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Autumn book releases 2012

Posted on 13 August 2012 by Alice

Some great titles are set to be released in the next couple of months – let’s hope they live up to the hype!

Here are my top fiction choices to watch out for this Autumn/fall.

August: Mark Billingham’s latest tale of murder and mystery is a great read. Anyone who’s read a Thorne novel will want to get their hands on this fast-paced standalone. See my interview with Mark here.

‘Perfect strangers.

A perfect holiday.

The perfect murder…

Three couples meet around the pool on their Florida holiday and become fast friends. But on their last night, their perfect holiday takes a tragic twist: the teenage daughter of another holidaymaker goes missing, and her body is later found floating in the mangroves. When the shocked couples return home, they remain in contact, and over the course of three increasingly fraught dinner parties they come to know one another better. But they don’t always like what they find: buried beneath these apparently normal exteriors are some dark secrets, hidden kinks, ugly vices… Then, a second girl goes missing. Could it be that one of these six has a secret far darker than anybody can imagine? A brilliantly plotted, utterly gripping thriller about the danger of making friends on holiday, Rush of Blood is Mark Billingham’s most ambitious and accomplished work to date.’


September: JK Rowling’s much-anticipated first adult novel is due to be released on 27th September. I wonder if it will feature any boy-wizards…

‘When Barry Fairbrother dies unexpectedly in his early forties, the little town of Pagford is left in shock. Seemingly an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, what lies behind the pretty façade is a town at war. Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils…Pagford is not what it first seems. And the empty seat left by Barry on the parish council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the town has yet seen. Who will triumph in an election fraught with passion, duplicity and unexpected revelations? Blackly comic, thought-provoking and constantly surprising, The Casual Vacancy is J.K. Rowling’s first novel for adults.’


September: The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao novelist surely won’t disappoint. This is definitely one to look out for.

‘Pulitzer Prize-winner Junot Díaz’s first book, Drown, established him as a major new writer with “the dispassionate eye of a journalist and the tongue of a poet” (Newsweek). His first novel, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, was named #1 Fiction Book of the Year” by Time magazine and spent more than 100 weeks on the New York Times
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bestseller list, establishing itself – with more than a million copies in print – as a modern classic. In addition to the Pulitzer, Díaz has won a host of major awards and prizes, including the National Book Critic’s Circle Award, the PEN/Malamud Award, the PEN/O. Henry

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Prize, the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, and the Anisfield-Wolf Award.

Now Díaz turns his remarkable talent to the haunting, impossible power of love – obsessive love, illicit love, fading love, maternal love. On a beach in the Dominican Republic, a doomed relationship flounders. In the heat of a hospital laundry room in New Jersey, a woman does her lover’s washing and thinks about his wife. In Boston, a man buys his love child, his only son, a first baseball bat and glove. At the heart of these stories is the irrepressible, irresistible Yunior, a young hardhead whose longing for love is equaled only by his recklessness–and by the extraordinary women he loves and loses: artistic Alma; the aging Miss Lora; Magdalena, who thinks all Dominican men are cheaters; and the love of his life, whose heartbreak ultimately becomes his own. In prose that is endlessly energetic, inventive, tender, and funny, the stories in This Is How You Lose Her lay bare the infinite longing and inevitable weakness of the human heart. They remind us that passion always triumphs over experience, and that “the half-life of love is forever”.’

September: From the very brilliant author of White Teeth.

‘This is the story of a city. The northwest corner of a city. Here you’ll find guests and hosts, those with power and those without it, people who live somewhere special and others who live nowhere at all. And many people in between. Every city is like this. Cheek-by-jowl living. Separate worlds. And then there are the visitations: the rare times a stranger crosses a threshold without permission or warning, causing a disruption in the whole system. Like the April afternoon a woman came to Leah Hanwell’s door, seeking help, disturbing the peace, forcing Leah out of her isolation…

Zadie Smith’s brilliant tragi-comic new novel follows four Londoners – Leah, Natalie, Felix and Nathan – as they try to make adult lives outside of Caldwell, the council estate of their childhood. From private houses to public parks, at work and at play, their London is a complicated place, as beautiful as it is brutal, where the thoroughfares hide the back alleys and taking the high road can sometimes lead you to a dead end. Depicting the modern urban zone – familiar to town-dwellers everywhere – Zadie Smith’s NW is a quietly devastating novel of encounters, mercurial and vital, like the city itself.’


October: Fans of Emma Donoghue’s amazing bestseller Room might have been a bit surprised by the re-release of The Sealed Letter that came after her hit novel. Astray – a collection of short stories – promises to be quirky if anything. See my interview with Emma here.

‘With the turn of each page, the protagonists of these stories go astray in various senses. They are emigrants, runaways, drifters; gold miners and counterfeiters, attorneys and slaves. They cross borders of race, law, sex, and sanity. They travel for love or money, under duress or incognito. Astray transports the reader from puritan Massachusetts to revolutionary New Jersey, from antebellum Louisiana to a 1960s Toronto highway, lighting up four centuries of wanderings that have profound echoes in the present. The book offers a past in scattered pieces, a moving history for restless times.’


October: Kate Morton’s tome The Distant Hours had all the ingredients of a great summer novel. Let’s see if her next work of fiction lives up to the standards she’s set for herself. See my interview with Kate here.

‘The spellbinding new novel from the author of The House at Riverton, The Forgotten Garden and The Distant Hours. Shifting between the 1930s, the 1960s and the present, The Secret Keeper is a spellbinding story of mysteries and secrets, theatre and thievery, murder and enduring love.’


November: Rebus is back! Yes, you might have thought he retired, but after a five-year break Ian Rankin’s ever-popular Detective is back in Standing in Another Man’s Grave. I personally can’t wait to get my hands on a copy.

‘The brand-new crime novel from number-one bestselling author Ian Rankin. It’s 25 years since John Rebus appeared on the scene, and five years since he retired. But 2012 sees his return in Standing in Another Man’s Grave. Not only is Rebus as stubborn and anarchic as ever, but he finds himself in trouble with Rankin’s latest creation, Malcolm Fox of Edinburgh’s internal affairs unit. Added to which, Rebus may be about to derail the career of his ex-colleague Siobhan Clarke, while himself being permanently derailed by mob boss and old adversary Big Ger Cafferty. But all Rebus wants to do is discover the truth about a series of seemingly unconnected disappearances stretching back to the millennium. The problem being, no one else wants to go there – and that includes Rebus’s fellow officers. Not that any of that is going to stop Rebus. Not even when his own life and the careers of those around him are on the line.’

*Autumn book releases 2012 listed in order of release

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