The Marriage Portrait – Maggie O’Farrell – £25.00 hardback
Winter, 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 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. Here, in this remote villa, 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, ruler of a province, and a trained soldier? How can she ensure her survival. The Marriage Portrait is an unforgettable reimagining of the life of a young woman whose proximity to power places her in mortal danger.
Moominsummer Madness – Tove Jansson – £6.99 paperback
It all began with a hot day in June, and a volcano dropping black ash on Moominmamma’s washing. Then a crack appeared in the ground, and Moomintroll’s toothbrush slipped straight down into the dark and yawning earth. Then a great flood wave came crashing through Moomin Valley. And that was why the Moomins found themselves a new home, and why they all had so many strange adventures, ones that were odd even by Moomin standards.
Death Comes to Pemberley – PD James – £8.99 paperback
The year is 1803, and Darcy and Elizabeth have been married for six years. There are now two handsome and healthy sons in the nursery, Elizabeth’s beloved sister Jane and her husband Bingley live nearby and the orderly world of Pemberley seems unassailable. But all this is threatened when, on the eve of the annual autumn ball, the guests are preparing to retire for the night – a chaise appears, rocking down the path from Pemberley’s wild woodland. As it pulls up, Lydia Wickham – Elizabeth’s younger, unreliable sister – stumbles out screaming that her husband, George Wickham, has been murdered. Inspired by a lifelong passion for the work of Jane Austen, P.D. James masterfully recreates the world of Pride and Prejudice.
Lily – Rose Tremain – £8.99 paperback
Nobody knows yet that she is a murderer…. London, 1850. On a freezing winter’s night, a baby is abandoned at the gates of a park only to be saved by a young policeman and taken to the Foundling Hospital. After suffering years of brutal hardship at the Hospital, Lily is released into the world of Victorian London. But she is hiding a dreadful secret. When Lily and the policeman meet again, Lily is convinced that he holds the key to her happiness. But might he also be the one to uncover her crime and so condemn her to death?
The Word is Murder – Anthony Horowitz – £9.99 paperback
A woman is strangled six hours after organising her own funeral. Did she know she was going to die? Did she recognise her killer? Daniel Hawthorne, a recalcitrant detective with secrets of his own, is on the case, and he’s found himself a sidekick – popular crime novelist Anthony Horowitz, who’s struck a deal with Hawthorne to turn his latest case into a true crime bestseller. But the case is twistier and bloodier than Hawthorne had bargained for, and the unlikely duo of detective and writer find themselves neck deep in danger. When the written word is your only defence, you know you’re in trouble when the word is murder.
How to Kill Your Family – Bella Mackie – £8.99 paperback
They say you can’t choose your family. But you can kill them. Meet Grace Bernard. Daughter, sister, serial killer. Grace has lost everything. And she will stop at nothing to get revenge. Funny, dark and twisted, Grace is a character you will find yourself rooting for, even as she commits the most hideous crimes.
Crossroads – Jonathan Franzen – £9.99 paperback
It’s 23 December 1971, and the Hildebrandts are at a crossroads. Fifteen-year-old Perry has resolved to be a better person and quit dealing drugs to seventh graders. His sister Becky, the once straight-laced high school social queen, has veered into counterculture. While at college, Clem is wrestling with a decision that might tear his family apart. As their parents – Russ, a suburban pastor, and Marion, his restless wife – tug against the bonds of a joyless marriage, Crossroads finds a family, and a nation, struggling to do the right thing.
The Bullet that Missed – Richard Osman – £20 hardback
It is an ordinary Thursday and things should finally be returning to normal. Except trouble is never far away where the Thursday Murder Club are concerned. A decade-old cold case leads them to a local news legend and a murder with no body and no answers. Then a new foe pays Elizabeth a visit. Her mission? Kill, or, be killed. As the cold case turns white hot, Elizabeth wrestles with her conscience (and a gun), while Joyce, Ron and Ibrahim chase down clues with help from old friends and new. But can the gang solve the mystery and save Elizabeth before the murderer strikes again?
Lessons in Chemistry – Bonnie Garmus – £16.99 hardback
Your ability to change everything – including yourself – starts here. Chemist Elizabeth Zott is not your average woman. In fact, Elizabeth Zott would be the first to point out that there is no such thing. But it’s the early 1960s and her all-male team at Hastings Research Institute take a very unscientific view of equality. Except for one: Calvin Evans, the lonely, brilliant, Nobel-prize nominated grudge-holder who falls in love with – of all things – her mind. True chemistry results.
Like science, life is unpredictable. Which is why a few years later, Elizabeth Zott finds herself not only a single mother, but the reluctant star of America’s most beloved cooking show, Supper at Six. Elizabeth’s unusual approach to cooking (‘combine one tablespoon acetic acid with a pinch of sodium chloride’) proves revolutionary. But as her following grows, not everyone is happy. Because as it turns out, Elizabeth Zott isn’t just teaching women to cook. She’s daring them to change the status quo.
A Gentleman in Moscow – Amor Towles – £9.99 paperback
On 21 June 1922, Count Alexander Rostov – recipient of the Order of Saint Andrew, member of the Jockey Club, Master of the Hunt – is escorted out of the Kremlin, across Red Square and through the elegant revolving doors of the Hotel Metropol. Deemed an unrepentant aristocrat by a Bolshevik tribunal, the Count has been sentenced to house arrest indefinitely. But instead of his usual suite, he must now live in an attic room while Russia undergoes decades of tumultuous upheaval. Can a life without luxury be the richest of all?