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Our Most Anticipated Books of the rest of 2021

We've somehow hit the second half of 2021 and there's a slew of new books to be excited about! They cover debuts, popular author follow-ups, non-fiction, fantasy, YA, verse, anthologies, and most have brilliant cover art. Some don't even have cover art yet. This doesn't begin to list every upcoming publication, but this is what our writers our looking forward to in the rest of 2021.



JULY




Ghost Forest by Pik-Shuen Fung (July 13)


A beautiful sparse book about an ‘astronaut’ dad who moves his family to Canada while he stays behind in Hong Kong after the 1997 Handover. Read The Book Slut review here. — Jessica Maria


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What Strange Paradise by Omar El Akkad (July 20)


I love books that are told from the perspective of a child (like Wonder by R.J. Palacio and Room by Emma Donoghue). So, it’s no wonder I’m excited to dive into this one. It displays the global refugee crisis through a child’s eyes after an overfilled boat capsizes and the only survivor is a nine-year-old Syrian boy. — Maggie


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Intimacies by Katie Kitamura (July 20)


I read Kitamura’s quiet and brilliantly written A Separation earlier this year, and I’m eager to read another volume of her special kind of storytelling. This novel concerns a court interpreter from New York traveling to work in the international court at The Hague. — Jessica Maria


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AUGUST




Two Spies in Caracas by Moisés Naím, Translated from the Spanish by Daniel Hahn (August 1)


Written by a man who was formerly Venezuela’s Minister of Trade and Industry in the 1990s, the synopsis reads: “Venezuela, 1992. Unknown colonel Hugo Chávez stages an ill-fated coup against a government, igniting the passions of Venezuela’s poor and catapulting the oil-rich country to international attention. For two rival spies hurriedly dispatched to Caracas—one from Washington, DC, and the other from Fidel Castro’s Cuba—this is a career-defining mission.” Sounds like a thrill ride, and set in a country rarely featured in English language novels. — Jessica Maria


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The President and the Frog by Carolina De Robertis (August 3)


When I first learned of Jose Mujica, former Uruguayan president, I was amazed. I remember thinking that there was no way that humility, practicality, kindness, understanding, and so much humanity could exist in a president. Yet, it did exist! So when one of my favorites, De Robertis, said she was coming out with a new book, and her inspiration would be Jose Mujica, I was beside myself. Her last book, Cantoras, was one of my absolute favorite books and this one was different but the best in its own way. You follow the journey of how a boy turns into this formidable president, how he sees the world working around him, how he tries to do good, how he finds that good, and how he inspires his people and you the reader will in turn be inspired. — Karen


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Mercury Boys by Chandra Pasad (August 3)


In what sounds like a fun YA thriller, the synopsis reads: “High school girl cliques can be tricky — and Saskia Brown’s clique has a magical, dangerous secret. The girls have uncovered an unusual method of time travel, and giddy with their new power, begin to traverse history — and even kindle romances with some enigmatic boys from the past. But what begins as a fun diversion explodes into a crucible of lies, jealousy, and betrayal.” Love the description. — Jessica Maria


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Em’s Awful Good Fortune by Marcie Maxfield (August 3)


I love a book about ex-pats, and this one sounds like fun—and it’s categorized as auto-fiction. The synopsis reads: “Em seems like the consummate globe-trotter—traveling to Paris, Tokyo, Shanghai, Los Angeles and Seoul—but she’s handcuffed to her husband’s international career, having to give up her own in the process. Behind every Insta-worthy travel experience is the dark (but relatable) side of a seemingly privileged world: a coming-apart-at-the-seams marriage, loneliness, depression, infidelity, and even PTSD. Grasping for her own identity and learning to prioritize her needs, Em must learn to stop letting herself be dragged along for the ride, both in travel and life. What follows is a dark, daring comedy about a woman’s global journey to reclaim her autonomy in a relationship stretched by the unfamiliar landscape of expat life.” — Jessica Maria


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All My Mothers by Joanna Glenn (August 5)


Even though I am sneaky-peaky reading this a few months in advance I have been waiting for a new Joanna Glen book since the release of her first novel, The Other Half Of Augusta Hope. All My Mothers is a rich life saga of Eva who is longing to find out who she is and where she belongs. This book is full of longing and rich history with sprinkles of grief and reflections on religion and the world on the whole. It is incredibly beautiful and I cannot wait until it is out in the world. — Courtney


Pre-order it now from our Bookshop in the UK


 


Velvet Was the Night by Silvia Moreno-Garcia (August 17)


I really, really loved Mexican Gothic (read my review!), and the prolific Moreno-Garcia has another creepy noir novel releasing that I can’t wait to read! According to the synopsis this is about “a daydreaming secretary, a lonesome enforcer, and the mystery of a missing woman they’re both desperate to find,” and set in 1970s Mexico City. Cound me in. — Jessica Maria


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SEPTEMBER



Beautiful World, Where Are You by Sally Rooney (September 7)


After reading and being mesmerized by Normal People, I want to know what Sally Rooney will bring us with her new novel. Alexandra


WHO ISN’T LOOKING FORWARD TO NEW SALLY ROONEY?!?!? — Courtney


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Castaway Mountain: Love and Loss Among the Wastepickers of Mumbai By SAUMYA ROY (September 7)


A non-fiction book that apparently reads like a thrilling page-turner, this book is described: “Yet amid the waste and poverty of a Mumbai slum, this book shows how there can be light and life even in the darkest of places. Saumya has unearthed a seam of entrepreneurship, budding romance and bloodshed in a truly unforgettable story that shines a light on the global problem of overconsumption.” Sounds like an eye-opening read. — Jessica Maria


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For Brown Girls with Sharp Edges and Tender Hearts: A Love Letter to Women of Color by Prisca Dorcas Mojica Rodríguez (September 7)


The founder of Latina Rebels comes with this formidable book that I think many Brown girls will have wished they had growing up. It is a guide to healing and growth. — Karen


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Matrix by Lauren Groff (September 7)


Set in the 12th century, Matrix is about Marie de France, a young woman banished to an impoverished abbey full of starving and diseased nuns. I love a story about faith and fervour, whether it’s centred on a religion or a cult, and this sounds like an exceptionally interesting one. Roxane Gay called it “gloriously written” and I don’t think you can get a much better endorsement. — Cat


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Wild Tongues Can't Be Tamed: 15 Voices from the Latinx Diaspora by Saraceia J. Fennell (September 14)


This is one that I want to read solely because I have been following Saraceia J. Fennell on Instagram and I am excited for her journey. This is a collection from writers of the Latinx diaspora and includes the following Elizabeth Acevedo, Cristina Arreola, Ingrid Rojas Contreras, Naima Coster, Natasha Diaz, Saraciea J. Fennell, Kahlil Haywood, Zakiya Jamal, Janel Martinez, Jasminne Mendez, Meg Medina, Mark Oshiro, Julian Randall, Lilliam Rivera, and Ibi Zoboi. — Karen


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America Calling: A Foreign Student in a Country of Possibility by Rajika Bhandari (September 14)


With over a million international foreign exchange students in America, Bhandari tells her deeply personal story of her search for her place in America. It’s the perfect time for an incisive analysis of America’s relationship with the rest of the world through education because of growing nationalism. I feel like Bhandari’s story is going to be completely moving, informative, eye-opening, and inspiring. — Maggie


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Harlem Shuffle by Colson Whitehead (September 14)


I loved The Nickel Boys by Whitehead and so I of course can’t wait for his upcoming release. It takes place in 1960’s Harlem and the main character, Ray Carney, has a reputation as an upstanding used furniture salesman, with a side gig fencing items for the underworld of Harlem. It sounds like a gorgeously entertaining novel that is sure to be full of heists, family drama, and a love letter to Harlem pre-gentrification. — Maggie


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Apples Never Fall by Liane Moriarty (September 14)


I just recently rewatched all of Big Little Lies on HBO, and so duh, I HAD to include Liane’s new book. When a retired couple allows a stranger into their home, the wife goes missing and their grown children wonder if their father might have done it. It sounds enticing as hell and I know Moriarty is a star at writing books that are impossible to put down. — Maggie


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When We Make It by Elisabet Velasquez (September 21)


I have to admit that I knew nothing about this book except that Elisabet Velasquez has been keeping us aware of her journey through publishing through her Instagram stories. There is so much joy in her journey that I couldn’t help but jump at the opportunity to pre-order this collection. It’s a novel-in-verse and if Elizabeth Acevedo has taught me anything, it’s that these types of books turn out to be favorites. — Karen


Pre-order it now from our Bookshops in the US


OCTOBER



Crossroads by Jonathan Franzen (October 5)


I can’t pinpoint why I am so excited for this, I just am. His books are so rich and just FULL. It always feels like such an achievement to finish one. — Courtney


Pre-order it now from our Bookshops in the US or UK


 


State of Terror by Hillary Rodham Clinton and Louise Penny (October 12)


Is Hillary Rodham Clinton now dedicated to writing thrillers? Gentlemen, you had my curiosity... but now you have my attention... From the official synopsis: "State of Terror follows a novice Secretary of State who has joined the administration of her rival, a president inaugurated after four years of American leadership that shrank from the world stage. A series of terrorist attacks throws the global order into disarray. So the secretary is tasked with assembling a team to unravel the deadly conspiracy, a scheme carefully designed to take advantage of an American government dangerously out of touch and out of power in the places where it counts the most." Alexandra


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The Pain Gap: How Sexism and Racism in Healthcare Kill Women by Anushay Hossain (October 12)


After Anushay Hossain nearly died during labor, she decided to more deeply analyze and critique women’s relationship with the United States healthcare system. Women, especially women of color, are dying at a rapid rate higher than men due to the ignorance and bias presented by people in this country who are supposed to protect us, heal us, and listen to us. If we have the most advanced and financially backed healthcare system in the world, why are so many women dying? — Maggie


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Dreaming of You by Melissa Lozada-Oliva (October 26)


I bring you another novel-in-verse from the poet who brought us Peluda. You may be singing the title as you read this list because it’ll bring back the iconic English song from Selena. This story brings Selena back to life (gasp, I know) and through this reincarnation brings us through questions of Latinx identity and so many other themes. Legit the cover alone should make you want to read it. — Karen


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The Hush by Sara Foster (October 27)


A female-led thriller that deals with the topics of female body autonomy and how closely this may be tied to government bodies. This book gives me The Handmaid’s Tale vibes, which in itself is terrifying, but I am always keen to see how women take back their power by incorporating truths of our world and showing us just how terrifyingly close to dystopia we are. — Courtney


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The Keeper Of The Night by Kylie Lee Baker (October 27)


A young adult fantasy novel with heavy Japanese folklore influence. This novel looks really interesting to me because while being extremely entertained I’ll be thrown into a new cultural fantasy world and part of the fun of reading is learning about different cultures even in the most unorthodox of ways i.e., a fantasy book about demon hunting. — Courtney


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NOVEMBER



Gilded by Marissa Meyer (November 2)


A RETELLING OF CLASSIC FAIRY TALE RUMPELSTILTSKIN WHERE HE ISN’T THE VILLAIN? GIVE IT TO ME NOW. (In the meantime, I highly recommend Heartless by Marissa Meyer which is an origin story/retelling of how the Queen of Hearts became deliciously infamous). — Courtney


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How To Be Heard by Roxane Gay (November 16)


I have read all of Roxane Gay’s work from her short stories, to her novels, to her edited anthologies, to her memoir, so OF COURSE I am going to read her forthcoming writing guide. I saw her speak in Atlanta a few years ago and had her sign my book “Keep Writing, Maggie” and I’m excited for her to give me another creative push. She is supposed to provide readers with realistic, frank, and humorous advice for inexperienced writers and makes it clear that anyone can be a writer. — Maggie


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Editor's note: this title may have been pushed out to a 2022 publication date after working on this list, but we're keeping it on for now, and it can still be pre-ordered!


 


The Teller of Secrets by Bisi Adjapon (November 16)


A debut novel telling a story of self-discovery that includes a feminist awakening in 1960s Ghana? Sign me up. — Maggie


Pre-order it now from our Bookshops in the US or UK




DECEMBER



The Ballerinas by Rachel Kapelke-Dale (December 7)


As a former ballerina, I can’t resist a thriller contemporary novel that follows three ballerinas in St. Pete’s with a past that’s catching up to them. It’s supposed to be Black Swan meets Luckiest Girl Alive and damn it that doesn’t intrigue me. — Maggie


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If This Gets Out by Sophie Gonzales and Cale Dietrich (December 7)


Per the synopsis on the publisher's website, this sounds so good: "Eighteen-year-olds Ruben Montez and Zach Knight are two members of the boy-band Saturday, one of the biggest acts in America. Along with their bandmates, Angel Phan and Jon Braxton, the four are teen heartbreakers in front of the cameras and best friends backstage. But privately, cracks are starting to form: their once-easy rapport is straining under the pressures of fame, and Ruben confides in Zach that he’s feeling smothered by management’s pressure to stay in the closet." — Lucy


Pre-order it now from our Bookshops in the US or UK

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As avid readers, our most anticipated books always promise captivating journeys. From thrilling mysteries to heartwarming tales, each title holds the promise of transporting us to new worlds and sparking our imaginations. Among our eagerly awaited selections is a los angeles birthday party magician memoir, blending magic with personal anecdotes. Imagining the dazzling performances and the intriguing behind-the-scenes revelations fills us with excitement. Additionally, we eagerly await a fantasy epic set in a world of mythical creatures, promising epic adventures and moral quandaries. These forthcoming reads promise to ignite our passions and keep us turning pages long into the night.

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Michael Hood
Michael Hood
Nov 09, 2023

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