• Entertainment

27 New Books You Need to Read This Summer

ny times books for summer

These are independent reviews of the products mentioned, but TIME receives a commission when purchases are made through affiliate links at no additional cost to the purchaser.

T here’s plenty to look forward to this summer, including a new crop of books that will transport you far away, regardless of your vacation plans. The best books arriving over the next few months take place in coastal Maine, an isolated part of Alaska, East Africa—and even a post-apocalyptic world, among other riveting destinations.

Some of the season’s greatest hits are by already beloved authors, like Tom Perrotta , Taylor Jenkins Reid , David Yoon , and Mohsin Hamid . Others are satisfying introductions to debut writers such as Joseph Han and Rebecca Rukeyser.

Here, the 27 best books to read this summer.

City of Orange , David Yoon (May 24)

ny times books for summer

David Yoon’s haunting new novel opens with a man lying supine in a desert, clueless as to what happened to him and where he is. The world has ended. The apocalypse has happened. As pieces of his memory slowly return, it becomes evident that he had a wife and daughter who are now lost forever. As the man figures out how to survive in this new barren land, he transitions from isolation to fear to, finally, acceptance. City of Orange is Yoon’s second book for adults, following Version Zero ; he’s also written the young-adult novels Frankly in Love and Super Fake Love Song .

Buy Now: City of Orange on Bookshop | Amazon

Either/Or, Elif Batuman (May 24)

ny times books for summer

In Elif Batuman’s second novel, a piquant sequel to her 2017 Pulitzer Prize-nominated debut novel The Idiot , protagonist Selin Karadag, a relentlessly curious Harvard student, ponders the value of love and lust as she mines her life for her burgeoning, semi-autobiographical creative writing. Drawing its title from Kierkegaard’s seminal work, with which Selin is obsessed, the narrative is a hyper-cerebral romp that is as brainy as it is charming.

Buy Now: Either/Or on Bookshop | Amazon

You Made a Fool of Death With Your Beauty , Akwaeke Emezi (May 24)

ny times books for summer

Akwaeke Emezi delivers a fresh summer romance with their latest novel, You Made a Fool of Death With Your Beauty . After the devastating loss of her partner, artist Feyi Adekola has nearly rebuilt her life, tentatively easing back into the dating scene. While Feyi begins dating a man who checks off every box, an unexpected spark with someone who’s off-limits makes her reconsider everything she thought she knew about love.

Buy Now: You Made a Fool of Death With Your Beauty on Bookshop | Amazon

Happy-Go-Lucky , David Sedaris (May 31)

ny times books for summer

David Sedaris’ signature wit has always thrived on the macabre, so perhaps it should come as no surprise that his latest collection of essays, Happy-Go-Lucky , written in the wake of the pandemic panic and the social and political unrest of 2020, is some of his darkest—and most astute—writing yet. From the death of his 98-year-old father to mask mandate drama, no topic is out of bounds for Sedaris’ acerbic humor and sharp observations.

Buy Now: Happy-Go-Lucky on Bookshop | Amazon

Yerba Buena , Nina LaCour (May 31)

ny times books for summer

Nina LaCour is well-known for her YA books, including Watch Over Me and We Are Okay . In Yerba Buena, her first adult novel, she introduces two women—Sara and Emilie—who cross paths while trying to figure out who they really are. Both are flawed, with family trauma to sort through, and they’re instantly drawn to each other. Their pasts, however, might interfere with their newfound love in this slow-burn, heartfelt story.

Buy Now: Yerba Buena on Bookshop | Amazon

Counterfeit , Kirstin Chen (June 7)

ny times books for summer

If you appreciate a good caper, you’ll want to pick up Kirstin Chen’s novel about two Asian American women who turn a counterfeit handbag scheme into a big business. The book is written as a confession, which helps readers get to know protagonists Ava and Winnie, and how their lives detoured toward crime. Counterfeit is fast-paced and fun, with smart commentary on the cultural differences between Asia and America.

Buy Now: Counterfeit on Bookshop | Amazon

Cult Classic , Sloane Crosley (June 7)

ny times books for summer

Magical realism meets romance in downtown New York in Sloane Crosley’s witty second novel, Cult Classic . Protagonist Lola is forced to confront her romantic past after she runs into a string of ex-boyfriends, all within the same five-mile radius in Manhattan’s Chinatown. But these occurrences are hardly coincidental, leading Lola on a mysterious and mystical chase to uncover what exactly is happening to her.

Buy Now: Cult Classic on Bookshop | Amazon

Nuclear Family , Joseph Han (June 7)

ny times books for summer

Migration, family secrets, and memory collide in Joseph Han’s gorgeous debut novel, Nuclear Family . For the Chos, a Korean American couple living in Hawaii, life has finally settled into comfort—that is, until their son, Jacob, who’s teaching English in Seoul, goes viral for attempting to cross the Demilitarized Zone into North Korea. Little does his family know that Jacob has been possessed by the ghost of his late grandfather, who still has unfinished business on earth.

Buy Now: Nuclear Family on Bookshop | Amazon

The Seaplane on Final Approach , Rebecca Rukeyser (June 7)

ny times books for summer

Mira heads to remote Alaska to spend the summer working at a floundering wilderness lodge. While there, she obsesses over her step-cousin and watches as the lodge owners’ dysfunctional marriage implodes. The Seaplane on Final Approach is a snappy character study and a meditation on sleaziness.

Buy Now: The Seaplane on Final Approach on Bookshop | Amazon

Tracy Flick Can’t Win , Tom Perrotta (June 7)

ny times books for summer

Twenty-four years after he published Election, Tom Perrotta revisits his cult classic antiheroine Tracy Flick in Tracy Flick Can’t Win. Picking up decades after Election left off, the ever-ambitious Tracy returns to navigating the turbulent waters of high school politics—but this time, on the other side of the student-faculty divide. As an assistant principal at a suburban New Jersey high school, Tracy is balancing a new relationship, single motherhood, and the demands of her job when an unexpected career opportunity pops up and promises to change life as she knows it.

Buy Now: Tracy Flick Can’t Win on Bookshop | Amazon

Horse , Geraldine Brooks (June 14)

ny times books for summer

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Geraldine Brooks turns her attention to the true story of a 19th-century racehorse named Lexington, one of the greatest in history. The story jumps between centuries: in Kentucky in 1850, an enslaved man bonds with a foal he vows to ride to victory. In New York City in 1954, a gallery owner becomes fixated on a mysterious oil painting of a horse. And finally, in Washington, D.C., in 2019, an art historian and a scientist make discoveries that lead back to Lexington. Horse isn’t just an animal story—it’s a moving narrative about race and art.

Buy Now: Horse on Bookshop | Amazon

Flying Solo , Linda Holmes (June 14)

ny times books for summer

When Laurie returns home to Maine to clear out her beloved great aunt’s estate, she’s only recently removed from calling off her wedding—and is coming to terms with the idea that a conventional relationship might not be in the cards. When she finds a mysterious wooden duck buried in her aunt’s belongings, she embarks on a wild goose chase to figure out its origins, getting reacquainted with her first love along the way. The novel—which follows Holmes’ 2019 summer hit Evvie Drake Starts Over —is a refreshing reminder that “happily ever after” doesn’t have to look one specific way.

Buy Now: Flying Solo on Bookshop | Amazon

Learning to Talk , Hilary Mantel (June 21)

ny times books for summer

Hilary Mantel is a literary legend: she’s won the Booker Prize twice, and garnered wide acclaim for her Wolf Hall trilogy, which concluded in 2020 and was adapted for television . In Learning to Talk , Mantel dispenses a series of semi-autobiographical short stories. The collection—a re-release from 2003—features a new preface. Many of the stories center on childhood, and Mantel brings England alive, writing with detail and intellect.

Buy Now: Learning to Talk on Bookshop | Amazon

Lapvona , Ottessa Moshfegh (June 21)

ny times books for summer

Ottessa Moshfegh transports readers to a medieval fiefdom in her new novel, which follows 2020’s Death in Her Hands . The book is about Little Marek, who was abused by his father, the village’s shepherd, and never knew his mother. He ends up in a power struggle that exposes the depravity of human nature and juxtaposes the difference between religion and manipulation. Lapvona is violent and provocative, and a departure from Moshfegh’s previous work.

Buy Now: Lapvona on Bookshop | Amazon

Thrust , Lidia Yuknavitch (June 28)

ny times books for summer

The protagonist in Lidia Yuknavitch’s new novel is Laisv, who’s a “carrier”—which means certain objects can help her travel through time to connect with interesting people from eras past. Laisv’s ultimate goal is to save these people, including a dictator’s daughter and an accused murderer. As in her previous work, including The Book of Joan and Dora: A Headcase , Yuknavitch’s writing is moving and incisive.

Buy Now: Thrust on Bookshop | Amazon

Life Ceremony: Stories , Sayaka Murata (July 5)

ny times books for summer

Sayaka Murata —a Japanese writer whose previous novels include Convenience Store Woman —delivers her first collection of short stories translated into English. Life Ceremony consists of 12 engrossing entries that probe intimacy and individuality while turning norms upside down. In one, for example, a curtain in a young girl’s room spirals into jealousy as she watches—and tries to stop—her owner’s first kiss. The stories are strange and bold.

Buy Now: Life Ceremony on Bookshop | Amazon

Crying in the Bathroom , Erika L. Sánchez (July 12)

ny times books for summer

Poet and young-adult novelist Erika L. Sánchez turns to the struggles and triumphs she’s experienced over the years for material for her latest book, the memoir Crying in the Bathroom . Touching on a wide range of topics that run the gamut from the deeply personal, like Sánchez’s bouts of depression, to the political, like immigration policy, each essay feels like a conversation with a good friend, thanks to Sánchez’s warm and vulnerable writing.

Buy Now: Crying in the Bathroom on Bookshop | Amazon

The Man Who Could Move Clouds, Ingrid Rojas Contreras (July 12)

ny times books for summer

Magic is not just a multi-generational occurrence in Ingrid Rojas Contreras’ family—it’s their legacy, something she details with both wonder and care in her memoir The Man Who Could Move Clouds . Growing up in Colombia, Rojas Contreras witnessed her mother telling fortunes and her grandfather, a renowned curandero (or healer), predicting the future, healing the sick, and moving clouds. Rojas Contreras was unsure of her place in this world until a head injury caused her to have amnesia—an experience that her family believes may be key to her accessing her own magic.

Buy Now: The Man Who Could Move Clouds on Bookshop | Amazon

Upgrade , Blake Crouch (July 12)

ny times books for summer

Blake Crouch’s inventive new novel, equal parts thriller and sci-fi, examines how far our humanity can stretch. It’s about Logan, a scientist whose genome has been hacked—which alters him in unsettling ways. To stop these so-called upgrades from rolling out to the rest of the world, Logan has to spring into action. Readers who enjoyed Crouch’s previous novels , such as Dark Matter and Recursion , will find Upgrade just as thrilling. Steven Spielberg’s production company Amblin Partners has snapped up the film rights, and Crouch is attached to the project as an executive producer.

Buy Now: Upgrade on Bookshop | Amazon

Dirtbag, Massachusetts: A Confessional , Isaac Fitzgerald (July 19)

ny times books for summer

Isaac Fitzgerald’s life has zigged and zagged: He used to work at a biker bar, and he’s the author of the children’s book How to Be a Pirate . He’s been an altar boy and a “fat kid.” He’s also had stints as a firefighter and smuggler. In his memoir Dirtbag, Massachusetts , Fitzgerald reflects on his origins—and coming to terms with self-consciousness, anger, and strained family relationships. His writing is gritty yet vulnerable.

Buy Now: Dirtbag, Massachusetts on Bookshop | Amazon

The Last White Man , Mohsin Hamid (Aug. 2)

ny times books for summer

What is the value of whiteness, if it ceases to exist as we know it? That’s the question at the heart of Mohsin Hamid’s The Last White Man , where Anders, a white man, wakes up one morning to find that his skin has turned dark. As other similar cases occur throughout the land, Hamid poses larger questions about how we really see each other and ourselves.

Buy Now: The Last White Man on Bookshop | Amazon

Mika in Real Life , Emiko Jean (Aug. 2)

ny times books for summer

In Emiko Jean’s Mika in Real Life , Mika Suzuki sees a chance to not only reinvent herself, but also reimagine what her life could look like outside of her dreary reality. At 35, Mika’s situation is bleak: her love life is in ruins, her family is perpetually disappointed in her, and her living arrangement is less than ideal. But after she gets a phone call from the daughter she gave up for adoption, a tiny white lie turns into an opportunity for a second act—as long as her secret doesn’t come to light.

Buy Now: Mika in Real Life on Bookshop | Amazon

Autoportrait , Jesse Ball (Aug. 9)

ny times books for summer

In his first memoir, Jesse Ball—whose previous work includes March Book and The Divers’ Game —helps readers understand who he is and what shaped him. He reveals personal tidbits, like that one of his shoulders stands higher than the other, and that his left hand is quicker but weaker than his right. He also reflects on love and loss. Autoportrait was inspired by the memoir French writer Édouard Levé wrote shortly before dying in 2007.

Buy Now: Autoportrait on Bookshop | Amazon

The Women Could Fly , Megan Giddings (Aug. 9)

ny times books for summer

In Megan Giddings’ dystopian novel, The Women Could Fly , the mystical collides with the familiar when it comes to women’s autonomy. Josephine Thomas lives in a world where women are mandated to be married by 30 or forced to enroll in a registry that monitors them; with her 30th birthday around the corner, Jo finds hope for her freedom in the extraordinary last request of her long-lost mother, rumored to be a witch, who mysteriously disappeared when Jo was a child.

Buy Now: The Women Could Fly on Bookshop | Amazon

Afterlives , Abdulrazak Gurnah (Aug. 23)

ny times books for summer

Germany’s brutal colonization of East Africa (what is known as Tanzania, Burundi, and Rwanda today) provides the backdrop to Abdulrazak Gurnah ’s arresting novel, Afterlives . Centering on the intersecting lives of Ilyas, Afiya, and Hamza, three young people who return home after being separated by war and slavery, the novel explores what is gained and what is lost in the name of survival. Gurnah, who won the 2021 Nobel Prize for his “uncompromising and compassionate penetration of the effects of colonialism,” employs sensitivity and tenderness in each storyline.

Buy Now: Afterlives on Bookshop | Amazon

Babel, Or the Necessity of Violence: An Arcane History of the Oxford Translators’ Revolution , R.F. Kuang (Aug. 23)

ny times books for summer

The Poppy War author R. F. Kuang tackles dark academia and imperialism with her latest novel, Babel, Or the Necessity of Violence: An Arcane History of the Oxford Translators’ Revolution. Centering on a plucky unnamed protagonist—a student at Babel, Oxford’s Royal Institute of Translation—and his rag-tag cohort, the book uses magic and agathokakological lessons to make a case for a post-colonial future.

Buy Now: Babel, Or the Necessity of Violence: An Arcane History of the Oxford Translators’ Revolution on Bookshop | Amazon

Carrie Soto Is Back , Taylor Jenkins Reid (Aug. 30)

ny times books for summer

Taylor Jenkins Reid has collected a devoted following for her made-for-summer books like Malibu Rising and Daisy Jones & The Six . She returns with a novel about tennis star Carrie Soto, who won 20 Grand Slam titles with her father, Javier, as her coach. Six years into retirement, Carrie’s record is shattered by a player named Nicki—so she leaps back onto the court for one final season to reclaim what’s hers. Don’t worry if you’re not big on sports stories; this is, ultimately, a heart-filled novel about an iconic and persevering father and daughter.

Buy Now: Carrie Soto Is Back on Bookshop | Amazon

More Must-Reads From TIME

  • Jane Fonda Champions Climate Action for Every Generation
  • Biden’s Campaign Is In Trouble. Will the Turnaround Plan Work?
  • Why We're Spending So Much Money Now
  • The Financial Influencers Women Actually Want to Listen To
  • Breaker Sunny Choi Is Heading to Paris
  • Why TV Can’t Stop Making Silly Shows About Lady Journalists
  • The Case for Wearing Shoes in the House
  • Want Weekly Recs on What to Watch, Read, and More? Sign Up for Worth Your Time

Write to Cady Lang at [email protected]

You May Also Like

Find anything you save across the site in your account

All products are independently selected by our editors. If you buy something, we may earn an affiliate commission.

What We’re Reading This Summer

By The New Yorker

Two people reading on beach.

“ Groovy Bob ,” by Harriet Vyner

“Groovy Bob” by Harriet Vyner  cover.

For your summer reading, it might be nice to go with something relatively light. This could mean a fast-paced contemporary novel whose specifics you’ll probably forget as soon as you finish it, but my preference is for the oral history, which can teach us something meaningful about a particular era from a variety of perspectives, with the bonus of some juicy gossip. One fine example of the genre that I picked up recently is “Groovy Bob,” by the writer and curator Harriet Vyner. Originally published in 1999 and reissued in expanded form in 2016, it features numerous interviews to present the life story of the art dealer Robert Fraser, whose self-titled gallery epitomized the newly hip, class-scrambling world of London in the mid-to-late nineteen-sixties. The son of a wealthy banker, Fraser was educated at Eton, and served as a young officer in Uganda in the late fifties. After a pit stop in New York, he returned to England, and over the next decade emerged as one of the country’s most important tastemakers, introducing British audiences to artists such as Warhol, Lichtenstein, and Dubuffet, while living faster and harder than almost any of his peers. (A tall order when your friends are the Rolling Stones.) The best-dressed man in any room, aloof and upper-class and ineffably cool, Fraser was also a junkie and a homosexual, a man who was preoccupied, in the words of Mick Jagger, with “bridging two worlds. And having a great time in the process, a very hedonistic time.” Living on the edge almost always has its price, however: in 1967, Fraser was busted for heroin possession while partying at Keith Richards’s country estate Redlands, and was imprisoned for months. After closing his gallery’s doors in 1969 (he was by all accounts a very bad businessperson), Fraser drifted, seeking enlightenment in India for a few years, then returning to his home country—and to hard drugs. He also opened a second iteration of his gallery—a much more indifferent endeavor, which he ran until his death, of AIDS -related causes, in 1986. This is not an especially happy story, but it’s also not a moralistic, cautionary tale. Rather, it presents a thick portrait of a now mostly forgotten man, who, for a short while, shined so bright that he was able to almost single-handedly define his cultural moment. Jagger again: “And that was his blaze, his quick swathe through London. He found a part.” — Naomi Fry

“ The Secret Lives of Church Ladies ,” by Deesha Philyaw

“The Secret Lives of Church Ladies” by Deesha Philyaw cover.

“My mother’s peach cobbler was so good, it made God himself cheat on his wife.” So begins “Peach Cobbler,” the fourth of nine beguiling short stories assembled in Deesha Philyaw’s collection, “The Secret Lives of Church Ladies.” Philyaw is a voyeur of a kind, training her gaze on the furtive activities of Black women. The milieus of the stories vary, but the mood threading them together is one of confession, sometimes in the theological sense. In “Peach Cobbler,” the daughter of a pastor’s mistress confuses the man with the grand authority he represents. “Eula” depicts two best friends who participate in a tradition of secret lovemaking on New Year’s Eve. Philyaw does not write erotica per se, but the thrill I get from turning over these short stories reminds me of first encountering, as a teen-ager, the pseudonymous Zane, the legendary writer of Black erotic fiction. Throughout the collection, Philyaw catches her characters in the midst of doing something “bad,” by which I mean, in the midst of inventing their own personal freedom. — Doreen St. Félix

“ The Europeans ,” by Orlando Figes

“The Europeans” by Oliver Figes cover

A good biography can be just as escapist as a novel, immersing the reader in the minutiae of a time, place, and character other than her own. Orlando Figes’s triple biography, “The Europeans,” illustrates the lives of his three subjects—the theatre manager Louis Viardot, the singer Pauline Viardot, and the novelist Ivan Turgenev—but also captures the galvanizing atmosphere of the nineteenth-century culture industry as Europe cohered into a unified entity. Gossip is the book’s hook: the Viardots and Turgenev are enmeshed in a long-term love triangle, with the older Louis tacitly accepting Pauline and Ivan’s enduring affair. Pauline, however, never seems to fully return the novelist’s love, and in old age the relationship settles into an emotionally intimate friendship. In the meantime, the three quarrel, split up across national borders, and cohabitate in various villas, ranging in location from the cosmopolitan German spa town Baden-Baden to Paris. In our own chaotic era, it’s comforting to read about how the throuple’s members persevered with their art amid various personal and geopolitical dramas. Figes is particularly good at pinpointing how the technological innovations of the century changed the world his subjects inhabited. The Viardots frequented cultural centers that became stops on the increasingly crowded U.K.-European tourist circuit, a beaten track reinforced by guidebooks produced by the London publisher John Murray—which, Figes writes, “did more than anything to standardize the experience of foreign travel.” Trains likewise brought disparate places—and the élites who lived there—closer together. At one point, Turgenev takes a disappointingly rainy and lonely seaside holiday in Ventnor, U.K., where he begins writing “Fathers and Sons.” Figes memorably describes the scene: “Turgenev sat down at the writing table in his room and began his masterpiece. He had nothing else to do.” — Kyle Chayka

“ Walking Through Clear Water in a Pool Painted Black ,” by Cookie Mueller

“Walking Through Clear Water in a Pool Painted Black” by Cookie Mueller cover

Semiotext(e)’s new, expanded edition of Cookie Mueller’s 1990 essay collection “Walking Through Clear Water in a Pool Painted Black” is a portal into a world of radical freedom—into Mueller’s dive-bar pinball machine of a life and into her mind, thrown open to anything, “so open that at times I hear the wind whistling through it.” Mueller was, among other things, a Dreamlander, acting in multiple John Waters films (Waters described her as a “Janis Joplin-meets-redneck-hippie with a little bit of glamour drag thrown in”), an exotic dancer, a coke dealer, a house cleaner, a sailor, an “unwed welfare mother,” and, perhaps above all else, a writer of cracked, profound integrity and adventure. The volume begins when Mueller is fifteen, juggling two lovers: a hospitalized alcoholic teen-age boy, and a girl named Gloria, soon to be dead when rogue silicone from her implants reaches her heart. By eighteen, she’s in Haight-Ashbury, where a single day contains a run-in with the Manson girls (“like ducks quacking over corn”), an LSD-capping party, a demon-summoning ceremony, a Grateful Dead concert at San Quentin State Prison, a rape at gunpoint (she tricks her rapist into giving her a ride home and then jumps out of the car screaming, “That man just raped me”), and a dawn nightcap of cocaine, meth, and philosophical musings about the lost city of Atlantis. She moves to Provincetown, collects food stamps, and assembles a life of marginal glamour in a barely insulated saltbox filled with fellow-Dreamlanders. Nothing really scares her until childbirth, an event that makes her see a blood moon, constellations rising in fast motion, her body sawed in half. But by the time she’s in New York, in her thirties, she’s figured out that she just has to get home by dawn to wake her son, Max, up for school. Before Mueller died at age forty from AIDS -related pneumonia, she wrote a series of “fables”—one’s titled “I Hear America Sinking or a Suburban Girl Who Is Naive and Stupid Finds Her Reward”—and an unsound, affecting health-advice column for The East Village Eye . (In one of the installments of the latter, she urges readers worried about the AIDS epidemic to be compassionate and to “relax.” By way of precautions, she advises, “Keep your body very strong and don’t forget your sense of humor.”) Mueller’s unflappability, her refusal of stasis and self-pity, her hunger for beauty, her readiness to find it where few else would look—all of it adds up into a singular code for living, in which the worst thing a person could do is flinch. — Jia Tolentino

“ Manhunt ,” by Gretchen Felker-Martin

“Manhunt” by Gretchen FelkerMartin cover.

For the past several years, for assorted, fairly obvious reasons, I’ve been drawn to stories of apocalypse. After the first few bleak novels, I realized that what drew me to these worlds was not some desire for depictions of chaos; rather, I crave their orderliness. The true fantasy of these post-catastrophe narratives is the imposition of new rules, within which new ways of living can be derived like mathematical proofs: the infection travels thusly, the infrastructure has fallen in such and such a way, the powerful baddies are organized like so; therefore, the methods of survival turn out to be this, and that, and the other. In “Manhunt,” by a mile the most gripping and visceral apocalypse novel I’ve read during this disaster binge, a raging virus transforms anyone with a testosterone-heavy endocrine system into a ferocious rutting creature. Trying to stay both alive and sane in this wasteland are two trans women, Fran and Beth, who hunt zombified men in order to consume their testicles as a source of desperately needed estrogen. (“Just pretend it’s one of those fancy chocolates with the gold foil. You know. A Ferrero Rocher,” Fran urges herself, as she downs a gland. “Pretend they’re oysters on the half shell.”) Fran and Beth, in turn, are being hunted by fascistic, heavily armed militias of anti-trans women, while simultaneously trying to avoid conscription into the private labor armies of wealthy “bunker brats,” who are riding out the apocalypse behind fortified walls. Fran and Beth fight, kill, get injured, and fuck stupendously, all of it described in extraordinarily physical prose that swings from poetic to hilarious to repulsive, often within the same breath. I’m a fairly squeamish person—really, there are few more lightweight—and there were times when the intensity of the language and the barrage of bodily fluids demanded that I take breaks for brain cleansing. (I suspect that Felker-Martin would take my regular blanch-outs as a compliment: “I write the most disgusting books in the English language,” she announces proudly in her Patreon bio.) Still, every time I thought that I couldn’t go further, I found myself drawn back: “Manhunt” is a filthy, furious delight; within its tense, gruesome premise live roundly human characters, with big, unwieldy emotions. It’s a shockingly tender exploration of genders and bodies, of violence as a part of nature, of the way love is a tool of survival. — Helen Rosner

“ The School for Good Mothers ,” by Jessamine Chan, and “ Elsewhere ,” by Alexis Schaitkin

“The School for Good Mothers” by Jessamine Chan and “Elsewhere” by Alexis Schaitkin covers

The warehouses of literature are full of wicked mothers, but the bad-mom-as-antihero trend feels more recent. Its trailblazers were memoirists and novelists—Rachel Cusk, Doris Lessing—who confronted the bad mom’s haters while pleading her case (which went something like, you try gentle parenting while your kid is flinging oatmeal at the cat). But lately I’ve been thinking about the migration of “bad” moms into speculative fiction, especially as the Supreme Court’s discarding of the constitutional right to abortion means that pregnant women will be increasingly surveilled and criminalized. Alexis Schaitkin’s “Elsewhere,” for instance, pictures a secluded town where mothers periodically vanish into the clouds. What draws “the affliction” to some women but not others is unknown, but it may relate to the quality of their mothering—too reckless, too excessive, too meek, too feral. “The School for Good Mothers,” by Jessamine Chan, makes a grimmer proposition. The protagonist, Frida, a Chinese American woman, is sent to a reëducation facility after leaving her toddler at home alone for a couple of hours. Frida is given a jumpsuit and incessantly monitored; every gesture, tone of voice, and action must meet a standard of parental perfection—a standard by which Frida’s kisses, for example, are said to “lack a fiery core of maternal love.” The book is a bleak and scalding satire of the cult of selfless caregiving, and also a soulful meditation on the bond between parents and children. Something mysterious in Chan’s characters, even the automated ones, resists social engineering; this uncontrollability makes them interesting. For me, the novel reanimated an obvious truth: that personality— life—inheres in the decisions we make, and that we are not ourselves, not alive, when we cannot choose. — Katy Waldman

“ None Like Us ,” by Stephen Best

“None Like Us” by Stephen Best cover

The literary critic Stephen Best begins his 2018 book, “None Like Us,” in notice of a “communitarian impulse” in Black studies. “It announces itself in the assumption that in writing about the black past ‘we’ discover ‘our’ history,” he writes. “It registers in the suggestion that what makes black people black is their continued navigation of an ‘afterlife of slavery.’ ” It could be called melancholic, an identity sustained by exclusion—from history, from politics, the hallowed sites of culture. Best is queasy about this, not for its mood but, rather, the presumption of affirmation to be found on the other side of subjection. Instead, he finds inspiration in works—El Anatsui’s sculptures, Toni Morrison’s “ A Mercy ”—that enact “a kind of thought that literary critics are not yet willing to entertain,” that is, “freedom from constraining conceptions of blackness as authenticity, tradition, and legitimacy; of history as inheritance, memory, and social reproduction; of diaspora as kinship, belonging, and dissemination.” In his study of these texts, Best picks apart the tropes that are often treated as foregone conclusions: that the heirs of a people made chattel would incur and even embrace the terms foisted upon them, that the first-person plural of Black studies is monolithic. I came to this book with an honest portion of chagrin: How often have I intoned a word like “community” in my appraisal of a novel or television show, taking that word for granted as one that exists with some definite sort of racial continuity rather than something to be powerfully disarticulated? The title and provocation of the book come from the abolitionist David Walker, who, in his “ Appeal to the Coloured Citizens of the World ,” first published in 1829, prayed that “none like us ever may live again until time shall be no more.” Disaffiliation pairs well with a spritz, I’ve learned. — Lauren Michele Jackson

“ Willful Disregard ,” by Lena Andersson

“Willful Disregard” by Lena Andersson cover

When readers meet Ester Nilsson, the heroine of Lena Andersson’s 2013 novel, “Willful Disregard,” they are told that she perceives reality “with devastating precision.” Ester is a writer: serious about her work and her choices, dedicated with earnest clarity to the life of the mind. Everything goes to hell when she agrees to deliver a lecture on an artist named Hugo Rask, and subsequently falls in love with him. Even Ester’s vegetarianism crumbles in the course of their abortive courtship.

“Willful Disregard,” published in Sarah Death’s 2015 English translation, follows Ester in her desperate attempts to comprehend what is going on between her and the artist who is failing to love her back. If, in “I Love Dick,” romantic abjection yields confrontational art, in “Willful Disregard” it yields awkward texts. This outcome is no less harrowing for being more familiar, and, in Andersson’s cool, observant prose, it’s possible to examine the mental gymnastics of thwarted desire with a rigor seldom available to those in Ester’s condition (or to their confidantes, who are given voice in the book as Ester’s “girlfriend chorus”). The results are ruthlessly lucid and funny.

“She had made up her mind not to ring him,” Andersson writes, after Ester and Hugo spend a night together. “Admittedly she thought it was strange that one would not want perpetual contact with the person with whom one had just embarked on a loving relationship, but she had to be flexible.” She calls, of course. He doesn’t answer. “There are natural explanations for everything,” she thinks. For example: “He felt secure with her and did not need to keep telling her what he was doing, or making contact, because they were in continuous spiritual contact anyway.” — Molly Fischer

“ Red Comet ,” by Heather Clark

“Red Comet” by Heather Clark cover

I bought Heather Clark’s “Red Comet: The Short Life and Blazing Art of Sylvia Plath” last winter, by which point it had appeared on year-end lists and was a Pulitzer finalist. I’ve wanted to dive in ever since but just couldn’t find the right moment to leap headlong into its eleven hundred and fifty-two pages. Then summer rolled around, and I found myself craving a smart book I could live in for months—the literary equivalent of a bottomless Negroni. A Big Biography, such as “Red Comet,” is a dense, self-contained world, one you can unpack your suitcase inside, and I knew that, once I did venture into it, it would totally consume me. This is more or less what has happened over the past few weeks. I am now so deep into “Red Comet” that it has become a little slice of my personality; I feel an urgent need to press it into other people’s hands so that we can discuss it.

“Red Comet” is not the first Plath biography I’ve read. My first was actually a 1994 meta-biography called “ The Silent Woman ,” by the late, great Janet Malcolm. Malcolm’s book, which grew out of an article she wrote for The New Yorker , is about the fact that nobody had ever written a truly great Plath study, as the task presents a thicket of competing interests, family resentments, and obstructionist estate intervention. After Plath’s suicide, in 1963, her husband, Ted Hughes, from whom she was separated at the time, and Hughes’s sister Olwyn managed her archive and her legacy, and as such any scholar wanting to write a Plath biography had to go through them in order to get permission to use the materials. This process skewed the works that emerged: those who coöperated wrote books that were highly favorable to Hughes’s side of the story, and those who didn’t wrote anemic volumes that lacked juicy insight. Malcolm’s brilliant book, which is not just about Plath’s many biographers but about how it is nearly impossible to write a truly phenomenal biography of anyone, is one of my favorites because it lays bare all the manipulations and compromises that go into any work of nonfiction. It also put me off Plath biographies (and there are always Plath biographies) for many years, because I was convinced that they were going to be either toothless duds or score-settling screeds. And then came “Red Comet,” with all its fanfare, which had taken Clark more than nine years to complete.

What Clark has accomplished is staggering: she manages to put Plath’s story back into the context of her life, rather than through her fights with Hughes or the tragic mythology swirling around her death. The book is urgent and alive and provocative and confident—which is exactly how Plath’s poetry feels. In the introduction, Clark writes, of Plath, “She was determined to live as fully as possible—to write, to travel, to cook, to draw, to love as much and as often as she could. She was, in the words of a close friend, ‘operatic’ in her desires, a ‘Renaissance woman’ molded as much by Romantic sublimity as New England stoicism.” The same could be said for Clark’s book—it is an opera, epic and sumptuous.

When I come to the end of “Red Comet,” it will feel like the end of a beautiful trip away, and I am not ready to go home yet. Fortunately, there are always Plath’s books to read—or to listen to. My other summer suggestion? Download Maggie Gyllenhaal reading “ The Bell Jar .” You won’t regret it. — Rachel Syme

“ The Fugitivities ,” by Jesse McCarthy

“Loves Work” by Gillian Rose cover

American literature is peopled with runaways—those brave, brazen, or simply compromised enough to abdicate their responsibilities and take to the road. Few contemporary writers have explored the impulse with more nuance and verve than the scholar Jesse McCarthy, whose début novel, “The Fugitivities,” follows a young Black teacher in the early two-thousands from disillusionment in Brooklyn to doubt and revelation abroad. Jonah, like his Biblical namesake, is a man who abandons his mission, so demoralized by teaching students condemned to poverty that he decides to quit classroom and country for Brazil. He squanders a small inheritance from a respectable uncle on his open-ended adventure—which, of course, only sharpens his alienation. Just before his departure, he crosses paths with a retired basketball star whose life took an opposite trajectory, away from his great love in Paris toward a responsible existence mentoring troubled youth in New York. In their parallel stories, the Black intellectual’s crisis of faith meets the guilty anomie of the American expatriate. McCarthy’s spiralling, exquisitely cadenced prose is a shot of adrenaline, enlivening an ambitious twenty-first-century sentimental education that recalls Ben Lerner, Ralph Ellison, and Roberto Bolaño. — Julian Lucas

“ Love’s Work ,” by Gillian Rose

“Loves Work” by Gillian Rose cover.

I am teaching a class in the autumn called “Love and Other Useless Pursuits.” It will begin, dutifully, with Plato’s Symposium and Phaedrus, and then move swiftly through my favorite writers and thinkers on this thorny subject: d’Aragona, Cavendish, Stendhal, Goethe, Emerson, Proust, Woolf, Barnes, Baldwin, Beauvoir, Lacan, and Barthes. Deciding when and how to end it was the hardest part, and the handful of texts I considered selecting as the final book—Lauren Berlant’s “ Desire/Love ,” Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick’s “ A Dialogue on Love ,” Leo Bersani’s “ Marcel Proust: The Fictions of Life and of Art ”—are still spread forlornly around my writing table. Where I landed was Gillian Rose’s “Love’s Work,” written while Rose, a great and uncompromising social philosopher, was dying of ovarian cancer. I wish that I knew why I made the choice I did; I cannot account for it in full. Certainly, it has something to do with her voice, which I find magnetic—elegant, unflinching, irreverent, and ferociously principled in its discussion of desire and affliction. It has something, too, to do with the resolve with which Rose faces both her own death and the deaths of those she has loved, or could have imagined loving: friends who have died from AIDS , relatives killed in the camps. But, more than anything else, I think that I wanted to end the class on Rose’s idea that love’s work is coextensive with the work of thinking and the work of criticism. Despite what advice columns and self-help books might teach, love, like criticism, is a peculiarly autocratic pursuit. One authorizes one’s own judgments and must live with the consequences. Sometimes—most of the time, some would say—we get it wrong. We err on the side of indulgence or cruelty, blind to (blinded by?) our own power. Yet to fail is not to fall into despair. Failing in love, and in criticism, lets us gain a sense of ethical relations: we perceive the conditionality of our judgments, and embrace our capacity to forgive and to be forgiven. Rose puts this better than I can hope to, in lines I often repeat to friends: “There is no democracy in any love relation: only mercy. To be at someone’s mercy is dialectical damage: they may be merciful and they may be merciless. Yet each party, woman, man, the child in each, and their child, is absolute power as well as absolute vulnerability. You may be less powerful than the whole world, but you are always more powerful than yourself.” — Merve Emre

New Yorker Favorites

Why facts don’t change our minds .

How an Ivy League school turned against a student .

What was it about Frank Sinatra that no one else could touch ? 

The secret formula for resilience .

A young Kennedy, in Kushnerland, turned whistle-blower .

The biggest potential water disaster in the United States.

Fiction by Jhumpa Lahiri: “ Gogol .”

Sign up for our daily newsletter to receive the best stories from The New Yorker .

ny times books for summer

Books & Fiction

By signing up, you agree to our User Agreement and Privacy Policy & Cookie Statement . This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Briefly Noted Book Reviews

By Justin Chang

How Lucy Sante Became the Person She Feared

By Emily Witt

The 33 Must-Read Books of Summer 2022

Buzzy novels, compulsively readable non-fiction, and a few deliciously guilty pleasures.

summer reading

Every item on this page was chosen by a Town & Country editor. We may earn commission on some of the items you choose to buy.

This season, you have no excuse for being without something good to read. Offerings include explosive novels, revealing memoirs, brilliant biographies, and everything in between. No matter what you like to read, there's a title coming out this summer that's sure to be just what you're looking for.

Also a Poet: Frank O'Hara, My Father, and Me

Also a Poet: Frank O'Hara, My Father, and Me

New York Times-bestselling author Ada Calhoun offers a must-read memoir about artistic ambition and a complicated father-daughter relationship. Calhoun’s journey began as a simple mission, to finish what her father, art critic Peter Schjeldah, had started—a biography detailing the life of poet Frank O’Hara. However, what ensued was an unimagined trip down memory lane, where Calhoun not only discovered O’Hara’s past, but confronted her father’s, and her own.

On Gin Lane

On Gin Lane

If you’re looking to dive into historical fiction this summer, look no further than Brooke Lea Foster’s On Gin Lane . It’s the summer of 1957, and New York City socialite Lee Farrows seems to have it all: a handsome fiancé, a load of money, and a beachside hotel on Gin Lane in Southampton. But after a tragic incident occurs during the hotel’s opening weekend, Lee’s picture perfect life is suddenly shattered and she is forced to reckon with herself.

Belle Greene

Belle Greene

Alexandra Lapierre’s Belle Greene tells the true story of Belle da Costa Greene, a librarian and intellectual living in New York City during the early 1900s. At the time, Greene was best known for managing the personal library of J. P. Morgan. But behind her monumental achievement was a well kept secret, her race. Greene was in fact a Black woman and the daughter of a famous Black activist, passing as white to experience freedom and control her own destiny.

The Midcoast: A Novel

The Midcoast: A Novel

The Midcoast , one of the most anticipated novels of the year, follows a chilling story of crime and drama small town Damariscotta. After Andrew returns to Damariscotta and visits old acquaintances Ed and Steph Thatch, he’s impressed by their lifestyle, and maybe even a bit jealous too. But not everything is as it seems, and Andrew soon discovers that the Thatches are hiding dangerous secrets.

Cult Classic

Cult Classic

Sloane Crosley's Cult Classic is unputdownable. The story centers on Lola, out to dinner in Chinatown, in New York City, when she runs into on of her ex boyfriends. Soon, she bumps into another. Before long, Lola is running into nearly every person she's dated, and it's no longer just coincidences. No spoilers, but this is a fun, gripping read on relationships, modern love, and what closure truly looks like.

Nuclear Family: A Novel

Nuclear Family: A Novel

The latest from Ottessa Moshfegh ( Eileen, My Year of Rest and Relaxation ) is a story of secrets and power set in a medieval village, where a young boy growing up without a mother finds himself on an unexpected path. Over the course of an eventful year, he'll question everything he's been told, find himself at odds with the most terrifying man he knows, and uncover truths that will change the course of his live forever.

The Angel of Rome: And Other Stories

The Angel of Rome: And Other Stories

Jess Walter’s intriguing and witty collection of short fiction stories shines a light on the lives of a diverse range of characters experiencing existential crises while searching for inspiration. Despite the fact that The Angel of Rome: And Other Stories is fictional, it’s unequivocally relatable and insightful, perhaps even encouraging the reader to do a little bit of their own introspective thinking.

Tracy Flick Can't Win: A Novel

Tracy Flick Can't Win: A Novel

When Tom Perrotta's Election (and the beloved movie it inspired) was released, it made the bulldozer of an overachiever Tracy Flick into a pop-culture touchstone. More than two decades later, Perrotta is revisiting Flick in this dark, funny new novel, which finds her back in high school as an assistant principal whose life isn't quite as perfect as she might have planned. It's a witty, sly look at the things we want, the people who get in our way, and how much of it really matters. We can't be the only ones keeping our fingers crossed for a big-screen adaptation.

City of Likes

City of Likes

When Megan Chernoff and her family move to New York City, she isn't expecting to fall in with a crowd of posh and polished social-media influencers. But when one of the set's queen bees takes Megan under her wing, a picture-perfect world seems to be at her fingertips. It's worth remembering, however, that things are rarely as they seem—especially on Instagram. In Jenny Mollen's observant novel, the world of momfluencers is a dazzling and dangerous backdrop for a story about friendship, deceit, ambition, and how we choose to let the world see us.

Horse: A Novel

Horse: A Novel

Pulitzer Prize winner Geraldine Brooks's latest novel spans centuries. Set in 1850 Kentucky, 1954 New York City, and 2019 Washington, D.C., Brooks charts the remarkable true story of the record-breaking thoroughbred race horse named Lexington. The story begins with an enslaved groom named Jarett and goes through Jess, a Smithsonian scientist from Australia, and Theo, a Nigerian-American art historian, who teamed up to understand the Black horsemen lost to history.

Rogues: True Stories of Grifters, Killers, Rebels and Crooks

Rogues: True Stories of Grifters, Killers, Rebels and Crooks

Anything Patrick Radden Keefe is a must-read— Empire of Pain: The Secret History of the Sackler Dynasty and Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland are his two other books—and his newest are no exception. Well, it's not quite new: Rogues is twelve of his New Yorker articles in one collection, featuring profiles of everyone from the late Anthony Bourdain to an international black market arms dealer. Nevertheless, a must read for anyone who loves a good story.

Growing Up Getty: The Story of America's Most Unconventional Dynasty

Growing Up Getty: The Story of America's Most Unconventional Dynasty

In this deep dive on one of the world's richest and most storied families, T&C contributor James Reginato looks closely not only at how the Getty family's riches and influence were built—including impressive and unprecedented access to diaries, love letters, and more—but uncovers at a new generation of family members who are redefining what it means to be a modern scion and making their own way in the world, famous last name or not.

Hollywood Ending: Harvey Weinstein and the Culture of Silence

Hollywood Ending: Harvey Weinstein and the Culture of Silence

Nearly two decades after first profiling the now-disgraced film producer Harvey Weinstein for the New Yorker , Ken Auletta couldn't stop thinking about him. Despite the reporting in both The New Yorker and the New York Times that eventually toppled Weinstein, Auletta wanted to explore more deeply how his subject became who he did and why he was able to get away with his barely concealed behavior for so long. In this fascinating, revealing new book, the writers gets to the heart of how Harvey was made, and the ways he built a world that protected him from consequences—until, of course, it didn't.

Learning to Talk: Stories

Learning to Talk: Stories

Hilary Mantel's sprawling Wolf Hall was a worldwide sensation—a best selling trilogy that spawned a television series and a Broadway show. In the author's latest, she goes in a much more succinct direction ; Learning to Talk is a collection of short stories that put all of the author's skill and style on display in a more truncated form.

The Last Resort: A Chronicle of Paradise, Profit, and Peril at the Beach

The Last Resort: A Chronicle of Paradise, Profit, and Peril at the Beach

For a book that's not a thriller, this could be one of the scariest beach reads imaginable this summer. That's because Sarah Stodola's journalistic look at beach resorts—their history, their impact, and how they've changed the world of luxury travel—pulls back the curtain on paradise and reveals some of the shocking truths behind the surf and sand.

Sisters in Resistance: How a German Spy, a Banker's Wife, and Mussolini's Daughter Outwitted the Nazis

Sisters in Resistance: How a German Spy, a Banker's Wife, and Mussolini's Daughter Outwitted the Nazis

Italy's Foreign Minister, Galeazzo Ciano, kept secret diaries during World War II, and these documents were key evidence used by the prosecution at the post-war Nuremberg Trials—but they almost didn't make it there. Ciano's wife (and Benito Mussolini's daughter), Edda, along with Hilde Beetz, a German spy, and Frances De Chollet, an "accidental spy," worked to make sure the diaries were published for use by the allies. A little-known history finally comes to light in Sisters in Resistance .

Growing Joy: The Plant Lover's Guide to Cultivating Happiness (and Plants)

Growing Joy: The Plant Lover's Guide to Cultivating Happiness (and Plants)

Whether you're actually tending a garden this summer or simply dreaming of one, this must-read book from Maria Failla (creator of the hit Bloom & Grow Radio podcast) shares not only sage advice for living with and caring for plants, but delves into the science behind what makes cohabitating with them so beneficial.

Rough Draft: A Memoir

Rough Draft: A Memoir

“By the time I was two years old, I knew to yell ‘Story! Story!’ at the squawks of my parents’ police scanner. By four, I could hold a microphone and babble my way through a kiddie news report. By the time I was in high school, though, my parents had lost it all. Their marriage. Their careers. Their reputations,” MSNBC anchor Katy Tur writes in her memoir. In Rough Draft , she details her childhood as the daughter of journalist parents, and her career from local reporter to national correspondent.

Can't Look Away

Can't Look Away

This thriller from the talented author of Tell Me Lies (which is currently being developed into a series for Hulu) follows Molly, whose life in an affluent Connecticut town seems to offer everything she could want, but still somehow leaves her wanting. When a bolt of excitement comes care of a new-to-town friend, Molly's outlook improves—until it becomes clear that this newcomer has an agenda, and Molly's buried past is threatening to catch up with her and fast.

preview for Leisure Section Curated

@media(min-width: 40.625rem){.css-1jdielu:before{margin:0.625rem 0.625rem 0;width:3.5rem;-webkit-filter:invert(17%) sepia(72%) saturate(710%) hue-rotate(181deg) brightness(97%) contrast(97%);filter:invert(17%) sepia(72%) saturate(710%) hue-rotate(181deg) brightness(97%) contrast(97%);height:1.5rem;content:'';display:inline-block;-webkit-transform:scale(-1, 1);-moz-transform:scale(-1, 1);-ms-transform:scale(-1, 1);transform:scale(-1, 1);background-repeat:no-repeat;}.loaded .css-1jdielu:before{background-image:url(/_assets/design-tokens/townandcountrymag/static/images/diamond-header-design-element.80fb60e.svg);}}@media(min-width: 64rem){.css-1jdielu:before{margin:0 0.625rem 0.25rem;}} Best Books of 2024 @media(min-width: 40.625rem){.css-128xfoy:before{margin:0.625rem 0.625rem 0;width:3.5rem;-webkit-filter:invert(17%) sepia(72%) saturate(710%) hue-rotate(181deg) brightness(97%) contrast(97%);filter:invert(17%) sepia(72%) saturate(710%) hue-rotate(181deg) brightness(97%) contrast(97%);height:1.5rem;content:'';display:inline-block;background-repeat:no-repeat;}.loaded .css-128xfoy:before{background-image:url(/_assets/design-tokens/townandcountrymag/static/images/diamond-header-design-element.80fb60e.svg);}}@media(min-width: 64rem){.css-128xfoy:before{margin:0 0.625rem 0.25rem;}}

james middleton

Al Pacino Is Writing a Memoir

spring 2024 books

The 45 Must-Read Books of Spring 2024

pictured l r hiroyuki sanada as yoshii toranaga, yuki kura as yoshii nagakado cr katie yufx

How 'Shōgun' Adapted James Clavell's Novel

los angeles house redesigned by oliver furth

Inside Oliver Furth's Redesign of a Bel Air Home

calendar

Katharine McGee's New Historical Romance Series

a man wearing glasses

The Best Books by Truman Capote

writer terry hayes

A Spy Thriller That Was 10 Years in the Making

audrey hepburn in paris

Audrey Hepburn's Son Opens Up His Mom in Paris

sports romance novel

21 Sports Romance Books for Taylor & Travis Fans

qr code

The Best Books to Read This February

oscar 2024 books

A Reading List for the 2024 Best Picture Nominees

List Challenges

88 Books to Bring Your Summer Alive (NYT)

How many have you read.

The Woman in the Library (Sulari Gentill)

Confirm Delete Score

Best Books of the 2010s

  • Share full article

Advertisement

How to Use Up Those Easter Eggs

Deviled eggs, for sure. Maybe pickled eggs, cured with beets, vinegar and sugar, too?

Sam Sifton

By Sam Sifton

ny times books for summer

Good morning. I had a lovely run of Brooklyn sandwiches going, before work, school and Easter intervened to send me back to the kitchen. There was a classic Saigon-style bánh mì from Ba Xuyen in Sunset Park. A colossal roast beef, fried eggplant and mozzarella hero from Defonte’s in Red Hook, with hot peppers, gravy and mayonnaise. A ton-katsu sando on pillowy milk bread from Taku Sando in Greenpoint.

These were all incredible. I could eat store-bought sandwiches in Kings County for a living, and I did for a time . (A few years ago, I ginned up a recipe for the roast beef hero from Defonte’s.) But today is Easter, and not really a day for sandwiches — unless they’re ham ones on little potato rolls, with strong mustard, to eat in a side yard in the chill while children run around looking for hidden eggs.

Give them to Father, please! (He’ll trade for chocolates.) I want to make deviled eggs (above) to celebrate the holiday puckishly, or maybe a big egg salad to serve in lettuce cups. I definitely want to peel a few for pickled eggs , cured with beets, vinegar and sugar: beautiful pink orbs with a briny, slightly sweet flavor to eat as the week progresses.

Featured Recipe

Deviled Eggs

View Recipe →

That’s today’s plan (along with a ham ). As for the rest of the week. …

I love Sarah Copeland’s recipe for tofu makhani , a vegetarian take on butter chicken, for both its ease of preparation and its deep flavor. Some replace the heavy cream added at the end with coconut milk. I am not one of them.

At first glance, David Tanis’s recipe for pork cutlets with lemon and capers may appear to be a little much for a weeknight, with all that dipping and breading and frying. But it’s easy, serial work that pays off beautifully. Serve with buttered noodles and plenty of lemon wedges.

Quesadillas for dinner are a wonderful thing, though they’re sometimes difficult to make in bulk. Eric Kim’s new recipe for sheet-pan quesadillas brings relief to those preparing them for a crowd, and you can adapt his instructions to your tastes and needs.

Melissa Clark, queen of ease, brought us a lovely new recipe for one-pan creamy artichokes and peas . The dish makes for a lovely introduction to the season: sweetness cloaked in a sweater. You’ll make it a few times before summer, no doubt.

And then you can welcome the weekend with a fine new recipe from Vallery Lomas for roasted chicken thighs with hot honey and lime . What I like about it is how you brush the thighs with a blend of hot sauce and butter halfway through baking, which crisps the skin nicely and provides a platform for the sweet astringency of lime and honey at the end.

There are many thousands more recipes waiting for you on New York Times Cooking . Yes, you need a subscription to read them. Subscriptions are the foundation of our enterprise. Please, if you haven’t taken one out yet, would you consider doing so today ? Thank you.

Write for help if you find yourself caught crosswise with our technology. We’re at [email protected] , and someone will get back to you, I promise. Or you can write to me if you’d like to yell about something or to say something nice. I’m at [email protected] . I can’t respond to every letter. But I read every one I get.

Now, it’s some considerable distance from anything to do with potted hare or papadzules , but someone’s probably going to tell you to watch the series “ 3 Body Problem ” on Netflix. (Here’s James Poniewozik’s review in The New York Times.) I’m going to suggest that you read the three novels the show is based on instead. Much better!

“ The Whistleblower ,” the latest dispatch from the Outlaw Ocean Project, casts a very dark eye on shrimp farming in India, an industry that provides roughly one in three shrimps consumed by Americans today.

Here’s Jason DeParle in The New York Review of Books on Tracy Kidder’s latest book, “ Rough Sleepers .” It’s bracing.

Finally, it’s the singer-songwriter Ryan Bingham’s birthday today. He’s 43. Here’s “ The Weary Kind ,” a song he wrote with T Bone Burnett for the 2009 film “ Crazy Heart .” Roll them sevens with nothing to lose. I’ll be back next week.

Sam Sifton is an assistant managing editor, responsible for culture and lifestyle coverage, and the founding editor of New York Times Cooking . More about Sam Sifton

More on Food and Dining

Keep tabs on dining trends, restaurant reviews and recipes..

Flamboyant displays of fake flowers at restaurants have turned into a maximalist design movement , with one man as a chief trendsetter.

Perloo, a supremely comforting one-pot rice dish , i s a Lowcountry staple with roots in West Africa.

Some of the greatest meals pair exalted wines with foods considered humble. Exploring beyond the conventional can be joyous, like the timeless appeal  of Champagne and fried chicken.

For many Jamaicans, spice bun is a staple of Lent. But there’s nothing restrictive about this baked good , so named for its bold seasonings.

For Ecuadoreans, fanesca, a labor-intensive lenten soup  served just during the lead-up to Easter, is a staple of Holy Week festivities.

Sign up for our “ The Veggie ” newsletter to get vegetarian recipes  for weeknight cooking, packed lunches and dinner parties.

Eating in New York City

Once the pre-eminent food court in Flushing, Queens, for regional Chinese cuisines, the Golden Mall has reopened after a four-year renovation.   A new one in Manhattan  is on the horizon.

At Noksu, dinner is served below the street, a few yards from the subway turnstiles. But the room and the food seem unmoored from any particular place .

You thought Old World opulence was over ? A prolific chef gives it a new and very personal spin at Café Carmellini, Pete Wells writes.

Eyal Shani’s Port Sa’id challenges the conventional wisdom  that you can’t get good food in a restaurant with a turntable.

IMAGES

  1. ny times books for summer

    ny times books for summer

  2. new york times 10 best books of 2021

    ny times books for summer

  3. Two New York Times bestsellers pick their perfect summer reading list

    ny times books for summer

  4. The Complete List of New York Times Fiction Best Sellers

    ny times books for summer

  5. Go beyond just the current list of New York Times Fiction Best Sellers

    ny times books for summer

  6. New York Times Bestsellers May 31, 2020

    ny times books for summer

COMMENTS

  1. The Best Books For Your Summer Reading List

    One summer, 73 books. No matter what you like — thrillers, audiobooks, cookbooks, historical fiction, music books, sci-fi, romance, horror, true crime, sports books, Hollywood tell-alls — we ...

  2. Summer Reading

    Summer Reading. Melissa Kirsch takes a look at some of the big books coming this summer. The books are piling up again. The physical ones on the bedside table; the library queue; the e-bookshelves ...

  3. Summer Reading

    In Gatien's book, THE CLUB KING: My Rise, Reign, and Fall in New York Nightlife (Little A, 253 pp., $24.95), bones are picked. The villain is Rudy Giuliani, who became mayor of New York City in ...

  4. Summer Reading

    Flight or Fright edited by Stephen King and Bev Vincent. By DANIELLE TRUSSONI. There's nothing quite like summer to make me long for horror fiction. I can't say why, but on hot and bright ...

  5. Best Sellers

    The New York Times Best Sellers are up-to-date and authoritative lists of the most popular books in the United States, based on sales in the past week, including fiction, non-fiction, paperbacks ...

  6. Here Are the Best New Books to Read This Summer

    By Megan McCluskey and Laura Zornosa. May 24, 2023 3:45 PM EDT. T his summer's slate of new books offers something for every reader, whether you're looking for a lighthearted escape, a ...

  7. 8 New Books We Recommend This Week

    Suggested reading from critics and editors at The New York Times. Our recommended books this week include three very different memoirs. In "Grief Is for People," Sloane Crosley pays tribute to ...

  8. 27 New Books You Need to Read This Summer

    Carrie Soto Is Back, Taylor Jenkins Reid (Aug. 30) Taylor Jenkins Reid has collected a devoted following for her made-for-summer books like Malibu Rising and Daisy Jones & The Six. She returns ...

  9. What We're Reading This Summer

    What We're Reading This Summer. New Yorker writers recommend books featuring a nineteenth-century love triangle, trans zombie hunters, revelry with the Rolling Stones, and more. By The New ...

  10. 17 New Books Coming in April

    New novels from Emily Henry, Jo Piazza and Rachel Khong; a history of five ballerinas at the Dance Theater of Harlem; Salman Rushdie's memoir and more.

  11. Book Review: New Horror Books

    During the summer of 1995, April and Eddie are on their way to a resort for their honeymoon when a wrong turn sends them down a dark road in the middle of the night.

  12. The New York Times ® Best Sellers

    Explore the New York Times Best Sellers list at Barnes & Noble® and be in the know about which books are currently most popular in America. Find out about the best new books each week, including fiction, non-fiction, advice & how-to, graphic novels, children's books, and more. Browse the selection by genre and format.

  13. The 33 Must-Read Books of Summer 2022

    Set in 1850 Kentucky, 1954 New York City, and 2019 Washington, D.C., Brooks charts the remarkable true story of the record-breaking thoroughbred race horse named Lexington.

  14. 27 Works of Fiction Coming This Spring

    Stories by Amor Towles, a sequel to Colm Toibin's "Brooklyn," a new thriller by Tana French and more. By Kate Dwyer March In her second novel, Gonzalez, a Pulitzer Prize finalist and the ...

  15. 88 Books to Bring Your Summer Alive (NYT)

    The New York Times's "88 Books for Summer" list, published in May 2022. 1-7: Thrillers 8-13: True Crime 14-21: Romance 22-29: Cookbooks 30-36: Travel 37-48: Historical Fiction 49-55: Science Fiction & Fantasy 56-58: Music 59-66: Gothic & Horror 67-72: Stage & Screen

  16. Stephen King's Best Books: A Guide

    A big part of the book's pleasures (and at over 800 pages, there are many) comes from the procedural-like manner in which Jake must establish a new identity in a new era and live in real time ...

  17. His Novel Sold a Million Copies. James McBride Isn ...

    McBride, who has written eight books, has found success before. His novel "The Good Lord Bird" won the National Book Award. "Deacon King Kong" was an Oprah Book Club pick and a New York ...

  18. Turns of Phrase

    This entry is a Times crossword debut, and "'The Lorax' setting" is a tricky clue. It's a Dr. Seuss reference, from a 1971 book that told a tale of ecological destruction in THNEEDVILLE.

  19. List of The New York Times number-one books of 2024

    The American daily newspaper The New York Times publishes multiple weekly lists ranking the best-selling books in the United States. The lists are split in three genres—fiction, nonfiction and children's books.Both the fiction and nonfiction lists are further split into multiple lists.

  20. How to Use Up Those Easter Eggs

    Here's Jason DeParle in The New York Review of Books on Tracy Kidder's latest book, "Rough Sleepers." It's bracing. It's bracing. Finally, it's the singer-songwriter Ryan Bingham's ...