Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday: Most Anticipated 2015 Debut Novels

I love good debut fiction.  I really do.  It's might even be on the shortlist of things I like most about being a blogger, the potential to discover a great book by a new author before everybody else has.  It happens that I've gotten a jump on things and already read a great 2015 debut by a new author.  In conjunction with Top Ten Tuesday at The Broke and the Bookish, here are ten more debuts I'll be excited to get my hands on this year. 

The Cherry Harvest by Lucy Sanna (William Morrow, June 2nd)
A memorable coming-of-age story and love story, laced with suspense, which explores a hidden side of the home front during World War II, when German POWs were put to work in a Wisconsin farm community . . . with dark and unexpected consequences.

(In my head, this is Summer of My German Soldier for grown-ups.)

Etta and Otto and Russell and James by Emma Hooper (Simon & Schuster, Jan 29th)
I've gone. I've never seen the water, so I've gone there. I will try to remember to come back.  Etta's greatest unfulfilled wish, living in the rolling farmland of Saskatchewan, is to see the sea. And so, at the age of eighty-two she gets up very early one morning, takes a rifle, some chocolate, and her best boots, and begins walking the 2,000 miles to water.

I'd Walk with My Friends If I Could Find Them by Jesse Goolsby (HMH, June 2nd)
In this powerful debut novel, three American soldiers haunted by their actions in Afghanistan search for absolution and human connection in family and civilian life. Together, three men face an impossible choice: risk death or commit a harrowing act of war. The aftershocks echo long after each returns home to a transfigured world, where his own children may fear to touch him and his nightmares still hold sway.

In a World Just Right by Jen Brooks (S&S Young Readers, April 28)
High school senior Jonathan Aubrey creates worlds at will. In Kylie-Simms-is-my-girlfriend, he’s given himself everything he doesn’t have in real life-–the track team, passing grades, and his dream girl–-until one day he confuses his worlds and almost kisses the real Kylie Simms. Now his girlfriend Kylie and the real Kylie are changing, and Jonathan must solve the mystery of his own life to save his love from a gruesome fate.

The Lost Boys Symphony by Mark Andrew Ferguson (Little, Brown and Co, March 24th)
A startingly original, genre-bending literary debut in which a lovesick college student is abducted by other versions of himself from the future.

Paperweight by Meg Haston (HarperTeen, July 7th)
Haunting and visceral, Paperweight follows seventeen-year-old Stevie’s journey as she struggles not only with a life-threatening eating disorder, but with the question of whether she can ever find absolution for the mistakes of her past...and whether she truly deserves to.

Playlist for the Dead by Michelle Falkoff (HarperTeen, January 27th)
Here’s what Sam knows: There was a party. There was a fight. The next morning, his best friend, Hayden, was dead. And all he left Sam was a playlist of songs, and a suicide note:  For Sam—listen and you’ll understand.

The Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly by Stephanie Oakes (Dial, June 9th)

The Kevinian cult has taken everything from seventeen-year-old Minnow: twelve years of her life, her family, her ability to trust. And when she rebelled, they took away her hands, too. Now their Prophet has been murdered and their camp set aflame, and it’s clear that Minnow knows something—but she’s not talking. As she languishes in juvenile detention, she struggles to unlearn everything she has been taught to believe, adjusting to a life behind bars and recounting the events that led up to her incarceration. But when an FBI detective approaches her about making a deal, Minnow sees she can have the freedom she’s always dreamed of—if she’s willing to part with the terrible secrets of her past.

War of the Encyclopaedists by Christopher Robinson and Gavin Kovite (Scribner, May 19th)
On a summer night, in the arty enclave of Capitol Hill, Seattle, best friends Mickey Montauk and Halifax
Corderoy throw one last blowout party before their lives part ways. At twenty-three, they had planned to move together to Boston for graduate school, but global events have intervened. As their lives move further away from their shared dream, Corderoy and Montauk keep in touch with one another by editing a Wikipedia article about themselves: smart and funny updates that morph and deepen throughout the year, culminating in a document that is both devastatingly tragic and profoundly poetic.  (Okay, I admit, it sounds pretty humdrum until you get to the part where it hinges on a Wikipedia article.  Than I get interested!)

We All Looked Up by Tommy Wallach (S&S Books for Young Readers, March 31st)
Four high school seniors put their hopes, hearts, and humanity on the line as an asteroid hurtles toward Earth in this contemporary novel.

How about you?  Any 2015 debuts you're really looking forward to?


  1. Some of these look really interesting, especially In A World Just Right. I honestly don't know any debuts for this year!

  2. I'm excited about The Lost Boys Symphony too!

  3. Great list, Megan. I was going to list a few on your list that particularly caught my fancy, but really all sound good!

  4. Oops! Etta and Otto. I think I'll take a look at that one at Amazon. Thanks for sharing these with us.

  5. Nice list! "In A World Just Right" sounds confusing, but very interesting...

  6. Megan,
    I'm honored you've included my novel I'd Walk with My Friends If I Could Find Them on your '15 Anticipated list (alongside some amazing writers)! Thank you so much, and I hope you enjoy the book. My best, Jesse

  7. I am SO bad about knowing new books before they're going to be published. Perhaps I'm just way out of touch. I haven't heard of any of these but I love the cover of Paperweight. Sounds like a pretty emotional read!

  8. I read Etta and Otto and .... and enjoyed it. I do like discovering authors new to me; I recently bought Swans Are Fat Too which is a rather new novel by an author new to me, and I liked that novel very much. She is an Eastern European novelist.