September Speed Reads


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Crime: A Novel By Irvine Welsh, out Sept. 2 An Edinburgh cop goes to Miami to plan his wedding and ends up battling a small ring of pe dophiles—don’t you hate it when that happens?—in what Welsh himself has called “an existential thriller.”


To Sound Like You’ve Read It: Mention that you’re glad that Crime’s protagonist and anti-hero Ray Lennox made the leap from supporting character in Welsh’s Filth.


The War Within: A Super Secret White House History 2006–2008 By Bob Woodward, out Sept. 8 In his fourth book chronicling the Bush years, wunderkind cum-windbagWoodward shines a light on the internal de bates during two controversial years of the Iraq War.


To Sound Like You’ve Read It: Ac knowledge that Woodward has progres sively sharpened his views toward Bush since Bush at War, his first book about the administration.


Hot, Flat and Crowded By Thomas L. Friedman, out Sept. 8 Anyone who has kept up with Fried man’s columns in the New York Times knows the man is obsessed with cli mate change and en ergy revolution. He synthesizes these two into an argument for a "Geo-Greenism" national strategy that will revolutionize America and the world.

To Sound Like You’ve Read It: Blather about how this book will do for the envi ronment what The World is Flat did for globalization. Segue into a conversation about those useless brown paper towels.


Indignation By Philip Roth, out Sept. 15 In his 29th (!) book, Roth tells the Cold War–era tale of the son of a Newark butcher who flees west to college in Winesburg, Ohio, where he hits the books ferociously to avoid the fate of a soldier.

To Sound Like You’ve Read It: Remark that the Winesburg of Roth’s story is not the same town as in Sherwood Anderson’s 1919 classic Winesburg, Ohio. Anderson’s hometown of Clyde, Ohio, was the basis for that book.


Downtown Owl: A Novel By Chuck Kloster man, out Sept. 15 The pop culture commentator and essayist makes his first foray into novels with this multi-char acter story about the community of Owl, a small town in North Dakota.

To Sound Like You’ve Read It: Casually drop that this technically isn’t Kloster man’s fiction debut. In his recent collec tion Chuck Klosterman: IV, he included a novella he’d written while working in Akron, Ohio, titled You Tell Me.


The Given Day By Denis Lehane, out Sept. 22 Lehane returns to Boston, where his bestselling Mystic River took place, but jumps back in time to 1918 for this sprawling epic that tumbles from labor clashes in the streets to baseball battles on the diamond.

To Sound Like You’ve Read It: Note that this wide-ranging story is a departure from the smaller, tightly focused scope of Lehane’s successful thrillers like Mystic River and Shutter Island.


The Other Queen By Philippa Gregory, out Sept. 16 The author of The Other Boleyn Girl brings out a new Other, this time with the story of the im prisonment of Mary, Queen of Scots. The action focuses on Mary’s captivity in the home of the Earl of Shrewsbury and his wife, Bess, where treachery and

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