Here’s our pick of the most exciting new fiction books coming your way in the new year.
Your 2016 ‘To Read’ pile starts here . . .
The Life and Death of Sophie Stark by Anna North
Who is the real Sophie Stark?
The Life and Death of Sophie Stark is the story of an enigmatic film director, told by the six people who loved her most. Brilliant, infuriating, all-seeing and unknowable, Sophie Stark makes films said to be ‘more like life than life itself’. But her genius comes at a terrible cost: to her husband, to the brother she left behind, and to an actress who knows too much.
With shades of We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves, A Visit from the Goon Squad and Where’d You Go, Bernadette.
The Life and Death of Sophie Stark is out now in ebook and is out in paperback and audio on 31st December. Read a taster here.
Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard
The hotly anticipated sequel to Victoria Aveyard’s New York Times bestselling YA fantasy Red Queen.
If there’s one thing Mare Barrow knows, it’s that she’s different. Mare’s blood is Red – the colour of common folk – but her Silver ability has turned her into a weapon that the royal court wants to control.
As she makes her escape from the prince and friend who betrayed her, Mare uncovers something startling: she is not the only one of her kind.
Pursued by the Silver king, Mare sets out to find and recruit other Red-and-Silver fighters to join in the struggle against her oppressors.
Glass Sword will be available in paperback, ebook and audio on 11th February 2016. Read a taster here.
The Night Circus meets Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell in this magical and mysterious gothic debut.
Amid the fading grandeur of a country estate, Clara lives in the care of Mr Crowe, a man of many mysterious gifts, and his faithful manservant, Eustace.
When Mr Crowe commits a crime of passion, he attracts the attention of Dr Chastern, the figurehead of a secret society to which Crowe belongs. When Chastern comes to call him to account, his sinister attention is soon diverted to Clara. For Clara possesses gifts of her own, gifts whose power she has not yet fully grasped. She must learn to use them quickly, if she is to save them all.
The Maker of Swans is out in hardback, ebook and audio on 11th February 2016.
The Glittering Art of Falling Apart by Ilana Fox
1980s Soho. Parties, love affairs and secrets . . .
1980s Soho is electric. For Eliza, the heady pull of its nightclubs and free-spirited people leads her into the life she has craved – all glamour, late nights and excitement. But it comes at a heavy cost.
Cassie is fascinated by her family’s history and the abandoned Beaufont Hall. Why won’t her mother talk about it? Offered the chance to restore Beaufont to its former glory, Cassie jumps at the opportunity to learn more about her past.
The Glittering Art of Falling Apart is out in paperback and ebook 11th February.
13 Minutes by Sarah Pinborough
Sarah Pinborough’s new novel is a gripping YA thriller which questions how well we really know about the people closest to us . . .
Natasha was dead for 13 minutes. All she knows for sure about the night she ended up in the icy river is that it wasn’t an accident.
They say you should keep your friends close and your enemies closer, but when you’re a teenage girl, it’s hard to tell them apart.
13 Minutes is out in hardback, ebook and audio on 18th February.
The Turning Tide by Brooke Magnanti
A crime-thriller about secrets and lies, from an author who knows what it’s like to lead a secret life…
Erykah Macdonald has a nice life – the kind of life you’re meant to want. But on her twentieth wedding anniversary, she’s about to cross a line. Erykah knows she’s about to make a choice you can’t reverse – but she’s lived with secrets most of her life and she thinks she’s ready..
Brooke Magnanti received a PhD in Forensic Pathology from the University of Sheffield, where she specialised in the identification of decomposed human remains. In 2009 she was revealed to be the anonymous author of the award-winning blog Belle de Jour and bestselling Secret Diary of a Call Girl series of books.
The Turning Tide is out in trade paperback, ebook and audio on 25th February 2016.
Jonathan Dark or The Evidence of Ghosts by A.K. Benedict
A mystery as dark and twisty as the Thames from the author of The Beauty of Murder.
Meet Jonathan Dark – a detective inspector whose only hope of saving the living lies in talking to the ghosts on London’s streets.
Shot through with love and loss, ghosts and grief, this compelling tale will leave you looking over your shoulder and wondering what lurks in the dark.
Jonathan Dark or The Evidence of Ghosts is out in trade paperback, ebook and audio on 25th February 2016.
Shtum by Jem Lester
Powerful, darkly funny and heart-breaking, Shtum is a story about families, forgiveness and finding a light in the darkest days.
Ben Jewell has hit breaking point. His ten-year-old son Jonah has severe autism and Ben and his wife, Emma, are struggling to cope.
When Ben and Emma fake a separation – a strategic decision to further Jonah’s case in an upcoming tribunal – Ben and Jonah move in with Georg, Ben’s elderly father. In a small house in North London, three generations of men – one who can’t talk; two who won’t – are thrown together.