Most of us are
skilled in the art of binge-watching TV. But why not give binge-reading a try this summer, when the sun is out and the weather's still warm and the park is begging for you to splay out for a while with a book? The about what "binge reading" really entails — essentially, instead of picking up books and putting them down in small bursts before bed, you'd read books in large chunks. Or, if you're feeling ambitious, in a single sitting. New York Times recently published an op-ed Our challenge to you this summer? Binge-read a book or two — and start with the new releases of July 2019. Like all her books, Jasmine Guillory's new rom-com, The Wedding Date, is an uplifting read about two people finding each other. The twisted mysteries found in Rory Power's YA debut, Wilder Girls, will have you rapidly turning the page — even if what's on the page turns your stomach. If you're going to binge-read Lisa Taddeo's Three Women, make sure you do so with a pen in hand. Each sentence glows with an insight you won't want to forget.
That's just the start. Here are the books to check out this month.
, Marcy Demarsky (2nd July) Very Nice
is a lot like overhearing juicy gossip for a couple hundred pages. Five narrators unspool the bizarre soap opera that is their interconnected lives. The novel begins when Rachel Klein, a college student from Connecticut, sleeps with her writing professor before he goes home to Pakistan, then agrees to babysit his poodle.
is a smart, stylish read about a bunch of exaggerated and not-so-self-aware characters. The book’s sheer wackiness differentiates from the other light romps of summer.
The women of Truviv, Inc. know that Ames Garrett is not to be trusted. Sloane, Ardie, Grace, who work in the legal department, and Rosalita, who is a cleaner, have all had brushes with his bravado — and worse. When Ames is tapped as the next CEO, will they turn the whispers about Ames up to a roar? This feminist thriller is a thought-provoking addition to #MeToo's conversation about workplace misconduct, power, and gender roles. It's also a delectable read.
You know those brief seconds between sleep and waking? The linked short stories in
Tell Me Who We Were
are carved straight out of that liminal state, where all things are possible, where figurative language becomes literal. In the stories, which span 60 years, McQuade parses the surprising repercussions a teacher’s mysterious death has on six of his students at an all-girls school.
, Lara Williams (4th July) Supper Club
Roberta is hungry for more — more opportunities than her painfully shy nature has afforded her, more
than is found in her isolating college dorm. At the depth of her college misery, Roberta begins cooking, and finds that she can nourish herself and others, too. So begins the idea of a supper club: A monthly gathering where women eat past the point of being full, and even past
will speak to parts of you that you didn’t know were yearning. A thought-provoking read that will make you hungry for Roberta’s cooking and more of Williams’ insights on women at crossroads (her book of
short stories came out in 2017
Self-professed introvert Nina Hill is doing her late 20s her way: Rapidly ascending the ranks at bar trivia and working at a book-shop. Her comfortable, safe life is upended when she learns the biological father she never knew existed has died and left her with
of half-siblings. It's a shame
The Bookish Life of Nina Hill
only lasts 350 pages, because I wanted to be friends with Nina for far longer.
unattended. There’s something feral and ferocious about this book, set on an isolated Maine island where a disease broke out. The Tox is drastically altering the girls of the Raxter School for Girls — the ones who survived, that is. Skipping over the conventional changes of adolescence, the girls instead grow scales, fins, extra limbs, the disease manifesting differently. Can Hetty and her two friends make it out of a world?
The Last Book Party
is a quintessential summer read — especially for a book lover. It’s June 1987, and Eve Rosen is in the perfect place for an aspiring writer: Enmeshed among the literary elite in Cape Cod.
, Lisa Taddeo (9th July) Three Women
The hype for
is real. In fact, it’s insufficient. Journalist Lisa Taddeo spent eight years with the three women subjects of this book, chronicling their sexual evolutions and stories. She writes of their lives with intimacy, treating real women with the depth that fictional characters often receive — a reminder that each of our lives are story-worthy.
Five years ago, the militant Islamic group Boko Haram captured 276 school girls from their dorm rooms in the town of Chibok, Nigeria. Many have not been heard from since, but in 2016, 21 girls returned. CNN reporter Isha Sesay has been covering the Chibok girls since 2014, and wrote a deeply empathetic account of four women's experiences in
Beneath the Tamarind Tree
, Courtney Maum (16th July) Costalegre
Lara has an unusual upbringing. In 1937, her eccentric mother established a colony in the jungles of Mexico for a group of artists and writers at risk under Hitler’s regime. All teenage Lara knows is Costalegre, where intellectuals clash, argue, and fester after history uprooted their lives.
A bit of wisdom: When Jasmine Guillory comes out with a book, buy it. With each new book, Guillory’s world of interconnected rom-coms becomes shaded in with more detail. The only things Theo and Maddie have in common is that they’re Alexa’s (of
The Wedding Date
) best friends — and that they hate each other. Too bad preparing for Alexa’s impending wedding keeps throwing the two of them together over and over, until they can’t deny there might be something other than hate between them.
In this novel set in post-Apartheid South Africa, the lives of a homeless pregnant teenager, a former nun, and a wealthy woman intersect in surprising ways. Bianca Marais renders her home country – and the issues that plagued it during this era — with the nuance of an insider.
, Rachel DeLoache Williams (23rd July) My Friend Anna My Friend Anna
is the dishy story you've been craving ever since Anna Delvey first made headlines for conning some of New York's most young and glamorous. Rachel DeLoache Williams thought she'd found a friend and fellow adventurer in Delvey. So the memoir starts off as a romp — and then, when Delvey's true nature emerges, turns into a harrowing account of what it's like to be conned.
History and mythology mingle in this standalone fantasy, set in 1920s Mexico. Casiopea Tun starts off like a regular Cinderella — stuck cleaning her miserly grandfather’s house and dreaming of another life. When she unleashes the spirit of a Mayan god who needs shepherding to Mexico City (casual!), she gets her ticket out of the doldrums, and into a world people said was impossible.
Inspired by a real-life unsolved drowning in 1960s Baltimore, Laura Lippman weaves a gripping story of a housewife mobilised to solve a crime that everyone else seems to have forgotten. 37-year-old Maddie Schwartz leaves her house and becomes a journalist just to find out what happened to Cleo Sherwood, a Black cocktail waitress who vanished.
Lady in the Lake
makes a thriller from the real American knots of class, race, and gender.
You can hardly blame Autumn Spencer for losing her grip on reality. In the span of a year, Autumn’s mother died, and her twin sister, Summer, disappeared. As Autumn desperately roams Harlem searching for her twin, she’s in danger of getting irrevocably lost herself.