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- March is here, along with 10 must-read books from Amazon, including new works from Viet Thanh Nguyen, Walter Isaacson, and Kazuo Ishiguro.
- This month’s selections cover everything from feminist historical fiction to South America’s illegal gold trade.
- We broke down all of the recommended books below, with summary descriptions from Amazon’s book editors.
For many, March 2021 has a grim yet hopeful air about it. Although the start of springtime by no means erases the severity of the pandemic, having brighter days to look forward to can alleviate some of the challenges that this year has already brought.
If reading is your main source of joy during this time, Amazon’s book editors have you covered. This month’s top 10 selections are creative and insightful — exploring the meaning of love through artificial intelligence or prompting education and empathy for the experience of immigration.
This month’s top choice is Naima Coster’s “What’s Mine and Yours,” which Al Woodworth beautifully and succinctly describes as “a quietly brilliant novel about a small North Carolina town and how parents and children — white and Black — experience love and loss, rejection and support.” Amazon’s book editors have expanded on all 10 selections below.
Here are Amazon’s top 10 books of March 2021:
Captions have been provided by Amazon’s book editors.
'What's Mine and Yours' by Naima Coster
For fans of Celeste Ng, Ann Patchett, and Jacqueline Woodson, Naima Coster’s “What’s Mine and Yours” is a quietly brilliant novel about a small North Carolina town and how parents and children — white and Black — experience love and loss, rejection and support, and what happens when a white wealthy school opens its doors to the less wealthy and more diverse. By turns searing and tender, “What’s Mine and Yours” beautifully unravels the hurt, happiness, and hope that one generation bestows upon the next. —Al Woodworth
'Lost Apothecary' by Sarah Penner
“The Lost Apothecary” is a dark and gripping tale with a tart edge about women struggling to survive in a world built by men, for men. Vengeance is the only way out from under their thumb, but when the reckoning comes no one will save women with as much heart and heroism as other women. Perfect for fans of “The Night Circus” or “The Weight of Ink”. — Vannessa Cronin
'Klara and the Sun' by Kazuo Ishiguro
When he was awarded the 2017 Nobel Prize, the committee noted how Ishiguru “uncovered the abyss beneath our illusory sense of connection with the world.” In this beautiful novel, Ishiguru presents an “Artificial Friend,” a robot girl with artificial intelligence designed as a playmate for real children. It is a simultaneously heart-breaking and heart-mending story about the abyss we may never cross. –Chris Schluep
'Committed' by Viet Thanh Nguyen
In “The Committed”, we follow the same nameless narrator to Paris where he is “no longer a spy or a sleeper” — as he was in the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel “The Sympathizer” — but “most definitely a spook.” Still a refugee, our fearless narrator now must survive the dark and deadly world of drug dealing, which he approaches with entertaining bravado and foolishness. Readers new to the series, and those returning, will marvel at Nguyen’s dexterity at conveying a man of two minds and the rhythmic beat of this wry, intense, and comedic novel. —Al Woodworth
'We Begin at the End' by Chris Whitaker
Imagine a thirteen-year-old girl — think a modern-day Scout — old enough to have experience of the evils of the world, young enough to think declaring herself an outlaw will keep her and her younger brother safe. Murder, poverty, prison, drugs, and shattered dreams in a small town, “We Begin at the End” is a mystery that covers a lot of ground. But it’s the electrifying young Duchess who will stick with you long after you turn the final page. —Vannessa Cronin
'The Code Breaker' by Walter Isaacson
Isaacson is famous for writing “Steve Jobs” and “Leonardo da Vinci”, so a title like “The Code Breaker” might imply a lesser book about a lesser character. But 2020 Nobel-winner Jennifer Doudna, who developed the gene-editing technology CRISPR, is a giant in her own right. CRISPR could open some of the greatest opportunities, and most troubling quandaries, of this century — and this book delivers. –Chris Schluep
'Infinite Country' by Patricia Engel
Sure, there is much to be learned about the immigration debate from our armchairs, watching the news. But it pales in comparison to what we can glean from good fiction, which has the power to put ourselves in other peoples’ shoes in a way the talking heads can’t, and hopefully inspire us to navigate the world from a place of greater empathy. That’s what Patricia Engel accomplishes in “Infinite Country”, the heart-pounding story of a Colombian family — fractured after fleeing violence in Bogotá — trying to find their way back to each other. —Erin Kodicek
'How Beautiful We Were' by Imbolo Mbue
In her debut “Behold the Dreamers”, Imbolo Mbue brought an African family to the United States and illustrated how the American dream might prove more elusive than expected. In this sweeping second novel, she brings rapacious American interests to Africa — and a young girl, whose village is slowly poisoned, eventually seeks an American education so that she might return with the tools to do something about it. –Chris Schluep
'Come Fly the World' by Julia Cooke
In the 1960s and 1970s, an adventurous heart and steady nerves — plus youth and a slender figure — were necessary for those who wanted to see the world as a Pan Am stewardess. With a colorful focus on the women who flew around the globe, Cooke explores R&R flights during the Vietnam War, decolonization in Africa, and glamourous parties in foreign bars. A cross-pollination of women’s rights and international events, “Come Fly the World” blooms with extraordinary moments and unforgettable women. —Adrian Liang
'Dirty Gold' by Jay Weaver, Nicholas Nehamas, Jim Wyss, and Kyra Gurney
“Dirty Gold” is a jaw-dropping true story of illegal gold mining that exposes its devastating ecological impact on developing nations in Latin America and a complex web of corruption and money laundering worth billions in the US. Gold is both recession-proof and easily melted down, leaving no trace of its lineage, and “Dirty Gold” offers a rare and exciting window into a criminal underworld that is the wild west of gold. —Seira Wilson
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