Since summer is nearly on its way out and everybody is trying to finish up their beach reading—note to self: bring lighter books, both in weight and subject time, next time—it’s time to get on with what’s going to be hitting bookstore display tables in the next few months. Here’s a glance at five September titles that look the most promising:
The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell (Random House, $30)
After the historical misfire of The Thousand Autumns of Jacob Zoet, Ghostwritten and Cloud Atlas author David Mitchell might be getting back to what he does best: spinning vast, pointillist sagas that cross space, time, and dimensions without ever being less than precise. This one spans decades and involves a runaway teenager who might be psychic and a secret cabal of “dangerous mystics.” There’s an excerpt of the book here.
The Children Act by Ian McEwan (Random House, $25)
Ian McEwan’s last book was 2012’s superb spy story Sweet Tooth. Now he looks to be getting back to the topical territory of novels like Saturday. The Children Act follows a family court judge who has to decide whether or not to overrule a teenager’s religious decision to forego medical treatment that could save his life.
The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher by Hilary Mantel (Henry Holt, $27.99)
Apparently to tide us over until the third volume in her Thomas Cromwell series (Wolf Hall, Bring Up the Bodies), Mantel provides this in-the-meantime collection of stories about “dislocation and family fracture, of whimsical infidelities and sudden deaths with sinister causes, [which] brilliantly unsettle the reader in that unmistakably Mantel way.”