Related to: 'Strange the Dreamer'

Julie Sarkissian blogs about the problems facing the protagnist of her debut novel, DEAR LUCY

Something's Wrong With Lucy - But What?

Lucy is different – that much is clear. She speaks like a child, doesn’t recognize social boundaries, flies into rages, and treasures rotten food. Her cognition is impaired, her vocabulary is very limited and she cannot read or write. But what – precisely – is wrong with her is left up to the reader. Lucy is the protagonist of my novel, DEAR LUCY, and from the first sentence of the book I ever wrote it was obvious that Lucy was cognitively different. The way Lucy describes herself is as “missing too many words.” Her mother calls her “difficult.” Readers of early drafts of the book had a few theories as to Lucy’s condition; autism, Williams Syndrome, Down Syndrome. But Lucy’s mother has kept her from going to school and Lucy has never seen a doctor. So in the fictional reality of the book there is no official diagnosis. But as the novel progressed I wondered – should I have one? I was torn. If Lucy was presenting enough symptoms to point to a real condition, was I ignoring the obvious not to fold that condition into my development of her character? Was it insensitive of me to allude to aspects of certain real, life-altering conditions but not assign a specific condition to Lucy? I worried about appropriating aspects of serious conditions without treating those conditions with proper respect and acknowledgement. And though any clinical diagnosis would probably not be explicit in the novel, I wondered if I would be ignoring an opportunity to bring attention to a real disorder when people asked me about Lucy’s condition, the way The Curious Incident of The Dog in the Night-time did for autism. On the other hand, I had concerns that if I chose a diagnosis for Lucy, I would be ascribing to her qualities that she wouldn’t have otherwise presented. Lucy had her own will over my writing and over the novel. I didn’t want to yoke Lucy’s expression by keeping her behavior and abilities consistent with a clinical condition. Accuracy would also become a critical issue if Lucy’s condition was named. Ultimately I chose not to diagnose Lucy, though I worry the artistic freedom provided by that decision comes at the price of being judged for being too liberal with my treatment of cognitive disorders. Now that publication is a few months away, I am apprehensive of how my treatment of Lucy’s cognitive limitations will be judged. I have yet to talk to a reader who has a learning different child, or works with learning different people, and that conversation is one I will be honored, and not a bit anxious, to have.

Hodder & Stoughton

Night of Cake and Puppets

Laini Taylor
Authors:
Laini Taylor
Hodder & Stoughton

The Most Dangerous Place on Earth: If you liked Thirteen Reasons Why, you'll love this

Lindsey Lee Johnson
Authors:
Lindsey Lee Johnson

*As featured on the High Low Show podcast*'I read The Most Dangerous Place on Earth in two chilling gulps. It's a phenomenal first book.' Anthony Doerr, New York times bestselling author of All the Light We Cannot See'You might not think that anyone in this School sees you but I do. I mean sees you really.' Aged thirteen, Tristan Bloch writes a love note to Calista Broderick. He thinks she is perfect. He wants to talk to her. He thinks he loves her. He could help her with her algebra homework. Cally shares the note with her best friend, Abigail, who insists that she shows it to her boyfriend Ryan, who decides to share it on Facebook: and then everyone sees it. Before long, Tristan takes a morning ride to the Golden Gate Bridge, leaves his bike on the against the rail, and jumps. Now, Tristan's classmates are seventeen, dealing with tests and affairs with teachers, pressure from parents and going to parties. These wealthy, privileged teenagers should be the happiest on earth. But the guilt of Tristan's death follows them all... For fans of Thirteen Reasons Why, Friday Night Lights, and The Bling Ring, The Most Dangerous Place on Earth is smart, compelling and eye opening. 'With a stunning constellation of characters' voices and a fiercely compelling story, it's impossible to put down, or to forget.' - Megan Abbott

Hodder & Stoughton

Enjoy Your Journey

Joyce Meyer
Authors:
Joyce Meyer

Are you enjoying every day of your life? Or do you tell yourself and others that you will find happiness once you have achieved a specific goal or position? Jesus came so that you might have and enjoy life (John 10:10). In this compact abridgment, Joyce Meyer combines biblical principles with personal experiences to explain how you can enjoy every day on your journey through life. You will learn such lessons as how to make the decision to enjoy life, how to rid yourself of regret, how to experience simplicity in life, how to find joy during times of waiting, and much more! Enjoying life is an attitude of the heart, and you can learn how to enjoy where you are on the way to where you are going.

Hodder & Stoughton

Gino's Healthy Italian for Less

Gino D'Acampo
Authors:
Gino D'Acampo

Want to cook like a true Italian and stick to the budget? Look no further than these 100 authentic and simple meals from the heart of Italy.Gino will teach us how to cook like a true Italian, but this time on a budget! Full of money-saving tips and tricks, to create delicious, healthy Italian meals at home - brimming with fresh ingredients with the same big flavours, in his simple signature style. Learn how to shop smart and store food, make the most of your fridge / freezer, and fill your kitchen cupboards with fail-safe Italian basics. Bring down the cost of your weekly shop and start eating better than ever with Gino's Healthy Italian for Less.

Hodder & Stoughton

The Complete Daughter of Smoke and Bone Trilogy

Laini Taylor
Authors:
Laini Taylor

The Daughter of Smoke and Bone Trilogy is unbounded by genre but located at a magical crossroads where The Passage meets Philip Pullman and Twilight meets Pan's Labyrinth.Karou is a seventeen-year-old art student in Prague, but she has a second life working as the errand-girl to the creature Brimstone from Elsewhere: a world of gods, chimaeras and seraphims. But her already extraordinary life is pushed into new realms when the door between Earth and Elsewhere begins to close and Karou is thrust into a war that could change both worlds forever.With DAUGHTER OF SMOKE AND BONE, DAYS OF BLOOD AND STARLIGHT and DREAMS OF GODS AND MONSTERS in one place you won't have to be 'tearing at your hair and gnashing your teeth waiting for the next installment' (Stephenie Meyer) - step into a world of gods and monsters and be prepared for love, violence and magic aplenty.

Hodder Paperbacks

Lips Touch

Laini Taylor
Authors:
Laini Taylor
Hodder & Stoughton

Dreams of Gods and Monsters

Laini Taylor
Authors:
Laini Taylor
Hodder Paperbacks

Days of Blood and Starlight

Laini Taylor
Authors:
Laini Taylor

It began with the breathtaking DAUGHTER OF SMOKE AND BONE... The story continues in the astounding, must-read sequel, DAYS OF BLOOD AND STARLIGHTOnce upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love and dared to imagine a new way of living - one without massacres and torn throats and bonfires of the fallen, without revenants or bastard armies or children ripped from their mothers' arms to take their turn in the killing and dying. Once, the lovers lay entwined in the moon's secret temple and dreamed of a world that was like a jewel-box without a jewel - a paradise waiting for them to find it and fill it with their happiness. This was not that world.

Hodder & Stoughton

Spicy Little Curses Such as These: An eBook Short Story from Lips Touch

Laini Taylor
Authors:
Laini Taylor

From the author of the astounding must-read novel DAUGHTER OF SMOKE AND BONE, comes a vividly imaginative short story, SPICY LITTLE CURSES (from the award-winning short story collection LIPS TOUCH).

Hodder & Stoughton

Goblin Fruit: An eBook short story from Lips Touch

Laini Taylor
Authors:
Laini Taylor
Hodder Paperbacks

Daughter of Smoke and Bone

Laini Taylor
Authors:
Laini Taylor

DAUGHTER OF SMOKE AND BONE is a book unbounded by genre but located at a magical crossroads where THE PASSAGE meets PHILIP PULLMAN and TWILIGHT meets PAN'S LABYRINTH.Errand requiring immediate attention. Come.The note was on vellum, pierced by the talons of the almost-crow that delivered it. Karou read the message. 'He never says please', she sighed, but she gathered up her things. When Brimstone called, she always came. In general, Karou has managed to keep her two lives in balance. On the one hand, she's a seventeen-year-old art student in Prague; on the other, errand-girl to a monstrous creature who is the closest thing she has to family. Raised half in our world, half in 'Elsewhere', she has never understood Brimstone's dark work - buying teeth from hunters and murderers - nor how she came into his keeping. She is a secret even to herself, plagued by the sensation that she isn't whole.Now the doors to Elsewhere are closing, and Karou must choose between the safety of her human life and the dangers of a war-ravaged world that may hold the answers she has always sought.'Remarkable and beautifully written . . . The opening volume of a truly original trilogy.' GUARDIAN

Hodder Paperbacks

Rose Cottage

Mary Stewart
Authors:
Mary Stewart
Hodder Paperbacks

Madam, Will You Talk?

Mary Stewart
Authors:
Mary Stewart

'A comfortable chair and a Mary Stewart: total heaven. I'd rather read her than most other authors.' Harriet EvansIt sounds idyllic: a leisurely drive through the sun-drenched landscape of Provence. But Charity's dream holiday turns into a nightmare when she becomes embroiled in a sinister plot to kidnap a young boy. She soon finds herself in a deadly pursuit and must uncover who to trust . . . and who to fall for. Whenever I look back now on the strange and terrifying events of that holiday in Southern France, I remember the minutes I spent gazing at the golden arches of the Roman aqueduct over the Gardon... the last brief lull before the thunder.

Hodder Paperbacks

My Brother Michael

Mary Stewart
Authors:
Mary Stewart
Hodder Paperbacks

Nine Coaches Waiting

Mary Stewart
Authors:
Mary Stewart

After a rather drab existence in an English orphanage Linda Martin is appointed governess to the nine-year-old owner of the Chateau Valmy in the French Alps. During little Philippe's minority the estates are being managed by his crippled uncle Leon, and Leon's handsome son Raoul. All seems delightful, but there are tensions below the smooth surface. One sunny afternoon a bullet is fired in the beechwoods ... and the tensions become terrors.

Elly Blake

Elly Blake loves fairy tales, old houses, and owls. After earning a BA in English literature, she held a series of random jobs before finding her ideal job as a writer and part-time library assistant. She lives in Southwestern Ontario with her husband, kids, and a lively Siberian Husky mix with definite Frostblood tendencies.

Mary Stewart

Mary Stewart was one of the 20th century's bestselling and best-loved novelists. She was born in Sunderland, County Durham in 1916, but lived for most of her life in Scotland, a source of much inspiration for her writing. Her first novel, Madam, Will You Talk? was published in 1955 and marked the beginning of a long and acclaimed writing career. In 1971 she was awarded the International PEN Association's Frederick Niven Prize for The Crystal Cave, and in 1974 the Scottish Arts Council Award for one of her children's books, Ludo and the Star Horse. She was married to the Scottish geologist Frederick Stewart, and died in 2014.

Rob Parsons

Rob Parsons is the bestselling author of THE SIXTY MINUTE GRANDPARENT, TEENAGERS! and THE SIXTY MINUTE FATHER. He speaks internationally on family issues and is the Executive Chairman of Care for the Family, a charity committed to strengthening family life and helping others who are hurting due to family breakdown.Care for the Family, launched by Rob in 1988, is a registered charity and its work is motivated by Christian compassion. The resources and support it provides are available to everyone, of any faith or none.Rob lives in Cardiff with his wife Dianne. They have two adult children and four grandchildren.

Robyn Young

Robyn Young was born in Oxford and grew up in the Midlands and Devon. She has a Masters in Creative Writing from the University of Sussex and lives and writes in Brighton full-time. Her first novel, BRETHREN, was the bestselling hardback debut novel of 2006, with the paperback also going straight into the top ten bestseller list. Two more bestsellers followed, CRUSADE and REQUIEM, completing the Brethren trilogy, which has now sold over a million copies and been translated into nineteen languages.The inspiration for Robyn's new trilogy, which began with INSURRECTION and continues in RENEGADE, grew out of an earlier research trip to Scotland. Robyn explains: 'Day by day, out of the pages of history and the wild landscape, one figure came striding, larger, clearer than all the others - Robert the Bruce. He swept me off my feet and carried me into a story of bitter family feuds, two civil wars and the struggle for the crown. I realised there was no way this character could play a cameo role in another man's story. His tale was too powerful, too intricate and too good to be cut down and boxed to fit.'To find out more about Robyn Young and her historical novels, visit her website at www.robynyoung.com and her Facebook page at www.facebook.com/RobynYoungAuthor and follow her on Twitter @RobynYoung36

Stephen Leather

Stephen Leather is one of the UK's most successful thriller writers, an ebook and Sunday Times bestseller and author of the critically acclaimed Dan 'Spider' Shepherd series and the Jack Nightingale supernatural detective novels. Before becoming a novelist he was a journalist for more than ten years on newspapers such as The Times, the Daily Mirror, the Glasgow Herald, the Daily Mail and the South China Morning Post in Hong Kong. He is one of the country's most successful ebook authors and his titles have topped the Amazon Kindle charts in the UK and the US. His bestsellers have been translated into fifteen languages and he has also written for television.You can learn more from Stephen's website, www.stephenleather.com, find him on Facebook, and follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/stephenleather.Stephen also has a website for his Spider Shepherd series, www.danspidershepherd.com, and for his Jack Nightingale series, www.jacknightingale.com.