Thursday, May 26, 2016

Meg's Picks: June 2016, part 2

Sometimes, my picks are no-brainers, at least to me. New titles by authors who have won awards, whose work consistently hits the best-sellers lists, whose novels have been staff and patron favorites in the past. And then, there are titles like these. Novels that the critics are excited about, and which I think may be of particular interest for readers looking for a novel a little off the beaten path.

If I Forget You, by Thomas Christopher Greene. Author of The Headmaster's Wife (2014), Greene returns with a love story: Twenty-one years after they were driven apart by circumstances beyond their control, two former lovers have a chance encounter on a Manhattan street. Told from altering points of view through time, If I Forget You tells the story of Henry Gold, a poet whose rise from poverty embodies the American dream, and Margot Fuller, the daughter of a prominent, wealthy family, and their unlikely, star-crossed love affair, complete with the secrets they carry when they find each other for the second time.

The Crow Girl, by Erik Axl Sund. If your idea of a beach read is a compulsively readable thriller like The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo or Gone Girl, add this international bestseller to your list. It begins in a Stockholm city park where the body of a young boy is discovered. Detective Superintendent Jeanette Kihlberg heads the investigation, battling an apathetic prosecutor and a bureaucratic police force unwilling to devote resources to solving the murder of an immigrant child. But with the discovery of two more deceased children, it becomes clear that a serial killer is at large. Superintendent Kihlberg turns to therapist Sofia Zetterlund for her expertise in the psychopathology of those who kill, and the lives of the two women become quickly intertwined—professionally and personally. As they draw closer to each other and to the truth about the killings, what surfaces is the undeniable fact that these murders are only the most obvious evidence of an insidious evil woven deep into Swedish society. Not for the faint of heart, but if your preferences run to reading something chilling in order to beat the heat, this should be on your list.

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