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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!
November 2013 Debut of the Month. Thea, with twin Sam, grew up in Florida in the 1920s amid wealth and security. Their slightly older cousin, by two years, Georgie spends a large part of his childhood with the twins. Then something happens between Georgie and Thea and she is packed off to boarding school. Puberty, experimentation, sex appeal, boys … this is the centre of bitchy school gossip, oh, and the love of horses. Thea, well aware of her sex appeal, manipulates and strangely, wins. This is partly a young read with sex and partly an interesting insight into coming-of-age in the 1920s.
Sex in the City comes to London! This glorious and, for all its glitz backdrop, surprisingly well-written (so many in this area are not) blockbuster has the golden boy of the literary world storming London and totally disrupting the lives of three best friends. He is not what he seems, this handsome charmer, and in a long book full of plot and incident, we discover his secrets. Fresh, sexy, fun and full of energy, this is rather like a modern Jilly Cooper – irresistible. Comparison: Jilly Cooper, Veronica Henry, Louise Bagshawe.
October 2013 Debut of the Month. Light, engaging and spotted with humour, this tale of a redundant husband relocating to New York with his wife and kids is not what I expected. Wife Lucy sulks, fair enough, but the marriage strengthens, life gets better, friends are made and all is good. The charm of this book is in all the different relationships, choices about child and work and mutual support. An honest, thoroughly pleasing look at modern life. In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion for An Englishwoman in New York a small number of Lovereading members were lucky enough to be invited to review this title - 'A snappy, funny and highly entertaining depiction of women finding their feet as they move into their 40s...' - Megan Olwen Williams. Scroll down to read more reviews.
Six women. Six abductions. Six souls in peril...London is in the grip of a barbaric serial killer, dubbed Herod by the tabloid press. Four pregnant women have been abducted in quick succession, their bodies mutilated and dumped. When a fifth pregnant woman, Julia Caton, is taken from her home in the dead of night, DCI David Rosen knows that time is running out to save her...Then Rosen gets a mysterious phone call from Father Sebastian Flint, an enigmatic priest who seems to know rather too much about the abductions. When it emerges that Father Flint was once the Vatican's leading expert on the occult, the investigation takes an increasingly disturbing turn. But it isn't until Rosen discovers the existence of an ancient text - said to be the devil's answer to the bible - that the true horror of Herod's plan begins to unfold. Rosen is drawn inexorably to the killer's lair, where he will discover a terrible truth - that Herod's retribution is absolute, and that there are far worse things than death...
Winner of the Goldsboro Last Laugh Award at CrimeFest 2014. One of our Books of the Year 2013. Maxim Jakubowski's November 2013 Book of the Month. Winner of the CWA John Creasey Dagger 2013. Sheldon Horowitz is 82, a retired American Marine and reluctantly moves to Oslo to where his granddaughter has settled. Confronted by an ugly crime, he goes on the run with a six-year old boy and has to use all his past skills, despite fading faculties and the ravages of age, to escape a fierce gang and confront the failures of his past life and, hopefully, redeem himself. Tense, gently humorous, unsentimental and often tragic, this thrilling tale spins a new angle on the theme of the involuntary sleuth struggling on unknown ground and proves profoundly humane and touching and highlights a gripping vision of the bleakness of Scandinavia and northern landscapes quite unlike that previously described by the recent vogue of Nordic crime authors. The revelation of a major new talent. Derek B. Miller said: “My sincere thanks to the judges and the Crime Writers' Association. This award feels less like a victory than a wonderful form of encouragement. And I appreciate that, deeply, because no one has ever encouraged me to write before. Tolerated me writing … sure. But encouraged me? Not as much. So thank you.” September 2013 Debut of the Month. Sarah Broadhurst's view... This, as a good chase thriller, is thrilling but add a conscience and some fascinating personal history to the main character and suddenly you have something very special. Our hero, unusually, is 82 years old! He is rescuing a child who witnessed his mother being murdered by Kosovo thugs. So we have the thugs and the police chasing a cantankerous old American Jew and the lad across Norway. That in itself is an excellent plot but this thriller has so much more. It looks at the Norwegian culture, Jewishness, World War II, Korea, Vietnam, war criminals, drug dealers, police tactics and more. An interesting book on several dimensions with a strong plot and plenty of space to explore different ideas. Highly recommended for both genders, thriller lovers and book club/reading groups. CWA Judges' comment: “Tension, humour and tragedy are combined in this beautifully-written contribution to Nordic noir with a twist from an English-speaking author. With a central character who is original, wonderfully humane and convincing, this debut novel cleverly avoids many the genre's clichés and pitfalls and emerges triumphant as a fully-dimensional gem.”
September 2013 Debut of the Month. A charming, humorous and moving coming-of-age story that will be enjoyed by fans of Wonder by R. J. Palacio and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon. In some ways Alex is a normal 13 year old boy entering puberty; chaotic, obsessed with girls and sex. However, Alex isn’t your typical 13 year old as he has a brain tumour - which make him feel ‘ostrichized’. Once you get into the ‘stream of consciousness’ style of writing we think this is an intriguing debut from a writer to watch in the future. In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion for Ostrich a small number of Lovereading members were lucky enough to be invited to review this title - ' Ostrich is poignant, endearing and comedic. It’s a mixture of despair and light-heartedness concocted so well that you can’t help but fall in love with Matt Greene’s first novel.'- William Alexander. Scroll down to read more reviews.
Shortlisted for the Irish Book Awards Novel of the Year 2013. September 2013 Debut of the Month. A passionate, poetic debut novel from Irish Playwright and Poet Frank McGuiness. 1940’s Donegal and an Italian Painter arrives to work and nothing and no-one is the same afterwards.Told with multiple voices it is a book of close observation, sharp wit, linguistic dexterity - and of deep sympathy for everyday humanity.
Shortlisted for the Guardian First Book Award 2013. September 2013 Debut of the Month. This mesmerising and evocative debut based on a true story about the last execution in Iceland is well written, well documented and exhaustively researched. Agnes Magnusdottir is sent to a farm in northern Iceland, awaiting execution for the murder of her lover, but as she tells her story to a local priest it is clear truth very much depends on who it is you believe. With its harsh winter setting and subject matter, the book is emotionally draining but compelling nonetheless. The characters and detail bring this forgotten time, place and lifestyle vividly to life. In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion for Burial Rites a small number of Lovereading members were lucky enough to be invited to review this title - 'Burial Rites is a mesmerising piece of historical fiction and one of the best début novels I have ever encountered.' - Nicola Foster Scroll down to read more reviews.
September 2013 Debut of the Month. A scarily realistic 'cat and mouse' thriller. Very unsettling with unexpected twists that will keep your stomach in knots. A very clever forensically aware serial killer is on the loose in London. But on his trail is the emotionally damaged DI Sean Corrigan who has an uncanny ability to identify darkness in others.The author is an ex Detective Sergeant in the London Police and we think he has found his new calling. Perfect for fans of Mark Billingham, Peter James and Stuart MacBride. Click here to view The Keeper by this author. A 'Piece of Passion' from the publisher...'As a former police officer, it’s not surprising that Luke Delaney’s writing has an incredible sense of authenticity. But what really hooked me on first reading Cold Killing was the almost visceral sense of menace and threat that pervades the novel. And I fell in love with D I Sean Corrigan, a brilliantly drawn and fascinating character with a dark history that gives him the ultimate edge when it comes to catching bad guys.' – Sarah Hodgson, Deputy Publishing Director, HarperFiction
August 2013 Debut of the Month. Fluctuating time zones and complicated relationships, revolving round an artist and his relationship with two very different sisters, makes for an absorbing debut of sibling jealousies and deceit. 1963. Two teenage sisters Alice and Natelie fall under the spell of a young artist, Thomas, while on the family holiday. 2007. Thomas, now a famous painter, has to face up to the consequences of that fateful Summer.A haunting and melancholic debut with characters that will stay with you long after you finish the book. A 'Piece of Passion' from the publisher... 'I completely fell in love with this haunting debut when it first came in on submission, and I stayed up most of the night in order to finish it. And ever since then, I haven’t stopped talking about it, and encouraging people to read it, no doubt making a nuisance of myself. There’s just something about a really, really good book which makes you want to press it into the hands of others... The Gravity of Birds is an unforgettable novel about illicit love, family, long-buried secrets. It’s also about entangled sisters, and dreadful love triangles, and the mistakes we make and the things we leave unsaid. Can you find someone who wants to be lost, can you save someone who won’t help themselves? The author, Tracy Guzeman, doesn’t give me any easy answers. But her novel has resonated in my mind long after I finished the final page. I so hope you might enjoy this book, too.' - Thalia Suzuma, HarperFiction Editor
A Maxim Jakubowski selected title. August 2013 Debut of the Month. This is the one for you if you enjoyed Erin Morgenstern's THE NIGHT CIRCUS or Kate Mosse's sagas. A dazzling historical fantasy debut set in New York at the turn of the 20th century involving both Jewish and Arabic lore in an outrageously romantic tale of impossible love, the immigrant experience and magic. Creatures of legend arrive in the New World and seek their destiny while trying to understand their past. An assured tale with a gallery of colourful characters and oozing with compassion. September 2013 Guest Editor Daisy Waugh on The Golem and the Djinni... The Golem and The Djinni by Helene Wecker is not a masterpiece, it's just a really really good novel. Set in turn of the century New York, it’s a fantastic story, full of warmth and surprises, and written so neatly that the writing feels all but invisible. Reading it – as I did just a couple of weeks ago – reminded me, once again, of the near unbeatable joy of relaxing … with a really good, unpretentious and compelling novel. Reminded me how lucky I was to be a writer. The Lovereading view... Folklore and legend combine in this enchanting and fascinating tale of two supernatural beings trying to understand themselves and their place in the human melting pot that was 19th century New York.Two magical beings, a clay Golem and a fiery Djinni, through fate and circumstance find themselves in New York in 1899. Opposites in every way they become unlikely friends who are forced to make a fateful choice when their existence is threated.This unforgettable story is definitely one for fans of Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell. In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion for The Golem and the Djinni a small number of Lovereading members were lucky enough to be invited to review this title - 'one of those rare books that completely draws you into its world...A magical, moving, sometimes humorous tale; I hope Helene Wecker will continue writing and look forward to reading her next novel.' Claudia Stach. Scroll down to read more reviews.
August 2013 Debut of the Month. An atmospheric and engrossing coming of age thriller. A death on Loyalty Island, in Northern Washington State, leads 14 year old Cal to be swept up in a storm of lies and deceit that make him question his family and the limits of his own morality. This modern re-telling of Treasure Island is an gripping and suspenseful debut. In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion for When Captain Flint Was Still a Good Man, a small number of Lovereading members were lucky enough to be invited to review this title - 'Cleverly complex and deeply fascinating...Nick Dybek’s novel is truly beautiful and affecting' - Lucinda Fountain. Scroll down to read more reviews.
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