Don’t let the last few days of summer go to waste! Whether you’re making the most of the sunshine or hiding in the shade, this month brings a whole new batch of adventures. From emotional memoirs, gripping thrillers, immersive debuts, captivating and spellbinding sci-fi reads, here are our most anticipated new books for August!
Searching for the source of sorrows that reverberate through generations, Kat Chow digs for the roots, unearthing the legacies of family dreams and cultural dissonance, preservation and reconciliation. Kat Chow is a remarkable storyteller. Emotion runs deep, but the prose is tender, the gaze clear, the voice nuanced by a generous love.
All The Frequent Troubles of Our Day
A compelling and bracing story of a life lived large and brave, All the Frequent Troubles of Our Days charts the perilous career of Mildred Harnack, newly graduated, newly married, newly moved from Wisconsin to 1930s Berlin. She was witness to the destruction of a democracy, the cruelty of a demagogue’s oppression and, in its face — and despite significant dangers — she chose committed resistance. Rebecca Donner’s telling is taut and immersive, riveting from start to finish. It is a story that lingers long after the final page.
Her Heart for a Compass
Fans of Victoria and Belgravia: We have a novel you won’t want to miss. Sarah Ferguson (yes, that Sarah Ferguson, famously rebellious modern royal and producer on Julian Fellow’s film The Young Victoria) teams up with Scottish novelist Marguerite Kaye to deliver a page-turner about duty, love and one woman’s desire for independence in a society that wants no such thing for her. This bold and thoughtful coming-of-age story includes plenty of incredible detail about Victorian England straight from the royal archives at Windsor.
The Women of Troy
Another exciting new mythological retelling! In this brilliant, highly anticipated follow-up to The Silence of the Girls, the women of Troy forge alliances and work to plot their revenge. Perfect for fans of Maggie O’Farrell and Madeline Miller. “[A] masterly continuation of her fiercely feminist take on Homer’s Iliad… In a novel filled with names from legend, Briseis stands tall as a heroine: brave, smart and loyal … Barker’s latest is a wonder.”—Publishers Weekly
Once There Were Wolves
Charlotte McConaghy’s beautiful debut novel Migrations was a Barnes & Noble Discover Pick of the Month in August 2020. She returns with a captivating, gorgeously written story of a woman who is trying desperately to save the wolves she loves and how that love consumes her. “One of those very rare, special novels that changes you as you read, which you do as slowly as you can because you want to savor it, except the pages keep turning furiously because the story is so thrilling and so powerful, with some of the best characters I have ever read. Charlotte McConaghy has cemented herself as a sure-thing, must-read writer for me.”―Laurie Frankel, author of This Is How It Always Is
Whisper Network had us on the edge of our seats when we first read it, and now Chandler Baker returns with a scathing and thrilling new novel that asks how far you’ll go to get a little help at home. A young couple moves to a new neighborhood where the men seem exceptionally eager to help at home, easing the second-shift burden and supporting their wives’ endeavors, all thanks to an unorthodox method of couples’ therapy. But what’s really happening in Dynasty Ranch?
Life in 1970s Klamath is hard: This is a company town, and everyone is impacted by the decisions the Sanderson Lumber company makes — including spraying herbicides to make logging easier. Damnation Spring is a heartbreaking story set in a fragile world. Ash Davidson has incredible compassion for her characters and the decisions they make, good and bad, on behalf of their families, and you’ll hear the echoes of John Steinbeck in this astonishingly assured debut as you fall in love with Rich and Colleen Gunderson and their son Chub. A terrific recommendation for readers of The Overstory by Richard Powers, Deep River by Karl Marlantes, and Barkskins by Annie Proulx.
On its surface, King’s latest novel is about a hired gun with a moral compass working one last job before retiring. The story is intense, and the action is thrilling for sure, but this book is really a writer’s journey, both literally and figuratively. We truly believe that we could take a fishbowl, add pieces of paper each with an adjective, subject and verb and Stephen King would deliver the best, most fantastic story. Ever. Add a genre, too — he’ll work that in. We are THRILLED by this latest pairing by this country’s most formidable author.
The Guilt Trip
If you loved Sandie Jones’ gripping, debut thriller, The Other Woman, get ready for more twists and turns in The Guilt Trip. All great thrillers begin with a mix of friends heading to a destination vacation. What could go wrong? Right? In Sandie Jones’ hands, tension is the key. And THAT is very, very right for a great novel. When the secrets begin to unravel amongst this group of friends, the question we’re all left wondering is — who is dying to tell the truth?
Megan Abbott writes with cinematic suspense. Don’t believe us? Four of Abbott’s novels have been, or are in development for, a TV adaptation. The Turnout has already been optioned for TV by the creators of HBO’s Sharp Objects! We recommend you let Abbott’s written visuals enthrall you first. “All one needs to know about a Megan Abbott book is that it’s a Megan Abbott book—dreamy, sexy, a deep dive into a subculture that has been exhaustively researched. The Turnout is all those things and more, taking you so far into the world of a small ballet school that you feel the characters’ aches and pains in your joints, your feet, and, most dangerous of all, your heart.” –Laura Lippman, author of Lady in the Lake
Velvet Was the Night
From gothic horror to noir cat & mouse plots, here in Velvet Was the Night, the magic, intrigue and mystique of Moreno-Garcia helps remain her grip on our imaginations. “Velvet Was the Night is a rollicking work of historical noir with a vivid sense of time and place and an unforgettable cast. Moreno-Garcia made me care deeply about her characters and their dangerous, riveting misadventures. This is a stylish hard-boiled novel painted in shades of gray with a whole lot of heart.”—Steph Cha, author of Your House Will Pay
Clark and Division
Naomi Hirahara is known for her Edgar Award–winning Mas Arai mystery series — which is to say, the Edgar honor is a mystery writer’s seal of approval. In addition, Hirahara established her voice in the nonfiction world with 2018’s Life after Manzanar. Put these two worlds together and we get Clark and Division. A novel that deftly combines the tragic history of the United States along with a truly engaging mystery. This work moves and will move you. More than Edgar Awards are in line for this book.
The Second Rebel
Linden A. Lewis
We’re not the only readers who’ve been waiting and waiting and waiting for this sequel to The First Sister, one of our first Monthly Picks for Speculative Fiction. The wait was absolutely worth it: we held our breath as we tore through pages desperate to learn how Astrid would fare as she attempts to bring down the Sisterhood from within. (This is also a fabulous read for fans of Red Rising by Pierce Brown, The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood, and The Expanse by James S.A. Corey.)
Billie Jean King
The tennis great has shown tenacity and determination in her career and a lot more of that in her personal life. King was among the best players in America but also an outspoken woman for gay and lesbian rights at a time when she encountered more hate than understanding. She continues her activism today and is seen as an important voice for equality.
The arc of history so brilliantly realized in the March trilogy, carries on and forward, charting the social, political and personal struggles in the year following the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. From marching for rights to running for representation, its tumults and triumphs, Run is the first in a new trilogy completed before Congressman Lewis’ death — a gift of memorable witness and cinematic graphics. The story continues; do not miss out.