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New Fiction: Home

New Fiction

The Prophets (Historical Fiction)

"Isaiah was Samuel’s and Samuel was Isaiah’s. That was the way it was since the beginning, and the way it was to be until the end. In the barn they tended to the animals, but also to each other, transforming the hollowed-out shed into a place of human refuge, a source of intimacy and hope in a world ruled by vicious masters. But when an older man—a fellow slave—seeks to gain favor by preaching the master’s gospel on the plantation, the enslaved begin to turn on their own. Isaiah and Samuel’s love, which was once so simple, is seen as sinful and a clear danger to the plantation’s harmony."

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

 

"...Jones proves himself an amazing lyricist, pulling poetry out of every image and shift of light. Nothing here is flat, everything has shape and depth, we see deep into shadows and silences, transgress rich landscapes rivered and internal...The book closes with a brilliantly rendered suite of rebellion and choice that left me in tears...What a fiery kindness that ending, this book. A book I entered hesitantly, cautiously, I exited anew - something in me unloosed, running. May this book cast its spell on all of us, restore to us some memory of our most warrior and softest selves."

          - Danez Smith, The New York Times Book Review

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

The Maidens

"Edward Fosca is a murderer. Of this Mariana is certain. But Fosca is untouchable. A handsome and charismatic Greek tragedy professor at Cambridge University, Fosca is adored by staff and students alike—particularly by the members of a secret society of female students known as The Maidens.

Mariana Andros is a brilliant but troubled group therapist who becomes fixated on The Maidens when one member, a friend of Mariana’s niece Zoe, is found murdered in Cambridge.

Mariana, who was once herself a student at the university, quickly suspects that behind the idyllic beauty of the spires and turrets, and beneath the ancient traditions, lies something sinister... When another body is found, Mariana’s obsession with proving Fosca’s guilt spirals out of control, threatening to destroy her credibility as well as her closest relationships. But Mariana is determined to stop this killer, even if it costs her everything—including her own life."

          - Image and description from MacMillan Publishers

 

"Mariana’s therapy experience introduces a fresh forensic-psychology perspective to ever-popular themes of Greek tragedy and insular academia. Michaelides’ stage-setting skills are as masterful here, as they were in The Silent Patient (2019); another tense, cleverly twisted winner."

          - Christine Tran, Booklist

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

That Summer (Realistic Fiction)

"Daisy Shoemaker can’t sleep. With a thriving cooking business, full schedule of volunteer work, and a beautiful home in the Philadelphia suburbs, she should be content. But her teenage daughter can be a handful, her husband can be distant, her work can feel trivial, and she has lots of acquaintances, but no real friends. Still, Daisy knows she’s got it good. So why is she up all night?

While Daisy tries to identify the root of her dissatisfaction, she’s also receiving misdirected emails meant for a woman named Diana Starling...Diana’s glamorous, sophisticated, single-lady life is miles away from Daisy’s simpler existence. When an apology leads to an invitation, the two women meet and become friends. But, as they get closer, we learn that their connection was not completely accidental. Who IS this other woman, and what does she want with Daisy?"

          - Image and description from Simon & Schuster

 

"Spurred on by the #MeToo movement, the characters explore the weight that victims of sexual assault carry, and the damage left in the wake of unchecked privilege. But there is also a warmth to the novel, fueled by the Cape Cod setting and deft characterization. "

          - Susan Maguire, Booklist

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

The Other Black Girl (Realistic Fiction)

"...Nella Rogers is tired of being the only Black employee at Wagner Books. Fed up with the isolation and microaggressions, she’s thrilled when Harlem-born and bred Hazel starts working in the cubicle beside hers. They’ve only just started comparing natural hair care regimens, though, when a string of uncomfortable events elevates Hazel to Office Darling, and Nella is left in the dust.

Then the notes begin to appear on Nella’s desk: LEAVE WAGNER. NOW.

It’s hard to believe Hazel is behind these hostile messages. But as Nella starts to spiral and obsess over the sinister forces at play, she soon realizes that there’s a lot more at stake than just her career."

          - Image and description from Simon & Schuster

 

"Harris...has a great deal to say about what it means to be a woman in the workplace...Harris makes her entrance as an author with singular style. Whatever she does next might seem quieter, but watch for it: It will be brilliant."

          - Bethan Patrick, NPR

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

Survive the Night (Mystery)

"Josh Baxter, the man behind the wheel, is a virtual stranger to Charlie. They met at the campus ride board, each looking to share the long drive home to Ohio. Both have good reasons for wanting to get away. 
 
The longer she sits in the passenger seat, the more Charlie notices there’s something suspicious about Josh, from the holes in his story about his father to how he doesn’t want her to see inside the trunk. As they travel an empty, twisty highway in the dead of night, an increasingly anxious Charlie begins to think she’s sharing a car with the Campus Killer...
 
One thing is certain—Charlie has nowhere to run and no way to call for help...."

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

 

"Thriller Award finalist Sager (Home Before Dark) elevates a standard suspense trope—a young woman trapped in a car with a stranger she fears is a serial killer—in this stellar nail-biter set in 1991....Sager excels at playing with reader expectations and in concocting plausible, gut-wrenching twists."

          - Publisher's Weekly

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

 

Golden Girl (Fantasy)

"On a perfect June day, Vivian Howe...is killed in a hit-and-run car accident while jogging near her home on Nantucket. She ascends to the Beyond where she's assigned to a Person named Martha, who allows Vivi to watch what happens below for one last summer. Vivi also is granted three “nudges” to change the outcome of events on earth, and with her daughter Willa on her third miscarriage, Carson partying until all hours, and Leo currently “off again” with his high-maintenance girlfriend, she’ll have to think carefully where to use them.

From the Beyond, Vivi watches “The Chief” Ed Kapenash investigate her death, but her greatest worry is her final book, which contains a secret from her own youth that could be disastrous for her reputation. But when hidden truths come to light, Vivi’s family will have to sort out their past and present mistakes...while Vivi finally lets them grow without her."

          - Image and description from Little, Brown and Company

 

"The book is filled with Hilderbrand’s trademark gorgeous scenes and delicious dialogue...It is funny and heartbreaking, and even though it’s in some ways a departure for Hilderbrand, the novel still offers plenty of that Nantucket air to keep you turning pages."

           - Amy Scribner, BookPage

           - Find more reviews on LitHub

Good Company (Realistic Fiction)

"lora Mancini has been happily married for more than twenty years. But everything she thought she knew about herself, her marriage, and her relationship with her best friend, Margot, is upended when she stumbles upon an envelope containing her husband’s wedding ring—the one he claimed he lost one summer when their daughter, Ruby, was five.

Flora and Julian struggled for years, scraping together just enough acting work to raise Ruby in Manhattan and keep Julian’s small theater company—Good Company—afloat. A move to Los Angeles brought their first real career successes, a chance to breathe easier, and a reunion with Margot, now a bona fide television star. But has their new life been built on lies? What happened that summer all those years ago? And what happens now? "

          - Image and description from HarperCollins

 

"...Sweeney skillfully navigates the narrow path between literary and commercial fiction with plenty of wit, warmth, heartache and joy. Like a comfy armchair, this is a novel you can sink into and enjoy. Good company, indeed."

          - Jeff Vashista, BookPage

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

Open Water (Realistic Fiction)

"In a crowded London pub, two young people meet. Both are Black British, both won scholarships to private schools where they struggled to belong, both are now artists—he a photographer, she a dancer—and both are trying to make their mark in a world that by turns celebrates and rejects them. Tentatively, tenderly, they fall in love. But two people who seem destined to be together can still be torn apart by fear and violence, and over the course of a year they find their relationship tested by forces beyond their control."

          - Image and description from Grove Atlantic 

 

"Nelson’s voice is wholly contemporary and original, shifting between essayistic modes that weave Saidiya Hartman, Teju Cole, and Barry Jenkins’s Moonlight into the plot of the novel, adding to the chorus the likes of Dizzee Rascal and Kendrick Lamar to create a thunderous interdisciplinary lineage of uncompromising Black joy."

          - Shazia Hafiz Ramji, Chicago Review of Books

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

The Lamplighters (Mystery)

"It’s New Year’s Eve, 1972, when a boat pulls up to the Maiden Rock lighthouse with relief for the keepers. But no one greets them. When the entrance door, locked from the inside, is battered down, rescuers find an empty tower. A table is laid for a meal not eaten. The Principal Keeper’s weather log describes a storm raging round the tower, but the skies have been clear all week. And the clocks have all stopped at 8:45.

Two decades later, the wives who were left behind are visited by a writer who is determined to find the truth about the men’s disappearance. Moving between the women’s stories and the men’s last weeks together in the lighthouse, long-held secrets surface and truths twist into lies as we piece together what happened, why, and who to believe."

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

 

"Seamlessly marrying quotidian detail with ghostly touches, the author captures both the lighthouse’s lure and the damage its isolation and confinement wreak on minds and families. The convincing resolution brings a welcome note of healing. Readers will eagerly await Stonex’s next."

          - Publisher's Weekly

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

Great Circle (Historical Fiction)

"After being rescued as infants from a sinking ocean liner in 1914, Marian and Jamie Graves are raised by their dissolute uncle in Missoula, Montana. There...Marian commences her lifelong love affair with flight. At fourteen she drops out of school and finds an unexpected and dangerous patron in a wealthy bootlegger who provides a plane and subsidizes her lessons, an arrangement that will haunt her for the rest of her life, even as it allows her to fulfill her destiny: circumnavigating the globe by flying over the North and South Poles.

A century later, Hadley Baxter is cast to play Marian in a film that centers on Marian’s disappearance in Antarctica...Hadley is eager to redefine herself after a romantic film franchise has imprisoned her in the grip of cult celebrity. Her immersion into the character of Marian unfolds, thrillingly, alongside Marian’s own story, as the two women’s fates–and their hunger for self-determination in vastly different geographies and times–collide."

           - Image and description from Penguin Random House

 

"...a soaring work of historical fiction...a relentlessly exciting story about a woman maneuvering her way between tradition and prejudice to get what she wants....Whether you’re planning a trip or settling in for a staycation, Great Circle is my top recommendation for this summer."

          - Ron Charles, The Washington Post

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

 

Second Place (Realistic Fiction)

"A woman invites a famous artist to use her guesthouse in the remote coastal landscape where she lives with her family. Powerfully drawn to his paintings, she believes his vision might penetrate the mystery at the center of her life. But as a long, dry summer sets in, his provocative presence itself becomes an enigma—and disrupts the calm of her secluded household.

Second Place, Rachel Cusk’s electrifying new novel, is a study of female fate and male privilege, the geometries of human relationships, and the moral questions that animate our lives. It reminds us of art’s capacity to uplift—and to destroy."

          - Image and description from MacMillan Publishers 

 

"You know when you’re reading a page of Rachel Cusk’s fiction. Her narrators tug insistently if coolly at the central knots of being. They analyze every emotion as if it were freshly invented. Nothing is extraneous...She digs into the gothic core of family and romantic entanglements...This novel pushes its needles into the red."

          - Dwight Garner, The New York Times

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

Sooley (Realistic Fiction)

"In the summer of his seventeenth year, Sam­uel Sooleymon gets the chance of a lifetime: a trip to the United States with his South Sudanese teammates to play in a showcase basket­ball tournament. He has never been away from home, nor has he ever been on an airplane. The opportunity to be scouted by dozens of college coaches is a dream come true...

During the tournament, Samuel receives dev­astating news from home: A civil war is raging across South Sudan, and rebel troops have ran­sacked his village. His father is dead, his sister is missing, and his mother and two younger brothers are in a refugee camp.

Samuel desperately wants to go home, but it’s just not possible. Partly out of sympathy, the coach of North Carolina Central offers him a scholar­ship. Samuel moves to Durham, enrolls in classes, joins the team, and prepares to sit out his freshman season. There is plenty of more mature talent and he isn’t immediately needed.

But Samuel has something no other player has: a fierce determination to succeed so he can bring his family to America. He works tirelessly on his game, shooting baskets every morning at dawn by himself in the gym, and soon he’s dominating everyone in practice. With the Central team los­ing and suffering injury after injury, Sooley, as he is nicknamed, is called off the bench. And the legend begins."
 

         - Image and description from Penguin Random House 

 

 

The Man Who Lived Underground (Realistic Fiction)

"Fred Daniels, a Black man, is picked up by the police after a brutal double murder and tortured until he confesses to a crime he did not commit. After signing a confession, he escapes from custody and flees into the city’s sewer system.
 
This is the devastating premise of this scorching novel, a masterpiece that Richard Wright was unable to publish in his lifetime. Written between his landmark books Native Son (1940) and Black Boy (1945), at the height of his creative powers, it would eventually see publication only in drastically condensed and truncated form in the posthumous collection Eight Men (1961)."

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

 

"Wright scripts a surreal reencounter with the world as seen through discovered cracks and doors that reveal hidden interiors...Wright tells an old story that still lives...His Fred carries the name of our most famous Black fugitive, the abolitionist writer Frederick Douglass...In the end, his Black existence presents a particular window and a universal predicament—and a reminder: Surrounded by ghastly forces every day, we destroy life with our many idolatries and illusions."

           - Imani Perry, The Atlantic 

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

The Souvenir Museum (Realistic Fiction)

"In these stories, the mysterious bonds of family are tested, transformed, fractured, and fortified. A recent widower and his adult son ferry to a craggy Scottish island in search of puffins. An actress who plays a children’s game-show villainess ushers in the New Year with her deadbeat half brother. A mother, pining for her children, feasts on loaves of challah to fill the void. A new couple navigates a tightrope walk toward love. And on a trip to a Texas water park with their son, two fathers each confront a personal fear."

          - Image and description from Harper Collins

 

"McCracken has a gift for surprising similes—“shoes damp as oysters”; “bored lifeguards, staring like unemployed goats”—that ignite the reader’s imagination, making great fun out of ordinary settings and scenery. Each story opens to reveal a whole life spent within the web of a family, chosen or not. Full of gems, this collection is a winner."

         - Publisher's Weekly 

         - Find more reviews on LitHub

Secrets of Happiness (Realistic Fiction)

"Ethan, a young lawyer in New York, learns that his father has long kept a second family...In the aftermath of this revelation, Ethan’s mother spends a year working abroad, returning much changed, and events introduce her to the other wife. Across town, Ethan’s half brothers are caught in their own complicated journeys...

As Ethan finds himself caught in a love triangle of his own, the interwoven fates of these two households elegantly unfurl...Evoking a generous and humane spirit, and a story that ranges over three continents, Secrets of Happiness elucidates the ways people marshal the resources at hand to forge their own forms of joy."

          - Image and description from Counterpoint Press

"Few make fiction feel as exciting as Joan Silber — and not in plot, but mere structure. Characters impact one another. Tones shift with perspective. Scenes build with profound scope. Off her award-winning Improvement, this latest novel feels like vintage Silber: stories interlinked with the confidence of Elizabeth Strout, but all their own in mood and power."

          - Mary Sollosi & David Canfield, Entertainment Weekly

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

 

Early Morning Riser (Romance)

"Jane falls in love with Duncan easily. He is charming, good-natured, and handsome but unfortunately, he has also slept with nearly every woman in Boyne City, Michigan...While Jane may be able to come to terms with dating the world’s most prolific seducer of women, she wishes she did not have to share him quite so widely. 

But any notion Jane had of love and marriage changes with one terrible car crash. Soon Jane’s life is permanently intertwined with Duncan’s, Aggie’s, and Jimmy’s, and Jane knows she will never have Duncan to herself. But could it be possible that a deeper kind of happiness is right in front of Jane’s eyes?"

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

 

"Told episodically in chapters titled by year and covering a span of 17 years, Heiny’s book finds beauty and humor in connection and community, family and friendship, and the way love can develop and deepen over time.  A heartwarming novel with a small-town vibe that sparkles like wine sipped with friends under backyard fairy lights."

          - Kirkus Reviews

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The Liar's Dictionary (Historical Fiction)

"Peter Winceworth, Victorian lexicographer, is toiling away at the letter S for Swansby’s multivolume Encyclopaedic Dictionary. His disaffection compels him to insert unauthorized fictitious entries into the dictionary in an attempt to assert some sense of individual purpose and artistic freedom.

In the present day, Mallory, a young intern employed by the publisher, is tasked with uncovering these mountweazels before the work is digitized. She also has to contend with threatening phone calls from an anonymous caller. Is the change in the definition of marriage really that upsetting? And does the caller really intend for the Swansby’s staff to ‘burn in hell’?"

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House 

 

"The Liar's Dictionary, "queasy with knowledge," is an audacious, idiosyncratic dual love story about how language and people intersect and connect, and about how far we'll go to save what we're passionate about. It's hard not to love a book in which even a broken lorgnette lens suffers a typographical crack — "a small asterisk shatter," never mind one that champions "winceworthliness, (n.), the value of idle pursuit," and puts a name on "agrupt, (adj.), the irritation caused by having a denouement ruined." I won't do that to you. Read this clever volume for yourself, from A to Z."

          - Heller McAlpin, NPR

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

Gold Diggers (Realistic Fiction)

"A floundering second-generation teenager growing up in the Bush-era Atlanta suburbs, Neil Narayan is funny and smart but struggles to bear the weight of expectations of his family and their Asian American enclave. He tries to want their version of success, but mostly, Neil just wants his neighbor across the cul-de-sac, Anita Dayal.

When he discovers that Anita is the beneficiary of an ancient, alchemical potion made from stolen gold—a “lemonade” that harnesses the ambition of the gold’s original owner—Neil sees his chance to get ahead. But events spiral into a tragedy that rips their community apart. Years later in the Bay Area, Neil still bristles against his community’s expectations—and finds he might need one more hit of that lemonade, no matter the cost."

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

 

"Pramesh also introduces Neil to the concept of eternalism...This concept also lies at the heart of the book's structure, which twines historical fictions and truths and family histories into the main narrative, exemplifying how time both does and does not make a linear kind of sense, how past, present, and future's paths collide at times in unexpected ways."

          - Ilana Masad, NPR

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

Tiny Nightmares (Horror)

"In this playful, spine-tingling collection, leading literary and horror writers spin unforgettably chilling tales in only a few pages.Tiny Nightmares brings to life broken-hearted vampires, Uber-taking serial killers, mind-reading witches, and monsters of all imaging, as well as stories that tackle the horrors of our modern world from global warming and racism to social media addiction and online radicalization."

         - Image and description from Catapult Books

 

"While some of the stories will leave readers wanting more of the world the author created, most are perfectly suited to this short form. Highly recommended for all fiction collections."

          - Lynnanne Pearson, Booklist

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

Hana Khan Carries On (Romance)

"Sales are slow at Three Sisters Biryani Poutine...Hana waitresses there part time, but what she really wants is to tell stories on the radio. If she can just outshine her fellow intern at the city radio station, she may have a chance at landing a job. In the meantime, Hana pours her thoughts and dreams into a podcast, where she forms a lively relationship with one of her listeners...


When her mysterious aunt and her teenage cousin arrive from India for a surprise visit, they draw Hana into a long-buried family secret. A hate-motivated attack on their neighborhood complicates the situation further, as does Hana’s growing attraction for Aydin, the young owner of the rival restaurant–who might not be a complete stranger after all.  As life on the Golden Crescent unravels, Hana must learn to use her voice, draw on the strength of her community and decide what her future should be."

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

 

"This modern romantic comedy is full of warmth, and complemented wonderfully by Hana’s courageous self-determination and the scene-stealing secondary members of the Khan family. "

          - Amanda Diehl, BookPage

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Sorrowland (Science Fiction)

"Vern—seven months pregnant and desperate to escape the strict religious compound where she was raised—flees for the shelter of the woods. There, she gives birth to twins, and plans to raise them far from the influence of the outside world.

But even in the forest, Vern is a hunted woman. Forced to fight back against the community that refuses to let her go, she unleashes incredible brutality far beyond what a person should be capable of, her body wracked by inexplicable and uncanny changes.

To understand her metamorphosis and to protect her small family, Vern has to face the past, and more troublingly, the future—outside the woods. Finding the truth will mean uncovering the secrets of the compound she fled but also the violent history in America that produced it."

          - Image and description from MacMillan Publishers

 

"And through it all, Solomon’s lyric writing cannot be denied. Sorrowland is filled with sentences so exquisite, so crushing that I found myself rereading them over and over again...the prose is beautiful to the point of near disbelief. How can such a thing be done? How do I feel such warmth and horror all at once? Solomon’s mastery of faer craft inspires awe and never lets the narrative be just one easily digestible thing. "

          - Christina Orlando, Los Angeles Review of Books

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

Concrete Rose (Realistic Fiction)

"If there’s one thing seventeen-year-old Maverick Carter knows, it’s that a real man takes care of his family. As the son of a former gang legend, Mav does that the only way he knows how: dealing for the King Lords...Life’s not perfect, but with a fly girlfriend and a cousin who always has his back, Mav’s got everything under control.  Until, that is, Maverick finds out he’s a father.

Suddenly he has a baby, Seven, who depends on him for everything. But it’s not so easy to sling dope, finish school, and raise a child. So when he’s offered the chance to go straight, he takes it. In a world where he’s expected to amount to nothing, maybe Mav can prove he’s different.

When King Lord blood runs through your veins, though, you can't just walk away..."

          - Image and description from Harper Collins

 

"Thomas’ book holds a universal truth: Regardless of mistakes made, there is a way to break through concrete, to bloom wildly with freedom. It is possible to take all that is hard, cold, grey and transform it to a thing of unexpected beauty. But it requires all those around us to tend and cultivate."

          - Cleyvis Natera, Time

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

We Begin at the End (Mystery)

"Duchess Day Radley is a thirteen-year-old self-proclaimed outlaw. Rules are for other people. She is the fierce protector of her five-year-old brother, Robin, and the parent to her mother, Star, a single mom incapable of taking care of herself, let alone her two kids.

Walk has never left the coastal California town where he and Star grew up. He may have become the chief of police, but he’s still trying to heal the old wound of having given the testimony that sent his best friend, Vincent King, to prison decades before. And he's in overdrive protecting Duchess and her brother.

Now, thirty years later, Vincent is being released. And Duchess and Walk must face the trouble that comes with his return."

          - Image and description from MacMillan Publishers

 

"As surprises surface, British writer Whitaker combines a brisk pace, a solid California voice and perhaps a record-setting cuss count. By the book’s end, you’ll want to begin at the end again."

          - Jay MacDonald, BookPage

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Hummingbird Salamander (Science Fiction)

"Security consultant “Jane Smith” receives an envelope with a key to a storage unit that holds a taxidermied hummingbird and clues leading her to a taxidermied salamander. Silvina, the dead woman who left the note, is a reputed ecoterrorist and the daughter of an Argentine industrialist. By taking the hummingbird from the storage unit, Jane sets in motion a series of events that quickly spin beyond her control.

Soon, Jane and her family are in danger, with few allies to help her make sense of the true scope of the peril. Is the only way to safety to follow in Silvina’s footsteps? Is it too late to stop? As she desperately seeks answers about why Silvina contacted her, time is running out—for her and possibly for the world."

          - Image and description from MacMillan Publishers

 

"Hummingbird Salamander, it should be said straightaway, is a pulpy page-turner...It taps into the part of ourselves that knows things aren’t okay, that knows we haven’t done enough to try and stop the world from plunging into darkness. And it does so while delivering a crackling good yarn about a woman in over her head, dodging bullets and fighting the kind of men we know all too well from news reports and history books."

          - Alex McLevy, A.V. Club

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The Lost Apothecary (Historical Fiction)

"Hidden in the depths of eighteenth-century London, a secret apothecary shop caters to an unusual kind of clientele. Women across the city whisper of a mysterious figure named Nella who sells well-disguised poisons to use against the oppressive men in their lives. But the apothecary’s fate is jeopardized when her newest patron, a precocious twelve-year-old, makes a fatal mistake, sparking a string of consequences that echo through the centuries.

Meanwhile in present-day London, aspiring historian Caroline Parcewell spends her tenth wedding anniversary alone, running from her own demons. When she stumbles upon a clue to the unsolved apothecary murders that haunted London two hundred years ago, her life collides with the apothecary’s in a stunning twist of fate—and not everyone will survive."

          - Image and description from Harlequin Trade Publishing

 

"...an enthralling work of mystery, murder, trust, and betrayal...The Lost Apothecary is engrossing from the onset. ..At one point, Nella says 'You cannot be betrayed by someone you do not trust.' But trust me, you can trust Sarah Penner's The Lost Apothecary to keep you turning the pages of a story that doesn't ease up until the very last sentence."

          - Denny S. Bryce, NPR

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

The Paris Library (Historical Fiction)

"Paris, 1939: Young and ambitious Odile Souchet seems to have the perfect life with her handsome police officer beau and a dream job at the American Library in Paris. When the Nazis march into the city, Odile stands to lose everything she holds dear, including her beloved library. Together with her fellow librarians, Odile joins the Resistance with the best weapons she has: books. But when the war finally ends, instead of freedom, Odile tastes the bitter sting of unspeakable betrayal.

Montana, 1983: Lily is a lonely teenager looking for adventure in small-town Montana. Her interest is piqued by her solitary, elderly neighbor. As Lily uncovers more about her neighbor’s mysterious past, she finds that they share a love of language, the same longings, and the same intense jealousy, never suspecting that a dark secret from the past connects them."

          - Image and description from Simon & Schuster

 

"Charles’s richly detailed plot incorporates historical figures from the American Library and highlights the perils of occupied Paris. Historical fiction fans will be drawn to the realistic narrative and the bond of friendship forged between a widow and a lonely young girl."

          - Publisher's Weekly

          - Find more reviews on LitHub

The Ex Talk (Romance)

"Shay Goldstein has been a producer at her Seattle public radio station for nearly a decade, and she can’t imagine working anywhere else. But lately it’s been a constant clash between her and her newest colleague, Dominic Yun, who’s fresh off a journalism master’s program and convinced he knows everything about public radio. 
 
When the struggling station needs a new concept, Shay proposes a show that her boss green-lights with excitement. On The Ex Talk, two exes will deliver relationship advice live, on air. Their boss decides Shay and Dominic are the perfect co-hosts, given how much they already despise each other. Neither loves the idea of lying to listeners, but it’s this or unemployment. Their audience gets invested fast, and it’s not long before The Ex Talk becomes a must-listen in Seattle and climbs podcast charts.  As the show gets bigger, so does their deception, especially when Shay and Dominic start to fall for each other. In an industry that values truth, getting caught could mean the end of more than just their careers."

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

"Shay and Dominic are brought to life with multilayered backstories...Witty dialogue meets steamy slow-burn tension while fun romance tropes (fake dating! there’s only one bed!) take a refreshing turn..."

          - Kirkus

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The Final Revival of Opal & Nev (Historical Fiction)

"Opal is a fiercely independent young woman pushing against the grain in her style and attitude, Afro-punk before that term existed. Coming of age in Detroit...Opal believes she can be a star. So when the aspiring British singer/songwriter Neville Charles discovers her at a bar’s amateur night, she takes him up on his offer to make rock music together...

In early seventies New York City...a rival band signed to her label brandishes a Confederate flag at a promotional concert. Opal’s bold protest and the violence that ensues set off a chain of events that will not only change the lives of those she loves, but also be a deadly reminder that repercussions are always harsher for women, especially black women...

Decades later...music journalist S. Sunny Shelton seizes the chance to curate an oral history about her idols. Sunny thought she knew most of the stories leading up to the cult duo’s most politicized chapter. But as her interviews dig deeper, a nasty new allegation from an unexpected source threatens to blow up everything."

          - Image and description from Simon & Schuster

"...Dawnie Walton's debut novel uses oral history as the form for her kaleidoscopic tale...The book bursts with fourth wall breaks and clear-eyed takes on race, sex, and creativity that...unfurls in urgent, endlessly readable style"

          - David Canfield & Leah Greenblatt, Entertainment Weekly

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Malibu Rising (Historical Fiction)

"Malibu: August 1983. It’s the day of Nina Riva’s annual end-of-summer party, and anticipation is at a fever pitch. Everyone wants to be around the famous Rivas: Nina, the talented surfer and supermodel; brothers Jay and Hud, one a championship surfer, the other a renowned photographer; and their adored baby sister, Kit. Together the siblings are a source of fascination in Malibu and the world over—especially as the offspring of the legendary singer Mick Riva.

By midnight the party will be completely out of control. By morning, the Riva mansion will have gone up in flames. But before that first spark in the early hours before dawn, the alcohol will flow, the music will play, and the loves and secrets that shaped this family’s generations will all come rising to the surface."

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

 

"Part of the fun of Reid’s recent novels is the way she reveals the machinery of celebrity life....Reid’s sense of pacing is sublime as she introduces and dispenses with a revolving door of characters to approximate the chaos of a rager where sloshed A-listers couple up in the closets and waiters pass trays of cocaine."

          - Stephanie Merry, The Washington Post

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The Rose Code (Historical Fiction)

"The New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of The Huntress and The Alice Network returns with another heart-stopping World War II story of three female code breakers at Bletchley Park and the spy they must root out after the war is over."

          - Image and description from Harper Collins 

 

"Quinn’s page-turning narrative is enhanced by her richly drawn characters, who unite under the common purpose of Britain’s war effort, and by the fascinating code-breaking techniques, which come alive via Quinn’s extensive historical detail. This does not disappoint."

          - Publisher's Weekly

Detransition, Baby (Realistic Fiction)

"Reese almost had it all: a loving relationship with Amy, an apartment in New York City, a job she didn’t hate. She had scraped together what previous generations of trans women could only dream of: a life of mundane, bourgeois comforts. The only thing missing was a child. But then her girlfriend, Amy, detransitioned and became Ames, and everything fell apart. 

Ames isn’t happy either. He thought detransitioning to live as a man would make life easier, but that decision cost him his relationship with Reese... Even though their romance is over, he longs to find a way back to her. When Ames’s boss and lover, Katrina, reveals that she’s pregnant with his baby—and that she’s not sure whether she wants to keep it—Ames wonders if this is the chance he’s been waiting for. Could the three of them form some kind of unconventional family—and raise the baby together?"

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

"Peters weaves together this multifaceted cast in ways that leave the reader empathizing with each one even as they undermine one another. Her characters are so vividly drawn and human that the reader comes to feel personally close to them...Peters doesn't shy away from exposing her characters' flaws. Nor does she shy away from an original plot. As Katrina's pregnancy progresses and the characters shift in their desires and identities, we remain hooked on their every word. Delivered with heart and savvy, their deliberations upend our traditional, gendered notions of what parenthood can look like."

          - Ginny Hogan, New York Times Review of Books

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Children of Chicago (Horror)

"Chicago detective Lauren Medina's latest call brings her to investigate a brutally murdered teenager in Humboldt Park—a crime eerily similar to the murder of her sister decades before. Unlike her straight-laced partner, she recognizes the crime, and the new graffiti popping up all over the city, for what it really means: the Pied Piper has returned. When more children are found dead, Lauren is certain her suspicion is correct. Still reeling from the recent death of her father, she knows she must find out who has summoned him again, and why, before more people die. Lauren’s torn between protecting the city she has sworn to keep safe, and keeping a promise she made long ago with her sister’s murderer. She may have to ruin her life by exposing her secrets and lies to stop the Pied Piper before he collects."

          - Image and description from Polis Books

 

"With superior worldbuilding, a relentless pace, a complex heroine, and a harrowing story that preys off of current events as much as its well-developed monster, this is a stellar horror novel that fires on all cylinders, from the first page through to its horrible conclusion."

          - Becky Spratford, Library Journal

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The Sanatorium (Mystery)

"Half-hidden by forest and overshadowed by threatening peaks, Le Sommet has always been a sinister place. Long plagued by troubling rumors, the former abandoned sanatorium has since been renovated into a five-star minimalist hotel. An imposing, isolated getaway spot high up in the Swiss Alps is the last place Elin Warner wants to be. But Elin’s taken time off from her job as a detective, so when her estranged brother, Isaac, and his fiancée, Laure, invite her to celebrate their engagement at the hotel, Elin really has no reason not to accept.

Arriving in the midst of a threatening storm, Elin immediately feels on edge–there’s something about the hotel that makes her nervous. And when they wake the following morning to discover Laure is missing, Elin must trust her instincts if they hope to find her. With the storm closing off all access to the hotel, the longer Laure stays missing, the more the remaining guests start to panic.
Elin is under pressure to find Laure, but no one has realized yet that another woman has gone missing. And she’s the only one who could have warned them just how much danger they are all in. . ."

         - Image and description from Penguin Random House

 

"Pearse’s engrossing debut boasts a highly atmospheric setting...This dark tale of family dynamics is sure to please suspense fans."

                    - Publisher's Weekly

Peaces (Fantasy)

"When Otto and Xavier Shin declare their love, an aunt gifts them a trip on a sleeper train to mark their new commitment—and to get them out of her house. Setting off with their pet mongoose, Otto and Xavier arrive at their sleepy local train station, but quickly deduce that The Lucky Day is no ordinary locomotive. Their trip on this former tea-smuggling train has been curated beyond their wildest imaginations, complete with mysterious and welcoming touches, like ingredients for their favorite breakfast. They seem to be the only people on board, until Otto discovers a secretive woman who issues a surprising message. As further clues and questions pile up, and the trip upends everything they thought they knew, Otto and Xavier begin to see connections to their own pasts, connections that now bind them together."

           - Image and description from Penguin Random House

 

"There are both tender and tense moments...The whole novel is quite unnerving, and it’s due in large part to Oyeyemi’s choice to conceal the truth, to keep you interested, eager to figure out the mystery...The heart of the book is about understanding and being understood. What does it mean to be seen by someone who loves you, by someone who has cared for you?"

          - Sara Cutaia, Chicago Review of Books

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Remote Control (Science Fiction)

"The day Fatima forgot her name, Death paid a visit. From hereon in she would be known as Sankofa­­—a name that meant nothing to anyone but her, the only tie to her family and her past.

Her touch is death, and with a glance a town can fall. And she walks—alone, except for her fox companion—searching for the object that came from the sky and gave itself to her when the meteors fell and when she was yet unchanged; searching for answers.

But is there a greater purpose for Sankofa, now that Death is her constant companion?"

          - Image and description from Tor.com

 

"Episodic and organic, the story winds along with a limber rhythm that allows every rich detail of Sankofa's surreal world to surface. It's a cumulative narrative, a slow burn that builds in emotional urgency even as the scope of Okorafor's worldbuilding bursts into something breathtakingly vast....By story's end, Okorafor pulls a neat trick: She uses the way in which legends morph throughout time to add another level of ambiguity to Sankofa's origin and fate."

          - Jason Heller, NPR

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The Committed - Realistic Fiction

" The long-awaited follow-up to the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Sympathizer...The Committed follows the man of two minds as he arrives in Paris in the early 1980s with his blood brother Bon. The pair try to overcome their pasts and ensure their futures by engaging in capitalism in one of its purest forms: drug dealing.

Traumatized by his reeducation at the hands of his former best friend, Man, and struggling to assimilate into French culture, the Sympathizer finds Paris both seductive and disturbing. As he falls in with a group of left-wing intellectuals...he finds stimulation for his mind but also customers for his narcotic merchandise. But the new life he is making has perils he has not foreseen, whether the self-torture of addiction, the authoritarianism of a state locked in a colonial mindset, or the seeming paradox of how to reunite his two closest friends whose worldviews put them in absolute opposition. The Sympathizer will need all his wits, resourcefulness, and moral flexibility if he is to prevail."

          - Image and description from Grove Atlantic

 

"The Committed indulges in espionage high jinks aplenty, but in truth the author is not as interested in them as a cursory plot summary might indicate. Nguyen is no le Carré and doesn't wish to be. The novel draws its true enchantment - and its immense power - from the propulsive, wide-ranging intelligence of our narrator as he Virgils us through his latest descent into hell. That he happens to be as funny as he is smart is the best plus of all."

          - Junot Diaz, New York Times Book Review

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Acts of Desperation (Realistic Fiction)

"In the first scene of this provocative gut-punch of a novel, our unnamed narrator meets a magnetic writer named Ciaran and falls, against her better judgment, completely in his power. After a brief, all-consuming romance he abruptly rejects her, sending her into a tailspin of jealous obsession and longing. If he ever comes back to her, she resolves to hang onto him and his love at all costs, even if it destroys her…
 
Part breathless confession, part lucid critique, Acts of Desperation renders a consciousness split between rebellion and submission, between escaping degradation and eroticizing it, between loving and being lovable. With unsettling, electric precision, Nolan dissects one of life’s most elusive mysteries: Why do we want what we want, and how do we want it?"
 
          - Image and description from Little, Brown & Company

 

"Please believe the hype. Please do not roll your eyes and say "not another Sally Rooney". Nolan is not another Sally Rooney. She is another seriously exciting writer who happens to be young and female and Irish. Those are broad categories. Nolan's book describes a very particular experience and it does so with rare intelligence and courage."

          - Claire Lowden, Sunday Times (UK)

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The Soulmate Equation (Romance)

"Single mom Jess Davis is a data and statistics wizard, but no amount of number crunching can convince her to step back into the dating world...

But then Jess hears about GeneticAlly, a buzzy new DNA-based matchmaking company that’s predicted to change dating forever. Finding a soulmate through DNA? The reliability of numbers: This Jess understands.

At least she thought she did, until her test shows an unheard-of 98 percent compatibility with another subject in the database: GeneticAlly’s founder, Dr. River Peña. This is one number she can’t wrap her head around, because she already knows Dr. Peña. The stuck-up, stubborn man is without a doubt not her soulmate. But GeneticAlly has a proposition: Get ‘to know him and we’ll pay you. Jess...is in no position to turn it down, despite her skepticism... As the pair are dragged from one event to the next as the “Diamond” pairing that could launch GeneticAlly’s valuation sky-high, Jess begins to realize that there might be more to the scientist—and the science behind a soulmate—than she thought."

          - Image and description from Simon & Schuster

 

" Readers won’t want to leave these characters or this world.  A sexy, science-filled, and surprising romance full of warmth and wit."

          - Kirkus Reviews

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Firebreak (Science Fiction)

"Two corporations have replaced the US, splitting the country’s remaining forty-five states (five have been submerged under the ocean) between them: Stellaxis Innovations and Greenleaf. There are nine supercities within the continental US, and New Liberty City is the only amalgamated city split between the two megacorps, and thus at a perpetual state of civil war as the feeds broadcast the atrocities committed by each side.

Here, Mallory streams Stellaxis’s wargame SecOps on BestLife, spending more time jacked in than in the world just to eke out a hardscrabble living from tips. When a chance encounter with one of the game’s rare super-soldiers leads to a side job for Mal—looking to link an actual missing girl to one of the SecOps characters. Mal’s sudden burst in online fame rivals her deepening fear of what she is uncovering about BestLife’s developer, and puts her in the kind of danger she’s only experienced through her avatar."

          - Image and description from Simon & Schuster

 

"By combining familiar science fiction elements with a strong critique of the commodification of essential elements of life and the corrupting influence of power, Firebreak offers a frightening warning against a near-future dominated by the rule of megacorporations."

          - Ian MacAllan, Chicago Review of Books

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How the One-Armed Sister Sweeps Her House (Realistic Fiction)

"In Baxter’s Beach, Barbados, Lala’s grandmother Wilma tells the story of the one-armed sister. It’s a cautionary tale, about what happens to girls who disobey their mothers and go into the Baxter’s Tunnels. When she’s grown, Lala lives on the beach with her husband, Adan, a petty criminal with endless charisma whose thwarted burglary of one of the beach mansions sets off a chain of events with terrible consequences. A gunshot no one was meant to witness. A new mother whose baby is found lifeless on the beach. A woman torn between two worlds and incapacitated by grief. And two men driven into the Tunnels by desperation and greed who attempt a crime that will risk their freedom – and their lives."

          - Image and description from Little, Brown, & Company

 

"... the book is intensely compelling, as well as a lesson in narrative control. You are ensnared in a web with these characters and their trauma; their claustrophobia becomes your own. It’s a startling achievement. There is very little light in this novel, but what shines through instead is a pitiless truth that stays with you long after the story ends."

          - Rhiannon Lucy Cosslet, The Guardian (UK)

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Klara and the Sun (Realistic Fiction)

"Here is the story of Klara, an Artificial Friend with outstanding observational qualities, who, from her place in the store, watches carefully the behavior of those who come in to browse, and of those who pass on the street outside. She remains hopeful that a customer will soon choose her. Klara and the Sun is a thrilling book that offers a look at our changing world through the eyes of an unforgettable narrator, and one that explores the fundamental question: what does it mean to love?"

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

"The strange and beautiful poignancy of Klara and the Sun has less to do with its commentary on the transformative role of technology in contemporary life than with the flowering of such transcendental thoughts in a mind like a walled garden, unwitnessed by anyone around her. "

          - Laura Miller, Slate

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Milk Fed (Realistic Fiction)

"Rachel is twenty-four, a lapsed Jew who has made calorie restriction her religion. By day, she maintains an illusion of existential control, through obsessive food rituals, while working as an underling at a Los Angeles talent management agency. At night, she pedals nowhere on the elliptical machine. Rachel is content to carry on subsisting—until her therapist encourages her to take a ninety-day communication detox from her mother, who raised her in the tradition of calorie counting.

Rachel soon meets Miriam, a zaftig young Orthodox Jewish woman who works at her favorite frozen yogurt shop and is intent upon feeding her. Rachel is suddenly and powerfully entranced by Miriam—by her sundaes and her body, her faith and her family—and as the two grow closer, Rachel embarks on a journey marked by mirrors, mysticism, mothers, milk, and honey."

          - Image and description from Simon & Schuster 

"Broder...has a rare ability to ground her fantasy in reality without undermining her her imaginative vision, making it feel personal and raw and relatable...Milk-Fed vividly evokes the lives of each woman, so that we’re fully invested in them, whether or not they seem recognizable to us. It adds to the profound pleasure of following what could have been a too-familiar trajectory of a lost soul seeking meaning and finding love...

          - Kera Bolonik, Boston Globe

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The Four Winds (Historical Fiction)

"The Four Winds is a rich, sweeping novel that stunningly brings to life the Great Depression and the people who lived through it—the harsh realities that divided us as a nation and the enduring battle between the haves and the have-nots. A testament to hope, resilience, and the strength of the human spirit to survive adversity, The Four Winds is an indelible portrait of America and the American dream, as seen through the eyes of one indomitable woman whose courage and sacrifice will come to define a generation."

          - Image and description from MacMillan Publishers 

 

"The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah is a captivating, heartbreaking tale of a family who will do anything for one another — and everything to survive. The strength of Hannah’s prose brings the characters to life in a way that will make you unable to tear yourself away from them. You will celebrate their triumphs, mourn their tragedies, and commend their bravery."

          - Molly Sprayregen, The Associated Press (in St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

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Infinite Country (Mystery)

"Talia is being held at a correctional facility for adolescent girls in the forested mountains of Colombia after committing an impulsive act of violence that may or may not have been warranted. She urgently needs to get out and get back home to Bogotá, where her father and a plane ticket to the United States are waiting for her. If she misses her flight, she might also miss her chance to finally be reunited with her family in the north.

How this family came to occupy two different countries, two different worlds, comes into focus like twists of a kaleidoscope. We see Talia’s parents, Mauro and Elena, fall in love in a market stall as teenagers against a backdrop of civil war and social unrest. We see them leave Bogotá with their firstborn, Karina, in pursuit of safety and opportunity in the United States on a temporary visa, and we see the births of two more children, Nando and Talia, on American soil. We witness the decisions and indecisions that lead to Mauro’s deportation and the family’s splintering—the costs they’ve all been living with ever since."

          - Image and description from Simon & Schuster

 

"Infinite Country is a beautifully written and humane book, and an uncannily timely one. In the news we see photographs of immigrant families separated, of children crossing borders alone, and we look away. Engel gives them faces and names and hearts that can be broken, and sometimes mended."

          - Colette Bankroft, Tampa Bay Times

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The Echo Wife (Science Fiction)

"Martine is a genetically cloned replica made from Evelyn Caldwell’s award-winning research. She’s patient and gentle and obedient. She’s everything Evelyn swore she’d never be.

And she’s having an affair with Evelyn’s husband.

Now, the cheating bastard is dead, and both Caldwell wives have a mess to clean up. Good thing Evelyn Caldwell is used to getting her hands dirty."

          - Image and description from MacMillan Publishers

 

"Gailey is an ace at constructing clean, clear plots, and The Echo Wife is no exception...Cooked right, science fiction and murder mysteries taste great together, and Gailey layers those ingredients together with a chef's kiss."

          - Jason Heller, NPR 

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The Blacktongue Thief (Fantasy)

Kinch Na Shannack owes the Takers Guild a small fortune for his education as a thief, which includes (but is not limited to) lock-picking, knife-fighting, wall-scaling, fall-breaking, lie-weaving, trap-making, plus a few small magics. His debt has driven him to lie in wait by the old forest road, planning to rob the next traveler that crosses his path. But today, Kinch Na Shannack has picked the wrong mark. Galva is a knight, a survivor of the brutal goblin wars, and handmaiden of the goddess of death. She is searching for her queen, missing since a distant northern city fell to giants. Unsuccessful in his robbery and lucky to escape with his life, Kinch now finds his fate entangled with Galva's. Common enemies and uncommon dangers force thief and knight on an epic journey where goblins hunger for human flesh, krakens hunt in dark waters, and honor is a luxury few can afford."

          - Image and description from MacMillan Publishers

"...a glorious overstuffed...fantasy that manages to balance the picaresque mode with that of the (far too often overdone) quest mode...It’s a rollicking ride from start to finish (a finish which is fully satisfying, but open-ended towards sequels), and it’s all contoured, colored and made tangible by the unique narrative voice of our anti-hero, Kinch."

          - Paul Di Filippo & Adrienne Martin, Locus

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Big Girl, Small Town (Realistic Fiction)

"Majella is happiest out of the spotlight, away from her neighbors’ stares and the gossips of the small town in Northern Ireland where she grew up just after the Troubles. She lives a quiet life caring for her alcoholic mother, working in the local chip shop, watching the regular customers come and go...But underneath Majella’s seemingly ordinary life are the facts that she doesn’t know where her father is and that every person in her town has been changed by the lingering divide between Protestants and Catholics. When Majella’s predictable existence is upended by the death of her granny, she comes to realize there may be more to life than the gossips of Aghybogey, the pub, and the chip shop. In fact, there just may be a whole big world outside her small town. "

          - Image and description from Workman

 

"...an inventively foulmouthed gem of a novel...Ms. Gallen's chief strength is her ear for dialogue...Characters are revealed in their own words or in Majella's laconic observations, but the resulting narrative, for all its eccentricity, never strays into farce or melodrama."

          - Anna Mundow, The Wall Street Journal

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The Girls Are All So Nice Here (Mystery)

"A lot has changed in years since Ambrosia Wellington graduated from college, and she’s worked hard to create a new life for herself. But then an invitation to her ten-year reunion arrives in the mail, along with an anonymous note that reads, “We need to talk about what we did that night.

It seems that the secrets of Ambrosia’s past—and the people she thought she’d left there—aren’t as buried as she believed. Amb can’t stop fixating on what she did or who she did it with: larger-than-life Sloane “Sully” Sullivan, Amb’s former best friend, who could make anyone do anything.

At the reunion, Amb and Sully receive increasingly menacing messages, and it becomes clear that they’re being pursued by someone who wants more than just the truth of what happened... This person wants revenge for what they did and the damage they caused..."

          - Image and description from Simon & Schuster

 

"The Girls Are All So Nice Here" kept me up all night – literally. I tore through the book in less than 24 hours, forcing my eyes to stay open as if the remaining pages wouldn't be there in the morning."

          - Morgan Hines, USA Today

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Libertie (Historical Fiction)

"Coming of age in a free Black community in Reconstruction-era Brooklyn, Libertie Sampson is all too aware that her purposeful mother, a practicing physician, has a vision for their future together: Libertie is to go to medical school and practice alongside her. But Libertie, drawn more to music than science, feels stifled by her mother’s choices and is hungry for something else... And she is constantly reminded that, unlike her light-skinned mother, Libertie will not be able to pass for white. When a young man from Haiti proposes to Libertie and promises she will be his equal on the island, she accepts, only to discover that she is still subordinate to him and all men. As she tries to parse what freedom actually means for a Black woman, Libertie struggles with where she might find it—for herself and for generations to come."

          - Image and description from Workman Publishing 

"Passionate and brilliantly written, Libertie shines a light on a part of history still unknown by far too many but that is now getting the finest treatment."

          - Arlene McKanic, BookPage

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Plain Bad Heroines (Historical Fiction)

"The award-winning author of The Miseducation of Cameron Post makes her adult debut with this highly imaginative and original horror-comedy centered around a cursed New England boarding school for girls—a wickedly whimsical celebration of the art of storytelling, sapphic love, and the rebellious female spirit."

          - Image and description from HarperCollins

 

"...a queer historical meta-novel by Emily Danforth with at least a dozen layers of formal flourish, is joyfully and delightfully middlebrow; I say this with reverence in my tone and adoration in my heart...It’s also — to use a word rarely employed in high praise — fun."

          - Hillary Kelly, Los Angeles Times

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We Could Be Heroes (Science Fiction)

"Jamie woke up in an empty apartment with no memory and only a few clues to his identity, but with the ability to read and erase other people’s memories—a power he uses to hold up banks to buy coffee, cat food and books. Zoe is also searching for her past, and using her abilities of speed and strength…to deliver fast food. And she’ll occasionally put on a cool suit and beat up bad guys, if she feels like it.  When the archrivals meet in a memory-loss support group, they realize the only way to reveal their hidden pasts might be through each other. As they uncover an ongoing threat, suddenly much more is at stake than their fragile friendship. With countless people at risk, Zoe and Jamie will have to recognize that sometimes being a hero starts with trusting someone else—and yourself."

          - Image and description from Harlequin Trade Publishing

 

"The book is an overall enjoyable, exciting, and action-packed read. Zoe and Jamie may possess superhuman abilities, but the challenges they endure together are profoundly human...'We Could Be Heroes' is an engaging story of good versus evil versus something in between. It is, at it’s core, just fun."

          - Molly Sprayregen, AP 

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Of Women and Salt (Realistic Fiction)

"In present-day Miami, Jeanette is battling addiction. Daughter of Carmen, a Cuban immigrant, she is determined to learn more about her family history from her reticent mother and makes the snap decision to take in the daughter of a neighbor detained by ICE. Carmen, still wrestling with the trauma of displacement, must process her difficult relationship with her own mother while trying to raise a wayward Jeanette. Steadfast in her quest for understanding, Jeanette travels to Cuba to see her grandmother and reckon with secrets from the past destined to erupt."

          - Image and description from MacMillan Publishers

 

"Of Women and Salt is a captivating and harrowing debut that will undoubtedly put Garcia on the literary map for years to come. It is a prime example of why diverse voices and stories need to be told, to shatter the one-sided narrative typically seen about immigrants, the Latino communities and beyond."

          - Jordan Snowden, Seattle Times

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Foregone (Realistic Fiction)

"At the center of Foregone is famed Canadian American leftist documentary filmmaker Leonard Fife, one of sixty thousand draft evaders and deserters who fled to Canada to avoid serving in Vietnam. Fife, now in his late seventies, is dying of cancer in Montreal and has agreed to a final interview in which he is determined to bare all his secrets at last, to demythologize his mythologized life. The interview is filmed by his acolyte and ex–star student, Malcolm MacLeod, in the presence of Fife’s wife and alongside Malcolm’s producer, cinematographer, and sound technician, all of whom have long admired Fife but who must now absorb the meaning of his astonishing, dark confession."

          - Image and description from HarperCollins 

"...a brilliantly cinematic novel; it moves in and out of the past and present like a camera, with montages, dissolves and jump cuts...Few writers have explored the regrets of aging and the door-knock of mortality with Banks' steely-eyed grace and gorgeous language. 'Foregone' is a subtle yet unsparing achievement from a master."

          - Hamilton Cain, Star Tribune

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Anxious People (Realistic Fiction)

"Looking at real estate isn’t usually a life-or-death situation, but an apartment open house becomes just that when a failed bank robber bursts in and takes a group of strangers hostage...Each of them carries a lifetime of grievances, hurts, secrets, and passions that are ready to boil over. None of them is entirely who they appear to be. And all of them—the bank robber included—desperately crave some sort of rescue. As the authorities and the media surround the premises, these reluctant allies will reveal surprising truths about themselves and set in motion a chain of events so unexpected that even they can hardly explain what happens next."

          - Image and description from Simon & Schuster

"Backman writes so humorously and poignantly about life, marriage, parenthood, love and death, prepare to be taken hostage by a stand-up philosopher/novelist who reminds us we are all 'idiots' because being human is 'idiotically difficult'... Anxious People is about how kindness and compassion count so much in surviving each day..."

          - Don Oldenberg, USA Today

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Leave the World Behind (Realistic Fiction)

"Amanda and Clay head out to a remote corner of Long Island expecting a vacation: a quiet reprieve from life in New York City, quality time with their teenage son and daughter, and a taste of the good life in the luxurious home they’ve rented for the week. But a late-night knock on the door breaks the spell. Ruth and G. H. are an older couple—it’s their house, and they’ve arrived in a panic. They bring the news that a sudden blackout has swept the city. But in this rural area—with the TV and internet now down, and no cell phone service—it’s hard to know what to believe.

Should Amanda and Clay trust this couple...? What happened back in New York? Is the vacation home...a truly safe place for their families? And are they safe from one other?"

         - Image and description from Harper Collins

"Leave the World Behind is a coy little thing: a disaster novel without the disaster...Where other practitioners of the genre revel in chaos—the coarse spectacle of society unravelling—Alam keeps close to his characters, who,...remain trapped in a state of suspended unease. This, he suggests, is the modern disaster—the precarity of American life, which leaves us unsure, always, if things can get worse."

          - Hillary Kelly, The New Yorker

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Homeland Elegies (Realistic Fiction)

"A deeply personal work about identity and belonging in a nation coming apart at the seams, Homeland Elegies blends fact and fiction to tell an epic story of longing and dispossession in the world that 9/11 made. Part family drama, part social essay, part picaresque novel, at its heart it is the story of a father, a son, and the country they both call home."

          - Image and description from Little, Brown and Company

 

"With its sprawling vision of contemporary America, “Homeland Elegies” is a phenomenal coalescence of memoir, fiction, history and cultural analysis. It would not surprise me if it wins him a second Pulitzer Prize."

          - Ron Charles, The Washington Post 

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Lock Every Door (Mystery)

"The next heart-pounding thriller from New York Times bestselling author Riley Sager follows a young woman whose new job apartment sitting in one of New York’s oldest and most glamorous buildings may cost more than it pays.”

          - Description and image from Penguin Random House

“The author…relates ominous events and spooky developments with skill, adding an element of social commentary and a surprise twist ending—elevating this exercise in terror above the ordinary shocker.”

          - Tim Nolan, Wall Street Journal

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Lady in the Lake (Mystery)

"The revered New York Times bestselling author returns with a novel set in 1960s Baltimore that combines modern psychological insights with elements of classic noir, about a middle-aged housewife turned aspiring reporter who pursues the murder of a forgotten young woman.”

               - Description and image from Harper Collins

“Lippman walks a fine line, balancing a cracking good mystery with the story of a not always admirable woman working to stand on her own. Lippman never loses sight of Maddie’s options and her obstacles ... she never loses touch with the twin mysteries at the center of her story ... Lippman answers all outstanding questions with a totally cool double twist that your reviewer — a veteran reader of mysteries — never saw coming.”

               - Stephen King, New York Times Book Review

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Westside (Mystery)

"A young detective who specializes in “tiny mysteries” finds herself at the center of a massive conspiracy in this beguiling historical fantasy set on Manhattan’s Westside—a peculiar and dangerous neighborhood home to strange magic and stranger residents”

          -   Image and description from Harper Collins

“a fantasy novel that is both literary and convention bending, reading as horror, crime fiction, dark noir, pulp slasher novel, action, and adventure gaming script, hidden-door-anthropological-history, delayed coming-of-age novel…gumshoe mystery, a love letter to pre-Prohibition New York City, and…a disquieting dystopian fable reminiscent of Lewis Carrol’s Alice in Wonderland.”

          - Anjanette Delgado, New York Journal of Books

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The Body Lies (Mystery)

"When a young writer accepts a job at a university in the remote English countryside, it’s meant to be a fresh start…But despite the distractions of her new life…her nerves continue to jangle. To make matters worse, a vicious debate about violence against women inflames the tensions and mounting rivalries in her creative-writing class. When a troubled student starts turning in chapters that blur the lines between fiction and reality, the professor recognizes herself as the main character in his book–and he has written her a horrific fate. Will she be able to stop life imitating art before it’s too late?”

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

“When the denouement comes, it is well timed to feel both shocking and inevitable: early enough for satisfying resolution afterwards and late enough to keep the reader up long into the night. There is violence, but there is also a very modern interrogation of violent fiction.”

           - Sarah Moss, The Guardian

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Gone Too Long (Mystery)

"On the day a black truck rattles past her house and a Klan flyer lands in her front yard, ten-year-old Beth disappears from her Simmonsville, Georgia, home. Armed with skills honed while caring for an alcoholic mother, she must battle to survive the days and months ahead. Seven years later, Imogene Coulter is burying her father—a Klan leader she has spent her life distancing herself from—and trying to escape the memories his funeral evokes. But Imogene is forced to confront secrets long held by Simmonsville and her own family when, while clearing out her father’s apparent hideout on the day of his funeral, she finds a child. Young and alive, in an abandoned basement, and behind a door that only locks from the outside.”

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

“It’s the kind of writing you would expect from the Edgar-winning author, but it’s made even more powerful here, filled with the purpose of exposing a hateful legacy and issuing a timely warning of its historical ebb and flow.”

          - Christine Tran, Booklist 

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The Last Guest House (Mystery)

"Littleport, Maine, has always felt like two separate towns: an ideal vacation enclave for the wealthy, whose summer homes line the coastline; and a simple harbor community for the year-round residents whose livelihoods rely on service to the visitors. Typically, fierce friendships never develop between a local and a summer girl—but that’s just what happens with visitor Sadie Loman and Littleport resident Avery Greer. Each summer for almost a decade, the girls are inseparable—until Sadie is found dead. While the police rule the death a suicide, Avery can’t help but feel there are those in the community, including a local detective and Sadie’s brother, Parker, who blame her. Someone knows more than they’re saying, and Avery is intent on clearing her name, before the facts get twisted against her.”

          - Image and description from Simon & Schuster

“Sharply drawn characters both ground and elevate the bombshell-laden plot, while evocative prose heightens tension and conjures place. Miranda delivers a clever, stylish mystery that will seize readers like a riptide.”

          - Publisher’s Weekly

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Cemetery Road (Mystery)

"Sometimes the price of justice is a good man’s soul. When Marshall McEwan left his Mississippi hometown at eighteen, he vowed never to return. The trauma that drove him away spurred him to become one of the most successful journalists in Washington, DC. But as the ascendancy of a chaotic administration lifts him from print fame to television stardom, Marshall discovers that his father is terminally ill, and he must return home to face the unfinished business of his past.”

          - Image and description from Harper Collins

“Though strictly speaking a suspense novel, "Cemetery Road" is, in fact, a great deal more. In the precision and power of its language and its sheer amplitude of detail, Iles's latest calls to mind the late, great Southern novelist Pat Conroy. Like Conroy, Iles writes with passion, intensity and an absolute commitment to the material at hand…Greg Iles is back and at the top of his game. He couldn't be more welcome.”

          - Bill Sheehan, Washington Post

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Disappearing Earth (Mystery)

"One August afternoon, on the shoreline of the Kamchatka peninsula at the northeastern edge of Russia, two girls–sisters, eight and eleven–go missing. In the ensuing weeks, then months, the police investigation turns up nothing. Echoes of the disappearance reverberate across a tightly woven community, with the fear and loss felt most deeply among its women.”

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

“It has the makings of a lurid thriller, but first-time novelist Julia Phillips…does something more sophisticated than that and turns her unshakable debut into a meditation on the lives of women in a far-flung corner of the world, spanning generations and ethnicities, in the months that follow the disappearance.”

          - Barbara VanDenburgh, USA Today

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My Lovely Wife (Mystery)

"Our love story is simple. I met a gorgeous woman. We fell in love. We had kids. We moved to the suburbs. We told each other our biggest dreams, and our darkest secrets. And then we got bored. We look like a normal couple. We’re your neighbors, the parents of your kid’s friend, the acquaintances you keep meaning to get dinner with.  We all have our secrets to keeping a marriage alive. Ours just happens to be getting away with murder.

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

 

“Downing’s tale unfolds slowly and sinuously, building tension about the couples’ fate while revealing the origins of their homicidal hobby. The first-person, present-tense narration makes readers feel uncomfortably complicit in all that transpires, underscoring the plot’s grim and twisted nature. Readers will eagerly await Downing’s next thriller.” 

          - Publisher’s Weekly

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The Last Widow (Mystery)

"New York Times bestselling author Karin Slaughter returns with another electrifying thriller in the beloved Will Trent mystery series, this time pitting Will and Sara against a mysterious group planning to unleash a deadly epidemic.”

          - Image and description from HarperCollins

 

“Another strong novel by Slaughter, with complex characters to root for and an antagonist you hope gets what he deserves. With a well-written, intriguing plot and an edge-of-the-seat ending, this is sure to keep readers up late into the night.”

          - Jodi Gheen, Library Journal

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Mr. Nobody (Mystery)

"When a man is found on a British beach… with no identification and unable to speak, interest in him is sparked immediately. From the hospital staff who find themselves inexplicably drawn to him, to international medical experts who are baffled by him, to the national press who call him Mr. Nobody, everyone wants answers… Dr. Emma Lewis is asked to assess the patient in a small town deep in the English countryside. This is her field of expertise…and this case could make her name known across the world. But…Emma left this same town fourteen years ago and has taken great pains to cover all traces of her past since then… And the more time she spends with her patient, the more alarmed she becomes that he knows the one thing about her that nobody is supposed to know.”

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

“…a highly imaginative tale tinged with Hitchcockian tension and kinetic pacing…Steadman’s deliciously provocative novel dishes up enough questions to fill the entire space devoted to this review. She cleverly cloaks them in more mysteries, turns and shocking revelations.”

          - Carol Memmott, The Washington Post

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The Chain (Mystery)

"Your phone rings....A stranger has kidnapped your child....To free them you must abduct someone else's child...Your child will be released when your victim's parents kidnap another child....If any of these things don't happen:  your child will be killed..."

You are now part of the chain...”

          - Image and description from Mulholland

“"The Chain" is that rare thriller that ends up being highly personal. Yes, there’s a shadowy force dictating the action, but when it all comes down to its (necessarily) explosive conclusion, the actions of characters are boiled down to familial ethics, understandable motivations, and good old-fashioned revenge, which makes for a satisfying and deeply rewarding read, no matter the season.”

          - Tod Goldberg, USA Today

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Now You See Me (Mystery)

FBI Special Agent Kimberly Quincy and Sergeant Detective D D Warren have built a task force to follow the digital bread crumbs left behind by deceased serial kidnapper Jacob Ness. When a disturbing piece of evidence is discovered in the hills of Georgia, they bring Flora Dane and true-crime savant Keith Edgar to a small town where something seems to be deeply wrong. What at first looks like a Gothic eeriness soon hardens into something much more sinister . . . and they discover that for all the evil Jacob committed while alive, his worst secret is still to be revealed.”

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

“…a brilliant, one-sitting, terrifying ride, full of übersuspense and hair-raising situations. As this unparalleled plot thickens, the author keeps fans salivating with her superb no-nonsense, visually disturbing bird’s-eye-view storytelling.”

          - Debbie Haupt, Library Journal

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Mexican Gothic (Mystery)

"After receiving a frantic letter from her newly-wed cousin begging for someone to save her from a mysterious doom, Noemí Taboada heads to High Place, a distant house in the Mexican countryside… Noemí is also an unlikely rescuer: She’s a glamorous debutante, and her chic gowns and perfect red lipstick are more suited for cocktail parties than amateur sleuthing. But she’s also tough and smart, with an indomitable will, and she is not afraid: Not of her cousin’s new husband…not of his father… and not even of the house itself, which begins to invade Noemi’s dreams with visions of blood and doom.”

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

“Mexican Gothic is a pitch-perfect Gothic novel…Moreno-… spins science, myth, and obsession into an effective tale of supernatural horror and determination. We are asked to consider the terror of losing agency, of being part of or becoming monstrousness whether you will or not.”

          - Jessica P. Wick, NPR

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Evie Drake Starts Over (Romance)

"From the host of NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour podcast comes a heartfelt debut about the unlikely relationship between a young woman who’s lost her husband and a major league pitcher who’s lost his game.”

           - Image and description from Penguin Random House

“Linda Holmes’ debut novel…is a nuanced, extraordinarily ordinary adult love story that is as romantic as it is real. Like most love stories, there are flirtatious moments that will bring a blushing smile to the faces of the sappiest romantics, but they are sweetly and sparingly intermixed with the melancholy and mundane moments that also make up all relationships.”

          - Mary Cadden, USA Today

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Ayesha at Last (Romance)

"Ayesha Shamsi has a lot going on. Her dreams of being a poet have been set aside for a teaching job so she can pay off her debts to her wealthy uncle. She lives with her boisterous Muslim family and is always being reminded that her flighty younger cousin, Hafsa, is close to rejecting her one hundredth marriage proposal. Though Ayesha is lonely, she doesn’t want an arranged marriage. Then she meets Khalid, who is just as smart and handsome as he is conservative and judgmental. She is irritatingly attracted to someone who looks down on her choices and who dresses like he belongs in the seventh century. When a surprise engagement is announced between Khalid and Hafsa, Ayesha is torn between how she feels about the straightforward Khalid and the unsettling new gossip she hears about his family. Looking into the rumors, she finds she has to deal with not only what she discovers about Khalid, but also the truth she realizes about herself.

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

“Despite the similarities in the premises, Ayesha at Last is more than just a Muslim retelling of Austen's work; Jalaluddin constructs a timely and enlightening narrative that validates the experiences of many South Asians and Muslims today, while weaving in universal themes of identity, class, and discrimination.”

          - Kamrun Nesa, NPR

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The Nickel Boys (Realistic Fiction)

"In this bravura follow-up to the Pulitzer Prize, and National Book Award-winning #1 New York Times bestseller The Underground Railroad, Colson Whitehead brilliantly dramatizes another strand of American history through the story of two boys sentenced to a hellish reform school in Jim Crow-era Florida.”

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

“It's a masterpiece squared, rooted in history and American mythology and, yet, painfully topical in its visions of justice and mercy erratically denied."

          - Maureen Corrigan, NPR

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Home Remedies (Realistic Fiction)

"Xuan Juliana Wang’s remarkable debut introduces us to the new and changing face of Chinese youth. From fuerdai (second-generation rich kids) to a glass-swallowing qigong grandmaster, her dazzling, formally inventive stories upend the immigrant narrative to reveal a new experience of belonging: of young people testing the limits of who they are, in a world as vast and varied as their ambitions. In stories of love, family, and friendship, here are the voices, faces and stories of a new generation never before captured between the pages in fiction.

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

“Wang’s style has an authenticity that derives from a “global” workshop-free perspective, an authorial fluidity that reveals a thoroughly enlightened study of character beyond all cultural expectations. Her characters are millennials and Chinese or Chinese Americans, but their lives, like Chekhov’s characters, are ordinary lives set in bold relief against the ordinary. The extraordinary appears and is magically absorbed into the familiar, like a dazzling new coat slipped on over old clothes.”

           - Carol Muske-Dukes, Los Angeles Review of Books

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Transcendent Kingdom (Realistic Fiction)

"Gifty is a sixth-year PhD candidate in neuroscience…studying reward-seeking behavior in mice and the neural circuits of depression and addiction. Her brother… was a gifted high school athlete who died of a heroin overdose after an ankle injury left him hooked on OxyContin. Her suicidal mother is living in her bed. Gifty is determined to discover the scientific basis for the suffering she sees all around her. But even as she turns to the hard sciences to unlock the mystery of her family’s loss, she finds herself hungering for her childhood faith and grappling with the evangelical church in which she was raised, whose promise of salvation remains as tantalizing as it is elusive”

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

“…Ms. Gyasi has trained her ambitions inward, applying the same rigorous attention to the quality of her sentences and to the laser-like interrogation of her themes. She has produced a powerful, wholly unsentimental novel about family love, loss, belonging and belief…”

          - Sam Sacks, Wall Street Journal

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Calm Sea and Prosperous Voyage (Realistic Fiction)

"Bette Howland herself was an outsider―an intellectual from a working-class neighborhood in Chicago; a divorcée and single mother, to the disapproval of her family; an artist chipped away at by poverty and perfection. Each of these facets plays a central role in her work. Mining her deepest emotions for her art, she chronicles the tension of her generation.”

          - Image and description from A Public Space

“Largely autobiographical and incredibly self-aware, Howland’s stories conjure vivid portraits of her home city of Chicago and bring to life the hypnotic thoughts of her narrators among their wide casts of vividly drawn characters.”

         - Publisher’s Weekly

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My Dark Vanessa (Realistic Fiction)

"2000. Bright, ambitious, and yearning for adulthood, fifteen-year-old Vanessa Wye becomes entangled in an affair with Jacob Strane, her magnetic and guileful forty-two-year-old English teacher.

2017. Amid the rising wave of allegations against powerful men, a reckoning is coming due. Strane has been accused of sexual abuse by a former student, who reaches out to Vanessa, and now Vanessa suddenly finds herself facing an impossible choice: remain silent, firm in the belief that her teenage self willingly engaged in this relationship, or redefine herself and the events of her past.”

          - Image and description from Harper Collins

“One of the cleverest aspects of the novel is how it resists the facile linear form of revelation; it backs up toward insights, runs away from them, sifts through them again, obsesses. The book reads like a thriller or mystery story though there is no mystery.”

                                                                          - Katie Rophe, NYT Book Review

                                                                          - See more reviews on Literary Hub

Such a Fun Age (Realistic Fiction)

"Alix Chamberlain is a woman who gets what she wants and has made a living showing other women how to do the same. So she is shocked when her babysitter, Emira Tucker, is confronted while watching the Chamberlains’ toddler one night, walking the aisles of their local high-end supermarket. The store’s security guard, seeing a young black woman out late with a white child, accuses Emira of kidnapping…A small crowd gathers, a bystander films everything, and Emira is furious and humiliated. Alix resolves to make things right. But Emira herself is aimless, broke, and wary of Alix’s desire to help. At twenty-five, she is about to lose her health insurance and has no idea what to do with her life. When the video of Emira unearths someone from Alix’s past, both women find themselves on a crash course that will upend everything they think they know about themselves, and each other.”

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

 “This is a book that will read, I suspect, quite differently to various audiences — funny to some, deeply uncomfortable and shamefully recognizable to others — but whatever the experience, I urge you to read Such a Fun Age. Let its empathic approach to even the ickiest characters stir you, allow yourself to share Emira's millennial anxieties about adulting, take joy in the innocence of Briar's still-unmarred personhood, and rejoice that Kiley Reid is only just getting started.”

          - Ilana Masad, NPR 

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Dear Edward (Realistic Fiction)

"One summer morning, twelve-year-old Edward Adler, his beloved older brother, his parents, and 183 other passengers board a flight in Newark headed for Los Angeles…Halfway across the country, the plane crashes. Edward is the sole survivor. Edward’s story captures the attention of the nation, but he struggles to find a place in a world without his family. He continues to feel that a part of himself has been left in the sky, forever tied to the plane and all of his fellow passengers. But then he makes an unexpected discovery—one that will lead him to the answers of some of life’s most profound questions…”

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

“’Dear Edward’ is such an optimistic diversion that you might not even notice how important and finely made it is. Never soppy, the novel provides pitch-perfect understanding of human vulnerabilities. When you’re reading, you’re deep in the pleasure of good storytelling, but when you’re done, you know that you’ve experienced a brush with literary virtuosity.”

          - Susan Merrell, Newsday

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The Vanishing Half (Realistic Fiction)

"The Vignes twin sisters will always be identical. But after growing up together in a small, southern black community and running away at age sixteen, it’s not just the shape of their daily lives that is different as adults, it’s everything: their families, their communities, their racial identities.”

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

“The Vanishing Half is a novel written a century after the Harlem Renaissance. It is a clear and direct descendant of that literary heritage and is a strong entry when compared to its ancestry. Race, class, and gender discussions are wrapped in beautiful language that is confident yet compassionate toward both reader and character.”

          - Aaron Coats, Chicago Review of Books

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The Lesson (Science Fiction)

"An alien ship rests over Water Island. For five years the people of the US Virgin Islands have lived with the Ynaa, a race of superadvanced aliens on a research mission they will not fully disclose. They are benevolent in many ways but meet any act of aggression with disproportional wrath. This has led to a strained relationship between the Ynaa and the local Virgin Islanders and a peace that cannot last.  A year after the death of a young boy at the hands of an Ynaa, three families find themselves at the center of the inevitable conflict, witness and victim to events that will touch everyone and teach a terrible lesson.”

          - Image from Goodreads; Description from Blackstone Publishing

“A compelling read of an invasive occupation and emotional uprising, Turnbull's debut is a must for all libraries. The author, who crafts speculative stories featuring black characters on par with Octavia Butler, is definitely one to watch.”

          - Kristi Cadwick, Library Journal

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Upright Women Wanted (Science Fiction)

"Esther is a stowaway. She’s hidden herself away in the Librarian’s book wagon in an attempt to escape the marriage her father has arranged for her—a marriage to the man who was previously engaged to her best friend. Her best friend who she was in love with. Her best friend who was just executed for possession of resistance propaganda.

The future American Southwest is full of bandits, fascists, and queer librarian spies on horseback trying to do the right thing.”

          - Image and description from MacMillan Publishers

“Couched in tart language, hard-bitten imagery, and pulp-Western punch, the novella benefits from its brevity. There's not a word or scene wasted, and the world-building hints at the enormity of America's imagined collapse without overdoing it.”

          - Jason Heller, NPR

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The Deep (Science Fiction)

"The water-breathing descendants of African slave women tossed overboard have built their own underwater society… Their past, too traumatic to be remembered regularly, is forgotten by everyone, save one—the historian…Yetu remembers for everyone, and the memories, painful and wonderful, traumatic and terrible and miraculous, are destroying her. And so, she flees to the surface, escaping the memories, the expectations, and the responsibilities—and discovers a world her people left behind long ago.”

          - Image and description from Simon & Schuster

“For all its complexity in origin and concept, The Deep is an elegantly concise and simple novel. Yetu's plight is an essential, emotionally fraught conflict between duty and sacrifice, between tradition and progress, between the individual and the common good, and between vengeance and forgiveness.”

          - Jason Heller, NPR

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Afterland (Science Fiction)

"Most of the men are dead. Three years after the pandemic known as The Manfall, governments still hold and life…Twelve-year-old Miles is one of the last boys alive, and his mother, Cole, will protect him at all costs. On the run after a horrific act of violence-and pursued by Cole’s own ruthless sister, Billie — all Cole wants is to raise her kid somewhere he won’t be preyed on.. Someplace like home. To get there, Cole and Miles must journey across a changed America in disguise as mother and daughter.”

          - Image and description from Mulholland Books

“Lauren Beukes’s fifth novel is a smartly written thriller that opens with a satisfying bang…She lets her tale do the talking, and the results are quite splendid.”

          - Stephen King, NYT Book Review

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A Long Petal of the Sea (Historical Fiction)

"From the author of The House of the Spirits, this epic novel spanning decades and crossing continents follows two young people as they flee the aftermath of the Spanish Civil War in search of a place to call home.”

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

 

“… she [Allende] has deftly woven fact and fiction, history and memory, to create one of the most richly imagined portrayals of the Spanish Civil War to date, and one of the strongest and most affecting works in her long career.”

          - Paula McLain, NYT Book Reviews

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The Southern Book Club's Guide to Slaying Vampires (Horror)

"Steel Magnolias meets Dracula in this ’90s-set horror novel about a women’s book club that must do battle with a mysterious newcomer to their small Southern town”

          - Image and description from Penguin Random House

 

“It feels weird to call a blood-soaked horror novel writhing with creepy-crawlies a delight, but these are strange times, and…Grady … is the patron saint of strange. His latest, “The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires” … is as unexpected as its title, a Southern-fried feminist take on well-worn lore that makes it feel fresh.”

          - Barbara VanDenburgh, USA Today

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