Six new must-read books for September

From a chilling thriller of a woman's obsessive desire for a baby to fantastical coming-of-age tale involving a ghost, this month's page-turners are sure to entertain.
Six new must-read books for September

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September books

A Marker to Measure Drift, by Alexander Maksik

There are some books you can pick up and put down at leisure, but A Marker to Measure Drift is not one of them. From the moment you encounter Jacqueline, the novel’s enigmatic protagonist, destitute and wandering the streets of a tourist town on an island in the Aegean Sea, you want desperately to know how she got there. But Alexander Maksik masterfully unveils Jacqueline’s story only through momentary flashes of memory, which are as fleeting and unsettling as the fragments of a dream. For most of the novel, there are few clues as to how this elegant, well-educated young woman came to be alone and hungry, scavenging for scraps of food left behind by tourists on the beach. Lured by the deceptively simple elegance of the prose, the reader joins Jacqueline on her quest for understanding, as hungry for insight as she is for food and solace — and just as thankful for the brief moments of reprieve she finds in the kindness of a stranger. A consistent thread throughout the novel is the otherworldly presence of Jacqueline’s mother, whose voice resonates in Jacqueline’s mind, alternately chiding or consoling her as she struggles to distinguish between memory and madness and free herself “of the ferocious dark, of the weight and panic.” With each page there is a building sense of dread as Jacqueline teeters on the edge of insanity, struggling to grasp the truth behind the horror that befell her, her family and her country. This is a mesmerizing tale of courage and survival that simultaneously shatters and restores hope for humanity. —Sydney Loney

A Marker to Measure Drift by Alexander Maksik, $25. Available at and

A Marker to Measure Drift Novel by Alexander Maksik

Apple Tree Yard, by Louise Doughty

Respected scientist, wife and mother Yvonne Carmichael lives a quiet, comfortable life — until a steamy encounter with a stranger fills her world with a passion she thought long gone. As she falls deeper under her lover’s spell, her life spins out of control, the police suddenly appear at her door, and Yvonne finds herself under arrest. Louise Doughty masterfully keeps readers guessing as to what the crime is throughout much of this thrilling drama, while at the same time illustrating how easily split-second decisions can forever derail lives.  —Lora Grady

Apple Tree Yard by Louise Doughty, $21. Available at and

Apple Tree Yard Novel by Louise Doughty

Until You’re Mine, by Samantha Hayes

Claudia is thrilled to be expecting her first child, especially after a number of devastating miscarriages. With her husband, James, set to depart on a months-long navy mission, the couple hire a nanny. But Claudia can’t shake the feeling that the new nanny is not who she says she is, especially after a number of local pregnant women are attacked. Who is responsible for the gruesome acts? Will Claudia be next? A chilling read about a woman’s obsessive desire for a baby. —Dominique Lamberton

Until You’re Mine
by Samantha Hayes, $25. Available at and

Until You're Mine Novel by Samantha Hayes

Shorecliff, by Ursula DeYoung

The Hatfield family are spending the summer at Shorecliff, their isolated vacation home on the coast of Maine. From the 13-year-old narrator, Richard, to Great-Uncle Eberhardt, it’s an eclectic mix of cousins, siblings, uncles and aunts, each with something to hide. What promises to be a lacklustre summer with no outside entertainment soon scintillates with excitement as the scandalous secrets start spilling out. DeYoung keeps readers hanging, wondering which family member’s shocking revelation will be unveiled next. An explosive debut. —Anna Redman

Shorecliff by Ursula DeYoung, $29. Available at and

Shorecliff Novel by Ursula DeYoung

Letters From Skye, by Jessica Brockmole

If you’re feeling nostalgic for the long-lost days of letter writing, this debut novel from Jessica Brockmole is sure to delight. Upon discovering a stack of her Scottish mother’s old correspondence with an American ambulance driver, Margaret Dunn sets out to learn all she can about her stoic mother’s secret and complicated past. Equal parts mystery and romance, the enchanting story spans both world wars and is told entirely through letters. —Madeline Cravit

Letters From Skye by Jessica Brockmole, $28. Available at and

Letters from Skye Novel by Jessica Brockmole

The Ghost Bride, by Yangsze Choo

When the dreadful heir of a wealthy family passes away unexpectedly, Li Lan is horrified to discover that the dead man still exists in a ghostly form and is pursuing her from beyond the grave. To escape her terrifying suitor, Li Lan embarks on a perilous out-of-body journey, meets a mysterious stranger and tries to uncover the truth about her family’s troubled past. The spellbinding details and discerning tone in this fantastical and unexpected coming-of-age tale lure readers into the underworld right alongside Li Lan. —Jenna Wallace

The Ghost Bride by Yangsze Choo, $27. Available at and

The Ghost Bride Novel by Yangsze Choo


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