The Fall Reading Group Guide Preview

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The American Booksellers Association’s Fall Reading Group Guide will continue as a free e-newsletter delivered to customers by email via Matchbook Marketing. This fall’s guide will be sent on October 14.

This guide includes the following categories: Dazzling Debuts, Family and Coming of Age, Historical Fiction, Nonfiction and Memoir, and Small Bites. The tiles are also available as an Edelweiss collection here. All titles are trade paperback unless otherwise noted.

The titles appearing in the Fall Reading Group e-newsletter are:

Dazzling Debuts

A Burning: A Novel (Indies Introduce)
By Megha Majumdar
(Vintage, 9780593081259, $16, June 29)

“A Burning lays bare the consequences and complexities of class, gender, politics, religion, and the social constructs that can empower or imprison, all while packaged in a propulsive narrative.”
—Melinda Powers, Bookshop Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, CA

Crooked Hallelujah (Indies Introduce)
By Kelli Jo Ford
(Grove Press, 9780802149138, $16, July 20)

“In Cherokee territory in 1974, 15-year-old Justine gets pregnant, putting her on a different spiritual path than her evangelical mother. Ford’s style is raw and quiet, gritty and emotionally powerful.”
—Carl Kranz, Fountain Bookstore, Richmond, VA

Eartheater: A Novel
By Dolores Reyes, Julia Sanches (Transl.)
(HarperVia, 9780062987754, $15.99, September 14)

“After the death of her mother, our narrator’s gift of seeing is manifested in visions brought on by eating earth from where a person lived. This book shows the tenacity and strength of character of someone living in a slum in Argentina.”
—Rebecca Dowling, Hockessin Book Shelf, Hockessin, DE

The Eighth Detective: A Novel
By Alex Pavesi
(Picador, 9781250798473, $17, August 3)

“Grant, who wrote detective stories decades ago, lives quietly on a Mediterranean Island until Julia, an editor interested in reissuing the stories, tracks him down. An intriguing homage to some of the great mystery novels.”
—Deon Stonehouse, Sunriver Books & Music, Sunriver, OR

Hench: A Novel
By Natalie Zina Walschots
(William Morrow Paperbacks, 9780062978585, $16.99, September 28)

“I absolutely loved this fast-paced, beautifully written novel about the underpaid, hardworking, under-appreciated employees of superheroes and villains. A perfect anti-capitalist romp!”
—Hillary Smith, Copperfield’s Books, Calistoga, CA

White Ivy: A Novel
By Susie Yang
(Simon & Schuster, 9781982100605, $17, July 27)

“Raised with little money by her strict Chinese-American family in Boston, all her life Ivy’s been seen as an outsider. But as she grows up, she becomes obsessed with the lives of the privileged.”
—Cassie Riva, An Unlikely Story, Plainville, MA

Family and Coming of Age

By Tiffany McDaniel
(Vintage, 9781984897947, $16, July 13)

“This powerful book tells the story of Betty, a young half-Cherokee girl growing up in poverty among eight children in southern Ohio in the 1950s and ’60s. This novel will stay with you for a long time.”
—Jude Burke-Lewis, Square Books, Oxford, MS

The Lying Life of Adults
By Elena Ferrante, Ann Goldstein (Transl.)
(Europa Editions, 9781609457150, $18, September 21)

“Elena Ferrante is unparalleled when it comes to delving deep into the psychology of female relationships, be it between mothers and daughters, friends, relatives, or even within ourselves.”
—Emma Ramadan, Riffraff, Providence, RI

By Peter Geye
(Vintage, 9780525565352, $17, July 20)

“Two stories set 100 years apart, one in the Arctic and the other in Minnesota, tell of a family’s history of love and loss. This is a story of heroic survival but also the survival of the human heart.”
—Sandi Torkildson, A Room of One’s Own Bookstore, Madison, WI

The Removed: A Novel
By Brandon Hobson
(Ecco, 9780062997555, $16.99, October 5)

“As a family moves through the grief of a death both untimely and unjust, Cherokee myth and folklore are woven into each member’s way of coping. The story is rich with contemporary issues but steeped in heritage and history.”
—Tina Greene-Bevington, Bay Books, Suttons Bay, MI

The Thirty Names of Night: A Novel
By Zeyn Joukhadar
(Atria Books, 9781982121525, $18, July 13)

“Gripping and beautifully written, this novel explores immigrant stories, art, gentrification, and identity as the present-day life of an artist and first-generation Syrian American mixes with a supernatural glimpse into the past.”
—Melissa Summers, Main Street Books, Davidson, NC

Transcendent Kingdom: A Novel
By Yaa Gyasi
(Vintage, 9781984899767, $16, July 6)

“This story is impossible to forget. Through one family’s journey, Transcendent Kingdom tells of addiction and loss, grief and hope, faith and science, wrapped in writing so powerful it will rip your heart out.”
—Eugenia Vela, BookPeople, Austin, TX


Historical Fiction

Cuyahoga: A Novel
By Pete Beatty
(Scribner, 9781982155568, $17, September 7)

“Equal parts folksy and hilarious, this memorable novel about the legendary hero Big Son is simply a must-read. Thoroughly enjoyable.”
—Lizy Coale, Copper Dog Books in Beverly, MA

The Exiles: A Novel
By Christina Baker Kline
(Custom House, 9780062356338, $16.99, July 6)

“Christina Baker Kline does not disappoint with this new novel! From the prologue, I was captivated with this story and read it in two days. So original! I’ve never read anything like it.”
—Sara Harjo, Best of Books, Edmond, OK

Fortune Favors the Dead: A Novel (A Pentecost and Parker Mystery)
By Stephen Spotswood
(Vintage Crime/Black Lizard, 9780593310755, $16, August 3)

“This book hooked me from page one. Willowjean and Ms. Pentecost definitely rock the Watson/Sherlock tone very well, but with feminist undercurrents. I absolutely loved it.”
—Sarah Danforth, Towne Book Center & Cafe, Collegeville, PA

The Mystery of Mrs. Christie
By Marie Benedict
(Sourcebooks Landmark, 9781728234304, $16.99, October 5)

“Based on the real-life disappearance of the famous mystery writer, Marie Benedict’s fictional retelling looks at Agatha’s courtship, marriage, and fledgling writing career and the revelation of what transpired.”
—Gerard Villegas, Warwick’s, La Jolla, CA

Universe of Two: A Novel
By Stephen P. Kiernan
(William Morrow Paperbacks, 9780062878458, $16.99, July 27)

“Based on true events, Kiernan’s novel illuminates the struggles that can plague scientists and those tasked with bringing about advancements in technology. Their humanness endures and ultimately redeems.”
—Beth Reynolds, Norwich Bookstore, Norwich, VT

The Vanishing Sky
By L. Annette Binder
(Bloomsbury Publishing, 9781635577044, $18, June 14)

“In this novel about the dark closing days of WWII in Germany, Binder heartbreakingly illustrates how there are no winners in war, at least not on the home front.”
—Barbara Lubin, White Birch Books, North Conway, NH



The Beauty in Breaking: A Memoir (Indies Introduce)
By Michele Harper
(Riverhead Books, 9780525537397, $16, June 29)

“This debut memoir is unlike any other. Michele Harper brings to light what is often forgotten in medical TV shows: First you become a doctor, and then you discover how to become a healer.”
—Shannon Alden, Literati Bookstore, Ann Arbor, MI

Dancing with the Octopus: A Memoir of a Crime (Indies Introduce)
By Debora Harding
(Bloomsbury Publishing, 9781635577846, $17, September 21)

“Dancing with the Octopus is the most honest memoir I have ever read. Harding leaves nothing on the table. Told in crystal-clear prose, this story is set to become a classic in its genre.”
—Quentin Greif, Little City Books, Hoboken, NJ

Down Along with That Devil’s Bones: A Reckoning with Monuments, Memory, and the Legacy of White Supremacy
By Connor Towne O’Neill
(Algonquin Books, 9781643752037, $16.95, September 28)

“A poignant exploration of the debate over Confederate monuments in America. O’Neill’s dive into the history of these items and their impact is a timely contribution to the conversation on memorializing hate and the persistence of extremism in America.”
—Maddie Collins, Harvard Book Store, Cambridge, MA

The Fixed Stars
By Molly Wizenberg
(Abrams Press, 9781419747892, $16, August 3)

“I’ve been a fan of Molly Wizenberg’s writing since she was a food blogger. In The Fixed Stars, she brings her considerable intellect and strong voice to an entirely new subject: her changing sexual orientation.”
—Lesley Rains, City of Asylum Bookstore, Pittsburgh, PA

This Time Next Year We’ll Be Laughing
By Jacqueline Winspear
(Soho Press, 9781641292948, $16.95, September 28)

“This should appeal to a wider audience than Maise Dobbs fans, though they won’t be disappointed to learn of the inspiration for the series. Winspear is a wonderful storyteller.”
—Pat Rudebusch, Orinda Books, Orinda, CA

The Way She Feels: My Life on the Borderline in Pictures and Pieces
By Courtney Cook
(Tin House Books, 9781951142599, $18.95, June 29)

“The Way She Feels is probably the best read to shake whatever ideas are in your head about borderline personality disorder. Cook’s writing and drawings make it one of the most eloquent reads this year.”
—Anton Bogomazov, Politics and Prose Bookstore, Washington, DC


Small Bites

Born Into This
By Adam Thompson
(Two Dollar Radio, 9781953387042, $15.99, July 13)

“This brilliant collection of short stories from an Indigenous Tasmanian writer showed me a new perspective. I loved visiting Thompson’s Tasmania through the eyes of so many different characters.”
—Kate Storhoff, Bookmarks, Winston-Salem, NC

I Hold a Wolf by the Ears: Stories
By Laura van den Berg
(Picador, 9781250798664, $17, July 27)

“A gothic breeze blows through these stories, many beautifully conveying the ways trauma can uproot the human animal. These stories will endure and deserve to be recommended to everyone you know.”
—Wesley Minter, Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park, WA

The Tangleroot Palace: Stories
By Marjorie Liu
(Tachyon Publications, 9781616963521, $16.95, June 15)

“This short story collection ending with a full novella is thoughtfully organized and deeply satisfying. The complexity of the stories and how they speak to each other makes this an enjoyable, thought-provoking read.”
—Emily Autenrieth, A Seat at the Table Books, Elk Grove, CA

The Union of Synchronized Swimmers
By Cristina Sandu
(Scribe Us, 9781950354399, $15, August 3)

“A quick, inspiring read. As young workers at a cigarette factory in Eastern Europe, six women swim in the local river, learning a variety of moves for the new sport of synchronized swimming.”
—Linda Bond, Auntie’s Bookstore, Spokane, WA

Vesper Flights
By Helen Macdonald
(Grove Press, 9780802158673, $17, July 13)

“Macdonald offers a little bit of everything for the reader of nature writing: wake-up calls, moments of recognition, and insights of bare-naked awe. The writing is gorgeous; the voice is singular.”
—Kelly Barth, Raven Book Store, Lawrence, KS

Walking on Cowrie Shells: Stories
By Nana Nkweti
(Graywolf Press, 9781644450543, $16, June 1)

“Walking on Cowrie Shells adds the unique voice of Cameroonian people to the canon of literature telling the story of African immigrants in the U.S. Nkweti takes no shortcuts and gives no easy answers.”
—Miesha Headen, Loganberry Books, Shaker Heights, OH