Shop Girl (A Memoir), Mary Portas
Young Mary Newton, born into a large Irish family in a small Watford semi, was always getting into trouble. When she wasn’t choking back fits of giggles at Holy Communion or eating Chappie dog food for a bet, she was accidentally setting fire to the local school. Mary was a trouble magnet. And, unlike her brothers, somehow she always got caught…
Britain in the 1970s was a world where R White’s lemonade was drunk in secret, curry came in a cardboard box marked Vesta and Beanz meant Heinz. In Mary’s family, money was scarce. Clothes were hand-me-downs, holidays a church day out to Hastings and meals were variations on the potato. But these were also good times which revolved around the force of nature that was Theresa, Mary’s mum.
When tragedy unexpectedly blows this world apart, a new chapter in Mary’s life opens up. She takes to the camp and glamour of Harrods window dressing like a duck to water, and Mary, Queen of Shops is born…
Black Wood, Sji Holliday
He spots the two girls through the cracked screen of beech, sycamore and leg-scratching gorse: a flash of red skirt and a unison of giggles . . . The smaller girl sees him first and she lets out a strange little squeak and jumps back, grabbing onto the other girl’s T-shirt, revealing a flash of milky white shoulder.
Something happened to Claire and Jo in Black Wood: something that left Claire paralysed and Jo with deep mental scars. But with Claire suffering memory loss and no evidence to be found, nobody believes Jo’s story.
Twenty-three years later, a familiar face walks into the bookshop where Jo works, dredging up painful memories and rekindling her desire for vengeance. And at the same time, Sergeant David Gray is investigating a balaclava-clad man who is attacking women on a disused railway, shocking the sleepy village of Banktoun. But what is the connection between Jo’s visitor and the masked man?
To catch the assailant, and to give Jo her long-awaited justice, Gray must unravel a tangled web of past secrets, broken friendship and tainted love. But can he crack the case before Jo finds herself with blood on her hands?
Not Quite Nice, Celia Imrie
Theresa is desperate for a change. Forced into early retirement, fed up with babysitting her bossy daughter’s obnoxious children, she sells her Highgate house and moves to the picture-perfect town of Bellevue-sur-Mer, just outside Nice.
With its beautiful villas, its bustling cafes and shimmering cerulean sea, the village sparkles like a diamond on the French Mediterranean coast. Once the hideaway of artists and writers, it is now home to the odd rock icon and Hollywood movie star, and, as Theresa soon discovers, a close-knit set of expats. There’s Carol, the infinitely glamorous American and her doting husband David; the erstwhile British TV star Sally; the ferocious Sian and her wayward Australian poet husband; the sharply witty Zoe with her strangely youthful face and penchant for white wine – and the suave Brian who catches Theresa’s eye…
As Theresa settles to the gentle rhythm of seaside life she embraces her new-found friendships and freedom. However, life is never quite as simple as it seems and as skeletons start to fall out of several closets, Theresa begins to wonder if life on the French Riviera is quite as nice as it first appeared…
Stranger Child, Rachel Abbott
When Emma Joseph met her husband David, he was a man shattered by grief. His first wife had been killed outright when her car veered off the road. Just as tragically, their six-year-old daughter mysteriously vanished from the scene of the accident.
Now, six years later, Emma believes the painful years are behind them. She and David have built a new life together and have a beautiful baby son, Ollie.
Then a stranger walks into their lives, and their world tilts on its axis.
Emma’s life no longer feels secure. Does she know what really happened all those years ago? And why does she feel so frightened for herself and for her baby?
When a desperate Emma reaches out to her old friend DCI Tom Douglas for help, she puts all their lives in jeopardy. Before long, a web of deceit is revealed that shocks both Emma and Tom to the core.
They say you should never trust a stranger. Maybe they’re right.
Silent Scream, Angela Marsons
Five figures gather round a shallow grave. They had all taken turns to dig. An adult sized hole would have taken longer. An innocent life had been taken but the pact had been made. Their secrets would be buried, bound in blood …
Years later, a headmistress is found brutally strangled, the first in a spate of gruesome murders which shock the Black Country.
But when human remains are discovered at a former children’s home, disturbing secrets are also unearthed. D.I. Kim Stone fast realises she’s on the hunt for a twisted individual whose killing spree spans decades.
As the body count rises, Kim needs to stop the murderer before they strike again. But to catch the killer, can Kim confront the demons of her own past before it’s too late?
Fans of Rachel Abbott, Val McDermid and Mark Billingham will be gripped by this exceptional new voice in British crime fiction.
Watch out for more from D.I. Kim Stone
A Detective hiding dark secrets, Kim Stone will stop at nothing to protect the innocent. Silent Scream is the first book in the series – watch out for EVIL GAMES coming soon.
What people are saying about Silent Scream
‘A superb debut by an assured new writer. Blending sharp wit with emotion, I thoroughly enjoyed the ride alongside DI Kim Stone and look forward to the next outing.’ Mel Sherratt
‘Stunning’ Mail on Sunday
‘I absolutely loved it! … This one is one of the best crime thrillers I’ve read in a long time, and that includes mainstream authors such as James Patterson! I would seriously put this book in the same league.’ Fiona’s Book Reviews
‘I have not been so impressed by a debut novel in a long time, and I’m actually now itching for more …D.I. Kim Stone is like the British Jane Rizzoli. She’s so ballsy and doesn’t understand the meaning of the word no. I LOVE heroines who just do what they want and sod the consequences and Kim did that, right from the beginning… I can’t wait for the second book, because this one was a top-notch crime thriller.’ Leah Loves
’I don’t think I’ve been so hooked by a new author since the discovery of Mark Edwards or Mark Billingham… Silent Scream gets 5 stars from me – if you finish a crime thriller feeling like you just need to have a lie-down and a cup of tea to get your breath back, then the writer has done their job. Angela Marsons, I still don’t have my breath back.’ Reading Room with a View
‘Normally when I see everybody rating a book five stars I think ‘Is it really that good?’ Silent Scream is that good, and then some… The only problem Angela now faces is keeping up this standard as the series progresses, but if she does than she’s going to be an author to watch and a huge star within the genre.’ Book Addict Shaun
‘I started reading ‘Silent Scream’ thinking I would just read a few chapters. I ended up reading it all… An excellent read and one I would happily recommend.’ Northern Crime
‘This is a fantastic debut novel by Marsons. The blurb said that if you were a fan of Val McDermid and Mark Billingham you would love this book and being a huge fan of both I thought I would give it a go and I was pleasantly surprised… With lots of twists and turns this is a real page turner.’ The Laughing Librarian
‘It’s highly unusual for me to find a book that leads me to put my life on hold. But Angela Marson’s Silent Scream has led me to virtually abandon work for the last day, even with deadlines looming… ticks all the boxes for a 5* rating from me: a well written flowing story; strong but vulnerable protagonist; fast pace; intrigue; twists and turns until several final OMG moments; plenty of action; and the revealing of a brutal murderer.’ Off the Shelf
The Year I Met You, Cecilia Ahern
Matt loves two things: his family and the booze. Without them, he hits rock bottom.
One New Year’s Eve, two people’s paths collide. Both have time on their hands; both are at a crossroads. But as the year unfolds, through moonlit nights and suburban days, an unlikely friendship slowly starts to blossom.
Sometimes you have to stop still in order to move on…
Winter Garden, Kristin Hannah
Meredith and Nina Whitson are as different as sisters can be. One stayed at home to raise her children and manage the family apple orchard; the other followed a dream and travelled the world to become a famous photo journalist. But when their beloved father falls ill, these two estranged women will find themselves together again, standing alongside their cold, disapproving mother, Anya, who even now, offers no comfort to her daughters. On his deathbed, their father extracts one last promise from the women in his life.
It begins with a story that is unlike anything the sisters have heard before – a captivating, mysterious love story that spans sixty-five years and moves from frozen, war-torn Leningrad to modern-day Alaska. The vividly imagined tale brings these three women together in a way that none of them could have expected. Meredith and Nina will finally learn the secret of their mother’s past and uncover a truth so terrible it will shake the foundations of their family and change who they think they are.
The Throwaway Children, Diney Costeloe
Rita and Rosie Stevens are only nine and five years old when their widowed mother marries a violent bully called Jimmy Randall and has a baby boy by him. Under pressure from her new husband, she is persuaded to send the girls to an orphanage – not knowing that the papers she has signed will entitle them to do what they like with the children.
And it is not long before the powers that be decide to send a consignment of orphans to their sister institution in Australia. Among them – without their family’s consent or knowledge – are Rita and Rosie, the throwaway children.
The Liar, Nora Roberts
When her husband Richard dies in a freak accident, Shelby Pomeroy is devastated. But his death reveals a horrible truth – Richard was a liar and a cheat. Now Shelby is left with the consequences – huge, terrifying debts and mounting proof that her late husband betrayed her in every conceivable way.
Heart-broken but unbowed, Shelby is determined to fix her problems – if only for the sake of her gorgeous little daughter Callie. Returning home to Tennessee and the family she thought she’d lost for ever, she discovers a new sense of strength and freedom. And hope, too, in the handsome form of carpenter Griffin Lott – a straight-dealing man who couldn’t lie to her if he tried.
But not everyone is thrilled to see Shelby Pomeroy back in town. And when a shocking act of violence is traced back to Richard’s shady business, it becomes clear that she is not safe from him, even in death. With her life in danger, Shelby must face the lies of the past – or lose everything.
A Time For Friends, Patricia Scanlan
When are the boundaries of friendship pushed too far, and when is it time to stop flying over oceans for someone who wouldn’t jump over a puddle for you? There comes a time when Hilary Hammond has to make that call.
Hilary and Colette O’Mahony have been friends since childhood, but when irrepressible Jonathan Harpur breezes into Hilary’s life and goes into business with her, Colette is not best pleased.
After their first encounter Colette thinks he’s a ‘pushy upstart’ while he thinks she’s ‘a snobby little diva’. And so the battle lines are drawn and Hilary is bang in the middle.
But as the years roll by and each of them is faced with difficult times and tough decisions, one thing is clear … to have a friend you must be a friend.
And that’s when Hilary discovers that sometimes your best friend can be your greatest enemy …
Saving Danny, Cathy Glass
Danny was petrified and clung to me in desperation as I carried him to my car. Trapped in his own dark world, he couldn’t understand why his parents no longer loved or wanted him, and were sending him away.While Danny’s parents have everything they could wish for in material terms, they are unable to care for their only child. This is where Cathy comes in. On a cold dark evening Danny finds a place in her home where he can be himself; away from his parents’ impatience and frustration. Often in his own little world, six-year-old Danny finds it difficult to communicate, finding solace in his best friend and confidant George – his rabbit.Cathy quickly becomes aware of his obsessively meticulous behaviour in addition to his love of patterns, he sees them everywhere and creates them at any opportunity – in his play and also with his food. She realises that patience is the key to looking after Danny as well as her well-tried strategies for managing children’s behaviour.With his father refusing to cooperate, it becomes increasingly likely that Danny will be living with Cathy permanently until she gets an opportunity to speak her piece.
You Are Dead, Peter James
THEY WERE MARKED FOR DEATH. The last words Nick Walton hears from his fiancée, Logan Somerville, are in a terrified mobile phone call. She has just driven into the underground car park beneath the block of flats where they live in Brighton. Then she screams and the phone goes dead. The police are on the scene within minutes, but Logan has vanished, leaving behind her neatly parked car and mobile phone.
That same afternoon, workmen digging up a park in another part of the city, unearth the remains of a woman in her early twenties, who has been dead for 30 years.
At first, to Roy Grace and his team, these two events seem totally unconnected. But then another young woman in Brighton goes missing – and yet another body from the past surfaces.
Meanwhile, an eminent London psychiatrist meets with a man who claims to know information about Logan. And Roy Grace has the chilling realization that this information holds the key to both the past and present crimes . . . Does Brighton have its first serial killer in over eighty years?
The Mirror World of Melody Black, Gavin Extence
He was a neighbour, not someone Abby knew well, but still, finding a body when you only came over to borrow a tin of tomatoes, that comes as a bit of a shock.
At least, it should.
And now she can’t shake the feeling that if she hadn’t gone into Simon’s flat, if she’d had her normal Wednesday night instead, then none of what happened next would have happened.
And she would never have met Melody Black . . .