Summer into Autumn reads

A most desirable marriage

These will double up as beach reads if you still need some, or just curl up with a book as the nights draw in.Hilary Boyd - A most desirable marriage   Lawrence and Jo have enjoyed a strong marriage, the envy of their friends. Even after thirty years they have lots to say to each other, many interests in common and, until recently, a good sex life. But Lawrence seems wary and restless. Something’s wrong. Just howwrong, Jo is about to discover… Can they use their years of history – all the things they’ve shared – to overcome a devastating betrayal?

Dani Atkins – Story of Us   A woman falls for the stranger who saved her life, from the bestselling author of Fractured

The story of usSophie Kinsella - Shopaholic to the stars   The misadventures of Becky Bloomwood, a financial journalist who cannot manage her own finances is now a stylist in glitzy New York.

Kathy Lette – Courting Trouble  Tilly has the day from hell when she’s sacked from her barristers’ chambers in the morning, then finds her husband in bed with her former best friend in the afternoon. “A feminist heroine sinking her teeth into love rats and conniving men in a rollicking courtroom romp.”

JoJo Moyes – The one plus one  Suppose your life sucks. Your husband has done a vanishing act, your stepson is being bullied and your daughter has a once in a lifetime opportunity – that you can’t afford to pay for. So imagine you found and kept some money that didn’t belong to you, knowing it would pay for your daughter’s happiness. But how do you cope with the shame? Especially when the man you’ve lied to decides to help you out in your hour of need. Jo is in hell – Ed has saved her family – but is their happiness worth a lifetime’s soul-searching?


Should have gone to the library …

A customer so absorbed in looking through sci-fi books in a bookshop in Manchester last week didn’t hear the owner leave and got locked in.

The man had been browsing the shelves in a back room of the shop –  it is believed the owner had gone for coffee and forgotten he was there – only realised he was locked in when he took his books through to the counter to pay and found the shop deserted.

He  searched for a key or a mobile number for the owner, but unable to find either, rang the police. An upstairs fire exit, with police offering to call the fire brigade to help with the rescue, proved useless because part of the ladder couldn’t be used. The man then agreed to wait inside the shop until officers could arrive – reading books he hoped to buy to pass the time. After an hour-and-a-half the shop’s owner returned and  set the customer free.

Even worse, the man was unable to pay for the books because the family-run shop doesn’t accept bank cards. But when he went back with cash to buy the books, the owner did give him a voucher to use on a return visit. He said: “I was relieved to be able to spend the night in my own bed without having the embarrassment of a rescue by the fire brigade!”

Håkan Nesser, godfather of Swedish crime

The G fileAre you a Scandanavian crime fan looking for a new series to read? This might be for you. There are 10 novels in all, see below, and Swedish author Hakan Nesser (he’s won the best Swedish crime novel award three times and gets a lot of good ratings from Leeds readers) has just published the final exciting instalment in the Inspector Van Veeteren series, called  The G File

In the early novels Van Veeteren is a detective and in the later ones he becomes the owner of an antique books shop. Set in a fictitious city called Maardam, which is located in an unnamed northern Europe country – shades of Sweden, the Netherlands, Poland and Germany – the names in it are mainly Dutch

About the G File It’s 1987. Verlangan, a former cop turned private detective is hired by a woman to follow her husband Jaan ‘G’ Hennan. A few days later, his client is found dead at the Woman with birthmarkbottom of an empty swimming pool . . . Maardam police, led by Chief Inspector Van Veeteren, investigate the case. Van Veeteren has encountered Jaan ‘G’ Hennan before and knows only too well the man’s dark capabilities. As more information emerges about G’s shadowy past, the Chief Inspector becomes more desperate than ever to convict him. Yet G has a solid alibi – and no one else can be found in relation to the crime . . . 2002.

Fifteen years have passed and The G File remains the one case former Chief Inspector Van Veeteren has never been able to solve. When Verlangan’s daughter reports the private detective missing, Van Veeteren returns to Maardam CID once more. For all Verlangan left behind was a cryptic note; and a telephone message in which he claimed to have finally discovered the proof of G’s murderous past


1. The Mind’s Eye 
2. Borkmann’s Point 
3. The Return 
4. Woman with Birthmark 
5. The Inspector and Silence 
6. The Unlucky Lottery 
7. Hour of the Wolf 
8. The Weeping Girl 
9. The Strangler’s Honeymoon 
10. The G File 

The Fiction Hotlist August 26

Be careful what you wish forA fantastic choice of 75 titles on #TheFictionHotlist this week. Click the link to browse the new titles and reserve any you fancy. It’s a brilliant choice.

Our blockbuster of the week is by Britain’s top selling novelist, and this is the fourth novel in the Clifton Chronicles series. The Clifton and Barrington families march forward into the sixties, in this epic tale of love, revenge, ambition and betrayal.

Yes, Jeffery Archer fans, there are 25 copies of ‘Be careful what you wish for’ coming to Leeds Libraries this week. The previous books in the series are:

1. Only Time Will Tell (2011)
2. The Sins of the Father (2012)
3. Best Kept Secret (2013)
4. Be Careful What You Wish For (2014)

If you’re not a fan there’s so many more to choose from Stephen Leather’s – White Lies – Spider Shepherd thriller which everyone is wanting. Saintcrow, Lilith – The Ripper affair. Bannon and Clare detective series

Harry, Lilian – Celebrations in Burracombe – Feelgood story set in late 50’s,  Martin, G RR – Dead man’s hand – Scifi short stories




James Tait Black Prizes

HarvestCongratulations to Jim Crace @jimcrace and Hermione Lee who have won the James Tait Black Prizes. The prizes  have been awarded annually since 1919  and it is the oldest book award. The former journalist and broadcaster, British-born author Jim Crace, has won the fiction prize. He’s written 13 books and already has several prestigious awards to his name.

Harvest - inspired by the daily toil of a shepherdess- tells the story of a remote English village as economic progress disrupts pastoral idyll following the Enclosure Acts, creating legal property rights to land that was previously considered common.  The judges said:  “A spellbinding lyrical reflection upon the nature of cultural inheritance and the obligations and responsibilities of community in a changing and uncertain world”.

Past winners include DH Lawrence, Graham Greene, Angela Carter and Ian McEwan. ThePenelope Fitzgerald: a life winners receive £10,000.

 Prof Dame Hermione Lee has won the biography prize for  Penelope Fitzgerald: A Life.  She has written widely on women writers, including Virginia Woolf and Edith Wharton. Biography judge Prof Jonathan Wild said: “Hermione Lee’s biography of Penelope Fitzgerald provides a masterclass in writing of this type. “It’s the perfect marriage of an excellent subject and a biographer working at the very top of her game.”

 The James Tait Black Prizes are judged by academics and postgraduate students who read more than 400 novels & then nominate books for the shortlist. The awards, organised by the University of Edinburgh’s department of literatures, languages and cultures, were founded by Janet Coats, the widow of publisher James Black.

Darkness, Darkness by John Harvey

Darkness Darkness by John Harvey

Good thing about this series of novels is that, if you haven’t read any before, this is the eleventh, so there’s ten more to go at. But bad news is, if you have been reading them before, this is the last one.

Yes, this is the final DI Charlie Resnick novel, from the Cartier Diamond Dagger winner and Sunday Times bestselling author of Cold in Hand,  John Harvey. Charlie Resnick is based in the city of Nottingham and loves sandwiches and jazz.

Thirty years ago, the Miners’ Strike threatened to tear the country apart, turning neighbour against neighbour, husband against wife, father against son – enmities which smoulder still.

Resnick, recently made up to inspector, and ambivalent at best about some of the police tactics, had run an information gathering unit at the heart of the dispute.

Now, in virtual retirement, and still grieving over the violent death of his former partner, the discovery of the body of a young woman who disappeared during the Strike brings Resnick back to the front line to assist in the investigation into the woman’s murder – forcing him to confront his past in what will assuredly be his last case.


The Quick by Lauren Owen #LeedsReadsRecommends

The quickThe quick by Lauren Owen

Travel to Victorian England, and there, in the wilds of Yorkshire, meet a brother and sister alone in the world, a pair bound by tragedy.

Named as one of the top ten literary books of the season by Publisher’s Weekly, this is a debut novel ‘of epic scope and suspense that conjures up all the magic and menace of Victorian London’ Don’t miss it.

 London, 1892: James Norbury, a shy would-be poet newly down from Oxford, finds lodging with a charming young aristocrat. Through this new friendship, he is introduced to the drawing-rooms of high society, and finds love in an unexpected quarter. Then, suddenly, he vanishes without a trace. Unnerved, his sister, Charlotte, sets out from their crumbling country estate determined to find him.

In the sinister, labyrinthine city that greets her, she uncovers a secret world at the margins populated by unforgettable characters: a female rope walker turned vigilante, a street urchin with a deadly secret, and the chilling “Doctor Knife.” But the answer to her brother’s disappearance ultimately lies within the doors of one of the country’s pre-eminent and mysterious institutions: The Aegolius Club, whose members include the most ambitious, and most dangerous, men in England.