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This summer's crop of new books offers something for everyone. PW staff picks include Noah Hawley's blockbuster thriller (Before the Fall), Russell Banks's dispatches from all over the globe (Voyager), a 900-page manga-style biography (The Osamu Tezuka Story), and much more. After surveying our staff picks, be sure to take a look at our category picks for even more books to stash in your suitcase or beach bag.

  • The Loney

    Andrew Michael Hurley (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)

    I've long been a fan of Tartarus Press, a small specialty publisher in the U.K. known for its high quality supernatural fiction. The Tartarus edition of The Loney, a first novel, received limited distribution in the U.S., but garnered praise from the likes of Stephen King ("It's not just good, it's great. An amazing piece of fiction"). Now a major American house is making this novel widely available. I'm curious to see what the excitement's about. —Peter Cannon, senior reviews editor

  • Eric Rohmer: A Biography

    Antoine de Baecque and Noel Herpe, trans. from the French by Steven Rendall and Lisa Neal (Columbia Univ.)

    The book I'm most looking forward to is one concerning a different kind of summer movie than we've become used to: the movies of Éric Rohmer. Though Rohmer filmed stories about spies, wars, and knights in shining armor, his work is mostly just about men, women, and conversation. I've been meaning to better acquaint myself with his light, unmistakably French movies, and this 600 page–plus biography seems like just the way to do it. —Everett Jones, reviews editor

  • Wintering

    Peter Geye (Knopf)

    I am reading this sequel to The Lighthouse Road right now and loving it for so many reasons. It's set in the wilds of northern Minnesota, and there is such a strong sense of place—and the impact of the isolation and ruggedness of this beautiful locale upon its characters, some of whom I met in The Lighthouse Road. I live in northern Minnesota and Geye's portrait of what it must have been like here for an earlier generation of inhabitants—and still is, for residents in some parts of the region—is spot on. The story moves along quietly, but packs a huge emotional punch. I've been reading Geye since his debut, Safe from the Sea, and he's blowing me away yet again. —Claire Kirch, senior correspondent/Midwest

  • Allegheny Front

    Matthew Neill Null (Sarabande)

    The American West may be our biggest national mythmaker, but for my money, the dark hollows and craggy mountainsides of old Appalachia are equally fascinating—and much eerier. West Virginia native Null's debut collection of short fiction sticks to the Allegheny region, chronicling more than 200 years of history and the comings and goings of humans and wildlife in a wilderness soon to be lost to mining, fracking, and the choke of burning coal. —John Maher, assistant news editor

  • The Osamu Tezuka Story: A Life in Manga and Anime

    Toshio Ban, trans. from the Japanese by Frederik L. Schodt (Stonebridge Press)

    Tezuka, creator of Astro Boy, is the Disney of Japan, an innovator of titanic influence, whose work manages to be cutesy, brutal, adventurous, and transcendent all at once. This 900-page manga-style biography by one of his assistants is officially sanctioned, so don't expect juicy revelations. Instead, it explores the postwar world that formed his work, and the restless, questioning spirit that led to books like his tragically uncompleted masterpiece, Phoenix. —Heidi MacDonald, comics reviews editor

  • Everybody's Fool

    Richard Russo (Knopf)

    Russo's ability to capture the humanity and humor of small-town life is what continues to draw me to his work. Getting to hang out again with the characters from Nobody's Fool, published over two decades ago and turned into a memorable film starring Paul Newman as Donald "Sully" Sullivan, makes this novel my pick. But you don't need to have read the earlier book, also set in North Bath, N.Y., to appreciate the plot, which features Philip Seymour Hoffman's character, Douglas Raymer, now the chief of police. —Judith Rosen, senior bookselling editor

  • Barkskins

    Annie Proulx (Scribner)

    Richly evocative and at times brutally stark, Proulx's epic novel spans 300 years, beginning in New France (the area colonized by France in North America) in 1693. Told through three families of woodcutters in the Maritimes—the Duquets, the Sels, and members of the native Mi'kmaq tribe—this novel is Proulx's most ambitious. —Mark Rotella, senior editor

  • Voyager: Travel Writings

    Russell Banks (Ecco)

    In this compilation, the novelist reflects on a career of traveling and writing, eventually uncovering that for him the two practices are inextricably intertwined. Each of the essays introduces a place by first grounding the location—the Everglades, the Caribbean, Scotland, Dakar—in a deep historicism, and then watching the flawed narrator stumble through. In the title essay, as Banks makes a whimsical spiral throughout the islands of the Caribbean while courting his fourth wife, secrets and long-hidden desires come bubbling to the surface. —Seth Satterlee, reviews editor

  • The Heavenly Table

    Donald Ray Pollock (Doubleday)

    Was Deliverance a little too mellow for you? Give this a try. It's Pollock's third book, a psychotic terror ride through an early 20th century hillbilly hellscape that puts the family of a swindled, good-hearted farmer on a collision course with three brothers on a crime spree. If you've read Pollock's earlier stuff you'll have an idea of the kind of intense darkness he traffics in here. If not, well, buckle up. —Jonathan Segura, executive editor

  • May Day

    Gretchen Marquette (Graywolf)

    In this lovely, dark, haunted, and haunting debut poetry collection, Marquette's ragged, sometimes very long lines can seem to be careening out of control, except that their subjects—childhood memories of a brother and bracing visions of him on military deployment overseas; hungering, fragile love; the very nature of human experience—are so carefully handled, with such resolve and resignation. "It's hard to forget what you're built to remember," she writes; readers will remember this book. —Craig Morgan Teicher, director of digital operations

  • Ninety-Nine Stories of God

    Joy Williams (Tin House)

    The most beguiling book of the summer is this little collection of 99 very short stories about God. The catch is that the brilliantly twisted Joy Williams is behind the stories, which means the Lord finds himself at a hotdog-eating contest or in line for a shingles vaccination. Mayhem, humor, and death mark this transcendent book.

  • Problems

    Jade Sharma (Coffee House/Emily Books)

    It's not the most reassuring feeling when the deputy reviews editor at work suggests you read a book with the title Problems. But that's how I came across Jade Sharma's debut novel, which plots the directionless world of Maya, a 31-year-old living with her husband in a windowless railroad apartment in New York City, as she spirals into a debilitating heroin addiction. Think Patrick Bateman circa 2016 except whip-smart and female. Maya's inner world is raw and repulsive, but astutely rendered by Sharma. The book is simultaneously hard to read and hard to put down. —Annie Coreno, reviews editor

  • Siracusa

    Delia Ephron (Penguin/Blue Rider)

    Set on the coast of Sicily, this is a seductive and edgy dissection of two imploding marriages. Former lovers Lizzie and Finn are each unhappily married, and when they travel on a shared vacation with their respective families, the situation reaches a boiling point amid deception, secrets, and betrayal.

  • The Mirror Thief

    Martin Seay (Melville House)

    If you like your summer reads epic and spanning multiple continents and centuries in the Cloud Atlas mold, The Mirror Thief is for you. The big historical adventure is set in 16th-century Venice; Venice Beach, Calif., circa 1958; and the modern-day Venice casino in Las Vegas. The result is part supernatural mystery, part ominous modern thriller, and a true delight.

  • Homegoing

    Yaa Gyasi (Knopf)

    Gyasi's amazing debut novel offers an unforgettable, page-turning look at the histories of Ghana and America, as the author traces a single bloodline across seven generations, beginning with Ghanaian half-sisters Effia, who is married off to a British colonizer in the 1760s, and Esi, who is captured into the British slave-trading system around the same time.

  • Sergio Y.

    Alexandre Vidal Porto, trans. from the Portuguese by Alex Ladd (Europa)

    Porto's captivating, impeccably structured novel is a detective story wrapped around a deeper exploration of identity. São Paulo therapist Armando is haunted by the case of 17-year-old Sergio, due to Armando's failure to diagnose a critical aspect of the unhappiness Sergio sought to eradicate through therapy: namely, Sergio's wish to become a woman. Armando begins a journey following Sergio's footsteps, resulting in a mesmerizing narrative about the sacrifices we make in the search for happiness.

  • Zero K

    Don DeLillo (Scribner)

    Jeffrey Lockhart joins his billionaire father, Ross, at a mysterious, remote compound to say good-bye to Ross's second wife (and Jeffrey's stepmother), Artis, who is going to be preserved until there's a cure for her ailing health. DeLillo, our preeminent brain-needler, packs obsessive asides—death, information, mannequins—into his 17th novel, which is one of his finest books.

  • Another Brooklyn

    Jacqueline Woodson (Amistad)

    In her first adult novel in 20 years, the acclaimed children's and YA author combines grit and beauty in a series of stunning vignettes. When anthropologist August revisits her old neighborhood after her father's death, it brings back a flood of childhood memories, painting a vivid mural of what it was like to grow up African-American in Brooklyn during the 1970s.

  • The Lost Civilization of Suolucidir

    Susan Daitch (City Lights)

    With shades of Umberto Eco and Paul Auster, this brilliant, addictive adventure novel is about the search for a mythical lost city located somewhere in modern-day Iran. As a succession of explorers and shady characters dig deeper into the landscape, the ancient secret of Suolucidir is gradually revealed. This is brainy, escapist fiction at its best.

  • Malafemmena

    Louisa Ermelino (Sarabande)

    The first collection from Ermelino, PW's reviews director, is composed of 16 sharp, globetrotting stories. With diverse scenarios including a meal of fish heads in Jakarta and a federal raid on an Acapulco beach, these stories use spare realism and humor to capture the feelings of isolation and foreignness in characters all over the world.

  • I Almost Forgot About You

    Terry McMillan (Crown)

    Georgia Young, a 54-year-old optometrist bored with her work and romantically adrift after two failed marriages, sets out to reinvent herself by examining the loves she left behind—devising a nifty three-step guide for finding "the Right One," and then moving on when it turns out wrong. There's no better creator than McMillan of female characters who refuse to give up on dreaming, or on looking back to find the way forward in their noisy, messy, joyous lives.

  • Modern Lovers

    Emma Straub (Riverhead)

    In the 1980s at Oberlin College, four friends—Elizabeth, Andrew, Zoe, and Lydia—had a band. Two decades later, Elizabeth and Andrew are married and live in the same Brooklyn neighborhood as Zoe, who is also married. Amid career challenges and midlife crises enters a Hollywood producer who's making a movie about Lydia, who died of a heroin overdose at 27, and needs the former band members to sign over their rights to their biggest song, "Mistress of Myself."

  • Marrow Island

    Alexis M. Smith (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)

    Struggling journalist Lucie Bowen returns to her family's cottage on Orwell Island, in Washington States's San Juan archipelago, after a 20-year absence to regroup. On a nearby island, Lucie learns her friend Katie has joined an environmentalist commune that has revitalized the land—but things are not as they seem. Smith suffuses her setting with dread and menace, raising the question: What is really happening on Marrow Island?

  • You Will Know Me

    Megan Abbott (Little, Brown)

    The cutthroat world of girls' gymnastics provides the backdrop for this piercing look at what a family will sacrifice to ensure their daughter's rise to the top of this punishing sport. Abbott keenly examines the pressures exuded on girls' bodies and the fierce, sometimes misguided love parents have for their children.

  • Dark Matter

    Blake Crouch (Crown)

    This science fiction thriller from Crouch, best known for his Wayward Pines trilogy, may be his breakthrough novel. A brilliant physicist is abducted and drugged while walking home one night in Chicago; he later wakes up to find his world completely changed.

  • Redemption Road

    John Hart (St. Martin's/Dunne)

    A good cop faces criminal charges for a fatal shooting in this timely crime thriller from Hart, the only author to win the Edgar Award for best novel twice in a row. It's been five years since Hart's last book, Iron Horse, and his many fans won't be disappointed by this tale centered on a powerful, courageous but emotionally wounded woman.

  • End of Watch

    Stephen King (Scribner)

    Retired police detective Bill Hodges, the unlikely hero of Mr. Mercedes and Finders Keepers, the first two entries in Thriller Award–winner King's crime trilogy, now runs an investigative agency. Bill and his partner, Holly Gibney, get pulled into their most dangerous case yet in this stunning mix of detective fiction and supernatural suspense.

  • All the Missing Girls

    Megan Miranda (Simon & Schuster)

    YA author Miranda (Soulprint) makes her adult debut with a fiendishly plotted thriller that uses reverse chronology. Family business brings prep school counselor Nicolette Farrell back to her hometown of Cooley, N.C., a place still fraught with the unsolved disappearance of her best friend right after high school graduation a decade earlier.

  • Charcoal Joe

    Walter Mosley (Doubleday)

    Recently named a grand master by the Mystery Writers of America, Mosley populates his excellent 14th mystery featuring his favor-dealing L.A. PI, Easy Rawlins, with a host of familiar series characters, including Easy's dangerous friend, Raymond "Mouse" Alexander, who introduces Easy to Rufus "Charcoal Joe" Tyler. Charcoal Joe needs Easy's help clearing a 22-year-old doctor of physics of a murder charge.

  • Marked for Life

    Emelie Schepp (Mira)

    Swedish author Schepp makes her U.S. debut with the stellar first in a crime trilogy. Prosecutor Jana Berzelius heads the investigation into the shooting murder of Hans Juhlén, the person in charge of asylum issues at the Swedish migration board.

  • Underground Airlines

    Ben H. Winters (LB/Mulholland)

    In Winters's spectacular speculative thriller, slavery is still legal in four American states in the present day. Victor, a former slave and bounty hunter for the U.S. Marshals Service, arrives in Indianapolis on the trail of a runaway knowing something isn't right—with the case file, with his work, and with the country itself.

  • ShallCross

    C.D. Wright (Copper Canyon)

    Wright (1949–2016), one of America's most lauded and revered contemporary poets, died unexpectedly in January, which will make this highly anticipated verse collection that much more heart-wrenching to read. Across five distinct movements she extracts form and language from that which, previously, seemed to have been unspeakable, featuring brief lyrics of quotidian scenes, a fractured distillation of crime reports, meditations on obscurity, and more. It's a triumph and a tragedy; she will be dearly missed. —Alex Crowley, reviews editor

  • Security

    Gina Wohlsdorf (Algonquin)

    State-of-the-art security can't prevent uninvited guests from turning the new Manderley Resort in Santa Barbara, Calif., into an abattoir in Wohlsdorf's arresting debut. Meanwhile, Tessa, Manderley's property manager, must deal with the reappearance, after 11 years of estrangement, of an old flame, one of the twin brothers she grew up loving in the home where all three were fostered.

  • How the Duke Was Won

    Lenora Bell (Avon)

    Debut author Bell begins the Disgraceful Dukes Regency series with a winning tale in which disreputable but charming protagonists bond over a shared passion for righting social injustices. Colorful supporting characters, plentiful plot twists, and the trials of star-crossed lovers make for a sizzling and emotionally rewarding page-turner.

  • Sweet Little Lies

    Jill Shalvis (Avon)

    Contemporary romance star Shalvis launches an exciting series with this winning title. Pru Harris captains a San Francisco Bay tour boat, Finn O'Riley is co-owner of O'Riley's Pub, and rescue mutt Thor wants to bring them together. The heartwarming vibe is almost overwhelming, but Shalvis never lets her sweet tale become saccharine, and the characters are perfectly imperfect.

  • Top to Bottom

    Delphine Dryden (Riptide)

    The third Escape contemporary erotic romance sizzles as two ex-lovers reunite to open a BDSM club. Dru just wants a little help getting her registration system set up, but when she and Amie meet again, their old flame reignites. Dru and Amie's relationship is tender and sweet with a healthy dose of hot, responsible kink, and the characters are deliciously well-rounded and engaging.

  • Beauty and the Clockwork Beast

    Nancy Campbell Allen (Shadow Mountain)

    Allen keeps both the romance and the gore PG-rated as she reimagines "Beauty and the Beast" as a supernatural murder mystery set in a steampunk Victorian England. Her tale seamlessly combines family politics, ballroom dancing, and romantic swooning with airships, ray guns, and automatons, as well as scientifically verified vampires and werewolves.

  • All In

    Simona Ahrnstedt, trans. from the Swedish by Tara Chace (Kensington)

    This passionate love story set in the cutthroat world of big business and venture capital was a bestseller in Sweden. Notorious corporate raider David Hammar doesn't count on falling for Natalia De la Grip, the brilliant but unappreciated daughter of his chief rival. Drawn together by sexual sparks and their mutual outsider status, the two become lovers but must make a series of deeply difficult choices.

  • Children of Earth and Sky

    Guy Gavriel Kay (NAL)

    World Fantasy Award–winner Kay returns to the alternate Renaissance-era Europe of A Song for Arbonne in this engrossing fantasy. Kay wields plots and all-too-human characters brilliantly, in a world where nothing is as valuable as information. This big, powerful fantasy offers an intricately detailed setting, marvelously believable characters, and an international stew of cultural and religious conflict writ larger than large.

  • Invaders: 22 Tales from the Outer Limits of Literature

    Edited by Jacob Weisman (Tachyon)

    Weisman brings together 22 SF stories by authors who, although not generally associated with the genre, are clearly fellow travelers. Junot Díaz, Katherine Dunn, Jonathan Lethem, Amiri Baraka, W.P. Kinsella, and others best known for literary fiction contribute stellar speculative tales. This volume is a treasure trove of stories that draw equally from SF and literary fiction, and they are superlative in either context.

  • Roses and Rot

    Kat Howard (S&S/Saga)

    Howard weaves a dark and enticing tale of sisterly bonds, fairy promises, and the price of artistic success in this lushly written debut fantasy set in the present-day United States. Two sisters escape their controlling stepmother and are reunited at a prestigious artist colony whose creative energy feeds the Fair Folk. Howard's characters are deftly drawn, and her writing is seductive as fairy magic.

  • A Natural History of Hell

    Jeffrey Ford (Small Beer)

    Celebrated short-form fantasist Ford blends subtle psychological horror with a mix of literary history, folklore, and SF in this collection of 13 short stories, all focused on the struggles, sorrows, and terrors of daily life. Each tale gently twists perceptions, diving down into the ordinary and coming back out with a thoughtful nugget of the extraordinary. Readers will be alarmed by how easily they relate to the well-meaning but inevitably destructive characters.

  • Before the Fall

    Noah Hawley (Grand Central)

    I never finished Hawley's 2012 novel, The Good Father, so I was skeptical when I heard various people in the industry raving about his latest. I'm not that far into Before the Fall, but the set-up does its job. A private plane leaving Martha's Vineyard goes down in the ocean and then the book moves back and forth in time, revealing the secrets of the dead passengers, as well as of the two survivors—a boy and a down-on-his-luck painter. Grand Central billed the book "the thriller to read in 2016"; if it keeps up like this, they might be right. —Rachel Deahl, news director

  • The Fireman

    Joe Hill (Morrow)

    In Hill's superb supernatural thriller, the world is falling apart in a maelstrom of flame and fury. A spore dubbed Dragonscale infects people, draws patterns on their skin, and eventually makes them spontaneously combust—and it's rapidly spreading. This is a tremendous, heartrending epic of bravery and love set in a fully realized and terrifying apocalyptic world, where hope lies in the simplest of gestures and the fullest of hearts.

  • The Glamour of Strangeness: Artists and the Last Age of the Exotic

    Jamie James (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)

    James examines six artists whose travels allowed them to find inspiration and belonging far from their homelands in locations across the globe. In addition to analyzing their art, he details their rich lives, revealing serendipitous connections among the artists. Many of James's subjects refused to conform to the social norms of their birthplaces, namely monogamy and heterosexuality, and the description of these struggles is illuminating.

  • The Dragon Behind the Glass: A True Story of Power, Obsession, and the World's Most Coveted Fish

    Emily Voigt (Scribner)

    Voigt explores the strange vortex where science, conservation, and commercialism meet when she follows the trail of the Asian arowana. Her journey takes her to Southeast Asia where she meets an array of colorful characters whose lives also orbit this rare, ancient, and extremely expensive fish. Voigt's passionate narrative perfectly conveys the obsessive world in which this creature swims.

  • Everybody Behaves Badly: The True Story Behind Hemingway's Masterpiece ‘The Sun Also Rises'

    Lesley M.M. Blume (HMH/Dolan)

    Blume has carved a mountain of original research into a riveting tale of the young Hemingway's literary, romantic, and publishing travails. In retelling the creation of his legendary debut and roman à clef, The Sun Also Rises, she shows how the book originated in an epic trip he undertook with a group of friends to Pamplona, Spain, in the summer of 1925.

  • Finding Fontainebleau: An American Boy in France

    Thad Carhart (Viking)

    American casualness and exuberance meet French formality and grandeur in this lively, perceptive memoir, a prequel to the author's The Piano Shop on the Left Bank. Carhart's meandering, warmly evocative anecdotes register both the quirkiness of France's traditions and the civilizing, humanizing influence they exert.

  • Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman

    Lindy West (Hachette Books)

    West, a culture writer at GQ and former staff writer for Jezebel, balances humor with a rare honesty and introspection in her debut. Always entertaining and relatable, she writes openly about embarrassing moments and self-esteem issues, and has a remarkable ability to move among lightheartedness, heavy-hitting topics, and what it means to be a good person.

  • Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War

    Mary Roach (Norton)

    The inimitable Roach returns with another squirm-inducing story of scientific endeavor. This time she digs into the work of the military scientists who are seeking ways to make combat more endurable for the soldiers engaged in it. This tale isn't one of advanced tactics or weapons, but of gruesome reconstructive surgery and Navy SEALs with diarrhea. If anyone can make the gross and traumatic entertaining, it's Mary Roach.

  • But What If We're Wrong?: Thinking About the Present As If It Were the Past

    Chuck Klosterman (Penguin/Blue Rider)

    Klosterman (I Wear the Black Hat) composes a series of delightful, intriguing thought experiments. For instance, if the ancient Egyptians had had television, which of their TV shows would interest us most—the Egyptian Breaking Bad, perhaps? He also asks, why do some writers achieve literary immortality while others are totally forgotten? This book will remind readers (any who need reminding) that Klosterman is one of our most insightful critics of pop culture.

  • Double Cup Love: On the Trail of Family, Food, and Broken Hearts in China

    Eddie Huang (Random/Spiegel & Grau)

    Via an endless stream of hilarious basketball metaphors and pop culture one-liners Huang (Fresh Off the Boat) conveys his passion for food and determination to get things right on every page of this memoir, which finds the young chef, who made his name in New York City, cooking his heart out in China.

  • Best Frints in the Whole Universe

    Antoinette Portis (Roaring Brook/Porter)

    Two aliens with sharp teeth and tadpole-like tails that (luckily) grow back provide a very funny portrait of the travails of friendship on planet Boborp, "where teef are long and tempers are short." Portis's playfully semi-homophonic Boborpian language will have human readers in stitches.

  • Magnate

    Joanna Shupe (Kensington/Zebra)

    I fell in love with the heroine of Shupe's splendid Gilded Age New York romance. Lizzie Sloane is a math-minded society lady who wants to speculate on the stock market. She turns to the titular magnate for funds, and sparks fly. Lizzie's fierce determination, good sense, and directness made me wish I could join her for an afternoon of drinking tea and reading the stock ticker by the light of the gasoliers. —Rose Fox, senior reviews editor

  • Clara

    Emily Arnold McCully (Random/Schwartz & Wade)

    McCully transports readers to 18th-century Europe in a moving portrait of the close relationship between a Dutch merchant marine, Captain Douwe Mout van der Meer, and a rhinoceros named Clara that took Europe by storm as they traversed the continent in a horse-drawn wagon.

  • Frank and Lucky Get Schooled

    Lynne Rae Perkins (Greenwillow)

    As Perkins makes humorously clear, some of the best learning happens outside of the classroom—especially when you have a dog by your side. Trying to share a bed with a restless pup? That's fractions right there. And how better to embrace geography than with a long hike through the great out-doors?

  • A Piece of Home

    Jeri Watts, illus. by Hyewon Yum (Candlewick)

    A Korean family endeavors to adjust to life in the U.S. in this intimate story from Watts and Yum. Hee Jun hates how much he stands out, his younger sister acts out, and their grandmother, a onetime teacher, retreats into silence. It's a sensitive portrait of resilience and cross-cultural bridge-building.

  • Splashdance

    Liz Starin (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)

    Summer is the perfect time to hit up the pool, but what if you're a polar bear trying to win a water ballet championship, and the pool has just banned bears? That's the setup for Starin's entertaining story as her heroine, Ursula, finds a crew of dedicated—and aquatically coordinated—allies to tackle injustice head-on.

  • Hippopotamister

    John Patrick Green (First Second)

    Zoo animals Hippopotamus and Red Panda attempt to find their true callings in this romp of a graphic novel that sees the friends trying out careers as construction workers, hair stylists, and chefs. The results of their efforts are decidedly mixed, but Green cleverly builds to an unexpected and rewarding ending for both animals.

  • Sea Change

    Frank Viva (Toon Books)

    Viva moves from picture books into fiction with this illustrated novel about a boy's summer visit to a Nova Scotia fishing village. With its striking graphic design, moody tone, and coastal Canadian setting, it's a book that feels a bit like a middle grade counterpart to Jillian and Mariko Tamaki's This One Summer.

  • Some Kind of Happiness

    Claire Legrand (Simon & Schuster)

    As 11-year-old Finley spends a summer with relatives she barely knows, Legrand delivers a deeply sensitive story that balances tough real-life situations like longstanding resentments, parental breakups, and depression with the power of storytelling and the building of connections that provide real, needed support.

  • We Will Not Be Silent: The White Rose Student Resistance Movement That Defied Adolf Hitler

    Russell Freedman (Clarion)

    Readers who love nonfiction and are interested in seeing how young people can make a difference should be riveted by Freedman's account of the clandestine efforts of siblings Hans and Sophie Scholl and others to oppose Hitler. While the consequences were deadly for these young activists, Freeman makes evident the value of their brave actions.

  • When Friendship Followed Me Home

    Paul Griffin (Dial)

    In a bighearted story set in Coney Island, Griffin showcases the determination of a 12-year-old boy named Ben, who may be out of the foster care system but whose challenges aren't over. Griffin's portraits of Ben's friendships with a local librarian, her daughter, and a rescued dog bring light to the difficulties Ben faces.

  • Every Exquisite Thing

    Matthew Quick (Little, Brown)

    Soul-searching and literary passion intertwine in the story of high school junior Nanette O'Hare, whose relationships with the author of a cult novel and a boy who also loves the book prove transformative for all three of them, as Nanette works to understand what she truly wants out of her life.

  • You Know Me Well

    Nina LaCour and David Levithan (St. Martin's Griffin)

    Two authors I love, each alternating chapters in one book? Sign me up. LaCour (I'll never get over how good her debut, Hold Still, is) and Levithan (editor and author extraordinaire) write about two friends dealing with relationship drama that unfolds over Pride Week in San Francisco. If this book is anything like the authors' previous endeavors, I know it'll be a great balance of honesty, authenticity, and humor. —Natasha Gilmore, associate editor, children's books

  • The Geek's Guide to Unrequited Love

    Sarvenaz Tash (Simon & Schuster)

    What better setting for a story of a nerd in love than Comic Con? Tash pokes fun at and revels in geek culture as 16-year-old Graham attempts to woo his longtime friend Roxy. Could they be the next Peter Parker and Mary Jane? The next Ron and Hermione? Teens will have to grab the book to find out.

  • The Lie Tree

    Frances Hardinge (Abrams/Amulet)

    There are layers upon layers to Hardinge's lushly written novel—murder, sexism, science, pseudoscience, and belief, for starters. A recent winner of the Costa Book Award in the U.K., the story centers on 14-year-old Faith Sunderly, whose family has moved to a remote island to avoid scandal, and a tree that may "feed" on the lies people tell.

  • My Lady Jane

    Brodi Ashton, Cynthia Hand, and Jodi Meadows (HarperTeen)

    A romantic comedy involving the ill-fated Edward VI and Lady Jane Grey is unlikely enough; throw in a race of shapeshifting humans called E∂ians, and you have a story that should be preposterous. Instead, this three-author collaboration is an uproariously fun comedy of errors that's all about the happily ever after.

  • Summer Days and Summer Nights: Twelve Love Stories

    Edited by Stephanie Perkins (St. Martin's Griffin)

    Francesca Lia Block, Libba Bray, Tim Federle, Lev Grossman, and Veronica Roth are among the big-name contributors to this eclectic collection of 12 romances, a summer-themed follow-up to My True Love Gave to Me. With a broad range of settings and romantic pairings, it's about as beach-bag-ready a book as one could hope for.

  • The Girls

    Emma Cline (Random House)

    The obsession with 1960s California cults comes to horrifying and electrifying life in this debut novel. While cults usually orbit charismatic men, Cline's protagonist is teenage Evie, whose attraction to impossible-to-resist cool girls leads to her fate. This coming-of-age story about how the need to be validated can go very wrong hits that sweet spot of literary fiction that's also compulsively readable. —Anisse Gross, west coast correspondent

  • One Hundred Twenty-One Days

    Michele Audin, trans. from the French by Christiana Hills (Deep Vellum)

    This weird little puzzle of a novel is about mathematicians in wartime, and it's only the second book published in English by a female member of the Oulipo. Audin, a French mathematician, scavenges different forms and styles (a fairy tale, a diary, newspaper clippings) to create a sort of literary mixtape. Perhaps the best comparison is Valeria Luiselli's The Story of My Teeth—like that novel, it gives you the rare, head-scratching feeling of not being able to say what exactly makes it so good. Maybe it's the precision of the details—but you wouldn't expect any less from a mathematician, would you? —Gabe Habash, deputy reviews editor

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