Welcome to the first Fiction newsletter for the year. We have selected the best of this month’s fiction selections to tempt you. Suspese/thriller novels were featured in this month’s Other Genre selections. Great reading for these lovely lazy summer days.
Gone : a novel / Cathi Hanauer.Gone
“For the past fourteen years, Eve Adams has worked part-time while raising her two children and emotionally supporting her sculptor husband, Eric, through his early fame and success. Now, at forty-two, she suddenly finds herself with a growing career of her own, a private nutritionist practice and a book deal, even as Eric’s career sinks deeper into the slump it lipped into a few years ago. After a dinner at a local restaurant to celebrate Eve’s success, Eric drives the babysitter home and, simply, doesn’t come back. Eve must now shift the family in possibly irreparable ways, forcing her to realize that competence in one area of life doesn’t always keep things from unravelling in another.” (adapted from Amazon.com)
Oh dear Silvia / Dawn French.
“Who is in Coma Suite Number 5? A matchless lover, a supreme egotist, a selfless martyr, a bad mother, a cherished sister, a selfish wife, or all of these. This is Silvia Shute, who has always done exactly what she wanted, until now, when her life suddenly, shockingly stops. Her past holds a terrible secret, and now that she is unconscious in a hospital bed, her constant stream of visitors is set to uncover the mystery of her broken life. Meanwhile she must lay there, victim of the beloveds, the borings, the babblings and the plain bonkers. Like it or not, the truth is about to pay Silvia a visit.” (adapted from Syndetics summary).
Trains and lovers / Alexander McCall Smith. “The rocking of the train car, the sound of its wheels on the rails, there’s something special about this form of travel that makes for easy conversation. This is just what happens to the four strangers who meet in Trains and Lovers. As they travel by rail from Edinburgh to London, they entertain one another with tales of how trains have changed their lives.” (adapted from Amazon.com)
A very diverse selection from our new Graphic novels this month, that illustrates so well the breadth and depth of this collection. The best and a must read is The Red Diary or The Re(a)d diary, by Teddy Kristiansen and Steven T. Seagle, a graphic novel in a class of its own.
Sunset / created and written by Christos Gage ; art by Jorge Lucas.
“Long ago, Nick Bellamy stole millions from his mob employer, Mr. Gianelli. He left the mob and married the woman he loved. It’s 30 years later, and Nick’s now-comatose wife requires most of his time while his life is less eventful. But Gianelli has found Nick and is determined to destroy his life. Although Nick avoids Gianelli’s every attempt at ending his life, his wife is murdered, and this one-time enforcer returns to violence to get revenge.” (adapted from Syndetics summary)
Freeway / Mark Kalesniko.
“A 416-page tour de force chronicling a single day, a few hours even, in the life of his recurring dog-headed alter ego, Alex Kalienka. Stuck in a horrendous traffic jam on his way to his increasingly miserable job as an animator at Mickey Walt Studios, a burnt-out and depressed Alex alternately rages, reminisces, fantasises and hallucinates. Then again, are they in fact fantasies or prescient flashes? Is a threatening car tailing Alex just a paranoid fantasy or a genuine threat?” (adapted from Amazon.co.uk)
The red diary ; the re(a)d diary / [Teddy Kristiansen & Steven T. Seagle].
“Artist and writer Kristiansen and writer Seagle, have collaborated in an unconventional way for this beautiful, dual-story graphic novel. Published in French, Kristiansen’s original story chronicles the search of a biographer for the truth behind the life of an unknown artist who died during WWI. Seagle uses the same images to tell a different tale of war, art, and identity, as an old man searches to connect to the diaries of his youth. Seagle, who had not read the original before creating his own story, has done a remarkable job of creating a tale similar in tone and scope to Kristiansen’s original, while also telling a story wholly its own.” (adapted from Syndetics summary)
Die easy : a Charlie Fox thriller / Zoë Sharp.
“In Sharp’s white-knuckle 10th Charlie Fox thriller (after 2012’s Fifth Victim), professional bodyguard Charlie takes on an assignment in post-Katrina New Orleans-the first job with her lover and partner, Sean Meyer, since he recovered from being shot in the head, though he’s forgotten much of their relationship. Tasked with protecting wealthy businessman Blake Dyer during the After Katrina Foundation fundraising event, Charlie is grateful for what appears to be a straightforward task. But when a face from her and Sean’s military past reappears and there’s a calculated attack on the party, Charlie realizes that there might be more at stake than just the financial well-being of several powerful men. Sharp convincingly mixes hand-to-hand combat with the ups and downs of Charlie’s attempts to rebuild her old life with Sean, even as that possibility grows dimmer by the day…” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Taboo / Casey Hill.
“Forensic investigator Reilly Steel, Quantico-trained and California-born and bred, imagined Dublin to be a far cry from bustling San Francisco, a sleepy backwater where she can lay past ghosts to rest and start anew. She’s arrived in Ireland to drag the Irish crime lab into the 21st century, plus keep tabs on her Irish-born father who’s increasingly seeking solace in the bottle after a past family tragedy. But a brutal serial killer soon puts paid to that. When a young man and woman are found dead in an apartment, the gunshot wounds on their naked bodies suggest a suicide pact. But Reilly’s instincts are screaming that something’s seriously amiss, and as more bodies are discovered, the team soon realises that a twisted murderer is at work, one who seeks to upset society’s norms in the most sickening way imaginable…” (Adapted from syndetics summary)
The prisoner of Brenda / Bateman.
“When notorious gangster ‘Fat Sam’ Mahood is murdered, the chief suspect is arrested nearby. But he seems to have suffered a breakdown. Incarcerated in a mental institution, he’s known only as the Man in the White Suit. The suspect remains an enigma until Nurse Brenda calls on Mystery Man.” (adapted from Syndetics summary)
Luck of the draw / Piers Anthony.
“Bryce, an 80-year-old man in failing health, suddenly finds himself in Xanth, with his body rejuvenated, his health restored and his future already determined for him. As part of a bet between the Demons Earth and Xanth, Bryce must enter a contest to win the heart of the Princess Harmony, whether she is willing or not.” (adapted from Syndetics summary)
Cold days : a novel of the Dresden files / Jim Butcher.
“Being killed has barely slowed down the Chicago PI, who now serves as the Winter Knight. In that role, Dresden operates as hit man for Mab, the queen of air and darkness, who is forbidden from killing mortals. Not only is his liege capricious and deadly, but Dresden soon finds himself up against new supernatural foes, not least the Redcap, who dyes his headgear with the blood of anyone unfortunate enough to cross his path. The greatest danger, however, may be from Dresden’s new assignment from Mab: to murder her daughter, Maeve.” (adapted from Syndetics summary)
The sacrifice game : book II in the sacrifice game trilogy / Brian D’Amato ; with the illustrations by the author.
“The previous book, In the Courts of the Sun, a team of scientists sent math prodigy and Mayan descendant Jed DeLanda back in time to the year AD 664 to learn the “Sacrifice Game,” a divination ritual that the ancient Maya used to predict the apocalypse on December 21, 2012. But after arriving in the body of a willing human sacrifice instead of a Mayan king, Jed’s experiences led him to the fateful decision that rather than avert the apocalypse, he must ensure instead that the world ends. Using his knowledge of the divination game, Jed sets in motion a series of events that will bring about the destruction of humanity, ending the world’s pain and suffering once and for all. But before the plan can be completed, the organization that sent him into the past discovers his intention and devotes every resource to stop him.” (adapted from Amazon.com)
This month’s selection of Other Genre fiction features Suspense/Thriller novels and includes the latest novel from Michael Connelly titled The Black Box, another dangerous, but intriguing investigation for the popular character Harry Bosch.
The black box : a novel / Michael Connelly.
“In a case that spans 20 years, Harry Bosch links the bullet from a recent crime to a file from 1992, the killing of a young female photographer during the L.A. riots. Harry originally investigated the murder, but it was then handed off to the Riot Crimes Task Force and never solved. Now Bosch’s ballistics match indicates that her death was not random violence, but something more personal, and connected to a deeper intrigue. Like an investigator combing through the wreckage after a plane crash, Bosch searches for the “black box,” the one piece of evidence that will pull the case together.” (adapted from Amazon.com)
Shadow Creek : a novel / Joy Fielding.
“Due to a last-minute change in plans, a group of unlikely travelling companions finds themselves on a camping trip in the Adirondacks. They include the soon-to-be-divorced Valerie; her oddball friends, Melissa and James; her moody teenage daughter, Brianne; and Val’s estranged husband’s fiancée, Jennifer. Val is dealing with unresolved feelings toward her ex husband and is grappling with jealousy and resentment toward his younger, prettier new flame, a woman with some serious issues of her own. Brianne is sixteen and openly rebellious, caught up in a web of secrets and lies. What Val and her companions don’t know is that a pair of crazed killers is wreaking havoc in the very same woods. When an elderly couple is found slaughtered and Brianne goes missing, Val finds herself in a nightmare much worse than anything she could have anticipated.” (adapted from Amazon.com)
Did you miss me? / Karen Rose.
“The last thing Ford Elkhart remembers is walking his girlfriend back to her car. Now he’s lying tied and gagged on a cold, dark floor, with only one chance to escape before he ends up like the bones surrounding him. Assistant State’s Attorney Daphne Montgomery is devastated by her son’s disappearance and is immediately convinced that his kidnapping is connected to the white supremacist she’s just had jailed for murder. FBI Special Agent Joseph Carter isn’t so sure, especially when he learns that Ford’s girlfriend is also missing. Is Ford’s abduction payback for Daphne’s courtroom victory, or is he a pawn in an even more dangerous game?” (adapted from Syndetics summary)