By Lauren Groff. (Riverhead, $16.) Groff, the author of “Fates and Furies,” is a master storyteller, and the 11 stories in her new collection dive into darker sides of the titular state: Panthers, tropical storms and sinkholes — not to mention plenty of bad men — abound. But it’s not all grim: As Times reviewer Christine Schutt put it, the selections “lean toward love and the promise of good people, in not just this state but the world.”
By Dave Itzkoff. (Picador, $18.) Itzkoff, a culture reporter for The Times, has written an appreciative and extensively reported biography of his hero Robin Williams. He follows Williams’ development, from a wealthy, introverted teenager to a brilliant comic phenomenon, but doesn’t skirt the comedian’s personal struggles, including addiction and mental illness.
WE BEGIN OUR ASCENT
By Joe Mungo Reed. (Simon & Schuster, $16.) A debut novel focuses on cycling, performance drugs and the personal failings of Sol, a middling British racer on the Tour de France. The book also includes a look at his marriage, to a geneticist waiting for a breakthrough. As Sol keeps doping, he and his wife are drawn into a drug-smuggling operation, raising questions about the moral consequences of ambition.
INTO THE RAGING SEA: Thirty-Three Mariners, One Megastorm, and the Sinking of El Faro
By Rachel Slade. (Ecco/HarperCollins, $17.99.) In 2015, the 790-foot ship El Faro sank off the Bahamas during Hurricane Joaquin, becoming the worst U.S. maritime disaster in decades. Slade makes good use of the transcript captured by the voyage data recorder, offering heartbreaking insight into the ship’s final hours. Times reviewer Douglas Preston called the book “a powerful and affecting story, beautifully handled.”
By Stephen McCauley. (Flatiron, $16.99.) When readers meet David Hedges, this novel’s central character, it’s not his happiest time: His boyfriend has left him, his job is unfulfilling and the house he rents (and loves) is being sold. But a phone call from his ex-wife, Julie, changes everything. Soon, he’s heading to Boston to help her daughter sort out her life plans, and he and Julie become unlikely companions.
RAGE BECOMES HER: The Power of Women’s Anger
By Soraya Chemaly. (Atria, $17.) A longtime activist, Chemaly outlines a number of inequities that should outrage women (pay disparity, discrimination, harassment). Despite the socialization that women and girls receive to suppress their emotions, she makes a case for how anger can be a galvanizing force.