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19 new books to look forward to.

Katie Yee

June 2, 2020, 9:50am

We are living in dark and heartbreaking times. There is a lot of amazing, vital writing here at Lit Hub—about the pandemic, about the protests—that I highly recommend you read right now. And then if you want to pick up one of the great books that have hit the shelves this week, here are 19 new ones to look for.

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Megha Majumdar, A Burning

Megha Majumdar, A Burning
(Knopf)

“Its characters are at the very front of the stage, and we can feel their breath … I can’t remember when I last read a novel that so quickly dismantled the ordinary skepticism that attends the reading of made-up stories.”
–The New Yorker

 

Naoise Dolan, Exciting Times

Naoise Dolan, Exciting Times
(Ecco)

“Wry, stylish…. In this witty satire of the haves and have nots, Dolan explores tender, insightful truths about the vagaries of modern love.”
–Esquire

 

Wayétu Moore, The Dragons, the Giant, the Women

Wayétu Moore, The Dragons, The Giant, The Women
(Graywolf)

“Readers will be both enraptured and heartbroken by Moore’s intimate yet epic story of love for family and home.”
–Publishers Weekly

 

Marie-Helene Bertino, Parakeet

Marie-Helene Bertino, Parakeet
(FSG)

“Brilliant, chaotic, and fantastically untethered from humdrum reality … Bertino playfully, precisely builds a big world in these pages, somehow making the case that there’s too much love, pain, and magic to ever fit in one story, and fitting it in all the same.”
–Booklist

 

Brit Bennett, The Vanishing Half

Brit Bennett, The Vanishing Half
(Riverhead)

“Assured and magnetic. . .Bennett is deeply engaged in the unknowability of other people and the scourge of colorism.”
–Kirkus

 

Patrick Hoffman, Clean Hands

Patrick Hoffman, Clean Hands
(Grove Atlantic)

“An enjoyably hard-boiled yarn streaked with noir effects, Hoffman’s follow-up to Every Man a Menace (2016) is a skillfully orchestrated effort that achieves its most outlandish effects with nifty understatement.”
–Kirkus

 

Carlos Busqued, tr. Samuel Rutter, Magnetized

Carlos Busqued, Magnetized
(Catapult)

“A fascinating profile . . . This is a chilling look at a prison system unable to meet the needs of mentally ill inmates.”
–Library Journal

 

an elegant woman_martha mcphee

Martha McPhee, An Elegant Woman
(Scribner)

“Thoughtful…Delicately rendered characters inform a richly textured family portrait.”
–Kirkus

 

Alexandra Petri, Nothing is Wrong and Here is Why: Essays

Alexandra Petri, Nothing Is Wrong and Here Is Why
(W. W. Norton)

“Brilliant and wry…Petri hilariously roasts the last five years in American culture.”
–Booklist

 

Carlos Manuel Álvarez, The Fallen
(Graywolf)

“In chapters which alternate between the perspectives of the four family members, Álvarez slowly and cleverly builds up a picture of a family unit on the brink of collapse.”
–The Spectator

 

cross of snow_nicholas a basbanes

Nicholas A. Basbanes, Cross of Snow
(Knopf)

“It is, perhaps, the biography Longfellow himself would have most liked to read. Absorbing the underlying message of Longfellow’s poetry, Mr. Basbanes writes about him the way a friend would, with generosity, gentleness and grace.”
–The Wall Street Journal

 

The Guest List_Lucy Foley

Lucy Foley, The Guest List
(William Morrow)

“Fans of Christie, Louise Penny, and Ruth Rendell will absolutely love this book, which doesn’t reveal its secrets until the very last page.”
–Library Journal

 

John Gierach, Dumb Luck and the Kindness of Strangers
(Simon & Schuster)

“Gierach’s inviting, down-to-earth, and humorous work shares a deep love of fly-fishing and the ways it can be a metaphor for life.”
–Publishers Weekly

 

Monty Lyman, The Remarkable Life of the Skin
(Grove Atlantic)

“Illuminating and thought-provoking, this book elicits a new awareness of and appreciation for the skin.”
–Kirkus

 

Janet Skeslien Charles, The Paris Library
(Atria)

“Charles brings her experience working at the American Library in Paris to this novel inspired by real people, that is a love letter to Paris, the power of books, and the beauty of intergenerational friendship.”
–Booklist

 

Stephen L. Klineberg, Prophetic City
(Avid Reader Press)

“A unique blend of analysis and research that is likely to become a classic work of scholarship on Houston.”
–Kirkus

 

Eric Cervini, The Deviant’s War
(FSG)

“He has clearly done a remarkable job of research, creating an absolutely indispensable, highly readable work of history that belongs in every library.”
–Booklist

 

Jamie Margolin, Youth To Power
(Hachette Go)

“A galvanizing how-to manual instructing other young people about turning their activism dreams into reality.”
–Booklist

 

Masha Gessen, Surviving Autocracy
(Riverhead)

“Gessen’s meticulous research and familiarity with the political and cultural history of post-Soviet Russia lend her arguments an authority lacking in other takedowns of Trump.”
–Publishers Weekly

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