Now that we’ve made it through April Fools’ Day mostly unscathed (I hope?), let’s take a look at some of this month’s upcoming books:
What Girls Are Made Of, by Elana K. Arnold
Earlier this year, Elana K. Arnold brought us A Boy Called Bat, a gentle, smart, funny, and utterly lovely middle grade book about a boy and a baby skunk. (If you haven’t read it yet, do.) What Girls Are Made Of promises to be different in every way other than quality. It’s about sixteen-year-old Nina’s experience of girlhood and young womanhood—through her, Arnold explores and engages with, as the Kirkus review put it, the societal “shoulds” and “supposed tos” of growing up female in America. Starred review.
North of Happy, by Adi Alsaid
I love love LOVE stories set in and around restaurants, so I’m very much looking forward to this one, which is about Carlos, a privileged Mexican boy from a wealthy family who throws caution to the winds after his brother’s sudden death. More specifically, he runs away to the United States, gets a job as a dishwasher, and starts working towards his true passion: cooking. Starred review.Maud: A Novel Inspired by the Life of L.M. Montgomery, by Melanie Fishbane
Vincent and Theo: The Van Gogh Brothers, by Deborah Heiligman
Alex and Eliza: A Love Story, by Melissa de la Cruz
Audubon, by Fabien Grolleau and Jérémie Royer
April will be a good month for readers who like historical fiction about real-life people: we’ve got upcoming books about Lucy Maud Montgomery, Vincent and Theo Van Gogh, Alexander Hamilton and Eliza Schuyler, and a French import about John James Audubon. Kirkus wasn’t at all impressed with the Montgomery book, sadly, but was especially taken with the Audubon graphic novel and the Van Gogh book. Starred review for Vincent and Theo.Between Two Skies, by Joanne O'Sullivan
Grendel's Guide to Love and War, by A.E. Kaplan
Unearthly Things, by Michelle Gagnon
Fans of retellings of classics are in luck, too: we’ve got a loose retelling of Longfellow’s Evangeline set in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, a retelling of Beowulf set in the modern day, and a modern Gothic retelling of Jane Eyre set in San Francisco. Starred reviews for the O’Sullivan and the Kaplan.
The Upside of Unrequited, by Becky Albertalli
Did you love Albertalli’s Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda? Well, then. You’ve probably already got this one pre-ordered.
Gem & Dixie, by Sara Zarr
Sara Zarr is one of my go-tos for complex, nuanced portrayals of teenage girls and family dynamics. I’ve been looking forward to this one for months and months. Starred review.
Pointe, Claw, by Amber J. Keyser
Ballet, rivalry, girlhood, and a broken friendship. Everything I’ve read about this one either describes it as ‘weird’ or ‘experimental’ or both, and always in a good way. I’m always here for that.
Get It Together, Delilah!, by Erin Gough
Aussie import! Sometimes that’s all I need to hear.
Defy the Stars, by Claudia Gray
Space opera about a human soldier and an android—originally fighting on opposite sides of a war, they team up to try to end said war altogether. Starred review.
As always, let me know if there’s something super exciting that I missed!
In addition to running a library in rural Maine, Leila Roy blogs at Bookshelves of Doom and The Backlist, is currently serving on the Amelia Bloomer Project committee, is a contributor at Book Riot, hangs out on Twitter a lot—possibly too much—and watches a shocking amount of television. Her cat is a murderer.