10 New Books to Read in September
This month's new releases include tales of female assassins and spies, a teen novel set in war-torn Syria and essays by Annie Proulx.
It’s September! The weather may still be hot and muggy, but school is back in session, everything is pumpkin-spice flavored, and our minds are drifting toward cozy nights and rainy afternoons curled up with some of these great new reads.
The following information is provided courtesy of the Arlington Public Library.
Killers of a Certain Age
By Deanna Raybourn
In the late 1970s, a clandestine international organization known as The Museum recruited Billie out of college to hunt down and assassinate remaining Nazis. Billie and her coworkers, Helen, Mary Alice and Natalie, then moved on to arms dealers, drug smugglers and sex traffickers. Forty years later, they’re retired—but they aren’t the only assassins on their retirement cruise. The Museum has sent someone to take them out. Everyone underestimates women, especially those over 60, and this group isn’t going down without a fight in Deanna Raybourn’s fast-paced adventure. // Available Sept. 6. Library catalog link here.
Sibi saw the swastikas on the planes that bombed Guernica, but under advice from an American military attaché she claims to have seen nothing—a lie that saves her life. The surviving members of her family move to Germany, where they appear to be helping the Nazi war machine but in fact are active members of the resistance. As the war goes on, Sibi must save her family in this page-turning story of survival in the face of unspeakable evil. // Available Sept. 6. Library catalog link here.
The Old Place
By Bobby Finger
After 40 years, Mary Alice finally retires from her job as a math teacher, but she’s not happy about it. She has the church picnic to plan and morning coffee with her best friend and neighbor, Ellie. Years ago, Ellie and Mary Alice both lost their sons shortly after they graduated from high school. But when Mary Alice’s estranged sister shows up with news that her son, Michael, is still very much alive, life in Billington, Texas will never be the same. A cozy read full of humor that understands the complicated dynamics of small town life. // Available Sept. 20. Library catalog link here.
A Ghost in Shining Armor
By Therese Beharrie
When Gemma kisses Levi on a dare, she doesn’t know he’s a ghost sent to reunite her with her long-lost sister. If Levi succeeds, he can go back to live his own life, as if he never died. If he fails, he will disappear forever. The only problem is—what if Levi wants to stay with Gemma? A laugh-out-loud romance that’s sure to delight. // Available Sept. 27. Library catalog link here.
The Red Widow: The Scandal That Shook Paris and the Woman Behind It
By Sarah Horowitz
Marguerite Steinheil was determined to be the belle of Belle Epoque Paris. She was known to have many lovers (including the French president, who died from a stroke amid one of their trysts) and used sex, blackmail and possibly even poison to ensure things went her way. Then an alleged home invasion gone wrong left her husband and mother dead—but her alive—in a scandal that fascinated Paris. Horowitz places the events of Steinheil’s life in the context of a changing French society in this salacious tale for fans of historical true crime. // Available Sept. 6. Library catalog link here.
Year of the Tiger: An Activist’s Life
By Alice Wong
Disability activist Wong uses art, essays, fiction and other storytelling devices in this moving personal memoir. From tales of her Midwest upbringing as the daughter of Chinese immigrants and navigating the Covid-19 pandemic as a high-risk individual, to an illustrated ode to cats and a critique of how disability is portrayed by the media, Wong’s multi-faceted narrative combines scrapbook, memoir and social commentary for an innovative and unforgettable read. // Available Sept. 6. Library catalog link here.
Author Nathalia Holt follows the lives and careers of five women who joined the Office of Strategic Services during WWII and moved on to the newly created CIA, where they continued their service through the Cold War. Referencing a range of materials, including scrapbooks and journals, Holt weaves an entertaining and enlightening tale about extraordinary careers, the history of 20th century spy craft, and the obstacles often faced by female agents. // Available Sept. 13. Library catalog link here.
In a series of essays, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Annie Proulx (The Shipping News, Brokeback Mountain) examines the world’s wetlands and how industrialization has led to their destruction—including the cost we are paying, having lost an ecosystem known for absorbing so much of the atmosphere’s carbon. Proulx is best known as a novelist, and her elegant writing and moving imagery will engage readers with even a slight interest in wetland preservation. // Available Sept. 27. Library catalog link here.
You Only Live Once, David Bravo
By Mark Oshiro
After a disastrous start to middle school, David Bravo encounters a talking dog who offers him the chance to go back in time to fix the moment where it all went wrong—if only David could pinpoint when that moment was. This rollicking adventure up and down David’s personal timeline has him reliving certain moments over and over again, only to make things worse each time. But he does discover some important truths about identity and friendship. A funny and unexpected twist on the time loop novel with moving and memorable results. // Available Sept. 20. Library catalog link here.
As Long as the Lemon Trees Grow
By Zoulfa Katouh
Salama’s mother was killed in a bombing and her father and brother were taken by the government. Now Salama is left caring for her pregnant sister-in-law, Layla, and volunteering at a hospital. It’s 2012 in Homs, Syria. Layla wants to take Salama to Germany, but Salama is torn between her duty to help her country and a budding romantic relationship—and her worries over what will happen to Layla and the baby if they don’t leave. Complicating matters is Khawf, the personification of Salama’s trauma, who is also urging her to risk the journey to Europe. Unflinching and searing, Zoulfa Katouh’s debut novel is an unforgettable story of a teenager caught in a revolution. // Available Sept. 13. Library catalog link here.