February 6, 2013 Reporter-turned-novelist Gene Kerrigan sets his story in Ireland after the 2008 financial crisis. The Rage is a boundlessly readable portrait of a country in which ordinary citizens have been hit the hardest and all the old certainties have vanished.
February 21, 2013 No good deed goes unpunished, and no one escapes Ismail Kadare's satire in this madcap indictment of Balkan totalitarianism. Set in Albania during WWII and its aftermath, The Fall of the Stone City is an incisive, biting work by a master of dark comedy.
January 31, 2013 When a psychic tells her that her biological father is still alive, Portland, Ore., comic-book artist Nicole Georges begins a quest of self discovery. Critic Carmen Gimenez Smith calls Georges' graphic memoir "a beautiful and innovative portrait" of an artist's journey.
January 29, 2013 A new biography of the Prophet Muhammad attempts to find the real man inside the mythology. Reviewer Drew Toal says the book describes the prophet as "a mostly reasonable, marginalized man beset by extraordinary circumstances."
January 28, 2013 As the classic novel celebrates its bicentennial, Paula Byrne's The Real Jane Austen examines some of the key objects in Austen's life and how they reveal a much more cosmopolitan awareness of the world than is commonly credited to her.
January 24, 2013 Ali Smith's new book, Artful, began as a series of lectures on comparative literature, given at Oxford last year. The lectures have been given a fictional shell, the story of an unnamed narrator finding a cache of essays in the study of her dead lover. Reviewer John Wilwol calls Artful "superb."
January 23, 2013 In Drinking with Men, Rosie Schaap chronicles the taverns she has called her own and the friends she has met along the way. It's a wonderfully funny and openhearted book from a generous, charismatic writer.
January 22, 2013 Writer and psychoanalyst Adam Phillips explores the paradox of dissatisfaction: Although not getting what we want may cause us pain, Phillips concedes, we should think of frustration as a natural part of existence, and one that can provide us pleasure if we let it.
January 17, 2013 When a young Quaker woman in 1850s Ohio comes into contact with the Underground Railroad, she faces a dilemma. If she helps the runaways, her family could go to prison and lose their farm. Tracy Chevalier's contemplative novel offers a powerful testament to the force of conscience.
January 16, 2013 Harlem Renaissance writer Eric Walrond's 1926 story collection, Tropic Death, is being reissued after decades out of print. Reviewer Oscar Villalon says the stories are "disturbing reminders of how utterly vulnerable we are to the injustices of the heart and of community."