The top 10 titles being released in September according to librarians across the country were announced Monday. There are a few in this list that surprised me. Particularly the top vote getter - not because I had not ordered it but just because......
Top title went to Smoke Gets In Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory by debut author Caitlin Doughty comes out on September 15th. Part memoir, part expose of the death industry and part instruction manual for aspiring morticians - a quirky, humorous in part story for fans of Mary Roach.
The remaining nine in no particular order are:
Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel comes on September 9th. I am amazed that this did not get top listing. Every reviewer who has read it, praises it dramatically. People have said things like " This is a beautiful, gripping novel told by a masterful hand." It is dystopian fiction when a strain of the swine flu (called Georgia flu by the way) wipes out 99% of the world's population. The remaining people settle in outposts but the story centers on a troupe of traveling Shakespearean actors that perform at the outposts. There is the feeling that just to survive is not enough and that the apocalypse is a way to reinvent freedom.
Tana French publishes The Secret Place on August 28th (that's almost September). This is the fifth in the Dublin Murder Squad series. In this one the murder squad takes on the world of teenage girls when one comes forward with evidence from a murder. Tension-filled - really makes you look at friendship.
Lauren Oliver has written several very popular teen books but on September 23rd, she comes out with her first adult novel, Rooms. When an estranged family comes back to a home after the father's death, they must learn to deal with the past and move on BUT in on the whole conversation are two ghosts who live in the walls of the old house. Both the living and the dead are haunted by painful truths. Said to be a searing family drama.
Ian McEwan gives us The Children Act on September 9th. Most except this to win a Booker nomination (it will not qualify this year as the long list is already out) so literary fiction lovers give this a try. Judge Fiona Maye is having marriage problems and her husband has moved out because she refused the idea of an open marriage. She concentrates on her work and becomes deeply involved - maybe too involved. A 17 year old boy and his parents are refusing allowing doctor's to give the boy a blood infusion for religious reasons. A poignant tale.
Helen Giltrow has The Distance, her debut, coming on September 9th. A tense thriller about a socialite who is a hidden tech guru in secret. Only one person has ever seen her in her 'secret' persona - and that person needs her for a job that could get them both in trouble or even dead. Everyone has layers, everyone is living some kind of double life, and everyone says that this is an edge of your seat read.
Horrorstor by Grady Hendrix arrives on September 23rd. It takes place in an IKEA type store where things are being damaged at night. 5 young employees are asked to work a dusk to dawn shift to find out what or who is happening. This is a horror story which is laid out like an IKEA catalog. Everyone has praised the inventiveness of the layout and the growth of the characters over the night. One reviewer said "This story is super creepy, has a lot of surprises, is clever and funny, AND left me in deep thought." Sounds like a winner to me.
The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters comes on September 16th. Waters has been short listed for the Booker prize 3 times so perhaps we have another possible nominee here. Her specialty is historical fiction and this one fits the bill. After WWI, many homes lost their husbands and brothers. An impoverished widow, Mrs. Wray, and her 'spinster daughter, Frances are forced to take in lodgers. The arrival of Lilian and Leonard Barber, a lower class couple with marriage problems, shake up the house in unexpected ways. One reviewer says "A love story, a tension-filled crime story, and a beautifully atmospheric portrait of a fascinating time and place, The Paying Guests is Sarah Waters's finest achievement yet."
Kim Harrison's The Witch with No Name which arrives on September 9th is another surprise for me. I think it is unusual for an urban fantasy novel to make the list but I guess there are a lot of people who like it and this is the very last book in her Hollows series so perhaps it is the ending of the series that made it this popular. Rachel Morgan and all her friends face their toughest battle yet.
Lastly, Season of Storms by Susanna Kearsley is being republished on September 2nd. Originally, this was published back in 2001. More of a romance than a suspense, actress Celia Sands takes a role in the modern day, that another Celia Sands (no relation) was suppose to play. Italy, romance and a small amount of suspense.
OK - hopefully there are a few in here for you. I have 3 more on my TBR pile.