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Looking to try something new? Check out our Debuts of the Month selection. You never know, one might become your favourite new author and a special discovery!
This is an odd one, part ghost story, part love story and part murder story, itâ€™s protagonist is a man who can see dead people. He is one of lifeâ€™s failures even though he could make some money out of his â€˜afflictionâ€™. Getting into all sorts of scrapes, the only thing he really wants is his wife and daughter back, attempting that is tough. Itâ€™s not really spooky but its paranormal aspects are fascinating.Comparison: Audrey Niffenegger, Alice Sebold, Ben Sherwood.Similar this month: None but do try William Landay.
This is a nice scenario for it takes the diverse lives of seven people over one week whose only real link is the school gate. From au pair to single father, teacher to deserted mum, all of life is exposed through these bruised families. The only problem is it doesn’t really conclude, just as our lives don’t.Comparison: Elizabeth Noble, Carmen Reid, Isabel Wolff.Similar this month: Melissa Hill, Barbara Delinsky.
Do you remember Dynasty and Lace, great big eventful, passionate blockbusters? Well, this is one such. An area under-published at the moment but a book for all who love Desperate Housewives or Footballers’ Wives. It’s wonderful stuff. Rich, spoilt people, a rebellious daughter who knows she can do it on her own, and a nasty evil world to confront. It’s a cracking read, glamorous, sexy and totally compulsive.Comparison: Jilly Cooper, Jackie Collins, Louise Bagshawe.Similar this month: None but try Annabel Dilke, Sara MacDonald.
Young, witty, bitchy read of behind-the-scenes glamour as a small-town girl climbs the ladder of hairdressing success in New York. An autobiographical novel quite startling in some of its revelations.Comparison: Nicola Kraus and Emma McLaughlin, Belinda Jones, Plum Sykes.Similar this month: None but try Wendy Holden and Melissa Hill.
Shortlisted for the Spread the Word : Books to Talk About 2008.I adore the American small town dramatic novel, preferably with a murder, and this debut is one of the best in this area. The characterisation is superb, the prejudice and pettiness beautifully handled and the heroine has such a dilemma you really cannot see how she will get through. Suspenseful, addictive and truly memorable, it is a must-read if ever there was one.Comparison: Adriana Trigiani, Rebecca Wells, Alice Hoffman.Similar this month: None, but try Annabel Dilke or Nicky Pellegrino.
The title says it all for this is Italy and food, emotions and secrets, loyalties and a sense of place as three generations of women escape or return to this bewitching southern region. A really pleasant, comfortable, dual-time tale.Comparison: Joanne Harris, Elizabeth Buchan, Sarah Harrison.Similar this month: Sara MacDonald, Lisa Jewell.
A lovely new, warm, Irish voice telling the story of three friends and how outwardly their lives seem content but inwardly … oh dear. It is very much Cathy Kelly territory.Comparison: Cathy Kelly, Sheila O’Flanagan, Patricia Scanlan.Similar this month: Sinead Moriarty, Sophie King.
A single-parent family in jeopardy, a teenage daughter being stalked and an explosive ending in a psychological thriller with humorous undertones, occasionally making light of the serious subject matter, she is definitely a talent to watch.Comparison: Nicci French, Minette Walters, Ruth Rendell.Similar this month: Pam Lewis, Louise Anderson.
A horrifying opening chapter where childhood innocence and friendship is completely destroyed and the terrible secret sealed, to resurface ten years later. It is psychological thriller stuff from a new author ripe for going places.Comparison: Nicci French, Barbara Vine. Similar this month: Vena Cork, Louise Anderson.
Those seeking an absorbing thriller after The Da Vinci Code will not go far wrong with this. It hasn’t got quite the same controversial premise but there is plenty of history to absorb here, all laced around underwater exploration and deciphering ancient hieroglyphics. It is fascinating and gripping. Comparison: Clive Cussler, Dan Brown, Valerio Massimo Manfredi. Similar this month: None, but try Dan Fesperman or Paul Carson
You may know the author’s name as one of the writers and stars of The League of Gentlemen or from his Dr Who novels, now know him as the creator of an Edwardian 007 spoof character, a secret agent, dandy, bi-sexual rake – he’s great – this is such fun. From Gentlemen’s Clubs to Italian decadence, Lucifer Box follows a trail of mystery and chaos, betrayal and desire, into the heart of Vesuvius. It really is the most outrageous stuff. Highly recommended, it’s brilliant, provided you are not offended.Comparison: George MacDonald Fraser, Tom Sharpe, Leslie Thomas.Similar this month: None.
A totally absorbing, wonderful novel of interlinking characters and their relationships; of love, heartache and loss all in the glorious South of France. You feel the heat, the colour, the emotions, the pain, the laughter and the tears. My only criticism is that it all ended rather abruptly â€¦ I wanted more, it was such a lovely book; please read it. Comparison: Sophie Kinsella, Lisa Jewell, Plum Sykes. Similar this month: Belinda Jones, Chris Manby.
Fabulous First-time Fiction
Can you spot the prize-winners or the best-sellers in waiting? Do you want to start at the beginning with a writer whose every subsequent book you’re going to anticipate impatiently? Do you enjoy being the first to read the next must-read novel? If so, you can rely on Lovereading to keep you up-to-date.
Just sign up to the regular email and you'll get to hear about the best books from 1st time authors in paperback or hardback. You'll also get the latest online reviews and you can download an extract of the book to decide for yourself. All our debut books are available to order online at discounted prices.
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