Who Killed Piet Barol?
By Richard Mason
A Book of the Year - The TimesA Book of the Year - Observer A Book of the Year - Mail on SundayAvoiding the chaos of the First World War, Piet Barol leaves the bustle of civilization and heads into Africa's greatest forest. With a business to build and secrets to escape, his only weapons are courage and intuition. His African guides have their own reasons for taking him to their ancestral lands. What he finds there changes him forever, and unleashes a chain of events he can neither predict nor control... This "gorgeous treat of a novel" (The Times, Book of the Month) is a funny, sexy, irreverent, and intensely moving portrait of what unites human beings when their sacred mysteries are blown apart.
Wycliffe and the House of Fear
By W.J. Burley
A troubling disappearance. A puzzling mystery. A new investigation for Detective Wycliffe.Detective Superintendent Wycliffe is holidaying in Cornwall when he meets the intriguing Kemp family. The Kemps have lived in Kellycork, their decaying family seat, for almost 500 years and have a tragic history. Roger Kemp's first wife disappeared mysteriously in what was presumed to be a boating accident and now the Kemps are struggling to maintain their family home. When Roger's wealthy second wife, Bridget, also disappears Wycliffe is inevitably drawn into the case.Wycliffe is troubled by the dysfunctional family he is investigating. Can the loss of their mother account for the Kemp children's strange behaviour or is there a more sinister explanation? And why is his main suspect doing so little to save himself?
Wycliffe and the Four Jacks
By W.J. Burley
A murder committed in the night of dead. It's all a game for Detective Wycliffe to solve in a puzzling case.Writer David Cleeve lived exactly the way a bestselling novelist should live - in an opulent house set in a beautiful corner of Cornwall. But beneath the successful façade was a private nightmare. For at regular intervals a sinister and mysterious warning was delivered to him: a single playing card, the Jack of Diamonds. Then, one day, the card arrived torn in half - and that night a murder was committed.Chief Superintendent Wycliffe was on holiday in the area but, far from relaxing, he finds himself drawn into the investigation. Before long, there is more than just a single mystery to solve. As Wycliffe investigates, he uncovers a double murder, arson, and a whole series of crimes stretching back over many years . . .
The Woman on the Stairs
By Bernhard Schlink
From the author of the internationally bestselling classic THE READER, a tale of obsession, possession and a mystery painting. For decades the painting was believed to be lost. But, just as mysteriously as it disappeared, it reappears, an anonymous donation to a gallery in Sydney. The art world is stunned but so are the three men who loved the woman in the painting, the woman on the stairs. One by one they track her down to an isolated cottage in Australia. Here they must try to untangle the lies and betrayals of their shared past - but time is running out. The Woman on the Stairs is an intricately-crafted, poignant and beguiling novel about creativity and love, about the effects of time passing and the regrets that haunt us all.
The Witches of New York
By Ami McKay
The beloved, bestselling author of The Birth House and The Virgin Cure is back with her most beguiling novel yet, luring us deep inside the lives of a trio of remarkable young women navigating the glitz and grotesqueries of Gilded-Age New York by any means possible, including witchcraft . . . The year is 1880. Two hundred years after the trials in Salem, Adelaide Thom (Moth from The Virgin Cure) has left her life in the sideshow to open a tea shop with another young woman who feels it's finally safe enough to describe herself as a witch: a former medical student and gardien de sorts (keeper of spells), Eleanor St. Clair. Together they cater to Manhattan's high society ladies, specializing in cures, palmistry and potions--and in guarding the secrets of their clients. All is well until one bright September afternoon, when an enchanting young woman named Beatrice Dunn arrives at their door seeking employment. Beatrice soon becomes indispensable as Eleanor's apprentice, but her new life with the witches is marred by strange occurrences. She sees things no one else can see. She hears voices no one else can hear. Objects appear out of thin air, as if gifts from the dead. Has she been touched by magic or is she simply losing her mind? Eleanor wants to tread lightly and respect the magic manifest in the girl, but Adelaide sees a business opportunity. Working with Dr. Quinn Brody, a talented alienist, she submits Beatrice to a series of tests to see if she truly can talk to spirits. Amidst the witches' tug-of-war over what's best for her, Beatrice disappears, leaving them to wonder whether it was by choice or by force. As Adelaide and Eleanor begin the desperate search for Beatrice, they're confronted by accusations and spectres from their own pasts. In a time when women were corseted, confined and committed for merely speaking their minds, were any of them safe?
A Way Through the Wood
By Nigel Balchin
A psychological study of marriage, loyalty and justice, A WAY THROUGH THE WOOD is a remarkable post-war novel.James Manning is perfectly content. He has a successful life as a businessman in the city, a bright young thing of a wife, Jill, and an idyllic home in the countryside, where he is a local magistrate. The only fly in the ointment is the 'Honbill' - the Honourable William Bule, a gentleman with too much time on his hands.When a young man is knocked off his bicycle and subsequently dies, James is sure that Bule is the culprit - after all, he saw a scratch on the Honbill's car the day of the accident and it matches the description to a T. But events take an unexpected turn when James discovers that it was really Jill driving that night, and he is torn between obligations to his wife and to his profound sense of right and wrong.A WAY THROUGH THE WOOD was the inspiration for SEPARATE LIES, a 2005 British film adapted by Academy Award-winning writer Julian Fellowes and starring Tom Wilkinson, Emily Watson and Rupert Everett.
The White Tiger
By Aravind Adiga, Kerry Shale
Meet Balram Halwal, the 'White Tiger': servant, philosopher, entrepreneur, murderer. Over the course of seven nights, by the scattered light of a preposterous chandelier, Balram tells his story...Born in a village in the dark heart of India, the son of a rickshaw puller, Balram is taken out of school by his family and put to work in a teashop. As he crushes coal and wipes tables, he nurses a dream of escape of breaking away from the banks Mother Ganga, into whose murky depths have seeped the remains of a hundred generations.His big chance comes when a rich village landlord hires him as a chauffeur for his son, daughter-in-law, and their two Pomeranian dogs. From behind the wheel of a Honda, Balram first sees Delhi. The city is a revelation. Amid the cockroaches and call-centres, the 36,000,004 gods, the slums, the shopping malls and the crippling traffic jams, Balram's re-education begins. Caught between his instinct to be a loyal son and servant, and his desire to better himself, he learns of a new morality at the heart of a new India. As the other servants flick through the pages of Murder Weekly, Balram begins to see how the Tiger might escape his cage. For surely any successful man must spill a little blood on his way to the top?THE WHITE TIGER is a take of two Indias. Balram's journey from the darkness of village life to the light of entrepreneurial success is utterly amoral, brilliantly irreverent, deeply endearing and altogether unforgettable.Read by Kerry Shale(p) 2008 Orion Publishing Group
A Waste Of Shame
By Jim Lusby
McCadden's first big test in the Irish Murder Squad - a 97-year-old woman strangled and grotesquely mutilated.On the first day of the new Millennium the body of a 97-year-old woman is found strangled and mutilated in her ramshackle house in a remote seaside village in west Cork. The local police are inclined to pin it on a pair of travellers who have set up camp in the neighbourhood, after drug money. McCadden, still new in his job on the all-Ireland murder squad, is not so sure. The viciousness of the attack seems to suggest something much deeper. What has this woman done in her 97 years to inspire such rage? The answer goes back almost to the beginning of the twentieth century ...
The Woman in the Picture
By Katharine McMahon
The page-turning sequel to THE CRIMSON ROOMS by the author of bestselling Richard & Judy Book Club pick, THE ROSE OF SEBASTOPOL.London, 1926. Evie Gifford, one of the first female lawyers in Britain, is not a woman who lets convention get in her way. She has left her family home following a devastating love affair, much to her mother's disapproval.London is tense in the days leading up to the General Strike and Evelyn throws herself into two very different cases - one involving a family with links to the unions and the other a rich man who claims not to be the father of his wife's child. Evie is confronting the hardest challenge of her career when she is faced with an unexpected proposal - just as her former lover returns.How can she possibly choose between security with a man she admires and passion for the man who betrayed her?
The Word Exchange
By Alena Graedon
Words are under threat. It's time to fight back . . .Imagine a world without words. A world in which books, libraries and newspapers are things of the past. A world where personal devices provide all you could want or need. Anana Johnson and her father, Doug, are hard at work on the final edition that will ever be printed of the English Dictionary. But one evening, Doug disappears and Anana unearths a single written clue: ALICE. In the battle to save her father, Anana discovers secret societies, dark incinerator rooms and underground passages. Above all, she finds a world that faces ruin from the dark side of technology.'A nervy dystopic thriller . . . spine-tingling' NEW YORK TIMES''Imaginative, layered, and highly original . . . An engagingly creepy story of technology gone wrong and a clever meditation on the enduring mysteries of language and love' Karen Thompson Walker, author of THE AGE OF MIRACLES
The Watcher in the Shadows
By Carlos Ruiz Zafon
A mysterious toymaker who lives as a recluse in an old mansion, surrounded by the mechanical beings he has created... an enigma surrounding strange lights that shine through the mists that envelop the small island on which the old lighthouse stands... a shadowy creature that hides deep in the woods... these are the elements of a mystery that bind 14-year-old Irene to Ismael during one magical summer spent in the Blue Bay. Irene's mother has taken a job as a housekeeper for the toymaker, Lazarus, but his house contains more secrets than Irene and Ishmael have bargained for.
A Week in Winter
By Maeve Binchy
Set on the west coast of Ireland, a mesmerising book from the much-loved No. 1 bestselling author.The Sheedy sisters had lived in Stone House for as long as anyone could remember. Set high on the cliffs on the west coast of Ireland, overlooking the windswept Atlantic Ocean, it was falling into disrepair - until one woman, with a past she needed to forget, breathed new life into the place. Now a hotel, with a big warm kitchen and log fires, it provides a welcome few can resist.Winnie is generally able to make the best of things, until she finds herself on the holiday from hell. John arrived on an impulse after he missed a flight at Shannon. And then there's Henry and Nicola, burdened with a terrible secret, who are hoping the break at Stone House will help them find a way to face the future...
While We Were Watching Downton Abbey
By Wendy Wax
Four friends, and a shared passion for Downton Abbey that will change their lives.When the concierge of a historic Atlanta apartment building invites his fellow residents to join him for weekly screenings of Downton Abbey, four very different people find themselves connecting with the addictive drama, and - even more unexpectedly - with each other...Samantha married young and for the wrong reason: the security of old Atlanta money - for herself and for her orphaned brother and sister. She never expected her marriage to be complicated by love and compromised by a shattering family betrayal.Claire is now an empty nester and struggling author who left her home in the suburbs for a new and productive life. But she soon wonders if clinging to old dreams can be more destructive than having no dreams at all.And then there's Brooke, a woman in constant battle with her faithless ex-husband. She's just starting to realise that it's time to take a deep breath and come to terms with the fact that her life is not the fairy tale she thought it would be.For Samantha, Claire, Brooke - and Edward, who arranges the weekly gatherings - it will be a season of surprises as they forge a bond that will sustain them through some of life's hardest moments-all of it reflected in their shared love of Downton Abbey.
Where We Belong
By Emily Giffin
There's no such thing as a single secret...The brand new novel from the NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author of HEART OF THE MATTER.Marian's biological clock is ticking. She has a dream job as the producer of a hugely successful TV show, a stunning Manhattan apartment and a wonderful relationship with the man she loves. But she wants a baby - and she also has a secret. And when that secret turns up on her doorstep after 18 years, her picture perfect existence begins to take on a life of its own.Kirby is adopted. She loves her parents and her sister, but she's never really felt she fitted in. And now she's 18 there's nothing to stop her finding her birth mother. But navigating her way, alone, to New York is only the start - and as Marian soon discovers, giving birth is the easy part.
Where'd You Go, Bernadette
By Maria Semple
'Like A VISIT FROM THE GOON SQUAD written by Tina Fey' Sam Baker, RED MAGAZINEShortlisted for the 2013 Women's Prize for FictionA NEW YORK TIMES bestsellerCOMING SOON: The film adaptation, directed by Richard Linklater and starring Cate Blanchett, Kristen Wiig and Billy Crudup Bernadette Fox is notorious. To Elgie Branch, a Microsoft wunderkind, she's his hilarious, volatile, talented, troubled wife. To fellow mothers at the school gate, she's a menace. To design experts, she's a revolutionary architect. And to 15-year-old Bee, she is a best friend and, quite simply, mum. Then Bernadette disappears. And Bee must take a trip to the end of the earth to find her.WHERE'D YOU GO, BERNADETTE is a compulsively readable, irresistibly written, deeply touching novel about misplaced genius and a mother and daughter's place in the world.
When in Rome
By Nicky Pellegrino
A city of love, food, music and passion - this is a novel for anyone who fell in love with LA DOLCE VITA.Rome in the 1950s, there's nowhere quite like it. The narrow stone streets, the fountains and piazzas full of life in the heat of the day, the cafes and bars full of music and desire by night...This is where Serafina calls home. Having grown-up with her sisters in a tiny apartment tucked in the top of a tumbledown building, she has watched her mother get by on next to nothing, and turn herself beautiful with a sweep of eyeliner and a hand-sewn dress. When her mother goes out, Serafina and her sisters go singing in the nearest piazza, busking for spare change and cinema tickets. The girls long to meet their matinee idols and Serafina daydreams of Mario Lanza and his spellbinding voice. But the sisters will grow up quickly and for Serafina, a choice opens between the world she knows and the life she dreams of. A captivating tale of love and music, food and passion, let Nicky Pellegrino take you on a journey to a city of beauty and heartbreak, at one of the most glamorous points in its magical history.
By Bernhard Schlink
The author of international phenomenon THE READER returns with a tale of old jealousies, explosive politics and uncertain futures. Meet the Baader-Meinhof Group, 25 years on...Old friends and lovers reunite for a weekend in a secluded country home after spending decades apart. They plumb their memories of each other and pass quiet judgements on the life decisions each has made since their youth. This isn't, however, just any old reunion, and their conversations of the old days aren't typical reminiscences. After 24 years, Joerg - a convicted murderer and terrorist, is released from prison on a pardon. A former member of the Red Army Faction (or Baader-Meinhof Group), the announcement of Joerg's release is sure to send shock waves throughout Germany. But before this happens, his group of friends - most of whom had been RAF sympathizers - gather for his first weekend of freedom. They are invited by Christiane, Joerg's devoted sister, whose suffocating concern for her brother is matched only by the unrelenting pull of Marcko, a dangerously passionate young man intent on using Joerg to continue the cause.
Welcome To The Working Week
By Paul Vlitos
A frank, hilarious and oh-my-god-that's-me look at life and love, all revealed by that unforgiving crucible of modern life - email...Meet Martin Sargent.He hasn't got a girlfriend (not any more, anyway); he hasn't got a flatmate (see point one) and he definitely hasn't got the gift of tact.But he has got his mates (against all odds), an office crush and a mum who wants him to welcome Jesus into his life.But most pressing of all - Martin's got a disciplinary meeting for improper use of work email...WELCOME TO THE WORKING WEEK is a flinchingly funny look at modern life and the friends, flirtations and foolishness that keep it running.
By Ian Rankin
A classic Ian Rankin from the No.1 bestselling author of THE COMPLAINTS.Bombs are exploding in the streets of London, but life seems to have planted more subtle booby-traps for Miles Flint. Miles is a spy. His job is to watch and to listen, then to report back to his superiors, nothing more. The job, affording glimpses into the most private lives of his victims, appeals to Miles. He doesn't lust after promotion, and he doesn't want action. He wants, just for once, not to botch a case. Having lost one suspect - with horrific consequences - Miles becomes too involved with another, a young Irish woman. His marriage seems ready to crumble to dust. So does his home. But Miles is given one last chance for redemption - a trip to Belfast, which quickly becomes a flight of terror, murder and shocking discoveries. But can the voyeur survive in a world of violent action?
Warnings Of Gales
By Annie Sanders
Three women rent a holiday house in Cornwall for the summer. Each brings with her children, baggage (in every sense) and expectations...Imogen, who organised the holiday, is frighteningly capable and a bit of a control freak. With three children who are at the centre of her world, she's determined that this holiday will be perfect. But is Imogen's tidy life quite as happy as it seems?Sophie is Imogen's oldest friend, dating back to the days when they would chat long after lights out at their Home Counties boarding school. Sophie knows she should be feeding her offspring organic couscous, but they love McDonald's apple pies too much - and where's the harm in that? But is there more to Sophie than dogged loyalty to her rather overbearing old mate? And then there's Jo, an acquaintance of Sophie's roped in at the last minute when the first choice of housemate pulled out. An east London GP and single mother, and very easy-going with her son, she appears to be the polar opposite to Imogen.A group holiday seemed such a good idea back in January...