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    Tommy Orange! Carson McCullers! The Village Voice! 24 new books out today.

    Gabrielle Bellot

    February 27, 2024, 4:52am

    As February slinks to a close—and, if you’re like me, as you start wondering how on Earth it can already nearly be March!—you might be on the search for something fresh to read. If so, you’re in quite the luck, for I’ve got twenty-four new books to recommend checking out, all of which are out today. In particular, it’s an excellent day for new nonfiction.

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    Below, you’ll find new novels from Tommy Orange, Maurice Carlos Ruffin, Emily Howes, and more, as well as new translations of subversive fiction from the Russian writer Vladimir Sorokin; a powerful new collection of poems by the Irish writer Declan Ryan; a biography of Carson McCullers from Mary V. Dearborn, which features previously unknown details about the celebrated queer writer; Tricia Romano on the radical, generation-defining paper The Village Voice; a capacious memoir of indigenous American life from Deborah Taffa; a moving reflection on grief by Sloane Crosley; a queer graphic memoir by Maurice Vellekoop; Natasha S. Alford on being Afro-Latina; a number of timely political books, including an analysis of the history and present of reproductive rights by Gretchen Sisson; and much, much more.

    Basically, there’s a bevy of fascinating, fantastical, and thought-provoking books to choose from, and I hope you’ll find joy curling up in the last cool days of February with one of these.


    Wandering Stars - Orange, Tommy

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    Tommy Orange, Wandering Stars

    “If there was any doubt after his incredible debut, there should be none now: Tommy Orange is one of our most important writers. The way he weaves time and life together, demands we remember how our history shapes us. In this novel the pain and resilience of generations are summoned beautifully. A wonderous journey and a necessary reminder.”
    –Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah

    The American Daughters - Ruffin, Maurice Carlos

    Maurice Carlos Ruffin, The American Daughters
    (One World)

    “Maurice Carlos Ruffin’s third book is a tour de force. An intelligent and haunting novel that grapples with the legacies of American slavery, The American Daughters features a sparkling cast of engaging Black women that you won’t soon forget.”
    –Lauren Wilkinson

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    The Painter's Daughters - Howes, Emily

    Emily Howes, The Painter’s Daughters
    (Simon & Schuster)

    “A thoughtful and thought-provoking debut novel that brings to life the daughters of painter Thomas Gainsborough. Emily Howes is a talented writer who vividly evokes Regency England but doesn’t shy away from exploring how its glittering society could constrain and threaten young women. An engaging and enjoyable mix of historical fact and beautifully-imagined fiction.”
    –Joanna Quinn

    Carson McCullers: A Life - Dearborn, Mary V.

    Mary V. Dearborn, Carson McCullers: A Life

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    “The triumphs and tragedies of an American writer. Drawing on abundant archival material, much not available to earlier biographers, Dearborn offers a thorough, passionate recounting of the life of Carson McCullers (1917-1967), a writer with an ‘unerring instinct for the outsider’s life’….A well-researched, sensitive literary biography.”
    Kirkus Reviews

    Whiskey Tender: A Memoir - Taffa, Deborah

    Deborah Taffa, Whiskey Tender

    “I was completely taken by Whiskey Tender: its gorgeous sentences, its searing observations about identity and loss and inheritance, and its exploration of generational and terrestrial traumas. This is a strong and special book.”
    –Carmen Maria Machado

    Dead Weight: Essays on Hunger and Harm - Clein, Emmeline

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    Emmeline Clein, Dead Weight: Essays on Hunger and Harm

    “[Clein] pulls no punches in her analysis of eating disorders and their psychological underpinnings, and her prose style is urgent, intense, and often captivating….This is a book that deserves attention—not just by those suffering from eating disorders, but by anyone trying to understand this insidious phenomenon.”
    Kirkus Reviews

    Crisis Actor: Poems - Ryan, Declan

    Declan Ryan, Crisis Actor: Poems

    “Among the so many things that make Crisis Actor extraordinary is how each poem is formally skilled and shrewd and smart, while, at the same time, profoundly packed with emotion. The book is carefully structured: the placement of the brilliant ‘boxer/boxing poems’ in the book is perfect….Ryan places himself among the great Irish poets and writers unafraid of sentiment and sensuousness, beauty and love, taking on history, ever-alive in the physical world, melding his traditions as his own.”
    –Lawrence Joseph

    My Beloved Life - Kumar, Amitava

    Amitava Kumar, My Beloved Life

    “This profound book is full of lives whose beauty lies in the wholeness of their telling. A father, a daughter, a crime, a country being born, a migration, another country, a plague. ‘We are in touch with a great astonishing mystery when we put honest words down on paper to register a life and to offer witness. Everything else is ordinary,’ Kumar writes. His novel offers magnificent witness, and is not ordinary but extraordinary.”
    –Salman Rushdie

    A Woman of Pleasure - Murata, Kiyoko

    Kiyoko Murata, A Woman of Pleasure (trans. Juliette Winter Carpenter)

    “With crystalline economy precisely calibrated to a world where money, beauty, power, and the lifeforce of women are measured against the value of pleasure and exchanged for survival, Kiyoko Murata’s novel comes alive with exacting force. Reading A Woman of Pleasure is like walking into the stratified rooms of Shinonome vibrant with a kaleidoscopic range of perspectives….A marvel.”
    –Asako Serizawa

    American Negra: A Memoir - Alford, Natasha S.

    Natasha S. Alford, American Negra: A Memoir

    “In her searing debut, Alford smartly and candidly examines what it means to be Black and Latina in America, and interrogates identity, class, race and success—on her terms. American Negra is required reading for anyone longing to understand the intricacies of intersectionality in this country, and be inspired in the process.”
    –Sunny Hostin

    Grief Is for People - Crosley, Sloane

    Sloane Crosley, Grief Is for People

    “An indelible portrait of a singular friendship, Grief Is for People is a beautifully written and sharply observed memoir about grief, yes, but also: secrets, betrayal, rage, work, community, and most of all, love. It’s both a provocation and a balm to the soul.”
    –Dani Shapiro

    I'm So Glad We Had This Time Together: A Memoir - Vellekoop, Maurice

    Maurice Vellekoop, I’m So Glad We Had This Time Together
    (Pantheon Books)

    “Vivid pictures from a gay life. In an honest, often self-deprecating coming-of-age graphic memoir, Canadian cartoonist and illustrator Vellekoop recounts growing up gay in 1970s Toronto, where his family was a member of the conservative Christian Reformed Church, which viewed homosexuality as a sin….Vellekoop structures his memoir in short chapters, each focused on a particular period in his life….A raw, revealing chronicle.”
    Kirkus Reviews

    Moon of the Turning Leaves - Rice, Waubgeshig

    Waubgeshig Rice, Moon of the Turning Leaves
    (William Morrow)

    “If you’ve ever wondered how the Anishinaabe way would fare after the Great Collapse, this is the novel for you. Fans of McCarthy’s The Road and The Walking Dead will feel right at home here with the intrigue, the dread and the hope. What a magnificent read. Mahsi cho, Waubgeshig Rice. Bravo!”
    –Richard Van Camp

    Green Dot - Gray, Madeleine

    Madeleine Gray, Green Dot

    “Madeleine Gray takes a scalpel to millennial malaise, office romance, and infidelity, and the result is a brainy, gutsy, nervy–and hilarious–wonder of a novel.”
    –Meg Howrey

    The Freaks Came Out to Write: The Definitive History of the Village Voice, the Radical Paper That Changed American Culture - Romano, Tricia

    Tricia Romano, The Freaks Came Out to Write: The Definitive History of the Village Voice, the Radical Paper That Changed American Culture

    “Romano debuts with a phenomenal oral history….Brimming with riveting anecdotes and capturing its subject’s rollicking spirit, this is a remarkable portrait of the ‘nation’s first alternative newspaper.'”
    Publishers Weekly

    Normal Women: Nine Hundred Years of Making History - Gregory, Philippa

    Philippa Gregory, Normal Women: Nine Hundred Years of Making History

    “This ambitious book is a rich contribution to women’s public history [in Britain]—and a powerful reminder that normal women have long made history.”
    BBC History

    Relinquished: The Politics of Adoption and the Privilege of American Motherhood - Sisson, Gretchen

    Gretchen Sisson, Relinquished: The Politics of Adoption and the Privilege of American Motherhood
    (St. Martin’s Press)

    “As jurists and politicians push adoption as an alternative to abortion, Gretchen Sisson’s compelling, compassionate book is timely and essential reading. By putting birth parents at the center, Relinquished complicates the rosy popular narratives of adoption, liberal and conservative alike. But it is also a profoundly human and moving account of real people’s lives, told with sensitivity and grace.”
    –Irin Carmon

    Blue Lard - Sorokin, Vladimir

    Vladimir Sorokin, Blue Lard (trans. Max Lawton)

    “Armed with fearless wit, giga-brain wordplay, and epicurean style to spare, iconoclastic supernova Vladimir Sorokin’s Blue Lard hits like a pipe bomb in the despot’s wet dream of how we are. Already an archetypal subversive masterpiece that has literally incited right-wing riots in the streets—and now brought to new life in a bravura high-wire translation by Max Lawton—Gravity’s RainbowNaked LunchThe 120 Days of Sodom, and Dr. Strangelove could be good kin….Like fresh air in a gashouse, a waterfall in an inferno, what a blessing there’s Sorokin.”
    –Blake Butler

    Red Pyramid and Other Stories - Sorokin, Vladimir

    Vladimir Sorokin, Red Pyramid and Other Stories (trans. Max Lawton)

    “Extravagant, remarkable, politically and socially devastating, the tone and style without precedent, the parables merciless, the nightmares beyond outrance, the violence unparalleled, these stories, translated with fearless agility by Max Lawton, showcase the great novelist Vladimir Sorokin at his divinely disturbing best.”
    –Joy Williams

    White Rural Rage: The Threat to American Democracy - Schaller, Tom

    Tom Schaller, Paul Waldman, White Rural Rage: The Threat to American Democracy
    (Random House)

    “With White Rural Rage, Tom Schaller and Paul Waldman…ask a crucial question: Why do so many white Americans fall for the authoritarian demagoguery…being peddled by the GOP? Moreover, how does this threaten the entire nation? Deploying a deft combination of data analysis and reporting from the heartland, they chronicle the decline of rural America and the rise of grievances….an important book that ought to be read by anyone who wants to understand politics in the perilous Age of Trump.”
    –David Corn

    Attack from Within: How Disinformation Is Sabotaging America - McQuade, Barbara

    Barbara McQuade, Attack from Within: How Disinformation Is Sabotaging America
    (Seven Stories Press)

    “Barbara McQuade has written a compelling page turner. You’ll learn how authoritarians destroy democracy through mis- and disinformation and the psychological forces inherent in all of us that make us believe them even when we know it’s a con.”
    –Jill Wine-Banks

    American Woman: The Transformation of the Modern First Lady, from Hillary Clinton to Jill Biden - Rogers, Katie

    Katie Rogers, American Woman: The Transformation of the Modern First Lady, from Hillary Clinton to Jill Biden
    (Crown Publishing Group)

    “Rogers rigorously examines the notion of legacy and the first lady in the modern era. These women, she maintains, are ‘the most known (and often least understood) women in America.’ Rogers’ unerring journalistic evaluation of the person behind the post should help change all that.”

    The Darkest White: A Mountain Legend and the Avalanche That Took Him - Blehm, Eric

    Eric Blehm, The Darkest White: A Mountain Legend and the Avalanche That Took Him

    “Eric Blehm offers an insightful perspective on how Craig Kelly became the effortless icon that we all revered as well as sobering details of how his heroic journey tragically ended. The Darkest White is a must read, not just for fans of snowboarding, but for anyone looking for inspiration from an unlikely hero.”
    –Tony Hawk

    The Deerfield Massacre: A Surprise Attack, a Forced March, and the Fight for Survival in Early America - Swanson, James L.

    James L. Swanson, The Deerfield Massacre: A Surprise Attack, a Forced March, and the Fight for Survival in Early America

    “A wonderful read! James Swanson’s eloquent and gripping account of Deerfield’s bloody past transports readers across space and time, while critically assessing the town’s multiple efforts to grapple with its history. He explores the persistence of colonial memories, and welcomes the inclusion of often-ignored Native American voices and perspectives….Swanson evokes disparate and unexpectedly poetic connections. He invites readers to walk with him into, through, and beyond this complicated past.”
    –Margaret M. Bruchac

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