I know — instead of looking ahead at all the books due to be published in the next few months, I really should just get on with reading the ones I've got now. But I always like to keep an eye on what's going to be coming out next season. These are a few that sound interesting and I want to remember to look for them when they become available. So I made a little list — not that it's likely I'll be reading ALL of them...but you never know.
(The publishing info on all of these is from Publishers Weekly.)
Bad Man, by Dathan Auerbach (Aug. 7, Doubleday, hardcover, $26.95, ISBN 978-0-385-54292-0). A young man is forced to take a job at the store where his kid brother disappeared into thin air, and strange and creepy events soon escalate into terror.
Before We Were Strangers, by Brenda Novak (Dec. 4, Mira, trade paper, $15.99, ISBN 978-0-7783-6994-3). When she was five, Sloane McBride’s mother disappeared. The official story is she left. But adult Sloane fears her domineering father isn’t just a difficult person, but something worse. Another traumatic loss makes Sloane realize she owes it to her mother to discover the truth.
The Clockmaker’s Daughter, by Kate Morton (Oct. 9, Atria, hardcover, $28, ISBN 978-1-4516-4939-0). A group of young artists arrives at Birchwood Manor in rural Oxfordshire in the summer of 1862, planning to use the seclusion for artistic inspiration. By the end of the summer, one of them is dead and another has disappeared. Over a century later, a London archivist discovers a leather satchel with connections to Birchwood Manor.
Daughters of the Lake, by Wendy Webb (Nov. 1, Lake Union, hardcover, $24.95, ISBN 978-1-5039-0082-0). After the end of her marriage, Kate Granger retreats to her parents’ home on Lake Superior—only to discover the body of a murdered woman, whom Kate recognizes from her dreams. As Kate is drawn into a 100-year-old tragedy, she promises to right the wrongs of the past.
The Governesses, by Anne Serre, trans. by Mark Hutchinson (Sept. 25, New Directions, trade paper, $13.95, ISBN 978-0-8112-2807-7). Serre’s U.S. debut is an erotic fairy tale set in a country house where three governesses, nominally educating a group of little boys, instead lie in wait for men to pass by the house. Meanwhile, they’re watched by the old man in the house opposite.
I Am Behind You, by John Ajvide Lindqvist (Oct. 16, St. Martin's, hardcover, $27.99, ISBN 978-1-250-08657-0). Four families wake up one morning in their trailer on an ordinary campsite—but everything outside the camping grounds has disappeared. As the holiday-makers try to come to terms with what has happened, they are forced to confront their deepest fears and secret desires.
In the Night Wood, by Dale Bailey (Oct. 9, HMH/Adams, hardcover, $23, ISBN 978-1-328-49443-6). In this contemporary fantasy, the grieving biographer of a Victorian fantasist finds himself slipping inexorably into the supernatural world that consumed his subject.
Killing Commendatore, by Haruki Murakami, trans. by Philip Gabriel and Ted Goossen (Oct. 9, Knopf, hardcover, $30, ISBN 978-0-525-52004-7). Murakami’s first novel since Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage is, according to the publisher, a story of “love and loneliness, war and art—as well as a loving homage to The Great Gatsby.”
The Mermaid and Mrs. Hancock, by Imogen Hermes Gowar (Sept. 11, Harper, hardcover, $28.99, ISBN 978-0-06-285995-2). In 1780s London, merchant Jonah Hancock finds overnight fame when he obtains a purported mermaid specimen. Catapulted into the drawing rooms of high society, he meets Angelica Neal, who dares him to bring her another mermaid.
Riddance: Or: The Sybil Joines Vocational School for Ghost Speakers & Hearing-Mouth Children, by Shelley Jackson (Oct. 16, Black Balloon, hardcover, $26, ISBN 978-1-936787-99-9). Eleven-year-old Jane Grandison arrives at the Sybil Joines Vocational School, which claims to cure students’ speech impediments, but secretly has pioneered the field of necrophysics by harnessing the students’ stutters to communicate with the dead.
A Short Film About Disappointment, by Joshua Mattson (Aug. 7, Penguin, hardcover, $25, ISBN 978-0-525-52284-3). A movie critic certain no one reads his reviews fills them with details of his personal life in this sharp, funny PW-starred debut set some time in the future, in America’s Central Hub.
The Third Hotel, by Laura Van Den Berg (Aug. 7, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, hardcover, $25, ISBN 978-0-374-16835-3). Clare, an elevator sales rep, travels to Havana after her horror-film scholar husband, Richard, is killed in a hit-and-run. The couple had planned to attend the Festival of New Latin American Cinema together, specifically to see Cuba’s first horror film. Shortly after arriving at the festival, Clare spies a man from afar who looks exactly like Richard.
Transcription, by Kate Atkinson (Sept. 25, Little, Brown, hardcover, $28, ISBN 978-0-316-17663-7). Initially recruited for her secretarial skills, Juliet Armstrong is drawn into dangerous assignments as an undercover agent for MI5 during WWII. A decade after the war, Juliet, now a radio producer, encounters figures from her past.
Melmoth, by Kate Perry (Oct. 16, Custom House, hardcover $28, ISBN 978-0-062-85639-5). Helen Franklin, a translator living in Prague, finds herself searching for the truth behind the dark, legendary figure Melmoth—while also being pursued by her. Gothic mystery novel from the author of The Essex Serpent.