Masala’s round up of the five most highly-anticipated 2019 book releases.
By Deboshree Banerjee
GOLDEN CHILD by CLAIRE ADAM
Release date: January 15, 2019
If you are a fan of twisty psychological fiction, then keep an eye out for Claire Adam’s intriguing debut novel, Golden Child. Set in Trinidad in the 1980s, the story follows the lives of twin boys, Peter and Paul, born to parents Clyde and Joy in a very rural area of the country. However, the twins are nothing alike. While Peter excels at everything he does, Paul is seen as slow and odd, which vexes his father to no end.
The plot thickens when Paul does not return home from a walk one day and Clyde has to step out into the night to search for his son. As hours turn into days, his hunt leads to the discovery of unsettling truths about his family and himself. With a heart- stopping climax, the novel tells a story about wanting more for our children, and swells with wisdom about masculinity, family, violence and sacrifice.
THE CARE AND FEEDING OF RAVENOUSLY HUNGRY GIRLS by ANISSA GRAY
Release date: February 19, 2019
Another promising debut, The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls, set in a small western Michigan town, is centred on three adult siblings, Althea, Viola and Lillian, each with an impassioned voice of their own. The sisters, despite being unalike, stay united to deal with the absence of their deceased mother and lack of parental guidance from their father. However, nothing could prepare them for the literal trial they have to endure when Althea and her husband, both restaurateurs, receive a multi-year sentence for food stamp fraud and charity embezzlement. As Althea awaits her fate, Lillian and Viola must come together in their childhood home to care for their sister’s teenage daughters. The book gently yet fearlessly explores the diversity and complexity of family connections.
THE PATH MADE CLEAR: DISCOVERING YOUR LIFE’S DIRECTION AND PURPOSE by OPRAH WINFREY
Release date: March 26, 2019
You know it’s going to be a good year when Oprah Winfrey is making her contribution to the literary world. Written with the aim to awaken your deepest vision of yourself, this much-awaited 10-chapter book promises to help you recognise the important milestones along the road to self-discovery, as well as your path to success. With stories and lessons from her own experiences, Oprah brings forth wisdom and insight to inspire people from different walks of life. According to her, “Your real job in life is to figure out as soon as possible what that is, who you are meant to be, and begin to honour your calling in the best way.”
FURIOUS HOURS: MURDER, FRAUD, AND THE LAST TRIAL OF HARPER LEE by CASEY CEP
Release date: May 7, 2019
Crime thriller fans, this one’s for you! Based on the true story of the Alabama serial killer case that obsessed To Kill a Mockingbird (1960) author, Harper Lee, Furious Hours: Murder, Fraud, and the Last Trial of Harper Lee follows Reverend Willie Maxwell, a rural preacher accused of murdering five family members for insurance money in the 1970s. With the help of a savvy lawyer, he escaped justice for years until a relative shot him dead at the funeral of his last victim. Featuring manslaughter, insurance fraud, courtroom drama and racial politics, Casey Cep brings this gripping story to life for those who just can’t get enough of true crime.
THE TESTAMENTS by MARGARET ATWOOD
Release date: September 10, 2019
The Testaments is the highly-anticipated sequel to the 1985 modern classic novel The Handmaid’s Tale, which follows Offred’s struggle to survive in a dystopian version of America, where women have little to no rights, and are used as breeding vessels. Narrated by three female characters, the sequel is set 15 years after Offred’s final scene in The Handmaid’s Tale, in which she was placed in a van that was possibly going to deliver her to freedom outside the country.