Elizabeth Taylor - Palladian - Little, Brown Book Group

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    • ISBN:9781844087136
    • Publication date:04 Aug 2011
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Palladian

By Elizabeth Taylor

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An amusing, wry homage to Jane Eyre by one of the best novelists of the twentieth century.

An amusing, wry homage to Jane Eyre by one of the best novelists of the twentieth century.

When newly orphaned Cassandra Dashwood arrives as governess to little Sophy, the scene seems set for the archetypal romance between young girl and austere widowed employer. Strange secrets abound in the ramshackle house. But conventions are subverted in this atmospheric novel: one of its worlds is suffused with classical scholarship and literary romance, but the other is chaotic, quarrelsome and even farcical. Cassandra is to discover that in real life, tragedy, comedy and acute embarrassment are never far apart.

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  • ISBN: 9780748131587
  • Publication date: 29 Sep 2011
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  • Imprint: Virago
She's a magnificent and underrated mid-20th-century writer, the missing link between Jane Austen and John Updike — David Baddiel, Independent
All her writings could be described as coming into the category of comedy. Comedy is the best vehicle for truths that are too fierce to be borne. — Anita Brookner
Elizabeth Taylor is finally being recognised as an important British author: an author of great subtlety, great compassion and great depth. As a reader, I have found huge pleasure in returning to Taylor's novels and short stories many times over. As a writer I've returned to her too - in awe of her achievements, and trying to work out how she does it — Sarah Waters
Elizabeth Taylor has an eye as sharply all-seeing as her prose is elegant - even the humdrum becomes astonishing when told in language that always aims for descriptive integrity, without a cliché in sight. As a result, Taylor excels in conveying the tragicomic poignancy of the everyday — Daily Telegraph
Virago

Dust Tracks On A Road

Zora Neale Hurston
Authors:
Zora Neale Hurston

With a new introduction by JESMYN WARD'Zora Neale Hurston was a knockout in her life, a wonderful writer and a fabulous person. Devilishly funny and academically solid: delicious mixture' MAYA ANGELOU First published in 1942 at the height of her popularity, Dust Tracks on a Road is Zora Neale Hurston's candid, exuberant account of her rise from childhood poverty in the rural South to a prominent place among the leading artists and intellectuals of the Harlem Renaissance. As compelling as her acclaimed fiction, Hurston's literary self-portrait offers a revealing, often audacious glimpse into the life - public and private - of an extraordinary artist, anthropologist, chronicler and champion of the black experience in America. Full of the wit and wisdom of a proud, spirited woman who started off low and climbed high: 'I have been in Sorrow's kitchen and licked out all the pots. Then I have stood on the peaky mountain wrapped in rainbows with a harp and a sword in my hands.''One of the greatest writers of our time' TONI MORRISON

Abacus

The Amazing Test Match Crime

Adrian Alington
Authors:
Adrian Alington
Abacus

Prague Spring

Simon Mawer
Authors:
Simon Mawer

It's the summer of 1968, the year of love and hate, of Prague Spring and Cold War winter. Two English students, Ellie and James, set off to hitch-hike across Europe with no particular aim in mind but a continent, and themselves, to discover. Somewhere in southern Germany they decide, on a whim, to visit Czechoslovakia where Alexander Dubcek's 'socialism with a human face' is smiling on the world.Meanwhile Sam Wareham, a first secretary at the British embassy in Prague, is observing developments in the country with a mixture of diplomatic cynicism and a young man's passion. In the company of Czech student Lenka Konecková, he finds a way into the world of Czechoslovak youth, its hopes and its ideas. It seems that, for the first time, nothing is off limits behind the Iron Curtain.Yet the wheels of politics are grinding in the background. The Soviet leader, Leonid Brezhnev is making demands of Dubcek and the Red Army is massed on the borders. How will the looming disaster affect those fragile lives caught up in the invasion?

Sphere

The Pact

Roberta Kray
Authors:
Roberta Kray

She's made a deal with a devil... THE PACT____________Eve Weston, daughter of recently deceased con man Alexander Weston, knows a good deal when she sees it - and this one doesn't even come close. But if she doesn't want her vulnerable brother Terry being beaten to a pulp in jail, she can't afford to be fussy.In desperation Eve turns to another prisoner, a dangerous-seeming individual called Martin Cavelli. They make a secret pact: if Cavelli protects Terry then she will pay whatever it costs.But making a deal with the Devil comes at a price, and after a break-in and a viscous assault Eve begins to question her choice. It seems Cavelli is leading her straight into Hell, and now it's not only her brother's life on the line . . .NO ONE KNOWS CRIME LIKE KRAY____________PRAISE FOR ROBERTA KRAY'S GRITTY CRIME THRILLERS'Great writing, gripping story, loved it!' Mandasue Heller 'Well into Martina Cole territory' Independent'Action, intrigue. . . sure to please any crime fiction fans' Woman'A compelling mystery'Heather Burnside

Fleet

The Fourth Shore

Virginia Baily
Authors:
Virginia Baily

Liliana's beloved husband has been dead six months when she finds a roll of banknotes in a drawer with a note: Treat yourself to something nice, love. The same morning, in her local café, she spies the headline on La Republica: two men have been shot and injured in Rome and it is suspected that Libya's Colonel Gadaffi is behind it. When she reads the name of one of the victims, Abrama Cattaneo, the last forty years of her life in England - not speaking Italian, never mentioning her Italian family - disappear in an instant. She is transported back to her years in Italy and in Tripoli, and she realises that Cattaneo, a poet, is the nephew she last saw when he was a baby. Immediately she knows what she must do. She boards a place to Rome, where she plans to reclaim the life that she failed to have. Her real life. Moving between past and present, to explore Liliana's years as a young woman in Tripoli under Italian occupation, The Fourth Shore shines a light on a forgotten period of brutal repression and once again shows that the emotionally crippling effects of war linger for decades after the fighting has stopped.

Virago

Chasm: A Weekend

Dorothea Tanning
Authors:
Dorothea Tanning
Virago

Corregidora

Gayl Jones
Authors:
Gayl Jones

'Corregidora is the most brutally honest and painful revelation of what has occurred, and is occurring, in the souls of Black men and women' JAMES BALDWIN'No novel about any black woman could ever be the same after this' TONI MORRISONUpon publication in 1975, Corregidora was hailed as a masterpiece, winning acclaim from writers including James Baldwin, Maya Angelou, Toni Morrison and John Updike. Exploring themes such as race, sexuality and the long repercussions of slavery, this powerful novel paved the way for Beloved and The Colour Purple. Now, this lost classic is published for a new generation of readers.Blues singer Ursa is consumed by her hatred of Corregidora, a nineteenth-century slave master who fathered both her mother and grandmother. Charged with 'making generations' to bear witness to the abuse embodied in the family name, Ursa Corregidora finds herself unable to keep alive this legacy when she is made sterile in a violent fight with her husband. Haunted by the ghosts of a Brazilian plantation, pained by a present of lovelessness and despair, Ursa slowly and firmly strikes her own terms with womanhood.AS HEARD ON THE BACKLISTED PODCASTAlso new to the VMC list: Eva's Man and The Healing by Gayl Jones.'An American writer with a powerful sense of vital inheritance, of history in the blood' JOHN UPDIKE'Gayl Jones's first novel, Corregidora (1975), was both shocking and ground-breaking in its probing of the psychological legacy of slavery and sexual ownership through the life of a Kentucky blues singer ... it predated Alice Walker's The Color Purple and Toni Morrison's Beloved, revealing an unfinished emancipation and the power of historical memory to shape lives. It also marked a shift in African-American literature that made women, and relationships between black people, central' MAYA JAGGI, Guardian'Corregidora's survey of trauma and overcoming has become even better and more relevant with the passage of time. It remains an indispensable point of entry into the tradition of African American writing that Gayl Jones reshaped and enriched' PAUL GILROY

Sphere

Bright Young Dead

Jessica Fellowes
Authors:
Jessica Fellowes

'All the blissful escapism of a Sunday-night period drama in a book'THE POOL ON THE MITFORD MURDERSAs the glamour of the Bright Young Things crashes into the world of the Mitford sisters, their maid Louisa Cannon finds herself at the scene of a gripping murder mystery.Meet the Bright Young Things, the rabble-rousing hedonists of the 1920s whose treasure hunts were a media obsession. One such game takes place at the 18th birthday party of Pamela Mitford, but ends in tragedy as cruel, charismatic Adrian Curtis is pushed to his death from the church neighbouring the Mitford home.The police quickly identify the killer as a maid, Dulcie. But Louisa Cannon, chaperone to the Mitford girls and a former criminal herself, believes Dulcie to be innocent, and sets out to clear the girl's name . . . all while the real killer may only be steps away.PRAISE FOR THE MITFORD MURDERS SERIES'An extraordinary meld of fact and fiction' GRAHAM NORTON'A lively, entertaining, well-written whodunit' THE TIMES (crime book of the month)'True and glorious indulgence. A dazzling example of a Golden Age mystery'DAISY GOODWIN'Exactly the sort of book you might enjoy with the fire blazing, the snow falling. The solution is neat and the writing always enjoyable'ANTHONY HOROWITZ (crime novels of the year)'Oh how delicious! This terrific start to what promises to be a must-read series is exactly what we all need in these gloomy times. Inventive, glittering, clever, ingenious. I devoured The Mitford Murders... so will you. Give it to absolutely everyone for Christmas, then pre-order the next one'SUSAN HILL'All the blissful escapism of a Sunday-night period drama in a book'THE POOL'Keeps the reader guessing to the very end. An accomplished crime debut and huge fun to read'EVENING STANDARD'This story is drenched in detail and feels both authentic and fun. Curl up in your favourite reading spot and enjoy'HEAT'The plan is that each book will focus on a different Mitford sister. On the strength of this initial entry, success is assured'FINANCIAL TIMES'Elegant, whipsmart and brilliantly twisty-turny, this Downton-style mystery had me hooked from the first page'VIV GROSKOP'Full of period pleasure'WOMAN & HOME'An audacious and glorious foray into the Golden Age of mystery fiction. Breathtaking'ALEX GRAY'A real murder, a real family and a brand new crime fiction heroine are woven together to make a fascinating, and highly enjoyable, read. I loved it'JULIAN FELLOWES'Jessica Fellowes' deliciously immersive, effortlessly easy novel has a strong feel for period and a rollicking plot'METRO'What a captivating crime novel and heroine Jessica has created in The Mitford Murders. The instant reassurance of being in the hands of a true storyteller with a feel for period detail makes this a real treat'AMANDA CRAIG'This is a chocolate soufflé of a novel: as the enthralling mystery heats up, so the addictive deliciousness of the story rises. The sort of book you never want to end'JULIET NICOLSON

Fleet

Everything You Do Is Wrong

Amanda Coe
Authors:
Amanda Coe

'Do You Know This Girl?'Harmony's teenage craving for drama is answered when a body is discovered by her aunt Mel on Evensand beach. But the naked, lifeless young woman turns out - problematically - to be alive. Unable to speak or remember where she came from, the woman is named Storm by her nurses. Surrounded by doctors, psychiatrists and policemen, Storm remains provocatively silent. Harmony is desperate to fill in the gaps in Storm's story, while the responsibility Mel feels for the woman she rescued begins to skew the course of her own settled life. Their efforts to solve the mystery clash with the efforts of rookie constable Mason, assigned to the case and determined to help this damsel he feels to be very much in distress.Will any of them be able to find out who Storm really is? And what if the distress belongs to everyone but her?Everything You Do Is Wrong is a compelling exploration of how this enigma sets a family's good and bad intentions crashing into each other, with unforgettable consequences.

Virago

The Peppermint Pig

Nina Bawden, Alan Marks
Contributors:
Nina Bawden, Alan Marks

'Warm and funny, this tale of a pint-size pig and the family he saves will take up a giant space in your heart' KIRAN MILLWOOD HARGRAVE'What a consummate storymaker Nina Bawden is' MICHAEL MORPURGOWINNER OF THE GUARDIAN AWARD FOR CHILDREN'S FICTION'D'ya want a peppermint pig, Mrs Greengrass?'Poll looked at the milkman, thinking of sweets, but there was a real pig poking its snout out of the milkman's coat pocket. It was the tiniest pig she had ever seen. 'What's a peppermint pig?''Runt of the litter. Too small for the sow to raise. He'd only get trampled in in the rush.'Mother took the pig from him and held it firmly while it kicked and squealed. 'Well, he seems strong enough. And even runts grow.''Oh,' Poll said. 'Oh, Mother.' She stroked the small, wriggling body. 'Theo,' she shouted, 'Look what we've got!'It is a difficult year for the Greengrasses. Poll's father has lost his job and gone overseas, the family are living off the charity of two aunts, and Poll and her brother Theo just can't seem to keep out of trouble. It takes a tiny, mischievous pig to bring laughter back into their lives.This is a collection of the best children's literature, curated by Virago, and will be coveted by children and adults alike. These are timeless tales with beautiful covers, that will be treasured and shared across the generations. Some titles you will already know; some will be new to you, but there are stories for everyone to love, whatever your age. Our list includes Nina Bawden (Carrie's War, The Peppermint Pig), Rumer Godden (The Dark Horse, An Episode of Sparrows), Joan Aiken (The Serial Garden, The Gift Giving) E. Nesbit (The Psammead Trilogy, The Bastable Trilogy, The Railway Children), Frances Hodgson Burnett (The Little Princess,The Secret Garden) and Susan Coolidge (The What Katy Did Trilogy). Discover Virago Children's Classics.

Virago

Deep Water

Patricia Highsmith
Authors:
Patricia Highsmith

Contains an interview with Gillian Flynn.To everyone around them, Melinda and Vic Van Allen are the perfect couple - young, wealthy and attractive. But when their love sours, their mind games reach a twisted, dangerous climax.'If I really don't like somebody, I kill him . . . You remember Malcolm McRae, don't you?'Melinda Van Allen is beautiful, headstrong and sexy. Unfortunately for Vic Van Allen, she is his wife. Their love has soured, and Melinda takes pleasure in flaunting her many affairs to her husband. When one of her lovers is murdered, Vic hints to her latest conquest that he was responsible. As rumours spread about Vic's vicious streak, fiction and reality start to converge. It's only a matter of time before Vic really does have blood on his hands.

Virago

Mossy Trotter

Elizabeth Taylor, Tony Ross
Contributors:
Elizabeth Taylor, Tony Ross
Virago

The King Must Die

Mary Renault
Authors:
Mary Renault

This brilliant retelling of the story of Theseus, the king of Athens, brings Greek mythology vividly to life and remains 'one of the truly fine historical novels of modern times' (The New York Times)Theseus is the grandson of the King of Troizen, but his paternity is shrouded in mystery - can he really be the son of the god Poseidon? When he discovers his father's sword beneath a rock, his mother must reveal his true identity: Theseus is the son of Aegeus, King of Athens, and is his only heir. So begins Theseus's perilous journey to his father's palace to claim his birthright, escaping bandits and ritual king sacrifice in Eleusis, to slaying the Minotaur in Crete. Renault reimagines the Theseus myth, creating an original, exciting story.'Mary Renault's portraits of the ancient world are fierce, complex and eloquent, infused at every turn with her life-long passion for the Classics. Her characters live vividly both in their own time, and in ours' (Madeline Miller, bestselling author of Circe)'Mary Renault is a shining light to both historical novelists and their readers' (Hilary Mantel, bestselling author of Wolf Hall)

Virago

The Talented Mr Ripley

Patricia Highsmith
Authors:
Patricia Highsmith

'I'm a huge Highsmith fan. If there's one book I wish I'd written, it's The Talented Mr Ripley' Sarah WatersTom Ripley travels to Italy with a commission to coax a prodigal young American back to his wealthy father. But Ripley finds himself very fond of Dickie Greenleaf. He wants to be like him - exactly like him. Suave, agreeable and utterly amoral, Ripley will stop at nothing to accomplish his goal. The Talented Mr. Ripley serves as an unforgettable introduction to this smooth confidence man, whose talent for murder and self-invention is chronicled in four subsequent Ripley novels.

Virago

The Charioteer

Mary Renault
Authors:
Mary Renault

'The Charioteer remains compelling both as a snapshot of a particular - and particularly fascinating - cultural moment, and as a deeply romantic story of love fulfilled against the odds. It has all those qualities that make Mary Renault so memorable as a novelist: craft, subtlety, intelligence, and a terrific natural sympathy with the intricacies of honour and desire' SARAH WATERS'An explosive and courageous book' SIMON RUSSELL BEALEFirst published in 1953, The Charioteer is a tender, intelligent coming-of-age novel and a bold, unapologetic portrayal of homosexuality that stands with Gore Vidal's The City and the Pillar and James Baldwin's Giovanni's Room as a landmark work in gay literature.Injured at Dunkirk, Laurie Odell, a young corporal, is recovering at a rural veterans' hospital. There he meets Andrew, a conscientious objector serving as an orderly, and the men find solace in their covert friendship. Then Ralph Lanyon appears, a mentor from Laurie's schooldays. Through him, Laurie is drawn into a tight-knit circle of gay men for whom liaisons are fleeting and he is forced to choose between the ideals of a perfect friendship and the pleasures of experience.'Emotionally intelligent, beautifully written and deeply moving, it transcends categorisations' Telegraph

Virago

Emily of New Moon

L. M. Montgomery
Authors:
L. M. Montgomery
Virago

Poor Cow

Nell Dunn
Authors:
Nell Dunn

Joy - also called Blossom, Sunshine and Blondie by the men in her life - walks down Fulham Broadway carrying her week-old baby, Jonny. She is twenty-one, with bleached hair, high suede shoes, and a head full of dreams. Her husband Tom is a thief and on the proceeds of a job they move to a luxury flat - 'the world was our oyster and we chose Ruislip'. Then Tom is sent to prison, leaving Joy and Jonny to move in with Auntie Emm. This is Joy's story: an exuberant, pink-lipsticked, tale of London life, love and young motherhood in the sixties...

Constable

Who is it that can tell me who I am?

Jane Haynes
Authors:
Jane Haynes

In this searingly honest memoir, Jane Haynes recalls to her psychotherapist her extraordinary story. Having overcome her strange childhood, overshadowed by her mother's absence and father's descent into madness, the real diagnosis of which the family concealed, she attempts, vividly but without sentimentality, to understand the construction of her own life.Now a psychotherapist in her own right, Haynes opens up her case files, which include a gifted young man on the cusp of a nervous breakdown; the middle-aged woman tormented by suicidal thoughts; the pornography addict, unable to connect emotionally with his girlfriend. Tragedy is brought home to her when her son-in-law is murdered. Her account powerfully demonstrates the resilience and life force of human nature.'I recommend it to anyone concerned with the life of the imagination'Hilary Mantel

Virago

A View Of The Harbour

Elizabeth Taylor
Authors:
Elizabeth Taylor
Virago

Frenchman's Creek

Daphne Du Maurier
Authors:
Daphne Du Maurier