Starred Reviews for James McBride, Katie Williams, Uzma Jalaluddin, and More!

By Rachel Mann | June 14 2023 | NewsStarred Reviews

With starred reviews from publications including Booklist, Kirkus Reviews, Publishers Weekly, and Library Journal—your patrons will want to read these much-anticipated books that reviewers are raving about.


The Heaven & Earth Grocery Store
A Novel

“Funny, tender, knockabout, gritty, and suspenseful, McBride’s microcosmic, socially critiquing, and empathic novel dynamically celebrates difference, kindness, ingenuity, and the force that compels us to move heaven and earth to help each other.”—Booklist, starred review

“The interlocking destinies of [McBride’s] characters make for tense, absorbing drama and, at times, warm, humane comedy. . . If it’s possible for America to have a poet laureate, why can’t James McBride be its storyteller-in-chief?” —Kirkus Reviews, starred review

Much Ado About Nada

“Jalaluddin (Hana Khan Carries On, 2021) updates Jane Austen’s Persuasion for modern Muslim life in the fictional Golden Crescent neighborhood in Toronto, where Muslims from all over the world worry about their children getting married and becoming too modern. It’s a lively, romantic story with rich side characters and a convincingly heartbreaking backstory for Nada and Baz.”—Booklist, starred review

My Murder
A Novel

“Combining elements of dystopian fiction, psychological suspense, and mystery, this is a wonderfully incisive and intriguing novel that defies genres and invites contemplation. Perfect for book groups.”Library Journal, starred review

“With this suspenseful, smart sophomore effort—a briskly paced story with charming characters at its core—Williams again imagines a near-futuristic, science-altered reality that offers an intriguing perspective on the push-pull of family and freedom…[A]n intelligent, insightful murder mystery that illuminates her imagined world and our own.”—Kirkus Reviews, starred review

Goodbye, Eastern Europe
An Intimate History of a Divided Land

“This phenomenal debut from journalist and historian Mikanowski is partly a nostalgic attempt to preserve the culture of a disappearing region and partly a boisterous defense of its legacy. The author argues that Eastern Europe should be understood less as a fragmented borderland and more as a place uniquely defined by its distinctiveness.”—Library Journal, starred review

“Ambitious. . . . stunning. . . . Shot through with lyrical reflections and astute analysis, this is a rewarding portrait of a diverse and complex part of the world.”—Publishers Weekly, starred review

Project 562
Changing the Way We See Native America

“The results of Wilbur’s travels across Turtle Island (an Indigenous name for North America) are beautifully presented here as portraits of Indigenous people, alongside interviews… An essential purchase for all libraries.”—Library Journal, starred review