Top Ten Women's Fiction 2015


We've been looking for intelligent women's fiction that provides a good read and we think that we've found some crackers. Here they are, in alphabetical order by author:

In The Unlikely Event by Judy Blume

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How many planes have to crash, before people take notice? How often can an unlikely event occur before you have to stop calling it that? How horrible do things have to get before the adults are willing to talk to the children about their fears, their theories, their understanding of it all, rather than just glossing over the details? Full review...

The Sudden Departure of the Frasers by Louise Candlish

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When something is too good to be true, maybe it is. Christy and Joe Davenport have found the house of their dreams in the luxurious enclave of Lime Park Road, and are thrilled by the asking price. After all, properties rarely come up here and when they do, it’s for an eye-watering amount. Pretty soon, though, they’re left wondering. Why was this house so cheap? Why did the previous owners clearly invest so much in giving the place a fabulous finish only to move out straight after? And why won’t any of the neighbours talk about the situation which clearly went down? Full review...

The Silent Sister by Diane Chamberlain

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Her father dead, her mother too, her only brother struggling with the after effects of a tour in Iraq. Riley’s life is not the easiest right now, but with the mammoth task of clearing out her late father’s estate, she’s back in her hometown for the summer while school’s out and she has time off her adolescent counselling job. Riley is expecting to have a long but simple task ahead of her, sorting through things to keep, things to donate, things to sell. But as she rifles through a lifetime’s collection, she finds far more than she bargained for including troubling news about her sister Lisa who committed suicide as a teenager. Except, it seems, she didn't. With the help of family friends, reams of paperwork and an email history he never expected her to find, Riley discovers her father had been keeping some big secrets. Lisa didn't drown, after all. She took off under an assumed name with a new identity, never to be heard of again. It’s a traumatic discovery for Riley, especially without anyone to share it with, but the more she digs into the past, the more she realises how little she knows about her family history. Full review...

The Sea Between Us by Emylia Hall

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To her parents, the move to Cornwall was an escape to a better way of life. For city-girl Robyn, it was wet, remote and miserable and she was counting down the days to University and her return to civilization. Desperate for something to do to entertain herself, Robyn takes a wetsuit and surfboard and makes her way to a secluded cove. An inexperienced surfer, she soon gets into difficulty, but is rescued from the sea by a young local man called Jago. From that moment on, the two lives are intertwined by an invisible bond; a bond that will be tested and stretched during the years that follow. Full review...

The Last Days of Rabbit Hayes by Anna McPartlin

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The three generations of the Hayes family are salt-of-the-Earth Irish: loud, brash, cussed, argumentative, full of tenaciousness and close. Now they need every ounce as 40 year old Rabbit – Molly and Jack's daughter, Grace and Davey's sister and 12 year old Juliet's mum - is dying of cancer. Each has to come to terms with it in their own way but no one wants to and they definitely won't let death get away with it without a fight, even if the weapons of choice are Molly's sharp tongue and a mug. Full review...

The New Woman by Charity Norman

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Boys will be boys - isn't that what they always say? But what happens when the boy never felt that he was a boy? Luke Livingstone has spent more than fifty years trapped in a man's body when he knows that he really is a woman. But if he feels that he can no longer live a lie, what will that do to his marriage, and how will his family, friends and colleagues react when Luke asks to be called Lucia? Full review...

Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult

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Jenna is a child without a mother. Not an orphan, per se, but close to it. Her mother vanished when she was a toddler. Her father is in an institution. But she's not willing to accept she has no one, not without proof. How do you find someone who doesn't want to be found, though? For Jenna, it's to enlist the services of a fallen-from-grace psychic, and a fallen-from-grace former cop turned PI. Can this mismatched threesome uncover the truth of what really happened all those years ago? Full review...

The House At The End Of Hope Street by Menna Van Praag

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Alba Ashby is a wallflower of a girl; studious, bookish and excruciatingly shy, so when tragedy wields its ponderous bolt, she is less able than most to adjust to life as she now knows it. In one of her midnight walks around historical Cambridge, she finds herself at the door to Number 11 Hope Street. It is house that she has never before seen; quirky and turreted with a wild garden and grandly Victorian in hue and Alba is enchanted by it. So she does something that she would never normally do, in a million years. She knocks on the door. Full review...

Techbitch by Lucy Sykes and Jo Piazza

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Imogen Tate (Editor in Chief, fashionista, all round legend) is back after an extended break for health reasons. Back at her desk at Glossy magazine, back in charge of the magazine and the team she’s spent years building and nurturing. Except she’s not. Things have changed a little while she’s been off. Her former assistant has sprung up the ranks and is now running the show. And it’s a show that’s now moved on, had its interval, and started its second act. Print and permanent are out, tech and temporary are in. The world has changed, the magazine’s going online and the old ways of working are just like Imogen – old. Forget trying to thrive, her new goal now is simply to survive in the arena she once loved and was happy to call home. Full review...

The Lodger by Louisa Treger

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A writer writing about writers writing. What more could a reader, a book reviewer, a tentative writer and lover of words want from a book? Not forgetting the setting – England, early 1900s, clear class divisions and social expectations – and the characters – fascinating, colourful, and above all, real. This book has everything I look for in a story. Full review...

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Last modified on 14 November 2015, at 15:49