#5Books: Book recs and U2!

On Saturday I went to U2’s Joshua Tree concert and it was amazing!

Like there was ever any doubt, lol.

The band did their music from Joshua Tree, and while I know some of their bigger hits from there, I realised I probably need to listen to their earlier music more — though they did play more of their other big hits too. We were in the nose-bleed seats, but because it was a smaller venue than one of the huge stadiums over here, it was pretty good — I mean, I felt the music in my breastbone and my ears were ringing long after I got home, so I count it as a win!

I forgot how wonderful Bono sounds live, and their stage presence is as electric as ever! I was amused somewhat about the shout out to Tayto Park, which is a theme park in Ireland devoted to potato crisps, and clearly this is now on my bucket list..

Check out my pics on insta. And the video, because the screen behind them for that was brilliant!

Raven Lane

The truth can bring out the worst in the best of friends.

Esme and Benedict Werner have an idyllic life in a tight-knit community until an accident in their cul-de-sac ends in the tragic sudden death of one of their dearest neighbors. After vindicating eyewitness accounts morph into contradictory memories, suspicion, and unaccountable accusations, Benedict is arrested. Esme’s life, too, is changed forever.

As the neighborhood largely turns against her and her family, Esme has time to think about her past and what to do next. Then her fellow residents start looking deeper, questioning one another, and themselves, about hidden lies and betrayals.

Esme has more than her share of secrets. And the consequences of what happened on that fateful late-summer evening on Raven Lane are far from over. When the mask of civility slips, can friends and neighbors recover from seeing the monstrous truths beneath?

There is something about this cover; like headlights on a wall illuminating the title that caught my eye immediately. Then of course came the delicious blurb with secrets and lies and, neighbours who aren’t really besties when it counts. What is in Esme’s past that she wants to hide? And what are the consequences of the accident? Do they link to Esme’s past?

My Dark Vanessa

Exploring the psychological dynamics of the relationship between a precocious yet naïve teenage girl and her magnetic and manipulative teacher, a brilliant, all-consuming read that marks the explosive debut of an extraordinary new writer.

2000. Bright, ambitious, and yearning for adulthood, fifteen-year-old Vanessa Wye becomes entangled in an affair with Jacob Strane, her magnetic and guileful forty-two-year-old English teacher.

2017. Amid the rising wave of allegations against powerful men, a reckoning is coming due. Strane has been accused of sexual abuse by a former student, who reaches out to Vanessa, and now Vanessa suddenly finds herself facing an impossible choice: remain silent, firm in the belief that her teenage self willingly engaged in this relationship, or redefine herself and the events of her past. But how can Vanessa reject her first love, the man who fundamentally transformed her and has been a persistent presence in her life? Is it possible that the man she loved as a teenager—and who professed to worship only her—may be far different from what she has always believed?

Alternating between Vanessa’s present and her past, My Dark Vanessa juxtaposes memory and trauma with the breathless excitement of a teenage girl discovering the power her own body can wield. Thought-provoking and impossible to put down, this is a masterful portrayal of troubled adolescence and its repercussions that raises vital questions about agency, consent, complicity, and victimhood. Written with the haunting intimacy of The Girls and the creeping intensity of RoomMy Dark Vanessa is an era-defining novel that brilliantly captures and reflects the shifting cultural mores transforming our relationships and society itself.

It’d be scary wouldn’t it — to look back at something that shaped you, that you held on to and see it entirely differently. Were you wrong? What did you miss? It’s that question that draws me to this book, especially considering where we are now, and then men and relationships that are now so different.

Wife after Wife

If Philippa Gregory and Jackie Collins went out for cocktails and wrote a book, they’d come back with Wife After Wife.

A wickedly entertaining and utterly absorbing modern take on the life and marriages of Henry VIII…if he were a twenty-first-century womanizing media mogul rather than the king of England.

Master of the universe Harry Rose is head of the Rose Corporation, number eighteen on the Forbes rich list, and recently married to wife number six. But in 2018, his perfect world is about to come crashing to the ground. His business is in the spotlight–and not in a good way–and his love life is under scrutiny. Because behind a glittering curtain of lavish parties, gorgeous homes, and a media empire is a tale worthy of any tabloid.

And Harry has a lot to account for.

You know how I got ranty about the Little Women movie? Well here’s a fine example of what could be done with a classic and still create a story that people want to read.

Hold Your Tongue

A brutal murder.

A young woman’s body is discovered with horrifying injuries, a recent newspaper cutting pinned to her clothing.

A detective with everything to prove.

This is her only chance to redeem herself.

A serial killer with nothing to lose.

He’s waited years, and his reign of terror has only just begun . . .

Introducing DI Eve Hunter, HOLD YOUR TONGUE is your new obsession.

Generally, blurbs like this can go one of two ways for me — too vague to be interesting … or there are ones like this one, that get under my skin, niggling at me like there’s something I have to know (FOMO HA). We’ll see how it goes!

Now, I am going to go listen to Joshua Tree again!

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