Five more holiday books to try


Book blogger Natalie Cavernelis shares five more books she plans to enjoy in the holidays, a new John Grisham, something historical, a bit of quirky fun. Take a look.

I always pick 10 books to see me through the holidays. Sometimes more are added later if I come across other delights and sometimes a book that doesn’t deliver is discarded. But I love having a good reading list to work from. I previously shared my first five (click here to read) and here’s my second set of five.

The legal mystery

Sycamore Row

Sycamore Row by John Grisham


A Time to Kill was one of my favourite Grisham books (the movie was superb too) and more than 20 years later we get a new one featuring defence attorney Jake Brigance. The story takes place in the same small American town in Mississippi three years after the Carl Lee Hailey case of the first book and racism remains a huge issue in the Deep South. Seth Hubbard is dying of cancer and hangs himself after leaving a new handwritten will excluding his adult children and leaving almost his entire fortune to his black maid. The legality of the new will is contested and tearing the town apart and Jake is smack bang in the middle of the events.

Buy the book here

The Russian thriller


Tatiana by Martin Cruz Smith


I actually saw the movie Gorky Park starring William Hurt before I read the book and have been a fan of the world-weary Russian police investigator Arkady Renko ever since. Anticorruption journalist Tatiana Petrova has died and it looks like she committed suicide throwing herself from her Moscow apartment but, of course, Renko thinks it’s not. I can’t wait to get stuck in.

Buy the book here

The historical delight


Longbourn by Jo Baker


As we’re still swept up in the wonderful world of Downton Abbey, this book feels like a perfect read. The author has taken Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice and written it from the point of view of the Bennet’s servants at the rundown family home, Longbourn. I’ve seen it on a couple of best-of-2013 lists and it sounds like an irresistible read.

Buy the book here

The sci-fi intriguer

The Returned

The Returned by Jason Mott


How fascinating does this sound? The dead start returning (not as zombies) and no one knows why this is happening. Suddenly a huge population of dead are rocking up on the doorsteps of their loved ones, some of whom are welcoming and some of whom are freaked out. But how does one cope with all these people and what do they do now? The story is told mainly from the point of view of a couple whose eight-year-old son has returned 50 years after his death. The book came out in 2013 and has already been turned into a TV series which we’ll see next year.

Buy the book here

The quirky delight

The Rosie Project

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion


I’m tempted to start my holiday reading with this book. Reviews say it’s filled with humour and that’s what I want. Genetics professor Don Tillman, who seems to have some degree of Asperger’s syndrome and is rather compulsive about how things should be in his life, is 39 and has decided he wants a wife. He starts a Wife Project with a scientific 16-page questionnaire (both sides) to find the perfect woman. Don meets Rosie, who’s completely unsuitable according to his questionnaire but he likes her and plans start to change. It sounds fun.

Buy the book here

Natalie Cavernelis-Natalie Cavernelis

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