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ZSH Literary
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2014 Archive

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We are pleased to announce that several of our clients have books on the "best of 2014" lists.

  • The Christian Science Monitor has chosen Ha Jin's A Map of Betrayal as one of the ten best novels of 2014. Kirkus selected Map of Betrayal as one of the best novels of the year, as well.
  • Kirkus Reviews has also chosen Doug Most's The Race Underground as one of the best page-turning nonfiction of 2014.
  • Murder by the Book has selected Elisabeth Elo's North of Boston as one of the best mysteries of the year.
  • Popsugar named Claire McDougall's Veil of Time one of best reads for women in 2014.
  • Hudson Booksellers selected Gail Caldwell's New Life, No Instructions as one of the best nonfiction titles of 2014.
  • Soundview Business Books chose Josh Linkner's The Road to Reinvention as one of the best business books of 2014.
  • Marc Solomon's Winning Marriage has been named a staff pick at Slate magazine for book of the year.
  • Marina Keegan's The Opposite of Loneliness won a Goodreads Choice Award for best nonfiction of the year.
  • John Brandon of INC named Nick Morgan's Power Cues as one of the best business books of the year.


  • Congratulations to two new New York Times bestselling authors: Rebecca Frankel for War Dogs and Brian F. Martin for Invincible.
  • Reese Witherspoon told The Hollywood Reporter of her first reaction when reading Cheryl Strayed's Wild: "once every five years, every 10 years, you read something that moves you to your core. And I feel like this is one of the most important books I've ever read in my life, for so many reasons."
  • Writing in the Financial Times, Edward Luce wrote David Rothkopf's National Insecurity "could lay claim to being the definitive book on how 9/11 affected US foreign policy."
  • National Insecurity has received fantastic reviews from other newspapers and magazines as well as a starred review in Kirkus.
  • Literature for Kids raved about S. S. Taylor's The Expeditioners middle grade fiction series, writing that, "the bottom line is that this series is superb."


  • We're very pleased to announce that Anthony Marra has won the 2014 Athens Prize for literature.
  • We are also delighted that Waterstones, the British book chain, named Marina Keegan's The Opposite of Loneliness one of their best books of the year.
  • Library Journal published a fantastic (starred) review of Robert Tate Miller's Forever Christmas, describing it as a "heartrending tale...a holiday story to remember."
  • Ha Jin's A Map of Betrayal won rave reviews from the Washington Post, Christian Science Monitor and the New York Times. Both Library Journal and Kirkus gave it a starred review, with Kirkus highlighting its "subtle, masterful and bittersweet storytelling."
  • And congratulations to several of our business authors whose books were named best business books of the year by Strategy + Business:
    • Niraj Dawar was named for Tilt (best marketing title);
    • And, Malachi O'Connor and Barry Dornfeld were named for The Moment You Can't Ignore (nominated one of the best titles on corporate culture).
  • Amanda Ripley's The Smartest Kids in the World is back on the New York Times bestseller list—this time in paperback.


  • We're excited to announce that Dragnet Nation by Julia Angwin is on the shortlist for the Financial Times/McKinsey Business Book of the Year.
  • We're proud as well that Anthony Marra's A Constellation of Vital Phenomena is on the shortlist for the Prix Medicis d'Étranger, for best foreign language novel translated into French.
  • The Chicago Tribune raved about Benoit Denizet-Lewis's new book, writing that, "if you're a dog person, pick up a copy of Travels With Casey."
  • Travels with Casey has hit the New York Times bestseller list, and we are very pleased.
  • We are also happy that Doctored, the new memoir by Sandeep Jauhar, has also become a New York Times bestseller.
  • Kirkus praised David Banks's Soar, describing the book as "a must-read for those concerned with the welfare of young men."
  • The LA Review of Books described Andrew Lam's short story collection Birds of Paradise Lost as "beautiful," "hypnotic and hilarious."


  • The Darien Times lauded Gail Caldwell's New Life, No Instructions, praising it as "beautifully written with snippets of philosophical wisdom, mild humor, & bright metaphors."
  • The Boston Globe raved about Sandeep Jauhar's "beautifully written and unsparing memoir," Doctored.
  • The New York Times called Doctored "arresting" and "thoughtful."


  • Kirkus Reviews raved about Matt Higgins's Bird Dream, describing the book as "a highflying, electrifying story of a treacherous sport in which every triumph is an eye blink away from becoming a disaster" and writing that, "for anyone who finds these kinds of emotional and precise accounts of risk, ambition and victory irresistible, this is a must-read."
  • Monsters and Critics praised Humaira Shahid's Devotion and Defiance, writing that they "really enjoyed this book and it deserves to be read by anyone interested in women's rights, humanitarian concepts and politics."
  • Corp Magazine highlighted David Farbman's new book, The Hunt, writing that, "if you want to meet someone passionate about their life, both professionally and personally, then you need to get to know David Farbman."
  • The Advocate wrote about books that deal with gays and religion, covering Jeff Chu's Does Jesus Really Love Me?, stating, "the confusion Christians experience trying to balance their contemporary belief systems with following the Bible is at an all-time high, and Chu's quest shows America's identity crisis in a blinding light."


  • We are thrilled that David Farbman's The Hunt has hit the New York Times bestseller list.
  • Midweek raved about Ray L'Heureux's Inside Marine One, calling it an "incredible tale."
  • The New York Times adored Gail Caldwell's New Life, No Instructions, writing that, "the scholar Leigh Gilmore has written that the 'serial autobiographer returns to the scene because she has left a body there which requires further attention.' If we're lucky, Caldwell will continue on like that other never-married writer, Diana Athill, who published her first memoir at 44, and her seventh at 93. Unabashed dispatches from lifelong single women are a fairly recent phenomenon. Caldwell has so much more to teach us."
  • Praising The Opposite of Loneliness, The Economist wrote: "reading this book is both heartbreaking and entertaining. It reveals a woman who tried to balance expectations of greatness with anxieties about falling short."
  • The Financial Times wrote about the author, Marina Keegan, stating, "as a student, her urgent writing about her generation had already reached a wider audience. Her death, days after graduation, lends her words extra power."


  • The New Statesman raved about Marina Keegan's The Opposite of Loneliness, writing that, "throughout the 18 pieces in the collection, pathos is delivered with a striking emotional intensity, in sharp and witty prose. Keegan doesn't shirk her youthful naivety but makes a weapon of it, insisting that we question our choices and look ahead, no matter our age."
  • The Wall Street Journal applauded Dr. Bill Thomas, and his book, Second Wind, describing it as, "in all, a stirring and splendid book."
  • We are delighted that Anthony Marra's A Constellation of Vital Phenomena is on the longlist for the PEN/Robert Bingham prize.
  • Bookish advised that every college graduate should read both Rilke's Letters to a Young Poet and Marina Keegan's The Opposite of Loneliness.


  • We are thrilled to announce that Marina Keegan's The Opposite of Loneliness has hit the New York Times hardcover nonfiction bestseller list, first at number 11, now at number 9.
  • Harper's Bazaar named The Opposite of Loneliness as one of the top publishing releases of the spring.
  • Leigh Haber in O Magazine published a fantastic review of Marina Keegan's The Opposite of Loneliness, writing, "Two years after a young writer's death, her words soar....The Opposite of Loneliness is a posthumous collection of her fiction and nonfiction pieces, and it sparkles with talent, humanity, and youth. The prose, polished but thoroughly unselfconscious, is heartbreaking evidence of what could have been."
  • The Opposite of Loneliness also won praise from Elizabeth Taylor in the Chicago Tribune, who named the book an "Editor's Choice", and announced, "in this season of college acceptances—and rejections and graduations—"The Opposite of Loneliness," a collection of Keegan's fiction and essays, is the book I'll press upon friends." Elle and People magazines also acclaimed Keegan's collection.
  • Scott Helman and Jenna Russell of the Boston Globe's Long Mile Home won the acclaim of USA Today, who described the book as "a riveting piece of journalism and an exceptional tribute to a great American city."
  • The Washington Post also loved Long Mile Home, writing that "the account by two Boston Globe reporters, Scott Helman and Jenna Russell, succeeds in every way. It is a harrowing narrative of the events and a behind-the-scenes look at the public officials and everyday people forever changed by the attack. It is also a portrait of a major American city, its psyche and the distance runners who consider the race a sacred rite."
  • Library Journal published a rave review of Claire MacDougall's Veil of Time, writing that, "McDougall's poetic prose shines, as do her thoroughly researched, detailed descriptions of life."
  • The Wall Street Journal praised Bill Thomas, and his book, Second Wind, calling this account of how the Baby Boomers can and should reinvent old age, "a stirring and splendid book".
  • Good Housekeeping lauded Gail Caldwell's new memoir, New Life, No Instructions, describing it as "eloquent and uplifting."
  • The 2014 nominations for the California Book Awards were announced, and we are pleased to announce that both of the nominees for first fiction are ZSH clients: Andrew Lam for Birds of Paradise Lost and Anthony Marra for A Constellation of Vital Phenomena.


  • We are extremely pleased to announce that Jonathan Allen and Arnie Parnes' HRC: State Secrets and the Rebirth of Hillary Clinton has been on the New York Times hardcover nonfiction bestseller list for several weeks, peaking so far at #6.
  • Kai Rysddal of NPR's "Marketplace" interviewed Julia Angwin, author of Dragnet Nation, a new book on censorship, data theft and the loss of privacy in the internet era.
  • Angwin was also interviewed on television by Bill Moyers.
  • Dragnet Nation has received fantastic reviews. Andrew Leonard in Slate described it as "a deeply researched book that is completely of the moment. Dragnet Nation moves right to the top of the list of books we should all read about privacy." The Economist wrote that, "Julia Angwin, who oversaw a pioneering series of Wall Street Journal articles called 'What They Know,' starting in 2010, exposes many of the questionable activities that erode privacy—activities that most people know nothing about."
  • We are proud to announce that the Texas Institute of Letters awarded Nan Cuba, author of Body and Bread, the Steven Turner Award for Best First Work of Fiction.
  • Singletitles raved about Claire MacDougall's novel Veil of Time, describing it as "captivating throughout.... filled with beautifully portrayed scenes and a cast of noteworthy characters."
  • Kirkus praised Scott Helman, Jenna Russell and the Boston Globe's Long Mile Home, describing it as "journalism that demonstrates all the arguments why we need professionals to tell the stories that mark our generations and a valentine to the people that proved Boston Strong."
  • We are thrilled to see more acclaim for Anthony Marra and his novel, A Constellation of Vital Phenomena: the novel has been named a finalist for the New York Public Library Young Lions Award, and the author has won the 2013 Barnes and Noble Buzz Discover Award.
  • The Washington Post published a wonderful review of Humaira Shahid's Devotion and Defiance, writing, "the author plunges into an account of her furious, often frustrated campaign for women's rights in a conservative, patriarchal society of 180 million—and "Devotion and Defiance" becomes a book worth reading ... the midlife memoir of this crusading activist serves an important and timely purpose." The author later appeared on BBC Radio 4's Women's Hour and on the Leonard Lopate show.


  • The New York Times covered Doug Most's The Race Underground, his account of the race between New York and Boston to build America's first subway, calling the book a "sweeping narrative of late-19th-century intrigue."
  • The Boston Globe raved about The Race Underground, describing it as "a story of rapscallions and risk takers, engineers and entrepreneurs, dreamers, darers, and doers—and it is thoroughly researched and splendidly narrated by Doug Most." Kirkus described it as "an almost flawlessly conducted tour back to a time when major American cities dreamed big."
  • Examiner.com published a glowing review of Lis Wiehl's new mystery novel, Snapshot, calling the novel "an exciting account of murder and conspiracy with a dash of historical narrative."
  • Sandra Tsing Loh discussed Quanyu Huang's The Hybrid Tiger: Secrets of the Extraordinary Success of Asian-American Kids in an amusing and very favorable review in the New York Times.
  • Michiko Kakutani published a nice review of HRC: State Secrets and the Rebirth of Hillary Clinton, by Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes, in the New York Times.
  • The Economist published a great review of Doug Most's The Race Underground.


  • We are delighted to announce that A Constellation of Vital Phenomena author Anthony Marra has been named the first recipient of the National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Award for debut fiction. The prize is voted on by the NBCC's 600 members. In addition, Publisher's Marketplace named A Constellation of Vital Phenomena as the #9 best reviewed novel of 2013, as part of their best of the best of lists, and Lynn Neary of NPR's "Here And Now" voted it one of the best novels of 2013.
  • We are also thrilled to announce that Kevin Cullen and Shelley Murphy's bestselling biography Whitey Bulger has been nominated for the 2013 NBCC award for nonfiction.
  • Congratulations to Jessica Lott, who won the 2013 New England Book Festival Award for general fiction for her novel The Rest of Us.
  • And, congratulations to Ilana Edelstein, whose book The Patron Way is on the Tattered Cover Bookstore (Denver, CO) Business Bestseller List.
  • Booklist published a fantastic review of Tony Vanderwarker's Writing With The Master, about the author's experience writing a thriller under the guidance of John Grisham, writing that the book was "brimming with invaluable literary lessons and amusing anecdotes."
  • Kirkus Reviews wrote a great review for Samuel Gailey's Deep Winter, stating that the author "writes visually, rendering the characters and action both vivid and alive."
  • Publishers Weekly published a glowing review of Marina Keegan's posthumously published collected fiction and nonfiction, The Opposite of Loneliness, writing that, "like every millennial who's seen irony elevated to an art form, Keegan brings self-awareness to the collective insecurity of her peers, even as she captures it with a precision that only comes from someone who feels it too."
  • Kirkus Reviews also praised The Opposite of Loneliness, writing that it was "[A]lways thoughtful, intelligent, and surprising...ferociously insightful."
  • Elizabeth Elo's North of Boston received wonderful reviews from the UK press. The Sun wrote that "loyal and tenacious Pirio is a marvelous protagonist. I can't wait to read more about her," and the Daily Mail wrote, "on this evidence Elo, a creative writing teacher, could well become a major force in the thriller world."