Best New Books: Week of 5/28/2019

Another Memorial Day weekend has come and gone, and with it another Summer season begins here in Avalon. While Summer doesn’t technically start for another few weeks, we have been fortunate enough to have some warm and wonderful weather, perfect for reading a great book on the beach! There are several great new titles arriving at the library this week and we’ve compiled all of them here for you to make picking your next read easy!



FICTION



Ask Again, Yes by  Mary Beth Keane

ask again yesFrancis Gleeson and Brian Stanhope are two NYPD rookies assigned to the same Bronx precinct in 1973. They aren’t close friends on the job, but end up living next door to each other outside the city. What goes on behind closed doors in both houses—the loneliness of Francis’s wife, Lena, and the instability of Brian’s wife, Anne, sets the stage for the stunning events to come.

Ask Again, Yes by award-winning author Mary Beth Keane, is a beautifully moving exploration of the friendship and love that blossoms between Francis’s youngest daughter, Kate, and Brian’s son, Peter, who are born six months apart. In the spring of Kate and Peter’s eighth grade year a violent event divides the neighbors, the Stanhopes are forced to move away, and the children are forbidden to have any further contact.

But Kate and Peter find a way back to each other, and their relationship is tested by the echoes from their past. Ask Again, Yes reveals how the events of childhood look different when reexamined from the distance of adulthood—villains lose their menace, and those who appeared innocent seem less so. Kate and Peter’s love story is marked by tenderness, generosity, and grace.

Description from Goodreads.

“A beautiful novel, bursting at the seams with empathy.” – Elle

“Thoughtful, compassionate… illustrates the mutability of memory and the softening effects of time… poignantly demonstrates how grace can emerge from forgiveness.” – Publishers Weekly

“Keane’s story embraces family lives in all their muted, ordinary, yet seismic shades… offers empathy and the long view… Tender and patient, the novel avoids excessive sweetness while planting itself deep in the soil of commitment and attachment. Graceful and mature. A solidly satisfying, immersive read.” – Kirkus Reviews, STARRED REVIEW

Available Formats:

Print Book | eBook | eAudiobook


How Not to Die Alone by  Richard Roper

how not to die aloneAndrew’s day-to-day is a little grim, searching for next of kin for those who die alone. Thankfully, he has a loving family waiting for him when he gets home, to help wash the day’s cares away. At least, that’s what his coworkers believe.

Andrew didn’t mean for the misunderstanding to happen, yet he’s become trapped in his own white lie. The fantasy of his wife and two kids has become a pleasant escape from his lonely one bedroom with only his Ella Fitzgerald records for company. But when new employee Peggy breezes into his life like a breath of fresh air, Andrew is shaken out of his routine. She doesn’t notice the wall he’s been safely hiding behind and their friendship promises to break it down.

Andrew must choose: Does he tell the truth and start really living his life, but risk losing his friendship with Peggy? Or will he stay safe and alone, behind the façade? How Not to Die Alone is about the importance of taking a chance in those moments when we have the most to lose. Sharp and funny, warm and real, it’s the kind of big-hearted story we all need.

Description from Goodreads.

“Roper’s delightful debut is as funny as it is touching… This story of a neurotic, tenderhearted man struggling to learn how not to be alone is irresistible.” – Publishers Weekly

“Quirky and heartfelt… Andrew’s past traumas are revealed gradually, and the reasons behind his isolation are heartbreaking and poignant. A moving and funny look at grief, hope, and the power of human connections.” – Kirkus Reviews

“A lively blend of humor and earnest emotion… As Andrew slowly comes to grips with being his true self, without pretense, readers will root for him to find liberation and love. A wry, humorous story.” – Shelf Awareness

Available Formats:

Print Book | eBook


Last Day by  Domenica Ruta

last dayIn Domenica Ruta’s profoundly original novel, the end of the world comes once a year. Every May 28, humanity gathers to anticipate the planet’s demise–and to celebrate as if the day is truly its last.

On this holiday, three intersecting sets of characters embark on a possibly last-chance quest for redemption. In Boston, bookish wunderkind Sarah is looking for love and maybe a cosmic reversal from the much older Kurt, a tattoo artist she met at last year’s Last Day BBQ–but he’s still trying to make amends to the family he destroyed long ago. Dysfunctional Karen keeps getting into trouble, especially when the voices she’s been hearing coax her to abandon everything to search for her long-lost adoptive brother; her friend Rosette has left the Jehovah’s Witnesses to follow a new pastor at the Last Kingdom on Earth, where she brings Karen on this fateful day. Meanwhile, above them all, three astronauts on the International Space Station, Bear, an American; Russian Svec; and billionaire Japanese space tourist Yui, contemplate their lives as well as their precious Earth from afar.

With sparkling wit, verbal ingenuity, and wild imagination, Ruta has created an alternate world in which an ancient holiday brings into stark reflection our deepest dreams, desires, hopes, and fears. In this tour-de-force debut novel she has written a dazzling, haunting love letter to humanity and to our planet.

Description from Goodreads.

“A beautiful portrait of humanity in the shadow of a dying Earth… Ruta delicately sketches the large cast of characters—as well as their dreams, fears, and failures—with care. She’s able to pinpoint certain universal feelings with precision.” – Kirkus Reviews

“…inventive… Ruta’s first novel is an entertaining and clever speculative tale.” – Booklist

Available Formats:

Print Book | eBook


The Flatshare by  Beth O’Leary

flatshareTiffy and Leon share a flat
Tiffy and Leon share a bed
Tiffy and Leon have never met…
 

Tiffy Moore needs a cheap flat, and fast. Leon Twomey works nights and needs cash. Their friends think they’re crazy, but it’s the perfect solution: Leon occupies the one-bed flat while Tiffy’s at work in the day, and she has the run of the place the rest of the time. 

But with obsessive ex-boyfriends, demanding clients at work, wrongly imprisoned brothers and, of course, the fact that they still haven’t met yet, they’re about to discover that if you want the perfect home you need to throw the rulebook out the window…

Description from Goodreads.

The Flatshare is the novel equivalent of a cup of hot tea. It’ll warm you up ― and heal you if you’re hurting.” – Refinery29

“This charming debut features lovely characters being nice to one another. It’s easy to root for them to get together and solve the problems in each of their lives. Be prepared to hand-sell this one. It’s a sweet romance that will win over readers once they discover it on the shelves.” – Library Journal, STARRED REVIEW

“This quirky romantic comedy has surprising depth… Colorful storylines, generous-hearted characters, and British banter make this a refreshing novel.” – Christian Science Monitor

Available Formats:

Print Book



MYSTERY



The Sentence is Death by  Anthony Horowitz

sentence is death“You shouldn’t be here. It’s too late…”

These, heard over the phone, were the last recorded words of successful celebrity-divorce lawyer Richard Pryce, found bludgeoned to death in his bachelor pad with a bottle of wine—a 1982 Chateau Lafite worth £3,000, to be precise.

Odd, considering he didn’t drink. Why this bottle? And why those words? And why was a three-digit number painted on the wall by the killer? And, most importantly, which of the man’s many, many enemies did the deed?

Baffled, the police are forced to bring in Private Investigator Daniel Hawthorne and his sidekick, the author Anthony, who’s really getting rather good at this murder investigation business.

But as Hawthorne takes on the case with characteristic relish, it becomes clear that he, too, has secrets to hide. As our reluctant narrator becomes ever more embroiled in the case, he realizes that these secrets must be exposed—even at the risk of death…

Description from Goodreads.

“Horowitz succeeds on all levels with book two in the Detective Daniel Hawthorne series… the overall voice of the series is fresh and original, Horowitz writing with the effortless élan that distinguishes all his work.” – Booklist

“Fans of traditional puzzle mysteries will be enthralled.” – Publishers Weekly, STARRED REVIEW

“Except for Jeffery Deaver and Sophie Hannah, no one currently working the field has anywhere near this much ingenuity to burn.” – Kirkus Reviews

Available Formats:

Print Book | Audiobook | eBook | eAudiobook



ROMANCE



Passion on Park Avenue by  Lauren Layne

passion on park avenueFor as long as she can remember, Bronx-born Naomi Powell has had one goal: to prove her worth among the Upper East Side elite—the same people for which her mom worked as a housekeeper. Now, as the strongminded, sassy CEO of one of the biggest jewelry empires in the country, Naomi finally has exactly what she wants—but it’s going to take more than just the right address to make Manhattan’s upper class stop treating her like an outsider.

The worst offender is her new neighbor, Oliver Cunningham—the grown son of the very family Naomi’s mother used to work for. Oliver used to torment Naomi when they were children, and as a ridiculously attractive adult, he’s tormenting her in entirely different ways. Now they find themselves engaged in a battle-of-wills that will either consume or destroy them…

Filled with charm and heart and plenty of sex and snark, this entertaining series will hook you from the very first page.

Description from Goodreads.

“Strong characters and relatable situations elevate Layne’s bighearted contemporary… This vivid enemies-to-lovers romance digs into class differences, emotional baggage, and the reality of dealing with aging parents.” – Publishers Weekly, STARRED REVIEW

“Featuring wine in coffee mugs, dinner parties with ulterior motives, and Naomi and Oliver being (almost) caught with their pants down, this is perfect for readers who love the dishy women’s fiction of Candace Bushnell.” – Booklist

“Ms. Layne is off to a great start for a new series of smart and fashionable women not looking for their HEAs that I can’t wait to follow.” – Harlequin Junkie

Available Formats:

Print Book | eBook



NONFICTION



Stay Sexy & Don’t Get Murdered: The Definitive How-To Guide by  Karen Kilgariff & Georgia Hardstark

stay sexy and don't get murderedThe highly anticipated first book by Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark, the voices behind the #1 hit podcast My Favorite Murder!

Sharing never-before-heard stories ranging from their struggles with depression, eating disorders, and addiction, Karen and Georgia irreverently recount their biggest mistakes and deepest fears, reflecting on the formative life events that shaped them into two of the most followed voices in the nation.

In Stay Sexy & Don’t Get Murdered, Karen and Georgia focus on the importance of self-advocating and valuing personal safety over being ‘nice’ or ‘helpful.’ They delve into their own pasts, true crime stories, and beyond to discuss meaningful cultural and societal issues with fierce empathy and unapologetic frankness.

Description from Goodreads.

“Kilgariff and Hardstark bring a much needed dimension to our current, true crime fever dream―an empathetic, slangy dose of acidic humor, weary compassion, and nervous hope. Their podcast is a joy to listen to and this book captures its energy and hilarity perfectly.” – Patton Oswalt, New York Times bestselling author of Silver Screen Fiend

“In addition to being laugh-out-loud funny, smart, and incisive, Stay Sexy & Don’t Get Murdered is so interesting and insightful that it made me a) want to be best friends with the authors and b) for real ask them to take me on as a therapy patient. This book is hilarious, honest, insightful, and clever as hell. Do yourself a fun favor by buying it and consuming it. You’ll emerge at the final word as a new-and-improved badass version of your former self.” – Megan Mullally, New York Times bestselling co-author of The Greatest Love Story Ever Told

Available Formats:

Print Book | Audiobook


Anthony Bourdain Remembered by  CNN

anthony bourdain rememberedWhen Anthony Bourdain died in June 2018, the outpouring of grief from his fans around the world was momentous. The tributes spoke to his legacy: That the world is much smaller than we imagine and people are more alike than they are different. As Bourdain had once said, “If I’m an advocate of anything, it’s to move… Walk in someone else’s shoes or at least eat their food.”

Remembering Anthony Bourdain brings together memories and stories from fans reminiscing about Bourdain’s unique achievements and his enduring effect on their lives as well as comments from chefs, journalists, filmmakers, musicians, and writers inspired by Tony including Barack Obama, Daniel Boulud, Jill Filipovic, Ken Burns, Questlove, and José Andrés, among many others.

These remembrances give us a glimpse of Tony’s widespread impact through his political and social commitments; his dedication to travel and eating well (and widely); and his love of the written word, along with his deep compassion, open-mindedness, and interest in lives different from his own.

Remembering Anthony Bourdain captures Tony’s inimitable spirit and passion in the words of his closest friends and colleagues as well as some of his most devoted fans.

Description from Goodreads.

Available Formats:

Print Book

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