My Week in Books – 29th January 2023

MyWeekinBooksOn What Cathy Read Next last week

Monday – I shared my review of A Winter Grave by Peter May as part of the blog tour

Tuesday – This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic was New-To-Me Authors I Discovered in 2022.

Wednesday – As always WWW Wednesday is a weekly opportunity to share what I’ve just read, what I’m currently reading and what I plan to read next… and to take a peek at what others are reading. 

Frday – I shared my review of The Last Party by Clare Mackintosh. 

Saturday – I published my review of The Echo Chamber by John Boyne.


New arrivals

River Sing Me HomeRiver Sing Me Home by Eleanor Shearer (Headline)

We whisper the names of the ones we love like the words of a song.That was the taste of freedom to us, those names on our lips.

Mary Grace, Micah, Thomas Augustus, Cherry Jane and Mercy.

These are the names of her children. The five who survived, only to be sold to other plantations. The faces Rachel cannot forget.

It’s 1834, and the law says her people are now free. But for Rachel freedom means finding her children, even if the truth is more than she can bear.

With fear snapping at her heels, Rachel keeps moving. From sunrise to sunset, through the cane fields of Barbados to the forests of British Guiana and on to Trinidad, to the dangerous river and the open sea.

Only once she knows their stories can she rest.

Only then can she finally find home.

Butler to the WorldButler to the World by Oliver Bullough (Profile)

How did Britain become the servant of the world’s most powerful and corrupt men?

From accepting multi-million pound tips from Russian oligarchs, to the offshore tax havens, meet Butler Britain…

In his Sunday Times-bestselling expose, Oliver Bullough reveals how the UK took up its position at the elbow of the worst people on Earth: the oligarchs, kleptocrats and gangsters. Though the UK prides itself on values of fair play and the rule of law, few countries do more to frustrate global anti-corruption efforts. From the murky origins of tax havens and gambling centres in the British Virgin Islands and Gibraltar to the influence of oligarchs in the British establishment, Butler to the World is the story of how we became a nation of Jeeveses – and how it doesn’t have to be this way.

Cut AdriftCut Adrift by Jane Jesmond (eARC, Verve Books)

Risk everything, trust no one.

Jen Shaw is climbing in the mountains near Alajar, Spain. And it’s nothing to do with the fact that an old acquaintance suggested that she meet him there…

But when things don’t go as planned and her brother calls to voice concerns over the whereabouts of their mother, Morwenna, Jen finds herself travelling to a refugee camp on the south coast of Malta.

Free-spirited and unpredictable as ever, Morwenna is working with a small NGO, helping her Libyan friend, Nahla, seek asylum for her family. Jen is instantly out of her depth, surrounded by stories of unimaginable suffering and increasing tensions within the camp.

Within hours of Jen’s arrival, Nahla is killed in suspicious circumstances, and Jen and Morwenna find themselves responsible for the safety of her daughters. But what if the safest option is to leave on a smuggler’s boat?


On What Cathy Read Next this week

Currently reading

Planned posts

  • My Five Favourite January 2023 Reads
  • Q&A/Extract: In the Shadows of Castles by G.K. Holloway
  • #6Degrees of Separation

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My Week in Books – 22nd January 2023

MyWeekinBooksOn What Cathy Read Next last week

Monday – I shared my review of historical novel The Lace Weaver by Lauren Chater. 

Tuesday – This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic was Bookish Goals for 2023.

Wednesday – As always WWW Wednesday is a weekly opportunity to share what I’ve just read, what I’m currently reading and what I plan to read next… and to take a peek at what others are reading. 

Thursday – I shared my review of The New Life by Tom Crewe. 

Saturday – I published my review of Becoming Ted by Matt Cain as part of the blog tour.


New arrivals

In the Shadows of Castles CoverIn the Shadows of Castles by G.K. Holloway (Silverwood Books)

It’s the 1060s and William of Normandy is establishing a new and brutal regime in England, but there are those who would defy him. As Norman soldiers spread like a plague across the land, resistance builds, but will it be enough to topple William and restore the rightful king to his throne? The English have the courage to fight, but the Normans, already victorious at Hastings, now build castles seeking to secure their tenuous foothold in these lands.

And what of the people caught up in these catastrophic events? Dispossessed but not defeated, their lives ripped apart, the English struggle for freedom from tyranny; amongst them, caught up in the turmoil, are a soldier, a thane and two sisters. As events unfold, their destinies become intertwined, bringing drastic changes that alter their lives forever.

The Square of SevensThe Square of Sevens by Laura Shepherd-Robinson (eARC, Mantle via NetGalley)

‘My father had spelt it out to me. Choice was a luxury I couldn’t afford. This is your story, Red. You must tell it well . . .’

A girl known only as Red, the daughter of a Cornish fortune-teller, travels with her father making a living predicting fortunes using the ancient method: the Square of Sevens. When her father suddenly dies, Red becomes the ward of a gentleman scholar.

Now raised as a lady amidst the Georgian splendour of Bath, her fortune-telling is a delight to high society, but she cannot ignore the questions that gnaw at her soul: who was her mother? How did she die? And who are the mysterious enemies her father was always terrified would find him?

The pursuit of these mysteries takes her from Cornwall and Bath to London and Devon, from the rough ribaldry of the Bartholemew Fair to the grand houses of two of the most powerful families in England. And while Red’s quest brings her the possibility of great reward, it also leads into her grave danger . . .

The Marriage PortraitThe Marriage Portrait by Maggie O’Farrell (Tinder Press)

In the winter of 1561. Lucrezia, Duchess of Ferrara, is taken on an unexpected visit to a country villa by her husband, Alfonso. As they sit down to dinner in the icy hall it occurs to Lucrezia that Alfonso has a sinister purpose in bringing her here: he intends to kill her.

Lucrezia is sixteen years old and has led a sheltered life, locked away inside Florence’s grandest palazzo, guarded by her father’s soldiers and her mother’s ladies-in-waiting.  Here, in this remote villa, however, she is entirely at the mercy of her increasingly erratic husband.

What is Lucrezia to do with this sudden knowledge? What chance does she have against Alfonso, the ruler of a province, and a trained soldier? How can she ensure her survival.


On What Cathy Read Next this week

Currently reading

Planned posts

  • Blog Tour/Book Review: A Winter Grave by Peter May
  • Book Review: The Last Party by Clare Mackintosh
  • Book Review: The Echo Chamber by John Boyne