Hang the Moon, by Jeannette Walls
Sallie Kincaid is the daughter of the biggest man in a small town, the charismatic Duke Kincaid. Born at the turn of the 20th century into a life of comfort and privilege, Sallie remembers little about her mother, who died in a violent argument with the Duke. By the time she’s 8 years old, the Duke has remarried and had a son, Eddie. While Sallie is her father’s daughter, sharp-witted and resourceful, Eddie is his mother’s son, timid and cerebral. When Sallie tries to teach young Eddie to be more like their father, her daredevil coaching leads to an accident, and Sallie is cast out. Nine years later, she returns, determined to reclaim her place in the family. Sallie confronts the secrets and scandals that hide in the shadows of the Big House, navigates the factions in the family and town, and finally comes into her own as a bold, sometimes reckless bootlegger.
A Likely Story, by Leigh McMullan Abramson
The only child of an iconic American novelist discovers a shocking tangle of family secrets, upending everything she thought she knew about her parents, her gilded childhood and her own stalled writing career in this standout debut novel. Growing up in the ’90s in New York City as the only child of famous parents was both a blessing and a curse for Isabelle Manning. Her beautiful society hostess mother, Claire, and New York Times bestselling author father, Ward, were the city’s intellectual It couple. Ward’s glamorous obligations often took him away from Isabelle, but Claire made sure her childhood was filled with magic and love. Now an adult, all Isabelle wants is to be a successful writer like her father. After many false starts and the unexpected death of her mother, she faces her upcoming 35th birthday alone and on the verge of a breakdown. Her anxiety skyrockets when she uncovers some shocking truths about her parents and begins wondering if everything she knew about her family was all based on an elaborate lie.
Community Board, by Tara Conklin
Where does one go, you might ask, when the world falls apart? When the immutable facts of your life — the mundane, the trivial, the take-for-granted minutiae that once filled every second of every day — suddenly disappear? Where does one go in such dire and unexpected circumstances? Home, of course. Darcy Clipper, prodigal daughter, nearly 30, has returned home to Murbridge, Massachusetts, after her life takes an unwelcome left turn. Murbridge, Darcy is convinced, will welcome her home and provide a safe space in which she can nurse her wounds and harbor grudges, both real and imagined. But Murbridge, like so much else Darcy thought to be fixed and immutable, has changed. And while Darcy’s first instinct might be to hole herself up in her childhood bedroom, subsisting on Chef Boyardee and canned chickpeas, it is human nature to do two things: seek out meaningful human connection and respond to anonymous internet postings. As Murbridge begins to take shape around Darcy, both online and in person, she asks herself: What can she expect of her community? And what does she owe it in return?
The Gospel of Orla, by Eoghan Walls
In this stunning debut novel from the Northern Irish poet, The Gospel of Orla is the coming-of-age story of a young girl, Orla, and the man she meets who has an astonishing and unique ability. It is also a road novel that takes us across the north of England after the two flee Orla’s village together, and the mysteries of faith charge full bore into the vagaries of contemporary mores.
The Three Little Guinea Pigs, by Erica Perl
Oh, my, cuteness overload! This charming retelling of the classic tale will have every guinea pig lover squeaking for joy at the three piggies’ clever antics. The fun facts at the end really amp up the “awwww” factor. (Ages 3-8.)
When Sea Becomes Sky, by Gillian McDunn
When you live near a salt marsh, a boat, no matter how tiny, is a ticket to freedom. For Bex, her rowboat is where she feels closest to her brother, Davey, and where she begins to see how art and life and personal passion intersect. When Sea Becomes Sky is destined to join the canon of summer must-reads. (Ages 9-12.)
Heroes of Havensong : Dragonboy, by Megan Reyes
This debut novel follows four children — a boy turned dragon; his reluctant dragon rider; a runaway witch; and a young soldier — bound together by the fates themselves to save their world, and magic itself, from being destroyed. Perfect for Wings of Fire fans looking for a new series. (Ages 9-12.)
Outdoor School: Tree, Wildflower, and Mushroom Spotting, by Mary Kay Carson
How do you know if that weed growing in your backyard actually is common liverwort? Does stinging nettle really sting? How do you recognize poison ivy? Find out all this and more in the newest edition of outdoor school. (Ages 8-13.) PS
Compiled by Kimberly Daniels Taws and Angie Tally.