Spring Arts Guide: Books

Once you've finished spring cleaning, let's begin accumulating printed matter again.

Chuck Klosterman (Kris Drake Photography)

Into the Water
By Paula Hawkins  |  May 2, Riverhead

If you hung on every word of the 2015 breakout sensation The Girl on the Train, it’s time to celebrate. Thriller writer Paula Hawkins returns to the genre with another novel that features unreliable narrators, dead bodies, and an unhealthy helping of psychological suspense. A perfect pick for fans of Gone Girl, Hawkins is a master of waging emotional warfare among her characters against a backdrop of murder. Into the Water is one to read with the lights on.

Men Without Women: Stories
By Haruki Murakami  |  May 9, Knopf

The latest title from Japanese fiction heavyweight Haruki Murakami is a story collection that focuses on men who are, in some way, alone. The seven stories contained within Men Without Women cover the standard Murakami territory that has endeared him to readers around the world: cats, baseball, the Beatles, and a surreal touch of noir. This superb volume should keep fans satiated as they await the English translation of Murakami’s latest novel, Killing Commendatore, published in Japan in February.

Woman No. 17
By Edan Lepucki  |  May 9, Hogarth

Following the success of her debut novel, California, author Edan Lepucki returns with a dark and clever tale about motherhood and the complexity of friendships. Lady Daniels lives among the elite in Hollywood, but when she hires S to watch her children so she can work on her memoir, both women find deep-seated secrets rising to the surface. With Woman No. 17, Lepucki — a longtime editor at The Millions — has fully made the jump from literary critic to literary star.

Since We Fell
By Dennis Lehane  |  May 9, Ecco

Known for novels like Mystic River and Shutter Island, writer Dennis Lehane returns with the story of a reporter who becomes a shut-in after suffering an on-air meltdown. This, of course, is only the beginning of a novel thick with conspiracy, heartbreak, and tender prose. Lehane’s ability to produce a narrative that is both literary in caliber and suspenseful in nature is why he is recognized as one of our country’s most masterful writers. 

Chuck Klosterman X
By Chuck Klosterman  |  May 16, Blue Rider Press

Chuck Klosterman makes essays fun. Whether he’s riding around in a SUV with Taylor Swift, grabbing breakfast with Kobe Bryant, or retelling the incredible story of a regional basketball game that took place in 1988 in North Dakota, Klosterman doesn’t simply profile his subjects, but probes past them to ask, “Why do we care?” A philosopher for the iPhone generation, Klosterman has been penning gems for outlets like GQ, Esquire, and the dearly departed Grantland for years. In Chuck Klosterman X, he catalogs his best work from the past 10 years.

Theft By Finding: Diaries (1977-2002)
By David Sedaris  |  May 30, Little, Brown and Company

Any new David Sedaris book is always cause for celebration, but this one is something new for the beloved essayist. Mining the meticulous diaries he’s kept for the past 40 years, Sedaris offers readers a glimpse into how he spins the everyday into delightful stories. While reading the diaries of a writer you love can often lead to disappointment, this new work is as brilliant and hilarious as anything Sedaris has previously published.

Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body
By Roxanne Gay  |  June 13, Harper

Roxanne Gay made some waves earlier this year when she switched publishers for an as-yet-unreleased project after learning of Simon & Schuster’s deal with prominent alt-right figure (and colossal asshole) Milo Yiannopoulos. Yiannopoulos’ deal has subsequently fallen through, but with her actions, Gay has once again demonstrated the power of her voice. Hunger is a memoir about food and bodies, chronicling Gay’s own struggles and deconstructing a culture that in part leads to issues of self-worth. It is but the latest work from an author who continues to be a fierce light in an often-dark world.

You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me: A Memoir
By Sherman Alexie  |  June 13, Little, Brown and Company

Beloved writer Sherman Alexie (The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven) started this collection of 78 poems and 78 essays after his mother passed away at the age of 78. In sharing the stories of growing up poor on an Indian reservation, raised by alcoholic parents, Alexie expertly imparts beauty into a lifetime of memories. Never one to shy away from being profane and profound in a single paragraph, You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me is pure Alexie, and a wonderfully realized reflection of the bond between parent and child.

Check out more from our Spring Arts Guide here:

Art
Comedy
Screens
Music
Theater
Street Fairs And Associated Weirdness

View Comments