Prepub Alert May 2022: The Complete List

All the May 2022 Prepub Alerts in one place, plus a downloadable spreadsheet of all titles from every post.







The May 2022 Prepub Alert posts are also available as a downloadable spreadsheet of titles.



Armstrong, Kelley. A Rip Through Time. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. May 2022. 352p. ISBN 9781250820006. $27.99. CD. MYSTERY/TIME TRAVEL

Atherton, Nancy. Aunt Dimity and the Enchanted Cottage. Viking. May 2022. 256p. ISBN 9780593295779. $26. CD. MYSTERY/COZY

Carcaterra, Lorenzo. Nonna Maria and the Case of the Missing Bride. Bantam. May 2022. 272p. ISBN 9780399177620. $26. Downloadable. MYSTERY

Haines, Carolyn. Lady of Bones: A Sarah Booth Delaney Mystery. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. May 2022. 368p. ISBN 9781250833723. $26.99. MYSTERY/COZY

Jónasson , Ragnar. Outside. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. May 2022. 320p. ISBN 9781250833457. $27.99. MYSTERY/INTERNATIONAL

Klingborg, Brian. Wild Prey: An Inspector Lu Fei Mystery. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. May 2022. 304p. ISBN 9781250779076. $27.99. MYSTERY/INTERNATIONAL

Lupica, Mike. Robert B. Parker’s Revenge Tour. Putnam. May 2022. 352p. ISBN 9780593419762. $28. CD/downloadable. MYSTERY

Paretsky, Sara. Overboard. Morrow. May 2022. 304p. ISBN 9780063010888. $28.99. lrg. prnt. MYSTERY

Patterson, James & Maxine Paetro. 22 Seconds. Little, Brown. (Women’s Murder Club). May 2022. 400p. ISBN 9780316499378. $29. lrg. prnt. CD. MYSTERY

Weaver, Ashley. The Key to Deceit. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. May 2022. 288p. ISBN 9781250780508. $27.99. MYSTERY

In a series starter from the ever-popular Armstrong, homicide detective Mallory is in 2019 Edinburgh when she experiences A Rip Through Time and winds up in one of the city’s alleyways in 1869, inhabiting the body of strangled-if-not-quite-dead housemaid Catriona Thomson and soon hunting for a killer (50,000-copy first printing). In Atherton's Aunt Dimity and the Enchanted Cottage, the redoubtable sleuth and her English-village neighbors fail in their attempt to befriend standoffish newcomer Crispin Windle until they discover the ruins of a Victorian woolen mill—and the graves of children who worked there, whom they seek to identify (30,000-copy first printing; originally scheduled for July 2021). In Nonna Maria and the Case of the Missing Bride, crusty but beloved widow Nonna Maria—who lives on the isle of Ischia in the Gulf of Naples and was inspired by the No. 1 New York Times best-selling Carcaterra’s grandmother—intervenes when a young bride-to-be declares that she’s afraid of her fiancé. In Haines’s Lady of Bones, Mississippi-based Sarah Booth Delaney of the Delaney Detective Agency is attending a party alit with jack-o-lanterns when she’s approached by a woman seeking her vanished daughter, who has been investigating the disappearance of young women in New Orleans every Halloween for the last five years (40,000-copy first printing). The internationally best-selling author of the “Dark Iceland” and “Hulda” series, Jónasson sets his new standalone during an Icelandic blizzard, with four frantic friends sheltering in an abandoned hunting lodge and facing a reignited tragedy that likely makes them wish they were all Outside (50,000-copy first printing). In Klingborg’s Wild Prey, Inspector Lu Fei of the Chinese Police travels to a remote region of Myanmar to find a missing 15-year-old girl in a case involving the illegal trafficking of exotic animals (50,000-copy first printing). In Robert B. Parker’s Revenge Tour, Lupica assigns PI Sunny Randall the thankless task of investigating actress friend Melanie Joan Hall when Melanie’s manager turns up dead, her bank account looks to be wiped out, and details of her past suddenly seem more imagined than real. In Paretsky’s Overboard, a seriously injured teenage girl discovered by V.I. Warshawski on Lake Michigan’s rocky shore subsequently vanishes from the hospital, and the iconic detective must chase down a monstrous conspiracy with pandemic-ridden Chicago as backdrop (100,000-copy first printing). Pursuing a massive drugs-and-weapons shipment being shepherded across the U.S.-Mexican border by former cops with the warning “You talk, you die” written on their bodies, Patterson/Paetro stalwart Sgt. Lindsay Boxer suddenly has 22 Seconds to decide what her fate will be. Second in the new series from librarian Weaver, who launched her writing career with the delightful Amory Ames mysteries, The Key to Deceit has breaker-and-enterer Ellie McDonnell again approached by stuffed-shirt good-guy Major Ramsey in World War II London: he wants her to discover which side the female spy found bobbing in the Thames was on (40,000-copy first printing).

Big-Star Thriller Authors

Barclay, Linwood. Take Your Breath Away. Morrow. May 2022. 464p. ISBN 9780063035133. $27.99. lrg. prnt. THRILLER

Brown, Dale. Countdown to Midnight. Morrow. May 2022. 400p. ISBN 9780063015081. $28.99. lrg. prnt. THRILLER/MILITARY

Burke, James Lee. Every Cloak Rolled in Blood. S. & S. May 2022. 288p. ISBN 9781982196592. $27. CD. THRILLER/SUPERNATURAL

Carr, Jack. In the Blood. Emily Bestler: Atria. May 2022. 400p. ISBN 9781982181659. $28. CD. THRILLER/POLITICAL

Horowitz, Anthony. Untitled. Harper. May. 2022. 304p. ISBN 9780063078413. $26.99. lrg. prnt. THRILLER/ESPIONAGE

Iles, Greg. Southern Man. Morrow. May 2022. 752p. ISBN 9780062824691. $28.99. lrg. prnt. CD. THRILLER

McKenzie, Catherine. Please Join Us. Atria. May 2022. 320p. ISBN 9781982159245. $27. THRILLER/PSYCHOLOGICAL

Meyer, Deon. The Dark Flood: A Benny Griessel Novel. Atlantic Monthly. May 2022. 416p. ISBN 9780802159601. $27. THRILLER

Pavone, Chris. Two Nights in Lisbon. MCD: Farrar. May 2022. 448p. ISBN 9780374604769. $28. CD. THRILLER/DOMESTIC

Rekulak, Jason. Hidden Pictures. Flatiron: Macmillan. May 2022. 384p. ISBN 9781250819345. $27.99. THRILLER/SUPERNATURAL

Toyne, Simon. Dark Objects. Morrow. May 2022. 400p. ISBN 9780062329790. $27.99. THRILLER

In Barclay’s Take Your Breath Away, Andrew Mason is suspected of murdering wife Brie after she disappears, and further complications arise when someone resembling her shows up at the couple’s old address before vanishing again (100,000-copy first printing). First seen in Brown's 2021 New York Times best seller, Arctic Storm Rising, former U.S. Air Force officer Nick Flynn now faces a Countdown to Midnight, with Midnight the code name for a secret project between Russia and Iran involving a lethal new weapon (125,000-copy first printing). In Burke’s Every Cloak Rolled in Blood, novelist Aaron Holland is guided by the ghost of his recently deceased daughter when his do-gooding efforts draw him into a shady crowd that includes a former Klansman, a not-so-saintly minister, some scary fake-evangelical bikers, and a murderer (100,000-copy first printing). In Carr’s In the Blood, a Mossad operative known to former Navy SEAL James Reece is killed in a plane explosion (she herself had just completed a targeted assassination), but searching for the culprit might mean walking into a trap (200,000-copy first printing). In Horowitz’s third James Bond outing, as yet Untitled, 007 is starting to question his role as the Cold War wears on but agrees to act as a double agent so that he can infiltrate a newly hatched Soviet intelligence organization (50,000-copy first printing). Unfolding 15 years after events in Iles’s “Natchez Burning” trilogy, Southern Man reintroduces Penn Cage, back in action as shots fired at a Bienville music festival nearly kill his daughter, a militant Black group takes responsibility for the torching of antebellum mansions, and a close friend is shot to death by a county deputy (200,000-copy first printing). Her career stumbling, lawyer Nicole Muller gladly complies when she’s asked by the exclusive women’s professional group Panthera Leo to Please Join Us, but as author McKenzie soon reveals, membership comes at a price (60,000-copy first printing). Demoted from the elite Hawks police unit for being too keen on uncovering state corruption, Meyer's stalwart detectives Benny Griessel and Vaughn Cupido await transfer from Cape Town to dull duty in Stellenbosch when an anonymous warning and a missing-student assignment reveal that The Dark Flood of corruption they knew was there is worse than they imagined. On a business trip with her new, much younger husband, Pavone’s latest heroine, Ariel Price, can’t enjoy her Two Nights in Lisbon; she awakens one morning to find her spouse missing and begins to realize that she hardly knows him (200,000-copy first printing). Edgar-nominated for The Impossible Fortress and also the editor behind Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Rekulak returns with Hidden Pictures, featuring a nanny whose five-year-old charge draws increasingly creepy and sophisticated pictures (shown in the text) hinting at a long-ago murder (250,000-copy first printing). A woman lies murdered, surrounded by Dark Objects that include the book How To Process a Murder by forensics expert Laughton Rees, who’s of course immediately called to the scene; the latest from “Sanctus” author Toyne (50,000-copy first printing).

Rising-Star Thriller Authors

Bamford, Emma. Deep Water. Gallery: Scout: S. & S. May 2022. 320p. ISBN 9781982170363. $28. THRILLER

A yacht adrift in the Indian Ocean? Capt. Danial Tengku orders his U.S. Navy vessel to draw near and discovers badly injured Jake and stammering Virginie, a British couple who had thought it would be fun to sail the seven seas. They ended up on a gorgeous little gem of an island they’d heard of that, alas, was inhabited by a bunch of unruly expat sailors. Their account of what happens next is horrific, but can Capt. Tengku believe them? From freelance journalist Bamford, a debut author; with a 125,000-copy first printing.

Cañas, Isabel. The Hacienda. Berkley. May 2022. 352p. ISBN 9780593436691. $27. Downloadable. THRILLER/GOTHIC

During the Mexican War of Independence, Beatriz’s father was executed and her home burnt to the ground, so she’s relieved to have found some measure of safety by marrying Don Rodolfo Solórzano. But his home, Hacienda San Isidro, evokes terror; the cook burns copal to ward off demons, Don Rodolfo’s sister won’t visit at night, awful visions taint Beatriz’s dreams, and soon Beatriz is wondering what happened to the first Doña Solórzano. Can young priest Padre Andrés help her survive? Debut gothic thrills appropriately billed for fans of Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s Mexican Gothic and Oyinkan Braithwaite’s My Sister, the Serial Killer.

Day, Elizabeth. Magpie. S. & S. May 2022. 336p. ISBN 9781982187606. $26. SUSPENSE

Marisa and Jake are delighted to find Kate, seemingly the perfect boarder, whose rent payment will help pay the bills and facilitate their having a child. But as fertility treatments and failed attempts unspool, Kate becomes overly familiar with Jake, and her knowing a whole lot more about Marisa and Jake than she ever let on creates the kind of suspense that would seem to merit the 75,000-copy first printing. British author of the well-received The Party and host of the award-winning podcast How To Fail.

Murphy, Nora. The Favor. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. May 2022. 288p. ISBN 9781250822420.$27.99. SUSPENSE

Leah and McKenna have never met, though their lives run on parallel tracks; they’re both wealthy and successful women. But as Leah drives past McKenna’s house one night, she immediately understands that McKenna has the same problem she has—they’re both trapped in marriages with husbands who aren’t as they seem. Eventually, Leah will intervene in McKenna’s life with explosive results. A debut with a 100,000-copy first printing.

Tallo, Katie. Poison Lilies. Harper. May 2022. 368p. ISBN 9780063247888. $26.99; pap. ISBN 9780063211742. $16.99. THRILLERS/PSYCHOLOGICAL

In this follow-up to the successful Dark August, August (Gus) Monet thinks she’s settled comfortably in her hometown after solving her mother’s murder. Then she makes a terrible mistake that compels her to leave town, settling in a shabby art deco apartment building in Ottawa with the aim of starting over. She’s happy to meet reclusive Poppy Honeywell, a not-quite-there older woman boasting a distinguished lineage, but what does Poppy have to do with the dead body found in the chilly waters of a nearby pond? With a 60,000-copy paperback and 25,000-copy hardcover first printing.

Literary Fiction: Award-Worthy Authors

Alharthi, Jokha. Bitter Orange Tree. Catapult. May 2022. 224p. tr. from Arabic by Marilyn Booth. ISBN 9781646220038. $26. LITERARY

Winner of the Man Booker International Prize for Celestial Bodies, Alharthi introduces readers to Zuhour, an Omani student at a British university, who’s caught uneasily between past and present, Omani and British culture. She especially misses the woman she always thought of as a grandmother, who passed away before Zuhour left home. Publicity pitches from women’s magazines to literati lists suggest the breadth of the writing.

Ali, Monica. Love Marriage. Scribner. May 2022. 432p. ISBN 9781982181475. $27. LITERARY

This latest from Bangladeshi-born, UK-raised Ali, a Granta Best of Young British Novelists, features 26-year-old medical student Yasmin Ghorami, who’s engaged to posh Joe Sangster. To Yasmin’s relief, Joe’s elegant mother quickly embraces her own not-as-polished mom, but family complications—and Joe’s less-than-devoted ways—quickly threaten the romance. With a 125,000-copy first printing.

Barrett, Colin. Homesickness. Grove. May 2022. 224p. ISBN 9780802159649. $27. LITERARY

Barrett’s 2013 debut collection, Young Skins, won him Rooney, Frank O’Connor, Guardian First Book, and National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 honors, and finally he’s back with a second collection that’s reputedly as glowingly tough as his first. The scenarios he dreams up range from a quiet pub night disrupted by a fugitive with a sword to a funeral party where several ghosts don’t want to, um, give up the ghost.

Batuman, Elif. Either/Or. Penguin Pr. May 2022. 368p. ISBN 9780525557593. $28. LITERARY

In this sequel to Batuman’s Pulitzer Prize finalist The Idiot, Selin, the daughter of Turkish immigrants, is now a Harvard sophomore trying to sort out her loop-de-loop summer in Hungary and her feelings for the slippery Hungarian mathematics student Ivan even as Ivan’s former girlfriend wants to chat. It’s as if Selin were in the midst of a thrilling novel but one unfortunately starring an off-kilter woman who’s been dumped. Can she fix that with the help of her literary syllabus and her friends?

Diaz, Hernan. Trust. Riverhead. May 2022. 416p. ISBN 9780593420317. $28. lrg. prnt. Downloadable. LITERARY

A Pulitzer and Pen/Faulkner finalist for In the Distance, Diaz uses a multilayered narrative to investigate money and power, truth and perception, and early 20th-century U.S. history. In 1920s New York, Wall Street tycoon Benjamin Rask and his wife, Helen, of offbeat aristocratic origins, are the crème of society’s crème. They’re also the protagonists of the novel Bonds, published in 1938 and on everyone’s reading list. But the novel doesn’t reveal the whole truth about the characters, who here engage with other accounts to share the big picture. I’ve heard raves.

Espach, Alison. Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance. Holt. May 2022. 352p. ISBN 9781250823144. $26.99. LITERARY

After debuting with Adults, a New York Times Editors' Choice pick, Espach has us soaking up the sun one fervent summer, with eighth grader Sally Holt and her older sister, Kathy, eagerly eyeing oh-so-cool senior Billy Barnes as he works the concession stand at the pool. By summer’s end, Billy and Kathy are a couple, but then tragedy descends, and Sally must face the consequences in a narrative that unfolds over 15 years. With a 150,000-copy first printing.

Glass, Julia. Vigil Harbor. Pantheon. May 2022. 416p. ISBN 9781101870389. $29. lrg. prnt. LITERARY

In coastal Vigil Harbor, where the National Book Award–winning Glass acts as escort, yacht clubbers are divorcing in droves, high-profile architect Austin Kepner wants to build homes strong enough to withstand the increasingly violent storms resulting from climate change, and Austin’s stepson returns home from the big city after having managed to avoid another terrorist attack. Then two strangers—a charming traveler and a mysterious widow—drop in to disrupt life further.

Harper, Rachel M. The Other Mother. Counterpoint. May 2022. 448p. ISBN 9781640095045. $28. LITERARY

In this latest from the author of the Ernest J. Gaines short-listed This Side of Providence, musical prodigy Jenry Castillo is on scholarship at Brown University, where he searches for information about his long-dead ballet dancer father. Then Jenry learns from his grandfather, famed Black history professor Winston Patterson, that Jenry’s mother and Winston’s daughter, Juliet, were lovers. Now Jenry is searching for his “other mother” as well.

Lee, Marie Myung-Ok. Evening Hero. S. & S. May 2022. 432p. ISBN 9781476735078. $27. LITERARY

Noted particularly for her YA fiction (e.g., Finding My Voice), Lee is cofounder of the Asian American Writers’ Workshop and that rare U.S. journalist granted a visa to visit North Korea. Here she introduces Dr. Yungman Kwak, who left Korea for Minnesota after the Korean War and has since worked as an obstetrician at Horse Breath’s General Hospital. He’s living the life he always wanted, but it’s built on a lie that a letter arriving from someone left behind is about to expose. With a 35,000-copy first printing

Momplaisir, Francesca. The Garden of Broken Things. Knopf. May 2022. 320p. ISBN 9780593321065. $28. Downloadable. LITERARY

Following the multi-best-booked My Mother’s House, Momplaisir revisits Haiti with single-mother Genevieve, who travels from New York to Port-au-Prince with teenage son Miles. Genevieve wants to introduce Miles to his heritage and escape her own failed marriage, and she’s happy to be among family again. Then tragedy strikes—the horrific 2010 earthquake. (For another look at the earthquake, see also Myriam J. A. Chancy’s excellent What Storm What Thunder, an LJ Best Book.)

Shipstead, Maggie. You Have a Friend in 10A: Stories. Knopf. May 2022. 272p. ISBN 9780525656999. $27. LITERARY

Author most recently of the Booker Prize short-listed Great Circle, Shipstead ranges worldwide in her first story collection, from a Pacific atoll to an Olympic village to star-spangled Paris. The scenarios include a Montana rancher, caught up in a love-hate triangle with his nephew and the young woman tending the horses, and an embittered novelist revisiting the failed romance that inspired his first novel, about to be published. As 10A was my first New York apartment, I am especially intrigued by the title story.

Smith, Ali. Companion Piece. Pantheon. May 2022. 272p. ISBN 9780593316375. $26.95. LITERARY

The twice Man Booker Prize–shortlisted and Baileys, Goldsmiths, and Costa–honored Smith triumphed with her distinctive “Seasonal Quartet,” which has been unfolding since 2016. Now that it’s done, this “companion piece” continues her investigation of #MeToo, Brexit, the global refugee crisis, the ongoing pandemic, and more.

Tagame, Gengoroh. Our Colors. Pantheon. May 2022. 528p. tr. from Japanese by Anne Ishii. ISBN 9781524748562. $32.50. LITERARY

The Eisner Award–winning Japanese author of dozens of graphic novels and short stories translated into multiple languages, Tagame tells the story of an artist dreamer named Sora Itoda struggling to negotiate high school as a young gay man, who keeps up the pretense that friend Nao is his girlfriend until he meets openly gay Mr. Amamiya, a middle-aged coffee shop owner who becomes Sora’s mentor. But Mr. Amamiya has his own painful past to confront.

Townsend, Jacinda. Mother Country. Graywolf. May 2022. 320p. ISBN 9781644450871. pap. $17. LITERARY

In this second novel from Townsend, winner of Janet Heidinger Kafka and James Fenimore Cooper honors for Saint Monkey, a Black American woman named Shannon visits Morocco with her boyfriend to escape painful realities that include learning she cannot have a child. There she encounters a toddler whom she quickly adopts (with the help of a bribe) and brings home to Louisville, KY. But the little girl already has a mother, an undocumented Mauritanian who was trafficked to Morocco as a teenager. What was Shannon thinking, and will the pain wrought by this situation ever be resolved?

Literary Fiction Debuts   

Baker, Peter C. Planes. Knopf. May 2022. 256p. ISBN 9780593320273. $27.Downloadable. LITERARY

Amira lives in Rome, where she spends her days trying to read the heavily redacted letters her husband sends from the Moroccan black site where he is imprisoned. Mel lives in suburban North Carolina, where she tries to get her conservative neighbors to support her far-reaching school board initiatives. Their stories come together when Mel discovers that a local charter airline is a CIA front serving various facilities, including the one holding Amira’s husband. Baker’s fiction and nonfiction pieces have appeared in multiple venues.

Birnbaum, Daniel. Dr. B. Harper. May 2022. 256p. tr. from Swedish by Deborah Bragan-Turner. ISBN 9780062939814. $27.99. LITERARY

A German Jewish journalist based in Warsaw, Immanuel Birnbaum escapes to Stockholm when Hitler comes to power in 1933 and works for a German publisher whose offices there were set up to evade German censorship. He also writes for a liberal paper under the name Dr. B., and soon he is involved with British intelligence agents. Then the post office finds a letter written in invisible ink, and everyone wonders whether Dr. B. himself tipped them off. But why? The former director of Stockholm’s Museum of Modern Art, Birnbaum draws on his grandfather’s life to tell this story. With a 25,000-copy first printing.

Brewer, William. The Red Arrow. Knopf. May 2022. 272p. ISBN 9780593320129. $26. Downloadable. LITERARY

Facing artistic failure, piled-up debt, marital woes, and a pervasive sense of dread, a young writer hopes to move forward by agreeing to ghostwrite a famous physicist’s memoir, but things get even worse when the physicist disappears. Then our hapless protagonist undertakes an experimental psychedelic treatment and finds his life flooded with joy, as past and present suddenly crisscross. A study of time, memory, and art from former Stegner fellow Brewer, whose I Know Your Kind was a National Poetry Series winner.

Ishola-Ayodeji, Abi. Patience Is a Subtle Thief. HarperVia. May 2022. 384p. ISBN 9780063116917. $27.99. LITERARY

In 1990s Nigeria, Patience Adewale, eldest daughter of Chief Kolade Adewale, feels lost and unloved, wondering why her mother was banished long ago from the family compound. Her search for the truth begins bearing fruit when she attends university in Lagos and reconnects with cousin Kash, but her getting drawn into his petty thievery presents its own problems. From multimedia journalist Ishola-Ayodeji.

Lama, Tsering Yangzom. We Measure the Earth with Our Bodies. Bloomsbury. May 2022. 368p. ISBN 9781635576412. $26. LITERARY

When China invades Tibet in 1959, sisters Lhamo and Tenkyi survive the arduous journey to a refugee camp in Nepal, but their parents do not. Struggling to rebuild their lives, the sisters are heartened when another refugee comes bearing the statue of a nameless saint said to appear in times of need. Decades later, Lhamo’s Toronto-based daughter Dolma discovers the statue in a collector’s vault and determines to reclaim it for her family and community. With a 50,000-copy first printing.

Mottley, Leila. Nightcrawling. Knopf. May 2022. 288p. ISBN 9780593318935. $27. lrg. prnt. LITERARY

Black teenagers Kiara and brother Marcus live alone in a grubby East Oakland apartment, having dropped out of high school when their family imploded. Marcus aspires to rap stardom, while Kiara scrambles to find paying work to support them and the abandoned nine-year-old who lives next door. When she reluctantly turns to streetwalking, she ends up as a key witness in a scandal involving the Oakland Police Department’s exploitation of young sex workers. Echoing a real-life 2015 case; 19-year-old Mottley was the 2018 Oakland Youth Poet Laureate, and her first short story, “Juneteenth Babies,” appeared in Oprah Daily.

Van Pelt, Shelby. Remarkably Bright Creatures. Ecco. May 2022. 368p. ISBN 9780063204157. $27.99. lrg. prnt. LITERARY

Recently widowed Tova Sullivan copes with her grief by taking a job at the Sowell Bay Aquarium, where she works the night shift and befriends a giant Pacific octopus named Marcellus. Marcellus has little use for humans, but he likes Tova and wants to help her. Thirty years ago, her son disappeared on a boat somewhere in the Puget Sound, and Marcellus thinks he can figure out what happened. Another Octopus Teacher! The 200,000-copy first printing speaks volumes.

Spotlight: Akwaeke Emezi's You Made a Fool of Death with Your Beauty

Emezi, Akwaeke. You Made a Fool of Death with Your Beauty. Atria. May 2022. 288p. ISBN 9781982188702. $27. LITERARY

After the gorgeous verve of the award-worthy novels Freshwater and The Death of Vivek Oji, National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 author Emezi looks at love, loss, and healing from another angle. Feyi has spent five years mourning the death of her one true love and thinks that finally she might be ready for a new relationship. She’s an artist with her own studio, sought out by a major curator, and excited after a summer of wining and dining and one hot rooftop encounter. She’s even started dating a man who seems ideal. But she can’t help feeling drawn to the one person in her life who isn’t available. Smart readers everywhere will be clamoring; with a 150,000-copy first printing.

Spotlight: John Water's Liarmouth 

Waters, John. Liarmouth: A Feel-Bad Romance. Farrar. May 2022. 256p. ISBN 9780374185725. $26. CD.

It’s hardly surprising that the outrageous filmmaker of silver-screen glitter from Hairspray to Pink Flamingos would make his fiction debut with a “feel-bad romance.” (He has authored several best-selling nonfiction titles, including the recent Mr. Know-It-All.) His protagonist is thieving, swindling, ever-resentful Marsha Sprinkle, disliked by children and animals alike and called Liarmouth by her fed-up family. Finally, Liarmouth meets a man who makes her face up to herself and tell the truth. With a 75,000-copy first printing.

Spotlight: Chris Bohjalian’s The Lioness

Bohjalian, Chris. The Lioness. Doubleday. May 2022. 336p. ISBN 9780385544825. $28. CD. THRILLER

In 1964, top-of-the-heap white actress Katie Barstow honeymoons in the Serengeti with new husband David Hill and a bunch of their glittery Hollywood friends, including distinguished Black actor Terrance Dutton, with whom Katie starred in a controversy-sparking film. They’re looking forward to a luxurious safari watching the giraffes and the wildebeest play and guzzling gin with ice from kerosene-powered ice makers. Instead, they get kidnapped, with Soviet mercenaries shuffling them into Land Rovers, leveling guns at their heads, as their Tanzanian guides lie bleeding in the dirt. Will they all survive? Different from the 1660s Boston–set Hour of the Witch , the HBO-blessed The Flight Attendant, and the topical Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands, with Bohjalian doing what he does best: surprising us. For suspense readers as well as those who love historical fiction and women’s stories, plus literary readers with a desire for adventure and great language.

Contemporary Pop Fiction: Friends

Mallery, Susan. The Boardwalk Bookshop. Mira: Harlequin. May 2022. 384p. ISBN 9780778333296. $28.99; pap. ISBN 9780778386087. $16.99. CONTEMPORARY

Thayer, Nancy. Summer Love. Ballantine. May 2022. 320p. ISBN 9780593358429. $28. CD. CONTEMPORARY

Waxman, Abbi. Adult Assembly Required. Berkley. May 2022. 400p. ISBN 9780593198766. pap. $17. CONTEMPORARY

In Mallery’s latest, bookshop owner Bree, giftshop owner Mikki, and muffin purveyor Ashley join forces to open The Boardwalk Bookshop on the California coast, relying on one another as they wrestle with the possibilities of love. In Thayer’s Summer Love, old secrets will out when four friends hold a 30-year reunion on Nantucket, even as their adult children pursue surprising interests. In Adult Assembly Required, Laura Costello moves to Los Angeles to avoid bad memories and an overprotective family, but her life remains topsy-turvy, and she must rely on friends who include the title character of Waxman’s USA TODAY best-selling The Bookish Life of Nina Hill.

Contemporary Pop Fiction: Family

Jonasson, Jonas. Sweet, Sweet Revenge LTD. HarperVia. May 2022. 304p. ISBN 9780063072152. $27.99. CONTEMPORARY

Runde, Katie. The Shore. Scribner. May 2022. 304p. ISBN 9781982180171. $26. CONTEMPORARY

Straub, Emma. This Time Tomorrow. Riverhead. May 2022. 320p. ISBN 9780525539001. $28. lrg. prnt. CD. CONTEMPORARY

Weiner, Jennifer. The Summer Place. Atria. May 2022. 416p. ISBN 9781501133572. $28. CD. CONTEMPORARY

Examining colonialism, art history, and greed, Jonasson’s Sweet, Sweet Revenge LTD brings together Maasai warrior Ole Mbatian Jr.; Kevin, the young man he calls his son: and trod-upon Agneta, who joins forces with Kevin against an underhanded gallery owner with the help of a Stockholm company specializing in revenge services (originally scheduled for July 2021; 60,000-copy first printing). Successful realtors serving tourists at The Shore, Brian and Margot Dunne face a different kind of summer in Runde’s debut; even as daughters Liz and Evy seek self-redefining experiences, the entire family struggles with the tragedy of Brian’s brain tumor (125,000-copy first printing). In Straub’s This Time Tomorrow, Alice is reasonably contented but wishes she were closer to her father, and she gets the chance at a remake when she wakes up one morning in 1996 as a 16-year-old. In Weiner's latest, when Veronica Levy bought The Summer Place on the Outer Cape, she imagined it staying in the family for generations. But with the family now dispersed, she gathers everyone together for one last blow-out summer until she sells it (350,000-copy first printing).

Contemporary Pop Fiction: Love

Andrews, Mary Kay. The Homewreckers. St. Martin’s. May 2022. 448p. ISBN 9781250278364. $28.99. CD. CONTEMPORARY

Caña, Natalie. A Proposal They Can’t Refuse. Mira: Harlequin. May 2022. 368p. ISBN 9780778386094. pap. $15.99. CONTEMPORARY

Colgan, Jenny. An Island Wedding. Avon. May 2022. 288p. ISBN 9780063243132. $27.99; pap. ISBN 9780063141889. $26.99. lrg. prnt. CONTEMPORARY

Foster, Lori. The Honeymoon Cottage. HQN. May 2022. 336p. ISBN 9781335427496. $28.99; pap. ISBN 9781335506368. $15.99. CONTEMPORARY

Lauren, Christina. Something Wilder. Gallery: S. & S. May 2022. 368p. ISBN 9781982173401. $26.99. CONTEMPORARY

Roberts, Nora. Nightwork. St. Martin’s. May 2022. 448p. ISBN 9781250278197. $29.99. CD. CONTEMPORARY

In Andrews’s latest, widowed Hattie Kavanaugh has a chance to rescue her business by appearing in a beach-house renovation reality show called The Homewreckers, competing with a male lead who could be a new love interest—or her worst competitor ever (300,000-copy first printing). In debuter Caña’s A Proposal They Can’t Refuse, Kamilah Vega wants to update her family’s Puerto Rican restaurant but can’t get permission from her ailing octogenarian grandfather unless she marries his best friend’s son, Irish American whiskey distiller Liam (75,000-copy first printing). In Colgan’s Island Wedding, Flora MacKenzie is planning a sweet, small wedding on the Scottish island of Mure when she learns that rich, gorgeous Olivia is returning home to Mure for her own extravaganza wedding—planned for the same day (100,000-copy paperback and 30,000-copy hardcover first printing). In Foster’s The Honeymoon Cottage, Jubil Long isn’t thrilled that the little sister he’s cared for since their parents’ deaths wants an out-of-the-way country wedding, but then he meets wedding planner Yardley Belanger, who wishes she could have her own wedding one day (75,000-copy paperback and 10,000-copy hardcover first printing). Lauren’s Something Wilder takes Lily Wilder to the Utah desert, where she uses her difficult treasure-hunting dad’s old maps to conduct staged hunts and encounters the one man from the past who always saw her as the love of his life (100,00-copy first printing). A thief since childhood, when he scrambled to support a mother dying of cancer, the ever-honorable Harry Booth feels he can’t follow up his feelings for Miranda Emerson—although maybe there’s hope if he disentangles himself from the Nightwork he’s been trapped into doing for bad-guy Carter LaPorte. This latest from Roberts has a million-copy first printing.

Contemporary Pop Fiction: Glamour Disrupted

McCoy, Sarah. Mustique Island. Morrow. May 2022. 352p. ISBN 9780062984371. $27.99. CONTEMPORARY

Perched in the southern Caribbean and owned by oddball British playboy Colin Tennant, Mustique Island is designed as a hideaway for rich, privileged folks. It’s 1972, and divorcée Willy May Michael—a former Texas beauty queen—builds a house there, not so far from Princess Margaret. When she invites her adult daughters, they discover that Mustique isn’t all sun, fun, and glorious white sand. With a 75,000-copy first printing.

Williams, Beatriz & others. The Lost Summers of Newport. Morrow. May 2022. 352p. ISBN 9780063040748. $28.99. lrg. prnt. CONTEMPORARY

The producer of a popular reality TV show, Mansion Makeover, Andie Figuero takes over falling-apart Sprague Hall in Newport, RI, and is told by Lucia “Lucky” Sprague, the reclusive heiress still living there, that the boathouse is off-limits. As the time-layered narrative unfolds, we learn that in 1899, Ellen Daniels came to the estate to teach singing to Maybelle Sprague, the new owner’s stepsister, who’s to be married off to an Italian prince. Later, in 1958, Maybelle arrived home from Italy with daughter Lucky, who discovered a terrible secret in the boathouse that haunts her still. With a 50,000-copy first printing.

Contemporary Pop Fiction: LGBTQ+ Debut

Fishman, Lillian. Acts of Service. Hogarth: Crown. May 2022. 240p. ISBN 9780593243763. $27. CONTEMPORARY

Young, queer, and Brooklyn-based, Eve has an adventurous streak that leads her to post nude photos of herself online. This is how she meets sly Olivia and through Olivia the magnetic Nathan, and they form a triangle allowing them—and the author—to explore sex, desire, and identity. From a former fiction reader for The New Yorker; film rights sold.

Fry, Henry. First Time for Everything. Ballantine. May 2022. 400p. ISBN 9780593358702. $27. Downloadable. CONTEMPORARY

Newly single after discovering stuck-up boyfriend Tobbs has been unfaithful, on the streets because his roommates want to start a family, and struggling to find contentment with his journalist job after having abandoned smalltown life for London, Danny moves into the East London “commune” of upbeat nonbinary friend Jacob. Soon, Danny discovers that life has more possibilities than he ever imagined. From a recipient of the London Writers Award.

Hart, Michelle. We Do What We Do in the Dark. Riverhead. May 2022. 224p. ISBN 9780593329672. $26. Downloadable. CONTEMPORARY

First-year college student Mallory is mourning her mother’s death when she begins an affair with an older married woman who’s brilliant, accomplished, and self-assured—everything Mallory wants to be. Having comfortably hidden away in their relationship, Mallory must decide as an adult whether she wants finally to face the world. From the assistant books editor at O, the Oprah Magazine.

O’Connell, Ryan. Just by Looking at Him. Atria. May 2022. 304p. ISBN 9781982178581. $26. CONTEMPORARY

Though he’s a successful TV writer, Eliot has problems. He’s been dangerously overdrinking and cheating on his loving boyfriend with a string of sex workers, and he struggles for acceptance in a world indifferent, even hostile, to his cerebral palsy. Finally, he decides that despite it all he will find a way to triumph. From Queer as Folk actor O’Connell, the Emmy-nominated creator, writer, and star of Netflix’s Special, based on his memoir.

Sneed, Madeline Kay. The Golden Season. Graydon House: Harlequin. May 2022. 352p. ISBN 9781525899836. $26.99. CONTEMPORARY

Emilia "Emmy" Quinn loves all things West Texas, including football. She has also just come out to her separated parents, which could create problems in her Southern Baptist community and especially for her father, who has been offered a plum coaching job but is told he must reveal anything in his life that could be deemed problematic. Complicating matters, Emmy has just met the cutest, smartest grad student, but Cameron is from Massachusetts—and she hates Texas! With a 50,000-copy first printing.

Historical Fiction

Herrera, Adriana. A Caribbean Heiress in Paris. HQN. May 2022. 336p. ISBN 9781335427519. $28.99; pap. ISBN 9781335639844. $16.99. CD. HISTORICAL/ROMANCE

Money-strapped Luz Alana Heith-Benzan Caña wants to take her Dominican family’s Caña Brava rum worldwide, while Scottish whiskey distiller James Evanston Sinclair could care less about his father’s fortune but fall hard for headstrong Luz when they meet at the 1889 Exposition Universelle. From USA TODAY best-selling author Herrera, who identifies as a bisexual Afro-Dominica; with a 100,00-copy paperback and a 10,000-copy first printing.

Jenner, Natalie. Bloomsbury Girls. St. Martin’s. May 2022. 368p. ISBN 9781250276698. $27.99. CD. HISTORICAL/WORLD WAR II

Sharp, stylish Vivien, whose fiancé was killed in action; wife and mother Grace, needing to work after her husband’s war-wrought breakdown; and Evie, in the first class of female students allowed a Cambridge degree: all are ambitious women, and in 1950 London they have makeover plans for century-old Bloomsbury Books, still run exclusively by stodgy men. From the author of The Jane Austen Society; with a 150,000-copy first printing.

Leary, Ann. The Foundling. Marysue Rucci: Scribner. May 2022. 336p. ISBN 9781982120382. $27. CD. HISTORICAL

In 1927, 18-year-old Mary Engle is glad to get a job as secretary at the disturbingly named   Nettleton State Village for Feebleminded Women of Childbearing Age, run by charismatic Dr. Agnes Vogel. Then she encounters a patient named Lillian, who was raised in the same orphanage as Mary and asks her help in escaping; Nettleton, she claims, is not as benevolent as it seems. From theNew York Times best-selling Leary (The Good House); with a 100,000-copy first printing.

Quick, Amanda. When She Dreams. Berkley. May 2022. 352p. ISBN 9780593337783. $28. CD. HISTORICAL/ROMANCE

In the aftermath of a marriage wrecked by betrayal, private eye Steen Colfax accepts a case from Maggie Lodge, who claims someone is impersonating her reclusive advice-columnist boss. Sparks ricochet uncertainly as a mysterious murder brings this odd couple one step closer to blackmail and a vengeful killer. Next in the “Burning Cove” series; from the author of 50 New York Times best sellers.

Ryan, Jennifer. The Wedding Dress Sewing Circle. Ballantine. May 2022. 352p. ISBN 9780593158838. $28. lrg. prnt. Downloadable. HISTORICAL/WORLD WAR II

When the Blitz destroys both home and business of famed fashion designer Cressida Westcott, she to flees to the family manor house she deserted decades ago, arriving with only the clothes on her back. Niece Violet is elated until her conscription letter arrives, while local vicar’s daughter Grace now has someone to help repair her mother’s wedding dress for her own nuptials. From the author of the beloved The Chilbury Ladies’ Choir.

Saint, Jennifer. Elektra. Flatiron: Macmillan. May 2022. 304p. ISBN 9781250773616. $27.99. HISTORICAL

Having triumphed with her internationally best-selling debut, Ariadne, Saint turns to bold Elektra in a story ultimately involving a triumvirate of women. Clytemnestra ignores insinuations of House of Atreus violence and is betrayed when Agamemnon sacrifices their daughter, Princess Cassandra goes unheeded, and Elektra longs to see her father yet wonders if she’s doomed to repeat her family’s bloody history. With a 100,000-copy first printing.

Sanders, Shelly. Daughters of the Occupation. Harper. May 2022. 400p. ISBN 9780063247895. $26.99; pap. ISBN 9780063226661. $16.99. lrg. prnt. HISTORICAL/WORLD WAR II

At her mother’s funeral in 1970s Chicago, Sarah learns her family’s devastating history from estranged grandmother Miriam, who gave birth to son Monya during the 1940 Soviet invasion of Latvia and lost her husband in the subsequent German invasion. As Jews, the remaining family sought protection from their staunch housekeeper, but Monya was left behind when they finally fled the country. Now Miriam wants Sarah to find him. From award-winning YA author Sanders; with a 150,000-copy paperback and a 25,000-copy hardcover first printing.

Weir, Alison. The Last White Rose: A Novel of Elizabeth of York. Ballantine. May 2022. 480p. ISBN 9780593355039. $28.99. HISTORICAL/TUDOR

After wrapping up her “Six Tudor Queens” series, New York Times best-selling novelist/historian Weir tracks back to Elizabeth of York—the first Tudor queen, rescued from marriage to Richard III when Henry Tudor stepped up, slew Richard at the Battle of Bosworth Field, and united the swords-drawn houses of Lancaster of York by marrying her himself.


Banker, Ashok K. The Blind King’s Wrath. Mariner: Houghton Harcourt. (Burnt Empire Saga, Bk. 3). May 2022. 448p. ISBN 9780358451334. pap. $17.99. FANTASY/EPIC

Clinching the “Burnt Empire Saga,” this follow-up to the LJ -starred Upon a Burning Throne has Krushni seeking to avenge her father’s death even as a wedding contest in Gwannland is secretly meant to destroy the place forever. The series has been called an Indian Game of Thrones, with Banker dubbed India’s leading fantasy author.

Bear, Elizabeth. The Origin of Storms. Tor. (Lotus Kingdoms, Bk. 3). May 2022. 384p. ISBN 9780765380173. $28.99. FANTASY/EPIC

Two-time Hugo Award winner wrap ups her “Lotus Kingdoms” series with four claimants clamoring for the sorcerous throne of the Alchemical Emperor, deploying three armies among them. Rajni Mrithuri is the most likely heir but needs an heir of her own to maintain her position. With a 35,000-copy first printing.

Erlick, Nikki. The Measure. Morrow. May 2022. 368p. ISBN 9780063204201. $27.99. lrg. prnt. MAGIC REALISM

One day, everyone on Earth receives a small wooden box bearing the inscription “The measure of your life lies within” and containing a length of string—with different lengths for different recipients. Terrified to contemplate how much time they have to live, people fall back frantically on past belief or forge bold new connections as debuter Erlick considers how best to live life. With a 150,000-copy first printing.

Estep, Jennifer. Tear Down the Throne. Harper Voyager. (Gargoyle Queen, Bk. 2). May 2022. 464p. ISBN 9780063023093. pap. $16.99. FANTASY/EPIC

In this second in her “Gargoyle Queen” series, spun off from her best-selling “Crown of Shards” trilogy, Gemma Ripley of Andvari is determined to defend her kingdom, which leads her to a summit among competing kingdoms and another meeting with Prince Leonidas, son of conniving Queen Maeven Morricone of Morta. He’s a threat to Gemma, but she can’t help feeling attracted. With a 50,000-copy first printing.

McGuire, Seanan. Seasonal Fears. Tordotcom. May 2022. 496p. ISBN 9781250768261. $29.99. FANTASY

Awards-laden McGuire returns to the world of Middlegame, where the queen of summer is fading toward death and the king of winter bemoans his fate: a life without her sunshine. Then they see an alternative and take it, trailed by those who wish them harm. With a 175,000-copy first printing.

Miller, Kirsten. The Change. Morrow. May 2022. 352p. ISBN 9780063144040. $27.99. lrg. prnt. MAGIC REALISM

Widowed empty-nester Nessa James begins hearing voices and realizes that like her foremothers she can commune with the dead. Harriett Osborne remains indoors after both career and marriage crash, undergoing an extraordinary transformation. Former executive Jo Levison has always felt tortured by her body but realizes with menopause that she’s found a special power she can deploy. The three join forces, guided by Nessa’s voices, to discover the truth about a teenage girl whose body was cruelly dumped on a Long Island beach. From top feminist YA author Miller (“Kiki Strike” series); with a 150,00-copy first printing.

Swan, Erin. Walk the Vanished Earth. Viking. May 2022. 384p. ISBN 9780593299333. $ 27. POST-APOCALYPTIC

Pushcart-nominated debuter Swan’s story swirls from a buffalo hunter on a Kansas plain in 1873, to a mute teenage girl crossing the same plain in 1975, to an engineer who constructs a floating city above the submerged streets of New Orleans in 2024, to a girl named Moon on Mars in 2073, who looks down on what’s now called the blue planet—once Earth, completely covered by water. Does she want to help repopulate Mars with humans? Comparisons to Emily St. John Mandel’s Station Eleven.

Vara, Vauhini.  The Immortal King Rao. Norton. May 2022. 400p. ISBN 9780393541755. $27.95. DYSTOPIAN

King Rao created a whole new world with his personal computer, the Coconut, and a corporate-run government now reigns supreme. His daughter, Athena, belongs to a resistance group wanting to live tech-free—except that she’s in prison, accused of her father’s murder and stuck with his memories via biotechnological innovation, which allows her to revisit his Dalit childhood in 1950s India. Former Wall Street Journal Vara, from a Dalit background, claims O. Henry Prize and Rona Jaffe honors.

Walter, Heather. Misrule. Del Rey: Ballantine. (Malice, Bk. 2). May 2022. 432p. ISBN 9781984818683. $27. Downloadable. FANTASY/EPIC

In the much-praised Malice, librarian Walter’s thorny reimagining of Sleeping Beauty, Princess Aurora saw the best in the Dark Grace Alyce, which others didn’t see. Now she lies sleeping endlessly under a terrible curse that cannot be lifted even by powerful Alyce, who become the utterly wicked villain everyone imagined her to be to save her beloved.

Yoon, David. Citiy of Orange. Putnam. May 2022. 352p. ISBN 9780593422168. $27. FANTASY/PSYCHOLOGICAL

An award-winning, best-selling YA author who went adult with 2021’s Version Zero, Yoon sets his new work in an apocalyptic landscape, where the protagonist wakes up solitary, injured, and almost completely bereft of memories. As he frantically searches for food and water, he encounters a young lad and starts to realize that things aren’t what they seem.


Spotlight: Robert Samuels & Toluse Olorunnipa’s His Name Is George Floyd

Samuels, Robert & Toluse Olorunnipa. His Name Is George Floyd: One Man’s Life and the Struggle for Racial Justice. Viking. May 2022. 320p. ISBN 9780593490617. $28. lrg. prnt. BIOGRAPHY

Washington Post journalists Samuels and Olorunnipa bring impressive credentials to their biography of George Floyd. Samuels, a national political enterprise reporter, is a multi-prize finalist for his own reporting and a Polk and Peabody Prize winner for team reporting at the Post, while Nigerian American Olorunnipa is a political enterprise and investigations reporter who has covered the White House, has filed from multiple countries as part of the presidential press corps, and also serves as an on-air contributor to CNN. Here they examine how systemic racism shaped Floyd's life, moving from his family’s North Carolina roots, to the ongoing issues he faced in housing, education, health care, criminal justice, and policing, to the story of his death and how it brought about a global demand for change.

Understanding Money Today  

Bernanke, Ben S. 21st Century Monetary Policy: The Federal Reserve from the Great Inflation to COVID-19. Norton. May 2022. 512p. ISBN 9781324020462. $35. ECONOMICS

Everything has changed in times of COVID-19, including the tools now being used by the U.S. Federal Reserve to maintain the economy, which might have raised eyebrows not so long ago. Chair of the Federal Reserve from 2006 to 2014 and currently distinguished senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, Bernanke not only explains how these new tools work but looks back at the FED over a half-century to present evidence that it has always changed with the times to address immediate needs.

Edelman, Ric. The Truth About Crypto: Your Investing Guide to Understanding Blockchain, Bitcoin, and Other Digital Assets. S. & S. May 2022. 400p. ISBN 9781668002322. $30. ECONOMICS

Crypto as investment strategy: even as it shakes up the world—the Bank of England claims it could “transform the global financial system”—many investors fail to understand its potential or even how it works. But not to worry. Thrice ranked by Barron’s as the No. 1 independent financial adviser in the United States, Edelman is here to demystify this new phenomenon.

Seessel, Adam. Where the Money Is: Value Investing in the Digital Age. Avid Reader: S. & S. May 2022. 320p. ISBN 9781982185145. $30. ECONOMICS

A Polk Award–winning journalist who migrated to Wall Street and eventually started his own firm, Gravity Capital Management, Seessel here argues that tech stocks are “where the money is” today. He learned the hard way, having watched his traditional portfolio stall, which prompted him to devise a new investment strategy which recognizes that technology has reshaped the economy. Here he helps other investors by offering a new understanding of what makes a business valuable and explaining how the digital economy works. With a 100,000-copy first printing.

Spotlight: Phil Klay's Uncertain Ground: Citizenship in an Age of Endless, Invisible War

Klay, Phil. Uncertain Ground: Citizenship in an Age of Endless, Invisible War. Penguin Pr. May 2022. 272p. ISBN 9780593299241. $27. lrg. prnt. Downloadable. ESSAYS

After serving in Iraq as an officer in the U.S. Marines, Klay returned home to produce two exceptional pieces of fiction shaped by his experience of war: the National Book Award–winning story collection Redeployment and the debut novel Missionaries, best-booked by the Wall Street Journal. Here he collects essays written over the past decade that explore what the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have really meant to the people of the United States, for whom the fighting itself has been essentially invisible. What are the consequences when only a small group of Americans—soldiers and their families—are impacted by war? How can civic duty be defined under such circumstances? Can the United States justly ask for such sacrifices? Why are these military actions kept under wraps? And how are these wars really affecting the country today?

Social Science Previews

Addison, Corban. Wastelands: The True Story of Farm Country on Trial. Knopf. May 2022. 448p. ISBN 9780593320822. $28. lrg. prnt. Downloadable. SOCIAL SCIENCE

Bremmer, Ian. Collision Course: How Three Coming Crises—and Our Response—Will Change the World. S. & S. May 2022. 288p. ISBN 9781982167509. $28. CD. POLITICAL SCIENCE

Fukuyama, Francis. Liberalism and Its Discontents. Farrar. May 2022. 192p. ISBN 9780374606718. $26. CD. POLITICAL SCIENCE

Gelles, David. The Man Who Broke Capitalism: How Jack Welch Gutted the Heartland, Widened the Wealth Gap, and Crushed the Soul of Corporate America—and How to Undo His Legacy. S. & S. May 2022. 256p. ISBN 9781982176440. $28. ECONOMICS

Hill, Marc Lamont & Todd Brewster. Seen and Unseen. Atria. May 2022. 288p. ISBN 9781982180393. $28. POLITICAL SCIENCE

Palley, Stuart. Into the Inferno: A Photographer’s Journey into California’s Megafires and Fallout. Blackstone. Apr. 2022. 240p. ISBN 9781094163697. $28.99. MEMOIR

Turkel, Nury. No Escape: A Uyghur’s Story of Oppression, Genocide, and China’s Digital Dictatorship. Hanover Square: Harlequin. May 2022. 320p. ISBN 9781335469564. $27.99. MEMOIR/POLITICAL SCIENCE

In Wastelands, award-winning novelist Addison turns to nonfiction to profile a rural community so angered by the damage done by pollution-spewing Big Agriculture that it sued the worst offender—and won. New York Times best-selling author Bremmer sets us on a Collision Course, predicting that more pandemics, increased climate-change complications, and life-altering new technologies will inevitably be a part of our future (100,000-copy first printing). Distinguished Stanford political scientist Fukuyama, perhaps best known forThe End of History and the Last Man, now examines Liberalism and Its Discontents at a time of political upheaval (75,000-copy first printing). “Corner Office” columnist at theNew York Times, Gelles calls General Electric CEO Jack Welch The Man Who Broke Capitalism, indicting him for the harm done by his brand of capitalism and showing how some companies are trying to undo it with different strategies. Award-winning journalist Hill ( BET News) and New York Times best-selling author Brewster (The Century) join forces in Seen and Unseen, considering videos like those showing the killing of George Floyd and the harassment of Christian Cooper to investigate how technology has impacted our conversations about race (100,000-copy first printing). Photographer Palley’s Into the Inferno recalls eight years spent documenting California’s raging wildfires, showing that the state’s fire season now lasts year-round and calling for climate action (see also poet Kevin Goodan’s Spot Weather Forecast). Former president of the Uyghur Humans Rights Project and now a commissioner for the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, Turkel uses memoir in No Escape to reveal China’s ongoing repression of the Uyghur people.

Hammer, Melina. A Year at Catbird Cottage: Recipes for a Nourished Life [A Cookbook]. Ten Speed. May 2022. 304p. ISBN 9781984859709. $29.99. COOKING

The IACP award-winning owner of the Catbird Cottage bed-and-breakfast situated at the foot of New York’s Shawangunk Mountain Ridge, Hammer here offers 100 recipes featuring the seasonal, locally sourced, and foraged food for which she is famous. With 125 photographs.

Martinez, Rick. Mi Cocina: Recipes and Rapture from My Kitchen in Mexico: A Cookbook. Clarkson Potter. May 2022. 304p. ISBN 9780593138700. $32.50. COOKING

Mole Coloradito and Tacos de Capeados, anyone? As Martinez is a former Bon Appétit food editor, a New York Times contributor, and host of the YouTube series “Pruébalo” and the Food52 video series “Sweet Heat,” this first book is much anticipated.

Onwuachi, Kwame & Joshua David Stein. My America: Recipes from a Young Black Chef. Knopf. May 2022. 304p. ISBN 9780525659600. $35. COOKING

As he’s piling up the credentials—for starters, named James Beard Award-winning chef, Esquire’s Chef of the Year, and a 30 Under 30 honoree by both Zagat and Forbes—Onwuachi ( Notes from a Young Black Chef) offers a cookbook ranging widely from Nigerian Jollof and Puerto Rican Red Bean Sofrito to Baby Back Ribs and Red Velvet Cake.

Taylor, Nicole. Watermelon and Red Birds: A Cookbook for Juneteenth and Black Celebrations. S. & S. May 2022. 272p. ISBN 9781982176211. $29.99. COOKING

Smoked Paprika and Cocoa Popcorn and Blueberry and Beef Puff Pies? Whoa! Twice nominated for a James Beard Award, food writer Taylor offers a first cookbook with 75 recipes appropriate for Juneteenth, plus essays examining the meaning of the holiday and recalling her own Juneteenth celebrations. With a 75,000-copy first printing.

Zabar, Lori. Zabar’s: A Family Story, with Recipes. Schocken. May 2022. 224p. ISBN 9780805243390. $28. Downloadable. COOKING

Established on New York’s Upper West Side in 1934 by Louis and Lilly Zabar, Zabar’s initially sold only smoked fish but now purveys cheese, fish, meat, produce, baked goods, prepared foods, kitchen appliances, and a drop-dead amazing chocolate babka. Glazer is a former researcher at the Metropolitan Museum of Art but more importantly Louis’s granddaughter, and she tells a family story that includes Louis’s escape from Ukraine in 1921 following a pogrom and sneaking into the United States from Canada.

Memoir: Black Fathers/Black Sons/Black Father Figures

Dennis, David J., Jr. & David J. Dennis Sr. The Movement Made Us: A Generational Fight for Civil Rights. Harper. May 2022. 288p. ISBN 9780063011427. $27.99. MEMOIR

Multi-award-winning freelance writer/commentator David J. Dennis Jr. serves as visiting professor of journalism at Morehouse College, while civil rights veteran David J. Dennis Sr. is one of the original Freedom Riders, traveling from Montgomery, AL, to Jackson, MS, in 1961. This father-and-son memoir travels, too, moving from the civil rights movement of the 1960s to today’s Black Lives Matter as the authors share stories of engagement and activism. At once intriguing history and a memoir of comfort, closeness, and revelation, this work was short-listed for the 2021 J. Anthony Lukas Work-In-Progressz Award. With a with a 75,000-copy first printing.

Jawando, Will. My Seven Black Fathers: A Young Activist’s Memoir of Race, Family, and the Mentors Who Made Him Whole. Farrar. May 2022. 240p. ISBN 9780374604875. $28. CD. MEMOIR

An attorney, activist, and councilman in Montgomery County, MD, Jawando was inspired by his participation in My Brother’s Keeper, President Barack Obama’s mentorship program for young men of color, to explore his own bonds with key father figures in his life. There’s Mr. Williams, the math teacher who taught him how to tie a tie; Joseph, the stepfather who taught him what family meant; Jay Fletcher, his mother’s openly gay colleague, who taught him about theater; and Mr. Holmes, the high school chorus director who taught him to sing and comforted him after a terrible disappointment. Then there’s Deen Sanwoola, who helped him connect his Nigerian heritage with his American upbringing, which eased the way to his reconciling with his biological father. A big-buzzing book; with a 200,000-copy first printing.

Memoir: Challenges and Changes

Cohen, Rich. The Adventures of Herbie Cohen: World’s Greatest Negotiator. Farrar. May 2022. 240p. ISBN 9780374169619. $27. MEMOIR

The New York Times best-selling author of Tough Jews and Monsters, cocreator of the HBO series Vinyl, a contributing editor at Rolling Stone, and winner of multiple awards, including Chicago Public Library’s 21st Century Award—Cohen is a busy man. Here he writes about another busy man, his father, Herbie Cohen, a Brooklyn-born Jewish wheeler dealer, adviser to presidents and corporations, arms and hostage negotiator, profound seeker of justice, and author of the how-to classic You Can Negotiate Anything. With a 75,000-copy first printing. With a 75,000-copy first printing.

Fitzgerald, Isaac. Dirtbag, Massachusetts: A Confessional. Bloomsbury. May 2022. 272p. ISBN 9781635573978. $28. MEMOIR

Founding editor of BuzzFeed Books, Fitzgerald grew up in a homeless shelter, once helped smuggle medical supplies into Burma (now Myanmar), and worked as a fireman and on a boat before leaping into New York’s literary world. He’s also written the best-selling children’s book How To Be a Pirate. He proclaims that “life mistakes are my copilot” and here puts his copiloting on display while also recommending a larger view of masculinity than the anger, isolation, and entitlement he’s seen defining his gender. With a 100,000-copy first printing.

Hood, Ann. Fly Girl: A Memoir. Norton. May 2022. 288p. ISBN 9781324006237. $26.95. MEMOIR

Before she authored such beloved best sellers as The Book That Matters Most and The Knitting Circle, Hood worked as a flight attendant, enjoying layovers in far-flung places and smiling through the blisters brought on by treading miles of aisles in high heels. Deregulation, an oil crisis, furloughs, a labor strike—she saw them all in a job she acknowledges is shaped by sexism yet for her proved empowering. She sketched out her first novel while sitting in one of her plane’s jump seats.

House, Cindy. Mother Noise: A Memoir. Marysue Rucci: Scribner. May 2022. 224p. ISBN 9781982168759. $26. MEMOIR

Artist, author, and regular opener for David Sedaris on his tours, House is now marking 20 years of recovery after heroin addiction. Here she uses essays and graphic narrative shorts to reflect on the wonders of life and friendship and the responsibilities of parenthood, opening with her trying to figure out how to explain her past to her nine-year-old son. With a 75,000-copy first printing.

Liu, Simu. We Were Dreamers: An Immigrant Superhero Origin Story. Morrow. May 2022. 320p. ISBN 9780063046498. $27.99. CD. MEMOIR

The first Chinese star of a Marvel superhero film, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Chinese Canadian actor Liu relates his journey from struggling immigrant child—he lived with grandparents in China until age four, then joined his parents in Canada—to model student starting to question the goals set out for him, to taking some huge risks after being laid off from his first job and winding up a Hollywood star. With a 50,000-copy first printing; originally scheduled for May 2021.

McNamara, Craig. Because Our Fathers Lied: A Memoir of Truth and Family, from Vietnam to Today. Little, Brown. May 2022. 288p. ISBN 9780316282239. $29. MEMOIR

President and owner of Sierra Orchards, McNamara is also the son of Robert McNamara, John F. Kennedy’s secretary of defense and hugely responsible for escalating U.S. involvement in Vietnam. Meanwhile, Stanford dropout Craig failed his draft-board physical, took to the road on his motorbike, and eventually participated in antiwar demonstrations. His memoir investigates father-son tensions while capturing the larger tensions in the country at the time. With a 35,000-copy first printing.

Osefo, Wendy. Tears of My Mother: The Legacy of My Nigerian Upbringing. Gallery: S. & S. May 2022. 256p. ISBN 9781982194505. $27. MEMOIR

Nigerian American political commentator Osefo, well known for her star turn on Bravo’s The Real Housewives of Potomac, here explains that, however prickly, her relationship with her mother, Susan Okuzu, significantly shaped her life. She describes Okuzu as a kind and loving person and a distant disciplinarian, determined to have herself and her children succeed in the United States, and she became the first Black woman to obtain a PhD in public affairs–community development from Rutgers University, Camden. Ultimately a Valentine to a formidable woman; with a 75,000-copy first printing.

Memoir: The LGBTQ+ Experience

Goetsch, Diana. This Body I Wore: A Memoir. Farrar. May 2022. 336p. ISBN 9780374115098. $28. MEMOIR

An award-winning poet and essayist who taught at New York City’s Stuyvesant High School for over two decades, Goetsch delivers a memoir not of transition but of living a trans life that unfolded over decades; she was active in New York’s crossdressing subculture in the 1980s–90s but transitioned later. As she says, “How can you spend your life face-to-face with an essential truth about yourself and still not see it?” Her story is thus personal while also running parallel to the emergence of the trans community in recent decades.

Park, Casey. Diary of a Misfit. Knopf. May 2022. 352p. ISBN 9780525658535. $28.95. MEMOIR

Raised in the rural South, Park came out as a lesbian in 2002; her mother promptly shut her out, and her pastor asked God to kill her. But her tough, conservative grandmother confided that she had grown up across the street from a woman who lived as a man and asked Park to find out what happened to the person she knew as Roy. A Washington Post reporter, Park used investigative skills to chase down Roy’s story, which she blends here with memoir as she examines her own sexuality and her fraught relationship with mother. Winner of a 2021 J. Anthony Lukas Work-In-Progress Award.

Reang, Putsata. Ma and Me: A Memoir. MCD: Farrar. May 2022. 368p. ISBN 9780374279264. $28. MEMOIR

When Reang was 11 months old, her family fled Cambodia, and she survived only because her mother thrust her seemingly lifeless baby on the medical staff at the U.S. naval base in the Philippines where the family first landed. Reang grew up seeking to be the perfect Cambodian daughter and was especially close to her mother, a tie that frayed when Reang came out in her twenties and snapped altogether when Reang, at age 40, married a woman. Journalist Reang here considers inherited trauma and the weight of cultural and filial obligation. (For another view of such trauma, see Anthony Veasna So’s excellent story collection, Afterparties.)

Rouse, Wade. Magic Season: A Son’s Story. Hanover Square: Harlequin. May 2022. 288p. ISBN 9781335475176. $27.99. MEMOIR

Having achieved success in public relations, Rouse went on to win awards as a memoirist and accolades as best-selling author of the popular fiction he writes under his grandmother’s name, Viola Shipman. But as a queer man, he had always had an uneasy relationship with his conservative, standoffish engineer father. Finally, as his father was dying, the two found reconciliation and comfort in their relationship, particularly in their shared love of baseball. With a 75,000-copy first printing.

Spotlight: Keano n Lowe & Justin Spizman’s Hometown Victory: A Coach’s Story of Football, Fate, and Coming Home

Lowe, Keanon & Justin Spizman. Hometown Victory: A Coach’s Story of Football, Fate, and Coming Home. Flatiron: Macmillan. May 2022. 240p. ISBN 9781250807632. $28.99. CD. MEMOIR

Lowe was working as an offensive analyst for the San Francisco 49ers when a childhood friend and former high school teammate died of an opioid overdose. He decided to do something different with his life, giving up his golden NFL job and returning to his hometown to coach high school football. When he took over, the Parkrose High School team was stuck in a 23-game losing streak, but in a story that’s been much reported, within two years he had led them to a conference championship. Along the way, he disarmed a school shooter, embracing him until the police arrived, and he has been noted throughout his career for his keen mentorship. Look for the forthcoming movie starring Dwayne Johnson; with a 200,000-copy first printing.

Questions in Retrospect

Dyer, Geoff. The Last Days of Roger Federer: And Other Endings. Farrar. May 2022. 272p. ISBN 9780374605568. $28. ESSAYS

As he approaches late middle age, award-winning critic/novelist Dyer looks at distinguished artists and athletes later in life to see whether growing older brings understanding or despair, greater insight or diminished capability. Moving from the waning-days work of J.M.W. Turner, John Coltrane, and Ludwig Beethoven to the fancy footwork of Bjorn Borg and Roger Federer, he reveals that last acts can be the deepest and the best. With a 50,000-copy first printing.

McKibben, Bill. The Flag, the Cross, and the Station Wagon: A Graying American Looks Back at His Suburban Boyhood and Wonders What the Hell Happened. Holt. May 2022. 240p. ISBN 9781250823601. $27.99. MEMOIR

Award-winning environmental activist McKibben (Falter) offers more than memoir as he reflects on growing up middle class in 1960s–1970s Lexington, MA, convinced that the United States, however imperfect, was a great country growing even greater. Now, with overconsumption fueling climate change, a new understanding of how racism has shaped U.S. history, and religion a divisive rather than unifying force, he ponders what went wrong. With a 100,000-copy first printing.

Memoirs of Prison and Redemption

Kruzan, Sara. I Cried To Dream Again: Trafficking, Murder, and Deliverance—A Memoir. Pantheon. May 2022. 192p. ISBN 9780593315880. $27. Downloadable. MEMOIR

At age 17, Kruzan murdered the pimp who had forced her into sex work and abused her between the ages of 11 and 16. With information about her abuse inadmissible at her trial, she was sentenced to life in prison. A 2009 Human Rights Watch video brought attention to her case, and she was released after serving 19 years and seven months in prison. She now works as an advocate for survivors like her, and her efforts have paid off. Rep. Bruce Westerman (R-Ark.) has introduced a bill in Congress known as Sara’s Law that would allow federal judges to impose reduced sentencing for survivors of juvenile sex trafficking, abuse, and assault who commit crimes against their abusers.

Lucky, Antong. A Redemptive Path Forward: From Incarceration to a Life of Activism. Counterpoint. May 2022. 224p. ISBN 9781640095342. $26. MEMOIR

Growing up in poverty-stricken East Dallas, TX, with his father incarcerated and use of crack cocaine and heroin on the rise, Lucky was a strong student but was pulled into the orbit of gang life. In the early 1990s, he formed the Dallas Bloods gang, riding a wave of illegal drug sales and retaliatory gun violence until his arrest and imprisonment. In prison, he renounced his gang affiliation and sought to unite rival gangs, and since his early release he has focused on mentoring Black men and boys, bridging the gap between community and police, and developing and launching violence-reduction strategies, criminal justice reform, and reentry initiatives for formerly incarcerated people.

Related Reading

Adams, Jarrett. Redeeming Justice: From Defendant to Defender, My Fight for Equity on Both Sides of a Broken System. Convergent: Crown. Sept. 2021. 304p. ISBN 9780593137819. $27. MEMOIR

Convicted by an all-white jury at age 17 of a crime he didn’t commit and finally exonerated with the help of the Wisconsin Innocence Project after multiple appeals and 10 years in prison, Adams subsequently earned a Juris Doctorate from Loyola University Chicago School of Law. He argued his first case with the Innocence Project, standing before the same court that had convicted him years previously.

Adayfi, Mansoor. Don’t Forget Us Here: Lost and Found at Guantánamo. Hachette. Aug. 2021. 336p. ISBN 9780306923869. $28. MEMOIR

Having left Yemen at age 18 for a cultural mission in Afghanistan, Adayfi was kidnapped, sold to the United States, and held without charges for 14 years at Guantánamo Bay. There he became known as Smiley Troublemaker, asserting himself by leading prison riots and hunger strikes. Released in 2016 and now an activist, he won the Richard J. Margolis Award for nonfiction writers of social justice journalism and is currently adapting this memoir for the Sundance Institute.

Hedges, Chris. Our Class: Trauma and Transformation in an American Prison. S. & S. Oct. 2021. 272p. ISBN 9781982154431. $26.99. SOCIAL SCIENCE

Since 2013, Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Hedges has taught drama, literature, philosophy, and history in the college degree program offered by Rutgers University at East Jersey State Prison. Here, he returns to his first class there, where 28 students read plays by authors including Amiri Baraka and August Wilson, then wrote scenes crafted over the years into a play. Called Caged, it is credited to the New Jersey Prison Theater Cooperative and expresses the inmates' suffering, frustrations, and dreams. In 2018, it had a sold-out run at Trenton's Passage Theatre and was published in 2020 by Haymarket Press.

Hylton, Donna with Kristine Gasbarre. A little Piece of Light: A Memoir of Hope, Prison, and a Life Unbound. Hachette. 2018. 272p. ISBN 9780316559256. $28. MEMOIR

Shuffled off to adoptive parents before she turned eight and taken from Jamaica to New York by an icily unappreciative mother and a sexually abusive father (she’s his “live-in child mistress”). Impregnated by a man who promised to help her as she’s on the verge of entering the prestigious boarding school she will never attend. Subject to a series of violent rapes. Struggling to raise her daughter when a coworker drags her into a mob scheme that leads to a wrongful conviction for kidnapping and second-degree murder. Hylton tells a shattering story, then shows how she put the pieces together in prison as she moved to help others: “My life is officially no longer about survival or doing what I have to do just to get by. … I am now part of something larger.” And so she remains after her release following 26-plus years behind bars. Astonishingly, this memoir isn't just a little sliver of light but fully glowing and radiant. 

Poor, Nigel & Earlonne Woods. This Is Ear Hustle: Unflinching Stories of Everyday Prison Life. Crown. Oct. 2021. 304p. ISBN 9780593238868. $28. SOCIAL SCIENCE

Poor, a white visual artist and photography professor at California State University, Sacramento, and Woods, a Black former inmate whose 31-year prison sentence was commuted by California Governor Jerry Brown in 2018, are cocreators and cohosts of the podcast Ear Hustle, a Pulitzer Prize finalist also nominated for Peabody honors. Woods is currently its full-time coproducer and also founded CHOOSE1, which aims to repeal the California Three Strikes Law under which he was sentenced. First created and produced entirely within San Quentin State Prison, the podcast allowed prisoners to share their thoughts and experiences about incarceration and the paths that led them there; it now tell post-incarceration stories as well. Here, the coauthors offer almost all-new stories (only two podcasts are excerpted) while framing these narratives with their own perspectives; with 40 original black-and-white illustrations.

Salaam, Yusef. Better, Not Bitter: Living on Purpose in the Pursuit of Racial Justice. S. & S. May 2021. 352p. ISBN 9781538705001. $28. MEMOIR

In 1989, at age 14, Salaam was one of five teenage boys sentenced to prison for assaulting a Central Park jogger, serving out their sentences before another inmate confessed to the crime and they were exonerated. Here, he speaks of his upbringing, imprisonment, and exoneration in what became a case of national importance while highlighting his belief that we're all "born on purpose, with a purpose" and his work as a prison reform and racial justice activist.

LJ is compiling a list of prison memoirs to accompany a 2022 feature on public library services to prisons. Send recommendations to .




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