Here are just a few of the titles being released in January 2015 in Australia that have caught my eye.
If these titles are being published elsewhere at a later date, I’ve provided links to that information.
YOU DON’T KNOW HER. BUT SHE KNOWS YOU. Rear Window meets Gone Girl, in this exceptional and startling psychological thriller.
Rachel catches the same commuter train every morning. She knows it will wait at the same signal each time, overlooking a row of back gardens. She’s even started to feel like she knows the people who live in one of the houses. ‘Jess and Jason’, she calls them. Their life – as she sees it – is perfect. If only Rachel could be that happy. And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Now Rachel has a chance to become a part of the lives she’s only watched from afar. Now they’ll see; she’s much more than just the girl on the train.
Book Depository | Bookworld (Aus) | Amazon | Kobobooks | B&N
This is the story of a young boy’s adventures as he takes it upon himself to solve the mystery of an ‘evil’ old neighbour in Geneva, and a missing auntie in Zimbabwe.
Ten-year-old Robert knows many things. He knows all about his hometown, Geneva, with its statues and cannons and underground tunnels and the Longest Bench in the World. He knows about the Red Cross and all the places his dad has been on his missions. He knows that his mum is writing a book about vampires and how long his older brother spends practicing his ‘swag’ poses in front of the mirror. He knows all about animals, too, because his Auntie Delphia is a vet in Zimbabwe.
But still he has questions. Is his neighbour, Monsieur Renoir, really evil? Why did he leave a Victoria Cross medal on Robert’s doorstep? And why has Auntie Delphia disappeared? In the ‘Peace and Conflict’ unit in school, Robert learned all about wars and heroes. But as the lives of his friends, foes and family unfold, he discovers what it really means to be a hero…
Book Depository | Bookworld (Aus) | Amazon
A major new debut thriller about a daring art heist, a cat-and-mouse waiting game, and a small-town girl’s mesmerizing transformation
On the grubby outskirts of Paris, Grace restores bric-a-brac, mends teapots, re-sets gems. She calls herself Julie, says she’s from California, and slips back to a rented room at night. Regularly, furtively, she checks the hometown paper on the Internet. Home is Garland, Tennessee, and there, two young men have just been paroled. One, she married; the other, she’s in love with. Both were jailed for a crime that Grace herself planned in exacting detail. The heist went bad but not before she was on a plane to Prague with a stolen canvas rolled in her bag. And so, in Paris, begins a cat-and-mouse waiting game as Grace’s web of deception and lies unravels and she becomes another young woman entirely.
Unbecoming is an intricately plotted and psychologically nuanced heist novel that turns on suspense and slippery identity. With echoes of Alfred Hitchcock and Patricia Highsmith, Rebecca Scherm’s mesmerizing debut is sure to entrance fans of Gillian Flynn, Marisha Pessl, and Donna Tartt.
Book Depository | Booktopia (Aus) | Amazon | B&N
From one of the country’s most acclaimed writers, a major new novel that depicts the joys and sorrows of modern China.
Yang Fei was born on a moving train, lost by his mother, adopted by a young railway worker, raised with simplicity and love – utterly unprepared for the changes that await him and his country. As a young man, he searches for a place to belong in a nation ceaselessly reinventing itself.
At forty-one, he meets an unceremonious death, and lacking the money for a burial plot, must roam the afterworld aimlessly. There, over the course of seven days, he encounters the souls of people he’s lost, and as he retraces the path of his life, we meet an extraordinary cast of characters: his adoptive father, beautiful ex-wife, neighbors who perished in the demolition of their homes.
Vivid, urgent, and panoramic, Yang Fei’s passage movingly traces the contours of his vast nation – its absurdities, its sorrows, and its soul. This searing novel affirms Yu Hua’s place as the standard-bearer of Chinese fiction.
Book Depository | Bookworld (Aus) | Amazon | B&N
Retired FBI agent Brigid Quinn knows how difficult it can be to overcome one’s past. But she is nothing if not a fighter. Even when the return of a serial killer from her past threatened to derail her new marriage, she managed to hold on to the life she’s been trying to build in Tucson with her husband, Carlo.
At first, the new challenges in her life seem pretty mundane compared to a serial killer. After her sister-in-law dies, Brigid’s nineteen-year-old niece Gemma Kate comes to live with her and Carlo, to establish Arizona residency before starting college. Brigid doesn’t exactly love the idea, especially since there’s always been something unsettling about Gemma Kate, but family is family. Meanwhile, Brigid agrees to help a local couple by investigating the death of their son-until dangerous things start to happen. As the menace comes closer and closer to home, Brigid starts to wonder if she can trust anyone.
After spending her career hunting sexual predators, Brigid has seen her share of evil. Nevertheless, the worst threats are not always easy to spot, even when they are right in front of you-partly because few people manage to be pure evil. But Brigid knows it’s what you don’t see, what you never expected, that can be the most treacherous… Becky Masterman’s Fear the Darkness is the masterful follow-up to the Edgar Award and CWA Gold Dagger finalist Rage Against the Dying.
Book Depository | Bookworld (Aus) | Amazon | Kobobooks | B&N
A provocative, urgent novel about time, family and how a changing planet might change our lives, from James Bradley, acclaimed author of The Resurrectionist and editor of The Penguin Book of the Ocean.
Compelling, challenging and resilient, over ten beautifully contained chapters, Clade canvasses three generations from the very near future to late this century. Central to the novel is the family of Adam, a scientist, and his wife Ellie, an artist. Clade opens with them wanting a child and Adam in a quandary about the wisdom of this. Their daughter proves to be an elusive little girl and then a troubled teenager, and by now cracks have appeared in her parents’ marriage. Their grandson is in turn a troubled boy, but when his character reappears as an adult he’s an astronomer, one set to discover something astounding in the universe.
With great skill James Bradley shifts us subtly forward through the decades, through disasters and plagues, miraculous small moments and acts of great courage. Elegant, evocative, understated and thought-provoking, it is the work of a writer in command of the major themes of our time.
Book Depository | Bookworld (Aus)