The Most Anticipated Books of Spring 2013posted by
Courtesy of Publishers Weekly…
Culled from PW’s Spring Announcements issue (on newsstands January 28), we asked our reviews editors to pick the most notable books publishing in Spring 2013. Links to reviews are included when available.
The Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls by Anton DiSclafani (Riverhead, June 4) – This debut novel from a young Floridian writer sold for a bundle and has tremendous pre-pub support from the likes of Lauren Groff (“sexy, smart, and vividly drawn”) and Prep author Curtis Sittenfeld (“sexy, suspenseful, gorgeously written”).
You Are One of Them by Elliott Holt (Penguin Press, May 30) – From a Pushcart Prize–winning writer who New York magazine has called a literary “star of tomorrow,” this debut novel is set in America in the ’80s and present-day Moscow. Holt has tremendous pre-pub support, from Darin Strauss, A.M. Homes, Kevin Wilson, Hannah Tinti, and Lauren Groff, who calls Holt “graceful, sharp, and super-smart.”
A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra (Hogarth, May 7) – Talk about credentials: among other achievements, Marra is a Stegner Fellow at Stanford University, has an M.F.A. from Iowa, and won the 2012 Whiting Writers’ Award, a Pushcart Prize, and the Atlantic’s Student Writing Contest. Ann Patchett came on board early, calling the book “simply spectacular. Not since Everything Is Illuminated have I read a first novel so ambitious and fully realized.”
The Son by Philipp Meyer (Ecco, May 8) – The author of American Rust returns with an epic, multigenerational novel of power, blood, and land that follows the rise of one Texas family from the Comanche raids of the 1800s to the oil booms of the 20th century. American Rust won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and was a book of the year pick in a number of publications. Meyer is one of the New Yorker’s “20 under 40” writers.
The Blood of Heaven by Kent Wascom (Grove, June 4) – A vivid portrait of ambition and political machinations in a young America where anything is possible. Grove is very much behind the book, calling it “one of the most powerful and impressive debuts” it’s ever published.
The Golem and the Jinni by Helene Wecker (Harper, Apr. 23) – Harper is really getting behind this debut in the vein of The Night Circus and The Discovery of Witches. The novel combines historical fiction with a magical fable about two supernatural creatures in turn-of-the-20th-century New York City.
Ghostman by Roger Hobbs (Knopf, February 12) – Five years after a failed heist, the protagonist, identified only by the alias “Jack Delton,” is leading an anonymous existence, but not enough of one to prevent his former boss from summoning him at a moment’s notice. The latest heist, of an armored car delivering $1.2 million to an Atlantic City casino, has gone badly, bloodily wrong, with one henchman dead and the other in hiding with the loot. Jack must find the survivor in the next 48 hours before an ink bomb hidden in the cash goes offHobbs’s supremely confident storytelling should leave readers eagerly anticipating his antihero’s future felonies.
Joyland by Stephen King (Hard Case Crime, June) – Set in a small-town North Carolina amusement park in 1973, King’s novel tells the story of the summer in which college student Devin Jones comes to work as a carny and confronts the legacy of a vicious murder.
Rage Against the Dying by Becky Masterman (Minotaur, March 12) – Resist any temptation to bail after the creepy prologue—a sexual predator’s-eye-view of the woman he’s about to attack—because then you’ll miss one of the most memorable FBI agents since Clarice Starling as well as a killer debut thriller.
Red Moon by Benjamin Percy (Grand Central, May 7) – Exploring one of the oldest themes in weird fiction—the werewolf—Percy (The Wilding) delivers a stunning alternate history epic that transcends its genre trappings to read as a provocative reflection on the contemporary zeitgeist. At a point where many other writers would flinch, Percy follows through on the direst possibilities of his premise, building to a shocking denouement and even more shock climax in the final pages.
The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman (William Morrow, June 18) – Poised to make a major splash; Gaiman hasn’t come out with a new book for adults since 2005’s Anansi Boys, and in the meantime his star has continued to rise with the success of the Newbery Medal- and Hugo-winning The Graveyard Book and other books for younger readers. Advance buzz is starting to build and will undoubtedly be enormous by the time the book comes out in June.
A Natural History of Dragons by Marie Brennan (Tor, February 5) – This book has been getting a ton of anticipatory attention, and rightly so. This memoir of a Victorian lady’s adventures as a naturalist studying mythical beasts hits all the sweet spots: plausible alternate history, proto-feminism that’s true to the setting, and that elusive sense of wonder that keeps SF/F fans coming back for more. Plus it’s gorgeously illustrated.
Magician’s End by Raymond E. Feist (Harper Voyager, May 14) and Dead Ever After by Charlaine Harris (May 7, Ace) – These books wrap up two major fantasy series. Obviously they’ll be of interest to series fans, and the conclusion of a series also means that readers who have been waiting until they can inhale the whole thing from start to finish will be able to dive in at last.
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