Debutante K.A. Doore
Kai’s Debut: The Perfect Assassin, TOR, 19 March 2019
In Ghadid, a desert city perched hundreds of feet above the sands, the Basbowen family has seen better days. Once feared assassins, a clash with the drum chiefs who govern Ghadid led to a ban on contracts. A decade later, hope that the ban will be lifted has dwindled.
But tradition persists and the next generation of assassins has been trained. Alone out of his generation, Amastan’s glad that he’ll never be asked to take a contract. Instead, he can focus on a different, less bloody job: preserving Ghadid’s history.
At least, that’s his plan until he stumbles upon a drum chief’s corpse.
Now Amastan must find the murderer before they kill again. But Amastan’s an assassin, not a detective, and finding justice means dredging up a past better left forgotten. If he succeeds, the drum chiefs will lift the contract ban. If he doesn’t – who better to blame for a murder than a family of assassins?
Debutante Devi S. Laskar
Devi S. Laskar was born and raised in Chapel Hill, NC, bleeds Carolina Blue, loves basketball and used to be a crime and government reporter in such places as Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois and North Carolina. She is now a soccer mom, photographer, artist, essayist, poet – and avid moviegoer.
Her Debut: The Atlas of Reds and Blues (Counterpoint Press, February 2019)
When an unnamed narrator moves her family from the city of Atlanta to its wealthy suburbs, she discovers that neither the times nor the people have changed since her childhood in a small southern town. Despite the intervening decades, the woman, known only as Mother, is met with the same questions: Where are you from? No, where are you really from? The American-born daughter of Bengali immigrant parents, her truthful answer, here, is never enough. She finds herself navigating a climate of lingering racism with three daughters in tow and a husband who spends more time in business class than at home.
Mother’s simmering anger breaks through one morning, when, during a baseless and prejudice-driven police raid on her house, she finally refuses to be calm, complacent, polite―and is ultimately shot. As she lies bleeding on her driveway, Mother struggles to make sense of her past and decipher her present―how did she end up here?
Debutante Layne Fargo
Her Debut: Temper, Scout Press, July 2019
Actress Kira Rascher has finally landed the role of a lifetime. The catch? Starring in Temper means working with Malcolm Mercer, a mercurial director who’s known for pushing people past their limits—on stage and off.
Kira’s convinced she can handle Malcolm, but the theater’s cofounder, Joanna Cuyler, is another story. Joanna sees Kira as a threat—to her own thwarted artistic dreams, her twisted relationship with Malcolm, and the shocking secret she’s keeping. But as opening night draws near, Kira and Joanna both start to realize that Malcolm’s dangerous extremes are nothing compared to what they’re capable of themselves.
Debutante Stephanie Jimenez
Her Debut: They Could Have Named Her Anything (Little A, August 2019)
THEY COULD HAVE NAMED HER ANYTHING is Stephanie Jimenez’s debut novel—the story of two teenaged girls—one Latina and one white—questioning what it means to live up to the name you’ve been given and how far you’ll go for the life you’ve always dreamed of; grappling with racism, class privilege, female friendship, and familial expectations, set in Queens, New York, and the Upper East Side, Manhattan.
Debutante Martine Fournier Watson
Her Debut: The Dream Peddler (Penguin, April 2019)
The dream peddler came to town at the white end of winter, before the thaw…
Traveling salesmen like Robert Owens have passed through Evie Dawson’s town before, but none of them offered anything like what he has to sell: dreams, made to order, with satisfaction guaranteed.
Soon after he arrives, the community is shocked by the disappearance of Evie’s young son. The townspeople, shaken by the Dawson family’s tragedy and captivated by Robert’s subversive magi, begin to experiment with his dreams. And Evie, devastated by grief, turns to Robert for a comfort only he can sell her. But the dream peddler;s wares awaken in his customers their most carefully buried desires, and despite all his good intentions, some of them will lead to disaster.
“Astonishing…The Dream Peddler unfolds like a gorgeous poem, leading us deep into the lives of its characters, and exploring the vast underground legacy of our own desires. This is the must-read book of the year.” – Rene Denfeld, bestselling author of The Child Finder