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A page-turning debut novel that has already been optioned by Netflix for Shonda Rhimes to produce; a collection of short stories based on a popular web comic about impostor syndrome, anxiety, and every other possible feeling you have in 2020; and a trio of memoirs poised to tear up bestseller lists.
Here are six new books to consider reading in November.
In her debut novel, Susie Yang takes the classic ideal of the American dream and turns it inside out. Filled with surprising twists and a nuanced exploration of class and race, White Ivy (Simon & Schuster) is a glimpse into the dark side of a woman who yearns for success at any cost. Already named as one of the best books of the year by multiple publications, White Ivy could soon be one of the next big hits to translate from the page to the miniseries after a seven-way bidding war, eventually won by Netflix. And TV mogul Shonda Rhimes is attached to executive produce the limited series.
Fortysomething, childless, and feeling stuck, Finnish author Mia Kankimäki takes that big leap we all fantasize about but never have the guts to do: She quits her job, sells her apartment, and travels the world. In a blend of travelogue, memoir, and biography, Kankimäki recounts her travels through Japan, Kenya, and Italy, while retracing the steps of 10 remarkable female pioneers from history.
Megan Rapinoe has cemented her role as one of America’s greatest athletes, but beyond her massive professional success on the soccer field, Rapinoe has also become an icon and ally to millions. In recent years, she has become one of the faces of the equal pay movement, and she was the first white athlete to demonstrate public support for Colin Kaepernick and the Black Lives Matter movement by taking a knee during the national anthem in the face of consequences to her own career. In One Life (Penguin), Rapinoe discusses the obligation we all have to speak up and examines the impact each of us can have on our communities.
It is not an understatement to say that this is the most anticipated book release of the season—if not the year. The former President of the United States is known for missing some of his publishing deadlines in the past, and this time was no exception. Although the publication date has drawn criticism for coming after Election Day on Nov. 3, there is no doubt that this, the first of three installments of Obama’s presidential memoirs, will become an instant bestseller and the subject of a million think pieces. A Promised Land (Crown) has been promised to be a candid look into the 44th President’s first term, from coming into office during the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression (at that time) to the passage of the Affordable Care Act. Readers should note they can take their time in poring over the 700-plus–page book; no dates have been set for the publication of the second and third volumes.
There are few actors of his generation as universally beloved as Michael J. Fox. His two previous bestselling memoirs, Lucky Man and Always Looking Up, dealt with how the Back to the Future actor came to terms with his Parkinson’s diagnosis, always maintaining his trademark optimism and light. His new memoir reassesses this outlook, as events in the past decade presented additional challenges. In No Time Like the Future: An Optimist Considers Mortality (Flatiron Books), Fox shares personal stories and observations about illness and health, aging, the strength of family and friends, and how our perceptions about time affect the way we approach mortality.
Anyone who is not a millennial (and maybe some millennials, too) will roll their eyes at the oft-remarked phrase, “adulting is hard.” Well it is hard—especially in 2020. Those four numbers need no explanation, but this adaptation of a popular web comic series does a deft job of bringing dark humor and evoking poignant reflections about dealing with anxiety, impostor syndrome, relationships, and what it all means when you find yourself crying in the frozen food aisle for what seems like no good reason—but there is a good reason. (There’s no wrong reason, it turns out.)
In this modern world, every individual is trying very hard to prove his worth to…