What I’ve Been Reading Lately: May 7

Welcome to What I’ve Been Reading Lately, a feature where I’ll be giving short reviews of what I’m currently reading:

Every Last Fear by Alex Finlay

After a late night of partying, NYU student Matt Pine returns to his dorm room to devastating news: nearly his entire family–his mom, his dad, his little brother and sister–have been found dead from an apparent gas leak while vacationing in Mexico. The local police claim it was an accident, but the FBI and State Department seem far less certain–and they won’t tell Matt why.

The tragedy makes headlines everywhere because this isn’t the first time the Pine family has been thrust into the media spotlight. Matt’s older brother, Danny–currently serving a life sentence for the murder of his teenage girlfriend Charlotte–was the subject of a viral true crime documentary suggesting that Danny was wrongfully convicted. Though the country has rallied behind Danny, Matt holds a secret about his brother that he’s never told anyone: the night Charlotte was killed Matt saw something that makes him believe his brother is guilty of the crime.

When Matt returns to his small hometown to bury his parents and siblings, he’s faced with a hostile community that was villainized by the documentary, a frenzied media, and memories he’d hoped to leave behind forever. Now, as the deaths in Mexico appear increasingly suspicious and connected to Danny’s case, Matt must unearth the truth behind the crime that sent his brother to prison–putting his own life in peril–and forcing him to confront his every last fear.

Back on the mystery train! And this one so far is fast paced and intriguing. Really excited to find out how it turns out!

A Poem for Every Spring Day edited by Allie Esiri

Within the pages of Allie Esiri’s gorgeous collection, A Poem for Every Spring Day, you will find verse that will transport you to vivid spring-time scenes, taking you from the first sighting of blossoms to Easter.

Perfect for reading aloud and sharing with all the family, this book dazzles with an array of familiar favourites and remarkable new discoveries selected from Allie Esiri’s bestselling poetry anthologies A Poem for Every Day of the Year and A Poem for Every Night of the Year. These seasonal poems – together with introductory paragraphs – have a link to the date on which they appear. (Credit: Macmillan Children’s Books

The joys of reading poetry when you are stress and burden is such a nice treat and I’m definitely going to need it for these upcoming weeks. I enjoyed reading A Poem for Every Winter Day so I know this one will be a treat!

Poems to Learn By Heart edited by Ana Sampson

These and many others are famous lines of poetry that often occur in everyday speech. But do you know the rest of the verse, or even the rest of the poem?

An anthology to warm the coldest heart or charm the least romantic soul, this is a collection of poems (or in some cases, extracts) that are not only memorable, but lend themselves to being learned by heart.

This is the perfect book for anyone with even the vaguest interest in poetry, providing a wonderful opportunity to revisit those much-loved lines remembered from earlier days. (Credit: Michael O’Mara)

Sampson always curates a great collection of poetry and I’m really excited to dive into this one!

The Lamplighters by Emma Stonex

It’s New Year’s Eve, 1972, when a boat pulls up to the Maiden Rock lighthouse with relief for the keepers. But no one greets them. When the entrance door, locked from the inside, is battered down, rescuers find an empty tower. A table is laid for a meal not eaten. The Principal Keeper’s weather log describes a storm raging round the tower, but the skies have been clear all week. And the clocks have all stopped at 8:45.

Two decades later, the wives who were left behind are visited by a writer who is determined to find the truth about the men’s disappearance. Moving between the women’s stories and the men’s last weeks together in the lighthouse, long-held secrets surface and truths twist into lies as we piece together what happened, why, and who to believe. (Credit: Viking)

It is slow paced but it does have an interesting premise with a compelling storyline so I’m interested to see how it turns out.


What I Plan to Read Next:

The Last Thing to Burn by Will Dean

On an isolated farm in the United Kingdom, a woman is trapped by the monster who kidnapped her seven years ago. When she discovers she is pregnant, she resolves to protect her child no matter the cost, and starts to meticulously plan her escape. But when another woman is brought into the fold on the farm, her plans go awry. Can she save herself, her child, and this innocent woman at the same time? Or is she doomed to spend the remainder of her life captive on this farm? (Credit: Atria Books)

Mirrorland by Carole Johnstone

Cat lives in Los Angeles, far away from 36 Westeryk Road, the imposing gothic house in Edinburgh where she and her estranged twin sister, El, grew up. As girls, they invented Mirrorland, a dark, imaginary place under the pantry stairs full of pirates, witches, and clowns. These days Cat rarely thinks about their childhood home, or the fact that El now lives there with her husband Ross.

But when El mysteriously disappears after going out on her sailboat, Cat is forced to return to 36 Westeryk Road, which has scarcely changed in twenty years. The grand old house is still full of shadowy corners, and at every turn Cat finds herself stumbling on long-held secrets and terrifying ghosts from the past. Because someone—El?—has left Cat clues in almost every room: a treasure hunt that leads right back to Mirrorland, where she knows the truth lies crouched and waiting…(Credit: Scribner)

The Shape of Darkness by Laura Purcell

As the age of the photograph dawns in Victorian Bath, silhouette artist Agnes is struggling to keep her business afloat. Still recovering from a serious illness herself, making enough money to support her elderly mother and her orphaned nephew Cedric has never been easy, but then one of her clients is murdered shortly after sitting for Agnes, and then another, and another… Why is the killer seemingly targeting her business?

Desperately seeking an answer, Agnes approaches Pearl, a child spirit medium lodging in Bath with her older half-sister and her ailing father, hoping that if Pearl can make contact with those who died, they might reveal who killed them.

But Agnes and Pearl quickly discover that instead they may have opened the door to something that they can never put back… (Credit: Bloomsbury)

Savage Her Reply by Deirdre Sullivan

A dark, feminist retelling of The Children of Lir told in Sullivan’s hypnotic prose. A retelling of the favourite Irish fairytale The Children of Lir. Aife marries Lir, a king with four children by his previous wife. Jealous of his affection for his children, the witch Aife turns them into swans for 900 years. Retold through the voice of Aife, Savage Her Reply is unsettling and dark, feminist and fierce, yet nuanced in its exploration of the guilt of a complex character. Voiced in Sullivan’s trademark rich, lyrical prose as developed in Tangleweed and Brine – the multiple award-winner which established Sullivan as the queen of witchy YA. Another dark & witchy feminist fairytale from the author of Tangleweed and Brine. (Credit: Little Island Books)




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