Three for you again this month.
Back when I first started reviewing, one of my first books was Stillhouse Lake, by Rachel Caine. I’d read a couple of her Weather Warden fantasy series years before, but I had no idea she wrote non-fantasy as well, so I was intrigued. I ended up reading, reviewing, and very much enjoying the first two in the Stillhouse Lake series before the problem with my eyes started, and then they slipped my mind. If Heartbreak Bay is anywhere near as good as its predecessors, then it should be well worth a read.
My second is a novella in Ben Aaronovitch’s Rivers of London series. I’ve read numerous urban fantasies based in some imaginary world beneath London, and Rivers of London is one of the better ones – imagine if Neil Gaiman had partnered with Terry Pratchett on Neverwhere as well as Good Omens, and you’ll not be far off. I’m not sure where What Abigail Did That Summer falls within the timeline, but it’s likely to be a riot.
Thirdly, we have Dark Lullaby, a dystopian offering from Polly Ho-Yen, an author I’d never heard of until a few weeks ago, when I received a copy to review. My review won’t pop up until mid-March, but the book has really stuck in my head, and I’m interested in what other people are going to make of it. It’s totally not my sort of novel but couldn’t put it down and ended up tearing through it in one sitting.
Reading update for February: thirty-five books of contrasting sizes so far (I’m writing this on February 26th), of which five were real actual printed-on-paper books! I’ve discovered that decent lighting is just as important as my various pairs of glasses, and that my left wrist now the thing holding me back from reading all the printed books one after the other, as it’s forgotten how to support itself. Sigh. Baby Steps.
Best read of the month: Gone Gull, by Donna Andrews
Worst read of the month: Behemoth, by Michael R Cole
Heartbreak Bay [Stillhouse Lake #5]
They’re hunting a killer so silent, so invisible, that his unspeakable crimes are the only proof he exists.
A car submerged in a remote pond. The bodies of two girls strapped into their seats. The mystery of their mother, vanished without a trace, leads Gwen Proctor and Kezia Claremont into dangerous territory.
On the surface, Gwen’s life is good—two children approaching adulthood, a committed partner, and a harrowing past dead and gone. But that past is attracting the attention of someone invisible…and unstoppable. Trouble’s just beginning. So is the body count in this backwoods Tennessee town.
As threats mount and Gwen’s hunted by an enemy who pulls all the strings, Kezia has her back. But working to solve these vicious and unreasonable crimes will expose them both to a killer they can’t for the life of them see coming.
Released 9th March 2021
What Abigail Did That Summer [Rivers of London #??]
It is the summer of 2013 and Abigail Kamara has been left to her own devices. This might, by those who know her, be considered a mistake. While her cousin, police constable and apprentice wizard Peter Grant, is off in the sticks chasing unicorns Abigail is chasing her own mystery. Teenagers around Hampstead Heath have been going missing but before the police can get fully engaged the teens return home – unharmed but vague about where they’ve been.
Aided only by her new friend Simon, her knowledge that magic is real and a posse of talking foxes that think they’re spies, Abigail must venture into the wilds of Hampstead to discover who is luring the teenagers and more importantly – why?
Released 18th March 2021
For fans of Black Mirror and The Handmaid’s Tale, in Dark Lullaby a mother desperately tries to keep her family together in a society where parenting standards are strictly monitored.
When Kit decides to have a child, she thinks she’s prepared. She knows how demanding Induction is. She’s seen children Extracted. But in a society where parenting is strictly monitored under the watchful gaze of OSIP (The Office of Standards in Parenting), she is forced to ask herself how far she will go to keep her family together.
Released 23rd March 2021