Here's just a handful of novels that are due to be published in September, which have caught my attention.
They have been arranged in alphabetical order according to author's surname.
"Australia is the Lucky Country, and Joey Driscol knows it. It's a far cry from his native Ireland, but he believes this is the place he and his wife can make a new life and forget the troubles of the past. And for a time, they do just that. There's a good life, a new house, regular work and, in time, they welcome their new son Marti into the world. But as the years pass, this new life thousands of miles from the Old Country comes under threat. Joey's wife has been struggling with demons of her own, their marriage is on the rocks and suddenly, Joey's wife disappears and takes Marti with her. Joey is beside himself, with no clues about where they are, with both his childhood sweetheart and his son now missing. Then, when Joey gets word that his wife and son have returned to Ireland, he knows that he'll now have to do the same if he ever wants to see his son again. And he also knows that he'll finally have to confront the ghosts of his past that he's been running from for years."
Tony Black is better known as a crime writer, but this is his first novel outside of the genre. It obviously appeals to me because it combines my interests in Irish literature and Australian literature in the one novel. Bonus!
"As soon as he arrives at the site, Thomas feels that he has escaped a repressed, backward-looking country and fallen headlong into an era of modernity and optimism. He is equally bewitched by the surreal, gigantic Atomium, which stands at the heart of this brave new world, and by Anneke, the lovely Flemish hostess who meets him off his plane. But Thomas's new-found sense of freedom comes at a price: the Cold War is at its height, the mischievous Belgians have placed the American and Soviet pavilions right next to each other — and why is he being followed everywhere by two mysterious emissaries of the British Secret Service? Expo 58 may represent a glittering future, both for Europe and for Thomas himself, but he will soon be forced to decide where his public and private loyaties really lie."
I've read a couple of Jonathan Coe novels and found them very funny indeed. When I heard him read a short extract of this book at a Penguin bloggers evening earlier this year, I thought it was hilarious. I was even brave enough to introduce myself to the author afterwards and he's as delightful as his writing. This one has been sitting in my TBR waiting to be read ever since.
"From Subhash's earliest memories, at every point, his brother was there. In the suburban streets of Calcutta where they wandered before dusk and in the hyacinth-strewn ponds where they played for hours on end, Udayan was always in his older brother's sight. So close in age, they were inseparable in childhood and yet, as the years pass — as US tanks roll into Vietnam and riots sweep across India — their brotherly bond can do nothing to forestall the tragedy that will upend their lives. Udayan finds himself drawn to the Naxalite movement, a rebellion waged to eradicate inequity and poverty. He will give everything, risk all, for what he believes, and in doing so will transform the futures of those dearest to him: his newly married, pregnant wife, his brother and their parents. For all of them, the repercussions of his actions will reverberate across continents and seep through the generations that follow. Epic in its canvas and intimate in its portrayal of lives undone and forged anew, The Lowland is a deeply felt novel of family ties that entangle and fray in ways unforeseen and unrevealed, of ties that ineluctably define who we are. With all the hallmarks of Jhumpa Lahiri's achingly poignant, exquisitely empathetic story-telling, this is her most devastating work of fiction to date."
Already long-listed for this year's Man Booker Prize, this one is certainly eye-catching in colour and design. I've not read any of Jumpa Lahiri's work before but I know she has a loyal fan base and there are plenty of people out there anxiously awaiting this novel's release.
"Bella Wallis is a glamorous widow with a secret identity: in an office buried deep within the dodgy backstreets of Victorian London, she writes sensationalist novels exposing the scoundrels that litter high society under the pen name Henry Ellis Margam. With dodgy deals, scheming aristocrats and stolen kisses behind closed doors, prize-winning author Brian Thompson conjures up an irresistible quartet filled top to toe with seedy Dickensian glamour. We start with 'The Widow's Secret', an effervescent romp to Paris on the trail of the owner of a mysterious cigar case; then 'The Sailor's Ransom', a tale of pearls and swine, set on the Cornish coast and the high seas; and 'The Player's Curse', where kidnap, cricket and cross-dressing coincide in a riotous mystery. We end with the previously unpublished 'The Whole Story', in which Bella is caught up in an anarchist bomb attack at her favourite restaurant, Fracatelli's on the Strand...and only just survives to tell the tale."
Doesn't this collection sound absolutely perfect for curling up on those long winter evenings, getting lost in a cosy crime story or four?
"Set in the early 1900s, 'Viennese Romance' tells the story of Michael Rost, an 18-year-old Jewish youth who travels to Vienna, hungry for experience. There, he forms passing relationships with everyone who crosses his path — prostitutes, revolutionaries, paupers, army officers, and rich men alike. When a shady businessman takes the penniless Rost under his wing, he rents a room in the home of an affluent bourgeois family. He is seduced by the lady of the house while her husband is away on business, and shortly after begins an affair with her 16-year-old daughter as well. This love triangle threatens to destroy the entire family.
'Viennese Romance' is a seminal work that explores the conflicts faced by many Jewish intellectuals in early 20th-century Europe. A compelling portrait of a decadent society, it also lays bare the obsessive–destructive nature of love."
The story of how this lucious-looking book (the type is embossed directly onto the woven-cloth hardcover) came to be published is almost as intriguing as the story itself. Apparently it was discovered almost 100 years after the author started working on it. He was previously known for just one another novel — Married Life — first published in 1929, which earned him comparisons with Joseph Roth, Thomas Mann and Franz Kafka. This is the first time Viennese Romance has been published in English — and it's taken an Australian publisher to do it. I'm planning on reading it very soon.
Please note that the release dates quoted are for the UK and are subject to change.
Are there any on this list that have piqued your interest?