by Lauren Groff (Voice) First your mom says you were conceived during an orgy. Then, when you're 28 and getting over a very bad affair with a much older, married professor, your motherwho has since found God says she lied. Your father lives in town, but she won't say who he is. You could kill her. Or you could do as star archeology student Willie Upton does: dig through the town's murky past until you find him. Monsters will give you paper cuts from turning pages.
by Amanda Goldberg and Ruthanna Khalighi Hopper (St. Martin's Press) A starlet dyes her dog to match her gown; a cracked-out rock star spreads her legs and shaves for her guests. Exaggeration? Maybe not. This Page Six-y tale of a Hollywood-bred 20-something comes courtesy of the daughters of two real-life Hollywood big shots (one of them the fabled loon Dennis Hopper). Clearly, someone was taking notes growing up.
Gardens of Water
by Alan Drew (Random House) When 15-year-old Irem gets her first period, her Muslim mother warns: "You must stay away from the boys now."It feels like a prison sentence for the pretty girl, who desires the iPod-sporting son of her American neighbors. But this is more than a modern Romeo and Juliet. Set in the aftermath of Turkey's 1999 earthquake, which temporarily unites the two families, the novel becomes a meditation on identity: Who are you when suddenly you've got nothing?