‘Sea of Tranquility,’ ‘The Candy House’ and ‘Atomic Anna’: Strange and beautiful new books this week – USA TODAY

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In search of something good to read? USA TODAY’s Barbara VanDenburgh scopes out the shelves for this week’s hottest new book releases. All books are on sale Tuesday.

1. “Sea of Tranquility,” by Emily St. John Mandel (Knopf, fiction)

What it’s about: The author of “Station Eleven” and “The Glass Hotel” returns with a fantastical new novel that sweeps across time and space, taking readers from Vancouver Island in 1912 to a lunar colony 500 years later. 

The buzz: “By turns playful, tragic, and tender, this should not be missed,” says a starred review from Publishers Weekly.

‘Glass Hotel’: Emily St. John Mandel examines devastation of a Ponzi scheme

2. “The Candy House,” by Jennifer Egan (Scribner, fiction)

What it’s about: It’s been nearly 12 years since Egan’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel “A Visit from the Goon Squad” was hailed as a postmodern masterpiece. In this sibling novel, tech guru Bix Bouton creates “Own Your Unconscious,” a technology that allows users to access and share every memory they’ve ever had.

The buzz: “A thrilling, endlessly stimulating work that demands to be read and reread,” says a starred review from Kirkus Reviews.

3. “The Trayvon Generation,” by Elizabeth Alexander (Grand Central, nonfiction)

What it’s about: The poet and Pulitzer Prize finalist pens a poignant, powerful book that meditates on the challenges facing young Black America at a crucial time in American history.

The buzz: A starred review from Kirkus Reviews calls it “A dynamic critique on the sprawling effects of racism and its effects on today’s youth.”

4. “Atomic Anna,” by Rachel Barenbaum (Grand Central, fiction)

What it’s about: Renowned nuclear scientist Anna Berkova tears through time when Chernobyl’s reactor melts down, sending her and three generations of brilliant women on a quest to right the wrongs of the past and prevent the nuclear disaster.

The buzz: “Barenbaum dares greatly, and succeeds,” says a starred review from Publishers Weekly. 

5. “Let’s Not Do That Again,” by Grant Ginder (Henry Holt and Co., fiction)

What it’s about: Nancy Harrison’s Senate campaign is on the ropes thanks to her floundering grown children – especially Greta, who makes headlines when she takes up with extremist protesters in Paris. Mother and son Nick must find her before it’s too late.

The buzz: “Ooh la la. The Senate race may be tight, but this book is a shoo-in,” says a starred review from Kirkus Reviews.