New and Known | Wyatt’s World

July brings an exciting mix of debut novels and key authors. Works from longtime favorites to new names of note, these books promise an engrossing month of entertainment. Here are five suggestions that will please a range of readers.

  • The Windfall by Diksha Basu (Crown).
    This buzzy debut, praised for its warmth and comedy, explores the lives of the one percent in modern-day India. Mr. Jha suddenly makes a great deal of money selling his business and moves his family from the world of the middle class to that of the superrich, only to learn lessons about belonging.
  • The Waking Land by Callie Bates (Del Rey: Ballantine).
    Blending fantasy with romance, this first novel firmly ensnares readers in the lavish story of Elanna Valtai, a woman infused with magic she has been taught to suppress. A June LibraryReads pick, it is being compared to Naomi Novik’s Uprooted.
  • The Late Show by Michael Connelly (Little, Brown).
    Sure-bet author Connelly gifts readers with a new series featuring a new character, Det. Renée Ballard. She works the night shift for the LAPD and is expected to turn her cases over each morning—then she catches two she won’t give up. This well-plotted and deeply characterized procedural is a great place to start for readers who have yet to discover the work of this modern master of crime.
  • The Lying Game by Ruth Ware (Scout: Gallery).
    Ware exemplifies how quickly a fan-favorite author can move from new to known. Her third book, after the blockbuster hits In a Dark, Dark Wood and The Woman in Cabin 10, is another chiller. Here, four friends from boarding school invent a lying game and reconvene years later with circumstances of dark suspicion following in their wake. [A July LibraryReads pick.—Ed.]
  • When the English Fall by David Williams (Algonquin).
    Newcomer Williams offers a fresh take on the apocalypse story. Who would survive a changed world better than most? The Amish, perhaps, who are already accustomed to living without electricity and able to thrive in a preindustrial setting. In the chaos of catastrophe, it doesn’t take long for the non-Amish to see the possibilities and invade the peaceful community. [A July LibraryReads pick.—Ed.]
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Neal Wyatt About Neal Wyatt

Neal Wyatt compiles LJ's online feature Wyatt's World and is the author of The Readers' Advisory Guide to Nonfiction (ALA Editions, 2007). She is a collection development and readers' advisory librarian from Virginia. Those interested in contributing to The Reader's Shelf should contact her directly at

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