I can’t believe it’s already time for the next hype post. May has come around very quickly, so have a look at some of our most anticipated books for the month. As always, do have a look at our 2022 overview post for inspiration HERE as we’re trying not to repeat titles.
The Dance Tree by Kiran Millwood Hargrave, out on the 12th of May is her second foray into adult fiction, after The Mercies. The latter took my heart by storm, with its lyrical writing and haunting story, so I can’t wait to read another of her adult books. This one is set during the dancing plague in Strasbourg in 1518, a legendary historical event. It tells the story of three women, pregnant Lisbet, her best friend Ida and Lisbet’s sister-in-law Nethe, newly returned from six years exile for an unkown crime. And no one will tell Lisbet what Nethe did all those years ago… This promises to be another brilliant book by Milwood Hargrave, combining deeply human, individual stories with embedding them in greater historical events, especially those affecting women most of all. These are slow, character-driven stories, but such amazing ones and I cannot recommend her books more – I don’t think there has been a single one, in any age category, that I did not love. Pre-order a copy of The Dance Tree via Bookshop here (affiliate link).
How to be Eaten by Maria Adelmann, out at the very end of May (31st) sounds like a book explicitly written to please me. It mixes a feminist approach to fairy tales with literary analysis and mythological retellings. In a story that is described as wickedly funny, five women meet in a support group to process their trauma in present-day NYC. All corresponding to fairy tale archetypes and representing modern day interpretations of these beloved stories, they start out wary of each other, judging the slightly weird backgrounds and story the other women have. But with time, they realise they have more in common than they thought, and start to consider what brought them together and how they can rescue each other. This hits so many of my favourite tropes, and I can’t wait to give it a read. Pre-order this one via Book Depository here.
I have been reading Kiersten White’s YA since her debut many many years ago, and especially since I’ve been on a bit of a horror and thriller binge recently, I’m very excited for her adult debut. Hide is out on the 24th of May, and set in an abandoned amusement park – which, even the setting is creepy as hell. The challenge has contestants spending a week hiding in the abandoned park without getting caught, offering a life-changing sum of money as a prize. Main character Mack is sure she’s meant to win this. After all, she’s an expert at hiding, as it’s what’s kept her alive while the rest of her family has perished. But when people start disappearing one by one, she starts to realise that this may be far more sinister than she imagined and that she may have to find a way to work with the other contestants if she wants to survive… It sounds like a deliciously dark thriller, keeping readers up all night reading (or not sleeping from the creepy) which is exactly what I want right now. Pre-order a copy via Bookshop here (affiliate link).
Perennial favourite of the book community The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo has given me a taste for the glamour of old Hollywood, for the golden age of film. And Siren Queen by Nghi Vo, out on the 10th, seems to scratch exactly that itch. Featuring a Chinese American lead in a universe not made to accommodate anyone who doesn’t fit a very narrow mold, Vo explores a world in which an outsider conquers this world on her own terms, with a fantastical bent where monsters are real. The blurb for this one is brilliant, so have a read:
“No maids, no funny talking, no fainting flowers.” Luli Wei is beautiful, talented, and desperate to be a star. Coming of age in pre-Code Hollywood, she knows how dangerous the movie business is and how limited the roles are for a Chinese American girl from Hungarian Hill—but she doesn’t care. She’d rather play a monster than a maid.
But in Luli’s world, the worst monsters in Hollywood are not the ones on screen. The studios want to own everything from her face to her name to the women she loves, and they run on a system of bargains made in blood and ancient magic, powered by the endless sacrifice of unlucky starlets like her. For those who do survive to earn their fame, success comes with a steep price. Luli is willing to do whatever it takes—even if that means becoming the monster herself.
Pre-order this one from Book Depository here.