First up, we have four titles from Christopher Brookmyre . . .
When The Devil Drives is the much anticipated follow up to the bestselling Where the Bodies Are Buried.
Private investigator Jasmine Shar has been hired to find Tessa Garrion, a young woman who has vanished without trace. What begins as a simple search awakens a malevolence that has lain dormant for three decades. As Jasmine uncovers a hidden history of sex, drugs, ritualism and murder, which links Glasgow's high society to the lowest depths of the underworld, she realises she may need a little help from the dark side herself if she's going to get to the truth.
Would it be your ultimate fantasy to enter the world of a video game? A realm where you can look like a hero or a goddess, fly space-ships, slay dragons, yet all of it feels completely real. A realm where there are no consequences and no responsibilities. Or would it be your worst nightmare? Stuck in an endless state of war and chaos where the pain and fear feels real and from which not even death can offer an escape…
This is where you find out. This is Bedlam.
How far would you go to protect the people you love? Would you take a fall? Would you take a bullet? Would you take a life?
When her father’s killer, Glen Fallan, is arrested for another murder, PI Jasmine Sharp enters an underworld where violence is a way of life and vengeance spans generations.
DS Catherine McLeod has one major Glaswegian gangster in the mortuary and another in the cells for killing him - which ought to be cause for celebration. But this case is far more dangerous than it appears on the surface, deeper than skin, darker than blood… Flesh Wounds
Next up, we have three titles from the wonderful Jackie Kay . . .
Red Dust Road. From the moment when, as a little girl, she realizes that her skin is a different colour from that of her beloved mum and dad, to the tracing and finding of her birth parents, her Highland mother and Nigerian father, Jackie Kay’s journey in Red Dust Road is one of unexpected twists, turns and deep emotions. In a book remarkable for its warmth and candour, she discovers that inheritance is about much more than genes: that we are shaped by songs as much as by cells, and that what triumphs, ultimately, is love.
Rachel Cusk's The Bradshaw Variations was published to great acclaim back in 2009 . . .
Since leaving his job to look after Alexa, his eight-year-old daughter, Thomas Bradshaw has found the structure of his daily piano practice and the study of musical form brings a nourishment to these difficult middle years. His pursuit of a more artistic way of life shocks and irritates his parents and his in-laws. Why has he swapped roles with Tonie Swann, his intense, intellectual wife who has accepted a demanding full-time University job? How can this be good for Alexa and for the family as a whole?
Meanwhile Tonie tunes herself out of domestic life, into the harder, headier world of work where long-since forgotten memories of herself are awakened. She soon finds herself outside their tight family circle and alive to previously unimaginable possibilities
Alice Munro is one of our finest short story writers and Dear Life, from 2012, is a spectacular collection of stories.
And finally, we have two titles from Patricia Cornwell's hugely successful Kay Scarpetta series . . .
Flesh and Blood. The master forensic sleuth finds herself in the middle of a nightmarish pursuit of a serial sniper who seems to leave no evidence except fragments of copper. The shots are so perfect, they cause instant death and seem impossible. First New Jersey, then Massachusetts, and then into the murky depths off the coast of South Florida. There she must face an unthinkable truth that points in the direction of her techno genius niece, Lucy, Scarpetta’s own flesh and blood.