Fiction Stars 2003

January - June

Annotated lists of books receiving at least one starred review from one of four major review sources: Booklist, Kirkus, LJ and PW. The review source assigns the star.
Titles are listed by approximate date of publication, then alphabetically by author. Annotations are from Advance, the Ingram Book Magazine - unless otherwise noted.

 


~ June ~ May ~ April ~ March ~ February ~ January

June

  • Every Woman for Herself
    Author: Ashley, Trisha
    Publisher: St Martins $ 22.95 ISBN: 0312313721 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    A funny new novelist for fans of Marian Keyes, Rebecca Wells, and Melissa Banks. Charlotte ("Charlie") Rhymer's husband wants a divorce. Charlie isn't sure what she wants, but after the incident with the frying pan, even she has to concede "irreconcilable" is the operative word.
    Suggested Reading: Chicklit Stars
    Updated 3.27.03
  • The Winter Without Milk: Stories
    Author: Avrich, Jane
    Publisher: Mariner $ 12 (paper) ISBN: 0618251421 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    Avrich explores the perils of desire in these 15 brilliant stories. Here are characters irresistibly attracted to excess--material, emotional, spiritual--who must in the end choose between a life of self-indulgence and a life of self-control.
    Updated 3.27.03
  • Slightly Scandalous
    Author: Balogh, Mary
    Publisher: Dell $ 5.99 (paper) ISBN: 0440241111 Date: 2003
    starPW
    In the final novel of Balogh's delectable Slightly trilogy, Freyja Bedwyn, the wild-hearted daughter of the high society family, meets her match in a man as passionate, and scandalous, as she.
    Suggested Reading: Romance Stars
    Updated 4.28.03
  • Stealing the Bride
    Author: Boyle, Elizabeth
    Publisher: Avon $ 5.99 (paper) ISBN: 0380820900 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    This seventh historical romance by the USA Today bestselling author tells the sparkling story of an impetuous beauty who elopes on a whim and the dashing adventurer who must steal her back at the risk of his own heart.
    Suggested Reading: Romance Stars
    Updated 6.25.03
  • The Pretender
    Author: Bradley, Celeste
    Publisher: St Martins $ 6.50 (paper) ISBN: 0312984855 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    This first book in a sexy new series introduces the Liars Club, a renegade group of rogues in the service of the Crown. Agatha Cunnington needs a "husband" to find her missing brother in London--and Liar's Club member Simon Montague Rain fits the bill.
    Suggested Reading: Romance Stars
    Updated 5.14.03
  • The Other Side of Silence
    Author: Brink, Andre
    Publisher: Harcourt $ 25 ISBN: 0151007705 Date: 2003
    starPW
    With years of abuse behind her, Hanna X, a young German woman, is transported to a colony in Africa to attend to the needs of male settlers. Combining the history of colonialism with the myths of Africa, this is an exquisitely written tale of suffering, violence, revenge, and, simply, love.
    Updated 4.7.03
  • Long For This World
    Author: Byers, Michael
    Publisher: Houghton Mifflin $ 24 ISBN: 039589171x Date: 2003
    starPWstarLJstarKirkus
    Byers' award-winning debut collection, The Coast of Good Intentions, won universal praise for its mature wisdom and deeply affecting characters. Now his exhilarating first novel showcases his extraordinary gifts in the suspenseful story of a geneticist grappling with an astonishing discovery.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars | Debuts
    Updated 4.8.03
  • Virgin Blue
    Author: Chevalier, Tracy
    Publisher: Plume $ 14 (trade paper) ISBN: 0452284449 Date: 2003
    starLJ
    Never before published in the United States, this first novel is released by the critically acclaimed author of Girl with a Pearl Earring and Falling Angels. Readers meet Ella Turner and Isabelle du Moulin--two women born centuries apart, yet bound by a fateful family legacy.
    Suggested Reading: Reading Group Stars
    Updated 8.14.03
  • P
    Author: Conn, Andrew Lewis
    Publisher: Soft Skull $ 15 ISBN: 1887128557 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    P is a raunchy and romantic debut novel about two misfits, rendered with postmodern sensibility and lyricism.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts
    Updated 4.7.03
  • The Last Days of Publishing
    Author: Engelhardt, Tom
    Publisher: University of Mass $ 24.95 ISBN: 1558494022 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    Rick Koppes knows a world is ending. The only question is, will he end with it? An editor at Byzantium Press for the last 25 years, he has watched his small, classy publishing house get gobbled up. By turns hilarious, sardonic, and poignant, this novel captures the ways in which publishing is being transformed.
    Updated 3.27.03
  • Short People
    Author: Furst, Joshua
    Publisher: Knopf $ 23 ISBN: 0375414312 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarLJstarBooklist
    An astonishing debut: ten stories that explore American childhood with great maturity, authority, and originality. With a remarkable range of imagination, understanding, and compassion, Furst calls into question preconceptions about innocence, purity, faith, and memory.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars | Debuts
    Updated 6.27.03
  • The Water Dancers
    Author: Gamble, Terry
    Publisher: Morrow $ 24.95 ISBN: 0060542667 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Told in a voice as clear and cool as lake water, The Water Dancers is a luminescent tale of love, loss, and redemption, and heralds the arrival of a remarkable new talent.
    Suggested Reading: Adult Books for Teens | Summertime Stars
    Updated 5.14.03
  • The Clearing
    Author: Gatreaux, Tim
    Publisher: Knopf $ 23 ISBN: 0375414746 Date: 2003
    starBookliststarPW
    From "one of the best writers to have emerged in the 1990s" (Kirkus Reviews), comes The Clearing, a story of family, of what sustains people through loss, of establishing a community in the deepest wilderness and then defending it.
    Suggested Reading: Veterans
    Updated 5.29.03
  • The Curious Incident of The Dog in the Night-Time
    Author: Haddon, Mark
    Publisher: Doubleday $ 22.95 ISBN: 0385509456 Date: 2003
    starPWstarKirkus
    Narrated by a 15-year-old autistic savant obsessed with Sherlock Holmes, this dazzling novel weaves together an old-fashioned mystery, a contemporary coming-of-age story, and a fascinating excursion into a mind incapable of processing emotions.
    Suggested Reading:Debuts | Reading Group Stars | Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 4.8.03
  • The Probable Future
    Author: Hoffman, Alice
    Publisher: Doubleday $ 24.95 ISBN: 0385507607 Date: 2003
    starPW
    By turns chilling and enchanting The Probable Future chronicles the Sparrows' legacy as young Stella struggles to cope with her disturbing clairvoyance. Culminating in an exquisite ending, this story showcases the lavish literary gifts that have made Hoffman one of America's most treasured writers.
    Suggested Reading: Literary Gothic
    Updated 5.6.03
  • The Kite Runner
    Author: Hosseini, Khaled
    Publisher: Riverhead $ 23.95 ISBN: 1573222453 Date: 2003
    starLibrary JournalstarKirkusstarPW
    An epic tale of fathers and sons, of friendship and betrayal, takes readers from Afghanistan in the final days of the monarchy to the atrocities of the present. As emotionally gripping as it is tender, The Kite Runner is an unusual and powerful debut.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts | All Stars | Afghanistan Stars | Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 5.12.03
  • The Facts of Life
    Author: Joyce, Graham
    Publisher: Atria $ 24 ISBN: 0743463420
    starKirkus Date: 2003
    A dramatic departure for the prize-winning author of Indigo--an exquisitely written, multifaceted wartime saga of identity, connection, and emotional endurance centering on an unforgettable English family during and after the Second World War.
    Updated 5.9.03
  • Every Good Boy Does Fine
    Author: Laskowski, Tim
    Publisher: Southern Methodist $ 23.95 ISBN: 0870744771 Date: 2003
    starLJ
    Updated 6.19.03
  • The Pursuit of Alice Thrift
    Author: Lipman, Elinor
    Publisher: Random $ 23.95 ISBN: 0679463135 Date: 2003
    starLibrary JournalstarPW
    Poor Alice Thrift is book-smart but people-hopeless. When Ray Russo, social-climbing purveyor of carnival fudge, decides to pursue her romantically, Alice reluctantly follows. The Pursuit of Alice Thrift brings the socially tone-deaf Alice out from under the burden of her clueless and beautiful mind.
    Suggested Reading: Chicklit Stars
    Updated 3.13.03
  • The Photograph
    Author: Lively, Penelope
    Publisher: Viking $ 24.95 ISBN: 0670032050 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Lively is a grande dame of British letters whose novels have attracted readers of Ian McEwan and Iris Murdoch--as well as those enthralled by her insight into relationships and family. The Photograph brings her talents into a whole new page-turning realm, and is Lively at her very best, the dazzling and intriguing climax to all she has written before.
    Updated 5.14.03
  • Jerusalem's Rain
    Author: Lliteras, D.
    Publisher: Hampton Roads $ 19.95 ISBN: 1571743405 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Updated 3.13.03
  • Liars and Saints
    Author: Meloy, Maile
    Publisher: Scribner $ 24 ISBN: 0743244354 Date: 2003
    starPW
    The prize-winning young author of a critically acclaimed short story collection makes her full-length fiction debut in this richly textured, emotionally charged novel about four generations of an American family.
    Updated 4.28.03
  • Morningside Heights
    Author: Mendelson, Cheryl
    Publisher: Random $ 24.95 ISBN: 0375508368 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    This fiction debut by the bestselling author of Home Comforts is a Manhattan saga focusing on a vivid cast of musicians and intellectuals whose lives are suddenly hanging.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts
    Updated 4.7.03
  • Spirited Away
    Author: Miyazaki, Hayao
    Publisher: Viz $ 9.95 (paper) ISBN: 1569317917 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Suggested Reading: Graphic Novel Stars
    Updated 5.19.03
  • The True Account
    Author: Mosher, Howard Frank
    Publisher: Houghton $ 24 ISBN: 0618197214 Date: 2003
    starLJ
    Published on the eve of the Lewis and Clark bicentennial, The True Account is the hilarious and heartbreaking story of a man who decides to race Lewis and Clark to the Pacific Ocean after a madcap night of drinking.
    Updated 6.5.03
  • Fluke: Or, I Know Why the Winged Whale Sings
    Author: Moore, Christopher
    Publisher: Morrow $ 23.95 ISBN: 0380978415 Date: 2003
    starPW
    The national bestselling author of Lamb devises a dazzling whale of a tale. Everybody knows that humpback whales sing, but why? Researcher Nathan Quinn plies the waters off Hawaii in search of an answer. Lately, though, Nate's beginning to wonder if he's spent just a little too much time in the sun.
    Suggested Reading: If You Like Douglas Adams
    Updated 3.31.03
  • Sexual Healing
    Author: Nelson, Jill
    Publisher: Agate $ 23.95 ISBN: 0972456201 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Nelson, bestselling author of Volunteer Slavery and Straight, No Chaser, has written a steamy and uproarious debut novel that tells the story of Lydia and Acey, two successful midcareer professionals. But their career success is matched by their romantic and sexual frustrations.
    Suggested Reading: African American Fiction Stars
    Updated 5.12.03
  • The Only Good Thing Anyone Has Ever Done
    Author: Newman, Sandra
    Publisher: HarperCollins $ 24.95 ISBN: 0060514981 Date: 2003
    starPW
    When Chrysalis Moffat and her brother, Eddie, inherit a mansion on the coast of California, Eddie hatches a plan to fleece credulous Californians of their cash by starting the fraudulent Tibetan School of Miracles.

    But something else is happening. Through Chrysalis's reunion with her brother, she begins to discover her adoptive father's secret past, causing her own identity to unravel. As Chrysalis lays down the facts of her life, she gambles her identity against the contradictions, half-truths, and fables of her past, leading her ultimately to question what it is we can truly know and whether it is fate or chance that dictates our lives.- Publisher Marketing
    Updated 6.19.03

  • The Tattooed Girl
    Author: Oates, Joyce Carol
    Publisher: Ecco $ 25.95 ISBN: 0060531061 Date: 2003
    starPW
    A celebrated but reclusive author, young but in failing health, Joshua Seigl realizes that he can no longer live alone. So he hires an assistant, but is unaware of her torturous past. With her masterful balance of dark suspense and surprising tenderness, Oates probes the tragedy of ethnic hatred and challenges accepted limits of desire.
    Updated 4.23.03
  • Dogs of Babel
    Author: Pankhurst, Carolyn
    Publisher: Little Brown $ 21.95 ISBN: 0316168688 Date: 2003
    starLibrary JournalstarBooklist
    A poignant and beautiful debut novel explores a man's quest to unravel the mystery of his wife's death with the help of the only witness--their Rhodesian ridgeback, Lorelei.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts | New Orleans | Dog Stars
    Updated 5.14.03
  • To Sir Philip, with Love
    Author: Quinn, Julia
    Publisher: Avon $ 6.99 ISBN: 0380820854 Date: 2003
    starPW
    In the latest title in Quinn's beloved Bridgerton series. Eloise Bridgerton's habit of writing letters attracts the interest of Sir Phillip Crane, with whom she has been corresponding. When they finally meet, Eloise is taken aback by this brute of a man--especially by his kiss.
    Suggested Reading: Romance Stars
    Updated 5.12.03
  • Blade of the Immortal: Beasts
    Author: Samura, Hiroaki
    Publisher: Dark Horse $ 14.95 (paper) ISBN: 1569717419 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Suggested Reading: Graphic Novel Stars
    Updated 4.28.03
  • Elegance
    Author: Tessaro, Kathleen
    Publisher: Morrow $ 23.95 ISBN: 0060522259 Date: 2003
    starLJ
    One of the most exciting debuts of the year is an enchanting, bittersweet novel for every woman who has ever longed for a fairy godmother. Starting with A and finishing with Z, Elegance is a unique alphabetical journey of timeless fashion, true friendship, and the rare, unexpected gift of love.
    Updated 6.5.03
  • 1929
    Author: Turner, Frederick W.
    Publisher: Counterpoint $ 25 ISBN: 1582432651 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarBooklist
    In a briefly affluent and deeply disenchanted postwar America, the Jazz Age erupts in gaudy glory. It and one of its most colorful icons, Bix Beiderbecke, are celebrated in this first novel by an acclaimed nonfiction writer.
    Suggested Reading: Music & Fiction | Historical Fiction Stars | Biographical Fiction
    Updated 5.29.03
  • Westward: A Fictional History of the American West
    Author: Walker, Dale L. (ed)
    Publisher: Forge $ 25.95 ISBN: 0765304511 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    In Westward, the history of the Old American West unfolds in 28 original stories written especially for this unique collection commemorating the 50th anniversary of Western Writers of America, Inc.
    Suggested Reading: Western Stars | Historical Fiction Stars
    Updated 4.7.03
  • Evidence of Things Unseen
    Author: Wiggins, Marianne
    Publisher: St Martins $ 24.95 ISBN: 0684869691 Date: 2003
    starLJstarPW
    From the award-winning author of John Dollar and Almost Heaven comes a stunning, lyrical novel about the unforeseen forces that shape people's lives.
    Updated 5.19.03
  • The Book Against God
    Author: Wood, James
    Publisher: Farrar Straus & Giroux $ 23 ISBN: 0374115389 Date: 2003
    starPWstarBooklist
    Thomas Bunting, the charming, chaotic, and deeply untruthful narrator of Wood's wonderful first novel, is in despair. His marriage is disintegrating and his academic career is in ruins: instead of completing his philosophy Ph.D., he is secretly writing what he hopes will be his masterwork, a vast atheistic project he has privately entitled The Book Against God.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts
    Updated 5.29.03
  • Escape to Love
    Author: Wootson, Alice
    Publisher: BET $ 6.99 (paper) ISBN: 1583143734 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    After witnessing the murder of her boss two years ago, Angela Baring entered the witness protection program, and Detective Trent Stewart housed Angela in his Maryland cabin. Now, Trent puts his love--and life--on the line to protect and cherish Angela for all time.
    Suggested Reading: African American Fiction Stars | Romance Stars
    Updated 6.25.03

~ June ~ May ~ April ~ March ~ February ~ January

May

  • The Spy's Bride
    Author: Abrams, Nita
    Publisher: Zebra $ 5.99 (paper) ISBN: 0821775618 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    The third installment of Abrams's sweeping series set during the Napoleonic Wars about an Anglo-Jewish family who find passion and peril serving as intelligence couriers for Wellington.
    Suggested Reading: Romance Stars
    Updated 4.28.03
  • Ten Little Indians: Stories
    Author: Alexie, Sherman
    Publisher: Grove $ 24 ISBN: 0802117449 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPW
    Alexie is one of the most acclaimed and popular writers today. Now, with Ten Little Indians, he offers 11 poignant and emotionally resonant new stories about Native Americans who, like all Americans, find themselves at personal and cultural crossroads.
    Suggested Reading: Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 5.6.03
  • Oryx and Crake
    Author: Atwood, Margaret
    Publisher: Doubleday $ 26 ISBN: 03885503857 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarBookliststarPWstarLJ
    With command of her material and with her sharp wit and dark humor, Atwood projects a conceivable future of the world, a place left devastated in the wake of ecological and scientific disaster, and populated by a cast of characters who will continue to inhabit dreams long after the book is closed.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars | Dystopian Stars | Apocalypse Nowish
    Updated 4.29.03
  • Promiscuous Unbound
    Author: Brian, Bex
    Publisher: Atlantic $ 23 ISBN: 0871138735 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    Vivienne Yellow, the narrator of this arresting debut, is an American woman who lies in traction in a Parisian hospital, remembering the sexual misadventure that landed her there. Ribald and funny, with a rich Dorothy Parker bitterness, Promiscuous Unbound traces the relationship between memory, love, and loss.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts
    Updated 3.13.03
  • Special
    Author: Bathurst, Bella
    Publisher: Mariner $ 12 (paper) ISBN: 0618263276 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    A group of schoolgirls goes off on a field trip to the English countryside in a story that will remind readers of Lord of the Flies. Put up at a manor house that has seen better days, they discover that the nearby town offers alcohol, drugs, and sex--grown up downfalls that are at once tempting and terrifying.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts | Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 3.13.03
  • Best Friends
    Author: Berger, Thomas
    Publisher: Simon & Schuster $ 24 ISBN: 0743241835 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarLJ
    In this highly anticipated new novel about friendship from the bestselling author of Little Big Man, Berger confirms his position as "one of the century's most important writers" (The London Times Book Review).
    Updated 4.29.03
  • Such Sweet Thunder
    Author: Carter, Vincent O.
    Publisher: Steerforth $ 25.95 ISBN: 1586420585 Date: 2003
    starPWstarBooklist
    Written in 1963 but never published, this literary portrait of black urban life in pre-World War II America, an era marred by racial segregation and relentless daily injustices, is told from the perspective of a young boy growing up during the 1920s and 1930s in Kansas City.
    they can't get out of their minds.
    Suggested Reading: Music & Fiction | African American Stars
    Updated 4.16.03
  • Rumble, Young Man, Rumble
    Author: Cavell, Benjamin
    Publisher: Knopf $ 22 ISBN: 0375414649 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPW
    In nine remarkable stories, Cavell exposes the darker side of being a "real man." Along with the macho comes a heightened sense of mortality, and a deeper need for something, or someone, to rely upon.
    Updated 4.28.03
  • The City Triology: Five Jade Disks, Defenders of the Dragon City, Tale of a Feather
    Author: Chang, Hsi-huo
    Publisher: Columbia $ 27.50 ISBN: 0231128525 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarBooklist
    These three short novels, first published in Taiwan in the late 1980s and early 1990s, are now presented for the first time in English in a single volume. Chang's most sustained work in the science fiction genre to date, all three novels stage the theme of free will versus determinism.
    Updated 5.14.03
  • Please
    Author: Darbyshire, Peter
    Publisher: Raincoast $ 15.95 (paper) ISBN: 1551925621 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    Updated 3.13.03
  • The Quality of Life Report
    Author: Daum, Megan
    Publisher: Viking $ 24.95 ISBN: 0670032131 Date: 2003
    starPW
    One of today's most admired new voices blends social critique and a bittersweet love story marked by both style and substance.
    Updated 4.7.03
  • Hell at the Breech
    Author: Franklin, Tom
    Publisher: Morrow $ 23.95 ISBN: 0688167411 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPWstarBooklist
    The award-winning author of Poachers weaves together historical fact, dark lyrical prose, and blistering action in this stunning first novel of hooded vigilantes in 1897 Alabama.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts | Historical Fiction Stars
    Updated 5.29.03
  • A Disturbance of Fate
    Author: Freedman, Mitchell J.
    Publisher: Seven Locks $ 27.95 ISBN: 1931643229 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Updated 5.6.03
  • Creation
    Author: Govier, Katherine
    Publisher: Overlook $ 24.95 ISBN: 1585674109 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    In this atmospheric and enthralling novel, Govier tells the story of John James Audubon, a man torn between the lies he has lived by and the truth he now needs. Her novel recreates the summer in which "the world's greatest living bird artist" finally understood the paradox embedded in his art: that the act of creation is also an act of destruction.
    Suggested Reading: Biographical Fiction | For the Birds
    Updated 4.28.03
  • Signal & Noise
    Author: Griesemer, John
    Publisher: Picador $ 26 ISBN: 0312300824 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarBooklist
    Signal & Noise is the epic page-turning story of the laying of the trans-Atlantic cable, and the men and women who are caught in its monumental tide.
    Suggested Reading: Historical Fiction Stars
    Updated 2.28.03
  • Will@Epicwest.Com: Medicated Memoir
    Author: Grimes, Tom
    Publisher: Ludlow $ 12.95 (paper) ISBN: 0971341575 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    In vividly compressed comic form, WILL@epicqwest.com takes the reader on a contemporary quest that is as cyberspatially and pharmaceutically fantastic as anything Ulysses encountered on his trek home from Troy.
    Suggested Reading: Internet Stars
    Updated 3.13.03
  • Love with a Scandalous Lord
    Author: Heath, Lorraine
    Publisher: Avon $ 5.99 (paper) ISBN: 0380817438 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    The USA Today bestselling author presents an unforgettable story of a young lady seeking a proper husband in London society. Instead, she finds passion with a handsome, inappropriate rogue.
    Suggested Reading: Romance Stars
    Updated 6.25.03
  • Fallen Angels
    Author: Hickman, Patricia
    Publisher: Warner $ 12.95 ISBN: 044691011 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Award-winning author Hickman presents the first installment in the Millwood Hollow series about an unlikely hero and a trio of abandoned siblings struggling for survival in the South during the Great Depression.
    Suggested Reading: Christian Fiction Stars
    Updated 6.25.03
  • Victims
    Author: Jeppensen, Travis
    Publisher: Little House on the Bowery $ 13.95 ISBN: 1888451424 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    Debut in series edited by cult novelist Dennis Cooper (Frisk).
    Updated 4.7.03
  • Hunting in Harlem
    Author: Johnson, Mat
    Publisher: Bloomsbury $ 23.95 ISBN: 1582342725 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Johnson has created vividly memorable characters and a story that stands out as one of the most controversial and explosive in years. As sure to ignite debate as it is to entertain, Hunting in Harlem is an old-fashioned page-turner with a fresh and brave voice.
    Suggested Reading: African American Stars
    Updated 5.14.03
  • Sappho's Leap
    Author: Jong, Erica
    Publisher: Norton $ 24.95 ISBN: 0393157615 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Always our keenest-eyed chronicler of the wonders and vagaries of sex and love, Jong has found the perfect subject for a witty and sensuous tale of a passionate woman ahead of her time.
    Updated 3.13.03
  • Dreams of Bread and Fire
    Author: Kricorian, Nancy
    Publisher: Grove $ 24 ISBN: 0802117430 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    Poetic and assured, the second novel by the critically acclaimed author of Zabelle is the story of a young American woman whose half-Jewish, half-Armenian heritage seems a footnote to her own identity until the dark shadows of history propel her into a profound series of journeys.
    Updated 3.13.03
  • Same as It Never Was
    Author: Lazebnik, Claire Scovell
    Publisher: St Martins $ 24.95 ISBN: 0312312490 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    Capturing the privileged world of the West Side of Los Angeles, this debut features an irreverent UCLA student who suddenly finds herself the guardian of her four-year-old half sister.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts
    Updated 4.7.03
  • The Gangster We Are All Looking For
    Author: Le, Thi Diem Thuy
    Publisher: Knopf $ 18 ISBN: 0375400184 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    A momentous literary debut: the life of a Vietnamese family in America luminously observed through the knowing eyes of a child. The Gangster We Are All Looking For is an authentically original story of finding one's place and voice in America.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts | Asian American Fiction Stars
    Updated 2.23.03
  • The Wandering Hill: A Novel
    Author: McMurtry, Larry
    Publisher: Simon & Schuster $ 26 ISBN: 0743233034 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    The sensational Pulitzer Prize-winning author delivers the second thrilling book in the Berrybender Narratives--The Wandering Hill is Larry McMurtry at his best. He spins an epic American adventure of the Old West that succeeds the bestselling Sin Killer and stands beside Lonesome Dove in breadth, passion, and authenticity.
    Suggested Reading: Western Stars | Historical Fiction Stars
    Updated 3.31.03
  • The Ramayana
    Author: Menon, Ramesh
    Publisher: North Point $ 35 ISBN: 0865476608 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    India's most beloved and enduring legend, the Ramayana is widely acknowledged to be one of the world's great literary masterpieces. Novelist Menon has rendered the tale in lyrical prose that conveys all the beauty and excitement of the original, while making this classic accessible to a new generation of readers.
    Suggested Reading: Stars of India
    Updated 3.13.03
  • The Only Good Thing Anyone Has Ever Done
    Author: Newman, Sandra
    Publisher: HarperCollins $ 24.95 ISBN: 0060514981 Date: 2003
    starLJ
    When Chrysalis Moffat and her brother Eddie inherit a mansion on the coast of California, Eddie hatches a plan to fleece credulous Californians of their cash by starting the fraudulent Tibetan School of Miracles. With Ralph as the would-be guru and miracle worker, the "school" quickly becomes more successful than anybody first imagined.
    Updated 6.5.03
  • Star of the Sea
    Author: O'Connor, Joseph
    Publisher: Harcourt $ 25 ISBN: 0151009082 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarLJ
    In this spellbinding tale of tragedy and mercy, love and healing, the farther the Star of the Sea sails toward the Promised Land, the more her passengers seem moored to a past that will never let them go. As urgently contemporary as it is historical, this gripping and compassionate novel builds with the pace of a thriller to a stunning conclusion.
    Suggested Reading: Historical Fiction Stars | Sea Stories
    Updated 4.29.03
  • Getting Mother's Body
    Author: Parks, Suzan-Lori
    Publisher: Random $ 23.95 ISBN: 1400060222 Date: 2003
    starBookliststarPW
    From this year's winner of the Pulitzer Prize for drama comes an enormously accomplished and original debut novel about a down-on-their-luck black family in 1960s Texas in search of the storied jewels buried with one of their relatives.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts | African American Fiction Stars | Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 5.19.03
  • Beyond Sunrise
    Author: Proctor, Candice
    Publisher: Ivy $ 6.99 ISBN: 0345447182 Date: 2003
    starPW
    The bestselling author of Midnight Confessions presents this breathtaking tale of India McKnight, an independent 19th-century woman who sails to the unknown South Pacific and finds unexpected adventure--and love.
    Suggested Reading: Romance Stars
    Updated 3.31.03
  • The Penelopeia
    Author: Rawlings, Jane
    Publisher: Godine $ 30 ISBN: 1567920066 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Updated 5.29.03
  • Eat Cake
    Author: Ray, Jeanne
    Publisher: Crown $ 19.95 ISBN: 060961004x Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    Ruth loves to bake cakes. As Eat Cake begins, Ruth's husband has lost his job, her elderly mother has just come to live with them, and her smart-alec daughter won't keep the misery of adolescence to herself. It's funny and witty and wise and warm, with unforgettable characters.
    Updated 4.7.03
  • Testament
    Author: Ricci, Nino
    Publisher: Houghton Mifflin $ 25 ISBN: 0618273530 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Grounded in extensive research, and written with the elegant poetic eye that has earned Ricci an international reputation, Testament is a bold work of historical fiction. It vividly recreates the world of 1st century Palestine to explore the very beginnings of the myth surrounding the man known as Jesus.
    Updated 2.28.03
  • Villa Incognito
    Author: Robbins, Tom
    Publisher: Bantam $ 27.50 ISBN: 0553803328 Date: 2003
    starPW
    American MIAs choose to remain missing after the Vietnam War. Four generations of strong, alluring women share a mysterious connection to an outlandish figure from Japanese folklore. Love, lust, and provocative ideas abound. Robbins has never written a more beautifully crafted novel nor one more fun to read.
    Updated 4.14.03
  • Sweetwater
    Author: Robinson, Roxana
    Publisher: Random $ 24.95 ISBN: 037550916x Date: 2003
    starPW
    The commercial breakthrough for an established literary writer, this compelling novel about the complications of a young widow's second marriage is set against the vivid backdrop of the natural landscape, with its own powerful dynamic.
    Updated 3.3.03
  • Mortals
    Author: Rush, Norman
    Publisher: Knopf $ 26.95 ISBN: 0679406220 Date: 2003
    starPWstarKirkus
    This greatly anticipated new novel by Rush--whose first novel, Mating (1991), won the National Book Award, is his richest work yet: at once political adventure, social comedy, and a passionate love triangle. It is set in the 1990s in Botswana--the African country Rush has made his own fictional territory.
    Updated 4.24.03
  • Portrait of My Mother, Who Posed Nude in Wartime: Stories
    Author: Sandor, Marjorie
    Publisher: Sarabande $ 21.95/13.95 ISBN: 1889330833/1889330825 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    The ten linked stories of Portrait of My Mother, Who Posed Nude in Wartime, display a Chekhovian restraint, an exceptional richness and depth of insight into the strangeness at the heart of every family. - Publisher Marketing
    Updated 2.23.03
  • Dreaming the Eagle
    Author: Scott, Manda
    Publisher: Delacorte $ 23.95 ISBN: 0385336705 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    A powerful novel about Boudica, one of the most intriguing and mysterious women in history. Scott has done her research, and the mix of real images and her imagination has created a completely believable world.
    Suggested Reading: Historical Fiction
    Updated 4.29.03
  • Wigfield: The Can-Do Town That Just May Not
    Author: Sedaris, Amy, Paul Dinello and Stephen Colbert, photos by Todd Oldham
    Publisher: Hyperion $ 22.95 ISBN: 0786868120 Date: 2003
    starPW
    A hilarious illustrated satire of a Lake Wobegon gone hideously wrong and the earnest reporter who hopes to save it from extinction. Wigfield is a town in danger, and its only hope lies in the self-righteous "journalist" Russell Hokes, who arrives hoping to capture the quiet dignity of the disappearing American Small Town.
    Suggested Reading: Humorous Fiction | Satirical Stars
    Link: Wigfield site
    Updated 4.28.03
  • We Need to Talk About Kevin
    Author: Shriver, Lionel
    Publisher: Counterpoint $ 25 ISBN: 1582432678 Date: 2003
    starPWstarBooklist
    Focusing on a boy who kills seven of his fellow students, Shriver tells a resonant story while framing the horrifying tableaux of teenage carnage as metaphors for the larger tragedy--the tragedy of a country where everything works, nobody starves, and anything can be bought but a sense of purpose.
    Suggested Reading: Epistolary Stars
    Updated 5.14.03
  • All Hat
    Author: Smith, Brad
    Publisher: Holt $ 24 ISBN: 0805072179 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Surprisingly poignant yet laugh-out-loud funny, All Hat tells a classic story of little guys fighting big guys and reaffirming the meaning of honesty and friendship--and second chances--in the process.
    Updated 3.31.03
  • Farewell, My Queen
    Author: Thomas, Chantal
    Publisher: Braziller $ 22.50 ISBN: 0807615145 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarBookliststarPW
    A woman whose function it once was to read books aloud to Marie-Antoinette is haunted by the memory of her last days at the French court of Versailles, when Louis XVI's magnificent palace succumbed to the irrepressible forces of revolution.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars | Historical Fiction Stars | Marie Antoinette
    Updated 6.19.03
  • My Father Had a Daughter: Judith Shakespeare's Tale
    Author: Tiffany, Grace
    Publisher: Berkley $ 21.95 ISBN: 042519003x Date: 2003
    starLJ
    After a family tragedy, Judith Shakespeare discovers a copy of her father's new play, which seems to make light of her grief. Furious, she follows him to London, intent on sabotaging the performance--but instead, she discovers that she and her father have more in common than she imagined.
    Suggested Reading: Adult Books for Teens | Shakespearean Stars
    Updated 5.19.03
  • Colour
    Author: Tremain, Rose
    Publisher: Farrar Straus & Giroux $ 25 ISBN: 0374126054 Date: 2003
    starPWstarKirkusstarBooklist
    Tremain's new novel is a saga of love and greed set during the mid-19th century gold rush in New Zealand. Newlyweds Joseph and Harriet Blackstone emigrate from England in search of new beginnings and prosperity. But the harsh land where they settle threatens to destroy them almost before they begin.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars | Historical Fiction Stars | Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 5.29.03
  • The Song Reader
    Author: Tucker, Lisa
    Publisher: Pocket/Downtown $ 12 (paper) ISBN: 0743464451 Date: 2003
    starPW
    When two sisters are left alone after the death of their mother and the disappearance of their father, Mary Beth becomes the hero of both her younger sister and their entire town. She is a "song reader." She doesn't read palms or tarot cards; she reads people's secrets and desires from the songs they can't get out of their minds.
    Suggested Reading: Music & Fiction | Debuts | Reading Group Stars | Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 3.17.03
  • The Dirty Girls Social Club
    Author: Valdes-Rodriguez, Alisa
    Publisher: St Martins $ 24.95 ISBN: 0312313810 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    In this heartfelt and absorbing novel, the author opens up the lives of six upwardly mobile Latina friends in their late 20s. Filled with humor, drama and the redemptive power of friendship, this book promises to be one of the most talked about books of the year.
    Suggested Reading: Latino/Latina Stars
    Updated 3.31.03
  • Easter Island
    Author: Vanderbes, Jennifer
    Publisher: Dial $ 22.95 ISBN: 038533673x Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPW
    It is 1913. Elsa Pendleton travels from England to Easter Island with her husband and her sister. What begins as familial duty becomes a grand adventure as she discovers her true calling. Easter Island is a tour-de-force of storytelling that will establish Vanderbes as a most gifted writer.
    Suggested Reading: Historical Fiction Stars
    Updated 5.19.03
  • A Palestine Affair
    Author: Wilson, Jonathan
    Publisher: Pantheon $ 23 ISBN: 0375422099 Date: 2003
    starPW
    When Mark Bloomberg, a disillusioned London painter, arrives in Palestine to take up a propaganda commission, he and his wife accidentally witness the murder of a prominent Orthodox Jew. This provocative murder--swiftly pinned on an Arab boy--becomes a test of their marriage and their ideals.
    Updated 5.12.03

~ June ~ May ~ April ~ March ~ February ~ January

April

  • Crescent
    Author: Abu-Jaber, Diana
    Publisher: Norton $ 24.95 ISBN: 039305747x Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Praised by critics for her first novel, Arabian Jazz, Diana Abu-Jaber now weaves with spellbinding magic a multidimensional love story set in the Arab-American community of Los Angeles.
    Suggested Reading: Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 3.31.03
  • The Marriage of the Sea
    Author: Alison, Jane
    Publisher: Farrar Straus & Giroux $ 24 ISBN: 0374199418 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    As alluring as The Love-Artist, this is a contemporary tale of love and ambition, betrayal and revenge, set in two gloriously watery cities.
    Suggested Reading: Venice | New Orleans
    Updated 1.10.03
  • Seduced
    Author: Britton, Pamela
    Publisher: Warner $ 6.99 (paper) ISBN: 0446611298 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Although they loathe one another, roguish Lucien St. Aubyn and headstrong Elizabeth Montclair are thrown together in matrimony after they are caught in a compromising position. Although she was the only woman to resist his charms, how long can Elizabeth last before she gives in?
    Suggested Reading: Romance Stars
    Updated 2.20.03
  • Christopher
    Author: Burnett, Allison
    Publisher: Broadway $ 13.95 (paper) ISBN: 0767913337 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Updated 4.16.03
  • The Devil You Know
    Author: Carlyle, Liz
    Publisher: Pocket $ 6.99 ISBN: 074343787x Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Cast aside by her beau, Frederica d'Avillez is comforted by Bentley Rutledge, a scoundrel whose wild ways embroil the couple in a passionate romance. Soon, Frederica finds herself in need of a husband. And who better than the devil that got her into her situation?
    Suggested Reading: Romance Stars
    Updated 4.16.03
  • Catwoman: Selena's Big Score
    Author: Cooke, Darwyne, illustrated by Matt Hollingsworth
    Publisher: DC Comics $ 24.95 ISBN: 1563898977 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Suggested Reading: Graphic Novel Stars
    Updated 3.13.03
  • Cosmopolis
    Author: Delillo, Don
    Publisher: Scribner $ 25 ISBN: 0743244249 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Eric Packer, age 28, is a billionaire asset manager, and on this day he is a man with two missions: to pursue a destructive bet against the yen and to get a haircut across town. Cosmopolis is a vivid novel with extraordinary pace. DeLillo's insight into the impact of money on every aspect of culture--from art to real estate to politics to time itself--is stunning.
    Updated 12.16.02
  • San Remo Drive: A Novel from Memory
    Author: Epstein, Leslie
    Publisher: Handsel $ 24 ISBN: 1590510666 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    San Remo Drive is a novel of many dimensions. It explores the glamorous life of Hollywood and evokes the landscape of Southern California both as it is no and as it appears before the migration to it of millions. - Publisher Marketing.
    Suggested Reading: Hollywood & Film Stars | Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 5.29.03
  • Beg the Question
    Author: Fingerman, Bob
    Publisher: Fantagraphics $ 24.95 ISBN: 1560975024 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Suggested Reading: Graphic Novel Stars
    Updated 3.3.03
  • Summer Secrets
    Author: Freethy, Barbara
    Publisher: Signet $ 6.99 (paper) ISBN: 0451410823 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Bestselling author Freethy presents her most powerful contemporary novel: the story of three unique sisters, the secrets that bind them for life, and the summer that will set them free.
    Suggested Reading: Summertime Stars
    Updated 5.14.03
  • Monkey Hunting
    Author: Garcia, Cristina
    Publisher: Knopf $ 23 ISBN: 0375410562 Date: 2003
    starLibrary JournalstarPW
    From a National Book Award finalist comes an emotionally rich and powerful saga of one Chinese-Cuban family. Rendered in the lyrical prose that is Garca's hallmark, Monkey Hunting brilliantly illuminates a generations-long struggle toward a sense of true belonging.
    Suggested Reading: Latino/Latina Stars
    Updated 4.7.03
  • Bad News of the Heart
    Author: Glover, Douglas H.
    Publisher: Dalkey $ 13.95 (paper) ISBN: 1564782867 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    Updated 3.13.03
  • Loot: And Other Stories
    Author: Gordimer, Nadine
    Publisher: Farrar $ 24 ISBN: 0374190909 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    Startling new stories are offered in this collection of masterly new fiction from the recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature.
    Updated 12.27.02
  • Crabwalk
    Author: Grass, Gunter
    Publisher: Harcourt $ 25 ISBN: 015107640 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPW
    No book since The Tin Drum has generated as much excitement as this engrossing account of the sinking of the German cruise ship turned refugee carrier Wilhelm Gustloff. This is at once a captivating tale of a tragedy at sea and a fearless examination of the ways different generations of Germans now view their past. Grass is a winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature.
    Updated 3.3.03
  • I Am Not Jackson Pollock
    Author: Haskell, John
    Publisher: Farrar Straus Giroux $ 20.00 ISBN: 0374173990 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPW
    In this debut series of myths for modern times, haunting meditations are given on art, movies, literature, and life.
    Updated 3.27.03
  • The Happiness Code
    Author: Herrick, Amy
    Publisher: Viking $ 24.95 ISBN: 0670031976 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    From the author of the acclaimed story collection At the Sign of the Naked Waiter comes a magical love story--set in a futuristic Brooklyn--that explores family, marriage, and destiny in a world where happiness can be guaranteed for everyone.
    Updated 3.31.03
  • The Final Confession of Mabel Stark
    Author: Hough, Robert
    Publisher: Atlantic $ 24 ISBN: 0871138700 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    This finalist for the 2002 Commonwealth Writers Prize for Best First Book in Canada tells the fascinating story of the greatest female tiger trainer in history--and her one true love--spanning from golden age of the circus in the early 20th century to the 1960s.
    Suggested Reading: Circus Fiction | Historical Fiction Stars | Biographical Fiction
    Updated 1.10.03
  • On the Nature of Human Romantic Interaction
    Author: Iagnemma, Karl
    Publisher: Dial $ 22.95 ISBN: 0385335938 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarBooklist
    Iagnemma, MIT robotics researcher and winner of the Paris Review Discovery Prize, blends science and romance in this dazzling debut collection. Restless, lonely, romantic, the disparate protagonists in these stories safeguard their emotions behind a wall of logic and knowledge.
    Updated 4.28.03
  • Getting Over Jack Wagner
    Author: Juska, Elise
    Publisher: Pocket $ 12 (paper) ISBN: 0743464672 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    Eliza has spent her entire life trying to find a passionate relationship and has been consistently disappointed. A child of the eighties, she assumes early in life that "rock stars" are the only answer to a "deep" boyfriend. With the help of her mother and friends, Eliza must reevaluate her aspirations for love and the very way she defines herself.
    Suggested Reading: Chicklit Stars
    Updated 2.10.03
  • Dr. Jeckyll & Mr. Hyde
    Author: adapted by Kramsky, Jerry; illustrated by Lorenzo Mattotti
    Publisher: NMB $ 15.95 ISBN: 1561633305 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Suggested Reading: Graphic Novel Stars
    Updated 3.13.03
  • The Midwife's Tale
    Author: Laskas, Gretchen Moran
    Publisher: Dial $ 23.95 ISBN: 0385335512 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    Incorporating the whimsical mountain lore of Appalachia's past, Laskas has crafted a story true to its time, and a cast of characters as poignant as they are original. Elizabeth and her Mama know intimately the histories of every family that comes knocking on their door, each love, loss, and shadowy secret. Few, however, know their own.
    Suggested Reading: Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 3.13.03
  • Gilgamesh
    Author: London, Joan
    Publisher: Grove $ 23 ISBN: 0802117414 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    London's stunning debut novel is set in 1937 Australia. Seventeen-year-old Edith is enthralled by the stories of her English cousin and his American friend about their archaeological dig in Iraq--especially tales of the ancient Mesopotamian king Gilgamesh.
    Suggested Reading: First Fiction Mystery & Debuts
    Updated 1.29.03
  • A Garden of Earthly Delights
    Author: Oates, Joyce Carol
    Publisher: Modern Library $ 13.95 (paper) ISBN: 0812968344 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    Updated 2.23.03
  • Shadow With out a Name
    Author: Padilla, Ignacio
    Publisher: Farrar Straus Giroux $ 22.00 ISBN: 0374261903 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    In this debut by one of Mexico's most dazzling younger writers, Nazi doubles obscure true identities over the decades--and clues which tie these men together are concealed in a manuscript that an old Polish count has left to his heirs.
    Updated 1.26.03
  • Conclave
    Author: Pazzi, Roberto
    Publisher: Steerforth $ 14.95 (paper) ISBN: 1586420666 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Updated 5.12.03
  • Second Glance
    Author: Picoult, Jodi
    Publisher: Atria $ 25 ISBN: 0743254502 Date: 2003
    starPW
    In a small Vermont town, and old man puts a piece of land up for sale, igniting a firestorm of protest from the local Abenaki Indians, who insist it is an ancient burial ground. Thus begins Picoult's enthralling and ultimately astonishing story of love, fate, and a crime of passion.
    Updated 3.31.03
  • The Blue Moon Circus
    Author: Raleigh, Michael
    Publisher: Sourcebooks $ 22 ISBN: 1402200153 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarLJ
    The coming-of-age story of an aging renegade and the boy who finds a home under the big top. Evoking the historical intrigue of Carter Beats the Devil and the ragtag characters of O Brother Where Art Thou?, author Michael Raleigh leads an oddball circus ensemble across the recently tamed, dust-blown American West. - Publisher marketing
    Suggested Reading: Circus Fiction | Historical Fiction Stars | Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 3.31.03
  • Southland
    Author: Revoyr, Nina
    Publisher: Akashic $ 15.95 (paper)ISBN: 1888451416 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    In Southland, her second novel, Nina Revoyr brings us a compelling story of race, love, murder, and history against the backdrop of Los Angeles. - Publisher Marketing.
    Updated 4.16.03
  • The Magic Flute
    Author: Russell, P. Craig
    Publisher: NMB $ 24.95 ISBN: 156163350x Date: 2003
    starPW
    Suggested Reading: Graphic Novel Stars
    Updated 9.08.03
  • Family History
    Author: Shapiro, Dani
    Publisher: Knopf $ 23 ISBN: 0375415475 Date: 2003
    starPW
    From the highly acclaimed author of the bestselling memoir, Slow Motion, comes a gripping new novel about a family unraveling, and a mother's helpless attempt to protect her children and her marriage.
    Updated 2.4.03
  • Gentlemen of Space
    Author: Sher, Ira
    Publisher: Free Pr $ 23 ISBN: 0743242181 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Magnolia Court is not the most magical place in Florida, but to young Georgie Finch, this outsized housing project is the center of the universe. In this superbly crafted and imaginative novel, Georgie tells the story of when his father, Jerry, won a competition in 1976 to become the first civilian man on the moon.
    Suggested Reading: Space Age Stars | Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 3.31.03
  • Good Faith
    Author: Smiley, Jane
    Publisher: Knopf $ 26 ISBN: 0375412174 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarBookliststarPW
    From the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of A Thousand Acres comes a masterly novel about some very American seductions: money, sex, and real estate. Good Faith is an extraordinary story about ordinary people caught up in the exotic 1980s version of the American Dream, as greed and financial game-playing explode on Main Street.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars
    Updated 2.20.03
  • A Choice of Angels
    Author: Sobczak, Charles
    Publisher: Indigo $ 24.95 ISBN: 0967619971 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Updated 6.25.03
  • All Honest Men: The Story of J. Willis Newton and America's Most Successful Outlaw Gang
    Author: Stanush, Claude & Michele
    Publisher: Permanent $ 28 ISBN: 1579620841 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    A lyrical debut novel by a father/daughter writing team based on the true-life story of J. Willis Newton, the cagey, charismatic son of a Texas sharecropper who fled the cotton fields to America's most successful bandit leader. Bridging the Old West outlaw era and the gangster world of Al Capone, the book explores the widespread twisting of the American Dream. - Publisher marketing.
    Suggested Reading: Historical Fiction Stars | First Fiction Mystery & Debuts | Biographical Fiction
    Updated 6.2.03
  • Bay of Souls
    Author: Stone, Robert
    Publisher: Houghton Mifflin $ 25 ISBN: 0395963494 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPWstarLJ
    Stone's fever dream of possession is a remarkable new psychological thriller of razor-sharp intensity: mysterious, erotic, and deeply readable. When a college professor pursues Lara Purcell to her native island of St. Trinity, he is caught unawares in a high-stakes smuggling scheme as his world becomes an ever-shifting phantasmagoria.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars
    Updated 3.13.02
  • The Deep and Other Stories
    Author: Swan, Mary
    Publisher: Random $ 23.95 ISBN: 0375508511 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    With The Deep and Other Stories, Mary Swan offers brilliant stories that illuminate the remarkable moments in life and cover a wide range of human thoughts and emotions, in a unique, imaginative, and profoundly moving way.
    Updated 2.23.03
  • The Light of Day
    Author: Swift, Graham
    Publisher: Knopf $ 24 ISBN: 0375415491 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    George Webb is a divorced ex-policeman turned private investigator, a man whose prospects seemed ruined not so long ago. Following the course of a single, dazzling day in his life, this novel illuminates not only his past but also his now all-consuming relationship with a former client.
    Updated 2.23.03
  • What Night Brings
    Author: Trujillo, Carla Mari
    Publisher: Curbstone $ 15.95 ISBN: 1880684942 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    The gripping story of a young girl discovering her lesbian identity. Miguel Marmol Prize Winner. What Night Brings focuses on a Chicano working-class family living in California during the 1960s Marci--smart, feisty and funny--tells the story with the wisdom of somecone twice her age as the determines to defy her family and God in order to find her identity, sexuality and freedom. - Publisher Marketing.
    Suggested Reading: Latino/Latina Stars
    Updated 3.31.03
  • The Book of Salt
    Author: Truong, Monique
    Publisher: Houghton Mifflin $ 24 ISBN: 0618304002 Date: 2003
    starPWstarKirkus
    In this literary feast, the Vietnamese cook for Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas reveals his fascinating story.
    Suggested Reading: Historical Fiction Stars | Biographical Fiction
    Updated 1.26.03
  • The Force of the Past
    Author: Veronesi, Sandro
    Publisher: Ecco $ 23.95 ISBN: 0066212456 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarLJstarBooklist
    A bizarre stranger enters the life of one Gianni Orzan, then promptly rewrites his entire past in this award-winning Italian novel.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars
    Updated 2.28.03
  • The Bullet Collection
    Author: Ward, Patricia Sarrafian
    Publisher: Graywolf $ 25 ISBN: 15559973760 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Updated 3.13.03
  • The Wife
    Author: Wolitzer, Meg
    Publisher: Scribner $ 23 ISBN: 0684869403 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    When Wolitzer published her first novel, Sleepwalking, she received extraordinary critical acclaim for her humor, grace, and intelligence. Now, in her sixth novel, she has maintained the qualities that thrill readers, and introduces a character and subject matter that are her most ambitious, provocative, and powerful to date.
    Updated 3.13.03

~ June ~ May ~ April ~ March ~ February ~ January

March

  • Shroud
    Author: Banville, John
    Publisher: Knopf $ 25 ISBN: 0375411305 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPW
    Axel Vander is an old man in ill health, recently widowed, a scholar renowned both for his unquestionable authority and the violence that often marks his conduct. In Shroud--as in all of his acclaimed previous novels--Banville gives readers an emotionally resonant tale, exceptionally rich in language and image, dazzling in its narrative invention.
    Updated 1.28.03
  • Alison's Automotive Repair Manual
    Author: Barkley, Brad
    Publisher: St Martins $ 23.95 ISBN: 0312291388 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    Automotive repair doubles as grief therapy in Barkley's quirky, emotionally resonant third novel (after Money, Love) set in a small town in West Virginia, where a newly widowed young woman tries to delay putting her life back together.
    Updated 12.23.02
  • Finding Caruso
    Author: Barnes, Kim
    Publisher: Putnam $ 24.95 ISBN: 0399149678 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    The work of an award-winning memoirist and poet, Finding Caruso is an unsentimental and unforgettable novel about two brothers trying to find their place in the world.
    Suggested Reading: Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 2.28.03
  • Drop City
    Author: Boyle, T.C.
    Publisher: Viking $ 25.95 ISBN: 0670031720 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarBookliststarPW
    Boyle has proven himself to be a master storyteller who can do just about anything. But even his most ardent admirers may be caught off guard by his ninth novel, for Boyle has delivered something completely unexpected: a serious and richly rewarding character study that is his most accomplished and deeply satisfying work to date.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars
    Updated 1.3.03
  • Suicidal Tendencies: Stories
    Author: Broughton, T. Alan
    Publisher: Univ of Colorado $ 24.95 ISBN: 1885635052 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    Updated 3.27.03
  • Brownsville
    Author: Casares, Oscar
    Publisher: Little, Brown $ 13.95 (paper) ISBN: 0316146803 Date: 2003
    starPW
    At the country's edge, on the Mexican border, Brownsville, Texas, is a town like many others. It is a place where people work hard to create better lives for their children, where people bear grudges against their neighbors, where love blossoms only to fade, and where the only real certainty is that life holds surprises.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts | Latino/Latina Stars
    Updated 2.24.03
  • Iron Rose
    Author: Canham, Marsha
    Publisher: Signet $ 6.99 (paper) ISBN: 0451208153 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Following a Spanish galleon's attack on his English merchant ship, Varian St. Clare discovers that the captain of the privateer who saved him is Juliet Dante, daughter of the legendary Pirate Wolf, who Varian has been sent to find. Juliet agrees to take him to her father--but only as her hostage.
    Suggested Reading: Romance Stars
    Updated 2.10.03
  • Alva & Irva: The Twins Who Saved a City
    Author: Carey, Edward
    Publisher: Harcourt $ 24 ISBN: 0151007829 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Alva and Irva Dapps are identical twin sisters who live in the city of Entralla. Yet the twins feel each other's emotions, think each other's thoughts, love and hate and suffer as one. And thereby hangs this inventive tale of creativity, obsession, and genius bred by necessity.
    Suggested Reading: Twin Stars
    Updated 3.31.03
  • Bruiser
    Author: Choaro, Ian
    Publisher: Atria $ 24 ISBN: 0743437756 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    In an accomplished first novel, Choro captures all the beauty, violence, and wonder of life as perceived by a ten-year-old boy in search of relief from the chaos of a shattered home.
    Suggested Reading: Adult Books for Teens | Debuts
    Updated 2.28.03
  • The Hills at Home
    Author: Clark, Nancy
    Publisher: Pantheon $ 25 ISBN: 037542203x Date: 2003
    starPWstarLJ
    Directing an irrepressible New England clan against the backdrop of the late 1980s recession and the sweeping political and economic changes taking place around the world, Clark delights with her lively prose and her affectionate exploration of the forces that strain and sustain a family.
    Updated 2.12.03
  • Crumbtown
    Author: Connelly, Joe
    Publisher: Knopf $ 23 ISBN: 0375413642 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Four years after his stunning debut with Bringing Out the Dead, Connelly returns with a darkly comic, wildly imaginative whirlwind of a new novel. Don Reedy is out after 15 years served for a staged armed robbery, and now embarks on a parole-required return to Crumbtown to consult on the TV show based on his life. He's got other ideas, however.
    Updated 2.24.03
  • The Point of Return
    Author: Deb, Siddhartha
    Publisher: Ecco $ 24.95 ISBN: 0060501510 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Set in the remote, northeastern hills of India in the 1970s, The Point of Return revolves around the father-son relationship of a willful, curious boy, Babu, and Doctor Dam, an enigmatic product of British colonial rule and Nehruvian nationalism.
    Suggested Reading: Stars of India | Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 3.31.03
  • I Am Madame X
    Author: Diliberto, Gioia
    Publisher: Scribner $ 24 ISBN: 0743211553 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Even before John Singer Sargent painted her portrait, Virginie Gautreau's reputation for promiscuity and showy self-display made her the subject of Paris gossip. Her scandalous portrait, unveiled in 1884, provides the inspiration for this debut novel--a compulsively readable immersion in Belle Epoque Paris.
    Suggested Reading: Historical Fiction Stars | Biographical Fiction Stars
    Updated 12.2.02
  • The Brother's Keeper
    Author: Groot, Tracy
    Publisher: Moody $ 11.99 (paper) ISBN: 0802431054 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    This imagined tale based on the few known facts from the life of James, the brother of Jesus, tells the story of the latter part of Jesus' ministry, up through his death and resurrection, as seen through the eyes of His own family. Groot takes readers on a journey from unbelief to belief as James grapples with the question of whom Jesus is.
    Suggested Reading: Christian Fiction Stars
    Updated 3.13.03
  • The Spinning Man
    Author: Harrar, George
    Publisher: Blue Hen $ 24.95 ISBN:039914983x Date: 2003
    starPW
    Evan Birch is charming and affable, handsome, and gentle. So when the police bring him in for questioning in the disappearance of a high school cheerleader, everyone is sure of Evan's innocence. But then the evidence builds, and Evan begins to strain the will to believe in him in this brilliantly told and suspenseful novel.
    Updated 3.3.03
  • The Very Virile Viking
    Author: Hill, Sandra
    Publisher: Leisure $ 6.99 ISBN: 0843950641 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Strangely transported to a kingdom called "Holly Wood, " Viking warrior Magnus Ericsson meets the woman of his dreams--a modern-day winemaker who fails to recognize Magnus as her soul mate. So he must prove to her that he is a man of exceptional talents.
    Suggested Reading: Romance Stars
    Updated 2.20.03
  • The Affair
    Author: Hingston, Sandy
    Publisher: Berkley $ 6.99 (paper) ISBN: 0425189074 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Years after meeting gambling proprietress Christiane d'Oliveri in Paris, Irish lord Gannon Finn carries a torch for her--despite her humiliation of him. Now a respectable headmistress of an academy for girls, Christiane is about to learn a hard lesson when the rakish Gannon comes back into her life.
    Suggested Reading: Romance Stars
    Updated 3.13.03
  • What I Loved
    Author: Hustvedt, Siri
    Publisher: Holt $ 25 ISBN: 0805071709 Date: 2003
    starPWstarLJstarBooklist
    From the author of The Enchantment of Lily Dahl comes a powerful and heartbreaking novel that chronicles the epic story of two families, two sons, and two marriages."
    Suggested Reading: All Stars
    Updated 2.20.03
  • The Office of Innocence
    Author: Keneally, Thomas
    Publisher: Doubleday $ 25 ISBN: 0385507631 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPW
    Poignantly depicting the conflicts between the secular and the holy, and between the family of a Father's birth versus the brotherhood of priests, this is a tale set in the most compelling of circumstances. Keneally has created an endearing protagonist who speaks to the conundrums of the age while paying tribute to quiet heroes of the past.
    Suggested Reading: Questions of Faith
    Updated 12.23.02
  • The Buzzing
    Author: Knipfel, James
    Publisher: Vintage $ 12 (paper) ISBN: 1400031834 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    In his first novel, Knipfel--author of the critically acclaimed memoirs Slackjaw and Quitting the Nairobi Trio--tackles modern life as it may be currently lived in New York City, and gives new meaning to the phrase "conspiracy theory."
    Updated 12.02.02
  • Safe in Heaven Dead
    Author: Ligon, Samuel
    Publisher: HarperCollins $ 23.95 ISBN: 0060099100 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPW

    A spellbinding literary noir, Safe in Heaven Dead reveals a world of people struggling to do what's right when everything seems wrong, a world of people resisting surrender to the corruption that surrounds them, and a world that, in the face of apparent hopelessness, somehow still breeds hope.
    Suggested Reading: Hard-Boiled|Noir
    Updated 3.13.03

  • The Coffee Trader
    Author: Liss, David
    Publisher: Random $ 24.95 ISBN: 0375508546 Date: 2003
    starPW
    With wit, imagination, and mystery, Liss depicts a world of subterfuge, danger, and repressed longing, where religious and cultural traditions clash with the demands of a new and exciting way of doing business. Readers of historical suspense and lovers of coffee will be up all night with this intriguing novel.
    Suggested Reading: Historical Fiction Stars | Drink Up
    Updated 1.28.03
  • The Clarninet Polka
    Author: Maillard, Keith
    Publisher: St Martins $ 24.95 ISBN: 0312308892 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarBookliststarLJstarPW
    This hard-edged, sweet-souled story of a heart's homecoming is deeply and authentically rooted in Polish-American culture. A remarkable novel from an important writer.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars | Music & Fiction
    Updated 1.3.03
  • A Few Short Notes on Tropical Butterflies: Stories
    Author: Murray, John
    Publisher: HarperCollins $ 24.95 ISBN: 0060509287 Date: 2003
    starPWstarBooklist
    The eight stories in this remarkable collection take their inspiration from the world of medicine and science. Intricately plotted and structured, with a novelistic scope and depth, these long stories share themes of love, loss, and redemption, and the sense that it is always possible to transform a life.
    Updated 2.28.03
  • All Over Creation
    Author: Ozeki, Ruth L.
    Publisher: Viking $ 24.95 ISBN: 0670030910 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPWstarBooklist
    From the author of My Year of Meats comes the story of a Japanese-American prodigal daughter just trying to make sense of it all as the unceasing cycle of all creation continues around her.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars | Asian American Stars | Adult Books for Tens
    Updated 2.20.03
  • Drinking Coffee Elsewhere
    Author: Packer, Z.Z.
    Publisher: Riverhead $ 23.95 ISBN: 1573222348 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPWstarLJ
    Drinking Coffee Elsewhere is the highly anticipated debut of a remarkable writer of short stories and winner of the Whiting Writers' Award and a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers' Award.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars | First Fiction & Mystery Debuts | African American Stars | Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 1.16.03
  • The Pearl of Kuwait
    Author: Paine, Tom
    Publisher: Harcourt $ 24 ISBN: 0151005184 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    California surfer Cody "Cowboy" Carmichael's life is forever changed when he meets Private Tommy Trang at boot camp. A powerful first novel by an award-winning writer, Paine has created an enthralling, joyful, and original story with the classic ingredients of love and war.
    Suggested Reading: Gulf War I Stars | Debuts | Marines
    Updated 2.28.03
  • The Jester
    Author: Patterson,James & Andrew Gross
    Publisher: Little Brown $ 27.95 ISBN: 0316602051 Date: 2003
    starPW
    With the unstoppable pace and plot of his page-turning thrillers, The Jester is a breathtakingly romantic, pulse-pounding adventure set in the Middle Ages--one that could only be conjured by the mind of international bestselling author Patterson.
    Suggested Reading: Historical Fiction Stars | Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 2.4.03
  • Circle of Five
    Author: Riccio, Dolores Stewart
    Publisher: Kensington $ 14 (paper) ISBN: 0758203004 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Now that her children are grown, her lout of an ex-husband is gone, and her herbal remedy business has taken off, Cass Shipton is free to enjoy the simple comforts of her grown-up life. But Cass's idyllic, small-town life changes after she bumps carts at the local supermarket with a stranger in a green cap.
    Suggested Reading: Magic & Magicians | Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 3.13.03
  • The Boy on the Bus
    Author: Schupack, Deborah
    Publisher: Free Press $ 23 ISBN: 0743242203 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarLJ
    With the precision of a literary wordsmith and the deftness of a psychological thriller writer, Schupack has crafted an extraordinary tale of a mother's love for her son, and a mystery that may ultimately rip them apart.
    Updated 2.12.02
  • Eyesores: Stories
    Author: Shade, Eric
    Publisher: U of Georgia $ 24.95 ISBN: 0820324329 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Updated 4.28.03
  • A Ship Made of Paper
    Author: Spencer, Scott
    Publisher: 0060185341 $ 24.95 ISBN: 0060185341 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPW
    In this new work by the author of Endless Love, a passionate interracial love affair threatens to destroy two families and injure everyone close to them.
    Updated 2.4.03
  • Ballpark Blues
    Author: Tooke, C.W.
    Publisher: Doubleday $ 22.95 ISBN: 0385506406 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    Russ Bryant, a lonely, downtrodden reporter trapped in a job he hates, stumbles into the story of a lifetime when he befriends a promising rookie named Casey Fox--a man possessed of mythic talents but mortal insecurities.
    Updated 12.27.02
  • The Songs of the Kings
    Author: Unsworth, Barry
    Publisher: Talese $ 26 ISBN: 0385501145 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPW
    As the harsh wind holds the Greek fleet trapped in the straits at Aulis, frustration and political impotence turn into a desire for the blood of a young woman--blood that will appease the gods and allow the troops to set sail. High-sounding principles clash with private motives, and dark comedy ensues.
    Suggested Reading: Ancient Greece | Adult Books for Teens | Trojan War
    Updated 2.20.02
  • Summer in the Country
    Author: Willett, Marcia
    Publisher: St Martins $ 24.95 ISBN: 031228781x Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    In this spellbinding tale born of the difficulties endured by both mothers and daughters, a woman is abandoned by her mother as a child but now the prodigal mom returns. Her summer lodger is also concealing a painful past with stunning repercussions.
    Suggested Reading: Summertime Stars
    Updated 5.14.03

~ June ~ May ~ April ~ March ~ February ~ January

February

  • In the Electric Eden
    Author: Arvin, Nick
    Publisher: Penguin $ 14 (paper) ISBN: 0142002569 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    In this dazzling debut, Arvin, a former engineer, layers his knowledge of technology, mechanical design, and human character into this collection of ten emotionally riveting stories that, though seemingly linked, come together to form an awe-inspiring whole.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts
    Updated 1.25.03
  • Under the Skin
    Author: Blake, James Carlos
    Publisher: Morrow $ 25.95 ISBN: 0380977516 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    Blake's latest tough-skinned novel is a 1930s crime saga with roots on both sides of the Rio Grande. Under the Skin is the tale of Jimmy Youngblood, bodyguard to gangster brothers. As the story ranges from steamy Galveston to the brutal Mexican desert, Jimmy's life takes its most fearsome turn yet when he fails for the wife of a powerful and vengeful Mexican warlord.
    Suggested Reading: Historical Fiction Stars
    Updated 1.16.03
  • Any Human Heart: The Intimate Journals of Logan Mountstuart
    Author: Boyd, William
    Publisher: Knopf $ 24.95 ISBN: 0375414932 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPW
    From the acclaimed author of Armadillo and The Blue Afternoon comes a new novel that invokes the tumult, events, and iconic faces of our time as it tells the story of Logan Mountstuart--writer, spy, and man of the world--through his intimate journals.
    Updated 11.12.02
  • Revenge of the Middle-Aged Woman
    Author: Buchan, Elizabeth
    Publisher: Viking $ 24.95 ISBN: 0670032069 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Full of humor, clever insight, and a whimsical sense of the absurd, Revenge of the Middle-Aged Woman is an irresistible and finely written fantasy for anyone who ever wondered what a certain age would look like from beyond the looking-glass--and who will find it ripe with promise that the best days are yet to come.
    Suggested Reading: Chicklit Stars
    Updated 12.23.02
  • After the Snooter
    Author: Campbell, Eddie
    Publisher: Top Shelf $ 14.95 (paper) ISBN: 0957789661 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Suggested Reading: Graphic Novel Stars
    Updated 2.24.03
  • The Good Patient
    Author: Duisberg, Kristen Waterfield
    Publisher: St Martins $ 23.95 ISBN: 0312300395 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarBooklist
    As her husband and her therapist desperately try to uncover her horrible secrets before she destroys herself, Darien just as desperately tries to keep them hidden as she spirals out of control.
    Updated 1.6.03
  • Wanderlust
    Author: Dyer, Chris
    Publisher: Penguin $ 13 (paper) ISBN: 0452283795 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    Writing a low-budget travel column for a New York newspaper is a dream for young Kate Bogart, but as she soon finds, the travel fulfills her--but the distance it kills her. A saucy and lighthearted novel that will leave readers happy to be along for the ride.
    Suggested Reading: Chicklit Stars
    Updated 12.23.02
  • Oscar Wilde Discovers America
    Author: Edwards, Louis
    Publisher: Scribner $ 24 BN: 0743236890 Date: 2003
    blackstar.jpg - 947 Bytes KirkusstarLJ
    This compelling and unique fictional foray into American history follows a brilliantly conjured Wilde and his young black valet on a whirlwind tour across the country from high-society Newport to the deep south.
    Suggested Reading: Historical Fiction Stars | Biographical Fiction
    Updated 11.20.02
  • The Master Butchers Singing Club
    Author: Erdrich, Louise
    Publisher: HarperCollins $ 25.95 ISBN: 0066209773 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarBookliststarPW
    A brilliant new book by one of America's most acclaimed novelists, in The Master Butchers Singing Club Erdrich creates a fictional world filled with memorable characters who grapple with the worst and best impulses of human nature.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars | Reading Group Stars
    Updated 12.23.02
  • Megatokyo: Volume 1
    Author: Gallagher, Fred
    Publisher: I.C. Entertainment $ 9.95 (paper) ISBN: 1929090307 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Suggested Reading: Graphic Novel Stars
    Updated 2.24.03
  • Stone Heart: A Novel of Sacagawea
    Author: Glancy, Diane
    Publisher: Overlook $ 21.95 ISBN: 158567365x Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    The drama and wonder of the Lewis and Clark expedition recaptured through the voice of Sacajawea, the enigmatic Shoshoni woman who accompanied them through the West.- Publisher Marketing.
    Suggested Reading: Historical Fiction Stars | Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 11.12.02
  • Mrs. Kimble
    Author: Haigh, Jennifer
    Publisher: Morrow $ 24.95 ISBN: 0060509392 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Covering a span of 25 years, Mrs. Kimble tells the story of a trio of women who consecutively married the same man--a charismatic opportunist named Ken Kimble--a fascinating psychological portrait of an irresistible Svengali and the women who succumb to his spell.
    Suggested Reading: Reading Group Stars
    Updated 12.2.02
  • The Commissariat of Enlightenment
    Author: Kalfus, Ken
    Publisher: Ecco $ 24.95 ISBN: 0060501367 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPW
    Brimming with intellect, humor, sweep, and rich, inventive storytelling, The Commissariat of Enlightenment is a novel of ideas that brilliantly evokes the tragicomic world of revolutionary Russia and the birth of today's image-based society, marking Kalfus as a daring and talented writer.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts | Stalin
    Updated 1.3.03
  • Goodnight, Nobody
    Author: Knight, Michael
    Publisher: Atlantic $ 23 BN: 0871138670 Date: 2003
    star Kirkus
    Knight received a special PEN/Hemingway citation for his startling, finely crafted first collection, Dogfight and Other Stories. Goodnight, Nobody, a brilliant collection of stories about rediscovered love, reconciliation, and peace amid the trials of everyday life, proves once again that he is "a genius of the ordinary" (Frederick Barthelme).
    Updated 10.31.02
  • Patrick: Son of Ireland
    Author: Lawhead, Stephen R.
    Publisher: Morrow $ 25.95 ISBN: 0060012811 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    A magnificent historical novel about the early life of the man who would one day be known as St. Patrick. This is the story of Patrick's "missing years"--years of calamity, defeat, and crushing disappointment that form him into a bard and advisor to the High King of Ireland, and lead to the mission for which his name will be remembered throughout history.
    Suggested Reading: Historical Fiction Stars | Biographical Fiction | Irish Stars
    Updated 3.13.03
  • A Bed in Heaven
    Author: De Loo, Tessa
    Publisher: Soho $ 21 ISBN: 1569473161 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    During the Occupation, a Dutch woman, Ida Flinck, had hidden Kata's father. They were in love, yet she was compelled to sleep with a German officer to protect him. Narrated by Kata, daughter of a Jew who fled Budapest early in World War II for the presumed safety of Amsterdam, this novel is simply stunning.
    Updated 11.12.02
  • Was It Beautiful
    Author: McGhee, Alison
    Publisher: Random $ 23 ISBN: 0609609785 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    In luminous, haunting prose, McGhee pays loving attention to the details of life in the Adirondacks and to the small kindnesses and idiosyncrasies that make each member of a community precious and unique.
    Updated 12.23.02
  • Property
    Author: Martin, Valerie
    Publisher: Doubleday $ 23.95 ISBN: 038550408x Date: 2003
    starPWstarLJ
    From the acclaimed author of Mary Reilly comes a groundbreaking novel set in the antebellum South during a slave rebellion, told by Manon Gaudet, a female slave owner who speaks about her past, her present, and her longings in an uncensored, pitch-perfect voice from the heart of moral darkness.
    Suggested Reading: Historical Fiction Stars | Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 1.29.03
  • The King in the Tree: Three Novellas
    Author: Millhauser, Steven
    Publisher: Knopf $ 23 ISBN: 0375415408 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarBookliststarPW
    From the author of Edwin Mullhouse and the Pulitzer Prize-winning Martin Dressier come three dazzling novellas about the many shapes of love.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars | Legendary Characters
    Updated 1.20.03
  • The House at Maakies Corner
    Author: Millionaire, Tony
    Publisher: Fantagraphics $ 19.95 ISBN: 1560975083 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Millionaire's Maakies comic strip runs in some of the largest weekly papers, and stars a drunken crow on the high seas with vaudeville humor. This volume features a year's worth of strips in a deluxe hardcover format that complements the strips classical style.
    Suggested Reading: Graphic Novel Stars
    Updated 2.10.03
  • Wintering: A Novel of Sylvia Plath
    Author: Moses, Kate
    Publisher: St Martins $ 23.95 ISBN: 031228375x Date: 2003
    starPWstarLJ
    This stunning literary debut captures the haunting last months of Sylvia Plath's life and the painful creation of her legendary Ariel poems. Wintering is a deeply felt novel about artistry, marriage, motherhood, and self-understanding.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts | Biographical Fiction | Poets | Stormy Weather
    Updated 1.16.03
  • Our Father Who Art in a Tree
    Author: Pascoe, Judy
    Publisher: Random $ 19.95 ISBN: 037550799x Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    Introducing a superb new talent--a former Australian acrobat who is now a standup comedienne in England--this richly written novel explores how a family deals with the loss of a parent in an imaginative and original way.
    Suggested Reading: Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 1.16.03
  • The Dante Club
    Author: Pearl, Matthew
    Publisher: Random $ 24.95 ISBN: 0375505296 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarBooklist
    When a series of gruesome murders erupts in 1865, only Boston's literary elite realize that the style and form of the killings are derived from Dante's Inferno. Twenty-six-year-old Pearl brilliantly blends fact and fiction in this debut mystery starring Oliver Wendell Holmes and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.
    Suggested Reading: First Fiction & Mystery Debuts
    Link: The Dante Club web site
    Updated 12.2.02
  • The Pieces from Berlin
    Author: Pye, Michael
    Publisher: Knopf $ 24 ISBN: 0375414363 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    From the author of Taking Lives comes a riveting new novel, inspired by an actual historical figure, about a woman who made a fortune trafficking stolen art in wartime Berlin, and the terrible emotional consequences of her crimes.
    Updated 12.02.02
  • Nightmare Alley
    Author: Rodriguez, Spain & William Lindsay Gresham
    Publisher: Fantagraphics $ 14.95 (paper) ISBN: 1560975113 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Suggested Reading: Graphic Novel Stars
    Updated 9.08.03
  • Set This House In Order: A Romance of Souls
    Author: Ruff, Matt
    Publisher: HarperCollins $ 25.95 ISBN: 0060195622 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Andrew Gage, 28, is trying to live a normal, stable life as a multiple personality. One day Andrew meets Penny Driver, who is also multiple, but doesn't know it yet. When a couple of Penny's other personalities try to enlist Andrew's aid, they set in motion a chain of events that threatens to bring Andrew's "house" crashing down.
    Suggested Reading: Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 1.28.03
  • The Amount to Carry
    Author: Scholz, Carter
    Publisher: Picador $ 23 ISBN: 0312269013 Date: 2003
    starPW
    From the author of Radiance comes a dazzling and unhinging collection of his finest stories that disturb the universe and probe the worlds readers call home.
    Updated 2.24.03
  • My Last Movie Star
    Author: Sherrill, Martha
    Publisher: Random $ 23.95 ISBN: 0375507698 Date: 2003
    star Kirkus
    When "it girl" Allegra Coleman disappears, the result is a parody and parable of Hollywood that is at once absurdly funny and disturbingly plausible, from a writer possibly destined to become the next new thing.
    Suggested Reading: Film Fiction
    Updated 10.31.02
  • Love and Other Games of Chance
    Author: Siegel, Lee
    Publisher: Viking $ 27.95 ISBN: 0670894613 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    A sumptuous entertainment in the vein of Carter Beats the Devil and Niagara Falls All Over Again, Love and Other Games of Chance is at once silly and grand, utterly absurd and yet full of meaning.
    Updated 2.20.03
  • Hot Pursuit
    Author: Skye, Christina
    Publisher: Dell $ 6.99 (paper) ISBN: 0440237599 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Suspense writer Taylor O'Toole's life starts to resemble one of her novels as she's thrown into the path of a stalker. Navy SEAL Jack Broussard is assigned to protect the writer, who now may be a key link to finding a missing scientist, and poses as her neighbor. When an attempt is made on Taylor's life, Jack had better watch out for his heart.
    Suggested Reading: Romance Stars
    Updated 1.25.03
  • The Pilots
    Author: Spencer, James
    Publisher: Putnam $ 24.95 ISBN: 0399149732 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    Spencer flew B-24 bombers during 1944 and 1945. Decades later he began to write about it. The extraordinary result is The Pilots, a novel-in-stories about a group of young men as they evolve in unpredictable ways during the last years of the war.
    Suggested Reading: Historical Fiction Stars | World War Fiction Stars
    Updated 12.16.02
  • The Dialogues of Time and Entropy
    Author: Stollman, Aryeh Lev
    Publisher: Riverhead $ 24.95 ISBN: 1573222356 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    Stollman's career began with stories that have appeared in leading literary journals, including American Short Fiction, The Yale Review, The Southwest Review, Tikkun, and Story magazine. Collected here, they address the themes he has grappled with so memorably in his novels.
    Updated 2.12.03
  • The Watermelon King
    Author: Wallace, Daniel
    Publisher: Houghton Mifflin $ 23 ISBN: 0618221387 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    From a beloved author whose work has been praised for its "wit, subtle compassion, and an offbeat originality" (Boston Globe) comes a novel as unforgettable as it is compelling. The Watermelon King takes readers back to Ashland, Alabama, a fictional town whose identity is based on its long-ago abundance of watermelons.
    Updated 1.29.03

~ June ~ May ~ April ~ March ~ February ~ January

January

  • Living Large
    Author: Alers, Rochell and others
    Publisher: NAL $ 6.99 (paper) ISBN: 0451207653 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Four fabulous bestselling authors contribute to this African-American anthology with stories of women with a plus-size joy for life. Includes "Reunion" by Rochelle Alers, "Surprise" by Donna Hill, "Bare Essentials" by Brenda Jackson, and "Strictly Business" by Francis Ray.
    Suggested Reading: African American Stars
    Updated 1.25.03
  • The Inquisitor's Manual
    Author: Atunes, Antonio Lobo
    Publisher: Grove $ 25 ISBN: 0802117325 Date: 2003
    starPWstarBooklist
    In his eleventh novel, Antonio Lobo Antunes, one of the great European literary masters, chronicles the decadence not just of a family but of an entire society -- a society morally and spiritually vitiated by four decades of totalitarian rule. - Publisher Marketing
    Updated 1.06.03
  • In His Image Christ The Clone Trilogy, Book 1
    Author: Beausigneur, James
    Publisher: Warner $ 18.95 ISBN: 0446531251 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Based on the actual scientific expedition to examine the Shroud of Turin, author BeauSeigneur creates a fictionalized story that links ancient DNA to the coming of the Antichrist.
    Suggested Reading: Christian Fiction Stars
    Updated 1.25.03
  • Making Things Better
    Author: Brookner, Anita
    Publisher: Random $ 23.95 ISBN: 0375508880 Date: 2003
    starPW
    The Booker Prize-winning author of The Bay of Angels and Hotel du Lac now pens a masterly new novel about the self-discoveries that come with maturity, and the eternal question confronted by people of all ages: What will I do with the rest of my life?
    Updated 12.23.02
  • A Memory of War
    Author: Busch, Frederick
    Publisher: Norton $ 25.95 ISBN: 0393049787 Date: 2003
    starPWstarKirkusstarBooklist
    Psychologist Alexander Lescziak has a life of quiet sophistication, until a new patient declares that he is the doctor's half-brother, the product of a union between Lescziak's Jewish mother and a German prisoner of war.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars
    Updated 1.06.03
  • A Whistling Woman
    Author: Byatt, A. S.
    Publisher: Knopf $ 26 ISBN: 0375415343 Date: 2003
    star Kirkus starPWstarBooklist
    The triumphant conclusion to Byatt's dazzling quartet of novels about English life is set in the late 1960s as the world begins to split. While Frederica--the spirited heroine of the novels--falls into a career in television in London, tumultuous events in her home county of Yorkshire threaten to change her life and those of the people she loves.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars
    Updated 12.2.02
  • Great Neck
    Author: Cantor, Jay
    Publisher: Knopf $ 27.95 ISBN: 0375413944 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Great Neck brings readers inside privileged Long Island childhoods, into the churches, juke joints, and jails of Mississippi and into underground meetings and protest marches. It is the tumultuous story of a group of friends, black and white, growing up radical in the sixties and seventies.
    Updated 1.06.03
  • Gilligan's Wake
    Author: Carson, Tom
    Publisher: Picador $ 25 ISBN: 031229123x Date: 2003
    starPWstarLJ
    In this kaleidoscopic novel about the last American century, an institutionalized shadow man combines twisted histories of six characters (a skipper, a millionaire, a rich woman, an actress, a professor, and one Mary-Ann Kilroy) into a pastiche of this country's history.
    Updated 12.23.02
  • The Skating Pond
    Author: Corey, Deborah Joy
    Publisher: Berkley $ 21.95 ISBN: 0425188353 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    Corey's long awaited second novel fulfills the promise of her first. It is the story of Elizabeth, a young girl from a fishing town who finds herself alone after her family abandons her. She turns to an older man who will cast an emotional and erotic shadow over her for the rest of her life.
    Updated 1.16.03
  • Sutter's Cross
    Author: Cramer, W. Dale
    Publisher: Bethany $ 12.99 (paper) ISBN: 0764227831 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Sutter's Cross is a resort town in the southern Appalachians, where people live in comfortable homes, have comfortable portfolios, and wear comfortable clothes. They expect their lives, their weather, even their God, to be cooperative and predictable--until a stranger calling himself "Harley" shows up at the church's spring picnic looking like a wreck and wearing stolen jeans. Can God use an outcast to change a town?
    Suggested Reading: Christian Fiction Stars
    Updated 1.25.03
  • Ice Cream
    Author: Dunmore, Helen
    Publisher: Grove $ 23 ISBN: 0802117333 Date: 2003
    star Library Journal
    "Subtle and delicate as the sweet confection of its title" (The Independent), this beautiful collection from one of England's most revered writers explores friendship, regret, mysterious passions, and the intense pleasure of ice cream.
    Updated 10.16.02
  • His Mother's Son
    Author: Emmons, Cai
    Publisher: Harcourt $ 25 ISBN: 015107349 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    Part domestic drama, part psychological thriller, this superb first novel from filmmaker Emmons follows a woman doctor, her young son, and the violent legacy of her brother.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts
    Updated 10.10.02
  • Valentine's Change of Heart
    Author: Fairchild, Elisabeth
    Publisher: NAL $ 4.99 (paper) ISBN: 0451207726 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Suggested Reading: Romance Stars
    Updated 1.25.03
  • Marriage: A Duet
    Author: Fleming, Anne Taylor
    Publisher: Hyperion $ 20 ISBN: 0786868740 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Infidelity is the theme connecting these two novellas--"A Married Woman" and "A Married Man"--written by CNN NewsNight contributor Fleming.
    Updated 12.2.02
  • The Seduction of Water
    Author: Goodman, Carol
    Publisher: Ballantine $ 23.95 ISBN: 0345450906 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    On the heels of her mesmerizing bestseller The Lake of Dead Languages, Goodman has written an absorbing, richly layered novel that skillfully weaves dark fairy tale themes into a modern web of intrigue.
    Updated 12.23.02
  • I Should Be Extremely Happy in Your Company: A Novel of Lewis and Clark
    Author: Hall, Brian
    Publisher: Viking $ 25.95 ISBN: 0670031895 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarPW
    Presenting the story of Lewis and Clark in an entirely new light, Hall uses the novelist's art to produce a compulsively readable book that fills the gaps and provides a new perspective on this great American story.
    Suggested Reading: Historical Fiction Stars | Biographical Fiction
    Updated 11.27.02
  • Forever
    Author: Hamill, Pete
    Publisher: Little, Brown $ 25.95 ISBN: 0316341118 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Cormac O'Connor, who arrives in New York City from Ireland in 1741, has been given the gift of immortality--but only on the condition that he never leave the island of Manhattan. Through his eyes, this magical epic follows the city's transformation from a burgeoning settlement to the thriving metropolis of the present day. But this is also Cormac's story as he explores the mysteries of time and immortality, death and loss, sex and love.
    Suggested Reading: Immortalism | Time Travel Stars | Adult Books for Teens
    Updated 12.23.02
  • Abandon
    Author: Iyer, Pico
    Publisher: Knopf $ 24 ISBN: 037541505x Date: 2003
    starPWstarLJ
    John Macmillain, an English graduate student in California, is obsessed with understanding the secrets of Sufism. When rumors reach him of ancient Islamic manuscripts smuggled out of Iran, he follows their trail and meets an elusive woman who hints that she knows more than she seems to about the mysteries he is pursuing.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts
    Updated 1.16.03
  • Little Infamies: Stories
    Author: Karnezis, Panos
    Publisher: Farrar Straus & Giroux $ 24 ISBN: 0374189374 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    Cunning, fantastical tales about a Greek village of the imagination, from a startling new talent Panos Karnezis' remarkable stories are all set in the same nameless Greek village. - Publisher Marketing
    Updated 12.16.02
  • Worth Any Price
    Author: Kleypas, Lisa
    Publisher: Avon $ 7.50 (paper) ISBN: 0380811073 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Fleeing to avoid a marriage to a controlling nobleman, Charlotte is soon captured by a treacherous foe: Nick Gentry is daring, dangerous, and reputed to be the most skillful lover in England. His mission is to return her to her hated enemy. However, he shockingly offers her a very different proposal.
    Suggested Reading: Romance Stars
    Updated 12.16.02
  • The Seduction of Silence
    Author: Le Hunte, Bem
    Publisher: HarperCollins $ 25.95 ISBN: 006052197x Date: 2003
    star Kirkus
    From the soaring hills of the Himalayas to haunted rooms in Great Britain, this enchanting debut novel--a bestseller in India--follows one family through five generations in a tale that is ethereal and earthy, profound and deeply heartfelt.
    Suggested Reading: Debuts
    Updated 10.31.02
  • Dancer
    Author: McCann, Colum
    Publisher: Holt $ 26 ISBN: 0805067922 Date: 2003
    starPW
    Taking his inspiration from the biographical facts of Rudolf Nureyev's life, McCann tells the story of a famous dancer through a chorus of voices. Spanning four decades and many worlds, Dancer is peopled by a large cast of characters, obscure and famous. The result is a monumental story of love, art, and exile.
    Suggested Reading: Biographical Fiction
    Updated 11.18.02
  • As Meat Loves Salt
    Author: McCann, Maria
    Publisher: Harvest $ 15 (paper) ISBN: 015601226x Date: 2003
    star PW starKirkusstarLJ
    A darkly erotic tale of passion and obsession, As Meat Loves Salt is a gripping portrait of 17th-century England beset by war. It is also a moving portrait of a man on the brink of madness. Hailed as a masterpiece, this is a first novel by an original new voice in fiction.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars | Historical Fiction Stars
    Updated 11.05.02
  • Voyage of the Destiny
    Author: Nye, Robert
    Publisher: Arcade $ 24.95 ISBN: 1559706465 Date: 2003
    starPW
    The acclaimed author of The Late Mr. Shakespeare scores again with a thrilling depiction of the Elizabethan era through the eyes of the legendary Sir Walter Raleigh.
    Suggested Reading: Shakespearean Stars
    Updated 12.16.02
  • The Time of Our Singing
    Author: Powers, Richard
    Publisher: Farrar $ 28 ISBN: 0374277826 Date: 2003
    starKirkusstarBookliststarLJ
    A magnificent, multifaceted novel about a supremely gifted--and divided--family, set against the backdrop of postwar America. The Time of Our Singing is a story of self-invention, allegiance, race, cultural ownership, the compromised power of music, and the tangled loops of time that rewrite all belonging.
    Suggested Reading: All Stars
    Updated 11.05.02
  • Samaritan
    Author: Price, Richard
    Publisher: Knopf $ 25 ISBN: 0375411151 Date: 2003
    star KirkusstarBooklist
    From the author of the bestselling Clockers and Freedomland comes a brilliant new novel of literary suspense--a story of crime, punishment, and the impulse to do good. Samaritan explores what happens when, caught up in the drama of oneUs own generosity, too little is given, too little is understood, and the result turns both tragic and potentially deadly.
    Updated 12.2.02
  • The Devil and Daniel Silverman
    Author: Roszak, Theodore
    Publisher: Leapfrog $ 15.95 (paper) ISBN: 0967952077 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    The author of the cult-status novel, Flicker, brings readers a hilarious exploration of politics and ideas in which the battle for the moral heart of America is waged between a college full of scripture-spouting fundamentalists and one Jewish homosexual writer.
    Updated 1.16.03
  • Only One Thing Missing
    Author: Ruiz, Luis Manuel
    Publisher: Grove $ 24 ISBN: 0802117309 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    Ruiz's English-language debut is a page-turner that takes readers through the streets of contemporary Seville, the walkways of an unmapped urban dreamscape, and to the devil-worshiping underworld of medieval Lisbon. At once a love story, a chilling tale of the occult, and an exploration of the timeless themes of memory, obsession, and loss.
    Updated 9.30.02
  • Dorian
    Author: Self, Will
    Publisher: Grove $ 24 ISBN: 0802117295 Date: 2003
    starLibrary Journal
    The New York Times Book Review has praised Will Self as a "high-powered satirical weapon." Set against the AIDS epidemic of the 80s, Self's Dorian is a shameless reworking of a most significant myth of shamelessness, brilliantly evoking the decade in which it was fine to stare into the abyss.
    Suggested Reading: AIDS
    Updated 11.20.02
  • The Miracles of Santo Fico
    Author: Smith, D.L.
    Publisher: Warner $ 22.95 ISBN: 0446531030 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    Smith chronicles a series of romantic and religious shenanigans in his debut novel set in the tiny Italian village of Santo Fico, where residents capitalize on the local tourist trade by diverting buses to a religious fresco depicting the miracles of St. Thomas. Suggested Reading: Adult Books for Teens | Debuts
    Updated 11.12.02
  • Guru of Love
    Author: Upadhyay, Samrat
    Publisher: Houghton $ 23 ISBN: 0618247270 Date: 2003
    starBooklist
    Upadhyay's first novel showcases his finest writing and his signature themes. The Guru of Love is a moving and important story--important for what it illuminates about the human need to love as well as lust, and for the light it shines on the political situation in Nepal and elsewhere.
    Suggested Reading: Adult Books for Teens | Debuts
    Updated 11.05.02
  • Cheops: A Cupboard for the Sun
    Author: West, Paul
    Publisher: New Directions $ 25.95 ISBN: 0811215199 Date: 2003
    starKirkus
    Known for wrapping readers in his historical web, Paul West, in his marvelous, new novel, Cheops; A Cupboard for the Sun, turns his attention to the 4th Dynasty (approx. 2680 BC) of ancient Egypt. Here, we find the pharaoh Cheops, building the great pyramids at Giza, surrounded by workers and solar boats. According to the Greek historian Herodotus, "a hundred thousand men were made to toil constantly for him, " and, as Herodotus claimed, Egypt was "plunged into all manner of wickedness." In Cheops, West delightfully has Herodotus transported back in time, to meet the great pharaoh, face to face. Nearing death, getting ready for his final "transportation to the stars, " the blind Cheops is obsessed with preparing for his end. All the while, the intrigues of his daughters, sons, wives, and courtiers are revealed, uncovering murder, incest, and rebellion. Most intriguing is the overarching narration told by Osiris, god of the Nile, who comments on this swarm of events with hilarious and humane authority. Profound and entertaining, Cheops; A Cupboard for the Sun is perhaps Paul West's greatest novel yet. - Publisher Marketing
    Suggested Reading: Egyptian Stars
    Updated 2.27.05

Starred Review Lists

Books that received at least one starred review from Booklist, Kirkus, LJ, and PW.

2013 Crime Fiction: Jan-June | Fiction: Jan-June | Speculative Fiction

2012 Crime Fiction: July-Dec | Fiction: July-Dec | Speculative Fiction

Hotlists@ Google Docs

Crime Fiction... 2013 | 2012 | 2011

Fiction... 2013 | 2012 | 2011

(lists of new and notable books - lists are sortable and can be downloaded)

more stars lists...

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