December 2018 Book Releases

The end of the year is upon us and the end of 2018 book releases. It is strange that the year is almost over. I've been planning what to write about on the blog and reading too. These lists have been helping me with my reading plan. I want to read a bunch of them next year.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy the last batch of December book releases I'm looking forward to reading.

Something happened to her mother that night. Something no one wants to talk about. But she's determined to uncover her family's dark secrets, even if they bury her.

Five-year-old Sloane McBride couldn't sleep that night. Her parents were arguing again, their harsh words heating the cool autumn air. And then there was that other sound--the ominous thump before all went quiet.

In the morning, her mother was gone.

The official story was that she left. Her loving, devoted mother! That hadn't sat any better at the time than it did when Sloane moved out at eighteen, anxious to leave her small Texas hometown in search of anywhere else. But not even a fresh start working as a model in New York could keep the nightmares at bay. Or her fears that the domineering father she grew up with wasn't just difficult--he was deadly.

Now another traumatic loss forces Sloane to realize she owes it to her mother to find out the truth, even if it means returning to a small town full of secrets and lies, a jilted ex-boyfriend and a father and brother who'd rather see her silenced. But as Sloane starts digging into the past, the question isn't whether she can uncover what really happened that's what will remain of her family if she does?
I've heard of Brenda Novak before. Probably from my mom or aunts so that's why I was initially interested in Before We Were Strangers. I found it crazy that literally everyone wants to shut this girl up from finding or telling the truth, even her own brother. I'm extremely curious to read how Sloane makes it through all of this, if she does. Plus that cover is very ominous with what must be her father in the background.

Abandoned by his father after his mother drowns in a frozen Minnesota lake, fifteen-year-old Wes Ballot is stranded with coldhearted grandparents and holed up in his mother’s old bedroom surrounded by her remnants and memories. As the wait for his father stretches unforgivably into months, a local girl, whose own mother died a brutal death, captures his heart and imagination, reminding Wes that hope always floats to the surface.

When buried truths come to light in the spring thaw, wounds are exposed and violence erupts, forcing Wes to embark on a search for his missing father, the truth about his mother, and a future he must claim for himself—a quest that begins back at that frozen lake.

A powerful, page-turning coming-of-age story, Winter Loon captures the resilience of a boy determined to become a worthy man by confronting family demons, clawing his way out of the darkness, and forging a life from the shambles of a broken past.
What is up with this cover being so amazing? I don't know why but I'm loving the design. Winter Loon is very similar with Before We Were Strangers in that the main character's are looking for the truth about what happened to their mothers. I like the possibilities for romance, there being a male POV, and the mystery surrounding not only his parents but why his grandparents are so cold to him too.

Iris Grey arrives at Mill Cottage in a picture-perfect Hampshire village, looking to escape from her crumbling marriage. She is drawn to the neighbouring Wetherby family, and is commissioned to paint a portrait of Dominic Wetherby, a celebrated crime writer.

At the Wetherby's Christmas Eve party, the mulled wine is in full flow - but so too are tensions and rivalries among the guests. On Christmas Day, the youngest member of the Wetherby family, Lorcan, finds a body in the water. A tragic accident? Or a deadly crime?

With the snow falling, Iris enters a world of village gossip, romantic intrigue, buried secrets and murder.
Murder at the Mill reminds me of Clue which could only mean good things. It sounds like it will be going for a classic mystery vibe which could be really fun. I actually have an ARC of it which I'll be reading pretty soon. I'm trying to post the review in January. A month late but earlier than most of my other ARCs sadly. So watch for the review coming soon!

As co-owner of Sugar and Spice Cookbooks, Sugar Calloway has seen simple confections bring friends together and spark fiery feuds. Except this time, the recipe truly is to die for . . . 

After losing her job as food editor at a glossy magazine, Rosetta Sugarbaker Calloway—aka “Sugar” to friends—isn’t sweet on accepting defeat and crawling back to her gossipy southern hometown. So when she has an opportunity to launch a community cookbook business with blue-ribbon baker Dixie Spicer in peaceful St. Ignatius, Iowa, she jumps at the chance to start over from scratch . . .

But as Sugar assembles recipes for the local centennial celebration, it’s not long before she’s up to her oven mitts in explosive threats, too-hot-to-handle scandals, and a dead body belonging to the moody matriarch of the town’s first family. With suspicions running wild, Sugar and Spice must solve the murder before someone innocent takes the heat—and the real culprit gathers enough ingredients to strike again . . .
I recently explained to someone what a cozy mystery is and he said basically that the genre as a mistake. I had to stop and say, "Excuse me? What's a mistake about food and mysteries together in one book?" I will always want to try a new cozy mysteries series or any baked goods book. I like the nicknames of the two bakers in Game of Scones and that it has the two friends working together on the mystery. That could be a fun dynamic to explore. But there is nothing about romance which is the last missing ingredient in a story like this. Hmm...

Melville Heights is one of the nicest neighbourhoods in Bristol, England; home to doctors and lawyers and old-money academics. It’s not the sort of place where people are brutally murdered in their own kitchens. But it is the sort of place where everyone has a secret. And everyone is watching you.

As the headmaster credited with turning around the local school, Tom Fitzwilliam is beloved by one and all—including Joey Mullen, his new neighbor, who quickly develops an intense infatuation with this thoroughly charming yet unavailable man. Joey thinks her crush is a secret, but Tom’s teenaged son Freddie—a prodigy with aspirations of becoming a spy for MI5—excels in observing people and has witnessed Joey behaving strangely around his father.

One of Tom’s students, Jenna Tripp, also lives on the same street, and she’s not convinced her teacher is as squeaky clean as he seems. For one thing, he has taken a particular liking to her best friend and fellow classmate, and Jenna’s mother—whose mental health has admittedly been deteriorating in recent years—is convinced that Mr. Fitzwilliam is stalking her.

Meanwhile, twenty years earlier, a schoolgirl writes in her diary, charting her doomed obsession with a handsome young English teacher named Mr. Fitzwilliam…
The past and present POV's sound terrifying like I'm thinking the worst of Mr. Fitzwilliam. And yeah, all the books I'm picking are mysteries. I hardly read mysteries which is a shame. I do really like them when I do. I expect Watching You to be the creepiest. I hope there is a good twist and it is not as predictable as it seems it could be.


Do any of these December books interest you?
What are you reading this December?


  1. Before We Were Strangers looks really intriguing to me. Lots of other great looking/sounding books too. :)

    1. Oh yes, I hear Brenda Novak is a popular author as well so I'm hoping for the best.

  2. I do like the sound of the upcoming Brenda Novak novel. I do have to agree with you that the cover of Winter Loon is pretty amazing.

    1. I haven't read anything by her yet but the new one coming out sounds so interesting. I'm very tempted. Winter Loon does look gorgeous. I enjoy cover art design that makes me stop and stare.


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