The Wall of Respect in Bronzeville, subject of a new book from Northwestern University Press
The days are—imperceptibly—getting shorter. We are officially sliding into the second half of 2017, which means it's time for our second list of books we can't wait to read. While I was compiling this list, I happened across an essay
by the wise and wonderful Linda Holmes on NPR's Monkey See
blog about how there's no possible way anyone will be able to read all the books they want to read, let alone watch all the TV shows, listen to all the podcasts, etc. And there will undoubtedly be great books that I'll be kicking myself for failing to mention here (I'm still bruised for my failure to include We Are Never Meeting in Real Life
by Samantha Irby on the last edition of this roundup
), but here are 48 upcoming titles that look like they could be a worthwhile way to spend a few hours or days.
Important notes: There is still no ETA on the new George R.R. Martin book. And the new John Grisham has no title.
Blind Spot by Teju Cole (6/27, Random House)
Hey, did you know that novelist Cole is also a photographer?
The Chalk Artist by Allegra Goodman (6/13, Dial Press)
A new novel about education, art, and video games by Goodman, whose work I've always found delightful.
You Don't Have to Say You Love Me: A Memoir by Sherman Alexie (6/13, Little, Brown)
Alexie looks back on his complicated and painful relationship with his mother, Lillian.
The Resistance Handbook: 45 Ways to Fight Trump by Markos Moulitsas and Michael Huttner (6/20, Disruption Books)
The founders of Daily Kos and ProgressNow have teamed up to teach us all how to save the world.
Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud: The Rise and Reign of the Unruly Woman by Anne Helen Petersen (6/20, Plume)
Petersen, who uses her PhD in celebrity gossip to analyze culture for Buzzfeed, considers all the women Americans love to hate, including Hillary, Serena, and the Kardashians.
The Prophet's Manual: A Guide to Sustaining Your Prophetic Gift by John Eckhardt (7/4, Charisma House)
I don't know if I have a prophetic gift, but it sure as hell would be nice to know what's going to happen next.
Meddling Kids by Edgar Cantero (7/11, Doubleday)
As the title implies, this is a tribute to a Scooby-Doo
-like gang of 1970s teen detectives (and a dog) who reunite in 1990 because they're still traumatized by their last case.
Goodbye, Vitamin by Rachel Khong (7/11, Holt)
Former Lucky Peach
editor Khong's first novel concerns a brokenhearted woman who finds herself caring for her lucidly erratic and erratically lucid parents.
What She Ate: Six Remarkable Women and the Food That Tells Their Stories by Laura Shapiro (7/25, Viking)
Food historian Shapiro considers the dietary habits of, among others, Eleanor Roosevelt
and Eva Braun.
The Cooking Gene: A Journey Through African American Culinary History in the Old South by Michael W. Twitty (8/1, Amistad)
Twitty, a cultural historian, traces the tangled roots of both his own family and southern food culture and how they're linked.
Mrs. Fletcher by Tom Perrotta (8/1, Scribner)
An empty-nester suburban mom becomes obsessed with a MILF-porn website featuring other middle-aged suburban moms. (There should be a Leftovers
joke in here somewhere.)
Sour Heart by Jenny Zhang (8/1, Lenny)
A collection of short stories about Chinese-American girls trying to figure out how to grow up in New York City.
The Wrong Way to Save Your Life by Megan Stielstra (8/1, Harper Perennial)
Chicagoan and Reader contributor
Stielstra's new collection of personal essays, including the time her apartment building caught on fire.
BraveTart: Iconic American Desserts by Stella Parks (8/15, Norton)
At the Strangers' Gate: Arrivals in New York by Adam Gopnik (9/5, Knopf)
A New Yorker
writer looks back on his life as a New Yorker.
Border: A Journey to the Edge of Europe by Kapka Kassabova (9/5, Graywolf)
Journalist Kassabova returns to her native Bulgaria to explore the border between communism and capitalism and Europe and the Middle East
A Dinner at the Center of the Earth by Nathan Englander (9/5, Knopf)
Another Jewish-American novelist takes on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Norma by Sofi Okansen (9/5, Knopf)
A young woman solves the mystery of her mother's death with the aid of her supernatural hair.
Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward (9/5, Scribner)
Ward's new novel tells the story of a black family in Mississippi.
Electric Arches by Eve L. Ewing (9/12, Haymarket)
In her first book, Ewing (aka wikipedia brown
and if you don't follow her on Twitter already, do it now) uses a combination of poetry, prose, and visual art to explore black girlhood.
The Girl Who Takes an Eye for an Eye by David Lagercrantz (9/12, Knopf)
Stieg Larsson is dead, but Lisbeth Salander and Mikael Blomkvist live on.
The Naughty Nineties: The Triumph of the American Libido by David Friend (9/12, Twelve)
In the 1990s, Americans discovered sex. Here's how!
The Rise and Fall of Adam and Eve by Stephen Greenblatt (9/12, Norton)
Unless, of course, we were just getting over our issues with the Bible.
The World Atlas of Street Food by Carol Wilson and Sue Quinn (9/14, Texas)
The best food carts, stalls, and trucks, wherever you happen to be.
The Wall of Respect: Public Art and Black Liberation in 1960s Chicago by Abdul Alkalimat, Romi Crawford, and Rebecca Zorach (9/15, Northwestern)
Fifty years before the Year of Public Art, the Organization of Black American Culture created a revolutionary mural at 43rd and Langley in Bronzeville.
This Blessed Earth: A Year in the Life of an American Farm by Ted Genoways (9/19, Norton)
Food journalist Genoways spends a year with a family whose farm and entire way of life threaten to vanish.
Sleeping Beauties by Stephen King and Owen King (9/26, Scribner)
A collaboration between the King of horror and his son about mysterious goings-on in a women's prison.
The Chicago Cubs: Story of a Curse by Rich Cohen (10/3, FSG)
Or how, for more than 70 years, a goat trampled the hopes and dreams of Chicagoans.
Manhattan Beach by Jennifer Egan (10/3, Scribner)
Egan's long-awaited follow-up to A Visit From the Goon Squad
tells the story of a young woman in Brooklyn during the Depression and World War II.
Origin by Dan Brown (10/3, Doubleday)
Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon returns for another adventure in biblical history.
Hoover: An Extraordinary Life in Extraordinary Times by Kenneth Whyte (10/10, Knopf)
The biography of the man once considered the worst American president of all time.
The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman (10/10, Simon & Schuster)
A prequel to the cult classic Practical Magic
, in the movie version of which Nicole Kidman and Sandra Bullock were witch sisters and Bullock fell in love with Aidan Quinn because he could flip a pancake. (And why
do I even remember that?)
As Lie Is to Grin by Simeon Marsalis (10/10, Catapult)
A college freshman's quest for identity and information about the Harlem Renaissance.
The Secret Life: Three True Stories of the Digital Age by Andrew O'Hagan (10/10, FSG)
O'Hagan reports on his adventures in cyberspace, including ghostwriting Julian Assange's autobiography and tracking down the inventor of Bitcoin.
Go Back to Where You Came From: The Backlash Against Immigration and the Fate of Western Democracy by Sasha Polakow-Suransky (10/17, Nation Books)
Polakow-Suransky examines the growing nationalist movements in France, the Netherlands, and the U.S.
100 Amazing Facts About the Negro by Henry Louis Gates Jr. (10/24, Pantheon)
Gates updates black journalist Joel A. Rogers's 1934 classic, 100 Amazing Facts About the Negro With Complete Proof.
New Legal Thriller by John Grisham (10/24, Doubleday)
That is all they're telling us. Prepare to be amazed!
Smitten Kitchen Every Day: Triumphant and Unfussy New Favorites by Deb Perelman (10/24, Knopf)
I'll cook just about anything Deb tells me to, and I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one who feels this way.
Sticky Fingers: The Life and Times of Jann Wenner and Rolling Stone Magazine by Joe Hagan (10/24, Knopf)
The title brings to mind lots of images I'd rather not think about, like why the fingers got so sticky, but hey, it's a publishing success story!
I, Parrot by Deb Olin Unferth and Elizabeth Haidle (11/7, Black Balloon)
Unferth's first graphic novel, about the desperate and bizarre lengths a woman will go to in order to recover her son.
Obama: An Intimate Portrait by Pete Souza (11/7, Little, Brown)
Oh, let's look back on happier times, when Bo and Sunny roamed the White House lawn and the sight of the president didn't reduce small children to tears.
Radio Free Vermont by Bill McKibben (11/7, Blue Rider)
A novel in which Vermont secedes from the United States. Blurbed by Bernie.
The Sullivan Street Bakery Cookbook by Jim Lahey and Maya Joseph (11/7, Norton)
More recipes from the genius who brought the world no-knead bread
Bunk: The Rise of Hoaxes, Humbug, Plagiarists, Phonies, Post-Facts, and Fake News by Kevin Young (11/14, Graywolf)
The real history of fake news! Turns out it's an American tradition, so maybe the tweeter-in-chief really is making our country great again.
The Extra Woman: How Marjorie Hillis Led a Generation of Women to Live Alone and Like It by Joanna Scutts (11/14, Liveright)
The first biography of Hillis, the first self-help-book author to tell American women that living alone, without men, was awesome.
The Only Girl in the World by Maude Julien (12/12, Little, Brown)
Julien's parents used her as a guinea pig for their theories about how to raise the ultimate survivor. This is her memoir, and it sounds absolutely horrifying, in a totally voyeuristic way.
A Distant Heart by Sonali Dev (12/26, Kensington)
But things cannot be completely terrible if Sonali Dev
is still around and writing books.