As we decided which ten titles to include this month, we all agreed April certainly was the cruellest month. There were so many exciting books to consider that it provoked some fierce debate – some of which is still raging!
BOOK OF THE MONTH
Dear Mrs Bird
A J Pearce
You may well have seen Dear Mrs Bird rather a lot on NetGalley—and there’s a reason for that: we all think it’s a marvellous, wonderful book. And it’s not just us: NetGalley members love it too. Which is why we think this is going to be one of the best debuts of the year.
London, 1940. Emmy Lake types letters for Henrietta Bird, the renowned agony aunt of Woman’s Friend magazine. Mrs Bird is very clear: letters containing any form of Unpleasantness must go straight into the bin. But Emmy is about to rebel…
Irresistibly funny, charming and moving, this is a book to tell everyone about.
The One Who Wrote Destiny
The eagerly anticipated new novel from the editor of The Good Immigrant is a brilliantly constructed, wonderfully moving and bitingly funny novel of three generations of one family. Ranging from Kenya to Keighly, from death to life, from love to racism, The One Who Wrote Destiny will be one of the most popular and important novels of the year
Hogarth’s series of reworkings of Shakespeare plays by contemporary writers has been a huge success, but Jo Nesbo’s Macbeth is something different – a seering crime drama that does real justice to the source material. Inspector Macbeth is a cop with a past – and a glittering future. But his vaulting ambition could be his undoing..
Akemi Dawn Bowman
A huge hit in 2017 with readers in the US, Starfish looks set to be a 2018 YA sensation in the UK. Kiko dreams of attending her dream art school, Prism; but is left devastated when she is rejected. Then a childhood friend suggests visiting her on the West Coast. It’s a chance for Kiko to discover what she wants to be, and who she is. Heartbreaking and illuminating.
Chatto & Windus
The highly-acclaimed, award-winning author of 26a returns with her first novel in nine years – and it is worth the wait. Acute, tender and insighful, Ordinary People tells the story of two couples at a crossroads, battling the daily pressures that can change lives. It is a bravura novel of identity, love and family – with a cracking soundtrack to boot.
Acquired in a frenzy of interest just before last year’s London Book Fair, The Lido is a compelling and uplifting tale of inter-generational friendship. Rosemary (86) and Kate (26) don’t appear to have much in common. But both love outdoor swimming at their local lido. When the lido is threatened with closure, the two women swing into action…
The Man I Think I Know
Hodder & Stoughton
Mike Gayle is one of the funniest and most perceptive writers around – and his latest is his very best yet. Compared to Jojo Moyes and Ruth Hogan, The Man I Think I Know is a touching and wise story of two men bound by the past and unsure of their future – and how their friendship is tested by the world. Witty, warm and uttterly compelling.
Richard Powers is one of America’s most intriguing, intelligent and unusual novelists, and this is his masterpiece. Already being touted as a Man Booker Prize frontrunner, The Overstory is a ranging, deeply felt exploration of our relationship with nature, and the delicate balance we strike with it.
There are many pretenders to George RR Martin’s throne, but Leo Carew’s debut novel – the first in the Under the Northern Sky series – shows him to be a worthy adversary. A great war has come to the land under the Northern Sky, and two very different ways of life are about to do battle. Bold, fresh and captivating.
A Grand Old Time
A breakout from an old people’s home. A road trip beginning in Dublin and continuing through the UK and on to France. A disapproving son in hot pursuit. Things are certainly changing for 75-year-old Evie Gallagher. But is there one last surprise on the cards? Riotously funny, genuinely touching and inspiring.