Dead of Winter by Wendy Corsi Staub. Published by Crooked Lane

Return to the weird and wonderful world of Lily Dale, where things are never quite what they seem. Bella Jordan just happens to be looking out her window when she witnesses a killer dumping a body. The killer notices her noticing him and decides to eliminate the threat, but as he approaches her house, a black cat appears and frightens off the superstitious killer, for now. Meanwhile a local boy, Jiffy, is looking for the cat. Jiffy has had visions of being kidnapped during a snowstorm and when the season’s first storm descend, the boy vanishes. Bella believes the boy has just lost track of time and will return home, but her son, Max, knows Jiffy has been taken. Bella starts taking her son seriously when a body is found in the lake and the town rallies to find the missing boy, but will they be too late? Staub writes another creepy tale about the village of Lily Dale that will leave readers shivering under the covers

Journeys: Young Readers’ Letters to Authors Who Changed Their Lives. Published by Candlewick

To quote Neil Gaiman ” A book is a dream that you hold in your hand”. Never is that more apparent when seeing the way children react and respond to books. Here are letters, real, heartfelt letters written by real kids, to the authors that have made all the difference in the world to them. I defy anyone to read this book without tearing up, or realizing the remarkable power of a good book to change lives. As a children’s librarian, I see it every day in my students, and it’s nothing short of a miracle. Authors, good authors, can change the lives of anyone who opens their books. Please, for the sake of our children and our world, read this book and fight to keep your public libraries open. Those authors have the power to save all of us

Perennials by Julia Cantrell. Published by Thomas Nelson

Eva, or Lovey as she’s called, and her sister Bitsy, grew up in Mississippi. A tragic fire during their girlhood damaged their mother’s prized perennial garden and injured one of Lovey’s friends. Bitsy, who seemed to be the perfect. daughter, the one who married well, blamed Lovey for the fire. By the time she’s 18, Lovey has had enough, she spurns a suitor and hightails it to Arizona, as far away as she can get from the deep South and her painful memories. She forges a good life for herself, with a successful career, but ar 45. she hasn’t met anyone she wants to spend her life with. Then she gets a call that twists her stomach into knots, her father wants her to come home to celebrate his 50th wedding anniversary. That means Lovey will have to see Bitsy again and be reminded of all the things she wasn’t. But family comes first, so Lovey journeys back to Oxford to confront her past, little knowing that in doing so, she will find herself.

Summer at the Little French Guesthouse by Helen Pollard. Published by Bookouture

Return to the Little French Guesthouse as Emmy Jamieson prepares to marry the love of her life, Alain. Life should be perfect, Emmy is managing La Cour des Roses in the French countryside and her mother has arrived to help plan the nuptials. Um, let’s rephrase that, her mum has come to take over the wedding plans. And if that isn’t enough to give Emmy an anxiety attack, the odd behavior of Alain’s ex certainly will. Suddenly, Emmy wonders if her fairytale is just that, and if it will all go up in a puff of smoke. This is a delightful series filled with eccentric characters and the lush beauty of France

The Night Market by Jonathan Moore. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Detective Ross Carver is on the scene of a murder in a stately home, trying to figure out what the hell is all over his victim. Whatever it is, it appears to be dissolving the man’s skin. Carver is still musing when federal agents storm the house and frog march him to a trailer to be decontaminated where he’s forced to drink a noxious liquid that gives him seizures and then given electrical shocks until he passes out. When he comes to his senses two days later, he’s in his own bed, while his neighbor Mia reads aloud to him. What the hell? He has little memory of what happened before he came to, but Mia tells him he was carried home by two cops who said he’s been poisoned. Thus begins one of the most twisted, puzzling books I’ve read this year. Moore is a master at creating suspense, this book is not be missed

The Artist’s Muse by Kerry Postle. Published by HarperCollins UK

In turn of the last century Vienna, Wally Neuzil will do almost anything to provide for her family, so when painter Gustav Klimt needs a model, Wally is willing to try to become the artist’s muse. Her role will introduce her to members of Vienna’s best families. But rather than being treated like an equal, Wally becomes a pariah, viewed as little more than a prostitute. It’s only when Wally meets another young artist, one who’s determined to show her a better life, that she allows herself to fall in love and be swept away by passion. Postle introduces readers to some of the greatest artists of the 20th century, while examining the social mores and constrictions on women of the time. Lush and evocative

Poison by Galt Niederhoffer. Published by St. Martins

Niederhoffer explores the fragile bonds of marriage and parenting in her latest book. Cass and Ryan O’Connor had other relationships before they married, each already had children, but somehow they have made their blended family work and seem to have reached the pinnacle of marital bliss. But nothing is ever as it seems, and when small fissures grow into larger cracks, the resulting fallout leaves each wondering where their hearts and their loyalties really lie. This is being billed as a thriller, and I guess if you were living it, you would probably deem it as such. For the reader, however, this comes across as a disturbing portrait at what really lies between the happy smiles and white picket fences of the “perfect” families.