In Clubland

The Henna Artist by Alka Joshi is the Reese’s Book Club pick for May. “Joshi’s eloquent debut follows a sought-after henna practitioner in postindependence Jaipur, India,” our review said. The author “masterfully balances a yearning for self-discovery with the need for familial love.” The novel pubbed March 3 and debuts at #16 in hardcover fiction, up 10 spots from the previous week. In honor of what would have been her mother’s 82nd birthday, Joshi filmed an at-home samosa cooking demonstration. “I have so many references to food in The Henna Artist,” she said in the video, “just because food is such a big part of our culture.”

Keep It Together

A pair of backlist titles offering advice on coping with adversity have seen renewed interest since Covid-19 took hold in the U.S. Psychiatrist and traumatic stress expert Bessel van der Kolk, author of The Body Keeps the Score, recently spoke with New Hampshire Public Radio about the benefits of group musical activities and yoga, even online: “Singing together gives you a great feeling of collectivity,” he said. “Sitting in the yoga class with other people also gives you a sense of attunement with humanity.”

The 20th anniversary edition of When Things Fall Apart by Pema Chödrön, a Buddhist nun, “is filled with useful advice about how Buddhism helps readers to cope with the grim realities of modern life,” our review said, “including fear, despair, rage and the feeling that we are not in control.”

Built to Last

Recent Weekly Print Unit Sales for Body and Things Scott Turow lands at #8 in hardcover fiction with The Last Trial, an “impressive legal thriller,” our review said. In a recent PW profile, the author, a two-time Authors Guild president, spoke about advocating for other writers. “There are all kinds of threats to the existence of authors,” he said. “The biggest right now are the behemoths of the internet: Google, Amazon, Apple. They’re interested in making use of the intellectual property of others for the least amount of compensation.”


Christopher Moore
#18 Hardcover Fiction
After taking on King Lear and The Merchant of Venice, Moore’s third Fool novel, a “raucous, crass, and innuendo-filled romp,” our review said, is a “cheeky homage” to A Midsummer Night’s Dream that “delivers light and derivative fun.”

Alexandra Carter
#14 Hardcover Nonfiction
“Carter, director of the Columbia Law School Mediation Clinic, recasts the art of negotiation as one of smart listening rather than adversarial demands,” our review said. Despite some “weaker material,” Carter’s debut is “an insightful compilation of advice.”