21 New Books to Read This Fall

From Zadie Smith's Swing Time, to Michael Chabon's Moonglow, to Tippi Hedren's memoir.

new books fall 2016


Mischling by Affinity Konar 

Twin girls try to survive their time at Auschwitz, but one of them disappears. The remaining one teams up with another twin as they try to discover what happened to their missing siblings in the midst of a liberated Poland.

Out September 6, Lee Boudreaux Books.

Here I Am by Jonathan Safran Foer 

Foer, the acclaimed author of Everything Is Illuminated and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close and the less acclaimed author of emails with actress Natalie Portman, returns with his first novel in a decade. The book follows the Bloch family and what it means to be an American Jew.

Out September 6, Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles 

Towles made a splash with his 2011 novel Rules of Civility, and now returns with a look at a Russian aristocrat sentenced to house arrest in communist Russia in the 1920s.

Out September 6, Viking.

Loner by Teddy Wayne

The campus novel gets an update, although the location will be a little familiar. Brilliant but socially awkward David tries to win his dream girl over once he enrolls at Harvard.

Out September 13, Simon & Schuster.

Commonwealth by Ann Patchett

An affair that splits two families has reverberations throughout the lives of the children on each side, as they grapple with what their parents’ new relationship means for them. Franny, at whose christening party some of the inciting incidents occur, begins an affair with an author who can’t resist her family’s story.

Out September 13, Harper.

Nutshell by Ian McEwan 

The author of Atonement returns with a story about a woman whose husband leaves her after she betrays him. Left with his less exciting brother and very pregnant, she must decide what to do.

Out September 13, Nan A. Talese.

Little Nothing by Marisa Silver 

The story of a dwarf, Pavla, and the man who loves her, Little Nothing explores the collision of modernity and folklore after Pavla’s parents’ attempts to heal her go very wrong.

Out September 13, Blue Rider Press.


The Angel of History by Rabih Alameddine

A man reflects, over the course of a single night, on his life as a gay Arab man living during the height of the AIDS crisis. He’s also visited by Death, Satan, and a few other supernatural beings in the process.

Out October 4, Atlantic Monthly Press.

The Mortifications by Derek Palacio 

A family is split when a mother flees with her two children to Hartford Connecticut, leaving behind her husband in Cuba. Their efforts to fit in to their new world are challenged when the family patriarch beckons.

Out October 4, Tim Duggan Books.

News of the World by Paulette Jiles 

Fans of historical fiction might like this one, which is about a man charged with transporting a young girl, who has been “rescued” from the Kiowa tribe that has killed her parents, but also raised her, to stay with an aunt and uncle she doesn’t know.

Out October 4, William Morrow.

Today Will Be Different by Maria Semple 

Fans of Semple’s previous novel, Where’d You Go, Bernadette?, will no doubt be excited for her latest effort, about a woman whose efforts to improve her life by living better for the day are derailed by both her son and her husband.

Out October 4, Little, Brown and Company.

The Mothers by Brit Bennett

The decision to hide a teen pregnancy continues to haunt the lives of three people trapped in a love triangle, who find themselves dealing with the repercussions years later.

Out October 11, Riverhead Books.

Boston Book Festival

If you’ve made it this far, it’s worth reminding you that the Boston Book Festival is October 15, including memoir keynote speaker Susan Faludi, whose newest book is In the Darkroom. [Read more.]

October 15, Copley Square, 857-259-6999, bostonbookfest.org.

IQ by Joe Ide 

Anyone who enjoys LA noir might like this one: It’s about a man called IQ, the prototypical loner genius, who solves crimes the LAPD can’t get to, but finds himself taking on a case that might just be too big for him. Hitmen, angry ex-wives, angry attack dogs—just another day at the office.

Out October 18, Mulholland Books.

The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher 

The woman who was blessed and cursed to be immortalized as Princess Leia in the Star Wars films has another memoir to share with the world. Given how funny Fisher can be even during a standard talk show interview, we’re guessing she has some pretty funny things to say about her time in the limelight.

Out October 18, Blue Rider Press.


Faithful by Alice Hoffman 

A young woman struggles with guilt and loneliness after an accident forever ruins the future of her best friend.

Out November 1, Simon & Schuster.

Tippi: A Memoir by Tippi Hedren 

Fans of classic Hollywood, Alfred Hitchcock, and Tippi herself will probably be interested in this memoir. Despite Hitchcock’s apparently terrible behavior on the set of The Birds, Hedren has stayed close to Hollywood: daughter Melanie Griffith has done pretty well for herself onscreen, and granddaughter Dakota Johnson had what could safely be called a breakthrough as the lead in Fifty Shades of Grey.

Out November 1, William Morrow.

The Chemist by Stephenie Meyer

Twilight author Stephenie Meyer endeavors to be slightly less known as the Twilight lady with this effort, about a woman on the run from the secret government agency she used to work for. Will she take on one last job for them? Will any of the characters have skin that sparkles? You’ll have to read it yourself to find out.

Out November 8, Little, Brown and Company.

Swing Time by Zadie Smith

Two girls dream of having an impact on dance—one as a performer, and one with ideas about people of color and their music and their dances. Their friendship burns out in their early twenties, but continues to affect them years later.

Out November 15, Penguin Press.

Scrappy Little Nobody by Anna Kendrick 

We’re pretty sure the title is tongue-in-cheek for this one. The actress, whose Twitter antics have been well-documented by Buzzfeed, takes her writing skills past 140 characters for this memoir.

Out November 15, Touchstone.

I’ll Take You There by Wally Lamb

What would you do if silent film director Lois Weber appeared to you and made you rewatch parts of your life onscreen? That’s what happens to Felix in Lamb’s latest. We’ll assume she stays away from things like waiting for doctor visits in favor of more life-shaking moments.

Out November 22, Harper.

Moonglow by Michael Chabon

Chabon’s latest is at least partially inspired by deathbed conversations he had with his grandfather after the publication of his first novel, Mysteries of Pittsburgh. How much is the true story of his grandparents’ love affair, and how much is it a meditation on the power of secrets and lies? You’ll have to find out.

Out November 22, Harper.