Saturday, March 25, 2017

Pre Pub Book Buzz: Three Titles From Putnam

So this week I'm doing something a little different with the pre pub book buzz post - I'm featuring three titles rather than the usual one. Which is not to say that each of these books doesn't deserve their very own highlight post! Rather, I was invited to an event this week that featured all three.

The good folks at Putnam put together a pre pub tour this week for three of their summer authors: Jill Santopolo, Courtney Maum, and Bianca Marais - and the second stop on this tour just happened to be Denver. And I got an invite.

The group included editors, publicists, booksellers, and sales reps, all mingling with the authors over Mexican hors d'oeuvres and drinks. It was a fabulous time and it gave us all the chance to hear a bit about the books from each of the authors too.

And Now I want to share them with you!

First up, Jill Santopolo's The Light We Lost, which is due out in May. Here's a bit about the book from Goodreads:

Lucy is faced with a life-altering choice. But before she can make her decision, she must start her story—their story—at the very beginning.

Lucy and Gabe meet as seniors at Columbia University on a day that changes both of their lives forever. Together, they decide they want their lives to mean something, to matter. When they meet again a year later, it seems fated—perhaps they’ll find life’s meaning in each other. But then Gabe becomes a photojournalist assigned to the Middle East and Lucy pursues a career in New York. What follows is a thirteen-year journey of dreams, desires, jealousies, betrayals, and, ultimately, of love. Was it fate that brought them together? Is it choice that has kept them away? Their journey takes Lucy and Gabe continents apart, but never out of each other’s hearts.

The Light We Lost sounds like a heart wrenching read. And a bit nostalgic too (for me anyway) considering we meet the characters in college at the same time I myself was there.

Next up is Courtney Mauam's Touch, which hits shelves in June. Here's the Goodreads synopsis:

Sloane Jacobsen is the most powerful trend forecaster in the world (she was the foreseer of the swipe), and global fashion, lifestyle, and tech companies pay to hear her opinions about the future. Her recent forecasts on the family are unwavering: the world is over-populated, and with unemployment, college costs, and food prices all on the rise, having children is an extravagant indulgence.

So it s no surprise when the tech giant Mammoth hires Sloane to lead their groundbreaking annual conference, celebrating the voluntarily childless. But not far into her contract, Sloane begins to sense the undeniable signs of a movement against electronics that will see people embracing compassion, empathy, and in-personism again. She s struggling with the fact that her predictions are hopelessly out of sync with her employer's mission and that her closest personal relationship is with her self-driving car when her partner, the French neo-sensualist Roman Bellard, reveals that he is about to publish an op-ed on the death of penetrative sex a post-sexual treatise that instantly goes viral. Despite the risks to her professional reputation, Sloane is nevertheless convinced that her instincts are the right ones, and goes on a quest to defend real life human interaction, while finally allowing in the love and connectedness she's long been denying herself.

I'll be honest, this one sounds a bit like a lighter Black Mirror kind of tale. The dangers of technology and all. I'm quite looking forward to it!

And finally, due out in July, is Bianca Marais's debut, Hum If You Don't Know the Words. Here's what Goodreads says:

Life under Apartheid has created a secure future for Robin Conrad, a nine-year-old white girl living with her parents in 1970s Johannesburg. In the same nation but worlds apart, Beauty Mbali, a Xhosa woman in a rural village in the Bantu homeland of the Transkei, struggles to raise her children alone after her husband's death. Both lives have been built upon the division of race, and their meeting should never have occurred . . . until the Soweto Uprising, in which a protest by black students ignites racial conflict, alters the fault lines on which their society is built, and shatters their worlds when Robin s parents are left dead and Beauty s daughter goes missing. 

After Robin is sent to live with her loving but irresponsible aunt, Beauty is hired to care for Robin while continuing the search for her daughter. In Beauty, Robin finds the security and family that she craves, and the two forge an inextricable bond through their deep personal losses. But Robin knows that if Beauty finds her daughter, Robin could lose her new caretaker forever, so she makes a desperate decision with devastating consequences. Her quest to make amends and find redemption is a journey of self-discovery in which she learns the harsh truths of the society that once promised her protection.

I'm not going to lie, this book sounds amazing! I wish you all could hear Marais talk about the inspiration behind this story! 

Huge thanks to the Putnam team and the authors for putting together this tour and for the invite. I had a wonderful time! I hope you'll all add these titles to you must have lists for this summer and if any of the authors are in your area for book tours, definitely don't miss the chance to see them!!!

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