by Joyce McClurg)
1. Carthage by Joyce Carol Oates (Ecco, fiction, on sale Jan. 21)
What it's about: A decorated Iraq War veteran becomes a suspect in the disappearance of a young girl in the Adirondacks.
The buzz: "Knotted, tense, digressive and brilliant," says Kirkus Reviews.
2. Under the Wide and Starry Sky by Nancy Horan (Ballantine, fiction, on sale Jan. 21)
What it's about: A novel about writer Robert Louis Stevenson and Fanny, his older American wife, an artist.
The buzz: Horan's first novel, Loving Frank, about architect Frank Lloyd Wright and his lover Mamah Cheney, became a book-club favorite.
3. Arik: The Life of Ariel Sharon by David Landau (Knopf, non-fiction, on sale now)
What it's about: A just-published biography of the former Israeli prime minister, who died Jan. 11 at the age of 85.
The buzz: A timely look at one of the most important figures in modern Israeli history.
4. The Days of Anna Madrigal by Armistead Maupin (Harper, fiction, on sale Jan. 21)
What it's about: In what's being billed as the last novel in the Tales of the City series, transgender landlady Anna Madrigal, now 92, takes what may be her final road trip.
The buzz: "Compulsively readable and endearing," says Booklist.
5. Worthy Brown's Daughter by Phillip Margolin (Harper, fiction, on sale Jan. 21)
What it's about: A historical legal thriller inspired by Holmes vs. Ford, about a freed slave family in 1850s Oregon trying to get their children returned to them.
The buzz: This departure for best-selling thriller writer Margolin might appeal to fans of the acclaimed movie 12Years a Slave.
*Blogger's note: I am reading "The Days of Anna Madrigal" and it is very good so far.