5th May 2021
New @ Surly April/May
Exciting times - Naoise Dolan
“You keep describing yourself as this uniquely damaged person, when a lot of it is completely normal. I think you want to feel special – which is fair, who doesn’t – but you won’t allow yourself to feel special in a good way, so you tell yourself you’re especially bad”
Ava left Dublin to Hong Kong to find happiness, but so far, it isn’ t working out. She’ s been
spending her days teaching grammar classes to rich children, and her nights avoiding petulant
roommates in her cramped apartment. She meets Julien, a British banker who promises her a good l ife. Against her better judgement, they move
into together, but before long he returns to
England which leaves Ava alone once more. She
then meets Edith, a Hong Kong–born lawyer, who is ambitious but thoughtful. Ava wants to be with her but when Julian returns, she has to decide.
All this time – Mikki Daughtry
“I’ve waited all this time for you. The slower we take it the longer it lasts. ”
From the authors behind Five Feet Apart, a #1 New York Times bestseller and hit movie, comes a gripping new romance. Kyle and Kimberly have been the perfect couple all through high school, but Kyle’s entire world upends – literally. Their car crashes, he awakes with a brain injury and finds Kimberly has died. He thinks no one could possibly understand, until he meets Marley who is suffering her own loss. As they work to heal each other’s wounds, their feelings for each other grow stronger. But Kyle can’t shake the sense that he’s headed for another crashing moment that will blow up his life as soon as he’s started to put it back together.
Earthlings - Sayaka Murata
“I was a tool for the town’s good, in two senses. Firstly, I had to study hard to become a work tool. Secondly, I had to be a good girl, so I could become a reproductive organ for the town. ”
As a child, Natsuki spent her summers in the wild mountains of Nagano with her cousin Yuu, dreaming of other worlds. Now Natsuki is grown. She lives a quiet life with her asexual husband, surviving as best she can by pretending to be normal. But the demands of Natsuki’s family are increasing, her friends wonder why she’s still not pregnant, and dark shadows from Natsuki’s childhood are pursuing her. Fleeing the suburbs for the mountains of her childhood, Natsuki prepares herself for a reunion with Yuu.
How the One-Armed Sister Sweeps Her House - Cherie Jones
“She would have told her that when a proposal is right, what a woman should feel, above all, is safe—like she has found a soft place for landing. She would have told her that the thudding heart and trepidation meant that this was not the marriage for her. ”
In Baxter Beach, Barbados, moneyed ex-pats clash with the locals who often end up serving them. Lala lives on the beach with her husband, Adan, a petty criminal with endless charisma whose thwarted burglary of one of the Baxter Beach mansions sets off a chain of events with terrible consequences. A gunshot no one was meant to witness. A new mother whose baby is found lifeless on the beach. A woman torn between two worlds and incapacitated by grief. And two men driven by desperation and greed who attempt a crime that will risk their freedom — and their lives
- Against the Loveless World – Susan Abulhawa
- Love in Colour – Bolu Babalola
- Boy Parts – Eliza Clark
- This Mournable Body – Tsitsi Dangarembga
- Burnt Sugar – Avni Doshi
- Just Like You – Nick Hornby
- Hitting a Straight Lick with a Crooked Stick – Zora Neale Hurston
- Exquisite Cadavers – Meena Kandasamy
- Breasts and Eggs – Mieko Kawakami
- Tyll – Daniel Kehlmann
- Sex and Vanity – Kevin Kwan Luster – Raven Leilani
- No One Is Talking about This – Patricia Lockwood
- Sorrow and Bliss – Meg Mason
- The Shadow King – Maaza Mengiste Earthlings – Sayaka Murata
- Kim Jiyoung, Born 1982 – Cho Nam- Joo
- Breathless – Jennifer Niven
- Such a Fun Age – Kiley Reid
- What Are You Going Through – Sigrid Nunez
- The Book of Two Ways – Jodi Picoult
- A Woman Is No Man – Etaf Rum
- The Liar’ s Dictionary – Eley Williams
Qualityland - Marc-Uwe Kling
“How wise of the government that they abolished history classes fifteen years ago and replaced them with future classes. “
Welcome to QualityLand! Everything will run smoothly in the future: work, leisure and relationships are optimized by algorithms. QualityPartner knows who suits you best. Nobody is forced to make difficult decisions anymore – because in QualityLand the answer to all questions is: ok. Nevertheless, the scrap machine Peter has more and more the feeling that something is wrong with his life. If the system is really that perfect, why are there drones with a fear of flying or combat robots with post-traumatic stress disorder? Why are machines becoming more and more human but are people becoming more and more machinebased?
Everyone on the Moon is Essential Personnel - Julian K. Jarboe
“Eventually, even Pavlov found that when he heard a bell he had the overwhelming urge to feed a dog. ”
In this debut collection of body-horror fairy tales and mid-apocalyptic Catholic cyberpunk, memory and myth, loss and age, these are the tools of storyteller Jarboe, a talent in the field of queer fabulism.Bodily autonomy and transformation, the importance of negative emotions, unhealthy relationships, and bad situations amidst the staggering and urgent question of how build and nurture meaning, love, and safety in a larger world/society that might not be “fixable”.
The New Wilderness - Diane Cook
“How people felt about one another was always in the voice. In the way they talked to one another when they thought they were alone. ”
Bea’s five-year-old daughter, Agnes, is slowly wasting away. The smog and pollution of the City—an over-populated, over-built metropolis where most of the population lives—is destroying her lungs. But what can Bea do? No one leaves the City anymore, because there is nowhere else to go. But across the country lies the Wilderness State, the last swath of open, protected land left. Here forests and desert plains are inhabited solely by wildlife. People are forbidden. Until now.
Beneath the Rising - Premee Mohamed
“Johnny was trembling so hard she was almost flickering, like a poorly-tracked VHS tape. The fear felt like something from outside of me, like secondhand smoke, greasily invisible, sinking into my pores, blown from someone unseen.”
Nick Prasad and Joanna “Johnny” Chambers have been friends since childhood. She’s rich, white, and a genius; he’s poor, brown, and secretly in love with her.
But when Johnny invents a clean reactor that could eliminate fossil fuels and change the world, she awakens the primal, evil Ancient Ones set on subjugating humanity.
From the oldest library in the world to the ruins of Nineveh, hunted at every turn, they need to trust each other completely to survive…
- Tender is the Flesh – Agustina Bazterrica
- Devolution – Max Brooks
- The Book of Koli – M. R. Carey
- The Andromeda Evolution – Michael Crichton
- Lakewood – Megan Giddings
- Klara and the Sun – Kazuo Ishiguro
- China Dream – Ma Jian
- Chosen Ones – Veronica Roth
- Welcome to Orphancorp – Marlee Jane Ward
Only Mostly Devastated - Sophie Gonzales
“That’s the beautiful thing about the universe. It puts you through trials, but it never gives you anything you can’t handle. We grow from these things.”
Will Tavares is the dream summer fling―he’s fun, affectionate, kind―but just when Ollie thinks he’s found his Happily Ever After, summer vacation ends and Will stops texting Ollie back. Now Ollie is one prince short of his fairy tale ending, and to complicate the fairy tale further, a family emergency sees Ollie uprooted and enrolled at a new school across the country. Which he minds a little less when he realizes it’s the same school Will goes to…except Ollie finds that the sweet, comfortably queer guy he knew from summer isn’t the same one attending Collinswood High. This Will is a class clown, closeted―and, to be honest, a bit of a jerk.
The Prophets - Robert Jones Jr.
“There are no lines. For everything is a circle, turning back on itself endlessly. This is not to make you dizzy, but to give you the chance to get it right the next time.”
Isaiah was Samuel’s and Samuel was Isaiah’s. That was the way it was since the beginning, and the way it was to be until the end. In the barn they tended to the animals, but also to each other, transforming the hollowed-out shed into a place of human refuge, a source of intimacy and hope in a world ruled by vicious masters. But when an older man—a fellow slave—seeks to gain favor by preaching the master’s gospel on the plantation, the enslaved begin to turn on their own. Isaiah and Samuel’s love, which was once so simple, is seen as sinful and a clear danger to the plantation’s harmony.
The Empress of Salt and Fortune - Nghi Vo
“Angry mothers raise daughters fierce enough to fight wolves. I am not worried for her in the least.”
A young royal from the far north is sent south for a political marriage. Alone and sometimes reviled, she has only her servants on her side. This evocative debut chronicles her rise to power through the eyes of her handmaiden, at once feminist high fantasy and a thrilling indictment of monarchy.
With the heart of an Atwood tale and the visuals of a classic Asian period drama, The Empress of Salt and Fortune is a tightly and lushly written narrative about empire, storytelling, and the anger of women.
Highway Bodies - Alison Evans
“We keep moving, because that’s what we’re good at.”
Bodies on the TV, explosions, barriers, and people fleeing. No access to social media. And a dad who’ll suddenly bite your head off – literally. These teens have to learn a new resilience…
Highway Bodies is a unique zombie apocalypse story featuring a range of queer and gender non-conforming teens who have lost their families and friends and can only rely upon each other.
- Clap When You land – Elizabeth Acevedo
- You Exist Too Much – Zaina Arafat
- Plain Bad Heroines – Emily M. Danforth
- Kindred:12 Queer #LoveOzYA Stories – Michael Earp
- The Death of Vivek Oji – Akwaeke Emezi
- I Hear The Sunspot – Yuki Fumino
- Everyone on the Moon is Essential Personnel – Julian K Jarboe
- That Blue Sky Feeling – Okura
- Nick and Charlie – Alice Oseman
- Fairest – Meredith Talusan
My Tidda, My Sister - Marlee Silva
“It is important to stress, though, I will still feel unable to celebrate Australia on any day, if the date change isn’t accompanied by a change in attitudes and actions.”
My Tidda, My Sister shares the experiences of many Indigenous women and girls, brought together by author and host of the Tiddas 4 Tiddas podcast, Marlee Silva. The voices of First Nations’ women that Marlee weaves through the book provide a rebuttal to the idea that ‘you can’t be what you can’t see’. For non-Indigenous women, it demonstrates the diversity of what success can look like and offers an insight into the lives of their Indigenous sisters and peers.
Emotional Female - Yumiko Kadota
“It was as though every time I achieved something, I needed to one up myself. I was addicted to that finish line feeling, but it was short lived. I did sometimes wonder if I’d ever be satisfied. When there’s always more, you feel like you’re never good enough.”
Yumiko Kadota was a model student, top of her class in medical school and on track to becoming a surgeon. A self-confessed workaholic, she regularly put ‘knife before life’, knowing it was all going to be worth it because it would lead to her longed-for career.
Emotional Female is her account of what it was like to train in the Australian public hospital system, and what made her walk away.
Yumiko Kadota is a voice for her generation when it comes to burnout and finding the resilience to rebuild after suffering a physical, emotional and existential breakdown.
The Believer - Sarah Krasnostein
“This book is about ghosts and gods, and flying saucers; certainty in the absence of knowledge; how the stories we tell ourselves to deal with the distance between the world as it is and as we’d like it to be can stunt us or save us.”
Sarah Krasnostein spent the last four years talking to some extraordinary people-people holding fast to belief, even as it rubs against the grain of more accepted realities. Some of them believe in things most people don’t. Ghosts. UFOs. Some of them believe in things most people would like to. Dying with autonomy. Spending half your life in prison for protecting your child and yet still believing in a just God.
In this intensely personal book Krasnostein talks with her trademark compassion and empathy to these believers-and finds out what happens when their beliefs crash into her own.
With the Falling of the Dusk - Stan Grant
“The journey is part of the story that comes from my ancestors, Aboriginal people of Australia whose tracks form a songline across country as vast and foreboding as the one I was now in. It is in the journey that I seek permission, that I ask this place to let me.”
In only a few short decades, we have come a long way from the triumph of liberal democracy in 1989. Now, with the inexorable rise of China, the ascendancy of authoritarianism and the retreat of democracy, the world stands at a moment of crisis. This is a time of momentous upheaval and enormous geopolitical shifts, compounded by the global pandemic, economic collapse and growing inequality, Islamist and far right terror, and a resurgent white supremacy. While the West has been at the forefront of history for 200 years, it must now adapt to a world it no longer dominates. At this moment, we stand on a precipice – what will become of us?
- A Life on Our Planet: My Witness Statement and a Vision for the Future – David Attenborough
- Phosphorescence – Julia Baird
- Humankind: A Hopeful History – Rutger Bregman
- Summertime – Danielle Celermajer
- Landscapes of Our Hearts – Matthew Colloff
- The Night Dragon – Matthew Condon
- White Fragility – Robin DiAngelo
- Going Dark: The Secret Social Lives of Extremists -Julia Ebner
- Sex Lies And Question Time – Kate Ellis
- Growing up Disabled in Australia – Carly Findlay
- Tiny Habits: The Small Changes that Change Everything – BJ Fogg
- The Beauty In Breaking – Michele Harper
- Dear NHS: 100 Stories to Say Thank You – Adam Kay
- Hood Feminism: Notes from the Women White Feminists Forgot – Mikki Kendall
- How to Do the Work – Nicole LePera
- Mary’s Last Dance – Mary Li
- Antigone Rising – Helen Morales
- Beyond Order: 12 More Rules for Life – Jordan Peterson
- Truganini: Journey Through the Apocalypse -Cassandra Pybus
- Tell Me Why – Archie Roach
- Human Compatible: AI and the Problem of Control -Stuart Russell
- You Look Like a Thing and I Love You -Janelle Shane
- The Untethered Soul – Michael A. Singer
- Warndu Mai: Good Food – Rebecca Sullivan
- Money for Something – Mia Walsch
- Unfree Speech: The Threat to Global Democracy and Why we Must Act, Now – Joshua Wong
The Inheritance Games - Jennifer Lynn Barnes
“Sometimes things that appear very different on the surface are actually exactly the same at their core.”
Avery Grambs has a plan for a better future: survive high school, win a scholarship, and get out. But her fortunes change in an instant when billionaire Tobias Hawthorne dies and leaves Avery virtually his entire fortune. The catch? Avery has no idea why–or even who Tobias Hawthorne is. To receive her inheritance, Avery must move into sprawling, secret passage-filled Hawthorne House. To survive. she’ll need to beat both the old man’s riddles and his surviving family, who grew up with every expectation that one day, they would inherit billions.
Flyaway - Kathleen Jennings
“A civilised, bone-china soul knows, as a bird does, that a heavy-footed, shouting man is a thing to be fled.”
In a small Western Queensland town, a reserved young woman receives a note from one of her vanished brothers—a note that makes question her memories of their disappearance and her father’s departure.
A beguiling story that proves that gothic delights and uncanny family horror can live—and even thrive—under a burning sun, Flyaway introduces readers to Bettina Scott, whose search for the truth throws her into tales of eerie dogs, vanished schools, cursed monsters, and enchanted bottles.
These Women - Ivy Pochoda
“Dorian could tell her a thing or two about how the rage is senseless. How it accomplishes nothing. How all that screaming and anger only digs you in deeper, alienates you, makes people pity and fear you—as if grief is contagious.”
In West Adams, a rapidly changing part of South Los Angeles, they’re referred to as “these women.” These women on the corner … These women in the club … These women who won’t stop asking questions … These women who got what they deserved …
In her masterful new novel, Ivy Pochoda creates a kaleidoscope of loss, power, and hope featuring five very different women whose lives are steeped in danger and anguish. Follow them as the careful existence they have built for themselves starts to crumble when two murders rock their neighborhood.
Plain Bad Heroines - Emily M. Danfort
“That version, as with so many of the stories we tell about our history, erased a woman- a plain, bad heroine- in favor of a less messy and more palatable yarn about two feuding brothers from New England.”
In 1902 at the Brookhants School for Girls, Flo and Clara are obsessed with the published journals of Mary MacLane, a controversial author who is a self-confessed bisexual – to which the girls see themselves reflected. To show their devotion to MacLane, they create the Plain Bad Heroine Society, however, shortly afterward they die a horrific death on school grounds – the first in a series of terrible deaths. A century later, a famed horror film director is making a movie about the story, starring the hottest it girl celesbian. But the curse of Brookhants seems to be following them now…or is it?
- The Sentinel – Lee Child
- When No One Is Watching – Alyssa Cole
- Quantum – Patricia Cornwell
- The Golden Rule – Amanda Craig
- Girl A – Abigail Dean
- Exciting Times – Naoise Dolan
- The Guest List – Lucy Foley
- Kill [redacted] – Anthony Good
- The Survivors – Jane Harper
- A Slow Fire Burning by Paula Hawkins
- Sisters – Daisy Johnson
- If It Bleeds – Stephen King
- Later – Stephen King
- The Disaster Tourist – Yun Ko-Eun
- The Girl from Widow Hills – Megan Miranda
- Long Bright River – Liz Moore
- Death in Her Hands – Ottessa Moshfegh
- A Girl Returned – Donatella Di Pietrantonio