August books for your summer reading list
July 29, 2022
Notable new releases
compiled by Sally Brewster
Properties of Thirst, by Marianne Wiggins
Rockwell “Rocky” Rhodes has spent years fiercely protecting his California ranch from the LA Water Corp. It is here where he and his beloved wife Lou raised their twins, Sunny and Stryker, and it is here where Rocky has mourned Lou in the years since her death. As Sunny and Stryker reach the cusp of adulthood, the country teeters on the brink of war. Stryker decides to join the fight, deploying to Pearl Harbor not long before the bombs strike. Soon, Rocky and his family find themselves facing yet another incomprehensible tragedy.
Rocky is determined to protect his remaining family and the land where they’ve loved and lost so much. But when the government decides to build a Japanese-American internment camp next to the ranch, Rocky realizes the land faces even bigger threats than the LA watermen he’s battled for years.
Properties of Thirst is a novel that is both universal and intimate. It is the story of a changing American landscape and an examination of one of the darkest periods in this country’s past, told through the stories of the individual loves and losses that weave together to form the fabric of our shared history.
Daisy Darker, by Alice Feeney
Daisy Darker’s entire family, after years of avoiding one another, are assembling for Nana’s 80th birthday party in Nana’s crumbling gothic house on a tiny tidal island. Finally back together one last time, when the tide comes in, they will be cut off from the rest of the world for eight hours. The family arrives, each of them harboring secrets. Then at the stroke of midnight, as a storm rages, Nana is found dead. And an hour later, the next family member follows … dead. Trapped on an island where someone is killing them one by one, the Darkers must reckon with their present mystery as well as their past secrets before the tide comes in and all is revealed.
With a wicked wink to Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None, Daisy Darker’s unforgettable twists will leave readers reeling.
Carrie Soto is Back, by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Carrie Soto is fierce, and her determination to win at any cost has not made her popular. When she retires from tennis, she is the best player the world has ever seen. She has shattered every record and claimed 20 Grand Slam titles. But six years after her retirement, Carrie finds herself sitting in the stands of the 1994 U.S. Open, watching her record be taken from her by a brutal, stunning player named Nicki Chan.
At 37 years old, Carrie makes the monumental decision to come out of retirement and be coached by her father for one last year in an attempt to reclaim her record. Even if the sports media say they never liked “the Battle-Axe” anyway. Even if her body doesn’t move as fast as it did. And even if it means swallowing her pride to train with a man she once almost opened her heart to: Bowe Huntley. Like her, he has something to prove before he gives up the game forever.
The Last White Man, by Mohsin Hamid
One morning, a man wakes up to find himself transformed. Overnight, Anders’ skin has turned dark, and the reflection in the mirror seems a stranger to him. At first he shares his secret only with Oona, an old friend turned new lover. Soon, reports of similar events begin to surface. Across the land, people are awakening in new incarnations, uncertain how their neighbors, friends and families will greet them. Some see the transformations as the long-dreaded overturning of the established order that must be resisted to a bitter end. In many, like Anders’ father and Oona’s mother, a sense of profound loss and unease battles with profound love. As the bond between Anders and Oona deepens, change takes on a different shading: a chance at a kind of rebirth — an opportunity to see ourselves, face to face, anew.
Haven, by Emma Donoghue
In seventh century Ireland, a priest called Artt has a dream telling him to leave the sinful world behind. Taking two monks, he rows a small boat down the river Shannon in search of an isolated spot to found a monastery. Drifting out into the Atlantic, the three men find an impossibly steep, bare island inhabited by tens of thousands of birds, and they claim it for God. When one of the men takes his devout calling to an even more fervent level, it is all they can do to survive together in the harsh conditions. SP
Sally Brewster is the proprietor of Park Road Books. 4139 Park Rd., parkroadbooks.com.