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Jessica Holland

The Amber Fury review - Greek tragedy with added suspense

Natalie Haynes's debut novel is a little bit Sophocles, a little bit noir Comedian, broadcaster and long-time Classics nut Natalie Haynes tells the story of Alex Morris, a meek former theatre director in her mid-20s who moves from London to Edinburgh a

On Such a Full Sea by Chang-rae Lee - review

Chang-rae Lee's adventure pieces together the story of a young woman who escapes a life of enslavement in a futuristic dystopia When New Yorker critic James Wood called Chang-rae Lee's Pulitzer-shortlisted novel, The Surrendered , ambitious, well wri

Three Brothers by Peter Ackroyd - review

Peter Ackroyd's tale of three brothers in 1950s Camden covers familiar themes in his usual vibrant style, Ackroyd's 15th novel and 54th published book is a family saga that develops into a murder mystery, but human relations and plot twists have never mu

Mr Loverman by Bernardine Evaristo - review

Bernardine Evaristo's novel explores illicit sexuality, African-Caribbean identity and language to winning effect At 74, Barrington "Barry" Walker, a Caribbean transplant to Stoke Newington in London with a church-going wife and two grown-up daughters, i

The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer - review

Everything changes for awkward frizzy-haired Julie Jacobson when she's invited into Boys Teepee 3, the "hot little nucleus" of her artsy summer camp, by the willowy Ash Wolf. There, she drinks and discusses Günter Grass with five other teenagers who call

Shift by Hugh Howey - review

What if the long-term survival of the human race depended on thousands of Americans being relocated to a vast underground city, with giant TV screens broadcasting a desolate landscape outside and no one allowed to leave?

The Riddle of the Labyrinth by Margalit Fox - review

Minos, a bronze-age king who ruled over the city-state Knossos in Crete, wasn't one for winning hearts and minds. According to Greek mythology, he'd regularly (possibly as often as every year – accounts differ) throw 14 kids to the minotaur in his labyr

The Hope Factory by Lavanya Sankaran - review

There are strong echoes of Dickens in this vibrant portrait of ambition and struggle in Bangalore Anand and Kamala are both dreaming big. He's the hardworking boss of a car factory in Bangalore with his eye on a lucrative Japanese deal; she's his domesti

Vampires in the Lemon Grove by Karen Russell - review

An enchanting collection of stories about lonely vampires and presidents reincarnated as horses A lonely vampire who believed in all the lore as a boy - sleeping in coffins, wearing velvet, drinking blood - meets a girl vampire, who teaches him to dull h

The Friday Gospels by Jenn Ashworth - review

Jenn Ashworth's bold third novel addresses the complexities of religion through the tale of a Mormon Lancaster family An exhausted 21-year-old Mormon, Gary, is on his way back to Lancaster from a two-year proselytising mission in Utah, and he summons the