My most recommended new releases for February 2021 are The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah and The Obsession by Jesse Q Sutanto. Both novels are out on February 2nd, and both are totally absorbing reads, but that's about all they have in common.
The Four Winds, by Kristin Hannah, tells the story of Elsa Martinelli and her family through many hardships and struggles, mostly triggered by the Dust Bowl. If I describe the plot, it might sound like a tragic story, as the family goes from hardship to hardship, but it's not a poverty-porn weepy. The drought that begins the Dust Bowl, black dust storms, crippling heat, floods, migration for a better start, etc.
The Obsession, by Jesse Q Sutanto, is a twisted high-school romance, with a little stalking, crime and creepy obsession. It's a fast read, with a lot of surprises crammed in. The novel is narrated in alternating chapters by Logan and Delilah, almost like the book is playing with the common YA romance style.
Fans of this one will also like her next book, Dial A For Aunties, a wonderful dark comedy about an accidental murder, a massive upscale wedding, and a pack of aunties ready to save the day. Dial A For Aunties will be out in April.
All Girls, by Emily Layden, never quite came together for me, creating more of an interesting ramble about high school girls' experiences than a story. Read this one for a series of vignettes and interesting characters, and don't look for an overall storyline or conclusion.
In nonfiction, Unmasked: Discover the Hidden Power of Your True Self by Catherine Duca is out on February 2nd. This is a thoughtful look at what will really make us happiest, and how to find our true selves.
And in March, we have the sweet queer romance Knit, Purl, A Baby And A Girl, dual-timeline adventures in The Lost Apothecary and twisty suspense The Girls Are All So Nice Here, all coming out soon.
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