As readers and publishers head into fall, the year’s publishing trends show no signs of stopping. Crunching the numbers, Publisher’s Weekly reports that Americans seem to be embracing reality, at least of the printed variety: nonfiction sales are up 5% from last year, driven in large part by political titles. It comes at the cost of fiction sales, which are down about the same amount. Not surprisingly, publishers are responding by bringing out and promoting their big nonfiction titles, and as September marks the start of the fall publishing push, some of those titles are hitting shelves soon. But fear not, fiction devotees: literary must-reads, blockbuster thrillers, genre gems and yes, even the first of the holiday titles await readers in September. On to the highlights:
--It’s no secret that many of those increased nonfiction sales are thanks to Trump tell-alls. Bob Woodward’s Fear: Trump in the White House is certain to be a best seller; according to politico.com, Woodward has been quietly plugging away at the book while not being officially allowed access within the White House. One official stated, “It’s gonna be killer. Everyone talked with Woodward.” Fear hits shelves September 11. Other political titles not directly concerning Trump but touching on current events will likely also see strong sales, including historian Doris Kearns Goodwin’s Leadership in Turbulent Times and Yuval Noah Harari’s macro take on censorship and other pressing issues, 21 Lessons for the 21st Century.
--For the nonpolitical or politically fatigued, Reese Witherspoon (Whiskey In a Teacup) and Chrissy Teigen (Cravings: Hungry for More) promise lifestyle wisdom and, in the case of Witherspoon, stories of growing up Southern. Actress Sally Field offers memoirs of her long and eventful career with In Pieces. Television icon Fred Rogers gets his first full-length biography with The Good Neighbor: The Life and Work of Fred Rogers. Researched by reporter Maxwell King, some reviewers are calling it a hagiography; others acclaim King’s detail that reveals Roger’s hidden complexities. It hits shelves September 4.
--Debuts! Stuart Turton turns the traditional English country house murder on its head in The 7 ½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle; one reviewer called it a mix of Quantum Leap meets Groundhog’s Day. Vlogger Hank Green releases his debut coming-of-age, science fiction mashup An Absolutely Remarkable Thing late in the month; Barnes and Noble has already picked it for their book club selection. The Mermaid and Mrs. Hancock marks the debut of Imogen Hermes Gowar. The 1780s set novel was shortlisted for the Baileys Women’s Prize for fiction; Booklist calls it a ‘sumptuous historical feast.’
--Fiction readers will want to set aside time for notable releases this month. Longtime romance author Jude Deveraux heads in a new direction with A Willing Murder, her first murder mystery; Publisher’s Weekly suggests Mary Higgins Clark fans will want to take note, while Kirkus suggests cozy fans give it a try. Ruiz Zafon closes his tetralogy “Cemetary of Forgotten Books” with The Labyrinth of the Spirits; Library Journal calls the book ‘a commitment, but one well-worth making’ while Kirkus terms it a ‘satisfying conclusion to a grand epic.’ And literary favorite Kate Atkinson delves into spycraft during World War II with Transcription, imbuing suspense with her trademark empathy and carefully researched history. Look for it late in the month.
As always you can click on through to see the full list. Happy reading!