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April’s Too Many Good Books

By on Friday, April 1st, 2022 at 10:48 pm

the best books of 2022 -- these could be the titles from Ian MacAllen, Grant Ginder, Marisa Siegel, Chloe Clark and Jaime Clarke

This month has a whole lot of books coming out. It seems like everyone was sitting on books during the pandemic and decided to release them this spring.

Good books have a hard enough time getting good press. Trust me, I know. My book is the first one on this list. But with all these heavy hitters releasing new titles this month, there simply isn’t enough space to go around. “Unfortunately we’re fully booked” wasn’t something you’d expect to hear in the middle of the pandemic, but here we are.

So here are a few books to check out this month (and in case you think you’re going to get some kind of reprieve, May has even more hot new titles).

Red Sauce: How Italian Food Became American

Ian MacAllen
Buy It.

I’m excited about this one because I spent five years researching it and now it is finally coming to print. Yes, this is some shameless self-promotion, but honestly, if you aren’t going to talk about your book, nobody else will.

Fixed Stars

Marisa Siegel
Illustrated by Trish Previte
Buy It.

Former Rumpus Editor-in-Chief Marisa Siegel has a collection of poetry from Burrow Press. We worked together at The Rumpus for nine years, so the irony isn’t lost on me that we both have books coming out this month. If you were like me, you will have ordered your special limited edition hardcover of this sure to be memorable poetry collection.

In January, Marisa sold The Rumpus. She’s now working as an acquisitions editor at Northwestern University Press. There is a whole lot of better quotes about the book on her website.

Let’s Not Do That Again

Grant Ginder
Buy it.

Grant is a master the dysfunctional family. Combined that dysfunction with wry comedy, and you have a perfect storm.

Grant’s break out novel was The People We Hate At The Wedding. Early birds at his book launch got these amazing tote bags, and Allison Janney will star in a movie version of the book.

In Honestly We Meant Well, Grant takes on a dysfunctional family vacation.

In his latest, Grant returns to his literary roots — political dramas about senate candidate Nancy Harrison (do we smell franchise?). Like his debut This Is How It Starts, we’re dealing family dysfunction in politics.

Anyway, it’s a book I’m definitely looking forward to grabbing.

Check out Grant’s Greenlight event of The People We Hate At The Wedding

Minor Characters

Jaime Clarke
Buy it.

Jaime Clarke’s debut We’re So Famous was the very first book I reviewed for the college literary magazine, The Anthologist, a Rutgers publication off and on since 1927. Clarke hung around with Bret Easton Ellis for a while around then before disappearing into Massachusetts to open Newtonville Books. For a while he thought he was done writing, but then a bookstore customer decided to launch a press.

Clarke then published Vernon Downs, a sort of semi-biographical version of a younger self and a younger Bret Easton Ellis. Several books later brings us Minor Characters, a collection of stories tying all his novels and characters together. This is an exciting book and not just because Jonathan Lethem wrote a forward and Laura van den berg wrote an introduction. Roundabout Press is a smaller press, but this is a big book.

Check out our coverage of Jaime Clarke talking about Vernon Downs with Charles Bock at the Center for Fiction.

Every Song A Vengeance

Chloe N. Clark
Buy it.

I’m excited by this new collection of poetry in part because I read and reviewed over at Trampset Chloe’s story collection Collective Gravities. Truthfully I don’t really know what to expect from her poetry, but since I enjoyed the stories, I think its worth adding to this list.

The book will be released at the end of the month from Vegetarian Alcoholic Press.



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