Carolyn’s Books of the Month – February

Best Read: The Girl in the Letter by Emily Gunnis

A heartbreaking letter. A girl locked away. A mystery to be solved. 1956. When Ivy Jenkins falls pregnant she is sent in disgrace to St Margaret’s, a dark, brooding house for unmarried mothers. Her baby is adopted against her will. Ivy will never leave. Present day. Samantha Harper is a journalist desperate for a break. When she stumbles on a letter from the past, the contents shock and move her. The letter is from a young mother, begging to be rescued from St Margaret’s. Before it is too late. Sam is pulled into the tragic story and discovers a spate of unexplained deaths surrounding the woman and her child. With St Margaret’s set for demolition, Sam has only hours to piece together a sixty-year-old mystery before the truth, which lies disturbingly close to home, is lost for ever… Read her letter. Remember her story…

Crime: I Thought I Knew You by Penny Hancock

Who do you know better? Your oldest friend? Or your child? And who should you believe when one accuses the other of an abhorrent crime? Jules and Holly have been best friends since university. They tell each other everything, trading revelations and confessions, and sharing both the big moments and the small details of their lives: Holly is the only person who knows about Jules’s affair; Jules was there for Holly when her husband died. And their two children – just three years apart – have grown up together. So when Jules’s daughter Saffie makes a serious allegation against Holly’s son Saul, neither woman is prepared for the devastating impact this will have on their friendship or their families. Especially as Holly, in spite of her principles, refuses to believe her son is guilty. For fans of He Said/She Said and Anatomy of a Scandal, Penny Hancock’s I Thought I Knew You is about secrets and lies – and whose side you take when it really matters.

Australian Author: The Burnt Country by Joy Rhoades

Australia 1948. As a young woman running Amiens, a sizeable sheep station in New South Wales, Kate Dowd knows she’s expected to fail. And her grazier neighbour is doing his best to ensure she does, attacking her method of burning off to repel a bushfire. But fire risk is just one of her problems. Kate cannot lose Amiens, or give in to her estranged husband Jack’s demands to sell: the farm is her livelihood and the only protection she can offer her half-sister pearl, as the Aborigines Welfare Board threatens to take her away. Ostracised by the local community for even acknowledging Pearl, Kate cannot risk another scandal. Which means turning her back on her wartime lover, Luca Canali … Then Jack drops a bombshell. He wants a divorce. He’ll protect what’s left of Kate’s reputation, and keep Luca out of it – but for an extortionate price. Soon Kate is putting out fires on all fronts to save her farm, keep her family together and protect the man she loves. Then a catastrophic real fire threatens everything …

General: The Other Half of Augusta Hope by Joanna Glen

Augusta Hope has never felt like she fits inches And she’s right. And now that she’s an adult, Augusta has no interest in the goings-on of the small town where she lives with her parents and her beloved twin sister, Julia. When an unspeakable tragedy upends everything in Augusta’s life, she’s propelled headfirst into the unknown.

Thriller: Good Girl,Bad Girl by Michael Robotham

A girl is found hiding in a secret room in a house being renovated after a terrible crime. For weeks, she has survived by sneaking out at night, stealing food for herself and two dogs that are kept in the garden. The nurses at the hospital where she is taken call her “Angel Face” because she won’t tell anyone her name, or her age, or where she came from. Maybe she is 12, maybe 15, or somewhere in between. She doesn’t appear on any missing person’s file, or match the DNA of any murder victim. Six years later, still unidentified, the same girl is living in a secure children’s home with a new name, Evie Cormac, when she initiates a court case demanding the right to be released as an adult. Psychologist Cyrus Haven is sent to interview Evie and decide if she’s ready to go free, but Evie Cormac is unlike he’s anyone he’s ever met. She’s damaged, destructive, and self-hating, yet possessed of a gift, or a curse, that makes her both fascinating and dangerous to be with – the ability to tell when someone is lying. Soon, he is embroiled in her unique and dangerous world, his life in utmost peril.

Thriller: The Guilty Party by Mel McGrath

On a night out, four friends witness a stranger in trouble. They decide to do nothing to help. Later, a body washes up on the banks of the Thames – and the group realises that ignoring the woman has left blood on their hands. But why did each of them refuse to step in? Why did none of them want to be noticed that night? Who is really responsible? And is it possible that the victim was not really a stranger at all?

Saga/Romance: Tell Me Your Secret by Dorothy Koomson

Ten years ago, Pieta was kidnapped from outside a London nightclub by a man who said he wouldn’t kill her if she kept her eyes closed for 48 hours. Pieta survived the weekend but was left emotionally and physically scarred by the experience. Now living in Brighton, she is a mother and journalist with a good life, until she is tasked with interviewing Callie, a woman who has the same story and scars as she does. Pieta has never told anyone what she did to escape with her life but now she may have to. Fifteen years ago policewoman Jody made a terrible mistake that resulted in a prolific serial killer known as The Blindfolder escaping justice. Only his newest victim Callie is willing to talk publicly about her ordeal, but when Jody finds out journalist Pieta was also once kidnapped by him, she realises how she can catch him. But that would mean endangering at least two innocent people. As the newest victim of the man known as the Blindfolder, Callie knows all eyes are on her to tell her story and give the police the information they need to catch this man. But does Callie know more than she is willing to tell? They kept quiet to protect themselves. Will they tell all to save or sacrifice each other?

EAudio Books

Daughter of the Murray by Darry Frazer (BorrowBox)

1890s, River Murray, Northern Victoria

Young and spirited Georgina Calthorpe is not happy living with her foster family, the MacHenrys, on their neglected sheep run on the banks of the River Murray.
Unlike the rest of the family, she isn’t looking forward to the return of the family’s prodigal son, Dane. She is right to be concerned, as on his return he’s furious when he discovers his inheritance is in severe decline. Ignoring the true culprit – his father – he blames Georgina and she decides to flee. Unfortunately, she makes her escape on Dane’s prized stallion and he gives chase …
From here their fates collide with Conor Foley, a businessman with a dark secret. He is offering Georgina security: marriage and status in the emerging nouveau-riche echelons of Melbourne. But where does her heart really lie?
No one could imagine the toll the changing political and social landscape will have on home, heart and family. Will Georgina’s decisions lead her into grave danger and unhappiness, or will she survive and fulfil her destiny?

Silver by Chris Hammer (rb digital)

Martin Scarsden returns in the sequel to the bestselling Scrublands. For half a lifetime, journalist Martin Scarsden has run from his past. But now there is no escaping. He’d vowed never to return to his hometown, Port Silver, and its traumatic memories. But now his new partner, Mandy Blonde, has inherited an old house in the seaside town and Martin knows their chance of a new life together won’t come again. Martin arrives to find his best friend from school days brutally murdered, and Mandy the chief suspect. With the police curiously reluctant to pursue other suspects, Martin goes searching for the killer. And finds the past waiting for him. He’s making little progress when a terrible new crime starts to reveal the truth. The media descend on Port Silver, attracted by a story that has it all: sex, drugs, celebrity and religion. Once again, Martin finds himself in the front line of reporting. Yet the demands of deadlines and his desire to clear Mandy are not enough: the past is ever present. An enthralling and propulsive thriller from the acclaimed and bestselling author of Scrublands. “Sprawling and explosive – a masterpiece.” HERALD SUN on Scrublands

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eBooks, eMagazines & eAudio from Blue Mountains library

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