We asked Erin Woodward from The Girly Book Club to round up the new books that will lead the literary debate over the next twelve months. These are the 9 books to look forward to in 2015.
An Untamed State by Roxane Gay
Daughter of one of Haiti’s richest men, Mireille is kidnapped, tortured, gang-raped and held for ransom. As Mireille waits silently to be set free, it soon becomes apparent that her ransom isn’t being paid. On the other side of the fence, her adoring husband pleads with her father to bring her home. Brutal, powerful and riveting, this book will have you on the edge of your seat.
Lost & Found by Brooke Davis
The debut novel from Brooke Davis, inspired by the death of her own mother, is about grief and recovery. Set in Australia, imagine The Unlikely Pilgrimage Of Harold Fry meets The Rosie Project, with a flavour of Neighbours thrown in for good measure! Seven-year-old Millie’s mum has taken off and an unlikely trio, made up of Millie, Agatha, an 82-year-old recluse and Karl, 87, who’s dealing with the recent death of his wife, go on a hunt across the Australian outback to find her. All are searching for solace during this cross-country adventure.
The Dictionary of Mutual Understanding by Jackie Copleton
An absolute must. Gripping from the first page, you’ll not want to put it down. It’s the story of Amaretasu Takahashi who has a surprise visitor, her grandson. But how can that be? He died along with her daughter the day an atomic bomb was dropped on Nagasaki. Or did they? For a debut novelist this is a superb literary launch.
The Umbrian Thursday Night Supper Club by Marlena de Blasi
If you liked Eat, Pray, Love then you should check this book out. It’s based on a real supper club, held every Thursday in the Italian hills above Orvieto. Five Italian women share the secrets of their lives, their families and of their generation.
Laughing All the Way to the Mosque by Zarqa Nawaz
Nawaz is the creator of the very controversial Canadian TV show ‘Little Mosque on the Prarie’, so that should give you some idea of what to expect from Laughing All the Way to the Mosque. She’s a practicing Muslim but she doesn’t take herself too seriously and, in this novel, shares memories about growing up, becoming a journalist and even her arranged marriage. She’s a strong, insatiable author and someone to keep an eye on. We suspect big things are to come.
Hausfrau by Jill Alexander Essbaum
This is an emotional tale that will hit home for many. Meet Anna, wife to Bruno. They live what appears to be a picture-perfect existence, but look closer and the cracks become visible. With an emotionally void husband, Anna reaches out for more meaning in her life and when language classes come up short she grabs hold of a warm hand and warm body. But once you cross that line is there any going back? Riveting and shocking.
The Possibilities by Kaui Hart Hemmings
From the author of The Descendants comes a remarkable tale of loss and love and a twist that will completely sideline you (in a good way). Sarah St John has lost her beloved 22-year-old son Cully in an avalanche and all she wants is to be left alone. Instead she gets just the opposite as her father, best friend and Cully’s father (with whom she has separated) storm into her life. Then if that wasn’t enough, enter Kit – who uproots this story even further. A read so good it’s already been optioned to be made into a Hollywood movie.
Fragile Lies by Laura Elliot
There is a whole lot going on in this book: adultery, betrayal, deception, tragedy and love, an illicit affair which destorys a marriage and a young son in a coma. A book you won’t want to put down – and may well read in one sitting.
As Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust by Alan Bradley
You can’t help but fall in love with Flavia, as she’s shipped off for various indiscretions to an all-female boarding school in Canada. When the first thing to happen is a mysterious body coming down through the chimney, you know her life is going to be very different from here on in.
Erin Woodward is founder of The Girly Book Club.