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Book reviews: Super reads for summer

BEACH READS

Rules For Visiting by Jessica Francis Kane

A lovely, deceptively simple novel about a 40-year-old single woman learning late in the day about the importance of friendship. Granta, out Jun 6

What Happens Now? by Sophia Money-Coutts

Jilly Cooper is a fan of this ex-Tatler journalist whose second romcom follows the sexual misadventures of a thirtysomething singleton pregnant after a one-night stand. HarperCollins, out Aug 22

Sweet Sorrow by David Nicholls

The new novel from the author of One Day is set over a long summer and centres on the firecracker intensity of adolescent first love. Hodder, out Jul 11

The Doll Factory by Elizabeth Macneal

This Dickensian-flavoured historical novel casts a macabre look at the male gaze through the story of a taxidermist’s obsessive love for an artist’s muse. Picador, out now

THRILLERS

The Body Lies by Jo Baker

This superior thriller looks at how novels represent violence through the story of a creative writing teacher who finds herself trapped between the borders of life and fiction after recognising herself in a story written by one of her students. Doubleday, out Jun 13

The Winker by Andrew Martin

A cat-and-mouse historical crime novel about a serial murderer known as the Winking Killer on the loose in 1970s London, and the wealthy Englishman living in Paris who is determined to catch him. Corsair, out Jun 6

Wakenhyrst by Michelle Paver

A seriously spooky gothic horror about a young girl living in a Suffolk manor house with her monstrous widowed father, who is haunted by a hellish medieval painting discovered in the local churchyard. Head Of Zeus, out now

LITERARY FICTION

The Farm by Joanne Ramos

This impressive and eerily persuasive debut focuses on a lucrative surrogacy business in Manhattan that uses the bodies of the poor to incubate the babies of the rich. Bloomsbury, out now

The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead

The new novel from the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Underground Railroad is about two boys sent to a reform school for delinquents — the Nickel Academy — in Jim Crow-era American South. It’s inspired by the real-life abuses in a Florida reform school. Fleet, out Aug 1

Zed by Joanna Kavenna

A digital-era dystopian chiller about a corrupt and seemingly untouchable tech CEO, Guy Matthias, whose empire is under attack from a mysterious hacker. Faber, out Jul 4