50 Books We Are Looking Forward to in the Second Half of 2016 – Part 4

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  1. You know that we like our authentic American voices here at Bookmunch – we’re thinking Cormac McCarthy, of course, but also Daniel Woodrell and up and comer Donald Ray Pollock, and Ron Rash almost falls into this group. His latest, Above the Waterfall, concerns a sheriff, weeks away from retirement, who is drawn into an environmental crime that lays bare tensions in the town in which he lives…
  2. “A psychedelic road trip recounted in beautifully crafted prose that pulses with frenetic energy”? “Inspired by the likes of Carlos Castaneda and Hunter S Thompson”? (How could it not be, right?) Dodge and Burn by Serafina Madsen is one of those debuts that we are eagerly looking forward to and keeping our fingers crossed for.
  3. So prescient that Richard T Kelly could market himself as a psychic, The Knives tells the story of “Home Secretary, David Blaylock [whose] daily work involves the control of Britain’s borders, the oversight of her police force, and the struggle against domestic terror threats. Some say the job is impossible; Blaylock insists he is tough enough. But around Westminster the gossip-mongers say his fiery temper is a liability…”
  4. Meanwhile those nice people at And Other Stories, have “gathered for the first time in English” a career-spanning collection of Enrique Vila-Matas’s finest short stories with Vampire in Love. Joanna Kavenna calls him “Arguably Spain’s most significant contemporary literary figure”, and who are we to argue?
  5. What’s that you say? You need to know about more graphic novels? Well okay then. Novelist Deborah Levy and graphic novel superstar Andrzej Klimowski (read The Depository or The Secret to see what we mean) have collaborated on Stardust Nation,  which concerns one Nikos Gazidis, who “is suffering from a strange psychiatric condition: he seems to have unwittingly crashed into the consciousness of his boss…” We quite literally do not need to know one more thing to be excited about this…
  6. If you read Rob Davis’ The Motherless Oven then you already have reason enough to look forward to The Can Opener’s Daughter, the second part of the trilogy. This time out, “the book takes us from her home in Parliament to suicide school, and from the Bear Park to the black woods that lie beyond…”
  7. Winner of the Glass Key award, the Danish Debutants award and the Harald Mogensen Prize for Best Danish Crime Novel, Thomas Rydahl’s The Hermit arrives on these shores showered in plaudits and drawing comparisons with the likes of Paul Auster.
  8. Charlie Davis forgets her pain by cutting herself. Oh God you might think. Another misery memoir. But hold your horses because in fact this is Girl in Pieces, the debut novel by Kathleen Glasgow, a book that took eight years to write and which is being praised on the other side of the pond for being both vivid and devastating.
  9. Another writer we’ve liked for a long, long time, Mary Gaitskill is back with The Mare, which promises to be “a heartbreakingly honest and profoundly moving portrait of the nearly unbridgeable gaps between people, and the way we long for fairytale endings despite knowing that they don’t exist…”
  10. We reviewed the first volume of Riad Sattouf’s graphic memoir, The Arab of the Future, earlier this year and we are happy as clams that the second volume is going to be following so hard on its heels. Look out for the review in October…

 

And in our fifth and final 50 Books We Are Looking Forward to in the Second Half of 2016 we get a bit sneaky and tell you about a new Jonathan Lethem and a new Michael Chabon (which probably won’t be out in the UK until 2017 but which you could, you know, buy from the States like we will) as well as new Tom Gauld and Teju Cole and also the longest book on our 50 books list…


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