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31st Aug 2019

15 books we can’t wait to curl up with this September

Keeley Ryan

Fall has well and truly arrived.

The days (and nights) are starting to get colder and the pumpkin spiced latte is due to make its return in just a few days time.

Which means that it’s the perfect time of year to curl up on the couch with a good book – which is why we’re assuming you’re here, right?

From mysteries to fantasy and everything in between, there is a number of incredible books hitting the shelf this month.

So, here are 15 brilliant books worth checking out this September.

The Testaments by Margaret Atwood

The Testaments, the sequel to Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, is one of the most highly anticipated books of the year.

The sequel will pick up 15 years after Offred’s final scene in the novel, which sees her going into a van after becoming convinced that her role in the May Day resistance has been uncovered.

The Testaments features the explosive testaments from three female narrators from Gilead – and is definitely one not to be missed this autumn.

Once, Twice, Three Times an Aisling by Emer McLysaght and Sarah Breen

Aisling is nearly 30, and she’s still a complete Aisling.

And on the face of it, life is good: business is booming, family life is settling back into comfortable normality, James Matthews is interested in taking things further, preparations for Majella’s wedding – and hen – are well underway, and Ballygobbard is buzzing with rumours of its first celebrity wedding…

For those around her, everything is finally falling into place.

So why can’t Ais escape the feeling that something, somewhere is missing?

Overcoming by Vicky Phelan

When Vicky Phelan delivered an emotionally charged statement from the steps of the Four Courts in April 2018 – having refused to sign a non-disclosure agreement in the settlement of her action against the HSE – she unearthed the medical and political scandal of our times.

Since then, Vicky has become women’s voice for justice on the issue, and her system-changing activism has made her a household name. In her memoir Overcoming, Vicky shares her remarkable personal story, from a life- threatening accident in early adulthood through to motherhood, a battle with depression, her devastating later discovery that her cancer had returned in shocking circumstances – and the ensuing detective-like scrutiny of events that led the charge for her history-making legal action.

An inspiring story of rare resilience and power, Overcoming is an account of how one woman can move mountains – even when she is fighting for her own life – and of finding happiness and strength in the toughest of times.

That Will Never Work by Marc Randolph

Netflix co-founder and first CEO shares the behind-the-scenes origin story of the major international brand that has changed everything about how we consume TV and film.

In That Will Never Work, co-founder Marc Randolph recounts the incredible highs and lows behind creating Netflix.

From the early days figuring out what the business would be and raising the seed money, to taking on Blockbuster, going public and establishing Netflix’s unique business principles that underpin the success it enjoys today, That Will Never Work is one of the most thrilling and inspiring business stories that has yet to be told by a founder.

The Hiding Game by Louise Phillips

Abby Jones, a young nanny from a small town outside Boston, is the last person with infant Jacob Rotterdam when he becomes seriously ill. Within hours, tragically, he dies, and Abby is charged with his murder.

Heather Baxter, her defence attorney, knows the case is not as clear-cut as the Assistant District Attorney claims, and with enormous media attention on the trial, the stakes could not be higher.

When Heather digs deeper, the shadows of her own past, and her mother’s unsolved murder 25 years earlier, in the same small town, begin to unravel with deadly consequences, placing both Heather, and her young client in danger.

Filter This by Sophie White

Ali Jones is hell-bent on achieving her #lifegoals: 10,000 Instagram followers and a win at the upcoming Glosscar Influencer Awards. It’s a welcome distraction from dealing with her father’s illness and Instagram is the one part of her life where she feels in control.

So when she inadvertently leads people to believe she is sporting a baby bump and immediately gains thousands of followers, Ali realises that this could be her ticket to Insta-success. But, as Ali decides to ride the Mummy Influencer wave all the way to Glossacar glory, Tinder Sam resurfaces and is determined to take his new role as ‘baby daddy’ to Ali’s ‘bump’ seriously. Falling for Sam is not part of Ali’s Insta-plan …

Meanwhile, Ireland’s biggest influencer (and Ali’s idol) Shelly Divine has it all… at least on paper. But beneath the immaculately curated feed, cracks are appearing. As both women desperately try to keep their real lives offline while juggling their online lives, will they realise what’s truly important before they lose what matters most?

The Institute by Stephen King

Deep in the woods of Maine, there is a dark state facility where kids, abducted from across the United States, are incarcerated. In the Institute, they are subjected to a series of tests and procedures meant to combine their exceptional gifts – telepathy, telekinesis – for concentrated effect.

Luke Ellis is the latest recruit. He is just a regular 12-year-old, except he is not just smart, he is super-smart. And he has another gift, which the Institute wants to use…

Far away in a small town in South Carolina, former cop Tim Jamieson has taken a job working for the local sheriff. But he’s about to take on the biggest case of his career.

The Secrets We Kept by Lara Prescott

At the height of the cold war, two secretaries are pulled out of the typing pool at the CIA and given the assignment of a lifetime: to smuggle Doctor Zhivago out of the USSR and help Boris Pasternak’s new novel make its way into print around the world.

Sally Forrester is a seasoned spy who uses her magnetism and charm to pry secrets out of powerful men. Irina is a novice, and under Sally’s direction, quickly learns how to blend into a crowd, make connections and ferry classified documents all over Washington DC.

The Secrets We Kept combines a legendary literary love story – the decades-long love affair between Boris Pasternak and his mistress and muse, Olga, who went to prison for him and was the inspiration for Zhivago’s heroine, Lara – with a narrative about two American women whose lives of extraordinary intrigue and risk are entangled with the history of the CIA.

The Power of Nunchi by Euny Hong

Nunchi is a guiding principle of Korean life, considered essential for survival, happiness and success.Also known as the ‘Korean superpower’, nunchi is the art of reading a room, understanding what people are thinking, feeling and needing in that moment, and using that information to get what you want fromany given situation.

Roughly translating as ‘self-awareness’ or ‘emotional intelligence’, anyone can be more successful in work, love, and life by refining their nunchi.

Nunchi is a skill you can learn no matter who you are, where you are, or where you want to go. By using nothing more than your eyes and ears, nunchi will give you the ability to make deeper connections with the right people, shine at work, reduce social anxiety and navigate the world with ease.

Postscript by Cecelia Ahern

When Holly Kennedy is approached by a group calling themselves the PS, I Love You Club, her safe existence isturned on its head.

Inspired by her late husband Gerry’sletters, the club wants Holly to help them with their own parting messages for their loved ones to discover afterthey’re gone.

Holly is sure of one thing – no way is she being draggedback to the grief she has left behind. It’s taken seven years to reinvent herself, and she’s ready to move onwith her life. But Holly comes to realize that when youlove someone, there’s always one more thing to say…

Elevator Pitch by Linwood Barclay

It all begins on a Monday, when four people board an elevator in a Manhattan office tower. Each presses a button for their floor, but the elevator proceeds, non-stop, to the top. Once there, it stops for a few seconds, and then plummets – right to the bottom of the shaft.

It appears to be a horrific, random tragedy. But then, on Tuesday, it happens again, in a different Manhattan skyscraper. And when Wednesday brings yet another high-rise catastrophe, one of the most vertical cities in the world – and the nation’s capital of media, finance,and entertainment – is plunged into chaos.

Who is behind this? What do these deadly acts of sabotage have to do with the fingerless body found on the High Line? Two seasoned New York detectives and a straight-shooting journalist must race against time to find the answers . . .

A Single Thread by Tracy Chevalier

It is 1932, and the losses of the First World War are still keenly felt. Violet Speedwell, mourning for both her fiancé and her brother and regardedby society as a ‘surplus woman’ unlikely to marry, resolves to escape hersuffocating mother and strike out alone.

A new life awaits her in Winchester. Yes, it is one of draughty boarding- houses and sidelong glances at her naked ring finger from younger colleagues; but it is also a life gleaming with independence and opportunity.

Violet falls in with the broderers, a disparate group of women charged with embroidering kneelers for the Cathedral, and is soon entwined in their lives and their secrets. As the almost unthinkable threat of a second Great War appears on the horizon Violet collects afew secrets of her own that could just change everything…

Cold Storage by David Koepp

When Pentagon bioterror operative Roberto Diaz was sent to investigate a suspected biochemical attack, he found something far worse: a highly mutative organism capable of extinction- level destruction. He contained it and buried it in cold storage deep beneath a little-used military repository.

Now, after decades of festering in a forgotten sub-basement, the specimen has found its way out and is on a lethal feeding frenzy. Only Diaz knows how to stop it.

He races across the country to help two unwitting security guards –one an ex-con, the other a single mother. Over one harrowing night, the unlikely trio must figure out how to quarantine this horror again. All they have is luck, fearlessness, and a mordant sense of humour. Will that be enough to save all of humanity

Meet Me In Monaco by Hazel Gaynor and Heather Webb

Movie stars and paparazzi flock to Cannes for the glamorous film festival, but Grace Kelly, the biggest star of all, wants only to escape from the flash- bulbs.

When struggling perfumer Sophie Duval shelters Miss Kelly in her boutique, fending off a persistent British press photographer, James Henderson, a bond is forged between the two women and sets in motion a chain of events that stretches across thirty years of friendship, love and tragedy.

James Henderson cannot forget his brief encounter with Sophie Duval. Despite his guilt at being away from his daughter, he takes an assignmentto cover the wedding of the century, sailing with Grace Kelly’s weddingparty on the SS Constitution from New York. In Monaco, as wedding fever soars and passions and tempers escalate, James and Sophie – like Princess Grace – must ultimately decide what they are prepared to give up for love.

Period. by Emma Barnett

At a time when women around the world are raising their voices in the fight for equality, there is still one taboo where there remains a deafening silence: periods.

Period. will be an agenda-setting manifesto to remove the stigma and myths continuing to surround the female body.

Bold, unapologetic and a crusade to ignite conversation, this is a book for every woman – and man – everywhere.

A good book can do just about anything; from taking you on a wild and fantastical adventure to making you feel like an all-knowing super sleuth (if you figure out the killer twist).

But what’s good to read? Each week, #Bookmarked will help you out – with an insight into the best novels hitting shelves right now and other faves that everyone needs to read at least once in their lives.