Notes on a Foreign Country
By Suzy Hansen
'Deeply honest and brave . . . A sincere and intelligent act of self-questioning . . . Hansen is doing something both rare and necessary' - Hisham Matar, New York TimesIn the wake of the 9/11 attacks and the invasion of Iraq, Suzy Hansen was enjoying success as a journalist for a New York newspaper. Increasingly, though, the disconnect between the chaos of world events and the response at home took on pressing urgency for her. Seeking to understand the Muslim world that had been reduced to scaremongering headlines, she moved to Istanbul.Hansen arrived in Istanbul with romantic ideas about a city perched between East and West, and a naïve sense of the Islamic world beyond. Over the course of years of living in Turkey and traveling in Greece, Egypt, Afghanistan, and Iran, she learned a great deal about these countries and their cultures. But the most unsettling surprise would be what she learned about her own country - and herself, an American abroad in the era of American decline. Blending memoir, journalism, and history, Notes on a Foreign Country is a moving reflection on America's place in the world. It is a powerful journey of self-discovery and revelation - a profound reckoning with what it means to be American in a moment of national and global turmoil.
Never Anyone But You
By Rupert Thomson
'A novel of tremendous beauty . . . A wonderful achievement' Sarah Waters'A beautiful and extraordinary book' Philip PullmanWhen Suzanne, a shy 17-year-old, meets the brilliant but troubled Lucie in rural Provence at the turn of the twentieth century, the two young women embark on a clandestine love affair. But they soon long for greater freedom. The lovers move to Paris where they recreate themselves entirely, as Claude Cahun and Marcel Moore. Before long, they are mixing in the most glamorous social circles and producing art of great power and strangeness.But the world is rapidly darkening around them. With war looming they leave Paris for Jersey, and it is here that they confront their destiny, dreaming up a campaign of propaganda against Hitler's occupying forces that will put their love - and even their very existence - in jeopardy. From one of our most celebrated writers, Never Anyone but You explores the gripping true story of two extraordinary women who smashed gender boundaries and ultimately risked their lives to overcome oppression. Theirs is a story that has been hidden in the margins of history - until now...
The Night Watchman
By Richard Zimler
Chief Inspector Henrique Monroe of the Lisbon Police Department is not your usual cop. Eccentric, elliptical - and stunningly observant - his peculiar behavior at crime scenes is legendary. But his colleagues put up with it because, in the end, Monroe's the best of the best. But he has a double-sided secret. And when he's called to investigate the brutal slaying of well-connected Portuguese businessman Pedro Coutinho, it's not just the murder case that will unravel - but his own identity, too. As Monroe's investigations lead him deep into a torrid world of shady political corruption and sexual violence, the details of the case trigger memories from his childhood in rural Colorado - memories he has travelled far, and worked hard, to hide. His behavior becomes even more upsetting and inappropriate than usual, and even his family - his wife, his brother and his two young boys - start to fear for the man they thought they knew. Henrique struggles to move his investigation forward whilst keeping the walls of his identity from crumbling. And then, another violent crime changes his life forever, destroying any chance he has of continuing to keep his secret . . . A chilling psychological mystery, The Night Watchman is a uniquely moving portrait of a troubled police detective and his family when a single crime reveals the damaging impact of abuse and the tragic truth about an entire nation.
The New Yorkers
By Cathleen Schine
Past the hustle and bustle of midtown, sheltered from the squawks of taxis and tourists, lies a quiet little block near Central Park kept humble by rent control. Cathleen Schine's brilliantly funny novel shows us how living on a street like this in New York with a dog is like living in a tiny village, one that has a rhythm all its own. Walking her dog, Beatrice, Jody falls under the spell of Everett's bewitching smile. Everett begins to appreciate his post-divorce life only when he falls in love with Howdy, Polly's puppy. Polly lives with her brother, George, who isn't looking so much for a love life as for life direction, and Howdy leads him right to it. Doris hates the trash on her block, she hates the pee on her SUV's large tires, and, above all, she hates dogs. That is, until she gets one of her own.In The New Yorkers, as in life, canine companions compel their masters to go outside of themselves, to take part in the community they live in, to make friends, and sometimes, to fall in love.
By John Burnham Schwartz
Twelve years after a tragic accident and a cover-up that led to prison time, Dwight Arno, now fifty, is a man who has started over without exactly moving on. Living alone in California, haunted yet keeping his head down, Dwight manages a sporting goods store and dates a woman to whom he hasn't revealed the truth about his past. Then an unexpected arrival throws his carefully neutralized life into turmoil and exposes all that he's hidden.Sam, Dwight's estranged college-age son, has shown up without warning, fleeing a devastating incident in his own life. In its way, Sam's sense of guilt is as crushing as his father's. As the two men are forced to confront their similar natures and their half-buried hopes for connection, they must also search for redemption and love. In turn, they dramatically transform the lives of the women around them: the ex-wives, mothers, and lovers they have turned to in their desperate attempts to somehow rewrite, outrun, or eradicate the past.Told in the resonant voices of everyday people gripped in the emotional riptide of lived life, Northwest Corner is at once tough and heart-lifting, an urgent, powerful story about family bonds that can never be broken and the wayward roads that lead us back to those we love.
The New Moon With the Old
By Dodie Smith
From the author of I Capture the Castle and The Hundred and One Dalmatians, an unusual adventure in which humour and more than a touch of strangeness are inextricably blended. When Jane Minton arrives at Dome House as a secretary-housekeeper, she finds herself sharing the comfortable country home of four attractive young people. Their charming widower father, Rupert Carrington is too occupied with his London business to see very much of them. Richard, the eldest, is a composer; Clare, whose true talents (if they can be called that) have not yet disclosed themselves, dreams of courtly romance; Drew is collecting material for a novel; and Merry, still at school, has her heart set on a stage career. Jane is warmly welcomed into this happy household and feels her luck is too good to be true. However, the private world of Dome House is fated to break up as Rupert flees England under threat of prosecution for fraud. He asks Jane to break the news to the children, who must now fend for themselves, and to do what she can to help them. However, the Carringtons are extremely unusual young people and the story of the eclectic choices they make next is an absorbing and unpredictable one.