New Fiction Highlights

By The Holt Bookshop

New Fiction Highlights

By The Holt Bookshop

New and exciting fiction being released throughout this August. 

The Long Knives

Irvine Welsh

£18.99 £18.04

The highly-anticipated second instalment in the CRIME trilogy, now a hit TV SeriesJustice can be a blunt instrument"Men like him usually tell the story. In business. Politics. Media. But not this time: I repeat, he is not writing this story." Ritchie Gulliver MP is dead. Castrated and left to bleed in an empty Leith warehouse. Vicious, racist and corrupt, many thought he had it coming. But nobody could have predicted this. After the life Gulliver has led, the suspects are many: corporate rivals, political opponents, the countless groups he's offended. And the vulnerable and marginalised, who bore the brunt of his cruelty - those without a voice, without a choice, without a chance. As Detective Ray Lennox unravels the truth, and the list of brutal attacks grows, he must put his personal feelings aside. But one question refuses to go away... Who are the real victims here?*A 2022 Book to Look Forward To in the Evening Standard*

The Bookseller of Inverness: The Waterstones Scottish Book of the Year 2023

S.G. MacLean

£16.99

A gripping historical thriller set in Inverness in the wake of the 1746 battle of Culloden from twice CWA award-winning author S. G. MacLean. Perfect for fans of C. J. Sansom and Andrew Taylor. After Culloden, Iain MacGillivray was left for dead on Drumossie Moor. Wounded, his face brutally slashed, he survived only by pretending to be dead as the Redcoats patrolled the corpses of his Jacobite comrades. Six years later, with the clan chiefs routed and the Highlands subsumed into the British state, Iain lives a quiet life, working as a bookseller in Inverness. One day, after helping several of his regular customers, he notices a stranger lurking in the upper gallery of his shop, poring over his collection. But the man refuses to say what he's searching for and only leaves when Iain closes for the night. The next morning Iain opens up shop and finds the stranger dead, his throat cut, and the murder weapon laid out in front of him - a sword with a white cockade on its hilt, the emblem of the Jacobites. With no sign of the killer, Iain wonders whether the stranger discovered what he was looking for - and whether he paid for it with his life. He soon finds himself embroiled in a web of deceit and a series of old scores to be settled in the ashes of war.

The Twist of a Knife: A gripping locked-room mystery from the bestselling crime writer

Anthony Horowitz

£20.00 £19.00

'I've written three books and our deal is over.' That's what reluctant author Anthony Horowitz tells ex-detective Daniel Hawthorne in an awkward meeting. The truth is that Anthony has got other things on his mind. His new play, a thriller called 'Mindgame', is about to open at the famous Vaudeville theatre in Shoreditch. Not surprisingly, Hawthorne declines a ticket to the opening night. The play is not enjoyed by the critics. In particular, Sunday Times critic Harriet Throsby gives it a savage review, focusing particularly on the writing. The next day, Throsby is stabbed in the heart with an ornamental dagger which, it turns out, belongs to Anthony, and which has his fingerprints all over it. Anthony is arrested by an old enemy . . . Detective Inspector Cara Grunshaw. She's still smarting from her failure to solve the case described in the second Hawthorne adventure: "The Sentence is Death". She blames Anthony for her failure. And now she's out for revenge. Thrown into prison and brutally interrogated, Anthony is the prime suspect in Throsby's murder and as a second theatre critic is found to have died in mysterious circumstances, the net closes in. Ever more desperate, he realizes that only one man can help him. But will Hawthorne take the call?

The Black Dog: The life-affirming debut novel from one of Britain's most-loved comedians

Kevin Bridges

£20.00 £19.00

THE BLACK DOG is the exciting debut novel from one of Britain's most-loved comedians, Kevin BridgesDeclan dreams of becoming a writer. It's a dream that helps him escape the realities of his life - going through the motions at college and stacking supermarket shelves part-time, whilst fighting a battle with the ever-darkening thoughts in his head. He has his pet Labrador for companionship and his best friend-turned-mentor, a pseudo-intellectual who works as a greenskeeper at the local municipal golf course, both of which help keep the worst of his anxieties at bay. But following a drunken row with local gangsters, Declan's worries threaten to spiral out of control. James Cavani - Declan's idol and his hometown's claim to fame - is a renowned writer, director and actor. But despite his success, his past hasn't relinquished its hold of him, and through his younger sister's battle with drug addiction, he finds himself returning to a world he thought he had escaped. At face value, their lives couldn't be more different, but perhaps fate has a way of bringing kindred spirits together - and perhaps each holds the other's redemption in their hands

Undercurrent: The heartbreaking and ultimately hopeful novel about finding yourself, from the Times bestselling author of Five R

Barney Norris

£16.99 £16.14

The beginning of summer. Perhaps it crosses my mind even now while I wait for news of Amy that something is coming towards us. Like sighting the first slow swell of a wave.'Years ago, in an almost accidental moment of heroism, Ed saved Amy from drowning. Now, in his thirties, he finds himself adrift. He's been living in London for years - some of them good - but he's stuck in a relationship he can't move forward, has a job that just pays the bills, and can't shake the sense that life should mean more than this. Perhaps all Ed needs is a moment to pause. To exhale and start anew. And when he meets Amy again by chance, it seems that happiness might not be so far out of reach. But then tragedy overtakes him, and Ed must decide whether to let history and duty define his life, or whether he should push against the tide and write his own story. Filled with hope and characteristic warmth, Undercurrent is a moving and intimate portrait of love, of life and why we choose to share ours with the people we do.

The Women Could Fly: The must read dark, magical - and timely - critically acclaimed dystopian novel

Megan Giddings

£16.99 £16.14

A piercing dystopian tale about the unbreakable bond between a young woman and her absent mother, set in a world in which magic is real and single women are closely monitored in case they are shown to be witches . . . Josephine Thomas has heard every conceivable theory about her mother's disappearance. That she was kidnapped. Murdered. That she took on a new identity to start a new family. That she was a witch. This is the most worrying charge, because in a world where witches are real, peculiar behaviour raises suspicions and a woman - especially a Black woman - can find herself on trial for witchcraft. But fourteen years have passed since her mother's disappearance, and now Jo is finally ready to let go of the past. Yet her future is in doubt. The State mandates that all women marry by the age of thirty - or enrol in a registry that allows them to be monitored, effectively forfeiting their autonomy. At twenty-eight, Jo is ambivalent about marriage. With her ability to control her life on the line, she feels as if she has her never understood her mother more. When she's offered the opportunity to honour one last request from her mother's will, Jo leaves her regular life to feel connected to her one last time. In this powerful and timely novel, Megan Giddings explores the limits women face - and the powers they have to transgress and transcend them.

1989: The brand-new thriller from the No.1 bestseller

Val McDermid

£20.00 £19.00

1989. The world is changing, and Allie Burns is still on the front line, covering the stories that count. Although Allie is no longer an investigative journalist, her instincts are sharper than ever. When she discovers a lead about the exploitation of society's most vulnerable, Allie is determined to give a voice to those who have been silenced. As Allie edges closer to exposing the truth, she travels behind the Iron Curtain, to East Berlin on the brink of revolution. The dark heart of the story is more shocking than she ever imagined. And to tell it, Allie must risk her freedom and her life . . . The latest Allie Burns thriller, set a decade after the bestselling first novel in the ground-breaking, iconic new series. Praise for 1979'McDermid is at her considerable best' GUARDIAN'

The Marriage Portrait: the Instant Sunday Times Bestseller, Shortlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction 2023

Maggie O'Farrell

£25.00 £23.75

The breathtaking new novel from the author of Hamnet, the Sunday Times No.1 bestseller (2021) and winner of the Women's Prize for Fiction 2020, The Marriage Portrait is a dazzling evocation of the Italian Renaissance in all its beauty and brutality. **AS SELECTED FOR BBC RADIO 2 BOOKCLUB**'O'Farrell is simply outstanding' Guardian'Her writing is exquisite. Immersive and compelling' Marian KeyesWinter, 1561. Lucrezia, Duchess of Ferrara, is taken on an unexpected visit to a country villa by her husband, Alfonso. As they sit down to dinner it occurs to Lucrezia that Alfonso has a sinister purpose in bringing her here. He intends to kill her. Lucrezia is sixteen years old, and has led a sheltered life locked away inside Florence's grandest palazzo. Here, in this remote villa, she is entirely at the mercy of her increasingly erratic husband. What is Lucrezia to do with this sudden knowledge? What chance does she have against Alfonso, ruler of a province, and a trained soldier? How can she ensure her survival. The Marriage Portrait is an unforgettable reimagining of the life of a young woman whose proximity to power places her in mortal danger.

The 6:20 Man

David Baldacci

£20.00 £19.00

The 6:20 Man is a heart-racing thriller set in the world of high finance in New York, from the number one bestselling author David Baldacci. A journey that took him to hell . . . Having survived combat tours in Afghanistan and Iraq and been decorated with medals, Travis Devine mysteriously leaves the Army under a cloud of suspicion. And at thirty-two years old, he's swapping fighting the Taliban and Al Qaeda for a different kind of danger in the cut-throat world of high finance. His daily commute on the 6.20 a.m. train into New York's financial district, to his new job as an analyst at the minted powerhouse investment bank Cowl and Comely, takes him into a world where greed, power, jealousy and ambition result in the financial abuse of the masses and the enrichment of an elite few. But it is on this daily journey that he passes a house where he sees something that sounds alarm signals he cannot ignore. A close friend of Devine's, Sarah Ewes, is the first victim and the mysterious circumstances surrounding her death at Cowl and Comely compel him to investigate further. As he digs deeper, he discovers strange coincidences and unnerving truths. As the deaths pile up, and the major players show their hands, he must question who he can trust and who he must fight.

The Night Ship

Jess Kidd

£16.99 £16.14

1628. Embarking on a journey in search of her father, a young girl called Mayken boards the Batavia, the most impressive sea vessel of the age. During the long voyage, this curious and resourceful child must find her place in the ship's busy world, and she soon uncovers shadowy secrets above and below deck. As tensions spiral, the fate of the ship and all on board becomes increasingly uncertain. 1989. Gil, a boy mourning the death of his mother, is placed in the care of his irritable and reclusive grandfather. Their home is a shack on a tiny fishing island off the Australian coast, notable only for its reefs and wrecked boats. This is no place for a child struggling with a dark past and Gil's actions soon get him noticed by the wrong people. The Night Ship is an enthralling tale of human brutality, providence and friendship, and of two children, hundreds of years apart, whose fates are inextricably bound together.

Carrie Soto Is Back: From the author of The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo

Taylor Jenkins Reid

£16.99 £16.14

Carrie Soto is fierce, and her determination to win at any cost has not made her popular. By the time Carrie retires from tennis, she is the best player the world has ever seen. She has shattered every record and claimed twenty Slam titles. And if you ask her, she is entitled to every one. She sacrificed nearly everything to become the best, with her father as her coach. But six years after her retirement, Carrie finds herself sitting in the stands of the 1994 US Open, watching her record be taken from her by a brutal, stunning, British player named Nicki Chan. At thirty-seven years old, Carrie makes the monumental decision to come out of retirement and be coached by her father for one last year in an attempt to reclaim her record. Even if the sports media says that they never liked the 'Battle-Axe' anyway. Even if her body doesn't move as fast as it did. And even if it means swallowing her pride to train with a man she once almost opened her heart to: Bowe Huntley. Like her, he has something to prove before he gives up the game forever. In spite of it all: Carrie Soto is back, for one epic final season. In this riveting and unforgettable novel, Taylor Jenkins Reid tells a story about the cost of greatness and a legendary athlete attempting a comeback. Praise for MALIBU RISING:'It's 365 pages of pure exhilaration' THE TIMES 'The perfect, literal, beach read, with the emotional depth of the ocean' HOLLY BOURNE

Utopia

Heidi Sopinka

£14.99 £14.24

It's okay for men to make bad art. There's no price on their head for doing it ... Nothing for men is pre-determined, except their chance at great success. Los Angeles, 1978. When Romy, a gifted young artist in the male-dominated art scene of 1970s California, dies in suspicious circumstances, it is not long before her art-star husband Billy finds a replacement. Paz, fresh out of art school in New York, returns to California to take her place. But she is haunted by Romy, who is everywhere: in the photos and notebooks and art strewn around the house, and in the eyes of the baby she left behind. As Paz attempts to claim her creative life, strange things begin to happen. Photographs move, noises reverberate through the house, people start to question what really happened the night Romy died, and then a postcard in her handwriting arrives. As Paz becomes increasingly obsessed with the woman she has replaced, a disturbing picture begins to emerge, driving her deep into the desert - the site of Romy's final artwork - to uncover the truth. At once an exquisite exploration of creativity and an atmospheric page-turner, Utopia is a book that takes hold of you and will leave you altered.

On Java Road: 'The bastard child of Graham Greene and Patricia Highsmith' METRO

Lawrence Osborne

£16.99 £16.14

A veteran British journalist living in Hong Kong investigates the disappearance of a student protestor amidst the pro-democracy demonstrations in this unsettling new novel from the acclaimed author of The ForgivenAfter twenty indolent years as an ex-pat reporter in Hong Kong, Englishman Adrian Gyle has almost nothing to show for it. And now the streets are choked with students demanding democratic freedoms, and the old world begins to fall apart . . . Watching from the skyrises overlooking the protests is Adrian's old friend Jimmy Tang, the scion of a wealthy Hong Kong family, who has begun a reckless affair with Rebecca, a leading pro-democracy protestor, full of idealism and reeking of tear gas. The couple are dancing over the abyss, and Adrian is drawn into their clandestine romance with a mixture of complicity and envy. But when Rebecca disappears and Jimmy goes to ground, Adrian unearths the familiar old urge to investigate, and personal loyalties evaporate overnight. Now an unwelcome foreigner in a hostile land, Adrian must reckon with these vanishings as old Hong Kong quietly slips off the stage. Pursuing Rebecca's ghost to Java Road where the city's dead congregate, Adrian re-assembles her final hours - as he struggles to distinguish between delusion and reality.

Is This Love?: Longlisted for the 2023 Polari First Book Prize

C. E. Riley

£14.99 £14.24

Did you mean to marry me?Did you understand the vows that we took? J's wife has left, and J is trying to understand why. How could someone you loved so much, who claimed to love you once, just walk away? How could they send divorce papers accusing you of terrible things, when all you've ever done is tried to make them happy?Narrated by J in the days, weeks and months after the marriage collapses, and interspersed with the departed wife's diary entries, Is This Love? is an addictive, deeply unsettling, and provocative novel of deception and betrayal, and passion turned to pain. As the story unfolds, and each character's version of events undermines the other, all our assumptions about victimhood, agency, love and control are challenged - for we never know J's gender. If we did, would it change our minds about who was telling the truth?

The Last White Man: The New York Times Bestseller 2022

MOHSIN HAMID

£12.99 £12.34

From the internationally bestselling author of Exit West, a story of love, loss, and rediscovery in a time of unsettling changeOne morning, Anders wakes to find that his skin has turned dark, his reflection a stranger to him. At first he tells only Oona, an old friend, newly a lover. Soon, reports of similar occurrences surface across the land. Some see in the transformations the long-dreaded overturning of an established order, to be resisted to a bitter end. In many, like Anders's father and Oona's mother, a sense of profound loss wars with profound love. As the bond between Anders and Oona deepens, change takes on a different shading: a chance to see one another, face to face, anew. The Last White Man concludes on a note of hope, a door jarred open just enough to let transcendence pour through' O, the Oprah Magazine 'The electric premise, borrowed from Kafka's The Metamorphosis, looks set to update a classic to make it urgently relevant' Evening Standard Praise for Exit West' Hamid's enticing strategy is to foreground the humanity.

Girlcrush: The #1 Sunday Times Bestseller

Florence Given

£16.99

In Given's debut novel, we follow Eartha on a wild, weird and seductive modern-day exploration as she commences life as an openly bisexual woman whilst also becoming a viral sensation on Wonderland, a social media app where people project their dream selves online. The distance between her online and offline self grows further and further apart until something dark happens that leads her into total self-destruction, forcing Eartha to make a choice; which version of herself should she kill off?Warning this book does include storylines that some readers may find triggering. *Also by Florence Given*Women Don't Owe You Pretty

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