Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Fall Books I'm Looking Forward To

Fall is usually the big-blockbuster season, when all the A-listers have their new books out. This year is no exception. Here are a few things I'm looking forward to.

 Before the fall though there is one big book (literally and figuratively) I want to make sure to mention. Amitav Ghosh wraps up his stunning Ibis Trilogy with the release of Flood of Fire this month. Look for it, and read the first two books, Sea of Poppies and River of Smoke, if you haven't, especially if you love immersive literary historical fiction. Flood of Fire is what I'm reading next.

On to the fall.

Some of my favorite authors have new books this fall. Margaret Atwood's The Heart Goes Last comes out in September; I did start it already but I'm going to start it again.

And of course the final volume in Elena Ferrante's Neapolitan series will be out in September, The Story of the Lost Child. I haven't had a chance to preview this one but I'll pick it up as soon as it comes out. How could I not?

Jeannette Winterson's The Gap of Time comes out from Hogarth in October. This is neat because it's part of a new series Hogarth is doing,
having literary heavyweights retell Shakespeare. Winterson's book is a retelling of "The Winter's Tale"; future installments of the series will include a version of "The Tempest" by Margaret Atwood, "The Merchant of Venice" retold by Howard Jacobson, "King Lear" retold by Edward St. Aubyn and more. I wish Hogarth offered a subscription option because I would sign up yesterday!

In November, look for Twain & Stanley Enter Paradise, a posthumous novel by the great Oscar Hijuelos. This is a lively tale about the friendship between Mark Twain and explorer Sir Henry Morton Stanley which Hijuelos was revising up until the day before his 2013 death. I skimmed the first few pages at BEA; it seems very different from other books of his I've read (Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love, Beautiful Maria of My Soul) but just as wonderful.

David Mitchell, Jonathan Franzen and Salman Rushdie also have books out this fall. But everyone will buy those no matter what I say about it! :-)

It's not just about the big names. There are some others, some new-to-me and some small press, and all books I'm really excited about.

The Wake, by Paul Kingsworth, is coming in September. It was longlisted for the Man Booker and
has been described as a post-apocalyptic thriller set in the distant past. Kingsworth tells his story in an adapted Old English which adds to the atmosphere and tension. It opens with "the night was clere though i slept i seen it."

The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra, by Vaseem Khan, comes in September and looks like a fun crime novel. "On the day that he was due to retire, Inspector Aswin Chopra discovered that he had inherited an elephant..."

New Directions tells me that they're publishing a new Cesar Aira novel this October, Dinner. You can bet I'll be in line for that ASAP. "Was it a nightmare–the result of bad indigestion–or did something truly scary happen after dinner in the Argentine town of Coronel Pringles?"
The Man Who Spoke Snakish, by Andrus Kivirähk, and coming out in November, is one I'm going to have to fight my fantasy-loving husband for.

Tightrope, by Simon Mawer, is coming in November. It's a "historical thriller" set in post-WW2 London where the old war meets the Cold War.

Then, in January of 2016, we're getting The Heart is a Muscle the Size of a Fist, by Sunil Yap, set in the 1999 Seattle WTO protests. It's the first book from Little, Brown's new Lee Boudreaux Books imprint and I can't wait to see what's in store.

What are you looking forward to this fall?


Anonymous said...

This new series from Hogarth sounds great. Big names!!
I just read Inspector Chopra. My review will be up sometime next week I think. I'm going to make you wait until then to let you know what I thought.

Mystica said...

Making a note of some of them for future reference. I read the Atwood one - as usual it was very good.

ChaosIsAFriendOfMine said...

I love Margaret Atwood too. I have The Heart Goes Last on but it's a couple of books down on my list. I can't wait to start it!