One of Madeline Cullen’s happiest childhood memories is of working with her Aunt Maddie in the quaint and cozy Printed Letter Bookshop. But by the time Madeline inherits the shop nearly twenty years later, family troubles and her own bitter losses have hardened her heart toward her once-treasured aunt—and the now struggling bookshop left in her care. Amid literature and lattes, three women come together and find that sharing one’s journey with best friends makes life richer.
Dominic Smith’s The Electric Hotel winds through the nascent days of cinema in Paris and Fort Lee, New Jersey—America’s first movie town—and on the battlefields of Belgium during World War I. A sweeping work of historical fiction, it shimmers between past and present as it tells the story of the rise and fall of a prodigious film studio and one man’s doomed obsession with all that passes in front of the viewfinder.
For nearly half a century, Claude Ballard has been living at the Hollywood Knickerbocker Hotel. A French pioneer of silent films, who started out as a concession agent for the Lumière brothers, the inventors of cinema, Claude now spends his days foraging mushrooms in the hills of Los Angeles and taking photographs of runaways and the striplings along Sunset Boulevard. But when a film-history student comes to interview Claude about The Electric Hotel—the lost masterpiece that bankrupted him and ended the career of his muse, Sabine Montrose—the past comes surging back. In his run-down hotel suite, the ravages of the past are waiting to be excavated: celluloid fragments and reels in desperate need of restoration, and Claude’s memories of the woman who inspired and beguiled him.
From the bestselling author of P.S., I Love You, a fiercely feminist story collection that blends fables with magical realism––perfect for fans of Roxane Gay. In this singular and imaginative story collection, Cecelia Ahern illuminates the myriad ways in which women overcome adversity with wit, resourcefulness and compassion. Exploring dilemmas and aspirations that women everywhere will relate to, these unforgettable tales blend magical realism and familiar scenarios with startling and often hilarious results. In matters ranging from marriage and childrearing to politics and career, the heroines of these thought-provoking stories confront problems both mysterious and mundane: one woman is tortured by sinister bite marks that appear on her skin; another is swallowed up by the floor during a mortifying presentation; yet another resolves to return and exchange her boring husband at the store where she originally acquired him. As they wrestle with obstacles of all kinds, their reality is shaped by how others perceive them––and ultimately, how they perceive the power within themselves. By turns sly, whimsical and affecting, these 30 short stories are an inspiring examination of what it means to be a woman today.
The Vegetarian meets Heathers in this darkly funny, seductively strange novel about a lonely graduate student drawn into a clique of rich girls who seem to move and speak as one. Samantha Heather Mackey couldn’t be more of an outsider in her small, highly selective MFA program at New England’s Warren University. A scholarship student who prefers the company of her dark imagination to that of most people, she is utterly repelled by the rest of her fiction writing cohort––a clique of unbearably twee rich girls who call each other “Bunny,” and are often found entangled in a group hug so tight they become one. But everything changes when Samantha receives an invitation to the Bunnies’ fabled “Smut Salon,” and finds herself inexplicably drawn to their front door––ditching her only friend, Ava, a caustic art school dropout, in the process. As Samantha plunges deeper and deeper into the sinister yet saccharine world of the Bunny cult and starts to take part in their ritualistic off-campus “Workshop” where they magically conjure their monstrous creations, the edges of reality begin to blur, and her friendships with Ava and the Bunnies are brought into deadly collision. A spellbinding, down-the-rabbit-hole tale of loneliness and belonging, creativity and agency, and friendship and desire, Bunny is the dazzlingly original second book from an author whose work has been described as “honest, searing and necessary” (Elle).
From the New York Times bestselling author of The Postmistress comes a novel that is The Hours meets The Forsyte Saga, centering on a love affair between the daughter of an American dynasty and an upstart trying to break into polite society. Following three generations of an old money family that has run out of its money but not the firm sense of its place or power, The Guest Book weaves between the 30s, the 50s and the present, tracing the past mistakes and betrayals that ripple down through time, ambitiously examining the racism and power structures embedded in the U.S. for centuries. Brimming with gorgeous writing and bitterly accurate social criticism, The Guest Book is a literary tour de force about the histories we inherit and the ways we blindly pass the past inside us on––until we see the history that lies in the cracks between.
In this stirring and insightful novel, T.C. Boyle takes us back to the 1960s and to the early days of a drug whose effects have reverberated widely throughout our culture: LSD.
In 1943, LSD is synthesized in Basel. Two decades later, a coterie of grad students at Harvard are gradually drawn into the inner circle of renowned psychologist and psychedelic drug enthusiast Timothy Leary. Fitzhugh Loney, a psychology Ph.D. student and his wife, Joanie, become entranced by the drug’s possibilities such that their “research” becomes less a matter of clinical trials and academic papers and instead turns into a free-wheeling exploration of mind expansion, group dynamics, and communal living. With his trademark humor and pathos, Boyle moves us through the Loneys’ initiation at one of Leary’s parties to his notorious summer seminars in Zihuatanejo until the Loneys’ eventual expulsion from Harvard and their introduction to a communal arrangement of thirty devotees—students, wives, and children—living together in a sixty-four room mansion and devoting themselves to all kinds of experimentation and questioning.
“A dark comedy of female rage” (Catherine Lacey) and a biting satire of the false promise of reinvention, by a National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 honoree and Granta Best Young American Novelist. Thirty-year-old Millie just can’t pull it together. Misanthropic and morose, she spends her days killing time at a thankless temp job until she can return home to her empty apartment, where she oscillates wildly between self-recrimination and mild delusion, fixating on all the little ways she might change her life. Then she watches TV until she drops off to sleep, and the cycle begins again. When the possibility of a full-time job offer arises, it seems to bring the better life she’s envisioning––one that involves nicer clothes, fresh produce, maybe even financial independence––within reach. But with it also comes the paralyzing realization, lurking just beneath the surface, of just how hollow that vision has become. Darkly hilarious and devastating, The New Me is a dizzying descent into the mind of a young woman trapped in the funhouse of American consumer culture.
Kate Michaels’ mother Lily is dead, the victim of a brutal attack in her tony suburban Baltimore home. Overwhelmed by grief, Kate is trying to hold it together for the sake of her newly widowed father and her own husband and young child, and is heartened by the appearance of Blaire Barrington at Lily’s funeral. Blaire and Kate—high school BFFs who fell out when Kate married her husband Simon—fall immediately back into their old routines. Kate (now a prominent doctor) is the accomplished but anxious achiever, while Blaire (who has since become a bestselling mystery author) serves as her defender against all enemies.
However heartened Kate is by her friend’s return, she’s horrified to discover that Blaire’s protection may actually be necessary—whoever killed Lily has been leaving notes threatening Kate and her five-year-old daughter Annabelle, sometimes accompanied by gruesome clues. As the messages become increasingly macabre, and the police still struggle for leads on the case, Blaire decides to take matters into her own hands, investigating friends and relatives with no care for the existing relationships. As she digs deeper, none of Baltimore’s moneyed elite is safe—but will her search for the truth push her or the increasingly unstable Kate over the edge?
Told with the lightning pace of The Last Mrs. Parrish but with life-and-death stakes this time, The Last Time I Saw You will be sure to thrill and delight Constantine’s fans and garner new ones.
Written in Lauren Denton’s signature Southern style, Glory Road tells the story of three generations of women navigating the uncertain pathways of their hearts during a summer that promises to bring change—whether they’re ready for it or not.
M.T. Edvardsson’s A Nearly Normal Family is a gripping psychological thriller that forces the reader to consider: how far would you go to protect the ones you love? In this twisted narrative of love and murder, a horrific crime makes a seemingly normal family question everything they thought they knew about their life—and each other.