Would you rather love the more, and suffer the more; or love the less, and suffer the less? That is, I think, finally, the only real question.
First love has lifelong consequences, but Paul doesn't know anything about that at nineteen. At nineteen, he's proud of the fact his relationship flies in the face of social convention.
As he grows older, the demands placed on Paul by love become far greater than he could possibly have foreseen.
Tender and wise, The Only Story is a deeply moving novel by one of fiction's greatest mappers of the human heart.
It is June 1962. In a hotel on the Dorset coast, overlooking Chesil Beach, Edward and Florence, who got married that morning, are sitting down to dinner in their room. Neither is entirely able to suppress their anxieties about the wedding night to come On Chesil Beach is another masterwork from Ian McEwan a story about how the entire course of a life can be changed by a gesture not made or a word not spoken.
SHORTLISTED FOR THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE 2017
In a city swollen by refugees and bubbling with civil unrest, two young people fall in love. Their homeland is on the brink of war. One day soon they must leave it behind: striking out into the unknown, searching for some corner of the world that might be safe.
Exit West is an extraordinary, sweeping journey, reaching far across the globe and deep into the human heart. In a world of upheaval and fear, how can we hold onto our humanity? In a world of closed borders, what happens when a door is opened? Mohsin Hamid's novel blazes triumphantly in the darkness, singing from the eye of the storm.
85-year-old Hendrik Groen is fed up to his false teeth with coffee mornings and bingo.
He dreams of escaping the confines of his care home and practicing hairpin turns on his mobility scooter. Inspired by his fellow members of the recently formed Old-But-Not-Dead Club, he vows to put down his Custard Cream and commit to a spot of octogenarian anarchy.
But the care home's Director will not stand for drunken bar crawls, illicit fireworks and geriatric romance on her watch. The Old-But-Not-Dead Club must stick together if they're not to go gently into that good night. Things turn more serious, however, when rumours surface that the home is set for demolition. It's up to Hendrik and the gang to stop it - or drop dead trying . . .
He may be the wrong side of 85, but Hendrik Groen has no intention of slowing up - or going down without a fight.
The third Lou Clark novel, following the number one international bestsellers Me Before You and After You.
Lou Clark arrives in New York ready to start a new life, confident that she can embrace this new adventure and keep her relationship with Ambulance Sam alive across several thousand miles. She is hurled into the world of the super-rich Gopniks: Leonard and his much younger second wife, Agnes, and a never-ending array of household staff and hangers-on. Lou is determined to get the most out of the experience and throws herself into her job and New York life within this privileged world.
Before she knows what's happening, Lou is mixing in New York high society, where she meets Joshua Ryan, a man who brings with him a whisper of her past.
In Still Me, as Lou tries to keep the two sides of her world together, she finds herself carrying secrets - not all her own - that cause a catastrophic change in her circumstances. And when matters come to a head, she has to ask herself: Who is Louisa Clark? And how do you reconcile a heart that lives in two places?
Two mysterious strangers appear at a hotel in a small country town. Where have they come from? Who are they? What catastrophe are they fleeing? The townspeople want answers, but the strangers are unable to speak of their trauma. And before long, wary hospitality shifts to suspicion and fear, and the care of the men slides into appalling cruelty. Lloyd Jones's fable-like novel The Cage is a profound and unsettling novel.
Alaska, 1974. Untamed. Unpredictable. A story of a family in crisis struggling to survive at the edge of the world, it is also a story of young and enduring love.
Cora Allbright and her husband Ernt, a recently-returned Vietnam veteran scarred by the war, uproot their thirteen year old daughter Leni to start a new life in Alaska. Utterly unprepared for the weather and the isolation, but welcomed by the close-knit community, they fight to build a home in this harsh, beautiful wilderness.
At once an epic story of human survival and love, and an intimate portrait of a family tested beyond endurance, The Great Alone offers a glimpse into a vanishing way of life in America. With her trademark combination of elegant prose and deeply drawn characters, Kristin Hannah has delivered an enormously powerful story that celebrates the resilience of the human spirit and the remarkable and enduring strength of women.
About the highest stakes a family can face and the bonds that can tear a community apart, this is a novel as spectacular and powerful as Alaska itself. It is the finest example of Kristin Hannah's ability to weave together the deeply personal with the universal.
Alfred Busi, famed and beloved in his town for his music and songs, is now in his sixties, mourning the recent death of his wife and quietly living out his days alone in the large villa he has always called home. The night before he is due to attend a ceremony at the town's avenue of fame, Busi is attacked by a creature he disturbs as it raids the contents of his larder. Busi is convinced that what assaulted him was no animal, but a child, `innocent and wild', and his words fan the flames of old rumour - of an ancient race of people living in the woods surrounding the town - and new controversy: the town's paupers, the feral wastrels at its edges must be dealt with. Once and for all.
As Busi's nephew's ambitious plans for himself and the town develop, he is able to fan the flames of rumour and soon Busi and the town he loves will be altered irrevocably.
The Melody by Jim Crace is a story about grief and ageing, about reputation and the loss of it, about love and music and the peculiar way myth seeps into real life. And it is a political novel too - a rallying cry to protect those we persecute. It is lyrical and warm, intimate and epic, a powerful future classic.
The dangerous and poignant odyssey of a tenacious young girl who boldly traverses the Texas frontier as she seeks to avenge her mother’s death.
Early one morning in the remote hill country of Texas, a panther attacks a family of homesteaders, mauling a young girl named Samantha and killing her mother, a former slave, whose final act is to save her daughter’s life. Samantha and her half-brother, Benjamin, survive, but she is left traumatised, her face horribly scarred.
Narrated in Benjamin’s beguilingly plain-spoken voice, The Which Way Tree is the story of Samantha’s relentless determination to stalk and kill the notorious panther and avenge her mother’s death. In this quest, she and Benjamin, now orphaned, enlist a charismatic Tejano outlaw and a haunted, compassionate preacher with an aging but unstoppable tracking dog. As the members of this unlikely posse hunt the panther, they are in turn pursued by a hapless but sadistic Confederate soldier with a score to settle.
In the tradition of the great pursuit narratives, The Which Way Tree is a breathtaking tale of revenge against an implacable and unknowable beast. Yet with the comedic undertones of Benjamin’s storytelling, it is also a timeless story full of warmth and humour, and a testament to the enduring love between a sister and brother in an adventure whose legend will last a lifetime.
This limited edition of Labels, Louis de Bernieres' quirkily affectionate short story debut, is being re-released as a facsimile edition to celebrate Hardie Grant's 20th anniversary. The debut publication for Hardie Grant Books 20 years ago, it is a tale of obsession, with tender moments and gristly bits, that will delight cooks, collectors and cat-lovers anew, and teach public inspectors a thing or two.
Two people. One love story. A million possibilities.They're soulmates.Ivy and Abe were inseparable as children until an accident tore them apart. Several decades later, when both are in their seventies, a chance encounter reunites them. But time is not on their side.What if they'd met in a different time and place? In another life, Ivy and Abe meet in their forties, when both are married already. Unable to resist the attraction between them, they embark on a passionate affair. In yet another, they marry young, with a bright future ahead of them - only for a dark shadow to threaten their happiness.Throughout various incarnations of their lives, they come together and go their separate ways, fall in and out of love, make or break promises. In every universe, Ivy and Abe are meant to meet. But are they meant to be?'An epic love story' Araminta Hall, bestselling author of Everything and Nothing'Beautiful, uplifting and wise. I surfaced from the last page, feeling as comforted as I was moved' Alison Macleod, Man Booker longlisted author of Unexploded'Beautifully crafted, original and full of insight into the human experience' Suzanne O'Sullivan, author of Wellcome Book Prize winner It's All in Your Head'A beautiful story that explores what it is to have a soul mate, and love in all its many guises. It made me cry a lot - in a good way! - but it also made me think, as all the best books do' Veronica Henry, author of A Night on the Orient Express'A beautiful, intricately woven book . . . Bittersweet and wonderfully observed, Elizabeth Enfield's writing moves you, makes you smile in recognition and makes you think' Kate Harrison, author of The Boot Camp
Susan Green doesn't like surprises - she likes to be in control. But at 45 her perfect life starts to unravel, and real life in all its messiness shows her that it's never too late to bloom.
It's never too late to bloom.
People aren't sure what to make of Susan Green - a prickly independent woman, who has everything just the way she wants it and who certainly has no need for messy emotional relationships.
Family and colleagues find her stand-offish and hard to understand, but Susan makes perfect sense to herself, and that's all she needs.
At forty-five, she thinks her life is perfect, as long as she avoids her feckless brother, Edward - a safe distance away in Birmingham. She has a London flat which is ideal for one; a job that suits her passion for logic; and a personal arrangement providing cultural and other, more intimate, benefits.
Yet suddenly faced with the loss of her mother and, implausibly, with the possibility of becoming a mother herself, Susan's greatest fear is being realised: she is losing control.
When she discovers that her mother's will inexplicably favours her brother, Susan sets out to prove that Edward and his equally feckless friend Rob somehow coerced this dubious outcome. But when problems closer to home become increasingly hard to ignore, she finds help in the most unlikely of places.
This sparkling debut is a breath of fresh air with real heart and a powerful emotional punch. In Susan we find a character as exasperating and delightful as The Rosie Project's Don Tillman. An uncompromising feminist and a fierce fighter, it's a joy to watch her bloom.
The Official Movie Tie-in Edition. The major motion picture releases on February 14, Valentine's Day 2018, and is based on volume three of the phenomenal #1 New York Times bestselling trilogy with more than 150 million copies sold worldwide.
When unworldly student Anastasia Steele first encountered the driven and dazzling young entrepreneur Christian Grey it sparked a sensual affair that changed both of their lives irrevocably. Shocked, intrigued, and, ultimately, repelled by Christian's singular erotic tastes, Ana demands a deeper commitment. Determined to keep her, Christian agrees.
Now, Ana and Christian have it all - love, passion, intimacy, wealth, and a world of possibilities for their future. But Ana knows that loving her Fifty Shades will not be easy, and that being together will pose challenges that neither of them would anticipate. Ana must somehow learn to share Christian's opulent lifestyle without sacrificing her own identity. And Christian must overcome his compulsion to control as he wrestles with the demons of a tormented past.
Just when it seems that their strength together will eclipse any obstacle, misfortune, malice, and fate conspire to make Ana's deepest fears turn to reality.
Newlyweds, Celestial and Roy, are the embodiment of both the American Dream and the New South. He is a young executive and she is an artist on the brink of an exciting career. They are settling into the routine of their life together, when they are ripped apart by circumstances neither could have imagined. Roy is arrested and sentenced to twelve years for a crime Celestial knows he didn’t commit.
Though fiercely independent, Celestial finds herself bereft and unmoored, taking comfort in Andre, her childhood friend, and best man at their wedding. As Roy’s time in prison passes, she is unable to hold on to the love that has been her center. After five years, Roy’s conviction is suddenly overturned, and he returns to Atlanta ready to resume their life together.
This stirring love story is a deeply insightful look into the hearts and minds of three people who are at once bound and separated by forces beyond their control. An American Marriage is a masterpiece of storytelling, an intimate look into the souls of people who must reckon with the past while moving forward – with hope and pain – into the future.
A retired couple, Gerry and Stella Gilmore, fly to Amsterdam for a midwinter break. A holiday to refresh the senses, to see the sights and to generally take stock of what remains of their lives. But amongst the wintry streets and icy canals we see their relationship fracturing beneath the surface.
And when memories re-emerge of a troubled time in their native Ireland things begin to fall apart. As their midwinter break comes to an end, we understand how far apart they are – and can only watch as they struggle to save themselves.
ABBEY’S BOOKSELLER PICK — The contrast couldn’t be greater, as I read this novel on my holiday break in coastal paradise. The Tattooist of Auschwitz is devastating.
But within the horror, Morris has found heart and hope. Graeme Simsion (The Rosie Project) accurately describes it as “moving, confronting and uplifting”. It’s a big story, with ethical and moral conundrums.
I find myself contemplating not only these past events, but also the sheer magnitude of inhumanity that people can inflict on others - while never once thinking of doing the same to their own family. And also knowing that inhumane acts and policies persist today.
I hope this novel finds the mainstream readership it warrants, to remind us of the danger to us all when we judge ‘the other’ and rationalise our bigotry. Craig Kirchner
The incredible story of the Auschwitz-Birkenau tattooist and the woman he loved.
Lale is well-dressed, a charmer, a ladies' man. He is also a Jew. On the first transport of men from Slovakia to Auschwitz in 1942, Lale immediately stands out to his fellow prisoners. In the camp, he is looked up to, looked out for, and put to work in the privileged position of Tetowierer - the tattooist - to mark his fellow prisoners, forever.
One of them is a young woman, Gita who steals his heart at first glance. His life given new purpose, Lale does his best through the struggle and suffering to use his position for good.
This story, full of beauty and hope, is based on years of interviews author Heather Morris conducted with real-life Holocaust survivor and Auschwitz-Birkenau tattooist Ludwig (Lale) Sokolov. It is heart-wrenching, illuminating, and unforgettable.
'Morris climbs into the dark miasma of war and emerges with an extraordinary tale of the power of love' Leah Kaminsky
In The Refugees, Viet Thanh Nguyen gives voice to lives led between two worlds, the adopted homeland and the country of birth. From a young Vietnamese refugee who suffers profound culture shock when he comes to live with two gay men in San Francisco, to a woman whose husband is suffering from dementia and starts to confuse her for a former lover, to a girl living in Ho Chi Minh City whose older half-sister comes back from America having seemingly accomplished everything she never will, the stories are a captivating testament to the dreams and hardships of immigration. The second piece of fiction by a major new voice, The Refugees is a beautifully written and sharply observed book about the aspirations of those who leave one country for another, and the relationships and desires for self-fulfillment that define our lives.
A stunning novel of friendship, fraud and betrayal within a compelling literary rivalry.
It is 1908, and Max Brod is the rising star of Prague's literary world. Everything he desires-fame, respect, love - is finally within his reach. But when a rival appears on the scene, Max discovers how quickly he can lose everything he has worked so hard to attain. He knows that the newcomer, Franz Kafka, has the power to eclipse him for good, and he must decide to what lengths he will go to hold onto his success. But there is more to Franz than meets the eye, and Max, too, has secrets that are darker than even he knows, secrets that may in the end destroy both of them.
The Lost Pages is a richly reimagined story of Max Brod's life filtered through his relationship with Franz Kafka. In this inspired novel of friendship, fraud, madness and betrayal, Marija Pericic writes vividly and compellingly of an extraordinary literary rivalry.
`The writing glows with emotional intelligence. This atmospheric debut...had me sniffing copiously' Daily Mail IN WARTIME, SURVIVAL IS AS MUCH ABOUT FRIENDSHIP AS IT IS ABOUT COURAGE...Kent, 1940. In the idyllic village of Chilbury change is afoot. Hearts are breaking as sons and husbands leave to fight, and when the Vicar decides to close the choir until the men return, all seems lost.But coming together in song is just what the women of Chilbury need in these dark hours, and they are ready to sing. With a little fighting spirit and the arrival of a new musical resident, the charismatic Miss Primrose Trent, the choir is reborn.Some see the choir as a chance to forget their troubles, others the chance to shine. Though for one villager, the choir is the perfect cover to destroy Chilbury's new-found harmony...An uplifting and heart-warming novel perfect for fans of Helen Simonson's The Summer before the War and The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.
Enigma Variations charts the life of a man named Paul, whose loves remain as consuming and as covetous throughout his adulthood as they were in his adolescence. Whether against the backdrop of southern Italy, where he develops a crush on his parents’ cabinetmaker, or a snowbound campus in New England, where his enduring passion for a girl he’ll meet again and again over the years is punctuated by anonymous encounters with men; whether he’s on a tennis court in Central Park, or on a New York sidewalk in early spring, his attachments are ungraspable, transient, and forever underwritten by raw desire - not for just one person’s body but, inevitably, for someone else’s as well.
Ahead of every step Paul takes, his hopes, denials, fears, and regrets are always ready to lay their traps. Yet the dream of love lingers. We may not always know what we want. We may remain enigmas to ourselves and to others. But sooner or later we discover who we’ve always known we were.
For a young woman in medieval Russia, the choices are stark- marriage or a life in a convent. Vasya will choose a third way- magic...The court of the Grand Prince of Moscow is plagued by power struggles and rumours of unrest. Meanwhile bandits roam the countryside, burning the villages and kidnapping its daughters. Setting out to defeat the raiders, the Prince and his trusted companion come across a young man riding a magnificent horse.Only Sasha, a priest with a warrior's training, recognises this 'boy' as his younger sister, thought to be dead or a witch by her village. But when Vasya proves herself in battle, riding with remarkable skill and inexplicable power, Sasha realises he must keep her secret as she may be the only way to save the city from threats both human and fantastical...
It is 1914, and twenty-five-year-old Frances Marion has left her (second) husband and her Northern California home for the lure of Los Angeles, where she is determined to live independently as an artist. But the word on everyone’s lips these days is “flickers”—the silent moving pictures enthralling theatergoers. Turn any corner in this burgeoning town and you’ll find made-up actors running around, as a movie camera captures it all.
In this fledgling industry, Frances finds her true calling: writing stories for this wondrous new medium. She also makes the acquaintance of actress Mary Pickford, whose signature golden curls and lively spirit have given her the title of America’s Sweetheart. The two ambitious young women hit it off instantly, their kinship fomented by their mutual fever to create, to move audiences to a frenzy, to start a revolution.
But their ambitions are challenged both by the men around them and the limitations imposed on their gender—and their astronomical success could come at a price. As Mary, the world’s highest paid and most beloved actress, struggles to live her life under the spotlight, she also wonders if it is possible to find love, even with the dashing actor Douglas Fairbanks. Frances, too, longs to share her life with someone. As in any good Hollywood story, dramas will play out, personalities will clash, and even the deepest friendships might be shattered.
With cameos from such notables as Charlie Chaplin, Louis B. Mayer, Rudolph Valentino, and Lillian Gish, The Girls in the Picture is, at its heart, a story of friendship and forgiveness. Melanie Benjamin perfectly captures the dawn of a glittering new era—its myths and icons, its possibilities and potential, and its seduction and heartbreak.
The breakout novel from a celebrated literary talent: ‘A haunting, imaginative, and deeply poignant story by one of America's great wordsmiths. I love this wise, probing and beautiful novel.’ - Steve Toltz
One summer night, beneath the Perseid meteor shower, seventeen-year-old Oliver Loving's hand makes a first furtive journey across a Navajo picnic blanket towards his classmate Rebekkah Sterling's. A few months later, Hector Espina enters Bliss County Day School's gymnasium during homecoming and shoulders a hunting rifle. The thirty-five rounds he fires cut a levelling swathe through the past and future of Oliver, his family, and the entire population of Bliss, Texas.
For the next nine years, Oliver is confined to a hospital bed. Conscious but totally paralysed, he plumbs the depths of his own imagination, a twilit netherworld of myth, in search of meaning. Eve, his adoring and indomitable mother, holds a solemn, lonesome vigil. Vulnerable younger brother Charlie flees to New York where he desperately attempts to resurrect Oliver's consciousness using nothing but three weather-beaten journals full of unfinished poetry.
Jed, Oliver's father, seems content to drink himself to death in a burnt out shack in the shadow of a resort hotel built on the land that is his birthright. But with the arrival of Professor McTeague from El Paso, towing along a new trailer-bound MRI machine and a revelation that Oliver's brain death may not be as complete as previously thought, a reckoning comes to Bliss and to the Loving family. Long-time grieving parent and newly minted experimental speech therapist Margot Strout descends, determined to make sure that Oliver reveals the truth about what happened that November night in this life or the next.
What she finds, or claims to find, may prove the Lovings' salvation or push them forever into the outer darkness.
South of No North is a collection of short stories written by Charles Bukowski that explore loneliness and struggles on the fringes of society.
Betting on the Muse is a combination of hilarious poetry and stories. Charles Bukowski writes about the real life of a working man and all that comes with it.
There are three things you should know about Elsie.The first thing is that she's my best friend.The second is that she always knows what to say to make me feel better.And the third thing... might take a little bit more explaining. 84-year-old Florence has fallen in her flat at Cherry Tree Home for the Elderly. As she waits to be rescued, Florence wonders if a terrible secret from her past is about to come to light; and, if the charming new resident is who he claims to be, why does he look exactly like a man who died sixty years ago?From the author of THE TROUBLE WITH GOATS AND SHEEP, this book will teach you many things, but here are three of them:1) The fine threads of humanity will connect us all forever.2) There is so very much more to anyone than the worst thing they have ever done.3) Even the smallest life can leave the loudest echo.
Tracy Chevalier brings Shakespeare’s harrowing drama of jealousy and revenge to a 1970s era elementary school playground.
Arriving at his fifth school in as many years, diplomat’s son Osei Kokote knows he needs an ally if he is to survive his first day – so he’s lucky to hit it off with Dee, the most popular girl in school. But one student can’t stand to witness this budding relationship: Ian decides to destroy the friendship between the black boy and the golden girl. By the end of the day, the school and its key players – teachers and pupils alike – will never be the same again.
The tragedy of Othello is transposed to a 1970s suburban Washington schoolyard, where kids fall in and out of love with each other before lunchtime, and practice a casual racism picked up from their parents and teachers. Peeking over the shoulders of four 11 year olds – Osei, Dee, Ian, and his reluctant ‘girlfriend’ Mimi – Tracy Chevalier's powerful drama of friends torn apart by jealousy, bullying and betrayal will leave you reeling.
John Wilkes Booth, the mercurial son of an acclaimed British stage actor and a Covent Garden flower girl, committed one of the most notorious acts in American history - the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln.
The subject of more than a century of scholarship, speculation, and even obsession, Booth is often portrayed as a shadowy figure, a violent loner whose single murderous act made him the most hated man in America. Lost to history until now is the story of the four women whom he loved and who loved him in return: Mary Ann, the steadfast matriarch of the Booth family; Asia, his loyal sister and confidante; Lucy Lambert Hale, the senator’s daughter who adored Booth yet tragically misunderstood the intensity of his wrath; and Mary Surratt, the Confederate widow entrusted with the secrets of his vengeful plot.
Fates and Traitors brings to life pivotal actors - some willing, others unwitting - who made an indelible mark on the history of our nation. Chiaverini portrays not just a soul in turmoil but a country at the precipice of immense change.
What would you do if your closest friend tried to steal your life?
Today I know that L. is the sole reason for my powerlessness. And that the two years that we were friends almost made me stop writing for ever.
Overwhelmed by the huge success of her latest novel, exhausted and unable to begin writing her next book, Delphine meets L.
L. is the kind of impeccable, sophisticated woman who fascinates Delphine; a woman with smooth hair and perfectly filed nails, and a gift for saying the right thing. Delphine finds herself irresistibly drawn to her, their friendship growing as their meetings, notes and texts increase. But as L. begins to dress like Delphine, and, in the face of Delphine's crippling inability to write, L. even offers to answer her emails, and their relationship rapidly intensifies. L. becomes more and more involved in Delphine's life until she patiently takes control and turns it upside down: slowly, surely, insidiously.
Based on a True Story is a chilling novel of suspense that will leave you questioning the truth and its significance long after you have turned the final page.
A bewitching novel about an enigmatic silent film actress, and the volatile love affair that left her a recluse for over half a century - for fans of Sarah Waters and Tracy Chevalier. During the oppressive heat wave of 1976 a young journalist, Ed Peters, finds an Edwardian photograph in a junk shop in the seaside town of Brightland. It shows an alluring, dark-haired girl, an actress whose name was Leda Grey. Enchanted by the image, Ed learns Leda Grey is still living - now a recluse in a decaying cliff-top house she once shared with a man named Charles Beauvois, a director of early silent film. As Beauvois's muse and lover, Leda often starred in scenes where stage magic and trick photography were used to astonishing effect. But, while playing a cursed Egyptian queen, the fantasies captured on celluloid were echoed in reality, leaving Leda abandoned and alone for more than half a century - until the secrets of her past result in a shocking climax, more haunting than any to be in found in the silent films of Charles Beauvois.
Twelve years ago Flora's mother Ingrid disappeared, vanishing from a Dorset beach. Everyone - especially her sister and father Gil - believes Ingrid is long dead. Everyone that is except Flora. So when she hears that her father has had an accident and is insisting that he saw his wife, Flora rushes home.
But the answers Flora seeks are nowhere to be found - only further questions:
What are the mysterious letters Gil keeps referring to?
Why is the house filled with towering piles of books?
And who was it her father actually saw?
As Flora assembles the pieces of this puzzle the true and troubling portrait of her parents' extraordinary marriage is slowly revealed...
Something has happened to Peach. It hurts to walk but she staggers home to parents that don't seem to notice. They can't keep their hands off each other and, besides, they have a new infant, sweet and wobbly as a jelly baby.
Peach must patch herself up alone so she can go to college and see her boyfriend, Green. But sleeping is hard when she is haunted by the gaping memory of a mouth, and working is hard when burning sausage fat fills her nostrils, and eating is impossible when her stomach is swollen tight as a drum.
In this dazzling debut, Emma Glass articulates the unspeakable with breath-taking clarity and verve. Intensely physical, with rhythmic, visceral prose, Peach marks the arrival of a visionary new voice.
She was disappearing inch by inch, vanishing into thin air, and then one day a postcard arrived... There was no return address, no signature, only a scrawled message: Say something. Shelby Richmond is an ordinary girl growing up on Long Island until one night a terrible road accident brings her life to a halt. While her best friend Helene suffers life-changing injuries, Shelby becomes overwhelmed with guilt and is suddenly unable to see the possibility of a future she'd once taken for granted.
But as time passes, and Helene becomes an almost otherworldly figure within the town, seen by its inhabitants as a source of healing, Shelby finds herself attended to by her own guardian angel. A mysterious figure she half-glimpsed the night of the car crash, he now sends Shelby brief but beautiful messages imploring her to take charge of her life once more... What happens when a life is turned inside out? When you lose all hope and sense of worth?
Shelby, a fan of Chinese food, dogs, bookshops, and men she should stay away from, captures both the ache of loneliness and the joy of finding oneself at last. From the bestselling author of The Dovekeepers comes this spellbinding, poignant and life-affirming story of one woman's journey towards happiness - and the power of love, family and fate.
A Japanese man, far from home, travels the countryside of Normandy with a friend - talking about war, literature, and everything in between. As his ideas of his life become more entangled with his personal writing, the pangs of his past and his half-forgotten memories overlap and threaten his peace. Owing a debt to French writers from La Fontaine to Proust, the three fable like tales in The Bear and the Paving Stone are stories of loss, memory and a longing to belong.
The world is threatened by encroaching ice, creeping down day by day from the polar ice caps. The imminent catastrophe has thrown the world's governments into chaos, and no one knows whether the disaster has an environmental or nuclear cause, or how soon the end will come. One man pursues his sylph-like, silver-haired ex-fiancee ('the girl') as she flees from country to country, away from her husband; away from the malevolent 'warden' of one of the proto-territories that have sprung up as traditional societies crumble; away from him.
Three young women leave the cloying atmosphere of Catholic Ireland for the freedom of swinging 60s London, all in search of a new beginning. You can escape a place. But you can't escape yourself. Hanna flees the scene of a terrible crime in her native Sligo. If she can just vanish, re-invent herself under a new name, perhaps the police won't catch up with her. London seems the perfect place to disappear. Lara has always loved Matthew and imagined happy married life in Dublin. Then comes the bombshell - Matthew says he wants to join the priesthood. Humiliated and broken-hearted, Lara heads to the most godless place she can find, King's Road, Chelsea. Matthew's twin sister, Noreen, could not be more different from her brother. She does love fiance John, but she also craves sex, parties and fun. Swinging London has it all, but without John, Noreen is about to get way out of her depth. All three girls find themselves working for Bobby Chevron - one of London's most feared gangland bosses - and it's not long before their new lives start to unravel.
After being together for ten years, Sylvie and Dan have all the trimmings of a happy life and marriage; they have a comfortable home, fulfilling jobs, beautiful twin girls, and communicate so seamlessly, they finish each other's sentences. However, a trip to the doctor reveals they could live another 68 years together... and panic sets in. They never expected 'until death do us part' to mean seven decades.
In the name of marriage survival, they quickly concoct a plan to keep their relationship fresh and exciting: they will create little surprises for each other so that their (extended) years together will never become boring.
But in their pursuit to execute Project Surprise Me, mishaps arise and secrets are uncovered that start to threaten the very foundation of their unshakeable bond. When a scandal from the past is revealed that questions some important untold truths, they begin to wonder if they ever really knew each other after all...
Eight-year-old Edgar remembers nothing of the terrible accident people still whisper about. A family epic about a desperate search for a little boy who's lost. Eight-year-old Edgar remembers nothing of the terrible accident people still whisper about. He only knows his father is dead, his mother has a limp, and his grandmother believes in ghosts. When Edgar meets a man with his own tragic story, the boy begins a journey into a secret wilderness where nothing is clear - even the line between the living and the dead. Edgar and Lucy is a thrilling adventure and an unlikely love story, combining a wonderfully rendered family epic with a desperate search for a little boy who's lost.
'An absorbing novel about a young man's voyage into adulthood, enlivened by Mary McCarthy's needling wit' Hilary Mantel, Booker prize-winning author of Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies'Fiercely intelligent, insatiably combative, McCarthy's novels invite controversy' Penelope Lively, from the introduction Peter Levi, a shy and sensitive American teenager, moves to Paris to avoid being drafted into the Vietnam War, where he is determined to live a life in harmony with his own idealistic views. But the world is changing at breakneck pace, with nuclear war looming abroad and racial tensions simmering at home. Before long, Peter's naive illusions are shattered, as he finds himself an unwilling participant in an era of extraordinary change.Birds of America is an unforgettable and deeply moving story of personal and political turmoil; of the strange and surprising nature of growing up; and of the questions we face when we examine who we really are.'A writer known for her wit, her glamour, and the shocking candour of her fiction' New Yorker
There's something eerily unsettling about Ottessa Moshfegh's stories, something almost dangerous while also being delightful - and often even weirdly hilarious. Her characters are all unsteady on their feet; all yearning for connection and betterment, in very different ways, but each of them seems destined to be tripped up by their own baser impulses. What makes these stories so moving is the emotional balance that Moshfegh achieves - the way she exposes the limitless range of self-deception that human beings can employ while, at the same time, infusing the grotesque and outrageous with tenderness and compassion. The flesh is weak; the timber is crooked; people are cruel to each other, and stupid, and hurtful, but beauty comes from strange sources, and the dark energy surging through these stories is oddly and powerfully invigorating. One of the most gifted and exciting young writers in America, she shows us uncomfortable things, and makes us look at them forensically - until we find, suddenly, that we are really looking at ourselves.
What do you do when your perfect life... isn’t?
Freya has the best life – she’s officially in love and her floristry business, Blooming Brilliant, is going from strength to strength.
Two years ago, it was a different story. She was barely employed as the worst waitress in the world, with no hope of a boyfriend, and no bank balance. But then she got BBest, a lifestyle app that knows you better than you know yourself. It changed everything. It streamlined her life, taking her likes and dislikes and skills and foibles, and gave her the best options so she doesn’t make mistakes anymore. Freya has never looked back – and neither has anyone else. Everyone loves BBest, it’s a game changer.
But if she’s so in love, why doesn’t it feel exactly right? And who is that mysterious man in her beloved grandfather’s bookshop with soulful eyes that leave her unstitched? All of a sudden Freya has so many questions – and no one seems to be able to answer them. She begins to wonder what she really agreed to when she let BBest into her life. Then her grandfather is arrested, and Freya is thrust into a world she could never have imagined in her shiny, successful existence.
When you have the perfect life, should you listen to your head or your heart?
After three years embedded in the Siege of Sarajevo, war correspondent Tom returns to Dublin a haunted shell of his former self. His childhood friends Karl and Baz know they're laughably unqualified to help him, but are determined to see him through the darkness. Together, they embark on a journey for an unlikely cure, to an experimental Californian clinic called Restless Souls. But as they try to save Tom from his memories, they must confront their own - of what happened to their childhood friend Gabriel. And in doing so, they must ask how their raucously funny teenage souls became weighed down - and why life got so damn complicated and sad. Restless Souls is about young men grappling with the aftermath of tragedy. Darkly comic and deeply moving, it's an extraordinary portrait of male friendship, the power of memory and what it means to come home.
This searing, extraordinarily evocative narrative opens with a man in his house at dawn, surrounded by aspens, coyotes cackling in the distance as he quietly navigates the distance between present and past. More and more, memory is overtaking him: in his mind he sees himself in a movie-set trailer, his young face staring back at him in a mirror surrounded by light bulbs. In his dreams and in visions he sees his late father - sometimes in miniature, sometimes flying planes, sometimes at war.
By turns, he sees the bygone America of his childhood: the farmland and the feedlots, the railyards and the diners - and, most hauntingly, his father’s young girlfriend, with whom he also became involved, setting into motion a tragedy that has stayed with him. His complex interiority is filtered through views of mountains and deserts as he drives across the country, propelled by jazz, Benzedrine, rock and roll, and a restlessness born out of exile.
The rhythms of theater, the language of poetry, and a flinty humor combine in this stunning meditation on the nature of experience, at once celebratory, surreal, poignant, and unforgettable.
In this brilliant novel set against the dark and desolate backdrop of the Mississippi Delta, a washed-up bare-knuckle fighter, battles against decades of booze and drug abuse as he returns home to try and save all he has lost.
The acres and acres of fertile soil, the two-hundred year old antebellum house, all gone. And so is the woman who gave it to him, the foster mother who saved Jack from a childhood of abandonment in the care system, who now rests in a hospice, her mind eroded by dementia, the family legacy she entrusted to Jack now owned by banks and strangers. And Jack's mind has begun to fail, too, as concussion after concussion forces him to carry around a notebook of names that separate friend from foe and remind him of dangerous haunts to avoid.
But in a single twisted night he is derailed. Hijacked by a no-good harmonica player out to settle a score, Jack loses the money that will clear his debt with Big Momma Sweet, the queen of Delta vice, whose deep backwoods playground offers sin to all those willing to pay. Yet this same chain of events introduces an unlikely saviour in the form of a sultry, tattooed carnival worker. Guided by what she calls her 'church of coincidence', Annette pushes Jack toward redemption in her own free-spirited way, only to discover that the world of Big Momma Sweet is filled with savage danger.
Damaged by regret, crippled by twenty-five years of fists and elbows, heartbroken at his own betrayals, Jack is forced to step into the fighting pit one last time, the stakes nothing less than life or death.
From the cruel irony of 'A member of the Family' to the fateful echoes of 'The Go-Away Bird' and the unexpectedly sinister 'The Girl I Left Behind Me', in settings that range from South Africa to the Portobello Road, Muriel Spark coolly probes the idiosyncrasies that lurk beneath the veneer of human respectability, displaying the acerbic wit and wisdom that are the hallmarks of her unique talent.The Complete Short Stories is a collection to be loved and cherished, from one of the finest short-story writers of the twentieth century.
Alfonso the bank clerk wants to be a poet and seems to be falling in love with Annetta, the vain and arrogant daughter of his boss. But the emptiness of his attempts at both writing and love lead to an ironic and painful conclusion. A Life is the gruelling tale of the frustrated existence of a bank clerk with a poetic soul. The artistic aspirations of the protagonist and the emptiness of his daily life become tragic in the great divide between what he wants, what he actually has and what he gets.'If you have never read Svevo, do as soon as you can. He is beautiful and important.' - New Statesman
On a cold but dazzling November morning George Webb, a former policeman turned private detective, prepares to visit Sarah, a prisoner and the woman he loves. As he goes about the business of the day he relives the catastrophic events of two years ago that have both bound them together and kept them apart.
Making atmospheric use of its suburban setting and shot through with a plain man’s unwitting poetry and rueful humour, The Light of Day is a powerful and moving tale of murder, redemption and of the discovery, for better or worse, of the hidden forces inside us.
In a dazzlingly original work of non-fiction, the Pulitzer-Prize winning author of The Underground Railroad recreates the exuberance, the chaos, the promise, and the heartbreak of New York. Here is a literary love song that will entrance anyone who has lived in - or spent time - in the greatest of American cities.
A masterful evocation of the city that never sleeps, The Colossus of New York captures the city's inner and outer landscapes in a series of vignettes, meditations, and personal memories. Colson Whitehead conveys with almost uncanny immediacy the feelings and thoughts of longtime residents and of newcomers who dream of making it their home; of those who have conquered its challenges; and of those who struggle against its cruelties.
Whitehead's style is as multilayered and multifarious as New York itself: Switching from third person, to first person, to second person, he weaves individual voices into a jazzy musical composition that perfectly reflects the way we experience the city. There is a funny, knowing riff on what it feels like to arrive in New York for the first time; a lyrical meditation on how the city is transformed by an unexpected rain shower; and a wry look at the ferocious battle that is commuting. The plaintive notes of the lonely and dispossessed resound in one passage, while another captures those magical moments when the city seems to be talking directly to you, inviting you to become one with its rhythms.
The Colossus of New York is a remarkable portrait of life in the big city. Ambitious in scope, gemlike in its details, it is at once an unparalleled tribute to New York and the ideal introduction to one of the most exciting writers working today.
'Wodehouse is a tonic' - New Yorker. A Wodehouse pick-me-up that'll lift your spirits, whatever your mood.Cheaper and more effective than Valium'.*Offers 'relief from anxiety, raginess or an afternoon-long tendency towards the sour'.*'Read when you're well and when you're poorly; when you're travelling, and when you're not; when you're feeling clever, and when you're feeling utterly dim.'*Whatever your mood, P. G. Wodehouse, widely acknowledged to be 'the best English comic novelist of the century'*, is guaranteed to lift your spirits. Why? Because 'Mr Wodehouse's idyllic world can never stale. He has made a world for us to live in and delight in.'*How? 'You don't analyse such sunlit perfection, you just bask in its warmth and splendour.'**Olivia Williams *Caitlin Moran *Lynne Truss *Sebastian Faulks *Evelyn Waugh *Stephen FryMeet the Young Men in Spats - all members of the Drones Club, all crossed in love and all busy betting their sometimes non-existent fortunes on unlikely outcomes - that's when they're not recovering from driving their sports cars through, rather than round, Marble Arch.These wonderful comic short stories are the essence of innocent fun. Here, you'll encounter some of Wodehouse's favourite characters - and, in 'The Amazing Hat Mystery', one of his favourite stories.Contents-- The Amazing Hat Mystery - Uncle Fred Flits By - Trouble Down at Tudsleigh
A Wodehouse pick-me-up that'll lift your spirits, whatever your mood.
Ever on the lookout for a quick buck, a solid gold fortune, or at least a plausible little scrounge, the irrepressible Ukridge gives con men a bad name. Looking like an animated blob of mustard in his bright yellow raincoat, he invests time, passion and energy (but seldom actual cash) in a series of increasingly bizarre money-making schemes. Shares in an accident syndicate? Easily arranged. Finance for a dog college? It's yours.
And if you throw in some cats, flying unexpectedly from windows, and a young man trying ever-more-desperately to impress the family of his latest love, you get a medley of Wodehouse delights in which lunacy and comic exuberance reign supreme.
- Goodbye to All Cats
- Ukridge's Dog College
- Ukridge's Accident Syndicate
A Wodehouse pick-me-up that'll lift your spirits, whatever your mood.
In the Angler's Rest, drinking hot scotch and lemon, sits one of Wodehouse's greatest raconteurs. Mr Mulliner, his vivid imagination lubricated by Miss Postlethwaite the barmaid, has fabulous stories to tell of the extraordinary behaviour of his far-flung family: there’s Cyril, the timid interior designer, who finds himself drunkenly playing 'this little piggy' with his beloved's formidable and angry mother's toes - how can that possibly end well?!
And then there's Wilfred, who lights on the formula for Buck-U-Uppo, a tonic given to elephants to enable them to face tigers with the necessary nonchalance… Add one of the best Jeeves and Wooster stories and you’ve got a medley of Wodehouse delights in which lunacy and comic exuberance reign supreme.
- Mulliner’s Buck-u-uppo
- The Spot of Art
- Strychnine in the Soup
A Wodehouse pick-me-up that'll lift your spirits, whatever your mood.
This collection contains two of the best Jeeves stories, in which the gentleman’s gentleman endeavours to smooth over Bertie Wooster’s relentless haplessness. Add in the story of a private detective who can make the guilty confess simply by smiling at them, told by one of Wodehouse’s greatest raconteurs, and you’ve got an assortment of Wodehouse delights in which lunacy and comic exuberance reign supreme.
- The Smile that Wins
- Jeeves and the Song of Songs
- The Great Sermon Handicap
When Mrs Ramsay tells her guests at her summer house on the Isle of Skye that they will be able to visit the nearby lighthouse the following day, little does she know that this trip will only be completed ten years later by her husband, and that a gulf of war, grief and loss will have opened in the meantime. As each character tries to readjust their memories and emotions with the shifts of time and reality, this long-delayed excursion will also prove to be a journey of self-discovery and fulfilment for them.
Rich in symbolism, daring in style, elegiac in tone and encapsulating Virginia Woolf's ideas on life, art and human relationships, To the Lighthouse is a landmark of twentieth-century literature and one of the high points of early Modernism.