Every traveler fantasizes about starting over in a foreign land—what happens when you actually go for it? That question is the starting point of The Diver’s Clothes Lie Empty (Ecco), in which Vendela Vida tells the story of a woman who travels to Morocco and reinvents herself. Peter Nichols’s The Rocks (Riverhead) takes place in a glamorous Majorcan resort, and is both a riveting mystery and a decades-long love story. Set in Manila, Boston, and Bahrain, In the Country (Knopf), the debut story collection from Mia Alvar, dives into the way race, class, and borders can change us, or make us want to change ourselves.
Of course, home—whether going to it or leaving it—can be just as dramatic. Eleni N. Gage, in her spellbinding The Ladies of Managua (St. Martin’s Press), looks at three generations of Nicaraguan women, reunited in their homeland, while Naomi Jackson’s lyrical The Star Side of Bird Hill (Penguin Press) is about two sisters forced to leave their mother in Brooklyn to live with their grandmother in Barbados. The Unfortunates (Farrar, Straus & Giroux), by Sophie McManus, conjures blue- blooded New York with its tale of the Somner family’s struggles to hold on to a waning era of opulence.
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