Published this week – my fiction picks to 9th May

A varied mix this week with a bit of something for everyone.

The index is a guide as to what format the title is being released in. In some cases the title might already have been published in a different format. For those readers interested in new audio editions I’ve indicated availability with the addition of a red button after the purchasing links – this makes it a bit easier to scan through and pick them up. The categories are intended to give you an indication of price and/or suitability depending on your preferred reading format. I have not complicated matters further by attempting to throw genres into the mix.

Where I’ve read the book, and would recommend it, I’ve added a new ‘Recommended’ button

(NB As an Amazon Associate, Bookshop and Hive Affiliate I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases)

Index

Hardback releases

Hardback and eBook releases

Paperback releases

Paperback and eBook releases

eBook releases

Hardback & eBook releases

The Beauty of Impossible Things

The Beauty of Impossible Things by Rachel Donohue

Foresight is not always a gift…

The summer Natasha Rothwell turns fifteen, strange dancing lights appear in the sky above her small town, lights that she interprets as portents of doom.

Natasha leads a sheltered life with her beautiful, bohemian mother in a crumbling house by the sea. As news of the lights spreads, more and more visitors arrive in the town, creating a feverish atmosphere of anticipation and dread. And the arrival of a new lodger, the handsome Mr Bowen, threatens to upset the delicate equilibrium between mother and daughter.

Then Natasha’s fears seem to be realized when a local teenager goes missing, and she is called on to help. But her actions over that long, hot summer will have unforeseen and ultimately tragic consequences that will cast a shadow for many years to come…


Before the Ruins

Before the Ruins by Victoria Gosling

Andy believes that she has left her past far behind her. But when she gets a call from Peter’s mother to say he’s gone missing, she finds herself pulled into a search for answers.

Bored and restless after their final school exams, Andy, Peter, Em and Marcus broke into a ruined manor house nearby and quickly became friends with the boy living there. Blond, charming and on the run, David’s presence was as dangerous as it was exciting. The story of a diamond necklace, stolen from the house fifty years earlier and perhaps still lost somewhere in the grounds inspired the group to buy a replica and play at hiding it, hoping to turn up the real thing along the way. But the game grew to encompass decades of resentment, lies and a terrible betrayal.

Now, Andy’s search for Peter will unearth unimaginable secrets – and take her back to the people who still keep them.


Whereabouts

Whereabouts by Jhumpa Lahiri

The woman moves through the city, her city, on her own.

She moves along its bright pavements; she passes over its bridges, through its shops and pools and bars. She slows her pace to watch a couple fighting, to take in the sight of an old woman in a waiting room; pauses to drink her coffee in a shaded square.

Sometimes her steps take her to her grieving mother, sealed off in her own solitude. Sometimes they take her to the station, where the trains can spirit her away for a short while.

But in the arc of a year, as one season gives way to the next, transformation awaits. One day at the sea, both overwhelmed and replenished by the sun’s vital heat, her perspective will change forever.

A rare work of fiction, Whereabouts – first written in Italian and then translated by the author herself – brims with the impulse to cross barriers. By grafting herself onto a new literary language, Lahiri has pushed herself to a new level of artistic achievement. A dazzling evocation of a city, its captures a woman standing on one of life’s thresholds, reflecting on what has been lost and facing, with equal hope and rage, what may lie ahead.


Peterdown: An epic social satire, full of comedy, character and anarchic radicalism

Peterdown by David Annand

Peterdown, an industrial town with a noble past and a lacklustre present, has been chosen as the regional hub for a soon-to-be-built, ultra-high-speed railway line. The development promises to propel Peterdown headlong into a prosperous future; but in order to get there, something from the landscape of Peterdown’s past will have to be demolished. On the shortlist are the Larkspur Hill housing estate, a significant modernist landmark, and the Chapel, the raucous home of the town’s football team, Peterdown United. Ellie Ferguson, an architect exiled from London, is as determined to save the Larkspur as her partner, Colin, a lifelong United fan, is desperate to save the Chapel. As they each find themselves leading increasingly passionate and opposing campaigns, their essential differences become hard to ignore.

Out of this spins an epic, wide-angle novel, rich with character and incident. Affairs are embarked upon. Conspiracies are uncovered. A broad-based popular insurgency ignites. Peterdown brings England’s beleaguered streetscape to life and finds lurking there a playful and storied counterculture: mad monks and machine breakers, avant-gardists and non-conformists.


Of Stone and Sky

Of Stone and Sky by Merryn Glover

After Highland shepherd Colvin Munro disappears, a mysterious trail of his possessions is found in the Cairngorm mountains. Writing the eulogy for his memorial years later, his foundling-sister Mo seeks to discover why he vanished. Younger brother Sorley is also haunted by his absence and driven to reveal the forces that led to Colvin’s disappearance. Is their brother alive or dead?

Set on a farming estate in the upper reaches of the River Spey, Of Stone and Sky follows several generations of a shepherding family in a paean to the bonds between people, their land and way of life. It is a profound mystery, a passionate poem, a political manifesto, shot through with wisdom and humour.


Great Circle: The dazzling new novel for fans of THE GOLDFINCH

Great Circle by Maggie Shipstead

I WAS BORN TO BE A WANDERER

From the night she is rescued as a baby out of the flames of a sinking ship; to the day she joins a pair of daredevil pilots looping and diving over the rugged forests of her childhood, to the thrill of flying Spitfires during the war, the life of Marian Graves has always been marked by a lust for freedom and danger.

In 1950, she embarks on the great circle flight, circumnavigating the globe. It is Marian’s life dream and her final journey, before she disappears without a trace.

Half a century later, Hadley Baxter, a brilliant, troubled Hollywood starlet is irresistibly drawn to play Marian Graves, a role that will lead her to probe the deepest mysteries of the vanished pilot’s life.


The Last Thing He Told Me

The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave

IT WAS THE LAST THING HE TOLD ME: PROTECT HER

Before Owen Michaels disappears, he manages to smuggle a note to his new wife, Hannah: protect her. Hannah knows exactly who Owen needs her to protect – his sixteen-year-old daughter, Bailey, who lost her mother tragically as a child. And who wants absolutely nothing to do with her new stepmother.

As her increasingly desperate calls to Owen go unanswered, his boss is arrested for fraud and the police start questioning her, Hannah realises that her husband isn’t who he said he was. And that Bailey might hold the key to discovering Owen’s true identity, and why he disappeared. Together they set out to discover the truth. But as they start putting together the pieces of Owen’s past, they soon realise that their lives will never be the same again…

Leaving Coy's Hill

Leaving Coy’s Hill by Katherine A Sherbrooke

An unforgettable story about the triumphs and travails of a woman unwilling to play by the rules, based on the the remarkable life of pioneering feminist and abolitionist Lucy Stone.

Born on a farm in 1818, Lucy Stone dreamt of extraordinary things for a girl of her time, like continuing her education beyond the eighth grade and working for the abolitionist cause, and of ordinary things, such as raising a family of her own. But when she learns that the Constitution affords no rights to married women, she declares that she will never marry and dedicates her life to fighting for change.

At a time when it is considered promiscuous for women to speak in public, Lucy risks everything for the anti-slavery movement, her powerful oratory mesmerizing even her most ardent detractors as she rapidly becomes a household name. And when she begins to lecture on the “woman question,” she inspires a young Susan B. Anthony to join the movement. But life as a crusader is a lonely one.

When Henry Blackwell, a dashing and forward-thinking man, proposes a marriage of equals, Lucy must reconcile her desire for love and children with her public persona and the legal perils of marriage she has long railed against. And when a wrenching controversy pits Stone and Anthony against each other, Lucy makes a decision that will impact her legacy forever.


China Room

China Room by Sunjeev Sahota

Mehar, a young bride in rural 1929 Punjab, is trying to discover the identity of her new husband. She and her sisters-in-law, married to three brothers in a single ceremony, spend their days hard at work in the family’s ‘china room’, sequestered from contact with the men. When Mehar develops a theory as to which of them is hers, a passion is ignited that will put more than one life at risk.

Spiralling around Mehar’s story is that of a young man who in 1999 travels from England to the now-deserted farm, its ‘china room’ locked and barred. In enforced flight from the traumas of his adolescence – his experiences of addiction, racism, and estrangement from the culture of his birth – he spends a summer in painful contemplation and recovery, finally gathering the strength to return home.


We Run the Tides

We Run the Tides by Vendela Vida

Teenage Eulabee and her magnetic best friend, Maria Fabiola, own the streets of Sea Cliff, their foggy oceanside San Francisco neighbourhood. They know Sea Cliff’s homes and beaches, its hidden corners and eccentric characters – as well as the upscale all-girls’ school they attend. One day, walking to school with friends, they witness a horrible act – or do they? Eulabee and Maria Fabiola vehemently disagree on what happened, and their rupture is followed by Maria Fabiola’s sudden disappearance – a potential kidnapping that shakes the quiet community and threatens to expose unspoken truths.

Suspenseful and poignant, We Run the Tides is Vendela Vida’s masterful portrait of an inimitable place on the brink of radical transformation. Pre-tech boom San Francisco finds its mirror in the changing lives of the teenage girls at the centre of this story of innocence lost, the pain of too much freedom, and the struggle to find one’s authentic self. Told with a gimlet eye and great warmth, We Run the Tides is both a gripping mystery and a tribute to the wonders of youth, in all its beauty and confusion.


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Paperback releases

The Cat and The City: 'Vibrant and accomplished' David Mitchell

The Cat and the City by Nick Broadley

In Tokyo – one of the world’s largest megacities – a stray cat is wending her way through the back alleys. And, with each detour, she brushes up against the seemingly disparate lives of the city-dwellers, connecting them in unexpected ways.

But the city is changing. As it does, it pushes her to the margins where she chances upon a series of apparent strangers – from a homeless man squatting in an abandoned hotel, to a shut-in hermit afraid to leave his house, to a convenience store worker searching for love. The cat orbits Tokyo’s denizens, drawing them ever closer.

So Happy Together: A Novel

So Happy Together by Deborah K Shepherd

As her stultifying marriage is unravelling, and in the midst of mourning the loss of her creative self, Caro Tanner has a nightmare about Peter, an old love whom she hasn’t seen in twenty years. She takes this as a sign he still needs her. With her three children safely off to summer camp, Caro embarks on a pre-Facebook, pre–cell phone road trip to recapture who she once was and what she thinks she once had.

Set in the sex, drugs, and rock ’n roll ’60s in Tucson, Arizona—when Caro and Peter were kooky, colorful, and inseparable drama students—and in the suburban ’80s, when Caro’s creative spark has been quenched to serve the needs of her husband and children, So Happy Together explores the conundrum of love and sexual attraction, creativity and family responsibilities, and what happens when they are out of sync. It is a story of missed opportunities, the tantalizing possibility of second chances, and what we leave behind, carry forward, and settle for when we choose. It sits in that raw, messy, confounding, beautiful place where love resides.

Paperback & eBook releases

Most Beautiful Girl in Cuba, The (Cuba Saga)

The Most Beautiful Girl in Cuba by Chanel Cleeton

A feud rages in Gilded Age New York City between newspaper tycoons William Randolph Hearst and Joseph Pulitzer. When Grace Harrington lands a job at Hearst’s newspaper in 1896, she’s caught in a cutthroat world where one scoop can make or break your career, but it’s a story emerging from Cuba that changes her life.

Unjustly imprisoned in a notorious Havana women’s jail, eighteen-year-old Evangelina Cisneros dreams of a Cuba free from Spanish oppression. When Hearst learns of her plight and splashes her image on the front page of his paper, proclaiming her, “The Most Beautiful Girl in Cuba,” she becomes a rallying cry for American intervention in the battle for Cuban independence.  

With the help of Marina Perez, a courier secretly working for the Cuban revolutionaries in Havana, Grace and Hearst’s staff attempt to free Evangelina. But when Cuban civilians are forced into reconcentration camps and the explosion of the USS Maine propels the United States and Spain toward war, the three women must risk everything in their fight for freedom.


The Heart Remembers: from the bestselling author of The Art of Hearing Heartbeats

The Heart Remembers by Jan-Philipp Sendker

Twelve-year-old Ko Bo Bo lives with his uncle U Ba in Kalaw, a town in Burma. An unusually perceptive child, Bo Bo can read people’s emotions in their eyes. This acute sensitivity only makes his unconventional home life more difficult: His father comes to visit him once a year, and he can hardly remember his mother, who, for unclear reasons, keeps herself away from her son.

Everything changes when Bo Bo discovers the story of his parents’ great love, which threatens to break down in the whirlwind of political events, and of his mother’s mysterious sickness. Convinced that he can heal her and reunite their family, Bo Bo decides to set out in search of his parents.


The Lost Girls of Ireland: A heart-warming and feel-good page-turner set in Ireland (Starlight Cottages Book 1)

The Lost Girls of Ireland by Susan O’Leary

A heart-warming story about family secrets and one woman’s escape to dreamy Sandy Cove on the stunning west coast of Ireland.

The picturesque beach of Wild Rose Bay is the last place Lydia Butler thought she’d be. But having just lost everything, the run-down cottage she inherited from her Great Aunt Nellie is the only place she can take her daughter, Sunny. Hidden away in a tiny Irish village, she can protect Sunny from the gossip in Dublin, and the real reason they have nowhere else to live…

The cottage is part of the old coastguard station and other eccentric residents are quick to introduce themselves when Lydia arrives. Lydia instantly feels less alone, fascinated by the stories they have about Nellie, and she’s charmed by American artist, Jason O’Callaghan, the mysterious man who lives next door.

But the longer Lydia relaxes under the moonlit sky, the more the secret she’s keeping from Sunny threatens to come out. And as she finds herself running into Jason’s arms, she knows she must be honest and face up to the past she has tried to forget. Has she finally found people who will truly accept her, or will the truth force her to leave the cottage for good?


The Ghost of Frédéric Chopin (Walter Presents)

The Ghost of Frederick Chopin by Eric Faye

The third book in the Walter Presents Library: a bewitching Prague-set mystery about a woman who claims to transcribe music from the ghost of Chopin

Prague, 1995: journalist Ludvík Slaný is assigned to make a documentary about a truly bizarre case. Věra Foltýnova, a middle-aged woman with no musical training, claims she has been visited by the ghost of great composer Frederic Chopin – and that he has been dictating dozens of compositions to her, to allow the world to hear the sublime music he was unable to create in his own short life.

With media and recording companies taking the bait, Ludvík enlists the help of ex-Communist secret police agent Pavel Černý to expose Věra as a fraud. Soon, however, doubt creeps in, as he finds himself irrationally drawn towards this unassuming woman and the eerily beautiful music she plays. Could he be witnessing a true miracle?

An intricately plotted mystery imbued with the dusky atmosphere of autumnal Prague, The Ghost of Frederic Chopin is an engrossing story of art, faith and the quiet accompaniment of the past.


The Son of the House

The Son of the House by Cheluchi Onyemelukwe-Onuobia

“We must do something to pass the time, I thought. Two women in a room, hands and feet tied.”
Kidnapped in Nigeria by a group not unlike Boko Haram, two women, Nwabulu and Julie, relate the stories of the very different lives fate has meted out for them.
When Nwabulu’s father dies, her stepmother sends her off to become a housemaid. For years, she suffers the abuse of employers, a love affair with an employer’s son offering little comfort. Out of their union a son is born, but the young Nwabulu has to give him up, and is bound to suffer in her stepmother’s home again until she can flee, establishing herself as a fashion designer, and finally able to inhabit Julie’s world.
Julie: privileged, educated, and adored by her parents. She has the opportunity to become whomever she desires. But sometimes too much choice can be a dangerous thing, and in Julie’s case it is. At thirty-four she is still unmarried and, for the first time, there is pressure: a burden that will only be lifted with the birth of a son. So determined is Julie for release that she goes as far as a polygamous marriage.
While the two women wait for the ransom to be paid, fate will once again decide the course of their lives.


The Mash House

The Mash House by Alan Gillespie

Cullrothes, in the Scottish Highlands, where Innes hides a terrible secret from his girlfriend Alice, a gorgeous, cheating, lying schoolteacher. In the same village, Donald is the aggressive distillery owner, who floods the country with narcotics alongside his single malt; when his son goes missing, he becomes haunted by an anonymous American investor intent on purchasing the Cullrothes Distillery by any means necessary. Schoolgirl Jessie is trying to get the grades to escape to the mainland, while Grandpa counts the days left in his life.

This is a place where mountains are immense and the loch freezes in winter. A place with only one road in and out. With long storms and furious midges and a terrible phone signal. The police are compromised the journalists are scum, and the innocent folk of Cullrothes tangle themselves in a fermenting barrel of suspicion, malice and lies…


Hidden Secrets at the Little Village Church: An absolutely unputdownable feel-good read (Hopley Village)

Hidden Secrets at the Little Village Church by Tracy Rees

When tragedy strikes, twenty-six-year-old Gwen Stanley finds herself suddenly jobless and heartbroken. With nowhere to turn, she retreats to Hopley, a crumbling little village deep in the heart of the English countryside. Wandering the winding lanes and daydreaming about what could have been, Gwen feels lost for the first time in her life.

Until one day she pushes through the creaking doors of a tiny stone church at the edge of the village, empty and forgotten by nearly everyone. There she stumbles on a book full of local secrets and is instantly drawn into the mystery of who could have left them there, and why.

When she’s unexpectedly joined by handsome local artist Jarvis, Gwen is caught off-guard. He seems just as fascinated by what’s in the book as she is… but why? Can she trust Jarvis’s motives really are what he says they are? And are the butterfly flutters she feels whenever they’re together because she’s one step closer to learning the book’s secrets… or might the little village church actually hold the key to healing Gwen’s poor, trampled heart?


The Girl in His Shadow: A Novel

The Girl in His Shadow by Audrey Blake

An unforgettable historical fiction novel about one woman who believed in scientific medicine before the world believed in her.

London, 1845: Raised by the eccentric surgeon Dr. Horace Croft after losing her parents to a deadly pandemic, the orphan Nora Beady knows little about conventional life. While other young ladies were raised to busy themselves with needlework and watercolors, Nora was trained to perfect her suturing and anatomical illustrations of dissections.

Women face dire consequences if caught practicing medicine, but in Croft’s private clinic Nora is his most trusted—and secret—assistant. That is until the new surgical resident Dr. Daniel Gibson arrives. Dr. Gibson has no idea that Horace’s bright and quiet young ward is a surgeon more qualified and ingenuitive than even himself. In order to protect Dr. Croft and his practice from scandal and collapse Nora must learn to play a new and uncomfortable role—that of a proper young lady.

But pretense has its limits. Nora cannot turn away and ignore the suffering of patients, even if it means giving Gibson the power to ruin everything she’s worked for. And when she makes a discovery that could change the field forever, Nora faces an impossible choice. Remain invisible and let the men around her take credit for her work, or step into the light—even if it means being destroyed by her own legacy.


The Five Things

The Five Things by Beth Merwood

For nine-year-old Wendy, the summer of 1969 will never be forgotten.

Local kids have always told stories about the eerie wood on the outskirts of the village, and Wendy knows for sure that some of them are true. Now the school holidays have started and she’s going to the wood again with Anna and Sam, but they soon become convinced that someone is trying to frighten them off.

When a terrible event rocks the coastal community, the young friends can’t help thinking there must be a connection between the incident, the tales they’ve heard, and the strange happenings they’ve begun to witness. As glimpses of a darker world threaten their carefree existence, they feel compelled to search out the underlying truth.

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eBook releases

Family Secrets at Hedgehog Hollow: An heartwarming, uplifting story from bestseller Jessica Redland Kindle Edition

Family Secrets at Hedgehog Hollow by Jessica Redland

Every family has its secrets, and at Hedgehog Hollow there is no exception…

It was always Samantha’s dream to run her beautiful rescue centre, Hedgehog Hollow, full-time. But just as her wish comes true, she becomes a victim of her own kindness when she finds herself with a house full of guests – all with their own problems and secrets – looking to her for support.

When her self-absorbed cousin, Chloe, unexpectedly turns up at the farm – swiftly handing over her baby to Samantha to care for – trouble is definitely brewing. Especially as Chloe won’t tell anyone why she’s left her husband, James…

As Samantha juggles new hedgehog arrivals, family dramas and her own health challenges, it soon becomes clear that she needs to start putting herself first for once. Little does she know that life-changing secrets from the past are about to unravel and turn their lives upside down…


The Ladies' Midnight Swimming Club: an uplifting, emotional story set in the sweeping Irish countryside perfect for fans o...

The Ladies’ Midnight Swimming Club by Faith Hogan

Three women. Three different stages of life. United by one thing: the chance to start again.

When Elizabeth’s husband dies, leaving her with crippling debt, the only person she can turn to is her friend, Jo. Soon Jo has called in her daughter, Lucy, to help save Elizabeth from bankruptcy. Leaving her old life behind, Lucy is determined to make the most of her fresh start.

As life slowly begins to return to normal, these three women, thrown together by circumstance, become fast friends. But then Jo’s world is turned upside down when she receives some shocking news.

In search of solace, Jo and Elizabeth find themselves enjoying midnight dips in the freezing Irish Sea. Here they can laugh, cry and wash away all their fears. As well as conjure a fundraising plan for the local hospice that will bring the whole community together…


Sponsored Ad – Web of Lies: A Midlands Crime Thriller (Detective Sebastian Clifford - Book 1)

Web of Lies by Sally Rigby

A trail of secrets. A dangerous discovery. A deadly turn.

Police officer Sebastian Clifford never planned on becoming a private investigator. But when a scandal leads to the disbandment of his London based special squad, he finds himself out of a job. That is, until his cousin calls on him to investigate her husband’s high-profile death, and prove that it wasn’t a suicide. 

Clifford’s reluctant to get involved, but the more he digs, the more evidence he finds. With his ability to remember everything he’s ever seen, he’s the perfect person to untangle the layers of deceit.

He meets Detective Constable Bird, an underutilised detective at Market Harborough’s police force, who refuses to give him access to the records he’s requested unless he allows her to help with the investigation. Clifford isn’t thrilled. The last time he worked as part of a team it ended his career.

But with time running out, Clifford is out of options. Together they must wade through the web of lies in the hope that they’ll find the truth before it kills them.


A Donkey On The Catwalk: Tales of life in Greece (The Peloponnese Series Book 4)

A Donkey on the Catwalk by Marjory McGinn

The fourth book in the best-selling Peloponnese series, A Donkey On The Catwalk is a new collection of original stories and travel narratives, many of them following the adventures of Marjory, Jim and their lovable terrier Wallace in rural Greece. Once again there are comical and insightful tales of life in wild and stunning locations.

Readers will be further enlightened by the escapades of the unforgettable farmer Foteini: her unique take on life; her outrageous ‘fashions’, including a makeshift shoe design you will never forget, and her ‘haute couture’ offerings for Riko the donkey.

As well as tales of the Peloponnese, there are stories from other Greek locations the couple have visited, including Pelion and the islands of Santorini and Corfu. This book also offers a fascinating glimpse into some of the author’s earliest trips to Greece with tales that have not been published before, including a year of teaching English in Athens during a dangerous time of political upheaval; a humorous story of facing up to bizarre religious relics in Corfu; and a long sabbatical in Crete that didn’t quite go to plan, with a hint of unexpected romance in an idyllic setting.


The Siren

The Siren by Katherine St. John

When Hollywood heartthrob Cole Power hires his ex-wife, Stella Rivers, to act in his son’s film, he sparks a firestorm on an isolated island that will unearth long-buried secretsand unravel years of lies.

In the midst of a sizzling hot summer, some of Hollywood’s most notorious faces are assembled on the idyllic Caribbean island of St. Genesius to film The Siren, starring dangerously handsome megastar Cole Power playing opposite his ex-wife, Stella Rivers. The surefire blockbuster promises to entice audiences with its sultry storyline and intimately connected cast.

Three very different women arrive on set, each with her own motive. Stella, an infamously unstable actress, is struggling to reclaim the career she lost in the wake of multiple, very public breakdowns. Taylor, a fledgling producer, is anxious to work on a film she hopes will turn her career around after her last job ended in scandal. And Felicity, Stella’s mysterious new assistant, harbors designs of her own that threaten to upend everyone’s plans.

With a hurricane brewing offshore, each woman finds herself trapped on the island, united against a common enemy. But as deceptions come to light, misplaced trust may prove more perilous than the storm itself.


The Forsaken Son: An uputdownable and stunning crime thriller (Detective Arla Baker Series Book 8)

The Forsaken Son by M L Rose

The body of a woman floats on Clapham Common Pond. Her hair spreads like a halo, her eyes stare like she’s in a daydream…
Detective Chief Inspector Arla Baker is called to investigate. The woman is Susan Remington, the daughter of an eminent politician. Her family are wealthy and powerful, and they want answers. Susan was beautiful, intelligent and successful, and there was no apparent reason why she would commit suicide. Arla discovers finger marks on Susan’s neck. She also has scrapes on her knuckles as she fought off her attacker.
On the back of her left hand a dollar sign is carved out. Why?
Susan didn’t kill herself…she was killed.
Two days later, Susan’s best friend Madelyn’s body is found floating in the same pond. The same strange dollar sign is carved on her left hand.
Arla is distraught, because she met Madelyn the day before. She knew things about Susan that no one else did. Why was Madelyn silenced? By whom?
As Arla delves into the Remington family, she discovers shocking secrets that will rock not just the family, but a scandal that can engulf whole political establishment.
Soon, Arla knows this vicious killer is just getting started. Arla and her team are now in his cross hairs, and he will stop at nothing to reach his target…


Ruby Falls: A Novel

Ruby Falls by Deborah Goodrich Royce

On a brilliantly sunny July day, six-year-old Ruby is abandoned by her father in the suffocating dark of a Tennessee cave. Twenty years later, transformed into soap opera star Eleanor Russell, she is fired under dubious circumstances. Fleeing to Europe, she marries a glamorous stranger named Orlando Montague and keeps her past closely hidden.

Together, Eleanor and Orlando start afresh in LA. Setting up house in a storybook cottage in the Hollywood Hills, Eleanor is cast in a dream role—the lead in a remake of Rebecca. As she immerses herself in that eerie gothic tale, Orlando’s personality changes, ghosts of her past re-emerge, and Eleanor fears she is not the only person in her marriage with a secret.

In this thrilling and twisty homage to Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca, the story ricochets through the streets of Los Angeles, a dangerous marriage to an exotic stranger, and the mind of a young woman whose past may not release her.


Lovebirds

Lovebirds by Amanda Hampson

In their youth, lovebirds Elizabeth and Ray had to fight to be together. Their future was full of promise and, blessed with children and careers, their happiness complete. But a twist of fate changed their lives forever. Now in her sixties, Elizabeth is desperately lonely. She rarely sees her two adult sons and her closest friend is a talkative budgie. But when her grandson, Zach, gets into trouble with the police, she decides to take him on a road trip to find his grandfather, her lost love. Ray, in the hope of mending their broken family. Two less compatible travelling companions would be hard to find, as they set off on an unlikely adventure into the wilds of the northern NSW hinterland. What they discover along the way, about Ray and each other, has the power to transform them all. In trying to save Zach, Elizabeth might just save herself. Warm, witty and wise, Lovebirds is an astute and uplifting novel about the power of love and family.


The Borrow a Bookshop Holiday: A gorgeously uplifting read - booklovers will love this heart-warming romcom!

The Borrow a Bookshop Holiday by Kiley Dunbar

The Borrow-a-Bookshop Bookshop Café invites literature lovers to run their very own bookshop … for a fortnight.

Spend your days talking books with customers in your own charming bookshop and serving up delicious cream teas in the cosy café.

Bookworms, what are you waiting for? Your holiday is going to be LIT(erary).

Apply to: The Borrow-a-Bookshop Bookshop Café, Down-a-long, Clove Lore, Devon.

Jude Crawley should be on top of the world. She’s just graduated as a mature student, so can finally go public about her relationship with Philosophy professor, Mack.

Until she sees Mack kissing another girl, and her dreams crumble. And worse, their dream holiday – running a tiny bookshop in the harbour village of Clove Lore for two weeks – is non-refundable.

Throwing caution to the winds, Jude heads down to Devon, eager to immerse herself in literature and heal her broken heart.

But there’s one problem – six foot tall, brooding (but gorgeous) Elliot, who’s also reserved the bookshop holiday for two weeks…

As Jude and Elliot put their differences aside to run the bookshop, it seems that Jude might be falling in love with more than just words. Until she discovers what Elliot is running from – and why he’s hiding out in Clove Lore.

Can Jude find her own happy ending in a tiny, tumbledown bookshop? Or is she about to find out that her bookish holiday might have an unexpected twist in the tale…


The Rock: A DCI Ryan Mystery (The DCI Ryan Mysteries Book 18)

The Rock by L. J. Ross (rolled over from last week)

FROM THE SHADOWS INTO THE LIGHT…

When a fishing boat is wrecked off the treacherous North Sea coast and the body of a young woman washes up on the beach beside the iconic ‘Marsden Rock’, DCI Ryan cannot ignore the call to duty.

With one already dead and more human cargo missing from the wreckage, Ryan and his team race to find the remaining souls — before it’s too late, and their investigation turns to murder. As they uncover the seedy underbelly of Tyneside, cold and calculated opportunism clashes with the rock-hard arm of the Law, but there’s one thing that proves stronger than stone…

The human spirit.

Murder and mystery are peppered with romance and humour in this fast-paced crime whodunnit set amidst the spectacular North Eastern landscape.


The Parted Earth

The Parted Earth by Anjali Enjeti

In August 1947, 16-year-old Deepa’s life in New Delhi begins to unravel in the days leading up to the birth of the Muslim minority nation of Pakistan, and the Hindu majority nation of India. Her secret Muslim boyfriend Amir, who sends her origami love notes, must now flee with his sister Layla and their parents to Lahore, Pakistan. Amir promises to return to Delhi to marry Deepa after the violence of Partition has ended. Soon after Amir’s departure, Deepa’s parents are killed. Her God-parents, fearful that Deepa is in grave danger, force her to move with them to London. Nine months later, Deepa gives birth to Vijay. She never sees or hears from Amir again.

After a devastating miscarriage in Atlanta in the present day, 40-year-old newly unemployed Shanthi (“Shan”) Johnson must confront her husband Max about his reckless spending. While grieving both her pregnancy loss and her marriage’s subsequent implosion, she finds clues that lead her to believe that the real reason her deceased father Vijay had abandoned her and her mother 30 years earlier to move to New Delhi was because he was in search of his father, a man he’d never known. To kickstart her life again, Shan moves out of her marital home, searches for a new job, and resumes her father’s search for her grandfather, whose name, she later learns, is Amir. To find Amir, Shan must first track down her estranged 86-year-old grandmother Deepa, a prickly woman who never wanted to have anything to do with Shan. During Shan’s search, which eventually takes her to Amsterdam and New Delhi, she comes to realize that the origami love notes Amir once sent to Deepa may be the clue to their reunion.


Save Her: a gripping psychological thriller full of twists

Save Her by Abigail Osborne

Would you give up your husband to save your best friend’s life?

Bonded by their traumatic childhoods, Flora and Sophie are inseparable friends who married brothers. 

What they could not have anticipated was their mother-in-law, Cecelia. Disappointed that her children have married beneath them, Cecelia takes every opportunity to belittle and taunt her daughters-in-law.

When Cecelia learns that Flora and her son are moving away, her wrath escalates, and Flora’s world begins to fall apart.

Meanwhile, Sophie’s life is also crumbling around her. Her marriage is not what it seems, and she is desperate to escape the clutches of the poisonous family she has married into.

Is Flora being tormented or is she losing her mind?

Will Sophie and Flora be forced to leave their husbands in order to survive?

With a mother-in-law like Cecelia, anything is possible…

Back to Index

OK folks, that’s it for another week, anything take your fancy?

See you – same time, same place next week.

Happy Reading!!

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