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15 new books to help you get through the week.

Katie Yee

May 24, 2022, 4:44am

Life’s got you down? At least there are always books! This week brings new gems from Elif Batuman, Nell Zink, Akwaeke Emezi, Elizabeth Hardwick, and more.

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Elif Batuman, Either/Or

Elif Batuman, Either/Or
(Penguin Press)

“Batuman has a gift for making the universe seem, somehow, like the benevolent and witty literary seminar you wish it were. This novel wins you over in a million micro-observations.”
–The New York Times

avalon

Nell Zink, Avalon
(Knopf)

“Even more impactful than the intellectual ballistics is the tortured romance story. The style is all Zink’s own, and she’s as brilliant as ever here.”
–Publishers Weekly

Akwaeke Emezi, You Made a Fool of Death With Your Beauty

Akwaeke Emezi, You Made a Fool of Death With Your Beauty
(Atria)

“An unabashed ode to living with, and despite, pain and mortality … Emezi’s latest novel is a departure in genre and prose style from their previous work, and it could appeal especially to people who, living through an isolating pandemic that has accelerated loss, hunger for more joie de vivre.”
–The New York Times Book Review

Marie Myung-Ok Lee_The Evening Hero

Marie Myung-Ok Lee, The Evening Hero
(Simon & Schuster)

“This precise, watchful novel reveals the loneliness of the immigrant experience, even when cloaked in outward success … This is a novel about healers and healing, about unflashy, quiet heroism, all wrapped in Yungman’s mordant humor.”
–The New York Times Book Review

Kitty and Al Tait_Breadsong

Al Tait and Kitty Tait, Breadsong: How Baking Changed Our Lives
(Bloomsbury)

“Whether dabbing CBD caramel over a Happy Bread doughnut loaf, or slathering brownies with miso fudge, Kitty’s passionate creativity is as irresistible as her creations. Bakers will have no trouble devouring every bit.”
–Publishers Weekly

Amy Feltman, All the Things We Don’t Talk About
(Grand Central Publishing)

“…the complex relationship between Morgan and Julian places this novel solidly in the category of worthwhile reads. A multidimensional family drama.”
–Kirkus

Cate Marvin_Event Horizon

Cate Marvin, Event Horizon
(Copper Canyon Press)

“Sometimes Cate Marvin seems to be speaking directly to me: a poet who loves the language she loves. Her poems are made of sentient sentences.”
–Terrance Hayes

on autumn lake

Douglas Crase, On Autumn Lake: The Collected Essays
(Nightboat Books)

“Crase knew many of the individuals he writes about and was immersed in the communities in which they flourished … Gracefully wrought essays imbued with a rare intimacy.”
–Kirkus

Chris Pavone_Two Nights in Lisbon

Chris Pavone, Two Nights in Lisbon
(MCD)

“Two nights in Lisbon sound like a fun vacation as long as someone isn’t trying to uncover a horrible secret from your past. This high-stakes drama grabs your attention and doesn’t let go.”
–Kirkus

Lynne Cox, Tales of Al: The Rescue Water Dog
(Knopf)

“She is a concise yet dramatic writer, with immersive descriptions of her childhood, her arduous swim training, the sensory experience of swimming, accents, the exploding flavors of Italian cuisine, and doggy behaviors … A delight from start to finish.”
–Library Journal

eden collinsworth_what the ermine saw

Eden Collinsworth, What the Ermine Saw
(Doubleday)

“Art lovers and history buffs will enjoy this fast-paced, entertaining romp from the Renaissance to the present day, focusing on one painting by one of the world’s most famous, intriguing, and mysterious artists.”
–Library Journal

the letters of thom gunn

Thom Gunn, The Letters of Thom Gunn
(FSG)

“Rowdy, funny, filthy, intensely literate letters … These letters have been anticipated, by many, because [Gunn] rarely spilled his guts on the page. There’s been no biography. These letters are what we have, and they don’t disappoint … This book, like Gunn’s life, puts an unusual mix of pleasures on display.”
–The New York Times

David Yoon_City of Orange

David Yoon, City of Orange
(G.P. Putnam’s Sons)

“Fans of The Martian will enjoy this new take on the struggle to survive in an unfamiliar land.”
–Publishers Weekly

Halik Kochanski_resistance

Halik Kochanski, Resistance: The Underground War Against Hitler, 1939-1945
(Liveright)

“A magisterial doorstop of a history that is well worth the effort … A definitive history and a great read.”
–Kirkus

Elizabeth Hardwick_NYRB

Elizabeth Hardwick, The Uncollected Essays of Elizabeth Hardwick
(NYRB)

“[Hardwick’s] stylish, gutting one-liners are present … I was struck by the prescience of the collection’s strongest inclusions.”
–Vulture

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