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The President's Gardens

By Muhsin Al-Ramli
Authors:
Muhsin Al-Ramli
One Hundred Years of Solitude meets The Kite Runner in Saddam Hussein's Iraq. "A contemporary tragedy of epic proportions. No author is better placed than Muhsin Al-Ramli, already a star in the Arabic literary scene, to tell this story. I read it in one sitting". Hassan Blasim, winner of the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize for The Iraqi Christ. On the third day of Ramadan, the village wakes to find the severed heads of nine of its sons stacked in banana crates by the bus stop.One of them belonged to one of the most wanted men in Iraq, known to his friends as Ibrahim the Fated.How did this good and humble man earn the enmity of so many? What did he do to deserve such a death?The answer lies in his lifelong friendship with Abdullah Kafka and Tariq the Befuddled, who each have their own remarkable stories to tell.It lies on the scarred, irradiated battlefields of the Gulf War and in the ashes of a revolution strangled in its cradle.It lies in the steadfast love of his wife and the festering scorn of his daughter.And, above all, it lies behind the locked gates of The President's Gardens, buried alongside the countless victims of a pitiless reign of terror.Translated from the Arabic by Luke Leafgren
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Poems for a world gone to sh*t

By Quercus Poetry
Authors:
Quercus Poetry
DISCOVER THE AMAZING POWER OF POETRY TO MAKE EVEN THE MOST F**KED UP TIMES FEEL BETTERA beautiful little book of short, simple, classic and contemporary poems to dip into, to make life feel better.From Shakespeare and Shelley to Lemn Sissay and Kate Tempest, poets have always been the best at showing us we're not alone, however sh*t things might seem.Funny, reflective, romantic and life-affirming - here is an anthology of poems to remind you to keep on looking at the stars: from that first 'what the f*ck' moment to empowering you to do something about this sh*t and ultimately realising that life is still beautiful after all.Rediscover old favourites and find some new treasures - you might be surprised just how much poetry can help. For fans of The Poetry Pharmacy, The Reading Cure and The Emergency Poet.
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A People without a Past

By Jaan Kross
Authors:
Jaan Kross
The second part in an epic historical trilogy - The Estonian answer to Wolf Hall - by the nation's greatest modern writer The year is 1563, and by any account Balthasar Russow can be said to have risen in the world. Fresh from his studies in the German town of Stetten, he has assumed the role as pastor of Tallinn's Holy Ghost Church. Moreover, he is betrothed to a maiden of the town - much to the chagrin of her father, who has no wish to welcome peasant stock to the family when there is no shortage of upstanding young German men - and is poised to begin the chronicle that will ensure his everlasting fame.But tribulations still await the now not-quite-young Pastor - Livonia is still plagued by foreign powers, with Tallinn braced to withstand a prolonged Muscovite siege. And he will discover that marriage is a often a battlefield in itself.Translated from the Estonian by Merike Beecher
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  • Prince of the Spear

    By David Hair
    Authors:
    David Hair
    Desperate for the next Game of Thrones? Prince of the Spear continues the Sunsurge Quartet and delivers a full-on fix of epic fantasy.The unthinkable has happened. With the Leviathan Bridge critically damaged and its towers unable to control the skies between Yuros and Antiopia, the East has invaded the West. A vast windfleet, constructed in secret, is winging across the Pontic SeaThe holy Shihad has begun.The Rondian Empire is divided and weak. Empress Lyra has barely survived a coup, triggered by a masked cabal whose members still remain concealed in the highest echelons of her court. Only Lyra's secret affinity to the heretical power of dwyma saved her - but that affinity is also her most dangerous weakness.As empires clash, lives are torn apart and long-held beliefs are overthrown by circumstance and desperation. A young queen whose court is riddled with traitors turns to the wrong people in her hour of need. Two princes clash in the skies, the fate of two nations riding on their skill. Two brothers must reconcile disparate cultures to regain their kingdom. An idealistic rabble-rouser sees a chance to strike. And a small group of dwymancers grope blindly for knowledge in a race against time before the masked Cabal strike again.'Represents modern epic fantasy at its best' - Fantasy Book Critic on the Moontide Quartet
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    A Perfect Husband

    By Hilary Boyd
    Authors:
    Hilary Boyd
    'Tackles a difficult subject with a light touch to keep you turning the pages' VERONICA HENRYA perfect husbandTo their friends, Lily and Freddy have a great marriage. He taught her to love again after the death of her first husband. But when Freddy becomes tense and distracted, a life-changing truth is revealed.A terrible shockFreddy has built up massive gambling debts that threaten to destroy not only his life but Lily's as well.Should she go forward - or back?Her friends and family urge her to forget him and move on - easier said than done. Is her willingness to give him a second chance just down to loyalty? Or is the truth something altogether darker? 'Boyd is terrific at cutting to the quick of modern relationships' WOMAN & HOME
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  • Prussian Blue

    By Philip Kerr
    Authors:
    Philip Kerr
    The twelfth book in the Sunday Times and New York Times bestselling series, perfect for fans of John le Carre and Robert Harris. 'One of the greatest anti-heroes ever written' Lee ChildFrance, 1956. Bernie Gunther is on the run. If there's one thing he's learned, it's never to refuse a job from a high-ranking secret policeman. But this is exactly what he's just done. Now he's a marked man, with the East German Stasi on his tail.Fleeing across Europe, he remembers the last time he worked with his pursuer: in 1939, to solve a murder at the Berghof, Hitler's summer hideaway in the Bavarian Alps. Hitler is long dead, the Berghof now a ruined shell, and the bizarre time Bernie spent there should be no more than a distant memory.But as he pushes on to Berlin and safety, Bernie will find that no matter how far he thinks he has put Nazi Germany behind him, for him it will always be unfinished business. The Berghof is not done with Bernie yet.
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    The Particle Zoo

    By Gavin Hesketh
    Authors:
    Gavin Hesketh
    What is everything really made of? If we split matter down into smaller and infinitesimally smaller pieces, where do we arrive? At the Particle Zoo - the extraordinary subatomic world of antimatter, ghostly neutrinos, strange-flavoured quarks and time-travelling electrons, gravitons and glueballs, mindboggling eleven-dimensional strings and the elusive Higgs boson itself.Be guided around this strangest of zoos by Gavin Hesketh, experimental particle physicist at humanity's greatest experiment, the Large Hadron Collider. Concisely and with a rare clarity, he demystifies how we are uncovering the inner workings of the universe and heading towards the next scientific revolution.Why are atoms so small? How did the Higgs boson save the universe? And is there a Theory of Everything? The Particle Zoo answers these and many other profound questions, and explains the big ideas of Quantum Physics, String Theory, The Big Bang and Dark Matter... and, ultimately, what we know about the true, fundamental nature of reality.
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    The Parable Book

    By Per Olov Enquist
    Authors:
    Per Olov Enquist
    "The love that dare not speak its name . . ." Sweden, 1949. A boy of 15, cutting across a garden, chances upon a woman of 51. What ensues is cataclysmic, life-altering. All the more because it cannot be spoken of. Can it never be spoken of?Looking back in late old age at an encounter that transformed him suddenly yet utterly, P.O. Enquist, a titan of Swedish letters, has decided to "come out" - but in ways entirely novel and unexpected. He has written the book that smoldered unwritten within him his entire life. The book he had always seen as the one he could not write.This poignant memoir of love as a religious experience - as a modern form of the Resurrection - is also a deeply felt reflection on the transitoriness of friendship, the fraught nature of family relationships, and the importance of giving voice to what cannot be forgotten. A parable as hauntingly intense as any Bergman film.
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    The Prodigal Daughter

    By Prue Leith
    Authors:
    Prue Leith
    It is 1968. Angelica Angelotti has grown up in the Italian food business started by her English mother and Italian father. Now she is using her cooking talent to strike out on her own, moving to Paris to go to culinary school. There, among the excitement and wild emotion of the student barricades, she falls in love with her charismatic but unreliable cousin Mario - a manic depressive ten years older than her whom her mother had sacked from their restaurant.Navigating a blossoming career, from the Savoy hotel pastry kitchen to the world of food writing and presenting, alongside an increasingly toxic relationship, eventually proves impossible. Angelica has to leave Mario, and makes the decision to move back to the family home in Gloucestershire to help her other cousin Silvano with a new branch of the family business - reopening the local pub, the Frampton Arms, as a restaurant. As they get to know each other better, Angelica realises her mistake: she chose the wrong brother.But when Mario reappears, determined to win her back, and as other jealous relatives plot the downfall of the Frampton Arms, will Angelica be able to hold on to her business and the man she's come to love?
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    The People We Were Before

    By Annabelle Thorpe
    Authors:
    Annabelle Thorpe
    If war is madness, how can love survive?Yugoslavia, summer 1979. A new village. A new life. But eight-year-old Miro knows the real reason why his family moved from the inland city of Knin to the sunkissed village of Ljeta on the Dalmatian Coast, a tragedy he tries desperately to forget. The Ljeta years are happy ones, though, and when he marries his childhood sweetheart, and they have a baby daughter, it seems as though life is perfect. However, storm clouds are gathering above Yugoslavia.War breaks out, and one split-second decision destroys the life Miro has managed to build. Driven by anger and grief, he flees to Dubrovnik, plunging himself into the hard-bitten world of international war reporters.There begins a journey that will take him ever deeper into danger: from Dubrovnik, to Sarajevo, to the worst atrocities of war-torn Bosnia, Miro realises that even if he survives, there can be no way back to his earlier life. The war will change him, and everyone he loves, forever.
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    Pedigree

    By Patrick Modiano
    Authors:
    Patrick Modiano
    "It's a book less on what I did than on what others, mainly my parents, did to me"Taking in a vast gallery of extraordinary characters from Paris' post-war years, Pedigree is an autobiographical portrait of Post-War Paris and a tumultuous childhood - a childhood replete with insecurity and sorrow that informed the oeuvre of France's Nobel Laureate.With his sometime-actress mother and shady businessman father barely functioning in any parental role, the young Modiano spent his childhood being packed off to the care of others, or held at a safe distance in a grimy boarding school - which he ran away from several times. His impecunious mother had "a heart of stone"; his womanising father once called the police when his son asked him for money, and later ceased all contact with him.But for all his parents' indifference, it is the death of his younger brother when Modiano is eleven that cuts deepest, leaving a wound that can never be healed.
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    Post Mortem

    By Peter Terrin
    Authors:
    Peter Terrin
    Emiel Steegman, an unknown writer with a handful of novels to his name, is seeking a way to escape a dinner with Estonian colleagues. Although things are plodding along quite happily, he cancels at the last moment "due to a rather difficult time for the family".A nasty feeling immediately comes over him: is he inviting trouble for his family in doing so? And what if a biographer stumbled on this? Would he not then suspect that something significant had happened in his life? The thought gives him a great idea for a new novel about a successful author, T, who becomes famous with an existential crime novel and increasingly worries about what his future biographer will write about him, so he withdraws entirely from public life.But Steegman's initial misgivings prove well founded. Because fate does strike. One afternoon, his daughter Renée falls asleep and it is impossible to wake her . . .
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  • Path of Gods

    By Snorri Kristjansson
    Authors:
    Snorri Kristjansson
    The epic conclusion to The Valhalla Saga, perfect for fans of Vikings and The Last Kingdom.Reunited, Audun and Ulfar have a new sense of purpose: to ensure that the North remains in the hands of those who hold with the old gods. To do this, they must defeat the people who seek to destroy all they have ever known with the new White Christ. But these are powerful enemies and if they have any chance of victory, they must find equally powerful allies. In Trondheim, King Olav, self-appointed champion of the White Christ, finds that keeping the peace is a much harder test of his faith than winning the war. With his garrison halved and local chieftains at his table who wish him nothing but ill, the king must decide how and where to spread the word of his god. And in the North, touched by the trickster god, something old, malevolent and very, very angry stirs . . .'Fans of David Gemmell's work should feel right at home with this one' Starburst Magazine
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