Best Fiction Books of 2013


SOMEONE by Alice McDermott
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 3, 2013

"There is no high drama here, but Marie and Gabe are compelling in their basic goodness, as is McDermott's elegy to a vanished world."
McDermott's brief seventh novel (Child of My Heart, 2002, etc.) follows seven decades of a Brooklyn woman's modest life to create one of the author's most trenchant explorations into the heart and soul of the 20th-century Irish-American family. Read full book review >
THE NIGHT GUEST by Fiona McFarlane
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Oct. 1, 2013

"A pleasurable novel, with turns of plot and phrase both startling and elegant."
An enrapturing debut novel that toys with magical realism while delivering a fresh fable. Read full book review >

AS SHE LEFT IT by Catriona McPherson
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 8, 2013

"The creator of Dandy Gilver (Dandy Gilver and an Unsuitable Day for a Murder, 2012, etc.) has produced a stand-alone that is worlds apart, a fascinating, mysterious ramble you can't put down."
A mystery a young woman finds in her childhood home leads her to revelations about her clouded past. Read full book review >
THE WOMAN UPSTAIRS by Claire Messud
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 30, 2013

"Brilliant and terrifying."
A self-described "good girl" lifts her mask in Messud's scarifying new novel (The Emperor's Children, 2006, etc.). Read full book review >
THE SON by Philipp Meyer
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 28, 2013

"An expertly written tale of ancient crimes, with every period detail—and every detail, period—just right."
The sins of the fathers are always visited upon the sons—and in Meyer's sweeping, absorbing epic, there are plenty of them. Read full book review >

WANT NOT by Jonathan Miles
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Nov. 5, 2013

"For readers who relish extravagant language, scathing wit and philosophical heft, this book wastes nothing."
Miles' panoramic second novel (Dear American Airlines, 2008) is structured around differing definitions of waste. Read full book review >
THE EXTINCTION CLUB by Jeffrey Moore
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: May 1, 2013

"Nile and Céleste's relationship—at times bantering, at times lovingly hectoring—will give enthralled readers the stamina to deal with the stomach-turning descriptions Moore (The Memory Artists, 2004, etc.) provides of past and present animal cruelty."
Animals don't have rights, and they don't torture beings for fun. So why do we call people civilized? Read full book review >
THE RETURNED by Jason Mott
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 27, 2013

"Poet and debut author Mott has written a breathtaking novel that navigates emotional minefields with realism and grace."
The world, a community and an elderly couple are confused and disconcerted when people who have died inexplicably come back, including the couple's 8-year-old son, whom they lost nearly 50 years ago. Read full book review >