Amazon's best books of February: Today's releases

Erin Kodicek on February 25, 2020

Amazon's best books of February: Today's releases

Today's releases include a powerful and heart-wrenching story of two fathers, one Palestinian and one Israeli, united in grief and a sense of purpose to combat the violence that stole what was most precious to them; and a fun romp through the adage “youth is wasted on the young.” 

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

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Apeirogon: A Novel by Colum McCann

Colum McCann’s 2009 novel, Let the Great World Spin, was a kaleidoscopic tale of New Yorkers in the 1970s that became an instant bestseller, won a National Book Award, and was named an Amazon Best Book of the Year, among many other honors. Ten years later, he has pushed the limits of kaleidoscopic with Apeirogon. The definition of the title is a shape with a countably infinite number of sides, and the book lives up to its meaning. In Apeirogon, McCann unfurls the story of two fathers, one Palestinian and one Israeli, who have both lost their daughters to the violence that surrounds them. Over the course of the day, these two men’s lives intertwine as they attempt to use their grief as a weapon for peace. Told in one thousand and one short vignettes, McCann flashes from the present to the past, sharing the lives of these men, the lives of their daughters, the experience of crossing police checkpoints and surviving jail, meditations on the migration pattern of birds, the making of bullets, and the history of the region. With these bursts, the novel centers on the unlikely friendship of two fathers and takes on a cinematic quality that vibrates with empathy, presenting a sweeping portrait of the complex conflict at the heart of the Holy Land. Apeirogon is a soaring and revelatory reading experience that is at once intimate and vast, heartbreaking and hopeful, and, yes, kaleidoscopic. —Al Woodworth

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Oona Out of Order: A Novel by Margarita Montimore

The Time Traveler’s Wife meets What Alice Forgot in this charming and cinematic novel that this reviewer devoured in 24 hours. Oona Lockhart is celebrating New Year’s Eve 1982 and the eve of her 19th birthday, but at midnight she passes out and wakes up as a 19-year-old trapped in the body of a 51-year-old. Thus begins Oona living life out of order—every January 1st going forward, at 12:01 am, she wakes up as herself in a different year of life. Each year brings its own challenges of piecing together her accomplishments, friends and lovers, and mistakes. As Oona writes to herself in a letter to be found after one “leap”: “Every leap will have its advantages and disadvantages, things you’ll gain and lose—relationships, youth, modern conveniences, etc.” Although this could be a fun romp through the adage “youth is wasted on the young” (and at times, it is), it’s also a deeper look at destiny, love, and family. The only thing I didn’t like is that I wish I could read about every year of Oona’s life. Oona Out of Order is incredibly fun and begs to be read in book clubs. —Sarah Gelman

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