My posts have been few and far between lately. Sorry about that. However, I break my radio silence to alert you to six books I feel are too good to miss this summer! And, spoiler alert, I have ARCs of four of them, so be expecting full reviews. Okay, here we go.
1) The Gypsy Moth Summer by Julia Fierro (June 6, St. Martin's Press)
(click here for my review)
I'm reading this book right now, and wow...there is so much going on. And I mean that in the best way possible. A gypsy moth infestation is raining down on Avalon Island, but the bugs are the least of the islander's worries. Fierro flutters between several different perspectives, managing to weave together stories of young love, an evil corporation, gangs of outsiders, familial abuse, and an aging matriarch eager to cling to her lifestyle while her husband succumbs to delusions. Truly, so far, it is masterful. A full review will be posted when I'm finished, but right now I can firmly say this book has not disappointed.
2) The Changeling by Victor Lavalle (June 13, Spiegel & Grau)
Honestly, Goodreads said it best, so I'm just going to paste in this crazy intriguing book description:
"Apollo Kagwa has had strange dreams that have haunted him since childhood. An antiquarian book dealer with a business called Improbabilia, he is just beginning to settle into his new life as a committed and involved father, unlike his own father who abandoned him, when his wife Emma begins acting strange. Disconnected and uninterested in their new baby boy, Emma at first seems to be exhibiting all the signs of post-partum depression, but it quickly becomes clear that her troubles go far beyond that. Before Apollo can do anything to help, Emma commits a horrific act—beyond any parent’s comprehension—and vanishes, seemingly into thin air.
Thus begins Apollo’s odyssey through a world he only thought he understood to find a wife and child who are nothing like he’d imagined. His quest begins when he meets a mysterious stranger who claims to have information about Emma’s whereabouts. Apollo then begins a journey that takes him to a forgotten island in the East River of New York City, a graveyard full of secrets, a forest in Queens where immigrant legends still live, and finally back to a place he thought he had lost forever. This dizzying tale is ultimately a story about family and the unfathomable secrets of the people we love."
3) Final Girls by Riley Sager (July 11, Penguin Group Dutton)
(click here for my review)
Confession: I already read this book. I received the ARC back in May and I couldn't resist diving in because it sounded too amazing to wait until July. Second confession: I LOVED it. A full review will be posted closer to publication, but this is not a book you want to miss. It surprised me at every turn, and I read it in one sitting.
Quincy Carpenter went on a weekend trip with her college friends, and returned the sole survivor of a massacre. This tragedy swept her into an elite club of survivors: the final girls. Despite her past and the foggy memories she has of that horrible night, Quincy manages to form a life for herself. She has a fiance, a baking blog, and a quiet existence she keeps neatly separated from that bloody night she experienced ten years prior in Pine Cottage. However, when one of her fellow final girls turns up dead, and the other turns up on her door step, Quincy begins to come to terms with her past in ways she never expected. Memories long forgotten resurface and she is left to rethink everything she thought she knew about that night in the woods, and whether or not someone has come back to finish what they started.
4) See What I Have Done by Sarah Schmidt (August 1, Atlantic Monthly Press)
See What I Have Done presents a fictionalized account of what happened that fateful day in August 1892 when Andrew and Abby Borden were found bludgeoned to death. Schmidt, using the alternating perspectives of Lizzie Borden, her older sister Emma, the housemaid Bridget, and Benjamin (a stranger to the family), spins a tale of an ill-tempered father, a spiteful stepmother, and two spinster sisters desperate for their freedom. I personally have very high hopes for this story. The Lizzie Borden story has been done over and over, but I'm anxious to see what new spin Sarah Schmidt has put on this harrowing tale.
5) The Blinds by Adam Sternbergh (August 1, Ecco)
Westerns aren't typically my genre of choice (thought Haints Stay by Colin Winnette is one of my favorite books of recent years), but The Blinds by Adam Sternbergh sounds fascinating. The Blinds is a town in rural Texas filled with criminals, though these particular criminals have had their memories altered and been assigned new identities. A fresh start, if you will. When the typically quiet town experiences a murder and a suicide in quick succession, the town's sheriff, Calvin Cooper, is left to handle the revolting citizens. In the midst of the chaos, mysterious outsiders and a new deputy arrive on the scene, and a series of secrets are revealed that shine a light on the reality of The Blinds. Underneath the facade of a fresh start lies a hotbed of violence, deception, and betrayal.
6) Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward (September 5, Scribner)
Again, I'm going to let Goodreads speak for me. Sing, Unburied, Sing sounds incredible (and reminiscent of every Toni Morrison novel I've ever fallen in love with!!), and I can't wait to read it in a few months.
"Jojo and his toddler sister, Kayla, live with their grandparents, Mam and Pop, and the occasional presence of their drug-addicted mother, Leonie, on a farm on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi. Leonie is simultaneously tormented and comforted by visions of her dead brother, which only come to her when she's high; Mam is dying of cancer; and quiet, steady Pop tries to run the household and teach Jojo how to be a man. When the white father of Leonie's children is released from prison, she packs her kids and a friend into her car and sets out across the state for Parchman farm, the Mississippi State Penitentiary, on a journey rife with danger and promise.
Sing, Unburied, Sing grapples with the ugly truths at the heart of the American story and the power, and limitations, of the bonds of family. Rich with Ward's distinctive, musical language, Sing, Unburied, Sing is a majestic new work and an essential contribution to American literature."
There you have it. The six books I'm most anticipating this summer. Are there any books you think I've missed? Do any of these books sound like something you'd be interested in? Let me know in the comments!