Thrillers, ro­mances and tragedies... this year’s se­lec­tion will

FIC­TION

Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Living - - BOOKS -

Anne Cun­ning­ham of­fers her top tips for the first half of the year

THE new year, as al­ways, prom­ises great new works of fic­tion. Here is my se­lec­tion of sto­ries to keep you turn­ing the pages. Peter Carey’s A Long Way from Home (Faber) is the story of a bru­tal road race across Aus­tralia in the 1950s. One to watch from the twice-win­ner of the Booker prize.

Two de­buts get­ting at­ten­tion are Sarah Vaughan’s Anatomy of a Scan­dal (Si­mon & Schus­ter) and Tony Kent’s Killer In­tent (El­liott & Thomp­son). The for­mer is about a high pro­file po­lit­i­cal mar­riage con­tain­ing se­crets that threaten to “rock West­min­ster”, while the lat­ter in­volves a plot to kill a for­mer US pres­i­dent in Lon­don.

An­other new writer at­tract­ing at­ten­tion is Imo­gen Her­mes Gowar, au­thor of The Mer­maid and Mrs Han­cock (Harvill Secker). This novel is set in Ge­or­gian Lon­don, where a ship­ping mer­chant dis­cov­ers he has lost his en­tire for­tune in the pur­chas­ing of a mer­maid.

Two Ir­ish au­thors have new books this month. Jo Spain’s lat­est thriller, The Con­fes­sion (Quer­cus) fol­lows the af­ter­math of the bru­tal mur­der of a dis­graced banker in Dublin, while Ali­son Walsh’s third novel The Week­end Dad (Ha­chette) in­volves a Dublin fa­ther trav­el­ling to Lon­don to meet the daugh­ter he didn’t know he had.

Ju­lian Barnes’ The Only Story (Jonathan Cape) is about the en­dur­ing love af­fair be­tween a 19-year-old boy and a mar­ried woman al­most three times his age. A novel about me­mory, love and re­gret.

David Mamet’s Chicago (Harper Collins) is a thriller set in the mob-rid­dled Chicago of the 1920s.

New Ir­ish writer Dan Shee­han’s de­but, Rest­less Souls (Wei­den­feld & Ni­chol­son) is de­scribed as “a novel about war and loss, male friend­ship and the power of home” and is en­dorsed by, among oth­ers, Colin Bar­rett and Colum Mccann.

Cathy Kelly’s lat­est is The Year that Every­thing Changed (Orion) and de­picts three women, three birthdays and three lives in sud­den cri­sis. Emma Han­ni­gan’s Let­ters to my Daugh­ters (Ha­chette) is about im­por­tant let­ters writ­ten by a re­cently de­ceased grand­mother that have in­ex­pli­ca­bly gone miss­ing.

Crime fic­tion fans have Chris Carter’s lat­est to look for­ward to. Gallery of the Dead (Si­mon & Schus­ter) sees the LAPD join forces with the FBI to track down a se­rial killer with a dif­fer­ence.

For­got­ten Ir­ish writer Nora Hoult is be­ing rein­tro­duced to the pub­lic with a vol­ume of her short sto­ries, Cock­tail Bar (New Is­land). In­tro-

Cathy Kelly (above) has a new ti­tle out in Fe­bru­ary. Photo: David Conachy. Mean­while Pat Mccabe (right) re­turns in April

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