2020’s had it’s fair share of tricks, no doubt, but we can always count on books to provide the treats we need. This week we’re rolling out a brand new John Grisham book, a boat load of genre reads, and a few titles profiling some of our favorite creators. Find out more when you scroll down!
A Time for Mercy by John Grisham
Jake Brigance is back! The hero of A Time to Kill, one of the most popular novels of our time, returns in a courtroom drama that showcases #1 New York Times bestselling author John Grisham at the height of his storytelling powers.
Clanton, Mississippi. 1990. Jake Brigance finds himself embroiled in a deeply divisive trial when the court appoints him attorney for Drew Gamble, a timid sixteen-year-old boy accused of murdering a local deputy. Many in Clanton want a swift trial and the death penalty, but Brigance digs in and discovers that there is more to the story than meets the eye. Jake’s fierce commitment to saving Drew from the gas chamber puts his career, his financial security, and the safety of his family on the line.
In what may be the most personal and accomplished legal thriller of John Grisham’s storied career, we deepen our acquaintance with the iconic Southern town of Clanton and the vivid cast of characters that so many readers know and cherish. The result is a richly rewarding novel that is both timely and timeless, full of wit, drama, and—most of all—heart.
Bursting with all the courthouse scheming, small-town intrigue, and stunning plot twists that have become the hallmarks of the master of the legal thriller, A Time for Mercy is John Grisham’s most powerful courtroom drama yet.
There is a time to kill and a time for justice. Now comes A Time for Mercy.
Kim Gordon: No Icon by Kim Gordon
An edgy and evocative visual self-portrait by musician and artist Kim Gordon, indie-underground cultural icon and muse of style for four decades.
As cofounder of legendary rock band Sonic Youth, best-selling author, and celebrated artist, Kim Gordon is one of the most singular and influential figures of the modern era.
This personally curated scrapbook includes a foreword by Carrie Brownstein and is an edgy and evocative portrait of Gordon’s life, art, and style. Spanning from her childhood on Californian surf beaches in the ’60s and ’70s to New York’s downtown art and music scene in the ’80s and ’90s where Sonic Youth was born. Through unpublished personal photographs, magazine and newspaper clippings, fashion editorials, and advertising campaigns, interspersed with Gordon’s song lyrics, writings, artworks, private objects, and ephemera, this book demonstrates how Kim Gordon has been a role model for generations of women and men.
Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse
From the New York Times bestselling author of Star Wars: Resistance Reborn comes the first book in the Between Earth and Sky trilogy, inspired by the civilizations of the Pre-Columbian Americas and woven into a tale of celestial prophecies, political intrigue, and forbidden magic.
A god will return
When the earth and sky converge
Under the black sun
In the holy city of Tova, the winter solstice is usually a time for celebration and renewal, but this year it coincides with a solar eclipse, a rare celestial event proscribed by the Sun Priest as an unbalancing of the world.
Meanwhile, a ship launches from a distant city bound for Tova and set to arrive on the solstice. The captain of the ship, Xiala, is a disgraced Teek whose song can calm the waters around her as easily as it can warp a man’s mind. Her ship carries one passenger. Described as harmless, the passenger, Serapio, is a young man, blind, scarred, and cloaked in destiny. As Xiala well knows, when a man is described as harmless, he usually ends up being a villain.
Crafted with unforgettable characters, Rebecca Roanhorse has created an epic adventure exploring the decadence of power amidst the weight of history and the struggle of individuals swimming against the confines of society and their broken pasts in the most original series debut of the decade.
The Adventures of China Iron by Gabriela Cabezón Cámara
*Finalist for the Booker Prize*
1872. The pampas of Argentina. China is a young woman eking out an existence in a remote gaucho encampment. After her no-good husband is conscripted into the army, China bolts for freedom, setting off on a wagon journey through the pampas in the company of her new-found friend Liz, a settler from Scotland. While Liz provides China with a sentimental education and schools her in the nefarious ways of the British Empire, their eyes are opened to the wonders of Argentina’s richly diverse flora and fauna, cultures and languages, as well as to the ruthless violence involved in nation-building.
This subversive retelling of Argentina’s foundational gaucho epic Mart n Fierro is a celebration of the colour and movement of the living world, the open road, love and sex, and the dream of lasting freedom. With humour and sophistication, Gabriela Cabez n C mara has created a joyful, hallucinatory novel that is also an incisive critique of national myths.
Ring Shout by P. Dèjí Clark
Nebula, Locus, and Alex Award-winner P. Djèlí Clark returns with Ring Shout, a dark fantasy historical novella that gives a supernatural twist to the Ku Klux Klan’s reign of terror
IN AMERICA, DEMONS WEAR WHITE HOODS.
In 1915, The Birth of a Nation cast a spell across America, swelling the Klan’s ranks and drinking deep from the darkest thoughts of white folk. All across the nation they ride, spreading fear and violence among the vulnerable. They plan to bring Hell to Earth. But even Ku Kluxes can die.
Standing in their way is Maryse Boudreaux and her fellow resistance fighters, a foul-mouthed sharpshooter and a Harlem Hellfighter. Armed with blade, bullet, and bomb, they hunt their hunters and send the Klan’s demons straight to Hell. But something awful’s brewing in Macon, and the war on Hell is about to heat up.
Can Maryse stop the Klan before it ends the world?
After the Rain: Gentle Reminders for Healing, Courage, and Self-Love by Alexandra Elle
In After the Rain, celebrated self-care storyteller Alexandra Elle delivers 15 lessons on how to overcome obstacles, build confidence, and cultivate abundance.
Part memoir and part guide, Elle shares stirring stories from her own remarkable journey from self-doubt to self-love.
This soulful collection is filled with illuminating reflections on loss, fear, bravery, healing, love, acceptance, and more.
• Readers follow along her journey as she transforms challenging experiences—a difficult childhood, painful romantic relationships, and single parenting as a young mom—into fuel for her career as a successful entrepreneur and author driven by purpose and pasion
• Filled with Elle’s signature candor and warmth
• Includes empowering affirmations and meditations for readers to practice in their own lives
After the Rain is a soulful guide to help you embrace all the beauty, love, and opportunity life has to offer.
• Presented in luminous package with a foil case and gold accents
• A beautiful gift for anyone on the path to self-discovery, and an uplifting reminder that there is always sunshine after the rain
• Perfect for the friend who loves meditating, self-care, journaling, or seeking personal transformation and empowerment
• Great for those who loved Present Over Perfect by Shauna Niequist, 100 Days to Brave by Annie F. Downs, and anything written by Brené Brown, Rupi Kaur, Rachel Hollis, and Elizabeth Gilbert
Tune in tomorrow at 5PM CDT for a special virtual event with Alexandra Elle, presented in partnership with Cadenza. Head here to learn more!
Tiny Nightmares ed. Lincoln Michel and Nadxieli Nieto
A collection of horror-inspired flash fiction, featuring over 40 new stories from literary, horror, and emerging writers–edited by Lincoln Michel and Nadxieli Nieto, the twisted minds behind Tiny Crimes: Very Short Tales of Mystery and Murder.
In this playful, inventive collection, leading literary and horror writers spin chilling tales in only a few pages. Each slim, fast-moving story brings to life the kind of monsters readers love to fear, from brokenhearted vampires to Uber-taking serial killers and mind-reading witches. But what also makes Tiny Nightmares so bloodcurdling–and unforgettable–are the real-world horrors that writers such as Samantha Hunt, Brian Evenson, Jac Jemc, Stephen Graham Jones, Lilliam Rivera, Kevin Brockmeier, and Rion Amilcar Scott weave into their fictions, exploring how global warming, racism, social media addiction, and homelessness are just as frightening as, say, a vampire’s fangs sinking into your neck. Our advice? Read with the hall light on and the bedroom door open just a crack.
Featuring new stories from Samantha Hunt, Jac Jemc, Stephen Graham Jones, Rion Amilcar Scott, and more.
Alexandra and the Awful, Awkward, No Fun, Truly Bad Dates by Rebekah Manley
*Signed Books available*
Follow Alexandra and her adorable French bulldog pup Lottie as Alex goes on 30 dates in 30 days in this charming parody/comedic dating horror story all about dating apps, being stood up, and the other joys of millennial dating culture.
Set in the thick of our swipe right society, newly thirty-year-old Alexandra decides she’s got nothing to lose and sets off on a 30-dates-in-30-days adventure.
With her trusty French bulldog pup Lottie, Alex experiences the worst of millennial dating culture. From know-it-alls and bores to Mama’s boys and no-shows and everything else in between, you’ll be laughing along with Alex as she searches for love but ultimately discovers something a lot more meaningful.
Alexandra and the Awful, Awkward, No Fun, Truly Bad Dates is the perfect gift for anyone who has swiped right, blind dated, or simply been a little bit lost in love at one point in their life.
She Come By It Natural by Sarah Smarsh
The National Book Award finalist and New York Times bestselling author of Heartland focuses her laser-sharp insights on a working-class icon and one of the most unifying figures in American culture: Dolly Parton.
Growing up amid Kansas wheat fields and airplane factories, Sarah Smarsh witnessed firsthand the particular vulnerabilities—and strengths—of women in working poverty. Meanwhile, country songs by female artists played in the background, telling powerful stories about life, men, hard times, and surviving. In her family, she writes, “country music was foremost a language among women. It’s how we talked to each other in a place where feelings aren’t discussed.” And no one provided that language better than Dolly Parton.
Smarsh challenged a typically male vision of the rural working class with her first book, Heartland, starring the bold, hard-luck women who raised her. Now, in She Come By It Natural, originally published in a four-part series for The Journal of Roots Music, No Depression, Smarsh explores the overlooked contributions to social progress by such women—including those averse to the term “feminism”—as exemplified by Dolly Parton’s life and art.
Far beyond the recently resurrected “Jolene” or quintessential “9 to 5,” Parton’s songs for decades have validated women who go unheard: the poor woman, the pregnant teenager, the struggling mother disparaged as “trailer trash.” Parton’s broader career—from singing on the front porch of her family’s cabin in the Great Smoky Mountains to achieving stardom in Nashville and Hollywood, from “girl singer” managed by powerful men to leader of a self-made business and philanthropy empire—offers a springboard to examining the intersections of gender, class, and culture.
Infused with Smarsh’s trademark insight, intelligence, and humanity, She Come By It Natural is a sympathetic tribute to the icon Dolly Parton and—call it whatever you like—the organic feminism she embodies.
Mad at the World: A Life of John Steinbeck by William Souder
A resonant biography of America’s most celebrated novelist of the Great Depression.
The first full-length biography of the Nobel laureate to appear in a quarter century, Mad at the World illuminates what has made the work of John Steinbeck an enduring part of the literary canon: his capacity for empathy. Pulitzer Prize finalist William Souder explores Steinbeck’s long apprenticeship as a writer struggling through the depths of the Great Depression, and his rise to greatness with masterpieces such as The Red Pony, Of Mice and Men, and The Grapes of Wrath. Angered by the plight of the Dust Bowl migrants who were starving even as they toiled to harvest California’s limitless bounty, fascinated by the guileless decency of the downtrodden denizens of Cannery Row, and appalled by the country’s refusal to recognize the humanity common to all of its citizens, Steinbeck took a stand against social injustice—paradoxically given his inherent misanthropy—setting him apart from the writers of the so-called “lost generation.”
A man by turns quick-tempered, compassionate, and ultimately brilliant, Steinbeck could be a difficult person to like. Obsessed with privacy, he was mistrustful of people. Next to writing, his favorite things were drinking and womanizing and getting married, which he did three times. And while he claimed indifference about success, his mid-career books and movie deals made him a lot of money—which passed through his hands as quickly as it came in. And yet Steinbeck also took aim at the corrosiveness of power, the perils of income inequality, and the urgency of ecological collapse, all of which drive public debate to this day.
Steinbeck remains our great social realist novelist, the writer who gave the dispossessed and the disenfranchised a voice in American life and letters. Eloquent, nuanced, and deeply researched, Mad at the World captures the full measure of the man and his work.
In Bibi’s Kitchen by Hawa Hassan, Julia Turshen
Grandmothers from eight eastern African countries welcome you into their kitchens to share flavorful recipes and stories of family, love, and tradition in this transporting cookbook-meets-travelogue.
In this incredible volume, Somali chef Hawa Hassan and renowned food writer Julia Turshen present 75 recipes and stories gathered from bibis (or grandmothers) from eight African nations: South Africa, Mozambique, Madagascar, Comoros, Tanzania, Kenya, Somalia, and Eritrea. Most notably, these eight countries are at the backbone of the spice trade, many of them exporters of things like pepper and vanilla. We meet women such as Ma Shara, who helps tourists “see the real Zanzibar” by teaching them how to make her famous Ajemi Bread with Carrots and Green Pepper; Ma Vicky, who now lives in suburban New York and makes Matoke (Stewed Plantains with Beans and Beef) to bring the flavor of Tanzania to her American home; and Ma Gehennet from Eritrea who shares her recipes for Kicha (Eritrean Flatbread) and Shiro (Ground Chickpea Stew).
Through Hawa’s writing—and her own personal story—the women, and the stories behind the recipes, come to life. With evocative photography shot on location by Khadija Farah, and food photography by Jennifer May, In Bibi’s Kitchen uses food to teach us all about families, war, loss, migration, refuge, and sanctuary.
Now in Paperback
Shuggie Bain by Douglas Stuart *Finalist for the National Book Award in Fiction*
Royal Holiday by Jasmine Guillory
Lakota America by Pekka Hamalainen
These titles and more are available for purchase in-store or online from BookPeople today.