8 New Books We Recommend This Week

Our fiction recommendations this week include a “gleeful romp” of a series mystery, along with three novels by some heavy-hitting young writers: Téa Obreht, Helen Oyeyemi and Tommy Orange. (How heavy-hitting, and how young? Consider that Obreht was included in The New Yorker’s “20 Under 40” issue in 2010 — and she’s still under 40 today. So is Oyeyemi, who was one of Granta’s “Best Young British Novelists” in 2013, while Orange, at 42, has won the PEN/Hemingway Award, the John Leonard Prize and the American Book Award. The future is in good hands.)

In nonfiction, we recommend a painter’s memoir, a group biography of three jazz giants, a posthumous essay collection by the great critic Joan Acocella and a journalist’s look at American citizens trying to come to terms with a divided country. Happy reading.— Gregory Cowles

Téa Obreht

After being displaced from their homeland, Silvia and her mother move into the Morningside, a weather-beaten luxury apartment building in “Island City,” a sinking version of New York in the middle of all-out climate collapse. Silvia learns about her heritage through the folk tales her aunt Ena tells her, and becomes fascinated with the mysterious woman who lives in the penthouse apartment.


“I marveled at the subtle beauty and precision of Obreht’s prose. … Even in the face of catastrophe, there’s solace to be found in art.”

From Jessamine Chan’s review

Random House | $29

Deanna Raybourn

In their ninth crime-solving tale, the Victorian-era adventuress and butterfly hunter Veronica Speedwell and her partner discover that a wax mannequin is actually a dead young woman, expertly preserved.

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