Confession time. For the second month in a row, I went a little crazy and amassed a whopping 15 new review commitments. I am going to blame my
greed insanity on self isolation, because well…. I can’t blame myself, can I? These fifteen titles all look amazing and I can’t wait to read them. Looks like I’ll have extra reading time, so that will help.
Anyway, here is my latest book haul via the bubble:As usual, just click on the book cover to go to the Goodreads site for the title.
A bank robber on the run locks himself in with an over-enthusiastic estate agent, two bitter IKEA-addicts, a pregnant woman, a suicidal multi-millionaire and a rabbit. In the end the robber gives up and lets everyone go, but when the police storm the apartment it is . . . empty.
In a series of dysfunctional testimonies after the event, the witnesses all tell their version of what really happened and it’s clear we have a classic locked-room mystery on our hands: How did the robber manage to escape? Why is everyone so angry? And: What is WRONG with people these days?
Publisher: Atria Books
Publication Date: September 8, 2020
I LOVE FREDRIK BACKMAN! I’ve read everything he has written so far.
Owen Pick’s life is falling apart.
In his thirties, a virgin, and living in his aunt’s spare bedroom, he has just been suspended from his job as a geography teacher after accusations of sexual misconduct, which he strongly denies. Searching for professional advice online, he is inadvertently sucked into the dark world of incel—involuntary celibate—forums, where he meets the charismatic, mysterious, and sinister Bryn.
Across the street from Owen lives the Fours family, headed by mom Cate, a physiotherapist, and dad Roan, a child psychologist. But the Fours family have a bad feeling about their neighbor Owen. He’s a bit creepy and their teenaged daughter swears he followed her home from the train station one night.
Meanwhile, young Saffyre Maddox spent three years as a patient of Roan Fours. Feeling abandoned when their therapy ends, she searches for other ways to maintain her connection with him, following him in the shadows and learning more than she wanted to know about Roan and his family. Then, on Valentine’s night, Saffyre Maddox disappears—and the last person to see her alive is Owen Pick.
Publisher: Atria Books
Publication Date: October 13, 2020
Lisa Jewell is an ‘automatic read’ for me. I don’t even have to read the blurb.
Surging out of the sea, the Bass Rock has always borne witness to the lives that pass under its shadow on the Scottish mainland. And across the centuries, the fates of three women are inextricably linked to this place and to one another.
Sarah, accused of being a witch, is fleeing for her life.
Ruth, in the aftermath of the Second World War, is navigating a new marriage and the strange waters of the local community.
Six decades later, Viv, still mourning the death of her father, is cataloguing Ruth’s belongings in the now-empty house.
As each woman’s story unfolds, it becomes increasingly clear that their choices are circumscribed, in ways big and small, by the men who seek to control them. But in sisterhood there is also the possibility of survival and a new way of life. Intricately crafted and compulsively readable, The Bass Rock burns bright with love and fury–a devastating indictment of violence against women and an empowering portrait of their resilience through the ages.
Publisher: Pantheon Books/Knopf Doubleday
Publication date: September 1, 2020
I’ve heard good things about this author, but I’ve not yet read any of her work. I’ve had another of her books, “All the Birds, Singing” on my TBR for quite a while but haven’t yet gotten around to reading it.
She’s going too far to go it alone.
It is 1950. London is still reeling from World War II, and Margery Benson, a schoolmarm and spinster, is trying to get through life, surviving on scraps. One day, she reaches her breaking point, abandoning her job and small existence to set out on an expedition to the other side of the world in search of her childhood obsession: an insect that may or may not exist–the golden beetle of New Caledonia. When she advertises for an assistant to accompany her, the woman she ends up with is the last person she had in mind. Fun-loving Enid Pretty in her tight-fitting pink suit and pompom sandals seems to attract trouble wherever she goes. But together these two British ladies find themselves drawn into a cross-ocean adventure that exceeds all expectations and delivers something neither of them expected to find: the transformative power of friendship.
Publisher: Dial Press/Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: November 24, 2020
I’ve read and thoroughly enjoyed several books by this talented author. I’m confident this will be another good one.
After the tragic loss of his wife, Helen, Luke Hansard is desperate to keep her memory alive. In an effort to stay close to her, he reaches out to an online friend Helen often mentioned: a reclusive photographer with a curious interest in beautiful but broken objects. But first he must find her—and she doesn’t want to be found.
Orla Kendrick lives alone in the ruins of a remote Suffolk castle, hiding from the haunting past that has left her physically and emotionally scarred. In her fortress, she can keep a safe distance from prying eyes, surrounded by her broken treasures and insulated from the world outside.
When Luke tracks Orla down, he is determined to help her in the way Helen wanted to: by encouraging her out of her isolation and back into the world. But Orla has never seen her refuge as a prison and, when painful secrets and dangerous threats begin to resurface, Luke’s good deed is turned on its head.
As they work through their grief for Helen in very different ways, will these two broken souls be able to heal?
Publisher: Amazon Publishing UK
Publication date: June 9, 2020
The beautiful cover first attracted me to this one, then I read the blurb and was hooked. (It helped that I am automatically approved for books published by this publisher.)
Millions of stolen, untraceable bank notes lie untouched in an old Victorian cottage, the hidden legacy of the Dolly Rawlins and her widows.
But the millions are not forgotten. Released from prison, Esther Freeman is determined to retrieve the money. And so too is Mike Withey, Shirley Miller’s brother and Audrey’s son.
When a fire breaks out at the derelict cottage, with a badly charred body inside along with what looks like thousands of burnt bank notes, it attracts the attention of the police and one young detective in particular, Jack Warr.
Jack’s investigation into the fire, and the burnt body inside, coincide with an investigation into his own past. Adopted at birth, Jack discovers his birth father may have been none other than Harry Rawlins, a renowned criminal.
As he finds out the truth about his own identity, Jack finds himself becoming increasingly aggressive, stopping at nothing to find the truth – including breaking the law himself.
Publisher: Bonnier Zaffre USA
Publication date: April 7, 2020
I’ve read several books by this author (many years ago now) and enjoyed them. Thought it was high time I read her again and this first book in a new crime series afforded me an excellent opportunity.
On Ichabod Island, a jagged strip of land thirteen miles off the coast of Massachusetts, ten-year-old Sky becomes an orphan for the second time after a tragic accident claims the lives of her adoptive parents.
Grieving the death of his best friends, Leo’s life is turned upside down when he finds himself the guardian of young Sky. Back on the island and struggling to balance his new responsibilities and his marriage to his husband, Leo is supported by a powerful community of neighbors, many of them harboring secrets of their own.
Maggie, who helps with Sky’s childcare, has hit a breaking point with her police chief husband, who becomes embroiled in a local scandal. Her best friend Agnes, the island busybody, invites Sky’s estranged grandmother to stay for the summer, straining already precarious relationships. Their neighbor Joe struggles with whether to tell all was not well in Sky’s house in the months leading up to the accident. And among them all is a mysterious woman, drawn to Ichabod to fulfill a dying wish.
Perfect for fans of Celeste Ng and Ann Leary, My Kind of People is a riveting, impassioned novel about the resilience of community and what connects us all in the face of tragedy.
Publisher: Atria Books
Publication date: June 1, 2020
I read this author’s debut novel “The Salt House” and thought her writing was beautiful. This cover and blurb hint that I am in for a treat!
Julianna Burke, bestselling mystery novelist, has a secret that those closest to her are hiding from the world. Julianna is losing her memory, and with it her powerful gift for storytelling that propelled her to fame.
A further devastating blow comes when Connor, Julianna’s beloved husband, is murdered. Even this is not something Julianna’s mind can hold on to, and every day her assistant has to break the heart-wrenching news all over again.
Julianna is desperate to know what happened to her husband. As she battles her failing mind to investigate, a detail of the murder surfaces that makes Julianna question everything she’s ever known. Somehow she must fight to find the truth, even though her grip on reality is fading…
Publisher: Lion Hudson
Publication date: September 18, 2020
First attracted by the cover, after I read the blurb I knew I just had to read this one. A new to me author, so it holds great potential.
Richard feels trapped in his hectic life of commitment and responsibility. From the daily mayhem of having young children, an exhausted wife and pushy in-laws who frequently outstay their welcome, Richard’s existence fills him with panic and resentment. The only place he can escape the dark cloud descending upon him is the bathroom, where he hides for hours on end, door locked, wondering how on earth he can escape.
Often staring out of his window, Richard enviously observes the tranquil life of Bill, his neighbour living in the bungalow across the road. From the outside, Bills world appears filled with comfort and peace. Yet underneath the apparent domestic bliss of both lives are lies, secrets, imperfections, sadness and suffering far greater than either could have imagined. Beneath the surface, a family tragedy has left Bill frozen in time and unable to move on. As he waits for a daughter who may never return, Bill watches Richards bustling family life and yearns for the joy it brings. As the two men watch each other from afar, it soon becomes apparent that other people’s lives are not always what they seem.
Publication date: April 12, 2018
I am auto-approved by this publisher, so decided to give this author a try as I’ve heard a lot about his work.
American journalist Rose Kynaston has just relocated to the childhood home of her husband, Dylan, in the English village of his youth. There’s a lot for Rose to get used to in Hurtwood. Like the family’s crumbling mansion, inhabited by Dylan’s reclusive mother, and the treacherous hill it sits upon, a place of both sinister folklore and present dangers.
Then there are unwelcoming villagers, who only whisper the name Kynaston—like some dreadful secret, a curse. Everyone knows what happened at Hurtwood House twenty years ago. Everyone except Rose. And now that Dylan is back, so are rumors about his past.
When an archaeological dig unearths human remains on the hill, local police sergeant Ellie Trevelyan vows to solve a cold case that has cast a chill over Hurtwood for decades.
As Ellie works to separate rumor from facts, Rose must fight to clear the name of the man she loves. But how can Rose keep her family safe if she is the last to know the truth?
Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
Publication date: August 11, 2020
Though I’ve never read this author before, the cover and blurb made me want to give this one a try.
Donna Pryor lives in the lap of luxury. She spends her days in a beautifully appointed condo. Her every whim is catered to by a dedicated staff, and she does not want for anything.
Except for news of her adult daughter.
Or an ex-husband who takes her calls.
Donna knows something is wrong, but she can’t quite put her finger on it. As her life of privilege starts to feel more and more like a prison, the facade she has depended on begins to crumble. Somewhere in the ruins is the truth, and the closer Donna Pryor gets to it, the more likely it is to destroy her.
Publication date: July 21, 2020
Another ‘new to me’ author. The blurb is what hooked me with this one.
A new town, a new life, and a new home—with an absolutely chilling lakefront view.
Two months a widow, Mallory Dent has made the impulsive decision to pack up and move on. In remote McNamara, nestled in the northern mountains, she can escape her grief, guilt, and pain. But the day Mallory arrives, death follows her, lapping just outside her door. A woman’s body is found floating in Loss Lake—and it’s not the first death on these shores. Locals talk about a monster in the depths with an almost disturbing reverence.
Sergeant Joel Benson understands Mallory’s unease. Years ago, his own brother was killed in the home Mallory now owns. But that was just a tragic accident. Wasn’t it? The more Mallory investigates, the more fearful she becomes. Maybe there are monsters in McNamara. Maybe some have followed her there.
As a winter storm bears down, the refuge Mallory sought has become a trap. It’s time to face her past, the secrets behind the town’s friendly faces, and a reckoning that will shatter the eerie, icy calm of Loss Lake.
Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
Publication date: November 10, 2020
Another ‘new to me’ author. The cover, then the blurb attracted me to this one.
Detective Sarah Burke and new cop Zivko ‘Bogey’ Boganicevic are sent to an incident at Fairweather Farms senior living center in Tucson. The center’s van has suddenly been chased at reckless speed by a carload of bandits firing high-powered rifles, and crashed into its own garage. Arriving at the scene, Sarah makes a grisly discovery: the driver, Enrique Lopez, was shot in the head during the chase. Why was a kindly man, dedicated to looking after the elderly, targeted and killed so dramatically by a team of hoodlums?
As Sarah works through her list of questions, she soon finds herself drawn into the high-stakes world of drugs, deception and mistaken identity where nothing is as it first appears, and she is forced to risk her career – and her life – in her search for answers.
Publisher: Severn House
Publication date: August 4, 2020
I’m auto-approved by this publisher – and, the blurb sounded good. I’ve not read this author before.
Publisher: Hanover Square Press
Publication date: April 21, 2020
I was invited to read/review this one. I find it hard to resist a good anthology…
Eighty-five-year-old Veronica McCreedy is estranged from her family and wants to find a worthwhile cause to leave her fortune to. When she sees a documentary about penguins being studied in Antarctica, she tells the scientists she’s coming to visit—and won’t take no for an answer. Shortly after arriving, she convinces the reluctant team to rescue an orphaned baby penguin. He becomes part of life at the base, and Veronica’s closed heart starts to open.
Her grandson, Patrick, comes to Antarctica to make one last attempt to get to know his grandmother. Together, Veronica, Patrick, and even the scientists learn what family, love, and connection are all about.
Publisher: Berkley/Penguin Publishing Group
Publication Date: June 16, 2020
I enjoy reading books with older protagonists and this one sounded like fun.
Have you read any of these stellar titles yet? Do you plan to?
Let me know in the comments. ♥