These are recommendations from previous CL Taylor Book Clubs Newsletters. To receive new recommendations, and catch up on all CL Taylor's news (and receive a free story), visit www.cltaylorauthor.com/newsletter
Louise Candlish£8.99 £8.36
Louise Candlish's Jamie is a superb character, so perfectly crafted, flawed but believable, and relatable in his own way. This is not a 'slow burning thriller', a phrase I think is becoming overused and implies some kind of fault with the story, when actually what the author has done is spent time building the character and creating the world they live in. In my opinion The Other Passenger is perfectly paced, cleverly constructed and full of suspense. In order to unravel the mystery you need to understand the characters and it's vital that they are fully rounded and 'real', even when you aren't sure exactly who you believe. The setting was as real as the characters - the area of London where the book is set was perfectly described and I could smell the cigarette smoke mixed with the cool river air and feel the crush of bodies on a packed tube train. The Other Passenger kept me guessing and had me enthralled.
The Hypnotist's Love Story: From the bestselling author of Big Little Lies, now an award winning TV series
Liane Moriarty£8.99 £8.36
Liane Moriarty excels at writing characters with depth, humour and insight. When you read a LM book you feel as though she genuinely cares for her characters - even stalker Saskia was written with compassion and understanding, and with a dry, wry humour. LM's books aren't edge of your seat reads. They aren't unbearably tense. But there's something compulsive about them that keeps you reading or listening. Having written several stalker books myself, and read even more, it was refreshing to read a distinctly non-crime take on this distressing phenomenon. I felt as though LM was trying to understand stalking, and get to the heart of the compulsion, and she did it brilliantly well. She also examined grief, loss and the struggles in familial and romantic relationships. She takes a magnifying glass to the ordinary and makes it extraordinary.
Lucy Atkins£16.98 £15.79
Magpie Lane by Lucy Atkins is beautifully crafted with sensational characterisation and a vivid sense of place (Oxford). Three lonely people's lives collide in a tale that is as creepy and suspenseful as it is heart-warming and hopeful. Loved it.
Will Dean£12.99 £12.08
Sensational. Claustrophobic, compulsive, and almost unbearably tense it's a heart-in-mouth read that's packed with suspense. Readers will be saying 'just one more page' all the way from the gripping beginning to the heart-stopping end.
Rosamund Lupton£8.99 £8.36
Immersive, terrifying, moving, intelligent and highly recommended.
Erin Kinsley£8.99 £8.36
I am not normally a big fan of police procedurals but this book captured me with the tender, thoughtful and realistic portrayal of the the victims of the crime - not just Evan, the snatched boy, but his mother, father and grandparents. Following their emotional journeys through the book was as gripping as the investigation to find Ewan and arrest his kidnappers. Hugely recommended.
Ira Levin£8.99 £8.36
Absolutely flew through it during a 3 hour flight. I was totally invested in the main character's quest to find out what was going on with the Stepford Wives, and wanting to avoid the same fate. A short, speedy read that I hugely enjoyed.
Gytha Lodge£12.99 £12.08
Part police procedural, part psychological thriller this book utterly gripped me - I was SO desperate to discover who was responsible for murdering the dead man who appeared in Louise's bed after a drunken night out. I'm not normally a fan of police procedurals by Gytha Lodge has converted me. She's such a good writer. I didn't realise this book was part of a series when I started it but it works brilliantly as a standalone (or start with book 1, She Lies in Wait, which was a Richard and Judy pick in 2019).
Gillian McAllister£7.99 £7.43
It's a rare book that outfoxes me but That Night kept me guessing and kept me fooled. I have read hundreds of psychological thrillers and I didn't see the twist coming in this one! Clever, pacy and so gripping that my heart raced. That Night will haunt the dreams of anyone who's ever had a nightmare about killing someone, and the police closing in...
Catherine Ryan Howard£14.99 £13.94
I have been waiting a long time for a book that blows me away and 56 Days IS THAT BOOK. I genuinely feel quite breathless at how extraordinarily good it is. Absolutely faultless in my opinion. I read it over two sittings and was so immersed I ignored my family and my phone. I can't remember the last time I read a book that I genuinely couldn't tear myself away from but 56 Days had me reading until 2am and then grabbing it again the moment I woke up. Catherine Ryan Howard succeeds in so many different levels with this book: not only does she accurately portray the awkwardness, insecurity and excitement of a new relationship but she whips the rug out from under your feet when you least suspect it. The characterisation is spot on, the mystery is intriguing, the pace is excellent, the touches of humour made me grin and the ending is excellent. It's the best book I have read this year and if 56 Days isn't a huge hit I will brain myself with my laptop. 56 days is crime writing perfection and Catherine Ryan Howard is a seriously talented writer.
Lisa Jewell£8.99 £8.36
Another superb book by Lisa Jewell. I listened to the audio version and I thought that Donna Banya, the narrator who voiced Saffyre was incredible. She has such a lovely timbre to her voice and she portrayed a teenaged girl very convincingly. The plot, a mystery about a missing girl was beautifully played out with a cast of fascinating, broken, well-rounded characters (Lisa writes them so well). I found the Incel storyline particularly menacing and the ending (no spoilers) was satisfyingly chilling.