ON A slew of new books due out in August has something for every reader, from the autobiography of tennis legend Billie Jean King to Helen Hoang’s latest passed out love story. August welcomes the return of veterans like Deborah Levy and Hilma Wolitzer and heralds debuts in novels by Anthony Veasna So and the poet Honorée Fanonne Jeffers. There’s an innovative thriller, heartbreaking short story collections, a comprehensive exposition of the history of white feminism, and more. Here are the 11 new books to read this month.
Radiant Refugees, Nawaaz Ahmed (August 3)
In Nawaaz Ahmed’s debut novel Radiant Fugitives, the family secrets of three generations come to an astonishing head. Set in the early days of the Obama administration, the story revolves around Seema, a Muslim Indian political activist whose pregnancy with her first child leads her to reconnect with her estranged family amid a rapidly changing cultural landscape. In just a week, Seema, her mother and sister face a life of tension and unspoken desires before welcoming a new life into their brood.
Buy now: Radiant refugees on bookstore | Amazon
All good, Mona Awad (August 3rd)
Miranda Fitch, the college theater director, loses almost everything in her life. She suffers from chronic back pain after an acting accident that ruined her marriage, her career and left her on pain medication. And now her current job is at stake, and Miranda decides to direct a production of the same Shakespeare play that put her in this precarious position: All well, that ends well. The appearance of three strangers who are far too familiar with Miranda’s past – and offer her a dangerously attractive deal to ensure a better future – complicates Miranda’s mission. What follows in Bunny’s latest novel is a darkly hilarious journey into the psyche of a woman who is nearing her ultimate breaking point.
Buy now: All good in the bookstore | Amazon
The husbands, Chandler Baker (August 3rd)
Can women really have it all? The question drives Chandler Baker’s latest page turn, which follows a lawyer named Nora Sprangler who is struggling to balance her successful career and the needs of her growing family. Everything changes when the Spranglers move to Dynasty Ranch, an exclusive suburban enclave where ambitious women are married to men who happily share domestic chores. There, Nora is asked to help a neighbor who dies illegally, triggering a series of surprising revelations about her new community. The Husbands, a film starring Kristen Wiig, is a disturbing portrait of marriage, motherhood, and love.
Buy now: The husbands in the bookstore | Amazon
Holdout, Jeffrey Kluger (August 3)
In TIME editor-in-chief Jeffrey Kluger’s holdout, astronaut Walli Beckwith has devoted her entire career to excellence in space travel, but she soon realizes that her most pressing concern is an urgent and time-sensitive issue on Earth. After having to leave the International Space Station where they work due to an unusual accident, Walli and her colleagues sees a golden – if risky – opportunity to campaign for the kind of change they love to see on earth in this action-packed thriller would of a novel.
Buy now: Holdout on bookstore | Amazon
Afterparties: Stories, Anthony Veasna Sun (August 3)
In his posthumous debut short story collection, Afterpartys: Stories, Anthony Veasna So captures the challenges and triumphs of a closely knit community of Cambodian Americans living in the shadow of the genocide in Southern California. Shaped by sharp wit and the overwhelming range of emotions they depict, Sos vignettes offer a nuanced and compassionate look at the rich and complex experiences of a group of immigrants who dared to start a new life in an often irreconcilable country. The collection is true testament to So’s strength as a writer – and its publication is bittersweet given his untimely death last winter at the age of 28, a taste of a unique talent that was lost far too soon.
Buy now: After parties in the bookstore | Amazon
Against White Feminism: Notes on Disruption, Rafia Zakaria (August 17)
The history of feminism has long been dominated by a white and western narrative depicting a liberation movement for white women at the expense of women around the world who are black, indigenous, and colored. In Against White Feminism, lawyer and political philosopher Rafia Zakaria presents a clear analysis of the harrowing true effects of white feminism on maintaining colonial, patriarchal, capitalist and white supremacy. Addressing issues ranging from the often problematic nature of development aid to the complicated politics of sexual liberation, Zakaria offers a comprehensive and intersectional critique of white feminism while envisioning a more inclusive future for all.
Buy now: Against white feminism in the bookstore | Amazon
The love songs by WEB Du Bois, Honorée Fanonne Jeffers (August 24th)
Honorée Fanonne Jeffers, poet on the longlist of the National Book Award, makes her fictional debut with The Love Songs of WEB Du Bois, a lively and delicate coming-of-age novel. Ailey Pearl Garfield is a young girl who grapples with what it means to be a black woman in America as she stands on the brink of growing up. As she negotiates her place in the world, Ailey travels through time and space to explore her family’s history, from her enslavement in the city of Chicasetta, Georgia to her ongoing generational trauma in the present. Ailey’s time travel features complex and intimate love and heartbreak stories from her family’s two centuries in the American South that not only give her a glimpse into her family’s complicated past, but also the tools to envision her own future.
Buy now: The love songs from WEB Du Bois on Bookshop | Amazon
All In: An Autobiography, Billie Jean King (August 17)
Tennis champion Billie Jean King reflects on her life and groundbreaking career in her new autobiography. All In traces everything from King’s experiences with sexism in sports to her work in the LGBTQ movement to her legendary victory in 1973 in the Battle of the Sexes against Bobby Riggs. Throughout, King describes the challenges she has faced and the problems she continues to fight in urgent and vivid words that fuse into a powerful self-portrait of an inspiring athlete and activist.
Buy now: Everything in bookstore | Amazon
Real Estate: A Living Autobiography, Deborah Levy (August 24)
The spaces we occupy can speak volumes about the life we want to live and the people we are – and hope to become. At least that’s the case with Deborah Levy in Real Estate, the third and final installation in her critically acclaimed memoir, Living Autobiography. In Levy’s succinct prose, she meditates on both the literal and conceptual facets of home, property and living. Sparkling with humor and Levy’s zest for life, it is a read for anyone who understands that home, although always familiar, can be found in the most unexpected places.
Buy now: Real estate on bookstore | Amazon
The Heart Principle, Helen Hoang (August 31)
Anna Sun is a burnt-out violinist who falls in love with her most unexpected admirer in Helen Hoang’s dazzling new romance. After Anna’s longtime boyfriend suggests opening up their relationship, she decides to go on a one night stand with a motorcyclist who couldn’t be less her type. But the heroine’s determination to keep it casual begins to dissolve as their affair turns into something much more. Sensitive and sweet, The Heart Principle – a worthy sequel to Hoang’s 2019 novel The Bride Test – explores a burgeoning romance based on undeniable chemistry.
Buy now: The heart principle in the bookstore | Amazon
Today a woman in the supermarket went crazy: Stories, Hilma Wolitzer (August 31)
Hilma Wolitzer, 91-year-old novelist and mother of novelist Meg Wolitzer, explores the quiet and sometimes devastating moments that accompany marriage in her latest collection of short stories. Today, A Woman Went Mad in the Supermarket, which includes many stories first published in the 1960s and 70s, includes narratives like Paulie and Howard’s developing relationship as they move through parenting, growing up, and aging . The result is a timeless confrontation with the bonds that bind us and the perseverance of love.
Buy now: Today a woman in the supermarket went crazy about the bookstore | Amazon
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