Joukhadar weaves two storylines together, one from years ago and one set in the present day, to relate the plight of a Syrian refugee family. She tells this story with a tenderness that is heartbreakingly beautiful, exploring themes of diaspora, humanity, and hope. It's such an important rendering of the hardships faced by those forced out of their homes, and should be required reading for the times we live in.
This is a stunning debut novel! Please read this book, and keep this explosive young writer on your radar!
100 Notable Books of 2018
Nothing brought me as much joy in as The Adventure Zone. The finished product is sure to entertain podcast fans and new readers alike. I can't wait for volume two! Set during the AIDS crisis in Chicago in the s, The Great Believers is a book about the personal and the political, about love and loss, grief and guilt, memory and art.
The Great Believers is an urgent and unrelentingly human story. Men and Apparitions is a magnum opus of ekphrastic genealogy as seen through a spurned anthropologist's loupe, an optics-saturated examination of the heteronormative male psyche circa fourth-wave feminism, and a mordant monologue on objectivity. No American novelist is better suited to this task than Lynne Tillman.
Her singular, engrossing narrator — a card-carrying member of the liberally educated, media-consuming cohort — zips from tic to tangent, leavening the text with self-deprecating rejoinders and cultural miscellany in a doomed bid to better understand the masculine mode in which he resides.
An end-to-end act of literary possession from an absolute icon. Claire is obsessed with the show Demon Heart. She writes fan fiction and "ships" the two male main characters together. When she gets the chance to go to a Demon Heart convention she wins the opportunity to meet the cast and crew! She then makes it her mission to try to convince the showrunner to have more queer representation. In the process, Claire meets a super cute girl who she might have a crush on?! I loved this story and I absolutely loved the writing. If you love fan fiction, queer representation, and supernatural-y shows, this is the book for you.
Tony Kushner's masterpiece Angels in America is probably the best play of the 20th century. Isaac Butler and Dan Kois have expertly assembled an oral history drawn from hundreds of interviews with the playwright, actors, directors, artists, critics and audiences that made it, lived it, and took it from workshops to Broadway to HBO and then back to Broadway.
In telling the story of the play, Butler and Kois have crafted both a vital retelling of an important moment in queer history and an engaging exploration of artistic creation and collaboration. Kat Gardiner's Little Wonder is a wondrous little book. In tiny, engaging fragments, it tells the tale of Gardiner's one-year foray into owning a business — a coffee shop music venue in Anacortes, Washington.
Poignantly, beautifully written, Little Wonder examines the joy and heartbreak of trying and failing at something you love. Never have I encountered such a powerful and compelling memoir. That should explain why I had no problem gobbling all 3, pages of the series, including the 1, in the final installment. Knausgaard's been struggling for so long that his final book is about the release of the first five and how it affected his life, not to mention a page essay on Adolph Hitler.
It beautifully wraps up one of the finest books I've ever read. Not normally the kind of book I read I'm a pretty dedicated fiction reader , I nevertheless remembered the satanic panic of the late '80s and was curious. Tallmadge's clear voice, solid writing, and easy, skilled transitions between the journalistic and the deeply personal kept me reading.
Months later, the questions about the nature of memory and reality at the core of this book are still with me and I find myself viewing current events and even my own history through a new lens. Intimate and earnest, like a late-night conversation with a friend, Whitehead's novel captures the challenges of leaving home and being an outsider no matter where one goes. Weaving together Jonny's memories of reservation life with his present one as an online sex worker in Winnipeg, the titular character ruminates on the grit it takes to get by.
It wasn't easy for me to choose between Anna Burns's brilliantly menacing Milkman and The Silence of the Girls , but Barker's powerfully haunting and gut-wrenching retelling of The Iliad won out by a squeak. By giving a voice to those made powerless by war, Pat Barker's novel will stand the test of time and custom and is a very grim reminder about what war and slavery entail. And it is more pertinent than ever! We follow Mia through two timelines, in the present with her chosen family, a group of women and a nonbinary person who travel the galaxy repairing old buildings, and in the past with a love she lost.
Themes of loss and heartbreak are paired with themes of acceptance and finding purpose to create a bittersweet atmosphere that slow burns into an exciting sci-fi adventure. Watching as her worlds collide took my breath away and refused to return it until the last panel. It's a beautiful, queer, intergalactic triumph of a story. In her introduction to Everyday People , editor Jennifer Baker writes that she hopes this anthology will one day join "other seminal anthologies used for study and inspiration Collecting an outstanding array of writers of color, some you may know Yiyun Li, Jason Reynolds and some you may not know just yet Dennis Norris II, Allison Mills , this anthology is one of the few out there that is strong and engaging from start to finish.
Pick this one up and you're bound to find a new favorite author within these pages. Anyone who thinks that when push comes to shove U. This book, as well as every day's headlines in this low, dishonest decade, demonstrate otherwise. Sustainable fashion. Slow fashion. Whatever your terminology, making, mending and reusing clothes and avoiding factory fashion can help make the world a better place.
Author and crafter Katrina Rodabaugh will inspire you to mend your old battered clothes and turn them into chic wear with environmentalist flair. Mending Matters opens with a quote from Arthur Ashe: "Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.
by Jane Sherron de Hart
What, if anything, do your values signify in the context of evolutionary history? How might moral truths emerge from and be justified through the feedbacking chaos of evolution? Peter J. Woodford explores these problems of value-grounding via the historical and philosophical works of Friedrich Nietzsche, Georg Simmel, and Heinrich Rickert, i. With this book, your sacred cows are at stake: the value of love, equality, objectivity, justice, and life itself. The Moral Meaning of Nature is a wild ride through a wilder abyss. Set in an unnamed country composed of towns arranged from A to Z, the novel traces the path of its terminally ill narrator who, for his final act, is traveling as a census taker with his mentally disabled son.
As he visits home after home, measuring lives while reexamining his own, it becomes impossible to ignore where this fateful journey is taking him. Both immersive and wondrous, Census is a meditative book about the modest roles we play in a sprawling world and the strength of human connections in the face of such enormity. More of a memoir than a guidebook, The Year of Less is a deep dive into what happens when you take a giant step away from consumerism.
She chronicles her journey with unflinching honesty and careful self-examination. I first read this book in early and was simply overwhelmed. I slept with the lights on and refused to answer the door for weeks! I've never encountered a work of nonfiction that left me feeling quite so terrified and amazed. While tackling the complexities of sex work, suicide, relationships, and harassment, author Casey Plett doesn't shy away from the fact that people and identity are messy, or that to be trans is to exist in conflicting modalities with the worlds we inhabit and the time that builds up to a life.
Her writing is devastatingly good. With more books like this one, we can start to believe that, despite any evidence to the contrary, we might be okay. The first graphic novel nominated for the Man Booker Prize, but don't let that put you off. Drnaso's Beverly was an odd and sweaty masterpiece, and Sabrina is too.
If Chris Ware wrote a story about grief taboos, the perverse logic of false flag conspiracy theorists, and TV dinners, it might be like this. Sabrina is that good. The Line That Held Us is a gorgeous and brutal story of love, violence, and loyalty so fierce it has the power to destroy everything in its path. I don't have kids and don't know that I ever will, but I have a lot of anxieties about parenting and childrearing and Meaghan's writing aligns with them perfectly.
This book is really funny in a kick-you-in-the-stomach kind of way, and I found myself laughing and sobbing a lot while reading it. In which we find Cat realizing that — far from being eradicated — the virus is evolving and killing faster than before. Her personal life is a mess, there are far too many secrets, and she's struggling with repressed memories coming back hard and fast. Worse, to find her "father," she's going to have to partner with the one group she has most reason to fear and distrust: Cartaxus.
Because if she's not careful, when the end comes, it will come with a bang — and she may not be around to stop it. Building on This Mortal Coil , my top pick from last year, Emily Suvada has crafted a fast-paced, intense, and intriguing read for sci-fi fans of all ages! Zora Neale Hurston left us a rich legacy of black cultural history through her recordings as an anthropologist of the African American folk narrative, striving to, as she puts it "set down essential truth.
Because she preserves his original vernacular in writing, it provides us with the rare opportunity to take in Cudjo's experiences as firsthand observers, giving an account of history so important to America and Africa's past. Sometimes I read a book that wrings me out so thoroughly I barely know who I am anymore. It's disturbing and disorienting, and although I'm glad it doesn't happen often, it is one of my very favorite things about reading. I had no idea that The Pisces was going to be one of those books.
I was expecting a fluffy summer beach read about a hot merdude, and instead I got this book which absolutely destroyed me. I can't stop thinking about The Pisces ; I already want to read it again. Notes From the Fog is funny, perverse, and maybe Marcus's best book in an influential writing career. Valente's use of language is beautiful, funny, and it will not stop for you in this glitter- and stardust-strewn story of when aliens first come to earth. The universal community has decided that wars are stupid and instead they hold a music competition to work through the competitive nature of civilization.
The punishment for last place is the destruction of the planet, so you had better rock your heart out. I cannot overstress how fun this book was to read. In a small town in northern Minnesota, Virgil Wander is living his life on autopilot until his car careens off a snowy cliff road and into Lake Superior. Afterward, he struggles with memory and vocabulary issues, while still trying to maintain his fledgling single-screen movie theater and job in City Hall.
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A likable cast of characters rounds out the story, including a kite-flying older Norwegian trying to find out more about his long-missing son, of whose existence he only recently learned. This is a feel-good read, and sometimes that's exactly what is needed in these trying times. This tiny graphic novel was easily the most influential book of for me. Archie a nonbinary person like me and Tristan a cisgender man break down gendered language in a funny, patient, and understandable manner.
I immediately gifted my copy to the employee breakroom anonymously hi, it was me, I'm allowed to out myself. Your mom needs this book. Your boss needs this book. You need this book. Going too far is not something Brian K. Vaughan believes in. He has, and I assume will always, push the boundaries of genre and storytelling, particularly in this ninth volume of Saga. There's still the same mix of fantasy, sci-fi, and realism; the same gorgeous illustrating by Staples; the same rich world full of the crazy, interesting characters that I love; and the same storylines that are firmly planted in their world, yet hit on real issues we face today.
But everything is elevated a couple notches. Though the ending wrecked me, it's a reminder that life is beautiful, yet often terrible, but love always wins. Hello, Login. Adrienne C. Miriam S. The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker A retelling of the story of the fall of Troy told from a woman's perspective — but not just any woman, a queen, Briseis, who becomes a slave when captured. Haley B. Priestdaddy by Patricia Lockwood Lockwood's riotous retelling of growing up in a rectory with her Catholic priest father and her disease-obsessed mother is a memoir like no other.
Rhianna W. Doug C. The Alehouse at the End of the World by Stevan Allred A fable, an adventure, a story filled with treats for us lovers of words and culture and the world. Jill O. Smith The Recovering by Leslie Jamison. Erin K. Amy W. Hayley H. Heads of the Colored People by Nafissa Thompson-Spires This razor-sharp collection of satirical stories made me gasp, laugh, scoff, groan, and otherwise draw attention to myself while reading in public. Jen H. Nan S. Adam P. Playing Changes by Nate Chinen Nate Chinen has written an accessible guide to the state of jazz in the 21st century.
Kim S. French Exit by Patrick deWitt It's a treat to experience the humor and satire in deWitt's latest novel about a family's fall from high society and its bemusing mother-son relationship. Eva F. Washington Black by Esi Edugyan I don't remember the last time I've been so suddenly and convincingly landed in a book. Piers R.
Slavery and the Making of America . The Slave Experience: Men, Women & Gender | PBS
Heart Berries by Terese Marie Mailhot This spare, poetic memoir has stuck with me more than any other book I read this year. Sandy M. Heavy by Kiese Laymon Kiese Laymon combines the personal and the political to come up with one of the most beautiful, compassionate, and courageous memoirs I have ever read. Britney T. Heavy by Kiese Laymon Laymon has a voice that is singular and devastating in its honesty. Kathleen B. Jordan S. Mary S. Killing Commendatore by Haruki Murakami Killing Commendatore is a Gatsby-esque novel that meditates on art, death, the spirit world, fate, and free will.
Lesley A. Kathi K. Jeremy G. Dianah H. Smoke City by Keith Rosson Rosson tackles the big life questions in this book, picking apart themes of purpose, redemption, suffering, forgiveness, addiction, passion, talent, guilt, the unknowable nature of life and death, the ways in which we help each other and the ways in which we hinder, the joy of living and the anticipation of death, and the absolute necessity of an examined life. Peter N. Anything Is Possible by Elizabeth Strout Elizabeth Strout is my favorite contemporary author, a writer of "perfect" fiction, with every word exquisitely chosen and every feeling coursing with authenticity and pathos.
Angelo R. Lauren P. There There by Tommy Orange As soon as I finished its blistering prologue, I knew this was my favorite title of the year. Kara G. Azalea M. Redvelations by Sera Beak Redvelations is truly a revelation. Katherine M. Now she has spoken about the horrors of her ordeal that left her so hopeless she tried to kill herself in captivity. He was so ugly, like a beast, with his long hair. Ekhlas managed to escape one day while her captor was out fighting and was taken to a refugee camp.
She now lives in Germany where she is receiving therapy and education in a psychiatric hospital and has ambitions to become a lawyer in the future. An estimated 9, Yazidis were killed or captured when Isis took over Mount Sinjar in the summer of Of that figure 3, were murdered, with almost half executed by gunshot, beheading or being burned alive, while the rest died from starvation, dehydration or injuries during the Isis siege on Mount Sinjar. But the true scale of the genocide inflicted on the Yazidis may never be known as thousands remain in captivity, researchers have warned.
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Try Independent Minds free for 1 month See the options. Ekhlas was just 14 when she was captured by Isis Screenshot. Ekhlas was just 14 when extremist fighters targeted her community in northern Iraq. You can form your own view. Subscribe now. Shape Created with Sketch. World news in pictures Show all An aerial view shows a crater on a barley field near Ahlbach. Experts assume that an air bomb of the WWII probably exploded at a depth of several metres as a result of the triggering of the chemical detonator.
People gather for a protest in Prague, Czech Republic. Protesters are on calling on Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis to step down over fraud allegations and subsidies paid to his former companies. Policemen push back anti-coal activists after they entered the open-cast mine Garzweiler, western Germany.
The activists tried to reach and occupy the massive open-cast lignite mine in a protest to demand action against global warming, now one of the hottest issues on the European political agenda. The silhouette of a girl performing yoga on the rocky crest of the Ancient Observatory Kokino on the occasion of fifth International Yoga Day, which is also the day of the summer solstice.
The ancient astronomic observatory, located about km northeast of Skopje, dates more than 4. It is ranked by Nasa as the fourth ancient observatory in the world. Indian residents get water from a community well in Chennai after reservoirs for the city ran dry. The drought is the worst in living memory for the bustling capital of Tamil Nadu state, India's sixth largest city, that is getting less than two thirds of the million litres of water it normally uses each day.
Several new policemen, of Catalan regional Mossos d'Esquadra Police, throw their caps after their graduation ceremony in Mollet del Valles, Barcelona. A total of new officers attended the ceremony. Rescuers carry out an injured man from an earthquake-damaged building in Yibin, in China's southwest Sichuan province. The toll from the strong 6. A protester wears a yellow raincoat to pay tribute to a man who died after falling from a scaffolding at the Pacific Place complex while protesting against the extradition bill.
People have been demanding Hong Kong's leaders to step down and withdraw the bill. Nearly 15, Dutch people gather in Valenciennes to support their women's football team playing against Cameroon at the city's Hainaut stadium.