Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders

Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders

February 1862. The Civil War is less than one year old. The fighting has begun in earnest, and the nation has begun to realize it is in for a long, bloody struggle. Meanwhile, President Lincoln’s beloved eleven-year-old son, Willie, lies upstairs in the White House, gravely ill. In a matter of days, despite predictions of a recovery, Willie dies and is laid to rest in a Georgetown cemetery. “My poor boy, he was too good for this earth,” the president says at the time. “God has called him home.” Newspapers report that a grief-stricken Lincoln returned to the crypt several times alone to hold his boy’s body… Read more.

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Slavery
  • Racism
  • Rape
  • Death of a child
  • Kidnapping
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The Angel of Darkness by Caleb Carr

The Angel of Darkness by Caleb Carr

June 1897. A year has passed since Dr. Laszlo Kreizler, a pioneer in forensic psychiatry, tracked down the brutal serial killer John Beecham with the help of a team of trusted companions and a revolutionary application of the principles of his discipline. Kreizler and his friends—high-living crime reporter John Schuyler Moore; indomitable, derringer-toting Sara Howard; the brilliant (and bickering) detective brothers Marcus and Lucius Isaacson; powerful and compassionate Cyrus Montrose; and Stevie Taggert, the boy Kreizler saved from a life of street crime—have returned to their former pursuits and tried to forget the horror of the Beecham case.

But when the distraught wife of a Spanish diplomat begs Sara’s aid, the team reunites to help find her kidnapped infant daughter. It is a case fraught with danger, since Spain and the United States are on the verge of war. Their investigation leads the team to a shocking suspect… Read more.

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Domestic abuse
  • Suicide
  • Infanticide
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Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe

Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe

When a benevolent landowner decides to sell two slaves—Uncle Tom and Eliza—in order to raise funds, the lives of the two slaves follow divergent paths. While Eliza escapes to eventual freedom, Uncle Tom is repeatedly sold until he ends up working on the prosperous Legree plantation, where his very life becomes forfeit to his violent master.

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Slavery
  • Racism
  • Suicide
  • Death of a child
  • Whipping
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Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay

Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay

Dexter Morgan appears to be the perfect gentleman. He leads a normal, quiet life working as a forensic officer for the Miami Police. He has a nice, shy girlfriend and is liked by her young children. But Dexter has a secret hobby. He’s an accomplished serial killer.

So far he’s killed dozens of people and has never been caught, because he knows exactly how to dispose of the evidence. And there are those who would rather he wasn’t caught at all, because Dexter is a serial killer with a difference. He only kills the city’s bad guys.

Then Dexter’s well-organised life is thrown into chaos. Another serial killer is invading his territory – and he wants Dexter to come out and play…

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Child abuse
  • Domestic abuse
  • Blood & gore depiction
  • Death of a child
  • Murder
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The Alice Network by Kate Quinn

The Alice Network by Kate Quinn

1947. In the chaotic aftermath of World War II, American college girl Charlie St. Clair is pregnant, unmarried, and on the verge of being thrown out of her very proper family. She’s also nursing a desperate hope that her beloved cousin Rose, who disappeared in Nazi-occupied France during the war, might still be alive. So when Charlie’s parents banish her to Europe to have her “little problem” taken care of, Charlie breaks free and heads to London, determined to find out what happened to the cousin she loves like a sister.

1915. A year into the Great War, Eve Gardiner burns to join the fight against the Germans and unexpectedly gets her chance when she’s recruited to work as a spy. Sent into enemy-occupied France, she’s trained by the mesmerizing Lili, code name Alice, the “queen of spies”, who manages a vast network of secret agents right under the enemy’s nose… Read more.

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Antisemitism & Nazism
  • Sexual assault
  • Suicide
  • Pregnancy
  • Abortion
  • Blood & gore depiction
  • Hospitalisation
  • Emesis
  • Death of a child
  • Torture
  • Stalking
  • World War One & Two
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A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray

A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray

It’s 1895, and after the suicide of her mother, 16-year-old Gemma Doyle is shipped off from the life she knows in India to Spence, a proper boarding school in England. Lonely, guilt-ridden, and prone to visions of the future that have an uncomfortable habit of coming true, Gemma’s reception there is a chilly one. To make things worse, she’s been followed by a mysterious young Indian man, a man sent to watch her. But why? What is her destiny? And what will her entanglement with Spence’s most powerful girls—and their foray into the spiritual world—lead to?

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Sexism
  • Antiziganism
  • Parent with substance addiction
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Suicide
  • Self-harm
  • Blood & gore depiction
  • Dead body
  • Death of a mother from suicide by knife violence
  • Death of a child by suffocation
  • Murder
  • Fire
  • Animal death & cruelty
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Sing Me Forgotten by Jessica S. Olson

Sing Me Forgotten by Jessica S. Olson

Sing Me Forgotten by Jessica S. Olson

Cast into a well at birth for being one of the magical few who can manipulate memories when people sing, she was saved by Cyril, the opera house’s owner. Since that day, he has given her sanctuary from the murderous world outside. All he asks in return is that she use her power to keep ticket sales high—and that she stay out of sight. For if anyone discovers she survived, Isda and Cyril would pay with their lives.

But Isda breaks Cyril’s cardinal rule when she meets Emeric Rodin, a charming boy who throws her quiet, solitary life out of balance. His voice is unlike any she’s ever heard, but the real shock comes when she finds in his memories hints of a way to finally break free of her gilded prison.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Child abuse
  • Emotional abuse
  • Toxic relationship
  • Self-harm
  • Emesis
  • Death of a parent
  • Death of a child
  • Grief and loss depiction
  • Gun violence
  • Confinement
  • Torture
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Sisters by Daisy Johnson

Sisters by Daisy Johnson

Sisters by Daisy Johnson

Now she returns with Sisters, a haunting story about two sisters caught in a powerful emotional web and wrestling to understand where one ends and the other begins.

Born just ten months apart, July and September are thick as thieves, never needing anyone but each other. Now, following a case of school bullying, the teens have moved away with their single mother to a long-abandoned family home near the shore. In their new, isolated life, July finds that the deep bond she has always shared with September is shifting in ways she cannot entirely understand. A creeping sense of dread and unease descends inside the house. Meanwhile, outside, the sisters push boundaries of behavior—until a series of shocking encounters tests the limits of their shared experience, and forces shocking revelations about the girls’ past and future.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Sexual assault
  • Toxic relationships
  • Mental illness
  • Self-harm
  • Blood
  • Child death
  • Grief
  • Bullying
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The Removed by Brandon Hobson

The Removed by Brandon Hobson

The Removed by Brandon Hobson

In the fifteen years since their teenage son, Ray-Ray, was killed in a police shooting, the Echota family has been suspended in private grief. The mother, Maria, increasingly struggles to manage the onset of Alzheimer’s in her husband, Ernest. Their adult daughter, Sonja, leads a life of solitude, punctuated only by spells of dizzying romantic obsession. And their son, Edgar, fled home long ago, turning to drugs to mute his feelings of alienation.

With the family’s annual bonfire approaching—an occasion marking both the Cherokee National Holiday and Ray-Ray’s death, and a rare moment in which they openly talk about his memory—Maria attempts to call the family together from their physical and emotional distances once more. But as the bonfire draws near, each of them feels a strange blurring of the boundary between normal life and the spirit world. Maria and Ernest take in a foster child who seems to almost miraculously keep Ernest’s mental fog at bay. Sonja becomes dangerously fixated on a man named Vin, despite—or perhaps because of—his ties to tragedy in her lifetime and lifetimes before. And in the wake of a suicide attempt, Edgar finds himself in the mysterious Darkening Land: a place between the living and the dead, where old atrocities echo.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Racism
  • Suicide attempt
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Dementia
  • Child death
  • Police brutality
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The Golden Sheep, Vol. 3 by Kaori Ozaki

The Golden Sheep, Vol. 3 by Kaori Ozaki

The Golden Sheep Vol 3 by Kaori Ozaki

Tsugu and Sora ran away from home, Yuushin took on the challenging professional boxer test, and Asari broke off ties with the girls in her class…

Nothing is turning out the way they’d hoped. Even in the face of such painful headwinds, they continue their restless adolescent journey…

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Child abuse
  • Child neglect
  • Suicide attempt mentioned
  • Chronic illness
  • Child death
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