Half Moon BayBy Helene Young. Michael Joseph. $29.99.
Helene Young is an award-winning romance writer, having twice won gongs from the Romance Writers of Australia. She’s also a champion of the sub-genre ”romantic suspense”, which weaves a love story into a suspense novel and she does it rather effectively.
Ellie, an international photojournalist, returns to her home town of Half Moon Bay after the residents send her a cry of help when the mayor is suspected of some dodgy dealings. She’s still getting over the death of her sister in Afghanistan and once home comes face to face with Nicholas, the ex-military man who was there the day her sister died.
You’ll keep reading, not only to find out the truth about Half Moon Bay, but to find out whether Ellie and Nicholas will get a happily ever after ending.
Dear LucyBy Julie Sarkissian. Hodder & Stoughton. $29.99.
Sarkissian’s voice is an original one and took some getting used to but, once you got settled into her rhythms, this book became quite engrossing. Lucy is different, a mentally challenged teenaged girl who is living on a farm with Mister and Missus after being abandoned by her own mother. Here she forms a friendship with pregnant Samantha and when Samantha gives birth and the baby disappears, Lucy takes it upon herself to investigate.
Through the differing view points of Lucy, Missus and Samantha, the book explores the concept of motherhood in all its variations as the search for the baby unfolds. While it was hard to develop a relationship with any of the characters Missus, in particular, it was an emotional novel.
And When She Was GoodBy Laura Lippman. Faber and Faber. $24.99.
The idea of a suburban housewife working as a high-end prostitute is not one of fiction any more. Heloise is your typical soccer mum. She’s also a madam, servicing several of Baltimore’s most powerful men. This book flicks back and forwards to Heloise’s youth and while this element got a little confusing at times, it was interesting in explaining the back story.
But it didn’t make Heloise any more likeable – she’s more than a little bitter and not terribly empathetic. The interest came in whether or not she could keep her lives separate.
The original release of this article first appeared on the website of Hangzhou Night Net.