Bookhampton owner Carolyn Brody shares her five must-reads.
1. SEX AND VANITY BYKEVIN KWAN ($27, Doubleday)
The iconic author of Crazy Rich Asiansbrings us a truly modern love story of Lucie Churchill, a young Chinese American woman torn between two men. Veering between the privileged summer playgrounds of Capri and East Hampton, this is a breezy update of E.M. Forster’s A Room with a Viewand a memorable comedy of manners set between two cultures.
2. THE SPLENDID AND THEVILE BY ERIK LARSON($22, Crown Publishing Group)
Erik Larson’s genius is his ability to take a slice of history and frame it so it reads like riveting fiction. Reading about Winston Churchill as England stands alone and is subjected to a relentless bombing campaign by the German Luftwaffe reminds us what great leadership looks like and how sorely it is needed. It’s a captivating historical saga.
3. ALL ADULTS HERE BY EMMA STRAUB($27, Penguin Publishing Group)
A thinking person’s beach read and Emma Straub at her best, this is a messy, layered love story about a multigenerational family, affirming why and how we should stay together and keep trying. It’s optimistic, funny, charming and warmhearted—perfect for this moment in time!
4. THE NICKEL BOYS BY COLSON WHITEHEAD ($23, Doubleday)
Colson Whitehead’s Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece is now out in paperback. Based on the disturbingtrue story of a Florida reform school, Whitehead takes us inside the stories of the boys sent to live there in a fictionalized tale. Short, intense and provocative, this book is painfully topical in its portrayal of racism and social injustice.
5. HAMNET BY MAGGIE O’FARRELL ($27, Knopf)
This is historical fiction of the first order by a U.K. author remarkably undiscovered by American readers—until now—a short, moving novel about the deathof Shakespeare’s 11-year-old son, Hamnet—a name interchangeable with Hamlet in 15th century Britain—and the years leading to the production ofhis great play. A luminous portrait of a marriage, a family ravaged by grief and the tender reimagining of a boy whose life has been forgotten but whose name was given to one of the most celebrated plays of all time. It’s mesmerizing and impossible to put down.