The Summer 2024 Reading Group Guide Preview

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The American Booksellers Association’s Summer 2024 Reading Group Guide will continue as a free e-newsletter delivered to customers by email via Matchbook Marketing. This Summer's guide will be sent on August 8.

This guide includes the following categories: Dazzling Debuts, Family & Coming of Age, Historical Fiction, Other Worlds, and Thrills & Chills. The tiles are also available as an Edelweiss collection. All titles are trade paperback unless otherwise noted.

The titles appearing in the Summer Reading Group e-newsletter are:

Dazzling Debuts

Banyan Moon (Indies Introduce)
By Thao Thai
(Mariner Books, 9780063267145, $18.99, Jun. 4)

Banyan Moon is an emotional novel spanning decades, told through three generations of Vietnamese American women. Family secrets and generational trauma are unraveled in this exquisitely written debut for fans of Pachinko and The Mountains Sing.”
—Christine Bollow, Loyalty Bookstores, Washington, DC

Deer Man: Seven Years of Living in the Wild
By Geoffroy Delorme, Shaun Whiteside (Transl.)
(Greystone Books, 9781778401787, $17.95, May 14)

“I read this book all in one sitting, startled yet delighted. Delorme writes with grace and quiet — roe-deer-like, even in that. Page-long paragraphs and wildlife photographs spread throughout made it easy to experience the season with Geoffroy and his animal friends.”
—Tegan Tigani, Queen Anne Book Company, Seattle, WA

Lucky Red: A Novel (Indies Introduce)
By Claudia Cravens
(Dial Press Trade Paperback, 9780593498262, $18, Jun. 4)

“Saddle up for a Western ride like no other. Lucky Red is a gender bending queer/feminist tale dripping with equal parts romance and revenge.”
—Maris Herrington, McLean & Eakin Booksellers, Petoskey, MI

The Quiet Tenant: A Novel
By Clémence Michallon
(Vintage, 9780593467862, $18, May 7)

“Michallon creates such vivid characters in this book, while keeping the tension so taut I had to remind myself to breathe. The ‘family man with a dirty secret’ is not a new trope, but giving all the power to the victims in the killer’s sphere was fresh. A must-read thriller.”
—Destinee Hodge, East City Bookshop, Washington, DC

Rivermouth: A Chronicle of Language, Faith, and Migration (Indies Introduce)
By Alejandra Oliva
(Astra House, 9781662602672, $18, Jun. 18)

“The United States immigration policy is so antiquated and deliberately discriminatory to the millions of humans that cross its borders everyday. Rivermouth demonstrates the extraordinary gift of language and translation, how it can expand human connection, and why we need to address this crisis now.”
—Thu Doan, East Bay Booksellers, Oakland, CA

Shark Heart: A Love Story (Indies Introduce)
By Emily Habeck
(S&S/Marysue Rucci Books, 9781668006504, $18.99, Jun. 4)

Shark Heart is a beautiful book. The premise — a man turns into a shark — is what made me pick it up, but the touching beauty and enchantment is what kept me reading. The paragraph-length chapters packed with depth lend to reflection.”
—Daniel Jordan, Pearl’s Books, Fayetteville, AR


Family & Coming of Age

Family Lore: A Novel
By Elizabeth Acevedo
(Ecco, 9780063207271, $18.99, May 28)

“There’s nothing more beautiful in literature than to see yourself, your sisters, your mothers and abuelitas, reflected in all of your Latinx glory. Elizabeth Acevedo continues to do our country, the Dominican Republic, proud. The Marte sisters will live on in my heart!”
—Vina Castillo, Kew & Willow Books, Kew Gardens, NY

Happiness Falls: A Novel
By Angie Kim
(Hogarth, 9780593448229, $18, May 7)

“Angie Kim’s writing is sublime. What appears on the offset as a mystery/thriller about a father gone missing slowly becomes an incredible, intricately woven story about a family — one that keeps you reading and hooked from the very first line.”
—Abel Velasquez, Watermark Books & Cafe, Wichita, KS

Little Monsters
By Adrienne Brodeur
(Avid Reader Press/Simon & Schuster, 9781982198114, $18.99, May 7)

Little Monsters is a captivating multi-generational saga set on Cape Cod. As the extended Gardner family is reunited one summer, secrets abound — some that bring the family closer together, others that tear relationships apart.”
—Caroline Buchta, Andover Bookstore, Andover, MA

The Rachel Incident: A Novel
By Caroline O'Donoghue
(Vintage, 9780593469446, $18, May 28)

“Oh what a sheer delight of a book. Such lovely, clever inversions of well-trod tropes in this novel — and the particularly Millennial voice of Rachel? Delicious. I shrieked, I wept, I laughed. This one is going on the re-read stack for sure!”
—Austin Carter, Pocket Books Shop, Lancaster, PA

Red Clay Suzie
By Jeffrey Dale Lofton
(Post Hill Press, 9798888455289, $18.99, Mar. 5)

“I can’t believe how much I cherished reading about hot wheels and recliner chairs. While focusing on a gay, Southern childhood, this book brings to mind all the precious and strange feelings of any childhood. This novel is to be held tight, squeezed dry of tears, and never forgotten.”
—Audrey Stewart, Carmichael’s Bookstore, Louisville, KY

The Tree Doctor: A Novel
By Marie Mutsuki Mockett
(Graywolf Press, 9781644452776, $17, Mar. 19)

“An unnamed literature teacher is cut off from her family in Hong Kong as she cares for her ailing mother in California at the outset of COVID. In her isolation, she revives her mother’s neglected garden. The garden and her own sexual reawakening are poetically portrayed in this sensuous novel.”
—Grace Harper, Mac’s Backs, Cleveland Heights, OH


Historical Fiction

Crook Manifesto: A Novel
By Colson Whitehead
(Vintage, 9780525567288, $18, Jun. 4)

“A worthy follow-up to Harlem Shuffle! Harlem in the '70s: Carney’s gone legit, until his daughter wants Jackson 5 tickets, and Carney has to do a favor. Like that, he’s back in. Pepper is up to his old tricks. Harlem is going up in flames. And everyone is a crook. Everyone.”
—James Wilson, Browseabout Books, Rehoboth Beach, DE

Do Tell: A Novel
By Lindsay Lynch
(Vintage, 9780593469286, $18, Jun. 18)

“I devoured this riveting debut set in the heyday of the studio system in Hollywood. Compassionately drawn characters, a complex plot that remains relevant, and a strong narrative voice make this the perfect read for classic film fans.”
—David Vogel, Literati Bookstore, Ann Arbor, MI

The East Indian: A Novel
By Brinda Charry
(Scribner, 9781668004531, $17, Apr. 9)

“Lyrical and expansive, Charry succeeds in crafting a Dickensian tale of Tony the East Indian, and shows the seemingly beautiful but brutal life of early America, and the racial and social divisions that defined it.”
—Rajan Jayasankar, Snug Books, Baltimore, MD

Like the Appearance of Horses
By Andrew Krivak
(Bellevue Literary Press, 9781954276314, $17.99, May 7)

“Some novels are just plain beautiful. Like the Appearance of Horses is a story about a family that lives through a hundred years of war. A family of soldiers — WWI, WWII, Vietnam, and finally Iraq — one by one, they are claimed for the battlefield, for wounds that never heal.”
—Linda Bond, Auntie's Bookstore, Spokane, WA

The London Séance Society
By Sarah Penner
(Park Row, 9780778334439, $18.99, Apr. 30)

“A dark and moody whodunit with the spiritualism movement of the late 19th century as a backdrop. Penner colors her characters with the darkness of grief and the lightness of hope.”
—Kristin Cook, Aaron’s Books, Lititz, PA

The Postcard
By Anne Berest, Tina Kover (Transl.)
(Europa Editions, 9798889660354, $18.95, May 7)

“This is not your typical WWII novel. The Postcard deserves a place right alongside some of the best (like All the Light We Cannot See). The writing is superb, the story propulsive, and the line between memoir and fiction is seamless. I savored every sentence.”
—Pat Rudebusch, Orinda Books, Orinda, CA


Other Worlds

The Adventures of Amina al-Sirafi
By Shannon Chakraborty
(Harper Voyager, 9780062963512, $19.99, Mar. 26)

“Chakraborty returns to the fantasy scene with the beginning of a new swashbuckling fantasy trilogy. Amina al-Sirafi is a mother, a sailor, a smuggler, and a notorious pirate. When a wealthy widow tracks Amina down and threatens to reveal her location to old enemies if the old pirate doesn't help her, al-Sirafi sets out on what she hopes will be one last adventure.”
—Giovanni Boivin, The Bookloft, Great Barrington, MA

Camp Damascus
By Chuck Tingle
(Tor Nightfire, 9781250874634, $17.99, Jun. 18)

“A religious, queer, sci-fi horror set in Montana, Chuck Tingle’s horror debut took off from page one and didn’t stop. The visuals in this book were terrifying, but lent itself to a bit of dark humor; blended with the main character’s inner turmoil, this made for such a great read.”
—Caleb Finley, Ghostlight Books, Spring Hill, TN

Chain Gang All-Stars: A Novel
By Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah
(Vintage, 9780593469316, $18, Jan. 23)

“Giving voice to incarcerated folks in an inhumane system that claims to rehabilitate, this novel takes an almost satirical approach to the horrors of prisons. Forced to fight each other to the death, these characters build community, find love, and battle for freedom — by any means necessary.”
—Jonathan Pope, Prologue Bookshop, Columbus, OH

Ink Blood Sister Scribe: A Novel
By Emma Törzs
(William Morrow Paperbacks, 9780063253476, $18.99, Jun. 11)

“Törzs’s debut novel is a suspenseful and utterly transformative read, crossing oceans and portals into magical libraries where a centuries-old secret waits to be uncovered by two estranged half-sisters brave enough to seek it.”
—Violet Antonick, Phoenix Books, Essex Junction, VT

By Helen Macdonald, Sin Blaché
(Grove Press, 9780802163400, $20, Jul. 16)

“Astonishingly deceptive, Prophet does several things well, all at once. It’s (a) a creepy episode of The X-Files, (b) a jet-setting investigative story that would make Dan Brown salivate, and, (c) a queer slow-burn romance. I’ve never been so delightfully deceived by what I thought would be a simple sci-fi novel!”
—Danielle King, Left Bank Books, St. Louis, MO

Some Desperate Glory
By Emily Tesh
(Tordotcom, 9781250835000, $18.99, Apr. 2)

“This book shoved its fingers behind my heart and pulled. With heavy subjects like childhood indoctrination into a We Are Right mentality, social expectations vs reality, and fraught familial bonds, Some Desperate Glory is both horrifying and — at times — oddly comforting.”
—Kel Russell, Main Street Books, Lafayette, IN


Thrills & Chills

The Dig: A Novel
By Anne Burt
(Counterpoint, 9781640096479, $17.95, Jun. 11)

“A young Harvard-educated attorney is pulled back into family drama when her brother protests their uncle’s corporate moves. Toni’s struggle to follow her own path — from Sarajevo, Thebes, Minnesota, Boston and back to the Twin Cities — will keep you turning pages!”
—Karen Bakshoian, Letterpress Books, Portland, ME

The Ferryman: A Novel
By Justin Cronin
(Ballantine Books, 9780525619499, $21, May 7)

“Prospera provides its residents with long, fulfilling lives — until their health monitors fall below 10%, when they must take a ‘retirement’ trip off the island on the ferry. Ferryman Proctor Bennett is shaken from his happy somnambulism as a covert resistance movement, secrets, and lies unravel.”
—Josh Niesse, Underground Books, Carrollton, GA

The Housekeepers
By Alex Hay
(Graydon House, 9781525804298, $18.99, June 11)

“Revenge, daring, greed, and deceit make a recipe for quite the historical caper. An audacious robbery during a costume ball leaves no drawer unopened. But is it jewels and artwork Mrs. King seeks — or something more? Loved it!”
—Melissa DeMotte, The Well-Read Moose, Coeur d'Alene, ID

Murder Your Employer: The McMasters Guide to Homicide
By Rupert Holmes
(Avid Reader Press/Simon & Schuster, 9781451648225, $18.99, Apr. 30)

“This book is a world of ridiculousness. Settle in to follow three students through their studies to execute their final thesis: end their target and never be found out. This is full of dry humor and curious happenstances that create a comfortable slow-burn book.”
—Rhiannon Gupta, R.J. Julia Booksellers, Madison, CT

My Murder: A Novel
By Katie Williams
(Riverhead Books, 9780593543771, $18, Jun. 4)

“Brought back to life by the Feds, Louise — the final victim of a notorious serial killer — struggles to acclimatize to her new life. I can’t stop proselytizing about this startling, searching, surprisingly sweet book to anyone who will listen. A Mystery Of The Summer contender.”
—Milo Michels, University Book Store, Seattle, WA

Silver Nitrate
By Silvia Moreno-Garcia
(Del Rey, 9780593355381, $18, May 21)

“Occultism, Nazi ghosts, Mexico’s film industry and its history, and a relationship that makes for an engaging subplot all converge into this original story. If you like unlikely heroes, this novel has that too. Once the plot grabs hold, it blasts off.”
—Karen Valenzuela, Cellar Door Books, Riverside, CA