I’ve been privileged to be able to read an amazing selection of new books so far in 2018. I’ve finished and reviewed (or plan to review closer to their release date in July) 27 fabulous books.
I’ve picked up a further 19 but put them down after about 50 pages or so because I wasn’t enjoying them enough to finish them.
The 7 books I’ve picked here are all really fabulous, very readable, 5-star books that are available at bookstores now (and most of the bookstores have sales on right now, so get reading!).
1. The Sisters’ Song
In a nutshell: One sister wants children. The other wants a musical career. Neither woman gets what she wants, with tragic consequences.
I loved it because: It’s beautifully written, easy to read and vividly shows what happens when society tries to jam people into moulds they simply don’t fit into.
Genre: Literary fiction, speculative fiction, magical realism
In a nutshell: A young woman’s mind breaks apart to protect her after a series of traumatic events. The ‘gods’ which inhabit her mind are not always kind to her, or to others.
I loved it because: It’s so different from anything I’ve read before. This is literary fiction, but on the easier-to-read end of the scale.
3. The Paris Seamstress
Genre: Dual narrative – historical fiction (WW2 Paris and New York), contemporary fiction (current day Australia and New York)
In a nutshell: A young woman flees occupied Paris to forge a new life as a fashion designer in New York. Decades later, her granddaughter curates her now-famous clothing collection and uncovers family secrets.
I loved it because: It’s well written, but so easy and satisfying to read. Women making it on their own and a couple of whirlwind romances against a backdrop of beautiful cities and gorgeous clothes.
4. Bookworm: A Memoir of Childhood Reading
In a nutshell: A book addict writes about her discovery of books from the moment she could read through to adolescence, consuming everything from the classics to Sweet Valley High.
I loved it because: It’s very, very funny and was such a wonderful trip down memory lane for me! I remember spending entire days as a kid reading in front of the heater during winter. Ah, those were the days…
- Buy from Booktopia (Australia)
- Buy from Amazon
- Read my full review of Bookworm: A memoir of childhood reading
5. The Lace Weaver
Genre: Historical fiction (1940s Estonia and Russia)
In a nutshell: A small community of women in Estonia fight to save their culture – and their lives – from advancing armies during World War 2.
I loved it because: It’s a brilliantly written account of war that is rarely highlighted in traditional WWII narratives – what were the women doing? What happened to the communities in countries that never intended to be part of the war, but simply got in the way? You will need tissues for this one.
6. The Tattooist of Auschwitz
Genre: Historical fiction
In a nutshell: Heather Morris, an Australian writer, spent 3 years interviewing Lale Sokolov about his memories of being the tattooist at Auschwitz and Birkenau during World War 2. The result is a horrifying but surprisingly uplifting account of Lale and Gita’s ability to find love in the midst of death and destruction.
I loved it because: Morris took the time, and Sokolov overcame his trauma, to preserve this story before it was lost forever. A bit random: I listened to it as an audiobook and enjoyed the narrator’s way of accenting ‘tattoviere’ – the German word for tattooist.
Genre: Contemporary fiction – romance/mystery
In a nutshell: Sarah is in her late 30s, recently separated and not looking for love. Eddie is a random man she met in a field in England. But something clicked. They spent the next 7 days in a bubble of intense getting-to-know-you joy. Then Eddie vanished. And Sarah can’t let go.
I loved it because: It’s brilliantly written, easy to read and has a killer twist that even my mum didn’t pick (and she ALWAYS figures out whodunnit by about page 5).
Disclosure: I received this book from the publisher for the purpose of review. This post contains affiliate links.