My Favourite Reads of October 2017

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My Favourite Reads image

It’s time for My Favourite Reads again, where I share the cool books I’ve been reading and love hearing about yours.

Although I didn’t get as much reading done as I’d like in October, the books I did get through were great fun, and included 3 new-to-me authors that I’d happily read again.

No question about which was my favourite read. Loved this book. LOVED!

Lost for Words by Stephanie Butland

Lost for Words by Stephanie ButlandOh, this book! It made me smile and cry and generally want to cuddle everyone in it. Well, almost everyone.

This was a recommendation from Miranda, who writes on the excellent Breathless in the Bush blog. It sounded smack in my zone so I downloaded a sample and was immediately hooked by the voice of its heroine, the wonderfully named Loveday Cardew.

Loveday is bookish, introverted and calls herself ‘hard work’ and to be fair she is but, as with all flawed characters, there’s a reason for that which you’ll discover as you read.

I won’t give any more away. You can read the blurb and other reviews for yourself and work out if it’s for you. But if you like heart-warming stories about love and books and finding courage, and gorgeous characters you can’t help but adore, then take a look at Lost for Words.

Utterly charming.

Suicide Forest by Jeremy BatesSuicide Forest by Jeremy Bates

I enjoy a good scare and like trying new authors, and the premise and setting of Suicide Forest sounded interesting which was more than enough excuse for me to grab this book when I saw it advertised. The title pretty much says it all. This is a book about a forest in Japan near Mount Fuji called Aokigahara. Sadly, it isn’t fictional. Aokigahara really is a suicide forest, with many people choosing to end their lives there.

This story is about a disparate group of people whose plans to climb Mount Fuji are waylaid when bad weather sets in. Instead, they choose to explore Aokigahara, with Blair Witch Project (a movie from the late 90s) type consequences. A bit bonkers in places but still a fun horror-thriller, and I enjoyed Bates’s writing and will look for more in his World’s Scariest Places series. The next one, The Catacombs, sounds cool.

If you’re interested in giving Suicide Forest a try, it’s currently listed as free on Amazon, Kobo, iBooks and Nook.

The Night Parade by Ronald MalfiThe Night Parade by Ronald Malfi

Malfi’s writing reminded me of Joe Hill, who is an auto-read author for me. After reading The Night Parade I suspect Malfi might become the same.

The Night Parade was an enjoyable post-apocalyptic road-trip tale in which much of the population has been struck down by a strange virus. Hope could lie within an eight-year-old girl except she’s on the run with her father, who’s wanted for questioning over his wife’s death.

My local library has a copy of Malfi’s December Park. It’s going on my to-read list.

His Majesty’s Temporary Bride by Annie WestHis Majesty’s Temporary Bride by Annie West

Annie never lets me down. Her romances are sexy, sumptuous and emotional, and the opening scene in this one was an absolute cracker!

The rest of His Majesty’s Temporary Bride was just as terrific. Our heroine Cat Dubois’s normal job is bodyguarding celebrities but thanks to her uncanny resemblance to Princess Amelie of St Galla, she’s been coerced into impersonating the missing princess (can’t wait to read Amelie’s story). All very simple… But this is an Annie West romance, and nothing is ever that simple.

Cat is tough, smart, and the perfect foil for visiting monarch King Alexander who might look regal and untouchable on the outside, but is a caring, sensitive and honest man inside. He’s also totally hot and dead snoggable, and when these two get together… fireworks!

A lovely Cinderella-type romance.

Darkest Place by Jaye FordDarkest Place by Jaye Ford

Ah, I do love Ford’s books. She’s an absolute master of tension and suspense, and Darkest Place was no exception.

This one’s set in Newcastle, a city I adore and will be moving back to next year, and I had a fab time recognising landmarks while reading. Darkest Place is clever too. Pretty much everyone was a suspect and there were times when it was equally plausible to think that the heroine Carly’s experiences might all be in her head.

Another terrific thriller. Ford’s books also tend to have a subtle romance thread that makes them even more appealing.

Hmm. I wonder when her next will be out…


What were your favourite reads of October?


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10 thoughts on “My Favourite Reads of October 2017

  1. AvatarMalvina

    Love the way you love Lost For Words! It’s a fabulous read, isn’t it. And one for book lovers as well. The big surprise for me over the last month was Beautiful Messy Love by Tess Woods. When I started to read it only one of the characters appealed, it was raw and very confrontational, not my usual style. By the end of the book I was cheering for the characters I hadn’t liked; what writer magic Tess spread…

    1. Cathryn HeinCathryn Hein Post author

      I’ve heard wonderful things about Beautiful Messy Love too, Malvina, and been meaning to read it for ages. Looks like I need to pull my finger out.

      There was another book you recommended at the same time as Lost For Words that I’m keen to try now – The Romance Readers Guide to Life. It’ll be interesting to see if I like that as much as you did too.

      Thanks for dropping by and sharing!

  2. AvatarAnna Campbell

    Always love this column of yours, Cathryn. The Lost for Words book looks right up my alley and I just loved the Annie West. I’ve actually been really slogging my way through an endless and not terribly compelling biography of Patricia Highsmith this month. A lot of travel and having to get a book of my own in hasn’t helped. Don’t think it’s EVER taken me this long to read a book. About 80 pages to go so I’ll have it done by next week with luck. It’s not quite so dull that I don’t want to finish it but it’s not quite interesting enough to keep me awake for more than a couple of pages when I do read it.

    1. Cathryn HeinCathryn Hein Post author

      I hope you get to try Lost for Words, Anna. It was so gorgeous. And I’d love to talk to you about it!

      Ignoramus that I am, I had to google who Patricia Highsmith was and holy moly, I had no idea she was the author of The Talented Mr Ripley. Wow.

      I sympathise with the length of time it’s taken to read though. I had one of those last month. The (very long… too long) book annoyed me no end but I wanted to keep going. Mostly because I’m a huge fan of the author and kept hoping it would morph into something I loved. Sadly, that didn’t happen.

  3. AvatarAnnie West

    Cathryn, I have to share a great find. A friend recently recommended the Liebermann Papers series by Frank Tallis. I started with ‘Mortal Mischief’ the first one, and it’s definitely worth reading them in order. I’m currently reading no 3. These are murder mysteries set in Austria in the earliest days of the 20th century, featuring a detective inspector of police and a young psychiatrist who’s a pupil of Freud. As well as complex mysteries there’s a wonderful evocation of that imperial city at that (on the surface) glamorous time. If you like food, music, history and art, it’s great fun. I swear though, that I’m putting on weight reading about the food!

    I’m so chuffed to see you enjoyed ‘His Majesty’s Temporary Bride’! I feel honoured that you included it in your reading list. Yes, I though Alex was eminently snoggable too. So glad that came through on the page! 🙂

    1. Cathryn HeinCathryn Hein Post author

      Annie, those books sound great. Food… mystery… glamour…I feel I’m going to have to investigate these ASAP. Thanks to the recommendation.

      Alex’s snoggability most certainly did come across on the page. He was quite delicious!

    1. Cathryn HeinCathryn Hein Post author

      I enjoyed it a lot, DB. I especially enjoyed Malfi’s writing or, I should say, his storytelling. The way he wove the tale was great and he captured the horror of the situation without being icky. I picked this up as a freebie and hadn’t expected much but finished the book seriously impressed.

  4. AvatarSue Gerhardt Griffiths

    Thanks for the heads up, Cathryn, Suicide Forest is now sitting on my Kindle. Oh man, all those books you’ve read sound terrific so as usual I’m adding them to my super super long to -read list except for Annie’s I have that one on my shelf, yay!

    I had an exceptional reading month I got through 11 books and they were all pretty much crazy good.
    Burning Lies by Helene Young – LOVED IT!!! MY FAVOURITE READ OF THE MONTH.
    The Lady in the Van by Alan Bennett – PRETTY DARN GOOD!
    The Billionaire Cattle Baron by Mandy Magro – LOVED IT!!!
    Under Her Spell by Monique Mulligan – VERY SHORT READ BUT SO CUTE!
    Shopping and Lies by Kathryn White – ULTRA SHORT BUT VERY FUNNY (part of the Abigail series)
    Snowed in with the Billionaire by Lila Monroe – JUST OK
    The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn – FANTASTIC THRILLER!
    The Gunslinger by Stephen King – NOT SURE HOW I FEEL ABOUT THIS ONE, IT WAS WRITTEN WELL BUT MAYBE NOT REALLY MY CUP OF TEA. I did finish it in case I want to continue with the series. But you’re right Cathryn when you said, that you’re not sure this would be the best place to start my Stephen King education. It certainly was a strange book. But I will look into other books by him I’m curious to see if his writing style is the same or different.

    1. Cathryn HeinCathryn Hein Post author

      Wow! What a great list of books, Sue. I hope you do try another Stephen King. Starting with the The Gunslinger was a bit worrying. I’m a huge fan but even I haven’t finished that series.

      I’ll be interested to hear what you think of Suicide Forest. It’s very Blair Witch!

      Yay on reading Kylie’s Lick. She’s a fab author. As is Helene, who many people are hanging out for a new book from.

      Thanks for sharing. I’m off to check out The Woman in the Window now.

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