This Week's Hot Reads

This week: a bold, direct guide to reinvigorating one’s business, a financial thriller of crime and investment bankers, Sam Munson’s dope-filled and witty novel of teenage angst, and a moving story of one reporter’s rigorous look into her mother’s life.

The Mirror Testby Jeffrey Hayzlett

A no-holds-barred guide to for your business’s survival.

If the recession has taught us anything, it’s that good business requires an actual strategy, and that effective management is easier said than done. After years as a talk show staple and a go-to expert for all things finance, Jeffrey Hayzlett has written a definitive guide for any manager or small business owner looking re-evaluate, reinvent, or just to stabilize their company. With his trademark tough love approach, Hayzlett guides the reader through a systematic reality check in order to implement time-tested strategies to guarantee that a business is, in fact, able to continue “breathing.”

Recklessby Andrew Gross

A simple case of burglary turns into an international terror plot.

Andrew Gross’ latest thriller certainly starts off with a bang: an entire family is murdered in their Connecticut home. The case seems like a botched burglary until one investigator realizes that one of the victims was a former flame of his and her husband a high-profile investment banker, escalating the story from small-town crime to one of international proportions. Gross has turned out a trademark thriller that the Seattle Post-Intelligencer called “A fast-paced, action-packed story with a ripped-from-the-headlines feel,” just in time for your summer reading pile.

November Criminalsby Sam Munson

A clever debut starring a stoner, Gen Y Holden-like teen.

Sam Munson’s debut novel, narrated by Jewish stoner teen misanthrope Addison Schacht, nails the adolescent voice perfectly while leading us through his stumbling attempt to solve a mystery. Addison’s witty, wandering asides reference everything from the Aeneid to Latin syntax to his favorite movies, as he finds himself right in the middle of the mystery he’s been trying to solve.

If You Knew Suzyby Katherine Rosman

A reporter opens her notebook to learn more about her mother.

Losing her mother, Suzy, to cancer prods journalist Katherine Rosman to contemplate who her mother really was. To find out, she launches on a cross-country trip to interview strangers and friends. “After I picked up If You Knew Suzy, I couldn’t put it down. Katherine Rosman’s enthralling memoir presents a tender yet searching picture of a mother’s life, her death, and her lasting influence on her daughters,” raved Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project.

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Granta: SexEdited by John Freeman

Britain’s famous lit mag gets down and dirty.

Who knew that Dave Eggers could get this sexy? His illustrations of animals contemplating, well, you can guess, is just one of the many surprises in this new issue of Granta. With writing from Jeanette Winterson, Adam Foulds, Rebecca Lenkiewicz, Marie Darrieussecq, Mark Doty, and Roberto Bolaño, Granta’s line up proves that literary sex is all too often overlooked. Though not every story perfectly melds with the issue’s topic—“sex from all angles,” as editor John Freeman explains in the video intro—readers will find a wonderful range of fiction and memoir.

Plus: Check out Book Beast, for more news on hot titles and authors and excerpts from the latest books.