Find a cosy spot and get to know your new read for the month. Here are our top 7 books of the month…
Top 7 books of the month:
GRIPPING DEBUT | That Green Eyed Girl by Julie Owen Moylan
Julie Owen Moylan expertly places her readers in a New York apartment, where you feel the heat and hear the tinny radio. It’s 1975 and as 15-year-old Ava dreams of a boy, her chain- smoking mother is falling apart.A mysterious package arrives that sets Ava on the path of discovering the truth about the apartment’s former occupants, who hid a secret with devastating consequences. There’s a cinematic quality to this novel; the characters are deftly drawn and engaging, and the plot develops at the right pace, with unexpected twists. An accomplished debut.
TWISTY THRILLER | Idol by Louise O’Neill
With millions of online followers hanging off her every word, empowerment guru Sam feels like she has truly made it. But when a sordid online rumour suggests she hasn’t been truthful about her past, Sam tries everything she can to separate her ‘fake’ and ‘real’ persona before it’s too late. A believable look at cancel culture, Idol makes you question whether you can have sympathy for those selling their soul on social media. A riveting read.
ANCIENT POMPEII | The House with the Golden Door by Elodie Harper
In the exciting second novel in the Wolf Den trilogy, we see escaped slave Amara living as a concubine with a new patron while wrestling remorse at having left others behind in the Lupanar brothel. We see a darker side to Amara, who is changed by what has gone before. Meticulously researched, it’s another brilliant look at the inhabitants of this fascinating ancient city.
FEEL-GOOD DRAMA | The People on Platform 5 by Clare Pooley
What do you really know about the strangers around you? Iona, who gets the 8.05 am train to Waterloo every day, has names for her fellow commuters, but she’ll get to know them all better when Smart-but-Sexist Surbiton chokes on a grape right in front of her. As the thaw breaks between the characters, they seek solace, friendship and hope in each other, leaving you with that fuzzy feeling you want from a feel-good book. Think of Me by Frances Liardet Frances’ dual- timeline novel opens in 1974, as James, a fighter pilot in WWII – now a widower –is appointed as vicar to a Hampshire village. Few writers are able to portray the challenges of a calling to a gospel-driven life without lapsing either into comic stereotype or stained-glass sentimentality, but Frances’ consummate skill makes Think of Me a deeply moving tale of loss and recovery.
WITTY ROMANCE | Book Lovers by Emily Henry
In one of the most enjoyable books you’ll read this year, literary agent Nora is consumed by work, until her little sister Libby persuades her to take a trip to Sunshine Falls – the town from one of their favourite books. But her work nemesis Charlie will be there too… The banter, chemistry and witty one-liners between the two are hilarious, and so are the romcom references. This sparkling book is utterly charming.
REAL-LIFE TRAGEDY | This is Not a Pity Memoir by Abi Morgan
As an award-winning screenwriter, Abi Morgan can change and edit stories. But there is no way of altering how her real life is upended when her husband is found collapsed on the bathroom floor. She dives unsparingly into the realities of when something devastates your family, and the tumult of emotions that follows. But ultimately, it’s an uplifting and powerful read.
MOVING FABLE OF FAITH | Think of Me by Frances Liardet
Frances’ dual- timeline novel opens in 1974, as James, a fighter pilot in WWII – now a widower –
is appointed as vicar to a Hampshire village. Few writers are able to portray the challenges of a calling to a gospel-driven life without lapsing either into comic stereotype or stained-glass sentimentality, but Frances’ consummate skill makes Think of Me a deeply moving tale of loss and recovery.