Literary Fiction | Prepub Alert, June 2024 Titles

Rachel Cusk, Akwaeke Emezi, and David Nicholls have new books, while Clare Sestanovich debuts her first novel.








Chambers, Essie. Swift River. S. & S. Jun. 2024. 304p. ISBN 9781668027912. $27.99. F

Chambers debuts with a story set in the summer of 1987, featuring Diamond Newberry, a teen who thinks, after her father disappears, that she is the only Black person in Swift River. A letter from an unknown relative connects her to a legacy of African American Newberry women—and to herself and family.

Cusk, Rachel. Parade. Farrar. Jun. 2024. 176p. ISBN 9780374610043. $27. F

Whitbread and Somerset Maugham Award winner and Guggenheim Fellow Cusk returns after Second Place with a novel the publisher is positioning as demolishing the conventions of storytelling. It is about art and family, seeing and being, and follows an artist, a mother, siblings, and more.

Emezi, Akwaeke. Little Rot. Riverhead. Jun. 2024. 288p. ISBN 9780525541639. $29. F

National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 author Emezi’s (You Made a Fool of Death with Your Beauty) newest is set over a single weekend and limns tropes from the thriller genre. Five characters try to survive after their worlds collide as they spin out from a sex party in Kuala Lumpur.

Kilroy, Claire. Soldier Sailor. Scribner. Jun. 2024. 240p. ISBN 9781668051801. $26. F

Rooney Prize for Irish Literature winner Kilroy explores the trauma, strain, and joy of motherhood, following her 2012 novel The Devil I Know. The Soldier of the title is an exhausted mom, parent to her toddler son Sailor. His terrible twos—and his very existence—are wreaking havoc.

Murrin, Alan. The Coast Road. HarperVia. Jun. 2024. 320p. ISBN 9780063336520. $28. F

Debuter Murrin mines the rocky path women walked in Ireland in the ’90s when divorce was illegal. Colette Crowley has an affair, and her husband denies her access to her children. Neighbor Izzy Keaveney offers help—with consequences for all. With a 150K-copy first printing and TV rights optioned.

Nicholls, David. You Are Here. Harper. Jun. 2024. 368p. ISBN 9780063394056. $30. F

Booker Prize–longlisted best seller Nicholls (One Day and Us—both with series adaptations) takes two characters on a 10-day hike, Michael adrift and reclusive, Marnie stuck and removed. Expecting nothing, and a bit hopeless, they come together, powering a deeply hopeful, funny, and heartwarming love story.

O’Neill, Joseph. Godwin. Pantheon. Jun. 2024. 288p. ISBN 9780593701324. $28. F

O’Neill’s Netherland won the PEN/Faulkner Award, and The Dog was Booker Prize longlisted. He returns, after a nearly 10-year break, with a novel that considers the legacy of colonialism as a pair of brothers, one a UK soccer agent, travel the world in search of an elusive African soccer prodigy who could be the next Messi—and could change the brothers’ fortunes.

Obioma, Chigozie. The Road to the Country. Hogarth: Crown. Jun. 2024. 384p. ISBN 9780593596975. $29. F

Two-time Booker Prize finalist (for The Fishermen and An Orchestra of Minorities) Obioma’s third book traces the history of two brothers and is set against the backdrop of the 1960s civil war in Nigeria. When his brother vanishes, Kunle begins an odyssey of redemption—through war and gilded by myth.

Perrin, Valérie. Forgotten on Sunday. Europa Editions. Jun. 2024. 304p. tr. from French by Hildegarde Serle. ISBN 9798889660187. $28. F

Perrin’s previous book, Fresh Water for Flowers, sold over a million copies worldwide. Here she writes about an unlikely friendship that develops between 21-year-old Justine and the almost-100-year-old Hélène, a resident at the retirement home where Justine works, as they share their stories and confront their pasts.

Phillips, Julia. Bear. Hogarth: Crown. Jun. 2024. 304p. ISBN 9780525520436. $28. F

Following up her debut, Disappearing Earth, which was a National Book Award finalist and one of NYT’s 10 Best of the Year, Phillips tells a tale of two sisters barely getting by and dreaming of escaping their home on an island off the coast of Washington. But their dreams are upended when a bear appears.

Sestanovich, Clare. Ask Me Again. Knopf. Jun. 2024. 320p. ISBN 9780593318119. $28. F

Sestanovich is a National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 honoree, and her story collection Objects of Desire was a PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize finalist. Her debut novel is a NYC coming-of-age story about two friends, drawn together despite their different personalities and backgrounds as they make their way in the world.

Talty, Morgan. Fire Exit. Tin House. Jun. 2024. 256p. ISBN 9781959030553. $28.95. F

Talty makes his full-length fiction debut after winning multiple awards for his story collection Night of the Living Rez. On the Penobscot Reservation in Maine, Charles can only watch as his daughter Elizabeth grows up without knowing he is her father. After she is gone for weeks, he considers confessing his secret.

Thomas, Joseph Earl. God Bless You, Otis Spunkmeyer. Grand Central. Jun. 2024. 224p. ISBN 9781538740989. $27. F

Thomas’s fiction debut delves into issues of race and class in the U.S., following his well-received memoir Sink. Returning from deployment in the Iraq War, Joseph Thomas tries to adjust to civilian life in Philadelphia as he pursues a degree, works as an EMT, and navigates family relationships.

Vercher, John. Devil Is Fine. Celadon. Jun. 2024. 272p. ISBN 9781250894489. $28.99. F

Vercher’s Three-Fifths and After the Lights Go Out both made best-book lists. Here he explores identity and reconciliation with the past. Reeling from the death of his son, the novel’s biracial narrator reckons with the legacy of an inheritance—land that turns out to be a former plantation. With a 100K-copy first printing.

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