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Autumn reads: 8 new books to get stuck into

Page turners, psychological dramas, a who dunnit and the latest book from the writer of Big Little Lies. We've got your next book club/sofa/commute read... sorted.

Oh what a haul we’ve got for you thanks to our friends at Mostly Booksin Abingdon – winners of our Muddy Awards 2021 Best Bookshop award… whoop whoop! Book worms… time to get stuck in.

Apples Never Fall by Liane Moriarty 

Moriarty hardly needs an introduction, whether you’re a reader of her novels or you’ve enjoyed the TV adaptations of Nine Perfect Strangers and Big Little Lies. The only problem is once you’ve read one of Moriarty’s novels (and then another, and then another) you’ll always be waiting impatiently for the next one!

The Delaney family love one another dearly – it’s just that sometimes they want to murder each other. Joy Delaney has four grown-up children, a successful business and is on the verge of retirement when she vanishes. How did Stan scratch his face? And who was the stranger who entered and suddenly left their lives? But for the Delaney children there is a much more terrifying question: did they ever know their parents at all?

Beautiful World Where Are You by Sally Rooney

At Mostly Books we’ve been bowled over by Rooney’s work so far. If you haven’t yet read Ireland’s latest literary talent, and chronicler of millennial life, then now is the time to start! Her third novel is perhaps one of the most anticipated titles of 2021, which sees writer Alice impulsively asks warehouse worker Felix to travel to Rome. Meanwhile, in Dublin, Alice’s best friend Eileen is getting over a break-up, and slips back into flirting with childhood pal Simon.

Alice, Felix, Eileen and Simon are still young, but life is catching up with them. They desire each other, they delude each other, they get together, they break apart. They have sex, they worry about sex, they worry about their friendships and the world they live in. Classic Rooney, with a quietness between the words that lets you fill the gaps.

Magpie by Elizabeth Day

This book had us leaving nail marks on the cover. From bestselling author of How to Fail and The Party comes Day’s edgy new novel, a story of motherhood, jealousy and power. 

Sometimes Marisa gets the notion that lodger Kate has visited the house before. She makes herself at home, sits too close to Marisa’s boyfriend on the sofa, constantly asks about the baby they are trying for. Or is it all just in Marisa’s head? After all, that’s what boyfriend Jake keeps telling her. And she trusts him – doesn’t she? A page-turning exploration of human psychology, as you’d expect from Day.

The Man Who Died Twice by Richard Osman

Richard Osman isn’t your run-of-the-mill celebrity author, his witty storytelling has earned him fans across the world, and his record-breaking first book Thursday Murder Club is still flying off the shelves. Dare we say it? We think the second instalment is better than the first!

It’s the following Thursday. Elizabeth has received a letter from an old colleague, a man with whom she has a long history. He’s made a big mistake, and he needs her help. His story involves stolen diamonds, a violent mobster, and a very real threat to his life. As bodies start piling up, Elizabeth enlists Joyce, Ibrahim and Ron in the hunt for a ruthless murderer. And if they find the diamonds too? Well, wouldn’t that be a bonus? But this time they are up against an enemy who wouldn’t bat an eyelid at knocking off four septuagenarians. It’s more of the same but Osman does it so well – perfect for fans of cosy crime who like their murder with a dash of laughs. 

Cloud Cuckoo Land by Anthony Doerr

From the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of All the Light We Cannot See comes a beautifully weaved tapestry of times and places. 

Strange, enthralling and infused with Doerr’s unique eye for the human condition Cloud Cuckoo Land explores the stories we tell ourselves and how we use them to make sense of our place in the world. The unforgettable characters are dreamers and outsiders figuring out the world around them: there’s thirteen-year-old Anna and Omeir, an orphaned seamstress and a cursed boy on opposite sides of the formidable city walls during the 1453 siege of Constantinople. Then there’s teenage idealist Seymour and octogenarian Zeno in an attack on a public library in present-day Idaho. Finally, Konstance, decades from now, who turns to the oldest stories to guide her community in peril. An engaging magic carpet ride.

Freckles by Cecilia Ahern

No one writes a life-affirming book like Ahern! The internationally bestselling author of P.S. I Love You returns with this life-affirming novel about kinship and finding people through whom you find yourself. After 18 months of isolation, we found Freckles to be a much-needed injection of beautiful, complex life.

Allegra Bird’s arms are scattered with freckles, but despite her nickname, Freckles has never been able to join the dots. So when a stranger tells her that everyone is the average of the five people they spend the most time with, it gets her thinking. The trouble is, Freckles doesn’t know if she has five people, so she must find them. Told in Allegra’s vivid, original voice, it’s moving and thought-provoking.

Snow Country by Sebastian Faulks

Set in Vienna during the First World War with the impending rise of Fascism, Faulks’s intelligent novel tracks a small group of individuals as they struggle to come to terms with the destruction of an old world and the frightening new shape of what’s to come, which feels particularly pertinent during our tumultuous times.

Lena abandons small town life when she meets a young lawyer who spirits her away to Vienna. But what she imagines to be love soon crumbles, she leaves the city behind to take a post at the snow-capped sanatorium, the Schloss Seeblick. Here she meets aspiring journo Anton and [spoiler alert!] something clicks. A beautiful and haunting book, which will delight those who enjoy 20th Century historical fiction as well those who yearn for stories about love and human connection. 

The Last Library by Freya Sampson

A heart warmer, and well written debut, The Last Library will make you laugh, cry, cheer and want to champion your local library. 

Library assistant June takes over Chalcot Library when her Mum dies, but despite their shared love of books, June feels she can live up to the village’s memory of her mum. When it’s threatened with closure, she is forced to open up to a band of eccentric locals determined to save it (and maybe her).

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