Title: Three Things About Elsie

Author: Joanna Cannon

Pages: 464 Pages

Publisher: Harper Collins

The Blurb

84-year-old Florence has fallen in her flat at Cherry Tree Home for the Elderly. As she waits to be rescued, she considers the charming new resident who looks exactly like a man she once knew – a man who died sixty years ago. His arrival has stirred distant memories she and Elsie thought they’d laid to rest. Lying prone in the front room, Florence wonders if a terrible secret from her past is about to come to light …

The Review

Three Things About Elsie is a beautifully sad book about getting older and about how people treat the elderly differently or lose sight of them all together. 

This is the story of Florence. She has had a fall and is waiting to be found. While she waits, she reflects on her life and the people who have made an impact. 

The story is told though various narrative threads. These include different time periods and different voices alongside modern times. It is also a mystery/crime story that Florence is trying to solve. Cleverly, author Joanna Cannon relies on societies disregard for the elderly to make out narrator seem unreliable. She has given the character of Florence certain qualities that we tend to attribute to Dementia or Alzheimers so we are never quite sure whether we should believe her or not.

Three Things About Elsie really is a heartbreaking novel about being old. Cannon shows a lot of empathy for her characters and allows us to recognise our own prejudices without preaching. 

Three Things About Elsie really is a wonderful book. 

Three Things About Elsie by Joanna Cannon is available now.

For more information regarding Joanna Cannon (@JoannaCannon) please visit her Twitter page.

For more information regarding Harper Collins (@HarperCollinsUK) please visit the Twitter page.

Title: The Little Big Things – A Young Man’s Belief that Every Day Can Be a Good Day 

Author: Henry Fraser

Pages: 192 Pages

Publisher: Seven Dials

The Blurb

The memoir of the year by Henry Fraser, motivational speaker and mouth artist with a foreword by J.K. Rowling.

Being challenged in life is inevitable, but being defeated is optional…

Henry Fraser was 17 years old when a tragic accident severed his spinal cord. Paralysed from the shoulders down, he has conquered unimaginable difficulty to embrace life and a new way of living. Through challenging adversity, he has found the opportunity to grow and inspire others.

This book combines his wisdom and insight into finding the gifts in life’s challenges, and will resonate with anyone facing an obstacle, no matter how big or small. It includes Henry’s thoughts on how to look at the right things and avoid the wrong, finding progress in whatever you do, and acknowledging and accepting the darkness when it comes. Right at the heart of Henry’s inspiring philosophy is his belief that every day is a good day.

(Goodreads Blurb)

The Review

At the age of 17, Henry Fraser went on his first ‘lads holiday’. On this holiday his life was changed forever the he accidentally severed his spinal cord and was left paralysed.

The Little Big Things is the story of his journey of recovery from his accident. I can honestly say that this is one of the most inspirational books that I have ever read. It is an open and honest account of Fraser’s feelings during and after this life changing event.

The Little Big Things is a story full of hope. It is a book that should be given to anyone who is having a moan at the small and inconsequential things that happen to them. It will uplift you and at once remind you just how lucky you actually are.

The Little Big Things – A Young Man’s Belief that Every Day Can Be a Good Day by Henry Fraser is available now.

For more information regarding Henry Fraser (@henryfraser0) please visit www.henryfraserart.com/art/.

For more information regarding Seven Dials (@SevenDialsBooks) please visit www.orionbooks.co.uk.

Title: The Nest

Author: Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney

Pages: 368 Pages

Publisher: Harper Collins

The Blurb

A sharp and funny debut about a wonderfully dysfunctional New York family and the three grown-up siblings fighting to save the family money pot – the ‘nest’ – as their oldest brother threatens to lose it all.

When Leo Plumb drives off drunk from a party in a sports car with a nineteen-year-old waitress in tow, to the moral and legal fallout must be added the horrible inconvenience to his brother and sisters. Leo’s rehab costs have severely depleted ‘the nest’ – the family’s joint trust fund that would have cut them loose from their myriad financial issues.

For Melody, a suburban wife and mother, it was to cover both an unwieldy mortgage and her daughters’ college tuition. Antiques dealer Jack has secretly borrowed against the beach cottage he shares with his husband. And Beatrice, a once-promising short story writer, can’t seem to finish her overdue novel.

Brought together as never before, the Plumb siblings must grapple with old resentments, present-day truths, and the significant emotional and financial toll of the accident, as well as finally acknowledging the choices they have made in their own lives.

Ferociously astute, warm and funny, The Nest is a brilliant debut chronicling the hilarity and savagery of family life.

The Review

The Plumb family have always relied on the Nest – a fund set up by their wealthy father that means that when the youngest child turns 40 they can all have their inheritance. However, when one of the Plumb children gets caught in a compromising situation their mother pulls rank and uses the Nest to fund his recovery…much to the chagrin of the other siblings.

The Nest is a brilliant story of how the other half live and how the sense of privilege transcends down the family line. It is an interesting look at sibling relationships and the dynamics of family life. It also makes you asses what you hold dear or see as important. The Nest is a very good read.

The Nest by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney is available now.

For more information regarding Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney (@CynthiaDSweeney) please visit www.cynthia-sweeney.com.

For more information regarding Harper Collins (@HarperCollinsUK) please visit the Twitter page.

Title: The Chalk Man

Author: CJ Tudor

Pages: 280 Pages

Publisher: Crown Publishing

The Blurb

In 1986, Eddie and his friends are just kids on the verge of adolescence. They spend their days biking around their sleepy English village and looking for any taste of excitement they can get. The chalk men are their secret code: little chalk stick figures they leave for one another as messages only they can understand. But then a mysterious chalk man leads them right to a dismembered body, and nothing is ever the same.

In 2016, Eddie is fully grown, and thinks he’s put his past behind him. But then he gets a letter in the mail, containing a single chalk stick figure. When it turns out that his friends got the same message, they think it could be a prank . . . until one of them turns up dead.

That’s when Eddie realizes that saving himself means finally figuring out what really happened all those years ago.

(Goodreads Blurb)

The Review

When a group of young boys find a dismembered body in a local park they are disturbed and baffled. The one clue is a man drawn in chalk.

Years later, the chalk man symbol starts appearing again and the mystery of the past returns.

The story of Eddie and his friends could be categorised as a coming of age under mystery thriller but it in’t really a genre that blends will in my opinion. I wanted to be completely hooked on the story and at times I will admit to feeling creeped out and, at times, a little disturbed but the pacing was a little to languorous for my liking.

The Chalk Man is an interesting take on a blended genre but I don’t really think this was my kind of story.

The Chalk Man by CJ Tudor is available now.

For more information regarding Crown Publishing (@CrownOublishing) please visit www.crownpublishing.com.

Title: Epstein – Dead Men Tell No Tales

Author: Dylan Howard

Pages: 201 Pages

Publisher: Skyhorse

The Blurb

This is—for the first time—the full and unedited story behind the sick life and mysterious death of Jeffrey Epstein that is being called one of the most significant scandals in American history

He was the billionaire financier and close confidant of presidents, prime ministers, movie stars and British royalty, the mysterious self-made man who rose from blue-collar Brooklyn to the heights of luxury. But while he was flying around the world on his private jet and hosting lavish parties at his private island in the Caribbean, he also was secretly masterminding an international child sex ring—one that may have involved the richest and most influential men in the world.

The conspiracy of corruption was an open secret for decades. And then this summer, it all came crashing down.

After his arrest on sex trafficking charges in July, it seemed Epstein’s darkest secrets would finally see the light. But hopes for true justice were shattered on August 10 this year, when he was found dead in his cell at the Metropolitan Correctional Center, New York.

The verdict: suicide. The timing: convenient, to say the least.

Now, Epstein: Dead Men Tell No Tales delivers bombshell new revelations, uncovers how the man President Trump once described as a “terrific guy” abused hundreds of underage girls at his mansions in Palm Beach and Manhattan… all while entertaining the world’s most powerful men—including President Clinton, Prince Andrew, and Donald Trump himself. How much did they know about his perversions? And did they take part? How might they have helped him to continue his abuse, and to escape justice for it? What responsibility might they have for his sudden, shocking death? And is there a shocking spy and blackmail story at the heart of the scandal? The answers to these questions and more will be explored in Epstein: Dead Men Tell No Tales with groundbreaking new reporting, never-before-seen court files, and interviews with new witnesses and confidants.

Combining the very best investigative reporting from investigative journalists Dylan Howard, Melissa Cronin and James Robertson—who have been covering the case for close to a decade—will send shockwaves through the highest levels of the establishment.

(Goodreads Blurb)

The Review

Epstein: Dead Men Tell No Tales is another explosive book regarding the case of Jeffrey Epstein and his sex trafficking crimes. This book was written and released after Epstein’s death (alleged suicide) and looks at the case going back to the earliest accusations up to his time incarcerated and subsequent death. 

Now there are several books on this topic so you may be wondering what makes this book so special. What I can tell you is that this case has so many layers that are still being uncovered that you are bound to learn something new, some new insidious detail that makes the plot of this real life drama thicken. 

For me, Epstein: Dead Men Tell No Tales poses the question of Epstein’s death – was it really suicide or was it murder – or is he actually even dead? It also highlights the worldwide implications of his crimes and pulls the curtains on those in power who do not want information being leaked.

Epstein: Dead Men Tell No Tales is fascinating. Anyone who is a true crime fan needs to read it. 

Epstein: Dead Men Tell No Tales by Dylan Howard is available now.

For more information regarding Skyhorse (@skyhorsepub) please visit www.skyhorsepublishing.com.