Linda Grant - The Dark Circle - Little, Brown Book Group

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  • Paperback £13.99
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    • ISBN:9780349006765
    • Publication date:03 Nov 2016
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    • ISBN:9780349006789
    • Publication date:06 Jul 2017

The Dark Circle

By Linda Grant

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The new novel by the acclaimed author of Upstairs at the Party and the Booker-shortlisted The Clothes on Their Backs.

The Second World War is over, a new decade is beginning but for an East End teenage brother and sister living on the edge of the law, life has been suspended. Sent away to a tuberculosis sanatorium in Kent to learn the way of the patient, they find themselves in the company of army and air force officers, a car salesman, a young university graduate, a mysterious German woman, a member of the aristocracy and an American merchant seaman. They discover that a cure is tantalisingly just out of reach and only by inciting wholesale rebellion can freedom be snatched.

Biographical Notes

Linda Grant is a novelist and journalist. She won the Orange Prize for Fiction in 2000 and the Lettre Ulysses Prize for Literary Reportage in 2006, and was longlisted for the Man Booker in 2002 for Still Here. The Clothes on Their Backs was shortlisted for the Man Booker in 2008 and went on to win the South Bank Show Award.

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  • ISBN: 9780349006772
  • Publication date: 03 Nov 2016
  • Page count:
  • Imprint: Virago
Exhilaratingly good . . . This is a novel whose engine is flesh and blood, not cold ideas . . . Grant brings the 1950s - that odd, downbeat, fertile decade between war and sexual liberation - into sharp, bright, heartbreaking focus — Christobel Kent, Guardian
A Grant novel is always a treat . . . Grant captures the stigma that surrounded TB perfectly — Evening Standard
A writer whose language crackles with vitality and whose descriptive powers are working at such a high level — Spectator
Linda Grant brings a forgotten slice of social and medical history to life by conjuring a rich cast of disparate - though equally desperate - characters observed with wry humour and affection to produce an absorbing and profoundly moving story — John Harding, Daily Mail
The novel is funny but also poignant . . . I loved it — Stylist
The Dark Circle is, beneath its narrative surface, fiercely political. She poses a large, naggingly relevant, question. What would (will?) privatisation of the NHS mean? Read this fine, persuasive, moving novel and contemplate - if you can dare to - that awful possibility — John Sutherland, The Times
Fascinating . . . a revealing insight: both funny and illuminating, it is a novel about what it means to treat people well, medically, emotionally and politically — Hannah Beckerman, Observer
Grant is so good at conjuring up atmosphere and writes with earthy vivacity — Anthony Gardner, Mail on Sunday
Contemporary issues linger ominously in Grant's margins, silently enriching what's already an astonishingly good period piece — Lucy Scholes, Independent
Her cast of characters is nothing less than a portrayal of post-war, class-riven Britain from the indolent aristocracy, to Oxford-educated blue stockings, and from car salesmen to the bottom of the pile, German emigres and East End Jewish lowlifes . . .This is a novel, above all, about trauma caused by the "dark circle" of tuberculosis, and results in a "tight circle" of comradeship. The ambitious reach of the novel is wisely held in check by its focus on a time when Lenny and Miriam had to discover for themselves what it was to be human — Jewish Chronicle
A rich, engaging novel, further proof that Grant can conjure up a special mood in a specific period with great humour — Ben Lawrence, Sunday Telegraph
Extraordinarily affecting — Alex Preston, Observer
An extraordinary depiction of the physical and emotional experience of illness. She marvellously communicates the poignancy of youth and sexuality in the presence of impending death. Grant's voice is unlike any other writer; so immediate and engaged even when writing historical fiction — Natasha Walter
An amazing subject, wonderfully depicted, with plausible people whom I grew to love . . . the most surprising plot developments. So original and full of life — Joan Bakewell
Virago

Upstairs at the Party

Linda Grant
Authors:
Linda Grant

'If you go back and look at your life there are certain scenes, acts, or maybe just incidents on which everything that follows seems to depend. If only you could narrate them, then you might be understood. I mean the part of yourself that you don't know how to explain.' In the early seventies, a glamorous and androgynous couple known as Evie/Stevie appear out of nowhere on the isolated concrete campus of a new university. To a group of teenagers experimenting with radical ideas, they seem blown back from the future, unsettling everything and uncovering covert desires. But their mesmerising flamboyant self-expression hides deep anxieties and hidden histories. For Adele, who also has something to conceal, Evie becomes an obsession - an obsession which becomes lifelong after the night of Adele's twentieth birthday party. What happened that evening and who was complicit are questions that have haunted Adele ever since. A set of school exercise books might reveal everything, but they have been missing for the past forty years. From summers in 1970s Cornwall to London in the twenty-first century, long after she has disappeared, Evie will go on challenging everyone's ideas of how their lives should turn out. With her hallmark humour, intelligence and boldness Linda Grant has written a powerful and captivating novel about secrets and the moments that shape our lives.

Virago

A Weekend With Claude

Beryl Bainbridge
Authors:
Beryl Bainbridge
Virago

Harriet Said...

Beryl Bainbridge
Authors:
Beryl Bainbridge

A girl returns from boarding school to her sleepy Merseyside hometown and waits to be reunited with her childhood friend, Harriet, chief architect of all their past mischief. She roams listlessly along the shoreline and the woods still pitted with wartime trenches, and encounters 'the Tsar' - almost old, unhappily married, both dangerously fascinating and repulsive.Pretty, malevolent Harriet finally arrives - and over the course of the long holidays draws her friend into a scheme to beguile then humiliate the Tsar, with disastrous, shocking consequences. A gripping portrayal of adolescent transgression, Beryl Bainbridge's classic first novel remains as subversive today as when it was written.

Virago

We Had It So Good

Linda Grant
Authors:
Linda Grant
Virago

The Cast Iron Shore

Linda Grant
Authors:
Linda Grant
Virago

Living In The Maniototo

Janet Frame
Authors:
Janet Frame

All I had experienced, all the stories I had read or dreamed came to me the moment I, a stranger, turned the key in the lock of the unknown house.'In a sweltering basement in downtown Baltimore, Mavis Halleton, writer, ventriloquist and gossip, is struggling to write her novel when an unexpected invitation arrives. The Garretts, a couple Mavis has never heard of but who admire her work, are to spend time in Italy, and offer the use of their airy home in the Berkeley hills.During her stay, an earthquake hits northern Italy, and Mavis, to her surprise, inherits the house. But, surrounded by museum replicas and tasteful imitations, she finds reality itself is on shaky ground.In this highly inventive novel, reality, fiction and dreams are woven together as Janet Frame playfully explores the process of writing fiction.

Virago

Still Here

Linda Grant
Authors:
Linda Grant
Virago

The People On The Street: A Writer's View Of Israel

Linda Grant
Authors:
Linda Grant

The further away anyone was from that block of Ben Yehuda street, the easier it seemed to find a solution to the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians, that stubborn mess in the centre of the Middle East and the more I studied these solutions, the more I thought that they depended for their implementation on a population of table football men, painted in the colours of the two teams: blue and white for the Israelis, green, red and black for the Palestinians. All the international community had to do was to twist the levers and the little players would kick and swing and send the ball into the net, to victory' One block of a Tel Aviv street is the starting point for Linda Grant's exploration of the inner dynamics of Israelis - not the government and its policies, but the people themselves, in all their variety. Iraqi shop-keepers, Teenage soldiers, Mob bosses, Tunisian-born settlers, Russian scientists, and the father of the child victim of a suicide bomber are some of the people she meets.

Virago

The Thoughtful Dresser

Linda Grant
Authors:
Linda Grant

A good handbag makes the outfit. Only the rich can afford cheap shoes. The only thing worse than being skint is looking as if you're skint.'For centuries, an interest in clothes has been dismissed as the trivial pursuit of vain empty-headed women. Yet, clothes matter, whether you are interested in fashion or not because what we choose to dress ourselves in defines our identity. For the immigrant arriving in a new country to the teenager who needs to be part of the fashion pack or the woman turning forty who must reassess her wardrobe, the truth is that how we look and what we wear, tells a story. And what a story. THE THOUGHTFUL DRESSER tells us how a woman's hat saved her life in Nazi Germany, looks at the role of department stores in giving women a public place outside the home, savours the sheer joy of finding the right dress. Here is the thinking woman's guide to our relationship with what we wear: why we want to look our best and why it matters. THE THOUGHTFUL DRESSER celebrates the pleasure of adornment

Virago

The Clothes On Their Backs

Linda Grant
Authors:
Linda Grant

Cath Staincliffe

Cath Staincliffe is an award winning novelist, radio playwright and creator of ITV's hit series Blue Murder. Cath's books have been shortlisted for the CWA Best First Novel award. She was joint winner of the CWA Short Story Dagger in 2012. Letters To My Daughter's Killer was selected for the Specsavers Crime Thriller Book Club on ITV3 in 2014. Cath also writes the Scott & Bailey books based on the popular ITV series. She lives with her family in Manchester.

Colson Whitehead

Colson Whitehead is the New York Times bestselling author of The Noble Hustle, Zone One, Sag Harbor, The Intuitionist, John Henry Days, Apex Hides the Hurt, and one collection of essays, The Colossus of New York. A Pulitzer Prize finalist and a recipient of MacArthur and Guggenheim fellowships, he lives in New York City.

Cynthia Harrod-Eagles

Cynthia Harrod-Eagles is the author of the hugely popular Morland Dynasty novels, which have captivated and enthralled readers for decades. She is also the author of the contemporary Bill Slider Mystery series, as well as her new series, War at Home, which is an epic family drama set against the backdrop of World War I. Cynthia's passions are music, wine, horses, architecture and the English countryside.

D.J. Taylor

D. J. Taylor is a writer and critic. His collection of short stories, After Bathing at Baxter's was published in 1997 and he is the author of six novels: Great Eastern Land (1986); Real Life (1992); English Settlement (1996); Trespass (1998), a satire of 1970s England; The Comedy Man (2001), the story of one half of a comedy duo; and Kept: A Victorian Mystery (2006). Several of his books are set in his home city of Norwich.His books of non-fiction include Afer the War: The Novel and England Since 1945 (1993); A Vain Conceit: British fiction in the 1980s (1989), a critical look at the quality of fiction-writing in Britain; and most recently, Bright Young People: The Rise and Fall of a Generation 1918-1940. He is also well-known for his biographies: Thackeray (1999); and Orwell: The Life, published in 2003 to coincide with the centenary of Orwell's birth. This book won the 2003 Whitbread Biography Award.

Denise Welch

Denise Welch was born in Whitley Bay in 1958. She is an award-winning actress, TV presenter and author of two Sunday Times bestselling autobiographies. Her many credits include Coronation St, Soldier Soldier, Waterloo Road and Boy Meets Girl, to name a few. She is also an accomplished theatre actress.Denise was a panelist on popular daytime show Loose Women for several years.She is married to artist Lincoln Townley and has two sons, Matthew and Louis, and stepson Lewis. She now lives a quiet, party-free life in rural Cheshire.

Derek Wilson

DEREK WILSON is a renowned Tudor historian. A graduate of Peterhouse, Cambridge, he has written over 50 critically acclaimed books including A Brief History of the Circumnavigators, and The Uncrowned Kings of England, as well as recent biographies of Charlemagne and Holbein.He is a writer and presenter for radio and television and is also the founder of the Cambridge History festival. He lives in North Devon. Visit his website: www.derekwilson.com

Emma Fraser

Emma Fraser is an ex-nurse and she completed her training in Edinburgh. After writing several medical romances under the name Anne Fraser, her research into medical training in the early twentieth-century inspired her to write about strong Scottish nurses and female doctors and her first novel as Emma Fraser, When the Dawn Breaks, was the result. When the Dawn Breaks was shortlisted for the Epic Romantic Novel RoNA Award in 2014. Emma lives with her husband and two children in Glasgow.

Fiona Melrose

Fiona Melrose was born in Johannesburg but has spent the majority of her adult life in the UK, first in London and then in East Anglia. She moved to Suffolk to concentrate on her writing and it is there that Midwinter was conceived. Previously Fiona has worked in academia, NGO's, public affairs and as an emerging markets analyst. She continues to keep a foot in both continents and is currently spending the majority of her time back in South Africa where she is completing her second novel.

Gabriella Pierce

GABRIELLA PIERCE is an American who lives in Paris with her two dogs. 666 Park Avenue in the first of three books in the 666 Park Avenue series.

J. D. Robb

Nora Roberts published her first novel using the pseudonym J.D. Robb in 1995, introducing to readers the tough as nails but emotionally damaged homicide cop Eve Dallas and billionaire Irish rogue, Roarke. With the In Death series, Robb has become one of the biggest thriller writers on earth, with each new novel reaching number one on bestseller charts the world over.For more information, visit www.jd-robb.co.ukBecome a fan on Facebook at Nora Roberts and J. D. Robb