Happy New Year! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and enjoyed your New Year celebrations. I had a busy December with Christmas parties, meeting up with family, Christmas shopping, wrapping of gifts and lots and lots of reading.
I was lucky enough to get through quite a backlog in December and I didn’t buy anything, which I am considering a win! I was also fortunate to receive some wonderful advance copies – 2018 looks like it is going to be a wonderful year for books.
Books I Read
Anatomy of a Scandal by Sarah Vaughan is published by Simon and Schuster on 11th January and is an incredibly timely novel which concentrates on a MP who has been accused of sexual assault. Told both via his wife and the prosecuting barrister, Anatomy of a Scandal twists and turns through the corridors of power and is a gripping read. You can pre-order it here and I will be posting a full review on publication day.
I have written before about how much I loved Black Chalk by Christopher J. Yates and so I was really excited to read Grist Mill Road. This is a book which opens with a gruesome and terrifying nonsensical act and follows the main players from the 1980s to the present day. It explores memory and loyalty and I couldn’t put it down. Grist Mill Road is published by Macmillan Picador on the 9th January when I will be posting my full review but you can pre-order here.
I read and reviewed Tall Chimneys by Allie Cresswell as part of the blog tour in December – this is a family saga which spans a lifetime taking in key moments in history such as WW2. You can read my full review here.
The Betrayals by Fiona Neill is a brilliant book which looks at memory, perception and tackles difficult issues such as cancer, OCD and mental illness. Told in multi-narrative and flitting back and forth between the present day and a key event in the past this book had me gripped – you can read my full review here.
Thresholds is the latest in the Walsh series of books by Kate Canterbary which I love. They are well-written, fun and pure escapism. I was too poorly to go to work and had to phone in sick and ended up devouring this surprise release in one day.
A Boy Called Christmas by Matt Haig was our Book Club choice for December and oh my word it is beautiful. It got a very rare 10 from me – it is well-written, funny, sweet and magical. Brilliant for both big and small kids alike.
I reviewed Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski last year and it was one of my Top Reads of 2017 so I was super excited to read Hydra published by Orenda Books. Hydra is in the same podcast style as Six Stories and examines the Macleod Massacre, a fictitious account of the death of a family at the hands of one of the daughters, Arla. I am on the Blog Tour for and I will be posting my full review on the 6th January but if you can’t wait until then the ebook is available now with the paperback being released on the 15th January and you can pre-order it here.
The Confession by Jo Spain is published by Quercus Books on the 25th January and it is an intriguing thriller – we find out who did it, we just don’t know why. Set in the days of the Celtic Tiger and the aftermath of its implosion this book is clever and well written. I am on the Blog Tour for The Confession and you will be able to read my full review on the 18th January. In the meantime you can pre-order here.
The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor is a thriller which examines the long lasting effects of a crime which took place in a small British town in the 1980s. This book tackles childhood friendships, relationships and murder via a dual timeline of 1986 and 2016. The Chalk Man is released on the 11th January and can be pre-ordered here – i’ll be posting a full review soon.
Exposure by Helen Dunmore was the last book that I read in 2017 and what a treat it was. I’ll be posting a full review soon but suffice to say I thoroughly enjoyed this wonderful and keenly observed novel set in 1960s Britain at the height of the Cold War.
Advanced Copies I Received
A Map of the Dark by Karen Ellis is published on the 11th January by Hodder & Stoughton and sounds like it is going to be a cracking thriller.
A girl missing
A woman, searching
A killer, planning…
A thrilling new FBI series for fans of Tess Gerritsen and Karin Slaughter.
FBI Agent Elsa Myers finds missing people.
She knows how it feels to be lost…
Though her father lies dying in a hospital north of New York City, Elsa cannot refuse a call for help. A teenage girl has gone missing from Forest Hills, Queens, and during the critical first hours of the case, a series of false leads hides the fact that she did not go willingly.
With each passing hour, as the hunt for Ruby deepens into a search for a man who may have been killing for years, the case starts to get underneath Elsa’s skin. Everything she has buried – her fraught relationship with her sister and niece, her self-destructive past, her mother’s death – threatens to resurface, with devastating consequences.
In order to save the missing girl, she may have to lose herself…and return to the darkness she’s been hiding from for years.
Our House by Louise Candlish is Simon & Schuster on 5th April and I am really looking forward to getting stuck into this as it sounds so different.
On a bright January morning in the London suburbs, a family moves into the house they’ve just bought in Trinity Avenue.
Nothing strange about that. Except it is your house. And you didn’t sell it.
For better, for worse.
When Fi arrives home to find a removals van outside her house, she is completely blind-sided. Trinity Avenue has been her family’s home for years. Where are all her belongings? How could this have happened? Desperately calling her ex-husband, Bram, who owns the house with her, Fi discovers he has disappeared.
For richer, for poorer.
The more Fi uncovers, the more she realises their lives have been turned upside by a nightmare of their own making. A devastating crime has been committed, but who exactly is the guilty party? What has Bram hidden from her – and what has she hidden from him?
Till death us do part.
The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn is published by Harper Collins UK on 25th January 2018 and it sounds very Rear Window-esque.
What did she see?
It’s been ten long months since Anna Fox last left her home. Ten months during which she has haunted the rooms of her old New York house like a ghost, lost in her memories, too terrified to step outside.
Anna’s lifeline to the real world is her window, where she sits day after day, watching her neighbours. When the Russells move in, Anna is instantly drawn to them. A picture-perfect family of three, they are an echo of the life that was once hers.
But one evening, a frenzied scream rips across the silence, and Anna witnesses something no one was supposed to see. Now she must do everything she can to uncover the truth about what really happened. But even if she does, will anyone believe her? And can she even trust herself?
Hiding by Jenny Morton Potts is published on the 1st February – many thanks to Jenny for a copy of her book.
A gripping psychological thriller with chiller twists, from a unique new voice.
Kellar Baye and Rebecca Brown live on different sides of the Atlantic. Until she falls in love with him, Rebecca knows nothing of Keller. But he’a known about her for a very long time, and now he wants to destroy her.
This is the story of two families. One living under the threat of execution in North Carolina. The other caught up in a dark mystery in the Scottish Highlands. The families’ paths are destined to cross. But why? And can anything save them when that happens?
I loved The Dry by Jane Harper (see my review here), and was thrilled to be asked to be on the Blog Tour for Jane Harper’s second book, Force of Nature by Little Brown on the 8th February.
FIVE WENT OUT. FOUR CAME BACK…
Is Alice here? Did she make it? Is she safe? In the chaos, in the night, it was impossible to say which of the four had asked after Alice’s welfare. Later, when everything got worse, each would insist it had been them.
Five women reluctantly pick up their backpacks and start walking along the muddy track. Only four come out the other side.
The hike through the rugged landscape is meant to take the office colleagues out of their air-conditioned comfort zone and teach resilience and team building. At least that is what the corporate retreat website advertises.
Federal Police Agent Aaron Falk has a particularly keen interest in the whereabouts of the missing bushwalker. Alice Russell is the whistleblower in his latest case – and Alice knew secrets. About the company she worked for and the people she worked with.
Far from the hike encouraging teamwork, the women tell Falk a tale of suspicion, violence and disintegrating trust. And as he delves into the disappearance, it seems some dangers may run far deeper than anyone knew.
Deep Blue Trouble by Steph Broadribb is the follow up to Deep Down Dead and I am on the Blog Tour on the 31st January.
Her daughter Dakota is safe, but her cancer is threatening a comeback, and Lori needs JT – Dakota’s daddy and the man who taught Lori everything – alive and kicking. Problem is, he’s behind bars, and heading for death row. Desperate to save him, Lori does a deal, taking on off-the-books job from shady FBI agent Alex Monroe. Bring back on-the-run felon, Gibson ‘The Fish’ Fletcher, and JT walks free. Teaming up with local bounty hunter Dez McGregor threatens to put the whole job in danger. But this is one job she’s got to get right, or she’ll lose everything…