The Reading List: April ’12 - The Culture Files Blog - Los Angeles magazine
 
 

The Reading List: April ’12

Every month LAmag.com compiles titles of local interest that are hitting the bookshelves. Here, arranged by genre, are some highlights

Fiction
 
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Further Interpretations of Real-Life Events: Stories
(Harper Perennial, paperback, $15)
By Kevin Moffett
Characters in transitional states fill the pages of this short story collection from the Claremont writer.
Out: March 20

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The Last Romanov
(Sourcebooks Landmark, paperback, $15)
By Dora Levy Mossanen
Imperial Russia, in its myth and magic, is the setting for this royal family drama by the Beverly Hills writer.
Out: April 3

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The Book of Madness and Cures
(Little, Brown, hardcover, $26)
By Regina O’Melveny
In this L.A. writer’s debut, a medically gifted woman searches for her missing father in 16th-century Venice.
Out: April 10

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Unholy Night
(Grand Central, hardcover, $25)
By Seth Grahame-Smith
The best-selling revisionist writer—whose Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter is currently being made into a Tim Burton-produced movie—goes back to the time of the Three Kings of Nativity. 
Out: April 10

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Everybody Says Hello
(Livingston, paperback, $19)
By Michael Kun
The L.A. writer says he “had a big, stupid grin” on his face while he was writing it. Will we have a similar experience while reading it?
Out: April 16

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More Like Her
(William Morrow, paperback, $15)
By Liza Palmer
The L.A. writer goes for a darker-than-usual subject matter in this story of a dream undone.
Out: April 17

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Memoirs of a Porcupine
(Soft Skull, paperback, $16)
By Alain Mabanckou
A confessional porcupine narrates this translation of the UCLA professor’s weirder-than-weird French original. Check out our February Critic’s Picks for a review.
Out: April 17

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Berlin Cantata
(Haus, paperback, $15)
By Jeffrey Lewis
Thirteen voices in a single book—even if it’s about as complex a subject as Berlin after the Wall—sounds like a lot. Find out for yourself in this L.A. writer’s latest.
Out: April 17

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The Angry Buddhist
(Europa Editions, paperback, $16)
By Seth Greenland
Local politics can be scandalous too in this novel from the medium-hopping L.A. writer.
Out: April 24

 

Nonfiction

 
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Fat, Drunk, and Stupid: The Inside Story Behind the Making of Animal House
(St. Martin’s, hardcover, $26)
By Matty Simmons
This isn’t just anybody writing—Simmons was the producer of the paradigm-shifting comedy classic.
Out: April 10

Suspense

 
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Scorpion Betrayal
(Harper, paperback, $10)
By Andrew Kaplan
The spy-thriller novelist opens his latest with the brutal murder of the head of Egypt’s State Internal Security.
Out: March 27

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Driven
(Poisoned Pen, paperback, $12)
By James Sallis
This sequel to Drive—now a Ryan Gosling star vehicle (pun intended)—opens seven years later.
Out: April 3

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Harbor Nocturne
(Mysterious, hardcover, $27)
By Joseph Wambaugh
Wambaugh fans will recognize characters from his Hollywood Station series in this cop drama set in San Pedro.
Out: April 3

Books.2011.Jan.Cover.Phyo 

L.A. '56: A Devil in the City of Angels
(Thomas Dunne, hardcover, $26)
By Joel Engel
The racially tense Los Angeles of the ’50s is the setting for this true crime novel from the former L.A. Times journalist.
Out: April 10

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Midnight Alley
(Oceanview, hardcover, $26)
By Miles Corwin
An elite LAPD detective with a complex history investigates the murder of two young black men. Check out our review in the April issue of Los Angeles magazine.
Out: April 16

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Wildcat Play: A Mystery 
(Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, hardcover, $24)
By Helen Knode 
This second novel featuring L.A. movie critic Ann Whitehead takes place in oil country.
Out: April 24

 

Memoir and Biography

 
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A Natural Woman: A Memoir
(Grand Central, hardcover, $28)
By Carole King
Can she top Patti Smith? Wait and see.
Out: April 10

Books.2011.Jan.Cover.Phyo 

Mike Wallace: A Life 
(Thomas Dunne, hardcover, $26)
By Peter Rader
Demons populate the past of the iconic 60 Minutes broadcaster in this biography from an L.A. filmmaker and screenwriter.
Out: April 24

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My Happy Days in Hollywood: A Memoir
(Crown Archetype, hardcover, $25)
By Garry Marshall
Expect some dish on his work with stars like Julia Roberts, Robin Williams, Anne Hathaway, and others. 
Out: April 24

 

Photo and Other

 
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Houses of the Sundown Sea: The Architectural Vision of Harry Gesner
(Abrams, hardcover, $75)
By Lisa Germany and Harry Gesner; photography by Juergen Nogai
Visit fifteen of modernist architect Gesner’s L.A. homes in this first-glimpse collection. Check out our review in the April issue of Los Angeles magazine.
Out: April 1

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Children of Manzanar
(Heyday, paperback, $18)
By Heather C. Lindquist
This year marks the 70th anniversary of Executive Order 9066, an act that forced thousands of Japanese Americans to relocate to compounds like Manzanar. Check out our review of this photo collection in the April issue of Los Angeles magazine.
Out: April 1

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Vintage Remix: The Interiors of Kishani Perera
(Abrams, hardcover, $35)
By Kishani Perera and Elizabeth Roehrig
Two of the L.A. interior designer’s clients, Molly Sims and Gary Oldman, contribute the introduction and foreword to this photo book.
Out: April 15

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James Franco: Dangerous Book Four Boys
(Skira Rizzoli, hardcover, $50)
By James Franco
What is this? Better question: Does anyone care? Note to Franco: Stick with acting.
Out: April 17

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100 Ideas that Changed Film
(Laurence King, paperback, $30)
By David Parkinson
We flipped to three random pages and got film d’art, film schools, and effects makeup. There are 97 more where those came from!
Out: April 18

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Paul R. Williams: Classic Hollywood Style
(Rizzoli, hardcover, $65)
By Karen E. Hudson
Clients of the elite Hollywood architect include Frank Sinatra, Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, and Barbara Stanwyck. 
Out: April 24

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