What’s In The Box!- May 2022 Predictions

Posted April 24, 2022 by stuckint in Uncategorized / 8 Comments

Hey everyone and welcome to another What’s In The Box post where we make predictions about what Book of the Month might choose as their monthly selection.

This month has been so chaotic with health issues, family visits and a handful of big life changes that we just haven’t had the time to throw together the post we normally.

Bur we still wanted to get you our list, because some list is better than no list right? So, excuses aside, enjoy our list of predictions!

Contemporary Fiction

The Homewrecker by Mary Kay Andrews

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsThe Homewreckers by Mary Kay Andrews
Published by St. Martin's Press on May 3, 2022
Pages: 448
Goodreads

Summer begins with MKA, in this delightful summer read about flipping houses, and finding true love.Hattie Kavanaugh went to work helping clean up restored homes for Kavanaugh & Son Restorations at eighteen; married the boss’s son at twenty; and was only twenty-five when her husband, Hank, was killed in a motorcycle accident.
Broken hearted, but determined to continue the business of their dreams, she takes the life insurance money, buys a small house in a gentrifying neighborhood, flips it, then puts the money into her next project. But that house is a disaster and a money-loser, which rocks her confidence for years to come. Then, Hattie gets a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity: star in a beach house renovation reality show called "The Homewreckers," cast against a male lead who may be a love interest, or may be the ultimate antagonist. It's a question of who will flip, and who will flop, and will Hattie ever get her happily-ever-after.
Filled with Mary Kay Andrews's trademark wit, warmth, junking trips, and house porn, The Homewreckers is a summer beach delight.

My Summer Darlings by May Cobb

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

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.

The Summer Place by Jennifer Weiner

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsThe Summer Place by Jennifer Weiner
Published by Atria Books on May 10, 2022
Pages: 432
Goodreads

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of That Summer comes another heartfelt and unputdownable novel of family, secrets, and the ties that bind.
When her twenty-two-year-old stepdaughter announces her engagement to her pandemic boyfriend, Sarah Danhauser is shocked. But the wheels are in motion. Headstrong Ruby has already set a date (just three months away!) and spoken to her beloved safta, Sarah’s mother Veronica, about having the wedding at the family’s beach house on Cape Cod. Sarah might be worried, but Veronica is thrilled to be bringing the family together one last time before putting the big house on the market.
But the road to a wedding day usually comes with a few bumps. Ruby has always known exactly what she wants, but as the wedding date approaches, she finds herself grappling with the wounds left by the mother who walked out when she was a baby. Veronica ends up facing unexpected news, thanks to her meddling sister, and must revisit the choices she made long ago, when she was a bestselling novelist with a different life. Sarah’s twin brother, Sam, is recovering from a terrible loss, and confronting big questions about who he is—questions he hopes to resolve during his stay on the Cape. Sarah’s husband, Eli, who’s been inexplicably distant during the pandemic, confronts the consequences of a long ago lapse from his typical good-guy behavior. And Sarah, frustrated by her husband, concerned about her stepdaughter, and worn out by challenges of life during quarantine, faces the alluring reappearance of someone from her past and a life that could have been.
When the wedding day arrives, lovers are revealed as their true selves, misunderstandings take on a life of their own, and secrets come to light. There are confrontations and revelations that will touch each member of the extended family, ensuring that nothing will ever be the same.
From “the undisputed boss of the beach read” (The New York Times), The Summer Place is a testament to family in all its messy glory; a story about what we sacrifice and how we forgive. Enthralling, witty, big-hearted, and sharply observed, this is Jennifer Weiner’s love letter to the Outer Cape and the power of home, the way our lives are enriched by the people we call family, and the endless ways love can surprise us.

The Shore by Katie Runde

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsThe Shore by Katie Runde
Published by Scribner on May 24, 2022
Pages: 304
Goodreads

Set over the course of one summer, this perfect beach read follows a mother and her two daughters as they grapple with heartbreak, young love, and the weight of family secrets.
Brian and Margot Dunne live year-round in Seaside, just steps away from the bustling boardwalk, with their daughters Liz and Evy. The Dunnes run a real estate company, making their living by quickly turning over rental houses for tourists. But the family’s future becomes even more precarious when Brian develops a brain tumor, transforming into a bizarre, erratic version of himself. Amidst the chaos and new caretaking responsibilities, Liz still seeks out summer adventure and flirting with a guy she should know better than to pursue. Her younger sister Evy works in a candy shop, falls in love with her friend Olivia, and secretly adopts the persona of a middle-aged mom in an online support group, where she discovers her own mother’s most vulnerable confessions. Meanwhile, Margot faces an impossible choice driven by grief, impulse, and the ways that small-town life in Seaside has shaped her. Falling apart is not an option, but she can always pack up and leave the beach behind.
The Shore is a powerful, heartbreaking, and ultimately uplifting novel infused with humor about young women finding sisterhood, friendship, and love in a time of crisis. This big-hearted family saga examines the grit and hustle of running a small business in a tourist town, the ways we connect with strangers when our families can’t give us everything we need, and the comfort to be found in embracing the pleasures of youth while coping with unimaginable loss.

Historical Fiction

Elektra by Jennifer Saint

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsElektra: A Novel of the House of Atreus by Jennifer Saint
Published by Flatiron Books on May 3, 2022
Pages: 320
Goodreads

The House of Atreus is cursed. A bloodline tainted by a generational cycle of violence and vengeance. This is the story of three women, their fates inextricably tied to this curse, and the fickle nature of men and gods.
ClytemnestraThe sister of Helen, wife of Agamemnon - her hopes of averting the curse are dashed when her sister is taken to Troy by the feckless Paris. Her husband raises a great army against them, and determines to win, whatever the cost.
CassandraPrincess of Troy, and cursed by Apollo to see the future but never to be believed when she speaks of it. She is powerless in her knowledge that the city will fall.
ElektraThe youngest daughter of Clytemnestra and Agamemnon, Elektra is horrified by the bloodletting of her kin. But, can she escape the curse, or is her own destiny also bound by violence?
Praise for Jennifer Saint and ARIADNE:
'A lyrical, insightful re-telling' Daily Mail
'Relevant and revelatory' Stylist
'Energetic and compelling' Times
'An illuminating read' Woman & Home
'A story that's impossible to forget' Culturefly

The Lioness by Chris Bohjalian

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsThe Lioness by Chris Bohjalian
Published by Doubleday Books on May 10, 2022
Pages: 336
Goodreads

A luxurious African safari turns deadly for a Hollywood starlet and her entourage in this riveting historical thriller from the New York Times bestselling author of The Flight Attendant
"The best possible combination of Hemingway and Agatha Christie — a gorgeously written story about the landscape and risks of Africa, whose edge-of-your-seat plot makes it impossible to put down.” —Jodi Picoult, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Wish You Were Here

Tanzania, 1964. When Katie Barstow, A-list actress, and her new husband, David Hill, decide to bring their Hollywood friends to the Serengeti for their honeymoon, they envision giraffes gently eating leaves from the tall acacia trees, great swarms of wildebeests crossing the Mara River, and herds of zebra storming the sandy plains. Their glamorous guests—including Katie’s best friend, Carmen Tedesco, and Terrance Dutton, the celebrated Black actor who stars alongside Katie in the highly controversial film “Tender Madness”—will spend their days taking photos, and their evenings drinking chilled gin and tonics back at camp, as the local Tanzanian guides warm water for their baths. The wealthy Americans expect civilized adventure: Fresh ice from the kerosene-powered ice maker, dinners of cooked gazelle meat, and plenty of stories to tell over lunch back on Rodeo Drive.
What Katie and her glittering entourage do not expect is this: A kidnapping gone wrong, their guides bleeding out in the dirt, and a team of Russian mercenaries herding them into Land Rovers, guns to their heads. As the powerful sun gives way to night, the gunmen shove them into abandoned huts and Katie Barstow, Hollywood royalty, prays for a simple thing: To see the sun rise one more time. A blistering story of fame, race, love, and death set in a world on the cusp of great change, The Safari is a vibrant masterpiece from one of our finest storytellers.

Literary Fiction

The Immortal King Rao by Vauhini Vara

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsThe Immortal King Rao by Vauhini Vara
Published by W. W. Norton Company on May 3, 2022
Pages: 384
Goodreads

In an Indian village in the 1950s, a precocious child is born into a family of Dalit coconut farmers. King Rao will grow up to be the most accomplished tech CEO in the world and, eventually, the leader of a global, corporate-led government.
In a future in which the world is run by the Board of Corporations, King’s daughter, Athena, reckons with his legacy—literally, for he has given her access to his memories, among other questionable gifts.
With climate change raging, Athena has come to believe that saving the planet and its Shareholders will require a radical act of communion—and so she sets out to tell the truth to the world’s Shareholders, in entrancing sensory detail, about King’s childhood on a South Indian coconut plantation; his migration to the U.S. to study engineering in a world transformed by globalization; his marriage to the ambitious artist with whom he changed the world; and, ultimately, his invention, under self-exile, of the most ambitious creation of his life—Athena herself.
The Immortal King Rao, written by a former Wall Street Journal technology reporter, is a resonant debut novel obliterating the boundaries between literary and speculative fiction, the historic and the dystopian, confronting how we arrived at the age of technological capitalism and where our actions might take us next.

Love Marriage by Monica Ali

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsLove Marriage by Monica Ali
Published by Scribner on May 3, 2022
Pages: 432
Goodreads

Set in London now, Love Marriage marks the magnificent return of Monica Ali, the Booker Prize shortlisted, “splendid, daring, brilliant, refreshing” novelist (The New Republic) “with an inborn generosity that cannot be learned” (The New York Times Book Review).
Yasmin Ghorami in twenty-six, in training to be a doctor (like her Indian-born father), and engaged to the charismatic, upper-class Joe Sangster, whose formidable mother, Harriet, is a famous feminist. The gulf between families is vast. So, too, is the gulf in sexual experience between Yasmin and Joe.
As the wedding day draws near, misunderstandings, infidelities, and long-held secrets upend both Yasmin’s relationship and that of her parents, a “love marriage,” according to the family lore that Yasmin has believed all her life.
A gloriously acute observer of class, sexual mores, and the mysteries of the human heart, Monica Ali has written a captivating social comedy and a profoundly moving, revelatory story of two cultures, two families, and two people trying to understand one another.
Monica Ali’s Brick Lane was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award, and was shortlisted for the Booker Prize. It was named a best book of the year by The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, and The Atlantic.

Remarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsRemarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt
Published by Ecco Press on May 3, 2022
Pages: 368
Goodreads

For fans of A Man Called Ove, a charming, witty and compulsively readable exploration of friendship, reckoning, and hope, tracing a widow's unlikely connection with a giant Pacific octopus.
After Tova Sullivan's husband died, she began working the night shift at the Sowell Bay Aquarium, mopping floors and tidying up. Keeping busy has always helped her cope, which she's been doing since her eighteen-year-old son, Erik, mysteriously vanished on a boat in Puget Sound over thirty years ago.
Tova becomes acquainted with curmudgeonly Marcellus, a giant Pacific octopus living at the aquarium. Marcellus knows more than anyone can imagine but wouldn't dream of lifting one of his eight arms for his human captors--until he forms a remarkable friendship with Tova.
Ever the detective, Marcellus deduces what happened the night Tova's son disappeared. And now Marcellus must use every trick his old invertebrate body can muster to unearth the truth for her before it's too late.
Shelby Van Pelt's debut novel is a gentle reminder that sometimes taking a hard look at the past can help uncover a future that once felt impossible.

All the Secrets of the World by Steve Almond

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsAll the Secrets of the World by Steve Almond
Published by Zando on April 19, 2022
Pages: 416
Goodreads

"The scorpion hunts while the rest of us dream. That's why he knows all the secrets of the world."


It's 1981 in Sacramento and 13-year-old Lorena Saenz has just been paired with Jenny Stallworth for the science fair by a well-meaning teacher hoping to unite two girls from starkly different worlds. The unlikely friendship they form will draw their families into a web of secrets and lies, one that sends Lorena on an unforgiving odyssey through the desert, past the gates of a religious cult in Mexico, and into the dark heart of America's criminal justice system.
A sweeping social novel, All the Secrets of the World introduces readers to a cast of indelible characters while illuminating the moment in our national history when the call for law and order became the dominant force within our public life. For fans of both Little Fires Everywhere and Breaking Bad, Steve Almond's long-awaited debut novel is a propulsive tour de force--the sheer scope, moral complexities, and piercing insights mark a writer at the height of his powers.

Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance by Alison Espatch

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsNotes on Your Sudden Disappearance by Alison Espach
Published by Henry Holt and Co. on May 17, 2022
Pages: 352
Goodreads

The summer before Sally Holt starts the eighth grade begins as a gloriously uneventful one. It's full of family trips to the beach and long afternoons at the local pool with her older sister Kathy, which they mostly use as an excuse to ogle Billy Barnes, who works the concession stand there. A rising senior and local basketball star, Billy has been an unending source of intrigue for both girls since he jumped off the school roof in fifth grade, and their fascination with him is one of the few things the increasingly different sisters have in common. By summer’s end Billy and Kathy are an item—an unthinkable stroke of luck that ends in an even more unthinkable tragedy.
Set over the course of fifteen years, Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance is narrated by Sally as she addresses Kathy before, during, and after her death. We watch as Kathy’s absence creates a gaping hole that only Billy—now firmly off-limits to Sally—understands and might possibly begin to fill. Charting years of their shared history and missed connections, Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance is both a breathtaking love story between two broken people who are unexplainably, inconveniently drawn to each other, and a wry, sharply observant coming-of-age story that looks at the ways the people we love the most continue to shape our lives long after they’re gone.

The Evening Hero by Marie Myung-Ok Lee

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsThe Evening Hero by Marie Myung-Ok Lee
Published by Simon Schuster on May 24, 2022
Pages: 448
Goodreads

A sweeping, lyrical novel following a Korean immigrant pursuing the American dream who must confront the secrets of the past or risk watching the world he’s worked so hard to build come crumbling down.
Dr. Yungman Kwak is in the twilight of his life. Every day for the last fifty years, he has brushed his teeth, slipped on his shoes, and headed to Horse Breath’s General Hospital, where, as an obstetrician, he treats the women and babies of the small rural Minnesota town he chose to call home.
This was the life he longed for. The so-called American dream. He immigrated from Korea after the Korean War, forced to leave his family, ancestors, village, and all that he knew behind. But his life is built on a lie. And one day, a letter arrives that threatens to expose it.
Yungman’s life is thrown into chaos—the hospital abruptly closes, his wife refuses to spend time with him, and his son is busy investing in a struggling health start-up. Yungman faces a choice—he must choose to hide his secret from his family and friends or confess and potentially lose all he’s built. He begins to question the very assumptions on which his life is built—the so-called American dream, with the abject failure of its healthcare system, patient and neighbors who perpetuate racism, a town flawed with infrastructure, and a history that doesn’t see him in it.
Toggling between the past and the present, Korea and America, Evening Hero is a sweeping, moving, darkly comic novel about a man looking back at his life and asking big questions about what is lost and what is gained when immigrants leave home for new shores.

Mystery and Thriller

The Hacienda by Isabelle Cañas

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

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.

The Night They Vanished by Vanessa Savage

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsThe Night They Vanished by Vanessa Savage
Published by Grand Central Publishing on May 3, 2022
Pages: 384
Goodreads

A family with a secret.
A past about to catch up with them.
Hanna has barely spoken to her family since the tragedy that rocked their lives fourteen years ago. The tragedy for which they held Hanna responsible.
Then she sees her family home listed as the scene of a horrific crime. Number of victims: three. Date of crime: today. Frantic, Hanna tries to contact her family, only to find they have disappeared.
To find them, Hanna will have to confront what happened all those years ago.
And the person determined to make her pay for it  . . .

The Patient by Jane Shermilt

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsThe Patient by Jane Shemilt
Published by William Morrow & Company on May 3, 2022
Pages: 304
Goodreads

She is his doctor. He will be her downfall.
The bestselling phenomenon returns…
When Rachel meets Luc, the attraction is instant.But she is a doctor, and he is her patient.She gives him the drugs he needs – but in doing so, risks everything.And when a secret is exposed, they’re both in the firing line.Not all patients are telling the truth.

Hide by Kiersten White

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsHide by Kiersten White
Published by Del Rey Books on May 24, 2022
Pages: 256
Goodreads

The challenge: spend a week hiding in an abandoned amusement park and don't get caught.
The prize: enough money to change everything.
Even though everyone is desperate to win--to seize their dream futures or escape their haunting pasts--Mack feels sure that she can beat her competitors. All she has to do is hide, and she's an expert at that.
It's the reason she's alive, and her family isn't.
But as the people around her begin disappearing one by one, Mack realizes this competition is more sinister than even she imagined, and that together might be the only way to survive.

Fourteen competitors. Seven days. Everywhere to hide, but nowhere to run.
Come out, come out, wherever you are.
A high-stakes hide-and-seek competition turns deadly in this dark supernatural thriller from New York Times bestselling author Kiersten White.

Romance

You Made a Fool of Death with Your Beauty by Akwaeke Emezi

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsYou Made a Fool of Death with Your Beauty by Akwaeke Emezi
Published by Atria Books on May 24, 2022
Pages: 288
Goodreads


New York Times
bestselling author and National Book Award finalist Akwaeke Emezi (they/them) reimagines the love story in this fresh and seductive novel about a young woman seeking joy while healing from loss.
Feyi Adekola wants to learn how to be alive again.
It’s been five years since the accident that killed the love of her life and she’s almost a new person now—an artist with her own studio, and sharing a brownstone apartment with her ride-or-die best friend, Joy, who insists it’s time for Feyi to ease back into the dating scene. Feyi isn’t ready for anything serious, but a steamy encounter at a rooftop party cascades into a whirlwind summer she could have never imagined: a luxury trip to a tropical island, decadent meals in the glamorous home of a celebrity chef, and a major curator who wants to launch her art career.
She’s even started dating the perfect guy, but their new relationship might be sabotaged before it has a chance by the dangerous thrill Feyi feels every time she locks eyes with the one person in the house who is most definitely off-limits. This new life she asked for just got a lot more complicated, and Feyi must begin her search for real answers. Who is she ready to become? Can she release her past and honor her grief while still embracing her future? And, of course, there’s the biggest question of all—how far is she willing to go for a second chance at love?
Akwaeke Emezi’s vivid and passionate writing takes us deep into a world of possibility and healing, and the constant bravery of choosing love against all odds.

Something Wilder by Christina Lauren

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

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.

Book Lovers by Emily Henry

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

One summer. Two rivals. A plot twist they didn’t see coming…
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.

I Kissed Shara Wheeler by Casey Mcquiston

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

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.

The Wedding Season by Katy Birchall

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsThe Wedding Season by Katy Birchall
Published by St. Martin's Griffin on May 3, 2022
Pages: 384
Goodreads

Four Weddings and a Funeral meets The Wedding Party in Katy Birchall's The Wedding Season: when a recently jilted bride is forced to attend seven weddings in one summer, her friends devise a series of challenges as distraction.
Freya Scott is getting married. Her wedding to Matthew, her long-term boyfriend, is the first of eight in her calendar this year, and as someone who prides herself on being meticulously organized, Freya is intent on making it the perfect day to remember.
But when Matthew calls things off hours before they walk down the aisle, Freya’s entire life plan goes up in smoke. Humiliated and heartbroken, the last thing she wants is to attend a summer of other peoples’ nuptials on her own.
Fortunately, her friends have an idea: together they devise a series of outrageous challenges for Freya to complete at each event, designed to distract her from Matthew and what might have been. From getting stuck in an old church bathroom and needing to be rescued by the vicar to making out with a barman at a French chateau, Freya realizes that despite herself, she might just be having fun.
By the time the final wedding arrives, she will discover that the road to a happy ending sometimes has unexpected detours, that “I do” is only the beginning––and that perhaps her own love story isn’t over just yet.

Science Fiction and Fantasy

When Women Were Dragons by Kelly Barnhill

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsWhen Women Were Dragons by Kelly Barnhill
Published by Doubleday Books on May 3, 2022
Pages: 352
Goodreads

Learn about the Mass Dragoning of 1955 in which 300,000 women spontaneously transform into dragons...and change the world.
Alex Green is a young girl in a world much like ours. But this version of 1950's America is characterized by a significant event: The Mass Dragoning of 1955, when hundreds of thousands of ordinary wives and mothers sprouted wings, scales and talons, left a trail of fiery destruction in their path, and took to the skies. Seemingly for good. Was it their choice? What will become of those left behind? Why did Alex's beloved Aunt Marla transform but her mother did not? Alex doesn't know. It's taboo to speak of, even more so than her crush on Sonja, her schoolmate.
Forced into silence, Alex nevertheless must face the consequences of dragons: a mother more protective than ever; a father growing increasingly distant; the upsetting insistence that her aunt never even existed; and a new "sister" obsessed with dragons far beyond propriety. Through loss, rage, and self-discovery, this story follows Alex's journey as she deals with the events leading up to and beyond the Mass Dragoning, and her connection with the phenomenon itself.

The Change by Kirsten Miller

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsThe Change by Kirsten Miller
Published by William Morrow & Company on May 3, 2022
Pages: 480
Goodreads

Big Little Lies meets The Witches of Eastwick--a gloriously entertaining and knife-sharp feminist revenge fantasy about three women whose midlife crisis brings unexpected new powers--putting them on a collision course with the evil that lurks in their wealthy beach town.
In the Long Island oceanfront community of Mattauk, three different women discover that midlife changes bring a whole new type of empowerment...
After Nessa James's husband dies and her twin daughters leave for college, she's left all alone in a trim white house not far from the ocean. In the quiet of her late forties, the former nurse begins to hear voices. It doesn't take long for Nessa to realize that the voices calling out to her belong to the dead--a gift she's inherited from her grandmother, which comes with special responsibilities.
On the cusp of 50, suave advertising director Harriett Osborne has just witnessed the implosion of her lucrative career and her marriage. She hasn't left her house in months, and from the outside, it appears as if she and her garden have both gone to seed. But Harriet's life is far from over--in fact, she's undergone a stunning and very welcome metamorphosis.
Ambitious former executive Jo Levison has spent thirty long years at war with her body. The free-floating rage and hot flashes that arrive with the beginning of menopause feel like the very last straw--until she realizes she has the ability to channel them, and finally comes into her power.
Guided by voices only Nessa can hear, the trio of women discover a teenage girl whose body was abandoned beside a remote beach. The police have written the victim off as a drug-addicted sex worker, but the women refuse to buy into the official narrative. Their investigation into the girl's murder leads to more bodies, and to the town's most exclusive and isolated enclave, a world of stupendous wealth where the rules don't apply. With their newfound powers, Jo, Nessa, and Harriet will take matters into their own hands...

The Book of Night by Holly Black

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsBook of Night by Holly Black
Published by Tor Books on May 3, 2022
Pages: 320
Goodreads

#1 New York Times bestselling author Holly Black makes her stunning adult debut with Book of Night, a modern dark fantasy of shadowy thieves and secret societies in the vein of Ninth House and The Night Circus
In Charlie Hall’s world, shadows can be altered, for entertainment and cosmetic preferences—but also to increase power and influence. You can alter someone’s feelings—and memories—but manipulating shadows has a cost, with the potential to take hours or days from your life. Your shadow holds all the parts of you that you want to keep hidden—a second self, standing just to your left, walking behind you into lit rooms. And sometimes, it has a life of its own.
Charlie is a low-level con artist, working as a bartender while trying to distance herself from the powerful and dangerous underground world of shadow trading. She gets by doing odd jobs for her patrons and the naive new money in her town at the edge of the Berkshires. But when a terrible figure from her past returns, Charlie’s present life is thrown into chaos, and her future seems at best, unclear—and at worst, non-existent. Determined to survive, Charlie throws herself into a maelstrom of secrets and murder, setting her against a cast of doppelgangers, mercurial billionaires, shadow thieves, and her own sister—all desperate to control the magic of the shadows.
With sharp angles and prose, and a sinister bent, Holly Black is a master of shadow and story stitching. Remember while you read, light isn’t playing tricks in Book of Night, the people are.

Short Stories & Essay Collections

No Stars in the Sky by Martha Batiz

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsNo Stars in the Sky by Martha Batiz
Published by Astoria on May 3, 2022
Goodreads

A new collection of hard-hitting and intimate stories by award-winning Mexican Canadian author Martha Bátiz.
The nineteen stories in No Stars in the Sky feature strong but damaged female characters in crisis. Tormented by personal conflicts and oppressive regimes that treat the female body like a trophy of war, the women in No Stars in the Sky face life-altering circumstances that either shatter or make them stronger, albeit at a very high price. True to her Latin American roots, Bátiz shines a light on the crises that concern her most: the plight of migrant children along the Mexico–U.S. border, the tragedy of the disappeared in Mexico and Argentina, and the generalized racial and domestic violence that has turned life into a constant struggle for survival. With an unflinching hand, Bátiz explores the breadth of the human condition to expose silent tragedies too often ignored.

Young Adult

The Summer of Bitter and Sweet by Jen Ferguson

What’s In The Box!- May 2022 PredictionsThe Summer of Bitter and Sweet by Jen Ferguson
Published by Heartdrum on May 10, 2022
Pages: 384
Goodreads

In this complex and emotionally resonant novel, debut author Jen Ferguson serves up a powerful story about rage, secrets, and all the spectrums that make up a person—and the sweetness that can still live alongside the bitterest truth.
Lou has enough confusion in front of her this summer. She’ll be working in her family’s ice cream shack with her newly ex-boyfriend—whose kisses never made her feel desire, only discomfort—and her former best friend, King, who is back in their Canadian prairie town after disappearing three years ago without a word.
But when she gets a letter from her biological father—a man she hoped would stay behind bars for the rest of his life—Lou immediately knows that she cannot meet him, no matter how much he insists.
While King’s friendship makes Lou feel safer and warmer than she would have thought possible, when her family’s business comes under threat, she soon realizes that she can’t ignore her father forever.

What About You?

What picks are you hoping to see for May? What do you think of our predictions? Let us know in the comments!

8 responses to “What’s In The Box!- May 2022 Predictions

  1. Claire Talbot

    A lot of books in this list are tempting! I am hoping for “Remarkably Bright Creatures” and “Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance”.

  2. Tammy

    Definitely going to be The Hacienda! Cover art is on the BOTM page. Can’t wait to read several of these!

  3. Ann

    I finally dropped my BOTM subscription a few months back. I think I had it for almost 2 years & enjoyed it very much for a while. Just could not justify keeping it, with libraries open for operation again & even offering curbside service. The branch near me is excellent at getting new titles. There was only a slight supply chain issue for a bit.

    I still love to check out the predictions!

    I have been on wait list for The Lioness. I may check out Remarkably Bright Creatures. It is rumored to be a ReadwithJenna pick & I usually like her selections. Also on wait list for the new Jennifer Weiner.

    I tried to read Emily Henry’s last book and it was a DNF for me. I just did not get the hype.

    Not a fan of the cute covered romances either.

    This looks like a good variety. I am sure I will end up reading some of these. Currently just started Greenwich Park. And with a blurb from Ashley Audrain, I can imagine it will be good.

    Also read Run, Rose, Rose, which was entertaining. My first time reading James Patterson.

    And The Unsinkable Greta James, which I thoroughly enjoyed. First time reading Jennifer E. Smith. Hope she writes more adult fiction.

    • KayKay

      I think purchasing books is completely justified because you’re paying authors for their work. Writing seems to be the only occupation where people expect the worker to do their work for free.

  4. Shauna

    The Hacienda is definitely one. They’ve got a hint up and the art is DEFINITELY from the cover of that book.

    When Women Were Dragons sounds intriguing!

  5. KayKay

    I think purchasing books is justified because you’re paying the authors for their work. Writing seems to be the only occupation where people expect to get your work for free.

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