2017 has seen some stellar blockbusters fly off the shelves, and we think the ones below are the absolute best of the best!
From hair-raising thrillers, like The Girl Who Takes an Eye for an Eye, to historical heavyweights like A Column of Fire, these are books with meaty plots and intrigue a-plenty, with determined heroes and plucky heroines that you’ll be cheering for til the very last page.
If you somehow haven’t checked these books out yet this year, then now is your chance!
In The Red Coast, Di Morrissey returns to the red earth of the Kimberley with a passionate story of resistance and resilience under its soaring blue skies.
After the upheaval which separated Jacqui Bouchard from her beloved son, she has finally settled in Broome, a magical remote town on the northwest coast of Australia.
But when a proposed mining development is unveiled, the town begins to tear itself apart. Rifts run deep, as friends, families and lovers are faced with a battle that could change their lives irrevocably.
As everyone takes sides, Jacqui confronts her own dilemma: to stay or leave? Who to trust . . . Who to love?
Harry Bosch is back as a volunteer working cold cases for the San Fernando police and is called out to a local drug store where a young pharmacist has been murdered. Bosch and the town's three-person detective squad sift through the clues, which lead into the dangerous, big business world of prescription drug abuse.
Meanwhile, an old case from Bosch's LAPD days comes back to haunt him when a long-imprisoned killer claims Harry framed him, and seems to have new evidence to prove it. Bosch left the LAPD on bad terms, so his former colleagues aren't keen to protect his reputation. He must fend for himself in clearing his name and keeping a clever killer in prison.
The two unrelated cases wind around each other like strands of barbed wire. Along the way Bosch discovers that there are two kinds of truth: the kind that sets you free and the kind that leaves you buried in darkness.
Christmas 1558, and young Ned Willard returns home to Kingsbridge to find his world has changed. The ancient stones of Kingsbridge Cathedral look down on a city torn by religious hatred. Europe is in turmoil as high principles clash bloodily with friendship, loyalty and love, and Ned soon finds himself on the opposite side from the girl he longs to marry, Margery Fitzgerald. Then Elizabeth Tudor becomes queen and all of Europe turns against England.
The shrewd, determined young monarch immediately sets up the country's first secret service to give her early warning of assassination plots, rebellions and invasion plans. Elizabeth knows that alluring, headstrong Mary Queen of Scots lies in wait in Paris. Part of a brutally ambitious French family, Mary has been proclaimed the rightful ruler of England, with her own supporters scheming to get rid of the new queen. Over a turbulent half-century, the love between Ned and Margery seems doomed, as extremism sparks violence from Edinburgh to Geneva. With Elizabeth clinging precariously to her throne and her principles, protected by a small, dedicated group of resourceful spies and courageous secret agents, it becomes clear that the real enemies - then as now - are not the rival religions.
The true battle pitches those who believe in tolerance and compromise against the tyrants who would impose their ideas on everyone else - no matter the cost.
In Judy Nunn’s latest compelling novel, compassion meets bigotry, hatred meets love, and ultimately despair meets hope on the windswept shores of Australia.
On a barren island off the coast of Western Australia, a rickety wooden dinghy runs aground. Aboard are nine people who have no idea where they are. Strangers before the violent storm that tore their vessel apart, the instinct to survive has seen them bond during their days adrift on a vast and merciless ocean.
Fate has cast them ashore with only one thing in common . . . fear. Rassen the doctor, Massoud the student, the child Hamid and the others all fear for their lives. But in their midst is Jalila, who appears to fear nothing. The beautiful young Yazidi woman is a mystery to them all.
While they remain undiscovered on the deserted island, they dare to dream of a new life . . .
But forty kilometres away on the mainland lies the tiny fishing port of Shoalhaven. Here everyone knows everyone, and everyone has their place. In Shoalhaven things never change.
Until now . . .
Will Robie, highly trained assassin and the US government's most indispensable asset, is called to London.
An imminent terrorist attack threatens the Underground and with the US next in line, Robie is the perfect choice to stop it before it begins.
He knows he has one chance to succeed. One chance to save London. One chance to make it safely home to find out what has happened to fellow agent Jessica Reel following their last deadly mission together.
But Robie is about to learn that even if he succeeds, the worst is yet to come. The game has started.
Now only he can end it . . .
Robert Langdon, Harvard professor of symbology and religious iconology, arrives at the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao to attend the unveiling of a discovery that “will change the face of science forever”. The evening’s host is his friend and former student, Edmond Kirsch, a forty-year-old tech magnate whose dazzling inventions and audacious predictions have made him a controversial figure around the world. This evening is to be no exception: he claims he will reveal an astonishing scientific breakthrough to challenge the fundamentals of human existence.
But Langdon and several hundred other guests are left reeling when the meticulously orchestrated evening is blown apart before Kirsch’s precious discovery can be revealed. With his life under threat, Langdon is forced into a desperate bid to escape, along with the museum’s director, Ambra Vidal. Together they flee to Barcelona on a perilous quest to locate a cryptic password that will unlock Kirsch’s secret.
In order to evade a tormented enemy who is one step ahead of them at every turn, Langdon and Vidal must navigate labyrinthine passageways of hidden history and ancient religion. On a trail marked only by enigmatic symbols and elusive modern art, Langdon and Vidal uncover the clues that will bring them face-to-face with a world-shaking truth that has remained buried until now.
‘Dan Brown is the master of the intellectual cliffhanger’ Wall Street Journal
‘As engaging a hero as you could wish for’ Mail on Sunday
‘For anyone who wants more brain-food than thrillers normally provide’ Sunday Times
For all fans of The Girl on the Train and Gone Girl comes this spellbinding Hitchcockian thriller which takes psychological suspense to the next level.
Jane stumbles on the rental opportunity of a lifetime: the chance to live in a beautiful ultra-minimalist house designed by an enigmatic architect, on condition she abides by a long list of exacting rules.
After moving in, she discovers that a previous tenant, Emma, met a mysterious death there and starts to wonder if her own story will be a re-run of the girl before.
As twist after twist catches the reader off guard, Emma's past and Jane's present become inexorably entwined in this tense, page-turning portrayal of psychological obsession.