Coming Soon

Sometimes, I spend an hour or so looking into the future. I skim lists of books that are “coming soon” to see if anything piques my interest. I keep a list of the ones that interest me, and this list is never completely empty. Even as “coming soon” becomes “coming now” I am looking ahead yet again, filling the list with more books.

I thought it might be interesting to share some of the books that appear on my “coming soon” list as of today. Here they are:

  • The Happy Bottom Riding Club: The Life and Times of Pancho Barnes by Lauren Kessler. The Right Stuff was one of my favorite movies as a kid, and a I grew older, I loved Tom Wolfe’s book on which the movie was based as well. I couldn’t help but be interested in Pancho Barnes, who is mentioned in both, and was delighted to see a biography of her coming out later this month.
  • The Map of Knowledge: A Thousand Year History of How Classical Ideas Were Lost and Found by Violet Moller. Maps, history, lost knowledge: all buzzwords that tickle my curiosity. This one also comes out in mid-May.
  • The Life and Afterlife of Harry Houdini by Joe Posnanski. Houdini has shown up in several books that I’ve read over the years, but I’ve never read a book about him. I saw this one and it seemed interesting so I added it to the list. It doesn’t come out until the end of October.
  • Untitled: A Memoir by Tom Selleck. I was and am a huge Magnum, P.I. fan. Celebrity bios and memoirs are a guilty pleasure of mine, and when I saw this as-of-yet untitled memoir by Selleck, I knew I’d want to read it. This one is currently slated for release in mid-November.
  • Agent Running in the Field: A Novel by John Le Carre. I’ve only read one Le Carre novel, but I very much enjoyed his memoir, and so when I see new books by Le Carre, they automatically go on my list. This one is due out toward the end of October.
  • Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World by David Epstein. I was intrigued by this because I’ve often thought of myself as a generalist as opposed to a specialist. I know a fair amount about a great deal of subjects as opposed to a great deal about one specific subject area. Isaac Asimov was a generalist in this regard as well, and probably one of the stronger influences on how I came to be as well. This one is due out at the end of May.
  • Blue Moon: Jack Reacher #24 by Lee Child. I read the first 23 Reacher books last year and they are pure fun for me. So naturally, I am looking forward to #24, which comes out at the end of October.
  • The Conservative Sensibility by George F. Will. I enjoy Will’s baseball writing, even if our politics don’t agree. That said, I try to understand many different view points, and when I saw this book and it’s summary, I thought it would make an interesting read. This one comes out in early June.
  • Fall, or Dodge in Hell by Neal Stephenson. Stephenson’s books are always intriguing and in many ways unique. The description of this new novel pushed the right buttons so I added it to my list. It comes out in early June.
  • Play Hungry: The Making of a Baseball Player by Pete Rose. I’m belong to the school of thought that Pete Rose should be allowed into the Baseball Hall of Fame. As soon as I saw he’d produced this memoir, it went onto my list. This one is also due out in early June.
  • Becoming Dr. Seuss: Thedore Geisel and the Making of an American Imagination by Brian Jay Jones. I grew up on Dr. Seuss. That is what my parents read to me when I was little, and that is what I read to my kids when they were little. I’ve often wanted to know more about him. This one comes out next week.
  • One Giant Leap: The Untold Story of How We Flew to the Moon by Charles Fishman. I love reading about the Apollo missions, and of course, a boatload of books are coming out this year, the 50th anniversary of the first manned moon landing. This one caught my eye because it focus on the computer systems that got Apollo to the moon. Book is due out mid-June.
  • Vagabonds: The Story of Henry Ford and Thomas Edison’s Ten Year Road Trip by Jeff Guinn. We drive down to Florida several times a year. On a couple of occasions, while down there, we’ve visited the Edison-Ford museum. It’s a beautiful place to visit, and I’ve always wanted to know more about the men. This books provides a nice opportunity to find out more. Comes out in July.

Just because the books are on the list doesn’t mean I will read them as soon as they come out. The butterfly effect of reading takes me in all kinds of directions. But there are all books that I am looking forward to reading at some point.


  1. I never knew Pancho Barnes was a writer. A rider, yes….

    Some of those sound very interesting, though, especially the MAP OF KNOWLEDGE one.

    Nice list!

  2. Gray, thanks for that catch. Though certainly a typo, I can’t help but think that I was hearing Jeff Goldblum’s voice from the film when he mentions the name of the place. As a kid, I was certain he was saying “writing” and not “riding.”

  3. Oh wow, that Neal Stephenson book looks really interesting. I’m currently wading through Seveneves. It’s not as dense as I expected (I still want to finish Anathem, and I started reading that in 2008). I’ve pre-ordered Fall, or Dodge in Hell. It will arrive in time for a long trip to Australia in mid-June.


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