New Book Releases: January 14, 2020

Each Monday, I’ll catalog the biggest and most exciting adult and YA fiction — and the occasional nonfiction — coming out that week.

OLIGARCHY, Scarlett Thomas. At an elite all-girls boarding school where special privileges are awarded to the thinnest students and where rumors abound about a princess who died by suicide and haunts the halls, the daughter of a Russian oligarch must find her disappeared best friend and figure out what is happening at the school. I can’t wait to get my hands on this one! , , .

A BEGINNING AT THE END, Mike Chen. Six years ago, a global pandemic wiped out most of the world’s population. In San Francisco, four characters are brought together by unusual circumstances, and must stand together when another outbreak threatens everything they’ve managed to build. , , .

BEYOND THE SHADOWED EARTH, Joanna Ruth Meyer. Tormented by guilt of her ascent to power, an ambitious empress embarks on a journey to confront the god who installed her. , .

ME AND MR. CIGAR, Gibby Haynes. From the Butthole Surfers frontman, a YA novel about a teen with a troubled family and his loyal companion, a supernatural dog named Mr. Cigar. , .

CLEANNESS, Garth Greenwell. In Sofia, Bulgaria, an American teacher grapples with the intimate interactions that define his experience there. From the author of the acclaimed What Belongs To You. , , .

FOLLOWERS, Megan Angelo. Two aimless, unsatisfied women launch themselves into influencer stardom, at great expense to those around them. 35 years later, in a California village where government-endorsed celebrities live 24–7 before a camera, one such celeb discovers that her entire family history is a lie — and becomes determined to know the truth. , .

HITTING A STRAIGHT LICK WITH A CROOKED STICK: STORIES FROM THE HARLEM RENAISSANCE, Zora Neale Hurston. Eight short stories from one of the most essential authors of the early 20th century. , .

KINGDOMTIDE, Rye Curtis. A 72-year-old sole survivor of a plane crash wanders the wilderness struggling to survive, while a recently-divorced park ranger battling addiction tries for weeks to find her. This one sounds incredible — it’s at the top of my TBR. , , .

NIGHT THEATER, Vikram Paralkar. In the middle of the night, a surgeon’s dead family appears, informing him that if he can fix their wounds by sun-up, they’ll get a second chance at life. , , .

SALTWATER, Jessica Andrews. A young working class woman decamps to her late grandfather’s home, where she dives into her own memories and her mother’s to understand who she is. , .

THE END OF THE OCEAN, Maja Lunde, Diane Oatley (Translator). In 2041, a father and his young daughter flee drought-stricken Southern Europe and discover a sailboat far from any water and with its own rich, mysterious history. , .

TRACK CHANGES, Sayed Kashua. A Palestinian immigrant to America and memoirist returns to Jerusalem to say goodbye to his dying father. There, he ruminates on the hardships of his life, many of which have mysterious connections to a short story he wrote years ago. , , .

ZED, Joanna Kavenna. In a world in which every event is predicted by an omniscient algorithm, a man is surprisingly murdered by a robot, while a powerful CEO insists it couldn’t be — that it must have been human error. , , .

WE WISH YOU LUCK, Caroline Zancan. A revenge story about three glamorous, brilliant grad students and the visiting professor who is their target. , , .

I’m a columnist for OneZero, where I write about the intersection of health & tech. Also seen at Elemental, The Atlantic, VICE, and Vox. Brooklyn, NY.