Notable books: July 2011

July is upon us, a month about which I’m particularly excited because (as I may have mentioned before, I’ll be taking part in the panel on reading short stories at the ShortStoryVille festival in Bristol on the 16th. For now, though, here’s a selection of the new books that have caught my attention this month:

Ben Brooks, Grow Up

When Téa Obreht won the Orange Prize, the fact that she was just 24 when her book was published attracted some comment. Well, Ben Brooks is 19; I am curious to see what this coming-of-age tale is like.

Enrique de Hériz, The Manual of Darkness

A magician is going blind as he searches for the secrets of a Victorian master pickpocket. Novels about magic tend to intrigue me, and this is no exception.

Helen FitzGerald, The Donor

This promises an interesting expolartion of ethical issues, as a single father finds both his daughters needing a new kidney–and he’s a match for their rare organ type.

Keigo Higashino, The Devotion of Suspect X

The UK publisher’s blurb for this Japanese bestseller is exceptionally cagey, promising a puzzling crime and surprise ending, whilst giving almost nothing in the way of detail. But it’s worked, and made me curious about the book.

Ryan David Jahn, The Dispatcher

I really enjoyed Jahn’s debut, Acts of Violence (recently published in the US as Good Neighbors), but for some unfathomable reason, I’ve never got around to reading his follow-up, Low Life–I must rectify that at some point. Anyway, this is the author’s third novel, about a police dispatcher seeking to rescue his missing daughter; I’d anticipate Jahn putting an interesting twist on the material.

M.D. Lachlan, Fenrir

Sequel to the excellent Wolfsangel, this moves Lachlan’s Viking fantasy to Paris a hundred years later.

Alice LaPlante, Turn of Mind

This could be  powerful: a novel about a former surgeon with Alzheimer’s who is suspected of killing her best friend.

Amos Oz, Scenes from Village Life

I’ve never read Oz before, but this does sound interesting– a set of linked stories mysterious happenings in an Israeli village.

Jonathan Trigell, Genus

From the author of Boy A comes a novel of a near future in which genetic enhancements are readily available to anyone who can afford them. I’m always interested in mainstream-published speculative fiction, so this goes on my reading list.

2 Comments

  1. Really enjoyed The Devotion of Suspect X. Hope you do to. And I’ve been curious about Wolfsangel for a while now. Must check it out.

  2. David Hebblethwaite

    2nd July 2011 at 12:42 pm

    Now I’ve gone and read your review of Suspect X, I’m even more curious about it! Definitely read Wolfsangel; it is a cut above the average epic fantasy.

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