Fictionophile’s May 2020 #BookHaul

My greed in amassing books for review continues at an alarming rate. I sacrificed my 80% NetGalley badge and downloaded TEN more titles from them. This was a tough decision, but I can rationalize it by saying I’ll never get my 500 reviews badge if I don’t continue to download from them. This, of course, is their evil plan. LOL

And… the fact that I have 101 more books to read/review for NetGalley doesn’t stress me out at all…. GULP!

The more positive news is that I’m doing well with my NetGalley Reading Challenge:


In total, I took on FOURTEEN more review commitments in May.

As usual, just click on the book cover to go to the Goodreads site for the title.


Here are the TEN titles I downloaded from NetGalley in May

The Whispering House” by Elizabeth Brooks

Freya Lyell is struggling to move on from her sister Stella’s suicide five years ago. Visiting the bewitching Byrne Hall, only a few miles from the scene of the tragedy, she discovers a portrait of Stella – a portrait she had no idea existed, in a house Stella never set foot in. Or so she thought.
Driven to find out more about her sister’s secrets, Freya is draw into the world of Byrne Hall and its owners: charismatic artist Cory and his sinister, watchful mother. But as Freya’s relationship with Cory crosses the line into obsession, the darkness behind the locked doors of Byrne Hall threatens to spill out.

Publisher: Doubleday
Publication date: August 6, 2020

One Step Behind” by Lauren North

Jenna is a wife, a mother, a doctor. She’s also the victim of a stalker.
Every time she leaves her house, she sees him. Disturbing gifts are left at her door. Cruel emails are sent to her colleagues. She has no idea who this man is but she feels powerless against him.
Until the day he is brought into her hospital after a serious accident, and Jenna is given the chance to find out once and for all why this man is tormenting her. Now, the power is all hers.
But how many lines is she willing to cross to take back control of her life?

Publisher: Transworld
Publication date: September 3, 2020

To Tell You the Truth” by Gilly Macmillan

Lucy Harper has a talent for invention…
She was nine years old when her brother vanished in the woods near home. As the only witness, Lucy’s story of that night became crucial to the police investigation. Thirty years on, her brother’s whereabouts are still unknown.
Now Lucy is a bestselling thriller writer. Her talent for invention has given her fame, fortune, and an army of adoring fans. But her husband, Dan, has started keeping secrets of his own, and a sudden change of scene forces Lucy to confront some dark, unwelcome memories. Then Dan goes missing and Lucy’s past and present begin to collide. Did she kill her husband? Would she remember if she did?
Finally, Lucy Harper is going to tell us the truth.
Cross her heart.And hope to die.

Publisher: Century/Cornerstone/Random House UK
Publication date: June 25, 2020

Across the Water” by Ingrid Alexandra

Secrets can pull you under…
In a remote, boat-access only house, Liz Dawson’s lifeline to the real world is her window, where she watches the people who live in the three identical houses that sit side by side across the creek. But it’s the middle house Liz finds herself drawn to most: the beautiful young mother, Delilah Waters, and her baby.
When Dee and her baby go missing, last seen by the murky waters of Myall Lake, it is a suspected murder-suicide. After all, it’s no secret that Dee Waters never wanted children. She wasn’t coping with the baby. Everyone in the town believes she leapt to her death, taking her child with her. Everyone except Liz.
Wrestling with her own demons, Liz risks everything to uncover a truth that becomes more complex with every twist. Of all people, Liz knows that just because someone is a reluctant mother, it doesn’t mean they don’t love their child. And it doesn’t mean they’re capable of murder… does it?

Publisher: One More Chapter/HarperCollins UK
Publication date: July 9, 2020

The Night Swim” by Megan Goldin

After the first season of her true crime podcast became an overnight sensation and set an innocent man free, Rachel Krall is now a household name―and the last hope for thousands of people seeking justice. But she’s used to being recognized for her voice, not her face. Which makes it all the more unsettling when she finds a note on her car windshield, addressed to her, begging for help.
The small town of Neapolis is being torn apart by a devastating rape trial. The town’s golden boy, a swimmer destined for Olympic greatness, has been accused of raping a high school student, the beloved granddaughter of the police chief. Under pressure to make Season Three a success, Rachel throws herself into interviewing and investigating―but the mysterious letters keep showing up in unexpected places. Someone is following her, and she won’t stop until Rachel finds out what happened to her sister twenty-five years ago. Officially, Jenny Stills tragically drowned, but the letters insists she was murdered―and when Rachel starts asking questions, nobody seems to want to answer. The past and present start to collide as Rachel uncovers startling connections between the two cases that will change the course of the trial and the lives of everyone involved.

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Publication date: Aug. 4, 2020

Spring Girls” by Karen Katchur

Another spring, another dead girl pulled from a lake in the Appalachian foothills: the latest victim in a series of murders with few leads. But Detective Geena Brassard and her partner, Parker Reed, finally land a break when they receive a tip about a previously unknown survivor of the so-called Spring Strangler.
The survivor’s reluctant to help with the case for reasons that aren’t all clear. Even so, Geena uncovers a connective thread between the victims, and recently discovered DNA brings her closer to the killer’s identity. But Geena knows the survivor has the most to offer the investigation—if also the most to lose.
Geena is torn between securing the surviving victim’s help and protecting her from further danger. One thing is certain: Geena and Parker must find answers before the killer claims another life—or returns to finish off the one who got away.

Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
Publication date: June 16, 2020

The Hidden Hours” by Sara Foster

Keeping her secret may save her family.
But telling it may save her life.
Arabella Lane, senior executive at a children’s publisher, is found dead in the Thames on a frosty winter’s morning after the office Christmas party. No one is sure whether she jumped or was pushed. The one person who may know the truth is the newest employee at Parker & Lane – the office temp, Eleanor.
Eleanor has travelled to London to escape the repercussions of her traumatic childhood in outback Australia, but now tragedy seems to follow her wherever she goes. To her horror, she has no memory of the crucial hours leading up to Arabella’s death – memory that will either incriminate or absolve her.
As Eleanor desperately tries to remember her missing hours and uncover the events of that fateful night, her own extended family is dragged further into the dark, terrifying terrain of blame, suspicion and guilt.
Caught in a crossfire of accusations, Eleanor fears she can’t even trust herself, let alone the people around her. And soon, she’ll find herself in a race against time to find out just what happened that night – and discover just how deadly some secrets can be.

Publisher: Blackstone Publishing
Publication date: November 3, 2020

The House Guest” by Mark Edwards

A perfect summer. A perfect stranger. A perfect nightmare.
When British twenty-somethings Ruth and Adam are offered the chance to spend the summer housesitting in New York, they can’t say no. Young, in love and on the cusp of professional success, they feel as if luck is finally on their side.
So the moment that Eden turns up on the doorstep, drenched from a summer storm, it seems only right to share a bit of that good fortune. Beautiful and charismatic, Eden claims to be a friend of the homeowners, who told her she could stay whenever she was in New York.
They know you’re not supposed to talk to strangers—let alone invite them into your home—but after all, Eden’s only a stranger until they get to know her.
As suspicions creep in that Eden may not be who she claims to be, they begin to wonder if they’ve made a terrible mistake…

Publisher: Amazon Publishing UK
Publication date: June 3, 2020

“Long Shadows” by Derek Thompson

Detective Craig Wild couldn’t cut it in London. Now he must swap the Met for Mayberry, a sleepy Wiltshire backwater where ambition goes to die.
It was supposed to be a second chance. Then Wild is faced with the most baffling case of his career.
Eccentric farmer Alexander Porter is found shot dead in his own field. Everyone assumes it was suicide. But Wild knows there’s more to it than that.
Determined to uncover the truth, he teams up with plucky PC Marnie Olsen. They set off on a twisting trail.
The first suspect is Nathan Porter, Alexander’s tearaway son. Wherever Nathan goes, trouble follows.
Then someone else dies.
Wild and Marnie must delve into the darkest corners of the family’s history if they are to uncover the truth.
Can they unmask the killer before Wild’s own chequered past catches up to him?

Publisher: Joffe Books
Publication date: June 1, 2020

The Day She Came Back” by Amanda Prowse

When her loving, free-spirited grandmother Primrose passes away, Victoria is bereft, yet resilient—she has survived tragedy before. But even her strength is tested when a mysterious woman attends Prim’s funeral and claims to be the mother Victoria thought was dead.
As the two women get to know each other and Victoria begins to learn more about her past, it becomes clear that her beloved grandmother had been keeping life-changing secrets from her. Desperate for answers, she still struggles to trust anyone to tell her the truth.
To live a full and happy life, Victoria knows she must not only uncover the truth, but find a way to forgive her family. But after so many years, is trusting them even possible?

Publisher: Amazon Publishing UK
Publication date: July 7, 2020

Here are the THREE titles I downloaded from Edelweiss in May

The River Home” by Hannah Richell

In their ramshackle Somerset home, with its lush gardens running down to the river, the Sorrells have gathered for a last-minute wedding—an occasion that is met with trepidation by each member of the family.
Lucy, the bride, has begged her loved ones to attend—not telling them that she has some important news to share once they’ve gathered. Her prodigal baby sister, Margot, who left home after a devastating argument with their mother, reluctantly agrees, though their family home is the site of so much pain for her. Meanwhile, their eldest sister, Eve, has thrown herself into a tailspin planning the details of the wedding—anything to distract herself from how her own life is unraveling—and their long-separated artist parents are forced to play the roles of cheerful hosts through gritted teeth.
As the Sorrells come together for a week of celebration and confrontation, their painful memories are revisited and their relationships stretched to the breaking point.

Publisher: HarperCollins
Publication date: August 4, 2020

Little Cruelties” by Liz Nugent

This story begins with a funeral. One of three brothers is dead, mourned by his siblings. But which one? And how? And, most importantly: why?
William, Brian, and Luke are each born a year apart in a lower middle class Catholic family in 1960s Dublin. William, the eldest, rises to the top of the heap in the film industry as a successful movie producer. Luke, the baby of the family, surprises everyone by morphing into a worldwide pop star. Brian, the compliant middle son, is the eternal adult in the room: the helpful, steady one, the manager of finances and careers.
But none of them is actually quite what he seems. Wounded by childhood, they have betrayed one another in myriad ways, hiding behind little lies that have developed into full blown treachery. With an unnerving eye for the complexities of families, Nugent delves into the secret life of a deeply troubled household and provides stunning insights into the many forces that shape us from childhood.

Publisher: Gallery/Scout Press/Simon & Schuster
Publication date: November 10, 2020

The Book of CarolSue” by Lynne Hugo

CarolSue and her sister, Louisa, are best friends, but haven’t had much in common since CarolSue married Charlie, moved to Atlanta, and swapped shoes covered with Indiana farm dust for pedicures and afternoon bridge. Louisa, meanwhile, loves her farm and animals as deeply as she’d loved Harold, her late husband of forty years.
Charlie’s sudden death leaves CarolSue so adrift that she surrenders to Louisa’s plan for her to move back home. But canning vegetables and feeding chickens are alien to CarolSue, and she resolves to return to Atlanta–until Louisa’s son, Reverend Gary, arrives with an abandoned infant and a dubious story. He begs the women to look after the baby while he locates the mother–a young immigrant who fears deportation.
Keeping his own secrets, Gary enlists the aid of the sheriff, Gus, in the search. But CarolSue’s bond with the baby is undeniable, and she forms an unconventional secret plan of her own. How many mistakes can be redeemed?

Publisher: Kensington Publishing Corp.
Publication date: August 25, 2020

And… last but not least, I received a title directly from the author David Rawding. I agreed to review his latest book because I have read his work before and enjoyed it. (Read my review of his “Taking on Water”)

Redemption Grove” by David Rawding

Twenty-one-year-old Chris Olson has hit rock-bottom. His addiction to painkillers has left him homeless and ruined. Hoping to give him a clean start, his sister, Aida, convinces him to move to Anchorage to live with her.
But trouble seems to follow Chris, and he brings it right to Aida’s doorstep. Faced with having to kick her brother out of the house, Aida enlists the help of her friend, Doctor Max Fitwell. Max, haunted by a recent personal tragedy, wants nothing more than to be left alone in his misery. But he reluctantly agrees to allow Chris to stay with him and to help build a cabin.
Chris and Max, two men who are each struggling to find their own reasons to live, navigate the wilderness of Alaska, where they’ll either become better men or die trying.

Publisher: Red Adept Publishing

Have you read any of these stellar titles yet?  Do you plan to?

Let me know in the comments. ♥

About Fictionophile

Fiction reviewer ; Goodreads librarian. Retired library cataloger - more time to read! Loves books, gardening, and red wine. I have been a reviewer member of NetGalley since October 2013. I review titles offered by Edelweiss, and participate in blog tours with TLC Book Tours.
This entry was posted in Anticipated titles, Fictionophile report and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

18 Responses to Fictionophile’s May 2020 #BookHaul

  1. eLPy says:

    Oh my, wow, you have your hands and mind full no doubt! Heck of a list of mystery thrillers that I hope to be able to keep up with you on. I’ve had several of them to my own list, yours having made me realize how much I haven’t been reading of my once favorite genres: mysteries and thrillers.

    I’ve added: The whispering house by elizabeth brooks; Across the Water by Ingrid Alexandra; The Night Swim by Megan Goldin; The Day She Came Back by Amanda Prowse; Little Cruelties by Liz Nugent;

    I always do my best to give credit where credit is due should I mention having found these books. Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Carol says:

    So many books, so little time! You’re still within easy reach of 80% so that’s good! That 500 badge is tempting! I’m still working on 50! I only requested one this week.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh I admire your restraint Carol. I hope to have my 80% badge back by the end of summer. Now I’m only 50 books away from 500!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Carol says:

        It’s part restraint and part not wanting to get stuck needing to write a negative review! I’m very very selective out of self preservation motives! What kind of virtual cake are you serving at your 500 celebration?!

        Liked by 1 person

        • Haha. I’ll have to have a think.
          I will soon be having a giveaway to celebrate 4000 blog followers. Just have to get 20 more followers…
          I will be giving away a $25.00 Amazon gift card. (or £15 if my winner is from the U.K.)

          Liked by 1 person

  3. carhicks says:

    First, I love your siggy Lynne. I have four of these on my TBR and 2 pending. These all look very interesting, but I am not adding any more right now. Enjoy reading while you still have to stay home. Any plans about heading to the cottage soon? How is your daughter doing?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thankfully our daughter is recovering well from her cancer surgery. She was laid off from work because of the pandemic, but she is eager to get back to work.
      Our son is also out of work at present because he works for Air Canada… our little grandson turned one year old this week.
      Luckily, our cottage is in Nova Scotia, so we’ll be going there soon. I feel bad for the people who own cottages out of province as they might not get to enjoy them much this summer.
      What are your plans for the summer Carla?


  4. fictionfixerreads says:

    That’s a lot of books! How do you keep up with all of it? 😮

    Liked by 1 person

  5. KayCKay says:

    Night Swim is awesome!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. All of these books sound really good, I hope you enjoy them.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Ohhh so many fascinating thrillers to look forward to! Hope you enjoy these when you get around to them. Happy reading! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

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