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It’s Nudy Magazine Day! (Orrrr New Book Day…)

Hooray! New books time again!

Some of these look better than others (that’s just my opinion) but let’s face it! There couldn’t possibly be fantastically amazing new books released every single week, otherwise we’d never be impressed when Oprah tells us that a truly life altering one has come along. Right? Right.

Without further ado, new releases for the week of June 1, 2010…

The 100 Greatest Looney Tunes Cartoons edited by Jerry Beck. Hardcover.
In a world of rascally rabbits, megalomaniacal ducks, and stuttering pigs, what defines greatness? This question was posed to thousands of cartoon fans, historians, and animators to create The 100 Greatest Looney Tunes Cartoons, the definitive Looney Tunes collection. Evaluated on their comedic brilliance, innovative animation, historical significance, and creative merit, cartoon historian Jerry Beck and the Cartoon Brew team of animation experts reveal the amusing anecdotes and secret origins behind such classics as “What’s Opera, Doc?,” “One Froggy Evening,” and “Duck Dodgers in the 24½th Century.”

Featuring more than 300 pieces of original art from private collectors and the Warner Bros. archives, The 100 Greatest Looney Tunes Cartoons settles the debate on the best of the best, and poses a new question: Is your favorite one of the greatest? – via Amazon!

Seriously? I can’t even comment on the awesomeness that is this book! I don’t know many people who didn’t grow up loving Looney Tunes, or at least watching it, so I hope this doesn’t disappoint.

The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake by Aimee Bender. Hardcover.
On the eve of her ninth birthday, unassuming Rose Edelstein, a girl at the periphery of schoolyard games and her distracted parents’ attention, bites into her mother’s homemade lemon-chocolate cake and discovers she has a magical gift: she can taste her mother’s emotions in the cake. She discovers this gift to her horror, for her mother—her cheerful, good-with-crafts, can-do mother—tastes of despair and desperation. Suddenly, and for the rest of her life, food becomes a peril and a threat to Rose.

The curse her gift has bestowed is the secret knowledge all families keep hidden—her mother’s life outside the home, her father’s detachment, her brother’s clash with the world. Yet as Rose grows up she learns to harness her gift and becomes aware that there are secrets even her taste buds cannot discern.

The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake is a luminous tale about the enormous difficulty of loving someone fully when you know too much about them. It is heartbreaking and funny, wise and sad, and confirms Aimee Bender’s place as “a writer who makes you grateful for the very existence of language” (San Francisco Chronicle). –via the publisher!

This sounds almost strange enough to read, to me, but I’m not sold. Maybe when the paperback comes out?

My Name Is Memory by Ann Brashares. Hardcover.
A romance that stretches across centuries and past lives constitutes the core of Brashares’s varied second adult novel, the first in a planned trilogy.

The story is primarily that of Daniel, as, in the present, he pursues Lucy (whom he knows as Sophia in a previous life) and attempts to persuade her of their history and destiny, but his passion initially and understandably scares her off. He disappears, presumed dead, but Lucy, unable to forget him, investigates his claims of their history until she discovers the truth. Meanwhile, Daniel takes readers on a tour of romantic near-misses, from sixth-century Africa through eighth-century Turkey to WWI. The story moves slowly and predictably, though when a plot finally materializes, Brashares (Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants) manages some satisfying momentum, even if the story begins to feel like it’s borrowed from a James Patterson novel. Brashares’s insights into human nature, meanwhile, should appeal to readers who enjoyed The Time-Traveler’s Wife, but can appreciate a Nicholas Sparks-esque sensibility. – via Publisher’s Weekly!

Yeah, this lost me at “Nicholas Sparks-esque”. Sorry, kids. Not a fan.

Bullet by Laurel K. Hamilton. Hardcover.
Anita Blake is back in St. Louis and trying to live a normal life-as normal as possible for someone who is a legal vampire executioner and a U. S. Marshal. There are lovers, friends and their children, school programs to attend. In the midst of all the ordinary happiness a vampire from Anita’s past reaches out. She was supposed to be dead, killed in an explosion, but the Mother of All Darkness is the first vampire, their dark creator. It’s hard to kill a god. This dark goddess has reached out to her here-in St. Louis, home of everyone Anita loves most. The Mother of All Darkness has decided she has to act now or never, to control Anita, and all the vampires in America.

The Mother of All Darkness believes that the triumvirate created by master vampire Jean-Claude with Anita and the werewolf Richard Zeeman has enough power for her to regain a body and to immigrate to the New World. But the body she wants to possess is already taken. Anita is about to learn a whole new meaning to sharing her body, one that has nothing to do with the bedroom. And if the Mother of All Darkness can’t succeed in taking over Anita’s body for herself, she means to see that no one else has the use of it, ever again. Even Belle Morte, not always a friend to Anita, has sent word: “Run if you can…” –via Amazon!

I believe Bullet is part of the vast Anita Blake series, correct? I haven’t delved into that world yet but maybe someday. Any thoughts about that?

All right, readers! Keep your eyes peeled on Fridays for whatever book I’ve decided to review, maybe it’ll be worth checking out or maybe it’ll blow. It all depends. This week’s review will answer the often asked question: “Hey Jessica! What’s your all time favorite book?”

So WATCH OUT! For that. There’s nobody behind you, I swear.

Images: Insight Editions, Anchor, Riverhead Books, Berkley

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  1. Shiri says:

    aimee bender is fantastic. *the girl in the flammable skirt* is full of short stories that showcase her magical and unique style and her novel *an invisible sign of my own* is heartbreaking and beautiful.
    shes an LA local and was just at skylight… she’ll be at book soup next week so maybe you can go check her out.
    i highly recommend! 🙂

  2. Katie says:

    I concur w/ Corinne. Anita Blake started out fun. The first 10 are worth a read. But LKH somehow manages to make hardcore sex BORING. An amazing feat!

  3. corinne says:

    the Anita Blake series started off good, but over the years has turned pretty much to smut. at this point the main character _needs_ to have sex really frequently, and essentially keeps a boy-harem around to deal with it.

  4. You’re welcome, Jerry! I totally wish I could go. Stupid living in Ohio…

    @Jason, I’ve actually heard that sentiment before! I’m sure it’s supposed to deter me from reading those books but now I kind of want to check ’em out more… just to see what all the fuss is about, of course. Ahem.

  5. Chris Hardwick says:

    I tweeted it Jerry! Peeps should go to that. I would, but I have to shoot my show. Eveyone, go in my stead!

  6. Jason says:

    The Anita Blake series, along with anything written by Hamilton is basically porn fiction. I’ve flipped through a few of them at the library and bookstore and let’s just say Ms. Hamilton must watch a lot of hardcore pornography. A LOT.

  7. Jerry Beck says:

    Thanks for the mention! Tonight (June 1st) I’m signing copies of The 100 Greatest Looney Tunes at the CineFamily/Silent Movie Theatre on Fairfax Ave. In Hollywood. And showing cartoons on the big screen:

  8. Joey says:

    Man that Bullet one and the Looney Toons book sound like winners. Something I can read (well Bullet anyway’s) when I’m drinking coffee or any other socially accepted beverage for book reading. 🙂