Titles recommended to book clubs

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Groups that meet in the library are entitled to a group ticket and sets can be delivered to a library of your choice.

The sets are popular reading group titles which we think you will enjoy discussing. Discover some great book titles that your group can read next.

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Book List – updated January 2024

Akkad, Hassan

Hope Not Fear

9781529059854

NEW March 2023

A testament to human strength, courage and compassion, this title shows that nobody is powerless to change the world. Refugee, filmmaker, and activist Hassan Akkad traces his campaigns for justice, from protesting the Assad regime in Syria to winning greater rights for cleaners in the NHS. 

Allen, Lesley

The lonely life of Biddy Weir

9781785770388

Abandoned by her mother as a baby, Biddy lives in her own little world, happy to pass her time watching the birds - until Alison Flemming joins her school. Popular and beautiful, but with a dangerous streak, Alison quickly secures the admiration of her fellow students. All except one. And Alison doesn't take kindly to people who don't fit her mould.

Allende, Isabel

A long petal of the sea

9781526615947

That September 3, 1939, the day of the Spanish exiles' splendid arrival in Chile, the Second World War broke out in Europe. Victor Dalmau is a young doctor when he is caught up in the Spanish Civil War, a tragedy that leaves his life - and the fate of his country - forever changed. Together with his sister-in-law, the pianist Roser Bruguera, he is forced out of his beloved Barcelona and into exile. When opportunity to seek refuge in Chile arises, they take it, boarding a ship chartered by the poet Pablo Neruda to the promised 'long petal of sea and wine and snow' over the seas. There, they find themselves enmeshed in a rich web of characters who come together in love and tragedy over the course of four generations, destined to witness the battle between freedom and repression as it plays out across the world.

Angelou, Maya

I know why the caged bird sings

9780860685111

In this, the first volume of her autobiography, writer and poet Maya Angelou reflects on her childhood spent growing up in the American South of the 1930s. There she learned the power of the white townsfolk and suffered the trauma of rape.

Archer, Jeffrey

Four Warned

9781447252481
NEW January 2024

These four short stories from a master storyteller are packed full of twists and turns. Jeremy finds out exactly the best way to steal the perfect ring for his fiancee. Albert celebrates his 100th birthday, and is pleased to be sent The Queen's Birthday Telegram. In Russia, businessman Richard plots the ideal way to murder his wife. And as Diana, a busy single mother, drives to have dinner with friends, she realises that a black van is following her.

Austen, Jane

Sense and Sensibility

9780141439662

Jane Austen sets social snobbery against summer picnics; social rejection against the passion of real love. Her warm portrait of the relationship between two very different sisters contrasts her precise observation of vanity, selfishness and snobbery. This edition includes explanatory notes, and an introduction.

Banville, John

April in Spain

9780571363582

When Dublin pathologist Quirke glimpses a familiar face while on holiday with his wife, it's hard, at first, to tell whether his imagination is just running away with him. Could she really be who he thinks she is, and have a connection with a crime that nearly brought ruin to an Irish political dynasty? Unable to ignore his instincts, Quirke makes a call back home and Detective St John Strafford is soon dispatched to Spain. But he's not the only one en route: as a terrifying hitman hunts down his prey, they are all set for a brutal showdown.

Barker, Pat

The Silence of the Girls

9780241983201

NEW August 2023

When her city falls to the Greeks, Briseis's old life is shattered. She is transformed from queen to captive, from free woman to slave, awarded to the god-like warrior Achilles as a prize of war. And she's not alone. On the same day, and on many others in the course of a long and bitter war, innumerable women have been wrested from their homes and flung to the fighters. The Trojan War is known as a man's story: a quarrel between men over a woman, stolen from her home and spirited across the sea. But what of the other women in this story, silenced by history? What words did they speak when alone with each other, in the laundry, at the loom, when laying out the dead?

Barker, Pat

The Women of Troy

9780241988336

Troy has fallen. The Greeks have won their bitter war. They can return home victors, loaded with their spoils: their stolen gold, stolen weapons, stolen women. All they need is a good wind to lift their sails. But the wind does not come. The gods have been offended - the body of Priam lies desecrated, unburied - and so the victors remain in limbo, camped in the shadow of the city they destroyed, pacing at the edge of an unobliging sea. And, in these empty, restless days, the hierarchies that held them together begin to fray, old feuds resurface and new suspicions fester. Largely unnoticed by her squabbling captors, Briseis remains in the Greek encampment. She forges alliances where she can - with young, dangerously naive Amina, with defiant, aged Hecuba, with Calchus, the disgraced priest - and begins to see the path to a kind of revenge.

Barnes, Julian

The Noise of Time

9781784703325

In May 1937 a man in his early thirties waits by the lift of a Leningrad apartment block. He waits all through the night, expecting to be taken away to the Big House. Any celebrity he has known in the previous decade is no use to him now. And few who are taken to the Big House ever return. So begins Julian Barnes's first novel since his Booker-winning 'The Sense of an Ending'. A story about the collision of art and power, about human compromise, human cowardice and human courage, it is the work of a true master.

Barry, Sebastian

Days Without End

9780571277049

Having signed up for the US army in the 1850s, aged barely 17, Thomas McNulty and his brother-in-arms, John Cole, go on to fight in the Indian wars and, ultimately, the Civil War. Orphans of terrible hardships themselves, they find these days to be vivid and alive, despite the horrors they both see and are complicit in.

Beckerman, Hannah

If only I could tell you

9781409177326

Audrey's family has fallen apart. Her two grown-up daughters, Jess and Lily, are estranged, and her two teenage granddaughters have never been allowed to meet. A secret that echoes back thirty years has splintered the family in two, but is also the one thing keeping them connected. As tensions reach breaking point, the irrevocable choice that one of them made all those years ago is about to surface. After years of secrets and silence, how can one broken family find their way back to each other?

Benjamin, Chloe

The Immortalists

9781472245007

It's 1969, and holed up in a grimy tenement building in New York's Lower East Side is a travelling psychic who claims to be able to tell anyone the date they will die. Four siblings, too young for what they are about to hear, sneak out to hear their fortunes. We then follow the intertwined paths the siblings take over the course of five decades and, in particular, how they choose to live with the supposed knowledge the fortune-teller gave them that day. This is a story about life, mortality and the choices we make: is it better to live a long and cautious life, or to burn brightly, but for the shortest time?

Bolton, Sharon

The Pact

9781409198321

A golden summer, and six talented friends are looking forward to the brightest of futures - until a daredevil game goes horribly wrong, and a woman and two children are killed. 18-year-old Megan takes the blame, leaving the others free to get on with their lives. In return, they each agree to a 'favour', payable on her release from prison. Twenty years later Megan is free. Let the games begin.

Bond, Caroline

The Second Child

9781786493361

It only takes a second to change a family forever. Why do you love your child? Is it because they're funny, kind or creative? Or is it simply because they're yours? Sarah and Phil love both their children. The couple have the same hopes and aspirations as any parent. But their expectations are shattered when they discover that their beloved Lauren has been born with a tiny genetic glitch that will shape her future, and theirs, irrevocably. Over time the family adapt and even thrive. Then one day a blood test result, changes everything. Lauren is not Phil's child. Suddenly, their precious family is on the brink of destruction. But the truth they face is far more complex than infidelity.

Boyd, William

Restless

9780747586203

What happens to your life when everything you thought you knew about your mother turns out to be an elaborate lie? Ruth Gilmartin discovers the strange and haunting truth about her mother, Sally, during the long hot summer of 1976.

Boyne, John

The heart’s invisible furies

9781784161002

Cyril Avery is not a real Avery - or at least that's what his adoptive parents tell him. And he never will be. But if he isn't a real Avery, then who is he? Born out of wedlock to a teenage girl cast out from her rural Irish community and adopted by a well-to-do if eccentric Dublin couple via the intervention of a hunchbacked Redemptorist nun, Cyril is adrift in the world, anchored only tenuously by his heartfelt friendship with the infinitely more glamourous and dangerous Julian Woodbead. At the mercy of fortune and coincidence, he will spend a lifetime coming to know himself and where he came from - and over his three score years and ten, will struggle to discover an identity, a home, a country and much more.

Bragg, Melvyn

Remember Me

9780340951231

A passionate but ultimately tragic love affair starts when two students - one French, one English - meet at university at the beginning of the 60s. From its tentative, unpromising early stages, the relationship develops into a life-changing one, whose profound impact continues to reverberate 40 years later.

Braithwaite, Oyinkan

The Baby is Mine

9781838952563

NEW January 2024

When his girlfriend throws him out during the pandemic, Bambi has to go to his Uncle's house in lock-down Lagos. He arrives during a blackout, and is surprised to find his Aunty Bidemi sitting in a candlelit room with another woman. They both claim to be the mother of the baby boy, fast asleep in his crib. At night Bambi is kept awake by the baby's cries, and during the days he is disturbed by a cockerel that stalks the garden. There is sand in the rice. A blood stain appears on the wall. Someone scores tribal markings into the baby's cheeks. Who is lying and who is telling the truth?

Buchan, Elizabeth

Two Women in Rome

9781786495358

Lottie Archer arrives in Rome excited to begin her new job as an archivist. When she discovers a valuable fifteenth-century painting, she is drawn to find out more about the woman who left it behind, Nina Lawrence. Nina seems to have led a rewarding and useful life, restoring Italian gardens to their full glory following the destruction of World War Two. So why did no one attend her funeral in 1978? In exploring Nina's past, Lottie unravels a tragic love story beset by the political turmoil of post-war Italy. And as she edges closer to understanding Nina, she begins to confront the losses in her own life.

Burns, Anna

Milkman

9780571338757

In this unnamed city, to be interesting is dangerous. Middle sister, our protagonist, is busy attempting to keep her mother from discovering her maybe-boyfriend and to keep everyone in the dark about her encounter with Milkman. But when first brother-in-law sniffs out her struggle, and rumours start to swell, middle sister becomes 'interesting'. The last thing she ever wanted to be. To be interesting is to be noticed and to be noticed is dangerous.

Burton, Jessie

The Miniaturist

9781447250937

On an autumn day in 1686, 18-year-old Nella Oortman knocks at the door of a grand house in the wealthiest quarter of Amsterdam. She has come from the country to begin a new life as the wife of illustrious merchant trader Johannes Brandt, but instead she is met by his sharp-tongued sister, Marin. Only later does Johannes appear and present her with an extraordinary wedding gift: a cabinet-sized replica of their home. It is to be furnished by an elusive miniaturist, whose tiny creations mirror their real-life counterparts in unexpected ways. Nella is at first mystified by the closed world of the Brandt household, but as she uncovers its secrets’ she realizes the escalating dangers that await them all.

Burton, Jessie

The Muse

9781447250975

On a hot July day in 1967, Odelle Bastien climbs the stone steps of the Skelton gallery in London, ready for her luck to change. She has been employed as a typist by the glamorous and enigmatic Marjorie Quick, who unlocks a potential Odelle didn't realize she had. When a lost masterpiece arrives at the gallery, Quick seems to know more than she is prepared to reveal and Odelle is determined to unravel the truth. The painting's secret history lies in 1936 and a large house in rural Spain, where Olive Schloss, the daughter of a renowned art dealer, is harbouring ambitions of her own. Into this fragile paradise comes two strangers, who overturn the Schloss family with explosive and devastating consequences.

Bythell, Shaun

The Diary of a Bookseller

9781781258637

Shaun Bythell owns The Bookshop, Wigtown - Scotland's largest second-hand bookshop. It contains 100,000 books, spread over a mile of shelving, with twisting corridors and roaring fires, and all set in a beautiful, rural town by the edge of the sea. A book-lover's paradise? Well, almost! In these wry and hilarious diaries, Shaun provides an inside look at the trials and tribulations of life in the book trade, from struggles with eccentric customers to wrangles with his own staff, who include the ski-suit-wearing, bin-foraging Nicky. He takes us with him on buying trips to old estates and auction houses, recommends books (both lost classics and new discoveries), introduces us to the thrill of the unexpected find, and evokes the rhythms and charms of small-town life, always with a sharp and sympathetic eye.

Candlish, Louise

Our House

9781471168062

When Fi Lawson arrives home to find strangers moving into her house, she is plunged into terror and confusion. She and her husband Bram have owned their home on Trinity Avenue for years and have no intention of selling. How can this other family possibly think the house is theirs? And why has Bram disappeared when she needs him most? Bram has made a catastrophic mistake and now he is paying. Unable to see his wife, his children or his home, he has nothing left but to settle scores. As the nightmare takes grip, both Bram and Fi try to make sense of the events that led to a devastating crime. What has he hidden from her - and what has she hidden from him? And will either survive the chilling truth - that there are far worse things you can lose than your house?

Candish, Louise

The Skylight

9781471198410

NEW January 2024

Simone has a secret. She likes to stand at her bathroom window and spy on the couple downstairs through their kitchen skylight. She knows what they eat for breakfast and who they’ve got over for dinner. She knows what mood they’re in before they even step out the door. There’s nothing wrong with looking, is there?

Candlish, Louise

The Swimming Pool

9781405919876

It's summer, and for teachers Ed and Natalie Steele this means six weeks off work with their young daughter Molly. Their lives are predictable and uncomplicated - or, at least, they were - until they met the Channing’s. Suddenly, glamorous Lara Channing, a former actress leading an eccentrically lavish lifestyle, is taking Natalie under her wing and the stability of summer takes an exciting turn. But are there hidden motives behind this new friendship? And when the end-of-summer party at the lido is cut short by a blackout, Natalie realises that she's been kept in the dark all along.

Cannon, Joanna

Three Things about Elsie

9780008196912

There are three things you should know about Elsie. The first thing is that she's my best friend. The second is that she always knows what to say to make me feel better. And the third thing - might take a little bit more explaining. 84-year-old Florence has fallen in her flat at Cherry Tree Home for the Elderly. As she waits to be rescued, Florence wonders if a terrible secret from her past is about to come to light; and, if the charming new resident is who he claims to be, why does he look exactly like a man who died 60 years ago?

Carty-Williams, Candice

Queenie

9781409180074

Queenie Jenkins can't cut a break. Well, apart from the one from her long term boyfriend, Tom. That's definitely just a break though. Definitely not a break up. Then there's her boss who doesn't seem to see her and her Caribbean family who don't seem to listen (if it's not Jesus or water rates, they're not interested). She's trying to fit in two worlds that don't really understand her. It's no wonder she's struggling. She was named to be queen of everything. So why is she finding it so hard to rule her own life?

Christie, Agatha

The Double Clue

QUICK READ

9780008615253

NEW January 2024

Here is the perfect introduction to Agatha Christie - four of the best Hercule Poirot stories, chosen for their readability and sense of adventure. A man is found shot through the head in a locked room. A wealthy banker vanishes while posting a letter. A thief disappears with a haul of rubies and emeralds. And, in the golden sands of Egypt, the men who discovered an ancient tomb are dying one by one. Hercule Poirot, the fussy Belgian detective with the egg-shaped head and immaculate moustache, solved some of the world's most puzzling crimes.

Cilliers, Victoria

I Survived

9781529020373

On Easter Sunday 2015, experienced skydiver Victoria Cilliers undertook a parachute jump, a gift from her husband, British army sergeant Emile Cilliers. Her parachutes failed to open and she plummeted 4,000 feet to the ground, sustaining life-threatening injuries. Miraculously, she survived. Then the police arrived at her door. Someone had tampered with her parachute and they suspected Emile. Victoria describes how she fell for Emile, and how the charming man she thought she knew gradually revealed a darker side, chipping away at her self-worth until she found it impossible to sift truth from lies. Can she really believe that her husband - the father of their two young children - tried to kill her? As more shocking revelations come to light, and she has to face his trial and relentless media scrutiny, she struggles to come to terms with the past.

Clarke, Susanna

Piranesi

9781526622433

Piranesi lives in the House. Perhaps he always has. In his notebooks, day after day, he makes a clear and careful record of its wonders: the labyrinth of halls, the thousands upon thousands of statues, the tides that thunder up staircases, the clouds that move in slow procession through the upper halls. On Tuesdays and Fridays Piranesi sees his friend, the Other. At other times he brings tributes of food and waterlilies to the Dead. But mostly, he is alone. Messages begin to appear, scratched out in chalk on the pavements. There is someone new in the House. But who are they and what do they want? Are they a friend or do they bring destruction and madness as the Other claims? Lost texts must be found; secrets must be uncovered. The world that Piranesi thought he knew is becoming strange and dangerous. Originally published: 2020

Coben, Harlan

Stay Close

9781409117223

Harlan Coben is back with a powerful psychological thriller that explores how our decisions define us and how our present selves are inescapably shaped by our pasts.

Collins, Bridget

The Binding

9780008272142

Emmett Farmer is working in the fields when a letter arrives summoning him to begin an apprenticeship. He will work for a Bookbinder, a vocation that arouses fear, superstition, and prejudice - but one neither he nor his parents can afford to refuse. He will learn to hand-craft beautiful volumes, and within each he will capture something unique and extraordinary: a memory. If there's something you want to forget, he can help. If there's something you need to erase, he can assist. Your past will be stored safely in a book and you will never remember your secret, however terrible. In a vault under his mentor's workshop, row upon row of books - and memories - are meticulously stored and recorded. Then one day Emmett makes an astonishing discovery: one of them has his name on it.

Dare, Abi

The girl with the louding voice

9781529359275

Adunni is a 14-year-old Nigerian girl who knows what she wants: an education. As the only daughter of a broke father, she is a valuable commodity. Removed from school and sold as a 3rd wife to an old man, Adunni's life amounts to this: 4 goats, 2 bags of rice, some chickens and a new TV. When unspeakable tragedy swiftly strikes in her new home, she is secretly sold as a domestic servant to a household in the wealthy enclaves of Lagos, where no one will talk about the strange disappearance of her predecessor, Rebecca. No one but Adunni. As a yielding daughter, a subservient wife, and a powerless servant, 14-year-old Adunni is repeatedly told that she is nothing. But Adunni won't be silenced. She is determined to find her voice - in a whisper, in song, in broken English - until she can speak for herself, for the girls like Rebecca who came before, and for all the girls who will follow.

Day, Elizabeth

The Party

9780008194307

Martin Gilmour is an outsider. When he wins a scholarship to Burtonbury School, he doesn't wear the right clothes or speak with the right kind of accent. But then he meets the dazzling, popular and wealthy Ben Fitzmaurice, and gains admission to an exclusive world. Soon Martin is enjoying tennis parties and Easter egg hunts at the Fitzmaurice family's estate, as Ben becomes the brother he never had. But Martin has a secret. He knows something about Ben, something he will never tell. It is a secret that will bind the two of them together for the best part of 25 years.

Dean, Will

The Last Thing To Burn

9781529307092

Her husband calls her Jane. That is not her name. She lives in a small farm cottage, surrounded by vast, open fields. Everywhere she looks, there is space. But she is trapped. No one knows how she got to the UK: no one knows she is there. Visitors rarely come to the farm; if they do, she is never seen. Her husband records her every movement during the day. If he doesn't like what he sees, she is punished. For a long time, escape seemed impossible. But now, something has changed. She has a reason to live and a reason to fight. Now, she is watching him, and waiting.

Donoghue, Emma

The Wonder

9781509818402

An eleven-year-old girl stops eating, but remains miraculously alive and well. A nurse, sent to investigate whether she is a fraud, meets a journalist hungry for a story. Set in the Irish Midlands in the 1850s, 'The Wonder' - inspired by numerous European and North American cases of 'fasting girls' between the 16th and the 20th centuries - is a psychological thriller about a child's murder threatening to happen in slow motion before our eyes. Pitting all the seductions of fundamentalism against sense and love, it is a searing examination of what nourishes us, body and soul. 

Doyle, Roddy

Dead Man Talking

QUICK READ

9781529913637

NEW January 2024

Pat had been best friends with Joe Murphy since they were kids. But years ago they had a big fight, and they haven't spoken since - until the day before Joe's funeral. What? On the day before his funeral Joe would be dead, wouldn't he? Yes, he would.

Edugyan, Esi

Half Blood Blues

9781846687761

1940. In the aftermath of the fall of Paris, Hieronymus Falk, a rising star on the cabaret scene, is arrested in a cafe and never heard from again. He is 20 years old, a German citizen and he is black. 50 years later, Sid - Hiero's bandmate and the only witness that day - is going back to Berlin, where they first met.

Elliott Wright, Susan

The flight of Cornilia Blackwood

9781471183423

What has happened to Cornelia Blackwood? She has a loving marriage. But she has no friends. Everyone knows her name. But no one will speak to her now. Cornelia Blackwood has unravelled once before. Can she stop it from happening again?

Evaristo, Bernardine

Girl, Woman, Other

9780241984994

 'Girl, Woman, Other' follows the lives and struggles of twelve very different characters. Mostly women, black and British, they tell the stories of their families, friends, and lovers, across the country and through the years.

Fagan, Jenni

Luckenbooth

9780099592198

No. 10 Luckenbooth Close is an archetypal Edinburgh tenement. The devil's daughter rows to the shores of Leith in a coffin. The year is 1910 and she has been sent to a tenement building in Edinburgh by her recently deceased father to bear a child for a wealthy man and his fiance. The harrowing events that follow lead to a curse on the building and its residents - a curse that will last for the rest of the century. Over nine decades, No. 10 Luckenbooth Close bears witness to emblems of a changing world outside its walls. An infamous madam, a spy, a famous Beat poet, a coal miner who fears daylight, a psychic: these are some of the residents whose lives are plagued by the building's troubled history in disparate, sometimes chilling ways. The curse creeps up the nine floors and an enraged spirit world swells to the surface, desperate for the true horror of the building's longest kept secret to be heard.

Faulks, Sebastian

Birdsong

9780099573098

This is the story of Stephen who arrives in Amiens in 1910. His life goes through a series of traumatic experiences, from the clandestine love affair that tears apart the family with whom he lives, to the unprecedented experience of the war itself.

Faulks, Sebastian

Where my Heart used to Beat

9780099549246

A tender, brutal and thoughtful portrait of a man and a century, which asks whether, given the carnage we've witnessed and inflicted over the past 100 years, people can ever be the same? 

Ferris, Joshua

Then we Came to the End

9780141027630

'Then We Came to the End' is about how we spend our days and too many of our nights. It is about being away from friends and family, about sharing a stretch of stained carpet with a group of strangers we call colleagues. The novel is the story of your life, the story of our times.

Fforde, Katie

Saving the Day

9781787466241

NEW January 2024

Allie is bored with her job and starting to wonder whether she even likes her boyfriend, Ryan. The high point in her day is passing a cafe on her walk home from work. It is the sort of place where she'd really like to work. Then one day she sees an advert on the door: assistant wanted. But before she can land her dream job, Allie knows she must achieve two things: learn to cook and end her relationship with Ryan, especially as through the window of the cafe, she spies a waiter who looks much more like her type of man. And when she learns that the cafe is in danger of closing, Allie knows she must do her very best to save the day.

Filer, Nathan

The Shock of the Fall

9780007491452

'The Shock of the Fall' is an extraordinary portrait of one man's journey through the spinning vortex that is mental illness. It is a brave and groundbreaking novel from one of the most exciting new voices in fiction.

Finn, A. J.

The Woman in the Window

9780008234188

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?

Fiore, Rosie

What she Left

9781760292492

Helen Cooper has a charmed life. She's beautiful, accomplished, organised - the star parent at the school. Until she disappears. But Helen wasn't abducted or murdered. She's chosen to walk away, abandoning her family, husband Sam and her home. Where has Helen gone, and why? What has driven her from her seemingly perfect life? What is she looking for?

Flanagan, Richard

The Narrow road to the deep North

9780099593584

Forever after, there were for them only two sorts of men: the men who were on the Line, and the rest of humanity, who were not. In the despair of a Japanese POW camp on the Burma Death Railway, surgeon Dorrigo Evans is haunted by his love affair with his uncle's young wife two years earlier. Struggling to save the men under his command from starvation, from cholera, from beatings, he receives a letter that will change his life forever. Hailed as a masterpiece, Richard Flanagan's epic novel tells the unforgettable story of one man's reckoning with the truth.

French, Nicci

The Unheard

9781471179341

Tess's number one priority has always been her three-year-old daughter Poppy. But splitting up with Poppy's father Jason means that she cannot always be there to keep her daughter safe. When she finds a disturbing drawing, dark and menacing, among her daughter's brightly coloured paintings, Tess is convinced that Poppy has witnessed something terrible. Something that her young mind is struggling to put into words. But no one will listen. It's only a child's drawing, isn't it? Tess will protect Poppy, whatever the price. But when she doesn't know what, or who, she is protecting her from, how can she possibly know who to trust?

Fuller, Claire

Unsettled Ground

9780241457467

Twins Jeanie and Julius have always been different from other people. At 51 years old, they still live with their mother, Dot, in rural isolation and poverty. Inside the walls of their old cottage they make music, and in the garden they grow (and sometimes kill) everything they need for sustenance. But when Dot dies suddenly, threats to their livelihood start raining down. Jeanie and Julius would do anything to preserve their small sanctuary against the perils of the outside world, even as their mother's secrets begin to unravel, putting everything they thought they knew about their lives at stake.

Gayle, Mike

All the Lonely People

9781473687417

In weekly phone calls to his daughter in Australia, widower Hubert Bird paints a picture of the perfect retirement, packed with fun, friendship and fulfilment. But Hubert Bird is lying. The truth is day after day drags by without him seeing a single soul. Until, that is, he receives some good news - good news that in one way turns out to be the worst news ever, news that will force him out again, into a world he has long since turned his back on. Now Hubert faces a seemingly impossible task: to make his real life resemble his fake life before the truth comes out.

Gaynor, Hazel

The Bird in the Bamboo Cage

9780008393670

China, 1941. With Japan's declaration of war on the Allies, Elspeth Kent's future changes forever. When soldiers take control of the missionary school where she teaches, comfortable security is replaced by rationing, uncertainty and fear. Ten-year-old Nancy Plummer has always felt safe at Chefoo School. Now the enemy, separated indefinitely from anxious parents, the children must turn to their teachers - to Miss Kent and her new Girl Guide patrol especially - for help. But worse is to come when the pupils and teachers are sent to a distant internment camp. Unimaginable hardship, impossible choices and danger lie ahead. Inspired by true events, this is the unforgettable story of the life-changing bonds formed between a young girl and her teacher, in a remote corner of a terrible war.

Gilbert, Elizabeth

City of Girls

9781408867068

Nineteen-year-old Vivian Morris arrives in New York City in the summer of 1940 with nothing but a sewing machine and a heretofore unindulged taste for adventure. Finding employment as seamstress at the Lily Playhouse, a charmingly down-at-heel Manhattan revue, Vivian quickly becomes the toast of the showgirls, transforming the tat only fit for the cheap seats into creations for goddesses. Adventure and opportunity blossom on every corner of this strange wartime city of girls, and Vivian and her girlfriends mean to down New York to its last drop. But there are hard lessons to be learned, and bitterly regrettable mistakes to be made. Vivian learns that to live the life she wants, she must live many lives, ceaselessly and ingeniously making them new. Originally published: U.S.: Riverhead Books, 2019

Glen, Joanna

All My Mothers

9780008410629

Between her emotionally absent mother and her physically absent father, there is nobody to answer them. Eva is convinced that all is not as it seems. Why are there no baby pictures of her? Why do her parents avoid all questions about her early years? When her parents' relationship crumbles, Eva begins a journey to find these answers for herself. Her desire to discover where she belongs leads Eva on a journey spanning decades and continents - and, along the way, she meets women who challenge her idea of what a mother should be, and who will change her life forever.

Glenconner, Anne

Lady In Waiting

9781529359107

From Maid of Honour at the Queen's Coronation to Lady in Waiting to Princess Margaret, Lady Anne Glenconner is a unique witness to royal history, as well as an extraordinary survivor of a generation of aristocratic women trapped without inheritance and burdened with social expectations. She married the charismatic but highly volatile Colin Tennant, Lord Glenconner, who became the owner of Mustique. But beneath the glitz and glamour there has also lurked tragedy. On Lord Glenconner's death in 2010 he left his fortune to a former employee. And of their five children, two grown-up sons died, while a third son had to be nursed back from a coma by Anne. In this book, she exposes what life was like in her gilded cage, revealing the role of her great friendship with Princess Margaret, and the freedom she can now finally enjoy in later life.

Green, Linda

The Last Thing she Told Me

9781786483737

Moments before she dies, Nicola's grandmother Betty whispers to her that there are babies at the bottom of the garden. Nicola's mother claims she was talking nonsense. However, when Nicola's daughter finds a bone while playing in Betty's garden, it's clear that something sinister has taken place. But will unearthing painful family secrets end up tearing Nicola's family apart?

Hallett, Janice

The Twyford Code

9781788165334

NEW August 2023

Forty years ago, Steve Smith found a copy of a famous children's book by disgraced author Edith Twyford, its margins full of strange markings and annotations. Wanting to know more, he took it to his English teacher Miss Isles, not realising the chain of events that he was setting in motion. Miss Iles became convinced that the book was the key to solving a puzzle, and that a message in secret code ran through all Twyford's novels. Then Miss Iles disappeared on a class field trip, and Steve's memory won't allow him to remember what happened. Now, out of prison after a long stretch, Steve decides to investigate the mystery that has haunted him for decades. Was Miss Iles murdered? Was she deluded? Or was she right about the code? And is it still in use today?

Halls, Stacey

The Foundling

9781838771409

London, 1754. Six years after leaving her illegitimate daughter Clara at London's Foundling Hospital, Bess Bright returns to reclaim the child she has never known. Dreading the worst - that Clara has died in care - the last thing she expects to hear is that her daughter has already been reclaimed - by her. Her life is turned upside down as she tries to find out who has taken her little girl - and why. Less than a mile from Bess' lodgings in the city, in a quiet, gloomy townhouse on the edge of London, a young widow has not left the house in a decade. When her close friend - an ambitious young doctor at the Foundling Hospital - persuades her to hire a nursemaid for her daughter, she is hesitant to welcome someone new into her home and her life. But her past is threatening to catch up with her and tear her carefully

Hamer, Kate

The Girl in the Red Coat

9780571313266

Carmel Wakeford becomes separated from her mother at a local children's festival, and is found by a man who claims to be her estranged grandfather. He tells her that her mother has had an accident and that she is to live with him for now. As days become weeks with her new family, 8-year-old Carmel realises that this man believes she has a special gift. While her mother desperately tries to find her, Carmel embarks on an extraordinary journey, one that will make her question who she is - and who she might become.

Hamid, Mohsin

Exit West

9780241979068

An extraordinary story of love and hope from the bestselling, Man Booker-shortlisted author of The Reluctant Fundamentalist.
This is Nadia. She is fiercely independent with an excellent sense of humour and a love of smoking alone on her balcony late at night.
This is Saeed. He is sweet and shy and kind to strangers. He also has a balcony but he uses his for star-gazing.
This is their story: a love story, but also a story about how we live now and how we might live tomorrow. Saeed and Nadia are falling in love, and their city is falling apart. Here is a world in crisis and two human beings travelling through it.
Exit West is a heartfelt and radical act of hope - a novel to restore your faith in humanity and in the power of imagination.

Hannah, Kristin

The Four Winds

9781529054583

Texas, 1934. Elsa Martinelli had finally found the life she'd yearned for. A family, a home and a livelihood on a farm on the Great Plains. But when drought threatens all she and her community hold dear, Elsa's world is shattered to the winds. Fearful of the future, when Elsa wakes to find her husband has fled, she is forced to make the most agonizing decision of her life. Fight for the land she loves or take her beloved children, Loreda and Ant, west to California in search of a better life. Will it be the land of milk and honey? Or will their experience challenge every ounce of strength they possess?

Hare, Louise

This Lovely City

9780008332600

The drinks are flowing. The music is playing. But the party can't last. With the Blitz over and London reeling from war, jazz musician Lawrie Matthews has answered England's call for help. Fresh off the Empire Windrush, he's taken a tiny room in south London lodgings, and has fallen in love with the girl next door. Touring Soho's music halls by night, pacing the streets as a postman by day, Lawrie has poured his heart into his new home - and it's alive with possibility. Until, one morning, he makes a terrible discovery. As the local community rallies, fingers of blame are pointed at those who had recently been welcomed with open arms. And, before long, the newest arrivals become the prime suspects in a tragedy which threatens to tear the city apart. 

Harper, Elodie

The House with the Golden Door

9781838933593

NEW August 2023

Amara has escaped her life as a slave in the town's most notorious brothel, but now her existence depends on the affections of her patron: a man she might not know as well as she once thought. At night she dreams of the wolf den, still haunted by her past. Amara longs for the women she was forced to leave behind and worse, finds herself pursued by the man who once owned her. In order to be free, she will need to be as ruthless as he is. Amara knows her existence in Pompeii is subject to Venus, the goddess of love. Yet finding love may prove to be the most dangerous act of all.

Harper, Jane

The Dry

9780349142111

Amid the worst drought to ravage Australia in a century, it hasn't rained in small country town Kiewarra for two years. Tensions in the community become unbearable when three members of the Hadler family are brutally murdered. Everyone thinks Luke Hadler, who committed suicide after slaughtering his wife and six-year-old son, is guilty. Policeman Aaron Falk returns to the town of his youth for the funeral of his childhood best friend, and is unwillingly drawn into the investigation. As questions mount and suspicion spreads through the town, Falk is forced to confront the community that rejected him 20 years earlier. Because Falk and Luke Hadler shared a secret, one which Luke's death threatens to unearth. And as Falk probes deeper into the killings, secrets from his past and why he left home bubble to the surface as he questions the truth of his friend's crime.

Harris, Joanne

Blue Eyed Boy

9780552773164

Once there was a widow with three sons, and their names were Black, Brown and Blue. Black was the eldest; moody and aggressive. Brown was the middle child, timid and dull. But Blue was his mother's favourite. And he was a murderer.

Harris, Robert

Munich

9781784751852

NEW August 2023

Set over four days against the backdrop of the Munich Conference of September 1938, this book follows the fortunes of two men who were friends at Oxford together in the 1920s. Hugh Legat is a rising star of the British diplomatic service, serving in 10 Downing Street as a private secretary to the Prime Minister, Neville Chamberlain. Paul von Hartmann is on the staff of the German Foreign Office - and secretly a member of the anti-Hitler resistance. They have not been in contact for more than a decade. But when Hugh flies with Chamberlain from London to Munich, and Paul travels on Hitler's train overnight from Berlin, their paths are set on a collision course - with dramatic results.

Harrison, A. S. A.

The Silent Wife

9780755399864

Todd Gilbert and Jodie Brett are in a bad place in their relationship. They've been together for 28 years, and with no children to worry about there has been little to disrupt their affluent Chicago lifestyle. But there has also been little to hold it together, and beneath the surface lie ever-widening cracks.

Haywood, Sarah

The Cactus

9781473660632

People aren't sure what to make of Susan Green - family and colleagues find her prickly and hard to understand, but Susan makes perfect sense to herself. At 45, she thinks her life is perfect, as long as she avoids her feckless brother, Edward. She has a London flat which is ideal for one; a job that suits her passion for logic; and a personal arrangement providing cultural and other, more intimate, benefits. Yet suddenly faced with the loss of her mother and, implausibly, with the possibility of becoming a mother herself, Susan's greatest fear is being realised: she is losing control. When she discovers that her mother's will inexplicably favours her brother, Susan sets out to prove that Edward and his equally feckless friend Rob somehow coerced this dubious outcome. But when problems closer to home become increasingly hard to ignore, she finds help in the most unlikely of places.

Healey, Emma

Elizabeth is Missing

9780241968185

Elizabeth is missing', reads the note in Maud's pocket in her own handwriting. Lately, Maud's been getting forgetful. She keeps buying peach slices when she has a cupboard full, forgets to drink the cups of tea she's made and writes notes to remind herself of things. But Maud is determined to discover what has happened to her friend, Elizabeth, and what it has to do with the unsolved disappearance of her sister Sukey, years back, just after the war.

Healey, Emma

Whistle in the Dark

9780241327654

Jen's 15-year-old daughter goes missing for four agonising days. When Lana is found, unharmed, in the middle of the desolate countryside, everyone thinks the worst is over. But Lana refuses to tell anyone what happened, and the police draw a blank. The once-happy, loving family return to London, where things start to fall apart. Lana begins acting strangely: refusing to go to school, and sleeping with the light on. As Lana stays stubbornly silent, Jen desperately tries to reach out to a daughter who has become a stranger.

Henderson, Emma

Grace Williams says it Loud

9781444704013

This isn't an ordinary love story. But then Grace isn't an ordinary girl. On her first day at the Briar Mental Institute, Grace meets Daniel. He sees someone to share secrets and canoodle with, someone to fight for. This is Grace's story: her life, its betrayals and triumphs, the disappointment and loss, the taste of freedom.

Herron, Mick

Slough House

9781399803106

A year after a calamitous blunder by the Russian secret service left a British citizen dead from novichok poisoning, Diana Taverner is on the warpath. What seems a gutless response from the government has pushed the Service's First Desk into mounting her own counter-offensive - but she's had to make a deal with the devil first. And given that the devil in question is arch-manipulator Peter Judd, she could be about to lose control of everything she's fought for. Meanwhile, still reeling from recent losses, the slow horses are worried they've been pushed further into the cold. Slough House has been wiped from Service records, and fatal accidents keep happening. No wonder Jackson Lamb's crew are feeling paranoid. But have they actually been targeted? 

Hislop, Victoria

The Sunrise

9780755377800

In 1972, Famagusta in Cyprus is the most desirable resort in the Mediterranean. Tourism and commerce boom in the city, with Greek and Turkish Cypriots living and working harmoniously side by side. Elsewhere on the island, there has been a decade of unrest and violence between the communities and in 1974, following a Greek military coup, Turkey invades the island to protect the Turkish Cypriot minority. As Famagusta is shelled, its population flees. In the now deserted city, just two families are left behind. 'The Sunrise' tells the story of this small group living in hiding.

Holmes, A. M.

May we be Forgiven

9781847083234

Harry is a Richard Nixon scholar who leads a quiet, regular life; his brother George is a high-flying TV producer, with a murderous temper. They have been uneasy rivals since childhood. Then one day George loses control so extravagantly that he precipitates Harry into an entirely new life.

Ishiguro, Kazuo

The Buried Giant

9780571315079

'The Buried Giant' begins as a couple set off across a troubled land of mist and rain in the hope of finding a son they have not seen in years. Sometimes savage, often intensely moving, Kazuo Ishiguro's first novel in a decade is about lost memories, love, revenge and war.

Ishiguro, Kazuo

Never let me go

9780571258093

Kathy, Ruth and Tommy were pupils at Hailsham - an idyllic establishment situated deep in the English countryside. The children there were tenderly sheltered from the outside world, brought up to believe they were special, and that their personal welfare was crucial. But for what reason were they really there?

Ivey, Eowyn

The Snow Child

9780755380534

Jack and Mabel have staked everything on making a fresh start in the raw Alaskan wilderness. In a moment of tenderness, the pair build a snowman - or rather a snow girl - together. The next morning, all trace of her has disappeared. But Jack can't shake the notion that he glimpsed a small figure running in the trees in the dawn light.

James, Peter

Wish You Were Dead

9781529041002

NEW January 2024

Roy Grace and his family have left Sussex behind for a week's holiday in France. The website promised a grand house, but when they arrive the place is very different from the pictures. And it soon becomes clear that their holiday nightmare is only just beginning. An old enemy of Roy, a lowlife criminal he had put behind bars, is now out of jail - and out for revenge. He knows where Roy and his family have gone on holiday. Of course he does. He's been hacking their emails - and they are in the perfect spot for him to pay Roy back.

Jewell, Lisa

The Family Upstairs

9781787461482

In a large house in London's fashionable Chelsea, a baby is awake in her cot. Well-fed and cared for, she is happily waiting for someone to pick her up. In the kitchen lie three decomposing corpses. Close to them is a hastily scrawled note. They've been dead for several days. Who has been looking after the baby? And where did they go? Two entangled families. A house with the darkest of secrets.

Johnson, Milly

The Little Dreams of Lara Cliffe

9781471186202

NEW January 2024

Lara Cliffe and her three friends are off on a mini break for her hen party. It’s three weeks before her wedding to ‘Steady Freddie’, one of the kindest men on the planet. But something is worrying Lara. Her friends say it’s wedding jitters, but she isn’t so sure. Fifteen years ago the love of her life, Danny Belfont, wailed out on her three weeks before their wedding. And she has never been able to get him out of her heart.

Jones, Tayari

An American Marriage

9781786075192

Newlyweds Celestial and Roy are the embodiment of both the American Dream and the New South. He is a young executive, and she is an artist on the brink of an exciting career. But as they settle into the routine of their life together, they are ripped apart by circumstances neither could have imagined. Roy is arrested and sentenced to 12 years for a crime Celestial knows he didn't commit. Though fiercely independent, Celestial finds herself bereft and unmoored, taking comfort in Andre, her childhood friend and best man at their wedding. As Roy's time in prison passes, she is unable to hold on to the love that has been her centre.

Jones, Tayari

Silver Sparrow

9781786078629

This is the story of a man's deception, a family's complicity, and the two teenage girls caught in the middle. James Witherspoon has two families, one public, the other a closely guarded secret. But when his daughters meet and form a friendship, only one of them knows the truth. It is a relationship destined to explode.

Joyce, Rachel

The Love Songs of Miss Queenie Hennessy

9781784160302

When Queenie Hennessy discovers that Harold Fry is walking the length of England to save her, and all she has to do is wait, she is shocked. Her note to him had explained she was dying from cancer. How can she wait? A new volunteer at the hospice suggests that Queenie should write again; only this time she must tell Harold the truth. Composing this new message, the volunteer promises, will ensure Queenie hangs on. It will also atone for the secrets of the past. As the volunteer points out, 'It isn't Harold who is saving you. It is you, saving Harold Fry.' This is that letter. A letter that was never sent. Told in simple, emotionally-honest prose, with a mischievous bite, this is a novel about the journey we all must take to learn who we are; it is about loving and letting go. 

Joyce, Rachel

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry

9780552778091

When Harold Fry nips out one morning to post a letter, leaving his wife hoovering upstairs, he has no idea that he is about to walk from one end of the country to the other. He has no hiking boots or map, let alone a compass, waterproof or mobile phone. All he knows is that he must keep walking. To save someone else's life.

Kalanithi, Paul

When Breath becomes Air

9781784701994

You are a young neurosurgeon. You have completed 11 years of training. You are devoted to your work and on the brink of a wonderful career. Then you are diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer. 'When Breath Becomes Air' is an unforgettable reflection on the practice of medicine and the relationship between doctor and patient, from a gifted writer who became both.

Kane, Jessica Francis

The Report

9781846272806

In March 1943, 173 people died on the steps of a London tube station while seeking shelter from an air raid. The job of compiling the report on the tragedy falls to magistrate Laurence Dunn, and he uncovers a precarious - even damaging - truth which forces him to question which path to take.

Kay, Guy Gavriel

A brightness long ago

9781473692374

In a chamber overlooking the nighttime waterways of a maritime city, a man looks back on his youth and the people who shaped his life. Danio Cerra's intelligence won him entry to a renowned school, though he was only the son of a tailor. He took service at the court of a ruling count - and soon learned why that man was known as The Beast. Danio's fate changed the moment he recognised Adria Ripoli as she entered the count's chambers one night - intending to kill. Born to power, Adria had chosen a life of danger - and freedom - instead. Other vivid figures share the story: a healer determined to defy her expected lot; a charming, frivolous son of immense wealth; a religious leader more decadent than devout; and, affecting these lives and many more, two mercenary commanders, whose rivalry puts a world in the balance.

Kidd, Jess

The Hoarder

9781782118527

Maud Drennan - underpaid carer and unintentional psychic - is the latest in a long line of dogsbodies for the ancient, belligerent Cathal Flood. Yet despite her best efforts, Maud is drawn into the mysteries concealed in his filthy, once-grand home. She realises that something is changing: Cathal, and the junk-filled rooms, are opening-up to her. With only her agoraphobic landlady and a troop of sarcastic ghostly saints to help, Maud must uncover what lies beneath Cathal's decades-old hostility, and the strange activities of the house itself. And if someone has hidden a secret there, how far will they go to ensure it remains buried?

Koch, Emily

If I Die Before I Wake

9781784705718

Everyone believes Alex is in a coma, unlikely to ever wake up. As his family debate withdrawing life support, and his friends talk about how his girlfriend Bea needs to move on, he can only listen. But Alex soon begins to suspect that the accident that put him here wasn't really an accident. Even worse, the perpetrator is still out there and Alex is not the only one in danger. As he goes over a series of clues from his past, Alex must use his remaining senses to solve the mystery of who tried to kill him, and try to protect those he loves, before they decide to let him go.

Lawrenson, Deborah

The Lantern

9781409135487

When Eve falls for the secretive, charming Dom in Switzerland, their whirlwind relationship leads them to purchase an abandoned house in a rural hamlet in the south of France. As the beautiful Provence summer turns to autumn, Eve finds it impossible to ignore the mysteries that haunt both her lover and the run-down old house.

Lee, Harper

Go set a Watchman

9781784752460

 This novel is set during the mid-1950s and features many of the characters from 'To Kill a Mockingbird' some twenty years before. Scout (Jean Louise Finch) has returned to Maycomb from New York to visit her father Atticus. She is forced to grapple with issues both personal and political as she tries to understand both her father's attitude toward society, and her own feelings about the place where she was born and spent her childhood.

Lefteri, Christy

The Beekeeper of Aleppo

9781838770013

Nuri is a beekeeper; his wife, Afra, an artist. They live a simple life, rich in family and friends, in the beautiful Syrian city of Aleppo - until the unthinkable happens. When all they care for is destroyed by war, they are forced to escape. But what Afra has seen is so terrible she has gone blind, and so they must embark on a perilous journey through Turkey and Greece towards an uncertain future in Britain. On the way, Nuri is sustained by the knowledge that waiting for them is Mustafa, his cousin and business partner, who has started an apiary and is teaching fellow refugees in Yorkshire to keep bees. As Nuri and Afra travel through a broken world, they must confront not only the pain of their own unspeakable loss, but dangers that would overwhelm the bravest of souls.

Littlewood, Fran

Amazing Grace Adams

9780241548516

One hot summer day, stuck in traffic on her way to pick up the cake for her daughter's sixteenth birthday party, Grace Adams snaps. She doesn't scream or break something or cry or curl into a ball. She simply abandons her car in traffic and walks away. But not from her life - towards it. To the daughter who won't live with her anymore and has banned her from the party. To the husband divorcing her. Towards the terrible thing that has blown their family apart. Today she'll show her daughter that no matter how far we fall we can always get back up again. Because Grace Adams was amazing. Her husband and daughter once thought so. They and the world might have forgotten. But Grace is about to remind them. 

Lloyd, Amy

The Innocent Wife

9781784757106

20 years ago, Dennis Danson was arrested for the brutal murder of Holly Michaels, which occurred 10 miles from her home in Red River county, Florida. Now, the accused is at the centre of a true crime documentary that is taking the world by storm – it’s one goal being the desire for the truth, to free the victim of a gross miscarriage of justice. Sam is a viewer obsessed with the documentary and starts to write to Dennis in prison. Soon she sets up a meeting and finds she has fallen for him. But how can she know for sure that he's innocent?

Lodge, Gytha

She Lies in Wait

9781405938488

On a hot July night in 1983, six school friends go camping in the forest. Bright and brilliant, they are destined for great things, and young Aurora Jackson is dazzled to be allowed to tag along. Thirty years later, a body is discovered. DCI Sheens is called to the scene, but he already knows what's waiting for him: Aurora Jackson, found at long last. But that's not all. The friends have all maintained their innocence, but the body is found in a hideaway only the six of them knew about. It seems the killer has always lurked very close to home.

Logan, T.M.

The Mother

9781804180839

A woman attends a funeral, standing in the shadows and watching in agony as her sons grieve. But she is unable to comfort them - or reveal her secret. A decade earlier, Heather gets her children ready for bed and awaits the return of her husband Liam, little realising that this is the last night they will spend together as a family. Because tomorrow she will be accused of Liam's murder. Ten years ago Heather lost everything. Now she will stop at nothing to clear her name - and to get her children back.

McCleen, Grace

The Land of Decoration

9780099565741

10-year-old Judith McPherson's world is regimented by her father's faith. Her mother was fun and liked making things, but she has gone, so Judith consoles herself with 'The Land of Decoration' - an intricate model of The Promised Land which she has built in her bedroom. Through the model, Judith realises she can perform miracles.

McDermid, Val

1979

9780751583076

1979. It is the winter of discontent, and reporter Allie Burns is hunting for the story that will make her name. There are few women in the newsroom and she needs an explosive scoop for the boys' club to take her seriously. Allie and fellow junior reporter Danny Sullivan aren't afraid to raise hackles as they expose the underbelly of respectable Scotland. But shining light into the darkness creates powerful enemies. When Allie comes up with a plan to infiltrate a Glasgow terror plot, it's the break she needs - and much more than just a story. Allie is a woman in a man's world - and putting a foot wrong could be fatal.

Macdonald, Helen

H is for Hawk

9780099575450

As a child Helen Macdonald was determined to become a falconer. She learned the arcane terminology and read all the classic books, including T.H. White's tortured masterpiece, 'The Goshawk', which describes White's struggle to train a hawk as a spiritual contest. When her father dies and she is knocked sideways by grief, she becomes obsessed with the idea of training her own goshawk. She buys Mabel on a Scottish quayside and takes her home to Cambridge. This book is a record of a spiritual journey - an unflinchingly honest account of Macdonald's struggle with grief during the difficult process of the hawk's taming and her own untaming. 

McEwan, Ian

Sweet Tooth

9780099578789

Serena Frome, the beautiful daughter of an Anglican bishop, has a brief affair with an older man during her final year at Cambridge, and finds herself being groomed for the intelligence services.

Mackintosh, Clare

Hostage

9780751577082

You can save hundreds of lives. Or the one that matters most. The atmosphere on board the inaugural non-stop flight from London to Sydney is electric. Numerous celebrities are rumoured to be among the passengers in business class and journalists will be waiting on the ground to greet the plane. Mina is one of a hand-picked team of flight attendants chosen for the landmark journey. She's trying to focus on the task in hand, and not worry about her troubled five-year-old daughter back at home with her husband. Or the cataclysmic problems in her marriage. But the plane has barely taken off when Mina receives a chilling note from an anonymous passenger, someone intent on ensuring the plane never reaches its destination. Someone who needs Mina's assistance and who knows exactly how to make her comply. It's twenty hours to landing. A lot can happen in twenty hours.

McLain, Paula

Paris Wife

9781844086689

Chicago, 1920: Hadley Richardson is a quiet 28-year-old who has all but given up on love and happiness, until she meets Ernest Hemingway. After a whirlwind courtship and wedding, the pair set sail for Paris, where they soon fall in with a circle of lively and volatile expatriates, including F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald and Ezra Pound.

MacMillan, Angela

A little, aloud: an anthology of prose and poetry for reading aloud to someone you care for

9780701185633

This unique book offers a selection of prose and poetry especially suitable for reading aloud - to your husband or wife, a sick parent or child, or an elderly relative.

MacNeal, Elizabeth 

The Doll Factory

9781529002430

London, 1850. The Great Exhibition is being erected in Hyde Park and among the crowd watching the spectacle two people meet. For Iris, an aspiring artist, it is the encounter of a moment - forgotten seconds later, but for Silas, a collector entranced by the strange and beautiful, that meeting marks a new beginning. When Iris is asked to model for pre-Raphaelite artist Louis Frost, she agrees on the condition that he will also teach her to paint. Suddenly her world begins to expand, to become a place of art and love. But Silas has only thought of one thing since their meeting, and his obsession is darkening.

McPartin, Anna

The last days of Rabbit Hayes

9780552773744

Mia 'Rabbit' Hayes is a fighter, and the heart of her adoring, chaotic family. The cancer that's slowly taken over her body may be resolute, but Rabbit is stubborn too - she will not acknowledge that her diagnosis has just rapidly plummeted, or share this news with her 12-year-old daughter, Juliet. It would mean the beginning of saying goodbye, and neither is ready for that just yet. As Rabbit's family rally round her, armed with black humour and relentless optimism, they can see she's fading away. Soon the truth is clutching at them all: that against every fierce hope and heartfelt instinct, they will have to let her go.

Magnusson, Sally

The Ninth Child

9781473696624

Isabel Aird is aghast when her husband is appointed doctor to an extraordinary waterworks being built miles from the city. But Isabel, denied the motherhood role that is expected of her by a succession of miscarriages, finds unexpected consolations in a place where she can feel the presence of her unborn children and begin to work out what her life in Victorian society is for. The hills echo with the gunpowder blasts of hundreds of navvies tunnelling day and night to bring clean water to diseased Glasgow thirty miles away - digging so deep that there are those who worry they are disturbing the land of faery itself. Here, just inside the Highland line, the membrane between the modern world and the ancient unseen places is very thin. With new life quickening within her again, Isabel can only wait. But a darker presence has also emerged from the gunpowder smoke. And he is waiting too.

Mohamed, Nadifa

The Fortune Men

9780241466957

Mahmood Mattan is a fixture in Cardiff's Tiger Bay, 1952, which bustles with Somali and West Indian sailors, Maltese businessmen and Jewish families. He is a father, chancer, petty criminal. He is a smooth-talker with rakish charm and an eye for a good game. He is many things, but he is not a murderer. So when a shopkeeper is brutally killed and all eyes fall on him, Mahmood isn't too worried. Since his Welsh wife Laura kicked him out for racking up debts he has wandered the streets more often, and there are witnesses who allegedly saw him enter the shop that night. But Mahmood has escaped worse scrapes, and he is innocent in this country where justice is served. Love lends him immunity too: the fierce love of Laura, who forgives his gambling in a heartbeat, and his children.

Mahmood, Imran

You don’t know Me

9781405927376

An unnamed defendant stands accused of murder. Just before the Closing Speeches, the young man sacks his lawyer, and decides to give his own defence speech. He tells us that his barrister told him to leave some things out. Sometimes, the truth can be too difficult to explain, or believe. But he thinks that if he's going to go down for life, he might as well go down telling the truth. There are eight pieces of evidence against him. As he talks us through them one by one, his life is in our hands. We, the reader - member of the jury - must keep an open mind till we hear the end of his story. His defence raises many questions - but at the end of the speeches, only one matters - did he do it? 

Maksik, Alexander

You Deserve Nothing

9781848545724

'You Deserve Nothing' is told in three voices: that of Will, a charismatic young teacher; Gilad, one of Will's students who has grown up behind compound walls in places like Dakar and Dubai; and Marie, the beautiful, vulnerable senior with whom Will is having an illicit affair.

Mantel, Hilary

Bring up the Bodies

9780007315109

The sequel to 'Wolf Hall', 'Bring up the Bodies' explores one of the most mystifying and frightening episodes in English history: the destruction of Anne Boleyn.

Marrs, John

The One

9781785035623

How far would you go to find 'the one'? One simple mouth swab is all it takes. One tiny DNA test to find your perfect partner - the one you're genetically made for. A decade after scientists discover everyone has a gene they share with just one person, millions have taken the test, desperate to find true love. Now, five more people take the test. But even soul mates have secrets. And some are more shocking - and deadlier - than others. Originally published: as A thousand small explosions. 

Martel, Yann

Life of Pi

9780857865533

Pi lives in Pondicherry, India, where his father owns the city's zoo. The family decides to immigrate to Canada, but tragedy strikes at sea. In the lifeboat are five survivors: Pi, a hyena, a zebra, a female orangutan and a 450-pound Royal Bengal tiger.

Mason, Meg

Sorrow and Bliss

9781474622998

Everyone tells Martha Friel she is clever and beautiful, a brilliant writer who has been loved every day of her adult life by one man, her husband Patrick. A gift - her mother once said - not everybody gets. So why is everything broken? Why is Martha - on the edge of 40 - friendless, practically jobless and so often sad? And why did Patrick decide to leave? Maybe she is just too sensitive, someone who finds it harder to be alive than most people. Or maybe there is something wrong with her. Something that broke when a little bomb went off in her brain, at 17, and left her changed in a way that no doctor or therapist has ever been able to explain. Forced to return to her childhood home to live with her dysfunctional, bohemian parents, Martha has one last chance to find out whether a life is ever too broken to fix - or whether, maybe, by starting over, she will get to write a better ending for herself. 

Mastai, Elan

All our Wrong Today’s

9781405927024

So, the thing is, I come from the world we were supposed to have. That means nothing to you, obviously, because you live here, in the crappy world we do have. But it never should've turned out like this. And it's all my fault - well, me and to a lesser extent my father. And, yeah, I guess a little bit Penelope. In both worlds, she's the love of my life. But only a single version of her can exist. I have one impossible chance to fix history's greatest mistake and save this broken world. Except it means saving one Penelope and losing the other forever - and I have absolutely no idea which to choose.

Mengiste, Maaza

The Shadow King

9781838851170

Ethiopia. 1935. With the threat of Mussolini's army looming, recently orphaned Hirut struggles to adapt to her new life as a maid. Her new employer, Kidane, an officer in Emperor Haile Selassie's army, rushes to mobilise his strongest men before the Italians invade. Hirut and the other women long to do more than care for the wounded and bury the dead. When Emperor Haile Selassie goes into exile and Ethiopia quickly loses hope, it is Hirut who offers a plan to maintain morale. She helps disguise a gentle peasant as the emperor and soon becomes his guard, inspiring other women to take up arms. But how could she have predicted her own personal war, still to come, as a prisoner of one of Italy's most vicious officers?

Michaelides, Alex

The silent patient

9781409181637

Alicia Berenson writes a diary as a release, an outlet - and to prove to her beloved husband that everything is fine. She can't bear the thought of worrying Gabriel, or causing him pain. Until, late one evening, Alicia shoots Gabriel five times and then never speaks another word. Forensic psychotherapist Theo Faber is convinced he can successfully treat Alicia, where all others have failed. Obsessed with investigating her crime, his discoveries suggest Alicia's silence goes far deeper than he first thought. And if she speaks, would he want to hear the truth?

Miller, Andrew

Snowdrops

9780857895806

'Snowdrops' is a chilling story of love and moral freefall - of the corruption, by a corrupt society, of a corruptible young man. It is taut, intense and has a momentum as irresistible to the reader as the moral danger that first enchants, then threatens to overwhelm, its narrator.

Miller, Madeline

Circe

9781408890042

In the house of Helios, god of the sun and mightiest of the Titans, a daughter is born. But Circe has neither the look nor the voice of divinity, and is scorned and rejected by her kin. Increasingly isolated, she turns to mortals for companionship, leading her to discover a power forbidden to the gods: witchcraft. When love drives Circe to cast a dark spell, wrathful Zeus banishes her to the remote island of Aiaia. There she learns to harness her occult craft, drawing strength from nature. But she will not always be alone; many are destined to pass through Circe's place of exile, entwining their fates with hers. The messenger god, Hermes. The craftsman, Daedalus. A ship bearing a golden fleece. And wily Odysseus, on his epic voyage home. 

Mitchell. David

The Bone Clocks

9780340921623

One drowsy summer's day in 1984, teenage runaway Holly Sykes encounters a strange woman who offers a small kindness in exchange for 'asylum'. Decades will pass before Holly understands exactly what sort of asylum the woman was seeking. 

Moggach, Lottie

Kiss me First

9781447233206

Leila has never met Tess, but she knows more about Tess than anyone in the world. Tess has never met Leila, but she is about to trust Leila with her life. One of them has never really lived, the other can't face living any more. Together they concoct the perfect lie, but how long will it survive?

Moriarty, Liane

Big Little Lies

9781405944236

Jane hasn't lived anywhere longer than six months since her son was born five years ago. She keeps moving in an attempt to escape her past. Now the idyllic seaside town of Pirriwee has pulled her to its shores and Jane finally feels like she belongs. She has friends in the feisty Madeline and the incredibly beautiful Celeste - two women with seemingly perfect lives ... and their own secrets behind closed doors. But then a small incident involving the children of all three women occurs in the playground causing a rift between them and the other parents of the school. Minor at first but escalating fast, until whispers and rumours become vicious and spiteful. It was always going to end in tears, but no one thought it would end in murder.

Morris, Heather

The Tattooist of Auchwitz

9781785763670

This novel is based on the true story of Lale and Gita Sokolov, two Slovakian Jews, who survived Auschwitz and eventually made their home in Australia. In that terrible place, Lale was given the job of tattooing the prisoners marked for survival - literally scratching numbers into his fellow victims' arms in indelible ink to create what would become one of the most potent symbols of the Holocaust.

Mortimer, John

Paradise Postponed

9780141049526

Why does Simeon Simcox, the CND-marching Rector of Rapstone Fanner, leave his fortune not to his two sons but to an odious Tory Minister? Mortimer's novel unveils the follies and passions of an astonishing array of characters and English life.

Moss, Sarah

Summerwater

9781529035476

'Summerwater' is a devastating story told over 24 hours in the Scottish highlands, and a searing exploration of our capacity for both kinship and cruelty in these divided times. On the longest day of the summer, twelve people sit cooped up with their families in a faded Scottish cabin park. The endless rain leaves them with little to do but watch the other residents. A woman goes running up the Ben as if fleeing; a retired couple reminisce about neighbours long since moved on; a teenage boy braves the dark waters of the loch in his red kayak. Each person is wrapped in their own cares but increasingly alert to the makeshift community around them. One particular family, a mother and daughter without the right clothes or the right manners, starts to draw the attention of the others. Tensions rise and all watch on, unaware of the tragedy that lies ahead as night finally falls.

Moyes, Jojo

The Giver of Stars

9780718183219

England, late 1930s, and Alice Wright - restless, stifled - makes an impulsive decision to marry wealthy American Bennett van Cleve and leave her home and family behind. But stuffy, disapproving Baileyville, Kentucky, where her husband favours work over his wife, and is dominated by his overbearing father, is not the adventure - or the escape - that she hoped for. That is, until she meets Margery O'Hare - daughter of a notorious felon and a troublesome woman the town wishes to forget. Margery's on a mission to spread the wonder of books and reading to the poor and lost - and she needs Alice's help. Trekking alone under big open skies, through wild mountain forests, Alice, Margery and their fellow sisters of the trail discover freedom, friendship - and a life to call their own.

Munro, Alice

Dear Life

9780099578635

Alice Munro captures the essence of life in this collection of stories. Moments of change, chance encounters, the twist of fate that leads a person to a new way of thinking or being: the stories in 'Dear Life' build to form a radiant, indelible portrait of just how dangerous and strange ordinary life can be.

Ng, Celeste

Everything I never told you

9780349134284

Lydia is the favourite child of Marilyn and James Lee; a girl who inherited her mother's bright, blue eyes and her father's jet-black hair. Her parents are determined that Lydia will fulfil the dreams they were unable to pursue - in Marilyn's case that her daughter become a doctor rather than a homemaker, in James's case that Lydia be popular at school, a girl with a busy social life and the centre of every party. But Lydia is under pressures that have nothing to do with growing up in 1970s small town Ohio. Her father is an American born of first-generation Chinese immigrants, and his ethnicity, and hers, make them conspicuous in any setting.
When Lydia's body is found in the local lake, James is consumed by guilt and sets out on a reckless path that may destroy his marriage. Marilyn, devastated and vengeful, is determined to make someone accountable, no matter what the cost. Lydia's older brother, Nathan, is convinced that local bad boy Jack is somehow involved. But it's the youngest in the family - Hannah - who observes far more than anyone realises and who may be the only one who knows what really happened. 

Ng, Celeste

Little fires everywhere

9780349142920

Everyone in Shaker Heights was talking about it that summer: how Isabelle, the last of the Richardson children, had finally gone around the bend and burned the house down. In Shaker Heights, a placid, progressive suburb of Cleveland, everything is meticulously planned - from the layout of the winding roads, to the colours of the houses, to the successful lives its residents will go on to lead. And no one embodies this spirit more than Elena Richardson, whose guiding principal is playing by the rules. Enter Mia Warren - an enigmatic artist and single mother- who arrives in this idyllic bubble with her teenage daughter Pearl, and rents a house from the Richardson’s. Soon Mia and Pearl become more than just tenants: all four Richardson children are drawn to the mother-daughter pair.

Nicholls, David

One Day

9780340896983

15th July 1988. Emma and Dexter meet for the first time on the night of their graduation. Tomorrow they must go their separate ways. So where will they be on this one day next year? The year after that and every year that follows?

Nicholls, David

Sweet Sorrow

9781444715422

On one life-changing summer 16-year-old Charlie meets Fran. This is a hymn to the tragicomedy of ordinary lives, a celebration of the reviving power of friendship and that brief, blinding explosion of first love that perhaps can only be looked at directly once it has burned out.

Nicholson, William

The Secret Intensity of Everyday Life

9781849161954

Laura is content enough with her marriage and her children and her part-time job - until a long-ago lover comes back into her life. Suddenly she remembers how once her life was passionate, and realises how the excitement has faded. How much happiness is she entitled to expect?

North, Alex

The Whisper Man

9781405935999

Still devastated after the loss of his wife, Tom Kennedy and his young son Jake move to the sleepy village of Featherbank, looking for a fresh start. But Featherbank has a dark past. Fifteen years ago a twisted serial killer abducted and murdered five young boys. Until he was finally caught, the killer was known as 'The Whisper Man'. Of course, an old crime need not trouble Tom and Jake as they try to settle in to their new home. Except that now another boy has gone missing. And then Jake begins acting strangely. He says he hears a whispering at his window.

Norton, Graham

A Keeper

9781473664999

Elizabeth Keane returns to Ireland after her mother's death, intent only on wrapping up that dismal part of her life. There is nothing here for her; she wonders if there ever was. The house of her childhood is stuffed full of useless things, her mother's presence already fading. And perhaps, had she not found the small stash of letters, the truth would never have come to light. 40 years earlier, a young woman stumbles from a remote stone house, the night quiet but for the tireless wind that circles her as she hurries further into the darkness away from the cliffs and the sea. She has no sense of where she is going, only that she must keep on. 

Nugent, Liz

Lying in Wait

9780241974063

The last people who expect to be meeting with a drug-addicted prostitute are a respected judge and his reclusive wife. And they certainly don't plan to kill her and bury her in their exquisite suburban garden. Yet Andrew and Lydia Fitzsimons find themselves in this unfortunate situation. While Lydia does all she can to protect their innocent son Laurence and their social standing, her husband begins to fall apart. But Laurence is not as naive as Lydia thinks. And his obsession with the dead girl's family may be the undoing of his own.

O’Farrell, Maggie

Hamnet

9781472223821

On a summer's day in 1596, a young girl in Stratford-upon-Avon takes to her bed with a fever. Her twin brother, Hamnet, searches everywhere for help. Why is nobody at home? Their mother, Agnes, is over a mile away, in the garden where she grows medicinal herbs. Their father is working in London. Neither parent knows that one of the children will not survive the week.

O’Flynn, Catherine

The News Where You Are

9780141046365

This is the touching story of Frank, a local TV news presenter. Beneath his awkwardly corny screen persona, Frank is haunted by disappearances - the mysterious hit and run that killed his predecessor, the demolition of his father's architecture and the unmarked passing of those who die alone in the city.

O’Hagan, Andrew

Mayflies

9780571273713

Everyone has a Tully Dawson: the friend who defines your life. In the summer of 1986, in a small Scottish town, James and Tully ignite a brilliant friendship based on music, films and the rebel spirit. With school over and the locked world of their fathers before them, they rush towards the climax of their youth: a magical weekend in Manchester, the epicentre of everything that inspires them in working-class Britain. There, against the greatest soundtrack ever recorded, a vow is made: to go at life differently. Thirty years on, half a life away, the phone rings. Tully has news.

Osman, Richard

The Thursday murder club

9780241988268

In a peaceful retirement village, four unlikely friends meet up once a week to investigate unsolved murders. But when a brutal killing takes place on their very doorstep, the Thursday Murder Club find themselves in the middle of their first live case. Elizabeth, Joyce, Ibrahim and Ron might be pushing 80 but they still have a few tricks up their sleeves. Can our unorthodox but brilliant gang catch the killer before it's too late? Originally published: UK: Viking, 2020

Overton, Hollie

Baby Doll

9781784753467

Lily was abducted from outside her high-school gates. For eight long years she's been locked away from the outside world. During that time she's changed from a girl into a woman. She's had a baby. And now she has seized her chance and escaped. Running for her life, with her daughter in her arms, she returns to her family and the life she used to know - to her much-loved twin sister Abby, her mum, her high-school boyfriend - and her freedom. But is it possible to go back? Lily's perfect life as a teenager doesn't exist anymore. Since she's been gone, her family's lives have changed too, in ways she never could have imagined. Her return, and the revelation of who took her, will send shockwaves through the whole community.

Owens, Delia

Where the Crawdads Sing

9781472154668

How long can you protect your heart? For years, rumours of the 'Marsh Girl' have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. When two young men from town become intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new life - until the unthinkable happens.

Paris, B.A.

The Dilemma

9780008287030

It's Livia's 40th birthday and she's having the party of a lifetime to make up for the wedding she never had. Everyone she loves will be there except her daughter Marnie, who's studying abroad. But although Livia loves Marnie, she's secretly glad she won't be at the party. She needs to tell Adam something about their daughter but she's waiting until the party is over so they can have this last happy time together. Adam wants everything to be perfect for Livia so he's secretly arranged for Marnie to come home and surprise her on her birthday. During the day, he hears some terrible news. He needs to tell Livia, because how can the party go on? But she's so happy, so excited - and the guests are about to arrive. The Dilemma - how far would you go to give someone you love a last few hours of happiness?

Patchett, Ann

The Dutch House

9781526614971

Danny Conroy grows up in the Dutch House, a lavish folly in small-town Pennsylvania taken on by his property developer father. Though his father is distant and his mother is absent, Danny has his beloved sister Maeve: Maeve, with her wall of black hair, her delicacy, her brilliance. Life is comfortable and coherent, played out under the watchful eyes of the house's former owners in the frames of their oil paintings, or under the cover of the draperies around the window seat in Maeve's room. Then one day their father brings Andrea home: Andrea, small and neat, a dark hat no bigger than a saucer pinned over a twist of her fair hair. Though they cannot know it, Andrea's advent to the Dutch House sows the seed of the defining loss of Danny and Maeve's lives.

Pearce, Aj

Dear Mrs Bird

9781509853922

London, 1941. Amid the falling bombs Emmeline Lake dreams of becoming a fearless Lady War Correspondent. Unfortunately, Emmy instead finds herself employed as a typist for the formidable Henrietta Bird, the renowned agony aunt at Woman's Friend magazine. Mrs Bird refuses to read, let alone answer, letters containing any form of Unpleasantness, and definitely not those from the lovelorn, grief-stricken or morally conflicted. But the thought of these desperate women waiting for an answer at this most desperate of times becomes impossible for Emmy to ignore. She decides she simply must help and secretly starts to write back - after all, what harm could that possibly do?

Postorino, Rosella

The women at Hitler’s table

9780008388331

East Prussia, 1943. Hitler hides away in the Wolfsshanze - his hidden headquarters. The tide is turning in the war and his enemies circle ever closer. Ten women are chosen. Ten women to taste his food and protect him from poison. 26-year-old Rosa has lost everything to this war. Her parents are dead. Her husband is fighting on the front line. Alone and scared, she faces the SS with nothing but the knowledge every bite might be her last. Caught on the wrong side of history, how far is Rosa willing to go to survive?

Powers, Richard

Bewilderment

9781529115253

Theo Byrne is a promising young astrobiologist who has found a way to search for life on other planets dozens of light years away. He is also the widowed father of a most unusual nine-year-old. His son Robin is funny, loving, and filled with plans. He thinks and feels deeply, adores animals, and can spend hours painting elaborate pictures. He is also on the verge of being expelled from third grade, for smashing his friend's face with a metal thermos. What can a father do, when the only solution offered to his rare and troubled boy is to put him on psychoactive drugs? What can he say when his boy comes to him wanting an explanation for a world that is clearly in love with its own destruction? The only thing for it is to take the boy to other planets, while all the while fostering his son's desperate campaign to help save this one.

Purcell, Laura

The Silent Companions

9781408888032

Newly married, newly widowed Elsie is sent to see out her pregnancy at her late husband's crumbling country estate, The Bridge. With her new servants resentful and the local villagers actively hostile, Elsie only has her husband's awkward cousin for company. Or so she thinks. But inside her new home lies a locked room, and beyond that door lies a 200-year-old diary and a deeply unsettling painted wooden figure that bears a striking resemblance to Elsie herself. 

Reid, Kiley

Such a fun age

9781526612168

Alix Chamberlain is a woman who gets what she wants and has made a living showing other women how to do the same. So she is shocked when her young black babysitter, Emira Tucker, is accused by a security guard of kidnapping the Chamberlains' toddler at the supermarket one night. A small crowd gathers, a bystander films everything, and Emira is furious and humiliated. Alix resolves to make it right. But Emira herself is aimless, broke and wary of Alix's desire to help. When the video of Emira unearths someone from Alix's past, both women find themselves on a crash course that will upend everything they think they know about themselves, and each other. 

Reid, Taylor Jenkins

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo

9781398515697

Aging and reclusive Hollywood movie icon Evelyn Hugo is finally ready to tell the truth about her glamorous and scandalous life. But when she chooses unknown magazine reporter Monique Grant for the job, no one is more astounded than Monique herself. Monique is not exactly on top of the world. Her husband has left her, and her professional life is going nowhere. But she is determined to use this opportunity to jumpstart her career. Summoned to Evelyn's luxurious apartment, Monique listens in fascination as the actress tells her story. Evelyn unspools a tale of ruthless ambition, unexpected friendship, and a great forbidden love. Monique begins to feel a very real connection to the legendary star, but as Evelyn's story near its conclusion, it becomes clear that her life intersects with Monique's own in tragic and irreversible ways.

Riley, Lucinda

The Murders at Fleat House

9781529094978

The sudden death of a pupil in Fleat House at St Stephen's - a small private boarding school in deepest Norfolk - is a shocking event that the headmaster is very keen to call a tragic accident. But the local police cannot rule out foul play and the case prompts the return of high-flying Detective Inspector Jazmine 'Jazz' Hunter to the force. Jazz has her own private reasons for stepping away from her police career in London, and reluctantly agrees to front the investigation as a favour to her old boss. Reunited with her loyal sergeant Alastair Miles, she enters the closed world of the school, and as Jazz begins to probe the circumstances surrounding Charlie Cavendish's tragic death, events are soon to take another troubling turn. Charlie is exposed as an arrogant bully, and those around him had both motive and opportunity to switch the drugs he took daily to control his epilepsy.

Rooney, Sally

Beautiful World, Where Are You

9780571365449

Alice, a novelist, meets Felix, who works in a distribution warehouse, and asks him if he'd like to travel to Rome with her. In Dublin, her best friend Eileen is getting over a break-up, and slips back into flirting with Simon, a man she has known since childhood. Alice, Felix, Eileen and Simon are still young - but life is catching up with them. They desire each other, they delude each other, they get together, they break apart. They have sex, they worry about sex, they worry about their friendships and the world they live in. Are they standing in the last lighted room before the darkness, bearing witness to something? Will they find a way to believe in a beautiful world?

Rooney, Sally

Normal People

9780571334650

Connell and Marianne grow up in the same small town in rural Ireland. The similarities end there; they are from very different worlds. When they both earn places at Trinity College in Dublin, a connection that has grown between them lasts long into the following years. This is an exquisite love story about how a person can change another person's life - a simple yet profound realisation that unfolds beautifully over the course of the novel. It tells us how difficult it is to talk about how we feel and it tells us - blazingly - about cycles of domination, legitimacy and privilege.

Ryan, Donal

The Spinning Heart

9781781620083

In the aftermath of Ireland's financial collapse, dangerous tensions surface in an Irish town. As violence flares, the characters face a battle between public persona and inner desires. Through a chorus of unique voices, each struggling to tell their own kind of truth, a single authentic tale unfolds. 'The Spinning Heart' speaks for contemporary Ireland like no other novel. Wry, vulnerable, all-too human, it captures the language and spirit of rural Ireland and with uncanny perception articulates the words and thoughts of a generation.

Sahota, Sunjeev

The year of the Runaways

9781447241652

Three young men live in a house in Sheffield, each in flight from India and in desperate search of a new life. Tochi, a former rickshaw driver, will say nothing about his past in Bihar and Avtar has a secret that binds him to protect the chaotic Randeep. Randeep, in turn, has a visa-wife in a flat on the other side of town: a clever, devout woman whose cupboards are full of her husband's clothes - in case the immigration men surprise her with a call. She is Narinder, and her story is the most surprising of them all.

Salinger, J. D.

The Catcher in the Rye

014023750X

A 16-year old American boy relates in his own words the experiences he goes through at school and after, and reveals with unusual candour the workings of his own mind. What does a boy in his teens think and feel about his teachers, parents, friends and acquaintances?

Sansom, C. J.

Lamentation

9780330511049

Summer, 1546. King Henry VIII is slowly, painfully dying. His Protestant and Catholic councillors are engaged in a final and decisive power struggle; whoever wins will control the government of Henry's successor, eight-year-old Prince Edward. As heretics are hunted across London, and the radical Protestant Anne Askew is burned at the stake, the Catholic party focus their attack on Henry's sixth wife, Matthew Shardlake's old mentor, Queen Catherine Parr. Shardlake, still haunted by events aboard the warship Mary Rose the year before, is working on the Cotterstoke Will case, a savage dispute between rival siblings. Then, unexpectedly, he is summoned to Whitehall Palace and asked for help by his old patron, the now beleaguered and desperate Queen.

Sarginson, Saskia

The Twins

9780749958695

Isolte and Viola are twins. Inseparable as children, they've grown into very different adults: Isolte, a successful features writer for a fashion magazine with a photographer boyfriend and a flat in London, and Viola, desperately unhappy and struggling with a lifelong eating disorder. What happened all those years ago to set the twins on such different paths to adulthood?

Seethaler, Robert and Collins, Chalotte (trans)

The Tabacconist

9781509806591

When 17-year-old Franz exchanges his home in the idyllic beauty of the Austrian lake district for the bustle of Vienna, his homesickness quickly dissolves amidst the thrum of the city. In his role as apprentice to the elderly tobacconist Otto Trsnyek, he will soon be supplying the great and good of Vienna with their newspapers and cigarettes. Among the regulars is a Professor Freud, whose predilection for cigars and occasional willingness to dispense romantic advice will forge a bond between him and young Franz.

Shafak, Elif

The Forty Rules of Love

9780241972939

Ella Rubinstein is 40 years old and unhappily married when she takes a job as a reader for a literary agent. She comes across an ancient Sufi manuscript and suddenly her life is transformed.

Shriver, Lionel

Big Brother

9780007271108

When Pandora picks up her older brother Edison at her local Iowa airport, she literally doesn't recognise him. Edison's slovenly habits, appalling diet and know-it-all monologues drive her health-and-fitness freak husband Fletcher insane. Fletcher eventually delivers his wife an ultimatum - it's him or me. Putting her marriage and two adoptive children on the line, Pandora chooses her brother - who, without her support in losing weight, will surely eat himself into an early grave.

Shriver, Lionel

We Need To Talk About Kevin

9781846687341

Who is to blame for teenage atrocity? Narrator Eva Khatchadourian's son, Kevin, murdered seven of his fellow high school students, a cafeteria worker, and the much-loved teacher who tried to befriend him. This novel is an examination of the effect tragedy has on a town, a marriage and a family.

Simpson, John

Our Friends in Beijing

9781473674561

Jon Swift is in trouble again. His journalism career is in freefall. He is too old to be part of the new world order and he has never learned to suck up to those in charge. But experience has taught him to trust his instincts. When, for the first time in years, Jon runs into Lin Lifeng in a cafe in Oxford he wonders if the meeting is a coincidence. When Lin asks him to pass on a coded message, he knows it's not. Once a radical student who helped Jon broadcast the atrocities of Tiananmen Square, Lin is now a well-dressed party official with his own agenda. Travelling to Beijing, Jon starts to follow a tangled web in which it is hard to know who are friends and who are enemies. As he ricochets across the country, Jon seeks to make sense of the ways in which China's past and present are colliding - and what that means for the future of the country and the world.

Sims, Gill

Why Mummy Swears

9780008284213

It's every parents' nightmare - the start of the school holidays - and instead of sitting in the sun, reading a book over a cold, crisp glass of Pinot Grigio, Mummy has two bored moppets to attend to. After frantically booking sports camps, child minder slots, not to mention time off work, Mummy is exhausted. But this is only the beginning. After being dragged to join the school's PTA in the new term by an annoyingly kind-spirited neighbour, Mummy is stuck with organising the Christmas Fayre and pleasing all the overly disapproving parents. In combination with getting to know her father's surprise new glamorous (and much younger) wife and being forced to spend more time with her narcissistic mother, life isn't cutting her much of a break. What more could possibly happen?

Sissay, Lemn

My name is Why

9781786892362

At the age of 17, after a childhood in a fostered family followed by six years in care homes, Norman Greenwood was given his birth certificate. He learned that his real name was not Norman. It was Lemn Sissay. He was British and Ethiopian. And he learned that his mother had been pleading for his safe return to her since his birth. This is Lemn's story; a story of neglect and determination, misfortune and hope, cruelty and triumph. Sissay reflects on a childhood in care, self-expression, and Britishness, and in doing so explores the institutional care system, race, family, and the meaning of home.

Sittenfeld, Curtis

Rodham

9780552776608

What if Hillary Rodham had turned down Bill Clinton's proposal of marriage? In 'American Wife', Curtis Sittenfeld painted a picture of an ordinary American girl who found herself married to a President - basing it on the life of Laura Bush. In this new novel, she takes another ordinary American girl, Hillary Rodham, and explores how her life might have turned out if she had stayed an independent woman.

Slimani, Leila

Lullaby

9780571337545

When Myriam, a French-Moroccan lawyer, decides to return to work after having children, she and her husband look for the perfect caretaker for their two young children. They never dreamed they would find Louise: a quiet, polite and devoted woman who sings to their children, cleans the family's chic apartment in Paris's upscale 10th arrondissement, stays late without complaint and is able to host enviable birthday parties. The couple and nanny become more dependent on each other. But as jealousy, resentment and suspicions increase, Myriam and Paul's idyllic tableau is shattered.

Spain, Jo

After the Fire

9781529400311

On a Dublin city street, packed with afternoon Christmas shoppers, a young woman appears, naked, traumatised and bearing burn marks. Tom Reynolds, now Chief Superintendent, is no longer head of the murder squad. But when it transpires the woman escaped from a house fire started deliberately and that there are more victims, including a baby, Tom is sucked in. What begins as a straightforward case of arson, soon becomes something much more sinister. The people in that house never wanted to be there in the first place. Now more of them are missing. Tom is faced with a ticking clock as he tries to locate the others and as he does, a terrifying spider's web of domestic and international crime unfolds. And not everybody will survive the fall-out.

Stuart, Douglas

Shuggie Bain

9781529019292

It is 1981. Glasgow is dying and good families must grift to survive. Agnes Bain has always expected more from life. She dreams of greater things: a house with its own front door and a life bought and paid for outright (like her perfect, but false, teeth). But Agnes is abandoned by her philandering husband, and soon she and her three children find themselves trapped in a decimated mining town. As she descends deeper into drink, the children try their best to save her, yet one by one they must abandon her to save themselves. It is her son Shuggie who holds out hope the longest. Shuggie is different. Fastidious and fussy, he shares his mother's sense of snobbish propriety. The miners' children pick on him and adults condemn him as no' right. But Shuggie believes that if he tries his hardest, he can be normal like the other boys and help his mother escape this hopeless place.

Stovell, Sarah

Exquisite

9781910633748

Bo Luxton has it all - a loving family, a beautiful home in the Lake District, and a clutch of bestselling books to her name. Enter Alice Dark, an aspiring writer who is drifting through life, with a series of dead-end jobs and a freeloading boyfriend. When they meet at a writers' retreat, the chemistry is instant, and the sinister relationship develops. Or does it?

Strout, Elizabeth

My name is Lucy Barton

9780241248782

A mother comes to visit her daughter in hospital after having not seen her in many years. Her unexpected visit forces Lucy to confront her past, uncovering long-buried memories of a profoundly impoverished childhood; and her present, as the facade of her new life in New York begins to crumble, awakening her to the reality of her faltering marriage and her unsteady journey towards becoming a writer. From Lucy's hospital bed, we are drawn ever more deeply into the emotional complexity of family life, the inescapable power of the past, and the memories - however painful - that bind a family together.

Summerscale, Kate

The Wicked Boy

9781408851166

Early in the morning of Monday 8 July 1895, 13-year-old Robert Coombes and his 12-year-old brother Nattie set out from their small terraced house in East London to watch a cricket match at Lord's. Their father had gone to sea the previous Friday, the boys told their neighbours, and their mother was visiting her family in Liverpool. Over the next ten days Robert and Nattie spent extravagantly, pawning their parents' valuables to fund trips to the theatre and the seaside. But as the sun beat down on the Coombes house, a strange smell began to emanate from the building. When the police were called to investigate, the discovery they made sent the press into a frenzy of horror and alarm, and Robert and Nattie were swept up in a criminal trial that echoed the outrageous plots of the 'penny dreadful' novels that Robert loved to read. Kate Summerscale uncovers a true story of murder and morality.

Swallow, James

Nomad

9781785760433

Marc Dane is a MI6 field agent at home behind a computer screen, one step away from the action. But when a brutal attack on his team leaves Marc as the only survivor - and with the shocking knowledge that there are traitors inside MI6 - he's forced into the front line. However the evidence seems to point towards Marc as the perpetrator of the attack. Accused of betraying his country, he must race against time to clear his name. With nowhere to turn to for help and no one left to trust, Marc is forced to rely on the elusive Rubicon group and their operative Lucy Keyes. Ex US Army, Lucy also knows what it's like to be an outsider, and she's got the skills that Marc is sorely lacking. A terrorist attack is coming, one bigger and more deadly than has ever been seen before. With the eyes of the security establishment elsewhere, only Lucy and Marc can stop the attack before it's too late.

Sweeney, D’Aprix Cynthia

The Nest

9780008133757

When black sheep Leo has a costly car accident, the Plumb siblings' much-anticipated inheritance is suddenly wiped out. His brother and sisters come together and form a plan to get back what is owed them - each grappling with their own financial and emotional turmoil from the fallout. As 'the nest' fades further from view, they must decide whether they will build their lives anew, or fight to regain the futures they had planned. Originally published: 2016

Toibin, Colm

Nora Webster

9780141041759

It is the 1960s and Nora Webster is living with her two young sons in a small town on the east coast of Ireland. The love of her life, Maurice, has just died so she must work out how to forge a new life for herself. As Nora returns to memories of the happiness of her early marriage, something more painful begins to intrude: memories of her own mother and what brought about the terrifying distance between them.

Towles, Amor

Rules of Civility

9781444708875

In a jazz bar on the last night of 1937, watching a quartet because she couldn't afford to see the whole ensemble, there were certain things Katey Kontent knew. By the end of the year she'd learned - how to launch a paper airplane high over Park Avenue, how to live like a redhead, and how to insist upon the very best.

Tremain, Rose

Lily

9781529115178

Abandoned at the gates of a London park one winter's night in 1850, baby Lily Mortimer is saved by a young police constable and taken to the London Foundling Hospital. Lily is fostered by an affectionate farming family in rural Suffolk, enjoying a brief childhood idyll before she is returned to the Hospital, where she is punished for her rebellious spirit. Released into the harsh world of Victorian London, Lily becomes a favoured employee at Belle Prettywood's Wig Emporium, but all the while she is hiding a dreadful secret. Across the years, policeman Sam Trench keeps watch over the young woman he once saved. When Sam meets Lily again, there is an instant attraction between them and Lily is convinced that Sam holds the key to her happiness - but might he also be the one to uncover her crime and so condemn her to death?

Tremayne, S.K.

The Assistant

9780008309558

Newly divorced Jo is delighted to move into her best friend's spare room almost rent-free. The high-tech luxury Camden flat is managed by a meticulous Home Assistant, called Electra, that takes care of the heating, the lights – and sometimes Jo even turns to her for company. Until, late one night, Electra says one sentence that rips Jo's fragile world in two: 'I know what you did'. And Jo is horrified. Because in her past she did do something terrible. Something unforgivable. Only two other people in the whole world know Jo's secret. And they would never tell anyone. Would they? As a fierce winter brings London to a standstill, Jo begins to understand that the Assistant on the shelf doesn't just want to control Jo; it wants to destroy her.

Tremayne, S.K.

The Fire Child

9780008105860

When Rachel marries dark, handsome David, everything seems place. Swept from single life in London to the beautiful Carnhallow House in Cornwall, she gains wealth, love, and a stepson, Jamie. But then Jamie makes a chilling prediction, and Rachel's perfect life begins to unravel. Haunted by the spectre of David's late wife - Jamie's real mother - Rachel finds herself drawn to the deserted mines where she plunged to her death, three years prior. As Rachel starts digging into the past, she begins to grow suspicious of her husband. Why is he so reluctant to discuss Jamie's behaviour? And what exactly happened to cause his ex-wife's untimely suicide? With December looming, Rachel begins to fear there might be truth in Jamie's words: 'You will die at Christmas'.to fall into

Trollope, Joanna

Sense and Sensibility

9780007461776

Two sisters could hardly be more different. Elinor Dashwood, an architecture student, values discretion above all. Her impulsive sister Marianne displays her creativity everywhere as she dreams of going to art school. But when the family finds itself forced out of Norland Park, their beloved home for twenty years, their values are severely put to the test. Can Elinor remain stoic knowing that the man she likes has been ensnared by another girl? Will Marianne's faith in love be shaken by meeting the hottest boy in the county? And when social media is the controlling force at play, can love ever triumph over conventions and disapproval?

Tudor, C. J.

The Chalk Man

9781405930956

It was the Chalk Man who gave Eddie the idea for the drawings: a way to leave secret messages between his group of friends. And it was fun, to start with, until the figures led them to the body of a young girl. That was thirty years ago and Ed thought the past was behind him. Then he receives a letter containing just two things: a piece of chalk, and a drawing of a stick figure. As history begins to repeat itself, Ed realises the game was never over.

Turton, Stuart

The Devil and the Dark Water

9781408889534

It's 1634 and Samuel Pipps, the world's greatest detective, is being transported from the Dutch East Indies to Amsterdam, where he is facing trial and execution for a crime he may, or may not, have committed. Travelling with him is his loyal bodyguard, Arent Hayes, who is determined to prove his friend innocent, while also on board are Sara Wessel, a noble woman with a secret, and her husband, the governor general of Batavia. But no sooner is their ship out to sea than devilry begins to blight the voyage. A strange symbol appears on the sail. A dead leper stalks the decks. Livestock are slaughtered in the night. And then the passengers hear a terrible voice whispering to them in the darkness, promising them three unholy miracles. With Pipps imprisoned, only Arent and Sara can solve a mystery that stretches back into their past and now threatens to sink the ship, killing everybody on board.

Tyce, Harriet

Blood orange

9781472252746

Alison has it all. A doting husband, adorable daughter, and a career on the rise - she's just been given her first murder case to defend. But all is never as it seems. Alison drinks too much. She's neglecting her family. And she's having an affair with a colleague whose taste for pushing boundaries may be more than she can handle. Alison's client doesn't deny that she stabbed her husband - she wants to plead guilty. And yet something about her story is deeply amiss. Saving this woman may be the first step to Alison saving herself. But someone knows Alison's secrets. Someone who wants to make her pay for what she's done, and who won't stop until she's lost everything.

Vaughan, Laura

Hazard Night

9781838957087

When Eve's husband is appointed housemaster at his old boarding school, Cleeve College, she gives up her life in London to join him. But the isolation and loss of autonomy threaten both her happiness and her marriage. The arrival of Fen, an enigmatic artist and wife of the new Classics teacher, is a welcome distraction. Fen doesn't play by the rules, and she and Eve enter into a game of escalating dares, disrupting the delicate balance of school life. Then, on the eve of Hazard Night, a tradition that allows the students to run wild and play pranks for one day, a body is found. Someone has been murdered. And it seems everyone has something to hide.

Vaughan, Sarah

Anatomy of a Scandal

9781471165023

‘Anatomy of a Scandal' centres on a high-profile marriage that begins to unravel when the husband is accused of a terrible crime. Sophie is sure her husband, James, is innocent and desperately hopes to protect her precious family from the lies which might ruin them. Kate is the barrister who will prosecute the case - she is equally certain that James is guilty and determined he will pay for his crimes. A high-profile marriage thrust into the spotlight. A wife, determined to keep her family safe, must face a prosecutor who believes justice has been a long time coming. A scandal that will rock Westminster. And the women caught at the heart of it.

Walsh, Rosie

The man who didn’t call

9781509828302

Imagine you one day meet a man and the two of you spend the next seven days together. By the end of that time, you've fallen in love, and you know, without a shadow of a doubt, that he feels the same. After the week is over, he leaves for a holiday booked long ago, and promises to phone you on his way to the airport. But he never calls. Your friends tell you to forget him, but you know they're wrong: something must have happened; there must be a reason for his silence. What do you do when you finally discover you're right? That there is a reason for his silence - and that reason is the one thing you can't change? You.

Walter, B.P.

The Dinner Guest

9780008446086

Four people walked into the dining room that night. One would never leave. Matthew: the perfect husband. Titus: the perfect son. Charlie: the perfect illusion. Rachel: the perfect stranger. Charlie didn't want her at the book club. Matthew wouldn't listen. And that's how Charlie finds himself slumped beside his husband's body, their son sitting silently at the dinner table, while Rachel calls 999, the bloody knife still gripped in her hand.

Ward, Catriona

Sundial

9781788166218

Rob fears for her daughters. For Callie, who collects tiny bones and whispers to imaginary friends. For Annie, because she fears what Callie might do to her. Rob sees a darkness in Callie, one that reminds her of the family she left behind. She decides to take Callie back to her childhood home, to Sundial, deep in the Mojave Desert. And there she will have to make a terrible choice. Callie is afraid of her mother. Rob has begun to look at her strangely. To tell her secrets about her past that both disturb and excite her. And Callie is beginning to wonder if only one of them will leave Sundial alive.

Watson, S J

Before I go to Sleep

9780552164139

Memories define us. So what if you lost yours every time you went to sleep? Your name, your identity, your past, even the people you love - all forgotten overnight. And the one person you trust may only be telling you half the story. Welcome to Christine's life.

Wax, Ruby

A mindfulness guide for the Frazzled

9780241972069

500 years ago no-one died of stress: we have invented this concept and now we let it rule us. Rest has become a dirty word, and our idea of satisfaction is answering the last email. We're sleepwalking through our own lives. Ruby Wax shows us how to wake up from this stupor with a scientific solution to modern problems: mindfulness. Outrageously witty, smart and accessible, Ruby Wax shows ordinary people how and why to change for good. 

Weaver, Tim

You were gone

9781405934688

Three days after Christmas, a woman walks into a police station. She has no phone and no ID, just a piece of paper with the name of missing persons investigator David Raker on it. She tells officers that Raker is her husband. When he turns up at the station, Raker is stunned. The woman looks exactly like his wife. She knows all about their marriage, their history, even private conversations the two of them had. There's just one problem: Raker's wife has been dead for eight years. The woman tells the police that Raker had a breakdown. A respected doctor backs up her account. Items are missing that prove Raker's side of the story - and, worst of all, he soon becomes the prime suspect in her disappearance. Could Raker have imagined their whole marriage? Hunted by the police, Raker will have to find out the truth before it costs him everything - his memories, his sanity, his life

Westover, Tara

Educated

9780099511021

Tara Westover grew up preparing for the End of Days, watching for the sun to darken, for the moon to drip as if with blood. She spent her summers bottling peaches and her winters rotating emergency supplies, hoping that when the World of Men failed, her family would continue on, unaffected. She hadn't been registered for a birth certificate. She had no school records because she'd never set foot in a classroom, and no medical records because her father didn't believe in doctors or hospitals. According to the state and federal government, she didn't exist. As she grew older, her father became more radical, and her brother, more violent. At sixteen Tara decided to educate herself. Her struggle for knowledge would take her far from her Idaho mountains, over oceans and across continents, to Harvard and to Cambridge. Only then would she wonder if she'd travelled too far.

Whitaker, Chris

We begin at the end

9781785769405

For some people, trouble just finds them. Thirty years ago, Vincent King became a killer. Now, he's been released from prison and is back in his hometown of Cape Haven, California. Not everyone is pleased to see him. Like Star Radley, his ex-girlfriend, and sister of the girl he killed. Duchess Radley, Star's thirteen-year-old daughter, is part-carer, part-protector to her younger brother, Robin - and to her deeply troubled mother. But in trying to protect Star, Duchess inadvertently sets off a chain of events that will have tragic consequences not only for her family, but also the whole town. Murder, revenge, retribution. How far can we run from the past when the past seems doomed to repeat itself?

Whitehead, Colson

The Underground Railroad

9780708898406

Cora is a slave on a cotton plantation in Georgia. All the slaves lead a hellish existence, but Cora has it worse than most; she is an outcast even among her fellow Africans and she is approaching womanhood, where it is clear even greater pain awaits. When Caesar, a slave recently arrived from Virginia, tells her about the Underground Railroad, they take the perilous decision to escape to the North. In Whitehead's razor-sharp imagining of the antebellum South, the Underground Railroad has assumed a physical form: a dilapidated box car pulled along subterranean tracks by a steam locomotive, picking up fugitives wherever it can.

Winn, Raynor

The Salt Path

9781405937184

In one devastating week, Raynor and her husband Moth lost their home of 20 years, just as a terminal diagnosis took away their future together. With nowhere else to go, they decided to walk the South West Coast Path: a 630-mile sea-swept trail from Somerset to Dorset, via Devon and Cornwall. This ancient, wind-battered landscape strips them of every comfort they had previously known. With very little money for food or shelter, Raynor and Moth carry everything on their backs and wild camp on beaches and clifftops. But slowly, with every step, every encounter, and every test along the way, the walk sets them on a remarkable journey. They don't know how far they will travel, but - to their surprise - they find themselves on a path to freedom.

Wodehouse, P. G.

Something Fresh

9780099513780

The one thing that could be expected to disturb the peace of life at Blandings is the incursion of imposters. Blandings has imposters like other houses have mice. On this occasion there are two of them - both intent on a dangerous enterprise.

Wood, Monica

The one-in-a-million Boy

9781472228383

Miss Ona Vitkus has - aside from three months in the summer of 1914 - lived unobtrusively, her secrets fiercely protected. The boy, with his passion for world records, changes all that. He is 11. She is 104 years, 133 days old (they are counting). And he makes her feel like she might be really special after all. Better late than never - only it's been two weeks now since he last visited, and she's starting to think he's not so different from all the rest. Then the boy's father comes, for some reason determined to finish his son's good deed. And Ona must show this new stranger that not only are there odd jobs to be done, but a life's ambition to complete.

Youngson, Anne

Three Women and a Boat

9781784165338

Meet Eve, who has departed from her thirty-year career to become a Free Spirit; Sally, who has waved goodbye to her indifferent husband and two grown-up children; and Anastasia: defiantly independent narrowboat-dweller, suddenly vulnerable as she awaits a life-saving operation. Inexperienced and ill-equipped, Sally and Eve embark upon a journey through the canals of England, guided by the remote and unsympathetic Anastasia. As they glide gently - and not so gently - through the countryside, the eccentricities and challenges of canalboat life draw them inexorably together, and a tender and unforgettable story unfolds.