Last year's books have been read (save a very few) and written about and now tidied away. The calendar has flipped to a new year and one book (however slender) has already been enjoyed and shared, so I think it is safe now to turn my attention to forthcoming books that I am looking forward to. Of course I am always ready to turn my attention to new books, but with a clean slate at hand, I feel like I can happily anticipate exploring this handful of books due out in the coming months. In no particular order here are a few books that have caught my eye and are on my wishlist and i can't wait to get my hands on.
In this Grave Hour by Jacqueline Winspear -- I am sure I have mentioned the new Maisie Dobbs mystery that will be published in March, but it is one of my most anticipated new reads, so I will mention it again. Now it i just around the corner! " Sunday September 3rd 1939. At the moment Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain broadcasts to the nation Britain’s declaration of war with Germany, a senior Secret Service agent breaks into Maisie Dobbs' flat to await her return. Dr. Francesca Thomas has an urgent assignment for Maisie: to find the killer of a man who escaped occupied Belgium as a boy, some twenty-three years earlier during the Great War." I am hoping that this mystery will see Maisie more healed after the trials she has gone through in previous books. And I think some old favorite characters will be back in the picture, too.
The Forbidden Garden by Ellen Herrick -- "Perfect for fans of Kate Morton and Sarah Jio, comes a lush imaginative novel that takes readers into the heart of a mysterious English country garden, waiting to spring to life."
Days without End by Sebastian Berry -- "Thomas McNulty, aged barely seventeen and having fled the Great Famine in Ireland, signs up for the U.S. Army in the 1850s. With his brother in arms, John Cole, Thomas goes on to fight in the Indian Wars—against the Sioux and the Yurok—and, ultimately, the Civil War. Orphans of terrible hardships themselves, the men find these days to be vivid and alive, despite the horrors they see and are complicit in."
Running by Cara Hoffman -- "From the critically acclaimed author of Be Safe I Love You comes a dark and breathtaking novel of love, friendship, and survival set in the red light district of Athens in the 1980s that Garth Greenwall calls 'a ferocious, brilliant book'."
The Home That Was Our Country: A Memoir of Syria by Alia Malek -- "The Home That Was Our Country is a deeply researched, personal journey that shines a delicate but piercing light on Syrian history, society, and politics. Teeming with insights, the narrative weaves acute political analysis with a century of intimate family history, ultimately delivering an unforgettable portrait of the Syria that is being erased."
More Alive and Less Lonely: On Books and Writers by Jonathan Lethem -- "A readerly wake-up call from one of America’s finest and most acclaimed working writers. Picking up where his NBCC Award finalist collection The Ecstasy of Influence left off, More Alive and Less Lonely collects more than a decade of Lethem’s finest writing on writing, with new and previously unpublished material, including: impassioned appeals for forgotten writers and overlooked books, razor-sharp essays, and personal accounts of his most extraordinary literary encounters and discoveries."
Dead Letters by Caite Dolan-Leach -- "In this, her startling debut novel, Dolan-Leach nimbly entwines the clever mystery of Agatha Christie, the wit of Dorothy Parker, and the inebriated Gothic of Eugene O’Neill. A sharp, wrenching tale of the true love only twins know."—Kirkus Reviews
Men Without Women: Stories by Haruki Murakami -- "Across seven tales, Haruki Murakami brings his powers of observation to bear on the lives of men who, in their own ways, find themselves alone. Here are vanishing cats and smoky bars, lonely hearts and mysterious women, baseball and the Beatles, woven together to tell stories that speak to us all."
The Alice Network by Kate Quinn -- "In an enthralling new historical novel from national bestselling author Kate Quinn, two women—a female spy recruited to the real-life Alice Network in France during World War I and an unconventional American socialite searching for her cousin in 1947—are brought together in a mesmerizing story of courage and redemption."
4 3 2 1: A Novel by Paul Auster -- "As inventive and dexterously constructed as anything Paul Auster has ever written, yet with a passion for realism and a great tenderness and fierce attachment to history and to life itself that readers have never seen from Auster before. 4 3 2 1 is a marvelous and unforgettably affecting tour de force."
House of Names by Colm Toibin -- "From the thrilling imagination of bestselling, award-winning Colm Tóibín comes a retelling of the story of Clytemnestra—spectacularly audacious, violent, vengeful, lustful, and instantly compelling—and her children."
The Girl in Green by Derek B. Miller -- I keep seeing this one everywhere, so I better check it out! "1991. Near Checkpoint Zulu, one hundred miles from the Kuwaiti border, Thomas Benton meets Arwood Hobbes. Benton is a British journalist who reports from war zones in part to avoid his lackluster marriage and a daughter he loves but cannot connect with; Arwood is a midwestern American private who might be an insufferable ignoramus, or might be a genuine lunatic with a death wish--it's hard to tell. Desert Storm is over, peace has been declared, but as they argue about whether it makes sense to cross the nearest border in search of an ice cream, they become embroiled in a horrific attack in which a young local girl in a green dress is killed as they are trying to protect her. The two men walk away into their respective lives. But something has cracked for them both."
Just like end of year favorites lists abounded, so now the best books of 2017 lists are daily discoveries it seems. I have merely touched the tip of the iceberg. Do you have a particular book (or books!) you are waiting for this year?