Rosemary’s Book Previews

January 2022

1.Vengance  | Mark David Abbott

John Hayes’ life is perfect. He has a dream job in an exotic land, his career path is on an upward trajectory and at home he has a beautiful wife whom he loves with all his heart.

But one horrible day a brutal incident tears this all away from him and his life is destroyed.

He doesn’t know who is to blame, he doesn’t know what to do, and the police fail to help.

What should he do? Accept things and move on with his life or take action and do what the authorities won’t do for him?

2. Better off Dead | Lee Child

Reacher never backs down from a problem.

And he’s about to find a big one, on a deserted Arizona road, where a Jeep has crashed into the only tree for miles around. Under the merciless desert sun, nothing is as it seems.

Minutes later Reacher is heading into the nearby border town, a backwater that has seen better days. Next to him is Michaela Fenton, an army veteran turned FBI agent, who is trying to find her twin brother. He might have got mixed up with some dangerous people.

And Reacher might just need to pay them a visit.

Their leader has burrowed his influence deep into the town. Just to get in and meet the mysterious Dendoncker, Reacher is going to have to achieve the impossible.

To get answers will be even harder. There are people in this hostile, empty place who would rather die than reveal their secrets.

But then, if Reacher is coming after you, you might be better off dead.

3. The Dark Hours | Michael Connelly

There’s chaos in Hollywood on New Year’s Eve. At the end of the countdown, LAPD Detective Renee Ballard seeks shelter from the traditional rain of lead as hundreds of revellers shoot their guns into the air. Minutes later, Ballard is called to a scene where a hardworking auto shop owner has been fatally hit by a bullet in the middle of a crowded street party. Ballard swiftly concludes that the deadly bullet could not have fallen from the sky and connects it with another unsolved murder – a case at one time worked by Detective Harry Bosch. Meanwhile, Ballard still hunts a fiendish pair of serial rapists, the Midnight Men, who have been terrorising women and leaving no trace.

Finding herself up against deadly inertia and foundering morale in a police department ravaged by the pandemic and recent riots, Ballard must look outside to the one detective she can count on: Harry Bosch. But as the two determined detectives join forces, they cannot relax their guard. The brutal predators they track won’t hesitate to kill to keep their secrets hidden.

4. The Midnight Lock | Jeffery Deaver

A killer without limits
He comes into your home at night. He watches you as you sleep. He waits.

A city in turmoil
He calls himself ‘The Locksmith’. No door can keep him out. No security system can catch him. And now he’s about to kill.

A race against time to stop him
Nobody in New York is safe. Now it’s up to Lincoln Rhyme to untangle the web of evidence and catch him.

But with Lincoln under investigation himself, and tension in the city at boiling point, time is running out…

5. Thicker than Water | J. D. Kirk

Not all monsters are make-believe.

When a badly mutilated body washes up on the shores of Loch Ness, DCI Jack Logan’s dream of a quiet life in the Highlands is shattered.

While the media speculates wildly about monster attacks, Jack and the Major Investigations Team must act fast to catch the killer before they can strike again.

But with Nessie-hunters descending on the area in their dozens, and an old enemy rearing his ugly head, the case could well turn out to be the most challenging of Jack’s career.

And, if he isn’t careful, the last.

Death and dark humour combine in this fast-paced Tartan Noir crime thriller set in the Highlands of Scotland.

6. Stolen Ones | Angela Marsons

Kim felt sickness sweep over her as she watched little Grace dust off her dirty hands. Blonde curls tumbled around her face. Then, Grace disappeared into the crowd. Kim wanted to pause the recording, run outside, and grab her to stop what was about to happen.

One August afternoon, eight-year-old Grace Lennard skips into the garden of the childcare center she attends and vanishes into thin air. Rushing to the scene of Grace’s disappearance, Detective Kim Stone finds a chilling piece of evidence: the engraved heart bracelet belonging to Melody Jones – the little girl who was taken from a playground exactly 25 years ago.

Hours before, Steven Harte had walked into Halesowen police station and confessed to having information that would lead Kim to Melody. And he told Kim she’d have a more urgent problem to deal with first. Now Kim must play Steven’s twisted game if she’s to find Grace alive.

With only 24 hours to make every second of Steven’s interrogation count, and scan his behavior for hidden clues, Kim and her team soon link Steven to the abduction of several vulnerable girls – two were kept for a year and then released, unharmed – but where are Melody and the others?

Then small bones are discovered in the grounds of a local park, and Kim fears the worst.

Kim may think she’s close to convicting a killer, but the case is about to get even more complex. Steven is hiding one final explosive truth, and he’s not the only one. Dr. Alex Thorne – the evil woman Kim did her best to keep behind bars is about to reveal a shocking secret to Kim that will hit her where it hurts the most. Kim knows she must put aside her own demons to save Grace and find the other missing girls in time. But can Kim untangle Steven’s web before any more innocent lives are lost?

7. Tooth for a Tooth | T. F. Muir

When a woman’s skeleton is discovered in a shallow grave DCI Andy Gilchrist is tasked with finding her murderer. But a psychic’s warnings and markings on a rusted cigarette lighter found among the rotted remains take Gilchrist on a journey into his own past that brings him closer to discovering the identity of his brother’s killer from a hit-and-run case some thirty-five years before.

When dental records from an extracted tooth force Gilchrist to confront the unthinkable—that his brother was her killer—he keeps his fears to himself, only to be suspended on suspicion of destroying evidence.

8. See Them Run | Marion Todd

On the night of a wedding celebration, one guest meets a grisly end when he’s killed in a hit-and-run. A card bearing the number ‘5’ has been placed on the victim’s chest. DI Clare Mackay, who recently moved from Glasgow to join the St Andrews force, leads the investigation. The following night another victim is struck down and a number ‘4’ card is at the scene. Clare and her team realise they’re against the clock to find a killer stalking the streets of the picturesque Scottish town and bent on carrying out three more murders.

To prevent further deaths, the police have to uncover the link between the victims. But those involved have a lot more at stake than first meets the eye. If Clare wants to solve the case she must face her own past and discover the deepest secrets of the victims – and the killer.

9.The Fossil Hunter | Tea Cooper

A fossil discovered at London’s Natural History Museum leads one woman back in time to nineteenth century Australia and a world of scientific discovery and dark secrets in this compelling historical mystery.

The Hunter Valley 1847

The last thing Mellie Vale remembers before the fever takes her is running through the bush as a monster chases her – but no one believes her story. In a bid to curb Mellie’s overactive imagination, her benefactors send her to visit a family friend, Anthea Winstanley. Anthea is an amateur palaeontologist with a dream. She is convinced she will one day find proof the great sea dragons – the ichthyosaur and the plesiosaur – swam in the vast inland sea that millions of years ago covered her property at Bow Wow Gorge. Soon, Mellie shares that dream for she loves fossil hunting too…

1919
When Penelope Jane Martindale arrives home from the battlefields of World War I with the intention of making her peace with her father and commemorating the death of her two younger brothers in the trenches, her reception is not as she had hoped. Looking for distraction, she finds a connection between a fossil at London’s Natural History museum and her brothers which leads her to Bow Wow Gorge. But the gorge has a sinister reputation – 70 years ago people disappeared. So when PJ uncovers some unexpected remains, it seems as if the past is reaching into the present and she becomes determined to discover what really happened all that time ago…

10. The Way It Is Now | Garry Disher

Set in a beach-shack town an hour from Melbourne, The Way It Is Now tells the story of a burnt-out cop named Charlie Deravin.

Charlie is living in his family’s holiday house, on forced leave since he made a mess of things at work.

Things have never been easy for Charlie. Twenty years earlier his mother went missing in the area, believed murdered. His father has always been the main suspect, though her body was never found.

Until now: the foundations are being dug for a new house on a vacant block. The skeletal remains of a child and an adult are found—and Charlie’s past comes crashing in on him.

The Way It Is Now is the enthralling new novel by Garry Disher, one of Australia’s most loved and celebrated crime writers.

11. Deception Creek | Fleur McDonald

A returned criminal, a cult-like family and cybercrime all clash against the backdrop of the Flinders Ranges in this thrilling new rural suspense novel from the best-selling Voice of the Outback.

Emma Cameron, a recently divorced farmer and a local in Barker, runs Deception Creek, the farm that three generations of her family have owned before her. Every day Emma pushes herself hard on the land, hoping to make ten-year-old memories of a terrible car accident disappear. And now there are more recent nightmares of an ex-husband who refuses to understand how much the farm means to Emma.

When Joel Hammond is released from jail and heads home to Barker, Detective Dave Burrows and Senior Constable Jack Higgins are on high alert. Joel has a long and sorry history with many of the townsfolk and they are not keen to see him home to stay.

Not all of the Barker locals want to see Joel run out of town, though. Some even harbour doubts about Joel’s conviction. The town finds itself split down the middle, families pitted against each other with devastating outcomes.

12. The Spy’s Wife | Fiona McIntosh

Evie, a widow and stationmaster’s daughter, can’t help but look out for the weekly visit of the handsome man she and her sister call the Southerner on their train platform in the wilds of northern England. When polite salutations shift to friendly conversations, they become captivated by each other. After so much sorrow, the childless Evie can’t believe love and the chance for her own family have come into her life again.

With rumours coming out of Germany that Hitler may be stirring up war, local English authorities have warned against spies. Even Evie becomes suspicious of her new suitor, Roger. But all is not what it seems.

When Roger is arrested, Evie comes up with an audacious plan to prove his innocence that means moving to Germany and working as a British counter-spy. Wearing the disguise of dutiful, naive wife, Evie must charm the Nazi Party’s dangerous officials to bring home hard evidence of war mongering on the F hrer’s part.

But in this game of cat and mouse, it seems everyone has an ulterior motive, and Evie finds it impossible to know who to trust. With lives on the line, ultimate sacrifices will be made as she wrestles between her patriotism and saving the man she loves.

From the windswept moors of the Yorkshire dales to the noisy beer halls of Munich and grand country estates in the picture-book Bavarian mountains, this is a lively and high-stakes thriller that will keep you second-guessing until the very end.

13. I Shot The Devil | Ruth McIver

A summer of relentless heat. A local surfer named Ray Carlson is found dead in a house not far from Portsea back beach. There’s a kitchen knife deep in his chest, and blood everywhere.

Detective Sergeant Zoe Mayer is scarcely back from extended leave, and still wrestling with her demons, but she is assigned the case-alongside her new service dog, Harry, whose instincts help her in unexpected ways.

There’s an obvious suspect for the murder, and Zoe makes an arrest. But it’s all too neat, and none of Zoe’s colleagues believes her theory that the whole thing is a stitch-up.

Except now someone is trying to hunt Zoe down.

Superbly plotted, and vividly set in the beachside suburbs and hilly retreats around Melbourne, The Long Game is a mystery about a tough and clever investigator who won’t give up.

14. The Long Game | Simon Rowell

A summer of relentless heat. A local surfer named Ray Carlson is found dead in a house not far from Portsea back beach. There’s a silver-handled kitchen knife deep in his chest, and blood everywhere.

Detective Sergeant Zoe Mayer is scarcely back from extended leave, and still wrestling with her demons, but she is assigned the case, alongside her new service dog, Harry, whose instincts help her in unexpected ways.

There’s an obvious suspect for the murder, and Zoe makes an arrest. But it’s all too neat, and none of Zoe’s colleagues believes her theory that the whole thing is a stitch-up.

Except now someone is trying to hunt Zoe down.

Superbly plotted, and vividly set in the beachside suburbs and hilly retreats around Melbourne, The Long Game is a mystery about a tough and clever investigator who won’t give up.

15. Freckles | Cecelia Ahern

Five people.
Five chances.
One woman’s search for happiness.

Allegra Bird’s arms are scattered with freckles, a gift from her beloved father. But despite her nickname, Freckles has never been able to join all the dots. So when a stranger tells her that everyone is the average of the five people they spend the most time with, it opens up something deep inside.

The trouble is, Freckles doesn’t know if she has five people. And if not, what does that say about her? She’s left her unconventional father and her friends behind for a bold new life in Dublin, but she’s still an outsider.

Now, in a quest to understand, she must find not one but five people who shape her – and who will determine her future.

16. Wish You Were Here | Jodi Picoult

Diana O’Toole is perfectly on track. She will be married by thirty, done having kids by thirty-five, and move out to the New York City suburbs, all while climbing the professional ladder in the cutthroat art auction world. She’s not engaged just yet, but she knows her boyfriend, Finn, a surgical resident, is about to propose on their romantic getaway to the Galápagos—days before her thirtieth birthday. Right on time.

But then a virus that felt worlds away has appeared in the city, and on the eve of their departure, Finn breaks the news: It’s all hands on deck at the hospital. He has to stay behind. You should still go, he assures her, since it would be a shame for all of their nonrefundable trip to go to waste. And so, reluctantly, she goes.

Almost immediately, Diana’s dream vacation goes awry. The whole island is now under quarantine, and she is stranded until the borders reopen. Completely isolated, she must venture beyond her comfort zone. Slowly, she carves out a connection with a local family when a teenager with a secret opens up to Diana, despite her father’s suspicion of outsiders.

Diana finds herself examining her relationships, her choices, and herself—and wondering if when she goes home, she too will have evolved into someone completely different.

17. The Hideout | Camilla Grebe

The Hideout is an eerie psychological thriller from the award-winning Swedish bestselling author Camilla Grebe.

When 18-year old Samuel finds himself at the centre of a drug deal gone wrong, he is forced to go underground to escape the police and an infamous drug lord. Seeking refuge in a sleepy town in the Stockholm archipelago, he takes a job as a personal assistant to a disabled boy. But when Samuel moves in with the beautiful Rakel and her son Jonas in the remote house by the sea, he soon realizes that nothing is quite what it seems . . .

Meanwhile, the bodies of young men have been washing ashore in the archipelago and investigator Manfred Olsson fears that they have a killer on the loose.

Set against a sweltering summer backdrop, Camilla Grebe’s flawed characters come alive as a chilling tale unravels to reveal evil lurking in the most serene of surroundings.

18. A Memory for Murder | A. Holt

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..

19. A Question of Guilt | Jorn Lier Horst

In 1999, seventeen-year-old Tone Vaterland was killed on her way home from work. Desperate for a conviction the police deemed the investigation an open-and-shut case and sent her spurned boyfriend, Danny Momrak, down for murder.
But twenty years later William Wisting receives a puzzling letter. It suggests the wrong man was convicted for Tone’s death and the real murderer is still out there.
Wisting is quickly thrown into a terrifying race against time where he must find the sender, decipher this mysterious letter and catch the real killer before they strike again.

20. Escape from the Ghetto | John Carr

Early in 1940 a thirteen-year-old Jewish boy and his eleven-year-old brother began to make their way through the barbed wire that surrounded the Lodz ghetto on their way to steal food for their family. The younger brother got caught on the wire. The older killed the guard who came to shoot him.

Thus began an Odyssey across Europe, first to the frozen river on the Russian border, where Soviet troops rolled hand grenades over the ice, then hidden in a German troop train to Berlin.

From Berlin to Alsace and a beautiful Roma girl, also fleeing the Nazis. Across the border into Vichy France concealed in a German jeep and over the Pyrenees, only to be arrested by Spanish police.

Saved by a British diplomat and finding his way to Gibraltar Chaim Herszman, now Henry Karbowski and soon to be Henry Carr, returned to Germany in the British Army.

This extraordinary but true tale of a boy’s escape from the ghetto and the prospect of extermination in the camps, and of his journey to adulthood as he made his way across Europe, is almost unbearably exciting while being at the same time, as all true stories are, complex and bitter-sweet.

21. Dog Days (A Year with Olive and Mabel) | Andrew Cotter

In Dog Days- A Year with Olive & Mabel, join Andrew Cotter as he takes you behind the scenes and into the pages of his diary to reveal just how extraordinary the year has been, and what really happened after his lockdown superstar Labradors chewed up the internet and found it was quite tasty.

For Olive, Mabel and Andrew, the last year has been like no other. With normal work cancelled or scaled back for so long, it has been a time to take stock and share experiences – both the everyday and the decidedly odd. Here Andrew takes a sharply observed and often hilarious walk through the strangest of days for all of us, reflecting on how precious our time really is, especially the time we have with our dogs.

Beautiful, comical, endlessly optimistic and eternally hungry Olive, Mabel (and Andrew) have padded around from the Cheltenham Literary Festival to 60 Minutes Australia, from their living room studio with ABC News Breakfast to an appearance on Good Morning America, and from obscurity to excited whispers of “Is that really Olive & Mabel?” wherever they go. Not to mention the lucrative merchandise and advertising deals that were turned down by the dozen, and the odd phone call from Hollywood.

Through it all, Olive and Mabel have always done exactly what they do best, being themselves and being there for Andrew – and for all of us who have loved watching their brilliant videos and following their progress online. If you’re a fan of Olive, Mabel and Andrew, this funny, touching and extraordinary account of a year like no other is an unmissable treat.

22. My Adventurous Life | Dick Smith

‘I have been charmed by good fortune to be born in Australia in the 1940s. I have lived through a time of great prosperity and every day I am reminded of my good luck.’

Dick Smith is a remarkable and proud Australian. He has been part of our national consciousness for over fifty years as an innovative and astute businessman, a ground-breaking adventurer, a generous philanthropist and a provocateur for the causes he feels deeply about. Yet, despite his great successes and achievements, Dick has remained down to earth and close to his roots.

So how did the young boy who was one of the most academically hopeless in class become the national living treasure he is today? And what was it within that kid with a speech impediment that allowed him to create three successful businesses, and take on some of the world’s greatest and most dangerous aviation challenges?

In My Adventurous Life, Dick shares his inspiring story and the lessons he’s learned about staying true to yourself. He has welcomed the freedoms that wealth brings, but has found the simple life more fulfilling. His responsibility is to the world and the people we share it with.

23. All for You | Louise Jensen

MEET THE WALSH FAMILY
Lucy: Loving mother. Devoted wife. And falling to pieces.
Aidan: Dedicated father. Faithful husband. And in too deep.
Connor:Hardworking son. Loyal friend. But can never tell the truth.

Everyone in this family is hiding something, but one secret will turn out to be the deadliest of all . . .

Can this family ever recover when the truth finally comes out?

24. A Haunting at Holkham | Anne Glenconner

It’s Christmas 1943 and Lady Anne Coke has returned to Holkham Hall from Scotland. But her home is now an army base, with large sections out of bounds. And 11-year-old Anne is in the care of a new governess, whom she hates and believes to be hiding something. At least her beloved grandfather is there with her, to share stories and keep her entertained.

But even though she’s been told to stay away from certain parts of the house, Anne knows secrets about the hall that others do not; the passageways and the cellars that allow her to move around unnoticed, watching. And when mysterious events lead to a murder and disappearance, Anne is determined to uncover the truth.

25. The Night Train to Berlin | Melanie Hudson

A summer of relentless heat. A local surfer named Ray Carlson is found dead in a house not far from Portsea back beach. There’s a kitchen knife deep in his chest, and blood everywhere.

Detective Sergeant Zoe Mayer is scarcely back from extended leave, and still wrestling with her demons, but she is assigned the case-alongside her new service dog, Harry, whose instincts help her in unexpected ways.

There’s an obvious suspect for the murder, and Zoe makes an arrest. But it’s all too neat, and none of Zoe’s colleagues believes her theory that the whole thing is a stitch-up.

Except now someone is trying to hunt Zoe down.

Superbly plotted, and vividly set in the beachside suburbs and hilly retreats around Melbourne, The Long Game is a mystery about a tough and clever investigator who won’t give up.

26. Daughters of the Resistance | Lana Kortchik

On a train from Ukraine to Germany, Lisa Smirnova is terrified for her life. The train is under Nazi command, heading for one of Hitler’s rumoured labour camps. As she is taken away from everything she holds dear, Lisa wonders if she will ever see her family again.

In Nazi-occupied Kiev, Irina Antonova knows she could be arrested at any moment. Trapped in a job registering the endless deaths of the people of Kiev, she risks her life every day by secretly helping her neighbours, while her husband has joined the Soviet partisans, who are carrying out life-threatening work to frustrate the German efforts.

When Lisa’s train is intercepted by the partisans, Irina’s husband among them, these women’s lives will take an unimaginable turn. As Irina fights to protect her family and Lisa is forced to confront the horrors of war, together they must make an impossible decision: what would they be willing to lose to save the people they love?

February 2022

27. A Change of Circumstance | Susan Hill

Simon Serrailler finds himself in devastating new territory as a sophisticated drugs network sets its sights on Lafferton and the surrounding villages

DCS Simon Serrailler has long regarded drugs ops in Lafferton as a waste of time. Small-time dealers are picked up outside the local secondary school, they don’t have any information about those higher up the chain, they’re given a fine or a suspended and away they go. And rinse and repeat. But when the body of a 22-year-old drug addict is found in neighbouring Starley, the case pulls Simon into a whole new way of running drugs. The foot soldiers? Vulnerable local kids like Brookie and Olivia, who will give Simon a bitter taste of this new landscape.

It is a harsh winter at home as well as work. Simon’s GP sister Cat and her husband Kieron (also Simon’s boss) are struggling with medical dramas big and small. A trip to Bevham General on her rounds sets off alarm bells for Cat, and a visit from her son Sam as he tries to work out if his midwifery course is right for him coincides with a threat to their beloved family dog. Simon is working hard, but he’s restless, wondering what’s next. There’s nothing new going on for him in Lafferton, but sometimes the familiar holds surprises, too . . .

28. The Stranger in the Lifeboat | Mitch Albom

Adrift in a raft after a terrible shipwreck, ten strangers struggle to survive while they wait for rescue.

After three days, short on water, food and hope, they spot a man floating in the waves.

They pull him on board – and the survivor claims he can save them.

But should they put their trust in him?

Will any of them see home again?

And why did the ship really sink?

29. Go Tell The Bees that I Am Gone | Diana Gabaldon

Jamie Fraser and Claire Randall were torn apart by the Jacobite Rising of 1745, and it took them twenty years to find each other again. Now the American Revolution threatens to do the same.

It is 1779 and Claire and Jamie are at last reunited with their daughter, Brianna, her husband, Roger, and their children on Fraser’s Ridge. Having the family together is a dream the Frasers had thought impossible.

Yet even in the North Carolina backcountry, the effects of war are being felt. Tensions in the Colonies are great and local feelings run hot enough to boil Hell’s tea-kettle. Jamie knows loyalties among his own tenants are split and the war is on his doorstep. It’s only a matter of time before the shooting starts.

Not so far away, young William Ransom is still coming to terms with the discovery of his true father’s identity – and thus his own. Lord John Grey also has reconciliations to make and dangers to meet . . . on his son’s behalf, and his own.

Meanwhile, the Southern Colonies blaze, and the Revolution creeps ever closer to Fraser’s Ridge. And Claire, the physician, wonders how much of the blood to be spilt will belong to those she loves.

30. The Last of the Apple Blossom | Mary-Lou Stephens

7 February, 1967. Walls of flame reduce much of Tasmania to ash.

Young schoolteacher Catherine Turner rushes to the Huon Valley to find her family’s apple orchard destroyed, her childhood home in ruins and her brother dead. Despite her father’s declaration that a woman will never run the orchard, Catherine resolves to rebuild the family business.

After five sons, Catherine’s friend and neighbour, Annie Pearson, is overjoyed by the birth of a much longed for daughter. As Annie and her husband Dave work to repair the damage to their orchard, Dave’s friend Mark pitches in, despite the fact that Annie wants him gone. Mark has moved his family to the valley to escape his life in Melbourne, but his wife has disappeared leaving chaos in her wake and their young son Charlie in Mark’s care.

Catherine becomes fond of Charlie, whose strange upbringing has left him shy and withdrawn. However, the growing friendship between Mark and Catherine not only scandalises the small community but threatens a secret Annie is desperate to keep hidden.

Through natural disasters, personal calamities and the devastating collapse of the apple industry, Catherine, Annie and those they love battle to save their livelihoods, their families and their secrets.

31. The Stoning | Peter Papathanasiou

A small outback town wakes to a savage murder.

Molly Abbott, a popular teacher at the local school, is found taped to a tree and stoned to death. Suspicion falls on the refugees at the new detention centre on Cobb’s northern outskirts. Tensions are high between immigrants and some of the town’s residents.

Detective Sergeant Georgios ‘George’ Manolis is despatched to his childhood hometown to investigate. His late father immigrated to Australia in the 1950s, where he was first housed at the detention centre’s predecessor a migrant camp. He later ran the town’s only milk bar.

Within minutes of George’s arrival, it is clear that Cobb is not the same place he left as a child. The town once thrived, but now it’s disturbingly poor and derelict, with the local police chief it seemingly deserves. As Manolis negotiates his new colleagues’ antagonism and the simmering anger of a community destroyed by alcohol and drugs, the ghosts of his own past flicker to life. His work is his calling, his centre, but now he finds many of the certainties of his life are crumbling. 

32. Anything Can Happen | Lucy Diamond

For Lara and her daughter Eliza, it has always been just the two of them. But when Eliza turns eighteen and wants to connect with her father, Lara is forced to admit a secret that she has been keeping from her daughter her whole life.

Eliza needs answers – and so does Lara. Their journey to the truth will take them on a road trip across England and eventually to New York, where it all began. Dreams might have been broken and opportunities missed, but there are still surprises in store…

33. Funkytown | Paul Kennedy

The community is paralysed by fear and a state’s police force and national media come to find a killer. Meanwhile, seventeen-year-old Paul Kennedy is searching for something else entirely. He is focused on finishing school, getting drafted into the AFL and falling in love. So much can change in a year.

The rites of passage for many Australian teenage boys – blackout drinking, simmering violence and emotional suppression – take their toll, and the year that starts with so much promise ends with Kennedy expelled, arrested and undrafted. But one teacher sees Kennedy self-destructing, and becomes determined to set him on another path.

Told with poignancy, humour and evoking the brilliant, dusty haze of late Australian summer, Funkytown is a love letter to adolescence, football, family, and outer suburbia.

March 2022

34Darkness Falls | Robert Brynza

Kate Marshall’s detective agency takes off when she and her partner Tristan are hired to investigate a cold case from over a decade ago. Twelve years previously, a determined young journalist called Joanna Duncan exposed a political scandal that had major repercussions. In the fallout she disappeared without trace and was never found.

When Kate and Tristan examine the case files, they find the trail long cold, but they discover the names of two young men who also vanished at that time. As she begins to connect their last days, Kate realizes that Joanna may have been onto something far more sinister than anyone first believed: the identity of a serial killer preying on the people who few will ever miss.

But the closer Kate comes to finding the killer, the darker things become . . .

 

35. The Birthday Party | Wendy Dranfield

Charlotte waves at her mother across the crowded lawn. Little red boots on, cowboy hat crooked over her blonde pigtails, she’s been looking forward to this party for weeks. Moments later, she disappears without a trace…

Kathy Hamilton drives away from her sister-in-law’s pristine-white suburban house in Maple Falls certain she’s left her daughter in safe hands. On the hottest day of the year, a birthday is the perfect excuse to gather friends, family and neighbors around the pool for a barbecue. But when she returns hours later to find her little girl has vanished, her world shatters.

Nobody laughing and drinking in the garden that day saw anything unusual.

Kathy’s eldest daughter is anxious and hardly eating. Is she sick with worry for her sister, or hiding a terrible secret?

The phone rings and rings, but why can’t Kathy get hold of the babysitter?

And is she imagining it, or when her husband rushed from work to join the search, was he wearing a different shirt to the one she saw him leave the house in that morning?

As the temperature rises, and long-buried secrets begin to surface, it’s clear that even the most perfect families keep devastating secrets. But in a town as small as this, is there anyone you can trust?

36. Night Shift | Robert Enright

Sam Pope was one of the UK’s finest soldiers, serving over a decade as an elite sniper. After a near fatal shooting brings an end to his career, Sam returns home to his family and a potential new career in the Metropolitan Police. When disaster strikes and his bond with his family is broken, Sam takes a job as an archive officer within the Met, hunting down criminals that have beaten the system and delivering his own brand of justice.

When a terrorist attack at the London Marathon shakes the city to its core, Sam decides to open his own line of investigation. Venturing into the world of organised crime and police corruption, Sam soon finds himself as the number one target…and faces a race against time to expose the truth.

Fans of Lee Child, Mark Dawson, Robert Ludlum and Vince Flynn who are looking for their next action hero, will be thrilled by The Night Shift, the first book in the Amazon No.1 Best Selling Series.

37. Fallen Angel | D.K. Hood

When a beautiful young woman is reported missing from her hotel room on the outskirts of Black Rock Falls, Sheriff Jenna Alton and her deputy David Kane are devastated to discover her pale, lifeless body trapped beneath a frozen lake nearby. It’s Jenna who finds the single pearl earring buried in the frosted grass that gives them their first lead.

Just as Jenna has the remaining hotel guests safely back in their rooms, the killer strikes again, and another victim is found in one of the hotel’s lakeside cabins. Next to his bloodied body is a second pearl earring. What does it mean, and why is the killer leaving them for Jenna to find?

Interviewing witnesses, Jenna discovers that both victims were seen arguing with other residents hours before their deaths. Could the murderer be out for revenge, and how many more bodies will follow before they are truly satisfied?

As a blizzard cuts the hotel off from Black Rock Falls, Jenna and her team are trapped with the killer. Then she receives a terrifying call from a teenage girl who thinks the murderer was in her room as she slept. Can Jenna save her from becoming the next victim? And how many more innocent lives will be taken before the snow thaws?

38. Stolen Ones | Angela Marsons

One August afternoon, eight-year-old Grace Lennard skips into the garden of the childcare centre she attends and vanishes into thin air. Rushing to the scene of Grace’s disappearance, Detective Kim Stone finds a chilling piece of evidence: the engraved heart bracelet belonging to Melody Jones – the little girl who was taken from a playground exactly twenty-five years ago.

Hours before, Steven Harte had walked into Halesowen police station and confessed to having information that would lead Kim to Melody. And he told Kim she’d have a more urgent problem to deal with first. Now Kim must play Steven’s twisted game if she’s to find Grace alive.

With only twenty-four hours to make every second of Steven’s interrogation count, and scan his behaviour for hidden clues, Kim and her team soon link Steven to the abduction of several vulnerable girls – two were kept for a year and then released, unharmed – but where are Melody and the others?

Then small bones are discovered in the grounds of a local park, and Kim fears the worst.

Kim may think she’s close to convicting a killer, but the case has got even more complex. A chilling figure from Kim’s past is about to reveal a shocking secret that will hit her where it hurts the most. Can Kim put aside her own demons, save Grace and the other missing girls before more innocent lives are lost?

39. All or Nothing | Ollie Ollerton

They say blood is thicker than water. They never mention alcohol. Ex-special forces soldier Alex Abbott has a lead on the killer of his dead brother, if only he can stay off the booze long enough to hunt it down. But the skeletons in Abbott’s closet are mounting up faster than the bodies in their bags, and Abbott needs to get his focus back if he’s going to get his revenge.

His pursuit takes him to the North of England, where Abbott infiltrates a local gang, forced to carry out jobs to maintain his cover. As he gains their trust he ventures deeper into the organisation uncovering a long-established international network of rich, depraved thrill-seekers, with a sadistic side-hustle in child trafficking.

Can Abbott stay ahead of his quarry and keep those who matter to him safe? The answer will take Abbott into Eastern Europe and a deadly game of cat and mouse, where he will face a terrible choice between his past and his future; it’s winner takes all and Abbott has everything to lose.

40. The Drowning Girls | Lisa Regan

In the thin glow of moonlight, a mess of auburn curls gleams against the rocks. Hands bound, the girl’s fragile body is limp and still. Seconds later, a wall of raging white water crashes down, swallowing her whole…

A knock on the door late in the evening can only mean trouble for Detective Josie Quinn, but fear chokes her at the news that the one of her own team is missing. No one has seen Denton PD’s beautiful Press Liaison Amber for days. Sweet-natured and totally dedicated to the job, she’d never let her colleagues down. A message scrawled on the frosted windscreen of Amber’s car leads Josie to a nearby dam. But the body they pull from the water is not Amber…

Josie won’t sleep until she finds a name for the innocent girl left to drown, and the meaning of the numbers scribbled in a tattered pink diary found on Amber’s desk. But when the trail leads her to a twisted truth about Amber’s family, Josie wonders if anyone really knew her at all?

Her team crumbling around her, Josie must stay strong and focused to get the job done. But as prime suspects start going missing, and rumors of an argument the night Amber disappeared surface, could one of her own staff be to blame?

Finding Amber alive is Josie’s only chance of knowing the truth and stopping a dangerous killer in their tracks. But as a blizzard closes in, how many more precious lives will be snatched before she can?

41. Buried in Secret | Viveca Sten

A woman’s skeletal remains are excavated on an uninhabited island in Sandhamn’s archipelago, and Thomas Andreasson is called to officially investigate. But his best friend, Nora Linde, can’t help but get involved.

On leave after her last case took a dark turn, Nora is tortured by depression, nightmares, and guilt. Her marriage fractured, her pride chipped away, Nora could find redemption in this investigation. Then evidence suggests two possible cold cases linked to the grim discovery: two women who have been missing for ten years. Now Nora feels compelled to unearth a mystery someone has gone to great pains to bury. What could have happened to require such a cover-up?

As the cold case vanishings converge, Nora follows a twisting trail of revenge, blackmail, and betrayal. She’s also inviting the watchful eye of someone determined to stop her. To free herself from the damaging grip of the past—and the reach of a relentless killer—Nora is going to have to brave the darkness one more time.

42. See them Run | Marian Todd

On the night of a wedding celebration, one guest meets a grisly end when he’s killed in a hit-and-run. A card bearing the number ‘5’ has been placed on the victim’s chest. DI Clare Mackay, who recently moved from Glasgow to join the St Andrews force, leads the investigation. The following night another victim is struck down and a number ‘4’ card is at the scene. Clare and her team realise they’re against the clock to find a killer stalking the streets of the picturesque Scottish town and bent on carrying out three more murders.

To prevent further deaths, the police have to uncover the link between the victims. But those involved have a lot more at stake than first meets the eye. If Clare wants to solve the case she must face her own past and discover the deepest secrets of the victims – and the killer.

Don’t miss the page-turning first novel in a gripping series featuring DI Clare Mackay, perfect for fans of Alex Gray, D. S. Butler and Rachel Amphlett.

43. Her Last Summer | Melinda Woodhall

When a celebrity author dies under mysterious circumstances in a small Florida town, a vulnerable young woman is the only witness, and Willow Bay’s new chief of police must begin the hunt for a ruthless serial killer who will stop at nothing to hide his true identity.

As reporter Veronica Lee investigates the breaking story, a local woman is brutally killed, exposing a disturbing connection to a dangerous con man who has eluded capture for almost a decade.

After Veronica’s efforts to uncover the killer’s motives lead to a horrifying discovery, she comes face to face with the cunning killer and must overcome her deepest fears to survive his deadly game.

44. Canticle Creek | Adrian Hyland

Two bodies. One long hot summer. A town that will never be the same.

When Adam Lawson’s wrecked car is found a kilometre from Daisy Baker’s body, the whole town assumes it’s an open and shut case. But Jesse Redpath isn’t from Canticle Creek. Where she comes from, the truth often hides in plain sight, but only if you know where to look. When Jesse starts to ask awkward questions, she uncovers a town full of contradictions and a cast of characters with dark pasts, secrets to hide and even more to lose.

As the temperature soars, and the ground bakes, the wilderness surrounding Canticle Creek becomes a powderkeg waiting to explode. All it needs is one spark.

45. The Freedom of Birds | Stephanie Parkyn

Remi Victoire is the golden child among all the theatre orphans; he dreams of a life on a Paris stage. But when this future is stolen from him, Remi and his faithful friend Pascal turn their backs on Paris forever.

With Saskia, a runaway orphan girl, Remi and Pascal form a performing troupe, travelling through the fairytale lands that are home to the Brothers Grimm, before finding a safe haven in Venice.

As Napoleon’s vast Empire crumbles, the French storytellers discover that Paris itself is now at risk of invasion and they fear for the loved ones they have left behind.

From picturesque villages to Italian theatres and on to the battlefields outside of Paris, this is a beautifully told story about the bonds of love and friendship, the importance of stories, and finding a place to belong.

46. The Rose Garden | Tracy Rees

Every house has its secrets . . .

For twelve-year-old Ottilie Finch, London is an exciting playground to explore. Her family have recently arrived in Hamstead from Durham, under a cloud of scandal that Otty is blissfully unaware of. The only shadow over her days is her mother’s mysterious illness, which keeps her to her room.

When young local girl Mabs is offered the chance to become Mrs Finch’s companion, it saves her from a desperate life on the canals. Little does she know that all is not as picture-perfect as it seems. Mabs is about to become tangled in the secrets that chased the Finches from their last home, and trapped in an impossible dilemma . . .

APRIL 22

47. Take Your Breath Away | Linwood Barclay

One weekend, while Andrew Mason was on a fishing trip, his wife, Brie, vanished without a trace. Most people assumed Andy had got away with murder, but the police couldn’t build a strong case against him. For a while, Andy hit rock bottom – he drank too much, was abandoned by his friends, nearly lost his business and became a pariah in the place he had once called home.

Now, six years later, Andy has put his life back together. He’s sold the house he shared with Brie and moved away for a fresh start. When he hears his old house has been bulldozed and a new house built in its place, he’s not bothered. He’s settled with a new partner, Jayne, and life is good.

But Andy’s peaceful world is about to shatter. One day, a woman shows up at his old address, screaming, ‘Where’s my house? What’s happened to my house?’ And then, just as suddenly as she appeared, the woman – who bears a striking resemblance to Brie – is gone. The police are notified and old questions – and dark suspicions – resurface.

Could Brie really be alive after all these years? If so, where has she been? It soon becomes clear that Andy’s future, and the lives of those closest to him, depends on discovering what the hell is going on. The trick will be whether he can stay alive long enough to unearth the answers…

48. My Darling Husband | Kimberly Bell

Jade and Cam Lasky are by all accounts a happily married couple with two adorable kids, a spacious home and a rapidly growing restaurant business. But their world is tipped upside down when Jade is confronted by a masked home invader. As Cam scrambles to gather the ransom money, Jade starts to wonder if they’re as financially secure as their lifestyle suggests, and what other secrets her husband is keeping from her.

Cam may be a good father, a celebrity chef and a darling husband, but there’s another side he’s kept hidden from Jade that has put their family in danger. Unbeknownst to Cam and Jade, the home invader has been watching them and is about to turn their family secrets into a public scandal.

With riveting twists and a breakneck pace, My Darling Husband is an utterly compelling thriller that once again showcases Kimberly Belle’s exceptional talent for domestic suspense.

49. The Shadow House | Anna Downes

When single mother Alex flees her abusive relationship and moves with her teenage son and baby girl to a rural ecovillage, she thinks she’s made the best decision of her life. Pine Ridge is idyllic: the off-grid lifestyle and remote location are perfect, and the community is welcoming – mostly. Charmed by its magnetic founder, Kit, and the natural beauty of the former farmland, Alex settles easily into her new home.

But her arrival at Pine Ridge disturbs barely submerged secrets, and she’s shaken by a series of eerily familiar events that seem to be connected to the abandoned farmhouse on the hill. Alex realises that, in escaping her own shadowy past, she may have stumbled into someone else’s. And this time, there may be nowhere to run.

From international bestselling thriller writer Anna Downes, The Shadow House lures you in and keeps you on edge at every turn.

50. For Your Own Good | Samantha Downing

Teddy Crutcher has just won Teacher of the Year at the prestigious Belmont Academy, home exclusively to the brightest and the best.

He says his wife couldn’t be more proud – though no-one has seen her in a while.

He’s deeply committed to improving his students. And well aware which ones need improving.

And all he wants is for his colleagues – and the endlessly interfering parents – to stay out of his way.

Oddly, not everyone agrees that Teddy has their best interests at heart.

But will that change when someone receives a lesson to die for…?

51. The Paris Apartment | Lucy Foley

Welcome to No.12 rue des Amants

A beautiful old apartment block, far from the glittering lights of the Eiffel Tower and the bustling banks of the Seine.

Where nothing goes unseen, and everyone has a story to unlock.

The watchful concierge, the scorned lover, the prying journalist, the naïve student, the unwanted guest?

There was a murder here last night. A mystery lies behind the door of apartment three.

52. One Step Too Far | Lisa Gardner

Five men head into the woods for a bachelor party weekend. Only four return.  A young man disappears during a stag weekend in the woods. Years later, he’s still missing. But his friends who were with him that day are still searching for him. Still hunting. They hike deep into the wilderness.  With them is missing person specialist Frankie Elkin.

What they don’t know is that they are putting their own lives in terrifying danger, and may not come back alive . . .

53. Something to Hide | Elizabeth George

A Nigerian born detective sergeant working for the Metropolitan Police is found unconscious in her own flat and ends up in hospital where she dies of her injury. The post-mortem reveals that the subdural hematoma is the result of a blow to her head. DI Thomas Lynley, DS Barbara Havers and DS Winston Nkata are called in to investigate a case that touches upon not only the work and the life of the murdered detective but also upon a controversial cultural tradition that damages and often destroys the future of everyone it involves.

54. Dark Horse | Greg Hurwitz

Having just survived an attack on his life Evan Smoak isn’t interested in a new mission. But one finds him anyway.

Aragon Urrea is a major drug-dealing kingpin in South Texas. But he’s also a local patron – providing legitimate employment, and a future to a people with little hope. However, for all his money and power, when a vicious cartel kidnaps his daughter he is helpless.

Not only must Evan break into the fortress of a heavily armed, deeply paranoid cartel leader – he must decide if he should help a very bad man, no matter how just the cause.

55. Deadlock | Quintin Jardine

Sir Robert Skinner’s stock is rising – after retiring from the police service he’s been promoted to head an international media organisation. Yet a series of unexplained deaths on his home turf in Scotland threaten to bring him crashing back down to earth.

As Skinner helps the elderly in his local community, several residents seem to die of natural causes. But when a gruesome discovery is made in a Glasgow flat and one of Skinner’s long-time friends – an aspiring politician – emerges as the prime suspect, things become very murky indeed.

After unpicking clues that go nowhere, Skinner and his team are left grappling the most baffling conundrum they have ever encountered – is there a mystery at all?

56. Breathless | Amy McCulloch

When you’re this high up, no one can hear you scream- an ice-cold thriller from an expert mountaineer turned bestselling author

At the top of the world’s tallest mountains, there literally isn’t enough oxygen to breathe. In the space of hours your body will begin to shut down. Any longer, and death is inevitable.  What better place for a serial killer to find their next victim?

Struggling journalist Cecily Wong is delighted to be invited to interview famed mountaineer Charles McVeigh, conditional on joining his team on one of the Himalayas’ toughest peaks. But on the mountain, it’s clear something is wrong. It begins small – a theft, an accidental fall. And then a note, pinned to her tent in the night- there’s a murderer on the mountain…

57. Exit .45 | Ben Sanders

When a former NYPD colleague is shot dead in front of him, private investigator Marshall Grade discovers there’s far more to the killing than meets the eye.

Ray Vialoux is in trouble. Big trouble. And he needs Marshall Grade’s help.

Reluctantly, Grade agrees to meet. Over dinner in a Brooklyn restaurant, he learns that his former NYPD colleague owes money – a lot of money – to the wrong people. But the conversation is cut short by gunfire, and suddenly Ray is lying dead on the restaurant floor.


As Marshall investigates the circumstances leading up to the murder, tracking down the drug dealers, bag men, bent cops and mob players within Ray’s orbit, it becomes clear there’s far more to the killing than a gambling debt. Just who is responsible for Vialoux’s death . . . and why? What secrets are his family hiding? And can Marshall find the answers before his own history marks him as the prime suspect?

‘It’s easy to see what the fuss is about. Sanders’ prose is sharper than a switchblade . . . It’s like Raymond Chandler, Lee Child and Elmore Leonard rolled into one.’ – Sydney Morning Herald on American Blood

58. The Last Station | Nicole Alexander

In nineteenth-century New South Wales, the name Dalhunty stood for prosperity and prestige. The family’s vast station was home to more than 80 people, and each year their premium wool was shipped down the bustling Darling River to be sold in South Australia.

Yet, just decades later, Dalhunty Station is on the brink of ruin . . .

In the summer of 1909, eccentric Benjamin Dalhunty and his son Julian anxiously await the arrival of the Lady Matilda, the first paddle-steamer to navigate the river in more than two years. It will transport their very last wool clip to market.

Twenty-year-old Julian wants more from life than the crumbling station, but as the eldest son his future has been set since birth.

Until the day his mother invites a streetwise young man from Sydney into their home . . .

Ethan Harris’s arrival shines a light on a family at breaking point. But he also unwittingly offers Julian an escape, as the young men embark on a perilous journey down the Darling and west into untamed lands.

59. Dressed by Iris | Mary-Anne O’Connor

1930: Seventeen-year-old Iris Mitchell dreams of designing clothes, but there’s little spare cash for fashion in their shanty-town home. The gift of a single purple ribbon from would-be boyfriend John Tucker, however, creates an unexpected opportunity … and when Iris’s brother Jim joins the Sydney Harbour Bridge construction, the large, dirt-poor but loving Mitchell family can move to the city. Iris will be torn away from John, but he’s Protestant and she’s Catholic, taboo in their world, so perhaps it wasn’t meant to be …

1932: By day, Iris scrubs the floors at Caron’s, an upmarket department store. By night, she designs and sews in her family’s tiny, crowded house. Friendship with gorgeous, livewire Natasha, one of Caron’s models, allows Iris to show her skills, but will her talent be acknowledged … or exploited?

When John reappears, passions are reignited, and Iris must face not only their religious divide, but the apparent impossibility of having both marriage and a career. Meanwhile, the Mitchells must navigate life in a city riven by corruption, dirty politics and gambling. Will their faith, determination and deep family bond save them when tragedy and adversity strike? In 1930s Sydney, the stakes have never been higher …

60. Moonlight and the Pearler’s Daughter | Lizzie Pook

Western Australia, 1886

As the pearling ships return to Bannin Bay after a long diving season, twenty-year-old Eliza Brightwell nervously awaits the arrival of her father’s boat.

But when his lugger finally limps in, it brings with it a tale of tragedy- Charles Brightwell, master pearler, has gone missing at sea.

Immediately, whispers from the townsfolk point to mutiny or murder, but headstrong Eliza knows her father; she is sure he is still alive. As the Bay swelters under the heat of the approaching wet season, it falls to Eliza to seek out the truth behind her eccentric father’s disappearance.

But as she delves beneath the glamorous veneer of south sea pearling, she discovers that the sun-baked streets she thought she knew so well are teeming with corruption, prejudice and blackmail.

How far is she willing to go to solve the mystery and save the ones she loves? And what family secrets will come to haunt her along the way? Because the truth may cost more than pearls – and she must decide if she’s willing to pay the price . . .

61. Wild Dogs | Michael Trant

In the drought-ridden rangelands of Western Australia, Gabe Ahern makes his living trapping wild dogs for local station owners.

Still coming to terms with his wife’s death – and the part he played in it – the old bushman leads a solitary life. Until one morning, when he rescues a young Afghan man, Amin, from certain execution.

Now, with a gang of people smugglers on his tail and the lives of Amin’s family on the line, Gabe is drawn into a ruthless game of cat and mouse. His main opponent is Chase Fowler, a kangaroo hunter with bush skills as wily and sharp as his own.

As the old dogger and roo-shooter go head to head, Gabe will need all his cunning to come out of this alive…

62. The Secrets of Bridgewater Bay | Julie Brooks

Rose and Ivy board a ship bound for Australia. One is travelling there to marry a man she has never met. One is destined never to arrive.

Australia, 2016: Amongst her late-grandmother’s possessions, Molly uncovers a photograph of two girls dressed in First World War nurses’ uniforms, labelled ‘Rose and Ivy 1917’, and a letter from her grandmother, asking her to find out what happened to her own mother, Rose, who disappeared in the 1960s.

Compelled to carry out her grandmother’s last wish, Molly embarks on a journey to England to unravel the mystery of the two girls whose photograph promised they’d be ‘together forever’…

63. The Last House on the Street | Dianne Chamberlain

1965. A young white female student becomes involved in the fight for civil rights in North Carolina, falling in love with one of her fellow activists, a Black man, in a time and place where an interracial relationship must be hidden from family, friends and especially the reemerging Ku Klux Klan. As tensions rise in the town, she realises not everyone is who they appear to be.

2010. A recently widowed architect moves into the home she and her late husband designed, heartbroken that he will never cross the threshold. But when disturbing things begin to happen, it’s clear that someone is sending her a warning. Who is trying to frighten her away, and why?

Decades later, past and present are set to collide in the last house on the street…

64. Girl A | Abigail Dean

Girl A,’ she said. ‘The girl who escaped. If anyone was going to make it, it was going to be you.’

I am Lex Gracie: but they call me Girl A.
I grew up with my family on the moors.
I escaped when I was fifteen years old.

65. In the Shadow of the Mountain | Silvia Vasquez-Lavado

Despite a high-flying career, Silvia Vasquez-Lavado knew she was hanging by a thread. Deep in the throes of alcoholism, and hiding her sexuality from her family, she was repressing the abuse she’d suffered as a child.

When her mother called her home to Peru, she knew something finally had to change. It did. Silvia began to climb.

Something about the sheer size of the mountains, the vast emptiness and the nearness of death, woke her up. And then, she took her biggest pain to the biggest mountain: Everest. The ‘Mother of the World’ allows few to reach her summit, but Silvia didn’t go alone. Trekking with her to Base Camp, were six troubled young women on an odyssey that helped each confront their personal trauma, and whose strength and community propelled Silvia forward…

Beautifully written and deeply moving, In the Shadow of the Mountain is a remarkable story of compassion, humility, and strength, inspiring us all to find have faith in our own heroism and resilience.

66. The Gilded Years | Karin Tanabe

Since childhood, Anita Hemmings has longed to attend the country’s most exclusive school for women, Vassar College. Now, a bright, beautiful senior in the class of 1897, she is hiding a secret that would have banned her from admission: Anita is the only African-American student ever to attend Vassar. With her olive complexion and dark hair, she has successfully passed as white, but now finds herself rooming with Lottie Taylor, an heiress of one of New York’s most prominent families.

Though Anita has kept herself at a distance from her classmates, Lottie’s sphere of influence is inescapable, her energy irresistible, and the two become fast friends. Pulled into her elite world, Anita learns what it’s like to be treated as a wealthy, educated white woman – the person everyone believes her to be – and even finds herself in a heady romance with a well-off Harvard student. But when Lottie becomes curious about Anita’s family the situation becomes particularly perilous, and as Anita’s graduation looms, those closest to her will be the ones to dangerously threaten her secret.

Set against the vibrant backdrop of the Gilded Age, an era when old money traditions collided with modern ideas, The Gilded Years is a story of hope, sacrifice and betrayal – and a gripping account of how one woman dared to risk everything for the chance at a better life.

67. The Little Wartime Library | Kate Thompson

London, 1944.

Clara Button is no ordinary librarian. While the world remains at war, in East London Clara has created the country’s only underground library, built over the tracks in the disused Bethnal Green tube station. Down here a secret community thrives: with thousands of bunk beds, a nursery, a cafe and a theatre offering shelter, solace and escape from the bombs that fall above.
Along with her glamorous best friend and library assistant Ruby Munroe, Clara ensures the library is the beating heart of life underground. But as the war drags on, the women’s determination to remain strong in the face of adversity is tested to the limits when it seems it may come at the price of keeping those closest to them alive.

68. Invisible | Danielle Steel

Antonia Adams is the product of a loveless marriage between an aspiring actress and an aristocrat. As a child, she is abandoned in the abyss that yawns between them, blamed by her mother, ignored by her father, and neglected by both. Unprotected and unloved, she learns that the only way to feel safe is to hide from the dangers around her, drawing as little attention as possible to herself, to be “invisible.”

69. Girl 11 | Amy Suiter Clarke

In this thrilling debut for fans of Karin Slaughter and Riley Sager, a social worker turned true-crime podcaster investigates a decades-old serial killer cold case-only to unwittingly create new victims.

Former social worker Elle Castillo is the host of a popular true-crime podcast that tackles cold cases of missing children in her hometown. After four seasons of successful investigations, Elle decides to tackle her white whale- the Countdown Killer, or TCK.

Twenty years ago, TCK established a pattern of taking and ritualistically murdering girls, each a year younger than the last. No one’s ever known why-why he stopped abruptly with his eleven-year-old victim, or why he followed the ritual at all.

Weeks into her new season, Elle sets out to interview a listener promising a tip, only to discover his dead body. When a child is abducted days later, in a pattern that looks very familiar, Elle is convinced TCK is back. Will she be able to get law enforcement on her side and stop TCK before it’s too late?

70. Playing Nice | JP Delaney

Pete Riley answers the door one morning to a parent’s worst nightmare. On his doorstep is a stranger, Miles Lambert, who breaks the devastating news that Pete’s two-year-old, Theo, isn’t his biological child after all – he is Miles’s, switched with the Lamberts’ baby at birth by an understaffed hospital.

Reeling from shock, Peter and his partner Maddie agree that, rather than swap the children back, it’s better to stay as they are but to involve the other family in their children’s lives. But a plan to sue the hospital triggers an official investigation that unearths some disturbing questions about just what happened on the day the babies were switched.

And when Theo is thrown out of nursery for hitting other children, Maddie and Pete have to ask themselves: how far do they want this arrangement to go? What are the secrets hidden behind the Lamberts’ smart front door? And how much can they trust the real parents of their child – or even each other?

An addictive psychological thriller, perfect for fans of The Silent Patient and Shari Lapena’s The Couple Next Door.

71. A Flicker in the Dark | Stacy Willingham

Chloe Davis’ father is a serial killer. He was convicted and jailed when she was twelve but the bodies of the girls were never found, seemingly lost in the surrounding Louisiana swamps. The case became notorious and Chloe’s family was destroyed.

His crimes stalk her like a shadow. Now Chloe has rebuilt her life. She’s a respected psychologist in Baton Rouge and has a loving fiancé. But she just can’t shake a tick-tick-tick of paranoia that, at any moment, it might all come crashing down.  As does something darker.
It is the anniversary of her father’s crimes, and Chloe is about to see her worst fears come true – a girl she knows goes missing.

The nightmare has started again…

72. The Mirror Man | Lars Kepler

Seventeen-year-old Jenny is abducted in broad daylight and taken to a dilapidated, isolated house where she is chained and caged along with several other girls. Their captor is unpredictable, and as wily as he is cruel: he foils every one of their desperate attempts to escape . . . and once caught they rarely survive their punishment.

Five years later, Jenny is found dead in a public park, and the police are scrambling to find a lead among the scant evidence. But Detective Joona Linna realizes that this murder has an eerie connection to a death that was declared a suicide years before. And now when Mia, a seventeen-year-old orphan, goes missing, it becomes clear to Joona that they are dealing with a serial killer-and the murderous rampage has just begun.

As the police close in on the killer, Mia and her fellow captives are plunged into ever greater danger, and Joona finds himself in a seemingly impossible race against time to save their young lives.

May 22

73. Lethal Deception  Rachel Amphlett

When a brutal attack on a business owner is followed by a suspicious death, the police first suspect the beginning of a new underworld drugs war.

Then a second victim is found dead, and the truth starts to look like something much worse.

With the death toll rising and her career under scrutiny from the media and her own superiors, Kay Hunter is running out of time to unravel the deadly secrets hiding behind ruthless ambition and treachery.

But Kay isn’t going to give up easily.

Because this time, the first victim is closer to home…

74. The  Sleeping and the Dead | Ann Cleeves

Detective Peter Porteous is called to Cranwell Lake where the body of a teenager has been discovered. After trawling through the missing persons files, he deduces that the corpse is Michael Grey, an enigmatic and secretive young man who was reported missing by his foster parents in 1972.

For country prison officer Hannah Morton it is the shock of her life. Michael had been her boyfriend, and she had been with him the night he disappeared. The news report that a body has been found brings back dreaded and long buried memories from her past …

75. The Engine House | Rhys Dylan

You’ll spot him on the edge of gaze, but when you turn, he is but haze…The Following man, folk tune.

When a landslip on Pembrokeshire’s stunning coastal path reveals the harrowing remains of 2 bodies, ex-DCI Evan Warlow’s quiet retirement is shattered.

As the original investigator for the 2 missing persons eight years before, Evan is recalled to help with what is now a murder inquiry. But as the killer scrambles to cover up the truth, the body count rises.

76. The Crooked Shore | Martin Edwards

‘So you want to know why I killed Ramona Smith?’

Hannah Scarlett is investigating the disappearance of a young woman from Bowness more than twenty years ago. Hannah’s former boss, Ben Kind, thought he knew what happened to Ramona Smith and the prime suspect was charged, but found not guilty. Now the case comes back into the public eye as the result of a shocking tragedy on the Crooked Shore, on the south coast of the county.

Tensions mount in the summer heat as a ruthless killer who has already got away with one murder, plans further appalling crimes. Scarlett finds herself racing against the clock as she strives to solve the case.

77. One for Sorrow | Helen Fields

One for sorrow, two for joy
Edinburgh is gripped by the greatest terror it has ever known: a lone bomber is targeting victims across the city, and no one is safe.

Three for a girl, four for a boy
In their jobs, DCI Ava Turner and DI Luc Callanach deal with death every day. But when it becomes clear that every bomb is a trap designed to kill them too, the possibility of facing it themselves starts to feel all too real.

Five for silver, six for gold
With the body count rising daily and the bomber’s methods becoming ever more horrifying, Ava and Luc must race to find out who is behind the attacks – or pay the ultimate price…

Seven for a secret never to be told…

78. The Locked Room | Elly Griffiths

Ruth Galloway and DCI Nelson are on the hunt for a murderer when Covid rears its ugly head. But can they find the killer despite lockdown?

Ruth is in London clearing out her mother’s belongings when she makes a surprising discovery: a photograph of her Norfolk cottage taken before Ruth lived there. Her mother always hated the cottage, so why does she have a picture of the place? The only clue is written on the back of the photo: Dawn, 1963.

Ruth returns to Norfolk determined to solve the mystery, but then Covid rears its ugly head. Ruth and her daughter are locked down in their cottage, attempting to continue with work and home-schooling. Happily, the house next door is rented by a nice woman called Zoe, who they become friendly with while standing on their doorsteps clapping for carers.

Nelson, meanwhile, is investigating a series of deaths of women that may or may not be suicide. When he links the deaths to an archaeological discovery, he breaks curfew to visit the cottage where he finds Ruth chatting to her neighbour whom he remembers as a carer who was once tried for murdering her employer.

Only then her name wasn’t Zoe. It was dawn.

79. Pray for Mercy | DK Hood

Her heart races as a noise from downstairs wakes her. She checks every room in her small home, but it’s not until she returns to the safety of her bedroom does she see movement. She’s not alone. And nobody can help her now…

Writing scrawled on the wall of Sheriff Jenna Alton’s office overnight leads her and her deputy David Kane to a secluded house on the outskirts of town. Inside, Jenna is devastated to find a much-loved local resident lying in a pool of blood, stab wounds covering her lifeless body. What monster would attack a defenseless woman living alone?

With no trace of the killer at the scene, the deadly message written on Jenna’s door is her only clue. But as the small town grieves, it leads her to a contractor who recently had access to the woman’s home. She races to interview him, only to discover the wreck of a car on a steep mountain road with another dead woman inside.

Jenna knows the victims were friends and regularly went to church together. She thinks a twisted killer has been watching them, waiting for the perfect time to strike. But before she can make her next move, one of her own team is found unconscious and covered in the blood of a third female victim-a knife inches away from his hand.

Pulse racing, Jenna questions her shaken deputy, who can’t explain why he was in the woman’s house. Could he really be a killer, or is someone playing an evil game? The clock ticks to uncover a dark secret that connects all three victims, but can she work it out before another innocent life is taken?

An absolutely unputdownable crime thriller from a USA Today bestselling author. If you’re a fan of Lisa Regan, Melinda Leigh and Kendra Elliot, you will love this gripping read.

 

80. The Game | Scott Kershaw

To save their life, you have to play.

Across the globe, five strangers receive a horrifying message from an unknown number.

The person you love most is in danger.

To save them, each must play The Game – a sinister unknown entity that has a single rule: there can only be one winner.

If you lose, your loved one will die.

But what is The Game – and why have they been chosen?

There’s only one thing each of them knows for sure: they’ll do anything to win…

Welcome to The Game. You’ve just started playing.

81. Dead Man’s Grave | Neil Lancaster

This grave can never be opened.
The head of Scotland’s most powerful crime family is brutally murdered, his body dumped inside an ancient grave in a remote cemetery.

This murder can never be forgotten.
Detectives Max Craigie and Janie Calder arrive at the scene, a small town where everyone has secrets to hide. They soon realise this murder is part of a blood feud between two Scottish families that stretches back to the 1800s. One thing’s for certain: it might be the latest killing, but it won’t be the last…

This killer can never be caught.
As the body count rises, the investigation uncovers large-scale corruption at the heart of the Scottish Police Service. Now Max and Janie must turn against their closest colleagues – to solve a case that could cost them far more than just their lives…

82. Give Unto Others | Donna Leon

Once again, Commissario Guido Brunetti is willing to bend police rules for an acquaintance, even though Elisabetta Foscarini, the woman who asks the favour, is not really a friend. But her mother was good to Brunetti’s, so he feels he has no choice but to repay the debt and agrees to look into the matter ‘privately’, rather than as a police official.
Her son-in-law has alarmed his wife by telling her they might be in danger because of something he’s involved with. Because Enrico Fenzo is an accountant, Brunetti suspects that the likely reason must be the finances of one of his clients. Brunetti takes a look and finds little- one client is an optician, another Fenzo`s father-in-law, whom he helped establish a charity, another the owner of a restaurant.
He is about to tell his friend that he can find no reason for preoccupation when her daughter’s place of work is vandalised, forcing Brunetti to turn his attention – still ‘private’ – to Elisabetta’s own family.
What he discovers shows the Janus-faced nature of yet another Italian institution as well as the wobbly line that attempts to differentiate between the criminal and the non-criminal.

83. Nothing to Hide | James Oswald

Suspended from duty after her last case ended in the high-profile arrest of one of Britain’s wealthiest men, DC Constance Fairchild is trying to stay away from the limelight. Fate has other ideas . . .

Coming home to her London flat, Constance stumbles across a young man, bloodied, mutilated and barely alive. She calls it in and is quickly thrown into the middle of a nationwide investigation . . . It seems that the victim is just the latest in a string of similar ritualistic attacks.

No matter that she is off-duty, no matter that there are those in the Met who would gladly see the back of her, Con can’t shake her innate determination to bring the monsters responsible for this brutality to justice.

Trouble always seems to find her, and even if she has nothing to hide, perhaps she has everything to lose . . .

84. Nowhere to Run | James Oswald

On compassionate leave following the death of her mother, Detective Constable Constance Fairchild thought renting a cottage near Aberystwyth, Wales would get her far enough from London to finally relax. But trouble always seems to find Con, and it’s not long before she is cooling off in a police station cell after defending herself from two would-be rapists.
In custody she meets a young Ukrainian woman, Lila, who confides in Con that she’s been forced by her manipulative boyfriend into prostitution and running drugs. Fearing for her life, she has run away from him, only to end up in the cells.
Con offers to help, but when her cottage is ransacked, and Lila subsequently disappears, she realises she’s stumbled into very dangerous company. International drug smugglers and ruthless people traffickers – those who will stop at nothing to protect their secrets. Out here at the end of the line, will Con find that there’s nowhere left to run?

85. Lies to Tell | Marion Todd

Keep your friends close and your enemies closer…

Early one morning DI Clare Mackay receives a message from her boss DCI Alastair Gibson telling her to meet him in secret. She does as he asks and is taken from St Andrews to a secure location in the remote Scottish hills. There, she is introduced to ethical hacker Gayle Crichton and told about a critical security breach coming from inside Police Scotland. Clare is sworn to secrecy and must conceal Gayle’s identity from colleagues until the source is found.

Clare already has her hands full keeping a key witness under protection and investigating the murder of a university student. When a friend of the victim is found preparing to jump off the Tay Road Bridge it is clear he is terrified of someone. But who? Clare realises too late that she has trusted the wrong person. As her misplaced faith proves a danger to herself and others, Clare must fight tooth and nail to protect those she cares about and see justice done.

86. Small Mercies | Alex Walters

A killer is sending a message. But who is it for?

DI Annie Delamere and her colleague DS Zoe Everett are off duty and enjoying a walk on the Peak District’s vast moorlands when they stumble across a mutilated corpse. The victim is unclothed and his tattoos indicate an affinity with the occult.

While Annie is put in charge of the case her long-term partner, MP Sheena Pearson, is confronted by a group of far right extremists. Rather than back down Sheena chooses to stand her ground – and almost pays for it with her life.

As more bodies are found, Annie is under pressure to prove her worth. But with one eye on her personal affairs can she catch a murderer and still keep her loved ones safe? And are the killings the work of a deranged mind – or a cover for something even more chilling?

87. The Mother | Jane Caro

Just like the garden, the fuse box, the bills, bin night and blown light bulbs, this was just something else she’d now have to take care of herself.

Recently widowed, Miriam Duffy is a respectable North Shore real estate agent and devoted mother and grandmother. She was thrilled when her younger daughter Ally married her true love, but as time goes by Miriam wonders whether all is well with Ally, as she moves to the country and gradually withdraws, finding excuses every time Miriam offers to visit. Their relationship has always had its ups and downs, and Miriam tries to give her daughter the distance she so clearly wants. But is all as it seems?

When the truth of her daughter’s situation is revealed, Miriam watches in disbelief as Ally and her children find themselves increasingly vulnerable and cut off from the world. As the situation escalates and the law proves incapable of protecting them, Miriam is faced with an unthinkable decision. But she will do anything for the people she loves most in the world. Wouldn’t you?

88. A Family of Strangers | Fiona Lowe

How can you know so little about those you love?

With a coveted promotion dangling within reach, the last thing Addy Topic needs to do is waste precious time singing in Rookery Cove’s choir. But when she’s reminded how much music meant to her late mother, she can’t say no. The building pressure raises the ghosts that sent her running from Rookery Cove years earlier – memories she’s spent decades hiding from, silencing them with work, alcohol and sex.

For Stephanie Gallagher, Rookery Cove was meant to be a new beginning in the slow lane. A place where she and her husband can embrace community, parenthood and evenly share the load. But the sea-change is changing everything. How much longer can they survive as a family?

Brenda Lambeck is finding her feet after the death of her husband when her best friend convinces her to join the choir. Beloved as a grandmother, Brenda is determined to mend the fraught relationship she has with her daughter, Courtney. But is that even possible when she continues to lie?

In the wake of a spectacular betrayal, three women are forced to face the uncompromising truths about the choices that have shaped their relationships with those they love most. The consequences will shatter their lives and all they hold dear. After such a disaster is rebuilding even possible?

89. Rising Dust | Fleur McDonald

After the family’s devastating tragedy, Detective Dave Burrows is crystal clear that his wife, Mel, is no longer interested in their marriage.

Before Dave can talk to Mel, he and his partner, Bob Holden, are sent to investigate a suspected sheep stealing at a station north of Carnarvon, where they very quickly realise that this crime is a lot more than just stock theft.

As a ferocious tropical storm floods the airstrip and uncovers more than anyone expected, Dave and Bob find themselves isolated, outnumbered and in extraordinary danger. Dave has to confront the guilt and trauma of his past before he can move forward. And perhaps there’s no way out this time.

90. The Long Weekend | Fiona Palmer

Coming together for a writing workshop with bestselling author Jan Goldstein, four strangers converge upon a luxury forest retreat. But along with their notepads and laptops, each of the participants has brought some emotional baggage.

Beth is a solo parent and busy career woman haunted by a tragic car accident. Simone, the youngest at 26, is a successful Instagram star but she’s hiding behind a facade. Jamie is the only man. He’s a handsome personal trainer – but he looks out of place with a pen in his hand. Finally, Alice is a wife and mum recovering from post-natal depression. She and Jamie soon realise they are not such perfect strangers after all.

Only one thing is for sure: on this creative getaway, nothing will go according to script.

91. Under a Venice Moon | Margaret Cameron

Life isn’t a sort of practice run, something you can afford to play around with. They don’t offer second and third chances to get it right. Use it better. Live it fuller.

A week in Venice ignites Margaret Cameron’s interest in the private city behind the tourist facade and the obscure tales from its history. Tantalised by stories of this lesser-known Venice she returns the following August for a month-long stay, determined to uncover the Venice of the Venetians.
Stepping out from her comfort zone, Margaret finds that friendships – unexpected and spontaneous – blossom within palazzi walls and she makes a discovery: life can lead you along rewarding paths, if you let it.
As each day passes, her time in Venice becomes more than just an interlude; soon, the city feels like home. Could she leave her satisfying life in Perth and start anew in Venice? The question becomes urgent when romance waits where she least expected to find it . . .

92. The Kelly Hunters | Grantlee Kieza

When Ned Kelly and his band of young tearaways ambushed and killed three brave policemen in a remote mountain camp in 1878, they sparked the biggest and most expensive manhunt Australia had seen. The desperate search would end when Kelly and his gang, wearing suits of armour, tried to derail a train before waging their final bloody gun battle with police in the small Victorian town of Glenrowan.

In the 20 months between those shootouts and aided by a network of informers, hundreds of lawmen, soldiers, undercover agents and a team of Aboriginal trackers combed rugged mountains in freezing conditions in search of the outlaws. The police officers were brave, poorly paid and often ailing, some nearing retirement and others young with small children, but they risked death and illness in the hope of finding the men who had killed their comrades.

The hunt for the Kelly gang became a fierce battle of egos between senior police as they prepared for the final shootout with Australia’s most infamous bushrangers, a gun battle that etched Ned Kelly’s physical toughness and defiance of authority into Australian folklore. By the author of the critically acclaimed Mrs Kelly, as well as other bestsellers such as Banks, Monash and Banjo, The Kelly Hunters is a fascinating and compelling account of the other side of the legendary Kelly story.

93. The Chancellor: The Remarkable Odyssey of Angela Merkel | Kati Marton

Angela Merkel has always been an outsider. A pastor’s daughter raised in Soviet-controlled East Germany, she spent her twenties working as a research chemist, only entering politics after the fall of the Berlin Wall. And yet within fifteen years, she had become chancellor of Germany and, before long, the unofficial leader of the West.

Acclaimed author Kati Marton sets out to pierce the mystery of this unlikely ascent. With unparalleled access to the chancellor’s inner circle and a trove of records only recently come to light, she teases out the unique political genius that is the secret to Merkel’s success. No other modern leader has so ably confronted authoritarian aggression, enacted daring social policies and calmly unified an entire continent in an era when countries are becoming only more divided. Again and again, she’s cleverly out manoeuvred strongmen like Putin and Trump, and weathered surprisingly complicated relationships with allies like Obama and Macron.

Famously private, the woman who emerges from these pages is a role model for anyone interested in gaining and keeping power while staying true to one’s moral convictions. At once a riveting political biography, an intimate human portrait and a revelatory look at successful leadership in action, The Chancellor brings forth from the shadows one of the most extraordinary women of our time

94. Mary Ann & Captain Piper | Jessica North

Born on Norfolk Island to First Fleet convicts, Mary Ann was destined to become a farmer’s wife. Instead, at the age of fourteen she entranced the island’s Commandant, the charming and flirtatious Captain Piper.

Learning how to behave as a lady, and overcoming the stigma of her origins, Mary Ann became mistress of the colony’s grandest home when Sydney was just becoming a party town. With scores of servants, she and Captain Piper entertained on a scale that had never been seen in the colonies, hosting magnificent garden parties, dinners and balls for hundreds of guests, including governors of New South Wales. But the Pipers were living beyond their means, and trouble was around the corner.

Mary Ann’s life journey from barefoot child to Sydney’s fashionable society encompasses triumphs, tragedies and travels around the globe. For the first time, Jessica North’s biography reveals Mary Ann Piper to be one of the most remarkable women in Australia’s early history.

95. Don’t Be Too Polite, Girls | Wendy McCarthy

Wendy McCarthy has made her mark on Australia in many extraordinary ways. For more than 50 years, she has been on the leading edge of feminism and corporate and public life in this country and her trailblazing advocacy and leadership have made her a widely respected and revered figure. Wendy is a woman who shaped her times as much as she was shaped by them, and now, at 80 years of age, she shares her remarkable life and achievements, and the lessons she learned – and taught us all.

From sheltered country schoolgirl to relentless campaigner for abortion and contraception, from passionate teacher to lifelong advocate for education, to smashing that glass ceiling again and again and showing the way to subsequent generations of women, Wendy has championed change across the public, private and community sectors – in education, family planning, human rights, public health, overseas aid and development, conservation, heritage, media and the Arts.

This inspiring and enlightening memoir is filled with cautionary tales and insider stories about being female in Australia – as well as a few helpful survival tips. Above all, it encourages the reader to find her own voice and listen to it.

96. Sunset in Spain | Erna Walraven

Bidding adios to work and Sydney, Erna and Alex decide to pursue a dream of living in the north of Spain. They fall in love with a tiny Castilian village, and set about restoring a long-forgotten, falling down villa that will soon be their new home.

Letting go of old ways, they get swept up in the colourful goings-on of their Spanish neighbours and the challenges of living a new life on a new continent – all while becoming minor celebrities among baffled locals who can’t understand why anyone would want to cross the world to live in their modest village.

Sunset in Spain is a warm, funny and poignant story of a couple’s search for new challenges and the joys to be had in ramping things up when most of us would be happy to start winding down.

June 22

97. Dream Town | David Baldacci 

All that glitters . . .
1952, Los Angeles. It is New Year’s Eve and PI Aloysius Archer is dining with his friend and rising Hollywood actress Liberty Callahan when they’re approached by Eleanor Lamb, a screenwriter who would like to hire him – as she suspects someone is trying to kill her.

Murder and mystery
A visit to Lamb’s Malibu residence leaves Archer knocked unconscious after he stumbles over a dead body in the hallway, and Lamb seems to have vanished. With the police now involved in the case, a close friend and colleague of Lamb’s employs Archer to find out what’s happened to the screenwriter.

The City of Angels – or somewhere much, much darker?
Archer’s investigation takes him from the rich, glamorous and glitzy LA to the seedy, dark side of the city, and onward to the gambling mecca of Las Vegas, just now hitting its stride as a hot spot for celebrities and a money-making machine for the mob. In a place where cops and crooks work hand in hand, Archer will cross paths with Hollywood stars, politicians and notorious criminals. He’ll almost die several times, and he’ll discover bodies and secrets from the canyons and beaches of Malibu and the luxurious mansions of Bel Air and Beverly Hills to the narcotics clubs of Chinatown.

With the help of Liberty and his PI partner Willie Dash, Archer will risk everything and leave no stone unturned in finding the missing Eleanor Lamb, and in bringing to justice killers who would love nothing better than to plant Archer six feet under.

98.  The Match | Harlan Coben

As a young child, Wilde was found living a feral existence in the Ramapo mountains of New Jersey. He has grown up knowing nothing of his family, and even less about his own identity.

He is known simply as Wilde, the boy from the woods.

But when a match at an online ancestry database puts him on the trail of a close relative – the first family member he has ever known – he thinks he might be about to solve the mystery of who he really is. Only this relation disappears as quickly as he’s resurfaced, having experienced an epic fall from grace that can only be described as a waking nightmare.

Undaunted, Wilde continues his research on DNA websites where he becomes caught up in a community of doxxers, a secret group committed to exposing anonymous online trolls.

Then one by one these doxxers start to die, and it soon becomes clear that a serial killer is targeting this secret community – and that his next victim might be Wilde himself …

99. Grimm Up North | David J Gatward

A young woman vanishes without a trace. Can an ex-soldier-turned-copper keep a mystery from becoming a tragedy?

Bristol, England. DCI Harry Grimm carries his horrific IED scars both inside and out. But when the ex-paratrooper’s obsession with tracking down his murderous father nearly throws an investigation, the dyed-in-the-wool city dweller is horrified to be reassigned to North Yorkshire’s rural backwater. Determined to escape his exile of parking tickets and lost lambs, he does his best to alienate the locals… until a teen disappears.

Well-acquainted with the ugly desires of human traffickers, Grimm fears the victim may have already met a gruesome end. So when he and his team make an awful discovery, his instinct for trouble tells him he’s stumbled across a special type of scum who could be hiding in plain sight.

Will the hard-nosed investigator nail his prey before the town mourns one of its own?

Grimm Up North is the gripping first book in the Harry Grimm crime fiction series. If you like driven but appealing heroes, British countryside settings, and a dollop of humor, then you’ll love David J. Gatward’s fish-out-of-water suspense.

Buy Grimm Up North to uncover the dark underbelly today!

100. Evil Intent | Jane Isaac

When a series of women’s bodies is discovered in the heart of rural Hamptonshire with a pentagram carved on their chests, DCI Helen Lavery is forced into a cat-and-mouse chase with a murderer who ultimately turns the tables and targets her.

Meanwhile, she is shocked to discover that her younger son’s new best friend is the nephew of organised crime boss Chilli Franks – the man who has held a grudge against Helen’s family since her father first put him away in the 1990s.

As her personal and professional lives collide, Helen finds herself in mortal danger as she races to track down the serial killer and restore safety to the streets of Hampton.

101. City of The Dead | James Patterson & Mindy McGinnis

‘Fights and flights are non-stop’ (USA Today) in the City of the Dead as Hawk takes off with a new, unexpected ally . . . her mother, Maximum Ride!

For Hawk, being a hero weighs heavily on her wings.

In the City of the Dead, life happens in the shadows. That’s why a war is brewing against an enemy no one can see.

Hawk and Maximum Ride never back down from a conflict, or from each other, and they argue more than they agree.

But as the dead begin to outnumber the living, a mother’s experience and a daughter’s instinct can make one powerful arsenal.

102. Vanished | Lynda La Plante

When an eccentric widow claims she is being stalked by her former lodger, Detective Jack Warr is the only person who believes her wild claims. Days later, she is found brutally murdered in her home.

When the investigation uncovers an international drugs operation on the widow’s property, the case grows even more complex. And as the hunt for the widow’s lodger hits dead end after dead end, it seems that the prime suspect has vanished without a trace.

To find answers, Jack must decide how far is he willing to go – and what he is willing to risk – in his search for justice. Because if he crosses the line of the law, one wrong move could cost him everything . . .

103. Beach Murder | Michael Ledwidge

Hamptons Sand. Hamptons Money. Hamptons Murder.

A high-society wedding party stirs up new evidence in an unsolved murder in this explosive and twisting thriller from the number one bestselling co-author of James Patterson’s Michael Bennett. For fans of Lee Child, David Baldacci and Gregg Hurwitz.
When Terry Rourke is invited to the spare-no-expense beach wedding of his hedge fund manager brother, he thinks that his biggest worry will be flubbing the champagne toast. But this isn’t the first time Terry has been to the Hamptons.
As the designer tuxedos are laid out and the flowers arranged along the glittering surf, Terry can’t help but take another look at a decades-old murder trial that rocked the very foundations of the town – and his family. He soon learns that digging up billion-dollar sand can be a very dangerous activity. The kind of danger that can very quickly turn even the most beautiful beach wedding into a wake.

104. Dead Man’s Stone | TG Reid

Some secrets are worth killing for.

When DCI Duncan Bone is contacted by a terminally-ill psychiatric patient and given clues linking a forty-year-old unsolved murder to high-profile public figures, he finds himself locked into a conspiracy at the very heart of the Scottish criminal and political establishment.

With his bosses stonewalling the investigation, lives under threat, and his career on the line, Bone faces a race against time to hunt down a group of men who will stop at nothing to cover their murderous crime.

Can DCI Bone catch the killer before the killing starts again?

Set among the dramatic hills and glens of Scotland’s Campsie Fells, Dead Man’s Stone is the third in a series of edge-of-your-seat crime thrillers that will keep you guessing right up to the nail-biting, heart-stopping climax.

Perfect for fans of Ian Rankin, J.D. Kirk, Val McDermid and Stuart MacBride.

105. Everyone in my Family has Killed Someone | Benjamin Stevenson

I was dreading the Cunningham family reunion even before the first murder. Before the storm stranded us at the mountain resort.

The thing is, us Cunninghams don’t really get along.

We’ve only got one thing in common: we’ve all killed someone.

My brother, my step-sister, my wife, my father, my mother, my sister-in-law, my uncle, my step-father, my aunt. Even me.

When they find the first body in the snow, it’s clear that only a Cunningham could have committed the crime – and it’s up to me to prove it.

There are plenty of killers in my family. But only one murderer . . .

106. Beautiful Little Fools | Jillian Cantor

On a sultry August day in 1922, Jay Gatsby is shot dead in his West Egg swimming pool. To the police, it appears to be an open-and-shut case of murder/suicide when the body of George Wilson, a local mechanic, is found in the woods nearby.

Then a diamond hairpin is discovered in the bushes by the pool, and three women fall under suspicion. Each holds a key that can unlock the truth to the mysterious life and death of this enigmatic millionaire.

Daisy Buchanan once thought she might marry Gatsby—before her family was torn apart by an unspeakable tragedy that sent her into the arms of the philandering Tom Buchanan.

Jordan Baker, Daisy’s best friend, guards a secret that derailed her promising golf career and threatens to ruin her friendship with Daisy as well.

Catherine McCoy, a suffragette, fights for women’s freedom and independence, and especially for her sister, Myrtle Wilson, who’s trapped in a terrible marriage.

Their stories unfold in the years leading up to that fateful summer of 1922, when all three of their lives are on the brink of unraveling. Each woman is pulled deeper into Jay Gatsby’s romantic obsession, with devastating consequences for all of them.

Jillian Cantor revisits the glittering Jazz Age world of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, retelling this timeless American classic from the women’s perspective. Beautiful Little Fools is a quintessential tale of money and power, marriage and friendship, love and desire, and ultimately the murder of a man tormented by the past and driven by a destructive longing that can never be fulfilled.

107. Sister Stardust | Jane Green

From afar Talitha’s life seemed perfect. In her twenties, and already a famous model and actress, she moved from London to a palace in Marrakesh, with her husband Paul Getty, the famous oil heir. There she presided over a swirling ex-pat scene filled with music, art, free love and a counterculture taking root across the world.

When Claire arrives in London from her small town, she never expects to cross paths with a woman as magnetic as Talitha Getty. Yearning for the adventure and independence, she’s swept off to Marrakesh, where the two become kindred spirits. But beneath Talitha’s glamourous facade lurks a darkness few can understand. As their friendship blossoms and the two grow closer, the realities of Talitha’s precarious existence set off a chain of dangerous events that could alter Claire’s life forever.

108. The Nurses’ War | Victoria Purman

In 1915, as World War 1 rages in Europe and the numbers of dead and injured continue to grow, Australian nurse, Sister Cora Barker, leaves her home in Australia for England, determined to use her skills for King and country. When she arrives at Harefield House – donated to the Australian Army by its expatriate Australian owners – she helps transform it into a hospital that is also a little piece of home for recuperating Australian soldiers.

As the months pass, her mission to save diggers lives becomes more urgent as the darkest months of the war see injured soldiers from the battlefields of France and Belgium flood into Harefield in the thousands. When the hospital sends out a desperate call for help, a quiet young seamstress from the village, Jessie Chester, steps up as a volunteer. At the hospital she meets Private Bert Mott, a recovering Australian soldier, but the looming threat of his return to the Front hangs over them. Could her first love be her first heartbreak?

Cora’s and Jessie’s futures, their hearts and their lives hang in the balance as the never-ending wave of injured and dying soldiers threatens to overwhelm the hospital and the hopes of a nation rest on a knife edge. The nurses war is a war against despair and death, fought with science and love rather than mustard gas and fear – but can they possibly win it? And what will be the cost?

109. The Diamond Eye | Kate Quinn

In 1937 in the snowbound city of Kiev (now known as Kyiv), wry and bookish history student Mila Pavlichenko organizes her life around her library job and her young son—but Hitler’s invasion of Ukraine and Russia sends her on a different path. Given a rifle and sent to join the fight, Mila must forge herself from studious girl to deadly sniper—a lethal hunter of Nazis known as Lady Death. When news of her three hundredth kill makes her a national heroine, Mila finds herself torn from the bloody battlefields of the eastern front and sent to America on a goodwill tour.

Still reeling from war wounds and devastated by loss, Mila finds herself isolated and lonely in the glittering world of Washington, DC—until an unexpected friendship with First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt and an even more unexpected connection with a silent fellow sniper offer the possibility of happiness. But when an old enemy from Mila’s past joins forces with a deadly new foe lurking in the shadows, Lady Death finds herself battling her own demons and enemy bullets in the deadliest duel of her life.

Based on a true story, The Diamond Eye is a haunting novel of heroism born of desperation, of a mother who became a soldier, of a woman who found her place in the world and changed the course of history forever.

110. What Eden Did Next | Sheila O’Flanagan

Five years after the death of her firefighter husband, Eden knows better than anyone that life can change in an instant. Now, instead of the future she had planned with Andy, she has Lila – the daughter he never got the chance to meet. And instead of Andy, she has his family.

Then Eden meets someone. Someone she knew before Andy, before Lila, before the tragedy. Someone who reminds her of how she used to be. But Andy’s mother has other plans. And Eden is facing an impossible choice. One that could tear a family apart . . .

111. The Sorrow Stone | Kari Gislason

After committing an audacious act of revenge for her brother’s murder, Disa flees with her son through the fjords of Iceland. She has already endured the death of her loved ones. Now she must run to save her son, and her honour.

In a society where betrayals and revenge killings are rife, all Disa has is her pride and her courage. Will it be enough for her and her son to escape retribution?

Dramatic and urgent in its telling, The Sorrow Stone celebrates one woman’s quest, against the dramatic backdrop of the Icelandic countryside. In this gripping novel, the co-author of the bestselling Saga Land takes a sidelined figure from the Viking tales and finally puts her where she belongs – at the centre of the story.

112. Chai Time at Cinnamon Gardens | Shankari Chandran

Welcome to Cinnamon Gardens, a home for those who are lost and the stories they treasure.

Cinnamon Gardens Nursing Home is nestled in the quiet suburb of Westgrove, Sydney – populated with residents with colourful histories, each with their own secrets, triumphs and failings. This is their safe place, an oasis of familiar delights – a beautiful garden, a busy kitchen and a bountiful recreation schedule.

But this ordinary neighbourhood is not without its prejudices. The serenity of Cinnamon Gardens is threatened by malignant forces more interested in what makes this refuge different rather than embracing the calm companionship that makes this place home to so many. As those who challenge the residents’ existence make their stand against the nursing home with devastating consequences, our characters are forced to reckon with a country divided.

113. Mothers and Daughters | Erica James

Even happy families have their secrets…

Since the sudden death of her husband, Naomi has steadily rebuilt the life they shared in the village of Tilsham by the sea.

Her eldest daughter, Martha, is sensible and determined – just like her father was – and very much in control of where her life is going. If she could just get pregnant with her husband, life would be perfect.

Willow, the youngest, was always more sunny and easy-going, yet drifted through life, much to her father’s frustration. But now, with charming new boyfriend, Rick, she has a very good reason to settle down.

The three women are as close as can be. But there are things Naomi has kept from her daughters. Like the arrival of Ellis, a long-lost friend from way back, now bringing the fun and spark back into her life. And she’s certainly never told them that her marriage to their father wasn’t quite what it seemed…

114. Lessons in Chemistry | Bonnie Garmus

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.

But 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.

Meet the unconventional, uncompromising Elizabeth Zott.

115. Three Sisters | Heather Morris

‘I want you to make a promise to me that you will always take care of your sisters. That you will always be there for one another. That you will not allow anyone to take you away from each other, ever. Do you understand?’

When they are little girls, Cibi, Magda and Livia make a promise to their father – that they will stay together, no matter what. Years later, at just 15, Livia is ordered to Auschwitz by the Nazis. Cibi, only 19 herself, remembers their promise and follows Livia, determined to protect her sister, or die with her. Together, they fight to survive through unimaginable cruelty and hardship.

Magda, only 17, stays with her mother and grandfather, hiding out in a neighbour’s attic or in the forest when the Nazi militia come to round up friends, neighbours and family. She escapes for a time, but eventually she too is captured and transported to the death camp.

In Auschwitz-Birkenau the three sisters are reunited and, remembering their father, they make a new promise, this time to each other: That they will survive.

116. Rosie’s Travelling Tea Shop | Rebecca Raisin

The trip of a lifetime!
Rosie Lewis has her life together.

A swanky job as a Michelin-starred Sous Chef, a loving husband and future children scheduled for an exact date.

That’s until she comes home one day to find her husband’s pre-packed bag and a confession that he’s had an affair.

Heartbroken and devastated, Rosie drowns her sorrows in a glass (or three) of wine, only to discover the following morning that she has spontaneously invested in a bright pink campervan to facilitate her grand plans to travel the country.

Now, Rosie is about to embark on the trip of a lifetime, and the chance to change her life! With Poppy, her new-found travelling tea shop in tow, nothing could go wrong, could it…?

117. French Braid | Anne Tyler

The Garretts take their first and last family vacation in the summer of 1959. They hardly ever leave home, but in some ways they have never been farther apart. Mercy has trouble resisting the siren call of her aspirations to be a painter, which means less time keeping house for her husband, Robin. Their teenage daughters, steady Alice and boy-crazy Lily, could not have less in common. Their youngest, David, is already intent on escaping his family’s orbit, for reasons none of them understand. Yet, as these lives advance across decades, the Garretts’ influences on one another ripple ineffably but unmistakably through each generation.

Full of heartbreak and hilarity, French Braid is classic Anne Tyler: a stirring, uncannily insightful novel of tremendous warmth and humor that illuminates the kindnesses and cruelties of our daily lives, the impossibility of breaking free from those who love us, and how close-yet how unknowable-every family is to itself.

118. The Winter Dress | Lauren Chater

Two women separated by centuries but connected by one beautiful silk dress. A captivating novel based on a real-life shipwreck discovered off Texel Island by the bestselling author of Gulliver’s Wife, Lauren Chater.

Jo Baaker, a textiles historian and Dutch ex-pat is drawn back to the island where she was born to investigate the provenance of a 17th century silk dress. Retrieved by local divers from a sunken shipwreck, the dress offers tantalising clues about the way people lived and died during Holland’s famous Golden Age.

Jo’s research leads her to Anna Tesseltje, a poor Amsterdam laundress turned ladies’ companion who served the enigmatic artist Catharina van Shurman. The two women were said to share a powerful bond, so why did Anna abandon Catharina at the height of her misfortune?

Jo is convinced the truth lies hidden between the folds of this extraordinary dress. But as she delves deeper into Anna’s history, troubling details about her own past begin to emerge.

On the small Dutch island of Texel where fortunes are lost and secrets lie buried for centuries, Jo will finally discover the truth about herself and the woman who wore the Winter Dress.

119. Brunswick Street Blues | Sally Bothroyd

Brick Brown has problems: she hates her day job, and her beloved Uncle Baz has gone missing.

Although a bartender by trade, Brick Brown has finagled herself a job on the city council to investigate a complaint that threatens to close her uncle’s well-loved blues club in the heart of Melbourne.

Brick suspects something strange is going on, but when her amateur sleuthing uncovers the mayor’s dead body in a locked room, she’s dragged into the dangerous world of dodgy developers with the reluctant help of Mitch Mitchell, a prickly war correspondent turned investigative journalist.

Relying on her street smarts and an unlikely band of allies, Brick and Mitchell unearth corruption that runs deeper than just local government, and the stakes are higher than they banked on. And when Brick also discovers some terrifying information about her past, the stakes turn deadly…

120. The Scarlet Cross | Lyn McFarlane

Meredith Griffin manages the emergency department at St Jude Hospital. A specialist in psychiatric nursing, she’s also an expert at hiding her own problems – and solving everyone else’s.

When women with the same fatal injury begin turning up in Meredith’s emergency ward, their deaths are labelled as suicides. But Meredith isn’t so sure. With the help of Detective Leo Donnelly, she begins an investigation to prove that the women were murdered. As pressure mounts from all quarters to stop her, questions arise about why the women were targeted – and why the hospital is so desperate to cover things up.

In a battle against addiction, self-doubt and a corrupt institution that may be hiding a serial killer, Meredith finds herself in the crosshairs of a network of powerful people – all of whom will stop at nothing to protect their privilege and keep her from the truth.

An atmospheric and intelligent crime thriller set in a hospital where nothing is as it seems.

121. The Murder Rule | Dervla McTiernan

First Rule: Make them like you.
Second Rule: Make them need you.
Third Rule: Make them pay.

They think I’m a young, idealistic law student, that I’m passionate about reforming a corrupt and brutal system.

They think I’m working hard to impress them.

They think I’m here to save an innocent man on death row.

They’re wrong. I’m going to bury him.

122. Apollo & Thelma: A True Tall Tale | Jon Faine

Apollo and Thelma have been a constant in Jon Faine’s life for decades. As a young lawyer, he was captivated by his favourite client, the Mighty Apollo, a legendary strongman and circus star, famous for pulling trams with his teeth and having an elephant stand on him. Apollo’s sister, Thelma, on the other hand, ruthless and rugged, had survived decades running solo one of the most remote pubs in the outback until unexpectedly dying, leaving behind a complicated estate.

Befriending Apollo and immersing himself in Thelma’s estate, Jon is forced to untangle a long line of astonishing stories and episodes in our distant and recent history that keep intersecting with his own. Via the circuitous route of these two larger-than-life characters – alongside a supporting cast of characters from the world of politics, law, literature and media – Jon reflects on their stories and is inevitably forced to rethink his own.

Apollo and Thelma is a uniquely Australian story, beautifully told.

123. The Ghost in the Rock: An archaeology of sensibilities on the Victorian goldfields | Ron Southern

From those lost in an imagined desert, and their inclusion into the very fabric of the strongest rock, to an isolated teacher playing with the geometry of the universe, The Ghost in the Rock is about how an animistic landscape is dug, scraped, chiseled, and built into the meanings we give to life, and to the past.

124. Not Just, The Wife of the General Manager | Sally Warriner

It was the 1980s and Sally was in her early 20s when she returned from a backpacking sojourn and hitchhiked to Australia’s far north. But instead of moving back to Canberra as planned, she stayed. After marrying a cattle station manager, Sally lived and worked with him on various stations until she was 50, ingraining herself into the lives of the characters who inhabited these isolated places.

With wit and sass, Sally tells the story of how she was so much more than just a wife of a station manager (despite what some of the top end blokes thought). Among other things, she was a nurse (dealing with local accidents, assisting the Flying Doctor service and making emergency 400 km round trips through the outback with sick children), a mother (bringing up several children, not all her own), a travel agent, a social secretary, a host and an organiser (including of Kerry Packer’s New Year’s Eve parties).

This is a story about adventure, resilience, the unexpected journeys we need to go on to find ourselves, and having the courage to do something for yourself. In Sally’s words: ‘Life’s like that, fellas. You may spend a lifetime trying to find yourself but, at the end of the day, you’ve been there all along.’

125. The Jane Austen Remedy | Ruth Wilson

As she approached the age of seventy, Ruth Wilson began to have recurring dreams about losing her voice. Unable to dismiss her feelings of unexplainable sadness, she made the radical decision to retreat from her conventional life with her husband to a sunshine-yellow cottage in the Southern Highlands where she lived alone for the next decade.

Ruth had fostered a lifelong love of reading, and from the moment she first encountered Pride and Prejudice in the 1940s she had looked to Jane Austen’s heroines as her models for the sort of woman she wanted to become.

As Ruth settled into her cottage, she resolved to re-read Austen’s six novels and rediscover the heroines who had inspired her; to read between the lines of both the novels and her own life. And as she read, she began to reclaim her voice.

The Jane Austen Remedy is a beautiful, life-affirming memoir of love, self-acceptance and the curative power of reading. Published the year Ruth turns ninety, it is an inspirational account of the lessons learned from Jane Austen over nearly eight decades, as well as a timely reminder that it’s never too late to seize a second chance.

July 22

126. A Harmless Lie | Sara Blaedel

A woman is haunted by a heartwrenching decision she made as a teenager in this darkly atmospheric, deeply emotional thriller from #1 internationally bestselling global superstar Sara Blaedel.

Detective Louise Rick is on a beach in Thailand when the panicked call from her father comes through. Louise′s beloved brother, Mikkel, has attempted suicide. His wife, Trine, left him days earlier, walking out the door one day with no warning and leaving Mikkel devastated.

Louise rushes home to Osted, the small, insular Danish town where she grew up and where Mikkel still lives. But the more Louise learns about Trine-a devoted wife and the mother of two young children-and her state of mind in the days before she left Mikkel, the more Louise begins to wonder whether Trine really meant to leave him. Or whether something much darker may have taken place.

As the local police begin to suspect that Mikkel may have had a hand in Trine’s disappearance, Louise struggles to clear his name but is forced to confront some hard truths: Small towns always hide secrets. The past always comes back to haunt you. And lies are never harmless.

127.  What She Said | D.S. Butler

Can DS Karen Hart rely on the word of a little girl to save the life of a woman in grave danger?

When a woman is abducted from a quiet suburban street and bundled into the back of a white van, the only witness to the crime is a child with a reputation for telling tall tales.

The police doubt the girl’s story, except for Detective Karen Hart, who is determined to follow her instincts–perhaps because the shy little girl reminds her of the daughter she’s still grieving.

When a playing card is found at the scene, Karen finds her first clue. And when a second card is found at the home of a missing woman, Tamara, Karen finds her victim. But before the team can catch their breath, another woman linked to Tamara is snatched. And then a body turns up in a farmer’s field.

With the crimes having escalated from kidnap to murder, Karen must unlock the killer’s calling-card code before any more victims are taken. But getting to the truth isn’t going to be easy when Tamara’s family has so much to hide…

128. The Silent Sisters | Robert Dugoni

After a harrowing escape from Russian agents on his last mission, Charles Jenkins thinks he’s finally done with the spy game. But then the final two of the Seven Sisters American assets who have been deep undercover in Russia for decades cut off all communication with their handlers. Are they in hiding after detecting surveillance? Or have they turned and become double agents? It’s Jenkins’s duty to find out, but he’s been added to a Russian kill list. It will require all of Jenkins’s knowledge of spycraft and an array of disguises to return to the country undetected.

But plans go awry his first night in Moscow when Jenkins gets involved in an altercation that ends in the death of the son of one of Russia’s most powerful organized crime leaders. Pursued by mafia henchmen, Russian agents, and a particularly dogged Moscow police detective, Jenkins is determined to track down the final two Sisters and get them to America or die trying. As various forces close in, Jenkins fears this time he might’ve pushed his luck too far.

129. The Midnight Hour | Elly Griffiths

Brighton, 1965

When theatrical impresario Bert Billington is found dead in his retirement home, no one suspects foul play. But when the postmortem reveals that he was poisoned, suspicion falls on his wife, eccentric ex-Music Hall star Verity Malone.
Frustrated by the police response to Bert’s death and determined to prove her innocence, Verity calls in private detective duo Emma Holmes and Sam Collins. This is their first real case, but as luck would have it they have a friend on the inside: Max Mephisto is filming a remake of Dracula, starring Seth Billington, Bert’s son. But when they question Max, they feel he isn’t telling them the whole story.
Emma and Sam must vie with the police to untangle the case and bring the killer to justice. They’re sure the answers must lie in Bert’s dark past and in the glamorous, occasionally deadly, days of Music Hall. But the closer they get to the truth, the more danger they find themselves in…

130. Going Dark | Neil Lancaster

When everything and everyone–friend and foe–is working against you, where will you turn?

Tom Novak is a troubled soul with a dark and bloody past.

A former refugee, Royal Marine, and member of the elite Special Reconnaissance Regiment, he now finds himself struggling with the deadening routine of day-to-day policing.

When he is deployed undercover to infiltrate a gang of people-traffickers, things go badly wrong. Faced with an impossible choice, his cover is blown and he finds himself on the run from the Serbian mafia and even his fellow police colleagues.

With no-one to trust, and his enemies using all the resources of the state against him, Tom has only one option: to Go Dark.

Who are the police traitors feeding the Serbian mafia his every move? Is there anyone he can trust? Can Tom prove his innocence before it’s too late?

Going Dark is the debut crime thriller from former covert specialist Detective Sergeant Neil Lancaster, and the first in the Tom Novak series. If you enjoy gritty suspense, thrilling action and flawed heroes battling against the odds, then you’ll love Going Dark.

131. Beach Murder | Michael Ledwidge

A high-society wedding party stirs up new evidence in an unsolved murder in this explosive and twisting thriller from the number one bestselling co-author of James Patterson’s Michael Bennett. For fans of Lee Child, David Baldacci and Gregg Hurwitz.
When Terry Rourke is invited to the spare-no-expense beach wedding of his hedge fund manager brother, he thinks that his biggest worry will be flubbing the champagne toast. But this isn’t the first time Terry has been to the Hamptons.
As the designer tuxedos are laid out and the flowers arranged along the glittering surf, Terry can’t help but take another look at a decades-old murder trial that rocked the very foundations of the town – and his family. He soon learns that digging up billion-dollar sand can be a very dangerous activity. The kind of danger that can very quickly turn even the most beautiful beach wedding into a wake.

132. Dead Against Her | Melinda Leigh

Sheriff Bree Taggert’s downfall is part of a killer’s cunning design in #1 Amazon Charts and Wall Street Journal bestselling author Melinda Leigh’s novel of murder, lies, and revenge.

Called to an isolated farm to check on an elderly widow, Sheriff Bree Taggert finds a brutal double homicide. One of the victims is Eugene Oscar, the bitter and corrupt former deputy she recently forced out of the department.

Working with criminal investigator Matt Flynn, Bree discovers that she isn’t the only one who had a troubling history with Eugene. But someone doesn’t want Bree digging up the past. She becomes the target of a stranger’s sick and devious campaign calculated to destroy her reputation, career, family, and new relationship with Matt. To make matters worse, she’s the prime suspect in Eugene’s murder.

When her chief deputy goes missing while investigating the case, Bree refuses to back down. She won’t let him become the next victim. His life and her future depend on finding a killer nursing a vengeful rage.

133. No Less The Devil | Stuart MacBride

Introducing an original and intriguing new lead character, Stuart MacBride’s new novel showcases a crime-writing master at the top of his game.

‘We are each our own devil, and we make this world our hell.’

It’s been seventeen months since the Bloodsmith butchered his first victim and Operation Maypole is still no nearer catching him. The media is whipping up a storm, the top brass are demanding results, but the investigation is sinking fast.

Now isn’t the time to get distracted with other cases, but Detective Sergeant Lucy McVeigh doesn’t have much choice. When Benedict Strachan was just eleven, he hunted down and killed a homeless man. No one’s ever figured out why Benedict did it, but now, after sixteen years, he’s back on the streets again – battered, frightened, convinced a shadowy ‘They’ are out to get him, and begging Lucy for help.

It sounds like paranoia, but what if he’s right? What if he really is caught up in something bigger and darker than Lucy’s ever dealt with before? What if the Bloodsmith isn’t the only monster out there? And what’s going to happen when Lucy goes after them?

134. Six Graves | Angela Marsons

It’s a typical teenage bedroom with posters covering the walls and clothes littering the floor. But the girl lying on her bed, wearing a delicate chain around her neck, is lifeless. A circle of red stains her white vest top. How had the girl’s mother looked down at her sleeping child and pulled the trigger?

When Detective Kim Stone rushes to the scene of a house fire, she’s shocked to discover it’s claimed the lives of two teenage children and their parents. But this tragedy is not quite as it seems. Each body is marked by a gunshot wound and the mother, Helen Daynes, is holding the gun.

The case sparks painful childhood memories for Kim who suffered at the hands of her own abusive mother, but it just makes her more determined to uncover the truth. As Kim untangles Helen’s past, she finds a history of clinical depression. But did it drive Helen to murder her loved ones?

 

Then Kim uncovers a tiny, vital clue in Helen’s bedroom that throws the investigation wide open. Could someone else have killed the Daynes family?

Just as Kim feels she’s making progress, a deadly threat is made to her own life by a dangerous psychopath from her past. Biting back her fear, she keeps digging. And when Kim hits upon a shocking secret that changes everything she thought she knew about Helen, she realises that the remaining family members are in grave danger.

Kim is under pressure like never before, and the monster circling her is getting ever closer. Four bodies already. Four graves fresh in the ground. Who will be next? Can Kim find the killer and save herself before it’s too late?

135. The Night Caller | Martina Murphy

Sometimes darkness stalks the most beautiful places…

On Doogarth East Bog, Achill Island, a body is found. The close community is stunned to learn that it’s Lisa Moran, a popular teacher who disappeared two days earlier.

DS Lucy Golden is assigned to the case. For her, it’s personal. As an Achill native, she knows that sometimes great evil can lurk in plain sight. Having moved back from Dublin, she has spent the last ten years trying to prove herself to her colleagues after her husband was jailed for fraud.
This is her chance to put the past behind her. Her teenage son Luc’s behaviour, however, is increasingly troubling and Lucy doesn’t have time for distractions.

When another body is found in an abandoned property on the bog, with links to a murder 20 years ago, the stakes are raised – but a pattern is emerging. Can Lucy put the pieces together? Or will her family crisis mean the murderer claims his next victim?

136. 22 Seconds | James Patterson

22 seconds…until Lindsay Boxer loses her badge – or her life.

SFPD Sergeant Lindsay Boxer has guns on her mind.

There’s word of a last-ditch shipment of drugs and weapons crossing the Mexican border ahead of new restrictive gun laws. Before Lindsay can act, her top informant tips her to a case that hits disturbingly close to home.

Former cops. Professional hits. All with the same warning scrawled on their bodies:

You talk, you die.

Now it’s Lindsay’s turn to choose.

137. Three Debts Paid | Daniel Pitt

It is February 1912 when barrister Daniel Pitt is reunited with his old college friend, Inspector Ian Frobisher. Following allegations of plagiarism, one of their Cambridge University professors has committed an assault, and Ian has recommended that Daniel defends him.
Meanwhile, Daniel’s dear friend Miriam fford Croft has returned to London as a newly qualified forensic pathologist and is working with eccentric Dr Evelyn Hall. On Daniel’s first visit to the morgue, he is shocked to find Miriam examining the mutilated body of a young woman and, what’s worse, it is being compared to another corpse bearing identical wounds. As rumours spread of a serial killer, nicknamed ‘the rainy-day slasher’, stalking the streets of London, Daniel hears that Ian Frobisher is in charge of the case.
So begins the harrowing pursuit of a brutal murderer whose killing spree is far from over…

138. Watch Her Disappear | Lisa Regan

The girl’s prom dress, the color of champagne, shimmers in the dying light. A corsage of wilting pink sweetheart roses decorates her wrist. She is perfectly still, lying on the ground like a delicate china doll, trapped forever in a sleep from which she will never wake…

When a call comes in about a young girl found dead at a high school prom-her life drained away from a fatal stab wound-Detective Josie Quinn drops everything to attend the scene. Taking in the girl’s neatly braided hair, Josie feels a flicker of recognition. But no one comes forward to identify this innocent child, murdered on what should have been the happiest night of her life.

Trawling missing persons files, Josie realizes where she has seen the girl before. Gemma Farmer disappeared a few months ago, shattering her family. But why would her body appear now, on her sixteenth birthday? Josie’s only clue is the five neat little cuts on Gemma’s pale arm. Days later, another missing girl shows up, tucked neatly into her bed on the morning of her birthday, her favourite teddy beside her, her skin as cold as ice-and the autopsy reveals scars on her arm matching Gemma’s.

Her head spinning, Josie fears the marks are a serial killer’s twisted way of counting his victims. But where are the other girls he’s killed, and how many more could follow? The case takes a terrifying turn when a local teen goes missing just days before she turns sixteen.

Clock ticking, Josie turns the town upside down in search of answers. But when her own chief comes forward with a missing piece in this devastating puzzle spanning decades, will it be enough to get inside the mind of the most unexpected and elusive killer she has ever encountered, or will another precious life be taken?

139. The Murders at Fleat House | Lucinda Riley

The sudden death of a pupil in Fleat House at St Stephen’s – a small private boarding school in deepest Norfolk – is a shocking event that the headmaster is very keen to call a tragic accident.

But the local police cannot rule out foul play and the case prompts the return of high-flying Detective Inspector Jazmine ‘Jazz’ Hunter to the force. Jazz has her own private reasons for stepping away from her police career in London, and reluctantly agrees to front the investigation as a favour to her old boss.

Reunited with her loyal sergeant Alastair Miles, she enters the closed world of the school, and as Jazz begins to probe the circumstances surrounding Charlie Cavendish’s tragic death, events are soon to take another troubling turn.

Charlie is exposed as an arrogant bully, and those around him had both motive and opportunity to switch the drugs he took daily to control his epilepsy.

As staff at the school close ranks, the disappearance of young pupil Rory Millar and the death of an elderly classics master provide Jazz with important leads, but are destined to complicate the investigation further. As snow covers the landscape and another suspect goes missing, Jazz must also confront her personal demons . . .

Then, a particularly grim discovery at the school makes this the most challenging murder investigation of her career. Because Fleat House hides secrets darker than even Jazz could ever have imagined . . .

140. The Devil’s Bargain | Stella Rimington

One lie put the nation at risk. Another might save it.

The new spy thriller from Stella Rimington, former head of MI5

Harry Bristow: policeman, father, chauffeur, fraud.

In 1988 Harry made one mistake: he took a bribe, letting a man he knew as Igor into Britain – and he’s regretted it ever since. So when he recognises ‘Igor’ fifteen years later as his newly-elected MP, he knows he has to come clean. But the MP recognises him too – and Harry fears what he might do next.

Peter Robinson, MP: salesman, politician, bachelor, spy.

It was easy to get into Britain in 1988 as an illegal, working deep undercover, but the break-up of the Soviet Union cut Robinson off from his homeland. He’s inching closer to Britain’s levers of power – but now the one man who knows his secret has reappeared. With no way to contact Moscow, he must act fast to preserve his position and reap its rewards – at any cost.

141. Old Sins | Aline Templeton

On a clear, moonlit night, DCI Kelso Strang hears the unmistakable howl of a wolf.

A disturbing sound, but not the only unsettling thing about the remote town of Inverbeg, where he is taking a break with an old army friend. Sean Reynolds is obsessive about rewilding his Auchinglass estate and there are rumours that he has taken illicit steps to hurry that on, much to the anger of local farmers. There are other tensions too.

An elderly lady died some months before, officially in a tragic stumble off a cliff path, but she was burdened with many secrets and her closest friend believes it was murder. When horror strikes in Inverbeg, Strang fears further retribution is at work and as he gets closer to uncovering the ugly truth, he finds himself in more danger than ever before.

142. Dancing With The Enemy | Diane Armstrong

June 1940. `It was a perfect June evening that began with hope and ended in despair.’ So begins the journal of Hugh Jackson, a Jersey doctor, whose idyllic world is shattered when Britain abandons the Channel Islands which are invaded by the Germans. Forced to choose between conflicting loyalties, he sends his pregnant wife to England, believing their separation will be brief. It’s a fateful decision that will affect every aspect of his life.

May 1942. Young Tom Gaskell fumes whenever he sees the hated swastika flying from Fort Regent. Humiliated by Jersey’s surrender and ashamed of his mother’s fraternisation with the occupiers, Tom forms an audacious plan, not suspecting that it will result in guilt and tragedy.

April 2019. Sydney doctor Xanthe Maxwell, traumatised by the suicide of her colleague and burnt out by the relentless pressure of her hospital work, travels to St Helier so she can figure out what to do with her life. But when she finds Hugh Jackson’s World War II journal, she is plunged into a violent world of oppression and collusion, but also of passion and resistance. As she reads, she is mystified by her growing sense of connection to the past. Her deepening relationship with academic Daniel Miller helps her understand Jersey’s wartime past and determine her own future.

By the time this novel reaches its moving climax, the connection between Tom, Xanthe and Hugh Jackson has been revealed in a way none of them could possibly have imagined.

143. Mara’s Choice | Anna Jacobs

When Mara Gregory travels to Australia to meet the father whom she had believed dead, will she be disappointed or might she find a whole new life waiting for her?

When Mara Gregory receives a letter from the father whom she believed to have died when she was a child, her world is turned upside down. Aaron Buchanan only discovered that he had a daughter a couple of years ago and now he’s desperate to play a part in her life. In the face of her mother’s opposition, Mara arranges to meet her father and his family.

In a breath-taking corner of the world, amid a waterfront community on Australia’s west coast, will Mara find him the disappointment that her mother promises? And when Australia brings another man into her life, she’s faced with some huge decisions and some heartrending choices.

144. A Valley Dream | Anna Jacobs

1935. At thirty-six, Bella Porter is dependent on her abusive cousin, acting as an unpaid servant. When a kind relative leaves her a house in the village of Backshaw Moss, Thomas tries to take it from her, but she defies him and grasps this chance of a new start in Lancashire.
It is not going to be easy, though. The house is on the edge of a slum and in a state of disrepair, let out as flats. As kind people help her find her feet, however, her confidence grows and when she meets struggling, widowed father-of-three Ryan, she begins to hope she may find the happy family she’s always dreamed of.
She’s offered partial help with her renovations by the local council who are planning to clear up the slums, but other landlords will do anything to avoid costly improvements and protect their profits. And when Thomas follows her, still after the inheritance, not only is Bella’s newfound happiness threatened but also her life. Can her new friends help her rid herself of her tormenter once and for all and finally achieve her valley dream?

145. The Island | Adrian McKinty

Propulsive, terrifying, and blade-sharp, The Island is the next thrilling adventure from the mastermind behind the award-winning global sensation The Chain, and a family story unlike any you’ve read yet.

You should not have come to the island.
You should not have been speeding.
You should not have tried to hide the body.
You should not have told your children that you could keep them safe.
No one can run forever . . .

146. The Murder Rule | Dervla McTiernan

Propulsive, terrifying, and blade-sharp, The Island is the next thrilling adventure from the mastermind behind the award-winning global sensation The Chain, and a family story unlike any you’ve read yet.

You should not have come to the island.
You should not have been speeding.
You should not have tried to hide the body.
You should not have told your children that you could keep them safe.
No one can run forever . . .

147. The Fallout | Yrsa Sigurdardottir

On a cold day in Reykjavik, a baby goes missing from her pram. When the child’s blanket washes up on the beach, and the mother is found dead, everyone’s worst fears seem to have been realised.

Eleven years later, and detective Huldar and child psychologist Freyja are now working in the same police building, on the same team. Freyja believes that personal and professional relationships must remain separate, however hard that may be. But when a woman’s dismembered body is found in a deserted car, her head missing, and Freyja and Huldar find themselves working on the same case, the secrecy around their affair threatens to crack. And when Freyja is accused of a serious breach of police protocol, will Huldar be able to help her? Meanwhile, their search to identify the body takes the case back into secrets of the past, and the unspoken crimes that bind three separate families.

148. Bitter Flowers | Gunnar Staalesen

PI Varg Veum has returned to duty following a stint in rehab, but his new composure and resolution are soon threatened when a challenging assignment arrives on his desk.

A man is found dead in an elite swimming pool and a young woman has gone missing. Most chillingly, Varg Veum is asked to investigate the ‘Camilla Case’: an eight-year-old cold case involving the disappearance of a little girl, who was never found.

As the threads of these apparently unrelated crimes come together, against the backdrop of a series of shocking environmental crimes, Varg Veum faces the most challenging, traumatic investigation of his career.

149. Lessons in Chemistry | Bonnie Garmus

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.

But 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.

Meet the unconventional, uncompromising Elizabeth Zott.

150. The Distant Shores | Santa Montefiore

Margot Hart travels to Ireland to write a biography of the famous Deverill family. She knows she must speak to the current Lord Deverill – JP – if she is to uncover the secrets of the past. A notorious recluse, JP won’t be an easy man to crack. But Margot is determined – and she is not a woman who is easily put off.

What she never expected was to form a close bond with JP and be drawn into his family disputes. Shouldering the blame for running up debts that forced him to sell the family castle, JP is isolated and vulnerable. With help from his handsome son Colm, it seems as though Margot might be the only one who can restore JP’s fortunes.

Will the family ever succeed in healing rifts that have been centuries in the making?

151. Call of the Penguins | Hazel Prior

Fiercely resilient and impeccably dressed, Veronica McCreedy has lived an incredible 87 years. Most of them alone, in her huge house by the sea.

But Veronica has recently discovered a late-life love for family and friendship, adventure and wildlife.

More specifically, a love for penguins!

And so when she’s invited to co-present a wildlife documentary, far away in the southern hemisphere, she jumps at the chance.

Even though it will put her in the spotlight, just when she thought she would soon fade into the wings.

Perhaps it’s never too late to shine?

152. The Girl from Lace Island | Joanna Rees

They came to the Island and its luxurious hideaway hotel to relax away from the prying eyes of the paparazzi and overzealous public.

Here they could forget they were famous. But this island holds secrets, and when one terrifying night the hotel burns to the ground, the only thing that is left is the visitors book.

The book is evidence to who stayed there and when, because behind the glamorous facade of Lace Island, treachery, blackmail and murder walk hand in hand with the stars that called this place paradise.

153. The Last Summer | Karen Swan

When the residents of St Kilda ask to be evacuated from their remote island home in the summer of 1930, it’s in search of a better life on mainland Scotland compared to the scratch existence on their mountain in the sea.

For eighteen-year-old tomboy Effie Gillies, it’s a bittersweet departure. She’s the best young climber on the island, as skilled and brave as any of the men. But it is Effie’s expansive knowledge of local bird life that leads her to take up a position as curator of Dumfries House’s ornithological collection – and back into the arms of Lord Dumfries’ son and heir, Sholto.

During her last summer on St Kilda, Effie had been Sholto’s guide, and their attraction had seemed irresistible. But, in the glamorous polite society of Ayrshire, it is clear they are worlds apart. When a body is discovered on the island, soon after the evacuation, a scandal erupts as Effie is implicated. Sholto knows she’s keeping secrets – but are they even her own?

154. A Terrible Kindness | Jo Browning Wroe

Tonight nineteen-year-old William Lavery is dressed for success, his first black-tie do. It’s the Midlands Chapter of the Institute of Embalmers Ladies’ Night Dinner Dance, and William is taking Gloria in her sequined evening gown. He can barely believe his luck.

But as the guests sip their drinks and smoke their post-dinner cigarettes a telegram delivers news of a tragedy. An event so terrible it will shake the nation. It is October 1966 and a landslide at a coal mine has buried a school: Aberfan. William decides he must act, so he stands and volunteers to attend. It will be his first job, and will be – although he’s yet to know it – a choice that threatens to sacrifice his own happiness. His work that night will force him to think about the little boy he was, and the losses he has worked so hard to bury. But compassion can have surprising consequences, because – as William discovers – giving so much to others can sometimes help us heal ourselves.

155. Esther’s Children | Caroline Beecham

Austria, 1936: Esther ‘Tess’ Simpson works for a British organisation that rescues academics from the cruel Fascist and anti-Semitic regimes taking hold in Europe. On a dangerous trip to Vienna to help bring aid to Europe’s threatened Jewish scholars, Esther meets Harry Singer, a young Jewish academic and musician.

Tess works tirelessly to rescue at-risk academics and scientists from across Europe, trying to find positions for them in Britain and America. In 1938, she secures employment for Harry at Imperial College, London, their love affair intensifying as the world heads into war; yet they are separated once again as Britain moves to intern European refugees.

With Harry detained on the Isle of Man while still waiting for news of his parents, Esther and the Society plead with the government for the interned scientists’ release. When Harry is eventually liberated, his future with Esther is by no means secure as he faces an impossible choice.

Confronting the horrific dangers of World War Two with remarkable integrity and bravery, Esther Simpson is revealed as an exceptional heroine.

156. The German Wife | Kelly Rimmer

Austria, 1936: Esther ‘Tess’ Simpson works for a British organisation that rescues academics from the cruel Fascist and anti-Semitic regimes taking hold in Europe. On a dangerous trip to Vienna to help bring aid to Europe’s threatened Jewish scholars, Esther meets Harry Singer, a young Jewish academic and musician.

Tess works tirelessly to rescue at-risk academics and scientists from across Europe, trying to find positions for them in Britain and America. In 1938, she secures employment for Harry at Imperial College, London, their love affair intensifying as the world heads into war; yet they are separated once again as Britain moves to intern European refugees.

With Harry detained on the Isle of Man while still waiting for news of his parents, Esther and the Society plead with the government for the interned scientists’ release. When Harry is eventually liberated, his future with Esther is by no means secure as he faces an impossible choice.

Confronting the horrific dangers of World War Two with remarkable integrity and bravery, Esther Simpson is revealed as an exceptional heroine.

157. The Resistance Girl | Mandy Robotham

Austria, 1936: Esther ‘Tess’ Simpson works for a British organisation that rescues academics from the cruel Fascist and anti-Semitic regimes taking hold in Europe. On a dangerous trip to Vienna to help bring aid to Europe’s threatened Jewish scholars, Esther meets Harry Singer, a young Jewish academic and musician.

Tess works tirelessly to rescue at-risk academics and scientists from across Europe, trying to find positions for them in Britain and America. In 1938, she secures employment for Harry at Imperial College, London, their love affair intensifying as the world heads into war; yet they are separated once again as Britain moves to intern European refugees.

With Harry detained on the Isle of Man while still waiting for news of his parents, Esther and the Society plead with the government for the interned scientists’ release. When Harry is eventually liberated, his future with Esther is by no means secure as he faces an impossible choice.

Confronting the horrific dangers of World War Two with remarkable integrity and bravery, Esther Simpson is revealed as an exceptional heroine.

158. The Long Weekend | Gilly MacMillan

By the time you read this, I’ll have killed one of your husbands.

In an isolated retreat, deep in the Northumbria moors, three women arrive for a weekend getaway.

Their husbands will be joining them in the morning. Or so they think.

But when they get to Dark Fell Barn, the women find a devastating note that claims one of their husbands has been murdered. Their phones are out of range. There’s no internet. They’re stranded. And a storm’s coming in.

Friendships fracture and the situation spins out of control as each wife tries to find out what’s going on, who is responsible and which husband has been targeted.

This was a tight-knit group. They’ve survived a lot. But they won’t weather this. Because someone has decided that enough is enough.

That it’s time for a reckoning.

159. Outback Teacher | Sally Gare

The year is 1956. Sally Gare is twenty. She’s just out of teachers’ college, and has been sent to work at a two-teacher school more than 3000 kilometres from Perth. With the head teacher away, she starts out alone with a class of forty-five Aboriginal children, ranging in age from five years to thirteen. Thus begins the career of a remarkable teacher and a life-changing adventure in remote Australia.

Outback Teacher is the story of the challenges and delights of teaching in outback schools in the 1950s and 1960s. Sally’s interaction with her students and the local Aboriginal communities is affectionate and heart-warming, although it isn’t without its misunderstandings. But the tensions aren’t just confined to the school and the local community. Some of the characters with whom Sally shares her less than comfortable housing are as eccentric and as curiously interesting as any escapee to the outback.

Full of warmth, humour and kindness, this generous book reminds us how bush people have always found their own solutions to the problems isolation throws at them. But most importantly, and in the most personal way, it confirms how inspiring and passionate teachers can change lives.

August 22

160. The Little Grave | Caroline Arnold

It’s been five years since Detective Amanda Steele’s life was derailed by the tragic death of her young daughter. The small community of Dumfries, Virginia, may have moved on, but Amanda cannot. When the man who killed Lindsey is found murdered, she can’t keep away from the case.


Fighting her sergeant to be allowed to work such a personal investigation, Amanda is in a race to prove that she can uncover the truth. But the more she digs into the past of the man who destroyed her future, the more shocking discoveries she makes. And when Amanda finds the link between a silver bracelet in his possession and the brutal unsolved murder of a young woman five years ago, she realizes she’s caught up in something darker than she ever imagined and suspects that more girls could be in danger.


But as Amanda edges toward the truth, she gets closer to a secret as personal as it is deadly. Amanda has stumbled upon a dangerous killer, and she must face some terrible truths in order to catch this killer – and save his next victim as she couldn’t save her own daughter…

 

161.  The 6:20 Man | David Baldacci

A journey that took him to hell . . .

Having survived combat tours in Afghanistan and Iraq and been decorated with medals, Travis Devine mysteriously leaves the Army under a cloud of suspicion. And at thirty-two years old, he’s swapping fighting the Taliban and Al Qaeda for a different kind of danger in the cut-throat world of high finance.

His daily commute on the 6.20 a.m. train into New York’s financial district, to his new job as an analyst at the minted powerhouse investment bank Cowl and Comely, takes him into a world where greed, power, jealousy and ambition result in the financial abuse of the masses and the enrichment of an elite few. But it is on this daily journey that he passes a house where he sees something that sounds alarm signals he cannot ignore.

A close friend of Devine’s, Sarah Ewes, is the first victim and the mysterious circumstances surrounding her death at Cowl and Comely compel him to investigate further. As he digs deeper, he discovers strange coincidences and unnerving truths. As the deaths pile up, and the major players show their hands, he must question who he can trust and who he must fight.

162. Local Gone Missing | Fiona Barton

Everyone watches their neighbours.

Elise King moves into the sleepy seaside town of Ebbing. Illness has thrown her career as a successful detective into doubt, but no matter how hard she tries to relax and recuperate, she knows that something isn’t right.

Everyone lies about their friends.

Tensions are running high beneath the surface of this idyllic community: the weekenders in their fancy clothes, renovating old bungalows into luxury homes, and the locals resentful of the changes. A town divided, with the threat of violence only a heartbeat away.

Everyone knows a secret.

This peaceful world is shattered when two teenagers end up in hospital and a local man vanishes without trace. Elise starts digging for answers, but the community closes ranks, and the truth begins to slip through her fingers. Because in a small town like this, the locals are good at keeping secrets…

Everyone’s a suspect when a local goes missing.

163. The Murder Book | Mark Billingham

Tom Thorne takes an old nemesis in the stunning new novel from multi-award-winning Sunday Times bestseller Mark Billingham.

Tom Thorne has it all.

In Nicola Tanner and Phil Hendricks, Thorne has good friends by his side. He finally has a love life worth a damn and is happy in the job to which he has devoted his life…

Tom Thorne has it all…. to lose.

Hunting the woman responsible for a series of grisly murders, Thorne has no way of knowing that he will be plunged into a nightmare from which he may never wake.

A nightmare that has a name.

Finally, Thorne’s past has caught up with him and a ruinous secret is about to be revealed. If he wants to save himself and his friends, he must do the unthinkable.

164. The Good Mother | Rae Cairns

She’s protected them from the truth. Can she save them from her past?

Sarah Calhoun is a regular Sydney soccer mum, but she’s keeping terrifying secrets from everyone she loves . . . and her past is about to catch up with her.

When two men from Northern Ireland hunt her down, she’s forced to return to Belfast to testify at a murder trial. Caught in the crossfire of an obsessive policeman driven by a disturbing past, and a brutal IRA executioner, Sarah faces an impossible choice: lie and allow a killer to walk free, or tell the truth and place her children in the line of fire.

With her family and innocent people at risk, Sarah must find the courage to fight for the truth. But righting the wrongs of the past just might cost her everything . . .

This fast-paced, explosive thriller will keep you on the edge of your seat to its gripping finale.

‘Show me a soldier who would fight harder than a mother to save her son.’

165. Her Last Wish | Jennifer Chase

FBI Agent Rachel Gift, 33, unparalleled for her ability to enter the minds of serial killers, is a rising star in the Behavioral Crimes Unit-until a routine doctor visit reveals she has but a few months left to live.

 

Not wishing to burden others with her pain, Rachel decides, agonizing as it is, not to tell anyone-not even her boss, her partner, her husband, or her seven-year-old daughter. She wants to go down fighting, and to take as many serial killers with her as she can.

 

A serial killer strikes in the Virginia area, targeting women who seek fertility treatments. As Rachel enters his sick and twisted mind, she struggles to understand his motive, or the connection between the victims.

 

Worse, the case strikes too close to home, bringing up memories of her own fertility treatments, and her failed mission to have a second child. As she seeks insight from a diabolical, jailed serial killer, she immediately realizes it’s a mistake. Can he see right through her?

 

Can Rachel keep her secret and keep her deteriorating health at bay long enough to finish the job? Can she fulfill her own bucket list before she dies? And can she keep herself from descending down the dark hole of her own traumatic past?

 

166. Sparring Partners | John Grisham

Homecoming takes us back to Ford County, the fictional setting of many of John Grisham’s unforgettable stories. Jake Brigance is back, but he’s not in the courtroom. He’s called upon to help an old friend, Mack Stafford, a former lawyer in Clanton who three years earlier became a local legend when he stole some money from his clients, divorced his wife, filed for bankruptcy, and left his family in the middle of the night, never to be heard from again. Until now. Now Mack is back and he’s leaning on his old pals, Jake and Harry Rex, to help him return. His homecoming does not go as planned.
In Strawberry Moon, we meet Cody Wallace, a young death row inmate only three hours away from execution. His lawyers can’t save him, the courts slam the door, and the Governor says no to a last minute request for clemency. As the clock ticks down, Cody has only one final request.
The Sparring Partners are the Malloy brothers, Kirk and Rusty, two successful young lawyers who inherited a once prosperous firm when its founder, their father, was sent to prison. Kirk and Rusty loathe one another, and speak to each other only when necessary. As the firm disintegrates, the fiasco falls into the lap of Diantha Bradshaw, the only person the partners trust. Can she save the Malloys, or does she take a stand for the first time and try to save herself?

 

167. Kiss Her Goodnight | D.K. Hood

She glances around as she locks the cafe door behind her. It’s growing dark and the quiet street is deserted. Tired, she starts on her short walk home. She thinks she’ll be safe inside within minutes, but the person watching from the shadows has other plans for her tonight…

 

When the body of a young woman is discovered in a local playground in the center of Black Rock Falls, Sheriff Jenna Alton and her deputy David Kane rush to the scene. Jenna recoils with horror when she sees the body, dressed in a thin nightgown, her face covered by a terrifying Halloween mask.

 

When the body is examined, red puncture marks are uncovered along her spine. Jenna makes a connection with a cold case where the killer tortured young women for years and was never caught. If the murderer has started killing again, Jenna knows it’s only a matter of time before another body is found.

 

Days later, when another victim lays slumped against the fence of a local landfill site, with the same puncture wounds and macabre mask, Jenna’s fears are confirmed. A serial killer is back in town and they’re picking off women one by one.

 

Then, as a third body is found, Jenna finally gets the breakthrough she needs. Dirt found underneath the women’s fingernails leads to a dangerous cave network in the mountains outside town. And once Jenna ventures into the dark, winding underground tunnels, will she find the person responsible for the deaths and take them down, or has she just walked into the killer’s trap?

168. With a Mind to Kill | Anthony Horowitz

It is M’s funeral. One man is missing from the graveside: the traitor James Bond, in custody accused of M’s murder.

Behind the Iron Curtain, a group of former Smersh and Stasi agents now want to use their lethal British spy against a target whose assassination will change history. Bond is smuggled into the lion’s den to receive his orders – but whose orders is he following, and what will he do when the time comes to pull the trigger?

In a mission where one false move means death, Bond must also grapple with the darkest questions about himself – but not even he knows what has happened to the man he used to be.

169. The Blood Tide | Neil Lancaster

You get away with murder.
In a remote sea loch on the west coast of Scotland, a fisherman vanishes without trace. His remains are never found.

You make people disappear.
A young man jumps from a bridge in Glasgow and falls to his death in the water below. DS Max Craigie uncovers evidence that links both victims. But if he can’t find out what cost them their lives, it won’t be long before more bodies turn up at the morgue…

You come back for revenge.
Soon cracks start to appear in the investigation, and Max’s past hurtles back to haunt him. When his loved ones are threatened, he faces a terrifying choice: let the only man he ever feared walk free, or watch his closest friend die…

170. Unhinged | Jorn Lier Horst/Thomas Enger

When police investigator Sofia Kovic uncovers a startling connection between several Oslo murder cases, she attempts to contact her closest superior, Alexander Blix before involving anyone else in the department. But before Blix has time to return her call, Kovic is shot and killed in her own home – execution style. And in the apartment below, Blix’s daughter Iselin narrowly escapes becoming the killer’s next victim.

Four days later, Blix and online crime journalist Emma Ramm are locked inside an interrogation room, facing the National Criminal Investigation Service. Blix has shot and killed a man, and Ramm saw it all happen.

As Iselin’s life hangs in the balance, under-fire Blix no longer knows who he can trust and he’s not even certain that he’s killed the right man.

171. Cold Cold Bones | Kathy Reichs

Winter has come to North Carolina and, with it, a drop in crime. Freed from a heavy work schedule, Tempe Brennan is content to dote on her daughter Katy, finally returned to civilian life from the army. But when mother and daughter meet at Tempe’s place one night, they find a box on the back porch. Inside: a very fresh human eyeball.

GPS coordinates etched into the eyeball lead to a Benedictine monastery where an equally macabre discovery awaits. Soon after, Tempe examines a mummified corpse in a state park, and her anxiety deepens.

There seems to be no pattern to the subsequent killings uncovered, except that each mimics in some way a homicide that a younger Tempe had been called in to analyze. Who or what is targeting her, and why?

Helping Tempe search for answers is detective Erskine “Skinny” Slidell, retired but still volunteering with the CMPD cold case unit—and still displaying his gallows humor. Also pulled into the mystery: Andrew Ryan, Tempe’s Montreal-based beau, now working as a private detective.

Could this elaborately staged skein of mayhem be the prelude to a twist that is even more shocking? Tempe is at a loss to establish the motive for what is going on…and then her daughter disappears.

172. The Last to Disappear | Jo Spain

A small town. A frozen lake. Three missing women. One body.

When young London professional Alex Evans is informed that his sister’s body has been pulled from an icy lake in Northern Lapland, he assumes his irresponsible sister accidentally drowned. He travels to the wealthy winter resort where Vicky worked as a tour-guide and meets Agatha Koskinen, the detective in charge. Agatha is a no-nonsense single mother of three who already thinks there’s more to Vicky’s case than meets the eye.

As the two form an unlikely alliance, Alex also begins to suspect the small town where his sister lived and died is harbouring secrets. It’s not long before he learns that three other women have gone missing from the area in the past and that his sister may have left him a message.

173. The Innocent Girls | B.R Spangler

Tears stream down her face as she feels the cold blade press against her neck. The sweet scent of her daughter’s favorite strawberry pancakes all around, her last thought is for her beautiful girl. Please, please let Lisa have escaped.

 

When Detective Casey White is called early one morning to a beachside vacation campsite in the Outer Banks, she finds the bodies of Carl and Peggy Pearson side-by-side, their throats cut, and their thirteen-year-old daughter Lisa nowhere to be found. Haunted by memories of her own missing girl, Casey fears this could soon become a triple murder: because without the medication found in the bathroom cabinet, Lisa has just days to live.

 

As her team struggle to untangle the meaning of the cryptic symbol carved into the victims’ skin, Casey searches the area for signs of Lisa: and is rewarded when she finds her blistered and barefoot, staggering along the highway. The girl barely has breath left to whisper ‘he invited me’ before blacking out.

 

Days later, another couple is found murdered on a vacation yacht. A different symbol is etched on their bodies, and their teenage daughter is also missing. Casey’s only clue is an unsettling ‘invitation’ found on the girl’s phone, to a secluded building out in the cornfields.

 

Desperate to uncover who is luring these innocent families to their deaths, and certain forensics have missed something vital, Casey matches up the crime scene photos herself. The symbols combine to form an upcoming date. The killer is taunting them with the timing of the next murder.

 

Racing to follow the invitation in time, when Casey arrives she is shocked to glimpse not the missing girls from this case, but her own missing daughter…

174. What They Knew | Marion Todd

It is summer in St Denis and Bruno is busy organising the annual village concert. He’s hired a local Perigord folk group, Les Troubadours, to perform their latest hit ‘A Song for Catalonia’. But when the song unexpectedly goes viral, the Spanish government, clamping down on the Catalonian bid for independence, bans Les Troubadours from performing it.

The timing couldn’t be worse, and Bruno finds himself under yet more pressure when a specialist sniper’s bullet is found in a wrecked car near Bergerac. The car was reportedly stolen on the Spanish frontier and the Spanish government sends warning that a group of nationalist extremists may be planning an assassination in France. Bruno immediately suspects that Les Troubadours and their audience might be in danger.

Bruno must organise security and ensure that his beloved town and its people are safe – the stakes are high for France’s favourite policeman.

175. To Kill a Troubadour | Martin Walker

DI Clare Mackay starts the new year with a death…

It is the stroke of midnight on Hogmanay when Alison Reid admits a caller to her home. When her death is later reported, DI Clare Mackay attends the scene. The initial evidence does not rule out murder, but it’s not possible to say for certain if foul play was involved. Yet when the pathologist informs Clare about a post mortem of a young woman found in the Kinness Burn, and with some similarities to Alison’s case, it seems there’s a strong chance that there’s a killer on the loose in St Andrews.

Clare and her team will have to look past the obvious conclusions and delve deeper into the lives of the victims to get to the truth. But who else risks meeting the same fate while the clock is ticking?

176. The Omega Factor | Steve Berry

The Ghent Altarpiece is the most violated work of art in the world. Thirteen times it has been vandalized, dismantled, or stolen. Why? What secrets does it hold?

Enter UNESCO investigator, Nicholas Lee, who works for the United Nations’ Cultural Liaison and Investigative Office (CLIO). Nick’s job is to protect the world’s cultural artifacts-anything and everything from countless lesser-known objects to national treasures.
When Nick travels to Belgium for a visit with a woman from his past, he unwittingly stumbles on the trail of a legendary panel from the Ghent Altarpiece, stolen in 1934 under cover of night and never seen since. Soon Nick is plunged into a bitter conflict, one that has been simmering for nearly two thousand years. On one side is the Maidens of Saint-Michael, les Vautours, Vultures, a secret order of nuns and the guardians of a great truth. Pitted against them is the Vatican, which has wanted for centuries to both find and possess what the nuns guard. Because of Nick the maidens have finally been exposed, their secret placed in dire jeopardy-a vulnerability that the Vatican swiftly moves to exploit utilizing an ambitious cardinal and a corrupt archbishop, both with agendas of their own.
From the tranquil canals of Ghent, to the towering bastions of Carcassonne, and finally into an ancient abbey high in the French Pyrenees, Nick Lee must confront a modern-day religious crusade intent on eliminating a shocking truth from humanity’s past. Success or failure – life and death – all turn on the Omega Factor.

177. Six Days in Rome | Francesca Giacco

A young artist travels to Rome to heal a broken heart in this visceral, decadent and deeply evocative debut novel.

Emilia, an artist, arrives in Rome alone. What was supposed to be a romantic trip has, with the sudden end of her relationship, become a solitary one.

Six days lie ahead. She wanders the streets, surrendering herself to the music, food and beauty of the city.

But when she meets John, an American living out a seemingly idyllic existence in Rome, their instant connection challenges how she sees her past, her family and herself. As their intimacy deepens, can Emilia begin to imagine life anew?

178. Trespasses | Louise Kennedy

When he was nine, and his mother had her first deadly dance with cancer, Harry became a thief. Someone had to find food and pay the mortgage even if his mother was too sick to work. When his mother finally succumbs to cancer, Harry leaves Chicago but somehow he can’t quite leave all of his past behind.

Harry lives a quiet, careful, rootless life – he can’t afford to attract attention or get attached – until he meets Miranda. But just when Harry thinks he has a chance at happiness his old life comes back to haunt him. Harry has had dealings with some bad people in his past but none more dangerous than Carter LaPorte and Harry is forced to run. But no matter what name he uses or where he goes, Harry cannot escape. If he is ever going to feel safe Harry must face down his enemy once and for all.

Only then can he hope to possess something more valuable than anything he has ever stolen.

179. Deception | Lesley Pearse

When he was nine, and his mother had her first deadly dance with cancer, Harry became a thief. Someone had to find food and pay the mortgage even if his mother was too sick to work. When his mother finally succumbs to cancer, Harry leaves Chicago but somehow he can’t quite leave all of his past behind.

Harry lives a quiet, careful, rootless life – he can’t afford to attract attention or get attached – until he meets Miranda. But just when Harry thinks he has a chance at happiness his old life comes back to haunt him. Harry has had dealings with some bad people in his past but none more dangerous than Carter LaPorte and Harry is forced to run. But no matter what name he uses or where he goes, Harry cannot escape. If he is ever going to feel safe Harry must face down his enemy once and for all.

Only then can he hope to possess something more valuable than anything he has ever stolen.

180. Nightwork | Nora Roberts

When he was nine, and his mother had her first deadly dance with cancer, Harry became a thief. Someone had to find food and pay the mortgage even if his mother was too sick to work. When his mother finally succumbs to cancer, Harry leaves Chicago but somehow he can’t quite leave all of his past behind.

Harry lives a quiet, careful, rootless life – he can’t afford to attract attention or get attached – until he meets Miranda. But just when Harry thinks he has a chance at happiness his old life comes back to haunt him. Harry has had dealings with some bad people in his past but none more dangerous than Carter LaPorte and Harry is forced to run. But no matter what name he uses or where he goes, Harry cannot escape. If he is ever going to feel safe Harry must face down his enemy once and for all.

Only then can he hope to possess something more valuable than anything he has ever stolen.

 

181. Horse | Geraldine Brooks

He tilted his desk lamp so that the light fell on the image. The head of a bright bay colt gazed out of the canvas, the expression in the eyes unusual and haunting.’

A discarded painting in a roadside clean-up, forgotten bones in a research archive, and Lexington, the greatest racehorse in US history. From these strands of fact, Geraldine Brooks weaves a sweeping story of spirit, obsession and injustice across American history.
Kentucky, 1850. An enslaved groom named Jarret and a bay foal forge a bond of understanding that will carry the horse to record-setting victories across the South, even as the nation reels towards war. An itinerant young artist who makes his name from paintings of the horse takes up arms for the Union and reconnects with the stallion and his groom on a perilous night far from the glamour of any racetrack.
New York City, 1954. Martha Jackson, a gallery owner celebrated for taking risks on edgy contemporary painters, becomes obsessed with a nineteenth-century equestrian oil painting of mysterious provenance.
Washington, DC, 2019. Jess, a Smithsonian scientist from Australia, and Theo, a Nigerian-American art historian, find themselves unexpectedly connected through their shared interest in the horse – one studying the stallion’s bones for clues to his power and endurance, the other uncovering the lost history of the unsung Black horsemen who were critical to his racing success.

 

182. The Islands | Emily Brugman

In the mid-1950s, a small group of Finnish migrants set up camp on Little Rat, a tiny island in an archipelago off the coast of Western Australia. The crayfishing industry is in its infancy, and the islands, haunted though they are by past shipwrecks, possess an indefinable allure.

Drawn here by tragedy, Onni Saari is soon hooked by the stark beauty of the landscape and the slivers of jutting coral onto which the crayfishers build their precarious huts. Could these reefs, teeming with the elusive and lucrative cray, hold the key to a good life?

183. Outback Skies | Barbara Hannay

Outback With The Boss

Grace Robbins and her new boss, Mitch Wentworth, had managed to deny their attraction until they got lost together in the Australian wilderness. Away from civilisation and with their lives potentially in danger, their true feelings surfaced. Then they were rescued…

Back at the office, Mitch was every inch the boss and Grace was determined to keep a cool head. But they were both fighting the memory of their nights in the outback and maintaining a professional distance might not last…

Outback Baby

Max Jardine always behaves like a bossy big brother to Gemma Brown. Except for one night five years ago a night they have never talked about since. Now Gemma is moving into Max’s remote outback home to help him care for a friend’s baby.

Seeing stubborn, gorgeous Max with a baby in his arms confuses Gemma almost as much as it intrigues Max to see Gemma all grown up! And tension mounts as they confront the past…

A Bride At Birralee

When Sydney girl Stella Lassiter discovers that she’s pregnant, she travels to the Outback seeking her ex–boyfriend for help, only to bump into the one man she’s hoping to avoid Callum Roper.

A year ago, Callum had been drawn to Stella at a party but quickly realised she was off–limits. Now however, he is determined to make her unborn baby part of his family. And marriage seems the perfect solution…

184. The Coast | Eleanor Limprecht

Set against the stunning backdrop of the Gulf country’s monsoon season, this is a dramatic story of betrayal and forgiveness from bestselling author and Australia’s authentic voice of the land.

Penny Carter’s quiet life in Southbend, running a nursery with her ex father-in-law, is turned upside down when Lisa, the young daughter of her late husband, is unexpectedly deposited on her doorstep. The unwelcome houseguest stirs up more than just memories of Penny’s husband’s betrayal, when a cyclone leads to the discovery of a skeleton buried next to the town cemetery.

As the mystery around the unsettling discovery grows, Penny, supported by her enigmatic neighbour Flint, begins to question everything she thought she knew about her own childhood and her mother’s death. Family secrets long thought buried come bubbling to the surface, as other shocking revelations see Penny and Lisa in an ultimate race for survival.

But what other secrets will the Wet season uncover, while the whole town is cut off from the rest of the world?

185. Gathering Storms | Kerry McGinnis

Set against the stunning backdrop of the Gulf country’s monsoon season, this is a dramatic story of betrayal and forgiveness from bestselling author and Australia’s authentic voice of the land.

Penny Carter’s quiet life in Southbend, running a nursery with her ex father-in-law, is turned upside down when Lisa, the young daughter of her late husband, is unexpectedly deposited on her doorstep. The unwelcome houseguest stirs up more than just memories of Penny’s husband’s betrayal, when a cyclone leads to the discovery of a skeleton buried next to the town cemetery.

As the mystery around the unsettling discovery grows, Penny, supported by her enigmatic neighbour Flint, begins to question everything she thought she knew about her own childhood and her mother’s death. Family secrets long thought buried come bubbling to the surface, as other shocking revelations see Penny and Lisa in an ultimate race for survival.

But what other secrets will the Wet season uncover, while the whole town is cut off from the rest of the world?

186. The Ghosts of Paris | Tara Moss

It’s 1947. The world continues to grapple with the fallout of the Second World War, and former war reporter Billie Walker is finding her feet as an investigator. When a wealthy client hires Billie and her assistant Sam to track down her missing husband, the trail leads Billie back to London and Paris, where Billie’s own painful memories also lurk. Jack Rake, Billie’s wartime lover and briefly, husband, is just one of the millions people who went missing in Europe during the war. What was his fate after they left Paris together?

As Billie’s search for her client’s husband takes her to both the swanky bars at Paris’s famous Ritz hotel and to the dank basements of the infamous Paris morgue, she’ll need to keep her gun at the ready, because something even more terrible than a few painful memories might be following her around the city of lights …

187. The War Widow | Tara Moss

Billie Walker’s search for a missing young man plunges her right back into the danger and drama she thought she’d left behind, in this thrilling tale of courage and secrets set in glamorous postwar Sydney.

Sydney, 1946. Though war correspondent Billie Walker is happy to finally be home, for her the heady postwar days are tarnished by the loss of her father and the disappearance in Europe of her husband, Jack. To make matters worse, now that the war is over, the newspapers are sidelining her reporting talents to prioritize jobs for returning soldiers. But Billie is a survivor and she’s determined to take control of her own future. So she reopens her late father’s business, a private investigation agency, and, slowly, the women of Sydney come knocking.

At first, Billie’s bread and butter is tailing cheating husbands. Then, a young man, the son of European immigrants, goes missing, and Billie finds herself on a dangerous new trail that will lead up into the highest levels of Sydney society and down into its underworld. What is the young man’s connection to an exclusive dance club and a high class auction house? When the people Billie questions about the young man start to turn up dead, Billie is thrown into the path of Detective Inspector Hank Cooper. Will he take her seriously or will he just get in her way?

As the danger mounts and Billie realizes that much more than one young man’s life is at stake, it becomes clear that though the war was won, it is far from over.

188. Lying Beside You | Michael Robotham

TWO MISSING WOMEN. ONE WITNESS. SO MANY LIES . . . The brand-new thriller by the number-one bestselling and award-winning master of crime

Twenty years ago, Cyrus Haven’s family was murdered. Only he and his brother survived. Cyrus because he hid. Elias because he was the killer.
Now Elias is being released from a secure psychiatric hospital and Cyrus, a forensic psychologist, must decide if he can forgive the man who destroyed his childhood.
As he prepares for the homecoming, Cyrus is called to a crime scene in Nottingham. A man is dead and his daughter, Maya, is missing. Then a second woman is abducted . . . The only witness is Evie Cormac, a troubled teenager with an incredible gift: she can tell when you are lying.
Both missing women have dark secrets that Cyrus must unravel to find them – and he and Evie know better than anybody how the past can come back to haunt you . . .

189. Dirt Town | Hayley Scrivenor

My best friend wore her name, Esther, like a queen wearing her crown at a jaunty angle. We were twelve years old when she went missing.

On a sweltering Friday afternoon in Durton, best friends Ronnie and Esther leave school together. Esther never makes it home.

Ronnie’s going to find her, she has a plan. Lewis will help. Their friend can’t be gone, Ronnie won’t believe it.

Detective Sergeant Sarah Michaels can believe it, she has seen what people are capable of. She knows more than anyone how, in a moment of weakness, a person can be driven to do something they never thought possible.

Lewis can believe it too. But he can’t reveal what he saw that afternoon at the creek without exposing his own secret.

Five days later, Esther’s buried body is discovered.

What do we owe the girl who isn’t there?

190. Black River | Matthew Spencer

A long, burning summer in Sydney. A young woman found murdered in the deserted grounds of an elite boarding school. A serial killer preying on victims along the banks of the Parramatta River. A city on edge.

Adam Bowman, a battling journalist who grew up as the son of a teacher at Prince Albert College, might be the only person who can uncover the links between the school murder and the ‘Blue Moon Killer’. But he will have to go into the darkest places of his childhood to piece together the clues. Detective Sergeant Rose Riley, meanwhile, is part of the taskforce desperately trying to find the killer before he strikes again. Adam Bowman’s excavation of his past might turn out to be Rose’s biggest trump card or it may bring the whole investigation crashing down, and put her own life in danger.

191. Trapped | Camilla Lackberg & Henrik Fexeus

A shocking murder…
It’s a case unlike anything detective Mina Dabiri has seen before. A woman trapped inside a magician’s box, with swords pierced through. But this time, it’s not a magic trick. It’s murder.

A case which twists and turns…
Knowing she has a terrifying killer on her hands, Mina enlists the help of celebrity mentalist, Vincent Walder. Only he can give her an insight into the secret world of magic and illusions.

A ticking clock to stop a serial killer…
Mina and Vincent soon discover that the murder victim has the roman numeral III engraved on her leg. The killer is counting down. There are going to be three more murders. And time is running out to stop them.

192. One Fatal Secret | Jane Isaac

Sometimes your enemies are closer than you think…

Nicole Jameson has always been proud of her husband, Ethan. He’s built a successful career in finance, and his employers, the Harrisons, treat them like family. They’re a firm who look after their own, and even gave a loan to the company chauffeur, Conrad, to fund his pilot licence.

When the two men are returning from a business trip, the worst possible thing happens – their plane crashes into the sea. No survivors are expected to be found. Nicole is heartbroken, much like Conrad’s wife, Ania. She never warmed to Nicole, but now they share a bond of grief.

When evidence is found that Conrad took drugs shortly before the plane departed with him at the controls, the two women begin to wonder if all is not what it seems. But when they ask questions about events leading up to the crash, unsettling occurrences suggest it wasn’t a good idea. Sinister-looking men follow them, the Harrisons are increasingly cagey, and the women wonder if there is not more to this than a tragic accident.

But are the most dangerous people the ones they have already allowed to get too close…?

September 22

193. Woman on Fire | Lisa Barr

A young journalist embroiled in an international art scandal centred around a Nazi-looted masterpiece, forcing the ultimate showdown between passion and possession, lovers and liars, history and truth.

After talking her way into a job, rising young journalist Jules Roth is given an unusual assignment: locate a painting stolen by the Nazis more than 75 years earlier. The painting? None other than legendary artist Ernst Engel’s most famous work, Woman on Fire. World-renowned shoe designer Ellis Baum wants this portrait of a mysterious woman for deeply personal reasons, but Jules doesn’t have much time; the famous designer is dying.

Meanwhile, in Europe, provocative and powerful Margaux de Laurent also searches for the painting. Heir to her art collector family’s millions, Margaux is a cunning gallerist who gets everything she wants. The only thing standing in her way is Jules. Yet Jules has resources of her own, including Adam Baum, Ellis’s grandson. A recovering addict and artist in his own right, Adam was once in Margaux’s clutches, and he’ll do anything to help Jules locate the painting before Margaux.

September 22

194. In the Blood | Jack Carr

A young journalist embroiled in an international art scandal centred around a Nazi-looted masterpiece, forcing the ultimate showdown between passion and possession, lovers and liars, history and truth.

After talking her way into a job, rising young journalist Jules Roth is given an unusual assignment: locate a painting stolen by the Nazis more than 75 years earlier. The painting? None other than legendary artist Ernst Engel’s most famous work, Woman on Fire. World-renowned shoe designer Ellis Baum wants this portrait of a mysterious woman for deeply personal reasons, but Jules doesn’t have much time; the famous designer is dying.

Meanwhile, in Europe, provocative and powerful Margaux de Laurent also searches for the painting. Heir to her art collector family’s millions, Margaux is a cunning gallerist who gets everything she wants. The only thing standing in her way is Jules. Yet Jules has resources of her own, including Adam Baum, Ellis’s grandson. A recovering addict and artist in his own right, Adam was once in Margaux’s clutches, and he’ll do anything to help Jules locate the painting before Margaux.

195. Shooting Season | David J. Gatward

When a book launch party turns murderous, can he capture a killer before they escape justice?

DCI Harry Grimm has a sneaking suspicion the bleak Yorkshire Dales are growing on him. Though shadows from his big-city past still loom, he’s finding his place among the quirky townsfolk and their eccentric eating habits. But his gruesome crime-scene expertise takes center stage when a successful visiting author is found dead.

Investigating the cantankerous writer’s entourage, Grimm lines up too many suspects with motives for murder. But with the evidence not adding up and the press piling on relentless pressure, the determined policeman could end up facing his own final chapter.

Can this seasoned detective solve a sinister case of fatal fair game?

196. The Guilty Girl | Patricia Gibney

Something whistling through the door behind her caused her to turn. A shadow spread across the opening. She clasped a hand to her mouth, stilling the fear that was rising. The menacing shadow was followed by a face that sent a cold shiver down her spine…

 

When the call comes in about Lucy, a seventeen-year-old girl murdered after the secret party she held in her parents’ home, Detective Lottie Parker is first on the scene. As she picks her way through the smashed glasses and the blood spatter on the perfect cream carpet, she is horrified to see Lucy’s angelic face, silvery-blue eyes forever closed.

 

As Lottie breaks the news to Lucy’s heartbroken parents and the devastated partygoers, she discovers that hours before her death Lucy had revealed a terrible secret about her friend Hannah. And when Lottie finds Lucy’s bloodstained clothing hidden in Hannah’s bedroom, she has no option but to bring the shy, frightened girl into custody.

 

But Hannah claims to have no memory of the night Lucy died and Lottie begins to question her guilt. Then a fifteen-year-old boy who also attended the party is pulled from the canal. And as Lottie investigates, she discovers something shocking. Her own son Sean was at the party. Why did he lie to her? Is her beloved child a witness or a suspect… or is he now in the killer’s sights?

197. The Family Remains | Lisa Jewell

LONDON. Early morning, June 2019- on the foreshore of the river Thames, a bag of bones is discovered. Human bones.

DCI Samuel Owusu is called to the scene and quickly sends the bag for forensic examination. The bones are those of a young woman, killed by a blow to the head many years ago.

Also inside the bag is a trail of clues, in particular the seeds of a rare tree which lead DCI Owusu back to a mansion in Chelsea where, nearly thirty years previously, three people lay dead in a kitchen, and a baby waited upstairs for someone to pick her up.

The clues point forward too to a brother and sister in Chicago searching for the only person who can make sense of their pasts.

Four deaths. An unsolved mystery. A family whose secrets can’t stay buried for ever …

198. One of Us | Kylie Kaden

Behind the tall hedges of the affluent, gated community of Apple Tree Creek, not all is as it seems …

Out of the blue, Gertie’s husband decides they need a break and he’s leaving her with their three children. Two streets east and three gardens down, successful businesswoman Rachael discovers her husband has cheated on her – again – even though she’s pregnant with his third child. Thrown together by a chance encounter, the two women bond over the shared disaster that is their marriages.

But did one husband push his wife too far? When the ambulance sirens cut through the serenity of Apple Tree Creek, the small community is shocked at the violence that’s played out in their midst. CCTV reveals no outsiders visited the estate that night, confirming that the assailant must have been one of their own. Is the culprit still living among them? And why didn’t any of the cameras, designed to keep them all safe, catch anything?

As the web of neighbourly relationships unravels and the workings of their inner lives are exposed, questions will be asked, but not everyone wants to learn the answers.
You can only push people so far.

199. The Girl Who Survived | Lisa Jackson

All her life, she’s been the girl who survived. Orphaned at age seven after a horrific killing spree at her family’s Oregon cabin, Kara McIntyre is still searching for some kind of normal. But now, twenty years later, the past has come thundering back. Her brother, Jonas, who was convicted of the murders has unexpectedly been released from prison. The press is in a frenzy again. And suddenly, Kara is receiving cryptic messages from her big sister, Marlie-who hasn’t been seen or heard from since that deadly Christmas Eve when she hid little Kara in a closet with a haunting, life-saving command: Don’t make a sound.
As people close to her start to die horrible deaths, Kara, who is slowly and surely unraveling, believes she is the killer’s ultimate target.
Kara survived once. But will she survive again? How many times can she be the girl who survived?

200. Deadly Choices | Rachel McLean

‘You get one of your children back. Your choice.’

 

When Alison Osman takes her children on a trip to Cadbury World, she thinks their squabbling is her worst problem. But when she turns to find them gone, she’s plunged into every mother’s worst nightmare.

 

And then the message arrives, telling Alison she has three days to choose one of her children.

 

Detective Inspector Zoe Finch and her team need to find answers, and fast. Why is Alison’s police officer husband behaving suspiciously? If the children’s father died in a climbing accident, why was there no body? And should Zoe listen to the nagging voice reminding her that two of the men behind the notorious Canary paedophile ring have been released?

 

Can Zoe track down the kidnapper before it’s too late? Or will Alison be forced to make the choice that no mother should face?

201. Bloody January | Alan Parks

How much is the truth worth?

When Detective Harry McCoy arrives at the scene of a double shooting in the middle of a busy Glasgow street, he is sure of one thing. This was not a random act of violence.

McCoy must enlist the help of his criminal underworld connections to find out the truth. How long will it be before McCoy himself ends up on the wrong side of the law?

202. Escape | James Patterson

While investigating the abduction of five teenage girls, Detective Bill Harney’s life isn’t the only one on the line – perfect for fans of Lee Child and Ian Rankin.

FIVE VICTIMS. ONE KILLER.

When five teenage girls are abducted, Chicago PD Detective Billy Harney leads the investigation to find them.

Harney and his partner, Carla, follow a lead to a remote house, only to find themselves caught in a deadly trap. A huge explosion rips through the building, killing Carla and allowing the kidnapper to escape.

With the loss of his partner fuelling him, Harney strengthens his resolve to find her killer – and to make sure the body count ends there.

203. The Lost Ones | Marnie Riches

When Detective Jackie Cooke is called to the murder scene, she has to choke back tears. Missing teenager Chloe Smedley has finally been found – her body left in a cold back yard, carefully posed with her bright blue eyes still open. Jackie lays a protective hand on the baby in her belly, who seems to kick out in anguish, and vows to find the brutal monster who stole Chloe’s future.

 

Breaking the news to Chloe’s mother is heartbreaking, and Jackie is haunted by the woman’s cries. She knows too well the terrible pain of losing a loved one: her own brother went missing as a child, the case never solved. Determined to get justice for Chloe and her family, Jackie sets to work, finding footage of the girl waving at someone the day she disappeared. Did Chloe know her killer?

 

But then a second body is found on the side of a busy motorway, lit up by passing cars. The only link with Chloe is the shocking way the victim has been posed, and the mutilated body convinces Jackie she is searching for a disturbed and dangerous predator. Someone has been hunting missing and vulnerable people for decades, and only Jackie seems to see that they were never lost. They were taken.

Jackie’s boss refuses to believe a serial killer is on the loose and threatens to take her off the case. But then Jackie returns home to find a brightly coloured bracelet on her kitchen counter and her blood turns to ice. It’s the same one her brother was wearing when he vanished. Could his disappearance be connected to the murders? Jackie will stop at nothing to catch her killer… unless he finds her first…

 

204. Quarter to Midnight | Karen Rose

Rocky Hebert walks into his death at quarter to midnight one New Orleans night.
His son Gabe cannot accept the official verdict of suicide and enlists the help of the Burke Broussard Private Investigation Agency to discover the real cause of death.
PI Molly Sutton knows what it’s like to lose a father in tragic circumstances and will go to any lengths to crack the investigation, as she tries to fight off her growing feelings for Gabe.
They soon realise Rocky was working on an investigation of his own; one that threatened to expose the deep corruption going all the way to the top of the police department. And that the key to the puzzle lies with a young witness to a murder that happened years earlier: Xavier Morrow.
Just what did Rocky know? And who might have shut him up?
As they get closer and closer to the truth, they realise that the killer is not going to stop at Rocky. And that Xavier is in very real danger. Someone will go to any lengths to protect what he witnessed that night coming out…

205. Portrait of an Unknown Woman | Daniel Silva

The hunt is on for the greatest art forger who ever lived …

Legendary spy and art restorer Gabriel Allon has at long last severed ties with Israeli intelligence and settled quietly with his beautiful wife and their young twins in Venice, the only place he has ever truly known peace.

But when the eccentric London art dealer Julian Isherwood asks Gabriel to investigate the circumstances surrounding the rediscovery and lucrative sale of a centuries-old painting, he is drawn into a deadly game of cat and mouse where nothing is as it seems.

Gabriel soon discovers that the work in question, a portrait of an unidentified woman attributed to Sir Anthony van Dyck, is almost certainly a fiendishly clever fake. To find the mysterious figure who painted it-and uncover a multibillion-dollar fraud at the pinnacle of the art world-Gabriel conceives one of the most elaborate deceptions of his career. If it is to succeed, he must become the very mirror image of the man he seeks: the greatest art forger the world has ever known.

206. Girl Forgotten | Karin Slaughter

A girl with a secret …

Longbill Beach, 1982. Emily Vaughn gets ready for prom night, the highlight of any high school experience. But Emily has a secret. And by the end of the evening, she will be dead.

A murder that remains a mystery …

Forty years later, Emily’s murder remains unsolved. Her friends closed ranks, her family retreated inwards, the community moved on. But all that’s about to change.

One final chance to uncover a killer …

Andrea Oliver arrives in town with a simple assignment: to protect a judge receiving death threats. But her assignment is a cover. Because, in reality, Andrea is here to find justice for Emily – and to uncover the truth before the killer decides to silence her too …

207. Silenced Girls | Roger Stelljes

Agent Tori Hunter takes in the body of the beautiful young woman curled up in the trunk of the car. Knowing what she will find, Tori gently lifts the bottom of the victim’s blouse. Decorating her back are two small dots an inch apart. Just like the others.

 

Guilt has kept FBI Agent Tori Hunter away from her home in Manchester Bay, Minnesota for twenty years, ever since her twin sister disappeared on the Fourth of July, when the girls should have been together. But when she receives an anonymous newspaper clipping about another missing girl, Genevieve, Tori is dragged back to the past. Just like Tori’s sister, Genevieve vanished without a trace, her empty car abandoned on a lonely lakeside road as Independence Day fireworks lit up the sky overhead.

 

Returning to Minnesota lake country, Tori finds Genevieve’s distraught parents desperate for answers. How could their beautiful, popular daughter be snatched so near her own home? Under pressure to make an arrest, the police have no time for Tori’s theories. Besides, they already have a suspect for Genevieve’s abductor: a local man seen flirting with her the night she disappeared.

 

When the suspect is found dead in his isolated cabin, his apparent suicide confirms his guilt to police. But Tori’s instincts tell her otherwise. Digging into cold cases, she discovers four women over the past twenty years who were found murdered in their cars late at night. Each had two puncture marks on her back. And when another missing young woman is found bound and strangled in the trunk of her own car, the tell-tale dots prove Tori’s suspicions tragically right. A dangerous killer is still out there…

 

Can Tori stop him before Genevieve meets the same fate? And if her twin’s kidnapper is pulling the strings, will Tori be the next to disappear?

208. The Bitter Taste of Murder | Camilla Trinchieri

One year after moving to his late wife’s Tuscan hometown of Gravigna, ex-NYPD detective Nico Doyle has fully settled into Italian country life, helping to serve and test recipes at his in-laws’ restaurant.

But the town is shaken by the arrival of wine critic Michele Mantelli in his flashy Jaguar. Mantelli holds his influential culinary magazine and blog over Gravigna’s vintners and restaurateurs. Some of Gravigna’s residents are impressed by his reputation, while others are enraged-especially Nico’s landlord, whose vineyards Mantelli seems intent of ruining.

Needless to say, Mantelli’s lavish, larger-than-life, and often vindictive personality has made him many enemies, and when he is poisoned, the local maresciallo, Perillo, has a headache of a high-profile murder on his hands-and once again turns to Nico for help.

209. Bruno’s Challenge & other Dordogne Tales | Martin Walker

With titles like ‘The Chocolate War’; ‘The Birthday Lunch’; ‘Oystercatcher’; ‘A Market Tale’ and ‘Fifty Million Bubbles’, you may be sure that champagne and gastronomy will feature as well as cosy crime in ‘Dangerous Vacation’. Bruno strides through these tales, staying calm. settling local disputes and keeping safe his beloved town of St Denis.
Only on one occasion does he panic: in ‘Bruno’s Challenge’, his friend Ivan, proprietor and chef of the town’s popular eatery, suddenly collapses on the eve of a large anniversary dinner, and he asks Bruno to take over the restaurant. After a few protests followed by some deep breaths, the inimitable Bruno meets his challenge and saves the day.

210. The Fallen Architect | Charles Belfoure

In turn of the century London, Douglas Layton is a disgrace. One of the music halls he so lovingly designed fell to pieces during a packed performance, killing dozens and ruining his reputation as an architect – not to mention eventually sending him to jail.

Five years later, Layton is attempting to rebuild some kind of a life for himself, despite the notoriety. He is able to disguise himself as a scenic designer at Nottingham Grand Imperial Theatre, but his past is never far behind…and something ever more dangerous is brewing in the walls of the music hal

211. The Last Hours in Paris | Ruth Druart

Paris 1944. Elise Chevalier knows what it is to love…and to hate. Her fiance, a young French soldier, was killed by the German army at the Maginot Line. Living amongst the enemy Elise must keep her rage buried deep within.

Sebastian Kleinhaus no longer recognises himself. After four years spent fighting a war he doesn’t believe in, wearing a uniform he despises, he longs for a way out. For something, someone, to be his salvation.

Brittany 1963. Reaching for the suitcase under her mother’s bed, eighteen-year-old Josephine Chevalier uncovers a secret that shakes her to the core. Determined to find the truth, she travels to Paris where she discovers the story of a dangerous love that grew as a city fought for its freedom. Of the last stolen hours before the first light of liberation. And of a betrayal so deep that it would irrevocably change the course of two young lives life for ever.

212. Bluebird | Genevieve Graham

Present day

Cassie Simmons, a museum curator, is enthusiastic about solving mysteries from the past, and she has a personal interest in the history of the rumrunners who ferried illegal booze across the Detroit River during Prohibition. So when a cache of whisky labeled Bailey Brothers’ Best is unearthed during a local home renovation, Cassie hopes to find the answers she’s been searching for about the legendary family of bootleggers…

1918

Corporal Jeremiah Bailey of the 1st Canadian Tunnelling Company is tasked with planting mines in the tunnels beneath enemy trenches. After Jerry is badly wounded in an explosion, he finds himself in a Belgium field hospital under the care of Adele Savard, one of Canada’s nursing sisters, nicknamed “Bluebirds” for their blue gowns and white caps. As Jerry recovers, he forms a strong connection with Adele, who is from a place near his hometown of Windsor, along the Detroit River. In the midst of war, she’s a welcome reminder of home, and when Jerry is sent back to the front, he can only hope that he’ll see his bluebird again.

By war’s end, both Jerry and Adele return home to Windsor, scarred by the horrors of what they endured overseas. When they cross paths one day, they have a chance to start over. But the city is in the grip of Prohibition, which brings exciting opportunities as well as new dangerous conflicts that threaten to destroy everything they have fought for.

213. The Night Ship | Jess Kidd

ONE SHIPWRECK.
TWO MISFITS.
THREE CENTURIES APART.

1629. Embarking on a journey in search of her father, a young girl called Mayken boards the Batavia, the most impressive sea vessel of the age. During the long voyage, this curious and resourceful child must find her place in the ship’s stratified world. She soon uncovers shadowy secrets above and below deck and as tensions spiral, the fate of the ship and all on board becomes increasingly uncertain.

1989. Gil, a boy mourning the death of his mother, is placed in the care of his cranky grandfather. Their home is a shack on a tiny fishing island off the West Australian coast, notable only for its reefs and wrecked boats. This is no place for a boy struggling with a dark past, and Gil’s actions soon get him noticed by the wrong people.

214. The Sun Rose in Paris | JPenny Fields-Schneider

When talented young artist Jack Tomlinson travels from Australia to London for six months to visit relatives, he unexpectedly finds himself transported into the bohemian art world of Paris as an art student, finding love and friendship. He learns that while life may give you everything you ever dreamed of, equally it can take it all away.

215. The House of Fortune | Jessie Burton

Amsterdam in the year 1705. Thea Brandt is turning eighteen, and is ready to welcome adulthood with open arms. At the theatre, Walter, the love of her life, awaits her, but at home in the house on the Herengracht, winter has set in – her father Otto and Aunt Nella argue endlessly, and the Brandt family are selling their furniture in order to eat. On Thea’s birthday, also the day that her mother Marin died, the secrets from the past begin to overwhelm the present.

Nella is desperate to save the family and maintain appearances, to find Thea a husband who will guarantee her future, and when they receive an invitation to Amsterdam’s most exclusive ball, she is overjoyed – perhaps this will set their fortunes straight. And indeed, the ball does set things spinning: new figures enter their life, promising new futures. But their fates are still unclear, and when Nella feels a strange prickling sensation on the back of her neck, she wonders if the miniaturist has returned for her . . .

216. The Family Gathering | Robyn Carr

Having left the military, Dakota Jones is at a crossroads in his life. With his elder brother and youngest sister happily settled in Sullivan’s Crossing, he shows up hoping to clear his head before moving on to his next adventure. But, like every visitor to the Crossing, he’s immediately drawn to the down-to-earth people and the seemingly simple way of life.

Dakota is unprepared for how quickly things get complicated. As a newcomer, he is on everyone’s radar–especially the single women in town. While he enjoys the attention at first, he’s really only attracted to the one woman who isn’t interested. And spending quality time with his siblings is eye-opening. As he gets to know them, he also gets to know himself and what he truly wants.

When all the Jones siblings gather for a family wedding, the four adults are drawn together for the first time in a way they never were as children. As they struggle to accept each other, warts and all, the true nature and strength of their bond is tested. But all of them come to realize that your family are the people who see you for who you really are and love you anyway. And for Dakota, that truth allows him to find the home and family he’s always wanted.

217. Summer at Kangaroo Ridge | Nicole Hurley-Moore

A stunning new rural romance from the bestselling author of The McCalister Legacy and Lawson’s Bend.

‘A staple read for rural fiction fans.’ – Mrs B’s Book Reviews on The McCalister Legacy

The Carrington family own the only pub in the small country town of Kangaroo Ridge in rural Victoria. It’s been many years since the five Carrington siblings became orphans, but with the help of their aunt Maddie, twins Sebastian and Tamara stepped up and looked after their younger brothers and sister.

Seb and Tam gave up their own teenage years to make sure the family stayed together, and because of their experiences they have turned into very different people. Now, seven years after the accident, Seb is silent and stoic. Tam, on the other hand, wants to kick over the traces and catch up on the life she missed out on.

To complicate matters, Tam is having a secret relationship which she’s sure Seb will question. But can Tam ever give herself a happy future while she still, deep down, blames herself for the accident that killed her parents?

218. Starting from Scratch | Penelope Janu

After a troubled childhood and the loss of her beloved grandmother, Sapphie Brown finally finds somewhere to call home – the close-knit rural community of Horseshoe Hill.

The locals love Sapphie because she never gives up – as chair of the environment committee, with the children in her classes, the troubled teens at the youth centre, the ex-racehorses she cares for and even the neglected farmhouse and gardens she wants to make her own. Sapphie gives second chances to everything and everyone. Except Matts Laaksonen.

An impossibly attractive environmental engineer, Matts was Sapphie’s closest childhood friend. He came to deliver a warning – now he doesn’t want to leave.

All Sapphie wants to do is forget their painful past, but thrown together they discover an attraction that challenges what they thought they knew about each other. Do they have a chance to recapture what they lost so long ago? Or will long-buried secrets tear them apart?

In the flowers she creates from paper and the beauty that grows on the land, Sapphie has found perfect imperfection. Could that be what love is like too?

219. Take Me Home | Karly Lane

In the space of only a few days, Elle loses her job and her home and is reluctantly facing moving back in with her parents.

Then Gran’s will is read and everything changes. It seems that Gran had a plan.

It’s a straightforward request: a road trip across Scotland, a country Gran loved, to locate the family castle; meet some long-lost cousins; oh, and work out what Elle wants to do with the rest of her life before returning home. Not a problem.

That is, unless the family castle is a ruin that has pretty much been lost in time; the family Elle has never met seems to be hiding a mysterious secret; and she’s running out of time to make a decision about her future.

220. The Whispering | Veronica Lando

Callum Haffenden swore he’d never return to Granite Creek. But, thirty years after a life-shattering accident, he’s thrust back into the clutches of Far North Queensland and a local legend he worked hard to forget.

When a man goes missing in the rainforest, the past begins to resurface, breathing new life into memories of previous tragedies – two girls lost, seventeen years apart. In a town where it’s easiest to turn a blind eye, the guilt runs deep and everyone in Granite Creek has something to hide.

In his search for answers, Callum fights to keep his feet firmly on the trail as he battles the deafening call of the rainforest burrowing into his ears. After all, everyone knows that the worst things in the rainforest are those unseen.

221. Blue Hour | Sarah Schimdt

1936: At nineteen, Kitty was ready to leave behind the stifling control of her parents and all those constantly telling her how to live her life. Work at the Wintonvale Repatriation Hospital was her escape and a chance to be someone else.

Then she met soldier George Turner – and she heard her mother’s voice in her ear, warning of danger, of being that girl. Kitty told herself if she ever had her own daughter she’d never control her. She’d make sure her voice never left a mark behind.

1973: Growing up, Eleanor’s home was strained by sorrow and the echoes of war that silenced her parents. And always her mother, Kitty’s, bitterness, twisting and poisoning everything she touched. She thought she knew what made her parents this way … but Eleanor would never know all her mother’s secrets.

The demands of marriage, motherhood and looking after her daughter while her husband, Leon, is in Vietnam lay claim to Eleanor’s days. Nature, embracing curiosity and not being like her mother are Eleanor’s solace. But they are not enough when Leon’s darkness overwhelms. Both he and her mother leave their mark, and use her child for their own ends. Afraid, unsure and alone, Eleanor will be driven to erase her mother’s voice in her head. But the question remains: can she bear the burden of her own secrets?

222. The Guilty Couple | C. L. Taylor

What would you do if your husband framed you for murder?

Five years ago, Olivia Sutherland was convicted of plotting to murder her husband.

Now she’s finally free, Olivia has three goals. Repair her relationship with her daughter. Clear her name. And bring down her husband – the man who framed her.

Just how far is she willing to go to get what she wants? And how far will her husband go to stop her?

Because his lies run deeper than Olivia could ever have imagined – and this time it’s not her freedom that’s in jeopardy, but her life…

October 2022

223. A Silent Truth | Rachel Amphlett

When the body of a young woman is found by the side of a quiet country road, police first suspect a hit and run.

Then a darker side to the victim is uncovered – a dangerous addiction that led to her violent death.

With little sympathy from a local population, Detective Mark Turpin faces a daunting task to track down her killer.

When a second victim dies after a ferocious attack, Mark realises someone is determined to hide the truth.

Both victims kept to the shadows of society – will their secrets die with them?

 

224. Look both Ways | Linwood Barclay

Just because that car sees you doesn’t mean it’s safe to cross…

From the international bestseller Linwood Barclay comes a new, action-packed, utterly gripping crime thriller! They think as one. They act as one. They kill as one.

The residents of Garrett Island are part of a visionary experiment. Their cars have been sent to the mainland and for one month, they’ve got self-driving vehicles called Arrivals. With just a voice command, an Arrival will take you where you want to go, and as the cars are all aware of each other, road accidents should be a thing of the past.

As the world’s press arrives for a glimpse of this driverless future, islander and single mom Sandra Montrose preps for the huge media event. She’s ready for this new world. Her husband died when he fell asleep at the wheel, and she’s relieved her two teens, Archie and Katie, may never need driver’s licenses.

But as the day gets underway, there are signs all is not well. A member of the press has vanished. There are rumours of industrial sabotage.

Before long, the sleek driverless cars are no longer taking orders. They’re starting to organize. They’re starting to hunt. And they’ve got the residents of Garrett Island in their sights.

225. Woman on Fire | Lisa Barr

A young journalist embroiled in an international art scandal centred around a Nazi-looted masterpiece, forcing the ultimate showdown between passion and possession, lovers and liars, history and truth.

After talking her way into a job, rising young journalist Jules Roth is given an unusual assignment: locate a painting stolen by the Nazis more than 75 years earlier. The painting? None other than legendary artist Ernst Engel’s most famous work, Woman on Fire. World-renowned shoe designer Ellis Baum wants this portrait of a mysterious woman for deeply personal reasons, but Jules doesn’t have much time; the famous designer is dying.

Meanwhile, in Europe, provocative and powerful Margaux de Laurent also searches for the painting. Heir to her art collector family’s millions, Margaux is a cunning gallerist who gets everything she wants. The only thing standing in her way is Jules. Yet Jules has resources of her own, including Adam Baum, Ellis’s grandson. A recovering addict and artist in his own right, Adam was once in Margaux’s clutches, and he’ll do anything to help Jules locate the painting before Margaux.

226. The Rising Tide | Ann Cleeves

Fifty years ago, a group of teenagers spent a weekend on Holy Island, forging a bond that has lasted a lifetime. Now, they still return every five years to celebrate their friendship, and remember the friend they lost to the rising waters of the causeway at the first reunion.

Now, when one of them is found hanged, Vera is called in. Learning that the dead man had recently been fired after misconduct allegations, Vera knows she must discover what the friends are hiding, and whether the events of many years before could have led to murder then, and now . . .

But with the tide rising, secrets long-hidden are finding their way to the surface, and Vera and the team may find themselves in more danger than they could have believed possible . . .

227. The Ink Black Heart | Robert Galbraith

When frantic, dishevelled Edie Ledwell appears in the office begging to speak to her, private detective Robin Ellacott doesn’t know quite what to make of the situation. The co-creator of a popular cartoon, The Ink Black Heart, Edie is being persecuted by a mysterious online figure who goes by the pseudonym of Anomie. Edie is desperate to uncover Anomie’s true identity.

Robin decides that the agency can’t help with this – and thinks nothing more of it until a few days later, when she reads the shocking news that Edie has been tasered and then murdered in Highgate Cemetery, the location of The Ink Black Heart.

Robin and her business partner Cormoran Strike become drawn into the quest to uncover Anomie’s true identity. But with a complex web of online aliases, business interests and family conflicts to navigate, Strike and Robin find themselves embroiled in a case that stretches their powers of deduction to the limits – and which threatens them in new and horrifying ways . . .

228. Listen to Me | Tess Gerritsen

Rizzoli & Isles return, in the nail-biting new thriller from Sunday Times bestselling author Tess Gerritsen.

The murder of Sofia Suarez is both gruesome and seemingly senseless. Why would anyone target a respected nurse who was well-liked by her friends and her neighbours? As Detective Jane Rizzoli and Forensic Pathologist Maura Isles investigate the baffling case, they discover that Sofia was guarding a dangerous secret — a secret that may have led the killer straight to her door.

Meanwhile, Jane’s watchful mother Angela Rizzoli is conducting an investigation of her own. She may be a grandmother, not a police detective, but she’s savvy enough to know there’s something very strange, perhaps even dangerous, about the new neighbours across the street. The problem is, no one believes her, not even her own daughter.

Immersed in the hunt for Sofia’s killer, Jane and Maura are too busy to pay attention to Angela’s fears. With no one listening to her, and danger mounting in her neighbourhood, Angela just may be forced to take action on her own…

229. The Last Party | Clare Mackintosh

On New Year’s Eve, Rhys Lloyd has a house full of guests.
His lakeside holiday homes are a success, and he’s generously invited the village to drink champagne with their wealthy new neighbours. This will be the party to end all parties.
But not everyone is there to celebrate. By midnight, Rhys will be floating dead in the freezing waters of the lake.
On New Year’s Day, DC Ffion Morgan has a village full of suspects.
The tiny community is her home, so the suspects are her neighbours, friends and family – and Ffion has her own secrets to protect.
With a lie uncovered at every turn, soon the question isn’t who wanted Rhys dead . . . but who finally killed him.
In a village with this many secrets, a murder is just the beginning.

 

230. Next In Line | Marion Tod

A murder victim with celebrity connections spells trouble for DI Clare Mackay…

Gaby Fox is known to many due to her successful TV career, so when her brother and his pals hire the salubrious Lamond Lodge for his birthday celebrations, it is noted by the St Andrews locals. A ripple of shock goes round the town when Russell Fox is gunned down on the premises.

DI Clare Mackay is attending a wedding when she sees Gabrielle receive a phone call then flee. Soon after, Clare learns why when the news of the shooting reaches her. Instead of trying to enjoy the day – not easy when the groom is her ex-boyfriend – Clare is preoccupied.

Clare gets to work on uncovering the facts surrounding Russell Fox’s death. The guests at the lodge have secrets to hide, but even when Clare begins to unravel the deceit, it doesn’t bring the answers. The detective can’t help but wonder why no one who knew Russell seems capable of telling the truth, and whether there is more than one person with a reason to want him dead..

231. Old Bones Lie | Marion Todd

DI Clare Mackay is about to face a test of her loyalty…

When a report comes in that a van containing two prison officers and a convicted jewel thief is missing, the police in St Andrews work quickly to locate the vehicle. Their efforts prove in vain when no trace is found and they realise the wives of both officers also appear to have left the area. Is this a case of corrupt guards springing a felon, or innocent people caught in the crossfire?

DI Clare Mackay leads the team but has to do without her right hand man; DS Chris West is a cousin to one of the missing prison officers and must not be involved in the case. With a new sergeant at her side plus a previously unencountered DCI, Clare’s people skills are pushed to the limit. Especially once she realises her boss is keeping her on the sidelines. Just what is it that Clare doesn’t know? And if she has to choose between keeping secrets from a friend, or letting slip something that could see a culprit go free, which path will she take?

232. Closer to the Dead | Scott Hunter

A new cold case for DCI Brendan Moran coincides with the unexpected reappearance of a dangerous adversary.

As Moran grapples with an ever-changing work culture and begins to get to grips with the forty-year old murder of a young RAF aircraftswoman, an unexpected complication arises in his personal life that threatens to sabotage a promising relationship before it even begins. Could his new friend really be involved in the shady financial dealings of a cold case murder victim?

With this uncertainty playing on his mind, Moran throws himself into the new investigation, but as he digs deeper it becomes clear that the original case was sloppily handled, the interviews poorly conducted and critical evidence overlooked. Under the watchful eye of a newly-appointed Crime Investigations Manager, the team begin the painstaking process of tracing the original persons of interest.

Progress, however, is glacial, and so, when presented with incontrovertible proof that their progress is being monitored with alarming accuracy by someone who seems to always be one step ahead of the official investigation, Moran begins to wonder if he can make an arrest before the perpetrator falls into the hands of an antagonist with a very different idea of justice…

233. The Faberge Secret | Charles Belfoure

New York Times bestselling author Charles Belfoure takes readers on a breathless journey from the gilded ballrooms of Imperial Russia to the grim violence of the pogroms, in his latest thrilling historical adventure.

St Petersburg, 1903. Prince Dimitri Markhov counts himself lucky to be a close friend of Tsar Nicholas II and Tsarina Alexandra. Cocooned by the glittering wealth of the Imperial court, the talented architect lives a life of luxury and comfort, by the side of his beautiful but spiteful wife, Princess Lara. But when Dimitri is confronted by the death and destruction wrought by a pogrom, he is taken aback. What did these people do to deserve such brutality? The tsar tells him the Jews themselves were to blame, but Dimitri can’t forget what he’s seen.

Educated and passionate, Doctor Katya Golitsyn is determined to help end Russian oppression. When she meets Dimitri at a royal ball, she immediately recognizes a kindred spirit, and an unlikely affair begins between them. As their relationship develops, Katya exposes Dimitri to the horrors of the Tsar’s regime and the persecution of the Jewish people, and he grows determined to make a stand . . . whatever the cost.

234. The Last Dress from Paris | Jade Beer

The secret is hidden within a collection of Dior dresses…

London, 2017. There’s no one Lucille adores more than her grandmother. So when her beloved Granny Sylvie asks for Lucille’s assistance with a small matter, she’s happy to help. The next thing she knows, Lucille is on a train to Paris, tasked with retrieving a priceless Dior dress. But not everything is as it seems, and what Lucille finds in a small Parisian apartment will have her scouring the city for answers to a question that could change her entire life.

Paris, 1952. Postwar France is full of glamour and privilege, and Alice Ainsley is in the middle of it all. As the wife to the British ambassador to France, Alice’s job is to see and be seen–even if that wasn’t quite what she signed up for. Her husband showers her with jewels, banquets, and couture Dior dresses, but his affection has become distressingly elusive. As the strain on her marriage grows, Alice’s only comfort is her bond with her trusted lady’s maid, Marianne. But when a new face appears in her drawing room, Alice finds herself yearning to follow her heart…no matter the consequences.

235. The Proxy Bride | Zoe Boccabella

Imagine marrying someone you’ve never met …

When Sofie comes to stay with her grandmother in Stanthorpe, she knows little of Nonna Gia’s past. In the heat of that 1984 summer, the two clash over Gia’s strict Italian ways and superstitions, her chilli-laden spaghetti and the evasive silence surrounding Sofie’s father, who died before she was born. Then Sofie learns Gia had an arranged marriage. From there, the past begins to reveal why no-one will talk of her father.

As Nonna Gia cooks, furtively adding a little more chilli each time, she also begins feeding Sofie her stories. How she came to Australia on a ‘bride ship’, among many proxy brides, knowing little about the husbands they had married from afar. Most arriving to find someone much different than described.

Then, as World War II takes over the nation, and in the face of the growing animosity towards Italians that sees their husbands interned, Gia and her friends are left alone. Impoverished. Desperate. To keep their farms going, their only hope is banding together, along with Edie, a reclusive artist on the neighbouring farm and two Women’s Land Army workers. But the venture is made near-impossible by the hatred towards the women held by the local publican and an illicit love between Gia and an Australian, Keith.

The summer burns on and the truth that unfolds is nothing like what Sofie expected …

236. The Italian Ballerina | Kristy Cambron

At the height of the Nazi occupation of Rome, an unlikely band of heroes comes together to save innocent lives in this breathtaking World War II novel based on real historical events.

Rome, 1943. With the fall of Italy’s Fascist government and the Nazi regime occupying the streets of Rome, British ballerina Julia Bradbury is stranded and forced to take refuge at a hospital on Tiber Island. But when she learns of a deadly sickness sweeping through the quarantine wards—a fake disease known only as Syndrome K—she is drawn into one of the greatest cons in history. Alongside hospital staff, friars of the adjoining church, and two Allied medics, Julia risks everything to rescue Jewish Italians from the deadly clutches of the Holocaust. Soon a little girl who dreams of becoming a ballerina arrives at their door, and Julia is determined to reunite the young dancer with her family—if only she would reveal one crucial secret: her name.

Present Day. Delaney Coleman recently lost her grandfather—a beloved small-town doctor and World War II veteran, so she returns home to help her aging parents. When a mysterious Italian woman reaches out claiming to own one of the family’s precious heirlooms, Delaney is compelled to travel to Italy and uncover the truth of her grandfather’s hidden past. With the help of the woman’s skeptical but charming grandson, Delaney learns of a Roman hospital that saved hundreds of Jewish people during the war. Soon, everything Delaney thought she knew about her grandfather comes into question.

237. The Long Road from Kandahar | Sara MacDonald

The hand of friendship can span a thousand miles…

Pakistan
Among the almond orchards of the Swat Valley, Zamir tends goats with his son, Raza. He must make a heartbreaking decision if he is to protect his youngest child from the Taliban.

Afghanistan
On a military base in Lashkar Gah, Ben lives on edge, wondering if his family will be the next to receive life-changing news from the front line.

Cornwall
And in a ramshackle house on the Cornish coast, Ben’s mother Delphi, an artist, offers a refuge to her grandson Finn, as he retreats from the changes he senses in his family.

When Raza and Finn, two boys from impossibly different worlds, meet, they are united by their loneliness. But will their unexpected bond be enough to save not just each other, but also their families, just as all their lives are about to change forever?

238. The Seamstress of Sardinia | Bianca Pitzorno

Born into poverty, the seamstress spends her days sewing in the houses of wealthy families. Her work is simple and honest; taught by her nonna, she skilfully prepares nightgowns, undergarments and children’s clothes, leaving the finer work of dressmaking to the ateliers in Paris.

Her story weaves in and out of the lives of the people she works for, whose secrets and scandals she is privy to. Some are kind and generous, others blinded by their desire to climb the social ladder. She dreams of freeing herself from the hardscrabble life she has inherited but can’t help being pulled back in by the love of the people around her.

Set at the dawn of the twentieth century, The Seamstress of Sardinia follows the girl as she grows into a woman, strives to educate herself and falls in love-always fighting for her independence in a world dominated by men and old social conventions.

239. The French Agent |Belinda Alexandra

A world in chaos. Two very different women. And the mystery of the man who may connect them. The stunning new novel from beloved Australian storyteller Belinda Alexandra.
Paris 1946: Sabine Brouillette is a war crimes investigator with the French secret service. She lost her family, including her young son, when her Resistance circuit was betrayed near the end of the war. New evidence comes to light that the traitor was a British double agent who went by the codename ‘the Black Fox’. Now her quest for revenge has a single focus: find the Black Fox and kill him.

Sydney 1946: Landscape designer Diana White has been waiting six years for her husband, Casper, to return from the war in Europe. Her son, Freddy, was only a baby when his British-born father joined the RAF. But Casper is a changed man when he returns from the convalescent hospital in England where he has spent the past year under mysterious circumstances. No longer the easygoing personality Diana fell in love with, he is now darker and more secretive.

Soon Sabine and Diana find themselves on a collision course – one seeking vengeance, the other willing to go to any lengths to protect her family.

240. Becoming Beth | Meredith Appleyard

Since adolescence, 58-year-old Beth has lived her life with blinkers on, repressing the memory of a teenage trauma. Her mother, Marian, took control of that situation, and of all else in their family life – and as much as she could in the small town of Miner’s Ridge as well.

Now Marian is dead, and Beth, unemployed and in the middle of an embarrassing divorce, is living with her gentle-hearted father in the family home. Beth feels obliged to take over her mother’s involvement in the local town hall committee, which becomes a source of new friendships, old friendships renewed, and a considerable amount of aggravation.

Researching town hall history, Beth finds photographs that show Marian in a surprising light; sorting through Marian’s belongings, she realises that her mother has left a trail of landmines, cruel revelations that knock the feet out from under her supposed nearest and dearest. Beth struggles to emerge from the ensuing emotional chaos … in middle age, can she really start anew?

A deeply felt, acutely observed novel about mothers and children, about what people hide from themselves and each other, about the richness and difficulties of community, and about becoming your own person.

241. The Keepers of the Lighthouse | Kaye Dobbie

A lonely windswept lighthouse island in Bass Strait hides a dangerous secret hundreds of years in the making … Secrets and sabotage keep readers guessing in the new novel from Australian author Kaye Dobbie.

1882

Laura Webster and her father are the stalwart keepers of Benevolence Island Lighthouse, a desolate place stranded in the turbulent Bass Strait. When a raging storm wrecks a schooner just offshore, the few survivors take shelter with the Websters, awaiting rescue from the mainland. But some of the passengers have secrets that lead to dreadful consequences, the ripples of which echo far into the future …

2020

Nina and her team of volunteers arrive on Benevolence to work on repairs, with plans to open up the island to tourists. Also on the expedition, for reasons of his own, is Jude Rawlins, a man Nina once loved. A man who once destroyed her.

But the idyllic location soon turns into a nightmare as random acts of sabotage leave them with no communication to the mainland and the sense of someone on the island who shouldn’t be there.

The fingers of those secrets from the passengers lost long ago are reaching into the present, and Nina will never be the same again …

242. The Crimson Thread | Kate Forsyth

Set in Crete during World War II, Alenka, a young woman who fights with the resistance against the brutal Nazi occupation finds herself caught between her traitor of a brother and the man she loves, an undercover agent working for the Allies.

May 1941. German paratroopers launch a blitzkrieg from the air against Crete. They are met with fierce defiance, the Greeks fighting back with daggers, pitchforks and kitchen knives. During the bloody eleven-day battle, Alenka, a young Greek woman, saves the lives of two Australian soldiers.

Jack and Teddy are childhood friends who joined up together to see the world. Both men fall in love with Alenka. They are forced to retreat with the tattered remains of the Allied forces over the towering White Mountains. Both are among the 7000 Allied soldiers left behind in the desperate evacuation from Crete’s storm-lashed southern coast.

Alenka hides Jack and Teddy at great risk to herself. Her brother Axel is a Nazi sympathiser and collaborator, and spies on her movements.

As Crete suffers under the Nazi jackboot, Alenka is drawn into an intense triangle of conflicting emotions with Jack and Teddy. Their friendship suffers under the strain of months of hiding and their rivalry for her love. Together, they join the resistance and fight to free the island, but all three will find themselves tested to their limits. Alenka must choose whom to trust and whom to love and, in the end, whom to save.

243. Framed | John M. Green

When art conservator JJ Jego spots a long-lost masterpiece through the window of a luxury apartment, she’s drawn into a dark web of intrigue, deception and murder.

JJ spies what she believes is a priceless Van Gogh. Except it can’t be … that painting, Six Sunflowers, was destroyed during World War II. She also glimpses what looks like a Rembrandt, one stolen in the infamous 1990 robbery at the Isabella Stewart Gardener Museum in Boston.

JJ sets out on a mission to discover if these works are fakes or genuine. But when she gets in too deep, she is forced to seek help from her estranged father, a Sydney detective.

From the pubs of Belfast to the boardrooms of Monte Carlo and the shores of Sydney Harbour, this gripping art heist thriller exposes a shadowy underworld where JJ crosses paths with a global organised crime empire in her pursuit to solve some of art history’s biggest mysteries.

244. The Happiest Little Town | Barbara Hannay

Happiness has a way of catching up with you, even when you’ve given up trying to find it.

Tilly doesn’t believe she can ever be happy again

Fourteen-year-old Tilly’s world is torn apart when her single mother dies suddenly and she is sent a million miles from everything she has ever known to a small country town and a guardian who’s a total stranger.

Kate is sure she will be happy just as soon as she achieves her dream

In the picturesque mountains of Far North Queensland, Kate is trying to move on from a failed marriage by renovating a van and making plans for an exciting travel escape. The fresh start she so desperately craves is within reach when an unexpected responsibility lands on her doorstep.

Olivia thinks she’s found ‘happy enough’ until an accident changes everything

Ageing former celebrity actress Olivia is used to winning all the best roles in her local theatre group, but when she’s injured while making a grand stage exit, she is relegated to the wings. Now she’s determined that she won’t bow out quietly and be left alone with the demons of her past.

When these lost souls come together under the roof of the Burralea Amateur Theatre group, the countdown to opening night has already begun. Engaging with a diverse cast of colourful characters, the three generations of women find unlikely friendship – and more than one welcome surprise.

245. The Paris Mystery | Kirsty Manning

In a city that flouts all the rules, journalist Charlie James has come to Paris to break news and, even more importantly, to break with her past.

‘A superb evocation of pre-war Paris … a mystery I couldn’t put down.’ – Kerry Greenwood

‘A glittering party, a dead body, and a room full of alluring suspects, this book is everything you are looking for. With deft light strokes, Kirsty Manning takes the reader on an Agatha Christie-style journey in 1930s Paris, led by infallible hero, journalist Charlie James. The Paris Mystery will transport, titillate and ultimately, satisfy. Run don’t walk to get your copy!’ – Sally Hepworth, author of The Younger Wife.

Paris, 1938. The last sigh of summer before the war.

As Australian journalist Charlotte ‘Charlie’ James alights at the Gare du Nord, ready to start her role as correspondent for The Times, Paris is in turmoil as talk of war becomes increasingly strident.
Charlie is chasing her first big scoop, needing to prove to her boss that she can do this job as well as, if not better than, her male counterparts. And the best way to forge the necessary contacts quickly is to make the well-connected expats, Lord and Lady Ashworth, her business. Lady Eleanor knows everyone who counts and at her annual sumptuously extravagant party, Charlie will meet them all.

On the summer solstice eve, the party is in full swing with the cream of Parisian society entranced by burlesque dancers, tightrope walkers, a jazz band and fireworks lighting the night skies. But as Charlie is drawn into the magical world of parties, couture houses and bohemian wine bars, secrets start to unravel, including her own. Putting a foot wrong could spell death …

In this magnificent new beginning to the joyful Charlie James series, Manning beguiles with glamour and mystery set in pre-war Paris.

246. The Pride | Tony Park

Ex-mercenary Sonja Kurtz is out for revenge after her daughter Emma is assaulted by an abalone poacher while on a beachside holiday near Cape Town.

When the poacher is murdered, Sonja is targeted by a violent local gangster and must flee the country.

As Sonja leaves a trail of destruction in her wake – from the threatened wilderness of Zimbabwe to the treacherous beaches of northern Mozambique – a concerned Emma must find the courage to rescue her mother.

But is Sonja a cold-blooded killer? Or is there a darker conspiracy taking place in southern Africa’s underworld – one that will change their lives forever?

247. The Settlement | Jock Serong

On the windswept point of an island at the edge of van Diemen’s Land, the Commandant huddles with a small force of white men and women.

He has gathered together, under varying degrees of coercion and duress, the last of the Tasmanians, or so he believes. His purpose is to save them-from a number of things, but most pressingly from the murderous intent of the pastoral settlers on their country.

The orphans Whelk and Pipi, fighting for their survival against the malevolent old man they know as the Catechist, watch as almost everything about this situation proves resistant to the Commandant’s will. The wind, the spread of disease, the strange black dog that floats in on the prow of a wrecked ship…

But above all the Chief, the leader of the exiles, before whom the Commandant performs a perverse, intimate dance of violence and betrayal.

In The Settlement, Jock Serong reimagines in urgent, compelling prose the ill-fated exploits of George Augustus Robinson at the settlement of Wyballena-a venture whose blinkered, self-interested cruelty might stand for the colonial enterprise itself.

248. Stay Awake | Megan Goldin

Liv Reese wakes up in the back of a taxi with no idea where she is or how she got there. When she’s dropped off at the door of her brownstone, a stranger answers-a stranger who claims to live in her apartment. She reaches for her phone to call for help, only to discover it’s missing. In its place is a bloodstained knife. Her hands are covered in scribbled messages, like graffiti on her skin- STAY AWAKE.

Two years ago, Liv was thriving as a successful writer for a trendy magazine. Now, she’s lost and disoriented in a New York City that looks nothing like what she remembers. Catching a glimpse of the local news, she’s horrified to see reports of a crime scene where the victim’s blood has been used to scrawl a message across a window, the same message that’s inked on her hands. What did she do last night? And why does she remember nothing from the past two years? Liv finds herself on the run for a crime she doesn’t remember committing. But there’s someone who does know exactly what she did, and they’ll do anything to make her forget-permanently.

249. The Wedding Party | Kathy Kelly

Four sisters.
One secret.
A day they’ll never forget…

The story follows the four Robicheaux sisters as they return home for their parents’ wedding, at the beautiful Hotel Sorrento where they all grew up as children.

For the first time in 15 years, the sisters are back together – and it doesn’t take long for long-buried secrets to surface…

250. The Girl Who Fell from the Sky | Emma Carey

From a terrible accident that left her paraplegic, Emma Carey has become an inspiration for hundreds of thousands online to live life to the fullest and remind us that if we can, we must.

There on that helicopter, somewhere over Switzerland on a Sunday in June, came the first tiny whisper. A voice that would carry me for years to come. ‘I’m going to be ok. There’s still joy here.’

When Emma Carey was twenty, she fell from 14,000 feet and survived. In The Girl Who Fell From the Sky Emma tells us the inspirational story of how, through one of her greatest tragedies, she found her truest self.

From waking in the hospital a paraplegic to learning how to use her legs again, through the six-year long court case and now being finally free to make the most of her life, Emma teaches us the importance of courage and resilience.

251. The Man Who Loved Pink Dolphins | Anthony Ham

Acclaimed travel and nature writer Anthony Ham spotlights the world’s largest rainforest in this unique combination of international politics, conservation, true crime, travel, biography and memoir.

This is the story of Christopher Clark, a remarkable man who spent his life helping to save a pristine corner of the Amazon rainforest in Brazil. Clark’s strict childhood sent him far from home in search of adventure, landing him in the Amazon, where he fell in love with the forest, its people and its wildlife. When a village elder in a dying riverbank town begged him to save the forest and its inhabitants, this challenge became his life’s work. Over the next thirty years, he set up home in one of the most remote parts of the Amazon and lived an extraordinary life. Together with the isolated Waimiri-Atroari Indigenous people, he stared down men with machine guns, weathered government campaigns to discredit and drive him out, apocalyptic fires, and more.

Australian writer Anthony Ham travelled to Clark’s forest home in Xixuau, and listened as Clark told his story for the first time. With Valdemar, an Indian guide and Clark’s lifelong friend, they explored the forest world in a dugout canoe as pink dolphins swam beside them. They spoke for days over caipirinhas, as Clark told stories of close encounters with jaguars and anacondas, of his life among the people of the Amazon, and of the deadly threats still being made against him. Ham brings to life the forest and its many dark and beautiful secrets, as well as depicting Clark in all his complexity. In the process the two men, writer and activist, became friends and together faced one last attempt on Clark’s life.

At a time of great peril for the Amazon and its inhabitants, as vast areas are being destroyed with frightening consequences for our planet, the rainforest itself becomes a haunting character in this gripping book. The Man Who Loved Pink Dolphins is captivating, crucial, terrifying and hopeful, and is very much a story of our time.

252. The Girl in the Green Dress | Jeni Haynes/Dr George Blair-West & Alley Pascoe

‘I didn’t know that you’re only supposed to have one personality. I didn’t realise that having lots of voices in your head was abnormal. But you are protecting yourself. You are protecting your soul, and that’s what I did.’

An intelligent, poised woman, Jeni Haynes sat in court and listened as the man who had abused her from birth, a man who should have been her protector, a man who tortured and terrified her, was jailed for a non-parole period of 33 years. The man was her father.
The abuse that began when Jeni was only a baby is unimaginable to most. It was physically, psychologically and emotionally sadistic and never-ending. The fact she survived may be called a miracle by some – but the reality is, it is testament to the extraordinary strength of Jeni’s mind.
What saved her was the process of dissociation – Multiple Personality Disorder (MPD) or Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) – a defence mechanism that saw Jeni create over 2500 separate personalities, or alters, who protected her as best they could from the trauma. This army of alters included four-year-old Symphony, teenage motorcycle-loving Muscles, elegant Linda, forthright Judas and eight-year-old Ricky.
With her army, the support of her psychiatrist Dr George Blair-West, and a police officer’s belief in her, Jeni fought to create a life for herself and bring her father to justice. In a history-making ruling, Jeni’s alters were empowered to give evidence in court. In speaking out, Jeni’s courage would see many understand MPD for the first time.

253. A Dolphin called Jock | Melody Horrill

The compelling, heart-warming story of how a traumatised young woman found peace through her friendship with an injured dolphin called Jock.

‘In this unputdownable account of the healing power of nature and the discovery of trust, an orphaned river dolphin gives a young woman a new life and a profound purpose – to help save the beautiful, sentient creatures that saved her.’ Brad Collis, author of Snowy and Fields of Discovery

When Melody Horrill arrived as a student at the University of South Australia she was a troubled and lost young woman, hiding behind a carefully crafted exterior. She had experienced a childhood of emotional and physical trauma mainly at the hands of her violent father that was as damaging as it was brutal.

One day Melody volunteered to help her university lecturer monitor pods of river dolphins that lived in the waters of Port Adelaide. There for the first time she encountered Jock, a solitary dolphin with a maimed fin, who lived apart from the highly social pods. Melody was to form a bond with Jock that gave her the key to freeing herself from the demons of her own past, and their extraordinary friendship was the start of a long-term mission to try to save the river dolphins.

254. House of Kwa | Mimi Kwa

Wild Swans meets Educated in this riveting true story spanning four generations

The dreamer boy travelling on dragon hide … a tiger running alone in the night …

Mimi Kwa ignored the letter for days. When she finally opened it, the news was so shocking her hair turned grey. Why would a father sue his own daughter?

The collision was over the estate of Mimi’s beloved Aunt Theresa, but its seed had been sown long ago. In an attempt to understand how it had come to this, Mimi unspools her rich family history in House of Kwa.

One of a wealthy silk merchant’s 32 children, Mimi’s father, Francis, was just a little boy when the Kwa family became caught up in the brutal and devastating Japanese occupation of Hong Kong during World War II. Years later, he was sent to study in Australia by his now independent and successful older sister Theresa. There he met and married Mimi’s mother, a nineteen-year-old with an undiagnosed, chronic mental illness. Soon after, ‘tiger’ Mimi arrived, and her struggle with the past ? and the dragon ? began …

255. Rachel | Rachel Kennedy

Rachel Kennedy stood out on a wild frontier dominated by men . . . her extraordinary and unputdownable pioneering story is told for the first time

‘Just a girl, but when it came to chasing wild horses nobody questioned Rachel Kennedy’s skill in a saddle. What raised eyebrows was the type of saddle she used: a man’s.’

Rachel Kennedy was a colonial folk hero. Born in the wild and remote Warrumbungle mountains of western New South Wales in 1845, she was described by Duke Tritton of The Bulletin as Australia’s greatest pioneer woman of them all.

Rachel caught brumbies, hid bushrangers, went to war with squatter kings, fed starving families during the shearing strikes, worked as a revered bush nurse and midwife, and fought for the underdog after observing the bitter experiences of the Chinese on the goldfields. She also built rare friendships with Aboriginal people, including a lifelong relationship with her ‘sister’ Mary Jane Cain, a proud campaigner for the rights of her people.

Meticulously researched and written with compelling energy, this is a vivid and at times heartbreaking story of a pioneering woman who left a legacy that went well beyond her lifetime.

November/December 2022

256. Long Shadows | David Baldacci

Memory man FBI agent, Amos Decker, returns in this action-packed thriller to investigate the mysterious and brutal murder of a federal judge and her bodyguard at her home in an exclusive, gated community in Florida.

Things are changing for Decker. He is in crisis following the suicide of a close friend and receipt of a letter concerning a personal issue which could change his life forever. Together with the prospect of working with a new partner, Frederica White, Amos Decker knows that this case will take all of his special skills to solve.

Judge Julia Cummins seemingly had no enemies and there was no forced entry to her property. Close friends and neighbours in the community apparently heard nothing, and Cummins’ distraught ex-husband, Barry, and teenage son, Tyler, both have strong alibis. Decker must first find the answer to why the judge felt the need for a bodyguard, and the meaning behind the strange calling card left by the killer.

As the investigation deepens, the body count rises, and Decker and White discover a trail which leads back to a past presidential campaign and an unsolved crime surrounding those in power at the very highest level. Greed, deceit, deception and corruption at the very heart of power.

Someone has decided that it’s payback time.

257. The Dark | Sharon Bolton

When a baby is snatched from its pram and cast into the river Thames, off-duty police officer Lacey Flint is there to prevent disaster. But who would want to hurt a child?
DCI Mark Joesbury has been expecting this. Monitoring a complex network of dark web sites, Joesbury and his team have spotted a new terrorist threat from the extremist, women-hating, group known as ‘incels’ or ‘involuntary celibates.’ Joesbury’s team are trying to infiltrate the ring of power at its core, but the dark web is built for anonymity, and the incel army is vast.
Pressure builds when the team learn the snatched child was just the first in a series of violent attacks designed to terrorise women. Worse, the leaders of the movement seem to have singled out Lacey as the embodiment of everything they hate, placing her in terrible danger…

258. The Maze | Nelson DeMille

‘Bottom line, if a man is known by his enemies, I’m one helluva guy.’
Former anti-terrorist cop John Corey is NYU – New York Unemployed – and watching his back, ever more convinced his past will soon catch up with him. Then a new opportunity comes calling, and with it, plenty of trouble . . .
A series of bodies has been found along a beach close to his home and he can no longer deny that a serial killer is on the loose, and no one seems able to find the culprit. Is the failure to find the perpetrator a result of the department’s oversight? Is it due to the fact the victims are prostitutes? Or is it something darker? Could the killer be someone on the inside?

259. Catch Her Death | Wendy Dranfield

“Mommy, wake-up,” he cries, pulling at her beautiful blonde hair. She’s silent, and her skin is deathly white. Tears roll down his cheeks as he realizes something is very wrong…

 

As snow falls on the small town of Lost Creek, Colorado, a three-year-old boy is found playing quietly in his car seat, his mother, cold as ice, slumped against the steering wheel in front. Tearing herself away from reconnecting with her special agent father who abandoned her for his career, Detective Madison Harper is haunted by the fear in the boy’s sky-blue eyes, and vows to find justice for this innocent child, left motherless just days before Christmas.

 

Madison works around the clock on her only clue: a perfect circle of clean glass found on the car’s rear window. But she’s stopped in her tracks the moment another mother is found dead outside a church during Midnight Mass, her young boy left sucking his thumb on the frozen ground beside her. It can’t be a coincidence.

 

The need to spare the children might hint to the suspect being a woman, but the deeper Madison digs, the closer she gets to a serial killer her own father spent a lifetime chasing. Has the killer followed her father here? Could Madison, single mother to a son herself, be next?

 

As a blizzard closes in, wreaking havoc on the investigation, Madison hits the same dead ends her father did all those years ago. But when her closest friend goes missing, Madison must dive into the mind of this twisted soul and risk it all to stop another heart-shattering tragedy. But will she make it in time?

260. What She Found | Robert Dugoni

Solving a decades-old disappearance sets Tracy Crosswhite on a dangerous collision course with the past in a pulse-pounding novel by New York Times bestselling author Robert Dugoni.

Detective Tracy Crosswhite has agreed to look into the disappearance of investigative reporter Lisa Childress. Solving the cold case is an obsession for Lisa’s daughter, Anita. So is clearing the name of her father, a prime suspect who became a pariah. After twenty-five years, all Anita wants is the truth – no matter where it leads.

For Tracy, that means reopening the potentially explosive investigations Lisa was following on the dark night she vanished: an expos© of likely mayoral graft; the shocking rumours of a reserved city councilman’s criminal sex life; a drug task force scandal compromising the Seattle PD; and an elusive serial killer who disappeared just as mysteriously as Lisa.

As all the pieces come together, it becomes clear that Tracy is in the midst of a case that will push her loyalties and her resilience to the limit. What she uncovers will come with a greater price than anyone feared.

261. Oath of Loyalty | Vince Flynn

Mitch Rapp confronts a very different kind of killer in the explosive new thriller in Vince Flynn’s #1 New York Times bestselling series, written by Kyle Mills.

With President Anthony Cook convinced that Mitch Rapp poses a mortal threat to him, CIA Director Irene Kennedy is forced to construct a truce between the two men. The terms are simple: Rapp agrees to leave the country and stay in plain sight for as long as Cook controls the White House. In exchange, the administration agrees not to make any moves against him.

This fragile détente holds until Cook’s power-hungry security adviser convinces him that Rapp has no intention of honoring their agreement. In an effort to put him on the defensive, they leak the true identity of his partner, Claudia Gould. As Rapp races to neutralize the enemies organizing against her, he discovers that a new generation of assassins is on her trail. A killer known to intelligence agencies only as Legion.

The shadowy group has created a business model based on double-blind secrecy. Neither the killer nor the client knows the other’s identity. Because of this, Legion can’t be called off nor can they afford to fail. No matter how long it takes weeks, months, years they won’t stand down until their target is dead. Faced with the seemingly impossible task of finding and stopping Legion, Rapp and his people must close ranks against a world that has turned on them.

262. Corpse Road | David J. Gatward

Picturesque hills stained with blood. An MO like no other. Can this senior officer draw on his paratrooper past to catch a twisted mind?

DCI Harry Grimm is still grappling with the Yorkshire Dales custom of eating cheese with cake. But the seasoned big-city cop has more than enough experience getting pulled out of bed in the middle of the night for the grisliest crimes. So the gruesome early-hour discovery of a woman’s savaged remains on the bleakly beautiful terrain has the detective keen to slam an ugly killer behind bars…

With both a clear motive and an obvious offender firmly in his sights, the dedicated policeman hunts relentlessly for the killer. But when the prime suspect goes missing and Grimm reworks the scene, he fears he sees signs of meticulous military planning and a culprit with a long list of victims.

Can the tough investigator get into the head of a murderer before he’s called to the next kill zone?

263. Restless Dead | David J. Gatward

DCI Harry Grimm is on the cusp of a stunning decision. Considering making his move to the scenic Yorkshire Dales permanent, he ends up reviewing details of a terrible car accident that killed a retired colonel’s beloved wife. But when the panicked widower calls the police claiming the deceased woman’s spirit is haunting him, the dedicated detective wades in to piece together a less implausible explanation.

With suspicions running high after a cabin on the property burns down, Grimm and his team are shocked to identify the scorched human remains that leave behind a twice-grieving family. And when he uncovers evidence the fire wasn’t simple misfortune, the no-nonsense investigator is certain the culprit is more than a ghastly ghoul…

264. Murder on Mustique | Anne Glenconner

A storm. A disappearance. A race against time . . .

Mustique is in a state of breathless calm as tropical storm Cristobal edges towards it across the Atlantic. Most villa owners have escaped the island but a few young socialites remain, unwilling to let summer’s partying end. American heiress Amanda Fortini is one such thrill-seeker – until she heads out for a morning swim and doesn’t return.

Detective Sergeant Solomon Nile is just 28 years old and the island’s only fully trained police officer. He quickly realises he needs to contact Lord and Lady Blake, who bought the island decades ago and have invested time, money and love creating a paradise. Jasper is in St Lucia designing a new village of luxury villas but Lady Veronica (Vee to her friends) catches a plane immediately. Her beloved god-daughter, Lily, is on the island and this disappearance has alarming echoes of what happened to Lily’s mother many years ago. Lady Vee would never desert a friend in need, and she can keep a cool head in a crisis.

When Amanda’s body is found, a murder investigation begins. Nile knows the killer must be an islander because flights and ferry crossings have stopped due to the storm warning, but the local community isn’t co-operating. And then the storm hits, and someone else disappears . . .

265. Twelve Secrets | Robert Gold

A small town. A shocking crime. You’ll suspect every character. But you’ll never guess the ending.

Ben Harper’s life changed for ever the day his older brother Nick was murdered by two classmates. It was a crime that shocked the nation and catapulted Ben’s family and their idyllic hometown, Haddley, into the spotlight.

Twenty years on, Ben is one of the best investigative journalists in the country and settled back in Haddley, thanks to the support of its close-knit community. But then a fresh murder case shines new light on his brother’s death and throws suspicion on those closest to him.

Ben is about to discover that in Haddley no one is as they seem. Everyone has something to hide.

And someone will do anything to keep the truth buried . . .

266. Her Bleeding Heart | D.K. Hood

Rain soaks her clothes as she runs from the large, isolated family home and hides behind the beaten-up pickup truck parked out front. Miles from safety, her heart thuds as footsteps draw closer. He’s found her…

The rain has been falling for weeks when Black Rock Falls Sheriff, Jenna Alton, receives a panicked phone call from a local forest ranger. The lifeless body of a woman has washed up on the banks of a swollen river.

Rushing to the scene, Jenna and her deputy, David Kane, find the young girl laying face up in the dirt, her long brown hair spilling out around her, her perfect pale skin showing no signs of struggle. Leaning in for a closer look, she finds a jack of hearts playing card tucked into the girl’s underwear. This was no accident—someone killed this innocent soul, and left a twisted calling card…

Days later, another young woman is found slumped in the back of car at a local truck stop on the outskirts of town, angry red marks around her neck. Jenna’s head spins when she finds a second playing card in her clothing. Is this killer escalating? And does he have a next victim already in his sights?

As a landslide shuts the town off from the outside world, Jenna and her team battle raging storms in their search for answers. Jenna is convinced the playing cards link these victims to a twisted serial killer the FBI have been hunting for over a decade. If she’s right, she’s chasing America’s most dangerous and elusive killer. Can she catch him before Black Rock Falls loses another innocent young life?

267. The Twist of a Knife | Anthony Horowitz

‘I’ve written three books and our deal is over.’ That’s what reluctant author Anthony Horowitz tells ex-detective Daniel Hawthorne in an awkward meeting. The truth is that Anthony has got other things on his mind.

His new play, a thriller called ‘Mindgame’, is about to open at the famous Vaudeville theatre in Shoreditch. Not surprisingly, Hawthorne declines a ticket to the opening night.

The play is not enjoyed by the critics. In particular, Sunday Times critic Harriet Throsby gives it a savage review, focusing particularly on the writing. The next day, Throsby is stabbed in the heart with an ornamental dagger which, it turns out, belongs to Anthony, and which has his fingerprints all over it.

Anthony is arrested by an old enemy . . . Detective Inspector Cara Grunshaw. She’s still smarting from her failure to solve the case described in the second Hawthorne adventure- “The Sentence is Death”. She blames Anthony for her failure. And now she’s out for revenge.

Thrown into prison and brutally interrogated, Anthony is the prime suspect in Throsby’s murder and as a second theatre critic is found to have died in mysterious circumstances, the net closes in. Ever more desperate, he realizes that only one man can help him.

But will Hawthorne take the call?

268. Dark Rooms | Lynda La Plante

Helena Lanark is the only one who knows about the horrors which once occurred in her family’s house. The heiress of an immense family fortune, she now resides in a luxurious care home; her mind and memory fading fast.

Jane Tennison is leading a murder investigation into the recent brutal death of a young girl, her decomposed, starved body discovered in an old air raid shelter in the garden of the Lanark’s now derelict house. Initially the focus is on identifying the victim, until another body is found hidden in the walls of the shelter.

As the investigation and search for answers intensifies, Jane travels to Australia. There she discovers the dark secret that the Lanark family has kept hidden for decades. A secret that not only threatens to bring down a family dynasty, but also places Jane Tennison in mortal danger . . .

Murder hides behind closed doors in Lynda La Plante’s brilliant new Jane Tennison thriller.

269. A Song of Comfortable Chairs | Alexander McCall Smith

Grace Makutsi’s husband, Phuti, is in a bind. An international firm is attempting to undercut his prices in the office furniture market. Phuti has always been concerned with quality and comfort, but this new firm seems interested only in profits. To make matters worse, they have a slick new advertising campaign that seems hard to beat. Nonetheless with Mma Ramotswe’s help, Phuti comes up with a campaign that may just do the trick.

Meanwhile, Mma Makutsi is approached by an old friend who has a troubled son. Grace and Phuti agree to lend a hand, but the boy proves difficult to reach, and the situation is more than they can handle on their own. It will require not only all of their patience and dedication, but also the help of Mma Ramotswe and the formidable Mma Potokwani in order to help the child.

Faced with more than her fair share of domestic problems, Mma Makutsi deals with it all with her usual grace. That, along with the kindness, generosity, and good sense that the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency is known for, assure us that in the end, all these matters will be set right.

270. The Temple of Skulls | Andy McDermott

World-renowned archaeologist Nina Wilde and her husband, former SAS soldier Eddie Chase, now lead a quiet life – the only real danger posed by their rebellious teenage daughter. Until, on a visit to a newly discovered temple, they’re suddenly engulfed in a deadly hunt for an ancient weapon which threatens the entire globe.

From the bustling streets of Mexico City to the mountainous jungles of Guatemala, Nina and Eddie – with daughter Macy in tow – are the only ones who can prevent an apocalyptic evil seizing control of an unstoppable power.

Battling special operations soldiers and blood-thirsty cults, Nina and Eddie must once again risk their lives to save the world. . .

271. In Dark Water | Lynne McEwan

Beneath the surface lie deadly secrets…
DI Shona Oliver agreed to move to Dumfries with her ex-banker husband when their teenage daughter got in with a bad crowd in London. As a Glasgow native, she’s back on home turf.

Living on the shores of the Solway Firth allows Shona to continue as an RNLI volunteer, and a call out to recover a woman’s body indicates foul play. Police in Cumbria take the case but links back to Scotland keep Shona’s team involved. As they investigate, reports of people trafficking and a spate of thefts from local shops compete for attention with a large scale drug bust. But Shona’s work may all be in vain when those close to her threaten to tear the case apart – and ruin Shona in the process.

272. The Bullet That Missed | Richard Osman

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?

273. A Heart Full of Headstones | Ian Rankin

John Rebus stands accused: on trial for a crime that could put him behind bars for the rest of his life.

But what drove a good man to cross the line?

Detective Inspector Siobhan Clarke may well find out. Clarke is tasked with the city’s most explosive case in years, an infamous cop, at the center of decades of misconduct, has gone missing. Finding him will expose not only her superiors, but her mentor John Rebus. And Rebus himself may not have her own interests at heart, as the repayment of a past debt places him in the crosshairs of both crime lords and his police brethren.

One way or another, a reckoning is coming – and John Rebus may be hearing the call for last orders…

274. Desperation in Death | J.D. Robb

New York, 2061: The place called the Pleasure Academy is a living nightmare where abducted girls are trapped, trained for a life of abject service while their souls are slowly but surely destroyed. Dorian, a thirteen-year-old runaway who’d been imprisoned there, might never have made it out if not for her fellow inmate Mina, who’d hatched the escape plan. Mina was the more daring of the two—but they’d been equally desperate.

Unfortunately, they didn’t get away fast enough. Now Dorian is injured, terrified, and wandering the streets of New York, and Mina lies dead near the waterfront while Lt. Eve Dallas looks over the scene.

Mina’s expensive, elegant clothes and beauty products convince Dallas that she was being groomed, literally and figuratively, for sex trafficking—and that whoever is investing in this high-overhead operation expects windfall profits. Her billionaire husband, Roarke, may be able to help, considering his ties to the city’s ultra-rich. But Roarke is also worried about the effect this case is having on Dallas, as it brings a rage to the surface she can barely control. No matter what, she must keep her head clear–because above all, she is desperate for justice and to take down those who prey on and torment the innocent.

275. The Understudy | Julie Bennett

It’s opening night. The stage is set, the houselights have dimmed and the handsome male lead is waiting. This is your time. Your chance to prove you are so much more than the understudy.

You have worked so hard and would have done almost anything to get here. But not what they are accusing you of – never that. It’s simply bad luck that Australia’s darling of opera has gone missing, throwing the spotlight on you just as the whole world is watching history in the making.

But the show must go on and it’s all down to you. Take a deep breath and get ready to perform the role of your life.

276. The Bellbird River Country Choir | Sophie Green

A warm-hearted story of fresh beginnings, unexpected friendships and the sustaining power of love and community, from the Top Ten bestselling author of The Shelly Bay Ladies Swimming Circle and Thursdays at Orange Blossom House.

Bellbird River, 1998: Teacher and single mum Alex is newly arrived in the small NSW country town of Bellbird River after escaping the city in search of a change of pace and the chance to reconnect with her young daughter. Across town, well-known matriarch Victoria and her globe-trotting, opera-singing cousin Gabrielle find themselves at a crossroads in their personal and professional lives, while local baker Janine and newcomer to the district Debbie are each secretly dealing with the consequences of painful pasts. With its dusty streets, lone pub and iron-lace verandahs, Bellbird River could just be a pit stop on the road to somewhere else. But their town holds some secrets and surprises – and it has a heart: the Bellbird River Country Choir.

Amid the melodies and camaraderie of the choir, each of the women will find the courage to leave the past behind. And together, they’ll discover that friends are much closer to home than they’d ever realised.

277. The End of the Game | Michael Fiddian

Albert is a young Indigenous man who is the best player in the local Aussie Rules team in his small fictional town of Duneldin. For the first time in most people’s living memory, the team makes the grand final of the local footy competition with high hopes of winning, especially if Albert and some of his teammates are playing at their best on the day.

One of Albert’s teammates, Tom, sees Albert getting racially abused, and knows Albert won’t take it. Incidents after training and at school make Tom and Albert think about the extent to which Albert is valued as player and as a young Aboriginal man, and what is most important.

Set against the backdrop of a country town where the footy club is the most powerful institution in town, Michael Fiddian’s debut novel, The End of the Game, exposes contemporary issues of culture and race that are experienced by Indigenous sportsmen and women.

278. The Tilt | Chris Hammer

A man runs for his life in a forest.

A woman plans sabotage.

A body is unearthed.

Newly-minted homicide detective Nell Buchanan returns to her home town, annoyed at being assigned a decades-old murder – a ‘file and forget’.

But this is no ordinary cold case, as the discovery of more bodies triggers a chain of escalating events in the present day. As Nell starts to join the pieces together, she begins to question how well she truly knows those closest to her. Could her own family be implicated in the crimes?

The nearer Nell comes to uncovering the secrets of the past, the more dangerous the present becomes for her, as she battles shadowy assailants and sinister forces. Can she survive this harrowing investigation and what price will she have to pay for the truth?

279. Exiles | Jane Harper

At a busy festival site on a warm spring night, a baby lies alone in her pram, her mother vanishing into the crowds.

A year on, Kim Gillespie’s absence casts a long shadow as her friends and loved ones gather deep in the heart of South Australian wine country to welcome a new addition to the family.

Joining the celebrations is federal investigator Aaron Falk. But as he soaks up life in the lush valley, he begins to suspect this tight-knit group may be more fractured than it seems. Between Falk’s closest friend, a missing mother, and a woman he’s drawn to, dark questions linger as long-ago truths begin to emerge.

280. The Three Lives of Alix St Pierre | Natasha Lester

1943. After spearheading several successful advertising campaigns in New York, PR wizard Alix St Pierre comes to the attention of the US government and finds herself recruited into a fledgling intelligence organisation.

Enlisted as a spy, Alix is sent to Europe where she is tasked with getting close to a Nazi who might be willing to help the Allied forces – but there’s also the chance he might be a double agent.

1946. Following the war, Alix moves to Paris to run the Service de la Presse for the yet-to-be-launched House of Christian Dior. But when a figure from the war reappears and threatens to destroy her future, Alix realises that only she can right the wrongs of the past and bring him to justice.

281. The Trivia Night | Ali Lowe

Question: How long does it take to tear someone’s life apart?
Answer: Sometimes just one night.

From the outside the parents of the kindergarten class at Darley Heights primary school seem to have it all. Living in the wealthy Sydney suburbs, it’s a community where everyone knows each other – and secrets don’t stay secret for long.

The big date in the calendar is the school’s annual fundraising trivia night, but when the evening gets raucously out of hand, talk turns to partner-swapping. Initially scandalised, it’s not long before a group of parents make a reckless one-night-only pact.

But in the harsh light of day, those involved must face the fallout of their behaviour. As they begin to navigate the shady aftermath of their wild night, the truth threatens to rip their perfect lives apart – and revenge turns fatal.

282. The Opal Miner’s Daughter | Fiona McArthur

Obstetrician Riley Brand leaves the city behind to go in search of her mother, who’s taken leave from her marriage to pursue a passion for opal mining in the dry backblocks of an old mining town. Accepting a short-term posting as a fertility expert in Lightning Ridge, Riley plans to assist women pursue their baby dreams in remote and regional areas, while at the same time helping to rekindle her parents’ love for each other.

The small dusty community is a far cry from her polite medical practice on the North Shore of Sydney, but the down-to-earth locals soon welcome her into the fold with their Friday night social gatherings. But no one is more welcoming than enigmatic doctor Konrad Grey, the GP who’s working alongside her.

When an employee of their medical practice confesses she’s hiding an unwanted pregnancy, and then goes into emergency labour, Konrad and Riley are thrown together in challenging and wonderful ways.

283. The Orphans | Fiona McIntosh

Orphan Fleur Appleby is adopted by a loving undertaker and his wife and she quickly develops a special gift for helping bereaved families. Her ambition to be the first female mortician in the country is fuelled by her plan to bring more women into the male dominated funeral industry.

Raised in the outback of South Australia’s Flinders Ranges, Tom Catchlove is faced with a life-changing tragedy as a young boy. He works hard but dreams big, striving for a future as a wool classer.

A chance encounter between the two children will change the course of their lives.

By adulthood Fleur finds herself fighting for the survival of the family’s business, while her widowed father drinks away generations of prosperity and a new, conniving stepmother wants Fleur gone. When Tom emerges from the isolation of the desert to find new work at the port woolstores, his path crosses with Fleur’s again – only to be caught up in a murder investigation, in which they can only trust each other.

At once tragic and triumphant, The Orphans is an unforgettable story about a unique bond between two children that will echo down the years, and teach them both about the real meaning of life, of loss, and of love.

284. The Sun Walks Down | Fiona McFarlane

In September 1883, the South Australian town of Fairly huddles under strange, vivid sunsets. Six-year-old Denny Wallace has gone missing during a dust storm, and the whole town is intent on finding him. As they search the desert and mountains for the lost child, the residents of Fairly – newlyweds, landowners, farmers, mothers, artists, Indigenous trackers, cameleers, children, schoolteachers, widows, maids, policemen – explore their own relationships with the complex landscape unsettling history of the Flinders Ranges.

285. The Night Tide | Di Morrissey

In September 1883, the South Australian town of Fairly huddles under strange, vivid sunsets. Six-year-old Denny Wallace has gone missing during a dust storm, and the whole town is intent on finding him. As they search the desert and mountains for the lost child, the residents of Fairly – newlyweds, landowners, farmers, mothers, artists, Indigenous trackers, cameleers, children, schoolteachers, widows, maids, policemen – explore their own relationships with the complex landscape unsettling history of the Flinders Ranges.

286. The Only Child | Kayte Nunn

Almost every graduating class had a girl who disappeared. A decades-old crime threatens to tear apart three generations of women in this unputdownable mystery that will keep you gripped until its last heart-wrenching page.

1949 It is the coldest winter Orcades Island has ever known, when a pregnant sixteen-year-old arrives at Fairmile, a home for ‘fallen women’ run by the Catholic Church. She and her baby will disappear before the snow melts.

2013 Frankie Gray has come to the island for the summer, hoping to reconnect with her teenage daughter, Izzy, before starting a job as deputy sheriff. They are staying with her mother, Diana, at The Fairmile Inn, but when an elderly nun is found dead, and then a tiny skeleton is discovered nearby, Frankie is desperate for answers.

287. Family Matters | Ellie O’Neill

For the first time in her life, Evie McCarthy sees Death coming for her. Clear as day. She just wants enough time to help her family realise the important things in life.

Her big-hearted granddaughter Rosie is in love again. She falls in love too quickly and this time it’s serious.

Rosie’s married sister, new mum Molly, is sleep deprived, exhausted and wondering what happened to her life.

Rosie and Molly’s mum, Yvonne, is hiding her own devastating secret. Something so shameful she can’t face the consequences.

Between the jigs and the reels, they pull one another up and over and come to understand that sometimes you have to give up the life you planned to get the life that’s meant for you.

288. Keeping up Appearances | Tricia Stringer

As tensions simmer in a small country town, three women are going to need more than CWA sausage rolls and can-do community spirit to put things right. From a bestselling Australian author comes a delightful novel full of practical wisdom and dry humour that examines female friendship, buried secrets and why honestly is (usually) the best policy.

Privacy is hard to maintain in Badara, the kind of small Australian country town where everyone knows everyone else’s business. So discovers single mum Paige when she and her three children arrive from the city seeking refuge. Paige’s only respite from child care and loneliness is the Tuesday gym club, where she had feared the judgement of the town matriarchs, but she is met only with generosity and a plethora of baked goods. Besides, both the brusque Marion and her polished sister-in-law Briony are too busy dealing with their own dramas to examine hers.

Well-to-do farmer’s wife and proud mother Briony is in full denial of her family’s troubles. Even with her eldest daughter’s marriage in ruins and her son Blake’s recent bombshell. Suddenly Briony and husband Vince have a full house again – and the piles of laundry aren’t the only dirty linen that’s about to be aired.

For Marion, the unearthing of a time capsule – its contents to be read at the Celebrate Badara weekend – is a disaster. She was only a teenager when she wrote down those poisonous words, but that doesn’t mean she won’t lose friends and family if they hear what she really thinks of them – especially as the letter reveals their darkest secrets to the world.

When the truth comes out for Badara, keeping up appearances may no longer be an option for anyone …

289. Next in Line | Jeffrey Archer

London, 1988. Royal fever sweeps the nation as Britain falls in love with the ‘people’s princess’.

Which means for Scotland Yard, the focus is on the elite Royalty Protection Command, and its commanding officer. Entrusted with protecting the most famous family on earth, they quite simply have to be the best. A weak link could spell disaster.

Detective Chief Inspector William Warwick and his Scotland Yard squad are sent in to investigate the team. Maverick ex-undercover operative Ross Hogan is charged with a very sensitive – and unique – responsibility. But it soon becomes clear the problems in Royalty Protection are just the beginning. A renegade organization has the security of the country – and the Crown – in its sights. The only question is which target is next in line…

290. Shrines of Gaiety | Kate Atkinson

1926, and in a country still recovering from the Great War, London has become the focus for a delirious new nightlife. In the clubs of Soho, peers of the realm rub shoulders with starlets, foreign dignitaries with gangsters, and girls sell dances for a shilling a time.

At the heart of this glittering world is notorious Nellie Coker, ruthless but also ambitious to advance her six children, including the enigmatic eldest, Niven whose character has been forged in the crucible of the Somme. But success breeds enemies, and Nellie’s empire faces threats from without and within. For beneath the dazzle of Soho’s gaiety, there is a dark underbelly, a world in which it is all too easy to become lost.

With her unique Dickensian flair, Kate Atkinson brings together a glittering cast of characters in a truly mesmeric novel that captures the uncertainty and mutability of life; of a world in which nothing is quite as it seems.

291. All the Broken Places | John Boyne

Ninety-one-year-old Gretel Fernsby has lived in the same mansion block in London for decades. She leads a comfortable, quiet life, despite her dark and disturbing past. She doesn’t talk about her escape from Germany over seventy years before. She doesn’t talk about the post-war years in France with her mother. Most of all, she doesn’t talk about her father, the commandant of one of the most notorious Nazi concentration camps.

Then, a young family moves into the apartment below her. In spite of herself, Gretel can’t help but begin a friendship with the little boy, Henry, though his presence brings back memories she would rather forget. One night, she witnesses a violent argument between Henry’s mother and his domineering father, one that threatens Gretel’s hard-won, self-contained existence.

Gretel is faced with a chance to expiate her guilt, grief and remorse and act to save a young boy – for the second time in her life. But to do so, she will be forced to reveal her true identity to the world. Will she make a different choice this time, whatever the cost to herself?

292. Forever Home | Graham Norton

Carol is a divorced teacher living in a small town in Ireland, her only son now grown. A second chance at love brings her unexpected connection and belonging. The new relationship sparks local speculation: what does a woman like her see in a man like that? What happened to his wife who abandoned them all those years ago? But the gossip only serves to bring the couple closer.

When Declan becomes ill, things start to fall apart. His children are untrusting and cruel, and Carol is forced to leave their beloved home with its worn oak floors and elegant features and move back in with her parents.

Carol’s mother is determined to get to the bottom of things, she won’t see her daughter suffer in this way. It seems there are secrets in Declan’s past, strange rumours that were never confronted and suddenly the house they shared takes on a more sinister significance.

In his tense and darkly comic new novel Norton casts a light on the relationship between mothers and daughters, and truth and self-preservation with unnerving effect.

293. Mad Honey | Jodi Picoult

Olivia McAfee knows what it feels like to start over. Her picture-perfect life – living in Boston, married to a brilliant cardiothoracic surgeon, raising a beautiful son, Asher – was upended when her husband revealed a darker side. She never imagined she would end up back in her sleepy New Hampshire hometown, living in the house she grew up in, and taking over her father’s beekeeping business.

Lily Campanello is familiar with do-overs, too. When she and her mother relocate to Adams, New Hampshire, for her final year of high school, they both hope it will be a fresh start.

And for just a short while, these new beginnings are exactly what Olivia and Lily need. Their paths cross when Asher falls for the new girl in school, and Lily can’t help but fall for him, too. With Ash, she feels happy for the first time. Yet at times, she wonders if she can she trust him completely …

Then one day, Olivia receives a phone call: Lily is dead, and Asher is being questioned by the police. Olivia is adamant that her son is innocent, and begs her brother, lawyer Jordan McAfee (The Pact, Nineteen Minutes, Salem Falls) to defend Asher. But she would be lying if she didn’t acknowledge the flashes of his father’s temper in Asher, and as the case against him unfolds, she realises he’s hidden more than he’s shared with her.

294. Dreamland | Nicholas Sparks

Colby Mills once felt destined for a musical career, until tragedy grounded his aspirations. Now the head of a small family farm in North Carolina, he spontaneously takes a gig playing at a bar in St. Pete’s Beach, Florida, seeking a rare break from his duties at home.

But when he meets Morgan Lee, his world is turned upside-down, making him wonder if the responsibilities he has shouldered need dictate his life forever. The daughter of affluent Chicago doctors, Morgan has graduated from a prestigious college music program with the ambition to move to Nashville and become a star. Romantically and musically, she and Colby complete each other in a way that neither has ever known.

While they are falling headlong in love, Beverly is on a heart-pounding journey of another kind. Fleeing an abusive husband with her six-year-old son, she is trying to piece together a life for them in a small town far off the beaten track. With money running out and danger seemingly around every corner, she makes a desperate decision that will rewrite everything she knows to be true.

In the course of a single unforgettable week, two young people will navigate the exhilarating heights and heartbreak of first love. Hundreds of miles away, Beverly will put her love for her young son to the test. And fate will draw all three people together in a web of life-altering connections . . . forcing each to wonder whether the dream of a better life can ever survive the weight of the past.

295. Haven | Emma Donoghue

Three men vow to leave the world behind them. They set out in a small boat for an island their leader has seen in a dream, with only faith to guide them. What they find is the extraordinary island now known as Skellig Michael. Haven, Emma Donoghue’s gripping and moving novel, has her trademark psychological intensity – but this story is like nothing she has ever written before.

In seventh-century Ireland, a scholar and priest called Artt has a dream telling him to leave the sinful world behind. Taking two monks – young Trian and old Cormac – he rows down the river Shannon in search of an isolated spot on which to found a monastery. Drifting out into the Atlantic, the three men find an impossibly steep, bare island, inhabited by tens of thousands of birds, and claim it for God. In such a place, what will survival mean?

296. The Seven Skins of Esther Wilding | Holly Ringland

‘On the afternoon that Esther Wilding drove homeward along the coast, a year after her sister had walked into the sea and disappeared, the light was painfully golden.’

The last time Esther Wilding’s beloved older sister Aura was seen, she was walking along the shore towards the sea. In the wake of Aura’s disappearance, Esther’s family struggles to live with their loss. To seek the truth about her sister’s death, Esther reluctantly travels from Tasmania to Copenhagen, and then to the Faroe Islands. On her journey, Esther is guided by the stories Aura left behind: seven fairy tales about selkies, swans and women, alongside cryptic verses Aura wrote and had secretly tattooed on her body.

297. One Woman’s War | Christine Wells

World War II London: When Victoire “Paddy” Bennett first walks into the Admiralty’s Room 39, home to the Intelligence Division, all the bright and lively young woman expects is a secretarial position to the charismatic Commander Ian Fleming. But soon her job is so much more, and when Fleming proposes a daring plot to deceive the Germans about Allied invasion plans he requests the newlywed Paddy’s help. She jumps at the chance to work as an agent in the field, even after the operation begins to affect her marriage. But could doing her duty for King and country come at too great a cost

Socialite Friedl Stöttinger is a beautiful Austrian double agent determined to survive in wartime England, which means working for MI-5, investigating fifth column activity among the British elite at parties and nightclubs. But Friedl has a secret—some years before, she agreed to work for German Intelligence and spy on the British.

When her handler at MI-5 proposes that she work with Serbian agent, Duško Popov, Friedl falls hopelessly in love with the dashing spy. And when her intelligence work becomes fraught with danger, she must choose whether to remain loyal to the British and risk torture and execution by the Nazis, or betray thousands of men to their deaths.

Soon, the lives of these two extraordinarily brave women will collide, as each travels down a road of deception and danger leading to one of the greatest battles of World War II. 

298. Nimble Foot | Robert Drewe

At the age of ten, and just short of four feet tall, a boy from Ballarat named Johnny Day became Australia’s first international sporting hero. Against adult competition he wooed crowds across continents as the World Champion in pedestrianism, the sporting craze of the day.

A few years later, in 1870, he won the Melbourne Cup on a horse aptly called Nimblefoot, this time impressing British royalty and Melbourne’s high society. And then, still aged only fourteen, this already-famous athlete and jockey disappeared without a trace.

Robert Drewe picks up where history leaves off, re-imagining Johnny’s life following his great Cup win. Celebrations that night land him in the company of Prince Alfred himself and some key Melbourne identities. But when Johnny becomes a reluctant witness to two murders in the town’s most notorious brothel, he finds himself on the run again – this time from the law itself.

In fear of his life he heads west, assuming different identities to outsmart his pursuers. Yet all the while Johnny fears his luck will soon run out.

Johnny Day is a character that couldn’t be invented, but in the masterful re-imagining of his life Robert Drewe brings us an adventure story, a coming-of-age classic, a man-hunt, a thriller – but most of all, a rollicking good yarn. And in doing so, he lays claim to Johnny Day’s rightful place in Australia’s illustrious sporting history.

299. Lessons| Ian McEwan

While the world is still counting the cost of the Second World War and the Iron Curtain has descended, young Roland Baines’s life is turned upside down. Stranded at boarding school, his vulnerability attracts his piano teacher, Miriam Cornell, leaving scars as well as a memory of love that will never fade.

Twenty-five years later, as the radiation from the Chernobyl disaster spreads across Europe, Roland’s wife mysteriously vanishes and he is forced to confront the reality of his rootless existence and look for answers in his family history.

From the fall of the Berlin Wall to the Covid pandemic and climate change, Roland sometimes rides with the tide of history but more often struggles against it. Haunted by lost opportunities, he seeks solace through every possible means — literature, travel, friendship, drugs, politics, sex and love.

His journey raises important questions. Can we take full charge of the course of our lives without damage to others? How do global events beyond our control shape us and our memories? What role do chance and contingency play in our existence? And what can we learn from the traumas of the past? contingency play in our existence? And what can we learn from the traumas of the past?

300. The Killing Forest | Sara Blaedel

Following an extended leave, Louise Rick returns to work at the Special Search Agency, an elite unit of the National Police Department. She’s assigned a case involving a fifteen-year-old who vanished a week earlier. When Louise realizes that the missing teenager is the son of a butcher from Hvalsoe, she seizes the opportunity to combine the search for the teen with her personal investigation of her boyfriend’s long-ago death . . .

Louise’s investigation takes her on a journey back through time. She reconnects with figures from her past, including Kim, the principal investigator at the Holbaek Police Department, her former in-laws, fanatic ancient religion believers, and her longtime close friend, journalist Camilla Lind. As she moves through the small town’s cramped network of deadly connections, Louise unearths toxic truths left unspoken and dangerous secrets.

301. The Axe Woman | Hakan Nesser

Sweden 2012. When Inspector Gunnar Barbarotti returns to work after a terrible personal tragedy his boss asks him to investigate a cold case, hoping to ease him back gently into his police duties.

Five years previously a shy electrician, Arnold Morinder, disappeared from the face of the earth, the only clue his blue moped abandoned in a nearby swamp. At the time his partner, Ellen Bjarnebo, claimed that Arnold had probably travelled to Norway never to return. But Ellen is one of Sweden’s most notorious killers, having served eleven years in prison after killing her abusive first husband and dismembering his body with an axe. And when Barbarotti seeks to interview Ellen in relation to Arnold’s disappearance she is nowhere to be found . . .

But without a body and no chance of interviewing his prime suspect Barbarotti must use all the ingenuity at his disposal to make headway in the case. Still struggling with his personal demons, Barbarotti seeks solace from God, and the support of his colleague, Eva Backman. And as he finally begins to track down his suspect and the cold case begins to thaw, Barbarotti realizes that nothing about Ellen Bjarnebo can be taken for granted . . .

302. The Assistant | Kjell Ola Dahl

Oslo, 1938. War is in the air and Europe is in turmoil. Hitler’s Germany has occupied Austria and is threatening Czechoslovakia; there’s a civil war in Spain and Mussolini reigns in Italy.

When a woman turns up at the office of police-turned-private investigator Ludvig Paaske, he and his assistant – his one-time nemesis and former drug-smuggler Jack Rivers – begin a seemingly straightforward investigation into marital infidelity.

But all is not what it seems, and when Jack is accused of murder, the trail leads back to the 1920s, to prohibition-era Norway, to the smugglers, sex workers and hoodlums of his criminal past … and an extraordinary secret.

Both a fascinating portrait of Oslo’s interwar years, with Nazis operating secretly on Norwegian soil and militant socialists readying workers for war, The Assistant is also a stunningly sophisticated, tension-packed thriller – the darkest of hard-boiled Nordic Noir – from one of Norway’s most acclaimed crime writers.

303. Sister | Kjell Ola Dahl

Suspended from duty, Detective Frølich is working as a private investigator, when his girlfriend’s colleague asks for his help with a female asylum seeker, who the authorities are about to deport. She claims to have a sister in Norway, and fears that returning to her home country will mean instant death.

Frølich quickly discovers the whereabouts of the young woman’s sister, but things become increasingly complex when she denies having a sibling, and Frølich is threatened off the case by the police. As the body count rises, it becomes clear that the answers lie in an old investigation, and the mysterious sister, who is now on the run.

304. The Night Singer | Johanna Mo

Hanna Duncker has returned to the remote island she spent her childhood on and to the past that saw her father convicted for murder. In a cruel twist of fate her new boss is the policeman who put him behind bars.

On her first day on the job as the new detective, Hanna is called to a crime scene. The fifteen-year-old son of her former best friend has been found dead and Hanna is thrown into a complex investigation set to stir up old ghosts.

Not everyone is happy to have the daughter of Lars Duncker back in town. Hanna soon realises that she will have to watch her back as she turns over every stone to find the person responsible…

305. The Hitchhiker | Gerwin Van Der Werf

Tiddo’s marriage to Isa is in trouble. They have drifted apart. They don’t make love anymore. Tiddo even finds their thirteen-year-old son, Jonathan, a stranger- is it simply that he is becoming a teenager, or is there something sinister behind the gruesome images Jonathan scratches in his notebook?

Desperate to keep his family together, Tiddo plans a holiday to Iceland, travelling the tourist circuit in a rented campervan. On their trip, they pick up a hitchhiker named Svein, who is tall, handsome and covered in tattoos of ancient runes. When Svein offers to guide them off the beaten track, Tiddo is conflicted. Does Svein pose a threat or offer salvation? Is there wisdom in his stories? What power do his tattoos hold?