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Book Features Emma's Anticipated Treasures Most Anticipated 2022 Paperback Publication Day Squadpod Squadpod Book Club Squadpod Recommends

Paperback Publication Day: All About Evie by Matson Taylor

Published: March 30th, 2023
Publisher: Scribner UK
Genre: Historical Fiction, Saga, Humorous Fiction, Adventure Fiction, LGBT Literarure, Gay Fiction, Holiday Fiction, Book Series

Happy Paperback Publication Day to All About Evie! This book is the second in one of my favourite series of all time. These books are guaranteed to lift your spirits and I challenge anyone not to fall in love with Evie.

Thank you to Scribner UK for the gifted copies of the book and the delightful Matson Taylor for arranging them for the Squadpod.

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SYNOPSIS:

EVIE EPWORTH IS TEN YEARS OLDER. BUT IS SHE ANY WISER?!

‘A golden ray of sunshine. If you’re after a funny, uplifting summer read then this is for you!’ Libby Page, author of The Lido

‘A joyous way to spend an afternoon.’ Joannna Nadin, author of The Double Life of Daisy Hemmings


Yorkshire Post: ‘Taylor’s writing is sublime, effortlessly combining humour with pathos and spot-on period detail while sensitively exploring themes such as loss, grief, love and death. It’s sure to be another hit.’ Yorkshire Post

‘A thoroughly uplifting and unputdownable sequel to the bestselling The Miseducation of Evie Epworth.’ Waterstones


1972. Ten years on from the events of The Miseducation of Evie Epworth and Evie is settled in London working for the BBC. She has everything she’s ever dreamed of (a career, a leatherette briefcase, an Ossie Clark poncho) but, following an unfortunate incident involving Princess Anne and a Hornsea Pottery mug, she finds herself having to rethink her life and piece together work, love, grief and multiple pairs of cork-soled platform sandals. 

Ghosts from the past and the spirit of the future collide in a joyous adventure that sees Evie navigate the choppy waters of her messy twenties. Can a 1960s miseducation prepare her for the growing pains of the 1970s?

Big-hearted, uplifting, bittersweet and tender, All About Evie is a novel fizzing with wit and alive to the power of friendship in all its forms. 

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MY REVIEW:

When the previous book in a series is not only one of your favourite books of that year, but of all time, there is some trepidation about reading the follow up. Would I enjoy this one as much and still love Evie with the same fierceness? The answer is yes! Once again Matson Taylor has knocked it out of the park with this hilarious, heartwarming and addictive novel that feels like a cup of Yorkshire tea and a piece of parkin on a cold day.  

This time, Taylor transports us to the Summer of 1972, 10 years after the events of The Miseducation of Evie Epworth, to reunite us with the eponymous heroine for more entertaining exploits. Evie is working for the BBC and living the life she’s always dreamed of  in London when a mishap involving Princess Anne and a Hornsea mug leads to her dismissal, and Evie is now forced to reassess her life. But what direction will she choose from the overwhelming number of possibilities open to her? And then there is her love life. At the ripe old age of 26 and a half she feels in danger of becoming over-the-hill and wonders why she hasn’t yet met Mr. Right. There is fun, laughter and lots of emotion, as Evie embarks on her greatest journey of self discovery yet.

Oh, Evie. How I love her. She truly feels like an old friend and I never get tired of reading her. She’s an iconic northern heroine who pole-vaults off the pages and straight into your heart. It is a slightly more sophisticated and wise Evie we meet in this book, yet she’s still the same feisty, funny, quirky and unforgettable Yorkshire lass we love. It has been great to watch her grow and I loved her metamorphosis from teenager to young woman in this story. And the snippets of information about her ex boyfriends were hilarious. 

Matson Taylor is a comedy genius and had me laughing out loud within the first few pages. He has a talent for writing witty, offbeat and uproarious characters and storylines that are also heartfelt. He paces the story perfectly, switching seamlessly between the serious and lighter moments to ensure things never feel too heavy. There are so many moments that were pure comedy gold and still make me laugh when they randomly pop into my head many months after reading the book. The evocative imagery and attention to detail brought 1970s London to life so vividly it felt like I’d stepped into a time machine and appeared in 1972. The book is filled with blasts from the past: Old Jamaica bars, Wimpy burgers, cheese and pineapple hedgehogs etc. I was assailed by memories and the nostalgia took over and thoroughly enjoyed the walk down memory lane.

Uplifting, witty and utterly magnificent, All About Evie is another must-read from Mr. Taylor. And that ending! I need book 3 now!

Rating: ✮✮✮✮✮

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MEET THE AUTHOR:

Matson Taylor grew up in Yorkshire (the flat part not the Brontë part). He comes from farming stock and spent an idyllic childhood surrounded by horses, cows, bicycles, and cheap ice-cream. His father, a York City and Halifax Town footballer, has never forgiven him for getting on the school rugby team but not getting anywhere near the school football team.

Matson now lives in London, where he is a design historian and academic writing tutor at the V&A, Imperial College and the Royal College of Art. Previously, he talked his way into various jobs at universities and museums around the world; he has also worked on Camden Market, appeared in an Italian TV commercial and been a pronunciation coach for Catalan opera singers. He gets back to Yorkshire as much as possible, mainly to see family and friends but also to get a reasonably-priced haircut.

He has always loved telling stories and, after writing academically about beaded flapper dresses and World War 2 glow-in-the-dark fascinators, he decided to enrol on the Faber Academy ‘Writing A Novel’ course. The Miseducation of Evie Epworth is his first novel. 

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BUY THE BOOK:

Waterstones*| Amazon* | Bookshop.org* (Indie Edtion) | Berts Books (Indie Edition)

You can buy the Indie Edition with yellow spredges from your local independent bookshop.

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Thanks for reading Bibliophiles xxxx

*These purchase links are affiliate links

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Blog Tours book reviews Emma's Anticipated Treasures Most Anticipated 2023 Squadpod Book Club Squadpod Recommends Support Debuts

BOOK REVIEW: The Secrets of Hartwood Hall by Katie Lumsden

Published: March 30th, 2023
Publisher: Michael Joseph
Genre: Gothic Fiction, Historical Fiction, Mystery, Suspense, Historical Mystery
Format: Hardcover, Kindle, Audiobook

Welcome to my review of this atmospheric, haunting and eerie gothic debut. Thank you to Michael Joseph for the gifted proof copy, which was the Squadpod Book Club pick for March.

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SYNOPSIS:

The mysterious and atmospheric debut novel perfect for fans of Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre, Stacey Halls and Bridget Collins

‘I loved this fresh take on the gothic genre. Vivid, haunting, surprising’ STACEY HALLS, bestselling author of The Familiars

‘A full-blooded gothic mystery with bite, great characterisation and heaps of atmosphere’ EMMA STONEX, bestselling author of The Lamplighters

‘With echoes of Jane Eyre but with a heart of its own . . . A suspenseful and beautifully crafted novel filled with atmosphere, rich characters and plenty of layers to keep a reader hooked right to the end’ SUSAN STOKES-CHAPMAN, bestselling author of Pandora
_________

1852.

Margaret Lennox is offered a position as governess at Hartwood Hall. She quickly accepts, hoping this isolated country house will allow her to leave her past behind.

But Margaret soon starts to feel there’s something odd about her new home, despite her growing fondness for her bright, affectionate pupil, Louis.

Strange figures move through the dark.
Tensions rise between the servants.
The east wing sits eerily abandoned . . .

Even stranger is the local gossip surrounding Mrs Eversham, Louis’s widowed mother, who is deeply distrusted by the nearby village.

Margaret is certain that everyone has something to hide.

But as her own past threatens to catch up with her, she must learn to trust her instincts before it’s too late . . .

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MY REVIEW:

“Folks say it’s cursed, but I dare say a lady like yourself wouldn’t believe such talk.”

1852. Newly widowed Margaret Lennox is offered a position as governess at Hartwood Hall. She swiftly accepts, hoping that the isolated country house will be the new start she needs. But it isn’t long before Margaret feels that something isn’t quite right at her new home and begins to wonder if there are dark secrets being hidden at Hartwood Hall…

A Victorian gothic mystery with themes of shadows, darkness, secrets, grief and ghosts interwoven into the plot, The Secrets of Hartwood Hall is a truly magnificent debut. Atmospheric, eerie and subtly tense, I was hooked from the first lines and sure this was going to be a book I loved reading. And it was. So much so that I had to force myself to put it down in the early hours after reading most of it in one sitting. I was so desperate to keep reading to the end that I even considered cancelling my plans the next morning. But the next day I found myself delaying picking it up as I was torn between wanting to know what happened and never wanting it to end. 

“When I think of Hartwood Hall, there are moments that come back to me again and again, moments that stain me, that cling like ink to my skin.”

Laden with vivid descriptions, a cast of secretivecharacters, and a gripping plot, Katie Lumsden has crafted a twist-filled mystery that lingers long after reading. She sets the atmosphere perfectly, giving me vibes of Daphne Du Maurier’s Rebecca as the sense of dread deepens and the unrelenting darkness becomes more prominent. Yet, it never feels too heavy as Lumsden cleverly balances it out with slices of love, hope and joy interwoven into the narrative. The lines between reality and imagination are expertly blurred as Lumsden creates a chilling atmosphere with a supernatural undercurrent, making us question what’s really going on. Then, when she’s lulled you into thinking you’ve got things all figured out, she whips the rug from under you to reveal something else entirely. 

Without great characters and a compelling protagonist I don’t think you can really connect to a book. Thankfully, this has both of those in abundance. The narrator, Margaret, is an intelligent, fierce, curious and determined woman who also has a mystery surrounding her past that keeps the reader guessing. Very recently widowed and left with nothing, we know Margaret is looking for a fresh start after her miserable marriage but there is also the sense that she’s running from something, both literally and metaphorically. I loved her bond with her young charge, Louis, which features prominently in the story. A strange, isolated, sickly looking child, Louis is actually very sweet. His excitement about the little joys in life that others take for granted was infectious and I quickly developed a strong affection for him, just as Margaret did. 
Louis’ mother, Mrs Eversham is an elusive character and the history of her and her son is a mystery to both the villagers and the reader. I was never sure if I could trust Mrs. Eversham and got the sense that she was keeping secrets from the start. She also seemed strangely overprotective of her son and had some rules that seemed quite over the top. Like Margaret I was eager to know what it was she was hiding. Could it really be something sinister? 

“I supposed that hers had not been a happy marriage either, that she, too, had found both guilt and relief in widowhood. 
Well, we were both free now. A strange link to hold the two of us together.”

Exploring themes of women’s rights, the story is told in a time where women had few rights, were owned by their fathers or husbands, and a woman without a man was viewed with suspicion. We see this in Mrs. Eversham’s character and the talks of a curse that surround Hartwood Hall. These are rooted in the fact that she came to the village alone, leading villagers to surmise that she is clearly up to no good. But we know little about her past and it is through Margaret that we mostly see this topic explored. Margaret has found freedom from her bad marriage in widowhood, and is trying to find the parts of herself she lost during those years. As a woman who has the privilege of modern independence and rights and having been in an abusive marriage, the idea of the law supporting abusive husbands and giving them ownership of their wives and children fills me with horror. I am so grateful to have had the right to leave, get divorced and keep custody of my child. I enjoyed reading a story featuring women who are attempting to take control of their own destinies and assert their independence.

Claustrophobic, haunting and suspenseful, The Secrets of Hartwood Hall is a sensational debut. Gothic and historical fiction fans will love this spine-chilling mystery, particularly those with a taste for Victoriana. Highly recommended. 

Rating: ✮✮✮✮.5

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MEET THE AUTHOR:

Katie Lumsden read Jane Eyre at the age of thirteen and never looked back. She spent her teenage years devouring nineteenth century literature, reading every Dickens, Brontë, Gaskell, Austen and Hardy novel she could find. She has a degree in English literature and history from the University of Durham and an MA in creative writing from Bath Spa University. Her short stories have been shortlisted for the London Short Story Prize and the Bridport Prize, and have been published in various literary magazines. Katie’s Youtube channel, Books and Things, has more than 25,000 subscribers. She lives in London and works in publishing.

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BUY THE BOOK:

Waterstones | Amazon | Bookshop.org

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Thanks for reading Bibliophiles xxx

*Purchase links are affiliate links

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book reviews Emma's Anticipated Treasures Most Anticipated 2023 Squadpod Squadpod Book Club Squadpod Recommends

BOOK REVIEW: I’ll Never Tell by Philippa East

Published: January 5th, 2023
Publisher: HQ
Genre: Suspense, Thriller, Psychological Ficiton, Domestic Fiction
Format: Paperback, Kindle, Audiobook

I’ll Never Tell was the Squadpod Book Club pick for January. Tense and twisty, this one had me on the edge of my seat! Thank you to HQ for the gifted proof and Philippa East for a great month of events.

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SYNOPSIS:
Gripping new suspense from the author of Little White Lies

‘A tense, cat and mouse tale . . . a compelling read’ Catherine Cooper, Sunday Times bestselling author of The Chateau

‘Had me gripped from start to finish. So original and clever’ Lesley Kara, Sunday Times bestselling author of The Apartment Upstairs

‘Wow! What a book! I couldn’t read it fast enough. The tension and pace were absolute magic’ Lauren North, author of All the Wicked Games

Keep your family close, and your secrets closer…

To the outside world, the Goodlights are perfect.

Julia is a lawyer, Paul a stay-at-home dad who has dedicated his life to helping their daughter Chrissie achieve her dreams as a talented violinist.

But on the night of a prestigious music competition, which has the power to change everything for Chrissie and her family, Chrissie goes missing.

She puts on the performance of a lifetime, then completely disappears. Suddenly every single crack, every single secret that the family is hiding risks being exposed.

Because the Goodlights aren’t perfect. Not even close.

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MY REVIEW:

“A sense of horror begins to creep through him, a sense of reality cracking apart. It feels as though the last forty-eight hours is unravelling backwards, all the dot-to-dot connections coming apart. He thought he had this; he thought he knew what he was doing… Now everything he’s assumed has been flipped on its head.”

To everyone they know, the Goodlights seem like the perfect, happy family. Julie is a lawyer, Paul is a stay-at-home dad who is committed to helping their daughter Christie, a talented violinist, achieve her dreams. But the truth is completely different and the Goodlights are each hiding secrets that could tear them apart. And when Christie goes missing, their secrets risk being revealed. Can they find their daughter while keeping their secrets safe? Or will their perfect facade finally be exposed?

I’ll Never Tell was the January pick for the Squadpod Book Club. And what an incredible way to start our 2023 reading! Tense, twisty and unexpected, I devoured this book. I loved Philippa East’s debut, Little White Lies, but this one surpassed my already high expectations. The fast-paced plot kept me on the edge of my seat from start to finish and I loved that it was so hard to predict, my mind swimming with a multitude of questions and possibilities as the story unfolded.  And that ending! It came out of the blue and left my jaw on the floor. I did not see it coming. 

It’s no secret how much I love an unreliable narrator, and this book has two of them. Paul and Julie are not only hiding secrets from the police, but each other. Secrets that threaten to tear their happy family apart if discovered. The air is thick with suspicion and suspense, the lies they are trying to keep concealed threatening to choke them. They are flawed, shady and broken, but utterly compelling to read. And while I had my misgivings about them, I was hoping to be proven wrong and rooting for them to get their daughter back safely. And though Chrissie is at the centre of the story, we only really see her through the eyes of others, which I felt was a great decision by the author as it made her character even more cryptic and elusive, adding to the veil of mystery that surrounds her. The fact that we don’t know if she has been taken or run away also adds to the mystery, all coming together to create an awful, inescapable tension. 

Atmospheric, gripping and nerve-shatteringly tense, this is a thriller you need on your TBR.

Rating: ✮✮✮✮.5

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MEET THE AUTHOR:

Philippa East is a fiction writer with HQ/HarperCollins and she also works as a clinical psychologist.

Philippa grew up in Scotland before moving to Oxford and then London to complete her clinical psychology training. A few years ago, she left the NHS to set up her own part-time practice and dedicate more hours to writing. The result was her debut novel LITTLE WHITE LIES, which was longlisted for The Guardian’s Not-The-Booker Prize and shortlisted for the CWA “New Blood” Award 2020.

Released in 2021, Philippa’s second book SAFE AND SOUND is another twisty and compelling tale. For a fun preview, check out the video trailer on Philippa’s Amazon Author page (best with sound on!). Philippa’s brilliant third book, I’LL NEVER TELL, will release in January 2023 and is available to pre-order via Amazon now. You can hear more about the book via Philippa’s latest two Author Update videos on this page.

Philippa now lives in the beautiful Lincolnshire countryside with her spouse and cat. She loves reading (of course!) and long country walks, and she also performs in a local folk duo called The Miracle Cure. Alongside her writing, Philippa continues to work as a psychologist and therapist.

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BUY THE BOOK:

Waterstones | Amazon | Bookshop.org

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Thanks for reading Bibliophiles xxx

*All purchase links are affiliate links

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Squadpod Squadpod Book Club The Squadpod Year In Review

Squadpod Recommends: 22 of 22

Happy New Year’s Eve! One of my favourie parts of this community is the Squadpod, the group of wonderful bloggers I am a part of. 2022 has been a brilliant year for us and we’ve been fortunate to help promote lots of fantastic books this year including All About Evie, Nobody But Us, The Dictator’s Wife, Meredith Alone and Bad Fruit. The cake blast for All About Evie was a higlight of 2022 for me and I am delighted that I overcame my fears to take part in interviews with authors such as Freya Berry and Ellen Alpsten.

Once again we have put together our lists of favourite reads of the year. It’s an even more diverse list than last year and I loved seeing the different books we enjoyed, as well as the ones that many of us picked as a favourite. Here are our individual lists. Keep reading to the end to find out our Squadpod Book of the Year and ultimate recommendations for 2022.

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Becca at Becca Kate Blogs

  • The Christie Affair by Nina de Gramont
  • The Maid by Nita Prose
  • Three Hours by Rosamund Lupton
  • The Clockwork Girl by Anna Mazzola
  • A Fatal Crossing by Tom Hindle
  • One Night on the Island by Josie Silver
  • Greenwich Park by Katherine Faulkner
  • Rock Paper Scissors by Alice Feeney
  • The Paris Apartment by Lucy Foley
  • Yinka, Where Is Your Huzband? by Lizzie Damilola Blackburn
  • Welcome To Your Life by Bethany Rutter
  • That Green-Eyed Girl by Julie Owen Moylan
  • The Man Who Died Twice by Richard Osman
  • Meredith Alone by Claire Alexander
  • Do No Harm by Jack Jordan
  • All About Evie by Matson Taylor
  • Hello, Stranger by Rachel Marks
  • The Girl on the 88 Bus by Freya Sampson
  • Wrong Place Wrong Time by Gillian McAllister
  • It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover
  • Tell Me Everything by Laura Kay

Book of the year: The Maid by Nita Prose

Beth at Beth’s Booketlist

  • One Night on the Island by Josie Silver
  • One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid
  • You and Me on Vacation by Emily Henry
  • Mad Honey by Jodi Picoult and Jennifer Finney Boylan
  • It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover
  • The Sight of You Holly Miller
  • The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazewood
  • Me by Elton John
  • Grown by Tiffany D. Jackson
  • The Stranding by Kate Sawyer
  • Empire of the Vampire by Jay Kristoff
  • Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly
  • Meet Me Under the Misteltoe by Jenny Bayliss
  • The Island Home by Libby Page
  • Beyond the Wand by Tom Felton
  • The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah
  • In the Dream House by Carmen Maria Machado
  • Still Me by Jojo Moyes
  • Beach Read by Emily Henry
  • The Ballad of Never After by Stephanie Garber
  • Aristotle and Dante Dive into the Waters of the Wrold by Benjamin Alire Sanez
  • The Woman They Could Not Silence by Kate Moore

Book of the year: One Night on the Island by Josie Silver

Cara at Welsh Book Lover

  • When I Was Ten by Fiona Cummins
  • The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood
  • Do No Harm by Jack Jordan
  • Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover
  • The Maid by Nita Prose
  • The Castaway by Lucy Clarke
  • Nobody But Us by Laure van Rensburg
  • Reckless Girls by Rachel Hawkins
  • Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
  • The Soulmate Equation by Christina Lauren
  • The Retreat by Sarah Pearse
  • Bad Fruit by Ella King
  • November 9 by Colleen Hoover
  • The Housemaid by Sarah A. Denzil
  • The Road Trip by Beth O’Leary
  • Beach Read by Emily Henry
  • The Wife Upstairs by Rachel Hawkins
  • The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena
  • The Cove by Alice Clarke-Platts
  • The Couple by Helly Acton
  • A Stranger in the House by Shari Lapena
  • The Glass House by Eve Chase

Book of the year: When I Was Ten by Fiona Cummins

Ceri at Ceri’s Lil Blog

  • Meredith Alone by Claire Alexander
  • Open Water by Caleb Azumah Nelson
  • The Attic Child by Lola Jaye
  • The Unravelling by Polly Crosby
  • When I Was Ten by Fiona Cummins
  • Welcome To The Real World by Carole Matthews
  • The First Day of Spring by Nancy Tucker
  • The Bay by Allie Reynolds
  • Oh I Do Like To Be by Rachel Canwell
  • The Set Up by Lizzy Dent
  • You Only Live Once by Maxine Morrey
  • The Murder List by Jackie Kabler
  • The Killer’s Family by Miranda Smith
  • A Wedding at Hedgehod Hollow by Jessica Redland
  • What Next? by Shari Low
  • Greenwich Park by Katherine Faulkner
  • Locked Away Life by Drew Davies
  • Psychopaths Anonymous by Will Carver
  • The Gingerbread Cafe by Anita Faulkner
  • The Christmas Bookshop by Jenny Colgan
  • Wendy’s Winter Gift by Debbie Viggiano

Book of the year: Meredith Alone by Claire Alexander

Chloe from Reviews by Chloe

  • The Last Party by Clare Mackintosh
  • Just Got Real by Jane Fallon
  • Do No Harm by Jack Jordan
  • The Girls Who Disappeared by Clare Douglas
  • Wrong Place Wrong Time by Gillian McAllister
  • A Terrible Kindness by Jo Browning Wroe
  • Two Nights in Lisbon by Chris Pavone
  • The Family Remains by Lisa Jewell
  • The Clockwork Girl by Anna Mazzola
  • The Woman Who Stole My Life by Marian Keyes
  • The Wedding Party by Tammy Cohen
  • The Promise by Lucy Diamond
  • Sparring Partners by John Grisham
  • After the Rain by Lucy Dillon
  • A White Christmas on Winter Street by Sue Moorcroft
  • The Murder at Fleet House by Lucinda Riley
  • Take Your Breath Away by Linwood Barclay
  • The Curfew by T.M. Logan
  • Insomnia by Sarah Pinborough
  • The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune
  • Merrily Ever After by Cathy Bramley
  • Breathless by Amy McCulloch

Book of the year: Do No Harm by Jack Jordan

Claire at Secret World of a Book

  • The Burning Chambers and City of Tears Series by Kate Mosse
  • Elektra by Jennifer Saint
  • Off Target by Eve Smith
  • Small Angels by Lauren Owen
  • The Dance Tree by Kiran Millwood Hargreaves
  • Wisewood by Stephanie Wrobel
  • Argo by Mark Knowles
  • Arcadian Days by John Spurling
  • Stone Blind by Natalie Haynes
  • The House with the Golden Door by Elodie Harper
  • Summer Fever by Kate Riordan
  • Uraveller by Frances Hardinge
  • The Sea Women by Chloe Timms
  • Widdershins and Sunwise series by Helen Steadman
  • Love and Other Human Errors by Bethany Clift
  • Black Mamba by William Friend
  • The Ruins by Phoebe Wynne
  • The Whispering Muse by Laura Purcell
  • The Ghost Woods by C.J. Cooke
  • The Butcher by Laura Kat Young
  • House of Hunger by Alexis Henderson

Book of the year: Black Mamba by William Friend

Clare at The Fallen Librarian Reviews

  • Love and Other Human Errors by Bethany Clift
  • Little Sister by Gytha Lodge
  • Young Women by Jessica Moor
  • A Little Hope by Ethan Joella
  • The Diamond Eye by Kate Quinn
  • The Kitchen Front by Jennifer Ryan
  • The Library by Bella Osborne
  • Home by Penny Parks
  • Fledgeling by Hannah Bourne-Taylor
  • The Reading List by Sara Nisha Adams
  • Meredith Alone by Claire Alexander
  • The Language of Food by Annabel Abbs
  • Shrines of Gaiety by Kate Mosse
  • The Very Secret Societ of Irregular Witches by Sangu Mandanna
  • The Keeper of the Stories by Sally Page
  • Notes on an Execution by Danya Kukafka
  • The Gosling Girl by Jacqueline Roy
  • The People on Platform 5 by Clare Pooley
  • More Than You’ll Ever Know by Katie Guiterrez
  • Opal Country by Chris Hammer
  • Daughter of the Moon Goddess/Heart of the Sun Warrior by Sue Lyn Tan
  • Heart of Earth & Blood/House of Sky & Breath by Sarah J. Maas

Book of the year: Shrines of Gaiety by Kate Mosse

Ellie at Elspells

  • I, Mona Lisa by Natasha Solomon
  • Great Circle by Maggie Shipstead
  • This One Sky Day by Leone Ross
  • Wahala by Nikki May
  • A Net For Small Fishes by Lucy Jago
  • The Confessions of Frannie Langton by Sara Collins
  • The Marsh House by Zoe Somerville
  • Nobody But Us by Laure van Rensburg
  • When I Sing, Mountains Dance by Irene Solà translated by Mara Feye Lethem
  • How Much of These Hills Is Gold by C Pam Zhang
  • That Green-Eyed Girl by Julie Owen Moylan
  • Love and Other Dramas by Ronali Collins
  • All About Evie by Matson Taylor
  • The Promise by Damon Galgut
  • The House with the Golden Door by Elodie Harper
  • The Heart of Redness by Zakes Md
  • The Dust Never Settles by Karina Lickorish Quinn
  • 10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World by Elif Shafak 
  • Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin
  • Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus
  • Peach Blossom Spring by Melissa Fu
  • The Dance Tree by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

Book of the Year: Peach Blossom Spring by Melissa Fu

Emma at Emma’s Biblio Treasures

  • Wahala by Nikki May
  • The Language of Food by Annabel Abbs
  • Nasty Little Cuts by Tina Baker
  • Keep It In The Family by John Marrs
  • Yinka, Where Is Your Huzband? by Lizzie Damilola Blackburn
  • Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus
  • The No-Show by Beth O’Leary
  • Nobody But Us by Laure van Rensburg
  • Elektra by Jennifer Saint
  • Book Lovers by Emily Henry
  • Take My Hand by Dolen Perkins-Valdez
  • The House with the Golden Door by Elodie Harper
  • Do No Harm by Jack Jordan
  • Daisy Darker by Alice Feeney
  • Isaac and the Egg by Bobby Palmer
  • The Last Girl To Die by Helen Fields
  • Shrines of Gaiety by Kate Atikinson
  • All About Evie by Matson Taylor
  • The Pain Tourist by Paul Cleave
  • End of Story by Louise Swanson
  • Mad Honey by Jodi Picoult and Jennifer Finney Boyland
  • The Mysterious Case of the Alperton Angels by Janice Hallett

Book of the year: End of Story by Louise Swanson

Hayley at The Lotus Readers Blog

  • The Maid by Nita Prose
  • The Last Girl To Die by Helen Fields
  • Black Hearts by Doug Johnstone
  • Meredith Alone by Claire Alexander
  • The Blackhouse by Carole Johnstone
  • The Sea Women by Chloe Timms
  • That Green-Eyed Girl by Julie Owen Moylan
  • The Whalebone Theatre by Joanna Quinn
  • Memphis by Tara M. Stringfellow
  • The Flames by Sophie Haydock
  • Take My Hand by Dolen Perkins-Valdez
  • Peach Blossom Spring by Melissa Fu
  • Yinka, Where Is Your Huzband? by Lizzie Damilola Blackburn
  • The Theatre of Marvells by Lianne Dillsworth
  • The Marsh House by Zoe Somerville
  • The Unravelling by Polly Crosby
  • The Dazzle of the Light by Georgina Clarke
  • The Skeleton Key by Erin Kelly
  • House of Fortune by Jessie Burton
  • All About Evie by Matson Taylor
  • Demon by Matt Wesolowski
  • Caged Little Birds by Lucy Banks

Hayley at Shelf Lyfe

  • Now She Is Witch by Kirsty Logan
  • Unraveller by Frances Hardinge
  • The Witches of Vardø by Anya Bergman
  • Cunning Women by Elizabeth Lee
  • Becoming Ted by Matt Cain
  • Entangled Lifeby Merlin Sheldrake
  • The Book of Gothel by Mary McMyne
  • The House with the Golden Door by Elodie Harper
  • Sistersong by Lucy Holland
  • A Little Hope by Ethan Joella
  • The Beauty of Impossible Things by Rachel Donohue
  •  The Green Indian Problem – Jade Leaf Willetts
  • Perimenopause Power by Maisie Hill
  • Plain Bad Heroines by Emily M Danforth
  • The Dictator’s Wife by Freya Berry
  • Duma Key by Stephen King
  •  Spooky Ambiguous – featuring Penny Ayers, Michael Bartlett, Patrick Booth, Amaris Chase, Holly Anne Crawford, Ivor Daniel, Amanda Jane Davies, Daphne Denley, J. J. Drover, Harriet Hitchen, Rebecca McDowall, Jane Phillips, Angela Reddaway, Joe Robson, Margaret Royall, with illustrations by Lorna Gray
  • Salmacis by Elizabeth Train-Brown
  • Welcome to St Hell by Lewis Hancox
  • The Marsh House by Zoe Somerville
  • Women and Love by Miriam Burke
  • The Little Library Parties by Kate Young

Book of the year: Now She Is Witch by Kirsty Logan

Jackie at Jackie’s Reading Corner

Due to ill health Jackie didn’t complete a full list, but mentioned the following three books:

  • The Coffin Club by Jacqueline Sutherland
  • All About Evie by Matson Taylor
  • The Loyal Friend by A. A. Chaudhuri

Book of the year: The Coffin Club by Jacqueline Sutherland

Jen at Travels Along My Bookshelf

  • Violetta by Isabelle Allende
  • One Night on the Island by Josie Silver
  • The Flames by Sophie Haydock
  • Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus
  • Small Things Like These by Claire Keegan
  • Nobody But Us by Laure van Rensburg
  • The Midnight House by Amanda Gerard
  • The People on Platform 5 by Clare Pooley
  • The Girl on the 88 Bus by Freya Sampson
  • The Bay by Allie Reynolds
  • Meredith Alone by Clare Alexander
  • On The Scent by Paola Totaro & Robert Wainwright
  • All About Evie by Matson Taylor
  • Love and Other Human Errors by Bethany Clift
  • Starling by Kristen Cram
  • Thunderstone by Nancy Campbell
  • Tess of The D’Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy
  • The Last Girl To Die by Helen Fields
  • Essex Dogs by Dan Jones
  • The Hastening Storm by CF Barrington
  • Bourneville by Jonathan Coe
  • The Whalebone Theatre by Joanna Quinn

Book of the year: Starling by Kristin Cram

Karen at Book Blogging Bureau

  • Love and Other Human Errors by Bethany Clift
  • The Retreat by Sarah Pearse
  • Caged Little Birds by Lucy Banks
  • Bad Fruit by Ella King
  • Isaac and the Egg by Bobby Palmer
  • Reasons To Go Outside by Esme King
  • The Summer Fair by Heidi Swain
  • Nobody But Us by Laure van Rensburg
  • The People on Platform 5 by Clare Pooley
  • A Tidy Ending by Joanna Cannon
  • The House with the Golden Door by Elodie Harper
  • The Language of Food by Annabel Abbs
  • Stepping Up by Sarah Turner
  • A Murder Before Evensong by Rev Richard Coles
  • Yinka, Where Is Your Huzband? by Lizzie Damilola Taylor
  • Essex Dogs by Dan Jones
  • The Dead of Winter by Nicola Upson
  • Reputation by Sarah Vaughan
  • The House at Helgyen by Victoria Hawthorne
  • Spring Tides at The Starfish Cafe by Jessica Redland
  • The Other Guest by Helen Cooper
  • The Key in the Lock by Beth Underwood

Book of the year: The Language of Food by Annabel Abbs

Kate at Rutherford Reads

  • Good Husbands by Cate Ray
  • Hello, Stranger by Rachel Marks
  • We Are Not Like Them by Jo Piazza and Christine Pride
  • The People Before by Charlotte Northedge
  • One Last Gift by Emily Stone
  • The Blame Game by Sandie Jones
  • The Bay by Allie Reynolds
  • The Other Guest by Helen Cooper
  • Daisy Darker by Alice Feeney
  • The Party House by Lin Anderson
  • The Last Party by Clare Mackintosh
  • Such A Good Mother by Helen Monks Tar
  • The Reunion by Polly Phillips
  • The Girl Who Left by Jenny Blackburn
  • Sun Damage by Sabine Durant
  • The Love of My Life by Rosie Walsh
  • One of the Girls by Lucy Clarke
  • Tell Me Your Lies by Kate Ruby
  • Into the Dark by Fiona Cummins
  • Remember Me by Charity Norman
  • The Golden Couple by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen
  • Wrong Place Wrong Time by Gillian McAllister

Book of the year: Good Husbands by Cate Ray

Kirsty at Kirsty’s Book Buying Addiction

  • Seven Exes by Lucy Vine
  • Preloved by Lauren Bravo
  • My (extra) Ordinary Life by Rebecca Ryan
  • The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood
  • The Imperfect Art of Caring by Jessica Ryn
  • Cornish Clouds and Silver Lining Skies by Ali McNamara 
  • The Little Bookshop of Love Stories by Jaimie Admans 
  • Healing Hearts at Bumblebee Barn by Jessica Redland 
  • Never Gonna Happen by Heidi Stephens
  • The Cornish Midwife by Jo Bartlett
  • The Summer Fair by Heidi Swain
  • Last Time We Met by Emily Houghton
  • We Just Clicked by Anna Bell
  • Talk Bookish To Me by Kate Bromely
  • The Girl on the 88 Bus by Freya Sampson
  • Peony Practice by Christie Barlow
  • The Blossom Tree of Dreams by Holly Martin 
  • Sunny Skies and Summer Kisses by Eliza J Scott
  • Just Got Real by Jane Fallon
  • Summer Kisses at Mermaid Point by Sarah Bennett 
  • The Key To My Heart by Lia Louis 
  • The Cornish Cream Tea Bookshop by Cresside Mclaughlin

Book of the year: Seven Exes by Lucy Vine

Sue at Brown Flopsy’s Book Burrow

  • The Unravelling by Polly Crosby
  • Wahala by Nikki May
  • The Dictator’s Wife by Freya Berry
  • Peach Blossom Spring by Melissa Fu
  • The Rabbit Factor by Antti Tuomainen
  • A Little Hope by Ethan Joella
  • The House with the Golden Door by Elodie Harper
  • The Birdcage by Eve Chase
  • The Midnight House by Amanda Gerard
  • The French House by Jacquie Bloese
  • All About Evie by Matson Taylor
  • Love and Other Human Errors by Bethany Clift
  • Housebreaking by Colleen Hubbard
  • A Hundred Million Years and a Day by Jean Baptiste Andrea
  • Double or Nothing by Kim Sherwood
  • Christmas Eve at Cranberry Cross by Kate Forster
  • The Poison Machine by Robert J LLoyd
  • The Weather Woman by Sally Gardner
  • Every Shade of Happy by Phyllida Shrimpton
  • The Measure by Nikki Erlick
  • Opal Country by Chris Hammer

Book of the year: Love and Other Human Errors by Bethany Clift

Vikkie at Little Miss Book Lover

*Vikkie read over 300 books this year so has listed her 31 favourites as 22 was too small of a number after reading that many books.

  • Suicide Thursday by Will Carver
  • Into the Dark by Fiona Cummins
  • All the Wicked Games by Lauren North
  • If They Knew by Sophie Flynn
  • My Big Fat Fabulous Christmas by Lyndsey Gallagher
  • Someone Like You by Rachel Dove
  • Santa Maybe by Mary Jayne Baker
  • Love Untold by Ruth Jones
  • The Pain Tourist by Paul Cleave
  • Keep It In The Family by John Marrs
  • Running Scared by Manda Sue Heller
  • Genesis by Chris Carter
  • Just Got Real by Jane Fallon
  • The Family Remains by Lisa Jewell
  • The Dictator’s Wife by Freya Berry
  • The Serial Killer’s Girl by LH Stacey
  • Your Word or Mine by Lia Middleton
  • My Husband’s Killer by Laura Marshall
  • The Botanist by M.W. Craven
  • My Other Husband by Dorothy Koomson
  • Wrong Place Wrong Time by Gillian McAllister
  • That Green-Eyed Girl by Julie Owen Moylan
  • Nobody But Us by Laure van Rensburg
  • The Loyal Friend by A. A. Chaudhuri
  • Hello, Stranger by Rachel Marks
  • The Last Party by Clare Mackintosh
  • All For You by Louise Jensen
  • Open Your Eyes by Heather Fitt

Books of the year: Suicide Thursday by Will Carver and Into the Dark by Fiona Cummins

Zoe at Zoe’s Book Nook

  • Hare House by Sally Hinchcliffe
  • When I Was Ten by Fiona Cummins
  • The Gosling Girl by Jacqueline Roy
  • The Love Songs of W E B Du Bois by Honoree Fanonne Jeffers
  • The House with the Golden Door by Elodie Harper
  • I, Mona Lisa by Natasha Solomons
  • Booth by Karen J Fowler
  • The Paris Apartment by Lucy Foley
  • The Kaiju Preservation Society by John Scalzi 
  • The Carnival Of Ash by Tom Beckerlegge 
  • Don’t Put Yourself On Toast by Freddy Taylor
  • After Dark by Jayne Cowie
  • Wrong Place, Wrong Time by Gillian McAllister
  • That Green-Eyed Girl by Julie Owen Moylan
  • Wahala by Nikki May
  • The Secrets of Rochester Place by Iris Costello
  • Peach Blossom Spring by Melissa Fu
  • The Sanctuary by Emma Haughton
  • The Prisoner by B. A. Paris
  • The Gifts by Liz Hayder
  • Babel by RF Kuang
  • A Magic Steeped In Poison by Judy I Lin

Books of the year: Babel by RF Kuang and The Love Songs of W E B Du Bois by Honoree Fanonne Jeffers

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Squadpod Books of the Year and Recommendations

After putting together the books featured on everyone’s lists and tallying the books, we have two books of the year: All About Evie by Matson Taylor and The House with the Golden Door by Elodie Harper.

Next up is our stack of ultimate recommendations. There were so many books that got two or three votes this year so I only counted books that got four votes or more. Even so, there are so many in the stack that I couldn’t hold it this year! So, here are the 10 books that make up our Squadpod Recommendations for 2022:

I am so happy to see that half of the books in this stack are debuts and that the Squadpod promoted and championed five of the books featured.

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What were your favourite reads of 2022? Have we inspired you to pick up any of our favourites? Let me know in the comments below. And don’t forget to follow the Squadpod on our social chanels to keep up with all the exciting things we have coming in 2023:

Thanks for reading Bibliophiles xxx

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