Easter is upon us again – early this year – and so I thought I’d throw some suggestions out there for books for reading over the bank holiday weekend, or the Easter holidays if you’re lucky enough to have them.
The Night That Changed Everything by Laura Tait and Jimmy Rice
Rebecca and Ben are perfect for each other – blissfully happy, they’re made for each other. But when a secret from the past is accidentally revealed, their love story is rewritten. Can they recover? Is it possible to forgive and forget? This came out yesterday (Thursday), but I was lucky to have an advance copy which I finished on the train home from work just after midnight on Thursday morning. I really, really, enjoyed Rebecca and Ben’s story – which, as you can probably tell from my synopsis, is not your traditional romantic comedy. It nearly had me crying on the train – which doesn’t happen very often (in part because I try not to read books that will make me cry on the train!) and I had trouble putting it down. I didn’t even notice I’d arrived at Euston on the way to work on Wednesday I was so engrossed – if it wasn’t the end of the line I would have missed my stop! On top of everything else going for it, I had no idea where it was going. I suspect this is going to be on a lot of beach reading lists this year – get there ahead of the game and read it now. I’m hoping this will be in the supermarkets and all over the place – but here are the traditional links: Amazon, Kindle, Waterstones, Foyles, Kobo.
Death of a Diva by Derek Farrell
Danny Bird has lost his job, his boyfriend and his home. So of course the logical solution to this is to take over a dive of a pub owned by a gangster and try and transform it into a fabulous nightspot. But then his big act for the opening night turns up dead in the dressing room surrounded by a cloud of powder that’s definitely not talc and he’s the prime suspect in a murder inquiry. This is funny and clever – I was laughing out loud as I tried to figure out who was responsible. Danny is a fabulous character – and is surrounded by a great supporting cast. There’s lots of potential here – this is another winner from Fahrenheit Press – who you may have noticed have been providing a lot of my favourite crime reads recently. Get your copy on Kindle and badger Fahrenheit on Twitter to get it on other platforms. I got my copy free when it was on promotion a couple of weekends ago (it came out before the Fahrenheit subscription) – this weekend their free book for Easter is Fidelis Morgan’s Unnatural Fire – which is high on my to-read pile – as I loved The Murder Quadrille as you may remember.
The Shadow Hour by Kate Riordan
Harriet and her granddaughter Grace are governesses at the same house, nearly 50 years apart. Grace has been raised on stories of Fenix House – but once she’s arrived it’s clear that her grandmother may be a less than reliable narrator. I reviewed this for Novelicious (check out my full review here) and basically this is the book that is going to fill the Victorian-time-slip-upstairs-downstairs gap in your life. Secrets, lies, families, relationships -they’re all there in this twisty and intriguing book – which had me poleaxed at the end. If you liked Letters to the Lost, or the Mysterious Affair at Castaway House, or any of Lauren Willig’s stand-alone novels like The Ashford Affair then this is for you.
Jolly Foul Play by Robin Stevens
Hazel and Daisy are back on the detection trail after Deepdean’s new head girl is found dead during a fireworks display. I haven’t finished the latest Wells and Wong mystery yet (it’s another that came out on Thursday – I started it as soon as my pre-order dropped on to my kindle) but if it’s half as good as the other three it’ll be a delight. One for the 8 to 12 year old in your house – and your inner child as well.
What am I going to be reading this Easter weekend? Well, I’m hoping to finish Hazel and Daisy’s adventures on my Good Friday commutes, then I think I might try to fill the Night Circus-shaped void in my life with Ben Aaronovitch’s Broken Homes or my urge for more time-slip books with the rest of Beatriz Williams’ latest or Lucinda Riley’s The Seven Sisters. Any other recommendations gratefully received in the comments – although I’m meant to be on a book-buying ban!