Reading list

The debut books of 2016

The New Year brings resolutions, fresh new starts and of course, never-before-read books for your bookshelf. Whether you want to discover your new favourite author, devour a thrilling new crime novel or enjoy a new voice in Young Adult fiction, these are the big debuts of 2016 for your reading list

Lucy Mangan



Baby Doll by Hollie Overton

Lily has been held captive in one room and abused every day since she was sixteen. Then one night, her captor leaves the door to her cell unlocked. A taut psychological thriller centring on family ties, trauma and justice, you’ll want to read Baby Doll in one sitting.

Hollie Overton is a television writer whose father was a member of the Overton Gang and went to prison for manslaughter. Hollie draws on her own childhood to explore violence and a complicated family.

Available on 30th June




Anna and the Swallow Man by Gavriel Savit

In Krakow in 1939, Anna finds herself fatherless and alone – but not for long. A mysterious man summons a swallow down to his hand to stop her from crying, and together, their travels begin through the dangers of the Second World War. Anna and the Swallow Man is a perfect read for those that loved The Book Thief, destined to be enjoyed by adults and young adults alike.

Author Gavriel Savit graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in Musical Theatre, and in between performances found time to read books that inspired him to write his first novel.

Available on 28th January


The Power Paradox by Dacher Keltner

This revolutionary book explores the power dynamics that shape everyday life – from the board room to the dinner table, the playground to the bedroom. By drawing on fascinating case studies that debunk longstanding myths, Dacher Keltner turns everything we know about power upside down.

Available on 17th May





The Girls by Evie Boyd

Evie Boyd is spending her lonely summer in Northern California, when she is entranced by a group of girls in the park. Her obsession with one girl in particular draws her into an infamous cult, thrilling, dangerous and pulling her closer to a moment where everything could change forever. Psychologically sharp and startling, The Girls paints an unforgettable picture of a girl turning into a woman.

Author Emma Cline is 25 years old and recently graduated from Columbia University. She won the Paris Review Plimpton Prize for her short story Marion.

Available on 14th June



The Widow by Jean Taylor

Jean Taylor’s life was blissfully ordinary until her husband was accused of unimaginable evil. The Widow unearths the intimate story from behind the scenes – the story of the wife, married to the man who is thought to be a monster.

As a journalist, Fiona Barton interviewed victims and criminals, but it was the wives of those in the spotlight that continued to haunt her and inspired her first novel.

Available on 14th January




My Name is Leon by Kit de Waal

Leon is nine, and has a perfect baby brother called Jake. They have gone to live with Maureen, who has fuzzy red hair like a halo, and a belly like Father Christmas. But the adults are speaking in low voices, and wearing Pretend faces. They are threatening to give Jake to strangers. Because Jake is white and Leon is not. My Name is Leon is a heart-breaking story of love, identity and learning to overcome unbearable loss. And how - just when we least expect it - we manage to find our way home.

Available on 2nd June



Fingers in the Sparkle Jar by Chris Packham

This coming-of-age memoir follows Chris Packham as an introverted young boy who finds himself enchanted by a baby kestrel. Lyrical and rich, Fingers in the Sparkle Jar brings to life the bewitching world of jam jars, bird’s eggs and country fields, but above all reveals how nature can teach a young boy to love.

Chris Packham is well-known for his BAFTA winning The Really Wild Show, and as a presenter on BBC’s Springwatch.

Available on 5th May




Dear Amy by Helen Callaghan

Margot Lewis is an agony aunt who receives an unexpected letter from Bethan Avery, a girl who was supposedly murdered years ago. Is it a cruel hoax? As more and more letters begin flooding in, Margot must answer the letters which could cost her everything. A psychological thriller filled with suspense, Dear Amy comes from new major voice in fiction.

Helen Callaghan worked as a fiction seller and buyer before studying her A-Levels at night school and achieving a place to read Archaeology at Cambridge University. Dear Amy is her first novel.

Available on 19th May


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