This autumn, we’re excited to reunite with some of our favorite sleuths (The Thursday Murder Club! Slough House!) and read intriguing mystery debuts from Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother author Amy Chua and The Love Witch director Anna Biller.
This autumn, we’re excited to reunite with some of our favorite sleuths (The Thursday Murder Club! Slough House!) and read intriguing mystery debuts from Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother author Amy Chua and The Love Witch director Anna Biller.
This fall, we’ll be cozying up to Katee Robert’s pirate romance, Alexis Hall’s most ambitious love story yet and an entire sleigh’s worth of holiday rom-coms.
This fall, we’ll be cozying up to Katee Robert’s pirate romance, Alexis Hall’s most ambitious love story yet and an entire sleigh’s worth of holiday rom-coms.
This season, we can’t wait to read the adult debuts of iconic YA authors like Cassandra Clare and see what new delights rising stars like Freya Marske have cooked up. All that, and a new Murderbot novel too!
This season, we can’t wait to read the adult debuts of iconic YA authors like Cassandra Clare and see what new delights rising stars like Freya Marske have cooked up. All that, and a new Murderbot novel too!

Discover your next great book!

BookPage is a discovery tool for readers, highlighting the best new books across all genres. BookPage is editorially independent; only books we highly recommend are featured.

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Fat Talk 

With the rise of the body positivity movement, many parents have asked, “How do I raise my child to love their body, eat healthy foods without demonizing sweets and navigate all of the negative talk about the sizes of bodies?” Most parents don’t know, because they’ve also grown up in a fatphobic society swarming with confusing advice and thin privilege. That’s where journalist Virginia Sole-Smith’s new book, Fat Talk comes in.

‘Fat Talk’ gives tons of helpful advice for navigating food and provides conversation starters to help unpack fatphobia with your child, no matter their size.

Sole-Smith presents research about how diet culture is promoted by Instagram influencers, doctors and pharmaceutical companies, all seeking to make a dollar. She also uncovers ample evidence that proves dieting doesn’t work, except as a strategy to blame the individual instead of society’s marginalization of larger, fat bodies. Rebalancing the narrative, she argues, will target the real problems, instead of shaming and harming children. It even helps the parent resolve complications they have with their own bodies.

In addition to its science-based debunking of diet culture, Fat Talk gives tons of helpful advice for navigating food and provides conversation starters to help unpack fatphobia with your child, no matter their size. It also includes a list of resources for parents including picture and middle-grade books, memoirs, podcasts, newsletters, movies and television shows and other resources.

Calm the Chaos

Pulling from her own experiences as both a mother of a child who doesn’t quite fit the mold and a teacher, Dayna Abraham’s book, Calm the Chaos is about empowering parents of children who need extra emotional, physical and developmental support. Abraham presents a five-stage framework that helps parents navigate and quell the storm. Each stage has been broken down into manageable chunks, often with illustrations; Abraham knows the parents who need her help do not have a lot of free time.

In a conversational and relatable way, Abraham helps families create safety through love for their high-needs child so each member can move from surviving to thriving. Every chapter includes lists of questions that help assess your current needs, actionable steps to put into practice based on where you are with your child and notes that relieve any shame that may come up as you assess your family’s needs.

Abraham knows the parents who need her help do not have a lot of free time.

Abraham provides real stories about real children who have benefited from her approach, giving the reader examples to draw from as they begin implementing the strategies in the book. Calm the Chaos will be a fabulous tool for anyone seeking to give their child the power to be who they were born to be.

Erasing the Finish Line

Most parents have worried about how to prepare their children for leaving the nest and finding a successful life of their own. In Erasing the Finish Line by early career development expert Ana Homayoun, parents are encouraged to let go of the made-up finish line at high school graduation and college admissions. As an academic advisor, Homayoun has helped countless young people figure out a new blueprint for success by building core competencies that will benefit them throughout their lives. Though they may lead to academic success, these core competencies aren’t structured around test scores and GPAs. Instead, Homayoun’s method crafts a blueprint based on the individual child’s goals. She encourages parents to instead teach their children how to organize, plan, prioritize, adapt, start and complete tasks. These skills will get older children through young adulthood and are important for long term success in any job or role.

Young people in their teens and early twenties are experiencing anxiety, depression and adjustment disorders at alarming rates, a fact that Homayoun says is contributed to by the intense focus on admissions to the “right” school. Erasing the Finish Line is a delightful read that functions as a handbook for loving and accepting your child just as they are. Only when our children feel an unconditional sense of acceptance can they find real success.

Growing Up in Public 

Many parents struggle to have healthy boundaries around technology, let alone help their children navigate the complex landscape of social media, texting and access to potentially harmful content. Growing Up in Public by Devorah Heitner, Ph.D. offers a wealth of relatable information, and will steer parents away from simply monitoring the ways children use technology, arguing instead for a mentorship approach that will guide children through the many landmines it can create for us.

Readers will walk away with a wealth of proactive strategies to prevent potential harm for their children who are engaging in the digital world.

From strategies rooted in trust versus surveillance, character building versus shaming and consent versus boundary crossing, Growing Up in Public gives parents a gentle guide on how to keep lines of communication open between them and their child.

Heitner’s gentleness shines in her writing. Her style puts the reader at ease, while also giving them permission to support tweens and teens through compassionate care. Readers will walk away with a wealth of proactive strategies to prevent potential harm for their children who are engaging in the digital world, as well as gentle guidance on what to do when the worst happens. This is an important guidebook for all parents as they seek to give their children the skills they need to navigate our brave new world.

Four parenting books on body positivity, neurodivergence and responsible social media use will ensure this remains the case.
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Fantasy has always been a playground for social commentary. From Tolkien’s anti-industrial allegories in Lord of the Rings to Samantha Shannon’s deconstruction of the archetypal damsel in The Priory of the Orange Tree, magical worlds with dragons and wizards are almost never as escapist as they seem. Urban fantasy is no exception, being as defined by its penchant for cultural critique as by its city settings. More than any other subgenre, urban fantasy is often unambiguously about real life.

Take The Hexologists by Josiah Bancroft. It’s essentially a fantasy mystery novel, following magically talented detective Iz Wilby and her imposing yet soft-hearted husband (and de facto chef), Warren, as they try to identify who has hexed the king of Bancroft’s barely fictionalized analogue of early 20th-century London. Bancroft’s leads are staunchly anti-royalist and anti-capitalist, positions which are proven to be entirely justified over and over throughout the book. Bancroft’s point could have been made more subtly, although, to be fair, subtlety does not seem to have been his intent: He opens the book with an overgrown tree golem attacking Iz and Warren’s house and spends a surprising amount of time justifying the couple’s high libido by asserting that sex helps Iz think. But The Hexologists is effective and entertaining regardless, not least because it also includes Felivox, a gourmand dragon who lives in a handbag. He is utterly delightful, and debilitatingly British dragons with discerning palates should be in more books.

Cassandra Khaw and Richard Kadrey’s The Dead Take the A Train, on the other hand, offsets its recognizable New York City setting with a relentless barrage of visceral body horror and deliriously twisted humor. So while their commentary—in their telling, Wall Street’s pursuit of money and power is literally devouring the world—is equally blatant, it feels more in line with the nature of the book. After all, we are introduced to the main protagonist, Julie, while she is amputating a bride-to-be’s arm in a nightclub with a penknife to extract a demon. After her plan to summon an angel to help a friend goes horribly awry, Julie tries to clean up her city-jeopardizing mess while also playing video games while high on possibly magical designer drugs, falling behind on rent and facing some creatively terrifying bogeymen. One antagonist is a seething mass of carnivorous worms, two others are twins who like to eat their sentient prey slowly, keeping it alive the whole time, and none of these is the one called The Mother Who Eats. This is most certainly not a book for the squeamish, the meek or the banker. (Remember: Wall Street is going to devour the world.)

Although The Hexologists is a mostly well-mannered British murder mystery and The Dead Take the A Train is a depraved carnival of nightmares and eldritch narcotics, they are both solid representatives of contemporary urban fantasy, addressing real-world injustices while also being very, very funny.

The Hexologists and The Dead Take the A Train blend social commentary with sensational genre thrills.
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The Second Murderer

Many a mystery writer has taken a shot at reimagining the work of Raymond Chandler, usually with mixed results. But in The Second Murderer, Denise Mina seamlessly resurrects Chandler’s supersleuth Philip Marlowe, right from the opening line: “I was in my office, feet up, making use of a bottle of mood-straightener I kept in the desk.” As was often the case with Marlowe as penned by Chandler, our hero can be found in a high-society mansion in one scene and sleeping off a hangover in a Skid Row flophouse in the next, but he’s a breed apart in both milieus. The Second Murderer is a pre-World War II, Los Angeles-set PI mystery, but with a modern sensibility—and it plays much better than one might expect of such an amalgam. As Marlowe attempts to track down a missing socialite, he’s joined on the case by Anne Riordan, owner of her very own all-female detective agency. Mina has done what few before her have managed, ably resuscitating Marlowe for legions of Chandler fans yearning for one more installment.

A Killer in the Family

With last year’s inventive and suspenseful Little Sister, Gytha Lodge propelled herself onto mystery fans’ must-read lists (including that of this reader). I am happy to announce that her latest Jonah Sheen mystery, A Killer in the Family, is just as impressive. Aisling Cooley sends a DNA sample to an ancestry website in hopes of locating her long-missing father, but is horrified when she’s subsequently contacted by the police. Aisling’s DNA closely aligns with that found at a murder scene, one of the grisly tableaus created by the so-called “bonfire killer,” who leaves their victims on pyres in fields. Aisling’s sons—one lively and popular, the other brooding and taciturn—naturally pique the interest of the police, but Aisling’s father is of even greater interest. Before he disappeared 30 years ago, he left a cryptic note saying that he loved his family, but could not “keep living this duplicitous life.” Thus, Aisling finds herself caught on the horns of a dilemma: whether to assist the police or protect her family. Lodge has a surefire winner on her hands with A Killer in the Family, easily one of the most original mysteries since the aforementioned Little Sister.

A Chateau Under Siege

The medieval town of Sarlat is a bit outside the bailiwick of Bruno Courreges, everyone’s favorite French policeman since the days of Inspector Jacques Clouseau, but there is to be a reenactment of the liberation of the town from England during the Hundred Years’ War and Bruno is on hand for the festivities. When a horse slips and falls, its swordsman rider is forced to improvise his role in the choreographed performance. He winds up getting stabbed in front of the horrified onlookers and appears to be bleeding out. A doctor appears out of nowhere to take charge of the emergency and the patient is airlifted to a hospital, after which he vanishes from the face of the earth. Strange, right? It will get stranger, as Martin Walker’s A Chateau Under Siege, one of Bruno’s more unusual adventures, proceeds. Bruno is tasked with guarding the daughters of the victim, who may or may not have been a clandestine government agent of some sort. And, as happens with some regularity in the Bruno novels, our hero finds himself tangled up in a situation with international ramifications that would tax any small-town cop (other than Bruno, of course). Balzac the basset hound, always a welcome diversion, plays a minor but pivotal role, and as with all the preceding books in the series, A Chateau Under Siege is by turns suspenseful, amusing and, in its Gallic way, nothing short of charming.

Proud Sorrows

The latest Billy Boyle mystery from author James R. Benn, Proud Sorrows finds the wartime military investigator on leave in rural Norfolk, England, although it will prove to be the proverbial busman’s holiday, with little of the rest and recuperation the hero sorely needs after his adventures in the two previous novels, Road of Bones and From the Shadows. A downed German bomber that crashed two years prior resurfaces in a peculiar turn of the tides at a nearby bay. When one of the bodies found in the cockpit turns out to be that of an English officer, the case falls to Billy to investigate. It appears the English officer has been murdered, as his injuries are not consistent with the crash. It will not be the last murder tied to the bomber, however, as one of Billy’s informants, a shell-shocked veteran, gets stabbed to death in a melee following an air raid scare. Sir Richard Seaton, the father of Billy’s lover, Diana, is considered by police to be a good candidate for the perpetrator. To exonerate Sir Richard, Billy turns to his trusty allies: Kaz, with his powerful intellect; Big Mike, the tenderhearted muscle of the group; and quick-witted and lovable Diana. The mystery is first-rate, the dialogue is period correct and the series as a whole is the best set of wartime novels since those of the legendary Nevil Shute. Proud Sorrows is absolutely not to be missed!

The latest Bruno, Chief of Police and Billy Boyle mysteries impress (When don’t they?) and Denise Mina resurrects Philip Marlowe in this month’s Whodunit column.
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Set in the 1800s, R.F. Kuang’s historical fantasy novel Babel: Or the Necessity of Violence: An Arcane History of the Oxford Translators’ Revolution follows the adventures of Robin Swift, a Chinese student at the Royal Institute of Translation at Oxford University, where the act of translation is used to derive magical power. Though languages like Bengali, Haitian creole and Robin’s native Cantonese are the source of much of this power, Britain and its ruling class reaps almost all of the benefits. As Robin progresses at the institute, his loyalties are tested when Britain threatens war with China. The politicization of language and the allure of institutional power are among the book’s rich discussion topics. 

Jason Fitger, the protagonist of Julie Schumacher’s witty campus novel Dear Committee Members, teaches creative writing and literature at Payne University, where he contends with funding cuts and diminishing department resources. He also frequently writes letters of recommendation for students and colleagues, and it’s through these letters that the novel unfolds. Schumacher uses this unique spin on the epistolary novel to create a revealing portrait of a curmudgeonly academic struggling to navigate the complexities of campus life. Reading groups will savor this shrewdly trenchant take on the higher-ed experience, and if you find yourself wanting to sign up for another course with Professor Fitger, Schumacher’s two sequels (The Shakespeare Requirement and The English Experience) are also on the syllabus.

For a surrealist send-up of the liberal arts world, turn to Mona Awad’s clever, disturbing Bunny. Samantha Mackey made it into the MFA creative writing program of Warren University thanks to a scholarship. The other writers—a tightknit circle of wealthy young women known as the Bunnies—convene regularly for a horrifying ritual. When Samantha is invited to take part, she learns difficult lessons about female friendship and her own identity. This haunting, often funny novel probes the dark side of academia and the challenges of the artistic process.

In her uncompromising, upfront memoir, They Said This Would Be Fun: Race, Campus Life, and Growing Up, Eternity Martis writes about being a Black student at Western University, a mostly white college in Ontario. Martis was initially thrilled to attend the university, but the racism she experienced in the classroom and in social settings made her question her life choices. Her smart observations, unfailing sense of humor and invaluable reporting on contemporary education make this a must-read campus memoir.

Go back to school with tomes that spotlight the scandals and drama of life on campus.

Is the book always better than the movie or TV show? Better read these soon-to-be adaptations ASAP so you can decide.

The Changeling

By Victor LaValle

September 8, 2023

The eerie 2017 cult classic from beloved horror writer Victor LaValle is coming to Apple TV+ on September 8 as a limited series that the network describes as “a fairy tale for adults.” LaKeith Stanfield (“Atlanta”) will both executive produce and star in the series, which follows a couple whose child, well, turns out to be not quite what they expected. Read our review of The Changeling.

The Other Black Girl

By Zakiya Dalila Harris

September 13, 2023

The Hulu limited series based on Harris’ creative and satirical bestselling debut stars Sinclair Daniel as Nella and Ashleigh Murray (“Riverdale”) as Hazel, the titular second Black woman who is hired at the publishing house where Nella works. All 10 episodes will be dropping on September 13. Read our review of The Other Black Girl

Lessons in Chemistry

By Bonnie Garmus

October 13, 2023

Bonnie Garmus’ charming debut novel is receiving the star treatment from Apple TV+ and producer Lee Eisenberg (“The Office”). Actor Brie Larson will play Elizabeth Zott, a brilliant scientist in the 1960s who refuses to sacrifice her career and calling to societal expectations. Read our coverage of Lessons in Chemistry, one of our Best Books of 2022.

Killers of the Flower Moon

By David Grann

October 20, 2023

Legendary director Martin Scorcese will be taking David Grann’s 2017 National Book Award finalist, which tells the true story of the shocking murders of members of the Osage Nation in Oklahoma in the 1920s, to the big screen. Frequent Scorcese collaborators Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert de Niro star alongside Native actors Tantoo Cardinal, Lily Gladstone and Tatanka Means. Read our review of Killers of the Flower Moon.

All the Light We Cannot See

By Anthony Doerr

November 2, 2023

Anthony Doerr’s stirring and Pulitzer Prize-winning 2014 novel is coming to Netflix as a limited series. In her first screen role, blind actor Aria Mia Loberti will play Marie-Laure, a blind French girl whose World War II-era encounter with a German soldier (Louis Hofmann) has life-changing consequences. Though most of the mainly international cast is unknown to American audiences, stars like Hugh Laurie and Mark Ruffalo will make appearances. Read our review of All the Light We Cannot See.


By Ottessa Moshfegh

December 8, 2023

Ottessa Moshfegh’s startling debut novel heralded the arrival of a writer who would continue to shock and awe readers with works such as My Year of Rest and Relaxation and Lapvona. Up-and-coming actor Thomasin McKenzie will play the titular character, a self-loathing and misanthropic young woman who works as a prison guard. But when glamorous Rebecca St. John (played by a reportedly superb Anne Hathaway) arrives, Eileen becomes increasingly obsessed with her, falling into a deeply toxic and possibly dangerous friendship. Read our review of Eileen.

Victor LaValle's eerie fairy tale The Changeling is the latest addition to a slate of upcoming book-to-screen adaptations you won’t want to miss.

Discover your next great book!

BookPage highlights the best new books across all genres, as chosen by our editors. Every book we cover is one that we are excited to recommend to readers. A star indicates a book of exceptional quality in its genre or category.