Books

7 novels coming out in May that you won’t want to miss

Max Porter, author of “Grief Is the Thing With Feathers”. Graywolf: 128 pp., $14 paper
Max Porter, author of “Grief Is the Thing With Feathers.”
(Lucy Dickens)

April is a great month for reading — nothing beats settling in with a good book and getting so lost in a novel that you temporarily forget about how much you owe in taxes.

May’s even better, though. With the the seemingly endless super bloom still speckling California’s hillsides with color, it’s the perfect time to read in the park, on the beach or during the seventh-inning stretch at a Dodgers game. Here are seven novels coming out next month that can keep you entertained no matter where you are.

“Loudermilk: Or, The Real Poet; Or, The Origin of the World,” Lucy Ives (May 7): Ives follows up her acclaimed “Impossible Views of the World” with a satire about a handsome young man who, with the help of his hopelessly nerdy friend, gets accepted into a prestigious graduate program for poets. Fellow satirist Sam Lipsyte has praised Ives, calling her “as deeply funny and ferocious a writer as they come.”

“Juliet the Maniac,” Juliet Escoria (May 7): West Virginia author Escoria has won praise for her poetry collection, “Witch Hunt,” and book of short stories, “Black Cloud.” Her debut novel follows a talented 14-year-old girl in Southern California reckoning with mental illness and substance use.

“The Flight Portfolio,” Julie Orringer (May 7): It’s been nine years since Orringer’s debut novel, “The Invisible Bridge,” was released to critical raves. Her follow-up is based on the real-life American journalist Varian Fry, who helped hundreds of Jewish authors and artists escape Nazi-occupied Europe during World War II.

“Lanny,” Max Porter (May 14): British author Porter won the International Dylan Thomas Prize for his debut novel, “Grief Is the Thing With Feathers.” His latest tells the story of a mythical creature named Dead Papa Toothwort and a bright but odd young boy who goes missing in a small English town.

“Disappearing Earth,” Julia Phillips (May 14): Brooklyn author Phillips makes her literary debut with a novel about two young girls who go missing from their home in the Kamchatka Peninsula of Russia. Author Gary Shteyngart called the novel “a genuine masterpiece.”

“Biloxi,” Mary Miller (May 21): Mississippi author Miller gained the notice of critics with her acclaimed first novel, “The Last Days of California.” Her newest book follows Louis McDonald Jr., a depressed 63-year-old man whose life is changed after he adopts an overweight mutt named Layla.

“Where We Come From,” Oscar Cásares (May 23): Austin, Texas, author Cásares made his debut in 2003 with “Brownsville,” a short story collection set in his hometown. His new novel tells the story of a Mexican American family living in a Texas-Mexico border town that shelters a young boy brought to the U.S. by human traffickers.