[Robert’s take on the bumper batch of new titles available this month. Yes, that’s right: Robert’s take – don’t blame the rest of us ;-)]:
Let’s start by taking a look at the new crime titles you can expect to see this October:
The biggest-hitter this month is probably the new Ian Rankin, The Impossible Dead – this is the second in his new Internal Affairs series and should be in great demand. Expect lots of umlauts in The Unlucky Lottery by multiple award-winning Swede Hakan Nesser.
Philip Kerr gives us a British take on Euro-crime with another exceptional period piece, Prague Fatale. In my humble opinion Bernie Gunther is one of the best inventions in crime fiction. There’s more home-grown crime talent in the shape of Kill My Darling by Diamond Dave Courtney’s big sister Cynthia Harrod-Eagles and slightly less bloodthirsty thrills in the new Agatha Raisin, As the Pig Turns by M. C. Beaton. More mannered murder from Simon Brett with Guns in the Gallery and, finally, some Australian mayhem in Peter Temple’s White Dog.
October’s a busy month for general fiction. It sees the release of the new blockbuster from Haruki Murakami, 1Q84 and also, the much-lauded return of Pulitzer-winner Jeffrey Eugenides with The Marriage Plot.
[inserts tongue firmly into cheek]
Clive Cussler’s still cranking the handle on his Autonovel5000 and this month brings us The Race (… great title, Clive). And according to Christian Jacq in The Beloved of Isis, Mozart was an Egyptian Mason, or something. But don’t worry, there’s a new Conn Iggulden epic, Conqueror, that’s very well reviewed.
Publishing landmark, ahoy! Hotel Vendome is Danielle Steel’s 9000th novel (or something like that) and in this one some rich people order room-service and in so doing trigger an emotional rollercoaster of terror and fun. It’s 336 pages long and incredibly soft and absorbent. Alexander McCall Smith’s latest, Unusual Uses for Olive Oil sounds, frankly, filthy, but probably won’t be. While Julian Clary’s Briefs Encountered sounds vaguely rude but will probably have you coughing tea all over the place. Incidentally, this October Colin Bateman gives us Nine Inches … There’s more. Do you want more?
Okay… There’s something that, at a guess, has lawyers in it, called The Litigators by John Grisham and something that, at a guess, has women who’d slice your face off in it called The Faithless by Martina Cole. Meanwhile, the late Irene Nemirovsky will be harshing everyone’s buzz with the bleak, tragic, semi-autobiographical The Wine of Solitude, first time out of the traps in English.
Janet Evanovich has a new title out for people who like books with numbers in the title Diesel 2, and Cecelia Ahern tells the story of The Time of My Life, it’s “touching, warm, funny and poignant”, apparently.
Matthew Reilly’s new book is called Scarecrow and the Army of Thieves, which sounds quite interesting until you start reading the synopsis: There are no crack units close enough to get to Dragon Island in time to stop the Army setting off the weapon. Except, that is, for a small equipment-testing team up in the Arctic led by a Marine captain named Schofield, call-sign SCARECROW. It’s not a strike team; just a handful of Marines and civilians. It’s not equipped to attack a fortified island held by a small army. But it will go in anyway, because… It’s MADNESS! They don’t stand a chance! They’ll never pull it off! Or will they..? Yes, they will. (I don’t think that really counts as a spoiler. I haven’t even read it and I know how it’s going to end. So do you. We all do. Some people like that in a book, though).
For the sophisticated ladies October promises The Dovekeepers by Alice Hoffman. This book looks well deep: the cover’s in black-and-white. Also, upsetting the middle-class sexual applecart is Nikki Gemmell’s With My Body, and practically a Basic Skills title by comparison is Emma Donoghue’s The Sealed Letter.
Of course, Christmas is coming and, like the first robins of winter, Holiday titles are starting to emerge. Leading the flock is a sensitive and moving examination of the burden of responsibility that one person feels to spread joy and happiness in a spirit of unqualified and unquestioning generosity and love, a burden that is shouldered with an inspirational lightness and humility. The imaginative memoir of a magical character, an icon of bounty and selflessness, it’s Santa Baby by Katie Price.
Something for everyone!