Highly anticipated returns, family drama, and literary invention feature in this fall’s notable fiction.
The Bee Sting
Paul Murray. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, Aug. 15 ($30, ISBN 978-0-374-60030-3)
Irish novelist Murray, who recently toured Meta’s virtual reality platform for New York magazine, conveys the bleakness of a territory closer to home—his country’s Midland Region—in this family drama.
Come and Get It
Kiley Reid. Putnam, Jan. 9 ($28, ISBN 978-0-593-32820-0)
Campus hijinks ensue with the story of a University of Arkansas resident assistant who takes on extra work in hopes of buying a house after graduation and deals with pranks from dorm residents.
Devil Makes Three
Ben Fountain. Flatiron, Sept. 26 ($30.99, ISBN 978-1-250-77651-8)
Fountain’s second novel comes 11 years after the NBCC-winning Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk. The setting is Haiti, where an American expat adjusts to the new normal after the 1991 coup.
Bryan Washington. Riverhead, Oct. 10 ($28, ISBN 978-0-593-42109-3)
Washington continues writing about food, which he did so well in Memorial, with a story of a bakery in Houston and two friends whose bond helps one of them get through the death of his lover.
Angie Kim. Hogarth, Sept. 5 ($28, ISBN 978-0-593-44820-5)
A young Korean American woman frantically tries to determine what happened to her father after her younger brother returns from a park near their Virginia home without him, covered in blood and unable to speak.
Benjamin Labatut. Penguin Press, Oct. 3 ($28, ISBN 978-0-593-65447-7)
Chilean writer Labatut, author of the International Booker–shortlisted When We Cease to Understand the World, unspools a story involving Hungarian polymath John von Neumann and the roots of AI.
Olga Ravn, trans. by Jennifer Russell. New Directions, Sept. 4 ($18.95, ISBN 978-0-8112-3471-9)
Danish writer Ravn returns after the speculative workplace novel The Employees with a hefty mixed-genre meditation on birth, motherhood, and writing.
Ann Patchett. Harper, Aug. 1 ($30, ISBN 978-0-06-332752-8)
Set in Northern Michigan in the spring of 2020, Patchett’s latest centers on a woman and her three adult daughters as they pepper her with questions about her past during a visit home.
Ayana Mathis. Knopf, Oct. 24 ($29, ISBN 978-0-525-51993-5)
In another long-awaited return, Mathis follows up 2012’s The Twelve Tribes of Hattie with the story of a family’s resilience after moving from Alabama to Philadelphia in the 1980s.
The Wren, the Wren
Anne Enright. Norton, Sept. 19 ($27, ISBN 978-1-324-00568-1)
A young writer, the descendant of a famous Irish poet, has a much different relationship with her maternal grandfather’s poems than her mother does, setting the stage for a story about great art by a perhaps not-so-great man.
Literary Fiction longlist
The New Naturals by Gabriel Bump (Nov. 14, $27, ISBN 978-1-61620-880-6). Bump’s sophomore novel is a tragicomedy of an underground Black utopia in western Massachusetts, where a young woman from Boston settles, hoping for a sense of community and a better life.
Do You Remember Being Born? by Sean Michaels (Sept. 5, $27, ISBN 978-1-66260-232-0). An acclaimed 70-something poet of modest means takes up an unexpected new career with a tech company, where she collaborates with an AI program to write poetry.
One Woman Show by Christine Coulson (Oct. 17, $25, ISBN 978-1-66802-778-3) follows up Coulson’s collection, Metropolitan Stories, with another book inspired by her work at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, this time a novel with a character portrait in the form of gallery wall text.
The Bookbinder by Pip Williams (Aug. 1, $28, ISBN 978-0-593-60044-3). After The Dictionary of Lost Words, Williams chronicles two sisters working as bookbinders in 1914 Oxford whose horizons are expanded as WWI draws the men away from home.
All You Have to Do Is Call by Kerri Maher (Sept. 19, $28, ISBN 978-0-593-10221-3) draws on the true story of the Jane Collective, which helped women gain access to abortions before the Roe v. Wade decision.
The House of Doors by Tan Twan Eng (Oct. 17, $28.99, ISBN 978-1-63973-193-0). Malaysian writer Tan is back 11 years after the Booker Prize–shortlisted The Garden of Evening Mists with the tale of a married couple visited in 1921 Penang by author Somerset Maugham, who picks up on his friends’ unhappiness.
The Book of Ayn by Lexi Freiman (Nov. 14, $27, ISBN 978-1-64622-192-9). In this satire, Ayn Rand becomes a source of inspiration for a disillusioned debut writer after her novel is dismissed by critics.
Nefando by Mónica Ojeda, trans. by Sarah Booker (Oct. 24, $17.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-56689-689-4) combines a morality tale with a deep dive into the gamer world, as a group of Barcelona artists gets sucked into a horror game called Nefando that blurs their sense of reality.
The Premonition by Banana Yoshimoto, trans. by Asa Yoneda (Oct. 3, $24, ISBN 978-1-64009-371-3). Japanese writer Yoshimoto’s 1988 novel, translated for the first time, involves a young woman struck by an unsettling feeling about her childhood.
Crooked Media Reads
Mobility by Lydia Kiesling (Aug. 1, $28, ISBN 978-1-63893-056-3). The daughter of an American diplomat has written a novel about privilege and the Caspian Sea oil boom, centered on a teenage girl growing up with her foreign service family in 1998 Azerbaijan.
Normal Rules Don’t Apply: Stories by Kate Atkinson (Sept. 12, $28, ISBN 978-0-385-54950-9) is a thematically linked collection featuring protagonists as diverse as a queen, a secretary, and a gambler.
Brooklyn Crime Novel by Jonathan Lethem (Oct. 3, $30, ISBN 978-0-06-293882-4) returns to the terrain of Lethem’s most celebrated work and covers five decades of a Brooklyn neighborhood’s economic upheaval and racial tensions.
Family Lore by Elizabeth Acevedo (Aug. 1, $30, ISBN 978-0-06-320726-4). The YA author’s adult debut follows a clairvoyant woman and her Dominican American family in Santo Domingo and New York.
A Volga Tale by Guzel Yakhina, trans. by Polly Gannon (Sept. 19, $28, ISBN 978-1-60945-934-5). Russian writer Yakhina draws on the history of a 17th-century German settlement in Russia with a love story involving the composer Jakob Bach, who spins a series of fairy tales for his daughter.
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Absolution by Alice McDermott (Nov. 7, $28, ISBN 978-0-374-61048-7). The National Book Award winner chronicles two women who meet in Vietnam during that war, where one of their husbands is a Navy lawyer and the other a corporate bigwig. In the present day, they reexamine their commitment to their husbands’ work.
Blackouts by Justin Torres (Oct. 10, $27, ISBN 978-0-374-29357-4). The author of We the Animals draws on an early-20th-century book called Sex Variants: A Study in Homosexual Patterns in this tale of a young man caring for an older man at the end of his life.
The Singularity by Balsam Karam, trans. by Saskia Vogel (Jan. 24, $16.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-55861-193-1). A woman takes care of a family of refugee children after their mother dies by suicide in Swedish writer Karam’s latest.
I’m a Fan by Sheena Patel (Sept. 5, $17 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-64445-245-5) is told from the perspective of an unnamed young woman as she strikes up an unbalanced relationship with a powerful married man.
So Late in the Day: Stories of Women and Men by Claire Keegan (Nov. 14, $20, ISBN 978-0-8021-6085-0). The title story of this triptych on regret and secrets has already appeared in the New Yorker, which previously ran Keegan’s novella Foster.
Hot Springs Drive by Lindsay Hunter (Nov. 7, $27, ISBN 978-0-8021-6145-1) delves into themes of body issues and hunger in a tale of friendship and jealousy based on a real murder.
People Collide by Isle McElroy (Sept. 26, $28.99, ISBN 978-0-06-328375-6) follows up their hit debut, The Atmospherians, with a fantastical novel about a man who wakes up in his wife’s body.
Great Expectations by Vinson Cunningham (Jan. 23, $27, ISBN 978-0-593-44823-6). Theater critic Cunningham makes his fiction debut with a bildungsroman about a Black man working on an Obama-like senator’s presidential campaign.
When the Jessamine Grows by Donna Everhart (Jan. 23, $16.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-4967-4070-0). A North Carolina woman tries to keep her family out of the Civil War.
Roman Stories by Jhumpa Lahiri, trans. by the author and Todd Portnowitz (Oct. 10, $27, ISBN 978-0-593-53632-2). Originally written in Italian, Pulitzer winner Lahiri’s stories convey a series of perspectives on Italy’s capital from locals and tourists alike.
Wellness by Nathan Hill (Sept. 26, $30, ISBN 978-0-593-53611-7) centers on a married couple dealing with the 21st century’s rapid cultural changes 20 years after meeting in college in the 1990s.
The Apology by Jimin Han (Aug. 1, $28, ISBN 978-0-316-36708-0) is a South Korean ghost story set over several decades of the country’s history. It features a late matriarch tasked in the afterlife with reversing her family’s curse.
The Pole by J.M. Coetzee (Sept. 19, $26, ISBN 978-1-324-09386-2). A journeyman Polish pianist attempts to seduce a wealthy Spanish patron of the arts in the Nobel Prize winner’s latest, which poses questions about the pair’s shifting power dynamic.
America Fantastica by Tim O’Brien (Oct. 24, $32, ISBN 978-0-06-331850-2). The National Book Award winner returns to fiction—after the memoir Dad’s Maybe Book—with a picaresque of a down-and-out journalist who commits a bank robbery and becomes a fugitive.
The Leftover Woman by Jean Kwok (Oct. 10, $30, ISBN 978-0-06-303146-3). A mother travels from China to New York City to search for her daughter, who was taken away from her as a result of China’s one-child policy.
New York Review Books
Loved and Missed by Susie Boyt (Sept. 19, $17.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-68137-781-0). British writer Boyt makes her U.S. debut with a novel about a woman who takes care of her granddaughter while her daughter deals with a drug addiction.
The Golem of Brooklyn by Adam Mansbach (Sept. 26, $18 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-593-72982-3). The author of Go the F**k to Sleep returns to adult fiction with a tale of antifascists who reanimate a golem to help fight white supremacists after a rally in Charlottesville, Va., reminiscent of Unite the Right.
The Men Can’t Be Saved by Ben Purkert (Aug. 1, $26, ISBN 978-1-4197-6713-5) traces the rise, fall, and reinvention of a young copywriter for an ad agency, who, after he gets fired, burrows into the kabbalah and abuses prescription pills.
A House for Alice by Diana Evans (Sept. 12, $28, ISBN 978-0-593-70108-9) draws on the 2017 Grenfell Tower fire in London for an account of a British Nigerian family affected by the disaster.
The Fraud by Zadie Smith (Sept. 5, $29, ISBN 978-0-525-55896-5) gathers a disparate set of characters in 1873 London for the trial of an Australian man accused of fraud.
The Wolves of Eternity by Karl Ove Knausgård (Sept. 19, $35, ISBN 978-0-593-49083-9) takes another step away from My Struggle with a dual-timeline narrative involving a Norwegian man in the mid-1980s who wonders about his father’s identity and a woman working as a biologist in present-day Russia.
Same Bed Different Dreams by Ed Park (Nov. 7, $30, ISBN 978-0-8129-9897-9). In this alternative history of Korea from a cofounder of the Believer, an early-20th-century nationalist group lingers in the underground after WWII and works in the present day toward reunification.
Tremor by Teju Cole (Oct. 17, $28, ISBN 978-0-8129-9711-8). Cole returns to autofiction for a story about the legacy and persistence of racism from the perspective of a West African photography professor at a Northeastern college.
The Vaster Wilds by Lauren Groff (Sept. 12, $28, ISBN 978-0-593-41839-0) follows a girl who escapes from servitude in a Jamestownesque colony and manages to survive in the wilderness.
Let Us Descend by Jesmyn Ward (Oct. 3, $28, ISBN 978-1-982104-49-8). The National Book Award winner’s latest references Dante’s Inferno for the story of a woman sold into slavery by her white biological father.
The Ukraine by Artem Chapeye, trans. by Zenia H. Tompkins (Jan. 16, $18.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-64421-295-0), offers an impressionistic view of Ukrainian writer Chapeye’s country in this genre-bending collection.
Simon & Schuster
Alice Sadie Celine by Sarah Blakley-Cartwright (Nov. 28, $26.99, ISBN 978-1-66802-159-0). In the YA author’s adult debut, longtime friends Alice and Sadie are out of college and trying to find themselves. Sadie’s mother, Celine, is a UC Berkeley professor who ends up in an affair with Alice.
Rouge by Mona Awad (Sept. 12, $28, ISBN 978-1-982169-69-5) follows a young woman who gets swept up in the fanatical Southern California beauty spa frequented by her late mother, who harbored secrets about herself and her daughter.
Coleman Hill: A Bio-
mythography by Kim Coleman Foote (Sept. 5, $28, ISBN 978-1-63893-114-0) concerns two Black women who move north during the Great Migration, where they build families together and are unexpectedly torn apart by an event involving their children.
Counting Backward by Binnie Kirshenbaum (Jan. 2, $27, ISBN 978-1-64129-468-3). Kirshenbaum’s last book, Rabbits for Food, dealt with a woman’s mental illness and institutional care. This time around, a woman must reckon with her husband’s dementia and terminal diagnosis of Lewy body dementia.
The President’s Wife by Tracey Enerson Wood (Aug. 15, $27.99, ISBN 978-1-72825-784-6) portrays Edith Bolling, wife of Woodrow Wilson, as she asserts herself after the WWI armistice when Wilson has a health crisis.
The Liberators by E.J. Koh (Nov. 7, $27.95, ISBN 978-1-959030-15-7) views Korean history from the perspective of two families, beginning with Japanese occupation in the early 20th century and marching through the years to the Sewol Ferry disaster in 2014.
A Shining by Jon Fosse, trans. by Damion Searls (Oct. 31, $16.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-945492-77-8). This Norwegian novel features a man who gets lost in a forest and encounters a strange sight.
Two Dollar Radio
Landscapes by Christine Lai (Sept. 12, $18.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-953387-38-7) mixes near-future climate fiction with a woman’s painful past, which resurfaces during an archival project at an English country manor.
Cross-Stitch by Jazmina Barrera, trans. by Christina MacSweeney (Nov. 7, $24, ISBN 978-1-949641-53-0). Three young women from Mexico City, childhood friends, travel to Europe where, after one of them drowns, the other two reflect on their past and their transition to adulthood.