Jackie Collins

The English author Jackie Collins last month published her latest novel, Confessions of a Wild Child, the eighth book in her Lucky Santangelo saga of Italian-American crime families. Remarkably, like all twenty-nine of her published books, it is a New York Times bestseller. This week Collins offers her recommendations for a different Mafia tale, an intricate trip through her adopted home of Los Angeles, and the memoir of one of music's most notorious "wild children."

 



The Godfather
By Mario Puzo
 
A classic book thath spawned three fabulous movies. The Corleone crime family is dangerous, intriguing, and full of life. The late, great Mario Puzo creates unforgettable characters who jump off the pages and stay with you forever. The Godfather is unputdownable.

 



Bright Shiny Morning
By James Frey
 
Set in Los Angeles, Bright Shiny Morning follows the lives of many different characters: a celebrity couple, a homeless man, a young couple trying to make it in L.A. and a Mexican maid. As these characters' lives intertwine, the reader is taken on an incredible trip including a rare history of Los Angeles. James Frey is a true storyteller with a talent for making you feel as if you are present in these characters' lives.

 



Life
By Keith Richards
 
As autobiographies go, this is one of the best. Rolling Stone Keith Richards takes the reader on a long, detailed, raunchy ride from childhood to super-fame. Clever, interesting, fascinating, and fun.

 

July 24: On this day in 1725 John Newton, the slave trader-preacher who wrote the hymn "Amazing Grace," was born.

Crime fiction legends Dennis Lehane and Michael Connelly discuss the new book that unites their beloved sleuths Patrick Kenzie and Harry Bosch.

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Books, CDs, DVDs to know about now
Paradise and Elsewhere

Canadian short story marvel Kathy Page emerges as the Alice Munro of the supernatural from these heartfelt tales of shapeshifting swimmers, mild-mannered cannibals, and personality-shifting viruses transmitted through kisses.

Pastoral

When a persuasive pastor arrives in a sleepy farm town, his sage influence has otherworldly results (talking sheep, a mayor who walks on water). But can he pull off the miracle of finding kindly local Liz Denny the love of her life?  Small wonder looms large in this charmer from Andre Alexis.

The Hundred-Year House

When a poetry scholar goes digging through the decrepit estate of his wife's family to uncover a bygone arts colony's strange mysteries, he awakens a tenacious monster: his mother-in-law. A wickedly funny take on aging aristocracies from author Rebecca Makkai (The Borrower).