BY SEAN CLARK

[In this feature, we highlight a handful of the best book reviews appearing over the weekend in major newspapers.]

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The Leftovers, by Tom Perotta. Reviewed by Stephen King (New York Times).

I really like when King publishes reviews. He does a great job of contextualizing the books he writes up (“‘The Leftovers’ is, simply put, the best ‘Twilight Zone’ episode you never saw.”). I’ve never actually read any of Perotta’s books, but I did love the movie Election. This one has an eerie, intriguing premise. It’s about the people left on Earth after a rapture-like event takes most of the people away. I’m a little skeptical about how much satire will be at work here and how true it will ring, but still, this is definitely the kind of book that catches my interest.

Get the book.

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The Secret Life of Pronouns, by James W. Pennebaker. Reviewed by Dennis Drabelle (Washington Post).

At 2 paragraphs, Drabelle’s review is pretty much the embodiment of short and sweet. There’s not much analysis, but he gets the gist of the book–it explores how an individual’s language use is related to gender and self-image. Sociologists and grammar nerds take notice.

Get the book.

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Open City, by Teju Cole. Reviewed by Giles Foden (The Guardian).

This is actually the second review the Guardian’s run on this book in the last month. (The first Nico pointed to briefly a few weeks back.) The novel’s a hard sell since it basically documents a guy wandering around, but Foden does a great job of dissecting the book and presenting its working parts. This excellent review makes me want to give it a go.

Get the book.

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The Cut, by George Pelecanos. Reviewed by Mark Athitakis (Barnes & Noble Review).

That Pelecanos was a writer and producer for HBO’s “The Wire” is reason enough to find interest in this book. By more than one account (Janet Maslin of the New York Times also has a review up this week), this is a sound, if straightforward, crime novel. Set amid the social politics of Washington, DC, The Cut is about a former Marine working as a PI working a small-time drug case that turns into a much bigger situation. The strength here, according to Athitakis, is in the characterization of Spero Lucas, the protagonist PI. A good sign for the beginning of an intended series.

Get the book.

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Bonus Book Trailer: Using caps for emphasis is UNNECESSARY. This book looks TERRIBLE.

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