The biggest titles coming in August? Martin Amis’s Lionel Asbo, Benjamin Black’s Vengeance, Sherilyn Kenyon’s Time Untime, Laura Lippman’s And When She Was Good, Kathy Reichs’s Flash and Bones, and Maria Semple’s Where’d You Go, Bernadette (classic summer reading); Paul Auster’s Winter Journal and Kati Marton’s Paris: A Love Story; and four terrific first novels: Peter Heller’s The Dog Stars, Jay Caspian Kang’s The Dead Do Not Improve, Vaddey Ratner’s In the Shadow of the Banyan, and M.L. Stedman’s The Light Between Oceans.
And September? T.C. Boyle’s San Miguel, Michael Chabon’s Telegraph Avenue, Lee Child’s A Wanted Man, Juno Díaz’s This Is How You Lose Her, Jonathan Evison’s The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving, Kevin Powers’s The Yellow Birds, J.K. Rowling’s The Casual Vacancy, and Zadie Smith’s NW (well, that was easy), not to mention Damien Echols’s Life After Death, Jonathan Kozol’s Fire in the Ashes, D.T. Max’s Every Love Story Is a Ghost Story: A Life of David Foster Wallace, Salman Rushdie’s Joseph Anton: A Memoir, and Jeffrey Toobin’s The Oath.
Why am I backtracking? Just as it’s important to preview books well in advance, especially as we’re seeing galleys earlier than ever, in paper or electronic form, it’s also important to know what’s sifting out as the best of the best once pub date approaches. Starting next month, I’ll offer what’s-hot wrap-ups on almost-there publications (with my reasons) and monthly metadata-rich Excel spreadsheets, counting down to publication date, so that you can track what’s in the wings.