What’s In The Box! - April 2022 Predictions

Posted March 26, 2022 by stuckint in Book of the Month, Book Subscriptions, BOTM, Predictions / 2 Comments

Hey everyone and welcome back to one of the most popular posts here on Stuck in the Stacks - our Book of the Month predictions post. It feels like Book of the Month has been kind of going rogue with their picks lately, pulling from rather obscure titles, but we are hoping that at least some our guesses will be picks or add ons.

Hey everyone , Haley here. This post is coming at you a little late because honestly, work is just chaos. You might know but summer is one of the busiest times for libraries and so we are getting ready for that plus I’m trying to get three different storytimes off the ground at once. It’s a whole thing, but I digress. There are so many amazing books coming out in April but there is also a lot of stuff coming out in May that I think might show up as early releases so this month I’m including a section for potential early releases that I think are worth having on the radar.

Keep in mind that these are simply guesses and I could get most or all of them wrong. Be that as it may, I hope my guesses get you excited for April and bring some under the radar titles to your attention.

Contemporary Fiction

The Wise Woman by Gina Sorell

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsThe Wise Women by Gina Sorell
Published by Harper on April 5, 2022
Pages: 352

A witty and wildly enjoyable novel, set in New York City, about two adult daughters and their meddling advice columnist mother, for readers of Meg Wolitzer, Cathleen Schine, and Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney.
Popular advice columnist Wendy Wise has been skillfully advising the women who write to her seeking help for four decades, so why are her own daughters’ lives such a mess? Clementine, the working mother of a six-year-old boy, has just discovered that she is actually renting the Queens home that she thought she owned, because her husband Steve secretly funneled their money into his flailing start-up. Meanwhile, her sister Barb has overextended herself at her architecture firm and reunited semi-unhappily with her cheating girlfriend.
When Steve goes MIA and Clementine receives an eviction notice, Wendy swoops in to save the day, even though her daughters, who are holding onto some resentments from childhood, haven’t asked for her help. But as soon as Wendy sets her sights on hunting down her rogue son-in-law, Barb and Clementine quickly discover that their mother has been hiding more than a few problems of her own.
As the three women confront the disappointments and heartaches that have accumulated between them over the years, they discover that while the future may look entirely different from the one that they’ve expected, it may be even brighter than they’d hoped.

This contemporary novel features two sisters and their meddling columnist mother. Wednesday has been giving advice to the women who write into her for years but her own daughters’ lives are a complete mess. When Wendy’s son in law goes missing, the three women are brought back together to work through their differences and past mistakes. While its not blurbed by previous Book of the Month authors, or compared to any previous Book of the Month picks it feels similar to books like The Chicken Sisters and The Vanishing Half. Witty, heart warming and thought provoking, The Wise Woman plunges the depth of female familial relationships and promises a character driven story full of vulnerability and healing.

Young Mungo by Douglas Stuart

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsYoung Mungo by Douglas Stuart
Published by Grove Press on April 5, 2022
Pages: 400

A story of queer love and working-class families, Young Mungo is the brilliant second novel from the Booker Prize-winning author of Shuggie Bain.
Douglas Stuart's first novel Shuggie Bain, winner of the 2020 Booker Prize, is one of the most successful literary debuts of the century so far. Published or forthcoming in forty territories, it has sold more than one million copies worldwide. Now Stuart returns with Young Mungo, his extraordinary second novel. Both a page-turner and literary tour de force, it is a vivid portrayal of working-class life and a deeply moving and highly suspenseful story of the dangerous first love of two young men.
Growing up in a housing estate in Glasgow, Mungo and James are born under different stars--Mungo a Protestant and James a Catholic--and they should be sworn enemies if they're to be seen as men at all. Yet against all odds, they become best friends as they find a sanctuary in the pigeon dovecote that James has built for his prize racing birds. As they fall in love, they dream of finding somewhere they belong, while Mungo works hard to hide his true self from all those around him, especially from his big brother Hamish, a local gang leader with a brutal reputation to uphold. And when several months later Mungo's mother sends him on a fishing trip to a loch in Western Scotland with two strange men whose drunken banter belies murky pasts, he will need to summon all his inner strength and courage to try to get back to a place of safety, a place where he and James might still have a future.
Imbuing the everyday world of its characters with rich lyricism and giving full voice to people rarely acknowledged in the literary world, Young Mungo is a gripping and revealing story about the bounds of masculinity, the divisions of sectarianism, the violence faced by many queer people, and the dangers of loving someone too much.

By the same author who wrote the incredibly popular novel Shuggie Bain, comes another contemporary LGBTQIA+ novel getting compared to Memorial by Bryan Washington. Page turning in its readability and literary in its style. This poignant novel tells the story of Mungo and James born Protestant and Catholic respectively. As the two fall in love over the years over the mundanity of life and James prized racing pigeons, Stuart weaves an emotional and thought provoking tale that challenges of traditional masculinity, the violence faced by the queer community, and what it means to live authentically. While it is not blurbed by any previous Book of the Month authors its coming of age themes combined with its queer worldview make it a prime pick for Book of the Month. 

Post-Traumatic by Chantal V Johnson

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsPost-Traumatic by Chantal V. Johnson
on April 5, 2022
Pages: 320

A debut about a young Black Latina lawyer finally confronting her dark past
To the outside observer, Vivian is a success story—a dedicated lawyer who advocates for mentally ill patients at a New York City psychiatric hospital. Privately, Vivian contends with the memories and aftereffects of her bad childhood—compounded by the everyday stresses of being a Black Latinx woman in America. She lives in a constant state of hypervigilant awareness that makes even a simple subway ride into a heart-pounding drama.
For years, Vivian has self-medicated with a mix of dating, dieting, dark humor and smoking weed with her BFF, Jane. But after a family reunion prompts Vivian to take a bold step, she finds herself alone in new and terrifying ways, without even Jane to confide in, and she starts to unravel. Will she find a way to repair what matters most to her?
A debut from a stunning talent, Post-traumatic is a new kind of survivor narrative, featuring a complex heroine who is blazingly, indelibly alive. With razor-sharp prose and mordant wit, Chantal V. Johnson performs an extraordinary feat, delivering a psychologically astute story about the aftermath of trauma that somehow manages to brim with warmth, laughter, and hope.

This wry, witty contemporary novel with a literary twist is getting compared to the likes of Queenie and Roxanne Gaye’s memoir Hunger. The book follows Vivian, who from the outside appears to be the picture of success. She is a lawyer who advocates for mentally ill patients at a psychiatric hospital. She also struggles with a traumatic past and living as a Black Latinx woman in America. Book of the Month has made efforts to be more diverse in their collections and Post-Traumatic seems like a perfect addition to their April line up. It’s also blurbed by Final Revival of Opal and Nev author Dawnie Walton. I will definitely be picking it up regardless but I’m crossing my fingers that it’s a selection!

I’ll Be You by Janelle Brown

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsI'll Be You by Janelle Brown
Published by Random House on April 26, 2022
Pages: 368

Two identical twin sisters and former child actors have grown apart--until one disappears, and the other is forced to confront the secrets they've kept from each other in this twisty thriller from the New York Times bestselling author of Pretty Things.

"You be me, and I'll be you,"

I whispered.
As children, Sam and Elli were two halves of a perfect whole: Gorgeous identical twins whose parents sometimes couldn't even tell them apart. They fell asleep to the sound of each other's breath at night, holding hands in the dark. And once Hollywood discovered them, they became B-list child TV stars, often inhabiting the same role.
But as adults their lives have splintered. After leaving acting, Elli reinvented herself as the perfect suburban wife: Married to a real-estate lawyer, in a house two blocks from the beach. Meanwhile, Sam has never recovered from her failed Hollywood career, or from her addiction to the pills and booze that have propped her up for the last fifteen years.
After her destructive behavior finally drove a wedge between them, Sam hasn't spoken to her sister in a year when their father calls out of the blue. Unbeknownst to Sam, Elli's life lately has been in turmoil: Her husband moved out, and Elli just adopted a two-year-old girl. Now she's checked in to a mysterious spa in Ojai, and has stopped answering her phone. As Sam works to connect the dots left by Elli's baffling disappearance, she realizes that the bond between her and her sister is more complicated than she ever knew.
This magnetic thriller from bestselling author Janelle Brown shows her writing at the top of her game: A story packed with twists and astounding revelations, about the secrets kept by the ones we think we know the best.

While this one is being characterized as “suspense” I’m leaving it in the contemporary fiction category because I don’t know that it has quite the page turner quality of a thriller. The reason it’s making my list at all is because it has been receiving glowing blurbs by Angie Kim (Miracle Creek), Emma Straub (All Adults Here) and Laura Dave (The Last Thing He Told Me). At the center of the story are twin sisters Sam and Elli. When Sam receives a phone call from her father that Elli has disappeared Sam is left to unravel the mystery. Book of the Month loves to features stories about sisters from The Vanishing Half to The Chicken Sisters and The Girl In the MIrror. It’s a beloved trope and Janelle Brown is at the top of her game with I’ll Be You, it won’t be surprising if it makes the April selection cut.

Historical Fiction

Forbidden City by Vaanessa Hua

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsForbidden City by Vanessa Hua
Published by Ballantine Books on April 19, 2022
Pages: 352

A teenage girl living in 1960s China becomes Mao Zedong's protégée and lover--and a poster child for the Cultural Revolution--in this provocative, poignant novel from the bestselling author of A River of Stars.
On the eve of China's Cultural Revolution and her sixteenth birthday, Mei dreams of becoming a model revolutionary. When the Communist Party recruits girls for a mysterious duty in the capital, she seizes the opportunity to escape her impoverished village. It is only when Mei arrives at the Chairman’s opulent residence—a forbidden city unto itself—that she learns that the girls’ job is to dance with the Party elites. Ambitious and whip-smart. Mei makes a beeline toward the Chairman.
Mei gradually separates from the other recruits to become the Chairman’s confidante—and paramour. As he fends off political rivals, Mei faces down schemers from the dance troupe who will stop at nothing to take her place, as well as the Chairman’s imperious wife, who has schemes of her own. When the Chairman finally gives Mei a political mission, she seizes it with fervor, but the brutality of this latest stage of the revolution makes her begin to doubt all the certainties she has held so dear.
Forbidden City is an epic yet intimate portrayal of one of the world's most powerful and least understood leaders during the most turbulent period of modern Chinese history. Mei's harrowing journey toward truth and disillusionment raises questions about power, manipulation, and belief, as seen through the eyes of a passionate teenage girl.

If you haven’t noticed, I’ve been trying to diversity my historical fiction picks because I think its really easy to get bogged down by all the WWII and WWI historical fiction that saturates the market. Forbidden City is getting compared to Libertie by Kaitlyn Greenidge. It tells the story of a teenage girl living in 1960s China who becomes Mao Zedong’s protégée and lover. This one is not blurbed by any previous Book of the Month authors, but it highlights a marginalized group of people, explores an often overlooked part of history, and immerses the reader in a distant time and place - like all good historical fiction should. I think it could find a wide readership through Book of the Month, especially among those aching for some more diverse historical fiction picks.

In the Face of the Sun by Denny S. Bryce

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsIn the Face of the Sun by Denny S. Bryce
Published by Kensington on April 26, 2022
Pages: 352

In this haunting novel set at the height of the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s, the author of Wild Women and the Blues takes readers on an audacious road trip with a pregnant young woman and her brash, profane aunt from Chicago to Los Angeles to confront a decades-old mystery from 1920’s Black Hollywood.
1928, Los Angeles:
The newly-built Hotel Somerville is the hotspot for the city's glittering African-American elite. It embodies prosperity and dreams of equality for all—especially Daisy Washington. An up-and-coming journalist, Daisy anonymously chronicles fierce activism and behind-the-scenes Hollywood scandals in order to save her family from poverty. But power in the City of Angels is also fueled by racism, greed, and betrayal. And even the most determined young woman can play too many secrets too far . . .
1968, Chicago: For Frankie Saunders, fleeing across America is her only escape from an abusive husband. But her rescuer is her reckless, profane Aunt Daisy, still reeling from her own shattered past. Frankie doesn't want to know what her aunt is up to so long as Daisy can get her to LA—and safety. But Frankie finds there’s no hiding from long-held secrets—or her own surprising strength.
Daisy will do whatever it takes to settle old scores and resolve the past—no matter the damage. And Frankie will come up against hard choices in the face of unexpected passion. Both must come to grips with what they need, what they’ve left behind—and all that lies ahead . . .

Set at the height of the Civil Rights movement, In The Face of the Sun a young pregnant woman sets out on a cross country road trip with her eccentric aunt from Chicago to Los Angeles. The second timeline takes place in 1928 and follows Daisy, who anonymously chronicles activism and the scandals that riddle Black Hollywood. Told in multiple timelines, In The Face of the Sun is a historical novel the features real historical figures inserted into a compelling fictional narrative. The book is also blurbed by Farrah Rochon, I think it’s a perfect read for anyone looking for a historical novel that isn’t WWII fiction.

Kaikeyi by Vaishnavi Patel

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsKaikeyi by Vaishnavi Patel
Published by Redhook on April 26, 2022
Pages: 432

"Patel’s mesmerizing debut shines a brilliant light on the vilified queen from the Ramayana….This easily earns its place on shelves alongside Madeline Miller’s Circe." –Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“I was born on the full moon under an auspicious constellation, the holiest of positions—much good it did me.”
So begins Kaikeyi’s story. The only daughter of the kingdom of Kekaya, she is raised on tales about the might and benevolence of the gods: how they churned the vast ocean to obtain the nectar of immortality, how they vanquish evil and ensure the land of Bharat prospers, and how they offer powerful boons to the devout and the wise. Yet she watches as her father unceremoniously banishes her mother, listens as her own worth is reduced to how great a marriage alliance she can secure. And when she calls upon the gods for help, they never seem to hear.
Desperate for some measure of independence, she turns to the texts she once read with her mother and discovers a magic that is hers alone. With this power, Kaikeyi transforms herself from an overlooked princess into a warrior, diplomat, and most favored queen, determined to carve a better world for herself and the women around her.
But as the evil from her childhood stories threatens the cosmic order, the path she has forged clashes with the destiny the gods have chosen for her family. And Kaikeyi must decide if resistance is worth the destruction it will wreak—and what legacy she intends to leave behind.
A stunning debut from a powerful new voice, Kaikeyi is a tale of fate, family, courage, and heartbreak—of an extraordinary woman determined to leave her mark in a world where gods and men dictate the shape of things to come.

The hint on the website leads one to believe that this will be a pick. It fits right in with other mythology retellings that Book of the Month has featured in the past like Circe and Ariadne. Its also getting compared to previous Book of the Month picks like The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker and Gods of Jade and Shadow by Sylvia Moreno-Garcia. Where most of these dealt with Greek and Latinx  mythology respectively, Kaikeyi is a retelling of Indian mythology and specifically reimagines the villain queen from the Indian epic Ramayana. I don’t know about you but I love me a good villain origin story and so I’ll be curious to see how Patel weaves in the original myth and what creative liberties she takes. Of all the guesses on my list, this is the one I’m most sure of!

The Good Left Undone by Adriana Trigiani

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsThe Good Left Undone by Adriana Trigiani
Published by Dutton Books on April 26, 2022
Pages: 448

From Adriana Trigiani, "a master of visual and palpable detail" (The Washington Post), comes a lush, immersive novel about three generations of Tuscan artisans with one remarkable secret. Epic in scope and resplendent with the glorious themes of identity and belonging, The Good Left Undone unfolds in breathtaking turns.
Matelda, the Cabrelli family's matriarch, has always been brusque and opinionated. Now, as she faces the end of her life, she is determined to share a long-held secret with her family about her own mother's great love story: with her childhood friend, Silvio, and with dashing Scottish sea captain John Lawrie McVicars, the father Matelda never knew. . . .
In the halcyon past, Domenica Cabrelli thrives in the coastal town of Viareggio until her beloved home becomes unsafe when Italy teeters on the brink of World War II. Her journey takes her from the rocky shores of Marseille to the mystical beauty of Scotland to the dangers of wartime Liverpool--where Italian Scots are imprisoned without cause--as Domenica experiences love, loss, and grief while she longs for home. A hundred years later, her daughter, Matelda, and her granddaughter, Anina, face the same big questions about life and their family's legacy, while Matelda contemplates what is worth fighting for. But Matelda is running out of time, and the two timelines intersect and weave together in unexpected and heartbreaking ways that lead the family to shocking revelations and, ultimately, redemption.

For all my bemoaning of WWII historical fiction, I had to include at least one on my list this month because  The Good Left Undone is blurbed by so many previous Book of the Month authors I don’t think it would be hard for them to find someone to give a brief explanation of why they loved this book. Furthermore, it’s a spanning epic that finds its origins off the coast of Italy and features a matriarch looking back on her life and revealing some family secrets that have remained long buried. What’s more, its told in two alternating timelines between the past and present and the reader is immersed in the struggles of these women living decades removed from one another but wrestling with similar existential questions about life and the human experience.The sheer number of authors who have been featured by Book of the Month and blurbed The Good Left Undone is staggering so I’ll just name a few: Laura Dave, Qian Julie Wang (Beautiful Country), Lisa Jewel, and Ann Napolitano. I think its possible that Book of Month could pick more than one historical fiction in a month and The Good Left Undone seems like a solid possibility. 


The Fervor by Alma Katsu

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsThe Fervor by Alma Katsu
on April 26, 2022
Pages: 320

From the acclaimed and award-winning author of The Hunger and The Deep comes a new psychological and supernatural twist on the horrors of the Japanese American internment camps in World War II.
1944: As World War II rages on, the threat has come to the home front. In a remote corner of Idaho, Meiko Briggs and her daughter, Aiko, are desperate to return home. Following Meiko's husband's enlistment as an air force pilot in the Pacific months prior, Meiko and Aiko were taken from their home in Seattle and sent to one of the internment camps in the Midwest. It didn’t matter that Aiko was American-born: They were Japanese, and therefore considered a threat by the American government.
Mother and daughter attempt to hold on to elements of their old life in the camp when a mysterious disease begins to spread among those interned. What starts as a minor cold quickly becomes spontaneous fits of violence and aggression, even death. And when a disconcerting team of doctors arrive, nearly more threatening than the illness itself, Meiko and her daughter team up with a newspaper reporter and widowed missionary to investigate, and it becomes clear to them that something more sinister is afoot, a demon from the stories of Meiko’s childhood, hell-bent on infiltrating their already strange world.
Inspired by the Japanese yokai and the jorogumo spider demon, The Fervor explores a supernatural threat beyond what anyone saw coming; the danger of demonization, a mysterious contagion, and the search to stop its spread before it’s too late.

Alma Katsu writes slow burn historical horror that I think could have wider appeal. Katsu has given a horror spin to the horrendous experiences of the Donner Party and the sinking of The Titanic and in The Fervor, Katsu weaves Japanese folklore into the atrocities of the United States’ WWII Japanese-American internment camps. It tells the story of a mother and daughter who cling to their humanity and their traditions as they try to survive in the camp and a plague ravages its prisoners. Inspired by the Japanese yokai and the jorogumo spider demon, The Fervor explores the horrors of the supernatural beyond just the threat of the occult. It’s getting comparisons to Simone St James’ novels and is blurbed by Book of the Month favorite Riley Sager. I have read all of Katsu’s horror novels in recent years and I cannot wait for more readers to discover her. 

Literary Fiction

Four Treasures of the Sky byJenny Tinghui Zhang

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsFour Treasures of the Sky by Jenny Tinghui Zhang
Published by Flatiron Books on April 5, 2022
Pages: 336

A propulsive and dazzling debut novel set against the backdrop of the Chinese Exclusion Act, about a Chinese girl fighting to claim her place in the 1880s American West
Daiyu never wanted to be like the tragic heroine for whom she was named, revered for her beauty and cursed with heartbreak. But when she is kidnapped and smuggled across an ocean from China to America, Daiyu must relinquish the home and future she imagined for herself. Over the years that follow, she is forced to keep reinventing herself to survive. From a calligraphy school, to a San Francisco brothel, to a shop tucked into the Idaho mountains, we follow Daiyu on a desperate quest to outrun the tragedy that chases her. As anti-Chinese sentiment sweeps across the country in a wave of unimaginable violence, Daiyu must draw on each of the selves she has been—including the ones she most wants to leave behind—in order to finally claim her own name and story.
At once a literary tour de force and a groundbreaking work of historical fiction, Four Treasures of the Sky announces Jenny Tinghui Zhang as an indelible new voice. Steeped in untold history and Chinese folklore, this novel is a spellbinding feat.

I have had my eyes on this one for a while and with comparisons to A Burning by Megha Majumbar and The Night Tiger by Yangsze Choo, I think it has strong chances of being a pick. Four Treasures of the Sky is a propulsive and dazzling debut novel, set against the backdrop of the Chinese Exclusion Act, about a Chinese girl fighting to claim her place in the 1880s American West. The last western style book that Book of the Month features was Outlawed by Anna North and so its unsurprising that Anna would blurbed this title. Four Treasures of the Sky is also praised for its reflections on injustice and love by Megha Majumbar- author of The Burning. It has a huge first print run and has a lot of push behind it from the publisher, it wouldn’t surprise me if Book of the Month got in on the hype and featured it as an April pick. 

The Candy House by Jennifer Egan (Repeat Author)

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsThe Candy House by Jennifer Egan
Published by Scribner on April 5, 2022
Pages: 352

From one of the most dazzling and iconic writers of our time and winner of the Pulitzer Prize, an electrifying, deeply moving novel about the quest for authenticity, privacy, and meaning in a world where our memories are no longer our own—featuring characters from A Visit from the Goon Squad.
It’s 2010. Staggeringly successful and brilliant tech entrepreneur Bix Bouton is desperate for a new idea. He’s forty, with four kids, and restless when he stumbles into a conversation with mostly Columbia professors, one of whom is experimenting with downloading or “externalizing” memory. Within a decade, Bix’s new technology, Own Your Unconscious—that allows you access to every memory you’ve ever had, and to share every memory in exchange for access to the memories of others—has seduced multitudes. But not everyone.
In spellbinding linked narratives, Egan spins out the consequences of Own Your Unconscious through the lives of multiple characters whose paths intersect over several decades. Egan introduces these characters in an astonishing array of styles—from omniscient to first person plural to a duet of voices, an epistolary chapter, and a chapter of tweets. In the world of Egan’s spectacular imagination, there are “counters” who track and exploit desires and there are “eluders,” those who understand the price of taking a bite of the Candy House.
Intellectually dazzling and extraordinarily moving, The Candy House is a bold, brilliant imagining of a world that is moments away. With a focus on social media, gaming, and alternate worlds, you can almost experience moving among dimensions in a role-playing game.​ Egan delivers a fierce and exhilarating testament to the tenacity and transcendence of human longing for real connection, love, family, privacy and redemption.

A repeat author for Book of the Month, members will remember Jennifer Egan for her last novel Manhattan Beach, which was featured some years ago. The Candy House is being described as a “sibling novel” to A Visit From the Goon Squad. It follows Bix, who’s new technology “Own Your Unconscious”—that allows you access to every memory you’ve ever had, and to share every memory in exchange for access to the memories of others- has taken the world by storm. What might repel Book of the Month members is its unique structure and progression, but that’s a staple of literary fiction and Book of the Month isn’t one to shy away from a stylistically complex novel. Its blurbed by Margaret Atwood, whose previous novel Blind Assassin was featured as “modern classics” by Book of the Month previously. We’ll see if Jennifer Egan actually becomes a repeat Book of the Month author.

A Tiny Upward Shove by Melisaa Chadburn

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsA Tiny Upward Shove: A Novel by Melissa Chadburn
on April 12, 2022
Pages: 352

"Addictive and headlong" (Lauren Groff), A Tiny Upward Shove is inspired by Melissa Chadburn's Filipino heritage and its folklore, as it traces the too-short life of a young, cast-off woman transformed by death into an agent of justice--or mercy.
My grandmother, sitting at her doily-covered table, marmalade on her cheek, explained that the aswang is all the evil bad things that a town or a society would want to deny--eventually it has to come out, has to be personified into something or the truth will reveal itself.
Marina Salles's life does not end the day she wakes up dead.
Instead, in the course of a moment, she is transformed into the stuff of myth, the stuff of her grandmother's old Filipino stories--an aswang. She spent her life on the margins, knowing very little about her own life, let alone the lives of others; she was shot like a pinball through a childhood of loss, a veteran of Child Protective Services and a survivor, but always reacting, watching from a distance. Death brings her into the hearts and minds of those she has known--even her killer--as she is able to access their memories and to see anew the meaning of her own. In the course of these pages she traces back through her life, finally able to see what led these lost souls to this crushingly inevitable conclusion.
In A Tiny Upward Shove, the debut novelist Melissa Chadburn charts the heartbreaking journeys of two of society's cast-offs as they find their way to each other and their roles as criminal and victim. What does it mean to be on the brink? When are those moments that change not only our lives but our very selves? And how, in this impossible world, can we rouse ourselves toward mercy?

This literary debut is getting compared to previous Book of the Month selections Luster by Raven Leilani, Dominica by Angie Cruz and Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward. Chadburn charts the heartbreaking journeys of two of society’s castoffs as they make their way to each other and their roles as criminal and victim. With a touch of magical realism, this book plunges the depth of our desire to connect and be loved. Inspired by Chadburn’s Filipino heritage and blurbed by Lauren Groff, I think it needs to on every reader’s TBR list, regardless of whether its a pick or not!

Memphis by Tara M. Stringfellow

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsMemphis by Tara M. Stringfellow
Published by The Dial Press on April 5, 2022
Pages: 272

A spellbinding debut novel tracing three generations of a Southern Black family and one daughter's discovery that she has the power to change her family's legacy.
In the summer of 1995, ten-year-old Joan, her mother, and her younger sister flee her father's violence, seeking refuge at her mother's ancestral home in Memphis. Half a century ago, Joan's grandfather built this majestic house in the historic Black neighborhood of Douglass--only to be lynched days after becoming the first Black detective in Memphis. This wasn't the first time violence altered the course of Joan's family's trajectory, and she knows it won't be the last. Longing to become an artist, Joan pours her rage and grief into sketching portraits of the women of North Memphis--including their enigmatic neighbor Miss Dawn, who seems to know something about curses.
Unfolding over seventy years through a chorus of voices, Memphis weaves back and forth in time to show how the past and future are forever intertwined. It is only when Joan comes to see herself as a continuation of a long matrilineal tradition--and the women in her family as her guides to healing--that she understands that her life does not have to be defined by vengeance. That the sole weapon she needs is her paintbrush.
Inspired by the author's own family history, Memphis--the Black fairy tale she always wanted to read--explores the complexity of what we pass down, not only in our families, but in our country: police brutality and justice, powerlessness and freedom, fate and forgiveness, doubt and faith, sacrifice and love.

Memphis is a spellbinding debut novel tracing three generations of a Southern Black family and one daughter’s discovery that she has the power to change her family’s legacy. It has been at the top of my list as a potential Book of the Month pick for a little while now and I’ve just been waiting for the opportunity to include it in a predictions post. Unfolding over seventy years through a chorus of voices, Memphis weaves back and forth in time to show how the past and future are forever intertwined. It is only when Joan comes to see herself as a continuation of a long matrilineal tradition—and the women in her family as her guides to healing—that she understands that her life does not have to be defined by vengeance. Along with its prescient themes of family legacy, ancestral trauma, and what it means to break cycles of abuse, Memphis is also blurbed by previous Book of the Month author Robert Jones Jr. and seems like a perfect ownvoices pick for April. 

Mysteries & Thrillers

The Younger Wife by Sally Hepworth

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsThe Younger Wife by Sally Hepworth
Published by St. Martin's Press on April 5, 2022
Pages: 352

THE HUSBANDA heart surgeon at the top of his field, Stephen Aston is getting married again. But first he must divorce his current wife, even though she can no longer speak for herself.
THE DAUGHTERSTully and Rachel Aston look upon their father’s fiancée, Heather, as nothing but an interloper. Heather is younger than both of them. Clearly, she’s after their father’s money.
THE FORMER WIFEWith their mother in a precarious position, Tully and Rachel are determined to get to the truth about their family’s secrets, the new wife closing in, and who their father really is.
THE YOUNGER WIFEHeather has secrets of her own. Will getting to the truth unleash the most dangerous impulses in all of them?

Sally Hepworth has not been picked up by Book of the Month yet, but maybe its time with Hepworth’s latest novel, The Younger Wife. This domestic thriller follows the Astons. A neurosurgeon father, two daughters suspicious of their father’s fiance, the struggling ex wife and the future wife with plenty of secrets. It’s a recipe for disaster and page turner. All are determined to uncover the tangled web of secrets that entraps them. The Younger Wife is getting compared to popular Book of the Month selection The Wife Upstairs and is blurbed by two previous Book of the Month authors - Jane Harper and Kate Morton. I have not read a Sally Hepworth novel before but I think she could find a home among Book of the Month members and readers. 

The Hacienda by Isabel Cañas

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsThe Hacienda by Isabel Cañas
Published by Berkley on May 3, 2022
Pages: 352

Mexican Gothic meets Rebecca in this debut supernatural suspense novel, set in the aftermath of the Mexican War of Independence, about a remote house, a sinister haunting, and the woman pulled into their clutches...
In the overthrow of the Mexican government, Beatriz’s father is executed and her home destroyed. When handsome Don Rodolfo Solórzano proposes, Beatriz ignores the rumors surrounding his first wife’s sudden demise, choosing instead to seize the security his estate in the countryside provides. She will have her own home again, no matter the cost.
But Hacienda San Isidro is not the sanctuary she imagined.
When Rodolfo returns to work in the capital, visions and voices invade Beatriz’s sleep. The weight of invisible eyes follows her every move. Rodolfo’s sister, Juana, scoffs at Beatriz’s fears—but why does she refuse to enter the house at night? Why does the cook burn copal incense at the edge of the kitchen and mark its doorway with strange symbols? What really happened to the first Doña Solórzano?
Beatriz only knows two things for certain: Something is wrong with the hacienda. And no one there will help her.
Desperate for help, she clings to the young priest, Padre Andrés, as an ally. No ordinary priest, Andrés will have to rely on his skills as a witch to battle the malevolent presence haunting the hacienda.
Far from a refuge, San Isidro may be Beatriz’s doom.

Described as Mexican Gothic meets Rebecca, The Hacienda is a highly anticipated April release on many of our lists. Our main character is Beatriz, whose father was executed and her home destroyed. When handsome Don Rodolfo Solórzano proposes, Beatriz ignores the rumors surrounding his first wife’s sudden demise, choosing instead to seize the security that his estate in the countryside provides. She will have her own home again, no matter the cost. But from the moment she arrives at The Hacienda, things begin to go wrong from bumps in the night to ominous shadows and disturbing dreams. If that’s not enough of a sell, it is blurbed by a handful of previous Book of the Month authors including Simone St. James, Rachel Hawkins, Alix E. Harrow, and SA Chakraborty. It’s a creepy haunted house story set in Mexico and I totally here for it!

Insomnia by Sarah Pinborough (Repeat Author)

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsInsomnia by Sarah Pinborough
Published by William Morrow & Company on April 12, 2022
Pages: 336

In this twisty, mind-bending thriller from the bestselling author of Behind Her Eyes, Emma Averell worries that her crippling insomnia is a sign that she’s slowly going insane—like the mother she’s worked so hard to leave in her past.
Emma Averell loves her life—her high-powered legal career, her two beautiful children, and her wonderful stay-at-home husband—but it wasn’t always so perfect. When she was just five years old, Emma and her older sister went into foster care because of a horrific incident with their mother. Her sister can remember a time when their mother was loving and “normal,” but Emma can only remember her as one thing—a monster. And that monster emerged right around their mother’s fortieth birthday, the same age Emma is approaching now.
Emma desperately wants to keep her successful life separate from her past, so she has always hidden her childhood trauma. But then she’s unable to sleep, and now losing time during the day, also one of the first symptoms her mother showed. Is the madness in her blood, just as her mother predicted? Could she end up hurting her family in her foggy, frenetic state? Or is she truly beginning to lose her mind?

Many are confident that PInborough’s newest novel will be a pick, but I’m a little bit more skeptical since she hasn’t had a book picked since her novel Cross Her Heart was a selection back in 2018. So I don’t think it’s as much of a shoe in as some people might think. However, Insomnia would fit nicely into Book of the Month’s thriller selections of late. It follows Emma, who is sincerely concerned that her chronic insomnia is a sign that she is slowly but surely losing her mind and her grip on reality. While I’m not a huge fan of the “women be crazy” trope- my verbage, you are welcome to steal it- it is undeniable that it is a popular trope right now. Beyond being a repeat author, Pinborough’s forthcoming psychological thriller is blurbed by Lisa Jewel, Lucey Foley, and Alice Feeney. I think there are better thrillers hitting shelves that Book of the Month could feature, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they chose this rather predictable title. 

Blood Will Tell by Heather Chavez

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsBlood Will Tell by Heather Chavez
Published by William Morrow & Company on April 26, 2022
Pages: 400

From the author of the acclaimed debut No Bad Deed, a twisty novel about the bond between two sisters—and the crimes one covers up to protect the other. For fans of Lisa Gardner and Harlan Coben.
Schoolteacher and single mom Frankie Barrera has always been fiercely protective of her younger sister Izzy—whether Izzy wants her to be or not. But over the years, Izzy’s risky choices have tested Frankie’s loyalty. Never so much as on a night five years ago, when a frantic phone call led Frankie to the scene of a car accident—and a drunk and disoriented Izzy who couldn’t remember a thing.
Though six friends partied on the outskirts of town that night, one girl was never seen again . . .
Now, an Amber alert puts Frankie in the sights of the local police. Her truck has been described as the one used in the abduction of a girl from a neighboring town. And the only other person with access to Frankie’s truck is Izzy.
This time around, Frankie will have to decide what lengths she’s willing to go to in order to protect Izzy—what lies she’s willing to tell, and what secrets she’s willing to keep—because the dangerous game that six friends once played on a warm summer night isn’t over yet . . .

Honestly, if you love crime fiction and have yet to pick up Heather Chavez, you are missing out. Her debut, No Bad Deed was loved by a lot of reviewers but Chavez is at the perfect point in her career where being picked up by Book of the Month could really make a difference. Blood Will Tell is a twisty novel about the bond between two sisters—and the crimes one covers up to protect the other. Book of the Month loves a book about sisters and complicated friendships and Blood Will Tell has both! Furthermore, with glowing reviews from previous Book of the Month authors Alison Gaylin (The Collective), The Winter Sister (Megan Collins), and Samantha Downing ( My Lovely Wife), I could definitely see Chavez’s sophomore novel getting picked up. 


Sari Not Sari by Sonya Singh

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsSari, Not Sari by Sonya K. Singh
Published by Simon Schuster on April 5, 2022
Pages: 304

This delightful debut rom-com follows the adventures of a woman trying to connect with her South Asian roots and introduces readers to a memorable cast of characters in a veritable feast of food, family traditions, and fun.
Manny Dogra is the beautiful young CEO of Breakup, a highly successful company that helps people manage their relationship breakups. As preoccupied as she is with her business, she’s also planning her wedding to handsome architect Adam Jamieson while dealing with the loss of her beloved parents.
For reasons Manny has never understood, her mother and father, who were both born in India, always wanted her to become an “All-American” girl. So that’s what she did. She knows next to nothing about her South Asian heritage, and that’s never been a problem—until her parents are no longer around, and an image of Manny that’s been Photoshopped to make her skin look more white appears on a major magazine cover. Suddenly, the woman who built an empire encouraging people to be true to themselves is having her own identity crisis.
But when an irritating client named Sammy Patel approaches Manny with an odd breakup request, the perfect solution presents itself: If they both agree to certain terms, he’ll give her a crash course in being “Indian” at his brother’s wedding.
What follows is days of dancing and dal, masala and mehndi as Manny meets the lovable, if endlessly interfering, aunties and uncles of the Patel family, and, along the way, discovers much more than she could ever have anticipated.

An ownvoices debut about a woman trying to connect with her Asian American roots feels a lot like recent picks such Yinka, Where Is Your Huzband and The Bride Test by Helen Hoang. This one flips the script a little on its head by introducing us to Manny, who runs a company which helps individuals get through and manage difficult breakups. Manny has spent her life trying to be the all “American” girl at the detriment of her Indian roots. When she meets Sammy, she agrees to help him with an odd breakup request on the condition that he give her a crash course in Indian culture at his brother’s wedding. Its a fake relationship romance with plenty of culture, delicious food and laugh out loud moment. Sari Not Sari would be an early release for Book of the Month if it was picked in March and while its not blurbed by any previous Book of the Month authors it is getting compared to Helen Hoang and Jasmine Guillory novels. I definitely think it would fit right in with Book of the Month’s diverse romance selections. 

Wedding Crasher by Mia Sosa

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsThe Wedding Crasher by Mia Sosa
Published by Avon on April 5, 2022
Pages: 320

The USA Today bestselling author of The Worst Best Man is back with another hilarious rom-com about two strangers who get trapped in a lie and have to fake date their way out of it...
Just weeks away from ditching DC for greener pastures, Solange Pereira is roped into helping her wedding planner cousin on a random couple’s big day. It’s an easy gig... until she stumbles upon a situation that convinces her the pair isn’t meant to be. What’s a true-blue romantic to do? Crash the wedding, of course. And ensure the unsuspecting groom doesn’t make the biggest mistake of his life.
Dean Chapman had his future all mapped out. He was about to check off “start a family” and on track to “make partner” when his modern day marriage of convenience went up in smoke. Then he learns he might not land an assignment that could be his ticket to a promotion unless he has a significant other and, in a moment of panic, Dean claims to be in love with the woman who crashed his wedding. Oops.
Now Dean has a whole new item on his to-do list: beg Solange to be his pretend girlfriend. Solange feels a tiny bit bad about ruining Dean’s wedding, so she agrees to play along. Yet as they fake-date their way around town, what started as a performance for Dean’s colleagues turns into a connection that neither he nor Solange can deny. Their entire romance is a sham... there’s no way these polar opposites could fall in love for real, right?

Another diverse, contemporary romance on my list is Wedding Crasher by Mia Sosa. We are entering wedding season and while Book of the Month doesn’t really make their selections based on season, this just feels like the perfect Spring romance. Its also being compared to previous Book of the Month authors Jasmine Guillory and Talia Hibbert. Solange Perreira is our love obsessed protagonist who crashes a wedding she is helping her cousin plan when it becomes apparent that the couple just isn’t meant to be. Shenanigans ensue when the sleighted groom insists that he and Solange are madly in love in the hopes of securing a job promotion, you have the set up for a hilarious fake dating, enemies to lovers romance. While not blurbed by any previous Book of the Month authors, its comparison to other contemporary romance Book of the Month picks as well as its Brazilian-American heroine, make it a strong contender for April. 

Part of Your World by Abby Jimenez

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsPart of Your World by Abby Jimenez
Published by Forever on April 19, 2022
Pages: 400

The New York Times bestselling author of Life's Too Short delivers a refreshingly modern fairy tale perfect for fans of Casey McQuiston and Emily Henry.
After a wild bet, gourmet grilled-cheese sandwich, and cuddle with a baby goat, Alexis Montgomery has had her world turned upside down. The cause: Daniel Grant, a ridiculously hot carpenter who’s ten years younger than her and as casual as they come—the complete opposite of sophisticated city-girl Alexis. And yet their chemistry is undeniable.
While her ultra-wealthy parents want her to carry on the family legacy of world-renowned surgeons, Alexis doesn’t need glory or fame. She’s fine with being a “mere” ER doctor. And every minute she spends with Daniel and the tight-knit town where he lives, she’s discovering just what’s really important. Yet letting their relationship become anything more than a short-term fling would mean turning her back on her family and giving up the opportunity to help thousands of people.
Bringing Daniel into her world is impossible, and yet she can’t just give up the joy she’s found with him either. With so many differences between them, how can Alexis possibly choose between her world and his?

The last romance pick on my list might just be my favorite. It features Alexis, a grilled cheese loving ER nurse who doesn’t aspire to more beyond the job that she loves and the occasional fling. Then she meets Daniel, ten years younger and a carpenter, he is in no way long term relationship material- at least according to Alexis. With its glowing blurb by Emily Henry and a comparison to two time Book of the Month author Casey McQuiston, I think it has a chance, if one of the repeat May authors doesn’t snag the romance spot for April. 

Sci Fi & Fantasy

In A Garden of Burning Gold by Rory Powers

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsIn a Garden Burning Gold by Rory Power
Published by Del Rey Books on April 5, 2022
Pages: 432

Twins imbued with incredible magic and near-immortality will do anything to keep their family safe—even if it tears the siblings apart—in the first book of a mythic epic fantasy from the New York Times bestselling author of Wilder Girls.
Rhea and her twin brother, Lexos, have spent an eternity helping their father rule their small, unstable country, using their control over the seasons, tides, and stars to keep the people in line. For a hundred years, they've been each other's only ally, defending each other and their younger siblings against their father's increasingly unpredictable anger.
Now, with an independence movement gaining ground and their father's rule weakening, the twins must take matters into their own hands to keep their family—and their entire world—from crashing down around them. But other nations are jockeying for power, ready to cross and double cross, and if Rhea and Lexos aren't careful, they'll end up facing each other across the battlefield.

Power’s adult debut is not to be missed and one I think a lot of Book of the Month readers would enjoy. This epic fantasy is the start to a series featuring twins Rhea and Lexos, who have spent a long time helping their father rule the country they call home. Now, with an independence movement gaining ground and their father’s rule weakening, the twins must take matters into their own hands to keep their family—and their entire world—from crashing down around them. While its not blurbed by any previous Book of the Month authors, it is getting comparisons to Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik. Full of political intrigue, complex characters, and rich world building I think it fits in perfectly with previous fantasy picks like A River Enchanted and The Keeper of Night. 

Young Adult

An Arrow To The Moon by Emily X R Pan (Repeat Author)

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsAn Arrow to the Moon by Emily X.R. Pan
on April 12, 2022
Pages: 400

Romeo and Juliet meets Chinese mythology in this magical novel by the New York Times bestselling author of The Astonishing Color of After
Hunter Yee has perfect aim with a bow and arrow, but all else in his life veers wrong. He’s sick of being haunted by his family’s past mistakes. The only things keeping him from running away are his little brother, a supernatural wind, and the bewitching girl at his new high school.
Luna Chang dreads the future. Graduation looms ahead, and her parents’ expectations are stifling. When she begins to break the rules, she finds her life upended by the strange new boy in her class, the arrival of unearthly fireflies, and an ominous crack spreading across the town of Fairbridge.
As Hunter and Luna navigate their families’ enmity and secrets, everything around them begins to fall apart. All they can depend on is their love…but time is running out, and fate will have its way.

A repeat author for Book of the Month, An Arrow to the Moon is being described as Romeo and Juliet meets Chinese mythology. Book of the Month doesn’t pick up YA like it used to, but I think this as a chance as a coming of age YA title featuring diverse characters and just a touch of magical realism has a chance. It’s also blurbed by repeat Book of the Month author John Green, who describes the title as “brilliantly crafted” and “harrowing”. Book of the Month tends to pick young adult titles that have a little more substance to them and that older readers could relate to. I think An Arrow To the Moon with its focus on family and tradition fits the bill.

Potential Early Releases

Book Lovers by Emily Henry

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsBook Lovers by Emily Henry
Published by Berkley on May 3, 2022
Pages: 384

Nora Stephens' life is books—she’s read them all—and she is not that type of heroine. Not the plucky one, not the laidback dream girl, and especially not the sweetheart. In fact, the only people Nora is a heroine for are her clients, for whom she lands enormous deals as a cutthroat literary agent, and her beloved little sister Libby.

Which is why she agrees to go to Sunshine Falls, North Carolina for the month of August when Libby begs her for a sisters’ trip away—with visions of a small town transformation for Nora, who she’s convinced needs to become the heroine in her own story. But instead of picnics in meadows, or run-ins with a handsome country doctor or bulging-forearmed bartender, Nora keeps bumping into Charlie Lastra, a bookish brooding editor from back in the city. It would be a meet-cute if not for the fact that they’ve met many times and it’s never been cute.

If Nora knows she’s not an ideal heroine, Charlie knows he’s nobody’s hero, but as they are thrown together again and again—in a series of coincidences no editor worth their salt would allow—what they discover might just unravel the carefully crafted stories they’ve written about themselves.

Something Wilder by Christina Lauren

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsSomething Wilder by Christina Lauren
Published by Gallery Books on May 17, 2022
Pages: 384

Growing up the daughter of notorious treasure hunter and absentee father Duke Wilder left Lily without much patience for the profession…or much money in the bank. But Lily is nothing if not resourceful, and now uses Duke’s coveted hand-drawn maps to guide tourists on fake treasure hunts through the red rock canyons of Utah. It pays the bills but doesn’t leave enough to fulfill her dream of buying back the beloved ranch her father sold years ago, and definitely not enough to deal with the sight of the man she once loved walking back into her life with a motley crew of friends ready to hit the trails. Frankly, Lily would like to take him out into the wilderness—and leave him there.
Leo Grady knew mirages were a thing in the desert, but they’d barely left civilization when the silhouette of his greatest regret comes into focus in the flickering light of the campfire. Ready to leave the past behind him, Leo wants nothing more than to reconnect with his first and only love. Unfortunately, Lily Wilder is all business, drawing a clear line in the sand: it’s never going to happen.
But when the trip goes horribly and hilariously wrong, the group wonders if maybe the legend of the hidden treasure wasn’t a gimmick after all. There’s a chance to right the wrongs—of Duke’s past and their own—but only if Leo and Lily can confront their history and work together. Alone under the stars in the isolated and dangerous mazes of the Canyonlands, Leo and Lily must decide whether they’ll risk their lives and hearts on the adventure of a lifetime.

By The Book by Jasmine Guillory

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsBy the Book (Meant to Be #2) by Jasmine Guillory
Published by Hyperion Avenue on May 3, 2022
Pages: 320

A tale as old as time—for a new generation…

Isabelle is completely lost. When she first began her career in publishing right out of college, she did not expect to be twenty-five, living at home, still an editorial assistant, and the only Black employee at her publishing house. Overworked and underpaid, constantly torn between speaking up or stifling herself, Izzy thinks there must be more to this publishing life. So when she overhears her boss complaining about a beastly high-profile author who has failed to deliver his long-awaited manuscript, Isabelle sees an opportunity to finally get the promotion she deserves.
All she has to do is go to the author’s Santa Barbara mansion and give him a quick pep talk or three. How hard could it be?
But Izzy quickly finds out she is in over her head. Beau Towers is not some celebrity lightweight writing a tell-all memoir. He is jaded and withdrawn and—it turns out—just as lost as Izzy. But despite his standoffishness, Izzy needs Beau to deliver, and with her encouragement, his story begins to spill onto the page. They soon discover they have more in common than either of them expected, and as their deadline nears, Izzy and Beau begin to realize there may be something there that wasn't there before.

Best-selling author Jasmine Guillory’s reimagining of a beloved fairy tale is a romantic triumph of love and acceptance and learning that sometimes to truly know a person you have to read between the lines.

We Measure the Earth with Our Bodies by Tsering Yangzom Lama

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsWe Measure the Earth with Our Bodies by Tsering Yangzom Lama
Published by Bloomsbury Publishing on May 17, 2022
Pages: 368

For readers of Pachinko and We Need New Names, a compelling and profound debut novel about a Tibetan family's journey through exile.
In the wake of China's invasion of Tibet in 1959, Lhamo and her younger sister Tenkyi arrive at a refugee camp on the border of Nepal. Lhamo and Tenkyi survived the dangerous journey across the Himalayas into exile, but their parents did not. Now, Lhamo-haunted by the loss of her homeland and the memory of her mother, a village oracle-is trying to rebuild a life amid a shattered community. Lhamo finds hope in the arrival of a young man named Samphel, whose uncle brings with him an ancient statue of a nameless saint-a statue last seen in their village and known for vanishing and reappearing in times of need.
Decades later, the sisters are separated, and Tenkyi is living with Lhamo's daughter Dolma in Toronto. While Tenkyi works as a cleaner and struggles with traumatic memories, Dolma is vying for a place as a scholar of Tibet Studies. But when Dolma comes across the statue of the nameless saint in a collector's vault, she decides to reclaim it for her family and community, even if it means risking her dreams.
Breathtaking in its scope and powerful in its intimacy, We Measure the Earth with our Bodies is a gorgeously written meditation on colonization, displacement, and the lengths we go to remain connected to our families and ancestral lands. Told through the lives of four people over fifty years, this novel provides a nuanced, moving portrait of the little-known world of Tibetan exiles.

My Summer Darlings by May Cobb

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsMy Summer Darlings by May Cobb
Published by Berkley on May 17, 2022
Pages: 368

Three lifelong friends plus a dangerous, sexy new stranger in town add up to a scorching summer of manipulation, obsession, and murder, from the acclaimed author of The Hunting Wives.
A woman in the forest thinks she’s going to die.I know he’s coming back for me.
Jen Hansen, Kittie Spears, and Cynthia Nichols have been friends since childhood. They are now approaching forty and their lives have changed, but their insular East Texas town has not. They stay sane by drinking wine in the afternoons, dishing about other women in the neighborhood, and bonding over the heartache of their own encroaching middle age and raising ungrateful teens.
Then Will Harding comes to town, moving into one of the neighborhood’s grandest homes. Mysterious and charming, he seems like the answer to each woman’s prayers. He’s a source of fascination for Jen, Kittie, and Cynthia, but none of them are ready for the way Will disrupts their lives.
As Will grows closer with each of the women, their fascination twists into obsession, threatening their friendships and their families. When he abruptly pulls away, each woman scrambles to discover the source of his affection. But what they’ll uncover is far more sinister and deadly than any of them could have ever imagined.

I Kissed Shara Wheeler by Casey McQuiston

What’s In The Box! – April 2022 PredictionsI Kissed Shara Wheeler by Casey McQuiston
Published by St. Martin's Press on May 3, 2022
Pages: 320

From the New York Times bestselling author of One Last Stop and Red, White & Royal Blue comes a debut YA romantic comedy about chasing down what you want, only to find what you need...
Chloe Green is so close to winning. After her moms moved her from SoCal to Alabama for high school, she’s spent the past four years dodging gossipy classmates and a puritanical administration at Willowgrove Christian Academy. The thing that’s kept her going: winning valedictorian. Her only rival: prom queen Shara Wheeler, the principal’s perfect progeny.
But a month before graduation, Shara kisses Chloe and vanishes.
On a furious hunt for answers, Chloe discovers she’s not the only one Shara kissed. There’s also Smith, Shara’s longtime quarterback sweetheart, and Rory, Shara’s bad boy neighbor with a crush. The three have nothing in common except Shara and the annoyingly cryptic notes she left behind, but together they must untangle Shara’s trail of clues and find her. It’ll be worth it, if Chloe can drag Shara back before graduation to beat her fair-and-square.
Thrown into an unlikely alliance, chasing a ghost through parties, break-ins, puzzles, and secrets revealed on monogrammed stationery, Chloe starts to suspect there might be more to this small town than she thought. And maybe—probably not, but maybe—more to Shara, too.
Fierce, funny, and frank, Casey McQuiston's I Kissed Shara Wheeler is about breaking the rules, getting messy, and finding love in unexpected places.

What About You?

What April and May releases are you hoping to see as picks? What do you think of my list? Let me know in the comments!

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