Whether you’re yet to embark to far off beaches for your Summer Holidays or you’re returning to colder climates after enjoying some Sun and cocktails, I have some great books lined up for your Summer reading that are filled with love, laughs, drama, tension and a little bit of whodunit thrown in for good measure.
Rule for Thursday Lovers by Yana Stajno starts off a little all over the place. During a timeshare event aboard a barge on the River Thames, two long lost school friends are reunited in a confusing and somewhat tipsy blur. Angie and Fiona make a drunken pact that they will timeshare a lover every Thursday and compile a list of rules that need to be adhered to. During the auditions at London Zoo, which is quite slapstick, there’s an instant miscommunication as two separate candidates are picked.
But slowly it is realised that young lawyer Jake is the best candidate, the only problem is that Jake doesn’t realise that he has to build relations with another woman after doing so well with Angie. A fact his useless co-worker Max left out of the advertisement. Throw into the mix a missing pensioner, Angie’s boring husband Ted, Fiona’s demanding father and a tattooed stranger and what you have is a nice mixed bag of humour, awkwardness but at the centre a heart-warming message of what happens when you reach a certain age. The way we are viewed by others as opposed to how we see ourselves and the secrets we keep to protect in the name of love.
This is an easy read with plenty of humour and warmth, credit to Yana for also pencilling some wonderfully honest intimate scenes, a delightful book that makes for the perfect beach read.
Rules for Thursday Lovers is published by Clink Street Publishing and is available on the Kindle from Amazon.co.uk for (RRP £5.69) The print edition is available in all good bookshops for (RRP £8.99)
The Good Girl by Fiona Neill is one of those rare novels that has the ability to lure you in with the first few pages. When headmistress Ailsa is approached by another member of staff and shows her a video of one the female students appearing in a pornographic home movie, it seems that her whole world seems to slowly unravel. Each chapter acts like a flashback and the events leading up to the day that opens the novel.
It focuses on the Field family who have moved to Norfolk seemingly abandoning the life they built for themselves in London, relationships are strained and their daughter Romy, along with her other siblings Luke and Ben, question the decision of the move constantly. But things take an even more interesting turn when the free-spirited and quirky Fairport’s move in next door.
The story is intelligent and gripping, focusing on taboo’s surrounding technology and the different attitudes faced by sexually active girls. There are plenty of subplots and these are cleverly woven by Fiona Neill. This is a page turning and provocative novel that will give you plenty to consider and discuss.
The Good Girl is published by Michael Joseph and is available on the Kindle from Amazon.co.uk for (RRP £3.32) The print edition is available in all good bookshops for (RRP £7.99)
The Book of Lost and Found by Lucy Foley starts off with Kate Darling being bequeathed an old portrait from her grandmother, but as well as the drawing Kate is also told a secret. It sends her on a journey of discovery as she traces down her now deceased mother’s biological parents. She journeys to Corsica where she meets world famous artist Tom Stafford.
During her time in Corsica Kate is taken back to the late 20’s as Tom tells the story of how he and Alice came to meet and the events that prevented them from truly being happy, and the obstacles that kept them apart. The book is beautifully descriptive, and the characters are both believable and likeable. It makes you realise that life is to be lived and chances are to be taken, it teaches you that you should have nothing to regret and should always be brave. That being said I found certain aspects of the book a tad too predictable to me and I found the latter chapters somewhat disappointing.
The Book of Lost and Found is published by Harper Collins and is available on the Kindle from Amazon.co.uk for (RRP £4.99) The print edition is available in all good bookshops for (RRP £7.99)
Black Eyed Susans by Julia Heaberlin pulls you in from the first sentence. Flitting between present day and the 90’s is follows the story of Tessa, who as a teenager was left for dead in a field of flowers ‘black eyed susans’ with the bodies of other young women who had been murdered. Tessa was lucky to survive, but can’t remember much about the events of the night. The case has been reopened and Tessa agrees to help with the investigation. The reason for this is because someone has been planting black eyed susans outside of her window, which is discomforting, especially when the man she pinned the crime is due to be executed on death row in a matter of weeks.
With the clever use of flashbacks we hear what Tessa experienced on the months following that fatal night, and the confusion and torment she currently lives with. The characters have plenty of depth and the moments of tension are expertly written. This is a page turner of a novel with plenty of red herrings, which will leave you guessing till the end. Without doubt one of the best books I have read this year.
Black Eyed Susans is published by Michael Joseph and is available on the Kindle from Amazon.co.uk (RRP £12.99) The print edition is available in all good bookshops for (RRP £12.99)