During the winter, days might feel a little longer than usual, but hopefully that affords a chance to enjoy stories to pass the extra time. There’s nothing better than being cuddled up with cozy blankets, warm tea, and a satisfying book during the especially colder days. These captivating stories from a wide range of voices will have readers forgetting about the snowstorms and chilly weather in no time!
Which story will you curl up with?
After a new initiative draws students from the largely Black east side of town into predominantly white high schools in the west, two seemingly different families come together in an unexpected way that will affect the trajectory of their lives over the next twenty years. Gee and Noelle’s paths cross when they both sign up for the school play, meant to be a bridge between the old and new students. In this multigenerational novel, we look at Gee and Noelle and how their relationships with their mothers shape their coming-of-age journeys. Both mothers are determined to see their child inherit a better life, but at what cost?
Charlie Yates and Magnolia Heathwood were twin sisters secretly separated at birth, after the brutal lynching of their parents whose only “crime” was loving one another. Years later, at the dawn of the Civil Rights movement, they reunite after their grandmother falls ill in Harlem. Her final wish is to be buried back home in Georgia, and to see Magnolia one last time. Magnolia, who is white-passing and knows nothing of her racial heritage, learns the truth of her family and her reflection mysteriously disappears from mirrors – a sign of a terrible curse. In this gothic thriller, both sisters must now face the hauntings of their past to break this deadly curse and discover the meaning of sisterhood in a racially divided land.
This one is for fans of romantic comedy. Out of the Blue is a novel about Preslee Owen, who has never worked out in a gym before. On her first day trying, she accidentally broadcasts a vlog that lets complete strangers witness the hilarious start to her fitness journey on a stair climber. To her mortification, viewers unexpectedly love it, which forces Preslee to continue going to the gym. A new perk of going is seeing Josh, her unrequited crush. To make him a little jealous, Adam, her new personal trainer, offers to pretend to be her boyfriend. Preslee soon develops newfound strength and courage, but will this be enough for her to face her biggest fears and seize what she really wants in life?
In this second installment of Essa Hansen’s space opera trilogy The Graven, Caiden runs into a childhood friend who he thought dead, and is lured into a game of cat-and-mouse with Threi’s powerful sister, Abriss. With both siblings on the hunt for Caiden and his ship, he must uncover the mystery of his ship’s power and his own origins to stop the multiverse from collapsing. This ambitious, action-packed adventure asks us questions about grief, responsibility, and choice.
Three Black women with albinism, Suzette, Maple, and Agnes, are each at different crossroads in their lives. Having had a sheltered upbringing, Suzette’s new romance forces her to consider what sacrifices she is willing to take for her autonomy. Maple is haunted by the unsolved murder of her mother and discovers an important key that may unlock the mystery. Agnes unleashes a shocking power that will make her confront her family and her past. These three narratives are a testimony to the power of family and present a meditation on female strength, grief, and transformation.
Carter von Oehson, college sophomore, posts on Instagram that he plans to kill himself, and 24 hours later, disappears – the worst seems to be confirmed. Carter’s father, Mathias von Oehson, founder and CEO of the world’s largest hedge fund, is the only person convinced Carter is still out there. A high stakes secret could damage everything he has built, so Mathias turns to the one person he can trust to find the truth. In this suspenseful novel, Dr. Dylan Reinhart and Elizabeth Needham, a NYPD detective, team up to uncover the mystery of Carter von Oehson’s disappearance.
Emily Hoang is a writer and editor who is obsessed with haunted houses, ghosts, and dreams. More info can be found on her website.