Midnight Blue

A Novel

Author: Simone van der Vlugt

Publisher: HarperCollins

ISBN: 0062686879

Category: Fiction

Page: 336

View: 4115

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From Simone Van Der Vlugt comes her European bestselling novel of a young woman's rise as a painter in Holland's Golden Age—perfect for readers of The Miniaturist, Tulip Fever, and Girl with a Pearl Earring. Amsterdam 1654: against the backdrop of Holland's Golden Age, a dangerous secret threatens to destroy a young widow's new life. Following the sudden death of her husband, twenty-five-year old Catrin leaves her small village and takes a job as a housekeeper to the successful Van Nulandt merchant family. Amsterdam is a city at the peak of its powers: science and art are flourishing in the Golden Age and Dutch ships bring back exotic riches from the Far East. Madam Van Nulandt passes her time taking expensive painting lessons from a local master, Rembrandt van Rigin, and when Catrin takes up a brush to finish some of her mistress's work, Rembrandt realizes the maid has genuine talent, and encourages her to continue. When a figure from her past threatens her new life, Catrin flees to the smaller city of Delft. There, her gift as a painter earns her a chance to earn a living painting pottery at a local workshop. Slowly, the workshop begins to develop a new type of pottery to rival fancy blue-on-white imported Chinese porcelain—and the graceful and coveted Delft Blue designs she creates help revolutionize the industry. But when tragedy strikes, Catrin must decide whether to defend her newfound independence, or return to the village that she'd fled.

Safe as Houses

Author: Simone van der Vlugt

Publisher: Canongate Books

ISBN: 1782110747

Category: Fiction

Page: 270

View: 4847

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A single mother stands in the garden of her isolated house, hanging out the washing, when suddenly a man appears. When he grabs at her, Lisa runs, but she is not quick enough. Suddenly Lisa and her young daughter find themselves held hostage in their own home. In the following hours and days, Lisa will do the unimaginable to protect her child - all the time wondering why the only witness has not come back to help her. . . Simmering with tension and lust for revenge, Safe as Houses is a terrifying story of every woman's worst fears.

My Name Is Leon

Author: Kit de Waal

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 1501117475

Category: Fiction

Page: 304

View: 9945

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“Taut, emotionally intense, and wholly believable, this beautiful and uplifting debut” (Kirkus Reviews) about a young black boy’s quest to reunite with his beloved white half-brother after they are separated in foster care is a sparkling novel perfect for fans of The Language of Flowers. Leon loves chocolate bars, Saturday morning cartoons, and his beautiful, golden-haired baby brother. When Jake is born, Leon pokes his head in the crib and says, “I’m your brother. Big brother. My. Name. Is. Leon. I am eight and three quarters. I am a boy.” Jake will play with no one but Leon, and Leon is determined to save him from any pain and earn that sparkling baby laugh every chance he can. But Leon isn’t in control of this world where adults say one thing and mean another. When their mother falls victim to her inner demons, strangers suddenly take Jake away; after all, a white baby is easy to adopt, while a half-black, nine-year-old faces a less certain fate. Vowing to get Jake back by any means necessary, Leon’s own journey will carry him through the lives of a doting but ailing foster mother, Maureen; Maureen’s cranky and hilarious sister, Sylvia; a social worker Leon knows only as “The Zebra”; and a colorful community of local gardeners and West Indian political activists. Told through the perspective of young Leon, too innocent to entirely understand what has happened to him and baby Jake, but determined to do what he can to make things right. In the end, this is an uplifting story about the power of love, the unbreakable bond between brothers, and the truth about what ultimately makes a family. My Name Is Leon will capture your imagination and steal your heart with its “moving exploration of race and the foster-care system that offers precious insight into the mind of a child forced to grow up well before his time” (Booklist).

The Sense of an Ending

Author: Julian Barnes

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0307957330

Category: Fiction

Page: 176

View: 7467

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Winner of the 2011 Man Booker Prize By an acclaimed writer at the height of his powers, The Sense of an Ending extends a streak of extraordinary books that began with the best-selling Arthur & George and continued with Nothing to Be Frightened Of and, most recently, Pulse. This intense new novel follows a middle-aged man as he contends with a past he has never much thought about—until his closest childhood friends return with a vengeance, one of them from the grave, another maddeningly present. Tony Webster thought he’d left all this behind as he built a life for himself, and by now his marriage and family and career have fallen into an amicable divorce and retirement. But he is then presented with a mysterious legacy that obliges him to reconsider a variety of things he thought he’d understood all along, and to revise his estimation of his own nature and place in the world. A novel so compelling that it begs to be read in a single sitting, with stunning psychological and emotional depth and sophistication, The Sense of an Ending is a brilliant new chapter in Julian Barnes’s oeuvre.

Instructions for a Heatwave

Author: Maggie O'Farrell

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0385349416

Category: Fiction

Page: 304

View: 3514

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Sophisticated, intelligent, impossible to put down, Maggie O’Farrell’s beguiling novels—After You’d Gone, winner of a Betty Trask Award; The Distance Between Us, winner of a Somerset Maugham Award; The Hand That First Held Mine, winner of the Costa Novel Award; and her unforgettable bestseller The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox—blend richly textured psychological drama with page-turning suspense. Instructions for a Heatwave finds her at the top of her game, with a novel about a family crisis set during the legendary British heatwave of 1976. Gretta Riordan wakes on a stultifying July morning to find that her husband of forty years has gone to get the paper and vanished, cleaning out his bank account along the way. Gretta’s three grown children converge on their parents’ home for the first time in years: Michael Francis, a history teacher whose marriage is failing; Monica, with two stepdaughters who despise her and a blighted past that has driven away the younger sister she once adored; and Aoife, the youngest, now living in Manhattan, a smart, immensely resourceful young woman who has arranged her entire life to conceal a devastating secret. Maggie O’Farrell writes with exceptional grace and sensitivity about marriage, about the mysteries that inhere within families, and the fault lines over which we build our lives—the secrets we hide from the people who know and love us best. In a novel that stretches from the heart of London to New York City’s Upper West Side to a remote village on the coast of Ireland, O’Farrell paints a bracing portrait of a family falling apart and coming together with hard-won, life-changing truths about who they really are. This eBook edition includes a Reading Group Guide.

A Place Called Winter

Author: Patrick Gale

Publisher: Grand Central Publishing

ISBN: 1455594067

Category: Fiction

Page: 352

View: 4552

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A privileged elder son, and stammeringly shy, Harry Cane has followed convention at every step. Even the beginnings of an illicit, dangerous affair do little to shake the foundations of his muted existence - until the shock of discovery and the threat of arrest cost him everything. Forced to abandon his wife and child, Harry signs up for emigration to the newly colonised Canadian prairies. Remote and unforgiving, his allotted homestead in a place called Winter is a world away from the golden suburbs of turn-of-the-century Edwardian England. And yet it is here, isolated in a seemingly harsh landscape, under the threat of war, madness and an evil man of undeniable magnetism that the fight for survival will reveal in Harry an inner strength and capacity for love beyond anything he has ever known before. In this exquisite journey of self-discovery, loosely based on a real life family mystery, Patrick Gale has created an epic, intimate human drama, both brutal and breathtaking. It is a novel of secrets, sexuality and, ultimately, of great love.

The Lie Tree

Author: Frances Hardinge

Publisher: Abrams

ISBN: 1613128991

Category: Young Adult Fiction

Page: 384

View: 7771

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Read this thought-provoking, critically acclaimed novel (6 starred reviews!!!) from Frances Hardinge, winner of the Costa Book of the Year, Costa Children's Book Award, and Horn Book-Boston Globe Award. Faith Sunderly leads a double life. To most people, she is reliable, dull, trustworthy—a proper young lady who knows her place as inferior to men. But inside, Faith is full of questions and curiosity, and she cannot resist mysteries: an unattended envelope, an unlocked door. She knows secrets no one suspects her of knowing. She knows that her family moved to the close-knit island of Vane because her famous scientist father was fleeing a reputation-destroying scandal. And she knows, when her father is discovered dead shortly thereafter, that he was murdered. In pursuit of justice and revenge, Faith hunts through her father’s possessions and discovers a strange tree. The tree bears fruit only when she whispers a lie to it. The fruit of the tree, when eaten, delivers a hidden truth. The tree might hold the key to her father’s murder—or it may lure the murderer directly to Faith herself. Frances Hardinge is the author of many acclaimed novels, including Cuckoo Song, which earned five starred reviews.

The Secret Scripture

A Novel

Author: Sebastian Barry

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 9781101202920

Category: Fiction

Page: 320

View: 5927

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An epic story of family, love, and unavoidable tragedy from the two-time Man Booker Prize finalist. Now a major motion picture starring Rooney Mara. Sebastian Barry's latest novel, Days Without End, is now available. Sebastian Barry's novels have been hugely admired by readers and critics, and in 2005 his novel A Long Long Way was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize. In The Secret Scripture, Barry revisits County Sligo, Ireland, the setting for his previous three books, to tell the unforgettable story of Roseanne McNulty. Once one of the most beguiling women in Sligo, she is now a resident of Roscommon Regional Mental Hospital and nearing her hundredth year. Set against an Ireland besieged by conflict, The Secret Scripture is an engrossing tale of one woman's life, and a vivid reminder of the stranglehold that the Catholic church had on individuals throughout much of the twentieth century. The Secret Scripture is now a film starring Rooney Mara, Eric Bana, and Vanessa Redgrave.

The Good Guy

Author: Susan Beale

Publisher: John Murray

ISBN: 9781473630369

Category: Fiction

Page: 320

View: 2604

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SHORTLISTED FOR THE COSTA FIRST NOVEL AWARD 2016 'I fell into The Good Guy hook, line and sinker . . . utterly captivating' Last Word Review A summer of love and deceit in 1960s New England. Abigail has everything she's meant to want: a handsome, successful husband, a beautiful baby daughter, and a house in the suburbs. Inside, however, she's in turmoil: awkward with her neighbors, exhausted by the demands of motherhood, a failure at domesticity. Her husband, Ted, doesn't feel the same pressure. His professional life is on the up when a chance encounter with single-girl Penny offers a glimpse of the life he might have had, had he not blindly followed convention. Captivated, he tells a lie and then another. Lie by lie, he constructs a double life, convinced he can keep his two worlds separate, but can he? Brilliantly observed and deeply moving, The Good Guy proves that the worst lies are the ones we tell ourselves. 'A sparkling debut, with a lifelike depiction of a time and place, and piercing insights into the fabled, and often tarnished, American dream' Lady 'Extremely well-written, intelligent and perceptive, this also happens to be a novel that slips down like ice-cream on a hot day. I absolutely loved it' Shiny New Books 'A delicious, slightly gossipy summer read with a Mad Men feel to it. I'd especially recommend this to readers who enjoyed The Longest Night by Andria Williams and Tigers in Red Weather by Liza Klaussmann' Bookbag

This Must Be the Place

A novel

Author: Maggie O'Farrell

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0385349432

Category: Fiction

Page: 400

View: 5356

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An irresistible love story, an unforgettable family. Bestselling author Maggie O’Farrell captures an extraordinary marriage with insight and laugh-out-loud humor in what Richard Russo calls “her breakout book.” Perfect for readers of Where’d You Go, Bernadette. Daniel Sullivan leads a complicated life. A New Yorker living in the wilds of Ireland, he has children he never sees in California, a father he loathes in Brooklyn, and his wife, Claudette, is a reclusive ex–film star given to pulling a gun on anyone who ventures up their driveway. Together, they have made an idyllic life in the country, but a secret from Daniel’s past threatens to destroy their meticulously constructed and fiercely protected home. Shot through with humor and wisdom, This Must Be the Place is an irresistible love story that crisscrosses continents and time zones as it captures an extraordinary marriage, and an unforgettable family, with wit and deep affection.

A God in Ruins

A Novel

Author: Kate Atkinson

Publisher: Little, Brown

ISBN: 031634155X

Category: Fiction

Page: 480

View: 2577

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One of the Best Books of 2015--TIME, NPR, Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, The Christian Science Monitor, The Seattle Times, The Kansas City Star, Kirkus, Bookpage, Hudson Booksellers, AARP The stunning companion to Kate Atkinson's #1 bestseller Life After Life, "one of the best novels I've read this century" (Gillian Flynn). "He had been reconciled to death during the war and then suddenly the war was over and there was a next day and a next day. Part of him never adjusted to having a future." Kate Atkinson's dazzling Life After Life explored the possibility of infinite chances and the power of choices, following Ursula Todd as she lived through the turbulent events of the last century over and over again. A GOD IN RUINS tells the dramatic story of the 20th Century through Ursula's beloved younger brother Teddy--would-be poet, heroic pilot, husband, father, and grandfather-as he navigates the perils and progress of a rapidly changing world. After all that Teddy endures in battle, his greatest challenge is living in a future he never expected to have. An ingenious and moving exploration of one ordinary man's path through extraordinary times, A GOD IN RUINS proves once again that Kate Atkinson is one of the finest novelists of our age.

The Power

Author: Naomi Alderman

Publisher: Little, Brown

ISBN: 0316547654

Category: Fiction

Page: 416

View: 6221

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One of the New York Times's Ten Best Books of 2017A Los Angeles Times Best Book of 2017One of the Washington Post's Ten Best Books of 2017An NPR Best Book of 2017One of Entertainment Weekly's Ten Best Books of 2017A Bustle Best Book of 2017A Paste Magazine Best Novel of 2017A San Francisco Chronicle Best Book of 2017Winner of the Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction One of President Obama's favorite reads of 2017 "The Power is our era's The Handmaid's Tale." --Ron Charles, Washington Post "Novels based on premises like the one at the core of The Power can quickly become little more than thought experiments, but Alderman dodges this trap deftly -- her writing is beautiful, and her intelligence seems almost limitless. She also has a pitch-dark sense of humor that she wields perfectly." --Michael Schaub, NPR A New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice An Amazon Best Book of 2017 **WINNER OF THE 2017 BAILEYS WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION** What would happen if women suddenly possessed a fierce new power? In THE POWER, the world is a recognizable place: there's a rich Nigerian boy who lounges around the family pool; a foster kid whose religious parents hide their true nature; an ambitious American politician; a tough London girl from a tricky family. But then a vital new force takes root and flourishes, causing their lives to converge with devastating effect. Teenage girls now have immense physical power--they can cause agonizing pain and even death. And, with this small twist of nature, the world drastically resets. From award-winning author Naomi Alderman, THE POWER is speculative fiction at its most ambitious and provocative, at once taking us on a thrilling journey to an alternate reality, and exposing our own world in bold and surprising ways.

Exposure

Author: Helen Dunmore

Publisher: Open Road + Grove/Atlantic

ISBN: 0802190413

Category: Fiction

Page: 400

View: 5982

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“Dunmore so cleverly interweaves each of the character's stories that as the tale unfolds it has the chilling ring of absolute authenticity. It’s gripping and page turning and all those things you expect in a Spy Drama—but always laced with her trademark humanity. I was totally caught up in the story which is paced perfectly. Her best book yet.”—Mavis Cheek Virtuoso storyteller Helen Dunmore returns with a thrilling Cold War espionage tale in which the closest ties are called into question and nobody is quite who they seem. It’s London, 1960. The Cold War is at its height, and a spy may be a friend or neighbor, colleague or lover. Two colleagues, Giles Holloway and Simon Callington, face a terrible dilemma over a missing top-secret file. At the end of a suburban garden, in the pouring rain, Simon’s wife, Lily, buries a briefcase containing the file deep in the earth. She believes that in doing so she is protecting her family. What she will learn is that no one is immune from betrayal or the devastating consequences of exposure.

A Country Road, A Tree

A novel

Author: Jo Baker

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 1101947195

Category: Fiction

Page: 304

View: 6820

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From the best-selling author of Longbourn, a remarkable imagining of Samuel Beckett’s wartime experiences. In 1939 Paris, the ground rumbles with the footfall of Nazi soldiers marching along the Champs-Élysées, and a young, unknown writer, recently arrived from Ireland to make his mark, smokes one last cigarette with his lover before the city they know is torn apart. Soon he will put them both in mortal danger by joining the Resistance. Through the years that follow, we are witness to the workings of a uniquely brilliant mind struggling to create a language to express a shattered world. A story of survival and determination, of spies and artists, passion and danger, A Country Road, A Tree is a portrait of the extremes of human experience alchemized into one man’s timeless art.

Sophie Someone

Author: Hayley Long

Publisher: Candlewick Press

ISBN: 0763689955

Category: Young Adult Fiction

Page: 272

View: 2043

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Sophie and her family left England for Belgium when she was very young. At fourteen, she's doesn't understand why they left England until she makes a startling discovery that helps her unlock the mystery of who she really is.

The Bricks that Built the Houses

Author: Kate Tempest

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA

ISBN: 162040902X

Category: Fiction

Page: 416

View: 9354

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Becky, Harry, and Leon are leaving London in a fourth-hand Ford with a suitcase full of stolen money, in a mess of tangled loyalties and impulses. But can they truly leave the city that's in their bones? Kate Tempest's novel reaches back through time--through tensely quiet dining rooms and crassly loud clubs--to the first time Becky and Harry meet. It sprawls through their lives and those they touch--of their families and friends and faces on the street--revealing intimacies and the moments that make them. And it captures the contemporary struggle of urban life, of young people seeking jobs or juggling jobs, harboring ambitions and making compromises. The Bricks that Built the Houses is an unexpected love story. It's about being young, but being part of something old. It's about how we become ourselves, and how we effect our futures. Rich in character and restless in perspective, driven by ethics and empathy, it asks--and seeks to answer--how best to live with and love one another. *Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times

The Hidden Thread

A Novel

Author: Liz Trenow

Publisher: Sourcebooks, Inc.

ISBN: 1492637521

Category: Fiction

Page: 384

View: 9121

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The Hidden Thread is a breathtaking novel about the intricate craft of silk and the heartbreak of forbidden love. When Anna Butterfield's mother dies, she's sent to live with her uncle, a silk merchant in London, to make a good match and provide for her father and sister. There, she meets Henri, a French immigrant and apprentice hoping to become a master weaver. But Henri, born into a lower class, becomes embroiled in the silk riots that break out as weavers protest for a fair wage. New York Times bestselling author Liz Trenow weaves a luminous tale of class struggle and star-crossed love.

The Island at the End of Everything

Author: Kiran Millwood Hargrave

Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers

ISBN: 055353534X

Category: Juvenile Fiction

Page: 256

View: 7547

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A poignant story filled with heart-warming courage as a young girl takes on a harrowing journey to be reunited with her mother. Ami lives on Culion, an island in the Philippines for people who have leprosy. Her mother is among the infected. Ami loves her home: with its blue seas and lush forests, Culion contains all she knows and loves. But the arrival of malicious government official Mr. Zamora changes her world forever. Islanders untouched by sickness are forced to leave for a neighboring island, where the children are placed in an orphanage. Banished across the sea, Ami is desperate to return to Culion before her mother's death. She finds a strange and fragile hope in a colony of butterflies. Can they lead her home before it's too late? Heartrending yet hopeful, celebrated newcomer Kiran Hargrave's novel is a story about loss, perseverence, and faith.

Days Without End

A Novel

Author: Sebastian Barry

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 0698168631

Category: Fiction

Page: 272

View: 8367

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COSTA BOOK OF THE YEAR AWARD WINNER LONGLISTED FOR THE 2017 MAN BOOKER PRIZE "A true leftfield wonder: Days Without End is a violent, superbly lyrical western offering a sweeping vision of America in the making."—Kazuo Ishiguro, Booker Prize winning author of The Remains of the Day and The Buried Giant “A haunting archeology of youth . . . Barry introduces a narrator who speaks with an intoxicating blend of wit and wide-eyed awe, his unsettlingly lovely prose unspooling with an immigrant’s peculiar lilt and a proud boy’s humor.”—The New York Times Book Review From the two-time Man Booker Prize finalist Sebastian Barry, “a master storyteller” (Wall Street Journal), comes a powerful new novel of duty and family set against the American Indian and Civil Wars Thomas McNulty, aged barely seventeen and having fled the Great Famine in Ireland, signs up for the U.S. Army in the 1850s. With his brother in arms, John Cole, Thomas goes on to fight in the Indian Wars—against the Sioux and the Yurok—and, ultimately, the Civil War. Orphans of terrible hardships themselves, the men find these days to be vivid and alive, despite the horrors they see and are complicit in. Moving from the plains of Wyoming to Tennessee, Sebastian Barry’s latest work is a masterpiece of atmosphere and language. An intensely poignant story of two men and the makeshift family they create with a young Sioux girl, Winona, Days Without End is a fresh and haunting portrait of the most fateful years in American history and is a novel never to be forgotten.