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West Bloomfield Township Public Library
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New Debut Novels

Most buzzed-about novels of summer and fall 2022!

Greenland : a novel by David Santos Donaldson

"A dazzling literary debut novel-within-a-novel, in the vein of The Prophets, about a young author writing about the forbidden love affair between E.M. Forster and Mohammed el Adl - in which Mohammed's story collides with his own, blending fact and fiction"--

Nightcrawling by Leila Mottley

"A dazzling, unforgettable novel about a young Black woman who walks the streets of Oakland and stumbles headlong into the failure of its justice system--a debut that announces a blazingly original voice. Kiara Johnson and her brother Marcus are barely scraping by in a squalid East Oakland apartment complex that calls itself, optimistically, the Royal-Hi. Both have dropped out of high school, their family fractured by death and prison. But while Marcus clings to his dream of rap stardom, Kiara hunts for work to pay their rent-which has now more than doubled-and to keep the 9-year-old boy next door, abandoned by his mother, safe and fed. What begins as a drunken misunderstanding with a stranger one night soon becomes the job Kiara never wanted but now desperately needs: nightcrawling. And her world breaks open even further when her name surfaces in an investigation that exposes her as a key witness in a massive scandal within the Oakland police department"--Provided by publisher

Mother ocean father nation : a novel by Nishant Batsha

"A riveting, tender debut novel, following a brother and sister whose paths diverge-one forced to leave, one left behind-in the wake of a nationalist coup in the South Pacific"--

NSFW : a novel by Isabel Kaplan

"A novel about a young woman trying to succeed in Hollywood without selling her soul. With electrifying prose and a darkly humorous voice, NSFW is an unflinching exploration of the grey area between empowerment and complicity, and an unforgettable portrait of what success costs in today's world"--

Big girl : a novel by Mecca Jamilah Sullivan

"Exquisitely compassionate and witty, Big Girl traces the intergenerational hungers and desires of Black womanhood, as told through the unforgettable voice of Malaya Clondon. In her highly anticipated debut novel, Mecca Jamilah Sullivan explores the perils-and undeniable beauty-of insatiable longing. Growing up in a rapidly changing Harlem, eight-year-old Malaya hates when her mother drags her to Weight Watchers meetings; she'd rather paint alone in her bedroom or enjoy forbidden street foods with her father. For Malaya, the pressures of her predominantly white Upper East Side prep school are relentless, as are the expectations passed down from her painfully proper mother and sharp-tongued grandmother. As she comes of age in the 1990s, she finds solace inthe music of Biggie Smalls and Aaliyah, but her weight continues to climb-until a family tragedy forces her to face the source of her hunger, ultimately shattering her inherited stigmas surrounding women's bodies, and embracing her own desire. Written with vibrant lyricism shot through with tenderness, Big Girl announces Sullivan as an urgent and vital voice in contemporary fiction"--

More than you'll ever know : a novel by Katie Gutierrez

In 1985, Dolores "Lore" Rivera marries Andres Russo in Mexico City, even though she is already married to Fabian Rivera in Laredo, Texas, and they share twin sons. Through her career as an international banker, Lore splits her time between two countries and two families, until the truth is revealed and one husband is arrested for murdering the other. In 2017, while trawling the internet for the latest, most sensational news reports, struggling true-crime writer Cassie Bowman encounters an article detailing that tragic final act. Cassie is immediately enticed by what is not explored: Why would a woman risk her family, career, and social standing for a secret double marriage? Cassie sees an opportunity, she'll track Lore down and capture the full picture, the choices, the deceptions that led to disaster. But the more time she spends with Lore, the more Cassie questions the facts surrounding the murder itself. Soon, her determination to uncover the truth could threaten to derail Lore's now quiet life, and expose the many secrets both women are hiding

The measure : a novel by Nikki Erlick

"Age of Miracles meets The Immortalists in this spirit-lifting, high-concept blockbuster debut set in a world where people can find out how much time they have left to live"--

Last summer on State Street : a novel by Toya Wolfe

Summer, 1999. Felicia "Fe Fe" Stevens lives with her mother and older teenaged brother in building 4950 of Chicago's Robert Taylor Homes. The high-rise is next in line to be torn down by the Chicago Housing Authority, and the neighborhood is beginning to fall down around them. Fe Fe is friends with Precious and Stacia, but when Fe Fe welcomes Tonya into their fold, the dynamics shift. Their friendships fray, as do the structures of the four girls' families. Fe Fe must make the painful decision of whom she can trust and whom she must let go. Decades later, remembering that fateful summer, Fe Fe tries to make sense of the grief and fraught bonds that still haunt her and attempts to reclaim the love that never left. -- adapted from jacket

The ballad of perilous graves by Alex Jennings

"In a fantastical version of New Orleans where music is magic, a battle for the city's soul brews between two young mages, a vengeful wraith, and one powerful song in this vibrant and imaginative debut contemporary fantasy"--

Nuclear family : a novel by Joseph Han

"Mr. and Mrs. Cho run a successful chain of Hawai'ian plate lunch restaurants, and their adult children are finding their way in the world: 21-year-old Grace is graduating in a few months, and 25-year-old Jacob is teaching English in Seoul. They're set to take over the restaurants when Umma and Appa retire. But when Jacob is captured by the South Korean government for attempting to run across the DMZ, the Chos' peaceful lives are shattered. What could possess Jacob to do something so stupid? The Chos don't know that Jacob has been literally possessed by his wily grandfather's ghost, don't know that Jacob is hiding his bisexuality and confusion over his identity as a Korean-American; they don't know that Grace is constantly stoned and plotting her escape from the island and her family's expectations. The children don't know the burdens of their immigrant parents. Joseph Han draws from Korean myth to explore the generational trauma experienced by families shattered by partition, and the impacts of American imperialism on the Korean peninsula. Nuclear Family is a spectacular debut novel-at once devastating and hilarious-about the memories that bind and divide families, and the yearning for home"--

Calling for a blanket dance : a novel by Oscar Hokeah

"A young Native American boy in a splintering family grasps for stability and love, making all the wrong choices until he finds a space of his own"--

The Bartender's Cure by Wesley Straton

"Wesley Straton's The Bartender's Cure is a fiercely relatable debut novel about an aspiring bartender at the perfect neighborhood bar, filled with cocktail recipes and bartending tips and tricks. Samantha Fisher definitely does not want to be a bartender. But after a breakup and breakdown in San Francisco, she decides to defer law school for a year to move to New York, crashing on her best friend's couch. When she is offered a job at Joe's Apothecary, a beloved neighborhood bar in Brooklyn, she tells herself it's only temporary. As Sam learns more about bartending and gets to know the service industry lifers and loyal regulars at Joe's, she is increasingly seduced by her new job. She finds acceptance in her tight-knit community and even begins a new relationship. But as the year draws to a close, Sam is increasingly pulled between the life she thought she wanted and the possibility of a different kind of future. When destructive cycles from her past threaten to consume her again, Sam must decide how muchshe's willing to let go of to finally belong"--

The scent of burnt flowers : a novel by Blitz Bazawule

"December 15, 1965, Alabama, the fateful night that triggers an avalanche of events that turn newly engaged couple Melvin and Bernadette into fugitives. A pitstop in the wrong part of town ends with blood on their hands. Suspecting that cops are already following them, Melvin realizes the only way they'll survive is if they flee the country. Bernadette, who's hiding a secret from her fiancae, reluctantly agrees. With a persistent FBI agent on their trail, they travel to Ghana to seek the help of Melvin'sold college friend, who happens to be Kwame Nkrumah, the country's embattled president. The couple's chance encounter with Ghana's most beloved Highlife musician, Kwesi, who's headed to play for the president, sparks a journey full of suspense, lust, magic, and danger as Nkrumah's regime crumbles around them. Traveling with Kwesi seems to be the perfect cover for the couple to go undetected. But Kwesi and Bernadette's undeniable attraction builds during their three-day trek, as does Melvin's staunch jealousy and erratic behavior. What was meant to be a fresh start quickly threatens both their relationship and their freedom. With the rogue FBI agent on their heels, Melvin, Bernadette, and Kwesi must confront each other and their secrets, setting off a series of cataclysmic events"--

A hundred other girls : a novel by Iman Hariri-Kia

"How far would you go to keep the job a hundred other girls are ready to take? Noora's life is a little off track. She's an aspiring writer and amateur blogger in New York-which is a nice way of saying that she tutors rich Upper East Side kids and is currently crashing on her sister's couch. But that's okay. Noora has Leila, who has always been her rock, and now she has another major influence to lean on: Vinyl magazine. The pages of Vinyl practically raised Noora, teaching her everything from how to properly insert a tampon to which political ideology she subscribes to. So when she lands a highly coveted job as assistant to Loretta James, Vinyl's iconic editor-in-chief, Noora can't believe her luck. Her only dream is to write for Vinyl, and now with herfoot firmly in the door and the Loretta James as her mentor, Noora is finally on the right path... or so she thinks. Loretta is an unhinged nightmare, insecure and desperate to remain relevant in an evolving media landscape she doesn't understand. Noora'sphone buzzes constantly with Loretta's bizarre demands, particularly with tasks Loretta hopes will undermine the success of Vinyl's wunderkind digital director Jade Aki. The reality of Noora's job is nothing like she expected, and a misguided crush on the hot IT guy only threatens to complicate things even more. But as Loretta and the old-school print team enter into a turf war with Jade and the woke-for-the-wrong-reasons digital team, Noora soon finds herself caught in the middle. And with her dream jobon the line, she'll need to either choose a side or form her own. Clever, incisive, and thoroughly fun, A Hundred Other Girls is an insider's take on the changing media industry, an ode to sisterhood, and a profound exploration of what it means to chaseyour dreams"--

Brother alive : a novel by Zain Khalid

"In 1990, three boys are born, unrelated but intertwined by circumstance: Dayo, Iseul, and Youssef. They are adopted as infants and live in a shared bedroom perched atop a mosque in one of Staten Island's most diverse and precarious neighborhoods, Coolidge. The three boys are an inseparable if conspicuous trio: Dayo is of Nigerian origin, Iseul is Korean, and Youssef indeterminately Middle Eastern. Nevertheless, Youssef is keeping a secret: he sees a hallucinatory double, an imaginary friend who seems absolutely real, a shapeshifting familiar he calls Brother. The boys' adoptive father, Imam Salim, is known for his radical sermons, but at home he is often absent, spending long evenings in his study with whiskey-laced coffee, writing letters to his formercompatriots back in Saudi Arabia. Like Youssef, he too has secrets, including the cause of his failing health and the truth about what happened to the boys' parents. When Imam Salim's path takes him back to Saudi Arabia, the boys will be forced to follow.There they will be captivated by an opulent, almost futuristic world, a linear city that seems to offer a more sustainable modernity than that of the West. But they will have to change if they want to survive in this new world, and the arrival of a creature as powerful as Brother will not go unnoticed. Stylistically brilliant and intellectually acute, Brother Alive is a remarkable novel of family, capitalism, power, sexuality, and the possibility of reunion for those who are broken"--

Florida woman : a novel by Deb (Novelist) Rogers

"Jamie is a Florida Woman. She grew up on the beach, thrives in humidity, has weathered more hurricanes than she can count, and now, after going viral for an outrageous crime she never meant to commit in the first place, she has the requisite headline to her name. But when the chance comes for her to escape viral infamy and imminent jail time by taking a community service placement at Atlas, a shelter for rescued monkeys, it seems like just the fresh start Jamie needs to finally get her life back on track -- until it's not. Something sinister stirs in the palmetto woods surrounding her cabin, and secrets lurk among the three beguiling women who run the shelter and affectionately take Jamie under their wing for the summer. She hears the distant screams of monkeys each night; the staff perform cryptic, lakeside sacrifices to honor Atlas; and the land, which has long been abandoned by citrus farmers and theme park developers alike, now proves to be dangerously, relentlessly untamed. As Jamie ventures deeper into the offbeat world and rituals of Atlas, her summer is soon set to inspire an even stranger Florida headline than she ever could've imagined." -- Jacket flap

Honey and spice : a novel by Bolu Babalola

"Sharp-tongued (and secretly soft-hearted) Kiki Banjo has just made a huge mistake. As an expert in relationship-evasion and the host of the popular student radio show Brown Sugar, she’s made it her mission to make sure the women of the African-Caribbean Society at Whitewell University do not fall into the mess of 'situationships', players, and heartbreak. But when the Queen of the Unbothered kisses Malakai Korede, the guy she just publicly denounced as 'The Wastemen of Whitewell,' in front of every Blackwellian on campus, she finds her show on the brink. They’re soon embroiled in a fake relationship to try and salvage their reputations and save their futures. Kiki has never surrendered her heart before, and a player like Malakai won’t be the one to change that, no matter how charming he is or how electric their connection feels. But surprisingly entertaining study sessions and intimate, late-night talks at old-fashioned diners force Kiki to look beyond her own presumptions. Is she ready to open herself up to something deeper?"--publisher's website

The long answer by Anna Hogeland

"A young woman gathers intimate stories about pregnancy, motherhood, and the nature of female relationships, in this profound and provocative novel"--

Body grammar by Jules Ohman

"To her own dismay, Lou is a natural model: tall, thin, captivatingly androgynous, and with a striking look. Out of nowhere, every agent in the Portland area wants to represent her. But Lou doesn't care for fashion, nor does she wish to be seen. Fresh outof high school, Lou's plan is to spend the summer taking photographs and hoping to catch the attention of Ivy, her close friend and secret crush. But when an afternoon hiking trip ends in a tragic accident, Lou finds herself lost, ridden with guilt, andunsure how to connect with her friends. Determined to find a purpose, Lou steps into the dizzying world of modeling auditions, commercial shoots, shockingly expensive haute couture, and runways in New York, Paris, and Milan. It's a whirlwind of learning how to walk, how to command her body and its movements, and how to manage her newfound fame. But in the dazzling flash of the camera and the thrill of seeing her face giant-size on billboards, Lou begins to worry that she's losing her identity-as a person,as an artist, and as a young woman still in love with the girl she left behind. A sharply observed and intimate story of grief and healing, doubt and self-acceptance set against the intense hyper-image-conscious industry of modeling and high fashion, Body Grammar shines with the anxieties of growing up and the often heartbreaking beauty of pursing love"--

The mutual friend : a novel by Carter Bays

"New York, 2015: The city is facing a series of bicycle accidents, the Mayor's approval ratings hang in the balance, and Alice, besieged by grief and regrets, wants desperately to take the MCAT and become a doctor, but she can't seem to sign up for the test. First and foremost there's her phone--which, like so many others, she can't seem to put down--but there's also her chaotic roommate Roxy, who works at the Mayor's office and whose thirst for adventure frequently gets Alice in trouble. Then there's hertech millionaire brother who is searching for meaning...meaning which may threaten to take him away from his wife, Pitterpat. And finally, the biggest distraction of all: Love. As the months go by, these characters, and more, slide in and out of each other's lives--they fall in-and-out of love, and they face various scandals. All the while, their mutual friend, the omniscient and mysterious narrator of the novel who seems to know all, watches over them, until the threads that tie these characters together come together in a wholly satisfying reveal. Filled with all of the warmth, humor, and heart that gained How I Met Your Mother its cult following, The Mutual Friend completely captures the choreography of navigating life and love in the chaos of contemporary life"--

Our wives under the sea by Julia Armfield

"Leah is changed. Months earlier, she left for a routine expedition, only this time her submarine sank to the sea floor. When she finally surfaces and returns home, her wife Miri knows that something is wrong. Barely eating and lost in her thoughts, Leahrotates between rooms in their apartment, running the taps morning and night. As Miri searches for answers, desperate to understand what happened below the water, she must face the possibility that the woman she loves is slipping from her grasp. By turnselegiac and furious, wry and heartbreaking, Our Wives Under the Sea is a genre-bending exploration of the depths of love and grief at the heart of a marriage"--

Old country by Matt Query

"Looking to lead a more peaceful life, former Marine Harry and his wife, Sasha, move to rural Idaho and buy an idyllic, remote ranch. Their nearest neighbors, Dan and Lucy Steiner, live over a mile away. But Dan and Lucy warn Harry and Sasha of a malevolent spirit that lives in the valley. Every season, the spirit haunts residents of that part of the Teton Valley in different and diabolical ways. Harry and Sasha are convinced isolation has driven their neighbors mad. That is, until the first of the manifestations appears, challenging everything Harry and Sasha thought they knew about the world we live in. As each season passes, the spirit grows stronger, and each encounter with it becomes more dangerous. Harry and Sasha must figure out how to make peace with the spirit...or be killed by it. Haunting and bone chilling, Old Country is a spellbinding debut in the horror genre"--

These impossible things : a novel by Salma El-Wardany

"It's always been Malak, Kees, and Jenna against the world. Since childhood, under the watchful eyes of their parents, aunties and uncles, they've learned to live their own lives alongside the expectations of being good Muslim women...With growing older and the stakes of love and life growing higher, the delicate balancing act between rebellion and religion is becoming increasingly difficult to navigate. As their lives begin to take different paths, Malak, Kees, and Jenna--now on the precipice of true adulthood--must find a way back to each other as they reconcile faith, family, and tradition with their own needs and desires."--

Immediate family by Ashley Nelson Levy

"A tender and fierce debut novel that explores of the bond between two siblings-one the biological child and one adopted-and the complexities of motherhood, infertility, race, and the many definitions of family"--

Groupies : a novel by Sarah Priscus

"It’s 1977, and Faun Novak is in love with rock ‘n’ roll. After her mother’s death, Faun, a naïve college dropout, grabs her Polaroid and hops a Greyhound to Los Angeles. In the City of Angels, she reconnects with her charismatic childhood friend Josie, now an up-and-coming model and muse. To make their reunion even sweeter, Josie is now dating Cal Holiday, the frontman of the superstar rock band Holiday Sun, and Faun is positively mesmerized. Except it’s not just the band she can’t get enough of. It’s also the proud groupies who support them in myriad ways. Among the groupies are: a doting high school girl at war with her mother; a drug-dealing wife and new mom who longs to be a star herself; and a cynical mover-and-shaker with a soft spot for Holiday Sun’s bassist. Faun obsessively photographs every aspect of this dazzling new world, struggling to balance her artistic ambitions with the band’s expectations. As her confidence grows for the first time in her life, her priorities shift. She becomes reckless with friendship, romance, her ethics, and her bank account. But just as everything is going great and her boring, old life is falling away, Faun realizes just how blind she has been to the darkest corners of this glamorous musical dreamland as the summer heats up and everything spirals out of control . . . " --publisher's website

An honest living by Dwyer Murphy

"A sharp and stylish debut from the editor-in-chief of CrimeReads in which an unwitting private eye gets caught up in a crime of obsession between a reclusive literary superstar and her bookseller husband, paying homage to the noir genre just as smartly as it reinvents it. After leaving behind the comforts and the shackles of a prestigious law firm, a restless attorney makes ends meet in mid-2000s Brooklyn by picking up odd jobs from a colorful assortment of clients. When a mysterious woman named Anna Reddick turns up at his apartment with ten thousand dollars in cash and asks him to track down her missing husband Newton, an antiquarian bookseller who she believes has been pilfering rare true crime volumes from her collection, he trusts it will be a quickand easy case. But when the real Anna Reddick-a magnetic but unpredictable literary prodigy-lands on his doorstep with a few bones to pick, he finds himself out of his depth, drawn into a series of deceptions involving Joseph Conrad novels, unscrupulousbooksellers, aspiring flAaneurs, and seedy real estate developers. Set against the backdrop of New York at the tail end of the analog era and immersed in the worlds of literature and bookselling, An Honest Living is a gripping story of artistic ambition,obsession, and the small crimes we commit against one another every day"--

The work wife : a novel by Alison B Hart

"Zanne Klein never planned to be a personal assistant to Hollywood royalty Ted and Holly Stabler. But a decade in at thirty-eight, that's exactly how she spends her days, earning six figures to make sure the movie mogul and his family have everything they could ever dream of and more. However, today is no ordinary day at the Stabler estate. Tonight, everyone who's anyone will be there for the Hollywood event of the season, and if the party’s a success, that chief of staff job Zanne's been chasing may soon be hers. Which means she can buy a house, give her girlfriend the life she deserves, pay off her student loans. Nothing's going to get in Zanne’s way—not disgruntled staff, not a nosy reporter, not even a runaway hostess. But when Ted’s former business partner, Phoebe Lee, unexpectedly shows up right before go time, Zanne suddenly has a catastrophe unfolding before her—one with explosive consequences. As the truth comes out and Zanne realizes how deeply entangled she's become in the Stablers' world, she must decide if the sacrifices she's made for the job are worth the moral price she has to pay. Told over the course of a single day and form three fierce perspectives, The Work Wife is a...novel about female ambition, complicity, privilege, and what happens when the brightest of stars aren't allowed to shine." --book jacket

Other names for love by Taymour Soomro

"A charged, hypnotic debut novel about a boy's life-changing summer in rural Pakistan: a story of fathers, sons, and the consequences of desire"--

Sirens & muses : a novel by Antonia Angress

"The lives of four artists are forever altered by the desires, protests, and ambitions that lure and unsettle them in this magnetic novel. It's 2011: America is in a deep recession and Occupy Wall Street is escalating. But at the elite Wrynn College of Art, students paint and sculpt in a rarified bubble, dreaming only of disproving the notion that in art, everything has already been done. Louisa Arceneaux is a thoughtful, observant nineteen-year-old when she transfers to Wrynn as a scholarship student, but she soon finds herself adrift in an environment that prizes novelty over beauty. Complicating matters is Louisa's unexpected attraction to her charismatic roommate, Karina Piontek, the preternaturally gifted but mercurial daughter of wealthy art collectors. Gradually, Louisa and Karina are drawn into an intense sensual and artistic relationship, one that forces them to confront their deepest desires and fears. But Karina also can't shake her fascination with Preston Utley, a senior and anti-capitalist Internet provocateur publicly feuding with visiting professor and political painter Robert Belfer-a once-controversial figurehead seeking to regain cultural relevance, and perhaps a spotlight. When Preston concocts an explosive hoax, the fates of all four artists are upended as each is unexpectedly thrust into the cutthroat New York art world. Now, all must struggle to find new identities in art, in society, and amongst each other. In the process, they must find either their most authentic terms of life-of success, failure, and joy-or risk losing themselves altogether. With mesmerizing grace and earnest beauty, Sirens & Muses wrestles with questions of selfhood and ambition, art and protest, and new love. At the same time, with a canny, critical eye, the novel upends notions of class, money, art, youth, and a generation's fight to own their future"--

1,000 coils of fear : a novel by Olivia 1985- author Wenzel

A young woman attends a play about the fall of the Berlin Wall--and realizes she is the only Black person in the audience. She and her boyfriend hang out by a lake outside Berlin--and four neo-Nazis show up. In New York, she is having sex with a stranger on the night of the 2016 presidential election--and wakes up to panicked texts from her friends in Germany about Donald Trump’s unlikely victory. Engaging in a witty Q&A with herself--or is it her alter ego?--she takes stock of our rapidly changing times, sometimes angry, sometimes amused, sometimes afraid, and always passionate. And she tells the story of her family: her mother, a punk in former East Germany who never had the freedom she dreamed of. Her Angolan father, who returned to his home country before she was born to start a second family

Patricia wants to cuddle : a novel by Samantha Allen

When the final four women in competition for an aloof, if somewhat sleazy, bachelor's heart arrive on a mysterious island in the Pacific Northwest, they mentally prepare themselves for another week of extreme sleep deprivation, invasive interviews, and of course, the salacious drama that viewers nationwide tune in to eagerly devour. Each woman came on "The Catch" for her own reasons--brand sponsorships, followers, and yes, even love--and they've all got their eyes steadfastly trained on their respective prizes. Enter Patricia, a temperamental, but woefully misunderstood local, living alone in the dark, verdant woods and desperate to forge a connection of her own. As the contestants perform for the cameras that surround them, Patricia watches from her place in the shadows, a queer specter haunting the bombastic display of heterosexuality before her. But when the cast and crew at last make her acquaintance atop the island's tallest and most desolate peak, they soon realize that if they're to have any hope of making it to the next Elimination Event, they'll first have to survive the night

Mother in the dark by Kayla Maiuri

"A novel about family secrets and a volatile relationship between a mother and her daughters. When Anna's sister calls with an urgent message, Anna doesn't return the call. She knows it's about their mother. Growing up in working class Boston in an Italian American family, Anna's childhood was sparse but comfortable-filled with homemade pasta sauce and a close-knit neighborhood. Anna and her sisters are devoted to their mother, orbiting her like the sun, trying to keep up with her loving but mercurial nature as she bounces between tenderness and bitterness. When their father gets a new job outside the city, the family is tossed unceremoniously into a middle-class suburban existence. Anna's mother is suddenly adrift, and the darkness lurking inside her expands until it threatens to explode. Her daughters, trapped with her in the new house, isolated, must do everything they can to keep her from unraveling. Alternating between childhood and a single weekend in Anna's twenties, in which she receives a shattering call about her mother and threatens to blow up her own precariously constructed new life in New York, Mother in the Dark asks whether we can ever really go back home when the idea of home was so unstable. Whether we can escape that instability or accept that our personalities are built around the defenses we put up. Maiuri is a master at revealing the fragile horrors of domestic family life and how the traumas of the past shape the present and generations of women. A story about sisterhood, the complications of class, and the chains of inheritance between mothers and daughters, Mother in the Dark delivers an unvarnished portrayal of a young woman consumed by her past and a family teetering on the edge of a knife"--

The book eaters by Sunyi Dean

"Sunyi Dean's The Book Eaters is a contemporary fantasy debut. It's a story of motherhood, sacrifice, and hope; of queer identity and learning to accept who you are; of gilded lies and the danger of believing the narratives others create for you. Out on the Yorkshire Moors lives a secret line of people for whom books are food, and who retain all of a book's content after eating it. To them, spy novels are a peppery snack; romance novels are sweet and delicious. Eating a map can help them remember destinations, and children, when they misbehave, are forced to eat dry, musty pages from dictionaries. Devon is part of The Family, an old and reclusive clan of book eaters. Her brothers grow up feasting on stories of valor and adventure, and Devon-like all otherbook eater women-is raised on a carefully curated diet of fairytales and cautionary stories. But real life doesn't always come with happy endings, as Devon learns when her son is born with a rare and darker kind of hunger-not for books, but for human minds"--

A map for the missing : a novel by Belinda Huijuan Tang

"An epic, mesmerizing debut novel set against a rapidly changing post-Cultural Revolution China that reckons with the costs of pursuing one's dreams and the lives we leave behind"--

The last Karankawas : a novel by Kimberly Garza

"A kaleidoscopic, emotionally charged debut about a tight-knit community of Mexican and Filipino families on the Texas coast. Unflinching, lyrical, and singular, The Last Karankawas is a portrait of America rarely witnessed, where browning palm trees andoily waters mark the forefront of ecological change. It is a deeply imagined exploration of familial inheritance, human perseverance, and the histories we assign to ourselves, establishing Kimberly Garza as a brilliant new literary voice"--

The making of her : a novel by Bernadette Jiwa

In 1996 Dublin, when Joan Egan receives a letter from Emma, the daughter whom she gave up for adoption, asking for a life-or-death favor, she, grappling with guilt, must confront her crumbling marriage and simmering tensions with her other daughter to keep her family together before it is too late

All good people here by Ashley Flowers

"In this propulsive debut novel from the host of the #1 true crime podcast Crime Junkie, a journalist uncovers her hometown's dark secrets when she becomes obsessed with the unsolved murder of her childhood neighbor-and the disappearance of another girl twenty years later. You can't ever know for sure what happens behind closed doors .... Everyone from Wakarusa, Indiana, remembers the infamous case of January Jacobs, who was discovered in a ditch hours after her family awoke to find her gone. Margot Davies was six at the time, the same age as January-and they were next-door neighbors. In the twenty years since, Margot has grown up, moved away, become a big-city journalist. But she's always been haunted by the fear that it could've been her. And the worstpart is, January's killer has never been brought to justice. When Margot returns home to help care for her uncle after a diagnosis of early-onset dementia, it all feels like walking into a time capsule. Wakarusa is exactly how she remembered-genial, stifled, secretive. Then news breaks about five-year-old Natalie Clark from the next town over, who's gone missing under eerily similar circumstances. With all the old feelings rushing back, Margot vows to find Natalie and solve January's murder once and for all. But the police, the family, the townspeople-they all seem to be hiding something. And the deeper Margot digs into Natalie's disappearance, the more resistance she encounters, and the colder January's case feels. Could the killer still be out there? Could it be the same person who took Natalie? And what will it cost to finally discover what truly happened that night? Twisty, chilling, and intense, All Good People Here is a searing tale that asks: What are your neighbors really capable of when they think no one is watching?"--

My government means to kill me by Rasheed Newson

"A fierce and riveting queer coming-of-age story, following the personal and political awakening of a young gay Black man in 1980s NYC, from the television drama writer and producer of The Chi, Narcos, and Bel-Air Born into a wealthy Black Indianapolis family, Earl 'Trey' Singleton III leaves his overbearing parents and their expectations behind by running away to New York City with only a few dollars in his pocket. In the City, Trey meets up with a cast of characters that change his life forever--from civil rights leader Bayard Rustin, who he meets in a Harlem bathhouse, to his landlord, Fred Trump, who he clashes with and outfoxes. He volunteers at a renegade home hospice for AIDS patients, and after being put to the test by gay rights activist Larry Kramer and civil rights leader Dorothy Cotton, becomes a founding member of the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT UP). Along the way Trey attempts to navigate past traumas and searches for ways to maintain familial relationships--all while seeking the meaning of life in the midst of so much death. Vibrant, humorous, and fraught with entanglements, Rasheed Newson's My Government Means to Kill Me is an exhilarating, fast-paced, coming-of-age story that lends itself to a larger discussion about what it means for a young, gay, Black man in the mid-1980s to come to terms with his role in the midst of a political and social reckoning"--

Perish : a novel by LaToya Watkins

"LaToya Watkins's PERISH follows four members of the Turner clan: Julie B., a woman who regrets her wasted youth and the time spent under Helen Jean's thumb; Alex, a police officer grappling with a dark and twisted past; Jan, mother of two, who yearns togo to school and leave Jerusalem and all of its trauma behind for good; And Lydia, a woman whose marriage is falling apart because her body can't seem to stay pregnant; as they're called home to say goodbye to their mother and grandmother, Helen Jean. Told through alternating chapters, and set in a vividly drawn, tight-knit rural, Black Texan community, PERISH explores the effects of inherited trauma and intra-generational violence and pain as the family's "reunion" unearths long-kept secrets and forces each member to ask themselves important questions about who is deserving of forgiveness and who bears the cross of blame. With powerful, sharp prose and a sense of place that is wholly immersive, offering a nuanced look into black communites in Texas, thisbeautiful yet heart-wrenching debut novel will pull you in and drop you into the world LaToya has masterfully crafted within the pages"--

Dirt Creek by Hayley Scrivenor

"In Hayley Scrivenor's Dirt Creek, a small-town debut mystery described as The Dry meets Everything I Never Told You, a girl goes missing and a community falls apart and comes together. When twelve-year-old Esther disappears on the way home from school ina small town in rural Australia, the community is thrown into a maelstrom of suspicion and grief. As Detective Sergeant Sarah Michaels arrives in town during the hottest spring in decades and begins her investigation, Esther's tenacious best friend, Ronnie, is determined to find Esther and bring her home. When schoolfriend Lewis tells Ronnie that he saw Esther with a strange man at the creek the afternoon she went missing, Ronnie feels she is one step closer to finding her. But why is Lewis refusing to speak to the police? And who else is lying about how much they know about what has happened to Esther? Punctuated by a Greek chorus, which gives voice to the remaining children of the small, dying town, this novel explores the ties that bind, what we try and leave behind us, and what we can never outrun, while never losing sight of the question of what happened to Esther, and what her loss does to a whole town"--

Face by Joma West

"In Joma West's Face, Margaret Atwood meets Kazuo Ishiguro in this sci-fi domestic drama that reimagines race and class in a genetically engineered society fed by performative fame. How much is your Face worth? Schuyler and Madeleine Burroughs have the perfect Face-rich and powerful enough to assure their dominance in society. But in SchAddie's household, cracks are beginning to appear. Schuyler is bored and taking risks. Maddie is becoming brittle, her happiness ever more fleeting. And their menial is fighting the most bizarre compulsions. In Face, skin color is an aesthetic choice designed by professionals, consent is a pre-checked box on the path to social acceptance, and your online profile isn't just the most important thing-it's the only thing"--

All this could be different by Sarah Thankam Mathews

"From an exhilarating new voice comes a dazzling debut novel about an Indian-American immigrant building a life for herself in the Midwest-a brilliant and utterly absorbing story of love, friendship, and precarity in 21st century America Graduating into the trough of yet another American recession, Sneha is one of the fortunate ones. However mind-numbing the work, her entry-level consulting job is the key that unlocks every door: she can pick up the check for her growing circle of friends in Milwaukee, send money home to her parents in India, and dare to envision a stable future for herself. She even begins dating who she has long wanted-women-and soon develops a crush on Marina, a beautiful dancer who always seems just out of reach. But then, as quickly as it came together, Sneha's life begins to fall apart. Her job and apartment are both suddenly and maddeningly in jeopardy, and closely-guarded secrets and buried traumas resurface, sending her spiraling into shame and isolation. When a chance encounter with Marina ignites an electric romance, it looks like salvation-if only they can overcome the lie that threatens to undo the trust they've built. A novel of working lives, friendships, and self-discovery in flux, All This Could Be Different is a wry, intimate, and redemptive exploration of the freedom and fragility of youth, and what it means to devote oneself to others in search of a better world"--

Moth : a novel by Melody Razak

"The saga of one family's trials through India's tumultuous partition-when Pakistan split from India-exploring its impact on women, what it means to be othered, and the redemptive power of family"--

The fortunes of jaded women : a novel by Carolyn Huynh

"It started with their ancestor, Oanh, who dared to leave her marriage for true love—so a fearsome Vietnamese witch cursed Oanh and her descendants so that they would never find love or happiness, and the Duong women would give birth to daughters, never sons.​ Oanh’s current descendant Mai Nguyen knows this curse well. She’s divorced, and after an explosive disagreement a decade ago, she’s estranged from her younger sisters, Minh Pham (the middle and the mediator) and Khuyen Lam (the youngest who swears she just runs humble coffee shops and nail salons, not Little Saigon’s underground). Though Mai’s three adult daughters, Priscilla, Thuy, and Thao, are successful in their careers (one of them is John Cho’s dermatologist!), the same can’t be said for their love lives. Mai is convinced they might drive her to an early grave. Desperate for guidance, she consults Auntie Hua, her trusted psychic in Hawaii, who delivers an unexpected prediction: this year, her family will witness a marriage, a funeral, and the birth of a son. This prophecy will reunite estranged mothers, daughters, aunts, and cousins—for better or for worse." --publisher's website

All that's left unsaid : a novel by Tracey Lien

"A deeply moving and unflinching debut following a young Vietnamese-Australian woman who returns home to her family in the wake of her brother's shocking murder, determined to discover what happened--a dramatic exploration of the intricate bonds and obligations of friendship, family, and community. Just let him go. These are the words Ky Tran will forever regret. The words she spoke when her parents called to ask if they should let her younger brother Denny out to celebrate his high school graduation with friends. That night, Denny--optimistic, guileless, brilliant Denny--is brutally murdered inside a busy restaurant in the Sydney suburb of Cabramatta, a refugee enclave facing violent crime, an indifferent police force, and the worst heroin epidemic in Australian history. Returning home to Cabramatta for the funeral, Ky learns that the police are stumped by Denny's case: a dozen people were at Lucky 8 restaurant when Denny died, but each of the bystanders claim to have seen nothing. Desperately hoping that understanding what happened might ease her suffocating guilt, Ky sets aside her grief and determines to track down the witnesses herself. With each encounter, she peels back another layer of the place that shaped her and Denny, exposing the seeds of violence that were planted well before that fateful celebration dinner: by colonialism, by the war in Vietnam, and by the choices they've all made to survive"--Provided by publisher

Thistlefoot : a novel by GennaRose Nethercott

Bellatine, a young woodworker, and Isaac, a wayfaring street performer and con artist have been estranged since childhood, separated both by resentment and by wide miles of American highway. But when they learn that they are to receive an inheritance, the siblings agree to meet--only to discover that their bequest isn’t land or money, but something far stranger: a sentient house on chicken legs. Thistlefoot, as the house is called, has arrived from the Yagas’ ancestral home outside Kyiv--but not alone. A sinister figure known only as the Longshadow Man has tracked it to American shores, bearing with him violent secrets from the past: fiery memories that have hidden in Isaac and Bellatine’s blood for generations. As the Yaga siblings embark with Thistlefoot on a final cross-country tour of their family’s traveling theater show, the Longshadow Man follows in relentless pursuit, seeding destruction in his wake. Ultimately, time, magic, and legacy must collide--erupting in a powerful conflagration to determine who gets to remember the past and craft a new future

The witch and the tsar by Olesya Salnikova Gilmore

"In this stunning debut novel, the maligned and immortal witch of legend known as Baba Yaga will risk all to save Russia and her people from Tsar Ivan the Terrible-and the dangerous gods who seek to drive the twisted hearts of men. As a half-goddess possessing magic, Yaga is used to living on her own, her prior entanglements with mortals having led to heartbreak. She mostly keeps to her hut in the woods, where those in need of healing seek her out, even as they spread rumors about her supposed cruelty andwicked spells. But when her old friend Anastasia-now the wife of the Tsar, and suffering from a mysterious illness-arrives in her forest desperate for her protection, Yaga realizes the fate of all of Russia is tied to Anastasia's. Yaga must step out of the shadows to protect the land she loves. As she travels to Moscow, Yaga witnesses a sixteenth century Russia on the brink of chaos. Tsar Ivan-soon to become Ivan the Terrible-grows more volatile by the day, and Yaga believes the Tsaritsa is being poisoned by an unknown enemy. But what Yaga cannot know is that Ivan is being manipulated by powers far older and more fearsome than anyone can imagine. Olesya Salnikova Gilmore weaves a rich tapestry of mythology and Russian history, reclaiming and reinventingthe infamous Baba Yaga, and bringing to life a vibrant and tumultuous Russia, where old gods and new tyrants vie for power. This fierce and compelling novel draws from the timeless lore to create a heroine for the modern day, fighting to save her countryand those she loves while also finding her true purpose as a goddess, a witch, and a woman"--

Sweet, soft, plenty rhythm : a novel by Laura Warrell

"An ensemble-cast novel about the perennial temptations of dangerous love, following a jazz musician and the multiple women-some charmed by him, others scorned-who find the power of their own voices in this thrilling debut It's 2013, and Circus Palmer, aforty-year-old Boston-based trumpet player and old-school ladies man, lives for his music, and refuses to be tied down. Before a gig in Miami, he learns that the woman who is secretly closest to his heart, the free-spirited drummer Maggie, is pregnant byhim. He flees instead of facing the necessary conversation, setting off a chain of interlocking revelations from the various women in his life. Most notable among them is his teenage daughter Koko, who idolizes him; she's awakening to her own sexuality even as her mentally fragile mother struggles to overcome her long failed marriage and rejection by Circus. Delivering a lush orchestration of diverse female voices, Warrell spins a provocative, soulful and gripping story of passion and risk, fathers and daughters, wives and single women, and finally hope and reconciliation, in answer to the age-old question: how do we find belonging when love is unrequited?"--

The means by Amy Fusselman

"The debut novel from "wholly original" (Vogue) memoirist Amy Fusselman, a tragicomic family saga that skewers contemporary issues of money, motherhood, and class through a well-to-do woman's quest to buy a Hamptons beach house"--

Leech by Hiron Ennes

"MEET THE CURE FOR THE HUMAN DISEASE "A wonderful new entry to Gothic science fiction, impeccably clever and atmospheric. Think Wuthering Heights... with worms!" -Tamsyn Muir A surreal and horrifying debut, Leech defies our understanding of identity, heredity, and bodily autonomy. In an isolated chateau, as far north as north goes, the baron's doctor has died. The doctor's replacement has a mystery to solve: discovering how the Institute lost track of one of its many bodies. For hundreds of years the Interprovincial Medical Institute has grown by taking root in young minds and shaping them into doctors, replacing every human practitioner of medicine. The Institute is here to help humanity, to cure and to cut, to cradle and protect the species from the apocalyptic horrors their ancestors unleashed. In the frozen north, the Institute's body will discover a competitor for its rung at the top of the evolutionary ladder. A parasite is spreading through the baron's castle, already a dark pit of secrets, lies, violence, and fear. The two will make war on the battlefield of the body. Whichever wins, humanity will lose again"--

Diary of a void by Emi Yagi

"When thirty-four-year-old Ms. Shibata gets a new job in Tokyo to escape sexual harassment at her old one, she finds that, as the only woman at her new workplace-a company that manufactures cardboard tubes-she is expected to do all the menial tasks. One day she announces that she can't clear away her colleagues' dirty cups-because she's pregnant and the smell nauseates her. The only thing is . . . Ms. Shibata is not pregnant. Pregnant Ms. Shibata doesn't have to serve coffee to anyone. Pregnant Ms. Shibata isn't forced to work overtime. Pregnant Ms. Shibata rests, watches TV, takes long baths, and even joins an aerobics class for expectant mothers. But pregnant Ms. Shibata also has a nine-month ruse to keep up. Helped along by towel-stuffed shirts and a diary app on which she can log every stage of her "pregnancy," she feels prepared to play the game for the long haul. Before long, though, the hoax becomes all-absorbing, and the boundary between her lie and her life begins to dissolve. A surreal and wryly humorous cultural critique, Diary of a Void is bound to become a landmark in feminist world literature"--

Paul by Daisy Lafarge

"A sharp, timely debut about a young woman's toxic relationship with an older man and her battle to free herself from the suffocating expectation to be "good." When personal scandal forces her to leave Paris, Frances, a young British graduate student, travels to southern France one summer to volunteer on a farm. Almost as soon as she arrives, she is pulled into a relationship with the farm's enigmatic owner, Paul, a well-traveled older artist. Alone in a foreign country, drawn into his orbit and eventually tangled up in his sheets, Frances starts to lose herself in Paul's easy, experienced charm. Yet over the course of three intense weeks, as she discovers more about Paul and the people surrounding him, she realizes that she's caught in an emotional battle of wills that threatens to stifle her voice and crush her autonomy. Coming to terms with what's happening to her and wrenching control from an older man with dark secrets of his own are at the heart of this compelling, unsettling novel. By turns the story of how a modern woman finds the inner strength to regain her sense of self and a fascinating exploration of the power dynamics between men and women, Paul is a deeply human novel that holds a mirror up to many of the issues that people confront today"--

Lungfish by Meghan Gilliss

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National Medal Recipient of the National Medal, the nation's highest honor for libraries.