The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge

The Lie Tree Frances Hardinge

Rating: 4.5 Stars ★★★★★

The boat moved with a nauseous, relentless rhythm, like someone chewing on a rotten tooth.

Plot

Faith’s father has been found dead under mysterious circumstances, and as she is searching through his belongings for clues she discovers a strange tree. The tree only grows healthy and bears fruit if you whisper a lie to it. The fruit of the tree, when eaten, will deliver a hidden truth to the person who consumes it. The bigger the lie, the more people who believe it, the bigger the truth that is uncovered.

The girl realizes that she is good at lying and that the tree might hold the key to her father’s murder, so she begins to spread untruths far and wide across her small island community. But as her tales spiral out of control, she discovers that where lies seduce, truths shatter . . .

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Good Me, Bad Me by Ali Land

Good Me Bad Me Ali Land

Rating: 4 Stars ★★★★☆

Have you ever dreamt of a place far, far away? I have.

Plot

Annie’s mother is a serial killer. The only way Annie can make it stop is to hand her in to the police.

With a new foster family and a new name -Milly- she hopes for a fresh start. Now, surely, she can be whoever she wants to be. But as her mother’s trial looms, the secrets of Milly’s past won’t let her sleep.

Because Milly’s mother is a serial killer. And blood is thicker than water…

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Altered Carbon by Richard Morgan

Altered Carbon Richard Morgan

Rating: 3 Stars ★★★☆☆

Two hours before dawn I sat in the peeling kitchen and smoked one of Sarah’s cigarettes, listening to the maelstrom and waiting.

Plot

It’s the twenty-fifth century, and advances in technology have redefined life itself. A person’s consciousness can now be stored in the brain and downloaded into a new body (or “sleeve”), making death nothing more than a minor blip on a screen.

Onetime U.N. Envoy Takeshi Kovacs has been killed before, but his last death was particularly painful. Resleeved into a body in Bay City (formerly San Francisco), Kovacs is thrown into the dark heart of a shady, far-reaching conspiracy that is vicious even by the standards of a society that treats existence as something that can be bought and sold. For Kovacs, the shell that blew a hole in his chest was only the beginning.

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Strange Star by Emma Carroll

Strange Star Emma Carroll

Rating: 3 Stars ★★★☆☆

It was Felix’s job to deliver the invitation.

Plot

Switzerland, 1816. On a stormy summer night, Lord Byron and his guests are gathered round the fire. Felix, their serving boy, can’t wait to hear their creepy tales. Yet real life is about to take a chilling turn- more chilling than any tale. Frantic pounding at the front door reveals a stranger, a girl covered in the most unusual scars. She claims to be looking for her sister, supposedly snatched from England by a woman called Mary Shelley. Someone else has followed her here too, she says. And the girl is terrified…

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Orphan X by Gregg Hurwitz

OrphanX

Rating: 3 Stars ★★★☆☆

Evan’s twelve-year-old body is stiff in the cushy passenger seat of the black sedan as he is driven in silence.

Plot

‘Do you need my help?’
It was the first question he asked.
They called him when they had nowhere else to turn.

As a boy Evan Smoak was taken from an orphanage.
Raised and trained in a top secret programme, he was sent to bad places to do things the government denied ever happened.

Then he broke with the programme, using what he’d learned to vanish. Now he helps the desperate and deserving.

But someone’s on his trail.

Someone who knows his past and believes that the boy once known as Orphan X must die . . .

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The Haunted Hotel by Wilkie Collins

The Haunted Hotel by Wilkie Collins

Rating: 3 Stars ★★★☆☆

In the year 1860, the reputation of Doctor Wybrow as a London physician reached its highest point.

Plot

An eminent doctor is visited by a desperate woman with a question: am I evil, or insane?

When the letters from Italian servant to his wife in London suddenly cease, she is convinced he has been murdered.

In the darkened bedroom of a mouldering palazzo by the Grand Canal, an English lord sickens and suddenly dies.

How are these little mysteries connected? Spend the night in Room 14 of Venice’s finest hotel, and find out the truth – if you dare…

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Final Girls by Riley Sager

Final Girls Riley Sager

Rating: 3 Stars ★★★☆☆

The forest had claws and teeth.

Plot

FIRST THERE WERE THREE

The media calls them the Final Girls – Quincy, Sam, Lisa – the infamous group that no one wants to be part of. The sole survivors of three separate killing sprees, they are linked by their shared trauma.

THEN THERE WERE TWO

But when Lisa dies in mysterious circumstances and Sam shows up unannounced on her doorstep, Quincy must admit that she doesn’t really know anything about the other Final Girls. Can she trust them? Or…

CAN THERE ONLY EVER BE ONE?

All Quincy knows is one thing: she is next.

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