The Mammoth Cheese
By Sheri Holman
When Manda Frank gives birth to an astonishing eleven babies, the world descends on her home town of Three Chimneys, Virginia. Beneath the intense media spotlight the town begins to give up its long-held secrets: from the unrequited love of August Vaughn, the town's avid Thomas Jefferson impersonator, to the more dangerous and subversive passions of Mr March, the local history teacher. Meanwhile, cheesemaker Margaret Prickett decides to highlight the plight of the rural community by creating 'The Mammoth Cheese' - a 1,235-pound wheel of Cheshire which she plans to parade all the way to Washington - while failing to notice the plight of her own teenage daughter Polly, who is caught up in the dangerous romance of rebellion, and veering precariously towards tragedy... 'This panoramic social novel with a needle-sharp point of view sends up both small-town America and politics. There's mordant social commentary, discussion of Jeffersonian civic ideals and bittersweet romance, plus more than you needed to know about cow midwifery' PEOPLE
The Magic Toyshop
By Angela Carter
'This crazy world whirled around her, men and women dwarfed by toys and puppets, where even the birds are mechanical and the few human figures went masked... She was in the night once again, and the doll was herself.'One night Melanie walks through the garden in her mother's wedding dress. The next morning her world is shattered. Forced to leave the home of her childhood, she is sent to live with relatives she has never met: gentle Aunt Margaret, mute since her wedding day; and her brothers, Francie and Finn. Brooding over all is Uncle Philip, who loves only the toys he makes in his workshop: clockwork roses and puppets that are life-size - and uncannily life-like.