Little Failure by Gary Shteyngart (Random House, $27)
The satirical novelist and prolific blurber's first memoir recalls his aspirations, struggles and family's immigration to the U.S. from the Soviet Union. Out now.
Words Will Break Cement: The Passion of Pussy Riot by Masha Gessen (Riverhead, $16)
Examining the arrest and incarceration of Russian punk band Pussy Riot, which captured international attention, this book by a Russian-American journalist was published early due to two members' release from prison. Out now.
A Highly Unlikely Scenario, or a Neetsa Pizza Employee’s Guide to Saving the World by Rachel Cantor (Melville House, $16.95)
In a future world where competing fast-food factions rule, an employee at a pizza chain manages the complaints hotline. It's a mind-numbing job—until he's contacted by a 13th-century explorer named Marco. Drawing comparisons to A Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and Shteyngart's Super Sad True Love Story, this debut novel sounds anything but boring. Jan 14.
The Last Days of California by Mary Miller (Liveright, $24.95)
We enjoyed Miller's story collection, Big World, and don't want to be left behind in reading her first novel, about a family from Montgomery, Alabama, on a westward road trip in anticipation of the Rapture. Jan 20.
Andrew's Brain by E.L. Doctorow (Random House, $26)
Exploring themes of truth and memory, Doctorow tells the story of a man with a habit of wreaking havoc. Jan 26.
Silence Once Begun by Jesse Ball (Pantheon, $23.95)
The Chicago-based author of Samedi the Deafness and The Curfew returns with a story of the "Narito Disappearances," in which eight people vanish from their homes in the same Japanese town, a single playing card left on each door. A journalist—also named Jesse Ball—is swept into the case. Jan 28.
A Life in Men by Gina Frangello (Algonquin, $15)
The Chicago novelist, editor of The Nervous Breakdown and Sunday Editor of The Rumpus publishes her third book of fiction, about a woman with cystic fibrosis attempting to understand why a relationship with her best friend unraveled years prior—an investigation that leads to both questionable decisions and valuable discoveries. Feb 4.
The Dismal Science by Peter Mountford (Tin House, $15.95)
A novel about identity, rationality and starting over, Mountford's book follows a former VP at the World Bank as he tries to rebuild his life following a series of scandals and losses. Feb 11.
Bark by Lorrie Moore (Knopf, $24.95)
Moore is often praised for her humor but we find many of her stories depressing. In particular, her most recent novel, A Gate at the Stairs, felt emotionally unsatisfying. That said, we're still eager to read her first new collection in 15 years. The form suits her. Less is Moore. Feb 26.
A Man Called Destruction: The Life and Music of Alex Chilton, From Box Tops to Big Star to Backdoor Man by Holly George-Warren (Viking, $27.95)
The first biography of the teen rock star, Big Star frontman, dishwasher and influential solo artist (in that order) was written by a Chilton acquaintance and draws on interviews with more than 100 bandmates, family members and friends. In the words of Big Star: Thank you, friends. Mar 20.