Fiction & Literature Book Reviews

THE COMPLETE STORIES by Clarice Lispector
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"Essential and sure to turn up soon on reading lists in courses in women's studies and Jewish diaspora literature as well as Latin American writing."
"Freedom is only what can be conquered": a welcome, long overdue omnibus collection of the short stories of the great Brazilian literata. Read full book review >
DAYS OF AWE by Lauren Fox
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"Read it for the magnetic voice and Fox's ever interesting perspective on work, love, friendship, and parenthood—because, really, what else is there?"
When a middle school teacher's best friend dies in a one-car accident, her world begins to fall apart. Read full book review >

MRS. SINCLAIR'S SUITCASE by Louise Walters
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"A breathtaking, beautifully crafted tale of loves that survive secrets."
Letters and postcards once used as bookmarks flutter out of used books, forgotten signs of liaisons. Read full book review >
VILLA AMERICA by Liza Klaussmann
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"Beautifully written and surprisingly fresh given the well-worn subject matter."
Another sensitive fictional portrait of a complicated marriage from the author of Tigers in Red Weather (2012).Read full book review >
THE MARRIAGE OF OPPOSITES by Alice Hoffman
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"Lilting prose, beautifully meted out folklore and historical references, and Hoffman's deep conviction in her characters (especially those 'willing to do anything for love') make reading this 'contes du temps passé' a total pleasure."
A ghost wife, a stolen child, wandering eyes, hidden ledgers—and more—bind the 19th-century Jewish community on a paradisiacal island in the West Indies. Read full book review >

BARBARA THE SLUT by Lauren Holmes
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"A first-rate first collection from a young writer you'll want to hear more from."
This sharp, sensitive debut story collection introduces us to a parade of people (and one dog) grasping their ways through complex relationships with family, friends, lovers, strangers, and, of course, themselves. Read full book review >
LANDFALLS by Naomi J. Williams
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"Literary art of the first order, intelligent and evocative in the way of the best of historical fiction."
Williams makes an entertainingly erudite debut with a prismatic reimagining of the doomed French attempt to circumnavigate the globe in the 1780s. Read full book review >
INFINITE HOME by Kathleen Alcott
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"A luminous second novel from a first-class storyteller."
Under the right circumstances, even a dilapidated Brooklyn brownstone can save a collection of wounded souls. Read full book review >
BRIEF LOVES THAT LIVE FOREVER by Andreï Makine
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"Moving and thoughtful, this novel—despite its slight frame—has a lot to say."
Translated from the French in which he writes (The Life of an Unknown Man, 2012, etc.), Siberian-born Makine's slim novel portrays the dangers of communism from the point of view of a romantic man.Read full book review >
MAKE YOUR HOME AMONG STRANGERS by Jennine Capó Crucet
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"This debut novel from Crucet (How to Leave Hialeah, 2009) heralds the birth of a talented novelist to watch."
Lizet Ramirez, the first in her Cuban immigrant family to attend college, must learn to navigate academia's culture of privilege alone as her family breaks apart. Read full book review >
ALL THAT FOLLOWED by Gabriel Urza
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"The author's family is from Spain's Basque region, which helps explain why an American writer would venture into this fraught history, and Urza does so convincingly, revealing the human faces behind the masks of terrorism and its collateral damage."
A terrorist bombing in Madrid stirs up memories in a Basque town of a politician kidnapped and killed, an act that linked the political and the personal, in this thoughtful, ambitious debut. Read full book review >
DRAGONFISH by Vu Tran
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 3, 2015

"Right off the bat, Tran displays the most admirable and worthwhile gift a serious thriller writer can have: compassion toward even the most disreputable of his characters."
A missing person mystery is delicately entwined with a heartbreaking story of migration and loss. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Sabaa Tahir
August 4, 2015

Sabaa Tahir’s novel An Ember in the Ashes reveals a world inspired by ancient Rome and defined by brutality. Seventeen-year-old Laia has grown up with one rule for survival: Never challenge the Empire. But when Laia’s brother Darin is arrested for treason, she leaves behind everything she knows, risking her life to try and save him. She enlists help from the rebels whose extensive underground network may lead to Darin. Their help comes with a price, though. Laia must infiltrate the Empire’s greatest military academy as a spy. Elias is the Empire’s finest soldier—and its most unwilling one. Thrown together by chance and united by their hatred of the Empire, Laia and Elias will soon discover that their fates are intertwined—and that their choices may change the destiny of the entire Empire. We talk to An Ember in the Ashes author Sabaa Tahir this week on Kirkus TV. View video >