Take your pick from the best new reads of the week….
The Second Sleep
In the year 1468, a priest, Christopher Fairfax, is travelling to Exmoor on horseback when he finds an iPhone.
How can an iPhone exist in 1468?
Because most of the human race was wiped out in 2025 and survivors restarted the calendar at 666, so Harris’s book is set 800 years from now.
The church holds sway and scientific investigations are banned.
Our descendants live primitive, superstitious lives.
But Fairfax has been sent to Exmoor to conduct the funeral of another priest.
He is shocked to discover that he took a dangerous interest in the old world – and died a mysterious death.
As Fairfax begins to question the church’s dogmas, Harris takes you on a thrilling ride while serving up serious food for thought.
BY JAKE KERRIDGE
Chastise: The Dambusters Story 1943
Operation Chastise was carried out by the RAF’s 617 Squadron on reservoirs in Germany’s Ruhr Valley on May 16, 1943.
The valour of the aircrews was unparalleled and Barnes Wallis’s bouncing bomb was proof of British technological brilliance.
A vivid account from the commanding general of history.
By JOHN LEWIS-STEMPEL
William Collins, £25
A Single Thread
In 1932, Violet is still mourning her fiance and brother who died in the First World War.
But she manages to leave her suffocating life with an overbearing mother to rent a room and work as a typist in Winchester.
There our surprisingly modern heroine embarks on a relationship that could change her life for good.
An evocative, beautifully written story from the author of Girl With A Pearl Earring.
BY EMMA LEE-POTTER
On his first day in Scotland Yard, policeman William Warwick becomes embroiled in the case of a missing Rembrandt.
Is suave millionaire Miles Faulkner the culprit? Then William falls in love with museum researcher Beth.
But why is she never available at weekends?
As he uncovers her secrets, the two storylines converge on neighbouring courtrooms in a juicy, fast-paced read with a fabulous twist.