Entertainment

NOTEWORTHY PAPERBACKS

Posted July 8, 2018 12:58 a.m. EDT

A selection of summaries from The New York Times Book Review:

NO APPARENT DISTRESS: A Doctor’s Coming-of-Age on the Front Lines of American Medicine, by Rachel Pearson. (Norton, $16.95.) On the heels of Hurricane Ike, in 2008, Pearson headed to Galveston, Texas, for medical school, where she witnessed firsthand how health care consistently fails lower-income patients. A huge segment of society has been cast aside by medical providers, she writes, and not by accident.

THE DESTROYERS, by Christopher Bollen. (Harper Perennial, $16.99.) In this crisp, taut thriller centered on a Greek island, the heir to a construction fortune goes missing. Bollen pairs all the pleasures of a literary thriller (dazzling coves, a string of murders, Champagne on yachts) with uneasy moral questions. Times reviewer Thad Ziolkowski praised the novel’s “seductive mood of longing mixed with regret.”

THE ENDS OF THE WORLD: Volcanic Apocalypses, Lethal Oceans, and Our Quest to Understand Earth’s Past Mass Extinctions, by Peter Brannen. (Ecco/HarperCollins, $16.) The earth has undergone five mass extinctions in the history of the planet, and Brannen, a science journalist, explains them all in gruesome detail. A glimmer of bright news? The extinction rate we’ve seen in the past 400 years doesn’t come close to rivaling the Big Five — at least not yet.

THE DARK NET, by Benjamin Percy. (Mariner, $14.99.) A gang of misfits in Portland, Oregon — a disgruntled journalist, his blind niece, a former child evangelist, a homeless man and others — must band together against satanic online groups from the darkest corners of the internet. Percy’s thrilling story delivers on the setup’s promise for action and horror: As Times reviewer Terrence Rafferty put it, “It’s one of the best Stephen King novels not written by the master himself.”

THE BOY WHO LOVED TOO MUCH: A True Story of Pathological Friendliness, by Jennifer Latson. (Simon & Schuster, $16.) Roughly one in 10,000 people have Williams syndrome, a genetic condition that wipes out the skepticism and social caution that seem hard-wired into most other humans. Latson follows one, 12-year-old Eli, and his mother’s attempts to shield him from the disease’s most wrenching side effects.

STAY WITH ME, by Ayobami Adebayo. (Vintage, $16.) It’s 1980s Nigeria, and the childless marriage between Yejide and her husband, Akin, is unraveling, as his secrets and betrayals come to light. This heartbreaking debut novel considers questions of fidelity and commitment; the tensions between tradition and modernity; and the break between society’s expectations and a woman’s own.