From Ben Marcus, one of the most innovative and important writers of his generation, comes The Flame Alphabet: a brilliant, mesmerizingly dark new novel in which the speech of children is killing their parents. A father, mother and daughter attempt to cope as a mysterious language toxicity takes hold across the country. Part satire and part lament, part dystopian fantasy and part family tragedy, the book asks whether or not there is consolation in love when one's life (and perhaps the world) is coming apart. Ben Marcus' first novel, Notable American Women, has been compared to the work of Kafka, Beckett and Borges. His stories, essays and reviews have appeared in The New York Times, Harper's and The Paris Review. Knopf will publish The Flame Alphabet in January 2012.
Erin Saldin's The Girls of No Return is a lacerating young adult debut about girls, knives, and redemption. The Alice Marshall School, set within a glorious 2-million acre wilderness area, is a place where teenage girls are sent to escape their histories and themselves. Lida Wallace has tried to negate herself in every way possible. At Alice Marshall, she meets Elsa Boone, Jules, and Gia Longchamps, whose glamour entrances the entire camp. As the girls prepare for a wilderness trek, Lida is both thrilled and terrified to be chosen as Gia's friend. Everyone has their secrets – the “Things” they try to protect; and when those come out, the knives do as well. The Girls of No Return will be published by Arthur A. Levine/Scholastic in February 2012.
Sandra Novack's first novel, Precious, was heralded by Booklist as one of the ten best debut novels of 2009. In Everyone But You, her new book of absorbing and atmospheric short stories, she explores the quietly dramatic relationships among wives, children, husbands, and friends all struggling to connect to one another. As insightful as it is provocative, Everyone But You beautifully illuminates the universal truths behind some of the most profound moments in people's lives. Sandra Novak's fiction has appeared in The Iowa Review, The Gettysburg Review, Gulf Coast, and Mississippi Review. Everyone But You will be published by Random House in September 2011.
From the bestselling author of The Moonflower Vine, a book that was compared toTo Kill a Mockingbird, Jetta Carleton's Clair de Lune is set in a small Missouri town in 1941, on the cusp of America's entry into WWIIl. It tells the story of a woman in her twenties from a conventional upbringing on a farm who yearns for more. She takes a job as a teacher at a junior college and becomes involved in an illicit relationship with one of her students. Clair de Lune will be published by HarperPerennial in Spring 2012.
Following Reif Larsen's highly praised debut, The Selected Works of T.S. Spivet, I Am Radar follows Radar Radmanovic, a love-struck epileptic radio operator from the Meadowlands of New Jersey. Prompted by tragedy at home, Radar begins to uncover the mysterious medical circumstances of his birth and his father's involvement with a secretive society of scientists and avant-garde puppeteers. Part international mystery, part love story, part family drama, his search will take him far from New Jersey and into the heart of a genocide, forcing him to confront the true nature of his identity. The novel is expected to be completed in late 2011.
Even before Jess Row had written a novel, he was named on Granta Magazine's list of BEST AMERICAN NOVELISTS as one of the 20 best writers under 35. He is now working on his first novel, under contract to Riverhead Books. Tentatively titled The Immigrant, the book follows the story of a man who has returned to the city of his youth as he attempts to recover from the sudden deaths of his Chinese wife and their young daughter. Not long after Kelly's arrival in Baltimore, an African American man he doesn't recognize calls out to him. It's Martin, the skinny, white, Jewish kid from his high school band. Martin is now black, and he's not wearing makeup. He wants Kelly, one of the only remaining connections to his previous life, to take his story of racial reassignment to the public. Jess Row's first book, the story collection The Train to Lo Wu, was a runner-up for the 2006 PEN/Hemingway Award for best first work of fiction.
The Perfect Loaf by Samuel Fromartz (author of Organic, Inc.) is guaranteed to delight both serious foodies and casual readers. It charts Fromartz's rapid ascent from an amateur baker in the kitchen of his Capitol Hill row house to a stint working elbow-to-elbow with a master baker at one of the best boulangeries of Paris and then to winning the “Best Baguette in D.C.” prize (over several big-name chefs). The Perfect Loaf, set for 2013 publication by Viking, will become the bible for this new brigade of bread bakers.
Knopf has recently signed Maestro James Levine, writing with Harvey Sachs, to write a book about his life in music. Levine is one of the foremost living conductors, a mainstay of New York's Metropolitan Opera for nearly four decades, and, until recently, the Music Director of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Now in his mid-sixties, he is still at the height of his powers but with more than half a century of professional experience behind him.
Gary Shteyngart's book to follow the New York Times bestseller Super Sad True Love Story will be the story of his own life. He was born Igor Shteyngart in 1972, in then Leningrad, Russia. The book covers his early childhood in Russia, the family's emigration first to Italy and then to the United States (as the author puts it, as part of the "grain for Jews" program) and growing up and coming of age as a a “small, furry immigrant.” Super Sad True Love Story was named a best book of 2010 by twenty-five publications. In June 2010, he was named as one of the New Yorker magazines' "20 under 40" luminary fiction writers. Delivery is expected in early 2013, and the publisher will be Random House.
When Harvey Sachs' first book, a
biography of Toscanini, was published in 1978, it was
proclaimed as the best book on the subject. He is now at work on a
new biography for Oxford University Press, which draws on an
extraordinary amount of new material, including 1,200-plus hours
of tapes of Toscanini talking to family and friends, the archives
of several key opera houses, starting with La Scala, and, above
all, the Toscanini family's archives, which were still in limbo in
the '70s. Sachs has written for the New Yorker, New York Times,
Wall Street Journal, Times Literary Supplement (London), La Stampa,
Corriere della Sera, Guardian, Observer and dozens of other
newspapers and periodicals.