Spring is a big time of year for publishing, as evidenced by the many debut novels coming out in April. Here are just a few that have received quite a bit of buzz. For a complete list, please visit our catalog.
“Dial A for Aunties” by Jesse Q. Sutanto
What happens when you mix one (accidental) murder with two thousand wedding guests, and then toss in a possible curse on three generations of an immigrant Chinese-Indonesian family?
You get four meddling Asian aunties coming to the rescue!
When Meddelin Chan ends up accidentally killing her blind date, her meddlesome mother calls for her even more meddlesome aunties to help get rid of the body. Unfortunately, a dead body proves to be a lot more challenging to dispose of than one might anticipate, especially when it is inadvertently shipped in a cake cooler to the over-the-top billionaire wedding Meddy, her Ma, and aunties are working at an island resort on the California coastline. It’s the biggest job yet for the family wedding business — “Don’t leave your big day to chance, leave it to the Chans!” — and nothing, not even an unsavory corpse, will get in the way of her auntie’s perfect buttercream flowers.
But things go from inconvenient to downright torturous when Meddy’s great college love — and biggest heartbreak — makes a surprise appearance amid the wedding chaos. Is it possible to escape murder charges, charm her ex back into her life, and pull off a stunning wedding all in one weekend?
“Malice” by Heather Walter
Once upon a time, there was a wicked fairy who, in an act of vengeance, cursed a line of princesses to die. A curse that could only be broken by true love’s kiss.
You’ve heard this before, haven’t you? The handsome prince. The happily ever after.
Let me tell you, no one in Briar actually cares about what happens to its princesses. Not the way they care about their jewels and elaborate parties and charm-granting elixirs. I thought I didn’t care, either.
Until I met her.
Princess Aurora. The last heir to Briar’s throne. Kind. Gracious. The future queen her realm needs. One who isn’t bothered that I am Alyce, the Dark Grace, abhorred and feared for the mysterious dark magic that runs in my veins. Humiliated and shamed by the same nobles who pay me to bottle hexes and then brand me a monster. Aurora says I should be proud of my gifts. That she … cares for me. Even though a power like mine was responsible for her curse.
But with less than a year until that curse will kill her, any future I might see with Aurora is swiftly disintegrating — and she can’t stand to kiss yet another insipid prince. I want to help her. If my power began her curse, perhaps it’s what can lift it. Perhaps together we could forge a new world.
Nonsense again. Because we all know how this story ends, don’t we? Aurora is the beautiful princess. And I…
I am the villain.
“When Stars Rain Down” by Angela Jackson-Brown
This summer has the potential to change everything.
The summer of 1936 in Parsons, Georgia, is unseasonably hot, and Opal Pruitt senses a nameless storm brewing. She hopes this foreboding feeling won’t overshadow her upcoming eighteenth birthday or the annual Founder’s Day celebration in just a few weeks. She and her Grandma Birdie work as housekeepers for the white widow Miss Peggy, and Opal desperately wants some time to be young and carefree with her cousins and friends.
But when the Ku Klux Klan descends on Opal’s neighborhood, the tight-knit community is shaken in every way possible. Parsons’s residents — both Black and white — are forced to acknowledge the unspoken codes of conduct in their post-Reconstruction era town. To complicate matters, Opal finds herself torn between two unexpected romantic interests — the son of her pastor, Cedric Perkins, and the grandson of the woman she works for, Jimmy Earl Ketchums. Both young men awaken emotions Opal has never felt before.
“The Last Watch” by J.S. Dewes
It’s the edge of the universe.
Now it’s collapsing — and taking everyone and everything with it.
The only ones who can stop it are the Sentinels — the recruits, exiles, and court-martialed dregs of the military.
At the Divide, Adequin Rake commands the Argus. She has no resources, no comms — nothing, except for the soldiers that no one wanted. Her ace in the hole could be Cavalon Mercer — genius, jerk, and exiled prince who nuked his grandfather’s genetic facility for “reasons.”
She knows they’re humanity’s last chance.