August 2019 Books

What’s new and good to read this month? Annakarin Klerfalk has a look at what’s on offer and chooses three good reads for August.

If You Were Here

Alice Peterson is best known for her novel A Song For Tomorrow, a book that stayed with its readers for a long time. Now she is back with a novel that will break your heart and put it back together again. If You Were Here is an emotional, inspiring and uplifting novel about living life to the fullest. Peggy’s daughter Beth suddenly dies and she is left to take care of her granddaughter, Flo.

When Peggy goes through her daughter’s things she discovers a secret; Beth had the same genetic condition that took her father’s life. Peggy has to either keep their secret or reveal to Flo that her life might be at risk. If a test could decide your future, would you take it? If You Were Here is out on Thursday 22 August.

Mudlarking: Lost and Found on the River Thames

It is the tides that make mudlarking in London unique, says Lara Maiklem, when she talks about her new book Mudlarking: Lost and Found on the River Thames. For 15 years mudlark Lara Maiklem has been walking the Thames foreshore at all times of the day and in all seasons, finding items discarded by generations of Londoners. Roman hair pins, Medieval shoe buckles, Tudor buttons and Georgian clay pipes are some of many treasures she has rescued from the river.

The book is part memoir, as she threads her own story through the history of the Thames. “It is often the tiniest of objects that tell the greatest stories”, she writes. The Bookseller reviews it as “An enthralling and evocative history of London and its people.” It’s also their Book of the Month. Mudlarking: Lost and Found on the River Thames is out on Thursday 22 August.

The Girl Before You is said to be the new Girl on The Train. Nicola Rayner has written a clever, psychological crime thriller, told in two different time frames. The main character Alice is haunted by the women from her husband’s past. And there is one ex in particular that she can’t get out of her head; the beautiful Ruth, who went missing. Alice thinks she sees Ruth on a train.

Is she alive? Or dead? Will she just turn up one day? The Observer reviewed it as “Note-perfect prose and an ending that will leave you gasping. So addictive, it should come with a health warning”. The Girl Before You is published on Thursday 22 August.

Anna Klerfalk

Anna is a literary agent based in Chiswick who is keen to hear from authors trying to get their books published. Contact her on She used to run the Waterstones bookshop in Chiswick. You can read more about her and Intersaga here

See more of Anna’s book choices here

Read about the annual Chiswick Book Festival here