I’m starting off the year with good intentions and organisation. Let’s see how long it lasts!
One of the things I would like to do is highlight to you each week a number of new releases that are coming out in the next 7 days. I’m going to try to share a variety of genres so that there is something for everyone. If by some miracle I’ve managed to read them ahead of publication date then I’ll share my review, however, I know my limitations. I may have good organisational intentions but reading to a schedule hasn’t worked well for me in the past!
The incredible true story of Ana Montes, the most damaging female spy in US history, drawing upon never-before-seen material and to be published upon her release from prison, for readers of Agent Sonya and A Woman of No Importance.
Just days after the 9-11 attacks, a senior Pentagon analyst eased her red Toyota Echo into traffic and headed to work. She never saw the undercover cars tracking her every turn. As she settled into her cubicle on the 6th floor of the Defense Intelligence Agency in Washington, FBI Agents and twitchy DIA officers were hiding in nearby offices. For this was the day that Ana Montes–the US Intelligence Community superstar who had just won a prestigious fellowship at the CIA–was to be arrested and publicly exposed as a secret agent for Cuba.
Like spies Aldrich Ames and Robert Hanssen before her, Ana Montes blindsided her colleagues with brazen acts of treason. For nearly 17 years, Montes succeeded in two high-stress jobs. By day, she was one of the government’s top Cuba experts, a buttoned-down GS-14 with shockingly easy access to classified documents. By night, she was on the clock for Fidel Castro, listening to coded messages over shortwave radio, passing US secrets to handlers in local restaurants, and slipping into Havana wearing a wig.
Montes didn’t just deceive her country. Her betrayal was intensely personal. Her mercurial father was a former US Army Colonel. Her brother and sister-in-law were FBI Special Agents. And her only sister, Lucy, also worked her entire career for the Bureau. The highlight of her distinguished 31 years as a Miami-based language specialist: Helping the FBI flush Cuban spies out of the United States. Little did Lucy or her family know that the greatest Cuban spy of all was sitting right next to them at Thanksgivings, baptisms, and weddings.
In Code Name Blue Wren, investigative journalist Jim Popkin weaves the tale of two sisters who chose two very different paths, plus the unsung heroes who had to fight to bring Ana to justice. With exclusive access to a “Secret” CIA behavioral profile of Ana, family memoirs, and Ana’s incriminating letters from prison, Popkin reveals the making of a traitor–a woman labelled “one of the most damaging spies in U.S. history” by America’s top counter-intelligence official.
After more than two decades in federal prison, Montes will be freed in January 2023. Code Name Blue Wren is a thrilling detective tale, an insider’s look at the clandestine world of espionage, and an intimate exploration of the dark side of betrayal.
Could you brave the wilderness with your HIGHLY SUSPICIOUS and UNFAIRLY CUTE ex-best friend?
BRADLEY GRAEME is pretty much perfect: he’s a star football player, manages his OCD well (enough) and comes out on top in all his classes . . . except the ones he shares with CELINE BANGURA.
They used to be best friends, until Brad decided he was too cool for conspiracy-theory-obsessed Celine and abandoned her for the popular kids’ table. (At least, that’s how Celine sees it.) These days, there’s nothing between them but insults and academic rivalry.
So when Celine signs up for a two-part survival course in the woods, the last thing she expects is to find Brad right beside her.
Forced to work as a team for the chance to win the grand prize, Celine and Bradley must trudge through not just mud and dirt but their messy past. As this adventure brings them closer together, they start to remember all the good parts of their history. But has too much time passed . . . or just enough to spark a whole new kind of relationship?
Inspired by her own family’s experiences following the 1979 Islamic Revolution, Susanne Pari explores the entangled lives within an Iranian American family grappling with generational culture clashes, the roles imposed on women, and a tragic accident that forces them to reconcile their guilt or forfeit their already tenuous bonds. Set between San Francisco and New Jersey in the late-1990’s, In the Time of Our History is a story about the universal longing to create a home in this world – and what happens when we let go of how we’ve always been told it should look.
Twelve months after her younger sister Anahita’s death, Mitra Jahani reluctantly returns to her parents’ home in suburban New Jersey to observe the Iranian custom of “The One Year.” Ana is always in Mitra’s heart, though they chose very different paths. While Ana, sweet and dutiful, bowed to their domineering father’s demands and married, Mitra rebelled, and was banished.
Caught in the middle is their mother, Shireen, torn between her fierce love for her surviving daughter and her loyalty to her husband. Yet his callousness even amid shattering loss has compelled her to rethink her own decades of submission. And when Mitra is suddenly forced to confront hard truths about her sister’s life, and the secrets each of them hid to protect others, mother and daughter reach a new understanding–and forge an unexpected path forward.
Alive with the tensions, sacrifices, and joys that thrum within the heart of every family, In the Time of Our History is also laced with the richness of ancient and modern Persian culture and politics, in a tale that is both timeless and profoundly relevant.
Three irresistible short stories by the global phenomenon Ali Hazelwood, now available together in paperback for the first time, with an exclusive bonus chapter.
Mara, Sadie, and Hannah are friends first, scientists always. Though their fields of study might take them to different corners of the world, they can all agree on this universal truth: when it comes to love and science, opposites attract, and rivals make you burn….
Under One Roof
An environmental engineer discovers that scientists should never cohabitate when she finds herself stuck with the roommate from hell – a detestable big-oil lawyer who won’t leave the thermostat alone.
Stuck with You
A civil engineer and her nemesis take their rivalry – and love – to the next level when they get stuck in a New York elevator.
A NASA aerospace engineer’s frozen heart melts as she lies injured and stranded at a remote Arctic research station and the only person willing to undertake the dangerous rescue mission is her longtime rival.
From the internationally bestselling author of A Dog’s Purpose and A Dog’s Way Home comes Love, Clancy: Diary of a Good Dog, a deeply moving story with a brand new cast of characters, including one very good dog.
You’ve probably never met someone like Clancy. He’s keeping a diary, he’s falling in love, there are rivals for his affections, he lives with his best friend and his worst enemy – even taken together, these factors are maybe not that unusual, except that Clancy is a dog. His point of view is therefore perhaps . . . different.
Told in W. Bruce Cameron’s signature style, a tremendous cast of wonderful characters find themselves jointly and separately navigating the challenges of life, of love, and . . . other pets, including Clancy’s “worst enemy” – one very disdainful cat. It’s a lot to keep track of, especially when things start to spin hilariously out of control, but fortunately, we’ve got the observations of Clancy, a very good dog, who shares a valuable perspective on what is really important.
A runaway queen. A reluctant prince. And a quest that may destroy them both.
Eight years have passed since the Battle of the Serpent. But in the icy north, Lady Nore of the Court of Teeth, has reclaimed the Ice Needle Citadel. There she is using an ancient relic to create monsters of stick and snow who will do her bidding and exact her revenge.
Suren, child queen of the Court of Teeth, and the one person with power over her mother, fled to the human world, where she lives feral in the woods. Lonely, and still haunted by the merciless torments she endured in the Court of Teeth, she bides her time by releasing mortals from foolish bargains. She believes herself forgotten until the storm hag Bogdana chases her through the night streets. Suren is saved by none other than Prince Oak, heir to Elfhame, to whom she was once promised in marriage and who she has resented for years.
Now seventeen, Oak is charming, beautiful and manipulative. He’s on a mission that will lead him into the north, and he wants Suren’s help. But if she agrees, it will mean guarding her heart against the boy she once knew and a prince she cannot trust, as well as confronting all the horrors she thought she had left behind.
Note: The ebook releases in January but the hardcover isn’t out until February
From New York Times bestselling author Rachel Hawkins comes a deliciously wicked gothic suspense, set at an Italian villa with a dark history, for fans of Lucy Foley and Ruth Ware.
As kids, Emily and Chess were inseparable. But by their 30s, their bond has been strained by the demands of their adult lives. So when Chess suggests a girls trip to Italy, Emily jumps at the chance to reconnect with her best friend.
Villa Aestas in Orvieto is a high-end holiday home now, but in 1974, it was known as Villa Rosato, and rented for the summer by a notorious rock star, Noel Gordon. In an attempt to reignite his creative spark, Noel invites up-and-coming musician, Pierce Sheldon to join him, as well as Pierce’s girlfriend, Mari, and her stepsister, Lara. But he also sets in motion a chain of events that leads to Mari writing one of the greatest horror novels of all time, Lara composing a platinum album––and ends in Pierce’s brutal murder.
As Emily digs into the villa’s complicated history, she begins to think there might be more to the story of that fateful summer in 1974. That perhaps Pierce’s murder wasn’t just a tale of sex, drugs, and rock & roll gone wrong, but that something more sinister might have occurred––and that there might be clues hidden in the now-iconic works that Mari and Lara left behind.
Yet the closer that Emily gets to the truth, the more tension she feels developing between her and Chess. As secrets from the past come to light, equally dangerous betrayals from the present also emerge––and it begins to look like the villa will claim another victim before the summer ends.
Inspired by Fleetwood Mac, the Manson murders, and the infamous summer Percy and Mary Shelley spent with Lord Byron at a Lake Geneva castle––the birthplace of Frankenstein––The Villa welcomes you into its deadly legacy.
Without a Trace is a moving tale of second chances and creating a life worth living from the Number One bestselling author, Danielle Steel.
Charlie Vincent feels trapped in his treadmill of a life. He’s wealthy and successful doing a job he doesn’t want to do, in a marriage to a woman where the romance died many years ago. All that interests Isabelle is his money to fund her extravagant lifestyle. The children have left home and there is nothing for him to look forward to.
One Friday evening he leaves work in Paris after yet another row with his CEO, to head to their Normandy chateau where Isabelle has invited guests for the weekend. He’s been working late every night, he’s tired and he’s not concentrating. Just an hour away from the chateau, his car veers off the road, down a cliff and into the sea. The accident should’ve killed him and he almost felt ready to die. However, he does escape the vehicle and he somehow finds the strength to climb to safety. The area is remote but in the growing darkness he sees a light on in a cottage in the woods. He knocks on the door and is greeted by Aude, an artist who is escaping her own demons.
This fateful meeting will change Charlie’s and Aude’s lives forever.