10 Books We Can’t Wait to Read in May
From a gripping legal thriller by voting rights activist Stacey Abrams to beach-ready reads about wedding planners and gay uncles, here are ten books we can’t wait to get our hands on this May.
1. While Justice Sleeps: A Novel by Stacey Abrams
No, Stacey Abrams isn’t just a lauded voting rights activist; she’s also a bestselling author on the side, and she’s back with another thriller set within the walls of the Supreme Court. The novel follows Avery, a brilliant young law clerk for the legendary Justice Howard Wynn. When Wynn slips into a coma, Avery is notified that she’s been selected to serve as his legal guardian and power of attorney, and her life turns upside down. Plunged into a role she never anticipated, Avery is unwittingly thrown into a conspiracy that infiltrates the highest power corridors of Washington.
2. Olympus, Texas by Stacey Swann
Weaving elements of classical mythology into a thoroughly modern family saga, Olympus, Texas centers on the Briscoe family, once again the talk of their small town when the prodigal son, March, returns years after he was caught having an affair with his brother's wife. Within days of March's arrival, someone is dead, marriages are upended and even the strongest of alliances are shattered.
3. The Hunting Wives by May Cobb
What happens when a group of housewives gets bored with the monotony of their comfortable, if quiet, lives? Weird stuff, apparently. The newest from Cobb (Big Woods) centers on Sophie, a young woman who’s left behind a stressful yet fulfilling career in Chicago to settle down with her husband and young son in a small Texas town. It should feel idyllic, but she soon realizes life is now too quiet. That is, until she takes up with a socialite who’s part of an elite clique secretly known as the Hunting Wives. Suddenly, Sophie is swept into the mysterious world of late-night target practice and dangerous partying. Then, the body of a teenage girl is discovered in the woods where the Hunting Wives meet, and everything changes.
4. Strange Children by Sadie Hoagland
In a polygamist commune in the desert, a 14-year-old boy and a 12-year-old girl fall in love and consummate their relationship, breaking religious law. They’re caught, and a year later she gives birth to his father's child while the boy commits murder four hundred miles away. Told by eight adolescent narrators, Strange Children is about how people use faith to justify cruelty and how redemption can come from unexpected places.
5. The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave
The latest from bestselling author Dave (Eight Hundred Grapes) is about the mysterious disappearance of a man who, before he goes missing, slips a note to his beloved wife of one year: Protect Her, it says. The note refers to the man’s teenage daughter, who wants absolutely nothing to do with her new stepmother. But when stepmother and daughter set out to solve the mystery, they quickly realize they're also building a new future that neither of them could have anticipated.
6. Yes, Daddy by Jonathan Parks-Ramage
Jonah is a struggling playwright new to New York City who begins an affair with a glamorous Pulitzer Prize-winning colleague. When summer arrives, Jonah joins his older lover at his sprawling estate in the Hamptons, where a fancy group of artist friends are served by a waitstaff of young, attractive gay men, many of whom have ugly bruises. Soon, Jonah is cast out of the circle and a sinister underlay begins to emerge, hurtling Jonah toward a decisive revenge that will shape the rest of his life.
7. The Guncle by Steven Rowley
Early beach read alert. Former sitcom star Patrick, or Gay Uncle Patrick (GUP, for short), has always loved his niece and nephew. He cherishes their visits to Palm Springs, but a week is usually more than enough quality time. Then, tragedy strikes and Patrick finds himself suddenly taking on the role of primary guardian. Quickly realizing that parenting—even if temporary—isn't solved with treats and jokes, Patrick's eyes are opened to a new sense of responsibility.
8. Secrets of Happiness by Joan Silber
From a master of family dramas comes this new one about a young lawyer in New York who learns that his father has long kept a second family living in Queens. In the aftermath, each family member is caught in their own complicated journey, as they come to terms with who they are and what they believe in. Taking place over three continents, Secrets of Happiness is about surprise loyalties, love triangles and how a family can tap into a reservoir of inner strength.
9. Unsettled Ground by Claire Fuller
At 51-one years old, twins Jeanie and Julius still live with their mother, Dot, in the English countryside. But when Dot dies unexpectedly, the world they’ve so carefully created begins to fall apart. Seeing a new future, Julius is torn between the loyalty he feels towards his sister and his desire for independence, while Jeanie struggles to find work and a home for them both. And just when it seems there might be a way forward, a series of startling secrets from their mother’s past come to the surface, forcing the twins to question who they are, and everything they know of their family’s history.
10. It Had to Be You by Georgia Clark
Anyone else feeling desperate for an escape from reality in the form of a book? Same, which is why we're positively jazzed about Clark’s latest, about a Brooklyn wedding planner who dies unexpectedly, and instead of leaving half of the business to his wife and business partner, leaves his share to…his much younger mistress. Chaos and hilarity ensue.