By Shelley Harris
For Jenny Pepper, housewife, charity bookshop worker and mum to a stroppy teen, life has become a little boring. She was once an actress, but now spends every day tidying up after other people. Then, on her way to a party one night, Jenny bravely steps in to save a woman in trouble. Suddenly her world is exciting again - and she's a hero. As she starts patrolling the streets of her small town, she feels more alive than she has in years. But when a real villain appears, Jenny's daughter is in danger. Will she tell the police what she knows or go it alone and risk losing everything?VIGILANTE is about an ordinary woman stuck in a rut - and the extraordinary lengths she'll go to recapture her life.
The Versions of Us
By Laura Barnett
A RICHARD AND JUDY BOOK CLUB PICK AND NUMBER ONE BESTSELLERWhat if you had said yes . . . ?Eva and Jim are nineteen, and students at Cambridge, when their paths first cross in 1958. Jim is walking along a lane when a woman approaching him on a bicycle swerves to avoid a dog. What happens next will determine the rest of their lives. We follow three different versions of their future - together, and apart - as their love story takes on different incarnations and twists and turns to the conclusion in the present day.The Versions of Us is an outstanding debut novel about the choices we make and the different paths that our lives might follow. What if one small decision could change the rest of your life?Laura's Barnett's new book GREATEST HITS is available for pre-order now.
By Rebecca Shaw
In Rebecca Shaw's latest scintillating tale of village life, hearts will be broken, families reunited and long-hidden secrets will finally come to light.You can't escape your past. At least that's what the residents of Turnham Malpas would say . . .While clearing out the rectory's loft, Reverend Peter Harris makes an unsettling discovery and a dark secret is exposed that soon sets tongues wagging in the village.Having received a letter from the sons she hasn't heard from in 15 years, local gossip Greta Jones is delighted at the prospect of seeing them after all this time - despite her husband's misgivings. And Craddock Fitch's unruly grandchildren, newly arrived in the village, are causing not a little trouble for the townsfolk.Meanwhile Fran Charter-Plackett has a difficult decision to make. Her parents would like to see her settled with kind and reliable Alex Harris. But when Chris Templeton, the man whom Fran once lost her heart to, returns to the village, it seems he is all set to steal her affections once more. Is Chris really a changed man? And will Fran finally go with her heart or her head?
By Rebecca Shaw
A heart-warming tale of loyalty, betrayal and family values in the village of Turnham Malpas.Things are heating up in the village of Turnham Malpas. Now comfortably settled in the Big House, Johnny and Alice Templeton are over the moon at the arrival of their second son. But Johnny's roguish younger brother, Chris, is visiting from Brazil and causing trouble in the village.For Ford and Mercedes Barclay, returning to the village after all these years is a big step. Will they be welcomed or shunned? And will Ford be able to convince people he's a changed man? Meanwhile, poor Fran Charter-Plackett has some important decisions to make about her future. With all her siblings having flown the nest, the pressure is on to decide what to do with her life. And when her parents discover Fran's shocking secret, things really start to get messy...
A Village in Jeopardy
By Rebecca Shaw
Rivalries flare and scandal abounds in bestselling author Rebecca Shaw's sparkling tale of love, loyalty and village life.The villagers of Turnham Malpas are in for a shock. With Sir Ralph now dead, his fortune and title go to newcomer, Johnny Templeton. Johnny could not be more different from his well-loved predecessor, and he soon finds himself in conflict with the long-standing members of Turnham Malpas.Meanwhile, there are two other villagers in crises, but theirs is a much more private issue. Marcus and Alice March have longed for a child for years. But when Alice finally becomes pregnant, there are those in the village who question the child's paternity. After all, Alice has grown very close to Johnny... As gossip begins to circulate, Alice must make the most difficult of decisions - whether to follow her heart or her morals.
Veronica Henry - Five Great Novels
By Veronica Henry
Five of Veronica Henry's brilliant novels, together in one collection. The collection comprises:Just a Family AffairMarriage and Other GamesThe Beach HutThe Birthday PartyThe Long Weekend
The Virgin Cure
By Ami McKay
A macabre voyage into the underbelly of nineteenth-century New York.'I am Moth, a girl from the lowest part of Chrystie Street, born to a slum-house mystic and the man who broke her heart.' So begins THE VIRGIN CURE, a novel set in the tenements of lower Manhattan in 1871. As a young child, Moth's father smiled, tipped his hat and walked away from her for ever. The summer she turned twelve, her mother sold her as a servant to a wealthy woman, with no intention of ever seeing her again.These betrayals lead Moth to the wild, murky world of the Bowery, filled with house-thieves, pickpockets, beggars, sideshow freaks and prostitutes, where eventually she meets Miss Everett, the owner of a brothel. Miss Everett caters to gentlemen who pay dearly for companions, and the most desirable of them all are young virgins like Moth.Through the friendship of Dr Sadie, a female physician, Moth learns to question and observe the world around her, where her new friends are falling prey to the myth of the 'virgin cure' to heal the incurable and tainted. She knows the law will not protect her, that polite society ignores her and still she dreams of answering to no one but herself. There's a high price for such independence, though, and no one knows that better than a girl from Chrystie Street...
A Village Deception
By Rebecca Shaw
Passions run high in Turnham Malpas as one man finds love - and another tragedy.When Harry Dickenson arrives in Turnham Malpas, the warm welcome he receives convinces him to stay. Handsome and charming, Harry quickly earns his place in rural life. But despite his outward friendliness, Harry is a troubled man, hiding memories of a tragic past from which he is desperate to escape. Just as Harry finds some measure of peace, he encounters the one woman in the village likely to turn any man's head. Soon, Harry is caught in an obsessive love that threatens to ruin everything that he has accomplished - and reveal his shocking secret to all.But Harry isn't the only man in the village to fall head-over-heels. Paddy Cleary, the shy gardener, is smitten. But will Paddy find the confidence to reveal his true feelings? And will the young lady return his affections? The villagers must watch and wait, hoping the burgeoning friendship will lead to something more...
The Village Newcomers
By Rebecca Shaw
Two newcomers arrive in Turnham Malpas, creating drama and upheaval. Another warm, witty and lively tale of village life from bestselling author Rebecca Shaw.Ford and Mercedes Barclay have decided to spend their twilight years in the lovely village of Turnham Malpas - but will these two newcomers be made welcome? Ford, a former businessman who made his fortune in scrap metal, has ambitious plans for the village. But not everyone in Turnham Malpas welcomes the newcomers with open arms...Meanwhile, a letter arrives at the village rectory that causes consternation. The rector's twin children have never had contact with their birth mother. But now, finally, she wishes to build a relationship with them. After so many years of estrangement, what should they do...?
Valley Of Grace
By Marion Halligan
Valley of Grace is an interwoven narrative of modern day Paris.Fanny and Gerard fall in love in a way that surprises even them as their lives fill with good sex and loving companionship. But they long for a child to complete their happiness. Two of Fanny's lesbian friends feel similarly driven by the need to have a child. But how to make that possible?Jean-Marie is an internationally regarded professor of philosophy whose adoring students are willing sexual partners fulfilling the tenets of his libertarianism. But perhaps philosophy can't bear the weight of human emotion.When Gerard buys a beautiful old house in the suburbs, the disturbing contents of the attic binds the stories into an intriguing and darkly disturbing knot.Valley of Grace is a lyrical work full of hope and children, written by one of Australia's most loved novelists at the height of her powers. Savour it.
By Rebecca Shaw
Mysterious goings-on in the village of Turnham Malpas...The village school is to get a new head, and the inhabitants of Turnham Malpas await her arrival with curiosity. At first sight, Kate Pascoe seems ideal. She's young, pretty and obviously loves her job. But when she introduces meditation classes for her ten-year-olds, and even tree-hugging, the villagers begin to think again.Then a strange malaise afflicts the whole village: lights are seen in Sykes Wood at night; a dog long dead appears to come to life and a sudden shocking death plunges the village into a state of superstitious dread. And always at the eye of the storm is Kate Pascoe...
By Rebecca Shaw
For the villagers of Turnham Malpas, the production of a play results in gossip, jealousy and scandal...From theSunday Times bestselling author.For the locals of Turnham Malpas, the rural peace is disrupted when a famous actor comes to stay to recuperate from illness. Before long he is bored by village life and when he meets Caroline, the rector's wife, he is instantly attracted to her. He agrees to direct and star in a play with the villagers as his supporting cast and Caroline as his leading lady... Before long, the villagers' lives are turned upside down: a marriage is wrecked, a proud man humbled and two people are brought closer together as gossip, scandal and jealousy mount...
A Village Dilemma
By Rebecca Shaw
A dilemma divides the village...From the Sunday Times bestselling author of the Turnham Malpas and Barleybridge series.An unwelcome visitor arrives in Turnham Malpas. Why is Bryn Fields - who fled four years ago under the worst possible circumstances - back? And what are his plans for the village?For the rector and his wife, Peter and Caroline, there are more serious problems to cope with when their twins start asking about their real mother. Having accepted her husband's indiscretion ten years ago, Caroline finds that facing up to it again now is almost more than she can bear...
A Village Feud
By Rebecca Shaw
A delightful slice of Turnham Malpas gossip, intrigue and conflict from the Sunday Times bestselling author.With the Rector Peter Harris and his family back from Africa, the villagers of Turnham Malpas heave huge sighs of relief - everything seems to be back to normal. But Peter has other ideas, and decides to return to Africa to fulfil his promise of working there for a year, leaving his family behind.The villagers are also missing Peter's guidance, especially when the store is the target of petty theft and violence. Everyone is relying on Peter's return to help restore harmony. But will he make it back before things get out of hand?
The Village Green Affair
By Rebecca Shaw
Dramatic events in Turnham Malpas make for a steamy summer.A mysterious visitor has arrived in Turnham Malpas. What can Titus Bellamy want? Is it true, the villagers ask each other, that he has discovered a medieval charter which grants the right to hold a market on their picturesque village green? And if it is true, can he be stopped?Meanwhile, after twenty-five years, the marriage of Liz and Neville Neal is on the rocks. Or so the unhappy Liz thinks. But Neville, to celebrate their silver wedding anniversary, has decided to throw a lavish party. The anniversary party and the market on the green mark both the beginning and the end of two quite different relationships. But is it really all the fault of Titus Bellamy? The village is divided - before a spate of burglaries on market day adds fuel to the hot debate, and someone unexpected decides to take matters into her own hands...
By Miss Read
Miss Read's future as headmistress hangs in the balance as the village school is threatened with closure.'People in Fairacre simply won't stand for their children being uprooted, and carted away in buses like so many - er, so many--''Animals?' prompted Mr Roberts helpfully.'No, no, not animals,' said Mrs Mawne testily. 'Animals don't go in buses! What I mean is, we won't have it. We'll never let Fairacre school close.'She looked round the table. Her face was red, her eyes bright.'Agreed?'The village of Fairacre is buzzing with rumours of the imminent closure of its two-class school. As fears grow amid mounting conjecture, headmistress Miss Read's future hangs in the balance. And trouble is never far away as village life is further disrupted by tangled matrimonial affairs and a police investigation. The community must rally together to face this new threat...
By Miss Read
The very first Miss Read novel - set in 1950s England, perfect nostalgia from the bestselling author of the Fairacre series.Fairacre is a village of cottages, a church and the school - and at the heart of the school, its headmistress, Miss Read.Through her discerning eye, we meet the villagers of Fairacre and see their trials and tribulations, from the irascible school cleaner Mrs Pringle, to the young schoolchildren with their scraped knees, hopeful faces and inevitable mischief.Miss Read takes us through the school year, beginning with the Christmas term when the bitterly cold weather challenges the school's ancient heating system, right through to the hot summer day when school is over for another year.Full of Miss Read's unique, acerbic wit, and wry observations, VILLAGE SCHOOL is an intriguing glimpse into a forgotten world, and has become a true classic.
By Philip K. Dick
It began with a blinding light, a divine revelation from a mysterious intelligence that called itself VALIS. And with that, the fabric of reality was ripped open and laid bare so that anything seemed possible, but nothing seemed quite right.Part science fiction, part theological detective story in which God plays both the missing person and the perpetrator of the ultimate crime, VALIS is both disorienting and eerily funny, and a joy to read.
By Jostein Gaarder
A playful and inventive work from the bestselling author of SOPHIE'S WORLD.A box of Latin manuscripts comes to light in an Argentine flea market. An apocryphal invention by some 17th or 18th century scolar, or a transcript of what it appears to be - a hitherto unheard of letter to St Augustine to a woman he renounced for chastity? VITA BREVIS is both an entrancing human document and a fascinating insight into the life and philosophy of St.Augustine. Gaarder's interpretation of Floria's letter is as playful, inventive and questioning as SOPHIE'S WORLD.