RaveLibrary JournalWhitehead has fun and shows off his literary dexterity with this rollicking crime novel set in 1960s Harlem ... As a writer, Whitehead is in full command, seamlessly populating his story with lovingly recounted period details. The stakes here aren’t as high, or the subject matter as heavy, as in his two recent masterworks, but Whitehead’s mystery explores the intersections of Black class mobility, civil unrest, and New York City in an entertaining way ... Another can’t-miss from the versatile Whitehead.
MixedLibrary JournalThis latest from Wang (Family Trust) takes the spy novel into Silicon Valley, with mixed results. Having been placed in an orphanage by her widowed mother, Julia Lerner is hand-picked by Leo Guskov of Russia’s State Protection Bureau for the express purpose of infiltrating an American tech giant ... Julia’s clandestine data breaches spark the interest of Alice Lu, a Tangerine worker bee who isn’t sure why the head of her company is being flagged during a routine server checkup and is less sure how hard she should try to find out. Wang’s novel is at its penetrating best during these chapters, with trenchant observations on cultural assimilation and the role of women in the tech economy. The tradecraft is less compelling, playing out in a predictable way ... A smart character study for fans of Dave Eggers’s The Circle looking for a different perspective.
PositiveLibrary Journal... a delicious love letter to language that readers of a sympathetic palate will devour ... Buried beneath the torrents of puns and linguistic riffing is a story about two people from different eras connected by the thread of language, free to invent and repurpose words as they please, but who are less adept at navigating that far more indefinable terrain: the human heart ... Expect sharply divided opinions here, but devoted fans of Ali Smith will gleefully succumb to Williams’s tale of acrobatic wordplay.
David Heska Wanbli Weiden
PositiveLibrary JournalWeiden’s series launch sheds much-needed light on the legal and societal barriers facing Native Americans while also delivering a suspenseful thriller that builds to a bloody climax. A worthy addition to the burgeoning canon of indigenous literature.
PositiveLibrary Journal...unnerving ... This doesn’t register quite as indelibly as Moshfegh’s earlier novels, as Vesta is not as compelling as Eileen’s title heroine or the unnamed protagonist of My Year of Rest and Relaxation. Still, recommended for fans of the author, as well as Iain Reid’s I’m Thinking of Ending Things.
RaveNew York Journal of BooksThe Fault in Our Stars feels like the stakes have been raised, a swing for the fences that tackles big themes (life, love, and death) and succeeds. Mr. Green takes a potentially mawkish premise and delivers an honest, immediate, and deeply resonant story, one deserving of its status as a future classic ... In case you worry that this will be a four-hankie, Nicholas Sparks-style sapfest, Hazel’s self-awareness will quickly dispel that notion (though you should still keep the hankies) ...
Augustus and Hazel’s relationship forms the heart of the book, and their scene following their first encounter with Van Houten is maybe the best of its kind that I’ve read in many years in a book aimed at teenagers.
Mr. Green’s empathetic portrayals have been a hallmark of all his fiction, but Hazel and Augustus are his two best creations. Deeply thoughtful and hyper-literate[.]
Helene Tursten, Trans. by Marlaine Delargy
MixedLibrary JournalIn this second thriller featuring DI Embla Nyström...Swedish author Tursten deepens the characterization of her 28-year-old series lead ... The novel’s first half often struggles with pacing, as the crimes mount and the focus bounces around various Strömstad authorities who try to determine how these crimes are linked. Once Embla asserts herself as the primary investigator, the story finds its rhythm, and Tursten guides it through a series of satisfying twists and turns ... Tursten’s novels aren’t nearly as bleak or as humorless as others in the genre
T. Marie Vandelly
MixedLibrary JournalThere\'s a character in this engaging but somewhat repetitive debut who talks about a \'blood bucket,\' the amount of violence one can take before it tips over. For fans of A.J. Finn\'s The Woman in the Window with sufficiently large buckets, this twist-filled story will be mostly eagerly welcomed.