Amazon's best books of October: This week's releases

Erin Kodicek on October 13, 2020
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Amazon's best books of October: This week's releases

Three sisters make good trouble when they use their supernatural powers to support the suffragette movement, John Grisham continues a popular series he started 31 years ago (!), and Sarah Smarsh celebrates the "organic feminism" of Dolly Parton.      

Learn about these and all of our picks for the Best Books of the Month.


The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow

Women’s suffrage and underground witchcraft spin together into an electrifying tale of three magical sisters living in the town of New Salem in 1893, fighting for equality and safety in a world that has denied them both those things. Harrow’s sophomore novel, The Once and Future Witches, proves she’s a writer to watch—and one who is willing to shake up the typical fantasy motifs even as she leans into cherished fairy tales and myths. This imaginative and deeply satisfying reckoning will add new readers to Harrow’s swiftly growing pool of fans. —Adrian Liang


A Time for Mercy by John Grisham

When a teenager shoots his stepfather at close range, many of the residents of Clanton, MS believe he should get the death penalty for killing a deputy. It’ll be up to Jake Brigance to take on the case that no other defense lawyer wants. Grisham’s storytelling gifts are on full display in A Time for Mercy as he keeps the reins tight on a complex courtroom thriller, a heartbreaking drama about two families from opposites sides of the track, and a stirring tale of a small, Southern town divided on the question of justice versus loyalty. —Vannessa Cronin


She Come By It Natural: Dolly Parton and the Women Who Lived Her Songs by Sarah Smarsh

National Book Award finalist Sarah Smarsh first got on our radar in 2018 with her thought-provoking memoir Heartland, a deep dive into working class poverty in America in which she also pays homage to the hard-scrabble women in her life. She does the same in She Come By It Natural, only this time she is celebrating working class and all-around icon Dolly Parton, whose songs celebrate the unsung women workin’ 9 to 5 (and then some). It also recognizes Parton, not only a beloved singer-songwriter but savvy businesswoman, as the feminist figurehead she is, even for folks who get a bit squeamy at the term. —Erin Kodicek


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