What You Missed Wednesday | April 24
By: Em Perper
We’re baaaaaack! Throughout this week’s What You Missed Wednesday, I featured a number of works in translation. We’re almost halfway through 2018, which means we’re halfway through Read Broader! If you’re unfamiliar with Read Broader, Curious Iguana’s self-guided reading initiative to get you out of your literary comfort zones, click here to check out our recommended reading list and stop by the store for a suggestion or two. And don’t forget to celebrate Independent Bookstore Day with us this Saturday, 4/28. We have a day of book signings, bookish exclusives, and giveaways planned–you won’t want to miss it.
Blackfish City by Sam J. Miller (Ecco/HarperCollins, $22.99)
A wholly fantastic vision of a climate-ravaged future, set in a floating city in the Arctic Circle party to corruption and crime, whose only hope is a woman who arrives riding on an orca.
The Comedown by Rebekah Frumkin (Henry Holt & Co./Macmillan, $27)
Dark humor, suspense, and fascinating characters dominates this novel about two dissimilar families—one Jewish, the other Black—enmeshed after a drug deal goes awry.
The Girl Who Never Read Noam Chomsky by Jana Casale (Knopf/PRH, $26.95)
Leda wants to want to read Noam Chomsky, but there’s so much going on in her life. Isn’t there always? Thanks to Casale’s astute, funny observations about contemporary womanhood, you’ll gladly follow Leda’s coming-of-age. Named by Kirkus one of “11 Debuts You Should Pay Attention To.”
Futureface: A Family Mystery, an Epic Quest, and the Secret to Belonging by Alex Wagner (OneWorld/PRH, $28)
Genealogical intrigue spurs journalist Alex Wagner to dig into her mixed-race family background and question the constructs of race, ethnicity, and boundaries.
Disoriental by Negar Djavadi/trans. Tina Kover (Europa/IPS, $18)
Complex but utterly enjoyable, this family saga offers insight into the contemporary history of Iran through the eyes of protagonist Kimia Sadr, “queer punk-rock aficionado and storyteller extraordinaire.”
The Desert and Its Seed by Jorge Baron Biza/trans. Camilo Ramirez (New Directions/W.W. Norton, $15.95)
A slim but harrowing transcontinental novel of love gone violently wrong, based on the true story of a wealthy Argentinian writer/politician and his wife.
The Feather Thief: Beauty, Obsession, and the Natural History Heist of the Century by Kirk Wallace Johnson (Viking/PRH, $27)
When Kirk Wallace Johnson learned about the 20-year-old American who broke into a British museum to steal priceless fly-fishing feathers, he was rightfully intrigued. Johnson’s search for insight into the thief’s motivations will take him around the world and into the depths of his own obsession.
Theory of Bastards by Audrey Schulman (Europa/IPS, $18)
Literary sci-fi contends with the blurry line between animal and human. Kirkus Reviews describes ToB as “if Philip K. Dick and Ann Patchett wrote a collaborative novel” about “technology and survival, sex and love.”
How to Write an Autobiographical Novel: Essays by Alexander Chee (Mariner Books/Houghton Mifflin, $15.99)
Bust out a pencil, because you’ll want to underline and circle your favorite parts of this much-anticipated essay collection. Topics include sexuality, drag, race, family lore and love, and, of course, writing.
Banthology: Stories from Banned Nations ed. Sarah Cleave (Deep Vellum Publishing/IPS, $14.95)
Arablit praises the “black humor, islamo-futurism, fantasy, and painful realities” presented in this collection, written by seven authors from the Muslim-majority countries Donald Trump denounced in an executive order in 2017.
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