Happy New Year everyone. It’s the start of 2020, so after looking back at 2019, it’s time to look ahead to some of the books coming out this year that I’m excited about. And as with last year’s list, it’s fairly weighted towards the start of the year – because that’s just how it always happens. Will one of these be this year’s Daisy Jones and the Six for me? Who knows.
The Mirror and the Light – Hilary Mantel (March)
Lets start with the big name, potential blockbuster released. The final part of Mantel’s Thomas Cromwell trilogy has been so long coming. It’s about 7 years since I read Bringing up the Bodies – I know because it was pre-this blog, but after I started working at the BBC (I know because I read it during a run of nightshifts up behind the old BBC World studio, which means the latest it can have been is autumn 2012). I mean it’s even been a few years since the TV adaptation of the first two parts. Whether it can live up to the hype and awards of its predecessors, who knows, but I’ll be reading it to find out. I studied the Tudors back in the day, and one of the big achievements of this series is to make Thomas Cromwell likeable. I know how this story ends (hint: not well for him) but I can’t wait to see how she finishes it all off.
Miss Austen – Gill Hornby (January)
Why did Cassandra Austen destroy a cache of letters written by her famous sister, more that 20 years after Jane’s death? My love of Austen-related books is well known, as it my love of mysteries and books about books and authors so I’m hoping this will be right up my alley. It’s out at the end of January and I’ve got a copy from NetGalley waiting on the Kindle already, so if I do like it, chances are you’ll be hearing about it.
The 24-Hour Cafe – Libby Page (January)
I really liked Page’s debut, The Lido, when I read it back in April 2018, and I’ve got high hopes for this. Set in a cafe, where two best friends work together, this is promising a story of friendship and community. The 24-Hour Cafe is another January release that I have a copy of from NetGalley and I’m hoping this will be a nice uplifting book to carry me through the dark and cold of the post-Christmas, pre-birthday period.
The Intoxicating Mr Lavelle (April)
Per the blurb Benjamin & Edgar Bowen head off on a Grand Tour of Europe to meet People of Quality, but it turns out the People of Quality may not want to meet them. But then Benjamin meets Horace Lavelle and his education really begins. I love a grand tour novel and this sounds like it might be right up my street. I have a copy from NetGalley and so this is another one which you may hear more about sooner rather than later.
The Thursday Murder Club – Richard Osman (September)
This is probably one of the more anticipated books for next year. The blurb for this promises a group of octogenarians, who meet up at their retirement village every week to investigate unsolved killings, investigating a real crime when a property developer ends up dead near by. Sounds right up my street already doesn’t it? Add to that the fact that Richard Osman is the tall guy behind the desk on Pointless and back when I worked at TV Centre, one of my treats to myself during tea breaks was to go and stand in the viewing gallery and watch episodes of Pointless being filmed and you’ll see why I’m really quite excited about this one and have been since it was announced back in May. It feels like it’s been a long wait already.
So there you have it, five books that I’m looking forward to this year. The list could have been longer – there are new books coming that I’m looking foward to from Lucy Parker, Gail Carriger, Deanna Raybourn and more, but I thought I’d try not to be too predictable!