Mohsin Hamid’s Last White Man, Amina Akhtar’s Kismet: 5 new books


Looking for something good to read? US TODAY Barbara VanDenburgh scours the shelves for this week’s hottest releases. All books are available on Tuesday unless otherwise noted.

For more must-read new book recommendations, check out our summer book guide with the 20 Hottest Books of the Season. our favorite books of 2022 so far; the swooniest rom-coms recently released by Ruby Barrett and Lacie Waldon; and the juiciest celebrity memoirs released this year by Kenny Loggins, Christine Quinn, Jennifer Grey, Viola Davis and more.

To see what everyone else is reading, check out USA TODAY’s Best Selling Books list for this week’s bestsellers.

“The Last White Man”

By Mohsin Hamid (Riverhead, Fiction)

What it’s about: White people are waking up to find that their skin has darkened, and they must confront the personal and social ramifications of change in this latest novel from the Booker Prize-nominated author of Exit West.

The Buzz: “A provocative story that raises questions of racial and social justice at every turn,” reads an starred review from Kirkus Reviews.

“The viral underclass: The human toll when inequality and disease collide”

By Steven W. Thrasher (Celadon, non-fiction)

What it’s about: Journalist and LGBTQ scholar, who exposed and fought the criminalization of HIV, Thrasher offers a bold new study from the COVID-19 era on the societal inequalities being exposed by viruses and how their spread and toll on social structures are shaped.

The Buzz: “Powerful and insightful, this is a must-read paradigm-shifting book,” says a starred review from Kirkus Reviews.


By Amina Akhtar (Thomas & Mercer, fiction, in stores from Monday)

What it’s about: Akhtar turns her sharp mind to the wellness community and its dark secrets in an equal parts malicious and funny thriller. Lifelong New Yorker Ronnie Khan is seduced by celebrity wellness guru Marley Dewhurst to Sedona, Arizona to find her best self only to find a string of gruesome murders instead.

The Buzz: Kirkus Reviews calls it “an amusing dismantling of influencer culture.”

‘Qualities of Thirst’

By Marianne Wiggins (Simon & Schuster, Fiction)

What it’s about: In Wiggins’ gripping new World War II-era historical novel (Evidence of Things Unseen), the Rhodes family, who have long fought to protect their California ranch, are reeling when the government establishes a neighboring Japanese-American detention center .

The Buzz: “This majestic novel will satisfy those who thirst for an epic saga of love, family and the complexities of American life,” says a starred review for Kirkus Reviews.

“The Many Daughters of Afong Moy”

By Jamie Ford (Atria, Fiction)

What it’s about: What if trauma was literally part of your DNA? The author of Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet makes generational trauma literal in his stunning new novel, in which a woman struggling with mental illness is forced to seek radical help when her daughter begins showing symptoms to show that have been passed down through generations of Chinese women.

The Buzz: “Ford raises fascinating questions,” says Kirkus Reviews.

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