN-10 0892393742
  • ISBN-13 978-0892393749
  • See all details

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Editorial Reviews

From school library journal.

"An uplifting offering that would be a wonderful addition to picture book collections and STEAM programs." -- School Library Journal

"A cheerful tale of innovation with strong multicultural ties." -- Booklist

"A buoyant, accessible, if simplified tribute to Mayan weaving." -- Kirkus Reviews

About the Author

Linda Elovitz Marshall grew up near Boston, graduated from Barnard College, and raised four children and a flock of sheep on a farm in the Hudson Valley of New York. She is the author of several books for young readers and was inspired to write this story by dear friends and founders of Mayan Hands, an organization of weavers in Guatemala. Marshall lives with her family in Selkirk, New York.

Elisa Chavarri is a full-time illustrator who graduated with honors from the Savannah College of Art and Design, where she majored in Classical Animation and minored in Comics. Born in Peru, she now lives with her husband and their daughter, cat, and dog in northern Michigan.

Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Lee & Low Books; Standard Edition (September 1, 2016)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 40 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0892393742
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0892393749
  • Reading age ‏ : ‎ 5 - 9 years
  • Lexile measure ‏ : ‎ AD580L
  • Grade level ‏ : ‎ Kindergarten - 4
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 15.2 ounces
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 9.01 x 0.35 x 10.55 inches
  • #61 in Children's Central & South America Books
  • #137 in Children's Art Fiction
  • #164 in Children's Recycling & Green Living Books

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Harbor Springs Festival of the Book announces 2024 lineup

Courtesy photoThe Harbor Springs Festival of the Book office is located at 160 State St., Harbor Springs.

HARBOR SPRINGS — The Harbor Springs Festival of the Book recently announced confirmed presenters for the ninth annual literary festival, which is set for Sept. 27-29.

Each year, the festival features authors and illustrators in eight literary genres.

"For the ninth inception of this annual event, it has been rewarding to find so many authors and illustrators who were delighted to accept invitations to present — not only because it is a part of what they do as creatives, but even more so because they have heard about the quality of our festival, the generosity of our town and that attendees sincerely love books and good conversation," said Katie Boeckl, the festival’s literary director, in a press release. "And so, we are pleased to introduce a lineup which includes award-winning and blockbuster bestselling children's and young adult presenters, renowned poets and authors of both fiction and nonfiction who will surprise and intrigue you. Some names you will recognize immediately as old friends on your bookshelves. Others are debuts we are proud to champion. No matter what, I hope you will agree that this fall's program for the weekend will be as unexpected and engaging as ever!"

This year's presenters include novelist Julia Phillips, whose previous book was a National Book Award finalist and a New York Times Top 10 Book of the Year. National Book Award winner M.T. Anderson will present in both the Middle Grade and Fiction categories. Also presenting are Caldecott honor illustrator and author Vera Brosgol, Newbery honor and National Book Award finalist Darcie Little Badger, as well as authors of nonfiction works, including Bianca Bosker, Douglas Brunt and David Coggins. Novelists J. Courtney Sullivan, Catherine Newman and Cristina Henriquez will also be a part of this year’s lineup. Debut presenters include Tara Karr Roberts, Amy Pease, Jess Hannigan and Rainbow Rowell.

The full list of presenters is available on hsfotb.org . The keynote presenter and cookbook presenters will be announced on June 12, and more names may be added in the coming days.

Need a break? Play the USA TODAY Daily Crossword Puzzle.

Registration and ticket sales begin at 9 a.m. on July 18.

My Passion: Romance Books 17+

Romantic fiction reading app, gm unicorn corporation limited, designed for ipad.

  • #13 in Magazines & Newspapers
  • 4.5 • 21K Ratings
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Hey there, story lovers! Looking for a perfect romance novel? Or would you prefer to dive into the paranormal world? Whatever your preferences are, we’ve got you covered. My Passion is exactly the place where you can indulge in thousands of the best books: romance, mystery or fantasy novels that will make your world become topsy-turvy. Here’re just a few TAGS & GENRES among dozens we have: Werewolf Billionaire New Adult Hot Romantic Paranormal Marriage Suspense Fan fiction and others FEATURES - Immerse yourself into the fiction world with free samples. - Add favorite books to your personal library and manage reading time. - Download chapters and enjoy offline reading ebooks. - Get relevant book recommendations. - Customize your reading experience (font, light/dark mode, etc.) SPECIAL OFFERS Daily Rewards. Claim coins for 6 days and get your Super Gift. Reading Rewards. Read on our platform for 15 minutes to claim coins. Earn coins for watching ads and creating the account. All books on My Passion are personal & somewhat heroic life trajectories of the protagonists. Our avid readers feel at ease, “unconstrained” & “amused” when they read our novels. New episodes released every day Exclusive novels & Steamy stories Award-Winning Authors Privacy Policy - https://passion-app.s3.us-east-2.amazonaws.com/documents/PassionPrivacyPolicyMay2021.docx.html Subscription terms - https://passion-app.s3.us-east-2.amazonaws.com/documents/PassionAppSubscriptionTermsMay2021.docx.html Terms of service - https://passion-app.s3.us-east-2.amazonaws.com/documents/PassionTermsofUseMay2021.docx.html

Version 1.77.1

Hey there, story lovers! We update our app on a regular basis to make your experience better and better. This Passion update includes bug fixes, performance optimization, and reliability optimization. Thank you for choosing our app!

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21K Ratings

Do NOT download!!!! Kills battery & poorly written English

I only give it five stars, so that the review gets read. Do not download and install this app. I have had nothing but problems. This app uses more battery than any of my other apps, including similar book apps. In just minutes it heats up my phone to dangerous levels (no other app. I use heats up my phone.). The grammar in the story I’ve read is atrocious. English is obviously not the first language of the author, and they obviously do not use a proofreader before publishing a book. There are numerous errors such as using present tense instead of past tense, misspellings that make a sentence unreadable. And each chapter’s mistakes are worse than the previous chapter, to the point where there’s multiple errors in most paragraphs, which makes it just too annoying to read Here are just a few of the incorrect word uses: bugger/burger, dare/dear, dose/does, tear/their. Now imaging multiple mistakes like those in a 2-3 sentence paragraph. To alloying to continue, even though the story plot was interesting, it’s too annoying to try to read when you have to figure out trying to say because of their mistakes.

Developer Response ,

Dear Customer, We are continually working on improving our app and your feedback is a great help for future development. Our developers will analyze the situation that you informed us about and try to find out what can be done to resolve it. We will also report it to our authors so that the issue with mistakes will be resolved. Still, please help us to get more information so that we can successfully resolve the issues you have faced. Please, contact us at [email protected], and we will get back to you promptly. Passion Team, Miia

Worst experience ever

I downloaded the app through a promotional on Instagram. When I created my account it didn’t recognize that I had already paid $6.99 for access for a week. I reached out to support and got a quick response. However, they told me that I needed to reach out to my bank because it showed that it was still pending status to see about having it be authorized to go through. My bank told me that it wasn’t going to go through for two days and it was the merchant that put that stipulation on there so because I wanted to continue reading I subscribed for $.99 … annnnd I still was not given access. I thought maybe I needed to log out and log back in for it to recognize that I signed up for the subscription. Well when I logged in I chose the option to continue with Apple ID when I tried to log back in utilizing the same option, it said that I couldn’t because it was a duplicate account so instead of logging me in using my Apple ID and attempting to create another account. when I reached out to support about me, not being able to continue reading after subscribing, I was told that it can take up to 24 hours for my coins to load. I didn’t purchase coins I purchase the ability to access the entire app. I then message them back telling them I no longer have the ability to access the app, and I have yet to receive a response. I’ve never had so much trouble being able to access something I’ve already paid for.
Dear Customer, Thank you for taking the time to write a review. We are so sorry for such an unfortunate experience. Can you please reach out to [email protected] with more information, including what type of device you are using? We would be happy to investigate this further for you.We hope that this situation will be resolved and you will continue enjoying the app. Passion Team, Scarlett
Hopefully, this gets published. I am only rating it high so it can get through. I the app and then realized it was going to cost a fortune to read the whole book so I stopped. And then the app he’s kept charging me through my Apple Pay every couple days sometimes multiple times a day. I now keep a zero valence in my Apple Pay. But if I do have money in there from someone paying me they will charge me. They will also charge me a smaller amount if I do t have the amount they want!!! I cancelled the app out months ago 5 to be exact! And it is totally out of my phone and iPad hard cancelled not just from the screens. But there is no way to contact them to cancel them! You can’t find these people! So don’t sign up for this app! Beware! They say they are friendly and want to help but I can’t even find out where to contact them?!? The contact us stuff leads nowhere! Even Apple can’t find them. To help get my money that is leaking out! I had another book I tried at the same time and cancelled with no problem at all. I don’t no why these people are so bad. 🥵
Dear client! It's unfortunate that you had such an experience using our application😔 As for the subscription and coin system, it seems there may have been some confusion, and we apologize for any misunderstanding. Our subscription aims to enhance the reading experience by offering benefits such as access to exclusive stories or ad-free reading, depending on the subscription tier. However, it appears we need to clarify these benefits and how they're applied more clearly. You can find more detailed information in our Help Center📚🌟We understand your concerns about pricing for unlocking all chapters, which is intended to support the platform's maintenance and development while providing a variety of stories from different authors. Nonetheless, we're continuously evaluating our pricing models to ensure they align with our readers' needs. We'd appreciate the chance to discuss this further with you and find ways to enhance your experience. If you're willing, please reach out to our customer support team directly - [email protected]💌Our priority is ensuring our readers' satisfaction and addressing any issues you may have encountered💖

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