Welcome to summer reading season! Pull up a hammock, a beach blanket, or a park bench and get lost in one of this season’s absorbing novels.
Trust by Hernan Diaz (Riverhead, May 3): This ingenious tale of high finance is told through four separate narratives; “no one document tells the whole story,” according to our review, “but the collection of palimpsests makes for a thrilling experience and a testament to the power and danger of the truth—or a version of it—when it’s set down in print.”
This Time Tomorrow by Emma Straub (Riverhead, May 17): On the morning after her 40th birthday, Alice Stern wakes up in her childhood bedroom, about to turn 16 again. “Combine Straub’s usual warmth and insight with the fun of time travel and you have a winner,” according to our review.
Counterfeit by Kirstin Chen (Morrow, June 7): Ava Wong, a Stanford grad–turned–full-time mom, gets involved with a scheme to sell fake Birkin bags. Our review calls it “a delightfully different caper novel with a Gone Girl–style plot twist.”
The Hotel Nantucket by Elin Hilderbrand (Little, Brown, June 14): The queen of the beach read returns with an instant-classic grand hotel saga featuring the ghost of a teenage chambermaid, a hotel manager trying to get top honors from an undercover reviewer, and, of course, a hot chef. As our review says, “Honestly, who needs Nantucket. It could hardly be more fun than this book.”
The Mutual Friend by Carter Bays (Dutton, June 7): In this darkly comic first novel from the co-creator of How I Met Your Mother, a loosely connected group of New Yorkers tries to put down their phones and figure out what they want out of life. Our review says the surprising thing about the book “is how beautifully written it is and how deftly the author balances humor and heartbreak.…A major accomplishment.”
Fellowship Point by Alice Elliott Dark (Marysue Rucci Books/Scribner, July 5): Two 80-ish Philadelphia women try to save a piece of land in Maine where their families have vacationed for generations. “Elegantly structured, beautifully written, and altogether diverting,” according to our review.
Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin (Knopf, July 5): Three brilliant college kids invent a video game that makes them famous and keeps them orbiting each other for decades. “Zevin’s delight in her characters, their qualities, and their projects sprinkles a layer of fairy dust over the whole enterprise,” our review says. “Sure to enchant even those who have never played a video game in their lives, with instant cult status for those who have.”
Winter Work by Dan Fesperman (Knopf, July 12): Take your mind off current affairs with what our review calls an “engrossing, deep-in-the-weeds thriller” set just after the fall of the Berlin Wall. Or maybe the book is timely, as Russians battle Americans and Germans for intelligence and a former Stasi agent searches for information that will help him get out of East Germany.
The Daughter of Doctor Moreau by Silvia Moreno-Garcia (Del Rey, July 19): On a ranch in 19th-century Yucatán, young Carlota Moreau lives with her father and the strange hybrids he experiments on. This spin on H.G. Wells’ classic is “a fun literary remix” from a novelist who loves to explore different genres, according to our review.
The Last White Man by Mohsin Hamid (Riverhead, Aug. 2): Hamid’s first novel since the brilliant Exit West (2017) opens with a formerly White man named Anders waking up one morning with brown skin. Our review calls this “a provocative tale that raises questions of racial and social justice at every turn.”
Laurie Muchnick is the fiction editor.