Deliciously unsettling, Leave the World Behind is best approached without any foreknowledge of the plot. Just flip to the first page and let the author take you on a finely observed journey from banality to horror. --Elese
Since moving to rural Japan, Asa spends her long summer days waiting for her husband to come home from work. In his absence she naps, cleans, cooks, and listens to the cicadas. Succumbing to restlessness, she decides to explore the town and is faced with an assortment of surreal goings-on. A wonderfully bizarre tale of the insanity of daily life, The Hole is both unbelievable and relatable. --Lucia
Never have I read a book that so deeply spoke to my sense of self like Spoiler Alert. This sexy rom-com follows April, a self-identified fat woman who catches the eye of Hollywood dreamboat Marcus. Not only will April and Marcus’ chemistry blow you away, but so will their honest and open communication that serves as the foundation of their relationship. Olivia Dade gracefully tackles anxiety, fat phobia, and internalized shame in an accessible way that left me in tears, as well as peals of laughter. Spoiler Alert is a tour de force that I implore everyone to read, romance reader or not. --Genni
In one of the most compelling and personal novels I've read this year, Memorial tells the complicated love story of Mike and Benson. On the surface, they're polar opposites, but their connection cuts deep, forcing them both to examine what it means to be home. With razor sharp humor, heartbreaking truths, and multi-dimensional characters that fly off the page, Bryan Washington's novel is a virtuosic triumph. As I shed tears through the last pages, I only wished I could live in this story for a little bit longer. I suspect readers across the country will devour it as quickly as I did. --Gage
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