Monday, December 01, 2014

January Treasures in My Closet

If December was a little skimpy when it came to new releases, January is overflowing with books. You won't believe how many titles I have, so many that I'm going to divide them in two days.

And, the January titles begin with a novel I've been waiting to read, Sarah Addison Allen's First Frost. Allen brings back the Waverley women from Garden Spells. As autumn arrives in Bascom, North Carolina, the Waverley women grow restless. When an unexpected visitor arrives, it becomes even more difficult for them to remain levelheaded. Everything should improve after the first frost of the season, but can the women make it until then? (Release date is Jan. 20.)

Michael Christie's If I fall, If I Die is the first debut novel on this list. Will has no memory of ever leaving his house. His mother is a loving woman, but an eccentric agoraphobe who fears opening the front door. But, Will hungers for adventure and leaves the house wearing a helmet, venturing into the outside world. That's where he means a loner who introduces him to skateboarding, and the dangers of everyday life. (Release date is Jan. 20.)

The next debut, Brooke Davis' Lost & Found, sounds as if it will tug at the heartstrings. Millie Bird is seven years old when she's left in the underwear of a local store. In the past seven years, Agatha Pantha has maintained a strict daily schedule, and hasn't spoken to another human being. At eighty-seven, Karl escapes from a nursing home. United at a fateful moment, the three embark on a road trip to find Millie's mother in a story "about the wisdom of the very young, the mischief of the very old, and the magic that happens along the way." (Release date is Jan. 22.)

Jan Ellison's A Small Indiscretion takes us into one woman's life as she deals with a youthful mistake. When Annie Black was nineteen, she trades a bleak future for a London winter of drinking and abandon. Twenty years later, she's living in San Francisco, designing lighting, married to a good man, and raising three children. When she receives a photo in the mailbox, it sets off a chain of events that threaten her family. Now, she must piece together the mysteries of her past. (Release date is Jan. 27.)

Mike Greenberg, the co-host of ESPN's Mike and Mike follows up his New York Times bestseller with My Father's Wives. Jonathan Sweetwater appears to have anything, but he never had a relationship with his father. When he discovers evidence that his marriage may not be as perfect as he thought, he decides to track down his father's five ex-wives to learn about the man he never knew. (Release date is Jan. 20.)

Interested in psychological suspense? Try A Pleasure and A Calling by Phil Hogan. Mr. Heming loves every inch of the small English village where he lives. He's the local real estate agent, and has watched over the town, acting as its moral guardian. In fact, he truly does watch the town, since he has keys to every home he's ever sold in town. But, when a dead body is inconveniently found on the lawn of a client, Heming realizes it may only be a matter of time before his own secrets are found out. (Release date is Jan. 6.)

The Telegraph UK called Pasi Ilmari Jaaskelainen's The Rabbit Back Literature Society "Twin Peaks meets the Brothers Grimm". It's a novel about a highly contagious book virus, a secretive literary society, and a disappearing author. Renowned children's author Laura White has only ever invited nine people to join "The Rabbit Back Literature Society", an elite group of writers in the small town of Rabbit Back. When Ella, a young literature teacher is selected, she discovers the Society isn't what it seems. What is this mysterious ritual known as "The Game"? Why are the words inside books starting to rearrange themselves? Ella is uncovering disturbing secrets that have been buried. (Release date is Jan. 20.)

Deepti Kapoor's A Bad Character is a debut novel set in New Delhi. An unnamed twenty-year-old woman, restless after the death of her mother, and the departure of her father, meets a man from a different class, and throws herself into an affair that takes her into a gritty life she never knew before. (Release date is Jan. 20.)

 The Unquiet Dead is Ausma Zehanat Khan's crime fiction debut. Detective Esa Khattak, a veteran of Toronto's police force and a Muslim, is in the midst of his evening prayers when he receives a call asking that he and his partner investigate the death of a local man who fell off a cliff. Drayton's death doesn't seem to warrant a police investigation by a team that handles minority-sensitive cases, but he may not have been the upstanding Canadian citizen he appeared to be. He may have been a Bosnian war criminal with ties to the Srebrenica massacre of 1995. If that's true, any number of people could have had reason to kill the man. (Release date is Jan. 13.)

There's a wealth of debuts this month. Andrew Lovett based Everlasting Lane, in part, on his own childhood. When Peter's father dies, his mother moves them to a house in the country for what seems to him to be a mysterious reason. But, Peter is soon distracted by the difficulties of being the new kid in school. And, he made friends with two other outcasts. And, their exploration of the countryside leads to some other outcasts from society. And, he starts to grow aware that his own mother may be an outcast as well. (Release date is Jan. 13.)

The release says, "Where does a person's story begin? In Greer Macallister's The Magician's Lie, the reader ponders this very question as an early 20th century female illusionist is given one night to convince a local policeman that she is not a murderer. As the Amazing Arden recounts the years that led up to her husband's untimely death, you will be left wondering - is she telling the truth? Or is this simply a tale of smoke and mirrors, designed to lull a small town copinto a false sense of security so that Arden can escape?" Macallister's debut is called "Water for Elephants meets The Night Circus." (Release date is Jan. 13.)

Becky Masterman follows the success of Rage Against the Dying with the next crime novel featuring retired FBI agent Brigid Quinn, Fear the Darkness. Quinn is trying to lead a nice quiet job as a private investigator. But, then she opens her home to her niece. When Brigid agrees to help a local couple investigate the death of their son, the danger hits close to home and Brigid must question everything and everyone. (Release date is Jan. 20.)

New York Times bestselling author Wes Moore brings us The Work: My Search for a Life That Matters. Moore tells stories from the front lines of recent history. He was a combat officer in Afghanistan, a White House fellow, a Wall Street banker during the financial crisis. Now he shares the lessons he learned along the way. (Release date is Jan. 13.)

Miranda Richmond Mouillot traces her family history in A Fifty-Year Silence: Love, War, and a Ruined House in France. In 1948, after surviving World War II by escaping Nazi-occupied France, the author's grandparents, Anna and Armand, bought an old stone house in a remote, picturesque village in the south of France. Five years later, Anna packed her bags and walked out. Miranda's grandparents never saw or spoke to each other again, never remarried, and never revealed what had divided them forever. Curious about her family history, Mouillet went searching for answers. (Release date is Jan. 20.)

After a traumatic experience caring for her father's chicken, Antonia Murphy vowed to never again take responsibility for a living creature besides her children. Now, in Dirty Chick: Adventures of an Unlikely Farmer, Murphy chronicles the misadventures of a San Franciscan who leaves city lie to become an artisanal farmer in New Zealand. (Release date is Jan. 22.)

Is that enough for today? I hope there's something here you want to read. And, there's another terrific pile of books for tomorrow.


Anonymous said...

Sounds like some really good books...can't wait to see what you have tomorrow!

Beth Hoffman said...

Wow, my "to buy" list just blew up, I want to read several of these!

Kaye Barley said...

oh, wow - a lot of things here I'm excited about reading!!!! Can't wait to see what else you'll be sharing with us.

I have already read the new Sarah Addison Allen novel. Fans will not be disappointed.

Lesa said...

Oh, Beth. Now, that I do apologize for - blowing up your "to buy" list. More to come tomorrow!

Lesa said...

I knew you liked the new Sarah Addison Allen, Kaye. I'm looking forward to it, but probably after NY. No time to give it the attention it deserves.

Anonymous said...

I just finished Dirty Chick and loved it. I have Fear the Darkness and can't wait to read it.

Lesa said...

Page, I'm so glad you loved Dirty Chick. It looks terrific.

Reine said...

Lesa, this is a great list. Thank you! For others to the several, but… A Fifty-Year Silence: Love, War, and a Ruined House in France is right at the top. I want to read it right now! Love Intrigue with my mystery. Set in France? This one looks like it has everything.

Lesa said...

I always like to see which books jump out at people, Reine. I hope you enjoy it!