Monday 15 October 2018


Top Picks From the Quercus 2019 Showcase

As you guys have seen in the lack of posts on here in recent months I've been in a massive blogging slump due to changes in my life. I have tons of ideas and things I want to talk about (I have dozens of unfinished blogs in my drafts) but when I actually sit down to write a post... nothing comes out. However, I was SO inspired by the Quercus 2019 showcase last week, which was filled with incredible sounding books that they'll be releasing in the next six months, Instagram-worthy displays and amazing people, that it not only made me excited to finally create one of my bookish Twitter threads again, but I've been itching to write about it on here too to share the amazing upcoming releases with you guys as well.

First things first, a big thank you is due to my blogging friend Laura for putting the event on my radar, without her I wouldn't have had a chance to attend. And secondly a HUGE thank you to the incredible Quercus team for putting on such an amazing night, with gorgeous reads and Instagram displays (including an actual flat lay station that is the envy of every blogger that was there!), the lovely chats we had during the night, and their general bookish generosity. I went away feeling inspired and also weighed down by the most massive tote bag of books I do believe I've ever taken away from an event. Thank you all so so much ♥

Now onto the good stuff... Each of the end of 2018/early 2019 releases had their own Instagram-worthy station to ooh and aah over the beautiful proofs and while I've been trying to be so very good with my book obtaining lately I uhm... walked away with about 75 per cent of the new releases. Oops. I cannot possibly pick a single fav, so find below some of the books that I am most excited for from Quercus in order of release date. Each book came with a lovely postcard with the cover on the front and a note from the editor on the back, and since they are much more able to convey the mesmerising stories laying without the pages I've also quoted them on a few occasions.

The Stranger Diaries by Elly Griffiths (1 November 2018)

I don't often pick up thrillers, however, editor Jane Wood describes this one as a "modern murder mystery with a Gothic thread", which sounds very cool. She continues: "Clare's best friend is murdered with a line from a Victorian horror story by her side. When Clare herself becomes suspect, she confesses her secrets to her diary. Imagine her shock when she notices a stranger's handwriting alongside her own." Dun, dun, dun...

Our Child of the Stars by Stephen Cox (1 November 2018)

The is a speculative novel set in 1960s America amid a Meteor crash and a peculiar child found in the wreckage. Colour me intrigued. I also love editor Jo's description: "This story about a mother's fight to save her adopted child from those who want him for political purposes has the warmth of The Snow Child, the otherworldly sense of The Humans and the innocent wonder of ET." Yes, please!

Calm the F*ck Down by Sarah Knight (31 December 2018)

I *just* said I wasn't going to pick favs, but I have to admit that this one is right up there. I read and loved You Do You by lifestyle anti-guru Sarah Knight, which had some fantastic inspiring, kick-up-the-butt motivational tips in there and I feel I can definitely use more of her no-nonsense ideas in my life. I've picked up her other two novels at the event, which I'm super excited to dig into to soon, and then at the end of the year she has a brand new book out. This time she's focusing on practical ways to manage difficult situations with the motto 'stop worrying and wallowing, and start bouncing back'.

Blackberry and Wild Rose by Sonia Velton (10 January 2019)

I've been vocal in the past that I can be very superficial with my book buying habits as I love a stunning cover design. Blackberry and Wild Rose is no exception as it drew me in with its incredibly eye-catching cover (and the flower wall behind it, not gonna lie). However, it captured me completely with its fascinating focus on Huguenot silk weavers in the late 18th century. Editor Jane Wood says: "A story of love, silk and betrayal, the novel is loosely based on the real-life silk designer Anna Maria Garthwaite, whose beautiful work may be seen in the V&A museum to this day."

The Dollmaker by Nina Allan (7 March 2019)

The proof cover of The Dollmaker  looks creepy AF and I'm totally here for it. I was already interested in this novel but then I spoke to Quercus Publicity Manager Olivia Mead and now I'm convinced this is the best book of 2019 and I need to read it NOW! Though not historical fiction she likened it to The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton and The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock by Imogen Hermes Gowar, both incredible, award-winning novels, so now I am very hyped for this one! Also, this description by editor Rose is everything: "What I love most about The Dollmaker is the way it tiptoes along the edge of reality – this is our familiar world, with an uncanny quality that rises goosebumps..."

The Lemon Tree Hotel by Rosanna Ley (7 March 2019)

Bay of Secrets by Rosanna Ley about The Lost Children of Francoism will forever be one of my favourite novels, so needless to say I was very excited when I saw another read by Rosanna's hand will be published early on in the new year. Throughout the years I've found her novels to become a bit more escapism than harrowing historical fiction, and that's not necessarily a bad thing, just an observation. The Lemon Tree Hotel is a feel-good novel set on the Italian Riviera and while published in March I have a feeling this will be a perfect summer read to add to your holiday wish list next year!

The Flatshare by Beth O'Leary (18 April 2019)

This book has a very cool premise of something I've heard about before; London is SO expensive that there are people who put up their flat for rent for part of the day they're not using it. So someone has the flat during the day while someone else has it during the night. A very strange idea but one that clearly makes a very cool concept for a novel. Despite this peculiar and perhaps a bit eerie premise this is not a thriller, it's a love story. Though editor Emily Yau says: "The Flatshare is more than your average love story. It's moving, uplifting, and funny to boot; it charmed our socks off." Sign me up!

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And those are my highlights from the Quercus 2019 showcase! Let me know in the comments below which of these books you're most excited about and don't forget to share this post on Twitter, Pinterest (pinnable image below) or your own preferred social channel. Thanks :)

🎵 Listening to: Heathers the Musical – Dead Girl Walking

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