The Bad Neighbour by Jennie Ensor
In March 2020, the Covid pandemic hits the sleepy English village of Brampton. At the start of lockdown, social climber and local busybody Tara Sanderson sets up a community group to help vulnerable residents through the crisis. Elderly Elspeth Chambers, her longstanding neighbour and friend, accepts Tara’s offer to buy food and collect medicine for her.
But it isn’t long before neighbourliness and community spirit turn sour. Tensions arise when Tara becomes jealous of Elspeth’s emerging friendship with Ashley Kahn, a recent arrival in Wilton Close. Suspecting there is more to Tara’s hostility toward them than meets the eye, Ashley and Elspeth start to uncover their neighbour’s long-buried secrets…
PS I Hate You by Sophie Ranald
Relationship: Hanging by a thread.
Sex life: Dead on arrival.
It’s normal to hate the man of your dreams, right?
Once upon a time, Abbie and Matt had swoon-worthy mini breaks in Paris, and Abbie would cook him steak wearing nothing but an apron and high heels. These days, they’re experiencing the longest dry spell on record… And Abbie is keeping a very big secret.
But she’s not ready to give up. Nobody knows Abbie like Matt does, and it helps that he’s tall, dark and handsome, with hazel eyes and dimples to die for.
Determined to reignite the romance, Abbie initiates Operation Memory Lane and recreates their happiest memories. Maybe breakfast in bed, sexy lingerie, dirty martinis and a romantic weekend in the countryside will bring back Abbie’s butterflies and make her giddy with happiness…
But revisiting the past is a risky business, and secrets always come out in the end. Will the truth ruin their second chance at love?
Night Shadows by Eva Bjorg Aegisdottir
The small community of Akranes is devastated when a young man dies in a mysterious house fire, and when Detective Elma and her colleagues from West Iceland CID discover the fire was arson, they become embroiled in an increasingly perplexing case involving multiple suspects. What’s more, the dead man’s final online search raises fears that they could be investigating not one murder, but two.
A few months before the fire, a young Dutch woman takes a job as an au pair in Iceland, desperate to make a new life for herself after the death of her father. But the seemingly perfect family who employs her turns out to have problems of its own and she soon discovers she is running out of people to turn to.
As the police begin to home in on the truth, Elma, already struggling to come to terms with a life-changing event, finds herself in mortal danger as it becomes clear that someone has secrets they’ll do anything to hide…
The Slow Lane Walkers Club by Rosa Temple
Daniel isn’t used to living life in the slow lane. So when he finds himself unexpectedly jobless and back in his old Cornish hometown, he can’t sit still.
Hazel used to be adventurous too. But now widowed and in her eighties, she barely leaves the house. When she sees an advert for Daniel’s new walking club, she grabs at the chance of some excitement.
Daniel’s heart sinks when he sees that the only person who’s turned up for his walking club is the crazy old lady from two doors down. But what he doesn’t expect is to discover that Hazel is one of the most fascinating people he’s ever met . . .
The Maid’s Secret by Shari J Ryan
Czechoslovakia, 1940: “We will always have our memories,” he says, as the soldiers pull him away. “You will survive this. You are braver than you know. Remember that, always.” This heartbreaking World War Two page-turner shows that love is more powerful than hatred, bravery can overcome evil, and hope is stronger than darkness.
In the middle of the night, while I am curled in Ben’s arms, there is a harsh knock on the door. My blood turns to ice. The love of my life is Jewish, and I am a Romany maid; every second that we exist in Hitler’s Europe, we are in danger. Every day, we have been huddling around a crackling radio, listening for news of this evil war. Every night, we have feared we won’t live till dawn.
The banging continues, and we leap out of bed. I can hardly breathe as I open the door, seeing Nazis standing before us. My heart cracks as the soldiers grab Ben. I’m powerless to stop them from shoving him into a wagon, bound for the place of no return.
The love of my life is now imprisoned in wire with thousands of other innocent inmates. For every moment he is trapped behind the gates of hell, he gets closer to death—surviving on scraps of food, and forced to work in gruelling conditions.
The soldiers haven’t arrested me yet, but it’s only a matter of time. I vow to stay alive for Ben, not to give up hope. I’ll stop at nothing to escape the enemy as they hunt me down.
With our fate in the hands of monsters, will we ever see each other again? And will our love for one another save us—or kill us?
The Book-Lovers Retreat by Heidi Swain
One long summer. One perfect setting. Can fiction inspire real life…?
Sometimes a book grabs you by the heart and grows to mean everything to you. That’s what Hope Falls is to friends Emily, Rachel and Tori. So, when they get the chance to spend a whole summer at the cottage in Lakeside where the film adaptation was located, they know it is going to be the holiday of a lifetime.
Spending six weeks away will give them a chance to re-evaluate their life choices. For Emily to decide which way her career will go – the safe route, or the more risky creative option? And for Rachel to decide whether to move in with her partner Jeremy. Then Tori has to drop out at the last moment, and her space is offered to another Hope Falls afficionado, Alex.
But when Alex turns out not to be who they expected, the holiday takes an unforeseen turn. And as the summer develops, so does their friendship. Could this be where they uncover their future selves, find love in all its forms and where their lives will change course forever…?
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You have some good sounding ones highlighted today, Jill. I am interested in The Slow Lane Walkers Club and Night Shadows. Night Shadows is on sale here so I grabbed it, but not the Walkers Club. It is now on my wishlist.
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I’ve got both too. I read the first in the Forbidden Iceland series and really enjoyed it x
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I should check to see if I can find the first one before I read this one then. Thanks, Jill.
It’s called The Creak on the Stairs and is 99p over here so fingers crossed on offer with you.
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Thanks, Jill, I will check.
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