- Josephine’s Garden – Stephanie Parkyn
France, 1794. In the aftermath of the bloody end to the French Revolution, Rose de Beauharnais stumbles from prison on the day she was to be guillotined. Within a decade, she’ll transform into the scandalous socialite who marries Napoleon Bonaparte, become Empress Josephine of France and build a garden of wonders with plants and animals she gathers from across the globe. But she must give Bonaparte an heir or she risks losing everything.
The lives of two other women from very different social spheres are tied to the fate of the Empress Josephine. Widow Marthes Desfriches is desperate to have a child when she enters a loveless marriage with an adversary of the Empress who despises her botanical ambitions. Anne Serreaux longs for a large family when she marries the man who becomes the Empress’s chief gardener tasked with germinating the first Tasmanian blue gums in Europe. Each of these women face obstacles in their relationships and in their quest to become mothers—experiencing trauma that will put all their lives at risk.
Josephine’s Garden is a richly imagined historical novel about identity, obsession, love and marriage, and, ultimately, finding the courage to let go.
- The Clergyman’s Wife – Molly Greeley
Charlotte Collins, nee Lucas, is the respectable wife of Hunsford’s vicar, and sees to her duties by rote: keeping house, caring for their adorable daughter, visiting parishioners and patiently tolerating the lectures of her awkward husband and his condescending patroness, Lady Catherine de Bourgh. Intelligent, pragmatic and anxious to escape the shame of spinsterhood, Charlotte chose this life, an inevitable one so socially acceptable that its quietness threatens to overwhelm her. Then she makes the acquaintance of Mr. Travis, a local farmer and tenant of Lady Catherine.
In Mr. Travis’ company, Charlotte feels appreciated, heard and seen. For the first time in her life Charlotte begins to understand emotional intimacy and its effect on the heart—and how breakable that heart can be. With her sensible nature confronted, and her own future about to take a turn, Charlotte must now question the role of love and passion in a woman’s life, and whether they truly matter for a clergyman’s wife.
- Return To Stringybark Creek – Karly Lane
When top-flight journalists Hadley Callahan and Mitch Samuals married two years ago, it was the wedding of the year. But, now, Hadley unexpectedly returns to Stringybark Creek alone to tell her parents one major piece of news while determinedly hiding another even more explosive secret. While in town, the shocking suicide of an old school friend brings Oliver Dawson and Hadley together.
Beginning a campaign to raise awareness of rural mental health, Hadley’s feelings for Ollie take her by surprise. But her life is so messed up—what future could they possibly have together? Return to Stringybark Creek concludes the Callahan family trilogy with a delightfully irresistible story of loyalty, hope and the importance of staying true to yourself.
- Oligarchy – Scarlett Thomas
When Natasha, daughter of a Russian oligarch, arrives for her first day at an all-girl boarding school, she finds herself thrown into a world of fierce pecking orders, eating disorders and Instagram angst. Then her friend Bianca mysteriously vanishes, and the world of the school gets ever darker and even weirder. Wildly frank, funny and full of humanity, this fierce and brilliant novel about power, privilege and peer pressure reminds us how insightful, vulnerable, brilliant and misunderstood teenagers are, never more so than now.
- A People’s History of Heaven – Mathangi Subramian
Welcome to Heaven, a thirty-year-old slum hidden between brand-new, high-rise apartment buildings in one of India’s fastest-growing cities—and its community of women who have been abandoned by their men when no male heir was produced.
Living hand-to-mouth and constantly struggling against the city government, these women, young and old, support one another sharing whatever they can. This is a story about geography, history and strength, about love and friendship, about fighting for the people and places we love even if no one else knows they exist.
- She Speaks: The Power of Women’s Voices – Yvette Cooper
A powerful celebration of 30 brilliant speeches by women throughout the ages that have inspired change and altered the course of history. From Boudica and Joan of Arc to Margaret Thatcher and Michelle Obama—and including Julia Gillard and Jacinda Ardern—each speech is reproduced in full. This is not only a much-needed celebration of women’s speeches throughout history but also proof that powerful and persuasive oratory can be decidedly female.
- Inexpressible Island – Paullina Simons
The must-read conclusion to the epic End of Foreversaga by Paullina Simons.
Julian has lost everything he ever loved and is almost out of time. His life and death struggle against fate offers him one last chance to do the impossible and save the woman to whom he is permanently bound.
As time runs out for the star-crossed lovers, Julian learns that fate has one last cruel trick in store for them – and that even a man who has lost everything still has something left to lose.
- The Other Windsor Girl – Georgie Blacock
Diana, Catherine, Meghan… glamorous Princess Margaret outdid them all. Springing into post-World War II society, and quite naughty and haughty, she lived in a whirlwind of fame and notoriety. Georgie Blalock captures the fascinating, fast-living princess and her “set” as seen through the eyes of one of her ladies-in-waiting.
- The German House – Annette Hess
A harrowing yet ultimately uplifting international bestseller. A young female translator is caught between societal and familial expectations and her unique ability to speak truth to power as she fights to expose the dark truths of her nation’s past.
- On Swift Horses – Shannon Pufahl
A breathtakingly beautiful debut novel of revolution, chance and the gambles we take with the human heart.
Julius has found himself in Las Vegas, where his gift for gambling leads him to a job patrolling the boards above the casino tables, watching through the cigarette smoke for chancers and cheats.
There he meets Henry, a blackjack artist and a man who shares Julius’s passions, and his secrets. As tourists gather on roof tops to watch atomic clouds bloom in the desert, Henry and Julius’s love burns in the shadows – until one-night Henry is forced to flee.