On What Cathy Read Next last week
Monday – I published my review of To All the Living by Monica Fenton as part of the blog tour.
Tuesday – This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic was Bookish Pet Peeves but I went slightly off piste with Bookish Pets. Courtesy of Aries Fiction, I also hosted a giveaway for a paperback copy of Odin’s Game by Tim Hodkinson.
Wednesday – WWW Wednesday is the opportunity to share what I’ve just read, what I’m currently reading and what I plan to read next… and to have a good nose around what others are reading.
Thursday – My Throwback Thursday post was my review of The Far Field by Madhuri Vijay.
Friday – I shared my write-up of historical novelist Kate Mosse‘s appearance at Henley Literary Festival 2021.
Saturday – I published my review of Small Pleasures by Clare Chambers.
Sunday – I shared my write-up of BBC reporter turned novelist John Simpson‘s appearance at Henley Literary Festival 2021.
As always, thanks to everyone who has liked, commented on or shared my blog posts on social media.
The postman has been a frequent visitor this week… and there may have been a bookshop visit or two.
A Memory for Murder by Anne Holt (Hardcover, Corvus & Readers First)
When former high-powered lawyer turned PI Selma Falck is shot and her oldest friend, a junior MP, is killed in a sniper attack, everyone – including the police – assume that Selma was the prime target. But when two other people with connections to the MP are also found murdered, it becomes clear that there is a wider conspiracy at play.
As Selma sets out to avenge her friend’s death, and discover the truth behind the conspiracy, her own life is threatened once again. Only this time, the danger may be closer to home than she could possibly have realised…
Liberty Terrace by Madeleine D’Arcy (eARC, Doire Press & Midas PR)
Set in a fictional area of Cork City from 2016-2020, Liberty Terrace captures the highs and lows of everyday life from both before and during the Covid-19 pandemic, prompting readers to consider what it means to be human and to live within a wider community.
A former solicitor with experience as a Census Enumerator in 2016, Cork native Madeleine D’Arcy took inspiration from the Irish Census originally scheduled in April 2021 but now postponed until 2022 for Liberty Terrace. D’Arcy has created a rich tapestry of stories all set in and around the fictional street; the residents of Liberty Terrace come and go over the years – their lives ebbing and flowing around each other in ways that are sometimes funny, sometimes dark and often both.
The cast of characters includes retired Garda Superintendent Deckie Google, a young homeless squatter, the mother of an autistic child working part-time as a Census Enumerator, the dysfunctional Callinan family, an ageing rock star, a trio of ladies who visit a faith healer, a philandering husband, as well as a surprising number of cats and dogs.
Black Drop by Leonora Nattrass (eARC, Viper via NetGalley)
This is the confession of Laurence Jago. Clerk. Gentleman. Reluctant spy.
July 1794, and the streets of London are filled with rumours of revolution. Political radical Thomas Hardy is to go on trial for treason, the war against the French is not going in Britain’s favour, and negotiations with the independent American colonies are on a knife edge.
Laurence Jago – clerk to the Foreign Office – is ever more reliant on the Black Drop to ease his nightmares. A highly sensitive letter has been leaked to the press, which may lead to the destruction of the British Army, and Laurence is a suspect. Then he discovers the body of a fellow clerk, supposedly a suicide.
Blame for the leak is shifted to the dead man, but even as the body is taken to the anatomists, Laurence is certain both of his friend’s innocence, and that he was murdered. But after years of hiding his own secrets from his powerful employers, and at a time when even the slightest hint of treason can lead to the gallows, how can Laurence find the true culprit without incriminating himself?
The Red Monarch (Brontë Sisters Mystery #3) by Bella Ellis (eARC, Hodder & Stoughton via NetGalley)
The Brontë sisters’ first poetry collection has just been published, potentially marking an end to their careers as amateur detectors, when Anne receives a letter from her friend Lydia Robinson.
Lydia has eloped with a young actor, Harry Roxby, and following her disinheritance, the couple been living in poverty in London. Harry has become embroiled with a criminal gang and is in terrible danger after allegedly losing something very valuable that he was meant to deliver to their leader. The desperate and heavily pregnant Lydia has a week to return what her husband supposedly stole, or he will be killed. She knows there are few people who she can turn to in this time of need, but the sisters agree to help Lydia, beginning a race against time to save Harry’s life.
In doing so, our intrepid sisters come face to face with a terrifying adversary whom even the toughest of the slum-dwellers are afraid of…The Red Monarch.
Matrix by Lauren Groff (Hardcover)
Cast out of the royal court by Eleanor of Aquitaine, deemed too coarse and rough-hewn for marriage or courtly life, 17-year-old Marie de France is sent to England to be the new prioress of an impoverished abbey, its nuns on the brink of starvation and beset by disease.
At first taken aback by the severity of her new life, Marie finds focus and love in collective life with her singular and mercurial sisters. In this crucible, Marie steadily supplants her desire for family, for her homeland, for the passions of her youth with something new to her: devotion to her sisters, and a conviction in her own divine visions. Marie, born the last in a long line of women warriors and crusaders, is determined to chart a bold new course for the women she now leads and protects. But in a world that is shifting and corroding in frightening ways, one that can never reconcile itself with her existence, will the sheer force of Marie’s vision be bulwark enough?
Girl A by Abigail Dean (Paperback)
Lex Gracie doesn’t want to think about her family. She doesn’t want to think about growing up in her parents’ House of Horrors. And she doesn’t want to think about her identity as Girl A: the girl who escaped, the eldest sister who freed her older brother and four younger siblings.
It’s been easy enough to avoid her parents – her father never made it out of the House of Horrors he created, and her mother spent the rest of her life behind bars. But when her mother dies in prison and leaves Lex and her siblings the family home, she can’t run from her past any longer. Together with her sister, Evie, Lex intends to turn the House of Horrors into a force for good. But first she must come to terms with her siblings – and with the childhood they shared.
The Bride Price by Buchi Emecheta (Hardcover)
The Bride Price is the poignant love story of Aku-nna, a young Igbo woman, and her teacher, Chike, the son of a prosperous former slave. As their tribe begins to welcome western education and culture, these two are drawn together despite the traditions that forbid them to marry. Aku-nna flees an unwanted and forced marriage to join Chike, only to have her uncle refuse the required bride price from her lover’s family. Frustrated and abandoned by their people, Aku-naa and Chike escape to a modern world unlike any they’ve ever experienced. Despite their joy, Aku-nna is plagued by the fear the she will die in childbirth – the fate, according to tribal lore, awaiting every young mother whose bride price is left unpaid.
On What Cathy Read Next this week
- Event Review: Ed Balls at Henley Literary Festival 2021
- Blog Tour/Book Review: A Woman Made of Snow by Elisabeth Gifford
- Blog Tour/Book Review: An Extra Pair of Hands by Kate Mosse
- Blog Tour/Book Review: Cold As Hell by Lilja Sigurðardóttir
- Blog Tour/Book Review: The Prince of the Skies by Antonio Iturbe
- Book Review: The Bride Price by Buchi Emecheta