Among the many pleasures of summer is the opportunity to rededicate ourselves to reading more. If you’re a bibliophile like all of us at Kirkus, you start keeping a list of titles you plan to tackle over the next few months. For our annual Summer Reads Issue, we asked some favorite authors to share theirs.
Hernan Diaz, author of Trust: “There are two new novels I am particularly looking forward to reading this summer: Jenny Erpenbeck’s Karios, translated by Michael Hofmann, and I Am Homeless If This Is Not My Home by Lorrie Moore. I know nothing about these books, and I want to keep it that way—I love stepping into the unknown. Also, I will keep going with Anthony Powell’s A Dance to the Music of Time—I am currently on Book 3.”
Celeste Ng, author of Our Missing Hearts: “I didn’t get to read much last fall while launching Our Missing Hearts, so at the top of my embarrassingly tall TBR is A Living Remedy by Nicole Chung. She’s one of the smartest writers out there, and I can’t wait to dive into this. And I have to add a few more to the stack for summer: Yellowface by R.F. Kuang looks fascinating, as does Tania James’ Loot and Ann Patchett’s newest, Tom Lake….Help.”
Imani Perry, author of South to America: “This summer, I’m looking forward to reading Chain-Gang All-Stars by Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah. I love when novelists explore contemporary social and political issues with provocative storylines. Likewise, I’m looking forward to Alejandro Varela’s short story collection, The People Who Report More Stress. Race, class, gentrification, incarceration, media, late capitalism, mental health—I know these brilliant writers will help me think about all of that. On the nonfiction front, I can’t wait to read Maryemma Graham’s comprehensive biography of Margaret Walker, The House Where My Soul Lives, one of the most important writers in the African American literary tradition. Graham has devoted years of her life to bringing Walker to her rightful place in the canon. I’m grateful.”
Lisa See, author of Lady Tan’s Circle of Women: “I’m very excited to read The Wager: A Tale of Shipwreck, Mutiny, and Murder by David Grann. The subtitle says it all, doesn’t it? Who wouldn’t like a book with those three elements? Grann always includes fantastic and interesting details in his writing—with all kinds of tidbits and stories to share over the dinner table with family and friends. I’m also looking forward to reading Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin. Everyone says it’s amazing.”
Tom Beer is the editor-in-chief.