Contemporary Fiction

Browse beach reads and modern literary classics alike in this selection packed with book club favorites, New York Times bestsellers, and award-winning page-turners. With your subscription to Scribd, intriguing characters, absorbing plotlines, and captivating settings will transport you from your daily commute to the fascinating worlds of today’s best novels.

Browse beach reads and modern literary classics alike in this selection packed with book club favorites, New York Times bestsellers, and award-winning page-turners. With your subscription to Scribd, intriguing characters, absorbing plotlines, and captivating settings will transport you from your daily commute to the fascinating worlds of today’s best novels.

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  • Elsewhere: A Novel
    Elsewhere: A Novel
    Elsewhere: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Elsewhere: A Novel

    byAlexis Schaitkin

    "The audiobook narrated by Ell Potter is riveting." -- Buzzfeed on Elsewhere Richly emotive and darkly captivating, with elements of Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” and the imaginative depth of Margaret Atwood, Elsewhere by Alexis Schaitkin conjures a community in which girls become wives, wives become mothers and some of them, quite simply, disappear. Vera grows up in a small town, removed and isolated, pressed up against the mountains, cloud-covered and damp year-round. This town, fiercely protective, brutal and unforgiving in its adherence to tradition, faces a singular affliction: some mothers vanish, disappearing into the clouds. It is the exquisite pain and intrinsic beauty of their lives; it sets them apart from people elsewhere and gives them meaning. Vera, a young girl when her own mother went, is on the cusp of adulthood herself. As her peers begin to marry and become mothers, they speculate about who might be the first to go, each wondering about her own fate. Reveling in their gossip, they witness each other in motherhood, waiting for signs: this one devotes herself to her child too much, this one not enough—that must surely draw the affliction’s gaze. When motherhood comes for Vera, she is faced with the question: will she be able to stay and mother her beloved child, or will she disappear? Provocative and hypnotic, Alexis Schaitkin’s Elsewhere is at once a spellbinding revelation and a rumination on the mysterious task of motherhood and all the ways in which a woman can lose herself to it; the self-monitoring and judgment, the doubts and unknowns, and the legacy she leaves behind. A Macmillan Audio production from Celadon Books.

    Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
    3/5
  • The Angel of Rome: And Other Stories
    The Angel of Rome: And Other Stories
    The Angel of Rome: And Other Stories

    Audiobook

    The Angel of Rome: And Other Stories

    byJess Walter

    From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Beautiful Ruins and The Cold Millions comes a stunning collection about those moments when everything changes—for the better, for the worse, for the outrageous—as a diverse cast of characters bounces from Italy to Idaho, questioning their roles in life and finding inspiration in the unlikeliest places. We all live like we’re famous now, curating our social media presences, performing our identities, withholding those parts of ourselves we don’t want others to see. In this riveting collection of stories from acclaimed author Jess Walter, a teenage girl tries to live up to the image of her beautiful, missing mother. An elderly couple confronts the fiction writer eavesdropping on their conversation. A son must repeatedly come out to his senile father while looking for a place to care for the old man. A famous actor in recovery has a one-night stand with the world's most surprising film critic. And in the romantic title story, a shy twenty-one-year-old studying Latin in Rome during “the year of my reinvention” finds himself face-to-face with the Italian actress of his adolescent dreams. Funny, poignant, and redemptive, this collection of short fiction offers a dazzling range of voices, backdrops, and situations. With his signature wit and bighearted approach to the darkest parts of humanity, Walter tackles the modern condition with a timeless touch, once again “solidifying his place in the contemporary canon as one of our most gifted builders of fictional worlds” (Esquire).

    Rating: 0 out of 5 stars
    0 ratings
  • The Measure: A Novel
    The Measure: A Novel
    The Measure: A Novel

    Audiobook

    The Measure: A Novel

    byNikki Erlick

    "PERFECT FOR BOOK CLUBS."—MARIE CLAIRE A luminous, spirit-lifting blockbuster for readers of The Midnight Library.  Eight ordinary people. One extraordinary choice. It seems like any other day. You wake up, pour a cup of coffee, and head out. But today, when you open your front door, waiting for you is a small wooden box. This box holds your fate inside: the answer to the exact number of years you will live. From suburban doorsteps to desert tents, every person on every continent receives the same box. In an instant, the world is thrust into a collective frenzy. Where did these boxes come from? What do they mean? Is there truth to what they promise? As society comes together and pulls apart, everyone faces the same shocking choice: Do they wish to know how long they’ll live? And, if so, what will they do with that knowledge? The Measure charts the dawn of this new world through an unforgettable cast of characters whose decisions and fates interweave with one another: best friends whose dreams are forever entwined, pen pals finding refuge in the unknown, a couple who thought they didn’t have to rush, a doctor who cannot save himself, and a politician whose box becomes the powder keg that ultimately changes everything. Enchanting and deeply uplifting, The Measure is a sweeping, ambitious, and invigorating story about family, friendship, hope, and destiny that encourages us to live life to the fullest.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The Bartender's Cure: A Novel
    The Bartender's Cure: A Novel
    The Bartender's Cure: A Novel

    Audiobook

    The Bartender's Cure: A Novel

    byWesley Straton

    Wesley Straton's The Bartender's Cure is a fiercely relatable debut novel about an aspiring bartender at the perfect neighborhood bar, filled with cocktail recipes and bartending tips and tricks. Samantha Fisher definitely does not want to be a bartender. But after a breakup and breakdown in San Francisco, she decides to defer law school for a year to move to New York, crashing on her best friend’s couch. When she is offered a job at Joe’s Apothecary, a beloved neighborhood bar in Brooklyn, she tells herself it’s only temporary. As Sam learns more about bartending and gets to know the service industry lifers and loyal regulars at Joe’s, she is increasingly seduced by her new job. She finds acceptance in her tight-knit community and even begins a new relationship. But as the year draws to a close, Sam is increasingly pulled between the life she thought she wanted and the possibility of a different kind of future. When destructive cycles from her past threaten to consume her again, Sam must decide how much she’s willing to let go of to finally belong. A Macmillan Audio production from Flatiron Books.

    Rating: 0 out of 5 stars
    0 ratings
  • Ghost Lover: Stories
    Ghost Lover: Stories
    Ghost Lover: Stories

    Audiobook

    Ghost Lover: Stories

    byLisa Taddeo

    From Lisa Taddeo, #1 New York Times bestselling and award-winning author of Three Women and “our most eloquent and faithful chronicler of human desire” (Esquire), Ghost Lover is an electrifying collection of fearless and ferocious short stories. Behind anonymous screens, an army of cool and beautiful girls manage the dating service Ghost Lover, a forwarding system for text messages that promises to spare you the anguish of trying to stay composed while communicating with your crush. At a star-studded political fundraiser in a Los Angeles mansion, a trio of women compete to win the heart of the slick guest of honor. In a tense hospital waiting room, an inseparable pair of hard-partying friends crash into life’s responsibilities, but the magic of their glory days comes alive again at the moment they least expect it. In these nine riveting stories—which include two Pushcart Prize winners and a finalist for the National Magazine Award—Lisa Taddeo brings to life the fever of obsession, the blindness of love, and the mania of grief. Featuring Taddeo’s arresting prose that continues to thrill her legions of fans, Ghost Lover dares you to look away.

    Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
    3/5
  • Belle Greene
    Belle Greene
    Belle Greene

    Ebook

    Belle Greene

    byAlexandra Lapierre

    TARGET CONSUMER Readers of Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood, The Vanishing Half by Britt Bennet, Homegoing and Transcendent Kingdom by Yaa Gyasi, The Gilded Years by Karin Tanabe, People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks Fans of fascinating historical fiction and gripping contemporary tales  KEY SELLING POINTS Coming soon as a TV series produced by Gaumont International Closely based on a ‘stranger than fiction’ true story  Afro-American history interest  Major review coverage and marketing campaign

    Rating: 0 out of 5 stars
    0 ratings
  • Neglect
    Neglect
    Neglect

    Audiobook

    Neglect

    byKim Wozencraft

    From the bestselling author of Rush comes a redemptive story of a young mother at war on two fronts. From bestselling author Kim Wozencraft comes the story of a young mother at war on two fronts: first as a soldier in Afghanistan and then upon her return to rural Granite County, New York, where one terrible mistake threatens her family and her sanity. Erin Hill enlists in the Army Reserve in an act of desperation. She and her husband have both lost their jobs and their marriage is disintegrating. Assured that the odds of deployment are extremely low, Erin now finds herself on an Army base in the middle of a combat zone, where it’s sometimes hard to tell who the enemy is—especially when a respected sergeant turns predator. When Erin returns stateside and reunites with her family, her battle for survival truly begins. Flooded with traumatic memories, with no prospects for jobs or treatment for PTSD, her husband involved with a new woman, Erin falls into the bottle head-first. After a nearly fatal night of despair, she is swept up into a vast and indifferent bureaucracy that threatens to take her children from her—forever. Neglect is a profound story of mother love.

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • Vacationland: A Novel
    Vacationland: A Novel
    Vacationland: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Vacationland: A Novel

    byMeg Mitchell Moore

    "As sophisticated and delicious as lobster bisque." -- Amanda Eyre Ward, New York Times bestselling author of The Lifeguards and The Jetsetters Louisa has come to her parents’ house in Maine this summer with all three of her kids, a barely-written book, and a trunkful of resentment. Left behind in Brooklyn is her husband, who has promised that after this final round of fundraising at his startup he will once again pick up his share of the household responsibilities. Louisa is hoping that the crisp breeze off Penobscot Bay will blow away the irritation she is feeling with her life choices and replace it with enthusiasm for both her family and her work. But all isn’t well in Maine. Louisa’s father, a retired judge and pillar of the community, is suffering from Alzheimer’s. Louisa’s mother is alternately pretending everything is fine and not pretending at all. And one of Louisa’s children happens upon a very confusing and heartfelt letter referring to something Louisa doesn’t think her father could possibly have done. Louisa’s not the only one searching for something in Maine this summer. Kristie took the Greyhound bus from Pennsylvania with one small suitcase, $761, and a lot of baggage. She’s got a past she’s trying to outrun, a secret she’s trying to unpack, and a new boyfriend who’s so impossibly kind she can’t figure out what she did to deserve him. But she can’t keep her various lives from colliding forever. As June turns to July turns to August, secrets will be unearthed, betrayals will come to light, and both Louisa and Kristie will ask themselves what they are owed and what they owe others. A delicious summer read and an exploration of family, responsibility, ambition and loss, Vacationland is Meg Mitchell Moore at her best.

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • Tracy Flick Can't Win
    Tracy Flick Can't Win
    Tracy Flick Can't Win

    Audiobook

    Tracy Flick Can't Win

    byTom Perrotta

    From New York Times bestselling author Tom Perrotta, a pitch-perfect new satirical novel about ambition, coming-of-age in adulthood, and never really leaving high school politics behind—featuring his most iconic character of all time. Tracy Flick is a hardworking assistant principal at a public high school in suburban New Jersey. Still ambitious but feeling a little stuck and underappreciated in midlife, Tracy gets a jolt of good news when the longtime principal, Jack Weede, abruptly announces his retirement, creating a rare opportunity for Tracy to ascend to the top job. Energized by the prospect of her long-overdue promotion, Tracy throws herself into her work with renewed zeal, determined to prove her worth to the students, faculty, and School Board, while also managing her personal life—a ten-year-old daughter, a needy doctor boyfriend, and a burgeoning meditation practice. But nothing ever comes easily to Tracy Flick, no matter how diligent or qualified she happens to be. Among her many other responsibilities, Tracy is enlisted to serve on the Selection Committee for the brand-new Green Meadow High School Hall of Fame. Her male colleagues’ determination to honor Vito Falcone—a star quarterback of dubious character who had a brief, undistinguished career in the NFL—triggers bad memories for Tracy, and leads her to troubling reflections about the trajectory of her own life and the forces that have left her feeling thwarted and disappointed, unable to fulfill her true potential. As she broods on the past, Tracy becomes aware of storm clouds brewing in the present. Is she really a shoo-in for the Principal job? Is the Superintendent plotting against her? Why is the School Board President’s wife trying so hard to be her friend? And why can’t she ever get what she deserves? In classic Perrotta style, Tracy Flick Can’t Win is a sharp, darkly comic, and pitch-perfect reflection on our current moment. Flick fans and newcomers alike will love this compelling novel chronicling the second act of one of the most memorable characters of our time.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Cult Classic: A Novel
    Cult Classic: A Novel
    Cult Classic: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Cult Classic: A Novel

    bySloane Crosley

    "...anyone will enjoy listening to Sloane read her novel about Lola, a young arts-and-culture editor who mysteriously keeps running into her ex-boyfriends." -Vulture Hilariously insightful and delightfully suspenseful, Cult Classic is an original: a masterfully crafted tale of love, memory, morality, and mind control, as well as a fresh foray into the philosophy of romance. MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK of 2022 by Glamour, W, Nylon, Fortune, Lit Hub, The Millions, and more! This program is read by the author. One night in New York City’s Chinatown, a woman is at a work reunion dinner with former colleagues when she excuses herself to buy a pack of cigarettes. On her way back, she runs into a former boyfriend. And then another. And . . . another. Nothing is quite what it seems as the city becomes awash with ghosts of heartbreaks past. What would normally pass for coincidence becomes something far stranger as the recently engaged Lola must contend not only with the viability of her current relationship but the fact that both her best friend and her former boss, a magazine editor turned mystical guru, might have an unhealthy investment in the outcome. Memories of the past swirl and converge in ways both comic and eerie, as Lola is forced to decide if she will surrender herself to the conspiring of one very contemporary cult. Is it possible to have a happy ending in an age when the past is ever at your fingertips and sanity is for sale? With her gimlet eye, Sloane Crosley spins a wry literary fantasy that is equal parts must-listen and poignant portrayal of alienation. A Macmillan Audio production from MCD Books

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Counterfeit: A Novel
    Counterfeit: A Novel
    Counterfeit: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Counterfeit: A Novel

    byKirstin Chen

    INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • A REESE'S BOOK CLUB PICK “A con artist story, a pop-feminist caper, a fashionable romp . . . Counterfeit is an entertaining, luxurious read—but beneath its glitz and flash, it is also a shrewd deconstruction of the American dream and the myth of the model minority. . . . Chen is up to something innovative and subversive here." — Camille Perri, NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW Recommended by New York Times Book Review • Washington Post • People • Entertainment Weekly • USA Today • Time • Cosmopolitan • Today show • Harper’s Bazaar • Vogue • Good Housekeeping • Parade • New York Post • Town & Country • GMA.com • Buzzfeed • Goodreads • Oprah Daily • Popsugar • Bustle •  theSkimm • The Millions • and more! For fans of Hustlers and How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia, the story of two Asian American women who band together to grow a counterfeit handbag scheme into a global enterprise—an incisive and glittering blend of fashion, crime, and friendship from the author of Bury What We Cannot Take and Soy Sauce for Beginners. Money can’t buy happiness… but it can buy a decent fake. Ava Wong has always played it safe. As a strait-laced, rule-abiding Chinese American lawyer with a successful surgeon as a husband, a young son, and a beautiful home—she’s built the perfect life. But beneath this façade, Ava’s world is crumbling: her marriage is falling apart, her expensive law degree hasn’t been used in years, and her toddler’s tantrums are pushing her to the breaking point. Enter Winnie Fang, Ava’s enigmatic college roommate from Mainland China, who abruptly dropped out under mysterious circumstances. Now, twenty years later, Winnie is looking to reconnect with her old friend. But the shy, awkward girl Ava once knew has been replaced with a confident woman of the world, dripping in luxury goods, including a coveted Birkin in classic orange. The secret to her success? Winnie has developed an ingenious counterfeit scheme that involves importing near-exact replicas of luxury handbags and now she needs someone with a U.S. passport to help manage her business—someone who’d never be suspected of wrongdoing, someone like Ava. But when their spectacular success is threatened and Winnie vanishes once again, Ava is left to face the consequences. Swift, surprising, and sharply comic, Counterfeit is a stylish and feminist caper with a strong point of view and an axe to grind. Peering behind the c

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • More Than You'll Ever Know: A Novel
    More Than You'll Ever Know: A Novel
    More Than You'll Ever Know: A Novel

    Audiobook

    More Than You'll Ever Know: A Novel

    byKatie Gutierrez

    NATIONAL BESTSELLER • A GOOD MORNING AMERICA BOOK CLUB PICK "Fantastic . . . A sweeping novel, unflinching and evocative in its engrossing study of love, motherhood, sex, Mexico, journalism and more." — WASHINGTON POST "Masterful . . . Elegance, darkness, even fear are deftly intertwined . . . A wonderful read." — LUIS ALBERTO URREA, Pulitzer Prize finalist and bestselling author of The House of Broken Angels Recommended by Los Angeles Times • Washington Post • Parade • Good Housekeeping • NBC News • Goodreads • Audible • The Millions • Popsugar • Tribeza • CrimeReads • Library Reads • She Reads • and more! An evocative drama about a woman caught leading a double life after one husband murders the other, and the true-crime writer who becomes obsessed with telling her story—this masterful work of literary suspense marks the debut of an extraordinary new writer The dance becomes an affair, which becomes a marriage, which becomes a murder... In 1985, Lore Rivera marries Andres Russo in Mexico City, even though she is already married to Fabian Rivera in Laredo, Texas, and they share twin sons. Through her career as an international banker, Lore splits her time between two countries and two families—until the truth is revealed and one husband is arrested for murdering the other. In 2017, while trawling the internet for the latest, most sensational news reports, struggling true-crime writer Cassie Bowman encounters an article detailing that tragic final act. Cassie is immediately enticed by what is not explored: Why would a woman—a mother—risk everything for a secret double marriage? Cassie sees an opportunity—she’ll track Lore down and capture the full picture, the choices, the deceptions that led to disaster. But the more time she spends with Lore, the more Cassie questions the facts surrounding the murder itself. Soon, her determination to uncover the truth could threaten to derail Lore’s now quiet life—and expose the many secrets both women are hiding. Told through alternating timelines, More Than You’ll Ever Know is both a gripping mystery and a wrenching family drama. Presenting a window into the hearts of two very different women, it explores the many conflicting demands of marriage and motherhood, and the impossibility of ever truly knowing someone—especially those we love. "A seductive, urgent tale about desire, family, the pursuit of truth, and the art of storytelling, More Than You’ll Ever Know will astonish readers with its vastness, romance, tragedy, and abundant heart. I didn’t want this book to ever end." — JESSAMINE CHAN, New York Times bestselling author of The School for Good Mothers "A gripping and thoughtful exploration of motherhood and marriage, the complexity of female desire, and the consequence of our obsession with true crime . . . One of the best suspenseful dramas I’ve read in yea

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Exalted
    Exalted
    Exalted

    Ebook

    Exalted

    byAnna Dorn

    -For fans of Naoise Dolan's EXCITING TIMES and Beth Morgan's A TOUCH OF JEN -Her memoir BAD LAWYER published in 2021 by Hachette -EXALTED taps into the millennial obsession with astrology and instagram influencer culture -Hollywood and pop culture references make this very accessible and timely -VAGABLONDE was about friendships and viral fame, the focus here is on family dynamics: Dawn wants a better relationship with her son and Emily is trying to make her parents proud

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • It All Comes Down to This: A Novel
    It All Comes Down to This: A Novel
    It All Comes Down to This: A Novel

    Audiobook

    It All Comes Down to This: A Novel

    byTherese Anne Fowler

    Therese Anne Fowler's It All Comes Down to This is a warm, keenly perceptive novel of sisterhood, heartbreak, home, and what it takes to remake a life at its halfway point, for fans of Ann Patchett and Emma Straub. Meet the Geller sisters: Beck, Claire, and Sophie, a trio of strong-minded women whose pragmatic, widowed mother, Marti, will be dying soon and taking her secrets with her. Marti has ensured that her modest estate is easy for her family to deal with once she’s gone––including a provision that the family’s summer cottage on Mount Desert Island, Maine, must be sold, the proceeds split equally between the three girls. Beck, the eldest, is a freelance journalist whose marriage looks more like a sibling bond than a passionate partnership. In fact, her husband Paul is hiding a troubling truth about his love life. For Beck, the Maine cottage has been essential to her secret wish to write a novel––and to remake the terms of her relationship. Despite her accomplishments as a pediatric cardiologist, Claire, the middle daughter, has always felt like the Geller misfit. Recently divorced, Claire’s secret unrequited love for the wrong man is slowly destroying her, and she’s finding that her expertise on matters of the heart unfortunately doesn’t extend to her own. Youngest daughter Sophie appears to live an Instagram-ready life, filled with glamorous work and travel, celebrities, fashion, art, and sex. In reality, her existence is a cash-strapped house of cards that may crash at any moment. Enter C.J. Reynolds, an enigmatic southerner ex-con with his own hidden past, who complicates the situation. All is not what it seems, and everything is about to change. A Macmillan Audio production from St. Martin's Press.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • So Happy for You: A Novel
    So Happy for You: A Novel
    So Happy for You: A Novel

    Audiobook

    So Happy for You: A Novel

    byCelia Laskey

    *A PureWow Best Beach Read of Summer 2022* A wedding weekend spirals out of control in this bold, electrifying, hilarious novel about the complexities of female friendship  Robin and Ellie have been best friends since childhood. When Robin came out, Ellie was there for her. When Ellie's father died, Robin had her back. But when Ellie asks Robin to be her maid of honor, she is reluctant. A queer academic, Robin is dubious of the elaborate wedding rituals now sweeping the nation, which go far beyond champagne toasts and a bouquet toss. But loyalty wins out, and Robin accepts.  Yet, as the wedding weekend approaches, a series of ominous occurrences lead Robin to second-guess her decision. It seems that everyone in the bridal party is out to get her. Perhaps even Ellie herself.  Manically entertaining, viciously funny and eerily campy, So Happy for You is the ultimate send-up to our collective obsession with the wedding industrial complex and a riveting, unexpectedly poignant depiction of friendship in all its messy glory.

    Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
    3/5
  • Mother Ocean Father Nation: A Novel
    Mother Ocean Father Nation: A Novel
    Mother Ocean Father Nation: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Mother Ocean Father Nation: A Novel

    byNishant Batsha

    A riveting, tender debut novel, following a brother and sister whose paths diverge—one forced to leave, one left behind—in the wake of a nationalist coup in the South Pacific On a small Pacific island, a brother and sister tune in to a breaking news radio bulletin. It is 1985, and an Indian grocer has just been attacked by nativists aligned with the recent military coup. Now, fear and shock are rippling through the island’s deeply-rooted Indian community as racial tensions rise to the brink. Bhumi hears this news from her locked-down dorm room in the capital city. She is the ambitious, intellectual standout of the family—the one destined for success. But when her friendship with the daughter of a prominent government official becomes a liability, she must flee her unstable home for California. Jaipal feels like the unnoticed, unremarkable sibling, always left to fend for himself. He is stuck working in the family store, avoiding their father’s wrath, with nothing but his hidden desires to distract him. Desperate for money and connection, he seizes a sudden opportunity to take his life into his own hands for the first time. But his decision may leave him vulnerable to the island’s escalating volatility. Spanning from the lush terrain of the South Pacific to the golden hills of San Francisco, Mother Ocean Father Nation is an entrancing debut about how one family, at the mercy of a nation broken by legacies of power and oppression, forges a path to find a home once again. 

    Rating: 0 out of 5 stars
    0 ratings
  • The Reservoir
    The Reservoir
    The Reservoir

    Ebook

    The Reservoir

    byDavid Duchovny

    A former Wall Street veteran, quarantined by the coronavirus, becomes consumed with madness—or the fulfillment of his own mythic fate. "Comically absurd, funny, and very dark." —New York Journal of Books "[Duchovny’s] novella The Reservoir, set in New York City, probes how pandemic isolation has changed us." —The Boston Globe "A new, pandemic-inspired, Rear Window–esque thriller." —Village Voice “Evocative, chilly prose that wouldn’t be out of place in a late Don DeLillo novel. Like his previous novels Bucky F*cking Dent and Miss Subways, it’s a love letter to Duchovny’s native New York. But it’s also a smart story about obsession. A slim, compelling tale of a man on the brink.” —Kirkus Reviews The Reservoir follows an unexceptional man in an exceptional time. We see our present-day pandemic world and New York City through the eyes of a former Wall Street veteran, Ridley, as he looks back upon his life in his enforced quarantine solitude, wondering what it all means and who he really is. Sitting and brooding night after night, gazing out his huge picture window high above the Central Park Reservoir, Ridley spots a flashing light in an apartment across the park as if a lonely quarantined person is signaling him in Morse code. His determination to find out who this mystery woman is leads him on an epic quest that will ultimately tempt him with either delusional madness or the fulfillment of his own mythic fate. Is he a dying man going mad or an everyman metamorphosing into a hero? Or both? We accompany Ridley as he leaves the safety of his apartment window to save the Fifth Avenue femme fatale and descends into a dangerous, increasingly surreal world of global conspiracies, madness, and sickness of this viral time. As Ridley’s actions grow more and more uncharacteristic, he realizes the key to all the mysteries of now, and even all of history, seem to lie deep beneath the freezing waters of the reservoir. The Reservoir is a twisted rom-com for our distanced time, when the merest touch could kill and conspiracy theories propagate like viruses—a contemporary union of Death in Venice, Rear Window, and The Plague.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Finn
    Finn
    Finn

    Audiobook

    Finn

    byStephen King

    Meet Finn. From all appearances he’s just a regular Irish kid, living in an Irish city, but he’s exceptional in one way: He’s wildly unlucky. He was dropped at birth and nearly ripped in two by a lightning strike. Never mind the cherry bomb that blew off one of his toes when he was five or that fall from the monkey bars at age seven that left him with a broken arm. His grandmother promises his fortunes will change, that God owes him, but what are the chances of that when the author of his fate is legendary storyteller Stephen King, the undisputed master of the macabre, eerie, and plain terrifying? King sets the scene: Finn is nineteen, walking home alone at night after necking with his girlfriend. He’s exhilarated and aching with what it means to be young and alive. Then bam: Another kid who’s dressed suspiciously like him, who, in fact, looks a lot like him, runs smack into him. This is weird enough, but moments later, while he’s still rubbing a scraped elbow, a van pulls up and two men jump out and grab him. A hood is thrown over his head, there’s a needle in his arm, and he’s out. He wakes in a cell, the captive of men who think he’s got answers to give them about a briefcase full of plans, about blueprints and some bomb factory, and they are willing to go to great—and painful—lengths to get what they want from him. It’s got to be a case of mistaken identity, or is something far more sinister going on? And far more absurd? As the young man tries to save his skin, he travels through existential and psychological crises that are a signature of King’s stories. No one knows monsters—imagines monsters—like the creator of It, The Outsider, Pet Sematary, and countless other mind-bending and timeless bestsellers, but in Finn he targets a peculiarly twenty-first-century monster: men so consumed by spy and war games that they twist reality to suit their purposes. As darkly funny as it is deeply unsettling, this latest story from King pokes some serious fun at “the luck of the Irish”—or in fact counting on any kind of luck when the machinations of a few bullies and madmen can so easily and tragically upend the lives of the innocent.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The Foundling: A Novel
    The Foundling: A Novel
    The Foundling: A Novel

    Audiobook

    The Foundling: A Novel

    byAnn Leary

    From the New York Times bestselling author of The Good House, the story of two friends, raised in the same orphanage, whose loyalty is put to the ultimate test when they meet years later at a controversial institution—one as an employee; the other, an inmate. It’s 1927 and eighteen-year-old Mary Engle is hired to work as a secretary at a remote but scenic institution for mentally disabled women called the Nettleton State Village for Feebleminded Women of Childbearing Age. She’s immediately in awe of her employer—brilliant, genteel Dr. Agnes Vogel. Dr. Vogel had been the only woman in her class in medical school. As a young psychiatrist she was an outspoken crusader for women’s suffrage. Now, at age forty, Dr. Vogel runs one of the largest and most self-sufficient public asylums for women in the country. Mary deeply admires how dedicated the doctor is to the poor and vulnerable women under her care. Soon after she’s hired, Mary learns that a girl from her childhood orphanage is one of the inmates. Mary remembers Lillian as a beautiful free spirit with a sometimes-tempestuous side. Could she be mentally disabled? When Lillian begs Mary to help her escape, alleging the asylum is not what it seems, Mary is faced with a terrible choice. Should she trust her troubled friend with whom she shares a dark childhood secret? Mary’s decision triggers a hair-raising sequence of events with life-altering consequences for all. Inspired by a true story about the author’s grandmother, The Foundling offers a rare look at a shocking chapter of American history. This gripping page-turner will have readers on the edge of their seats right up to the stunning last page…asking themselves, “Did this really happen here?”

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The Long Corner
    The Long Corner
    The Long Corner

    Ebook

    The Long Corner

    byAlexander Maksik

    A bold novel about ambition, grief, creativity, beauty, and existential emptiness that retraces the arc of American life and culture in the first decades of the 21st century. It is early 2017 in New York City, Donald Trump is President, and Solomon Fields, a young Jewish journalist-turned-advertising hack, finds himself disillusioned by the hollowness and conformity of American life and language. Once brimming with dreams and ideals instilled in him by his eternally bohemian grandmother, a survivor of the Holocaust who has dedicated her life to passion and pleasure, Sol now finds the senseless jargon he produces at work seeping into all aspects of the world around him—and most disturbingly, into the art that his beloved grandmother taught him to revere. A personal tragedy drives Sol to leave New York and accept an invitation to The Coded Garden, an artists’ colony on a tropical island, whose mysterious patron, Sebastian Light, seems to offer the very escape Sol desperately needs. But the longer he remains in the Garden, the more Light comes to resemble Trump himself, and the games he plays with Sol become more dangerous. Slowly lines begin to blur—between reality and performance, sincerity and manipulation, art and life, beauty and emptiness—until Sol finds that he must question everything: his past, his convictions, and his very sanity. “Alexander Maksik is a sorcerer of the first order."—Lauren Groff, author of Fates and Furies

    Rating: 0 out of 5 stars
    0 ratings
  • Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance: A Novel
    Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance: A Novel
    Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance: A Novel

    byAlison Espach

    “Once I began listening to Jesse Vilinksy's excellent narration I was immediately swept up in the story.” – Anne Bogel, Modern Ms. Darcy From Alison Espach, author of the New York Times Editor’s Choice novel The Adults, comes a dazzlingly unconventional love story for readers of Ask Again, Yes and Tell the Wolves I’m Home. For much of her life, Sally Holt has been mystified by the things her older sister, Kathy, seems to have been born knowing. Kathy has answers for all of Sally’s questions about life, about love, and about Billy Barnes, a rising senior and local basketball star who mans the concession stand at the town pool. The girls have been fascinated by Billy ever since he jumped off the roof in elementary school, but Billy has never shown much interest in them until the summer before Sally begins eighth grade. By then, their mutual infatuation with Billy is one of the few things the increasingly different sisters have in common. Sally spends much of that summer at the pool, watching in confusion and excitement as her sister falls deeper in love with Billy—until a tragedy leaves Sally’s life forever intertwined with his. Opening in the early nineties and charting almost two decades of shared history and missed connections, Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance is both a breathtaking love story about two broken people who are unexplainably, inconveniently drawn to each other and a wryly astute coming-of-age tale brimming with unexpected moments of joy. A Macmillan Audio production from Henry Holt & Company.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The Lost Summers of Newport: A Novel
    The Lost Summers of Newport: A Novel
    The Lost Summers of Newport: A Novel

    Audiobook

    The Lost Summers of Newport: A Novel

    byBeatriz Williams

    THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER "An engrossing and sumptuous tale, this novel is a fantastic spring read." — Good Morning America From the New York Times bestselling team of Beatriz Williams, Lauren Willig, and Karen White—a novel of money and secrets set among the famous summer mansions of Newport, Rhode Island, spanning over a century from the Gilded Age to the present day. “Three stories elegantly intertwine in this clever and stylish tale of murder and family lies…This crackerjack novel offers three mysteries for the price of one.”--Publishers Weekly (starred review" 2019: Andie Figuero has just landed her dream job as a producer of Mansion Makeover, a popular reality show about restoring America’s most lavish historic houses. Andie has high hopes for her latest project: the once glorious but gently crumbling Sprague Hall in Newport, Rhode Island, summer resort of America’s gilded class—famous for the lavish “summer cottages” of Vanderbilts and Belmonts. But Andie runs into trouble: the reclusive heiress who still lives in the mansion, Lucia “Lucky” Sprague, will only allow the show to go forward on two conditions: One, nobody speaks to her. Two, nobody touches the mansion’s ruined boathouse. 1899: Ellen Daniels has been hired to give singing lessons to Miss Maybelle Sprague, a naive young Colorado mining heiress whose stepbrother John has poured their new money into buying a place among Newport’s elite. John is determined to see Maybelle married off to a fortune-hunting Italian prince, and Ellen is supposed to polish up the girl for her launch into society. But the deceptively demure Ellen has her own checkered past, and she’s hiding in plain sight at Sprague Hall. 1958: Lucia “Lucky” Sprague has always felt like an outsider at Sprague Hall. When she and her grandmother—the American-born Princess di Conti—fled Mussolini’s Italy, it seemed natural to go back to the imposing Newport house Nana owned but hadn’t seen since her marriage in 1899. Over the years, Lucky's lost her Italian accent and found a place for herself among the yachting set by marrying Stuyvesant Sprague, the alcoholic scion of her Sprague stepfamily. But one fateful night in the mansion’s old boathouse will uncover a devastating truth...and change everything she thought she knew about her past. As the cameras roll on Mansion Makeover, the house begins to yield up the dark secrets the Spragues thought would stay hidden forever….

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The Summer Place: A Novel
    The Summer Place: A Novel
    The Summer Place: A Novel

    Audiobook

    The Summer Place: A Novel

    byJennifer Weiner

    INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTELLER From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of That Summer comes another heartfelt and unputdownable novel of family, secrets, and the ties that bind. When her twenty-two-year-old stepdaughter announces her engagement to her pandemic boyfriend, Sarah Danhauser is shocked. But the wheels are in motion. Headstrong Ruby has already set a date (just three months away!) and spoken to her beloved safta, Sarah’s mother Veronica, about having the wedding at the family’s beach house in Cape Cod. Sarah might be worried, but Veronica is thrilled to be bringing the family together one last time before putting the big house on the market. But the road to a wedding day usually comes with a few bumps. Ruby has always known exactly what she wants, but as the wedding date approaches, she finds herself grappling with the wounds left by the mother who walked out when she was a baby. Veronica ends up facing unexpected news, thanks to her meddling sister, and must revisit the choices she made long ago, when she was a bestselling novelist with a different life. Sarah’s twin brother, Sam, is recovering from a terrible loss, and confronting big questions about who he is—questions he hopes to resolve during his stay on the Cape. Sarah’s husband, Eli, who’s been inexplicably distant during the pandemic, confronts the consequences of a long ago lapse from his typical good-guy behavior. And Sarah, frustrated by her husband, concerned about her stepdaughter, and worn out by challenges of life during quarantine, faces the alluring reappearance of someone from her past and a life that could have been. When the wedding day arrives, lovers are revealed as their true selves, misunderstandings take on a life of their own, and secrets come to light. There are confrontations and revelations that will touch each member of the extended family, ensuring that nothing will ever be the same. From “the undisputed boss of the beach read” (The New York Times), The Summer Place is a testament to family in all its messy glory; a story about what we sacrifice and how we forgive. Enthralling, witty, big-hearted, and sharply observed, this is Jennifer Weiner’s love letter to the Outer Cape and the power of home, the way our lives are enriched by the people we call family, and the endless ways love can surprise us.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Mustique Island: A Novel
    Mustique Island: A Novel
    Mustique Island: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Mustique Island: A Novel

    bySarah McCoy

    From bestselling author Sarah McCoy, a sun-splashed romp with a rich divorcee and her two wayward daughters in 1970s Mustique, the world’s most exclusive private island, where Princess Margaret and Mick Jagger were regulars and scandals stayed hidden from the press… It’s January 1972 but the sun is white hot when Willy May Michael’s boat first kisses the dock of Mustique Island. Tucked into the southernmost curve of the Caribbean, Mustique is a private island that has become a haven for the wealthy and privileged. Its owner is the eccentric British playboy Colin Tennant, who is determined to turn this speck of white sand into a luxurious neo-colonial retreat for his rich friends and into a royal court in exile for the Queen’s rebellious sister, Princess Margaret—one where Her Royal Highness can skinny dip, party, and entertain lovers away from the public eye. Willy May, a former beauty queen from Texas—who is also no stranger to marital scandals—seeks out Mustique for its peaceful isolation. Determined to rebuild her life and her relationships with her two daughters, Hilly, a model, and Joanne, a musician, she constructs a fanciful white beach house across the island from Princess Margaret—and finds herself pulled into the island’s inner circle of aristocrats, rock stars, and hangers-on. When Willy May’s daughters arrive, they discover that beneath its veneer of decadence, Mustique has a dark side, and like sand caught in the undertow, their mother-daughter story will shift and resettle in ways they never could have imagined. 

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Remarkably Bright Creatures: A Novel
    Remarkably Bright Creatures: A Novel
    Remarkably Bright Creatures: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Remarkably Bright Creatures: A Novel

    byShelby Van Pelt

    A Read With Jenna Today Show Book Club Pick! “Remarkably Bright Creatures is a beautiful examination of how loneliness can be transformed, cracked open, with the slightest touch from another living thing.” -- Kevin Wilson, author of Nothing to See Here For fans of A Man Called Ove, a charming, witty and compulsively readable exploration of friendship, reckoning, and hope that traces a widow's unlikely connection with a giant Pacific octopus After Tova Sullivan’s husband died, she began working the night shift at the Sowell Bay Aquarium, mopping floors and tidying up. Keeping busy has always helped her cope, which she’s been doing since her eighteen-year-old son, Erik, mysteriously vanished on a boat in Puget Sound over thirty years ago. Tova becomes acquainted with curmudgeonly Marcellus, a giant Pacific octopus living at the aquarium. Marcellus knows more than anyone can imagine but wouldn’t dream of lifting one of his eight arms for his human captors—until he forms a remarkable friendship with Tova. Ever the detective, Marcellus deduces what happened the night Tova’s son disappeared. And now Marcellus must use every trick his old invertebrate body can muster to unearth the truth for her before it’s too late.  Shelby Van Pelt’s debut novel is a gentle reminder that sometimes taking a hard look at the past can help uncover a future that once felt impossible.

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • Companion Piece: A Novel
    Companion Piece: A Novel
    Companion Piece: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Companion Piece: A Novel

    byAli Smith

    ‘A story is never an answer. A story is always a question.’ Here we are in extraordinary times. Is this history? What happens when we cease to trust governments, the media, each other? What have we lost? What stays with us? What does it take to unlock our future? Following her astonishing quartet of Seasonal novels, Ali Smith again lights a way for us through the nightmarish now, in a vital celebration of companionship in all its forms. ‘Every hello, like every voice, holds its story ready, waiting.’

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • Sensing Light
    Sensing Light
    Sensing Light

    Audiobook

    Sensing Light

    byMark A. Jacobson

    “A POWERFUL WORK OF FICTION THAT AUTHENTICALLY EVOKES THE BAD AND THE GOOD.”—Eric Goosby, MD, US Global AIDS Coordinator, 2009–13 “A MOVING STORY OF DOCTORS NAVIGATING THE INTERSECTIONS OF SUFFERING, AMBITION ANDDISCOVERY.”—Krista Bremer, My Accidental Jihad This breakout book by Mark A. Jacobson, a leading Bay Area HIV/AIDS physician, follows three people from vastly different backgrounds, who are thrown together by a shared urgency to find out what is killing so many men in the prime of their lives. Kevin, a gay medical resident from working class Boston, has moved to San Francisco in search of acceptance of his sexual identity. Herb, a middle-aged supervising physician at one of the nation’s toughest hospitals, struggles with his own emotional rigidity. And Gwen, a divorced mother raising a teen daughter, is seeking a sense of self and security while endeavoring to complete her medical training. Mark A. Jacobson, a professor of medicine at the University of California San Francisco and attending physician at San Francisco General Hospital, began his internship in 1981, just days after the CDC first reported a mysterious, fatal disease affecting gay men.

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • Hope and Glory: A Novel
    Hope and Glory: A Novel
    Hope and Glory: A Novel

    Audiobook

    Hope and Glory: A Novel

    byJendella Benson

    One of the year’s most anticipated by Marie Claire, Essence, Debutiful, & Goodreads A brilliant debut by a British-Nigerian author—a heartfelt family drama that will delight book club readers and fans of books like The Girl with the Louding Voice and Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows. “Jendella Benson has drawn such a compelling world. The book and the characters stayed with me long after I'd turned the final pages!” —Candice Carty-Williams, bestselling author of Queenie Glory Akindele returns to London from her seemingly glamorous life in LA to mourn the sudden death of her father, only to find her previously close family has fallen apart in her absence. Her brother, Victor, is in jail and won’t speak to her because she didn’t come home for his trial. Her older sister, Faith, once a busy career woman, appears to have lost her independence and ambition, and is instead channeling her energies into holding together a perfect suburban family. Worst of all, their mother, Celeste, is headed toward a breakdown after the death of her husband and the shame of her son’s incarceration. Rather than returning to America, Glory decides to stay and try to bring them all together again. It’s a tall order given that Glory’s life isn’t exactly working out according to plan either, and she’s acutely aware that she’s not so sure who she is and what she wants. A chance reunion with a man she’d known in her teens—the perceptive but elusive Julian—gives her the courage to start questioning why her respectable but obsessively private Nigerian immigrant family is the way it is. But then Glory’s questioning unearths a massive secret that shatters the family’s fragile peace—and she risks losing everyone she deeply cares about in her pursuit of the truth and a reunited family. "Filled with unexpected, but earned, twists, Hope and Glory balances moments of rich humor and devastating profundity...deeply authentic." —Kirkus Reviews "A sumptuous and satisfying meditation on family and the meaning of home.” —Publishers Weekly

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The Existence of Pity
    The Existence of Pity
    The Existence of Pity

    Audiobook

    The Existence of Pity

    byJeannie Zokan

    Growing up in a lush valley in the Andes mountains, sixteen-year-old Josie Wales is mostly isolated from the turbulence brewing in 1976 Colombia. As the daughter of missionaries, Josie feels torn between their beliefs and the need to choose for herself. She soon begins to hide things from her parents, like her new boyfriend and her explorations into different religions. Josie eventually discovers her parents’ secrets are far more insidious. When she attempts to unravel the web of lies surrounding her family, each thread stretches to its breaking point. Josie tries to save her family, but what happens if they don’t want to be saved? The Existence of Pity is a story of flawed characters told with heart and depth against the beautiful backdrop of Colombia.

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • Junket
    Junket
    Junket

    Audiobook

    Junket

    byLauren Groff

    In these over-busy, stress-rich days, what sounds better than a stay at a high-end spa, complete with a much-needed change of scenery, in a warmer, gentler spot? The heroine of this latest story from beloved bestselling author Lauren Groff is offered just that: a few all-expenses-paid days of pampering at an Arizona retreat, far from the colorless cold of late winter in her hometown of Boston. Soon she’s squinting into desert sunlight, a kind of all-encompassing brightness she’s not known in years. But relaxing is harder than it seems for Groff’s narrator, who, like so many of her unforgettable characters, is thrillingly complex and conflicted. A novelist, she’s been invited to the retreat to bring an air of intellectual sophistication—but only because a “far more famous writer” canceled at the last minute. She hasn’t had a full night’s sleep or written with any enthusiasm in months and is fresh from a breakup. Arriving with her guard up, she quickly becomes ill at ease with the wastefulness-in-the-name-of-luxury she sees around her, the complacency of the other guests—so wealthy she can barely relate to them or them to her—and the New Age spirituality on the overpriced spa menu. And yet something starts working on her. Maybe it’s the jarring beauty of the desert, the response to the reading she gives from her latest book, or even those New Age treatments she’s so suspicious of. Despite herself, her cynicism begins to soften. And as it does so, she becomes overwhelmed by what she feels—and we are drawn into the existential and psychological terrain that Groff maps with such uncanny skill, providing piercing insight after insight into what it means to live among the twenty-first century’s environmental and socioeconomic crises. In Junket, as with her recent internationally celebrated novel Matrix, she conjures a woman at a crossroads who, rather than surrender to desolation, finds renewed courage and strength via her art, a path to a creative vision all her own, confirming once again that this three-time National Book Award finalist is a master of both the sublime and the subversive.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
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