These are the books that will be hitting our shelves in 2015, and you won’t be able to put them down.
The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
Rachel catches the same commuter train every morning. She knows it will wait at the same signal each time, overlooking a row of back gardens. She’s even started to feel like she knows the people who live in one of the houses. ‘Jess and Jason’, she calls them. Their life – as she sees it – is perfect.
If only Rachel could be that happy. And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Now Rachel has a chance to become a part of the lives she’s only watched from afar. Now they’ll see; she’s much more than just the girl on the train.
Why you should read it: Critics are calling it the next Gone Girl.
Shutter by Courtney Alameda
Micheline Helsing is a tetrachromat — a girl who sees the auras of the undead in a prismatic spectrum. As one of the last descendants of the Van Helsing lineage, she has trained since childhood to destroy monsters both corporeal and spiritual: the corporeal undead go down by the bullet, the spiritual undead by the lens. With an analog SLR camera as her best weapon, Micheline exorcises ghosts by capturing their spiritual energy on film.
She’s aided by her crew: Oliver, a techno-whiz and the boy who developed her camera’s technology; Jude, who can predict death; and Ryder, the boy Micheline has known and loved forever.
Why you should read it: It’s a darkly layered read that is set to turn the Young Adult Horror genre on its head.
Fever of Animals by Miles Allinson
A thoughtful and beautifully observed novel about a man trying to make sense of his life through the prism of two overseas journeys he’s taken; one in which his relationship disintegrated, and the other in which he searches for a Romanian surrealist painter who disappeared in a forest in 1967.
Why you should read it: It was the winning entry in the 2014 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for an unpublished manuscript.
Find Me by Laura van den Berg
Joy has no one. She spends her days working the graveyard shift at a grocery store outside Boston and nursing an addiction to cough syrup, an attempt to suppress her troubled past. But when a sickness that begins with memory loss and ends with death sweeps the country, Joy, for the first time in her life, seems to have an advantage: she is immune.
Why you should read it: The New York Times stated “Ms. van den Berg spins complex plots around a sense of emotional emptiness. Her stories are bursting at the seams, while her characters are lonely to the core.”
The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro
The Buried Giant begins as a couple set off across a troubled land of mist and rain in the hope of finding a son they have not seen in years.Sometimes savage, often intensely moving, Kazuo Ishiguro’s first novel in nearly a decade is about lost memories, love, revenge, and war.
Why you should read it: It’s an extraordinary new novel from the Man Booker Prize–winning author of the international bestsellers Never Let Me Go and The Remains of the Day.
Useful by Debra Oswald
Sullivan Moss is useless.
Once a charming underachiever, he’s now such a loser that he can’t even commit suicide properly. Waking up in hospital after falling the wrong way on a rooftop, he comes to a decision. He shouldn’t waste perfectly good organs just because they’re attached to his head. After a life of regrets, Sully wants to do one useful thing: he wants to donate a kidney to a stranger.
Why you should read it: It’s written by the creator of Offspring and has been billed as a smart, moving and wry portrait of one man’s desire to give something of himself.
Mosquitoland by David Arnold
After the sudden collapse of her family, Mim Malone is dragged from her home in northern Ohio to the “wastelands” of Mississippi, where she lives in a medicated milieu with her dad and new stepmom. Before the dust has a chance to settle, she learns her mother is sick back in Cleveland.
So she ditches her new life and hops aboard a northbound Greyhound bus to her real home and her real mother, meeting a quirky cast of fellow travelers along the way.
Why you should read it: It’s told in an unforgettable, kaleidoscopic voice, and is set to be a modern American odyssey, as hilarious as it is heartbreaking.
Daughters of the Territory by Jacqueline Hammar
A larger-than-life tale of adventure, survival and love in some of Australia’s most isolated country, Daughter of the Territory is an extraordinary autobiography that zips along at a cracking pace, with one entertaining yarn after another.
Why you should read it: It’s a future Australian classic—an epic story of love and survival in the wilds of the Northern Territory.
A History of Loneliness by John Boyne
Propelled into the priesthood by a family tragedy, Odran Yates is full of hope and ambition. When he arrives at Clonliffe Seminary in the 1970s, it is a time in Ireland when priests are highly respected, and Odran believes that he is pledging his life to “the good.”
Forty years later, Odran’s devotion is caught in revelations that shatter the Irish people’s faith in the Catholic Church. He sees his friends stand trial, colleagues jailed, the lives of young parishioners destroyed, and grows nervous of venturing out in public for fear of disapproving stares and insults. At one point, he is even arrested when he takes the hand of a young boy and leads him out of a department store looking for the boy’s mother.
Why you should read it: It’s by John Boyne, author of the New York Times-best-selling novel The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas.