Every month we winnow the hundreds of upcoming titles down to the few that we’re most excited to listen to. It’s a tough job, but somebody’s gotta do it. Here’s what the Tattle team will be listening to this August!

Lucky Us by Amy Bloom

As both a National Book Award and National Book Critics Circle Award finalist for her short stories collections, Amy Bloom has a lot to live up to with her new novel, but I’m confident she’ll pull it off. With a 125,000 announced first print run and a planned 11-city author tour, Random House thinks so, too. If first lines make the book, you can hardly fail to be intrigued by the opening lines of Lucky Us: “My father’s wife died. My mother said we should drive down to his place and see what might be in it for us.” I snagged an advance copy and started reading it last night, and now I’m basically just waiting to be able to go home and find out what happens to these two sisters in 1940s America. My take so far: Iris may be the star, but quiet Eva is the one I’m cheering for.

Audio published by Random House Audio. Available 8/1/2014.

 

Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage by Haruki Murakami

Fans of the internationally bestselling epic 1Q84 rejoice! At last, the English edition of Murakami’s new novel is almost here! The 250,000 announced first print run for this literary novel is testament to the anticipation of Murakami’s fans. With his new novel, Murakami returns to the lyrical realism that made him famous with Norwegian Wood, this time set against the social realities of contemporary Japan. Even the title has a sort of dreamy symbolism to it, a reference to the story’s detail that Tsukuru always felt out of place in his group of friends because he was the only one whose name did not have a character that stood for a color. Years after leaving his childhood home, Colorless Tsukuru returns to find out why his close-knit group of friends completely turned on him after high school, refusing to have anything to do with him.

Audio published by Random House Audio. Available 8/12/2014.

 

The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton

In March, I recommended the debut novel The Anatomy Lesson by Nina Siegal (and I’m not the only one—it became an Oprah.com Book of the Week). You know when you finish a book and you just don’t want to leave that world behind? Now you can stay in 17th century Amsterdam just a little longer! Set in the same time and place as Siegal’s book, and also featuring an artist, The Miniaturist promises an enchanting, suspenseful story of love and betrayal in the tradition of Emma Donoghue.

Audio published by HarperCollins Publishers. Available 8/26/2014.

 

Season of the Dragonflies by Sarah Creech

I have to admit that I don’t usually go for stories with magic and I’m rarely interested in elements of fantasy mixed into my otherwise contemporary fiction. But there’s something about this one that just draws me in. Maybe it’s because the Blue Ridge Mountains setting feels magical or because I’m a sucker for multi-generational family stories and the bonds between mothers, daughters, and sisters. This debut about a family of women and the magic they concoct is one to recommend for fans of Alice Hoffman, Sarah Addison Allen, and Adriana Trigiani.

Audio published by HarperCollins Publishers. Available 8/12/2014.

 

I Am Malala, Young Reader’s Edition by Malala Yousafzai and Patricia McCormick

I feel like I hardly even need to talk about how excited I am about this Young Reader’s Edition—geared for ages 10 and up—of fearless education advocate Malala Yousafzai’s memoir. Anyone who’s talked to me for more than five minutes in the last six months knows I’m excited about this one. I learned so much from I Am Malala and I’m thrilled that children and teens will now get to benefit from her story. And who better to co-author it than two-time National Book Award finalist Patricia McCormick, author of Sold? Wow, can you imagine being in a room with these two at the same time?

Audio published by Blackstone Audio. Available 8/5/2014.

 

Positive by Paige Rawl and Ali Benjamin

Just in case your younger patrons need even more inspiration after finishing up I Am Malala, they can turn to Paige Rawl’s memoir of being born HIV-positive and what happened when, in middle school, she disclosed her condition to a friend for the first time. With a powerful anti-bullying message, Rawl inspires teens and adults alike to live a life guided by compassion. This would be a great pick for kids who enjoyed Wonder and are now aging into high school.

Audio published by HarperCollins Publishers. Available 8/26/2014.