Whether you're tucked up in bed, glued to the sofa, running a hot bath or relaxing at the dinner table, these new novels are ideal for curling up with (preferably in a corner) on a quiet afternoon.
Ruth’s tribe are her lively children and her filmmaker husband, Simon, who has Motor Neurone Disease and can only communicate with his eyes. As she tells the story of their marriage, Ruth also charts her passion for sea swimming, one of the daily coping strategies as Ruth fights to preserve the strong but now silent connection with her husband. An invocation to all of us to love as hard as we can, and live even harder, I Found My Tribe is an urgent and uplifting letter to a husband, family, friends, the natural world and the brightness of life.
New Boy by Tracy Chevalier
The tragedy of Othello is transposed to a 1970s’ suburban Washington schoolyard, where kids fall in and out of love with each other before lunchtime, and practise a casual racism picked up from their parents and teachers. Watching over the shoulders of four 11-year-olds – Osei, Dee, Ian and his reluctant girlfriend Mimi – Tracy Chevalier's powerful drama of friends torn apart by jealousy, bullying and betrayal will leave you reeling.
The Growing Season by Helen Sedgwick
Without the pouch, Eva might not have been born. And yet she has sacrificed her career, and maybe even her relationship, campaigning against FullLife’s biotech baby pouches. Despite her efforts, everyone prefers a world where women are liberated from danger and constraint and all can share the joy of childbearing. Perhaps FullLife has helped transform society for the better? But just as Eva decides to accept this, she discovers that something sinister is happening at FullLife.
Montpelier Parade by Karl Geary
Working on the garden with his father one Saturday, Sonny is full of curiosity. Then the back door eases open and she comes down the path towards him. Vera. Casting off his lonely life of dreams and quiet violence for this new, intoxicating encounter, he longs to know Vera, even to save her. But what is it that Vera isn’t telling him? Unfolding in the sea-bright, rain-soaked Dublin of early spring, Montpelier Parade is a beautiful, cinematic novel about desire, longing, grief, hope and the things that remain unspoken.
Smile by Roddy Doyle
Having just moved in to a new apartment and alone for the first time in years, Victor Forde goes every evening to Donnelly’s pub for a pint. One night a man brings over his pint and sits down. He seems to know Victor’s name and to remember him from school. He prompts other memories too – of Rachel, his beautiful wife who became a celebrity, and of Victor’s own small claim to fame, as the man who says the unsayable on the radio. But it’s the memories of school, and of one particular Brother, that he cannot control and which eventually threaten to destroy his sanity.
Hag-Seed by Margaret Atwood
Felix is at the top of his game as Artistic Director of the Makeshiweg Theatre Festival. His productions have amazed and confounded, and now he’s staging a Tempest like no other. Or that was the plan. Instead, after an act of unforeseen treachery, Felix is living in exile, haunted by memories of his beloved lost daughter, Miranda. But after twelve years, revenge finally arrives in the shape of a theatre course at a nearby prison. Here, Felix and his inmate actors will put on his Tempest and snare the traitors who destroyed him.