If there is one thing that makes a popular fiction great it’s a little bit of heartbreak and emotion thrown into an exciting plot. Meet five books who have all of the elements of a great novel. From bad marriages to kidnapped children and characters who love one another, these books have it all. Some are feelgood, yet others will haunt you. From character development to fast-paced action, whatever you choose, get ready to flip the pages because these fictional stories will have you wanting more.

Recipe for a Perfect Wife: A Novel
By Karma Brown
Dutton, $26.00, 336 pages

A positively captivating story awaits you in Recipe For A Perfect Wife. Alice Hale has moved to the New York suburbs due to her husband’s job change and finds herself in a big, empty house. She stumbles upon a cookbook left by the previous owner, Nellie, who was a 1950s housewife. And in this cookbook lay Nellie’s secrets about her marriage that may not be so innocent. Recipe For A Perfect Wife is a page turner from start to finish.

Meg and Jo
By Virginia Kantra
Berkley, $16.00, 400 pages

Inspired by the classic, Little Women, this book centers around the two title characters, Meg and Jo following them into adulthood adventures. Jo is in New York City struggling as a writer and Meg is a housewife with an adoring family. When their mother becomes ill, the girls must travel back home and the sense of what’s important, sisterhood, family, love, and inner strength are remembered. A beautiful continuation of the original classic.

Impossible Causes
By Julie Mayhew
Bloomsbury Publishing, $26.00, 432 pages

A story that could evoke fear in any person’s mind, Impossible Causes is set on the island of Lark which is cut off from the mainland for seven months out of the year due to fog. As three strangers appear on the island, the people who live on the island see their community change. The women fall under the spell of the male teacher and the mysterious little girl is drawn into the group of little girls on the island. As the culture on the island as they know changes, secrets are revealed. With a teenage heroine, this book is simply spellbounding.

Ash: A Novel
By James Rayburn
Blackstone Publishing, $26.99, 320 pages

As a stay-at-home Dad loses both his child and wife in a kidnapping and murder, Danny Ash is forced to evade law enforcement and the authorities to find his ten-year-old son. As Ash comes closer to the truth, his life becomes more endangered and he must learn to battle the struggles of his past if he wants to get his son back. This is a fast-paced, action novel that will get your heart racing and rooting for the main character. A nail-biter that will have you on the edge of your seat.

The Lost are the Last to Die (A Sonny Burton Novel)
By Larry D. Sweazy
Five Star Publishing, $25.95, 332 pages

A novel spanning over twenty-five years, ex-Texas Ranger Sonny Burton’s life unfolds from his unhappy home life to his military service and his relationship with an escaped convict named Billy Bunson. Sonny ends up leaving his wife with his son in Texas and loses his arm in a Bonnie and Clyde shootout. It also takes the reader through the life of Billy from when Billy was a little boy who grows up with a prostitute as a mother and grandmother who owns a brothel to his life of crime which seems to be inevitable given his background and upbringing. The Lost are the Last to Die is great for fans of Westerns with well-developed characters and a stories full of emotional heartbreak and lessons learned.