The Best New Books for Your Beach Bag in Early 2019

Best new release books for your beach bag in early 2019.

Simply put, the perfect day at the beach just isn’t complete without a captivating novel to complement the sweeping ocean views.

From light, breezy reads to immersive works of fiction, the new year brims with releases from acclaimed and up-and-coming authors. To complement Acqualina’s Bedside Reading program — which in coming months will feature bestsellers from Benjamin Feder’s Take Off Your Shoes to Tricia Foley’s Elegant Simplicity to Larry Stewart’s The Spirit of Hospitality — here are some of the books we are most looking forward to in January and February:

An Orchestra of Minorities novel by Chigozie Obioma.An Orchestra of Minorities by Chigozie Obioma

Reminiscent of Homer’s OdysseyAn Orchestra of Minorities is a heartbreaking story about a Nigerian farmer who sacrifices everything for love. Narrated by a chi, or a guardian spirit, the story begins on the outskirts of Umuahia, Nigeria when young Chinonso meets Ndali atop a bridge one night. The two later fall in love, and after her wealthy family objects to her marrying a poor, uneducated farmer, Chinonso sells most of his possessions to attend college — ultimately ending up penniless, homeless, and furious at the world.

Spanning continents and traversing the earth and cosmos, Obioma’s much-anticipated new novel is about destiny and determination. Available January 8.

Photo: Little, Brown

The Dreamers novel by Karen Thompson Walker.The Dreamers by Karen Thompson Walker

From the New York Times bestselling author of The Age of MiraclesThe Dreamers is a mesmerizing tale set in an isolated college town in Southern California. The story begins when a first-year student falls asleep and cannot be roused by her roommate Mei. Another girl falls asleep, and then another, and panic soon takes hold of the college and the town. Those affected by the illness are displaying unusually high levels of brain activity, dreaming heightened dreams. Told in luminous prose, the novel is both beautiful and haunting. Available January 15.

Photo: Random House

The Age of Light by Whitney Scharer

Whitney Scharer’s powerful debut novel tells the story of Lee Miller, a former Vogue model who wants to forge a new identity as a photographer in Paris. After arriving to the city in 1929, she catches the eye of famous surrealist Man Ray, who first wants to use her only as a model but is later convinced to take her on as his assistant and teach her everything he knows. Their personal and professional lives become intimately entwined as Lee struggles between romantic desire and artistic ambition. Available February 5.

The Peacock Feast novel by Lisa Gornick.The Peacock Feast by Lisa Gornick

Spanning three continents over the course of a century, The Peacock Feast is a sweeping family drama that explores how our decisions reverberate across time and space. The tale opens in June, 1916 when Louis C. Tiffany, the glass genius, dynamites the breakwater at his Oyster Bay mansion not far from where his prized gardener’s two children, Prudence and Randall, are sleeping and playing. Nearly a century later in New York, Prudence receives an unexpected visit from Grace, the granddaughter of the brother that Prudence never saw again after he left for California at the age of 14.

From the Tiffany family mansions to the London consultation room of Anna Freud, Gornick’s novel takes us around the world to explore the meaning of art and the art of dying. Available February 5.

Photo: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

The Lost Girls of Paris novel by Pam Jenoff.The Lost Girls of Paris by Pam Jenoff

Thrilling and mysterious, The Lost Girls of Paris is the tale of twelve brave women who helped to win World War II. Pam Jenoff’s adventure opens when Grace Healey, passing through Manhattan’s Grand Central Terminal in 1946, finds an abandoned suitcase filled with photos of women. Grace impulsively takes the suitcase and later learns that it belonged to Eleanor Trigg, leader of a network of female secret agents who were deployed out of London during the war. The fate of the women is a mystery, and Grace sets out to discover the truth. Available February 5.

Photo: Harper Collins

Lost Children Archive by Valeria Luiselli

Told through breathtaking imagery, Lost Children Archive focuses on a family on a roadtrip across America. The destination is Apacheria in Arizona, the places the Apaches once called home. As the family listens to the radio and hears about the “immigration crisis” at the country’s southwestern border, a fissure grows between the parents — one that the two children can almost feel beneath their feet. A grand adventure full of heart and insight, Valeria Luiselli’s newest novel is an engaging story about how we document our experiences and remember the things that matter most to us. Available February 12.

Leading Men novel by Christopher Castellani.Leading Men by Christopher Castellani

Opening in July of 1953 at a party thrown by Truman Capote in Portofino, Italy, Leading Men begins when Tennessee Williams and his lover Frank Merlo meet the mysterious young actress Anja Blomgren. The encounter will come to alter all of their lives. Ten years later, Frank reminisces on that fateful summer from his deathbed while Anja, now a reclusive, legendary film star, finds herself drawn back into the spotlight by a man connected to the events of 1953. Highlighting the burdens of fame, Castellani seamlessly weaves together fact and fiction. Available February 12.

Photo: Viking Books

The Study of Animal Languages novel by Lindsay Stern.The Study of Animal Languages by Lindsay Stern

Lindsay Stern’s debut novel tells the story of a married couple who are experts in language but cannot seem to communicate with each other. Ivan, a tightly wound philosophy professor, and Prue, a bold presence in the emerging field of biolinguistics, discover that there is a distance between them. As a series of crises unfold, Ivan is forced to fight for what he holds dear. Entertaining and insightful, The Study of Animal Languages is about the fragility of love and the ways in which we misunderstand each other and ourselves. Available February 19.

Photo: Viking Books