Our latest Book Trailer of the Week is this must-see clip for Penny Marshall’s new memoir My Mother Was Nuts. A virtual lock for a 2012 Moby Award, the clever spot features SNL and Portlandia star Fred Armisen impersonating the long-time actress and director to hilarious effect. Don’t miss the “lotion” bit, and after you’ve shared the fun with friends, don’t forget to check out Marshall’s book as well. Honest, poignant, and funny, her down-to-earth reflections on Hollywood life and close friendships with John Belushi, Carrie Fisher, and Art Garfunkel make for a fascinating read indeed. Enjoy!
Our latest Book Trailer of the Week is for Dennis Lehane’s new historical crime epic Live by Night. A follow-up of sorts to 2008’s masterful The Given Day, the novel revisits the Coughlin family in Prohibition-era Boston as youngest brother Joe defies his police officer father to climb the ladder of organized crime. As his rum running empire grows from Tampa all the way to Batista’s Cuba, however, a Vito Corleone-like Joe struggles to protect his family from his violent chosen path. Described by Booklist as “an utterly magnetic novel on every level,” Live by Night is Mystic River-author Lehane at his best. Don’t miss it.
Our latest Book Trailer of the Week is this hilarious spoof for John Wray’s intriguing novel Lowboy. Honored with a 2010 Moby Award for the Best Cameo in a Book Trailer, this awkwardly funny clip features comedian Zach Galifianakis impersonating Wray in possibly the worst and strangest author interview of all time. Watch it now, watch it often, and make sure to check out Wray’s capitivating novel as well. A vivid character study, the story follows 16-year-old Will Heller’s battle with mental illness in what Booklist called “a tour de force of empathy, style, and imagination.” Don’t miss it.
Our latest Book Trailer of the Week is for Dash Shaw’s darkly fantastical graphic novel BodyWorld. The year is 2060 and America is reeling from a devastating civil war when Professor Paulie Panther rambles into the small town of Boney Borough. An experimental botanist by trade, he soon stumbles upon a mysterious two-lobed plant of possible alien origin growing back behind the high school. The strange flora’s telepathic powers are unwelcomed by the humorously quirky townsfolk, however, and the eccentric Panther quickly finds himself chafing against Boney Borough’s rigid conformist attitude. Funny and fearless, BodyWorld is a mind-blowing blend of sci-fi, offbeat romance, and futuristic what-if that will challenge your imagination with its visionary artwork. Don’t miss it.
After a brief hiatus, the Book Trailer of the Week is back with this captivating clip for Laura Hillenbrand’s new biography Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption. Winner of the 2010 L.A. Times Book Prize for Biography, Unbroken tells the enthralling tale of Louie Zamperini, a 1936 Munich Olympics track star and a WWII Army Air Corps bombardier who endured 47 days in a life raft and two years in Japan’s most brutal POW camps after his B-24 crashed in the Pacific. Broken and haunted upon his repatriation, Zamperini eventually experienced a spiritual rebirth, and now at 93, he works with the Japanese to promote forgiveness and healing. Inspiring, heart-wrenching, and simply unforgettable, Unbroken is Seabiscuit-author Hillenbrand at her best. Don’t miss it.
Our latest Book Trailer of the Week is for Peter Bognanni’s fantastic debut novel The House of Tomorrow. A finalist for the 2010 L.A. Times’ Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction, The House of Tomorrow tells the story of Sebastian Prendergast, a lonely 16-year-old who lives in rural Iowa with his grandma and is homeschooled in a geodesic dome. When his grandma takes ill, Sebastian is forced from his bubble world and soon meets Jarod Whitcomb, a moody music lover who introduces Sebastian to punk rock, brutal honesty, and friendship. Laugh-out-loud funny and deeply touching, The House of Tomorrow is a sly portrayal of teen angst and self-discovery that’s “as fun and lively as a Ramones tune.” Don’t miss it.
Today is Presidents Day, and we celebrate with this Book Trailer of the Week for Ron Chernow’s landmark biography Washington: A Life. In this fascinating clip, the National Book Award-winning author tours in person several of the same landmark locations he visits in the pages of his richly nuanced portrait of America’s first President. A 2010 NY Times Notable Book, Chernow’s carefully researched page turner brings Washington to vivid life as “a dashing, passionate man of fiery opinions and many moods” while recounting how he rose from humble beginnings to become the father of our nation. A unique, groundbreaking biography not to be missed. Happy Birthday, George!