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What to Read on Vacation

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4. Breakouts

Swimming
By Nicola Keegan (July 14; Knopf)
First novel about a natural-born swimmer who grows up to be an Olympic champion, beginning, a bit like Tristram Shandy, with memories of her freakishly buoyant infancy.

EXCERPT: “I have no idea my feet are special, am simply impressed that they heed my call. I kick both legs at once, executing a perfect flip, as everyone, including Leonard, sucks their breath in. The Glenwood aqua aerobics class hears the commotion, stops in mid-twirl, and runs to the edge of the baby pool … I do a perfect figure eight as the crowd gasps … My chins have piled upon each other like an accordion, squirting out water instead of notes. I have no idea what I am.”


The Others
By Seba Al-Herz (July 30; Seven Stories Press)
Already a best seller in Arabic (and published pseudonymously), this Saudi novel, in which a closeted lesbian Shia girl feverishly narrates her struggles and affairs, offers a rare personal glimpse into the repressive kingdom.


This Is Where I Leave You
By Jonathan Tropper (August 6; Dutton)
The Gen-X cult favorite’s fifth novel might be his ticket to wider acclaim. Best line: “There’s nothing in life, really, to prepare you for the experience of seeing your wife have sex with another man.”


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