In the words of rockers the Breeders, “Summer is ready when you are.” And for book lovers, that means the chance to read either outside by the swimming pool (but please use sunscreen) or inside your house, huddled six inches from an air conditioner on full blast.
However you like to read, there’s no shortage of new books to choose from this month, including a taut suspense novel set in Australia and an essay collection by one of the country’s best television critics. Consider picking up one of these seven books to keep you company while you either embrace or dodge the coming summer heat.
“City of Girls,” Elizabeth Gilbert: Fans of “Eat, Pray, Love” memoirist Gilbert have been waiting six years for a new work of fiction from the bestselling author. Her newest book, set in 1940s New York, follows a young woman named Vivian who moves in with her aunt after getting kicked out of school, and encounters an unusual cast of characters, all with ties to Midtown Manhattan’s theater scene.
“Song for the Unraveling of the World: Stories,” Brian Evenson: Prolific author Evenson has earned a following of fans who love his ability to blend literary fiction, horror and science fiction. His latest book, published by Minnesota indie publisher Coffee House Press, is a collection of short stories that deal with art, paranoia and the dark urges that haunt even the most normal people.
“Serious Eater: A Food Lover’s Perilous Quest for Pizza and Redemption,” Ed Levine: Any foodie worth their salt, fat, acid and heat knows about Serious Eats, the website founded by food writer Ed Levine. In his new book, Levine tells the story of how he turned a blog into one of the most influential culinary sites on the Internet. The book contains recipes by Serious Eats writers Stella Parks and J. Kenji López-Alt.
“The Tenth Muse: A Novel,” Catherine Chung: New York author Chung won rave reviews for her 2012 debut novel, “Forgotten Country,” which won an honorable mention for the prestigious PEN/Hemingway Award. Her new novel is about a Chinese American mathematician whose attempts to solve a famous mathematical problem lead her to uncover some long-hidden secrets. Roxane Gay called the novel “moving, elegant and richly written.”
“I Like to Watch: Arguing My Way Through the TV Revolution,” Emily Nussbaum: Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Nussbaum, who writes for the New Yorker, is one of the brightest and most perceptive critics working in any field today. Her new book collects both previously published and new essays about “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” “Girls,” Ryan Murphy, the #MeToo movement and more.
“The Sixth Man: A Memoir,” Andre Iguodala with Carvell Wallace: Golden State Warriors swingman Iguodala has had a distinguished basketball career, from his college career at Arizona to his NBA Finals MVP-winning performance in 2015. In his new memoir, he writes about his childhood in Illinois, his experiences dealing with racism, and his remarkable run with the Philadelphia 76ers and the Warriors.
“The Van Apfel Girls Are Gone,” Felicity McLean: Journalist and author McLean’s debut novel has drawn comparisons to Jeffrey Eugenides’ “The Virgin Suicides.” The book follows a young woman who returns to her Australian hometown, and is forced to confront the legacy of three girls who went missing in the summer of 1992. Suspense novelist Tim Johnston called the book “a novel that is as delightful as it is terrifying, and just scary good.”