The Sara Gruen Collection
By Sara Gruen
FROM INTERNATIONALLY-BESTSELLING AUTHOR SARA GRUEN, A COLLECTION OF HER MOST BELOVED NOVELS'ONE OF AMERICA'S MOST COMPELLING STORYTELLERS' Kathryn Stockett, author of The Help1 - WATER FOR ELEPHANTSThe international phenomenon - with over 10 million copies sold, made into a film with Reese Witherspoon and Robert Pattinson.'I loved Water for Elephants' Stephen King'You are so immersed in circus life that you are blinded by the thrilling, fatal dazzle of sequins and sawdust' The Telegraph'An imaginative modern fairy story, teeming with eccentric characters' The Times The Great Depression 1929 - when Jacob Jankowski, recently orphaned and suddenly adrift, jumps onto a passing train, he enters a world of freaks, grifters, and misfits in the Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth a second-rate travelling circus struggling to survive making one-night stands in town after endless town. He meets Marlena, the beautiful young star of the equestrian act, married to August, the charismatic but twisted animal trainer. He also meets Rosie, an elephant who seems untrainable until he discovers a way to reach her...2 - AT THE WATER'S EDGEA gripping and poignant love story set in a remote village in the Scottish Highlands at the end of the Second World War.'The only fault I can find with this book is that I've already finished it' Jodi Picoult'Truly enthralling' Scotsman'Breathtaking' Harper's Bazaar1945. After disgracing themselves at a high society party, spoilt young Philadelphia socialites Maddie and Ellis Hyde are cut off from the family without a penny. Ellis decides their salvation will be to hunt down the Loch Ness Monster, a venture his father very publicly failed at. So, oblivious to WW2 raging around them, they make their way to the Scottish Highlands, where Maddie has to face reality and decide just who the real monsters are.3 - APE HOUSE The New York Times bestseller.'If you love animals like I do, it's a must read' Ellen DeGeneres'Had me instantly enraptured' Dallas Morning News'Wildly entertaining' Booklist (starred review)These bonobos are no ordinary apes. Like others of their species, they are capable of reason and carrying on deep relationships - but, unlike most bonobos, they also know American Sign Language.Isabel Duncan, a scientist at the Great Ape Language Lab, doesn't understand people, but animals she gets, especially the bonobos. Isabel feels more comfortable in their world than she's ever felt among humans . . . until she meets John Thigpen, a very married reporter who braves the ever-present animal rights protesters outside the lab to see what's really going on inside.When an explosion tears apart the lab, severly injuring Isabel and 'liberating' the apes to an unknown destination, John's human interest piece turns into the story of a lifetime.
By Tatiana De Rosnay
Released in 2010 as a major motion picture starring Kristin Scott Thomas, Sarah's Key is perfect for fans of The Tattooist of Auschwitz and All the Light We Cannot See. 'A remarkable novel. Like Sophie's Choice, it's a book that impresses itself upon one's heart and soul forever' Naomi Ragen, author of The Saturday WifeParis, July 1942. Sarah, a ten year-old Jewish girl, is arrested by the French police in the middle of the night, along with her mother and father. Desperate to protect her younger brother, she locks him in a cupboard and promises to come back for him as soon as she can. Paris, May 2002. Julia Jarmond, an American journalist, is asked to write about the 60th anniversary of the Vel' d'Hiv' roundup - the infamous day in 1942 when French police rounded up thousands of Jewish men, women and children, in order to send them to concentration camps. Sarah's Key is the poignant story of two families, forever linked and haunted by one of the darkest days in France's past. In this emotionally intense, page-turning novel, Tatiana de Rosnay reveals the guilt brought on by long-buried secrets and the damage that the truth can inflict when they finally come unravelled.
The Scarlet Pimpernel
By Baroness Orczy
Baroness Orczy's classic tale of adventure during the French Revolution. Also available as an unabridged audiobook, read by Julian Rhind-Tutt.Paris, 1792. The Terror has begun. Every day, scores of the French nobility are delivered to the guillotine. Trapped in the capital, they have no way of escape. But rumours abound of a league of young English gentlemen who are risking their lives to spirit French aristocrats away to safety across the Channel. Led by a man known only as the 'Scarlet Pimpernel', they leave no trace behind them save a single note. Determined to stop them, ruthless spymaster Chauvelin travels to England and embarks on a quest to uncover the identity of their leader, forcing the Scarlet Pimpernel and his men to summon all their courage and wits to evade capture and stay alive.PRAISE FOR THE SCARLET PIMPERNEL"Anyone who feels that their outward manner is but a travesty of their inner self can hardly fail to respond to THE SCARLET PIMPERNEL" - Independent"The Baroness Orczy invented the "masked avenger" genre of fiction - the swashbuckling hero of dual identity. Her progeny include Zorro, Superman, The Lone Ranger and many others." - Audiofile Magazine
By Thomas Keneally
Made into the award-winning film 'Schindler's List'. In the shadow of Auschwitz, a flamboyant German industrialist grew into a living legend to the Jews of Cracow. He was a womaniser, a heavy drinker and a bon viveur, but to them he became a saviour. This is the extraordinary story of Oskar Schindler, who risked his life to protect Jews in Nazi-occupied Poland and who was transformed by the war into a man with a mission, a compassionate angel of mercy.
The Scorpion's Strike: Empire X
By Anthony Riches
With his compelling Centurions trilogy complete, Anthony Riches returns to his bestselling Empire sequence of novels with his storytelling skills polished to perfection. Set in the second century AD, The Scorpion's Strike continues the story of Marcus Aquila's fight for justice for a family ripped asunder by imperial assassins. Still seeking revenge, Marcus finds himself thrown back into the heart of the chaos that is shaking the Roman Empire to its roots. Fresh from their close escape from imperial betrayal in the German forest, Marcus and the Tungrians are ordered to Gaul, where an outlaw called Maturnus is wreaking havoc. Havoc that may be more than mere banditry, as deserters and freed slaves flock to his cause: rebellion is in the air for the first time in a generation. And if escape from Rome's memories is a relief for the young centurion, he soon discovers that danger has followed him west to Gaul. The expedition is led by Praetorians whom he has every cause to hate. And to fear, if they should discover who he really is.'A masterclass in military historical fiction' Sunday Express on Retribution
A Sea of Gold
By Julian Stockwin
'Tension surges through A Sea of Gold . . . In this rousing yarn, Stockwin again raises naval fiction to a new level' - Quarterdeck'Stockwin has surpassed himself with A Sea of Gold . . . a fine, fully favoured vintage yarn' - Warships1809. After his heroic actions during the retreat to Corunna, Captain Sir Thomas Kydd is the toast of London society. Here he falls in with the legendary frigate captain, Lord Thomas Cochrane.So begins a relationship, professional and personal, that will be unlike any that Kydd has known: a relationship that will lead him, almost simultaneously, to first glory, then ruin.The French fleet is massing in the Basque Roads in a near impregnatable position. The Admiralty orders Cochrane to command an attack, to the chagrin of more senior officers who object to being overlooked and Cochrane's reputation for daring. Cochrane insists that his new friend, Kydd, is in the forefront of the assault armada, a motley collection of rocket, bomb and fire ships that will set the anchorage ablaze - this despite Kydd's almost pathological fear of fire. The fallout from what follows will see Kydd financially ruined, with only his former shipmates, his oldest friend of all, Nicholas Renzi, and the whisper of hidden Spanish treasure promising the sea of gold that he needs to save himself. ********************Praise for Julian Stockwin's Kydd series'Paints a vivid picture of life aboard the mighty ship-of-the-line' Daily Express'This heady adventure blends fact and fiction in rich, authoritative detail' Nautical Magazine'Fans of fast-paced adventure will get their fill with this book' Historical Naval Society'In Stockwin's hands the sea story will continue to entrance readers across the world' - Guardian
Sea of Poppies
By Amitav Ghosh
Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize 2008'Sea of Poppies boasts a varied collection of characters to love and hate, and provides wonderfully detailed descriptions . . . utterly involving and piles on tension until the very last page' Sunday TimesAt the heart of this epic saga, set just before the Opium Wars, is an old slaving-ship, the Ibis. Its destiny is a tumultuous voyage across the Indian Ocean, its crew a motley array of sailors and stowaways, coolies and convicts. In a time of colonial upheaval, fate has thrown together a truly diverse cast of Indians and Westerners, from a bankrupt Raja to a widowed villager, from an evangelical English opium trader to a mulatto American freedman. As their old family ties are washed away they, like their historical counterparts, come to view themselves as jahaj-bhais or ship-brothers. An unlikely dynasty is born, which will span continents, races and generations. The vast sweep of this historical adventure spans the lush poppy fields of the Ganges, the rolling high seas, and the exotic backstreets of China. But it is the panorama of characters, whose diaspora encapsulates the vexed colonial history of the East itself, which makes Sea of Poppies so breathtakingly alive - a masterpiece from one of the world's finest novelists.
By Julian Stockwin
'In Stockwin's hands the sea story will continue to entrance readers across the world' - GuardianIt is two years since Thomas Kydd was spirited away in the night to serve his country aboard the old line-of-battle ship Duke William. Now, he and and the other members of the ill-fated Artemis are shipwrecked sailors, back in London waiting to be summoned as court martial witnesses. Then, in a political act to shield an officer's reputation, they are shipped out in haste to the Caribbean - where sugar is king and yellow jack a fearsome peril.*****************What readers are saying about SEAFLOWER'A great read for lovers of a seafaring yarn' - 5 stars'Stockwin's seafaring books are so great to read. They leave you wanting more!' - 5 stars'I thoroughly enjoyed this book and highly recommend it' - 5 stars'I'm absolutely hooked now . . .' - 5 stars'An excellent read, full of action and adventure' - 5 stars
The Sealwoman's Gift
By Sally Magnusson
A Zoe Ball ITV Book Club Pick'Sally Magnusson has taken an amazing true event and created a brilliant first novel. It's an epic journey in every sense: although it's historical, it's incredibly relevant to our world today. We had to pick it' Zoe Ball Book Club***SHORTLISTED FOR THE HWA DEBUT CROWN, THE WAVERTON GOOD READ AWARD & LONGLISTED FOR THE BEST FIRST NOVEL AWARD***'A remarkable feat of imagination ... I enjoyed and admired it in equal measure' Sarah Perry, author of The Essex Serpent 'A powerful tale of Barbary pirates ... richly imagined and energetically told.' Sunday Times - 100 Best Books to Read This Summer'Engrossing' Sunday Express 'Fascinating ... a really, really good read' BBC R2 Book Club'An extraordinarily immersive read ... examining themes of motherhood, identity, exile and freedom' Guardian1627. In a notorious historical event, pirates raided the coast of Iceland and abducted 400 people into slavery in Algiers. Among them a pastor, his wife, and their children.In her acclaimed debut novel Sally Magnusson imagines what history does not record: the experience of Asta, the pastor's wife, as she faces her losses with the one thing left to her - the stories from home - and forges an ambiguous bond with the man who bought her. Uplifting, moving, and witty, The Sealwoman's Gift speaks across centuries and oceans about loss, love, resilience and redemption.'The best sort of historical novel' Scotsman 'A lyrical tale' Stylist 'A poetic retelling of Icelandic history' Daily Mail 'Compelling stuff' Good Housekeeping'Icelandic history has been brought to extraordinary life... An accomplished and intelligent novel' Yrsa Sigurðardóttir, author of Why Did You Lie?'Vivid and compelling' Adam Nichols, co-translator of The Travels of Reverend Ólafur Egilsson
The Seasons Will Pass
By Audrey Howard
Clare Hanrahan has nothing left to lose the day she stumbles into Lew Earnshaw's arms. Her family is gone and her own life hangs by a thread after a desperate season seeking work. By the time Lew and his kindly neighbours have nursed Clare back to health, he is hopelessly in love with the frail Irish girl. But though she will always care for Lew, another man comes between them. Martin Heywood could not be more different from the gentle, idealistic weaver. The rich young farmer is proud, arrogant and devastatingly handsome. He sweeps Clare off her feet, inspires her to better herself, steals her love away. What he cannot do is marry a mere servant girl. Even if it breaks both their hearts . . .
The Secret of Quarry House
By Claire Lorrimer
At twenty-four Kate marries her first love, Campbell Rivers. She becomes mistress of Quarry House, a Jacobean mansion set brooding and isolated on the Yorkshire moors. Kate is blissfully happy, but gradually, fuelled by rumours of the fate of Campbell's first two wives, she begins to sense the menace that surrounds the house. As her anxiety becomes more acute, she realises that her life is at stake. For her very survival she must unearth the sinister secret of Quarry House - before it is too late.
The Secrets of Mary Bowser
By Lois Leveen
'I spy with my little eye, where the bird goes when he doesn't fly,' Mama said one mid-day, her words floating on the Richmond heat as we carried empty cookpots through the yard to the kitchen. Mama, your little girl is all grown up, and still playing our best game. I am a spy . . . Based on the true story of Mary Bowser, this stirring and captivating novel follows a slave who is freed by her owner's abolitionist daughter and sent North to be educated. She is blessed with a photographic memory and the passion and courage to involve herself fearlessly in the Underground Railroad movement. As the Civil War rages she returns South and winds up as a spy in the house of Jefferson Davis . . . This tale of slavery, war, love and espionage is a stunning fictional retelling of an extraordinary life.
By Sandra Brown
***Number One New York Times bestselling author Sandra Brown returns with another suspenseful, sexy thriller***Twenty-five years ago, Major Franklin Trapper became a national icon when he lead a handful of survivors to safety after the bombing of a Dallas hotel. For years, he gave frequent speeches and interviews but then suddenly dropped out of the public eye, shunning all media. Now, ambitious TV journalist Kerra Bailey is determined to get an exclusive with the Major - even if she has to wrangle an introduction from his estranged son, former ATF agent John Trapper.Trapper wants no association with the Major, but despite himself, he agrees to the meet. But when the interview goes catastrophically awry - with unknown assailants targeting his father and Kerra - Trapper starts a hunt to track down the gunmen . . . and finally discover who was responsible for the Dallas bombing.Kerra is wary of a man so charming one moment and dangerous the next, and she knows Trapper is withholding evidence from his ATF investigation into the bombing. But having no one else to trust and enemies lurking closer than they know, Kerra and Trapper join forces to expose a sinuous network of lies and conspiracy - and uncover who would want a national hero dead.*************Praise for Sandra Brown'Suspense that has teeth'Stephen King'A masterful storyteller, carefully crafting tales that keep readers on the edge of their seats' USA Today'Lust, jealousy, and murder suffuse Brown's crisp thriller' Publishers Weekly'An edge-of-the-seat thriller that's full of twists . . . Top stuff!'Star
Send Her Victorious
By Alexander Cordell
1848. When the French people besiege Paris, King Louis Philippe flees to England and the French aristocracy run for their lives. Even the Pope deserts the Vatican.Europe is in turmoil. Fearing economic and social collapse, the French provisonal government distractsworld attention by recruiting a Queen voctoria 'look alike', one madame Alicia Bernard, and then claiming that they have succeeded in abducting Victoria for a trial in Paris for'crimes against the poor'. Alicia Bernard stands alone before the howling mobs, until barrister Andre Pelon is appointed to defend her...
Settling Accounts: Return Engagement
By Harry Turtledove
Turtledove's alternate history of a century-long American civil war continues . . . continues . . . The first book in the Settling Accounts sequence tells the story of an utterly different World War II.It is 1939, and the world is overshadowed by the thunder-clouds of war, once again. In this alternate world the US prepares for war while across the Pacific Japan is ready to fight again.Once again brother fights brother, friend against friend and the New World is ravaged by all the horrors of modern warfare.This is the first book in a new series on the first global conflict by the modern day master of alternate history. Epic, exciting and incredibly powerful, it deals with relatively recent past so cleverly. This is World War II as it might have been...
Settling Accounts: In at the Death
By Harry Turtledove
In the fourth volume of the Settling Accounts sequence it is 1945, and the war between the northern and southern American states that began in 1861 ends at last, as the most inventive and enthralling alternate-history series of our time comes to its surprising conclusion.Victory seems assured as the United States of America drive deep into Confederate States territory, uncovering shocking death camps as they go. But both sides in this war have been working on unimaginably powerful new weapons. Can a new kind of bomb save the Confederate States from defeat at the eleventh hour?
Settling Accounts: Drive to the East
By Harry Turtledove
Turtledove's alternate history of a century-long American civil war continues . . . The second book in the Settling Accounts sequence takes the story to 1942, during an utterly different World War II.The Confederate States of America are locked in a tangle of jagged, blood-soaked battle lines with the United States of America. In Richmond, dictator Jake Featherston is shocked by what his own aircraft have done in Philadelphia - killing U. S. president Al Smith in a barrage of bombs. But he presses ahead with a secret plan on the dusty plains of Texas, where a so-called detention camp hides a far more evil purpose. The United States face a furious thrust by Confederate army into Pennsylvania. But with the industrial heartland under siege, Canada in revolt and US ships fighting against the Japanese in the Sandwich Islands, the most dangerous place in the world may be overlooked.
Shades of Grey
By Jasper Fforde
***Number One bestselling author Jasper Fforde's new standalone, Early Riser, is available to order now!***Imagine a black and white world where colour is a commodity . . .Hundreds of years in the future, after the Something that Happened, the world is an alarmingly different place.Life is lived according to The Rulebook and social hierarchy is determined by your perception of colour. Eddie Russett is an above average Red who dreams of moving up the ladder by marriage to Constance Oxblood. Until he is sent to the Outer Fringes where he meets Jane - a lowly Grey with an uncontrollable temper and a desire to see him killed. For Eddie, it's love at first sight. But his infatuation will lead him to discover that all is not as it seems in a world where everything that looks black and white is really shades of grey ...If George Orwell had tripped over a paint pot or Douglas Adams favoured colour swatches instead of towels, neither of them would have come up with anything as eccentrically brilliant as Shades of Grey.
The Shadowed Hills
By Audrey Howard
Katy Andrews, born to wealth and position, has never been thwarted or curbed by her gentle mother or her indulgent father. When she sets her cap at Jamie Hutchinson, she expects the ambitious young farmer to love her in return - but he does not. He falls in love instead with Katy's despised, gentle cousin Chloe Taylor, and Katy thinks she has nothing left to live for. Driven half-mad with grief and horror, she turns to the most dangerous man she could possibly find: her loutish, brutal cousin Paddy Andrews. The only man who can save her is Jamie Hutchinson. And he is married to another woman. 'Her thousands of fans recognise the artistry of a true storyteller' Lancashire Life
Shadows On The Shore
By Jessica Stirling
In this compelling novel, sequel to Lantern for the Dark, author Jessica Stirling weaves a poignant tale of passion and deceit...In Europe, the war against the French rages. In Ayrshire, a different kind of battle begins . . .Once, Frederick Striker betrayed, then abandoned Clare Quinn. Now, she is no longer a guileless, impressionable innocent but a well-to do widow, mother of a young daughter whom she must protect from his predatory charm.But when Frederick and Clare meet each other once again, their deadly game of passion and deceit will inevitably bring ruin to one of them . . .The follow up to Lantern for the Dark, this turbulent tale of duplicity and desire sees Frederick and Clare tossed together once more.