The Best New Books to Read This Month

Whether you’re looking for a a fun beach read, a fascinating investigation, or a moving memoir, July has something for everyone. Here are 10 new releases that caught our eye this month.

1

Hum If You Don’t Know The Words, by Bianca Marais

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This moving debut novel from Bianca Marais tells the intertwined stories of two different families living under Apartheid in South Africa. Beauty Mbali, a black schoolteacher from a rural village, travels to Johannesburg when she hears that her daughter is in grave danger. Robin Conrad, a young white girl, is left in the care of her absent aunt when her parents are killed. Beauty becomes her unofficial caretaker while she searches for her daughter. Through alternating perspectives, Marais explores the complex social and racial relationships during Apartheid and demonstrates how strangers can quickly become family in trying times.

To buy: $17; amazon.com.

Released July 11.


2

Watch Me Disappear, by Janelle Brown

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Billie Flanagan, a woman with a seemingly perfect family and life, goes missing on a hike in the middle of the woods. Numerous searches and one year later, all that has been found of her is her shattered cellphone and one hiking boot. When her daughter, Olive, starts having visions of her mother and comes to believe she is still alive, she and her father begin to look for the truth of what happened. Brown’s page-turning thriller, perfect for fans of Gone Girl, will have readers questioning even the relationships closest to them.

To buy: $19; amazon.com.

Released July 11.


3

Woolly: The True Story of the Quest to Revive One of History’s Most Iconic Extinct Creatures, by Ben Mezrich

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What would happen if we had the power to revive extinct species? A group of scientists at Harvard University, led by geneticist Dr. George Church, has set out to explore the possibility of harvesting DNA from a frozen woolly mammoth to bring it back to life. Using the controversial CRISPR technology to combine the Woolly DNA with that of a functional modern elephant embryo, they may be able to do the unthinkable. Mezrich's Jurassic Park-like tale shows how this team of scientists plans to use these creatures to reverse the damage our society has done on Earth.

To buy: $17; amazon.com.

Released July 4.



4

Made for Love, by Alissa Nutting

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In this fun and punchy novel, Hazel leaves her marriage to the overbearing tech mogul Byron Golgol and finds herself living with her father (and his sex doll, Diane) in a senior citizen trailer park. As Hazel starts to reinvent herself, Byron uses all of his power to track her down and bring her back to him. Nutting’s sophomore novel will have readers laughing and wondering how absurd a future totally controlled by technology might actually be.

To buy: $18; amazon.com.

Released July 4.


5

The Stars in Our Eyes: The Famous, the Infamous, and Why We Care Way Too Much About Them, by Julie Klam

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Why is it that we can’t take our eyes off of the tabloids? This fascinating investigation from Julie Klam, author of You Had Me at Woof, looks into our societal obsession with the rich and famous. Through anecdotes, countless psychological studies, and her own conclusions, Klam takes readers into the star-studded world that entertains us, to find out why we are so invested in the lives of complete strangers. This hilarious societal examination is perfect for pop-culture lovers.

To buy: $16; amazon.com.

Released July 18.


6

What We Lose, by Zinzi Clemmons

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Zinzi Clemmons' debut novel is a moving coming of age story told through vignettes. Thandi, raised in America, has never felt close to her mother’s youth in Johannesburg. But when her mother passes away from cancer, Thandi must learn to live life without her, as she navigates a marriage and unplanned pregnancy. Through beautiful prose, Clemmons addresses loss and the impact of our identities.

To buy: $14; amazon.com.

Released July 11.



7

Gather The Daughters, by Jennie Melamed

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This chilling debut novel from Jennie Melamed tells the story of a dystopian religious community, isolated on an island away from the remains of the world. In this society, religion is used to justify violence against women through controlled breeding rituals. But an attempt at rebellion begins to crack away at the mystery surrounding the community's creation and rituals. Fiction lovers and fans of Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid’s Tale won’t be able to put this one down.

To buy: $18; amazon.com.

Released July 25.


8

Patient H69: The Story of My Second Sight, by Vanessa Potter

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In her compelling memoir, Vanessa Potter recounts how she unexpectedly lost her sight over the course of 72 hours. Her experience and neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder (NMOSD) diagnosis transformed the way Potter thought about health and science. With the help of a team from University of Cambridge, she explored her condition and turned her devastating experience into a fascinating investigation.

To buy: $18; amazon.com.

Released July 25.


9

In the Days of Rain: A Daughter, a Father, a Cult, by Rebecca Stott

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This heartbreaking memoir, from the author of Ghostwalk, recounts Rebecca Stott’s upbringing in a fundamentalist, separatist Christian cult called the Exclusive Brethren. Stott’s world is shaken up when the Brethren is torn apart, and she and her family are forced to assimilate back into everyday life. With incredible honesty, Stott takes the reader through the ordeal and the lasting effects the cult had on her life.

To buy: $6; amazon.com.

Released July 4.



10

Why?: What Makes Us Curious, by Mario Livio

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More than almost anything else, humans are curious creatures. It’s what makes us explorers and inventors and even explains why we love to eavesdrop. In this fascinating book, astrophysicist Mario Livio explores several fields—including biology, psychology, and neuroscience—to uncover the nature of curiosity, and he looks at some of the most curious minds in history, including Leonardo da Vinci and Richard Feynman. This fun explainer is perfect for anyone fascinated by human nature.

To buy: $17; amazon.com.

Released July 11.