In search of something good to read? USA TODAY’s Barbara VanDenburgh scopes out the shelves for this week’s hottest new book releases. All books are on sale Tuesday.
1. ‘Sleep walk’
By Dan Chaon (Henry Holt and Co., fiction)
What’s about: Will Bear is a henchman with a bruised heart, living off the grid with no ties and running errands for a mysterious and powerful operation. One day, he gets a call on one of his burner phones from a woman claiming to be his daughter from him, and she needs his help from him.
Thebuzz: A starred review for Publishers Weekly calls it “thrilling and funny,” and says it’s Chaon’s “best one yet.”
2. ‘You Made a Fool of Death With Your Beauty’
By Akwaeke Emezi (Atria, fiction)
What’s about: National Book Award finalist Emezi (“The Death of Vivek Oji”) thought a seductive love story. Feyi Adekola lost the love of her life from her to an accident five years ago, and now she’s ready to date again. Things get complicated, though, when she becomes infatuated with her perfectly nice new boyfriend’s father.
Thebuzz: “This is sure to tug at readers’ heartstrings,” says Publishers Weekly.
‘The Death of Vivek Oji’:Identity and grief entwine in Akwaeke Emezi’s wrenching novel
3. ‘Queer Ducks (and Other Animals): The Natural World of Animal Sexuality’
By Eliot Schrefer, illustrated by Jules Zuckerberg (Katherine Tegen Books, nonfiction)
What’s about: Two-time National Book Award finalist (and USA TODAY book critic) Schrefer returns with a well-researched, YA-friendly exploration of same-sex behaviors in the animal world and what they can teach us about queerness.
Thebuzz:Kirkus Reviews calls it “A thoughtful, thought-provoking, and incredibly fun study of queerness across the animal kingdom.”
By Elif Batuman (Penguin Press, fiction)
What’s about: Selin, the protagonist of Batuman’s acclaimed novel “The Idiot,” returns for her sophomore year at Harvard, where she continues her quest for self-knowledge.
Thebuzz: “Another delightfully cerebral and bighearted novel from a distinctive voice in contemporary fiction,” says a starred review in Kirkus Reviews.
5. ‘City of Orange’
By David Yoon (GP Putnam’s Sons, fiction)
What’s about: A man wakes up alone in an apocalyptic wasteland with a head wound, a bottle of pills in his pocket and no memory of who he is or how he got here.
Thebuzz: “Fans of ‘The Martian’ will enjoy this new take on the struggle to survive in an unfamiliar land,” says Publishers Weekly.