This Month in Adult Books: August 2023

Reading recommendations for adults
August 8, 2023
Featured Title
Mother Daughter Murder Night by Nina Simon
Lana is staying with her estranged daughter and granddaughter in the Monterey Bay area while undergoing cancer treatment. Efforts to improve their relationship are not going well but then her granddaughter, Jack, discovers a body while kayaking. The police decide she’s their prime suspect, something which Lana and her daughter, Beth, know is ridiculous. Before long they’ve set up a murder board and are hard at work with their own investigation, modeled after all those episodes of Colombo they used to watch together. What better to repair a relationship than solving a murder? Cozy mystery fans will not want to miss this debut!

What's Hot This Month
September brings out big name authors, like the return of Zadie Smith with The Fraud, a historical novel centering around a real life court case in which an Australian man claimed he was a long lost English aristocrat. Etaf Rum also returns with her second novel, Evil Eye, returning to the Palestinian community in Brooklyn to share the story of a complex mother daughter relationship that is haunted by intergenerational trauma.
Genre readers will find great new reads too with Knockout by Sarah Maclean, the next book in the Hell’s Belles series, starring Lady Imogen Loveless, a chemist and explosives expert, and Thomas Peck, a detective at Scotland Yard. And Shelley Parker-Chan returns with He Who Drowned The World, which completes the historical fantasy retelling of the rise of Chinese Emperor Zhu Yuanzhang.  
Check This Out
This Barbie loves reading and is looking for the next title to check out for their visit to Barbieland.  
What We Are Reading
The God of Good Looks by Breanne Mc Ivor (audio) (CW: eating disorder)
Set in Trinidad and Tobago, this debut features a young woman who had her dream job in publishing until a scandalous photo outed her illicit relationship with a Government minister. She lost everything (he suffered no consequences, of course) and was forced to turn to modeling to survive. Some time later she is approached by an up and coming MUA (make-up artist) to get his new magazine Extempo off the ground. It’s an entertaining combination of character, fashion and setting, accentuated with themes of privilege, power, sexism, and personal growth plus commentary on entrenched misogyny in a patriarchal society. There is a definite emphasis on appearance here with lots of details about make up and fashion. At times that fact seemed at odds with the themes, at others it complimented them, giving the reader a chance to consider the various complexities involved. All that, and it has an entertaining story with a touch of romance. As a bonus, the audio is read in two voices.
For more lists of recommended reads from the book world and beyond: