Exploring New Reads: Elin Hilderbrand’s Latest Release and More

Unveiling the Latest Literary Treasures

In the quest for captivating reads, USA TODAY’s Barbara VanDenburgh meticulously curates a list of this week’s hottest book releases. Every book mentioned is set to hit the shelves on Tuesday, promising a literary adventure for readers of diverse tastes. Let’s dive into the literary realm and discover the narratives waiting to be explored.

Elin Hilderbrand’s ‘Five-Star Weekend’

By Elin Hilderbrand (Little, Brown, fiction)

What’s It About?

Renowned for her bestseller “The Hotel Nantucket,” Elin Hilderbrand returns with another summer sensation in “The Five-Star Weekend.” The novel unfolds the story of Hollis Shaw, who, grappling with the sudden loss of her husband in a car accident, orchestrates a rejuvenating “Five-Star Weekend.” Hollis invites her closest friends from various phases of her life for a weekend retreat on Nantucket, weaving a tale of friendship, healing, and self-discovery.

The Buzz

Publishers Weekly awards this novel a starred review, predicting it to become a beach bag staple. The anticipation surrounding “The Five-Star Weekend” is palpable, promising readers a compelling and heartwarming summer read.

  • Purchase Options:
    • [Amazon](link to Amazon) – $19
    • [Bookshop](link to Bookshop) – $30

‘Better Living Through Birding: Notes From a Black Man in the Natural World’

By Christian Cooper (Random House, nonfiction)

What’s It About?

Christian Cooper, known for his expertise in bird-watching, shares his personal journey in “Better Living Through Birding.” A self-described “Blerd” (Black nerd), Cooper gained public attention in a 2020 viral video. In this memoir, he narrates his own story and explores how the practice of bird watching has shaped his experiences and perspectives.

The Buzz

Publishers Weekly, in a starred review, commends the memoir for adding “heft and heart to the headlines.” Christian Cooper’s narrative promises to provide readers with a profound and rewarding exploration of his life and passion.

  • Purchase Options:
    • [Amazon](link to Amazon) – $24
    • [Bookshop](link to Bookshop) – $26

‘100 Places to See After You Die: A Travel Guide to the Afterlife’

By Ken Jennings (Scribner, nonfiction)

What’s It About?

Ken Jennings, famed “Jeopardy!” champion and host, presents a unique travel guide in “100 Places to See After You Die.” This entertaining and imaginative guide takes readers on a journey through the afterlife, featuring must-see destinations from mythology, literature, and pop culture. From Dante’s “Inferno” to NBC’s “The Good Place,” Jennings explores a fascinating array of destinations.

The Buzz

Kirkus Reviews describes it as “an entertaining, amusing collection of a wide variety of visions of the afterlife.” Ken Jennings’ witty and engaging style promises readers an enjoyable exploration of the beyond.

  • Purchase Options:
    • [Amazon](link to Amazon) – $25
    • [Bookshop](link to Bookshop) – $26

‘Wannabe: Reckonings with the Pop Culture That Shapes Me’

By Aisha Harris (HarperOne, nonfiction)

What’s It About?

Aisha Harris, co-host of NPR’s “Pop Culture Happy Hour,” presents a collection of insightful essays in “Wannabe: Reckonings with the Pop Culture That Shapes Me.” Reflecting on the pop culture that has influenced her, Harris emerges as a modern cultural critic with astute observations on film, music, and TV.

The Buzz

Publishers Weekly, in a starred review, describes the essays as “incisive” and “entertaining,” making them a delightful treat for readers interested in thought-provoking cultural commentary.

  • Purchase Options:
    • [Amazon](link to Amazon) – $14
    • [Bookshop](link to Bookshop) – $28

Bonus Preview: ‘Nightbloom’ by Peace Adzo Medie (Out June 13)

By Peace Adzo Medie (Algonquin, fiction)

What’s It About?

“Nightbloom” by Peace Adzo Medie explores the lives of cousins Selasi and Akorfa in Ghana. Their inseparable bond undergoes challenges as Selasi undergoes a transformation, leading Akorfa to pursue studies in the U.S. A crisis forces them back together, unveiling Selasi’s secret.

The Buzz

Publishers Weekly calls it a “poignant outing,” indicating that “Nightbloom” is worth a look for readers seeking a compelling and emotionally resonant narrative.

  • Pre-order Options:
    • [Amazon](link to Amazon) – $14
    • [Bookshop](link to Bookshop) – $26

Conclusion: Diverse Stories Await

As the literary landscape unfolds with these new releases, readers are invited to embark on journeys of love, friendship, self-discovery, and cultural exploration. Whether you’re drawn to fiction, memoirs, or thought-provoking essays, this week’s selection promises something for every literary palate.

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