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Digital Subscriptions > Newsweek International > 1st June 2018 > Read ’Em and Weep

Read ’Em and Weep

The 50 best books of 2018 (so far). That’s roughly four per week through Labor Day— who says you don’t have summer plans?

BOOKS

HENRIK SORENSEN/GETTY
COURTESY OF NETFLIX

NOTHING SACRED

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt has its #MeToo moment

IT’S JUNE, ALMOST HALFWAY THROUGH the year, and what have you read— other than several thousand tweets? If you’re like most people, not much, what with work, child care, mindless TV bingeing, plunging down Instagram rabbit holes, stressing about current events and stressing about stressing. But that’s what summer’s for, right? Catching up? We’ve organized this year’s notable releases (with some 2017 spillover) according to genre. Note: Given our times, we’ve provided a bigger-thanusual collection of thrillers and crime novels, because nothing distracts from an annus horribilis like bloodbaths and skulduggery.

Reality Bites

MEMOIRS, BIOGRAPHIES, OPINION, HISTORY— AND TRUTHS STRANGER THAN FICTION

The Beekeeper: Rescuing the Stolen Women of Iraq

By Dunya Mikhail

NEW DIRECTIONS PUBLISHING

In 2014, the Islamic State group (ISIS) invaded northern Iraq, killing men and enslaving women. A local beekeeper smuggled some of the women back to their homes. Mikhail, a journalist and poet, spoke to survivors, bearing witness to their wrenching stories of horrific abuse.

City of Devils

By Paul French

PICADOR

Historical true crime that transports you back to the decadence and deranged beauty of 1930s Shanghai— a place that rivaled Prohibition Chicago for colorful miscreants and bruisers, including an ex-Navy boxer who became the Slot King of Shanghai. (Out in July.)

Educated: A Memoir

By Tara Westover

RANDOM HOUSE

If you’ve ever questioned why people stay in cults or abusive families, this coming-of-age memoir by the daughter of Mormon fundamentalists provides moving answers. Westover, who educated her way out of a very bad situation, shows how blood ties can bind beyond rationality, and how where you come from (in this case, Idaho) is rooted in your soul.

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BIBLE THUMPERS: RUSSIA IS CRACKING DOWN ON JEHOVAH'S WITNESSES It was just after sunrise on April 10th when the doorbell rang at Anatoly and Alyona Vilitkevich’s apartment in Ufa, an industrial city in central Russia. Their early morning visitors: masked police officers armed with automatic weapons. The police’s tactics that morning were the type often used to detain dangerous criminals. But Anatoly isn’t a suspected terrorist, murderer or drug trafficker. Police arrested him because he and Alyona are Jehovah’s Witnesses, a Christian evangelical movement known for its members’ door-to-door proselytizing. Jehovah’s Witnesses are also committed pacifists who historically have been persecuted by governments all over the world for their refusal to perform military service, or salute the flag. Some of the most brutal repression took place in Fidel Castro’s Cuba, Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union. And now it’s the Kremlin, with the blessing of the Russian Orthodox Church, that’s ramping up the pressure. The state’s crackdown comes as part of a government-backed drive against minority “foreign” religions.