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Book Recommendations of the Month: Jan 2021

Happy New Year!

What is your favorite genre? Mystery and Thrillers? Romance? Literary Fiction? Self-Help? I have decided to start something new this year. On the first day of each month, I will list a handful of my favorite reads so that your TBR pile can grow to a new high and you can thank me later!

We saw a lot of new and interesting releases in 2020. From quirky mysteries to nail-biting psychological thrillers that heightened paranoia to a whole new level, feel-good novellas that gave us hope to sweet romances that make our hearts flutter, debut authors who wrote mind-blowing mysteries to authors who included the real-life scenarios (read lockdown) in their stories.

Speaking of quirky mysteries, Katie Gayle’s debut novel The Kensington Kidnap released in December 2020. Katie Gayle is a pseudonym for two versatile South African writers Kate Sidley and Gale Schimmel. The protagonist is Pip aka Epiphany Bloom. Now, our Pip is not your usual amateur sleuth. She’s tried a variety of jobs so far and miserably failed at each one of them. Pip is also known to mess up things – well, I suppose this is pretty clear from the plethora of ‘failed’ jobs she’s had so far. So, our dear Pip ends up working for Boston Investigations – they mistake her for a renowned PI. The boss at Boston Investigations is a huge fan of mansplaining so Pip did not have the time (or voice) to say she’s not a PI. But all’s well that ends in a bell, right?

The next book I want to talk about is a Covid thriller. Yep, you heard that right! Bradley West’s The Dark Cure, a first in a trilogy series released in November 2020. Imagine our worst nightmares coming true. Covid-19 mutates to something deadlier – Covid-20. A biotech executive’s employee finds a possible cure and when the executive’s pregnant daughter is struggling to survive, he injects it into her blood stream. She gives birth to a healthy baby that has Covid-20 antigens in its body. The baby is kidnapped and its blood is used to make what is known as The Dark Cure. Time’s running out for the baby’s family to find the bad guys. This book might take your fear to a whole new level but believe me, Dark Cure is definitely worth a read!

Annie Lyons’ Eudora Honeysett is Quite Well, Thank You is a heart-warming story of a grumpy 85-year-old woman who learns of an assisted death facility in Switzerland and writes to them for help. A family moves in next door and Eudora is unaware of the changes the little girl next door is going to bring in her life. Eudora is quite set on having a lonely death – via the assisted death facility, after all, she has no family left. There are some stories that make an impact on our lives and I certainly believe Eudora Honeysett is Quite Well, Thank You is one such book. Beautifully written, this book brings makes you laugh and believe that no matter what happens, things will always change for the best.

If you are a fan of the Golden Age Detective Fiction, you might not want to miss reading The Murder of my Aunt by Richard Hull. Hull’s first book and absolutely hi-lar-ious, this book will have you in splits. A young man is fed up of his aunt’s nagging. The poor boy moved in with his aunt soon after his parents’ passing. Instead of being a fairy godmother, the aunt turned out to be a pain in the backside! One fine day, the nephew(now a grown man) decides enough is enough and makes plans to kill her. The guy might be intelligent but his plans… unless, something magically falls from the sky onto his lap, none of them can come to fruition.

If you are in the mood for a Historical Mystery, you must read Lee Strauss’ Death At the Tavern. The first in Higgins and Hawke series, Death At the Tavern involves two women – one is a medical examiner and the other, a reporter. It is the 1930s, the era where women weren’t encouraged to work. The two ladies join hands to solve crimes, but without seeing their share of remarks and ‘views’ on how women must stay at home and mind the kids. Strong character portrayal and inclusion of real-life scenarios (prohibition and great depression to name a few) are the best parts of this story.

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