Happy To Read Tuesday! Here we’re highlighting the eight titles that our editors are most excited to add to their TBR shelves. For even more hot new releases, check out our Winter Previews for the best books coming out this season.
For readers who’ve been waiting with bated breath for the next entry in Ali Smith’s Seasonal Quartet series, this is going to be a good week. Winter is here, and it is sure to delight fans every bit as much as Autumn did. Art is heading for London, fake girlfriend in tow. There, he visits his mother, Sophia, and his aunt, Iris, who haven’t spoken to one another in decades. As the story progresses, Iris and Sophia will talk about how their lives have diverged and it what it might mean for them to make amends. Ali Smith fans: You will not be disappointed.
In Jeff Sparrow’s exciting new biography, readers can learn about the life of Paul Robeson, a famed athlete, activist, and actor. Robeson lived from 1898 until 1976, and during his life was considered by some to be the most well-known African American man of the era. He was an outspoken advocate for the working class. Robeson reached great popularity and influence before falling out of favor, partially because of his support for the Soviet Union. In a starred review, Kirkus called this book “A lucid, thought-provoking tribute to Robeson by an author determined to stand where Robeson stood and imagine what he thought.”
We named Grist Mill Road one of this winter’s must-read releases, so here at Bookish, we’re very excited it’s finally coming out this week. In this thriller, three characters’ lives are forever connected by one night in 1982. Hannah, Patrick, and Matthew are all involved or witness to a single, horrific crime in some capacity. When they meet up decades later in the Big Apple, the results are riveting. For readers who love watching multiple characters’ lives play out years after a pivotal event, this is a perfect book to pick up this week.
For readers hooked by the first installment in Charles Stross’ Empire Games series, the release of Dark State this week is excellent news. With one timeline set in the near future, Dark State tells the story of a United States of America where citizens are always watched and must live in constant fear of massive weapons being deployed. But there are also other timelines at work that intertwine in fascinating and gripping ways. A separate timeline concerns a world where the United States doesn’t exist–instead, there is the North American Commonwealth which only recently got its independence from Great Britain. How will these stories intersect and convene? You’ll have to read to find out.
Relationships can be tricky, especially when you and your partner are both striving for a place in Hollywood. This scenario could either be a recipe for success or one for disaster. But what if it’s both? Allison Winn Scotch’s Between Me and You is a tale that attempts to answer the question of whether love can be rekindled. In a whirlwind, Ben Livingston, a writer on the cusp of making it big, and Tatum Connelly, an actress struggling to make rent, meet each other, fall in love, marry, and have children. When Ben suffers several devastating losses, his career begins to dim as Tatum’s begins to shine. With this reversal also comes the unraveling of their marriage. Ben and Tatum must reflect on what went wrong and decide if there’s any way to make it right.
Joanna Meyer’s YA fantasy debut, Beneath the Haunting Sea, follows the story of 16-year-old Talia, banished from her desert home to live at the edge of the Northern Sea. Talia is sent away just as she learns that she is biological daughter of the dying emperor, meaning she is destined to become empress. Making Talia’s banishment all the worse is the fact that she has been promised against her will to be the bride of Wen, one of the inhabitants of her new home. All is not lost, however, for the sea speaks to Talia, helping her to unravel the myth of Rahn and her hall of Death—a story Talia’s dead mother had been obsessed with. With the help of Wen, Talia sets out to fulfill her destiny.
Instead of focusing exclusively on Frederick Douglass’ well-known and important autobiography of emancipation, in Facing Frederick Tonya Bolden dives into his rich and multi-layered persona, including his life as a newspaperman and statesman. Alongside the text are illuminating graphics and images which illustrate how Douglass became the most photographed person of his era. Middle grade readers will marvel at this fresh biography of one of the United States’ most important figures.
Pictures are worth a thousand words in While You Are Sleeping, a wordless picture book by Mariana Ruiz Johnson. The book moves from micro to macro as it explores the world of a sleeping child. From mythscape to dreamscape, this lovely story enchants with images that move from room to rooftop to starry sky. The pictures answer the age-old question of children everywhere: What happens when I am sleeping? The reader learns that there is life around us always, even when we lay down our heads for the night. The daughter of two book illustrators, Ruiz Johnson proves once again that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Readers of all ages will be delighted by her magical tale.