Fall book preview

Michelle Poje


Credit: Beth Rankin

Let’s face it. No matter how interesting a topic may be or how exciting a book your professor tries to find, those expensive textbooks are rarely what students would call “enjoyable reading.”

Thankfully, students eager to escape the ho-hum drudgery of textbook torture can find relief through some new books set to be released early this fall.

Sequel: Son of a Witch by Gregory Maguire

(Sept. 27, HarperCollins Publishers)

First there was Wicked, the best-selling novel turned hit Broadway musical, which gave readers a glimpse into the not-so-wicked life story of The Wizard of Oz’s Wicked Witch of the West. Now, 10 years after Wicked’s publication, author Gregory Maguire treats fans to a sequel, this time focusing on Liir, a young boy who may be the son of the infamous witch.

Mystery: Blue Smoke by Nora Roberts

(Oct. 4, Penguin Group), A Literary Guild and Doubleday Book Club main selection

When a mysterious fire destroys the family home of young Reena Hale, she vows that someday she will become an investigator of arson to help others in similar situations. Years later, Hale joins an arson unit and eagerly throws herself into her passion, despite repeated tests on her strength and commitment. But when she starts receiving mysterious phone calls and witnessing unexplainable fires, the haunting fears from her past begin to resurface.

History: Encyclopedia Idiotica: History’s Worst Decisions and the People Who Made Them by Nicholas Weir-Williams

(September, Barron’s Educational Series)

Sure to top the wish list of history lovers everywhere, this encyclopedia-sized book reflects, in minute detail, 50 notorious decisions in history and the disastrous, life-changing outcomes. Author Nicholas Weir-Williams chronicles blunders from the Roman era to the Enron scandal of 2002 in pages of descriptive accounts complete with cartoon-style illustrations and informative sidebars. A must-have for anyone who enjoys reading about the imperfections of world history, past and present.

Fiction: City of Falling Angels by John Berendt

(September, Penguin Group)

Ten years ago, author John Berendt scored a four-year spot on the New York Times best-seller list with Midnight In the Garden of Good and Evil. Praised for his ability to accurately bring the settings of his novels to life, Berendt tackles the exotic city of Venice in his much-anticipated second novel. This time, Berendt is investigating the cause of a fire that has destroyed the Italian city’s beloved Fenice opera house. While peeling back the layers of the mystery surrounding the fire, Berendt encounters a variety of eccentric and mysterious characters.

Entertainment: The Top 10 of Everything 2006 by Russell Ash

(September, DK Publishing Inc.)

Trivia fans everywhere can get their fill of fun factoids with this newest issue of rankings from author Russell Ash. Known by publishers as the King of Lists, Ash compiles informative facts on various subjects ranging from the media to the Internet to well-known trends in pages upon pages of lengthy and detailed lists.

Mystery/Crime: The Lincoln Lawyer by Michael Connelly

(October, Little, Brown and Company)

This first legal thriller from New York Times best-selling author Michael Connelly introduces readers to Mickey Haller, a defense attorney who works to bring justice to lowly clients while operating his business from the backseat of a Lincoln Town Car. Despised by law enforcement officials for his willingness to represent con artists and drug dealers, Haller’s eagerness to prove innocence in the most unlikely of clients is tested when he is asked to represent a rich Beverly Hills resident accused of beating a woman.

Education: Launch Your Career In College: Strategies for Students, Educators and Parents by Adele Scheele

(October, Greenwood Publishing Group, Inc.)

Adele Scheele, a career strategist and coach, helps students make the most out of this integral time in their lives with her sixth self-help book on preparing for career life after college. This helpful guide teaches students how to form connections with the right people and make the most of career opportunities and educational goals.

Women’s Studies: Women’s Letters: America From the Revolutionary War to the Present by Lisa Grunwald and Stephan J. Adler

(September, Dell Publishing)

When it comes to obtaining information about the past, many historians have used letters to interpret lifestyles and events in history as recorded by those who experienced them. In this book, Grunwald and Adler allow readers to obtain a personal glimpse into American history through the written word. It includes letters about the signing of the Declaration of Independence, letters foreshadowing tragic historical events and letters written in the wake of Sept. 11, this book is sure to be an interesting read for anyone who wishes to learn more about our country’s history from the personal perspectives of those who were there.

Contact student affairs reporter Michelle Poje at [email protected]