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September 11, 2008



Can I make a guess? I think it's Dennis Lehane's THE GIVEN DAY. He's published by Morrow which is an imprint of Harper Collins, isn't it?

David Montgomery

Lehane was one of my first guesses, along with Laura Lippman. But I decided against him since his book is being published after the date on the secret Amazon book. So that made me think it wasn't it. (Has Oprah ever picked a book that isn't out yet? I have no idea.)

Patti Abbott

I have it sitting on my coffee table. Neither my husband or I have been able to get into it. Too much back story.

Marcus Sakey

Which, Patti? I haven't read EDGAR SAWTELLE, but I thought THE GIVEN DAY was magnificent. It was my first guess too, David, but I think you're right about the pub date. Though if it was a pick, I'm sure Morrow would happily move the date forward to accommodate Oprah. From what I've heard from my publishers, they're happy to do pretty much anything for her.


My guess is "The City of Refuge".


The reason for City of Refuge is if you notice her book is available in hardback and large print only. City of Refuge fits the mold. It's about Katrina and a black and white family and typical Oprah style. Published by Harper in 2008. I personally hope I am wrong.

Sean Chercover

Damn. I thought it was going to be...

...never mind.

Laura Benedict

I always get The Story of Edgar Sawtelle mixed up with The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane. Now that would show imagination on Oprah's part!

Clea Simon

Hey - You probably know this already, but SAWTELLE is a re-telling of Hamlet set in a dog-training school (think Smiley's "Thousand Acres"). It got wonderful reviews in the NYT and other places so I peeked at it, but it didn't grab me. Interesting enough, a dog trainer I know said that the fictional breed of dogs in the book was very well done and quite believable.


I picked up the Edgar Sawtelle book this week and read it. Yuck!!! Too wordy. Could have been written in half the pages.
Any wonder Oprah liked all
the flowy descriptions. Pleeeze!!!!!!!!!!!!! You find me with my theology.


Saw this morning that you hit the nail on the head with your "prediction". Read quite a few reviews on this book. From what I read, I won't be reading this book. Too wordy. Too long. Depressing ending. Yep, just what Oprah would believe is "literary". Also confirms my personal belief - Never ever read a book chosen by Oprah. Read one of her picks. Fool me once, shame on her. She won't get a second chance.

Michael P

Could someone explain to me why anyone other than the author and publisher would give a rat's ass what Oprah's latest pick is?

Dave G.

The real SECRET is from ancient yoga. Research the KALPA TARU chakra if you want to learn more.

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David J. Montgomery is a writer and critic specializing in books and publishing. He is an emeritus columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times and The Daily Beast, and has also written for USA Today, the Washington Post, and other fine publications. A former professor of History, he lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and two daughters.

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