Friends, Enemies, Family, & Lovers: Pop Fiction, Jul. 2021, Pt. 3 | Prepub Alert

Big-name authors and 100,000-copy first-printing newbies provide top summer reading.

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Christie, Annette. The Rehearsals. Little, Brown. Jul. 2021. 320p. ISBN 9780316592994. $28. Downloadable. WOMEN’S

Clancy, Christina. Shoulder Season. St. Martin’s. Jul. 2021. 336p. ISBN 9781250239631. $27.99. CD. WOMEN’S

Clements, Mikaella & Onjuli Datta. The View Was Exhausting. Grand Central. Jul. 2021. 336p. ISBN 9781538734902. $27. Downloadable. ROMANCE/MULTICULTURAL & INTERRACIAL

Gelman, Laurie. Yoga Pant Nation. Holt. Jul. 2021. 256p. ISBN 9781250777577. $26.99. WOMEN’S

Guillory, Jasmine. While We Were Dating. Berkley. Jul. 2021. 352p. ISBN 9780593100851. pap. $16. Downloadable. ROMANCE/MULTICULTURAL & INTERRACIAL

McCall Smith, Alexander. The Man with the Silver Saab: A Detective Varg Novel. Pantheon. Jul. 2021. 240p. ISBN 9780593316108. $26.95. HUMOROUS

Macomber, Debbie. It’s Better This Way. Ballantine. Jul. 2021. 320p. ISBN 9781984818782. $27. lrg. prnt. CD/downloadable. ROMANCE/CONTEMPORARY

Shepard, Sara. Safe in My Arms. Dutton. Jul. 2021. 336p. ISBN 9781524746780. pap. $16. Downloadable. WOMEN’S

Singh, Nalini. Last Guard. Berkley. Jul. 2021. 384p. ISBN 9781984803658. $27. ROMANCE/PARANORMAL

Straczynski, J. Michael. Together We Will Go. Gallery: Scout: S. & S. Jul. 2012. 304p. ISBN 9781982142582. $27. PSYCHOLOGICAL

Yoder, Rachel. Nightbitch. Doubleday. Jul. 2021. 256p. ISBN 9780385546812. $25.96. Downloadable. WOMEN’S

In debuter Christie’s The Rehearsals, Megan Givens and Tom Prescott plan to call off their wedding after a calamitous rehearsal dinner but wake up the next morning in a time loop, endlessly repeating the event until maybe they get it right (100,000-copy first printing). Clancy’s Shoulder Season reveals what happens when shy young church organist Sherri Taylor switches paths after her parents’ death to become a Playboy bunny (100,000-copy first printing). Leading Black actress Whitman ("Win") Tagore and playboy Leo Milanowski have long staged a romance so that Win can keep Hollywood at bay, but things are about to change in The View Was Exhausting, by Berlin-based wives Clements and Datta, from Australia and England, respectively (30,000-copy first printing). Class Mom, You’ve Been Volunteered, and now Yoga Pant Nation: Gelman brings back Jen Dixon to deal with her son’s fifth-grade travails, spin-teacher training, and her husband’s ex-wife (75,000-copy first printing). The New York Times best-selling Guillory’s While We Were Dating features Ben Stephens, Theo’s brother from The Wedding Party, who trying to stay strictly professional while working with a famous actress. Billed as humor, McCall Smith’s The Man with the Silver Saab brings back the detectives of Malmo’s Department of Sensitive Crimes for a third outing. In Macomber’s stand-alone It’s Better This Way, Julia Jones has sold her business, moved into a condominium, and put her marital breakup behind her, but she isn’t looking for love—until handsome resident Heath comes along. Pretty Little Liars author Shepard’s Safe in My Arms stars three out-of-the-loop moms who try to discover why the principal of the children’s elite California preschool was attacked. Fifth in the “Psy-Changeling Trinity,” Singh’s Last Guard features her psychic characters struggling to survive as a new darkness descends upon them. In Hugo/Bradbury/Eisner winner Straczynski’s latest, an unsuccessful young writer pulls together a crew of equally disaffected folks, buys an old bus, and proclaims Together We Will Go—straight to California, where they will then drive off a cliff (100,000-copy first printing). In debuter Yoder’s one-of-a-kind Nightbitch, a woman who’s convinced that she is turning into a dog ferrets out answer in A Field Guide to Magical Women and links up with a group of mothers with their own secret persuasions. Already optioned for film.

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Barbara Hoffert

Barbara Hoffert (, @BarbaraHoffert on Twitter) is Editor, LJ Book Review; past chair of the Materials Selection Committee of the RUSA (Reference and User Services Assn.) division of the American Library Association; and past president of the National Book Critics Circle, to which she has just been reelected.

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