Welcome to 2019! It’s hard to believe in twelve short months we’ll be living in futuristic 2020. But before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s enjoy all the wonderful new paperbacks 2019 has to offer. January is starting off strong with some of my personal favorites from authors like Lisa Genova and Maria Semple. We also have some great mystery-thrillers to keep you up at night, a charming family novel, and a humorous memoir from comedian Tiffany Haddish. I hope you’ll pick one up and start checking off your 2019 reading resolutions!
Leah’s husband Robert Eady, the eccentric novelist, has vanished and left behind plane tickets to Paris for his wife and daughters. Eager to uncover clues and find her husband, Leah packs up her daughters and embarks on an adventure to Paris, where she finds Robert’s unfinished manuscript and a small English-language bookstore up for sale. Leah accepts buys the bookstore on the spot and finds herself the new proprietor of the store. As her family settles into their new Parisian life, they trace the literary paths of beloved Parisian classics, but she must brace herself for what she finds. If you’re aching for a Parisian vacation or want to wrap yourself up in a charming, triumphant novel, PARIS BY THE BOOK will satisfy your cravings.
f you're not a fan of story collections (or you've never really given them a try) Nafissa Thompson-Spires’s is the perfect place to start. Longlisted for the National Book Award, this stunning collection examines the concept of black identity in this so-called post-racial era. Her stories are exquisitely rendered, satirical, and captivating in turn, engaging in the ongoing conversations about race and identity politics, as well as the vulnerability of the black body.
Longlisted for the National Book Award for Fiction and Kirkus Prize Finalist
Calling to mind the best works of Paul Beatty and Junot Díaz, this collection of moving, timely, and darkly funny stories examines the concept of black identity in this so-called post-racial era.
A stunning new talent in literary fiction, Nafissa Thompson-Spires grapples with black identity and the contemporary middle class in these compelling, boundary-pushing vignettes.
Each captivating story plunges headfirst into the lives of new, utterly original characters. Some are darkly humorous—from two mothers exchanging snide remarks through notes in their kids’ backpacks, to the young girl contemplating how best to notify her Facebook friends of her impending suicide—while others are devastatingly poignant—a new mother and funeral singer who is driven to madness with grief for the young black boys who have fallen victim to gun violence, or the teen who struggles between her upper middle class upbringing and her desire to fully connect with black culture.
Thompson-Spires fearlessly shines a light on the simmering tensions and precariousness of black citizenship. Her stories are exquisitely rendered, satirical, and captivating in turn, engaging in the ongoing conversations about race and identity politics, as well as the vulnerability of the black body. Boldly resisting categorization and easy answers, Nafissa Thompson-Spires is an original and necessary voice in contemporary fiction.
My Reading Goal This Year Is to Read 45 Books by People of Color. Here Are 6 Amazing Titles on My List.
One of my favorite books in the last few years is finally getting its movie moment! If you haven’t read Maria Semple’s breakout novel, WHERE’D YOU GO BERNADETTE, yet, now is the perfect time to pick it up. Cate Blanchett will be playing the titular character in what’s sure to be a fun, adventurous movie. Bernadette Fox is a fearlessly opinionated partner and mother. She’s the bane of fellow private-school mothers’ existence, and in the design world she’s a revolutionary architect. Most importantly, she’s a best friend and mom to her fifteen-year-old daughter, Bee. When agoraphobic Bernadette disappears, Bee traces emails, sorts through documents and secret correspondence, and starts out to find her mother. This is a whip-smart dramedy about a family in search of its brilliant, notorious matriarch.
Bernadette Fox is a fiercely independent wife and mother, when one day she disappears. It began when her daughter Bee aced her report card and claimed her promised reward: a family trip to Antarctica. But Bernadette's intensifying allergy to Seattle—and people in general—has made her agoraphobic, making a trip to the end of the earth a bit of an issue. To find her mother, Bee compiles email messages, official documents, and secret correspondence.
If you’re looking for a heart-pounding thriller to kick off your new year’s reading list, THE ELIZAS is the perfect place to start. Written by Sara Shepard, author of the Pretty Little Liars series, THE ELIZAS is filled with ingenious twists, half-truths, and buried memories. When Eliza Fontaine is rescued from the bottom of her hotel pool, her family assumes it was another failed suicide attempt, but Eliza is vehement that this was attempted murder. Her first novel is about to be published, and the people around her begin to confuse facts from her real life with the fiction from the pages of her book. As Eliza becomes more and more uncertain of where her protagonist’s story ends and hers begins, the truth fades from view.
Tiffany Haddish is known for her humor. From her stand-up comedy to her breakout role in the movie Girls Trip and the recent TV series The Last O.G., she has quickly become a huge name in comedy. But what I loved about this unflinchingly honest memoir is how much readers get to see of her life offstage. Growing up in one of the poorest neighborhoods of South Central Los Angeles, Tiffany survived by learning how to make people laugh. In this heartfelt memoir, Tiffany is an inspiration to many that you can come from nothing and still make your dreams come true. Her humor is evident on every page and she’s often bawdy and brutally honest.
When Cassandra Bowden wakes up hungover in a hotel room in Dubai, it’s not an unusual start to the day for her. As a flight attendant, she’s used to adventurous nights in far-off places. But when she slides out of bed, she sees the man she spent the night with . . . and the blood pooling around him on the sheets. Afraid to call the police, she begins to lie: to her fellow flight attendants and pilots, on her next flight to Paris, and to the FBI agents who eventually catch up to her. Could she have killed him? And if it wasn’t her, then who was it? Set in the fascinating world of flight attendants at 40,000 feet, this is a spellbinding story carefully woven.