Category New Books

New and forthcoming books from independent publishers and university presses.

New Book :: Not a Soul but Us

Not a Soul but Us A Story in 84 Sonnets by Richard Smith book cover image

Not a Soul but Us: A Story in 84 Sonnets
Poetry by Richard Smith
Bauhan Publishing, April 2022

Not a Soul but Us: A Story in 84 Sonnets by Richard Smith is the winning collection of the 2021 May Sarton New Hampshire Poetry Prize. In it, Smith tells the story of mid-fourteenth century Yorkshire, when the plague pandemic wipes out half the inhabitants of a remote village. Left behind is a twelve-year-old shepherd boy, who, with the help of his dog, survives near-starvation and a brutal winter and keeps his flock alive. In the months and years that follow, he struggles to reconnect with the life around him. Judge Meg Kearney said this of her selection, “A mastery of craft. Music. An undulating urgency of tone that leaves no doubt about the emotional impulse that drives the work. A voice that you trust, even when the syntax or the material is difficult. And that material needs to feel relevant, of substance, necessary. Not a Soul But Us is an achievement on every front.”

New Book :: The Girl I Never Knew

The Girl I Never Knew Who Killed Melissa Witt a true crime book by LaDonna Humphrey book cover image

The Girl I Never Knew: Who Killed Melissa Witt?
True Crime by LaDonna Humphrey
Genius Book Publishing, April 2022

For over two decades, the identity of Melissa Witt’s killer has been hidden among the dense trees and thorny undergrowth rooted deeply in the uneven ground of a remote mountaintop in the Ozark National Forest. Determined to find answers, LaDonna Humphrey has spent the past seven years hunting for Melissa’s killer. Her investigation, both thrilling and unpredictable, has led her on a journey like no other, at times her own safety at risk from those who want this mystery to remain unsolved. LaDonna Humphrey is a writer, documentarian, investigative journalist, private investigator, and advocate for victims of crime. “I’m hopeful that the book will put some pressure on some of those people who know they are being looked at [as suspects] but have not been named publicly.” Visit the publisher’s website for links to radio and news media interviews with the author.

New Book :: Blood Snow

Blood Snow poetry by dg nanouk okpik book cover image

Blood Snow
Poetry by dg nanouk okpik
Wave Books, October 2022

American Book Award–winning poet dg okpik’s second collection of poems, Blood Snow, tells a continuum story of a homeland under erasure, in an ethos of erosion, in a multitude of encroaching methane, ice floe, and rising temperatures. Here, in a true Inupiaq voice, okpik’s relationship to language is an access point for understanding larger kinships between animals, peoples, traditions, histories, ancestries, and identities. Through an animist process of transfiguration into a shaman’s omniscient voice, we are greeted with a destabilizing grammar of selfhood. Okpik’s poems have a fraught relationship to her former home in Anchorage, Alaska, a place of unparalleled natural beauty and a traumatic site of devastation for Alaskan native nations and landscapes alike. In this way, okpik’s poetry speaks to the dualistic nature of reality and how one’s existence in the world simultaneously shapes and is shaped by its environs.

New Book :: These Dark Skies

These Dark Skies: Reckoning with Identity, Violence, and Power from Abroad a collection of essays by Arianne Zwartjes book cover image

These Dark Skies: Reckoning with Identity, Violence, and Power from Abroad
Essays by Arianne Zwartjes
University of Iowa Press, June 2022

In These Dark Skies, Arianne Zwartjes interweaves the experience of living in the southern Netherlands—with her wife, who is Russian—and the unfolding of both the refugee crisis across Europe and the uptick in terrorist acts in France, Greece, Austria, Germany, and the Balkans. She probes her own subjectivity, as a white American, as a queer woman in a transcultural marriage, as a writer, and as a witness. The essays investigate and meditate on a broad array of related topics, including drone strikes, tear gas, and military intervention; the sugar trade, the Dutch blackface celebration of Zwarte Piet, and constructions of whiteness in Europe and the U.S.; and visual arts of Russian avant-garde painters, an Iraqi choreographer living in Belgium, and German choreographer Pina Bausch.

New Book :: Chronicles of a Luchador

Chronicles of a Luchador YA fiction by Ray Villareal book cover image

Chronicles of a Luchador
YA Fiction by Ray Villareal
Arte Público Press, June 2022

Jesse Baron, the son of the American Championship Wrestling star known as the Angel of Death, is about to graduate from high school. His parents expect him to attend the University of Texas and study mechanical engineering, something he’s not interested in. The young man knows he would be a natural at professional wrestling, and with his father’s help, he might even reach the same level of fame and success. But the Angel of Death, retired from the ACW and running a wrestling promotion and school, refuses to train his son for fear he will choose sports entertainment over a college degree. Jesse decides that once he gets settled at UT, he’s going to look for another place to wrestle. To keep his father from finding out, he’ll promote himself as a masked luchador from Oaxaca, Mexico, named Máscara de la Muerte. When no one will hire him, Jesse reluctantly considers joining a lucha libre organization, even though he doesn’t speak Spanish. Will the fans and his fellow wrestlers see him as a luchador—or just a gringo with a mask?

New Book :: The Ultimate Havana

The Ultimate Havana: A Willie Cuesta Mystery by John Lantigua book cover image

The Ultimate Havana: A Willie Cuesta Mystery
Fiction by John Lantigua
Arte Público Press, March 2022

Willie Cuesta, former Miami Police detective turned private investigator, is struggling to pay the bills when he receives a call from an old family friend. Cesar Mendoza is the blind, elderly owner of Tabacos El Ciego, a cigar store in Little Havana. Cesar is worried about Victoria Espada, a friend from the old days in Cuba. As a young woman, she was so beautiful that cigar makers competed to put her image on their boxes. She came from a long line of tobacco growers and married a man from an old, respected clan of cigar makers. The couple, who represented one of the great cigar dynasties of all time, fled the island after the revolution, but things didn’t go well. Ernesto Espada ultimately committed suicide, leaving his widow with two young children to raise. Now, her son, a less-than-successful cigar salesman, has gone missing, and the detective is tasked with finding him.


New Book :: Out of Patients

Out of Patients a novel by Sandra Carallo Miller book cover image

Out of Patients
Fiction by Sandra Carallo Miller
University of Nevada Press, August 2022

After practicing medicine for more than thirty years in the sweltering suburbs of Phoenix, Dr. Norah Waters is weighing her options, and early retirement is looking better and better. At age fifty-eight, she questions whether she still needs to deal with midnight calls, cranky patients, and the financial headaches that come with running a small clinic. Fighting burnout and workplace melodrama, Norah gives herself one final year to find the fulfillment and satisfaction she remembers from the early years of her once-cherished career. Supported by her steadfast dog, a misfit veterinarian, and a thoughtful radiologist, Norah wrestles through a surprising assortment of obstacles, sometimes amusing and sometimes dreadful, on her way to making a final decision about her future.

Books Received July 2022

NewPages receives many wonderful titles each month to share with our readers. You can read more about some of these titles by clicking on the “New Books” tag under “Popular Topics.” If you are a publisher or author looking to be listed here or featured on our blog and social media, please contact us!

Poetry

American Narratives, T.P. Bird, Turning Point
Book of the Cold, Antonio Gamoneda, World Poetry Books
Broadsided Press: Fifteen Years of Poetic and Artistic Collaboration, 2005-2020
Buy a Ticket, Judith R. Robinson, Word Poetry
Cold Fire, Veronica Zondek, World Poetry Books
Coming To, J.R. Solonche, David Robert Books
Flutter Kick, Anna V.Q. Ross, Red Hen Press
Gold Hill Family Audio, Corrie Lynn White, Southeast Missouri State University
Hechizo, Mark Statman, Lavendar Ink
Hers, Maria Laina, World Poetry Books
I Dreamed I was Emily Dickinson’s Boyfriend, Ron Koertge, Red Hen Press
Living in a Red State Blues, M. Scott Douglass, Paycock Press
The Lowly Negro, James Smith, Revolutionary Books
Love Poems in the Apocalypse, Dani Gabriel, Main Street Rag Publishing
Love’s Universe, Nin Carey Tassi, Cherry Grove Collections
Lynchings: Postcards from America, Lester Graves Lennon, WordTech Editions
The Ones with Difficult Names, David Brendan Hopes, Kelsay Books
Oxblood, Nicole Caruso Garcia, Able Muse Press
Salem Revisited, Charles K. Carter, WordTech Editions
Sheltered in Place, CJ Giroux, Finishing Line Press
A Woman Somehow Dead, Amy Locklin, David Robert Books

Continue reading “Books Received July 2022”

New Book :: Talking to Strangers

Talking to Strangers: Poetry of Everyday Life Poetry by Peter Neil Carroll book cover image

Talking to Strangers: Poetry of Everyday Life
Poetry by Peter Neil Carroll
Turning Point, January 2022

In this newest collection, Talking to Strangers: Poetry of Everyday Life, Peter Neil Carroll employs a multiplicity of voices to ensure that no one is, truly, a stranger. Carroll is the author of several previous collections, including Fracking Dakota, Riverborne: A Mississippi Requiem and A Child Turns Back to Wave: Poetry of Lost Places, which won the Prize Americana in 2012. Other books include the memoir Keeping Time. His poems have appeared in many journals. He has taught creative writing at the University of San Francisco, taught history and American Studies at Stanford and Berkeley, and hosted “Booktalk” on Pacifica Radio. Read sample poems here.

New Book :: Hechizo

Hechizo
Poetry by Mark Statman
Lavender Ink, January 2022

Lavender Ink poetry by Mark Statman book cover image

An hechizo is a spell, an incantation that attempts to effect change in the world via language. Mark Statman’s Hechizo is woven through a world of personal demons, past and present, a world facing a pandemic and social, political, and environmental dissolution. These incantations take aim at the world from the smallest lizard that crawls into view to overarching political structures. It’s a register not seen in his work before—of foreboding, the forbidden, concluding in tentative, possible joy.