Before the calendar turns, we wanted to give you a final look at our editors' picks for the Best Books of February. Here are a handful from the list, which includes debut novels, eye-opening nonfiction titles, and a suspenseful legal mystery:
Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Katherine Boo's landmark work of narrative nonfiction tells the dramatic, and sometimes heartbreaking, story of families striving toward a better life while taking up residence in the slum-shadows of one of the twenty-first century’s great, unequal cities: Mumbai, India.
When a shocking crime shatters Andy Barber's happy life, the assistant district attorney is blindsided by what happens next: His fourteen-year-old son is charged with the murder of a fellow student. It's a suspenseful, character-driven mystery and a spellbinding tale of guilt, betrayal, and losing control.
When Frederick and Jette flee her disapproving mother in 1904 by traveling to America, they find themselves in the small town of Beatrice, Missouri, not speaking a word of English and meeting characters ranging from a gumbo-cooking jazz trumpeter to a malevolent, bicycle-riding dwarf. Poignant, funny, and heartbreaking, it's a novel centered on the universal story about the search for home.
Eli Schwartz as has endured the loss of his home, the indifference of his parents, the success of his older brother, and the frequent dismissal of women. A classic loser, Eli strikes up a dangerous friendship with a former TV star, now current paraplegic sex addict, that descends into utter debasement and YouTube stardom. Adam Wilson writes heart-moving mischief in this wondrous debut of a truth-telling comic voice.
Alaska, 1920, is a brutal place to homestead, especially for recent arrivals Jack and Mabel. Childless; they are drifting apart, but in a moment of levity during the season's first snowfall, the couple build a child out of snow. Come dawn, the snow child is gone, but Jack and Mabel glimpse a young, blonde-haired girl running through the trees. Jack and Mabel come to love this strange child, Faina, as their own, and what they eventually learn about her will transform all of them.