Matt Sumell wrote Making Nice in part as a response to his mother's death from cancer. "I was using the good luck of bad luck," he says. "You use what hurts."
Mark Doten's debut novel has some beautiful writing in it, but critic Jason Sheehan says the book suffers from too much verbal and typographical trickery, and not enough actual story.
Nate Silver profiles the world of prediction in The Signal and the Noise, which appears at No. 14.
In Elin Hilderbrand's The Matchmaker, Dabney Kimball Beech faces her true love when he returns home after 27 years. It appears at No. 14.
David Axelrod recounts his journey from Chicago journalist to presidential adviser in Believer. It debuts at No. 5.
In A Spool of Blue Thread, Anne Tyler tells the story of a Baltimore family thrown into disarray by illness and sudden tragedy. It debuts at No. 3.
The lists are compiled from weekly surveys of close to 500 independent bookstores nationwide.
While immigration is a subject of some of the most intense political debates in this country, inaugural poet Richard Blanco says it also drives his art. He shares his journey of becoming an American.
The Iranian-American comic came to the U.S. when he was 6 years old, just before Iran's 1979 revolution. His new memoir is I'm Not a Terrorist, But I've Played One on TV.
Mainstream superhero comics have a streak of teenage wish-fulfillment: Great power and great responsibility. But a new wave of comics is exploring how complicated it can be when wishes are granted.
Claire North's new novel imagines a world where "ghosts" can leave their own bodies at death and jump to whoever's close enough to touch. Scary, but "reader, I loved it," says reviewer Amal El-Mohtar.
American photojournalist Lynsey Addario, who has survived kidnappings in Iraq and Libya, talks to Renee Montagne about her new book, It's What I Do: A Photographer's Life of Love and War.
In movies, crowd noise, hospital waiting room chatter and barroom brawl sounds are created by voice actors called loopers. "If it's done right, you shouldn't even notice it," one sound mixer says.
Mohsin Hamid's new collection plays on the title of Sigmund Freud's classic Civilization and Its Discontents, but critic Michael Schaub says these essays are both more personal and wider ranging.
These are not your father's fairy tales, but reviewer Genevieve Valentine says readers prepared to devote some time will find rich rewards in this newly translated volume of 10th-century Arab stories.
Anna Lyndsey — a pseudonym — was an ordinary civil servant when she developed a rare disorder: A severe sensitivity to light. She deftly chronicles her shadowy new normal in Girl in the Dark.
Price says that in every precinct there's one cop who just can't let go of a case. "They all reminded me of Ahab ... looking for their whales," he says. Price's latest is called The Whites.
Reviewer Jason Heller says Laura Van Den Berg's first novel has a stellar setup — mysterious young woman, post-disease-apocalypse — but drifts listlessly, never quite living up to its premise.
Jasmine Warga's debut young adult novel My Heart and Other Black Holes follows two teens who make a suicide pact, in a carefully layered character study that sometimes stumbles on the details.
The British monarch ruled at a time of civil war — and was blamed for much of the bloodshed. In Killers of the King, Charles Spencer tells the story of the men who signed the king's death warrant.