A friend of mine recently asked me to list the top five books that I am looking forward to reading in 2017. First I need to add that the book world (authors and publishing companies) have been killing it lately with some amazing books. It seems to me that every year brings about a set of new books that must be added to book shelves everywhere. With that being said something as simple as “tell me the top five books your looking forward to reading in 2017” is made not so simple. There are so many great books hitting bookshelves this year! Here is my small list that was no small feat to compile:
1. Difficult Women By Roxane Gay (Published January 3, 2017) The title alone of this short story collection says enough to make you want to pick it up and read it. You may recognize the name Roxane Gay from the New York Times Bestselling essay collection Bad Feminist. In addition to Difficult Women, Gay will also have Hunger: A Memoir coming out that tackles her relationship with “food, weight, self-image, and learning how to feed your hunger while taking care of yourself”. Do yourself a favor and make it a 2017 new years resolution to read a book by Roxane Gay! Not into non-fiction? She writes fiction as well.
2. Sing, Unburied, Sing: A Novel By Jesmyn Ward (To be published September 5, 2017) I have waited oh so long for a new novel by Jesmyn Ward. She marveled and shocked me with her lyrical storytelling in Salvage the Bones. Not to mentioned she graced the world with The Fire This Time, inspired by James Baldwin’s 1963 examination of race in America, The Fire Next Time. Ward is a powerful writer to be read.
3. Men Without Women By Haruki Murakami (To be published May 9, 2017) What can I say about Murakami that another book lover wouldn’t say? Murakami is a Japanese novelist that has had his work translated into 50 languages. He is often a contender for the Nobel Peace Prize in Literature and has written well over 20 books (fiction and non-fiction). He is the “damn Daniel” of books! And he’s back at it again with this new story collection. Is it May yet?
4. The Refugees By Viet Thanh Nguyen (To be published February 7, 2017) Given the current state of our country this one could not possibly be more important to read. The Refugees is a new collection of stories “written over a period of twenty years, exploring questions of immigration, identity, love, and family”. I am a new reader to Viet Thanh Nguyen but an eager one and I absolutely cannot wait to read this one.
5. Lucky Boy By Shanthi Sekaran (Published January 10, 2017) Last but not least and one that I have actually gotten to read this year is Lucky Boy. A tale inspired by the true hardships that many undocumented immigrants face living in America and at it’s core explores motherhood. It is beautifully written and although I finished it weeks ago, the characters and story still lingers in my mind.
*BONUS* Any and every reader should do themselves a favor and dip into the Young Adult book world. Every year I like to add a few YA reads to my list of books to read. Here are two 2017 YA reads I am SUPER excited to read:
All links provided direct you to Politics and Prose, one of my favorite local bookstores in the DC area. Do the world a favor and support your local bookstore! They need you as much as you need them, not to mention booksellers make the best book recommendations AND if you are lucky like we are in the DC area, your local bookstores serve wine and beer 😉 Shout out to Politics and Prose AND KramerBooks.