cover image Yesterday


Felicia Yap. Mulholland, $27 (400p) ISBN 978-0-316-46525-0

Yap’s ingenious debut, a psychological thriller set around Cambridge, England, posits a radically different dual-class society: the elite duos, the 30% of the population who can remember the preceding two days of their lives after age 23, and the stigmatized monos, capable of recalling only the previous 24 hours of their lives after age 18. (Everyone is expected to fill in the gaps by studying the officially mandated daily entries in their iDiaries.) This creates unique challenges for Det. Chief Insp. Hans Richardson as he starts to investigate the apparent murder of stunning Sophia Ayling, whose body was found in the River Cam not far from the mansion of bestselling novelist and novice politician Mark Henry Evans (with whom, according to Sophia’s iDiary, she had a rather intimate acquaintance) and his dutiful mono wife of 20 years, Claire. Yap fully exploits her provocative premise: Richardson, a mono struggling to maintain his masquerade as a duo, delves into the trio’s pasts—insofar as they can be determined from potentially deceptive diary accounts. Though she’s less convincing with her characters’ psychology, this still makes for a deviously delicious diversion. Agent: Alexandra Machinist, ICM. (Aug.)