This is my first book haul which doesn't consist of paper/hardbacks. Granted, they weren't as exciting to receive, but they were mine within seconds, and some were very cheap.
Yellow Crocus by Laila Ibrahim
Moments after Lisbeth is born, she’s taken from her mother and handed over to an enslaved wet nurse, Mattie, a young mother separated from her own infant son in order to care for her tiny charge. Thus begins an intense relationship that will shape both of their lives for decades to come. Though Lisbeth leads a life of privilege, she finds nothing but loneliness in the company of her overwhelmed mother and her distant, slave-owning father. As she grows older, Mattie becomes more like family to Lisbeth than her own kin and the girl’s visits to the slaves’ quarters—and their lively and loving community—bring them closer together than ever. But can two women in such disparate circumstances form a bond like theirs without consequence? This deeply moving tale of unlikely love traces the journey of these very different women as each searches for freedom and dignity.
A colleague of mine recommended this book, and the reviews were positive, so I parted with £3.49 to see what it was about. The subject of race and breaking boundaries sounds similar to The Help, which I loved, so I have high hopes for this one.
How to Fall in Love by Cecelia Ahern
She has just two weeks. Two weeks to teach him how to fall in love – with his own life. Adam Basil and Christine Rose are thrown together late one night, when Christine is crossing the Halfpenny Bridge in Dublin. Adam is there, poised, threatening to jump. Adam is desperate – but Christine makes a crazy deal with him. His 35th birthday is looming and she bets him she can show him that life is worth living before then. Despite her determination, Christine knows what a dangerous promise she’s made. Against the ticking of the clock, the two of them embark on wild escapades, grand romantic gestures and some unlikely late-night outings. Slowly, Christine thinks Adam is starting to fall back in love with his life. But has she done enough to change his mind for good? And is that all that’s starting to happen?
This has positive reviews, but has been described as predictable. Still, I liked the sound of the story line, so didn't mind paying £1.99 for this.
You Had Me At Hello by Mhairi McFarlane
What happens when the one that got away comes back? Rachel and Ben. Ben and Rachel. It was them against the world. Until it all fell apart. It’s been a decade since they last spoke, but when Rachel bumps into Ben one rainy day, the years melt away. From the moment they met they’d been a gang of two; partners in crime and the best of friends. But life has moved on. Ben is married. Rachel is definitely not. In fact, the men in her life make her want to take holy orders… Yet in that split second, Rachel feels the old friendship return. And along with it, the broken heart she’s never been able to mend.
This was also £1.99, and has been on my radar for a while. I'm interested to see how the story line plays out, and hopefully it's not just another boring romance.
Hide Her Name by Nadine Dorries
This gripping follow on from The Four Streets finds the community alive with rumours and gossip after the murder which rocked it to the core. No one knows - or is saying - who did it, least of all the police, but they are not giving up their search for the truth. Somewhere, in this tight-knit Irish Catholic community, someone must know something. Someone will surely talk one day. Meanwhile, 14-year-old Kitty Doherty, pregnant with the dead man's child, is a living danger to everyone who needs to keep the secret. Her mother, Maura and best friend Nellie's grandmother, the redoubtable Kathleen, decide the girls must be spirited away quietly to Ireland to await the birth of the baby. But it isn't easy to keep a secret that big.
I haven't read the first book, but I don't think I need to in order to read this. The main reason why I bought it was because it was 39p!
The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough
In the rugged Australian Outback, three generations of Clearys live through joy and sadness, bitter defeat and magnificent triumph - driven by their dreams, sustained by remarkable strength of character... and torn by dark passions, violence and a scandalous family legacy of forbidden love. It is a poignant love story, a powerful epic of struggle and sacrifice, a celebration of individuality and spirit. Most of all, it is the story of the Clearys' only daughter, Meggie, who can never possess the man she so desperately adores - Ralph de Bricassart. Ralph will rise from parish priest to the inner circles of the Vatican... but his passion for Meggie will follow him all the days of his life.
I also bought this one because it was cheap (49p). Also, it has a rating of 4.19 on Goodreads from 210,167 people, so I thought I may as well give it a go!
The Letter by Kathryn Hughes
1973 - Tina Craig has one mission in life – to escape her drunken, abusive husband. She works all the hours she can to save up enough money to leave him. She spends as little time as possible in the violent household she is forced to call home, even volunteering at a charity shop at the weekend to escape Rick’s clutches. One day, whilst sorting through the pockets of a second-hand suit which has been donated to the shop, she comes across an old letter. It is still firmly sealed and unfranked. Unable to resist the pull of curiosity, Tina opens the letter. It was written on 4th September 1939. She is so moved by the contents and bemused as to why the letter was never delivered, she embarks on a quest to find out what became of the writer and his intended recipient, a journey with consequences she could never have predicted.
1939 - Billy Stirling knows he has been a fool, but he also knows how to put things right. On 4th September, 1939 he sits down to write a letter that will change his life forever. He slips it into his jacket pocket and, with a spring in his step, and full of optimism, he heads for the nearest post box. How was he to know that his heartfelt missive would not be read for another 34 years, and then by a complete stranger?
The Letter tells the story of two women, born decades apart, but whose paths are destined to cross and how one woman’s devastation leads to the other’s salvation.
This was £1.15, and the way it goes between the past and present reminded me of The Girl You Left Behind by Jojo Moyes, which I loved.
Closer Than You Think by Karen Rose
Psychologist Faith Corcoran is desperate to escape the stalker who’s made her life a nightmare for the past year—desperate enough to run to the one place that has been her nightmare far longer. Both boon and bane, her recent inheritance of her grandmother’s old house in Cincinnati offers sanctuary in which she can start her life anew, but requires that she face the dark memories that still resonate to this day. But she has no idea how close to home her fears still are. Two college girls have gone missing in the area, and FBI Special Agent Deacon Novak is called to work on the case. When his inquiry unexpectedly leads him to Faith, he finds a beautiful and brave woman he can’t help but fall for. Soon they’ll discover that this seemingly simple investigation is anything but. Reaching back decades into Faith’s own past, it will shatter everything she believes to be true and will give terrifying new meaning to flesh and blood.
This was also purchased because it was cheap (79p), but I'm intrigued by the story line because I haven't read many books like it.
What books do you recommend reading?