Books of the Month: April 2024

April 2024 Books

Was this edition of our monthly book preview column delayed by the earthquake? It wasn’t not delayed by the earthquake, if you know what we mean. We’re pretty excited about what this month has in store when it comes to books, including several new works by writers we’ve published in these very (virtual) pages. Read on for some suggestions for your spring reading.

"Sporting Moustaches"

Aug Stone, Sporting Moustaches
(Apr. 1, Sagging Meniscus Press)

If you’ve ever looked at a photograph of an athlete in decades past sporting magnificent facial hair — Rollie Fingers, anyone? — you may well have wondered when someone might draw on this for fiction. Well, your long wait is over. In his new collection Sporting Moustaches, Aug Stone explores the absurd place where sports and facial hair collide, and it’s like nothing you’ve read before.

"The Missing"

Ben Tanzer, The Missing
(Apr. 1, 7.13 Books)

Ben Tanzer’s new novel is all about grey areas. It’s narrated by a couple whose daughter disappears — but the circumstances aren’t quite a kidnapping in the traditional sense of the word. But in the wake of that event, that absence reveals greater ambiguities in the narrators’ marriage, pushing both parties in unexpected and unsettling directions.

"Like Happiness"

Ursula Villarreal-Moura, Like Happiness
(Apr. 1, Celadon Books)

The debut novel from Sunday Stories alumnus Ursula Villarreal-Moura explores big questions — including the fraught power dynamics that can emerge in creative communities and the question of what draws us to art to begin with. It’s a welcome debut from a writer whose work we’ve long admired.

"The Poets"

William Walsh, The Poets
(Apr. 1, Erratum Press)

For as long as we can remember, William Walsh has been writing formally inventive literary work — and his latest book, The Poets, looks set to continue that streak. It’s a novella about poets told in the form of a census — which a surreal combination of qualities, but one that looks ready to make bold decisions in terms of its structure.

"The Stone Home"

Crystal Hana Kim, The Stone Home
(Apr. 2, William Morrow)

Set in the late 20th and early 21st centuries, Crystal Hana Kim’s novel revisits an unsettling moment in the history of South Korea. In the author’s words, this novel “shows the ways in which humans come together even under the most difficult circumstances.” It’s the kind of thematically rich work we find especially compelling.

"Like Love"

Maggie Nelson, Like Love
(Apr. 2, Graywolf Press)

Maggie Nelson writes fantastic nonfiction. This book collects a fascinating cross-section of that nonfiction. That’s….probably all you need to know, right?


Matthew Burnside, Centrifugal
(Apr. 8, Whiskey Tit)

Several years ago in Ploughshares interview with Matthew Burnside, the subject of upcoming projects came up and a science fiction collection was mentioned. This collection — billed as one comprised of “unstories” — may be that book, given the presense of surreal and speculative elements here. Also, the publisher’s description mentions “an advent calendar for broken hearts,” which piqued our interest.

"How to Get Along Without Me"

Kate Axelrod, How to Get Along Without Me
(Apr. 16, CLASH Books)

We’ve enjoyed Kate Axelrod’s writing for a while now, including her debut novel and her short fiction. With that in mind, we’re thrilled to see a collection of the latter seeing release — specifically, a wide-ranging batch of interconnected stories. Lindsay Hunter dubbed this “a book that is both modern and timeless,” which is always good to hear.

"In the Away Time"

Kristen E. Nelson, In the Away Time
(Apr. 23, Autofocus Books)

What recourse can writing give us in the wake of emotional pain? That’s one of the big questions informing the heart of Kristen E. Nelson’s new book In the Away Time. It’s both an exploration of Nelson’s own heartbreak and the stories others told her about comparable experiences in their lives — all told via haunting prose poems.


Justin Taylor, Reboot
(Apr. 23, Pantheon)

A new Justin Taylor novel, you say? We’re on board for that. This one focuses on an aging child actor seeking to rebuild his professional and personal lives; it’s leagues away from the anarcho-punk setting of his debut The Gospel of Anarchy, and yet it also points to Taylor as one of his generation’s most incisive writers when it comes to seekers of all types.

"The Rachel Condition"

Nicholas Rombes, The Rachel Condition
(Apr. 30, CLASH Books)

Set in a surreal version of Detroit, Nicholas Rombes’s novel zeroes in on the search for a lost novel and the conflicting desires of an array of countercultural figures. Rombes understands pop-cultural ephemera better than most, and this novel pulls that fascinating in some unexpected directions. And hey, there’s an excerpt of it online now.


Note: all release dates and cover art are subject to change.

Follow Vol. 1 Brooklyn on TwitterFacebook, and sign up for our mailing list.