It’s book haul time! You know the drill by now, enjoy!
The Lion Tamer Who Lost by Louise Beech (Orenda Books)
Be careful what you wish for…
Long ago, Andrew made a childhood wish, and kept it in a silver box. When it finally comes true, he wishes it hadn’t…
Long ago, Ben made a promise and he had a dream: to travel to Africa to volunteer at a lion reserve. When he finally makes it, it isn’t for the reasons he imagined…
Ben and Andrew keep meeting in unexpected places, and the intense relationship that develops seems to be guided by fate. Or is it?
What if the very thing that draws them together is tainted by past secrets that threaten everything?
A dark, consuming drama that shifts from Zimbabwe to England, and then back into the past, The Lion Tamer Who Lost is also a devastatingly beautiful love story … with a tragic heart.
The Shrouded Path by Sarah Ward (Faber & Faber)
The past won’t stay buried forever.
November, 1957: Six teenage girls walk in the churning Derbyshire mists, the first chills of winter in the air. Their voices carrying across the fields, they follow the old train tracks into the dark tunnel of the Cutting. Only five appear on the other side.
October, 2014: a dying mother, feverishly fixated on a friend from her childhood, makes a plea: ‘Find Valerie.’ Mina’s elderly mother had never discussed her childhood with her daughter before. So who was Valerie? Where does her obsession spring from?
DC Connie Childs, off balance after her last big case, is partnered up with new arrival to Bampton, Peter Dahl. Following up on what seems like a simple natural death, DC Childs’ old instincts kick in, pointing her right back to one cold evening in 1957. As Connie starts to broaden her enquiries, the investigation begins to spiral increasingly close to home.
Aftershock by Adam Hamdy (Headline)
THEY BELIEVED IT WAS OVER
Having survived the lethal Pendulum conspiracy, photographer John Wallace atones for his past mistakes.
DI Patrick Bailey clings to the hope that he can, at last, return to a normal life in London.
BUT IT’S ONLY JUST BEGINNING
FBI investigator Christine Ash – alone and paranoid – hunts down the remaining members of the ruthless Foundation organisation.
DARK FORCES ARE RISING AGAIN
But when masked assassins strike at the heart of the UK government, a shocking new threat emerges that forces all three to reunite.
DEADLIER THAN EVER BEFORE
With time running out, they must defeat a lethal new adversary: a manipulative mastermind with sinister powers unlike anything they’ve seen before.
I Can’t Begin to Tell You by Elizabeth Buchan (from the author)
When the Nazis invade Denmark, British-born Kay Eberstern is sickened when Bror – her husband of twenty-five years – collaborates with the enemy to save his family home.
Lured by British Intelligence into a covert world of resistance, her life in the hands of London’s code breakers, Kay’s betrayal of her husband is complete as she risks her home and children to protect an SOE agent who won’t even tell her his name.
As her family – especially her headstrong daughter – is drawn further into danger, Kay is faced with a wrenching moral dilemma. Who will be sacrificed next for the cause? Can she and Bror ever find their way back to one another?
I Can’t Begin to Tell You is a stunning story of bravery, broken loyalties, lies and how the power of love can bring redemption even to the darkest of places.
Before Her Eyes by Jack Jordan (from the author)
She can’t see the killer
But the killer can see her…
Naomi Hannah has been blind since birth. Struggling with living in a small, claustrophobic town, Naomi contemplates ending her life. But then she stumbles across the body of a young woman who has been brutally murdered. She senses someone else there at the scene – watching her. Naomi may not be able to see the killer’s face, but she is still the only person who can identify him.
As the police begin hunting the person responsible and more victims are discovered, Naomi is forced to answer the question on which her fate hangs: why did the killer let her live?
In a town this small, the murderer must be close, perhaps even before her very eyes…
Sleeping Through War by Jackie Carreira (from the author)
Set against the backdrop of real, world-changing events, these are the stories that are forgotten in the history books. The year is 1968 and the world is changing forever. During the month of May, students are rioting and workers are striking across the globe, civil rights are being fought and died for, nuclear bombs are being tested, there are major conflicts on every continent, and war is raging in Vietnam. Against this volatile background, three women strive to keep everything together.
Rose must keep her dignity and compassion as a West Indian nurse in East London. Amalia must keep hoping that her son can escape their seedy life in Lisbon. And Mrs Johnson in Washington DC must keep writing to her son in Vietnam. She has no-one else to talk to. Three different women, three different countries, but all striving to survive – a courageous attitude that everybody can relate to.
Although Sleeping Through War is a work of fiction, this somewhat hidden history attempts to humanise a few weeks in time that were so stuffed with monumental events that it’s easy to forget the people involved. The author was a child in 1968 and lived in London and Lisbon during the 1960s. She met women like these and didn’t want their voices to go unheard into the future. Readers of both history and literary fiction will enjoy this emotionally-vivid work that weaves fiction into fact.
Some They Lie by MK Farrar (from the author)
Everybody hides the monster inside…
When Olivia Midhurst meets Michael, she doesn’t fool herself that he’s the perfect guy. No one is perfect—she knows that better than most. Everyone has their secrets, their skeletons in the closet.
But something about Michael’s behaviour sets alarm bells ringing, and, when people around her start to go missing, and then turn up dead, she’s forced to act.
Knowing the police will never believe what she’s witnessed, and terrified her accusations will only drag up the past she’s worked so hard to bury, Olivia has no choice but to take things into her own hands…
One Little Lie by Sam Carrington (Avon.)
‘My name is Alice. And my son is a murderer.’
Deborah’s son was killed four years ago. Alice’s son is in prison for committing that crime.
Deborah would give anything to have her boy back, and Alice would do anything to right her son’s wrongs.
Driven by guilt and the need for redemption, Alice has started a support group for parents with troubled children. But as the network begins to grow, she soon finds out just how easy it is for one little lie to spiral out of control…
They call it mother’s intuition, but can you ever really know your own child?
Perfect Prey; Perfect Death; Perfect Silence by Helen Fields (Avon.)
Books 2 – 4 in the DI Callanach series
The Tattoo Thief by Alison Belsham (Orion)
A policeman on his first murder case
A tattoo artist with a deadly secret
And a twisted serial killer sharpening his blades to kill again…
When Brighton tattoo artist Marni Mullins discovers a flayed body, newly-promoted DI Francis Sullivan needs her help. There’s a serial killer at large, slicing tattoos from his victims’ bodies while they’re still alive. Marni knows the tattooing world like the back of her hand, but has her own reasons to distrust the police. So when she identifies the killer’s next target, will she tell Sullivan or go after the Tattoo Thief alone?
Her Mother’s Grave by Lisa Regan (Bookouture)
When two young boys discover human bones buried beneath a tree in a trailer park, Detective Josie Quinn races to join her team at the scene. She used to play in those woods as a child, happier outside and away from her abusive mother, Belinda Rose.
Josie’s past crashes into her present when a rare dental condition confirms the bones belong to a teenage foster-child who was murdered thirty years ago. A girl named Belinda Rose…
Josie hasn’t seen her mother in years but, with an undeniable connection between her mother and the dead girl, does she dare try to track her down?
Just as Josie gets closer to uncovering a secret that will shatter her world forever, another body is uncovered. It’s suddenly clear that someone very close to Josie will stop at nothing to keep the truth buried forever.
As she battles the demons from her past, can Josie stop this killer before another precious life is taken?
Sticks and Stones by Jo Jakeman (via Over The Rainbow Book Blog)
Imogen’s husband is a bad man. His ex-wife and his new mistress might have different perspectives but Imogen thinks she knows the truth. And now he’s given her an ultimatum: get out of the family home in the next fortnight or I’ll fight you for custody of our son.
In a moment of madness, Imogen does something unthinkable: she locks her husband in the cellar. Now she’s in control. But how far will she go to protect her son and punish her husband? And what will happen when his ex and his girlfriend get tangled up in her plans?
Into the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant (via Zuky the Bookbum)
Seven years ago the Atargatis set off on a voyage to the Mariana Trench to film a mockumentary, bringing to life ancient sea creatures of legend.
It was lost at sea with all hands. Some have called it a tragedy; others have called it a hoax.
Now, a new crew has been assembled to investigate. And they’ll discover that whatever is down there is definitely no joke . . .
Goldsboro Books July BOTM:
Wrecker by Noel O’Reilly
A powerful debut exploring the dark side of Cornwall – the wrecking and the drowned sailors – where poverty drove villagers to dark deeds…
Shipwrecks are part of life in the remote village of Porthmorvoren, Cornwall. And as the sea washes the bodies of the drowned onto the beach, it also brings treasures: barrels of liquor, exotic fruit, the chance to lift a fine pair of boots from a corpse, maybe even a jewel or two.
When, after a fierce storm, Mary Blight rescues a man half-dead from the sea, she ignores the whispers of her neighbours and carries him home to nurse better. Gideon Stone is a Methodist minister from Newlyn, a married man. Touched by Mary’s sacrifice and horrified by the superstitions and pagan beliefs the villagers cling to, Gideon sets out to bring light and salvation to Porthmorvoren by building a chapel on the hill.
But the village has many secrets and not everyone wants to be saved. As Mary and Gideon find themselves increasingly drawn together, jealousy, rumour and suspicion is rife. Gideon has demons of his own to face, and soon Mary’s enemies are plotting against her…
Watching You by Lisa Jewell
You’re back home after four years working abroad, new husband in tow.
You’re keen to find a place of your own. But for now you’re crashing in your big brother’s spare room.
That’s when you meet the man next door.
He’s the head teacher at the local school. Twice your age. Extraordinarily attractive. You find yourself watching him.
All the time.
But you never dreamed that your innocent crush might become a deadly obsession. Or that someone is watching you.
The Bachman Books by Stephen King
Written under the nom de plume “Richard Bachman”, here are four early novels by bestselling author Stephen King: RAGE, a story of stunning psychological horror; THE LONG WALK, the tale of a macabre marathon; ROADWORK, a variation on the theme of “Home Sweet Home”; and THE RUNNING MAN, a nightmare vision of a ghoulish game show in which you bet your life–literally.
The Last One by Alexandra Oliva
She wanted an adventure. She never imagined it would go this far.
It begins with a reality TV show. Twelve contestants are sent into the woods to face challenges that will test the limits of their endurance. While they are out there, something terrible happens–but how widespread is the destruction, and has it occurred naturally or is it man-made? Cut off from society, the contestants know nothing of it. When one of them–a young woman the show’s producers call Zoo–stumbles across the devastation, she can imagine only that it is part of the game.
Alone and disoriented, Zoo is heavy with doubt regarding the life–and husband–she left behind, but she refuses to quit. Staggering countless miles across unfamiliar territory, Zoo must summon all her survival skills–and learn new ones as she goes.
But as her emotional and physical reserves dwindle, she grasps that the real world might have been altered in terrifying ways–and her ability to parse the charade will be either her triumph or her undoing.
Sophisticated and provocative, The Last One is a novel that forces us to confront the role that media plays in our perception of what is real: how readily we cast our judgments, how easily we are manipulated.
Breeze from the River Manjeera by Hema Macherla
Breeze from the River Manjeera tells the story of the engaging Neela who arrives in England from a small village in India as a bride for the brutal Ajay. The life that awaits Neela is a far cry from her hopes and expectations. Treated worse than a servant by her in-laws, and unwanted by her husband, she finally escapes in search of independence and freedom. The novel explores in a personal, moving way the issues around the deep-rooted traditions of arranged marriages and the struggle for young women like Neela to find love and happiness.
A born story-teller, Hema Macherla was short-listed for Richard & Judy with this novel, and has since written the epic Blue Eyes.
The Book of the Unnamed Midwife by Meg Elison
When she fell asleep, the world was doomed. When she awoke, it was dead.
In the wake of a fever that decimated the earth’s population—killing women and children and making childbirth deadly for the mother and infant—the midwife must pick her way through the bones of the world she once knew to find her place in this dangerous new one. Gone are the pillars of civilization. All that remains is power—and the strong who possess it.
A few women like her survived, though they are scarce. Even fewer are safe from the clans of men, who, driven by fear, seek to control those remaining. To preserve her freedom, she dons men’s clothing, goes by false names, and avoids as many people as possible. But as the world continues to grapple with its terrible circumstances, she’ll discover a role greater than chasing a pale imitation of independence.
After all, if humanity is to be reborn, someone must be its guide.
Swan Song by Kelleigh Greenberg-Jephcott
They told him everything.
He told everyone else.
Over countless martini-soaked Manhattan lunches, they shared their deepest secrets and greatest fears. On exclusive yachts sailing the Mediterranean, on private jets streaming towards Jamaica, on Yucatán beaches in secluded bays, they gossiped about sex, power, money, love and fame. They never imagined he would betray them so absolutely.
In the autumn of 1975, after two decades of intimate friendships, Truman Capote detonated a literary grenade, forever rupturing the elite circle he’d worked so hard to infiltrate. Why did he do it, knowing what he stood to lose? Was it to punish them? To make them pay for their manners, money and celebrated names? Or did he simply refuse to believe that they could ever stop loving him? Whatever the motive, one thing remains indisputable: nine years after achieving wild success with In Cold Blood, Capote committed an act of professional and social suicide with his most lethal of weapons . . . Words.
A dazzling debut about the line between gossip and slander, self-creation and self-preservation, SWAN SONG is the tragic story of the literary icon of his age and the beautiful, wealthy, vulnerable women he called his Swans.
‘Writers write. And one can’t be surprised if they write what they know.’
You Were Made for This by Michelle Sacks
A gripping page-turner for fans of The Couple Next Door, Michelle Sacks’s You Were Made For This provocatively explores the darker side of marriage, motherhood and friendship.
Doting wife, devoted husband, cherished child. Merry, Sam and Conor are the perfect family in the perfect place. Merry adores baking, gardening, and caring for her infant son, while Sam pursues a new career in film. In their idyllic house in the Swedish woods, they can hardly believe how lucky they are. What perfect new lives they’ve built for themselves, away from New York and the events that overshadowed their happiness there.
And then Merry’s closest friend Frank comes to stay. All their lives, the two women have been more like sisters than best friends. And that’s why Frank sees things that others might miss. Treacherous things that unfold behind closed doors.
But soon it’s clear that everyone inside the house has something to hide. And as the truth begins to show through the cracks, Merry, Frank, and Sam grow all the more desperate to keep their picture-perfect lives intact.
The Death of Mrs Westaway by Ruth Ware
When Harriet Westaway receives an unexpected letter telling her she’s inherited a substantial bequest from her Cornish grandmother, it seems like the answer to her prayers. She owes money to a loan shark and the threats are getting increasingly aggressive: she needs to get her hands on some cash fast.
There’s just one problem – Hal’s real grandparents died more than twenty years ago. The letter has been sent to the wrong person. But Hal knows that the cold-reading techniques she’s honed as a seaside fortune teller could help her con her way to getting the money. If anyone has the skills to turn up at a stranger’s funeral and claim a bequest they’re not entitled to, it’s her.
Hal makes a choice that will change her life for ever. But once she embarks on her deception, there is no going back. She must keep going or risk losing everything, even her life…
The Brighton Mermaid by Dorothy Koomson
Brighton Beach, 1993
Teenagers Nell and Jude find the body of a young woman and when no one comes to claim her, she becomes known as the Brighton Mermaid. Nell is still struggling to move on when, three weeks later, Jude disappears.
Twenty-five years on, Nell is forced to quit her job to find out who the Brighton Mermaid really was – and what happened to her best friend that summer.
But as Nell edges closer to the truth, dangerous things start to happen. Someone seems to be watching her every move, and soon she starts to wonder who in her life she can actually trust…
The Stand by Stephen King
Imagine America devastated by a vast killer plague that moves from coast to coast. Imagine the countryside destroyed and great cities decimated as the entire population desperately and futilely seeks safety. Imagine then an even greater evil rising to threaten the survivors—and a last embattled group of men and women coming together to make a last stand against it.
Now You See Her by Heidi Perks
Charlotte is looking after her best friend’s daughter the day she disappears. She thought the little girl was playing with her own children. She swears she only took her eyes off them for a second.
Now, Charlotte must do the unthinkable: tell her best friend Harriet that her only child is missing. The child she was meant to be watching.
Devastated, Harriet can no longer bear to see Charlotte. No one could expect her to trust her friend again.
Only now she needs to. Because two weeks later Harriet and Charlotte are both being questioned separately by the police. And secrets are about to surface.
Someone is hiding the truth about what really happened to Alice.
The three nonfiction titles I received free from Crown Publishing this month are books featured on Rise Up and Read. These books are for readers devoted to activism, those just picking up a cause, and for anyone seeking to empower themselves or others through knowledge. On the website, riseupandread.com, there are guides and resources that will help you start conversations, learn more, and take action.
Writing my Wrongs by Shaka Senghor
Shaka Senghor was raised in a middle class neighborhood on Detroit’s east side during the height of the 1980s crack epidemic. An honor roll student and a natural leader, he dreamed of becoming a doctor—but at age 11, his parents’ marriage began to unravel, and the beatings from his mother worsened, sending him on a downward spiral that saw him run away from home, turn to drug dealing to survive, and end up in prison for murder at the age of 19, fuming with anger and despair.
Writing My Wrongs is the story of what came next. During his nineteen-year incarceration, seven of which were spent in solitary confinement, Senghor discovered literature, meditation, self-examination, and the kindness of others—tools he used to confront the demons of his past, forgive the people who hurt him, and begin atoning for the wrongs he had committed. Upon his release at age thirty-eight, Senghor became an activist and mentor to young men and women facing circumstances like his. His work in the community and the courage to share his story led him to fellowships at the MIT Media Lab and the Kellogg Foundation, membership in Oprah Winfrey’s SuperSoul 100, and invitations to speak at events like TED and the Aspen Ideas Festival.
In equal turns, Writing My Wrongs is a page-turning portrait of life in the shadow of poverty, violence, and fear; an unforgettable story of redemption, reminding us that our worst deeds don’t define us; and a compelling witness to our country’s need for rethinking its approach to crime, prison, and the men and women sent there.
I’m Still Here by Austin Channing Brown
Austin Channing Brown’s first encounter with a racialized America came at age 7, when she discovered her parents named her Austin to deceive future employers into thinking she was a white man. Growing up in majority-white schools, organizations, and churches, Austin writes, “I had to learn what it means to love blackness,” a journey that led to a lifetime spent navigating America’s racial divide as a writer, speaker and expert who helps organizations practice genuine inclusion.
In a time when nearly all institutions (schools, churches, universities, businesses) claim to value “diversity” in their mission statements, I’m Still Here is a powerful account of how and why our actions so often fall short of our words. Austin writes in breathtaking detail about her journey to self-worth and the pitfalls that kill our attempts at racial justice, in stories that bear witness to the complexity of America’s social fabric–from Black Cleveland neighborhoods to private schools in the middle-class suburbs, from prison walls to the boardrooms at majority-white organizations.
For readers who have engaged with America’s legacy on race through the writing of Ta-Nehisi Coates and Michael Eric Dyson, I’m Still Here is an illuminating look at how white, middle-class, Evangelicalism has participated in an era of rising racial hostility, inviting the reader to confront apathy, recognize God’s ongoing work in the world, and discover how blackness–if we let it–can save us all.
Give People Money by Annie Lowry
A brilliantly reported, global look at universal basic income—a stipend given to every citizen—and why it might be necessary in an age of rising inequality, persistent poverty, and dazzling technology.
Imagine if every month the government deposited $1,000 into your bank account, with nothing expected in return. It sounds crazy. But it has become one of the most influential and hotly debated policy ideas of our time. Futurists, radicals, libertarians, socialists, union representatives, feminists, conservatives, Bernie supporters, development economists, child-care workers, welfare recipients, and politicians from India to Finland to Canada to Mexico—all are talking about UBI.
In this sparkling and provocative book, economics writer Annie Lowrey examines the UBI movement from many angles. She travels to Kenya to see how a UBI is lifting the poorest people on earth out of destitution, India to see how inefficient government programs are failing the poor, South Korea to interrogate UBI’s intellectual pedigree, and Silicon Valley to meet the tech titans financing UBI pilots in expectation of a world with advanced artificial intelligence and little need for human labor.
Lowrey explores the potential of such a sweeping policy and the challenges the movement faces, among them contradictory aims, uncomfortable costs, and, most powerfully, the entrenched belief that no one should get something for nothing. In the end, she shows how this arcane policy has the potential to solve some of our most intractable economic problems, while offering a new vision of citizenship and a firmer foundation for our society in this age of turbulence and marvels.
The Choice by Edith Eger (Penguin, Ebury)
In 1944, sixteen-year-old Edith Eger was sent to Auschwitz. There she endured unimaginable experiences, including being made to dance for the infamous Josef Mengele.
Over the coming months, her bravery helped her sister to survive and led to her bunkmates rescuing her during a death march.
When their camp was finally liberated, Edith was pulled from a pile of bodies, barely alive.
In The Choice, Edith Eger shares her life, remarkable because her years in the concentration camp encouraged her to find a hope and resilience that most of us would never think was possible.
It wasn’t easy but, as she tried to find a future for herself after the Second World War, partly by helping many others through their own versions of trauma, she discovered an honesty, strength and empowerment within herself that makes for a memorable and inspiring read.
Compelling, truly remarkable, and ultimately triumphant, The Choice is the unforgettable memoir of a woman who has seen the worst and lived the best.
Another successful month of hauling! I’m not using Netgalley as much as I used to, yet there are 18 book on my NG shelf, I think I need to dedication some time to lowering that number!
Did you see any books that take your fancy?
Did we haul any of the same books?