You see, just today I've threatened to topple the growing tower of review copy books on my desk TWICE. And that's just so far. (Kind of gives renewed meaning to the title of my blog). Note the pile, from which I am starting with prying books from the bottom. These antics are somewhat entertaining for the folks who sit behind me.
I'm going to start by giving away a book from a local-ish author. "Primacy" by J.E. Fishman (Verbitrage, 400 pp., $24.95, September 2011) is of the relatively new eco-thriller genre. Fishman calls Chadds Ford, Delaware County, home some of the time (according to his publisher, he also has a home in New York City).
Here's a YouTube video of the author introducing his novel. He said he got the idea for the book while driving one day. Fishman said he asked himself: "What if the first ape to mutate for speech showed up in an animal testing laboratory of all places?"
Here's a description of the novel from the Verbitrage site:
Researcher Liane Vinson thinks she can handle her promotion to the primate lab at Pentalon, the world’s biggest and most secretive animal testing facility. Going along to get along, she’ll ignore both the vitriol of animal rights protestors outside the front gates and the cold calculus that her bosses use to distance themselves from their subjects behind closed doors.
But when Liane discovers that one of her favorite apes, a young bonobo called Bea, has shockingly developed the ability to speak, all her doubts awaken — doubts about right and wrong, about following the rules, and about sacrificing individuals to the supposedly greater good.
She’d spare this unique being the knife if she could, but only Axel Flickinger, Pentalon’s cold-hearted CEO, holds the power of life and death within the closely monitored laboratory. If there’s any chance of rescuing Bea, Liane will need to involve her neighbor, Mickey Ferrone, a rough-hewn veterinarian with his own grievances.
Soon, at risk of life and limb, Liane and Mickey must challenge forces almost beyond their comprehension: a malevolent corporation, a venal federal government, an animal rights movement that’s lost its way — and all of our assumptions about man’s primacy in nature.
Kirkus Reviews calls the book "more fun than a barrel of overgrown monkeys" and Publishers Weekly said it is "an appealing debut thriller."
Want to WIN this book? Simply comment here with your mailing address, or, if that's too public, email it to me at email@example.com. I'll mail my new review copy out to one winner, selected at random, in the next week.
J.E. Fishman is also the author of mystery novel "Cadaver Blues." He has co-authored two nonfiction books, "All I Need to Know I Learned From My Horse" and "Life is a Series of Presentations." His short story "The Dead Field" took Second Prize in Word Hustler's Page-to-Screen Short Story Contest, judged by Sara Gruen. A former Doubleday editor, literary agent, and ghostwriter, Fishman divides his time between Chadds Ford, Pa., and New York City. He is at work on "The Darkest Pool," a financial thriller with a publication date yet to be determined, but stay tuned. When not writing he serves as managing partner of Second Fiddle Enterprises LLC, a real estate holding company, and is a communications advisor to the CEO of Acorn Energy. Fishman is a graduate of Tufts University. Check out Fishman's blog. Follow him on Twitter @JEFISHMAN.