Are you buying a book for Book Club, and looking for a recommendation? Maybe you're buying them all this month? Here's a handy guide - the seven I've enjoyed recently that you should be able to locate at your local book store.
If you click the cover, you'll get my full review, if you want to know more. On this page I've summarised them all. Don't forget to come back to check out the rest.
The Alice Network was written by New York Times bestseller, Kate Quinn. It's set just after WWII, and before you roll your eyes - yes it is about that War, particularly about a group of women - The Alice Network - who spy for the Allies. Kate writes about history as if it were your favourite TV series. By that, I mean addictively. Read the review, you'll see what I mean.
Swedish writers, a series of crimes committed by a family. It all started with The Father. I cannot begin to tell you how much I liked this book. And it was my most popular review last month - it seemed to hit a nerve. It doesn't get much better than this.
You've seen the movie (the trailer, not the whole thing, if you're me), but have you thought about reading the book. I promise it is not about ballet. Written by an ex-CIA operative (for 33 years), it's about Dominika Egorova, a Sparrow and Nathaniel Nash, an American spy. Unputdownable - it may just be as good as The Father.
And now for something completely different. I loved The Beach Cafe. It's the perfect holiday and Book Club read. Lucy Diamond has written a few of these, and she's a hit. In this one, Evie inherits Aunt Jo's coffee shop next to the ocean. Should she, shouldn't she keep it? It's a fun, feel-good afternoon tea kind of book.
Every Note Played is the story of Richard, who was married to Karina. He isn't anymore. He's also a famous concert pianist, except now he has ALS (the ice bucket challenge disease) so he isn't that either. Lisa Genova wrote Still Alice. She also studied neuroscience. She knows her way around this stuff, and this book is brilliant.
Hannah Kent? Yes - The Burial Rites, remember? This is as good. It must be, it's about The Good People. Haha. Seriously though, you're in excellent hands here. The Good People is about a village raising a child, or trying to. In 1825, in County Kerry, Ireland, when life was hard, and loved ones died. All the time. Nóra Leahy knows. She's lost a husband and a daughter and four-year-old Micheál is her grandson - the one she must care for. He fits and rages, can't walk or talk. This is a beautiful book, written superbly.
Last one, I promise. Dictator is timely, relevant and wonderfully readable. Yes it is about Caesar, and the Roman Empire and his rule. It's also written from the perspective of Cicero's personal assistant - Tiro, and he was quite a man himself. Responsible for inventing shorthand, and staying out of trouble (no mean feat in those times) , and transcribing his famous master's eloquence, this is a delight. It's also part three of a trilogy, but who needs to read history in order? It happened, we know the spoilers.
That's my pile. Hope you find some books you love, and if you're also having dinner, DON'T FORGET TO TALK ABOUT THE BOOKS!