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    21 new books out today!

    Gabrielle Bellot

    July 25, 2023, 5:55am

    It’s nearly the end of July, and that means that if you haven’t already gotten to enjoy the special pleasure of reading a book outside in pleasant weather (that is, if you’ve had the luck to experience pleasant weather amidst all the recent climate chaos), you should try to reserve some time to do so while summer is still here. Below, you’ll find some excellent new books to consider, from new novels and translations, memoirs and essay collections, poetry, wide-ranging nonfiction, and a handful of new books about musical history. I hope you’ll add these to your to-be-read lists and that you find a spot of just-right weather, wherever you might be, to enjoy one (or more!) of them in.

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    Kala - Walsh, Colin

    Colin Walsh, Kala
    (Doubleday)

    “[A] gritty heartbreaker of a thriller….Part heartfelt coming-of-age tale, part brutal Irish noir, this is a spectacular read for Donna Tartt and Tana French fans.”
    Kirkus Reviews

    King of the Armadillos - Chin-Tanner, Wendy

    Wendy Chin-Tanner, Kings of the Armadillos
    (Flatiron Books)

    “Wendy Chin-Tanner’s King of the Armadillos is both a moving coming-of-age story and a fiercely intelligent love letter to the author’s father. It is beautifully written and entertaining, but doesn’t shy away from questions of race, class, and belonging. A fantastic debut.”
    –Cari Luna

    Somebody's Fool - Russo, Richard

    Richard Russo, Somebody’s Fool
    (Knopf)

    “Russo’s latest book has an engaging plot that sensitively and insightfully explores themes of grief and reconciliation….[T]he relationships between the characters give this story an emotional depth that has an undeniable appeal.”
    Library Journal

    The Country of the Blind: A Memoir at the End of Sight - Leland, Andrew

    Andrew Leland, The Country of the Blind: A Memoir at the End of Sight
    (Penguin Press)

    “Andrew Leland writes about his own gradual blindness using cultural histories and the politics of disability to upend what we assumed we knew. It’s one of the year’s best.”
    Chicago Tribune

    The Brothers Karamazov: A New Translation by Michael R. Katz - Dostoevsky, Fyodor

    Fyodor Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov: A New Translation by Michael Katz (trans. Michael Katz)
    (Liveright)

    “This book weighs about two pounds, but I found it light. The writing is good and clear; fuss has been eliminated. Katz’s lucid, unpretentious language opens up my favorite scenes, characters and even monologues.”
    The Guardian

    Contradiction Days: An Artist on the Verge of Motherhood - Novak, Joanna

    Joanna Novak, Contradiction Days: An Artist on the Verge of Motherhood
    (Catapult)

    “[Novak’s] consideration of painter Agnes Martin, who had paranoid schizophrenia, leads her to think carefully about women’s bodies versus women’s bodies of work–and what it takes for an artist to continue creating while gestating. The book’s lyrical structure suits its emotive material.”
    –Bethanne Patrick

    The Forest Brims Over - Ayase, Maru

    Maru Ayase, The Forest Brims Over (trans. Haydn Trowell)
    (Counterpoint)

    “In this novel by Japanese writer Ayase, the first of her eighteen works to be translated into English, a writer’s wife transforms into a forest. A sprightly, compelling tale with magical realist flair in which a novelist’s muse takes charge of her own story.”
    Kirkus Reviews

    Emerald Wounds: Selected Poems - Mansour, Joyce

    Joyce Mansour, Emerald Wounds: Selected Poems
    (City Light Books)

    “It is high time (and way past it!) that someone bring to publishing daylight the truly great range of poems by the English/Egyptian writer artist/entertainer Joyce Patricia Adès, whom we salute as Joyce Mansour. Emilie Moorhouse has just accomplished this feat and we can gladly say, to this bilingual and welcome presentation of a large selection of those texts with City Lights, a very loud hooray!”
    –Mary Ann Caws

    Lakdhas Wikkramasinha - Wikkramasinha, Lakdhas

    Lakdhas Wikkramasinha, Lakdhas Wikkramasinha
    (New York Review of Books)

    “Even though, in fact, hardly a photograph of him exists today, [Wikkramasinha] has written some of the most permanent and iconic poems of [Sri Lanka].”
    –Michael Ondaatje

    Pleasure of Thinking: Essays - Xiaobo, Wang

    Wang Xiaobo, Pleasure of Thinking: Essays (trans. Yan Yan)
    (Astra House)

    “These essays, which Wang Xiaobo (1952-1997) wrote during the 1990s, cover a range of topics, from literature to sexuality to food. What binds them is a concern for the value of an examined life and a wry awareness of the diverse ways in which humans fail to reap the rewards of thinking deeply….Wang offers an illuminating window on life in China—and Western life seen through the eyes of a Chinese traveler—at the end of the twentieth century. A wide-ranging, humorous, often sharp collection.”
    Kirkus Reviews

    Glaciers - Smith, Alexis M.

    Alexis M. Smith, Glaciers
    (Tin House)

    Glaciers, Alexis Smith’s brilliant debut novel, is filled with kaleidoscopic pleasures….The past, present, and imaginary future stream into beautifully unstable geometries: Isabel’s childhood snows from her youth in Alaska are juxtaposed against her adult trip to a vintage thrift store; her hopes for an evening party push against the echoes of war that haunt a young soldier whom she loves….[A] haunted, joyful, beautiful book.”
    –Karen Russel

    Lost in Summerland: Essays - Swanson, Barrett

    Barrett Swanson, Lost in Summerland: Essays
    (Counterpoint)

    “More than most writers, Barrett Swanson is a first-rate cultural anthropologist. Perceptive, amusing, searching, he scans and gazes past the variety of scrims the world has set out to cloud our vision. His brilliant essays bring so much back into focus, while also noting the American surrealism of the American dream. There is not a weak link in this collection. Every piece is a gem.”
    –Lorrie Moore

    Social Fiction - Montellier, Chantal

    Chantal Montellier, Social Fiction (trans. Geoffrey Brock)
    (New York Review Comics)

    “Published together in English for the first time, this spiky collection of three science fiction graphic novellas from Montellier, one of the few women published in the famed French comics magazine Métal Hurlant in its heyday, makes a case for her place as one of the publication’s brightest creators….Montellier’s firm line and punk ethos recall the early, science fiction-themed installments of Love and Rockets, but her vision is far bleaker, fueled by political rage, satirical wit, and a full-bore feminist drive. The anarchic sensibility feels both of its time and eerily prescient. It’s a thrilling introduction to an unmissable comics talent.”
    Publishers Weekly

    Worlds Beyond Time: Sci-Fi Art of the 1970s - Rowe, Adam

    Adam Rowe, Worlds Beyond Time: Sci-Fi Art of the 1970s
    (Abrams)

    “Rowe’s obvious love for the form animates the volume, and makes a powerful case for how this period continues to influence the genre’s aesthetic. Sci-fi fans of all stripes will be delighted.”
    Publishers Weekly

    The Possibilities - Goldstein-Love, Yael

    Yael Goldstein-Love, The Possibilities
    (Random House)

    “Goldstein-Love’s game of hopscotch through the multiverse works both as a smart sci-fi thriller and as a metaphor for the worry, exhaustion, and power inherent in motherhood….This memorable, stirring work of suspense is primed to become a sensation in book club circles.”
    Shelf Awareness

    The Crow Valley Karaoke Championships - Bryan, Ali

    Ali Bryan, The Crow Valley Karaoke Championships
    (Henry Holt)

    “In these pages, there’s love and loss, life and death, drama, danger, mystery, and poutine. Never has so much hinged on a karaoke regional qualifier. This book is a dazzling spectacle. You won’t be able to turn away.”
    –Bradley Somer

    Ode to Hip-Hop: 50 Albums That Define 50 Years of Trailblazing Music - Fitzgerald, Kiana

    Kiana Fitzgerald, Ode to Hip-Hop: 50 Albums that Define 50 Years of Trailblazing Music
    (Running Press Adult)

    “Music journalist Fitzgerald curates an eclectic list of albums for this respectable tribute to hip-hop….Refreshingly, there are more women and non-coastal representations than in most music publications. The book’s structure creates a countdown that allows the albums to speak for themselves.”

    The Little Village of Book Lovers - George, Nina

    Nina George, The Little Village of Book Lovers
    (Ballantine Books)

    “This spin-off of George’s beloved The Little Paris Bookshop—this is the book within that one—is narrated by omniscient and powerful representations of abstract concepts, with Love, Pride, and Fate all weighing in, and this creative framing adds to its considerable charm. George pays particular attention to the romantic potential of the everyday….Fans…will adore George’s latest exploration of life, love, and destiny.”
    Booklist

    Narcas: The Secret Rise of Women in Latin America's Cartels - Bonello, Deborah

    Deborah Bonello, Narcas: The Secret Rise of Women in Latin America’s Cartels
    (Beacon Press)

    “Bonello presents a complex report on women’s roles in a world of extreme machismo and an eye-opening challenge to the perception of women involved in the complicated and brutal world of cartels.”
    Booklist

    The Gospel of the Hold Steady: How a Resurrection Really Feels - Hann, Michael

    Michael Hann and The Hold Steady, The Gospel of the Hold Steady: How a Resurrection Really Feels
    (Akashic)

    “A colorful montage of stories about and photographs of American rock band The Hold Steady, by both members of the group as well as dedicated fans….A must-have for admirers of the band and a good choice to fans of bar rock.”
    Kirkus Reviews

    Brothers and Sisters: The Allman Brothers Band and the Inside Story of the Album That Defined the '70s - Paul, Alan

    Alan Paul, Brothers and Sisters: The Allman Brothers Band and the Inside Story of the Album that Defined the ’70s
    (St. Martin’s Press)

    “[A] rollicking tale….Enriched by a cache of band interviews never heard before, Paul’s entry marshals encyclopedic detail and sterling prose for a vivid glimpse into a classic moment in music history. Rock fans will rejoice.”
    Publishers Weekly

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