5 new books to read this week

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Historical fiction proves a winner in this week’s round-up of new books…


1. The Whispering Muse by Laura Purcell is published in hardback by Raven Books, priced £14.99 (ebook £7.99). Available now

Set in Victorian London, this Gothic mystery novel sees Jenny Wilcox navigate tragedy, betrayal, dubious moral choices, and whispers of a mysterious mythical muse. The young woman, struggling to support her family, has her life turned upside down after she is hired by the wife of a West End theatre owner, to spy on their lead actress. Life seems to imitate art at The Mercury, a theatre specialising in tragic plays – and she had no idea what she was signing up for. Eerie throughout and surprisingly gory at times, this book is not for the fainthearted. Bursting with vibrant, believable characters and imagery that makes you feel like you’re there, the story will stay with you long after you put the book down.8/10(Review by Abbie Llewelyn)

2. Are You Happy Now by Hanna Jameson is published in hardback by Viking, priced £14.99 (ebook £7.99). Available now

This book will make you want to throw it across a room… and then pick it back up again. The plot follows an unlikely group of friends navigating a pandemic in New York. The so-called catatonia becomes the talk of the city, as people begin to sit down and simply never get up. Every member of the group is going through their own troubles, and each chapter allows you to explore the mind of each individual. At times, this is a hard book to read, as the emotions they are going through can hit a little too close to home. But this is a testament to the fantastic writing, making the story so easy to relate to. There is a blend of romance with dystopian future in the plot, making it really different from anything you might have read before. A fantastic read.8/10(Review by Randy Bainbridge)

3. A Wild & True Relation by Kim She...