The Maker of Swans
By Paraic O’Donnell
Amid the fading grandeur of a country estate, Clara lives in the care of Mr Crowe, a man of many mysterious gifts, and his faithful manservant, Eustace. Free from rules and lessons, she inhabits a silent world of her own. She has her books, and her secret places.Mr Crowe was once the toast of the finest salons: a man of learning and means, he travelled the world, dazzling all who met him. Now, he devotes himself to earthly pleasures, while his great library gathers dust and his once magnificent gardens grow wild.But Mr Crowe and his extraordinary gifts have not been entirely forgotten. When he commits a crime of passion, he attracts the attention of Dr Chastern, the figurehead of a secret society to which Crowe still belongs. When Chastern comes to call him to account, his sinister attention is soon diverted to Clara. For Clara possesses gifts of her own, gifts whose power she has not yet fully grasped. She must learn to use them quickly, if she is to save them all.
By Carlos Ruiz Zafon
'Fifteen years on, the remembrance of that day has returned to me. I have seen that boy wandering through the mist of the railway station, and the name of Marina has flared up again like a fresh wound. We all have a secret buried under lock and key in the attic of our soul. This is mine...'In May 1980, 15-year-old ?scar Drai suddenly vanishes from his boarding school in the old quarter of Barcelona. For seven days and nights no one knows his whereabouts... His story begins in the heart of old Barcelona, when he meets Marina and her father German Blau, a portrait painter. Marina takes ?scar to a cemetery to watch a macabre ritual that occurs on the fourth Sunday of each month. At 10 a.m. precisely a coach pulled by black horses appears. From it descends a woman dressed in black, her face shrouded, wearing gloves, holding a single rose. She walks over to a gravestone that bears no name, only the mysterious emblem of a black butterfly with open wings. When ?scar and Marina decide to follow her they begin a journey that will take them to the heights of a forgotten, post-war Barcelona, a world of aristocrats and actresses, inventors and tycoons; and a dark secret that lies waiting in the mysterious labyrinth beneath the city streets. Carlos Ruiz Zaf?n was born in Barcelona and is the author of seven novels including THE SHADOW OF THE WIND. He is one of the world's most read and best-loved writers. His work has been translated into more than 40 languages and published around the world, garnering numerous international prizes and reaching millions of readers. He divides his time between Barcelona and Los Angeles.
The Mistletoe Bride and Other Haunting Tales
By Kate Mosse
The perfect winter ghost short story collection from the No.1 bestselling author of LABYRINTH and THE WINTER GHOSTS.I hear someone coming. It has happened before. I pause and listen but no longer hear anything. I sigh. As always, hope is snatched away before it can take root. And so then, as always, I am carried back to that first December so very long ago...Rooted in the elemental landscapes of Sussex, Brittany and the Languedoc, here are tales of ghosts and spirits seeking revenge, grief-stricken women and haunted men coming to terms with their destiny.
By Anthony Horowitz
Sherlock Holmes is dead. Days after Holmes and his arch-enemy Moriarty fall to their doom at the Reichenbach Falls, Pinkerton agent Frederick Chase arrives in Europe from New York. The death of Moriarty has created a poisonous vacuum which has been swiftly filled by a fiendish new criminal mastermind who has risen to take his place.Ably assisted by Inspector Athelney Jones of Scotland Yard, a devoted student of Holmes's methods of investigation and deduction, Frederick Chase must forge a path through the darkest corners of the capital to shine light on this shadowy figure, a man much feared but seldom seen, a man determined to engulf London in a tide of murder and menace. Author of the global bestseller The House of Silk, Anthony Horowitz once more breathes life into the world created by Arthur Conan Doyle. With pitch-perfect characterisation and breath-taking pace, Horowitz weaves a relentlessly thrilling tale which teases and delights by the turn of each page. The game is afoot...
Mrs Griffin Sends Her Love
By Miss Read
A nostalgic collection on rural schools, childhood and English country life from the much-loved author of VILLAGE SCHOOL.From organising the school summer fete...'Because of our inability to recognise our climatic shortcomings from the outset, arrangements for outdoor jollities get completely out of hand'....to the sometimes rather odd passions of childhood:'I collect stones with holes in them'.Miss Read captures the essence of rural life, and in particular of village schools, as only she can. This collection also includes extracts from her letters:'Michael Joseph wrote after the Observer thing and is throwing out feelers for a book. I shall know if he still feels like it - me too! - after we've met'.It will also include an Introduction on how 'Miss Read' was first created: 'Miss Read was born fully clothed in sensible garments and aged about forty. She was born, in fact, when I was struggling to write my first book and needed a village schoolmistress as the narrator.'
By J. Meade Falkner
A classic story of high adventure, treasure and smuggling set in a small Dorset village of Moonfleet. Soon to be a major Sky TV series starring Ray Winstone.When young John Trenchard finds a secret passage, he's sure it will lead him to Blackbeard's infamous lost treasure - a huge diamond of incredible value. But what John finds among the coffins beneath Moonfleet church is a smuggler's lair. And a coded message from Blackbeard himself . . . John is inadvertently caught up in the dangerous world of the smugglers and is forced to run for his life. While he hides from the authorities, he decodes Blackbeard's message. He now knows where the diamond is.But there are unknown perils between John and the diamond and his boyish dreams of great riches soon turn into very real nightmares . . .
Maria and the Admiral
By Rachel Billington
A sweeping historical drama, based on the true and enduring love of Thomas Cochrane and Maria Graham.Chile, June 1822. Maria Graham, a young British widow, watches as her compatriot Admiral Lord Cochrane sails triumphantly into the Valparaiso Bay, fresh from leading the Chilean fleet to victory over the country's Spanish rulers.Cochrane, a popular yet outspoken hero of the Napoleonic wars, is drawn to Maria, a woman whose intelligence and spirit of adventure rival his own. Yet their intense and extraordinary relationship must contend with a climate of uncertainty, political turmoil and civil war.Inspired by Maria Graham's own journals, MARIA AND THE ADMIRAL vividly brings to life the story of one woman who tested the limits of society, and of her enduring love for one of the most colourful figures of her age.
The Manual of Darkness
By Enrique de Heriz
The world's best magician is going blind, but is there a story in his past that can save him? Victor Losa has spent his life studying magic. His mentor, Mario Galvan, taught him not only the practical aspects of the art, but also its history and the lives of famous Victorian magicians such as Hoffman, Maskelyne, and Cooke, and the most enigmatic historical figure of all, Peter Grouse, a pickpocket who decided to challenge the best magicians of the day. But suddenly things change for Victor Losa, just as he is proclaimed the world's best magician. A light appears in his eye, but this is no magic trick - he is diagnosed with a rare degenerative condition of the optical nerve. In short, he is rapidly going blind. As he loses his sight, Victor finds that there are new ways to conjure the world through stories of the past, present and future. And finally he learns the secret behind his mentor's teachings.
The Man Who Killed His Brother
By Stephen Donaldson
An alcoholic former private investigator; his missing niece; a police force unable to find her; and a horrifying race against time...Mick 'Brew' Axbrewder has plenty to think about. A once capable private investigator, he is now an alcoholic after having lost his license following the accidental shooting of a police officer - his own brother.When not drinking, Brew helps out Ginny Fistoulari, a tough, capable P.I. who he used to work with and with whom he's always shared a connection. But Brew and Ginny have an arrangement that she will never drag him out of a bar - so when she does just that, Brew knows it must be something serious. And it is. Brew's thirteen-year-old niece - his dead brother's daughter - has gone missing. The police are doing nothing and suspect she is a runaway. Until Brew's investigation uncovers a link with several other girls who all went missing, sent a letter home, then turned up dead, full of heroin. Desperately fighting the latest drinking binge and determined to stay off the bottle, Brew needs to find his niece before it is too late...
The Mother's Tale
By Camilla Noli
An extraordinary, powerful and controversial debut about a mother's dark story.From the warm light of her sleeping baby's nursery, the curve of her husband's arm, the soft embrace of an old friend, the anonymous narrator of THE MOTHER'S TALE whispers to you her intimate fears, her deepest held desires.In the suburbs, a young mother is looking after her two children. She used to be a successful career woman in control of her life and with her husband's undivided attention. But now her control is slipping away. Motherhood is devouring her life. She is desperate to reclaim her sense of self, even if that means thinking the unthinkable.From its softly lit beginning to its explosive, emotional conclusion THE MOTHER'S TALE takes the reader on a journey to the dark recesses of one woman's heart and mind; right to the truths that are never spoken, the thoughts that are not written about. THE MOTHER'S TALE is a taut, beautifully constructed book which, once begun, cannot be put down, told by a narrator who will not be easily forgotten. It engages and confronts, and will provoke discussion for a long time to come.
The Man In The Yellow Doublet
By Arturo Perez-Reverte
Captain Alatriste returns in a swashbuckling tale of intrigue, romance and regicide.Captain Alatriste's affair with the beautiful actress Maria de Castro is rankling not only his long-term mistress but also the King of Spain. With loyal companion Inigo distracted by the affections of Angelica, Alatriste becomes embroiled in a series of tussles outside his lover's house. Ambushed by arch-nemesis Malatesta, a skirmish ensues that leads to the death of Maria's other lover - the monarch himself. But behind this tale of sexual jealousy lurks a darker truth. As it becomes clear that both Alatriste and Inigo have been cunningly honey trapped - and that the dead man was an impostor. With a puppet king waiting dutifully in the wings, Alatriste must use all his cunning and swordsmanly guile to prevent the murder of the real king - and his implication in a crime for which he has been perfectly framed.
The Making of Mia
By Ilana Fox
Gorgeous, feel-good debut of one woman's journey from rags to bitches...When Jo Hill lands a job as a PA at GLOSS magazine, she thinks it's the job of her dreams. But it soon turns into a nightmare. As a mousy secretary with a penchant for giant bags of Maltesers and comfy shoes, Jo doesn't exactly fit in at the uber-chic office. Her boss humiliates her; her colleagues bitch about her; even the receptionist ignores her. At first, Jo's not sure why - is it her hair, her figure, her clothes? Then she realises it's pretty much all of the above and that she'll never be like the sleek, glamorous girls flitting round the office in their Sass & Bide jeans and Gucci mules. Or will she? Jo might be overweight and overlooked, but she's different in other ways too. She's bright, ambitious and smart, and what's more, she has a plan.Reduced to tears for the umpteenth time by her boss - the gorgeous but vicious magazine publisher Joshua Garnet - Jo knows it's time for drastic action. She's had it with magazines and knows that 'discovering a whole new you' takes more than a manicure and a new MAC blusher. Jo's going to give herself the ultimate makeover and by the time she's finished, the magazine world - and Joshua - won't know what's hit them. Goodbye Jo, hello Mia - magazine diva extraordinaire.
A Much Married Man
By Nicholas Coleridge
A stunning new blockbuster from the author of GODCHILDREN.An Englishman's home is his castle. Or at least it should be. But as Anthony Anscombe surveys Winchford Priory, his beautiful Elizabethan house in Oxfordshire, lurking in the village are more than one or two reminders of a life well-lived.His first wife was the hauntingly beautiful girl he married in an impulsive rush of hedonism. Amanda was never going to live up to her role as the wife of a country squire, so why does she still cast such a long shadow in Anthony's life?Sandra, the second wife, came to Anthony's rescue. Sturdy, dependable and relentlessly practical, Sandra had plans to turn the Priory into a proper family home, until that summer when it all went horribly wrong... And then there's Dita, a force of nature. Effortlessly glamorous and achingly wealthy, Dita storms through Anthony's life, organising and rearranging - particularly when it comes to previous Mrs Anscombes and their children.With the entire cast of his life roosting in the village, it's no wonder Anthony doesn't have a minute's peace.
Maeve Binchy: Three Great Novels: Three No.1 Bestsellers
By Maeve Binchy
Three No. 1 bestselling novels from the world's favourite storyteller.THE GLASS LAKEKit McMahon lives in the small Irish town of Lough Glass, where everyone knows everyone and where change comes slowly. Then one day, Kit's mother, the beautiful, mysterious Helen McMahon, disappears, presumed drowned in the lake, and the gossip runs wild.SCARLET FEATHERCathy Scarlet and Tom Feather have decided to create the best catering company in Dublin. They have the perfect premises, heaps of talent and even a few contacts - but not everyone seems as pleased by the idea of 'Scarlet Feather' as they are. QUENTINSEvery table at Quentins Restaurant has a thousand stories to tell: tales of love, betrayal and revenge. Ella Brady wants to make a documentary about the renowned Dublin restaurant - but as she uncovers more of what has gone on, she wonders about the wisdom of bringing it to the screen...
The Man Who Fought Alone
By Stephen Donaldson
Fourth in the brilliant crime series by the Numer One bestselling fantasy author all around the world.When Mick 'Brew' Axbrewder catches a bullet while in the process of taking out the top hitman of 'El Senor' - Puerto del Sol's only real crime-lord - his partner and sometime lover, Ginny Fistoulari decides to get the both of them out of town. But running doesn't seem to solve half their problems. Mick, without a PI licence and fast alienating Ginny, must rebuild his life, but the only way is to trust the one man he is coming to hate most, Marshal Viviter: an old college friend of Ginny's, and a phenomenally successfully private investigator.Viviter appears to have everything, and be everything, that Mick could ever hope for, but there are strings attached to his help - strings which could get Mick killed ...
The Meat Eaters
By Michael Collins
Michael Collins's stories are about Ireland, about the Irish as they are and as they would like to be imagined. In the title story we see the fatal consequences of self-deception. Posing as a nationalist hero, a young man travels to America with a suitcase full of meat. The warm welcome he expects swiftly dematerialises as he awakes to the grim realities of life in hiding.The vivid, surreal splendour of the writing allied with images of real people - the struggling widow, the careless father, the schoolboy and the philosopher, the good and the corrupt - make this an outstanding collection.
The Mark Of The Assassin
By Daniel Silva
A gripping thriller by the author of the Unlikely Spy.A secret world organisation of wealthy Capitalists hires a shadowy former KGB assassin with a trademark method of killing - 3 gunshots in the face of his victim. For the assassin, a hit is simply another million dollars in the bank. But to the President of the US, it symbolises revenge. To the hero of THE UNLIKELY SPY, this trademark simply makes it easier to track the killer across three continents, as the death count rises steadily.This is a battle between an assassin, and the only man who knows his identity.