With the Easter break and the bank holiday weekend finally upon us, it’s the perfect time to pick up a brand new book, pour yourself a cup of tea and escape reality for a little while.
The only problem is deciding which story to jump into, as so many brilliant new books are being released lately, it can be quite the challenge trying to choose the right one to start with.
That’s why we’ve put together this little list of wonderful new releases which are sure to keep you company during these bright April days. No matter what you’re in the mood for — a thrilling new romance, a suspenseful crime novel or a breathtaking memoir — we’ve got a reading recommendation for you!
Four Treasures of the Sky by Jenny Tinghui Zhang – Out now
A propulsive and dazzling debut novel set against the backdrop of the Chinese Exclusion Act, about a Chinese girl fighting to claim her place in the 1880s American West.
When Daiyu is kidnapped and smuggled across an ocean from China to America, she must relinquish the home and future she imagined for herself. Over the years that follow, she is forced to keep reinventing herself to survive — from a calligraphy school, to a San Francisco brothel, to a shop tucked into the Idaho mountains. As anti-Chinese sentiment sweeps across the country in a wave of unimaginable violence, Daiyu must draw on each of the selves she has been — including the ones she most wants to leave behind — in order to finally claim her own name and story.
At once a literary tour de force and a groundbreaking work of historical fiction, Four Treasures of the Sky announces Jenny Tinghui Zhang as an indelible new voice. Steeped in untold history and Chinese folklore, this novel is a spellbinding feat.
Twelve Days In May by Niamh Hargan – Out April 28
Lizzy Munro is working at the Cannes Film Festival, in a job that involves a lot more admin than red-carpet glamour. There, Ciaran Flynn is the man everyone is talking about: heartthrob of the moment and director of the most romantic movie of the year.
What nobody knows is that twelve years ago, they were best friends . . . and they haven’t spoken since. But when Ciaran’s film runs into trouble, there’s only one person he can turn to.
Is twelve days enough to save not only Ciaran’s film, but also the spark he and Lizzy once shared?
My Heart & Other Breakables by Alex Barclay – Out April 28
Ellery Brown says NO to sadness. And yes to HER CRAZY NEW LIFE.
“This is the diary of me, Ellery Brown, aged 16 and a half. I think I'm supposed to use it to record my feelings about my Mom, since she died. So why do I keep thinking about who my dad might be, instead.? My best friend has narrowed it down to three authors my Mom knew. (She was an author too.) But they're not just in different countries: they're on different CONTINENTS. Which means fake IDs, passports, disguises, plane tickets, and somehow getting away from my self-obsessed grandmother. One thing's for sure: this year is going to be INTERESTING.”
The No-Show by Beth O’Leary – Out April 12
Siobhan is a quick-tempered life coach with way too much on her plate. Miranda is a tree surgeon used to being treated as just one of the guys on the job. Jane is a soft-spoken volunteer for the local charity shop with zero sense of self-worth.
These three women are strangers who have only one thing in common: They've all been stood up on the same day, the very worst day to be stood up–Valentine's Day. And, unbeknownst to them, they've all been stood up by the same man.
The No-Show is a charming rom-com by Beth O’Leary, author of brilliant romance novels such as The Flat Share and The Road Trip.
Trouble by Marise Gaughan – Out now
Marise was nine when she first realised there was trouble, 14 when her Dad tried to end it all, and 23 when he finally succeeded. In a turmoil of conflicting emotions Marise runs – from Dublin to Amsterdam to Los Angeles, leaving a trail of sex and self-destruction in her wake. Until finally, she finds herself facing what she's become in a California psych ward, a girl imploding through trying to make sense of her father's suicide.
As she retells her unravelling, from child to adult, Marise strips back her identity and her relationship with her father, layer by layer, until she finally starts to understand how to live with him, years after he has gone. Written beautifully, with wit and unflinching honesty, Marise has produced one of the most powerful coming-of-age memoirs of recent years, a brave new voice in Irish writing.
Wild Shores by Richard Cairn – Out now
Following the Irish coast in a clockwise direction, acclaimed ecologist Richard Nairn travels by boat, on foot and sometimes by air to visit the best remaining wild places, including islands, cliffs, beaches and dunes.
The result is a unique mix of nature, history, science and a reflection on the author’s personal experiences of exploring Ireland’s coast. By viewing the Irish coastline from the sea, Richard gains a unique perspective on the island. And along the way, he recalls a lifetime spent studying nature.
Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus – Out now
Chemist Elizabeth Zott is not your average woman. In fact, Elizabeth Zott would be the first to point out that there is no such thing.
But it's the early 1960s and her all-male team at Hastings Research Institute take a very unscientific view of equality. Except for one: Calvin Evans; the lonely, brilliant, Nobel-prize nominated grudge-holder who falls in love with – of all things – her mind. True chemistry results.
But like science, life is unpredictable. Which is why a few years later, Elizabeth Zott finds herself not only a single mother, but the reluctant star of America's most beloved cooking show Supper at Six. Elizabeth's unusual approach to cooking ('combine one tablespoon acetic acid with a pinch of sodium chloride') proves revolutionary. But as her following grows, not everyone is happy. Because as it turns out, Elizabeth Zott isn't just teaching women to cook. She's daring them to change the status quo.
Meet the unconventional, uncompromising Elizabeth Zott.
The Lamplighters by Emma Stonex – Out now
The unresolved fate of three Cornish lighthouse keepers haunts the community, and especially the trio of women who loved them, in this uniquely crafted and darkly evocative novel.
Inspired by real events, The Lamplighters is an intoxicating and suspenseful mystery, an unforgettable story of love and grief that explores the way our fears blur the line between the real and the imagined.