Wednesday, May 15, 2024

Spotlight: Summer and Fall at Kensington Books


Today I attended a Zoom with Kensington Books to see the new summer and fall line-up. Here are some of the books that you have to look forward to...

A Daughter of Fair Verona by Christina Dodd

Knives Out meets Bridgerton in Fair Verona, as New York Times bestselling author Christina Dodd kicks off a frothy, irreverent, witty new series with an irresistible premise—Romeo and Juliet’s daughter as a clever, rebellious, fiercely independent young woman in fair Verona—told from the delightfully engaging point of view of the captivating Rosie Montague herself…

"A sharp, determined heroine, a clever historical mystery, sparkling wit, a unique setting, family drama and a dash of romance.”– Amanda Quick, New York Times bestselling author of The Lady Has a Past

Once upon a time a young couple met and fell in love. You probably know that story, and how it ended ( badly). Only here’s the That’s not how it ended at all.

Romeo and Juliet are alive and well and the parents of seven kids. I’m the oldest, with the emphasis on ‘old’—a certified spinster at twenty, and happy to stay that way. It’s not easy to keep your taste for romance with parents like mine. Picture it—constant monologues, passionate declarations, fighting, making up, making out . . . it’s exhausting.

Each time they’ve presented me with a betrothal, I’ve set out to find the groom-to-be a more suitable bride. After all, someone sensible needs to stay home and manage this household. But their latest match, Duke Stephano, isn’t so easy to palm off on anyone else. The debaucher has had three previous wives—all of whom met unfortunate ends. Conscience forbids me from consigning another woman to that fate. As it turns out, I don’t have to . . .

At our betrothal ball—where, quite by accident, I meet a beautiful young man who makes me wonder if perhaps there is something to love at first sight—I stumble upon Duke Stephano with a dagger in his chest. But who killed him? His late wives’ families, his relatives, his mistress, his servants—half of Verona had motive. And when everyone around the Duke begins dying, disappearing, or descending into madness, I know I must uncover the killer . . . before death lies on me like an untimely frost.

Expected publication June 25, 2024

A Dog Called Ducky by Amanda Morgan

Secrets of Rose Briar Hall by Kelsey James

A Time for Defiance by James D. Shipman

The Eyes are the Best Part by Monika Kim

Feminist psychological horror about the making of a female serial killer from a Korean-American perspective.

Ji-won’s life tumbles into disarray in the wake of her appa’s extramarital affair and subsequent departure. Her mother, distraught. Her younger sister, hurt and confused. Her college freshman grades, failing. Her dreams, horrifying… yet enticing.

In them, Ji-won walks through bloody rooms full of eyes. Succulent blue eyes. Salivatingly blue eyes. Eyes the same shape and shade as George’s, who is Umma’s obnoxious new boyfriend. George has already overstayed his welcome in her family’s claustrophobic apartment. He brags about his puffed-up consulting job, ogles Asian waitresses while dining out, and acts condescending toward Ji-won and her sister as if he deserves all of Umma’s fawning adoration. No, George doesn’t deserve anything from her family. Ji-won will make sure of that.

For no matter how many victims accumulate around her campus or how many people she must deceive and manipulate, Ji-won’s hunger and her rage deserve to be sated.

A brilliantly inventive, subversive novel about a young woman unraveling, Monika Kim’s The Eyes Are the Best Part is a story of a family falling apart and trying to find their way back to each other, marking a bold new voice in horror that will leave readers mesmerized and craving more.

Expected publication June 25, 2024

The Deading by Nicholas Belardes

The House by the Cemetery by Lisa Childs

Where I End by Sophie White

Metal From Heaven by August Clarke

For fans of The Princess Bride and Gideon the a bloody lesbian revenge tale and political fantasy set in a glittering world transformed by industrial change – and simmering class warfare. Ichorite is progress. More durable and malleable than steel, ichorite is the lifeblood of a dawning industrial revolution. Yann I. Chauncey owns the sole means of manufacturing this valuable metal, but his workers, who risk their health and safety daily, are on strike. They demand Chauncey research the hallucinatory illness befalling them, a condition they call “being lustertouched.” Marney Honeycutt, a lustertouched child worker, stands proud at the picket line with her best friend and family. That’s when Chauncey sends in the guns. Only Marney survives the massacre. She vows bloody vengeance. A decade later, Marney is the nation’s most notorious highwayman, and Chauncey’s daughter seeks an opportune marriage. Marney’s rage and the ghosts of her past will drive her to masquerade as an aristocrat, outmaneuver powerful suitors, and win the heart of his daughter, so Marney can finally corner Chauncey and satisfy her need for revenge. But war ferments in the north, and deeper grudges are surfacing. . . H. A. Clarke’s adult fantasy debut, writing as August Clarke, Metal from Heaven is a punk-rock murder ballad tackling labor issues and radical empowerment against the relentless grind of capitalism.

Expected publication October 22, 2024

The Bitter Truth by Shanora Williams

Fleeing France by Alan Hlad

Best, First, and Last by Amy T Matthews

In this stirring, spirited, and ultimately joyful new novel from the author of Someone Else’s Bucket List, three generations of women in the same family, whose hearts have been broken in different ways, set out on a challenging journey to see one of the wonders of the world—and find themselves to be just as awe-inspiring. Perfect for fans of Josie Silver and Rebecca Serle.

When twenty-five-year-old Heather Russo breaks up with her boyfriend—again—she can’t figure out if she’s to blame or he is. Either way, she’s miserable, and working at home via Zoom meetings is only making it worse. What’s more, all the women in her family are struggling. Mom Sandy is convinced she’s wasted her life and is nursing a giant grudge against Heather’s father, whom she’s now divorcing. Grandmother Bonnie is reeling with the grief of losing her third husband, and is carrying his urn everywhere she goes, even the supermarket. The bottom has fallen out of their lives so abruptly, the trio is clinging to any handhold they can—and slowly but surely losing their grip . . .

Inspired by a friend’s adventurous grandson, and determined not to spend her 70th birthday wallowing, Bonnie is ready to take extreme measures. Even if it means dragging her beloved girls along by the hair, they’re going to hike the Incan Trail to Machu Picchu! Of course, their emotional baggage gets packed with their lightweight jackets, but as they make the trek, the women also talk, sharing stories and secrets that have been festering for far too long. With every arduous step toward the famed summit, each woman sheds some of the past and its pain, and opens up to the extraordinary possibilities of the present—and a future that just might include a new happily ever after.

Expected publication June 25, 2024 

The Cold Light of Day by Anna Lee Huber

In the Lonely Hours by Shannon Morgan

One Cursed Rose by Rebecca Zanetti

Information is power, and those who control it live like gods.

In my world,

billionaires play deadly games of insult and influence where magic is the dirtiest weapon of all. Here, even a powerful princess can be swallowed by the darkest of shadows . . .

My name is Alana Beaumont, and due to a recent tragedy, I’m the sole heir to Aquarius Social, a family business being systematically dismantled by an unseen enemy. My father’s solution is to give me in marriage and create a coalition with a competing family, so I’m torn between my thirst for revenge and my duty. Now I just have a week to finish my hunt before the wedding.

There’s nothing like an assassination attempt to cut short the best of plans—even worse is my unwanted rescue by Thorn Beathach, the Beast whose social media empire is driving Aquarius under. The richest, most ruthless of them all, he protects his realm with an iron rule: no one sees his face. When he shows himself to me, I know he’ll never let me go.

Adam may think he can lock me in his castle forever, but I’m not the docile Beauty he expects. If the Beast wants to tie me up, I’m going to take pleasure from every minute of it . . .and we’ll just see who ends up shackled.

Expected publication June 25, 2024

Bad River by Marc Cameron

Follow the Stars Home by Diane C McPhail

The Trial of Mrs. Rhinelander by Denny S Bryce

Inspired by a real-life scandal that was shocking even for the tumultuous Roaring Twenties, this captivating novel tells the story of a pioneering Black journalist, a secret interracial marriage among the New York elite, and the sensational divorce case that ignited an explosive battle over race and class—and brought together two very different women fighting for justice, legitimacy, and the futures they risked everything to shape. From Denny S. Bryce, bestselling author of Wild Women and the Blues and In the Face of the Sun.

New York, 1924. Born to English immigrants who’ve built a comfortable life, idealistic Alice Jones longs for the kind of true love her mother and father have. She believes she’s found it with Leonard “Kip” Rhinelander, the shy heir to his prominent white family’s real estate fortune. Alice too, is “white”, though she is vaguely aware of rumors that question her ancestry—gossip her parents dismiss. But when the lovers secretly wed, Kip’s parents threaten his inheritance unless he annuls the marriage. 

Devastated but determined, Alice faces overwhelming odds both legally and in the merciless court of public opinion. But there is one person who can either help her—or shatter her hopes for Reporter Marvel Cunningham. The proud daughter of an accomplished Black family, Marvel lives to chronicle social change and the Harlem Renaissance’s fiery creativity.

At first, Marvel sees Alice’s case as a tabloid sensation generated by a self-hating woman who failed to “pass.” But the deeper she investigates, the more she will recognize just how much she and Alice have in common. For Rhinelander vs. Rhinelander will bring to light stunning truths that will force both women to confront who they are, and who they can be, in a world that is all too quick to judge.

Expected publication July 23, 2024

You Have Gone Too Far by Carlene O'Connor

Echoes of Memory by Sara Driscoll

The Sorority by Nancy Bush 

When a popular marriage counselor’s own marriage falls apart, she’s forced to question her methods—and discovers the magical ingredient she’s been missing all along—in the dreamiest possible way . . .

Just one year ago, Chelsea Knight was living the life she’d always wanted. Marriage to the perfect guy, a thriving career, and a gorgeous condo overlooking San Francisco Bay. Then out of nowhere, her husband, Austin, left her. Ironic, because Chelsea fixes marriages for a living. In fact, she’s famous for her techniques. Naturally, she’s been using her expertise to win back her ex—and when he invites her for drinks, she’s sure her work has finally paid off. Until he announces he’s engaged.

Devastated, Chelsea seeks refuge in the beloved small-town lake cabin she and Austin now take turns using. When she arrives, the streets are dazzlingly decked out for Halloween, the autumn leaves are exceptionally vibrant, and the locals are especially warm and welcoming. It’s downright magical—and so is Knox Hart, a talented jack-of-all-trades who’s fixing her roof. Chelsea is instantly drawn to him—and to the simplicity of country life. Slowly, she becomes immersed in the townspeople’s problems and finds a sense of belonging—leading her to reevaluate her own path . . .

But something about the idyllic hamlet—and Knox—seems too good to be true. A trick more than a treat. And when she ultimately learns the truth, her heart is shattered. Miraculously, Austin is there to mend it. It’s everything she’d hoped for. Or is it? On the cusp of making all her dreams come true, Chelsea must find the strength to make an impossible choice . . .

When a popular marriage counselor's own marriage falls apart, she's forced to question her methods-- and discovers the magical ingredient she's been missing al along-- in the dreamiest possible way. Has to make a choice between the life she has and the life that only exists in her dreams.

Publication date July 23, 2024

Check out all of the books at Kensington Books.

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