Related to: 'Coming of age classics'

Virago

The Peppermint Pig

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

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?' Poll asks her mother. Johnnie was only the runt of the litter. He'd cost Mother a shilling, but somehow his naughtiness and cleverness kept Poll and her little brother Theo cheerful, even though it was one of the most difficult years of their lives.This collection of the best children's literature, curated by Virago, 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

What Katy Did Next

Susan Coolidge
Authors:
Susan Coolidge
Virago

What Katy Did at School

Susan Coolidge
Authors:
Susan Coolidge
Virago

What Katy Did

Susan Coolidge
Authors:
Susan Coolidge
Constable

May Day Murder

Julie Wassmer
Authors:
Julie Wassmer

It's springtime and Whitstable is emerging from hibernation. While neither the restaurant nor detective agency is too busy, Pearl resolves to spend some time at the family allotment. But her best friend, Nathan, has persuaded one of his favourite actresses to open the May Day festivities at Whitstable Castle and involves Pearl in his plans.Like Pearl, Faye Marlowe is a Whitstable native, but having left the town more than two decades ago, the star has been living in the South of France since her agent's phone stopped ringing. Charming but 'sensitive', she arrives with a small entourage and though her presence in the town causes a stir Pearl's mother Dolly remains unimpressed, choosing to remember Faye Marlow when she was plain old Frankie Murray, the daughter of a local whelk merchant.Nathan soon realises he has made a mistake with this invitation and his doubts are confirmed when Faye is nowhere to be found on the morning of May Day. And as 'Jack in the Green' puts on his impressive costume to lead the parade, the actress's dead body is discovered - tethered to the maypole on the Castle grounds . . . and so it's left to Pearl and DCI Mike McGuire to unravel the mystery of the May Day murder.

Virago

Mossy Trotter

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

The Lady and the Unicorn

Rumer Godden
Authors:
Rumer Godden

In a crumbling Calcutta mansion, with faded frescos and a jasmine-covered garden, the Lemarchant family live, clinging to the fringes of respectability: neither Indian nor English, they are accepted by no one and exploited by all.After only a day in India, Stephen Bright meets Rosa Lemarchant. In an ill-fitting dress once belonging to her sister, she is awkward and shy, and couldn't be more different from the stories he has heard of fast 'Eurasian' girls. Ignorant of Calcutta's strict codes of conformity, he falls in love with Rosa and becomes enchanted by the building in which she lives, determined to uncover its secrets.Mystery pervades this story of a memory-haunted house in old Calcutta, as secret as a sundial in a ruined garden.

Virago

Breakfast with the Nikolides

Rumer Godden
Authors:
Rumer Godden
Virago

Penelope

Rebecca Harrington
Authors:
Rebecca Harrington

Meet Penelope O'Shaughnessy, Harvard freshman.Armed with her Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights poster and party conversation modelled on the repartee of Noel Coward, Penelope is ready to take her place on campus. But where are the kindred spirits who will share her passion for Morse code and Tetris? Penelope's roommates, over-achieving Emma and the sullen Lan, seem to have already got to grips with university life, and she is finding it hard to work out if the dashing but elusive Gustav matches up to her hero, Hercule Poirot.Penelope follows our heroine's progress through her first year among America's elite, as she navigates the mysteries of life, love, inappropriate tutors, marionette operation and how to kiss on both cheeks and avoid disaster.

Hachette Audio

Slammerkin

Emma Donoghue
Authors:
Emma Donoghue
Virago

Invitation To The Waltz

Rosamond Lehmann
Authors:
Rosamond Lehmann

On her seventeenth birthday, Olivia Curtis receives: a diary for her innermost thoughts, a china ornament, a ten-shilling note and a roll of flame-coloured silk for her first ball dress. She anticipates the dance, the greatest and most terrifying event of her life so far, with uncertainty and excitement. For her pretty sister Kate, it is sure to be a triumph, but what will it be for shy, awkward Olivia?Rosamond Lehmann, one of the best-loved writers of the twentieth century, perfectly captures the emotions of a girl poised on the threshold of womanhood.

Virago

The River

Rumer Godden
Authors:
Rumer Godden

Harriet is caught between two worlds: her older sister is no longer a playmate, her brother is still a little boy. And the comforting rhythm of her Indian childhood - the sounds of the jute factory, the colourful festivals that accompany each season and the eternal ebb and flow of the river on its journey to the Bay of Bengal - is about to be shattered by a tragic event. Intense, vivid, and with a dark undertow, The River is a poignant portrait of the loss of a young girl's innocence.

Virago

My Brilliant Career

Miles Franklin
Authors:
Miles Franklin

Trapped on her parents' farm in the hardscrabble Australian outback, sixteen-year-old Sybylla Melvyn loves the bush but not the toil it brings. She longs for refinement, and most of all she longs to achieve great things.Suddenly she falls under the gaze of wealthy, handsome Harry Beecham . . . and finds herself choosing between the conventional path of marriage and her plans for a 'brilliant career'.

Virago

Tipping The Velvet

Sarah Waters
Authors:
Sarah Waters

Piercing the shadows of the naked stage was a single shaft of rosy limelight, and in the centre of this was a girl: the most marvellous girl - I knew it at once! - that I had ever seen. A saucy, sensuous and multi-layered historical romance, Tipping the Velvet follows the glittering career of Nan King - oyster girl turned music-hall star turned rent boy turned East End 'tom'.

Virago

Complete Short Stories

Elizabeth Taylor
Authors:
Elizabeth Taylor
Virago

Touchy Subjects

Emma Donoghue
Authors:
Emma Donoghue

How do you make conversation with a sperm donor? How do you say someone's novel is drivel? Would you give a screaming baby brandy? In what words would you tell your girlfriend to pluck a hair on her chin?Touchy Subjects is about things that make people wince: taboos, controversies, secrets and lies. Some of the events that characters crash into are grand, tragic ones: miscarriage, overdose, missing persons, a mother who deserts her children. Other topics, like religion and money, are not inherently taboo, but they can cause acute discomfort because people disagree so vehemently. Many of these stories are about the spectrum of constrained, convoluted feeling that runs from awkwardness through embarrassment to shame.

Virago

Selected Letters Of Edith Sitwell

Richard Greene, Edith Sitwell
Authors:
Richard Greene, Edith Sitwell

Edith Sitwell (1887-1964) was, through four decades, the most prominent and celebrated woman poet in Britain. Among the notable admirers of her work were Siegfried Sassoon, WB Yeats and Gertrude Stein, Stephen Spender and Marianne Moore. Just after her death, Allen Tate described her in The New York Times as 'one of the great poets of the twentieth century'. Even as one allows for the ebb and flow of literary reputations, Edith Sitwell will have permanent claim on the attention of readers and literary scholars. She and her two brothers, Osbert and Sacheverell, were the focus of a movement in English Literature described as an 'alternative Bloomsbury'. This volume includes unpublished letters to many significant figures, including WB Yeats, Bertrand Russell and Benjamin Britten. It also contains letters that illuminate Sitwell's relations with other women writers, among them, Gertrude Stein and Rosamond Lehmann.'I am besotted with this dotty old bat. Britain's most celebrated and eccentric female poet, she dashed off reams of witty, newsy, mischievous letters in exquisitely beautiful prose. Every letter is a gem' - Val Hennessy (one of her top ten books for 1997), Daily Mail

Virago

The Weather In The Streets

Rosamond Lehmann
Authors:
Rosamond Lehmann

Taking up where AN INVITATION TO THE WALTZ left off, THE WEATHER IN THE STREETS shows us Olivia Curtis ten years older, a failed marriage behind her, thinner, sadder, and apprently not much wiser. A chance encounter on a train with a man who enchanted her as a teenager leads to a forbidden love affair and a new world of secret meetings, brief phone calls and snatched liaisons in anonymous hotel rooms.Years ahead of its time when first published, this subtle and powerful novel shocked even the most stalwart Lehmann fans with its searing honesty and passionate portrayal of clandestine love.

Virago

Life Mask

Emma Donoghue
Authors:
Emma Donoghue

Emma Donoghue

Born in Dublin in 1969, Emma Donoghue is an award-winning writer, living in Canada with her family. Her novels are Room, The Sealed Letter, Landing, Life Mask, Slammerkin, Hood and Stir-fry; short-story collections Astray, Three and a Half Deaths (UK ebook), Touchy Subjects, The Woman Who Gave Birth to Rabbits, and Kissing the Witch; and literary history including Inseparable, We Are Michael Field, and Passions Between Women as well as two anthologies that span the seventeenth to the twentieth centuries. Frog Music, her new novel, comes out in Spring 2014.