Wednesday, April 6, 2011

5 Fiction Releases to Watch for in April

April is upon us and there are a number of great fiction releases coming out this month. I had a lot of fun with the posts last month on forthcoming fiction from big names, from first time Canadian authors and their well established counterparts, that I thought I'd try to make posts on forthcoming fiction a more regular feature. Here are 5 novels being released in April that caught my eye.

Please Look After Mom
by Kyung-Sook Shin (April 5):

Translated from Korean, this story of a 69 year old wife, mother and grandmother who disappears in a busy Seoul subway station was a bestseller in Korea. has named it a Best Book of the Month for April, noting that "Kyung-sook Shin’s elegantly spare prose is a joy to read, but it is the quiet interstitial space between her words, where our own remembrances and regrets are allowed to seep in, that convicts each one of us to our core." The library also owns this book in the original Korean.

Potsdam Station
by David Downing (April 5)

The fourth in a series of historical suspense stories starring journalist John Russell (British born, Berlin resident and navigating the treacherous politics of Europe, first on the brink of war and then during its escalation). In the 4th installment the war is reaching its conclusion and Russell is in Russia, separated from his family and trying to reconnect. Publishers Weekly says "Downing convincingly portrays the final days of the Nazis in power, and his characters are rich enough to warrant a continuation of their stories, even after the war." The series has been recommended for fans of Philip Kerr and Alan Furst.

Sandalwood Tree
by Elle Newmark (April 5)

Shifting between India at the time of Partition and and the late 19th Century: an American couple discover a cache of letters in the wall of the house they are staying in while a nation's political turmoil unfolds around them. The letters harken back to another couple, another turmoil, and a mystery that they seek to solve. Library Journal said "This novel is more historical women's fiction than romance and will appeal to readers who enjoy Anita Desai, Keith Heller, and perhaps even Anita Shreve."

The Russian Affair
by Michael Wallner (April 12)

Cold War+espionage+romance=great reading! Translated from German, Novelist describes this book as a bittersweet, suspenseful novel with a strong sense of place. Set in 1970s Russian, follows 29 year old Anna Viktorovna, a married Moscow mother who begins an affair with a man who is highly place in the government. The romance is threatened when politics interfere. From the author of another suspenseful historical romance: April in Paris.

by Alexi Zentner (April 12)

A first novel from one of Random House Canada's New Faces of Fiction for 2011. The author's website gives this description "In Sawgamet, a north woods boomtown gone bust, the cold of winter breaks the glass of the schoolhouse thermometer, and the dangers of working in the cuts are overshadowed by the mysteries and magic lurking in the woods. Stephen, a pastor, is at home on the eve of his mother's funeral, thirty years after the mythic summer his grandfather returned to the town in search of his beloved but long-dead wife. And like his grandfather, Stephen is forced to confront the losses of his past".

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