Starred Review

Death on the Beach: Essays from a Marginal World

by Per Högselius, trans. by Agnes Broomé

"Beaches are places of mystery and contradiction," writes Per Högselius, a Swedish professor of technology and the history of science, in Death on the Beach: Essays from a Marginal World, translated by Agnes Broomé. In 15 fascinating, expansive essays that encompass wars, religions, crime novels, murders, poets, and much more, he proves his point that "the seashore is a borderland," a place that once "evoked fear and repulsion." His examples are often visually evocative. For instance, before the

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Rebel Girl: My Life as a Feminist Punk

by Kathleen Hanna

Kathleen Hanna has led such a high-octane life that her memoir wouldn't need to be especially well written to hold reader interest. As it happens, Rebel Girl: My Life as a Feminist Punk delivers on both the sentence and the story fronts.

Born in 1968, Hanna grew up "at the lower end of middle class," bouncing between suburbs in Oregon and Maryland. Her father's alcoholism blighted a childhood redeemed by Hanna's youthful epiphany: "I had something to live for. I was a good singer." Despite a minefield of challenges,

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Everything You Know About Sharks Is Wrong!

by Nick Crumpton, illus. by Gavin Scott

Zoologist Nick Crumpton and illustrator Gavin Scott follow their Everything You Know About Dinosaurs Is Wrong!--the first installment in the Everything You Know About series--with a mesmerizing dive into the world of the oft-maligned shark. Crumpton structures the work around common myths about the shark and its close relatives, the ray and the skate. Scott supports the fascinating text with naturalistic art that faithfully re-creates the animals described. The result is a spellbinding picture book for middle-grade

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A Letter to the Luminous Deep

by Sylvie Cathrall

Two bereaved strangers work to unravel the mystery of their siblings' disappearance in Sylvie Cathrall's dreamy, witty epistolary underwater fantasy, A Letter to the Luminous Deep, the first book in a planned duology.

E. Cidnosin is fascinated with the previously undiscovered "Elongated Fish" she spots through the window of the Deep House, her underwater home, so she writes to Henerey Clel, a natural history scholar and complete stranger. Her social anxiety leads her to exhort him not to read her letter but

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Drive: Scraping by in Uber's America, One Ride at a Time

by Jonathan Rigsby

Possessed of a master's degree in Middle Eastern studies and performing at an exemplary level in his job as a counter-terrorism intelligence analyst for the State of Florida, Jonathan Rigsby in 2016 was successful by any reasonable definition of that term. But in the dark year when his marriage broke up and he desperately needed to supplement his income to hold up his end of the divorce settlement, he signed on as an Uber driver in his home town of Tallahassee, Fla. Drive: Scraping by in Uber's America,

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Road Home

by Rex Ogle

In Road Home, the heart-wrenching final book in his memoir trilogy that began with Free Lunch, Rex Ogle details the turbulent summer of 1998 after high school when he came out as gay and was forced out of the house by his father.

"I never thought I would have so little," Ogle writes of his 17-year-old self, "Not when I need so much." The young man, with nowhere else to go, packs a duffle bag and drives from Alabama to New Orleans to stay with an older man whom he met during a vacation. Their short, tumultuous

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On a Summer Night

by Deborah Hopkinson, illus. by Kenard Pak

In the beguiling On a Summer Night, Deborah Hopkinson (Carter Reads the Newspaper) and Kenard Pak (On the Horizon illustrator) eloquently showcase the hushed, magical wonder of a hot summer night.

A child wakes on a night so warm that "even the crickets think it's too hot to sing." The child walks through the house and explores the yard in moonlit shadows. Hopkins sets the story in present tense, with a second-person voice asking: "What has woken you?" As the child explores inside and outside the home, the

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Welcome

Shelf Awareness is a free e-newsletter about books and the book industry. We have two separate versions:

For Readers: Every Friday, discover the 25 best books published that week as selected by our industry insiders. Sign up now.

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Learn more about Shelf Awareness.

Shelf Discovery

The Witches of Bellinas

by J. Nicole Jones

In this atmospheric and suspenseful novel, an exclusive coastal California community is either the best thing to ever happen to an unhappy newlywed, as her husband believes, or a frightening trap.

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S.S. Murder

by Q. Patrick

Originally published in 1933, S.S. Murder is a seafoam-sparkling epistolary shipboard murder mystery with a literal boatload of suspects.

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One of Us Knows

by Alyssa Cole

A woman with dissociative identity disorder is trapped on an island with a group of racists as a storm bears down in this intense thriller.

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Thirsty: A Novel

by Jas Hammonds

A CSK John Steptoe New Talent Award winner delivers a scintillating sophomore title about a young woman desperate to be seen and valued.

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The Heirloom

by Jessie Rosen

Superstition over the karma attached to her heirloom engagement ring leads a Californian bride-to-be on a whirlwind European adventure in this heartfelt debut.

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Five Broken Blades

by Mai Corland

An elite cadre of thieves and killers unite to kill an immortal king in this action-packed, romantic epic fantasy set in a world inspired by Korea.

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Did I Ever Tell You?

by Genevieve Kingston

Genevieve Kingston's first book is a poignant memoir of growing up with a legacy of mementos and loving letters her mother left behind to be opened on significant occasions throughout their lives.

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A Long Walk from Gaza

by Asmaa Alatawna, trans. by Caline Nasrallah, Michelle Hartman

A Long Walk from Gaza searingly chronicles--in reverse--a violent girlhood in occupied Gaza and the arduous journey to reach freedom in France.

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Death's Country

by R.M. Romero

This splendidly rhapsodic novel-in-verse tenderly portrays polyamorous queer love and the expansive emotions behind embracing a complex self as two teens rescue their girlfriend from the underworld.

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The Goldie Standard

by Simi Monheit

Simi Monheit's sparkling, insightful debut novel follows a Jewish grandmother's attempts to secure her granddaughter's happiness, with surprising results.

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All Fours

by Miranda July

In this wry and unconventional take on middle age, a woman abandons the cross-country journey she hopes will illuminate the path of her life only to find some answers closer to home.

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Sourcebooks Landmark: Long After We Are Gone by Terah Shelton Harris

Media Heat

Monday, May 20, 2024

Good Morning America: Kevin Kwan, author of Lies and Weddings (Doubleday, $29, 9780385546294).

Also on GMA: Kristina Kuzmič, author of I Can Fix This: And Other Lies I Told Myself While Parenting My Struggling Child (Penguin Life, $29, 9780593653333).

Fresh Air: Michael McDonald, co-author with Paul Reiser of What a Fool Believes: A Memoir (Dey Street Books, $32, 9780063357563).

Late Show with Stephen Colbert: Paul Scheer, author of Joyful Recollections of Trauma (HarperOne, $29.99, 9780063293717).

Thursday, May 16, 2024

Fresh Air: Carvell Wallace, author of Another Word for Love: A Memoir (MCD, $28, 9780374237820).

Good Morning America: LaDarrion Williams, author of Blood at the Root (Labyrinth Road, $20.99, 9780593711927).

Live with Kelly and Mark: Jessica Biel, author of A Kids Book About Periods (DK Children, $19.99, 9780593847091).

The View: Helen Rebanks, author of The Farmer's Wife: My Life in Days (Harper Horizon, $29.99, 9780785290483).

Wednesday, May 15, 2024

CBS Mornings: Whoopi Goldberg, author of Bits and Pieces: My Mother, My Brother, and Me (Blackstone, $28.99, 9798200920235).

The Late Show with Stephen Colbert: George Stephanopoulos, author of The Situation Room: The Inside Story of Presidents in Crisis (Grand Central, $35, 9781538740767).

Tuesday, May 14, 2024

The View: George Stephanopoulos, author of The Situation Room: The Inside Story of Presidents in Crisis (Grand Central, $35, 9781538740767).

Late Night with Seth Meyers: Amor Towles, author of Table for Two: Fictions (Viking, $32, 9780593296370).

Monday, May 13, 2024

Today Show: Poppy Harlow and Laura Jarrett, authors of The Color of Love (Viking Books for Young Readers, $18.99, 9780593527108).

CBS Mornings: Harlan Coben, author of Think Twice (Grand Central, $30, 9781538756317).

Fresh Air: Kathleen Hanna, author of Rebel Girl: My Life as a Feminist Punk (Ecco, $29.99, 9780062825230).

Kelly Clarkson Show: Whoopi Goldberg, author of Bits and Pieces: My Mother, My Brother, and Me (Blackstone, $28.99, 9798200920235).
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