5 Must-Read Books Out in May

5 Must-Read Books Out this Month



Clear some space on your bookshelf—here are our buyers' must-read picks of the month.

We asked Changing Hands co-founder Gayle Shanks and our buyers Miranda, Natalie, Cortney, and Allie to share the books they're most excited about this May.

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The Covenant of Water (Oprah's Book Club) By Abraham Verghese Cover Image
ISBN: 9780802162175
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Grove Press - May 2nd, 2023

"The reading world has long wished that Abraham Verghese would write another novel after reading his brilliant Cutting for Stone. And now, after ten years, it's here and it was worth the wait. An epic story covering nearly a century of Indian history, filled with flawed but engaging characters, descriptions of foods and the plants that produce them, the author's love for medicine and doctors, and a mysterious ailment he calls The Condition, all combine to suck you in and not let you go until the last of the 724 pages ends. There's love and intrigue and trains and floods and lepers and artists—the weaving of multiple lives that will remind you that great writing informs and broadens our own lives. This novel is a perfect example of great storytelling."

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The Late Americans: A Novel By Brandon Taylor Cover Image
ISBN: 9780593332337
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Riverhead Books - May 23rd, 2023

"Brandon Taylor is arguably one of the finest writers of this generation. No matter the story, you will find a part of yourself in one of his characters - in their experiences, relationships, and most intimate thoughts. Taylor has an exceptional ability to capture the minutiae of our everyday interactions with one another, experimenting with the charged undercurrent of truth that courses beneath the artifice of our words and expressions. His writing is timeless; it’s about love, friendship, growing up, and the confrontations that arise from these experiences. If you haven’t read Taylor yet, The Late Americans is a great place to start."

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Brave the Wild River: The Untold Story of Two Women Who Mapped the Botany of the Grand Canyon By Melissa L. Sevigny Cover Image
ISBN: 9780393868234
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - May 23rd, 2023

"This is a truly fantastic book. It's an accounting of a journey that pushed the boundaries of the time and disregarded gender norms that told women what they shouldn't and couldn't in the 1930s. Prior to this, nobody had yet to survey the plants along what was then said to be the most dangerous river in America, and these two women wanted to be the first to do so. I highly recommend this if you have any interest in the history of the Grand Canyon, the science of botany, or just want to read a smart and funny book about passionate women risking everything to journey into the great unknown."

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Ander & Santi Were Here: A Novel By Jonny Garza Villa Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250843999
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Wednesday Books - May 2nd, 2023

"When love finds a home, you’ll do whatever you can to fight for it and in Ander & Santi Were Here, a young couple fights for each other, finds family doesn’t end with blood, and find themselves searching for what life can look like when we stand strong for ourselves and for those we love. This is perfect wholehearted queer, Latinx contemporary YA and it has stolen my entire heart and made my eyes cry buckets of tears. Simply beautiful."

Fake Dates and Mooncakes By Sher Lee Cover Image
ISBN: 9780593569955
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Underlined - May 16th, 2023

"Sher Lee’s debut, a baking competition twist on Crazy Rich Asians filled with fun, food, and family, is an adorable romcom sure to warm your heart and make your mouth water for mooncakes and xiao long bao. Aspiring chef Dylan Tang is determined to win a mooncake-making competition to help bring publicity to his aunt’s restaurant, and getting distracted by a handsome, wealthy customer named Theo is not on the agenda. But when Theo asks Dylan to be his fake date to a family wedding, suddenly their fauxmance starts to feel all too real. Cute and charming!"