The Guardian hails the book as a “masterpiece” and as “a novel of epic proportions [that is] every bit as thrilling, propulsive, darkly comic and stupendously intelligent as its predecessors...The trilogy is complete and it is magnificent”. The husband never returns. As she travels across the U.S., surveying and chronicling the experiences of immigrants living in New York, Miami, Cleveland, New Haven, and Flint, Cornejo Villavicencio introduces us to the people who perform some of America’s most essential services while unequivocally destroying the right-wing talking points that villainize the undocumented. Porter explores how this national pathology has stunted the nation’s development and the growth of the institutions needed for a healthy, cohesive society – including labour, education, health and welfare. From the white neighbors to the Latinx and African American witnesses of the crime, McBride introduces a diverse cast of characters to deliver nuanced commentary on race and class in New York City. In Simon Han’s debut novel, out this November, five-year-old Annabel Cheng’s struggle with sleepwalking triggers a series of spiderwebbing fractures in her suburban Texas community.

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Laura, Gould’s protagonist, arrives in New York in the early 2000s to pursue ambitions of songwriting stardom, but her plan gets turned upside down when she winds up pregnant. You're in store for some majorly juicy drama, duh.

—AG, Pochoda's take on L.A. noir is a refreshing and innovative outlier. This year, she’s finally returned to publishing her own fiction, and her tale of mothers and musicians, Perfect Tunes, is a delight. While Sittenfeld’s American Wife, which traced the experiences of a very Laura Bush-esque figure, used a similar approach, Rodham goes much further, showing both the successes that Hillary could have achieved on her own and the trail Bill would've gone down without her by his side. It’s a remarkable debut and the kind of book you want to hug tight when it ends. For those who have never encountered it firsthand, the world of right-wing extremism may seem like an alien planet. Ever since the publication of Meaty in 2013, Irby’s essays have been required reading on the millennial condition. A year after rising star Grace Turner mysteriously disappeared from Hollywood, she suddenly reappears on the scene, just in time to present a Lifetime Achievement Award to director Able Yorke—her longtime abuser. Living in an overpopulated, polluted metropolis, Bea realises she and her daughter cannot stay in the city, and so join a group of volunteers to take part in an extreme experiment. In 2020’s breakout debut, a young Black New Yorker named Edie starts dating a middle-aged white man in an open marriage. Arafat’s beautiful, visceral coming-of-age story expertly weaves many unwieldy themes—a fraught mother-daughter relationship, the feeling of being caught between two cultures, the frenzy of romantic and sexual dependency—into an astonishingly elegant package.

Erdrich describes the Turtle Mountain Reservation in North Dakota in rich detail and illustrates the lengths that some will go to protect the ones they care for.

Every item on this page was chosen by an ELLE editor. The Observer also praises the author, who has previously won the Booker: “Enright triumphs as a chameleon: memoirist, journalist, critic, daughter – her emotional intelligence knows no bounds.”. I love reading children’s books to my daughter at bedtime. The stories feature demons and ghosts, skeletons and spirits, but the original tales are all imaginatively up-ended by Aoko, and told from a contemporary, female perspective. But now, as adults, they’ve taken two paths: one living with her Black daughter in the same community she’s known her whole life; the other passing as white and living among loved ones who have no idea where she came from.

If you’re ordinarily bored by short story collections, we can empathize—which is why you’ll want to trust us when we say that this one is worth making an exception for. When two murders are reported in their neighborhood, the women find their lives inextricably connected by the crimes and obsessions of one man. In a world of instability, the steady churn of new books from brilliant authors remains one of the few things we can count on. Its premise: Cal Hooper wanted to peace TFO of his stressful and painful past, but a local tragedy in his picturesque new life makes it hard. Though they might be fictional, Sittenfeld's piercing insights into the psychology of a woman whose feelings we know so little make for a fascinating reading experience.

I Am Not Your Baby Mother by Candice Brathwaite. The titular character, based on her maternal grandfather, leads the effort against proposed legislation that threatens the rights to his tribe’s land. —JK, Boasting arguably the most eye-catching cover of the year, Godshot, from debut author Chelsea Bieker, is an unnerving tour de force.

“Everyone with an interest in the future of the planet should read this book.

I absolutely despise transitions.

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