CLMP’s Year-End Roundup: Fiction of 2020

Throughout 2020, CLMP has been gathering monthly lists of the books forthcoming from our member presses. We’re excited to share this year-end roundup of more than one hundred works of fiction published in 2020 by small literary publishers! Browse below for debut works of fictionshort-story collections, and novels, and read our year-end roundups for poetrynonfiction, and hybrid work as well!


Debut Fiction

The Fallen by Carlos Manuel Álvarez
Graywolf Press | June 2020
Translated from the Spanish by Frank Wynne, this debut novel is, according to Alia Trabucco Zerán, “a subtle, intelligent, and profoundly moving novel which sketches… a rarely seen Cuban landscape.”

Cockfight by María Fernanda Ampuero
Feminist Press | May 2020
Translated from the Spanish by Frances Riddle, this debut short fiction collection explores “domestic horrors and everyday violence, providing an intimate and unflinching portrait of twenty-first-century Latin America.”

Spider Love Song and Other Stories by Nancy Au
Acre Books | 2019
Longlisted for the 2020 PEN/Bingham Prize for Debut Short Story Collection, this book of short fiction explores characters who “endeavor to create new worlds that honor their identities and their Chinese heritage.”

We Were Lucky with the Rain by Susan Buttenwieser
Four Way Books | September 2020
The stories in Buttenwieser’s debut collection follow characters who “stand at the margin of society, often perched on the knife’s edge of economic disaster.”

Heartland Calamitous by Michael Credico
Autumn House Press | March 2020
This debut flash fiction collection “portrays an absurdist, exaggerated, and bizarre vision of the Midwest known as the heartland. The stories are clipped views into a land filled with slippery confusion and chaos.”

The Likely World by Melanie Conroy-Goldman
Red Hen Press | August 2020
According to Lidia Yuknavitch, this debut novel “vibrates between addiction, memory, nostalgia and being in a future landscape about ten second from our present tense.”

Boy Oh Boy by Zachary Doss
Red Hen Press | June 2020
Winner of the Grace Paley Prize in Short Fiction, Doss’s debut is “a collection of queer fabulist stories and flash fictions told via second person, asking readers to share Doss’s explorations of joy and longing.”

Animal Wife by Lara Ehrlich
Red Hen Press | September 2020
The stories in Erlich’s debut collection “are unified by girls and women who cross this threshold seeking liberation from family responsibilities, from societal expectations, from their own minds.”

The Shame by Makenna Goodman
Milkweed Editions | August 2020
This debut novel follows “a woman in isolation, whose mind—fueled by capitalism, motherhood, and the search for meaningful art—attempts to betray her.”

A World Between by Emily Hashimoto
Feminist Press | September 2020
Hashimoto’s debut novel “follows two strikingly different but interconnected women as they navigate family, female friendship, and their own fraught history.”

Tea by the Sea by Donna Hemans
Red Hen Press | June 2020
Hemans’s debut novel is, according to Marlon James, “a powder keg of a novel, where secrets and lies explode into truth and consequences, all told with spellbinding, shattering power.”

Breath Like the Wind at Dawn by Devin Jacobsen
Sagging Meniscus Press | June 2020
This debut novel “tells the epic story of the Tamplin family of outlaws” over the course of two decades.

Above Us the Milky Way by Fowzia Karimi
Deep Vellum | April 2020
This illustrated debut novel, structured around the alphabet, follows “a young family forced to flee their war-ravaged homeland, leaving behind everything and everyone beloved and familiar.”

Worst. Date. Ever. by Dan Kopcow
Regal House Publishing | March 2020
In this short story collection, which “captures the vulnerability, desperation, and bravery of putting yourself out there,” characters “are undergoing the worst dates of their lives.”

Pink Mountain on Locust Island by Jamie Marina Lau
Coffee House Press | September 2020
This debut novel “follows a teenager and her maybe-boyfriend into the seedy corners of the art world.”

Temporary by Hilary Leichter
Coffee House Press | March 2020
Leichter’s novel tells the story of a young temp who “fills increasingly bizarre placements in search of steadiness, connection, and something, at last, to call her own.”

Ambushing the Void by James McAdams
Frayed Edge Press | May 2020
This debut collection of short stories “explores the margins of 21st century America, presenting characters seeking meaning in a world overrun by surveillance technologies, environmental decay, and drug epidemics.”

Hallelujah Station and Other Stories by M. Randal O’Wain
Autumn House Press | September 2020
O’Wain’s debut short story collection “introduces readers to a wide and diverse cast of characters struggling with and responding to changes and loss.”

Outside the Lines by Ameera Patel
Catalyst Press | June 2020
Patel’s debut novel is “a journey through the underbelly of Johannesburg, South Africa and the intimacy of family drama scattered across racial, religious, and class divisions.”

The Parasol Flower by Karen Quevillon
Regal House Publishing | August 2020
According to Janet Turpin Myers, this debut novel is “an engrossing tale of two impassioned women, separated by a century, both hunting for treasure.”

Banana Republic by Eric Sean Rawson
Regal House Publishing | March 2020
Author Amy Meyerson writes of this debut novel, “As funny as it is apt, as inventive as it is entertaining, Rawson’s reimagining of O. Henry’s life on the run is a fast-paced exploration into a seedy ex-pat community in the early 20th century.”

Hunting Teddy Roosevelt by James Ross
Regal House Publishing | July 2020
This debut work of historical fiction follows Teddy Roosevelt across Africa in 1909.

Inconvenient Daughter by Lauren J. Sharkey
Akashic Books | June 2020
Sharkey’s debut novel “dispels the myths surrounding transracial adoption, the ties that bind, and what it means to belong.”

Bliss by Fredrick Soukup
Regal House Publishing | March 2020
This debut novel, says author Laurie Ann Doyle, “is deft, moving, and sharply observed, seamlessly weaving together the affluent, superficial world of the suburbs with that of an inner city neighborhood pulsing with energy and danger.”

Variations in the Key of K by Alex Stein
Etruscan Press | August 2020
Stein’s debut novel “begins where history leaves off, delving into imagined lives of Kafka and other great artists.”

Edendale by Jacquelyn Stolos
Creature Publishing | October 2020
This debut novel “explores the ways rape culture can permeate intimate relationships, making us question our agency in our own lives and the world at large.”

Further News of Defeat: Stories by Michael X. Wang
Autumn House Press | September 2020
Winner of the 2019 Fiction Prize, selected by Aimee Bender, Wang’s debut short story collection “interrogates personal and political events set against the backdrop of China that are both real and perceived, imagined and speculative.”


Short Fiction

Whistler’s Mother’s Son and Other Curiosities by Peter Cherches
Pelekinesis | March 2020
This collection of over one hundred short prose pieces “features parodies, standardized tests, nursery-rhyme anxieties, fables, riddles, collaborations, conundrums, rescued clichés, abominations-in-training, dark Americana, existential misdemeanors, misbegotten mysteries, identity crises, optimistic nihilism, formal experimentation, and polyrhythmic prose.”

Dance on Saturday: Stories by Elwin Cotman
Small Beer Press | August 2020
According to Kelly Link, Cotman’s short fiction collection features “inventive, incandescent stories, rich in strangeness.”

Life in the Iron Mills by Rebecca Harding Davis
Feminist Press | August 2020
Originally published in 1861 in the Atlantic Monthly, this work of short fiction “paints a bleak and incisive portrait of nineteenth-century industrial America.”

Lake Like a Mirror by Ho Sok Fong
Two Lines Press | April 2020
Translated from the Chinese by Natascha Bruce, this collection of stories is “a scintillating exploration of the lives of women buffeted by powers beyond their control.”

Where You’re All Going by Joan Frank
Sarabande Books | February 2020
In this quartet of novellas, Frank “invites readers into the inner lives of characters bewildered by love, grief, and inexplicable affinities.”

Agitprop for Bedtime: Polemic, Story Problems, Kulturporn and Humdingers by Charles Holdefer
Sagging Meniscus | October 2020
This volume of short prose is, according to Jesi Buell, “a taut, fast-paced collection of short stories that explore what it is to be as American as the (seeming) collapse of our civilization.”

Calm Sea and Prosperous Voyage by Bette Howland
A Public Space | May 2020
The paperback edition of the debut title from A Public Space Books, this collection of short fiction “restores to the literary canon an extraordinarily gifted writer, who was recognized as a major talent before all but disappearing from public view for decades.”

Red Ants by Pergentino José
Deep Vellum | August 2020
Translated by Thomas Bunstead, this short story collection—the first literary translation from Sierra Zapotec—”meshes magical realism with the everyday reality of indigenous life in Mexico.”

On the Origin of Species and Other Stories by Bo-Young Kim
Kaya Press | October 2020
The first translation of Kim’s work into English, this short story collection features “strikingly original, thought-provoking work teems with human and non-human beings, all of whom are striving to survive through evolution, whether biologically, technologically or socially.”

Wake in the Night by Laura Krughoff
ARC Pair Press | 2020
The six stories in this collection of short fiction span a century of rural American women and, as author Paula Carter puts it, “reveal women struggling to fit a definition of womanhood that cannot contain them.”

The Heart Is a Full-Wild Beast by John L’Heureux
A Public Space | December 2020
This posthumous collection of short stories “explores head-on life’s biggest questions, and the moments—of joy, doubt, transcendence—that alter the course of life.”

The Complete Writings of Art Smith, the Bird Boy of Fort Wayne, Edited by Michael Martone by Michael Martone
BOA Editions | October 2020
According to Margaret McMullan, “Michael Martone’s clever, hilarious prose soars in this faux biography of a real person, Art Smith, an early Fort Wayne aviator who invented skywriting.”

Instances of Head-Switching by Teresa Milbrodt
Shade Mountain Press | June 2020
The short stories in Milbrodt’s latest collection are often fabulist or absurdist and “focus on themes of embodiment, disability, and economic insecurity.”

The OK End of Funny Town by Mark Polanzak
BOA Editions | May 2020
Winner of the BOA Short Fiction Prize, this collection of short stories “excavates the layers between our collective obsession with passing fads and our secret yearning for lasting connection.”

Sugar, Smoke, Song by Reema Rajbanshi
Red Hen Press | August 2020
This collection of linked stories “following the secrets and passions of young women” is set in the Bronx, California, India, and Brazil.

New Bad News by Ryan Ridge
Sarabande Books | May 2020
“Set in Kentucky, Hollywood, and the afterlife” Ridge’s short (and short-short) stories “construct an uncannily familiar, alternate-reality America.”

Cars on Fire by Mónica Ramón Ríos
Open Letter Books | April 2020
The stories in this English-language debut “offer powerful remembrances to those lost to violence, and ultimately make the case for the power of art, love, and feminine desire to subvert the oppressive forces—xenophobia, neoliberalism, social hierarchies within the academic world—that shape life in Chile and the United States.”

The Rest of the World by Adam Schwartz
Washington Writers’ Publishing House | October 2020
This short story collection features “studies of characters in crisis-delivered by a writer whose empathies illuminate the longings of teens and young adults forced to navigate complex moral choices.”

Apsara Engine by Bishakh Som
The Feminist Press | 2020
This graphic short story collection “is immersed in questions of gender, the body, and existential conformity.”

Fauna by Christiane Vadnais
Coach House Books | September 2020
Translated by Pablo Strauss and winner of the Horizons Imaginaires speculative fiction award and the City of Quebec book award, this collection of “lush and bracing linked climate fictions depict a world gorgeous and terrifying in its likeness to our own.”

Sansei and Sensibility by Karen Tei Yamashita
Coffee House Press | May 2020
In this collection of short stories, Yamashita “transfers classic tales across boundaries and questions what an inheritance—familial, cultural, emotional, artistic—really means.”



Out of Mesopotamia by Salar Abdoh
Akashic Books | September 2020
Abdoh’s novel follows an Iranian journalist in an “unprecedented glimpse into ‘endless war’ from a Middle Eastern perspective.”

The Farm by Max Annas
Catalyst Press | September 2020
Winner of the 2015 German Crime Writing Prize, Annas’s novel is translated by Rachel Hildebrandt Reynolds and “an explosive mixture of psychological thriller and Neo-western with a political subtext.”

Tropic of Violence by Nathacha Appanah
Graywolf Press | May 2020
Translated from the French by Geoffrey Strachan, Appanah’s novel follows “a small chorus of voices who narrate the heartbreak, violence, and injustice of life in Mayotte.”

Not Far From The Junction by Will Ashon
Open Pen | July 2020
This novelette is an edited transcript of a day spent by the author “hitching around the motorways and ‘A’ roads of England, chatting to whoever picked him up about their lives, dreams, aspirations, fears and favourite foods.”

A Song from Faraway by Deni Ellis Béchard
Milkweed Editions | May 2020
This novel reaches from “nineteenth-century Prince Edward Island to modern-day Iraq, tracing the story of a North American family that is at once singular and emblematic, and exploring the cultural repercussions of war and violence.”

Mrs. Murakami’s Garden by Mario Bellatin
Deep Vellum | December 2020
Translated by Heather Cleary, the latest work in English by Mario Bellatin is “a short, allegorical novel that questions truth, art, language, and the split between East and West.”

The Book of Anna by Carmen Boullosa
Coffee House Press | April 2020
Translated by Samantha Schnee, this novel “tells a polyphonic and subversive tale of the Russian revolution through the lens of Tolstoy’s most beloved work.” 

Little Constructions by Anna Burns
Graywolf Press | February 2020
The second novel by Man Booker Prize–winning author Burns “explores what transpires when unspeakable realities, long hidden from view, can no longer be denied.” 

Ornamental by Juan Cárdenas
Coffee House Press | June 2020
Translated from the Spanish by Lizzie Davis, this novel follows a doctor who “recruits volunteers for the trial of a new recreational drug that exclusively affects women.”

Summer of the Cicadas by Chelsea Catherine
Red Hen Press | August 2020
Catherine’s novel tells the story of “a West Virginian town where a brood of Magicicadas emerges for the first time in seventeen years.”

Bitter Pill by Peter Church
Catalyst Press | June 2020
The final chapter in Peter Church’s dark web trilogy explores “a sinister underground world where no price is too high to pay to deliver every fantasy.”

Dark Video by Peter Church
Catalyst Press | January 2020
In the second book of Peter’s Dark Web Trilogy, a college student “is lured deeper and deeper into this sinister underground world where reality blurs and morals unravel.”

The Journey by Miguel Collazo
Restless Books | July 2020
Translated from the Spanish by David Frye, Collazo’s 1960s classic “is a mind-opening parable of social progress, prophets and reluctant masses, and humanity’s metaphysical voyage inward.”

One Night Two Souls Went Walking by Ellen Cooney
Coffee House Press | November 2020
In this novel set over the course of one night, “a young interfaith chaplain is joined on her hospital rounds one night by an unusual companion: a rough-and-ready dog who may or may not be a ghost.”

High Skies by Tracy Daughtery
Red Hen Press | October 2020
Winner of the Red Hen Press Novella Award, High Skies “recounts the collision of devastating weather, Cold War suspicion, tense race relations, and the unintended consequences of good intentions in a small West Texas town in the 1950s.”

Sorrow by Tiffanie DeBartolo
Woodhall Press | October 2020
DeBartolo’s latest novel is “a poignant story about friendship and love, art and music, and how these pursuits can save us from ourselves.”

My Part of Her by Javad Djavahery
Restless Books | February 2020
Translated from the French by Emma Ramadan, this novel explores how “a youthful betrayal during a summer on the Caspian sea has far-reaching consequences for a group of friends as their lives are irrevocably altered by the Revolution.”

ASEROË by François Dominique
Bellevue Literary Press | September 2020
Translated from the French by Richard Sieburth and Howard Limoli, this novel portrays “the aesthetic adventures of a mad mycologist.”

Skyland by Andrew Durbin
Nightboat Books | July 2020
Durbin’s novella about two writers in search of a lost portrait is, according to Chloe Aridjis, “haunting and beautiful and full of phantoms past and present.”

Telephone by Percival Everett
Graywolf Press | May 2020
Everett’s latest novel, structured as a triptych, is, according to Booklist, “an exquisite portrait of grief and one man’s search for meaning in the face of unimaginable loss.”

The Darkest Hearts: A D Hunter Mystery by Nelson George
Akashic Books | August 2020
The fifth installment of George’s D Hunter mystery series “reflects the challenges of being a black businessperson in an era when the rules of entrepreneurship are constantly shifting beneath an increasingly polarized political environment.”

Villa of Delirium by Adrien Goetz
New Vessel Press | 2020
Translated from the French by Natasha Lehrer, this novel is “a sweeping tale about an illustrious family that builds itself a fabulous vacation retreat on the French Riviera—a replica of an ancient Greek palace in which they seek perfection and beauty.”

One Small Saga by Bobbie Louise Hawkins
Ugly Duckling Presse | July 2020
Originally published by Coffee House Press in 1984, this autobiographical novel has, according to Barbara Henning, “an understated poetic style and an eye especially sensitive to hypocrisy.”

Night, Sleep, and the Dreams of Lovers by David Brendan Hopes
The Black Mountain Press | June 2020
Hopes’s latest novel is “Thomas Wolfe’s Altamont dragged into the Twenty First Century, full of artists and dreamers and crooked politicians, abounding with a dark energy at once innocent and annihilating.”

The Tree and the Vine by Dola de Jong
Transit Books | 2020
First published in 1954 in the Netherlands and translated from the Dutch by Kristen Gehrman, this novel tells “the story of two women torn between desire and taboo in the years leading up to the Nazi occupation of Amsterdam.”

Alexandria by Paul Kingsnorth
Graywolf Press | October 2020
The conclusion to Kingsnorth’s The Wake, this novel follows “perhaps the world’s last human survivors” a thousand years in the future.

Grove by Esther Kinsky
Transit Books | July 2020
Translated from the German by Caroline Schmidt and winner of the Leipzig Book Prize and the Düsseldorf Book Prize, this novel is, according to Lucy Scholes, “a story of an existence stilled by loss, but the promise of life, and with it renewal and hope, pulses gently but steadily at its heart.”

The Bear by Andrew Krivak
Bellevue Literary Press | February 2020
Krivak’s third novel chronicles a future in which “a girl and her father live close to the land in the shadow of a lone mountain” and is “a stunning tribute to the beauty of nature’s dominion.”

Black Lotus 2: The Vow by K’wan
Akashic Books | November 2020
According to Publishers Weekly, ““K’wan delivers a lean, tightly plotted tale that balances noir aesthetics with comic book flair.”

Catchlight by Brooke Adams Law
Woodhall Press | October 2020
Winner of the 2019 Fairfield Book Prize, this novel follows four grown children caring for their mother, who has Alzheimer’s, and wrestling with “the secret that threatens their family’s very identity.”

Neotenica by Joon Oluchi Lee
Nightboat Books | June 2020
Neotenica is a “novel of encounters: casual sex, arranged-marriage dates, cops, rowdy teenagers, lawyers, a Sapphic flirtation, a rival, a child, and two important dogs.”’

Keeping Time by Thomas Legendre
Acre Books | March 2020
According to critic Claire Foster, Keeping Time “is a rich novel that explores the nature of a marriage and asks whether love is a monolith, a miracle of biology, or an artificial construct.”

Exposition by Nathalie Léger
Dorothy, A Publishing Project | September 2020
Translated by Amanda DeMarco, this novel follows “the Countess of Castiglione (1837–1899), who at the dawn of photography dedicated herself to becoming the most photographed woman in the world.”

The White Dress by Nathalie Léger
Dorothy, A Publishing Project | September 2020
Translated by Natasha Lehrer, this third novel in Léger’s triptych is “a harrowing meditation on the risks women encounter, in life and in art.”

Glorious Boy by Aimee Liu
Red Hen Press | May 2020
Set in 1942 in the Andaman Islands, this novel covers an aspiring anthropologist and a civil surgeon’s mission to save their missing family.

American Follies by Norman Lock
Bellevue Literary Press | July 2020
The seventh and stand-alone installment in The American Novels series “explores the roots of the women’s rights movement, its relationship to the fight for racial justice, and its reverberations in the politics of today.”

Fiebre Tropical by Juli Delgado Lopera
The Feminist Press | 2020
According to LitHub, this multilingual novel is a “story about coming of age as a queer adolescent, an immigrant, a daughter, a bilingual kid, a complex human being.”

Outline of My Lover by Douglas A. Martin
Nightboat Books | June 2020
This early autofiction classic, reissued on its twentieth anniversary, is, according to Colm Tóibin, “a love story between a raw and damaged boy-narrator and a famously mysterious rock star.”

Wolf by Douglas A. Martin
Nightboat Books | June 2020
Martin’s latest novel is, according to Tiphanie Yanique, “a horror story, a love story, story of survival, of parenting and of coming of age.”

Treasure of the Blue Whale by Steven Mayfield
Regal House Publishing | April 2020
This novel is, according to Thanh Tan, “a fascinating and wildly inventive narrative that artfully weaves the timeless themes of greed, survival, and love into an epic American tale that grips the reader from start to finish.”

A Million Aunties by Alecia McKenzie
Akashic Books | November 2020
In McKenzie’s novel, “American-born artist Chris travels to his mother’s homeland in the Caribbean hoping to find some peace and tranquility.”

Dear DeeDee by Kat Meads
Regal House Publishing | December 2020
According to Letitia Montgomery-Rodgers, Dear DeeDee is an “elliptical novel that integrates the death of a lineage into a reflection on personal mortality.”

Four by Four by Sara Mesa
Open Letter Books | May 2020
Translated from the Spanish by Katie Whittemore, this novel is, according to Laura van den Berg, “an unforgettable gothic landscape, centered on the mysterious and menacing Wybrany College, that twists in ways that unsettle and thrill.”

Renato! by Eugene Mirabelli
McPherson & Company | October 2020

Renato! features “three sequential novels about the poignant and comical misadventures of an artist, Renato Stillamare, which have now been revised and assembled into a magnum opus.”

This Could Have Become Ramayan Chamar’s Tale by Subimal Misra
Open Letter Books | July 2020
Translated by V. Ramaswamy, this collection of two “anti-novels“ is the first of Misra’s work to appear in the United States.

MOSS by Klaus Modick
Bellevue Literary Press | August 2020
Translated from the German by David Herman, this novel “serves as a testament to our tenuous and intimate relationship with nature.”

Polar Vortex by Shani Mootoo
Akashic Books | September 2020
Mootoo’s new book is “a seductive and tension-filled novel about Priya and Alex, a lesbian couple who left the big city to relocate to a bucolic countryside community.”

That Time of Year by Marie NDiaye
Two Lines Press | September 2020
Translated from the French by Jordan Stump, this psychological novel is “ a nightmarish vision of otherness, privilege, and social amnesia, told with potent clarity and a heady dose of the weird.”

The Five Books of (Robert) Moses by Arthur Nersesian
Akashic Books | July 2020
Nersesian’s latest novel is a “dramatic, playful, brutal, sweeping, and always entertaining reimagining of New York City history.”

Trimming England by M.J. Nicholls
Sagging Meniscus | December 2020
Set in a near future, M.J. Nicholls’s book “is a stark and uncompromising account of the bizarre and regrettable period when the British government set about trimming England.”

Harmada by João Gilberto Noll
Two Lines Press | November 2020
Translated from the Portuguese by Edgar Garbelotto, this novel follows the narrator’s “desperate search for Harmada, the capital city of an unnamed nation and the land of his former glory.”

Echo on the Bay by Masatsugu Ono
Two Lines Press | June 2020
Translated from the Japanese by Angus Turvill, this novel is “populated by an infectious cast of characters” in a fishing village on the Japanese coast.

Ramifications by Daniel Saldaña París
Coffee House Press | October 2020
Translated from the Spanish by Christina MacSweeney, Ramifications is “an emotionally rich anti-coming-of-age novel that wrestles with the inherited privileges and atrocities of masculinity.”

Another Kind of Madness by Ed Pavlić
Milkweed Editions | April 2020
Pavlić’s novel is “tuned to the clash between soul music’s vision of our essential responsibility to each other and a world that breaks us down and tears us apart.”

At the Lucky Hand, aka the Sixty-Nine Drawers by Goran Petrović
Deep Vellum | November 2020
Translated by Peter Agnone, this award-winning Serbian novel “explores what it means to read and be a reader—ultimately acting as a love letter to the power of literature.”

The Diaries of Emilio Renzi: A Day in the Life by Ricardo Piglia
Restless Books | October 2020
Translated from the Spanish by Robert Croll, this final volume in Piglia’s autobiographical trilogy “picks up the thread of Piglia’s life in the 1980s until his death from ALS in 2017.”

The Way Out by Ricardo Piglia
Restless Books | August 2020
Translated from the Spanish by Robert Croll, this academic thriller is “a bracing critique of American culture and an exploration of privacy and politics in an era of rapid technological advancement.”

The Sky Weeps for Me by Sergio Ramirez
McPherson & Company | October 2020
Translated from the Spanish by Leland H. Chambers with Bruce McPherson, this novel explores “a maze of deception, corruption, and murders” and “a dangerous, international conspiracy.”

Jean-Luc Persecuted by C. F. Ramuz
Deep Vellum | August 2020
The first English translation of a classic Swiss novel, Jean-Luc Persecuted—translated by Olivia Baes—is “a masterful exploration of societal pressure’s explosive effects.”

St. Michael Poker & Drinking Club by Ned Randle
Regal House Publishing | March 2020
According to author Heather Bell Adams, this novel is “a contemplative and ultimately hopeful story exploring what happens when a lonely Catholic priest, desperate to avoid sinking into melancholy, gathers a group of clergymen to play cards.”

Spiral by Agustín de Rojas
Restless Books | July 2020
Translated from the Spanish by Nick Caistor and Hebe Powell, Spiral is “another magisterial space opera from the late great science fiction author Agustín de Rojas.”

When the Whales Leave by Yuri Rytkheu
Milkweed Editions | March 2020
Translated into English for the first time by Ilona Yazhbin Chavasse, this installment in the Seedbank series is “at once a vibrant retelling of the origin story of the Chukchi, a timely parable about the destructive power of human ego—and another unforgettable work of fiction from Yuri Rytkheu.”

The Regal Lemon Tree by Juan José Saer
Open Letter | October 2020
Translated from the Spanish by Sergio Weisman, this novel focuses on “a couple in the north of Argentina who lost their only son six years prior.”

B, Book, and Me by Kim Sagwa
Two Lines Press | February 2020
Translated from the Korean by Sunhee Jeong, this novel “walks the precipice between youth and adulthood, reminding us how perilous the edge can be.”

The Memory Monster by Yishai Sarid
Restless Books | September 2020
Translated from the Hebrew by Yardenne Greenspan, this novel is “written as a report to the chairman of Yad Vashem, Israel’s memorial to the victims of the Holocaust.”

Unseen City by Amy Shearn
Red Hen Press | September 2020
This novel is “an exploration of what home is, how we live with loss, who belongs in the city and to whom the city belongs, and the possibilities and power of love.”

The Piano Student by Lea Singer
New Vessel Press | October 2020
Translated by Elisabeth Lauffer, this novel explores “an affair between one of the 20th century’s most celebrated pianists, Vladimir Horowitz, and his young male student, Nico Kaufmann, in the late 1930s.”

Lake of Urine: A Love Story by Guillermo Stitch
Sagging Meniscus Press | July 2020
Stitch’s first full-length novel is “is a sui generis romp through every fairy-tale convention and literary trope you can think of.”

The Devil’s Country by Perla Suez
White Pine Press | March 2020
Translated from the Spanish by Rhonda Dahl Buchanan, this novel is “a tale of vengeance and vigilante justice at the hands of an unlikely heroine, a fourteen year-old girl named Lum Hué, daughter of a white man and a Mapuche mother, and sole survivor of the massacre of her village by five white soldiers.”

Scratching the Head of Chairman Mao by Jonathan Tel
Turtle Point Press | January 2020
This novel-in-stories is, according to James Lasdun, “a tour de force of deep knowledge, uncanny powers of observation, and brilliant tragicomic invention.”

The Love Story of the Century by Märta Tikkanen
Deep Vellum | March 2020
Translated by Stina Katchadourian, this is a “haunting, profoundly personal, evocative novel, written in verse, dissecting one woman’s fraught relationship with her alcoholic husband.”

The Blue Sky by Galsan Tschinag
Milkweed Editions | June 2020
Translated from the German by Katharina Rout, this novel, set in Mongolia, explores how “the nomadic Tuvan people’s ancient way of life collides with the pervasive influence of modernity as seen through the eyes of Dshurukawaa, a young shepherd boy.”

Barn 8 by Deb Olin Unferth
Graywolf Press | March 2020
In Unferth’s sixth book, a novel, “Two auditors for the US egg industry go rogue and conceive a plot to steal a million chickens in the middle of the night—an entire egg farm’s worth of animals.”

The Beforeland by Corinna Vallianatos
Acre Books | October 2020
Vallianato’s novel, set in the Mojave Desert and Southern California, “moves swiftly among characters caught between the deprivations of the past and the mysteries of the future.”

The Living Is Easy by Dorothy West
Feminist Press | November 2020
West’s first novel, originally published in the 1940s, is “a classic of American literature by a groundbreaking African American woman writer whose work deserves widespread and enduring recognition.”

Red Dust by Yoss
Restless Books | July 2020
Translated from the Spanish by David Frye, this novel from the beloved Cuban science fiction author follows “a positronic robot detective on the hunt for some extra-dangerous extraterrestrial criminals.”

The Narcissism of Small Differences by Michael Zadoorian
Akashic Books | May 2020
This novel, set in 2009 Detroit, “is the story of an aging creative class, doomed to ask the questions: Is it possible to outgrow irony?”