Coming this week – my fiction picks to 1st August.

Following on from last week’s announcement here’s this week’s curated list of new fiction titles. These are titles appearing in hardback/paperback for the first time. In some cases the ebook might already be available. Titles are primarily based on the listings found in The Bookseller, so I’m not working from a list of all titles being published.

A quiet week this week so I daren’t look to see what that means for next week!

Just a reminder I don’t see any advance copies, my choices are based on the blurb, gut instinct and what I might happen to fancy reading at the time.

(NB This post features Affiliate links from which I earn a small commission on qualifying purchases)

Index

Crime, Thriller and Mystery

General Fiction

Historical (I tend to take this as pre 1960’s ie not in my lifetime!)

Non-Fiction added extras

Crime, thriller & mystery

The Shetland Sea Murders: A gripping and chilling murder mystery

The Shetland Sea Murders by Marsali Taylor

While onboard her last chartered sailing trip of the season, Cass Lynch is awoken in the middle of the night by a Mayday call to the Shetland coastguard. A fishing vessel has become trapped on the rocks off the coast of one of the islands.

In the days that follow, there’s both a shocking murder and a baffling death. On the surface there’s no link, but when Cass becomes involved it is soon clear that her life is also in danger.

Convinced that someone sinister is at work in these Shetland waters, Cass is determined to find and stop them. But uncovering the truth could prove to be deadly . . .

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General/Contemporary Fiction

Mrs. Rochester's Ghost: A Thriller

Mrs Rochester’s Ghost by Lindsay Marcott

In a modern and twisty retelling of Jane Eyre, a young woman must question everything she thinks she knows about love, loyalty, and murder.

Jane has lost everything: job, mother, relationship, even her home. A friend calls to offer an unusual deal—a cottage above the crashing surf of Big Sur on the estate of his employer, Evan Rochester. In return, Jane will tutor his teenage daughter. She accepts.

But nothing is quite as it seems at the Rochester estate. Though he’s been accused of murdering his glamorous and troubled wife, Evan Rochester insists she drowned herself. Jane is skeptical, but she still finds herself falling for the brilliant and secretive entrepreneur and growing close to his daughter.

And yet her deepening feelings for Evan can’t disguise dark suspicions aroused when a ghostly presence repeatedly appears in the night’s mist and fog. Jane embarks on an intense search for answers and uncovers evidence that soon puts Evan’s innocence into question. She’s determined to discover what really happened that fateful night, but what will the truth cost her?


Build Your House Around My Body: The most hotly anticipated debut of the summer

Build Your House Around my Body by Violet Kupersmith (pbk)

Two young Vietnamese women go missing decades apart. Both are fearless, both are lost. And both will have their revenge.

1986: The teenage daughter of a wealthy Vietnamese family gets lost in an abandoned rubber plantation while fleeing her angry father, and is forever changed by the experience. 

2011: Twenty-five years later, a young, unhappy Vietnamese-American named Winnie disappears from her new home in Saigon without a trace.

The fates of both women are inescapably linked, bound together by past generations, by ghosts and ancestors, by the history of possessed bodies and possessed lands. Barrelling through the sweaty nightclubs of Saigon to ramshackle zoos, colonial mansions and haunted forests, Violet Kupersmith’s heart-pounding fever dream of a novel deftly combines Vietnamese history and folklore to create an immersive, playful, utterly unforgettable debut. 


Love, Hope: An uplifting, life-affirming novel-in-letters about overcoming loneliness and finding happiness

Love, Hope by Juliet Ann Conlin

An unexpected letter. An unlikely friendship. A chance to start again.

Ever since she first picked up a violin, Hope Sullivan dreamed of going to music college, joining an orchestra and travelling the world with her best friend Janey. But when her parents were killed in a car accident on the way to one of her recitals, she gave it all up to look after her younger sister, Autumn. Ten years later, Janey is living their dream on her own, Autumn is flourishing as a doctor and Hope’s life is smaller and less musical than ever.

Arnold Quince had the happiest of lives – until he lost his beloved wife Marion. Once the life and soul of the village, he withdrew into his grief and pushed all his friends away. Now, five years on, he is sick, lonely and just counting down the years until he can be with Marion again.

When Hope and Arnold are pushed into writing to one another, neither has any idea how much their life is about to change.

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Historical

Cecily: ‘A STARTLING HEROINE’ Sarah Moss

Cecily by Annie Garthwaite

The word is a spark. They can start a fire with it, or smother it in their fingertips.
She chooses to start a fire.

You are born high, but marry a traitor’s son. You bear him twelve children, carry his cause and bury his past.

You play the game, against enemies who wish you ashes. Slowly, you rise.

You are Cecily.

But when the king who governs you proves unfit, what then?

Loyalty or treason – death may follow both. The board is set. Time to make your first move.

Told through the eyes of its greatest unknown protagonist, this astonishing debut plunges you into the closed bedchambers and bloody battlefields of the first days of the Wars of the Roses, a war as women fight it.


Three Words for Goodbye: A Novel

Three Words for Goodbye by Hazel Gaynor and Heather Webb

(NB it’s the Large Print edition which is published this week. Paperback due in Sept)

Three cities, two sisters, one chance to correct the past . . .

New York, 1937: When estranged sisters Clara and Madeleine Sommers learn their grandmother is dying, they agree to fulfill her last wish: to travel across Europe—together. They are to deliver three letters, in which Violet will say goodbye to those she hasn’t seen since traveling to Europe forty years earlier; a journey inspired by famed reporter, Nellie Bly.

Clara, ever-dutiful, sees the trip as an inconvenient detour before her wedding to millionaire Charles Hancock, but it’s also a chance to embrace her love of art. Budding journalist Madeleine relishes the opportunity to develop her ambitions to report on the growing threat of Hitler’s Nazi party and Mussolini’s control in Italy.

Constantly at odds with each other as they explore the luxurious Queen Mary, the Orient Express, and the sights of Paris and  Venice,, Clara and Madeleine wonder if they can fulfil Violet’s wish, until a shocking truth about their family brings them closer together. But as they reach Vienna to deliver the final letter, old grudges threaten their reconciliation again. As political tensions rise, and Europe feels increasingly volatile, the pair are glad to head home on the Hindenburg, where fate will play its hand in the final stage of their journey.


Secrets My Father Kept

Secrets my Father Kept by Rachel Givney

Secrets My Father Kept is a captivating novel about love, sacrifice, secrets and resilience, as the clock inexorably ticks down to a devastating world war. It’s February 1939. As the Führer edges towards an invasion of Poland, total war looms in Europe. However in Krakow, seventeen\-year\-old Marie Karska’s primary concern is the unexplained disappearance of her mother fifteen years ago, and her father Dominik’s unbreakable silence on the matter. Even his wife’s name is a secret he guards closely. Dominik, a well\-respected and innovative doctor at the local hospital, has devoted his life to caring for his only daughter. Yet a black fear haunts him \- over the questionable act he committed to keep Marie safe. And with German troops now marching to the border, he needs to find her a husband. One who will protect her when he no longer can… But Marie has already met the man she wants to marry: her childhood friend Ben. She’s determined that his Jewish faith won’t stand in the way of their future together. And nor will her father’s refusal to explain the past stop her from unpicking his darkest secret.

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Non-Fiction

Going to My Father's House: A History of My Times

Going to my Father’s House : A History of my Times by Patrick Joyce

A historian’s personal journey in the complex questions of immigration, home and nation.
From Ireland to London in the 1950s, Derry in the Troubles to contemporary, de-industrialised Manchester, Joyce finds the ties of place, family and the past are difficult to break. Why do certain places continue to haunt us? What does it mean to be British after the suffering of Empire and of war? How do we make our home in a hypermobile world without remembering our pasts? Patrick Joyce’s parents moved from Ireland in the 1930s and made their home in west London. But they never really left the homeland. And so as he grew up among the streets of Paddington and Notting Hill and when he visited his family in Ireland he felt a tension between the notions of home, nation and belonging. Going to My Father’s House charts the historian’s attempt to make sense of these ties and to see how they manifest in a globalised world. He explores the places – the house, the street, the walls and the graves – that formed his own identity. He ask what place the ideas of history, heritage and nostalgia have in creating a sense of our selves. He concludes with a plea for a history that holds the past to account but also allows for dynamic, inclusive change.

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So that’s all for this week.

Happy Reading!

6 comments

  1. I don’t know what your thoughts are on prequels/sequels and books ‘influenced’ by a classic but I find them off putting. Hence why the Mrs Rochester won’t be making its way to my house 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • In the case of the book in question it’s basically just using the same plot. I suspect there are dozens of books that re-use plots, this one has just chosen not to hide it. It will be read by an audience that probably know nothing of the original. I suppose there’s always a chance that it might make them want to read Jean Eyre, but I suspect not. What I’m more likely to avoid are prequels/sequels that have a compatible time frame, especially if I’ve read the original. They always feel a bit presumptuous. If it also relates to a book I enjoyed I don’t want it spoiling by someone else’s interpretation of plot and character.

      Like

    • Hi Shaharee, I state quite clearly that these are titles that I pick from listings found in The Bookseller. I also clarify that I don’t see any advance copies, my choices are based on the blurb, gut instinct and what I might happen to fancy reading at the time. These are purely the books that I’d fancy reading. I certainly don’t read them or claim that I will. So thankfully that leaves me plenty of time for myself.

      Liked by 1 person

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