October 2021 books

What’s new and good to read this month? Annakarin Klerfalk has a look at what’s on offer and chooses Are We Having Fun Yet?, Crossroads and The Lonely Ones, which are all published in October.

Are We Having Fun Yet?

Lucy Mangan writes columns for The Guardian, where she is a TV critic. Her debut novel, Are We Having Fun Yet? really feels like an accurate portrait of modern family life.

All Liz wants to do is to get a moment to herself but the challenges of motherhood – and her family’s overall demands – consume her. She also has to cope with bosses, parents and her friends. Why is it always too much?

The book charts a year in Liz’s life as she faces one storm after another, trying her hardest not to go completely mad on her quest to find some peace.

Marian Keyes reviewed it as “Utterly wonderful … full of love. Enormously uplifting, funny and witty and wry.”

Are We Having Fun Yet? is published by Profile Books on 14 October.

Images above: Are We Having Fun Yet? front cover, Author Lucy Mangan


Jonathan Franzen’s new novel, Crossroads, is the first in the A Key to All Mythologies trilogy. Franzen ventures back in time and explores the history of two generations. He is known for his unforgettable characters and tells a rather complex story with humour and warmth.

The story begins in 1971, when the Hildebrandt family is at a crossroads. The pastor, Russ, wants to break free from his marriage but his wife, Marion, might beat him to it. Their three children have their own problems, which makes the family even more dysfunctional. They all seek a freedom for themselves but the other family members get in each other’s way.

Publishers weekly said:

“Franzen returns with a sweeping and masterly examination of the shifting culture of early 1970’s America, the first in a trilogy…Throughout, Franzen exhibits his remarkable ability to build suspense through fraught interpersonal dynamics. It’s irresistable.”

HarperCollins will release Crossroads on 5 October.

Images above: Crossroads front cover, author Jonathan Franzen

The Lonely Ones

The Lonely Ones is Hakan Nesser’s forth novel where Gunnar Barbarotti is the lead detective.  This time it’s a case of history repeating itself. Barbarotti investigates the mystery of two deaths, thirty-five years apart, in the exact same place.

Back in 1969, three young couples meet in Uppsala, Sweden, and they become close friends. But a summer trip in Europe changes everything and when their time at university comes to an end, one of the students die unexpectedly. Many years later, a lecturer at Lund university is found dead, in the same spot. Are the two murders connected and, if so, how?

Hakan Nesser is said to be the godfather of Swedish crime and he has won Best Swedish Crime Award three times.

Pan Macmilan will release The Lonely Ones on 14 October.

Images above: The Lonely Ones front cover, author Hakan Nesser

Annakarin 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 anna@intersaga.co.uk. 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

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