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Books Jessica Faust Wishes Were on Her List #MSWL

It’s been a long time since I’ve done one of these, but a recent perusal through Publishers Marketplace had me jealous and desirous of some new projects. Projects that sound so intriguing I know I’d jump on them if they landed in my inbox.

They are also books I’ll be looking for once they hit stores.

Inspired by the author’s own experiences with cancer, Luke Allnutt’s WE OWN THE SKY, about a family confronted with an unthinkable dilemma when their child is diagnosed with cancer, to Liz Stein at Park Row Books (NA).

Author of She’s Not There and See Jane Run, Joy Fielding’s BLEEDING HEARTS, about a young woman’s return home after her family is killed, and another novel of psychological suspense, to Anne Speyer at Ballantine Bantam Dell

C. J. Tudor’s THE CHALK MAN, a debut suspense novel tracing two parallel narratives—one in 1986, when a group of adolescent friends get caught up in dangerous and disturbing events, and the other in present day as they are drawn back together by someone using the dark secrets of their childhood to threaten them—pitched to readers of Ruth Ware and Tana French, to Nathan Roberson at Crown

Kathleen Barber’s ARE YOU SLEEPING, about a woman forced to revisit her father’s long-ago murder when it’s the topic of a hugely popular podcast; pitched as “Serial” meets Luckiest Girl Alive or In A Dark, Dark Wood, to Lauren McKenna at Gallery

Laura Purcell’s THE SILENT COMPANIONS, a gothic thriller pitched as The Others meets The Woman in Black, in which a grieving widow in Victorian England is sent to her husband’s country estate to see out her pregnancy, only to make a disturbing discovery about the many painted wooden figures contained there

Liz Nugent’s psychological thriller LYING IN WAIT, in which a judge and his wife a young woman and bury her in their back garden and are determined to keep their son in the dark, until he suspects his parents and finds himself on a dangerous path that can only end in emotional betrayal, and a second novel, UNRAVELLING OLIVER, to Jackie Cantor at Gallery

NYT bestselling author Lisa Unger’s UNDER MY SKIN, about a woman who is reeling from the sudden death of her husband and begins experiencing blackouts, hallucinations, and dreams that may in fact be memories, calling into question what really happened on the night he was murdered, moving to Erika Imranyi at Park Row Books

USAToday bestselling author of THE COMFORT OF BLACK Carter Wilson’s MISTER TENDER’S GIRL, inspired by a real-life case, the story of a girl who, at fourteen, survived a horrific stabbing attack by two schoolmates obsessed with a graphic-novel character created by her own father; now, over a decade later and an ocean away, she’s just trying to reconstruct her life–but her nightmarish past won’t leave her alone, to Anna Michels at Sourcebooks,

Category: Blog



  1. Super intriguiging indeed! Thanks so much for sharing the list with us, Jessica. Some of these titles really piqued my interest, but some hurt too badly. The sad story in the beginning (parents with cancer kid) made me cringe. Indulge me please, I’m a translator and interpreter who interprets for mothers with children in terminal phases of lethal illnesses (did it yesterday evening, for example), and who gets a fit of anger at such books. (Think of The Titan and Titanic among others). But whether there’s something to that It’s a personal thing. I’m bombarded with tragedy as an interpreter, I need a ray of light in my reading. I can’t digest anything resembling dystopian anymore. I want pink hearties, HEAs and butterflies in my stomach.
    The adolescents story is too much I Know What You Did Last Summer, so I’m not very impressed with that either, even though here is where the voice might play a part.
    BUT I’d looooooove to read Lying in Wait and secret Companions, those really got my ears buzzing. Thanks a gain for the list, Jessica, you’re a well of gems!!!

  2. I’ll have to try some of these agents if mine doesn’t work out. Especially Laura Purcell’s. Thanks for posting!

  3. Not sure any of these grab me by the short blurbs above – they all sound a little too dark and deep and serious for me. Although it’s hard to tell if they have HEAs which is the real deal breaker.

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