I’m walking across England this month! 84 miles along Hadrian’s Wall, plus some wandering around. You can follow my trip on my instagram @mwgerard, and after I return I will be posting lots here as well. Aside from a long transAtlantic flight, I don’t think I’ll be doing too much reading in June, but here are some new and forthcoming books to check out.

A Botanist’s Guide to Parties and Poisons by Kate Khavari

from the publisher: Newly minted research assistant Saffron Everleigh is determined to blaze a new trail at the University College London, but with her colleagues’ beliefs about women’s academic inabilities and not so subtle hints that her deceased father’s reputation paved her way into the botany department, she feels stymied at every turn.
When she attends a dinner party for the school, she expects to engage in conversations about the university’s large expedition to the Amazon. What she doesn’t expect is for Mrs. Henry, one of the professors’ wives, to drop to the floor, poisoned by an unknown toxin. 

Dr. Maxwell, Saffron’s mentor, is the main suspect and evidence quickly mounts. Joined by fellow researcher–and potential romantic interest–Alexander Ashton, Saffron uses her knowledge of botany as she explores steamy greenhouses, dark gardens, and deadly poisons to clear Maxwell’s name.

This was a nimble, fun read. The mystery was engaging, the heroine was sprightly, and the botany angle was ingenious. It’s a great choice for a lake cabin read this summer. Read via NetGalley.

Publisher: ‎Crooked Lane Books (June 7, 2022)
Language: ‎English
Hardcover: ‎304 pages
ISBN-10: ‏ 1639100075

Spare Parts by Paul Craddock

from the publisher: We think of transplant surgery as one of the medical wonders of the modern world. But transplant surgery is as ancient as the pyramids, with a history more surprising than we might expect. Paul Craddock takes us on a journey – from sixteenth-century skin grafting to contemporary stem cell transplants – uncovering stories of operations performed by unexpected people in unexpected places. Bringing together philosophy, science and cultural history, Spare Parts explores how transplant surgery constantly tested the boundaries between human, animal, and machine, and continues to do so today. Witty, entertaining, and illuminating, Spare Parts shows us that the history – and future – of transplant surgery is tied up with questions about not only who we are, but also what we are, and what we might become.

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press (May 10, 2022)
Language: ‎English
Hardcover: ‎320 pages
ISBN-10: ‎125028032X

Augusta Hawke by G.M. Malliet

from the publisher: While Augusta Hawke is a successful author of eighteen crime novels, since her husband’s death she’s been living vicariously through her Jules Maigret-like detective Claude and his assistant Caroline. Then a handsome police detective appears investigating a real-life mystery. Where are her neighbors, the Normans? No one has a clue what’s happened – except Augusta. Although she isn’t nosy, spending all day staring out the windows for inspiration means she does notice things. Like the Normans arguing. And that they’ve been missing a week.

Augusta Hawke is a fantastic narrator. She self-aware but doesn’t let that stop her from snooping. Read via NetGalley.

Publisher: Severn House; Main edition (July 5, 2022)
Language: ‎English
Hardcover : ‎240 pages
ISBN-10: ‎1448306027

What are you reading this June?

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