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August 29, 2015 June Reid has lost everyone she loves in one horrifying moment, but she's not the only one grieving. Bill Clegg's new novel tells of June's loss through the voices of those who know and encounter her.
August 27, 2015 Alexandra Kleeman's novel, populated by TV-obsessed characters on a steady diet of Popsicles and oranges, is a controlled exercise in what critic Jason Sheehan calls "terrifying banality."
August 26, 2015 Literary critic Clive James revisits the work of great writers such as Joseph Conrad, Ernest Hemingway, Shakespeare and others, subjecting each to the "finicky test of delight."
August 25, 2015 Author Tracy Daugherty's new biography of Joan Didion is an honest attempt to construct a coherent narrative about her — but critic Michael Schaub says it doesn't completely work.
August 24, 2015 A posthumously published collection of stories steers recognition to Lucia Berlin, whose fictional narrators are the sort who have seen it all and aren't afraid to tell you about their crappy day.
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August 23, 2015 Ottessa Moshfegh's new novel follows a defiantly, triumphantly off-putting young woman who dreams of escaping her grim New England existence. Critic Jean Zimmerman calls it "pleasingly perverse."
August 20, 2015 NPR's Audie Cornish talks with Kathryn VanArendonk, who teaches developmental reading and writing at Union County College, about how some schools are including contemporary books on summer lists.
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August 20, 2015 Alaa Al Aswany's new book sets the dynamics of a fallen family and an elitist car club against the tensions of post-World War II Egypt, but a clunky translation and too many plots keep the brakes on.
August 20, 2015 Aliette de Bodard's new novel is set in a postapocalyptic Paris, devastated by a magical war between factions of fallen angels. It's a gritty mix of high gothic poetry and knotty angelic rivalries.
August 19, 2015 Chuck Wendig's brisk new thriller deals in cutting-edge tech, but it's traditional at heart, pitting a rag-tag band of hackers against a big, sinister cyber-entity and the threat of global disaster.
August 19, 2015 Adam Johnson's new story collection spans the globe from former East Germany to post-Katrina Louisiana. Reviewer Michael Schaub says the book is uneven but enlightening, and brilliant at its best.
August 18, 2015 Ruth Ware's In A Dark, Dark Wood brings together a group of 20-something women in an isolated rural house for a bachelorette party — a perfect setting for buried secrets and terrible deeds.
August 18, 2015 Stephanie Clifford's debut novel, about the desperate social strivings of a young woman in Manhattan, has its roots in the tragic, old-money fascinations of Edith Wharton's The House of Mirth.
August 16, 2015 This week, we're setting the NPR Books Time Machine for the Napoleonic Wars, and Lauren Willig's swashbuckling Pink Carnation series, about florally themed spies battling it out across Europe.
August 15, 2015 Our Summer of Love rolls on with a roundup of romance manga. Japanese comic books can be a daunting field to enter — but we've picked three of the sweetest for your summer reading pleasure.
August 15, 2015 Readers everywhere are rediscovering the work of Brazil's Clarice Lispector. Critic Juan Vidal calls Lispector a singular artist, whose newly collected stories linger in the mind like poetry.
August 13, 2015 Helen Phillips' surreal, dark, funny new novel follows a young woman named Josephine, who gets a job at a mysterious agency. Critic Michael Schaub says the book works as both love story and thriller.
August 13, 2015 Tanwi Nandini Islam's debut novel is an understated queer coming-of-age tale, set in a vividly-portrayed Brooklyn brownstone whose residents all ache for some kind of home they've never been to.
August 12, 2015 Explorer and activist Bell is best remembered today for helping create the modern state of Iraq. A smartly edited new collection of her writings presents a fascinating (if not always smooth) portrait.
August 12, 2015 Colin Atrophy Hagendorf decided to review a plain slice of pizza from every joint in Manhattan — a project that evolved into a two-fisted memoir of his own life and struggles with substance abuse.
August 11, 2015 Before her death in 2014, author Denise Inge took a spiritual journey to bone houses throughout Europe. Critic Maureen Corrigan says the resulting book, The Tour of Bones, is "strange and chaotic."
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August 11, 2015 Angélica Gorodischer's episodic, lyrical new novel follows (in a meandering sort of way) the magically tinged lives of a motley cast of boarders in a house that once belonged to a famous German poet.
August 11, 2015 A new novel doesn't take the easy way out but, instead, asks questions about the mutations of human institutions under the pressure of global warming, says commentator Adam Frank.
August 11, 2015 Nalo Hopkinson's new collection mixes up her Afro-Caribbean influences with classic literature and historical fantasy. Critic Jason Heller says her stories dazzle with a hard-won sense of hope.
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