Your Community: Fresh new reads for spring

Your future self will thank you for putting these hot new titles on hold today!

Johnson County Library works hard all year long to bring you the freshest titles available. In fact, there’s a centralized collection development team whose job is to provide a collection rich with ideas, information and viewpoints from all walks of life and all sides of a topic. This year, there are some exciting releases and the Library doesn’t want you to miss out. And don’t delay, there’s already a lot of interest in these titles, so it’s a good idea to secure your place in line by placing these on hold now.

Gregg Winsor, the Library’s Readers’ Advisory Reference Librarian, has highlighted a few noteworthy titles being added to the collection this spring. Gregg says, “While we at the Johnson County Library might not be able to predict the next ‘Gone Girl’ or ‘Where the Crawdads Sing,’ we can point readers toward several new releases this spring that will pack serious potential for making your reading lists.”

Here are Gregg’s recommendations:

Black Cake,” a debut novel by Charmaine Wilkerson, is out on February 1 and is absolutely going to be the talk of your book group. This elegantly-written novel involves the death of a mother who leaves behind a brief tape recording and a copy of a beloved family recipe that seeks to bring together two estranged siblings as well as revealing some long-simmering family secrets. This is a rich, deeply-layered story that, like a real Caribbean black cake, needs to be savored to fully appreciate.

Lucy Foley’s “The Paris Apartment” hits the shelves on February 22. Foley, who broke records with her 2020 smash “The Guest List,” returns with her latest thriller about a young woman who comes to visit her half-brother in Paris, only to find him missing—and the neighbors acting very suspiciously. With her trademark gripping prose, multiple viewpoint characters, and a novel that packs more twists and turns than an absentminded cab driver, the holds list on this one is going to be long.

If you love historical fiction, make sure to place a hold on the sweeping and lyrical “A Ballad of Love and Glory” from Reyna Grande, making its debut on March 15. Set in 1846 during the Mexican-American War, this lush and descriptive novel features a Mexican nurse who, after her family is killed, meets an Irish soldier who fled the Famine and eventually switches sides to fight for a cause that he believes in. Based on real events, these two characters’ relationship will resonate with readers looking for a novel to get lost in.

Finally, check out “In a New York Minute” by Kate Spencer, released on March 15. This delightful rom-com about a meet-cute in the NYC subway system that involves a ripped dress that quickly – and hilariously – goes viral on Instagram. Readers will cheer for the slow-burn romance of down-on-her-luck Franny and the straightlaced yet handsome Hayes. Spicy, witty, and filled with quirky and heartwarming characters, this is bound to make everyone’s temperature rise just as Spring emerges.

And this is just a taste of what’s to come. Find these novels, and a ton more, online and at your local Johnson County Library branch. If you are looking for more recommendations, check out the We Recommend page on to browse new titles, booklists, recommendations by genre, staff reviews and more.

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