Books

14 new books you need to read in April

Posted by
Dan Dalton
Published

1. The Bone Readers by Jacob Ross, out now

A crime thriller set on a Caribbean island, marrying cutting edge forensics with traditional culture, as Detective Michael ‘Digger’ Digson tracks down both a missing man, and the corrupt cop who killed his mother during a political demonstration. Winner of the 2017 Jhalak Prize. (Peepal Tree Press)

2. A Separation by Katie Kitamura, out now

After their recent separation, a woman gets word that her ex-husband has gone missing in a remote region of Greece. Keeping their split to herself, she agrees to go looking for him, not sure if she actually wants to succeed. Once there she traces the failure of their relationship, and finds that she understands less than she thought about the man she used to love. (Clerkenwell Press)

3. To Be A Machine by Mark O’Connell, out now

In this first full-length exploration of transhumanism – a movement whose aim is to use technology to transcend human limitations, and perhaps, lifespans – Mark O’Connell highlights its philosophical and scientific roots, its key players and possible futures. (Granta)

4. What Belongs To You by Garth Greenwell, out now

On an unseasonably warm autumn day, an American teacher enters a public bathroom beneath Sofia's National Palace of Culture. There he meets Mitko, a charismatic young hustler, and pays him for sex. He returns to Mitko again and again over the next few months, their relationship growing increasingly intimate and unnerving. (Picador)

5. The Day That Went Missing by Richard Beard, out 6 April

When his brother Nicholas drowns on a family holiday in Cornwall in 1978, Richard and his other brothers don’t attend the funeral, and the family soon stop speaking of the tragedy. After nearly 40 years of collective denial, Richard Beard sets out to recreate the precise events of that day. Why did the family react as they did? And what actually happened? (Harvill Secker)

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6. White Tears by Hari Kunzru, out 6 April

Two rising stars of the New York music scene, the awkward, shy Seth, and trust fund hipster Carter, stumble across a legendary blues song. As they try to track down a recording, which may only exist as a figment of their imaginations, Carter is drawn down a dark path from which there is no return – and Seth has no choice but to follow. (Hamish Hamilton)

7. Based On A True Story, by Delphine de Vigan, out 6 April

Exhausted and suffering a crippling inability to write, Delphine meets the impeccable, sophisticated L. Initially, Delphine finds L. irresistible, but as their relationship rapidly intensifies, L. begins to dress like Delphine, and she slowly, patiently takes control of Delphine's life. (Bloomsbury)

8. Skintown by Ciaran McMenamin, out 6 April

Vincent Patrick Duffy chops chickens in a takeaway, dreaming of escape, when a mindless act of kindness leads to an unlikely business opportunity. Trapped between Skintown’s narrow horizons, might a little pill with a dove on it be the key to a second summer of love? (Doubleday)

9. Reservoir 13 by John McGregor, out 6 April

A teenage girl has gone missing in the hills at the heart of England. The villagers are called up to join the search, fanning out across the moors as a crowd of news reporters descends on their usually quiet home. Meanwhile, there is work that must still be done: cows milked, fences repaired, stone cut. The search for the missing girl goes on, but so does everyday life. (Fourth Estate)

10. The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley by Hannah Tinti, out 6 April

After years spent living on the run, Samuel Hawley moves with his teenage daughter Loo to Olympus, Massachusetts. There, Hawley finds work as a fisherman, while Loo struggles to fit in at school and grows curious about her mother's mysterious death. Haunting them both are 12 scars Hawley carries on his body, from 12 bullets in his criminal past. (Tinder Press)

11. Pussy by Howard Jacobson, out 13 April

Prince Fracassus, heir to an empire of skyscrapers and casinos, passes his boyhood watching reality shows on TV, imagining himself to be the Roman Emperor Nero, and fantasising about hookers. He is idle, boastful, thin-skinned and egotistic; has no manners, no curiosity, no knowledge… could he, in that case, be the very leader to make the country great again? (Jonathan Cape)

12. Universal Harvester by John Darnielle, out 13 April

Jeremy works at the counter of Video Hut in Nevada, Iowa. It’s the 1990s, pre-DVD, and the work is easy. But when a local schoolteacher returns her copy of Targets, she has an odd complaint: ‘There’s another movie on this tape’. Curious, Jeremy takes a look. What he sees is so strange and disturbing that it propels him into a search for the tape’s creator. (Scribe)

13. The Blood Miracles by Lisa McInerney, out 20 April

McInerney took home the Bailey’s Prize in 2016 for her debut novel, The Glorious Heresies. This, her second novel, again follows troubled Cork youth Ryan Cusack; gifted pianist, superstar DJ, drug peddler. With his gangster boss pulling him into a new money-making scheme, Ryan is about to find out what he's made of, and it might be that chaos is in his blood. (John Murray)

14. The Power by Naomi Alderman, out 20 April

Suddenly, teenage girls find that with a flick of their fingers, they can generate enough electricity to inflict agonising pain and even death. What if the power to hurt were in women's hands? Would a world where women are the dominant sex be any better? Longlisted for the 2017 Bailey’s Women’s Prize for Fiction. (Viking)