General Fiction Audiobooks

Your commute is about to get a lot more interesting and enjoyable. Here’s where you’ll find the must-listens of the year for general fiction audiobooks. You’ll love the riveting adventures, fascinating lives, and compelling storylines described in these new releases and bestsellers. Browse our compilations below and start listening to outstanding fiction audiobooks from a range of remarkable novelists.

Your commute is about to get a lot more interesting and enjoyable. Here’s where you’ll find the must-listens of the year for general fiction audiobooks. You’ll love the riveting adventures, fascinating lives, and compelling storylines described in these new releases and bestsellers. Browse our compilations below and start listening to outstanding fiction audiobooks from a range of remarkable novelists.

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  • Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance: A Novel
    Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance: A Novel
    Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance: A Novel

    byAlison Espach

    From Alison Espach, author of the New York Times Editor’s Choice novel The Adults, comes a dazzlingly unconventional love story for readers of Ask Again, Yes and Tell the Wolves I’m Home. For much of her life, Sally Holt has been mystified by the things her older sister, Kathy, seems to have been born knowing. Kathy has answers for all of Sally’s questions about life, about love, and about Billy Barnes, a rising senior and local basketball star who mans the concession stand at the town pool. The girls have been fascinated by Billy ever since he jumped off the roof in elementary school, but Billy has never shown much interest in them until the summer before Sally begins eighth grade. By then, their mutual infatuation with Billy is one of the few things the increasingly different sisters have in common. Sally spends much of that summer at the pool, watching in confusion and excitement as her sister falls deeper in love with Billy—until a tragedy leaves Sally’s life forever intertwined with his. Opening in the early nineties and charting almost two decades of shared history and missed connections, Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance is both a breathtaking love story about two broken people who are unexplainably, inconveniently drawn to each other and a wryly astute coming-of-age tale brimming with unexpected moments of joy. A Macmillan Audio production from Henry Holt & Company.

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • Bloomsbury Girls: A Novel
    Bloomsbury Girls: A Novel
    Bloomsbury Girls: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Bloomsbury Girls: A Novel

    byNatalie Jenner

    Named a Most Anticipated Book of 2022 by Katie Couric Media, Audible, the CBC, the Globe and Mail, BookBub, POPSUGAR, SheReads, Women.com and more! "Juliet Stevenson's performance of this novel about a post-WWII bookshop is vocal virtuosity." —AudioFile "English actress Juliet Stevenson is a superb choice for the narration of this marvelous work of fiction, she gives life to every character from the most minor to the three female stars." - The Reading Frenzy on Bloomsbury Girls Multi-award-winning actor Juliet Stevenson narrates this Earphones Award–winning, heartwarming audiobook from the internationally bestselling author of The Jane Austen Society. Natalie Jenner returns with a compelling story of postwar London, a century-old bookstore, and three women determined to find their way in a fast-changing world in Bloomsbury Girls. Bloomsbury Books is an old-fashioned new and rare book store that has persisted and resisted change for a hundred years, run by men and guided by the general manager's unbreakable fifty-one rules. But in 1950, the world is changing, especially the world of books and publishing, and at Bloomsbury Books, the girls in the shop have plans: Vivien Lowry: Single since her aristocratic fiance was killed in action during World War II, the brilliant and stylish Vivien has a long list of grievances--most of them well justified and the biggest of which is Alec McDonough, the Head of Fiction. Grace Perkins: Married with two sons, she's been working to support the family following her husband's breakdown in the aftermath of the war. Torn between duty to her family and dreams of her own. Evie Stone: In the first class of female students from Cambridge permitted to earn a degree, Evie was denied an academic position in favor of her less accomplished male rival. Now she's working at Bloomsbury Books while she plans to remake her own future. As they interact with various literary figures of the time--Daphne Du Maurier, Ellen Doubleday, Sonia Blair (widow of George Orwell), Samuel Beckett, Peggy Guggenheim, and others--these three women with their complex web of relationships, goals and dreams are all working to plot out a future that is richer and more rewarding than anything society will allow. A Macmillan Audio production from St. Martin's Press.

    Rating: 1 out of 5 stars
    1/5
  • Mustique Island: A Novel
    Mustique Island: A Novel
    Mustique Island: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Mustique Island: A Novel

    bySarah McCoy

    From bestselling author Sarah McCoy, a sun-splashed romp with a rich divorcee and her two wayward daughters in 1970s Mustique, the world’s most exclusive private island, where Princess Margaret and Mick Jagger were regulars and scandals stayed hidden from the press… It’s January 1972 but the sun is white hot when Willy May Michael’s boat first kisses the dock of Mustique Island. Tucked into the southernmost curve of the Caribbean, Mustique is a private island that has become a haven for the wealthy and privileged. Its owner is the eccentric British playboy Colin Tennant, who is determined to turn this speck of white sand into a luxurious neo-colonial retreat for his rich friends and into a royal court in exile for the Queen’s rebellious sister, Princess Margaret—one where Her Royal Highness can skinny dip, party, and entertain lovers away from the public eye. Willy May, a former beauty queen from Texas—who is also no stranger to marital scandals—seeks out Mustique for its peaceful isolation. Determined to rebuild her life and her relationships with her two daughters, Hilly, a model, and Joanne, a musician, she constructs a fanciful white beach house across the island from Princess Margaret—and finds herself pulled into the island’s inner circle of aristocrats, rock stars, and hangers-on. When Willy May’s daughters arrive, they discover that beneath its veneer of decadence, Mustique has a dark side, and like sand caught in the undertow, their mother-daughter story will shift and resettle in ways they never could have imagined. 

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Woman, Eating: A Literary Vampire Novel
    Woman, Eating: A Literary Vampire Novel
    Woman, Eating: A Literary Vampire Novel

    Audiobook

    Woman, Eating: A Literary Vampire Novel

    byClaire Kohda

    An IndieNext Pick! A Best Book of 2022 in Harper’s Bazaar, Daily Mail, Glamour, and Thrillist! Most Anticipated of 2022 in The Millions, Ms. Magazine, LitHub A young, mixed-race vampire must find a way to balance her deep-seated desire to live amongst humans with her incessant hunger in this stunning debut novel from a writer-to-watch. Lydia is hungry. She's always wanted to try Japanese food. Sashimi, ramen, onigiri with sour plum stuffed inside - the food her Japanese father liked to eat. And then there is bubble tea and iced-coffee, ice cream and cake, and foraged herbs and plants, and the vegetables grown by the other young artists at the London studio space she is secretly squatting in. But, Lydia can't eat any of these things. Her body doesn't work like those of other people. The only thing she can digest is blood, and it turns out that sourcing fresh pigs' blood in London - where she is living away from her vampire mother for the first time - is much more difficult than she'd anticipated. Then there are the humans - the other artists at the studio space, the people at the gallery she interns at, the strange men that follow her after dark, and Ben, a boyish, goofy-grinned artist she is developing feelings for. Lydia knows that they are her natural prey, but she can't bring herself to feed on them. In her windowless studio, where she paints and studies the work of other artists, binge-watches Buffy the Vampire Slayer and videos of people eating food on YouTube and Instagram, Lydia considers her place in the world. She has many of the things humans wish for - perpetual youth, near-invulnerability, immortality – but she is miserable; she is lonely; and she is hungry - always hungry. As Lydia develops as a woman and an artist, she will learn that she must reconcile the conflicts within her - between her demon and human sides, her mixed ethnic heritage, and her relationship with food, and, in turn, humans - if she is to find a way to exist in the world. Before any of this, however, she must eat. “Absolutely brilliant – tragic, funny, eccentric and so perfectly suited to this particularly weird time. Claire Kohda takes the vampire trope and makes it her own in a way that feels fresh and original. Serious issues of race, disability, misogyny, body image, sexual abuse are handled with subtlety, insight, and a lightness of touch. The spell this novel casts is so complete I feel utterly, and happily, bitten.” -- Ruth Ozeki, Booker-shortlisted author of A Tale for the Time Being

    Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
    3/5
  • One Italian Summer: A Novel
    One Italian Summer: A Novel
    One Italian Summer: A Novel

    Audiobook

    One Italian Summer: A Novel

    byRebecca Serle

    INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER “[A] magical trip worth taking.” —Associated Press “Rebecca Serle is a maestro of love in all its forms.” —Gabrielle Zevin, New York Times bestselling author The New York Times bestselling author of In Five Years returns with a powerful novel about the transformational love between mothers and daughters set on the breathtaking Amalfi Coast. When Katy’s mother dies, she is left reeling. Carol wasn’t just Katy’s mom, but her best friend and first phone call. She had all the answers and now, when Katy needs her the most, she is gone. To make matters worse, their planned mother-daughter trip of a lifetime looms: to Positano, the magical town where Carol spent the summer right before she met Katy’s father. Katy has been waiting years for Carol to take her, and now she is faced with embarking on the adventure alone. But as soon as she steps foot on the Amalfi Coast, Katy begins to feel her mother’s spirit. Buoyed by the stunning waters, beautiful cliffsides, delightful residents, and, of course, delectable food, Katy feels herself coming back to life. And then Carol appears—in the flesh, healthy, sun-tanned, and thirty years old. Katy doesn’t understand what is happening, or how—all she can focus on is that she has somehow, impossibly, gotten her mother back. Over the course of one Italian summer, Katy gets to know Carol, not as her mother, but as the young woman before her. She is not exactly who Katy imagined she might be, however, and soon Katy must reconcile the mother who knew everything with the young woman who does not yet have a clue. Rebecca Serle’s next great love story is here, and this time it’s between a mother and a daughter. With her signature “heartbreaking, redemptive, and authentic” (Jamie Ford, New York Times bestselling author) prose, Serle has crafted a transcendent novel about how we move on after loss, and how the people we love never truly leave us.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The Last Confessions of Sylvia P.: A Novel
    The Last Confessions of Sylvia P.: A Novel
    The Last Confessions of Sylvia P.: A Novel

    Audiobook

    The Last Confessions of Sylvia P.: A Novel

    byLee Kravetz

    The Millions Most Anticipated Pick and A GMA March Reads Pick “Lee Kravetz has created a bit of a miracle, a plot-driven literary puzzle box whose mystery lives in both its winding approach to history and its wonderous story. It’s a book full of ideas about inspiration and a love for language that translates across borders, physical and generational.”—Adam Johnson, Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction for The Orphan Master's Son “Captivating . . . . Part truth, part fiction, the novel is an ingenious addition to an ever-growing body of work about Plath that has helped make her an American literary icon.”—Washington Post Blending past and present, and told through three unique interwoven narratives that build on one another, a daring and brilliant debut novel that reimagines a chapter in the life of Sylvia Plath, telling the story behind the creation of her classic semi-autobiographical novel, The Bell Jar. A seductive literary mystery and mutigenerational story inspired by true events, The Last Confessions of Sylvia P. imaginatively brings into focus the period of promise and tragedy that marked the writing of Sylvia Plath’s modern classic The Bell Jar. Lee Kravetz uses a prismatic narrative formed from three distinct fictional perspectives to bring Plath to life—that of her psychiatrist, a rival poet, and years later, a curator of antiquities.   Estee, a seasoned curator for a small Massachusetts auction house, makes an astonishing find: the original manuscript of Sylvia Plath’s semi-autobiographical novel, The Bell Jar, written by hand in her journals fifty-five years earlier. Vetting the document, Estee will discover she’s connected to Plath’s legacy in an unexpected way.  Plath’s psychiatrist, Dr. Ruth Barnhouse, treats Plath during the dark days she spends at McLean Hospital following a suicide attempt, and eventually helps set the talented poet and writer on a path toward literary greatness.   Poet Boston Rhodes, a malicious literary rival, pushes Plath to write about her experiences at McLean, tipping her into a fatal spiral of madness and ultimately forging her legacy.    Like Michael Cunningham’s The Hours, Paula McLain’s The Paris Wife, and Theresa Anne Fowler’s Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald, The Last Confessions of Sylvia P. bridges fact and fiction to imagine the life of a revered writer. Suspenseful and beautifully written, Kravetz’s masterful literary novel is a hugely appealing read.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Carolina Built
    Carolina Built
    Carolina Built

    Audiobook

    Carolina Built

    byKianna Alexander

    This “exuberant celebration of Black women’s joy as well as their achievements” (Kate Quinn, New York Times bestselling author) novelizes the life of real estate magnate Josephine N. Leary in a previously untold story of passion, perseverance, and building a legacy after emancipation in North Carolina. Josephine N. Leary is determined to build a life of her own and a future for her family. When she moves to Edenton, North Carolina from the plantation where she was born, she is free, newly married, and ready to follow her dreams. As the demands of life pull Josephine’s attention away, it becomes increasingly difficult for her to pursue her real estate aspirations. She finds herself immersed in deepening her marriage, mothering her daughters, and being a dutiful daughter and granddaughter. Still, she manages to teach herself to be a businesswoman, to manage her finances, and to make smart investments in the local real estate market. But with each passing year, it grows more and more difficult to focus on building her legacy from the ground up. “Filled with passion and perseverance, Josephine Leary is frankly a woman that everyone should know” (Sadeqa Johnson, author of Yellow Wife) and her story speaks to the part of us that dares to dream bigger, tear down whatever stands in our way, and build something better for the loved ones we leave behind.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • A Very Nice Girl: A Novel
    A Very Nice Girl: A Novel
    A Very Nice Girl: A Novel

    Audiobook

    A Very Nice Girl: A Novel

    byImogen Crimp

    "Tender, devastating, witty. And deeply true. Sweetbitter meets Normal People.” —Meg Mason, author of Sorrow and Bliss For readers of Sweetbitter and Luster, a razor-sharp debut novel about an ambitious young opera singer caught between devotion to her craft and an all-consuming affair with an older man Anna knows she has talent, but she’s always felt out of place in the world of opera. A first-year student at a prestigious London conservatoire, she lives in a grim series of rented rooms with her friend Laurie, a sharp-tongued waitress and aspiring writer. Her days are devoted to highly competitive auditions and long, straining rehearsals. At night, she sings jazz in an expensive bar, relying on her popularity with the inebriated businessmen to make rent and stay afloat alongside her wealthy peers. It’s there that Anna meets Max, a charismatic financier in the midst of a divorce who, at thirty-eight, is fourteen years Anna’s senior. Reluctantly impressed by Max—his stillness, his careful detachment—Anna soon finds herself desperate to hold his attention. As winter pervades the city, Anna begins a dangerous oscillation between hard-won moments on stage, where she can zip herself into the skin of her characters, and nightly stays at Max’s glass-walled flat. But as Anna’s fledgling career begins to demand her undivided attention, so too does Max, a situation that dangerously compounds until Anna must decide who—or what—she wants. Intoxicatingly propulsive and written with lacerating precision, Imogen Crimp’s A Very Nice Girl is a clever, sexually charged portrait of a young woman on the teetering edge of adulthood. With heartrending authenticity and an arresting voice, it lays bare how we consciously shape our identities in the pursuit of power, desire, and a place to belong. A Macmillan Audio production from Henry Holt and Company.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Mercy Street: A Novel
    Mercy Street: A Novel
    Mercy Street: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Mercy Street: A Novel

    byJennifer Haigh

    “Ms. Haigh is an expertly nuanced storyteller long overdue for major attention. Her work is gripping, real, and totally immersive, akin to that of writers as different as Richard Price, Richard Ford, and Richard Russo.”—Janet Maslin, New York Times The highly anticipated new novel by acclaimed New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Haigh—“a gifted chronicler of the human condition” (Washington Post Book World)—is a tense, riveting story about the disparate lives that intersect at a woman’s clinic  For almost a decade, Claudia has counseled patients at Mercy Street, a clinic in the heart of the city. The work is consuming, the unending dramas of women in crisis. For its patients, Mercy Street offers more than health care; for many, it is a second chance. But outside the clinic, the reality is different. Anonymous threats are frequent. A small, determined group of anti-abortion demonstrators appears each morning at its door. As the protests intensify, fear creeps into Claudia’s days, a humming anxiety she manages with frequent visits to Timmy, an affable pot dealer in the midst of his own existential crisis. At Timmy’s, she encounters a random assortment of customers, including Anthony, a lost soul who spends most of his life online, chatting with the mysterious Excelsior11—the screenname of Victor Prine, an anti-abortion crusader who has set his sights on Mercy Street and is ready to risk it all to protect the unborn. Mercy Street is a novel for right now, a story of the polarized American present. Jennifer Haigh, “an expert natural storyteller with a keen sense of her characters’ humanity” (New York Times), has written a groundbreaking novel, a fearless examination of one of the most divisive issues of our time.  

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The School for Good Mothers: A Novel
    The School for Good Mothers: A Novel
    The School for Good Mothers: A Novel

    Audiobook

    The School for Good Mothers: A Novel

    byJessamine Chan

    An Instant New York Times Bestseller A Read with Jenna Today Show Book Club Pick In this taut and explosive debut novel, one lapse in judgement lands a young mother in a government reform program where custody of her child hangs in the balance. Frida Liu is struggling. She doesn’t have a career worthy of her Chinese immigrant parents’ sacrifices. She can’t persuade her husband, Gust, to give up his wellness-obsessed younger mistress. Only with Harriet, their cherubic daughter, does Frida finally attain the perfection expected of her. Harriet may be all she has, but she is just enough. Until Frida has a very bad day. The state has its eyes on mothers like Frida. The ones who check their phones, letting their children get injured on the playground; who let their children walk home alone. Because of one moment of poor judgment, a host of government officials will now determine if Frida is a candidate for a Big Brother-like institution that measures the success or failure of a mother’s devotion. Faced with the possibility of losing Harriet, Frida must prove that a bad mother can be redeemed. That she can learn to be good. A searing page-turner that is also a transgressive novel of ideas about the perils of “perfect” upper-middle class parenting; the violence enacted upon women by both the state and, at times, one another; the systems that separate families; and the boundlessness of love, The School for Good Mothers introduces, in Frida, an everywoman for the ages. Using dark wit to explore the pains and joys of the deepest ties that bind us, Chan has written a modern literary classic.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Beasts of a Little Land: A Novel
    Beasts of a Little Land: A Novel
    Beasts of a Little Land: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Beasts of a Little Land: A Novel

    byJuhea Kim

    "A spectacular debut filled with great characters and heart.” —Lisa See, author of Snow Flower and the Secret Fan A Recommended Read from: USA Today * The Washington Post * Entertainment Weekly * The Today Show * Real Simple * Good Morning America * Harper's Bazaar * Buzzfeed * Fortune * Vulture * Goodreads * Lit Hub * Book Riot * PopSugar * E! Online * Ms. Magazine * Chicago Review of Books * Bustle * The Oregonian * The Millions An epic story of love, war, and redemption set against the backdrop of the Korean independence movement, following the intertwined fates of a young girl sold to a courtesan school and the penniless son of a hunter In 1917, deep in the snowy mountains of occupied Korea, an impoverished local hunter on the brink of starvation saves a young Japanese officer from an attacking tiger. In an instant, their fates are connected—and from this encounter unfolds a saga that spans half a century. In the aftermath, a young girl named Jade is sold by her family to Miss Silver’s courtesan school, an act of desperation that will cement her place in the lowest social status. When she befriends an orphan boy named JungHo, who scrapes together a living begging on the streets of Seoul, they form a deep friendship. As they come of age, JungHo is swept up in the revolutionary fight for independence, and Jade becomes a sought-after performer with a new romantic prospect of noble birth. Soon Jade must decide whether she will risk everything for the one who would do the same for her. From the perfumed chambers of a courtesan school in Pyongyang to the glamorous cafes of a modernizing Seoul and the boreal forests of Manchuria, where battles rage, Juhea Kim’s unforgettable characters forge their own destinies as they wager their nation’s. Immersive and elegant, Beasts of a Little Land unveils a world where friends become enemies, enemies become saviors, heroes are persecuted, and beasts take many shapes.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The Cat Who Saved Books: A Novel
    The Cat Who Saved Books: A Novel
    The Cat Who Saved Books: A Novel

    Audiobook

    The Cat Who Saved Books: A Novel

    bySosuke Natsukawa

    AN INDIE NEXT PICK! From the #1 bestselling author in Japan comes a celebration of books, cats, and the people who love them, infused with the heartwarming spirit of The Guest Cat and The Travelling Cat Chronicles. Bookish high school student Rintaro Natsuki is about to close the secondhand bookstore he inherited from his beloved bookworm grandfather. Then, a talking cat appears with an unusual request. The feline asks for—or rather, demands—the teenager’s help in saving books with him. The world is full of lonely books left unread and unloved, and the cat and Rintaro must liberate them from their neglectful owners.  Their mission sends this odd couple on an amazing journey, where they enter different mazes to set books free. Through their travels, the cat and Rintaro meet a man who leaves his books to perish on a bookshelf, an unwitting book torturer who cuts the pages of books into snippets to help people speed read, and a publishing drone who only wants to create bestsellers. Their adventures culminate in one final, unforgettable challenge—the last maze that awaits leads Rintaro down a realm only the bravest dare enter . . .  An enthralling tale of books, first love, fantasy, and an unusual friendship with a talking cat, The Cat Who Saved Books is a story for those for whom books are so much more than words on paper.  Translated from the Japanese by Louise Heal Kawai. "Cats, books, young love, and adventure: catnip for a variety of readers!" –Kirkus

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Dragonfire: Four Days That (Almost) Changed America
    Dragonfire: Four Days That (Almost) Changed America
    Dragonfire: Four Days That (Almost) Changed America

    Audiobook

    Dragonfire: Four Days That (Almost) Changed America

    byGarrett M. Graff

    From the New York Times bestselling author of The Only Plane in the Sky: An Oral History of 9/11, a fast-paced story about the little-known terrorist plot that upended the United States government just weeks after the September 11 attacks. Barely a month after four planes were hijacked and directed at U.S. targets on September 11, 2001, a CIA source from Afghanistan—code name Dragonfire—reported an even more terrifying development: terrorists linked to al-Qaeda had smuggled a nuclear device into New York City. As the U.S. government struggled to mount a response to the horrifying 9/11 attacks, this new threat came as a stunning blow. It was the worst of worst-case scenarios. Was an American Hiroshima on the horizon? As the fires at the World Trade Center still burned, a small, top-secret cadre of FBI agents, CIA officers, and counterterrorism experts worked around the clock, trying to track down a nuclear bomb that could be anywhere from the Bronx to Lower Manhattan and could detonate at any moment, killing thousands and wreaking havoc on the U.S. economy. No one else in the country, not even New York officials, was alerted to this threat, for fear of the widespread panic that would ensue. It would be months before news of the incident came out, but the details were so scant, few took notice. And the mystery remained: Was Dragonfire right? There was obviously no explosion in New York City, but was it because the bomb didn’t exist, or because it was found and disabled in time? For years, Garrett Graff tried to get the whole story. As the acclaimed author of numerous books about counterterrorism and national security, including The Threat Matrix, Raven Rock, and the New York Times bestseller The Only Plane in the Sky: An Oral History of 9/11, Graff had the trust of officials at all levels of the FBI, CIA, and the executive branch, who knew him as a smart and responsible journalist. But when it came to uncovering the truth about the Dragonfire incident, he was repeatedly stonewalled. There was clearly much more to the story than had been reported. But what? Why were people so skittish talking about a threat that had supposedly been easily dealt with years earlier? What if the plot wasn’t actually as harmless as we’d been led to believe? The facts surrounding the bomb scare were so classified it’s likely that even some of President George W. Bush’s closest advisers were kept in the dark. Dragonfire is Graff’s informed and thoughtful speculation on what might have happened in those fraught weeks after 9/11. Drawing on his extraordinary knowledge of the groups involved and how the characters within them operate, he re-creates the high-stakes search for the alleged bomb. His story—procedurally accurate and based on extensive interviews with several of the principal players—has the ring of actual events and the drama and action of a thriller. One thing is indisputable: The Dragonfire threat so deeply affected top U.S. officials that it accelerated and shaped America’s War on Terror, which in turn gave us the invasion of Iraq and the protracted war in Afghanistan, the calamitous end of which is still fresh in our minds. Whether the bomb was real or not, this little-known event, still shrouded in secrecy, sent shock waves through the U.S. government that reverberate to this day.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Burntcoat: A Novel
    Burntcoat: A Novel
    Burntcoat: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Burntcoat: A Novel

    bySarah Hall

    A NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE NOMINEE "An extraordinary work that will stand as blazing witness to the age that bore it.” -- Sarah Perry A "masterpiece" (Daisy Johnson) of mortality, passion, and human connection, set against the backdrop of a deadly global virus—from the Booker–nominated writer You were the last one here, before I closed the door of Burntcoat. Before we all closed our doors . . . In an unnamed British city, the virus is spreading, and like everyone else, the celebrated sculptor Edith Harkness retreats inside. She isolates herself in her immense studio, Burntcoat, with Halit, the lover she barely knows. As life outside changes irreparably, inside Burntcoat, Edith and Halit find themselves changed as well: by the histories and responsibilities each carries and bears, by the fears and dangers of the world outside, and by the progressions of their new relationship. And Burntcoat will be transformed, too, into a new and feverish world, a place in which Edith comes to an understanding of how we survive the impossible—and what is left after we have. A sharp and stunning novel of art and ambition, mortality and connection, Burntcoat is a major work from “one of our most influential short story writers” (The Guardian). It is an intimate and vital examination of how and why we create—make art, form relationships, build a life—and an urgent exploration of an unprecedented crisis, the repercussions of which are still years in the learning.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Once Upon a Wardrobe
    Once Upon a Wardrobe
    Once Upon a Wardrobe

    Audiobook

    Once Upon a Wardrobe

    byPatti Callahan

    Megs Devonshire sets out to fulfill her younger brother George's last wish by uncovering the truth behind his favorite story. The answer provides hope and healing and a magical journey for anyone whose life has ever been changed by a book. 1950: Margaret Devonshire (Megs) is a seventeen-year-old student of mathematics and physics at Oxford University. When her beloved eight-year-old brother asks Megs if Narnia is real, logical Megs tells him it’s just a book for children, and certainly not true. Homebound due to his illness, and remaining fixated on his favorite books, George presses her to ask the author of the recently released novel The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe a question: “Where did Narnia come from?” Despite her fear about approaching the famous author, who is a professor at her school, Megs soon finds herself taking tea with C.S. Lewis and his own brother Warnie, begging them for answers. Rather than directly telling her where Narnia came from, Lewis encourages Megs to form her own conclusion as he slowly tells her the little-known stories from his own life that led to his inspiration. As she takes these stories home to George, the little boy travels father in his imagination than he ever could in real life. Lewis’s answers will reveal to Megs and her family many truths that science and math cannot, and the gift she thought she was giving to her brother—the story behind Narnia—turns out to be his gift to her, instead: hope. A captivating, standalone historical novel combining fact and fiction An emotional journey into the books and stories that make us who we are

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • This Thing Between Us: A Novel
    This Thing Between Us: A Novel
    This Thing Between Us: A Novel

    Audiobook

    This Thing Between Us: A Novel

    byGus Moreno

    A widower battles his grief, rage, and the mysterious evil inhabiting his home smart speaker, in this mesmerizing horror thriller from Gus Moreno. It was Vera’s idea to buy the Itza. The “world’s most advanced smart speaker!” didn’t interest Thiago, but Vera thought it would be a bit of fun for them amidst all the strange occurrences happening in the condo. It made things worse. The cold spots and scratching in the walls were weird enough, but peculiar packages started showing up at the house—who ordered industrial lye? Then there was the eerie music at odd hours, Thiago waking up to Itza projecting light shows in an empty room. It was funny and strange right up until Vera was killed, and Thiago’s world became unbearable. Pundits and politicians all looking to turn his wife’s death into a symbol for their own agendas. A barrage of texts from her well-meaning friends about letting go and moving on. Waking to the sound of Itza talking softly to someone in the living room . . . The only thing left to do was get far away from Chicago. Away from everything and everyone. A secluded cabin in Colorado seemed like the perfect place to hole up with his crushing grief. But soon Thiago realizes there is no escape—not from his guilt, not from his simmering rage, and not from the evil hunting him, feeding on his grief, determined to make its way into this world. A bold, original horror novel about grief, loneliness and the oppressive intimacy of technology, This Thing Between Us marks the arrival of a spectacular new talent. A Macmillan Audio production from MCD x FSG Originals.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The Book of Magic: A Novel
    The Book of Magic: A Novel
    The Book of Magic: A Novel

    Audiobook

    The Book of Magic: A Novel

    byAlice Hoffman

    “Hoffman certainly knows how to enchant” (The New York Times Book Review) in this breathtaking conclusion to the Practical Magic series—a spellbinding and bewitching novel that asks how far will you go to change your fate? For over three-hundred years a curse has kept the Owens family from love—but all of that is about to change. The novel begins in a library, the best place for a story to be conjured, when beloved aunt Jet Owens hears the deathwatch beetle and knows she has only seven days to live. Jet is not the only one in danger—the curse is already at work. A frantic attempt to save a young man’s life spurs three generations of the Owens women, and one long-lost brother, to use their unusual gifts to break the curse as they travel from Paris to London to the English countryside where their ancestor Maria Owens first practiced the Unnamed Art. The younger generation discovers secrets that have been hidden from them in matters of both magic and love by Sally, their fiercely protective mother. As Kylie Owens uncovers the truth about who she is and what her own dark powers are, her aunt Franny comes to understand that she is ready to sacrifice everything for her family, and Sally Owens realizes that she is willing to give up everything for love. A heartfelt and satisfying conclusion to a beloved series, The Book of Magic celebrates mothers and daughters, sisters and brothers, and anyone who has ever been in love.

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • Reprieve: A Novel
    Reprieve: A Novel
    Reprieve: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Reprieve: A Novel

    byJames Han Mattson

    "Like Whitehead’s The Intuitionist, Alyssa Cole’s When No One Is Watching or Zakiya Dalila Harris’ The Other Black Girl, Reprieve straddles genres in the best possible way. . . . Sure to spark conversation and debate at book clubs across the land." –LOS ANGELES TIMES “An eventual American classic that is unrelenting in its beauty and incisive cultural critique.” – KIESE LAYMON Recommended by New York Times • Los Angeles Times • NPR • Today • Esquire • O Quarterly • Boston Globe • Chicago Tribune • Harper’s Bazaar • Shondaland • Thrillist • The Millions • Crimereads • XTRA • Tor • Literary Hub • and more! A chilling and blisteringly relevant literary novel of social horror centered around a brutal killing that takes place in a full-contact haunted escape room—a provocative exploration of capitalism, hate politics, racial fetishism, and our obsession with fear as entertainment.  On April 27, 1997, four contestants make it to the final cell of the Quigley House, a full-contact haunted escape room in Lincoln, Nebraska, made famous for its monstrosities, booby-traps, and ghoulishly costumed actors. If the group can endure these horrors without shouting the safe word, “reprieve,” they’ll win a substantial cash prize—a startling feat accomplished only by one other group in the house’s long history. But before they can complete the challenge, a man breaks into the cell and kills one of the contestants. Those who were present on that fateful night lend their points of view: Kendra Brown, a teenager who’s been uprooted from her childhood home after the sudden loss of her father; Leonard Grandton, a desperate and impressionable hotel manager caught in a series of toxic entanglements; and Jaidee Charoensuk, a gay international student who came to the United States in a besotted search for his former English teacher. As each character’s journey unfurls and overlaps, deceit and misunderstandings fueled by obsession and prejudice are revealed, forcing all to reckon with the ways in which their beliefs and actions contributed to a horrifying catastrophe. An astonishingly soulful exploration of complicity and masquerade, Reprieve combines the psychological tension of classic horror with searing social criticism to present an unsettling portrait of this tangled American life.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • What Storm, What Thunder: A Novel
    What Storm, What Thunder: A Novel
    What Storm, What Thunder: A Novel

    Audiobook

    What Storm, What Thunder: A Novel

    byMyriam J.A. Chancy

    The audiobook edition of What Storm, What Thunder includes an exclusive introduction from author Myriam Chauncy about the 2010 earthquake in Haiti that inspired this novel, as well as the devastating earthquake that struck Haiti earlier this year. In her own voice and signature poignant and vivid prose, Myriam reflects on her efforts to humanize a catastrophe and provide listeners with a means to understand the incredible strength and spirit of a nation in crisis. “Sublime. A striking and formidable novel by one of our most brilliant writers and storytellers.” — Edwidge Danticat The earth had buckled and, in that movement, all that was not in its place fell upon the earth’s children, upon the blameless as well as the guilty, without discrimination. At the end of a long, sweltering day, as markets and businesses begin to close for the evening, an earthquake of 7.0 magnitude shakes the capital of Haiti, Port-au-Prince. Award-winning author Myriam J. A. Chancy masterfully charts the inner lives of the characters affected by the disaster—Richard, an expat and wealthy water-bottling executive with a secret daughter; the daughter, Anne, an architect who drafts affordable housing structures for a global NGO; a small-time drug trafficker, Leopold, who pines for a beautiful call girl; Sonia and her business partner, Dieudonné, who are followed by a man they believe is the vodou spirit of death; Didier, an emigrant musician who drives a taxi in Boston; Sara, a mother haunted by the ghosts of her children in an IDP camp; her husband, Olivier, an accountant forced to abandon the wife he loves; their son, Jonas, who haunts them both; and Ma Lou, the old woman selling produce in the market who remembers them all. Artfully weaving together these lives, witness is given to the desolation wreaked by nature and by man. Brilliantly crafted, fiercely imagined, and deeply haunting, What Storm, What Thunder is a singular, stunning record, a reckoning of the heartbreaking trauma of disaster, and—at the same time—an unforgettable testimony to the tenacity of the human spirit.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Cloud Cuckoo Land: A Novel
    Cloud Cuckoo Land: A Novel
    Cloud Cuckoo Land: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Cloud Cuckoo Land: A Novel

    byAnthony Doerr

    AudioFile Magazine’s Best Audiobooks of 2021 On the New York Times bestseller list for 19 weeks * A New York Times Notable Book * A Barack Obama Favorite * A National Book Award Finalist * Named a Best of the Year by Fresh Air, Time, Entertainment Weekly, Associated Press, and many more—one of the ten books that appeared on the most lists for 2021 “If you’re looking for a superb novel, look no further.” —The Washington Post From the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of All the Light We Cannot See, comes the instant New York Times bestseller that is a “wildly inventive, a humane and uplifting book for adults that’s infused with the magic of childhood reading experiences” (The New York Times Book Review). Among the most celebrated and beloved novels of 2021, Anthony Doerr’s gorgeous third novel is a triumph of imagination and compassion, a soaring story about children on the cusp of adulthood in worlds in peril, who find resilience, hope—and a book. In Cloud Cuckoo Land, Doerr has created a magnificent tapestry of times and places that reflects our vast interconnectedness—with other species, with each other, with those who lived before us, and with those who will be here after we’re gone. Thirteen-year-old Anna, an orphan, lives inside the formidable walls of Constantinople in a house of women who make their living embroidering the robes of priests. Restless, insatiably curious, Anna learns to read, and in this ancient city, famous for its libraries, she finds a book, the story of Aethon, who longs to be turned into a bird so that he can fly to a utopian paradise in the sky. This she reads to her ailing sister as the walls of the only place she has known are bombarded in the great siege of Constantinople. Outside the walls is Omeir, a village boy, miles from home, conscripted with his beloved oxen into the invading army. His path and Anna’s will cross. Five hundred years later, in a library in Idaho, octogenarian Zeno, who learned Greek as a prisoner of war, rehearses five children in a play adaptation of Aethon’s story, preserved against all odds through centuries. Tucked among the library shelves is a bomb, planted by a troubled, idealistic teenager, Seymour. This is another siege. And in a not-so-distant future, on the interstellar ship Argos, Konstance is alone in a vault, copying on scraps of sacking the story of Aethon, told to her by her father. She has never set foot on our planet. Like Marie-Laure and Werner in All the Light We Cannot See, Anna, Omeir, Seymour, Zeno, and Konstance are dreamers and outsiders who find resourcefulness and hope in the midst of gravest danger. Their lives are gloriously intertwined, and Doerr’s dazzling imagination transports us to worlds so dramatic and immersive that we forget, for a time, our own. Dedicated to “the librarians then, now, and in the years to come,” Cloud Cuckoo Land is a beautiful and redemptive novel about stewardship—of the book, of the Earth, of the human heart.

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • Black Girls Must Die Exhausted: A Novel
    Black Girls Must Die Exhausted: A Novel
    Black Girls Must Die Exhausted: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Black Girls Must Die Exhausted: A Novel

    byJayne Allen

    “It’s a good thing that this is only the first book of a trilogy, because after getting to know Tabitha, you won’t want to leave her at the end. . . . Written intimately as if you’re peering into the mind of a close friend, this book is a true testament to the stresses on women today and how great girlfriends (and grandmothers) are often the key to our sanity.”  — Good Morning America The first novel in a captivating three-book series about modern womanhood, in which a young Black woman must rely on courage, laughter, and love—and the support of her two longtime friends—to overcome an unexpected setback that threatens the most precious thing she’s ever wanted. Tabitha Walker is a black woman with a plan to “have it all.” At 33 years old, the checklist for the life of her dreams is well underway. Education? Check. Good job? Check. Down payment for a nice house? Check. Dating marriage material? Check, check, and check. With a coveted position as a local news reporter, a "paper-perfect" boyfriend, and even a standing Saturday morning appointment with a reliable hairstylist, everything seems to be falling into place. Then Tabby receives an unexpected diagnosis that brings her picture-perfect life crashing down, jeopardizing the keystone she took for granted: having children. With her dreams at risk of falling through the cracks of her checklist, suddenly she is faced with an impossible choice between her career, her dream home, and a family of her own.  With the help of her best friends, the irreverent and headstrong Laila and Alexis, the mom jeans-wearing former "Sexy Lexi," and the generational wisdom of her grandmother and the nonagenarian firebrand Ms. Gretchen, Tabby explores the reaches of modern medicine and tests the limits of her relationships, hoping to salvage the future she always dreamed of. But the fight is all consuming, demanding a steep price that forces an honest reckoning for nearly everyone in her life. As Tabby soon learns, her grandmother's age-old adage just might still be true: Black girls must die exhausted.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Talk to Me: A Novel
    Talk to Me: A Novel
    Talk to Me: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Talk to Me: A Novel

    byT.C. Boyle

    From bestselling and award-winning author T.C. Boyle, a lively, thought-provoking novel that asks us what it would be like if we could really talk to the animals When animal behaviorist Guy Schermerhorn demonstrates on a TV game show that he has taught Sam, his juvenile chimp, to speak in sign language, Aimee Villard, an undergraduate at Guy's university, is so taken with the performance that she applies to become his assistant.  A romantic and intellectual attachment soon morphs into an interspecies love triangle that pushes hard at the boundaries of consciousness and the question of what we know and how we know it.   What if it were possible to speak to the members of another species—to converse with them, not just give commands or coach them but to really have an exchange of ideas and a meeting of minds? Did apes have God?  Did they have souls?  Did they know about death and redemption?  About prayer?  The economy, rockets, space?  Did they miss the jungle?  Did they even know what the jungle was?  Did they dream?  Make wishes?  Hope for the future? These are some the questions T.C. Boyle asks in his wide-ranging and hilarious new novel Talk to Me, exploring  what it means to be human, to communicate with another, and to truly know another person—or animal… 

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The Double Life of Alfred Buber
    The Double Life of Alfred Buber
    The Double Life of Alfred Buber

    Audiobook

    The Double Life of Alfred Buber

    byDavid Schmahmann

    A splendid original tale, Alfred Buber is warm, smart, romantic, but his life is as barren as an ice floe, an embarrassing collage of successes and humiliations that add up to... nothing. He lives as if he has landed in a strange country, nowhere he recognizes. Can an-oh-so respectable Boston lawyer, out of options, out of hope, lonely beyond measure, stray way outside the lines and find love? Can he step into the tawdry dark, and back into the wholesome light, and not be affected? Alfred Buber thinks he can. But the line between his two lives is a thin one.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Snowflake: A Novel
    Snowflake: A Novel
    Snowflake: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Snowflake: A Novel

    byLouise Nealon

    "Mad and wonderful. I thought I was reading one thing, then discovered—several times—that I was reading a different, even better thing.”—Roddy Doyle “Snowflake is a wonderfully inventive, deeply felt novel full of the best kinds of surprises.”—Margot Livesey An exquisitely talented young Irish writer makes her literary debut with this powerful and haunting novel—a tale of love and family, depression and joy, and coming of age in the twenty-first century. Eighteen-year-old Debbie was raised on her family’s rural dairy farm, forty minutes and a world away from Dublin. She lives with her mother, Maeve, a skittish woman who takes to her bed for days on end, claims not to know who Debbie’s father is, and believes her dreams are prophecies. Rounding out their small family is Maeve’s brother Billy, who lives in a caravan behind their house, drinks too much, and likes to impersonate famous dead writers online. Though they may have their quirks, the Whites’ fierce love for one another is never in doubt. But Debbie’s life is changing. Earning a place at Trinity College Dublin, she commutes to her classes a few days a week. Outside the sheltered bubble of her childhood for the first time, Debbie finds herself both overwhelmed and disappointed by her fellow students and the pace and anonymity of city life. While the familiarity of the farm offers comfort, Debbie still finds herself pulling away from it. Yet just as she begins to ponder the possibilities the future holds, a resurgence of strange dreams raises her fears that she may share Maeve’s fate. Then a tragic accident upends the family’s equilibrium, and Debbie discovers her next steps may no longer be hers to choose. Gorgeous and beautifully wrought, Snowflake is an affecting coming-of-age story about a young woman learning to navigate a world that constantly challenges her sense of self. 

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Cactus Jack: A Novel
    Cactus Jack: A Novel
    Cactus Jack: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Cactus Jack: A Novel

    byBrad Smith

    Brad Smith “rivals Elmore Leonard at his best” (Publishers Weekly). His latest novel, for fans of Richard Russo and Jane Smiley, is a terrific novel about a thirty-something single woman, the untried colt she inherits, a horse crazy little girl, and their band of misfits and has-beens who stick it to the establishment in the cutthroat world of horse racing. Billie Masterson is a thirty-something chronic underachiever, drowning herself in alcohol and bad relationships in Ohio. She hasn’t been home to the family’s broken-down thoroughbred farm in Kentucky since college. Her mother committed suicide when Billie was a teen and she blames her father, Will Masterson. When Will drops dead while working on the farm, Billie returns to rural Kentucky for the funeral, intending only to pay her respects before high-tailing it back to Ohio. However, she’s informed by her father’s lawyer, the garrulous David Mountain Clay, that she now owns the farm…and all the debt that goes with it. Determined to sell everything, settle the debts and get out of town, Billie discovers that her father’s colt, a horse named Cactus Jack, is the object of obsession for billionaire Reese Ryker, the louche scion of a department store dynasty and now owner of Double R Racing, one of the top thoroughbred stables in the world. Billie is willing to sell everything to Ryker—until she realizes that he’s an entitled misogynist and a not-so-subtle racist. Against her better judgment, she decides to keep the farm and the untested horse. To do that she needs to race the animal—and beat Ryker at his own game. Assisted by a team of misfits, including a washed-up trainer with whom she has a bit too much history, the horse-crazy little girl next door, and her father’s ex-girlfriend, Billie and Cactus Jack take the track by a storm.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The Actual Star: A Novel
    The Actual Star: A Novel
    The Actual Star: A Novel

    Audiobook

    The Actual Star: A Novel

    byMonica Byrne

    David Mitchell’s Cloud Atlas meets Octavia Butler’s Earthseed series, as acclaimed author Monica Byrne (The Girl in the Road) crafts an unforgettable piece of speculative fiction about where humanity came from, where we are now, and where we’re going—and how, in every age, the same forces that drive us apart also bind us together. "A stone-cold masterpiece."—New Scientist The Actual Star takes readers on a journey over two millennia and six continents—telling three powerful tales a thousand years apart, all of them converging in the same cave in the Belizean jungle. Braided together are the stories of a pair of teenage twins who ascend the throne of a Maya kingdom; a young American woman on a trip of self-discovery in Belize; and two dangerous charismatics vying for the leadership of a new religion, racing toward a confrontation that will determine the fate of the few humans left on Earth after massive climate change. In each era, a reincarnated trinity of souls navigates the entanglements of tradition and progress, sister and stranger, and love and hate—until all of their age-old questions about the nature of existence converge deep underground, where only in complete darkness can they truly see.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Beautiful World, Where Are You: A Novel
    Beautiful World, Where Are You: A Novel
    Beautiful World, Where Are You: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Beautiful World, Where Are You: A Novel

    bySally Rooney

    "via McMahon, Rooney's peerless descriptions imprint upon the mind's eye. The listener won't soon forget a silk blouse caressed like a pet, freckled arms made pink by the sun, the coast of Ireland at nightfall, or the forgiveness of a best friend. A hopeful Millennial journey shines through McMahon's performance." -- AudioFile Magazine, Earphones Award Winner Beautiful World, Where Are You is a new novel by Sally Rooney, the bestselling author of Normal People and Conversations with Friends. Alice, a novelist, meets Felix, who works in a warehouse, and asks him if he’d like to travel to Rome with her. In Dublin, her best friend, Eileen, is getting over a break-up, and slips back into flirting with Simon, a man she has known since childhood. Alice, Felix, Eileen, and Simon are still young—but life is catching up with them. They desire each other, they delude each other, they get together, they break apart. They have sex, they worry about sex, they worry about their friendships and the world they live in. Are they standing in the last lighted room before the darkness, bearing witness to something? Will they find a way to believe in a beautiful world? Grateful acknowledgment is made for permission to reprint the following material: Epigraph from ‘My Vocation,’ by Natalia Ginzburg, from The Little Virtues. Copyright © 1962, 1966, 1972, 1984, 1998, 2012 and 2015 Giulio Einaudi editore s.p.a., Torino. Originally published in Italian as Le Piccole Virtù. Translation copyright © 1985 Dick Davis. First published in Great Britain in 1985 by Carcanet, Manchester. Excerpt from ‘How to Get There,’ by Frank O’Hara, from Lunch Poems. Copyright © 1964 by Frank O’Hara. Reprinted with the permission of The Permissions Company, LLC, on behalf of City Lights Books, citylights.com. All rights reserved. Excerpt from Within a Budding Grove, by Marcel Proust, translated by C. K. Scott Moncrieff, The Modern Library, New York, copyright 1924 Excerpt from The Waste Land, first published in 1922; copyright the Estate of T. S. Eliot. Reproduced by permission of Faber & Faber Ltd. A Macmillan Audio production from Farrar, Straus and Giroux

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The Magician: A Novel
    The Magician: A Novel
    The Magician: A Novel

    Audiobook

    The Magician: A Novel

    byColm Toibin

    A New York Times Notable Book, Critic’s Top Pick, and Top Ten Book of Historical Fiction Named a Best Book of the Year by The Washington Post, NPR, Vogue, The Wall Street Journal, and Bloomberg Businessweek ​From one of today’s most brilliant and beloved novelists, a dazzling, epic family saga set across a half-century spanning World War I, the rise of Hitler, World War II, and the Cold War that is “a feat of literary sorcery in its own right” (Oprah Daily). The Magician opens in a provincial German city at the turn of the twentieth century, where the boy, Thomas Mann, grows up with a conservative father, bound by propriety, and a Brazilian mother, alluring and unpredictable. Young Mann hides his artistic aspirations from his father and his homosexual desires from everyone. He is infatuated with one of the richest, most cultured Jewish families in Munich, and marries the daughter Katia. They have six children. On a holiday in Italy, he longs for a boy he sees on a beach and writes the story Death in Venice. He is the most successful novelist of his time, winner of the Nobel Prize in literature, a public man whose private life remains secret. He is expected to lead the condemnation of Hitler, whom he underestimates. His oldest daughter and son, leaders of Bohemianism and of the anti-Nazi movement, share lovers. He flees Germany for Switzerland, France and, ultimately, America, living first in Princeton and then in Los Angeles. In this “exquisitely sensitive” (The Wall Street Journal) novel, Tóibín has crafted “a complex but empathetic portrayal of a writer in a lifelong battle against his innermost desires, his family, and the tumultuous times they endure” (Time), and “you’ll find yourself savoring every page” (Vogue).

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Inseparable: A Never-Before-Published Novel
    Inseparable: A Never-Before-Published Novel
    Inseparable: A Never-Before-Published Novel

    Audiobook

    Inseparable: A Never-Before-Published Novel

    bySimone De Beauvoir

    A novel by the iconic Simone de Beauvoir of an intense and vivid girlhood friendship that, unpublished in her lifetime, displays “Beauvoir's genius as a fiction writer” (Wall Street Journal)  From the moment Sylvie and Andrée meet in their Parisian day school, they see in each other an accomplice with whom to confront the mysteries of girlhood. For the next ten years, the two are the closest of friends and confidantes as they explore life in a post-World War One France, and as Andrée becomes increasingly reckless and rebellious, edging closer to peril. Sylvie, insightful and observant, sees a France of clashing ideals and religious hypocrisy—and at an early age is determined to form her own opinions. Andrée, a tempestuous dreamer, is inclined to melodrama and romance. Despite their different natures they rely on each other to safeguard their secrets while entering adulthood in a world that did not pay much attention to the wills and desires of young women. Deemed too intimate to publish during Simone de Beauvoir’s life, Inseparable offers fresh insight into the groundbreaking feminist’s own coming-of-age; her transformative, tragic friendship with her childhood friend Zaza Lacoin; and how her youthful relationships shaped her philosophy. Sandra Smith’s vibrant translation of the novel will be long cherished by de Beauvoir devotees and first-time readers alike.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The Archer
    The Archer
    The Archer

    Audiobook

    The Archer

    byShruti Swamy

    Kiese Laymon called Shruti Swamy’s debut book of stories, A House Is a Body, “one of the greatest short story collections of the 2020s.” Now, Swamy brings us an accomplished and immersive coming-of-age novel set in the Bombay of the 1960s and 1970s. As a child, Vidya exists to serve her family, watch over her younger brother, and make sense of a motherless world. One day she catches sight of a class where the students are learning Kathak, a precise, dazzling form of dance that requires the utmost discipline and focus. Kathak quickly becomes the organizing principle of Vidya’s life, even as she leaves home for college, falls in love with her best friend, and battles demands on her time, her future, and her body. Can Vidya give herself over to her art and also be a wife in Bombay’s carefully delineated society? Can she shed the legacy of her own imperfect, unknowable mother? Must she, herself, also become a mother? Intensely lyrical and deeply sensual, with writing as rhythmically mesmerizing as Kathak itself, The Archer is about the transformative power of art, and the possibilities that love can open when we’re ready.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
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