Listen. There are a lot of “fun” holidays out there. You know the ones — they pay tribute to the snacks and products that we love most. It seems like every morning when I check Instagram, there’s a new noun or inanimate object to worship that day. But the best bizarre holidays are the ones that celebrate the things you already love. National Ice Cream Day? Basically every day in my house. National Grilled Cheese Day? Duh. I’m obviously on board with all things melted cheese. But perhaps my favorite fun holiday is World Book Day.
World Book Day is a celebration of one of my favorite things: reading. I live a life surrounded by books, and I think you do too, because why else would you be here reading this? So this World Book Day, let’s celebrate reading together by checking out the books coming out this week.
Real quick — if you’re reading along in the HG Book Club, we’re wrapping up Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body by Roxane Gay. Be sure to keep an eye on our Instagram Story this week so you can vote and help decide what we read in May.
Here are 11 books coming out this week that you don’t want to miss!
1My Oxford Year by Julia Wheelan, out April 24th
Fancy a little summer romance across the pond? You’ll swoon over the sweet love story between Ella and Jamie, a young woman abroad and her professor. Read My Oxford Year now, because it’s already being made into a movie starring Melissa Benoist and Sam Heughan. Heart eyes for days.
2You Think It, I’ll Say It: Stories by Curtis Sittenfeld, out April 24th
You already know Curtis Sittenfeld from her novels like Prep and Eligible. But now, we get to see a new side of her. You Think It, I’ll Say It: Stories is her first collection of short stories. Get ahead of the curve on this one too, because Reese Witherspoon (yes, that Reese Witherspoon) is executive producing a 10-episode, half-hour comedy series inspired by YTIISI starring none other than Kristen Wiig (yes, that Kristen Wiig).
3The Girl Who Smiled Beads by Clemantine Wamariya, out April 24th
Clemantine Wamariya was six years old when she fled the Rwandan massacre. For six years, she and her sister traveled in search of safety, until they were granted asylum into the U.S. The Girl Who Smiled Beads: A Story of War and What Comes After is her story, and she holds nothing back as she tries to remember, heal, and move forward.
4The Husband Hour by Jamie Brenner, out April 24th
The Husband Hour is your official first beach read of the season. It’s about Lauren, a woman who has just lost her high school sweetheart husband in combat. She escapes to her family’s beach house but must share it with her mother and sister — not an ideal getaway. But when she meets the stranger who is making a documentary about her late husband, her outlook on her once-dreadful summer begins to change.
5Empire of Light by Michael Bible, out April 24th
Empire of Light is a prequel to Michael Bible’s 2015 novel Sophia. We meet a teenage Maloney who is reflecting on how he ended up in a small town in North Carolina. The novel perfectly captures that bittersweet in-between time when you’re transitioning from teenager to adult. At just under 100 pages, you’ll read it in one sitting — and you’ll be so glad that you did.
6The Feather Thief by Kirk W. Johnson, out April 24th
Listen up, true crime lovers. Make The Feather Thief: Beauty, Obsession, and the Natural History Heist of the Century your next read. It follows Kirk W. Johnson’s search for answers about a bizarre bird theft at the British Museum of Natural History. We never knew feathers and fly-tying could be so enthralling.
7Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli, out April 24th
You loved Leah, Simon’s BFF, in Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda. (Or, as it was called at the box office: Love, Simon.) Now, she’s taking the spotlight in Leah on the Offbeat. In it, as graduation approaches, she’s trying to find the courage to tell her friends that she’s bisexual. And don’t worry — there will be plenty of Simon. “He’s in Leah on the Offbeat so much you’ll be sick of him,” Becky Albertalli tweeted back in December. More Leah AND more Simon? Score.
8House of Rougeaux by Jenny Jaeckel, out April 24th
House of Rougeaux is a multi-generational family saga. It begins on the Island of Martinique in 1785 and follows the descendants of African slaves over the next 200 years, one family member at a time. Read this one with a box of tissues, because every other page will move you to tears.
9What Would Dolly Do? by Lauren Marino, out April 24th
We could all stand to be a little bit more like Dolly Parton. She’s funny, sassy, full of heart, and so uniquely herself. What Would Dolly Do?: How to Be a Diamond in a Rhinestone World is a biography, a book of life lessons, and a guide to helping you embrace inner Dolly Parton. Get readin’, y’all.
10The Extraordinary Life of Sam Hell by Robert Dugoni, out April 24th
Sam Hill was born with red pupils. And because of his ocular albinism, he always saw the world a little differently than other people. The Extraordinary Life of Sam Hell switches between the past and the present as Sam struggles to figure out his purpose in life. It’s inspiring, uplifting, and heartwarming from start to finish.
11A Prom to Remember by Sandy Hall, out April 24th
Prom season is here. And even if it’s been years since you shopped for a prom dress or donned a corsage, you can still relive the memories through A Prom to Remember. It’s about seven seniors, each dealing with a major prom-related problem. From frantically searching for a date to worrying about going all the way that night, you’ll be transported right back to high school.