6 New Books To Read This Month

6 New Books To Read This Month

Whether it’s a reprint from the author of last year’s smash hit An America Marriage or a brilliant debut, this month serves up both fascinating fiction and moving memoirs…

A Thousand Moons by Sebastian Barry

Winona is a young Lakota orphan adopted by former soldiers Thomas McNulty and John Cole. Living with Thomas and John on the farm they work in 1870s Tennessee, she is educated and loved, forging a life for herself beyond the violence and dispossession of her past. But the fragile harmony of her unlikely family unit, in the aftermath of the Civil War, is soon threatened by a further traumatic event, one which Winona struggles to confront, let alone understand. Told in Sebastian Barry's masterly prose, A Thousand Moons is a moving study of one woman's journey, of her determination to write her own future and of the enduring human capacity for love.

“Nobody writes like, nobody takes lyrical risks like, nobody pushes the language, and the heart, and the two together, quite like Sebastian Barry does.” – Ali Smith

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House of Glass by Hadley Freeman

After her grandmother died, journalist Hadley Freeman travelled to her apartment to try and make sense of a woman she’d never really known. Sala Glass was a European expat in America – defiantly clinging to her French influences, famously reserved, fashionable to the end – yet to Hadley much of her life remained a mystery. When Hadley found a shoebox filled with her grandmother’s treasured belongings, it started a decade-long quest to find out their haunting significance and to dig deep into the extraordinary lives of Sala and her three brothers. The search takes Hadley from Picasso’s archives in Paris to a secret room in a farmhouse in Auvergne to Long Island and Auschwitz. A moving memoir.

“An utterly engrossing book.” – Nigella Lawson

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My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russell

Vanessa Wye was 15 years old when she first had sex with her English teacher. She is now 32 and the teacher, Mr Strane, has just been accused of sexual abuse by another former student. Vanessa is horrified by this news: the relationship she had with Strane wasn't abuse, it was love. Forced to rethink her past, to revisit everything that happened, Vanessa must redefine the great love story of her life – her great sexual awakening – as rape, as well as deal with the possibility that she might be a victim, and just one of many. Nuanced, uncomfortable and powerful, My Dark Vanessa goes straight to the heart of some of the most complex issues our age.

“A package of dynamite.” – Stephen King

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Pretending by Holly Bourne

Holly Bourne, the author of the bestselling How Do You Like Me Now?, returns with a new story about finding love amid the pressures and duplicity of online dating. April is kind, pretty, and relatively normal – yet she can't seem to get past date five. Every time she thinks she's found someone to trust, they reveal themselves to be awful, leaving her heartbroken. And angry. If only April could be more like Gretel. Gretel is exactly what men want – she's a ‘Regular Everyday Manic Pixie Dream Girl Next Door With No Problems’. The problem is, Gretel isn't real. And April is now claiming to be her. As soon as April starts 'being' Gretel, dating becomes much more fun – especially once she reels in the unsuspecting Joshua. Finally, April is the one in control, but can she control her own feelings? And as she and Joshua grow closer, how long will she be able to keep pretending?

“Magnificent. Brutally honest and righteously angry but still hugely enjoyable and engaging. I bow down!” – Marian Keyes 

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Silver Sparrow by Tayari Jones

Following the success of Tayari Jones’s 2019 Women’s Prize For Fiction winner An American Marriage, her 2011 third novel Silver Sparrow is published for the first time in the UK. Set in a middle-class neighbourhood in Atlanta in the 1980s, the novel revolves around James Witherspoon's two families – the public one and the secret one. When the daughters from each family meet and form a friendship, only one of them knows they are sisters. It is a relationship destined to explode. A stunning read.

"Silver Sparrow will break your heart before you even know it. Tayari Jones has written a novel filled with characters I'll never forget. This is a book I'll read more than once." – Judy Blume

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The Animals at Lockwood Manor by Jane Healey

August 1939. Thirty-year-old Hetty Cartwright is tasked with the evacuation and safekeeping of the natural history museum’s collection of mammals. Once she and her exhibits arrive at Lockwood Manor, however, where they are to stay for the duration of the war, Hetty soon realises that she’s taken on more than she’d thought. Protecting the animals from the grumpy Lord Lockwood and resentful servants is work enough, but when some of them go missing, and worse, Hetty begins to suspect someone – or something – is following her through the darkened corridors of the house. Part love story, part mystery, The Animals at Lockwood Manor is a gripping and atmospheric tale of family madness, long-buried secrets and hidden desires.

“A gloriously gothic extravaganza, perfect for fans of Sarah Perry and Bridget Collins.” – Waterstones

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