50 Books We’re Looking Forward to in 2022 (Part 3)

  1. Having completed her seasonal quartet (feel free to dally and read our thoughts on Autumn,  Winter, Spring and Summer, respectively) Ali Smith is now back with Companion Piece which instantly makes us think – companion piece to the seasonal quartet? All we know so far is it’s: “A celebration of companionship in all its timeless and contemporary, legendary and unpindownable, spellbinding and shapeshifting forms…”
  2. With her last novel, Reasons to be Cheerful winning both the Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize for Comic Fiction and the Comedy Women in Print Award, we have high hopes for Nina Stibbe’s newbie, One Day I Will Astonish the World. You can sense the kinship between Stibbe and Nick Hornby (who adapted her book, Love Nina for the telly) and so expect gentle comedy, gentle existential crisis and probably a few profound truths along the way.
  3. We know you can hardly swing a cat for authors resurrecting classical stories and setting them in a modern setting lately, but that isn’t what Lara Williams is up to with her latest novel, The Odyssey. which is set aboard a cruise ship and involves an employee mentorship scheme and a lifestyle guru among other things. How long can it be before Ben Wheatley adapts one of her books for the screen? C’mon, Ben!
  4. We loved Fleischman is in Trouble (“bursting with verve” we said) and so news of a new Taffy Brodesser-Akner has had us excited for a while now (it did sort of look to be scheduled in for this year and then seems to have been pushed back). Long Island Compromise feels like an inverted Patty Hearst story with a wealthy business man forced to re-evaluate what happened when he was kidnapped some thirty years previously. Can. Not. Wait. For. This.
  5. Doesn’t it feel like ages since Gold Fame Citrus was published? It’s been about five years by our reckoning so we are stoked to welcome to the stage, I Love You But I’ve Chosen Darkness, a novel that sees Claire Vaye Watkins confronting ghosts in the Mojave desert. Jenny Offill says the book is “startlingly original, hilarious and harrowing by turns” – and that is recommendation enough for us.
  6. World Record Holders promises to be “a career spanning collection” of work by Guy Delisle. We don’t know if this means it’s a sort of primer for readers who have yet to discover the lovely genius of Delisle or a compendium or lots of things that have not been published before. We secretly hope it’s the latter but, you know what? If it’s a collection of stuff we’ve read before that’s fine because any day with a Delisle comic in it is a day well spent.
  7. Those nice Galley Beggar people are bringing us After Sappho by Selby Wynn Schwartz in 2022 – over to them for all you need to know: “Sarah Bernhard – Colette – Eleanora Duse – Lina Poletti – Josephine Baker – Virginia Woolf… these are just a few of the women (some famous, others hitherto unsung) sharing the pages of a novel as fierce as it is luminous. Lush and poetic; furious and funny; in After Sappho, Selby Wynn Schwartz has created a novel that celebrates the women and trailblazers of the past – and also offers hope for our present, and our futures.”
  8. The first graphic novelist ever to be nominated for the Booker Prize with his book, Sabrina, Nick Drnaso is back with Acting Class – “a tapestry of disconnect, distrust, and manipulation” in which 10 strangers come together (presumably in an acting class, we’re thinking). “Exploring the tension between who we are and how we present, Drnaso cracks open his characters’ masks and takes us through an unsettling American journey…”
  9. There may not be much we need to say about our second Galley Beggar book in this particular 10: Malarkoi by Alex Pheby. It’s the sequel to Mordew. As Stan Lee was given to saying: nuff said.
  10. Last but not least for today, Illuminations by Alan Moore. Having retired from comics in order to settle down to fiction in his dotage, Moore is choosing to follow his epic Jerusalem with a collection of short stories. The short stories will, in turn, pre-empt a five volume fantasy extravaganza. The man is bursting with fiction, apparently, and we can’t wait to start reading it.

Look out for Part 4 of 50 Books We’re Looking Forward to in 2022 tomorrow – featuring new books from the likes of TC Boyle, Elif Batuman, CJ Box and Sandra Newman. 

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