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New Book Releases Featuring Sequoia Nagamatsu, Nnedi Okorafor, and Bernardine Evaristo

by Ashley Dickson-Ellison (@teachingtheapocalypse)


Here are three books coming out today that I'm excited to read!


How High We Go in the Dark by Sequoia Nagamatsu Book Cover

Sequoia Nagamatsu's How High We Go in the Dark (Bookshop.org | Libro.fm)


Description from Publisher:

"In 2030, a grieving archeologist arrives in the Arctic Circle to continue the work of his recently deceased daughter at the Batagaika Crater, where researchers are studying long-buried secrets now revealed in melting permafrost, including the perfectly preserved remains of a girl who appears to have died of an ancient virus.

"Once unleashed, the Arctic plague will reshape life on Earth for generations to come, quickly traversing the globe, forcing humanity to devise a myriad of moving and inventive ways to embrace possibility in the face of tragedy. In a theme park designed for terminally ill children, a cynical employee falls in love with a mother desperate to hold on to her infected son. A heartbroken scientist searching for a cure finds a second chance at fatherhood when one of his test subjects--a pig--develops the capacity for human speech. A widowed painter and her teenaged granddaughter embark on a cosmic quest to locate a new home planet.

"From funerary skyscrapers to hotels for the dead to interstellar starships, Sequoia Nagamatsu takes readers on a wildly original and compassionate journey, spanning continents, centuries, and even celestial bodies to tell a story about the resilience of the human spirit, our infinite capacity to dream, and the connective threads that tie us all together in the universe."


Why I want to read it: Why do I want to read this? Lol. I have seen RAVE reviews of how phenomenal this one is, and despite the dark premise, I love stories that focus on highlighting the capacity of humans to wonder, to hope, and to endure. This one promises to be a deeply impactful read!

 

Akata Woman by Nnedi Okorafor Book Cover

Nnedi Okorafor's Akata Woman (Bookshop.org)


Description from Publisher:

"From the moment Sunny Nwazue discovered she had mystical energy flowing in her blood, she sought to understand and control her powers. Throughout her adventures in Akata Witch and Akata Warrior, she had to navigate the balance between nearly everything in her life—America and Nigeria, the 'normal' world and the one infused with juju, human and spirit, good daughter and powerful Leopard Person.


"Now, those hard lessons and abilities are put to the test in a quest so dangerous and fantastical, it would be madness to go...but may destroy the world if she does not. With the help of her friends, Sunny embarks on a mission to find a precious object hidden deep in an otherworldly realm. Defeating the guardians of the prize will take more from Sunny than she has to give, and triumph will mean she will be forever changed."


Why I want to read it: I'm here for everything by Nnedi Okorafor, and I love this series so much! I can't wait to get back to Sunny and her friends and to see what develops in this new adventure.

 

Manifesto on Never Giving Up by Bernardine Evaristo Book Cover

Bernardine Evaristo's Manifesto: On Never Giving Up (Bookshop.org | Libro.fm)


Description from Publisher: "Bernardine Evaristo's 2019 Booker Prize win was a historic and revolutionary occasion, with Evaristo being the first Black woman and first Black British person ever to win the prize in its fifty-year history. Girl, Woman, Other was named a favorite book of the year by President Obama and Roxane Gay, was translated into thirty-five languages, and has now reached more than a million readers.

"Evaristo's astonishing nonfiction debut, Manifesto, is a vibrant and inspirational account of Evaristo's life and career as she rebelled against the mainstream and fought over several decades to bring her creative work into the world. With her characteristic humor, Evaristo describes her childhood as one of eight siblings, with a Nigerian father and white Catholic mother, tells the story of how she helped set up Britain's first Black women's theatre company, remembers the queer relationships of her twenties, and recounts her determination to write books that were absent in the literary world around her. She provides a hugely powerful perspective to contemporary conversations around race, class, feminism, sexuality, and aging. She reminds us of how far we have come, and how far we still have to go. In Manifesto, Evaristo charts her theory of unstoppability, showing creative people how they too can visualize and find success in their work, ignoring the naysayers.

"Both unconventional memoir and inspirational text, Manifesto is a unique reminder to us all to persist in doing work we believe in, even when we might feel overlooked or discounted. Evaristo shows us how we too can follow in her footsteps, from first vision, to insistent perseverance, to eventual triumph."


Why I want to read it: This one sounds so amazing. I still have not read Girl, Woman, Other, but it's high on my list for 2022. This one sounds inspiring and powerful, and I love the work Evaristo is doing. (Additionally, I have access to the audiobook thanks to Libro.fm's ALC program, so I will be listening to this one very soon!)

 

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