The contemporary literary scene can bring the most delightful surprises as well the most frustrating experiences. But then how gratifying is it to discover a new book to lose yourself in and talk about with your friends for hours on end? Here are the five titles that will be released in April that we can’t wait to read.
Hemingway Didn't Say That: The Truth Behind Familiar Quotations, by Garson O’Toole
Garson O’Toole, the author of the Quote Investigator blog, has set on a mission to analyse and correct the misquotations that have become commonplace on the Internet, in the media and our everyday lives.
More than simply identifying some of the most common quotes wrongly attributed to a variety of high-profile figures from Balzac to Napoleon, Dostoyevsky to Ghandi, O’Toole tries to reveal the reasons and processes that lead to this. The loss of context and nuance over time, the oversimplification of language or its imprecise appropriation by a different culture than the one it has been born into are just a few of the factors he points out.
O’Toole’s first book is the result of an extensive research and the first encyclopaedia of its kind, constituting a mix of sociological study, archival research and linguistics.
Little A, 1 April 2017
The Most Beautiful: My Life with Prince, by Mayte Garcia
The Most Beautiful is Prince’s first wife’s story of her life, marriage and professional collaboration with one of the most powerful legends in the history of music.
With a title inspired by one of Prince’s hit songs written about his and Mayte Garcia’s love story, the book reveals a deeply personal perspective on their relationship, from the moment they met backstage, through to their rich artistic collaboration and to the overwhelming times when separation became inevitable.
Released for the one-year anniversary of Price’s death, The Most Beautiful offers the most intimate, personal and direct insight into the music icon’s private life.
Hachette Books, 4 April 2017
The Enigma of Reason: A New Theory of Human Understanding, by Hugo Mercier and Dan Sperber
In his new book, Hugo Mercier – an American postdoc in Philosophy, Politics and Economics and Dan Sperber - a French social and cognitive scientist, use a series of psychological, philosophical and scientific observations and arguments in an attempt to answer a series of vital questions on the human mind and its processes.
Rather than a personal achievement and an individual journey, the two authors view reason as a social tool, that evolves on the ground of our interaction with others and as a consequence of our constant need to prove, justify and explain ourselves to our community. Therefore, reason is more a human achievement than a human given.
The question would be, in this case, would our power of reasoning evolve on a level directly proportionate to our will of social power?
Penguin Random House, 6 April 2017
Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI, by David Grann
The second book of New Yorker staff writer and author of the best-selling The Lost City of Z (which in 2016 has been turned into a movie directed by James Gray), Killers of the Flower Moon is a stirring true-crime story, covering a horrific series of murders happening in Oklahoma in the 1920s.
In the 1920s, the Osage Indian nation in Oklahoma were the wealthiest people per capita in the world. The apparently undisturbed opulent life of the community is shattered when, one by one, more than two dozens of the Osage members got killed. In a world where financial interests were making all the rules, being an investigator in such a case, meant stepping into an almost certain deathtrap. In this context, the F.B.I. takes up the case and begins uncovering one of the most sinister series of crimes in the American history.
Killers of the Moon is a thoroughly researched historical account, while remaining a gripping and profoundly emotional piece of literature.
Doubleday, 18 April 2017
Roughneck, by Jeff Lemire
The new graphic novel of the best-selling Canadian cartoonist and author of the Essex County Trilogy is a delightfully illustrated story of family ties, loss, violence and self-destruction.
With his hockey career destroyed by an accident on ice, Derek lives out of alcohol, fights and the shadow of his faded glory in a small, isolated town with no real way out. Things change when, after a long absence, his sister returns home, shattered at the end of a violent and oppressive relationship.
In an attempt to escape Beth’s aggressive boyfriend, they go to live in a remote camp in the woods. Here, life slows down, all tension decreases and they rebound. But Beth’s boyfriend tracks them down and they can feel how fragile can their newly-built, harmonious universe become.