Dr Clock's Last Case
By Ruth Fainlight
A collection of short stories from the author of "Twenty One Poems" and "Three Poems".A. S. Byatt's comment that Ruth Fainlight's poems 'combine Alice Munro's virtues with something more archaic and also, in exact clear words, give us a truly new vision of usual and mysterious events' can be applied with equal force to this collection of stories. Acutely precise and elegant, they move from vivid evocations of an American childhood and close studies of amoral expatriate life to erotic humour and black fantasy. The breakdown of a middle-aged man when the ghost of his mother, who perished in the Holocaust, returns to haunt him; the unexplained midnight arrival of three likely terrorists at the comfortable English village house of a university professor; a woman's half-reluctant marriage to her daughter's fiance: all these stories demonstrate Ruth Fainlight's uncompromising subtlety of style, and the range of her sympathies and imagination.
Dear Fang, With Love
By Rufi Thorpe
Lucas and Katya were boarding school seniors when, blindingly in love, they decided to have a baby. Seventeen years later, after a decade of absence, Lucas is a weekend dad, newly involved in his daughter Vera's life. But after Vera suffers a terrifying psychotic break at a high school party, Lucas takes her to Lithuania, his grandmother's homeland, for the summer. Here, in the city of Vilnius, Lucas hopes to save Vera from the sorrow of her diagnosis. As he uncovers a secret about his grandmother, a Home Army rebel who escaped Stutthof, Vera searches for answers of her own. Why did Lucas abandon her as a baby? What really happened the night of her breakdown? And who can she trust with the truth? Skillfully weaving family mythology and Lithuanian history with a story of mental illness, inheritance, young love, and adventure, Rufi Thorpe has written a breathtakingly intelligent, emotionally enthralling book.
A Darkness Absolute
By Kelley Armstrong
When experienced homicide detective Casey Duncan first moved to the secret town of Rockton, she expected a safe haven for people like her, people running from their past misdeeds and past lives. She knew living in Rockton meant living off-the-grid completely: no cell phones, no Internet, no mail, very little electricity, and no way of getting in or out without the town council's approval. What she didn't expect is that Rockton comes with its own set of secrets and dangers.Now, in A Darkness Absolute, Casey and her fellow Rockton sheriff's deputy Will chase a cabin-fevered resident into the woods, where they are stranded in a blizzard. Taking shelter in a cave, they discover a former resident who's been held captive for over a year. When the bodies of two other women turn up, Casey and her colleagues must find out if it's an outsider behind the killings or if the answer is more complicated than that...before another victim goes missing.
By Roxane Gay
'Phenomenally powerful and beautifully written' the GuardianThe women in these stories live lives of privilege and of poverty, are in marriages both loving and haunted by past crimes or emotional blackmail. A pair of sisters, grown now, have been inseparable ever since they were abducted together as children, and must negotiate the elder sister's marriage. A woman married to a twin pretends not to realize when her husband and his brother impersonate each other. A stripper putting herself through college fends off the advances of an overzealous customer. A black engineer moves to Upper Michigan for a job and faces the malign curiosity of her colleagues and the difficulty of leaving her past behind. From a girls' fight club to a wealthy subdivision in Florida where neighbors conform, compete, and spy on each other, Gay delivers a wry, beautiful, haunting vision of modern America.'Gay brings the powerful voice that flows through her work as a novelist and cultural critic to the 21 short stories in her first collection . . . Gay's "difficult women" are unforgettable' BBC.com'Gay's signature dry wit and piercing psychological depth make every story mermerisingly unusual and simply unforgettable' Harper's Bazaar
The Dreaming of Rain and Peter Lovesey
By Ann Cleeves
An original short story taken from the anthology Motives for Murder, by members of The Detection ClubFrom acclaimed novelist Ann Cleeves, author of the Vera and Shetland series, comes a tale about a wife who will do anything to meet her favourite writer.The life of Ann Cleeves' ex-pat wife protagonist is one of boredom punctuated by stultifying dinner parties and making sure that her home is tidy and her husband is happy. When her favourite writer, Peter Lovesey, is due to appear at the Emirates Literature Festival, she is beyond thrilled. What will she do then when her husband changes their plans at the last minute?
The Dog That Whispered
By Jim Kraus
Wilson Steele is a single professor and Vietnam veteran who likes living alone, insisting it's too late for him to have a family. His mother disagrees. When she impulsively adopts a rescued black lab mix, she insists Thurman is special, and has whispered of the coming of grandchildren. Wilson brushes the notion off as fantasy. When his mother learns of her retirement community's 'no pets' policy, she forces Wilson to take the lovable dog. Wilson notices Thurman's growls do sound like words, but he knows he's just projecting his own thoughts on the animal. If Wilson is talking to neighbors on their walks, and spending time with Emily, a widow with three children, it isn't because Thurman encouraged him. After all, everyone knows dogs can't talk...can they?
Dreams of Dead Women's Handbags
By Shena Mackay
In stories as intriguing as their titles - 'Pink Cigarettes', 'Electric Blue Damsels', 'Other People's Bathrobes' - Shena Mackay demonstrates her uncanny ability to expose the menace of everyday life with humour and haunting accuracy. Harnessing Mackay's darkly comic vision, an astonishing originality and vibrant prose, these remarkable short works provide 'novel-worthy dimensions in a few pages' (New York Times Book Review).
Dancing On the Outskirts
By Shena Mackay
Shena Mackay came to fame aged 20 when she published her first book, written in her teens, with Andre Deutsch. At times darkly surreal and funny, always deft, and highly memorable, her fiction has attracted a legion of fierce admirers ranging from Iris Murdoch to Julie Burchill, Ian Hamilton to Rachel Cooke. She was born in Edinburgh but her family moved often and were living in Blackheath, South East London, when Shena left school at 16. Winning a £25 poetry prize in the (prestigious) Daily Mirror Children's Literary Competition marked the beginning of her writing life. Part of her teens - she got married when she was 20 - were spent in Earls Court and the seedy Soho of the 1960s, and she was privileged to meet many artists, visiting Henry Moore at Much Hadham and drinking whisky from bone china tea cups with David Hockney in Powis Square. In the early 1970s she moved to the country with her husband and three children, and re-emerged as a writer in the 80s with a collection of stories, followed by more works including the Booker Shortlisted The Orchard on Fire.
The Dog That Saved Stewart Coolidge
By Jim Kraus
When a stray dog helps himself to a bone from a display in the supermarket, he doesn't know his actions will brand him a criminal and spark a romance between two humans. Stewart Coolidge works as a bag boy at the store, and his outraged boss offers a reward and demands Stewart catch the thieving animal. He fails at that, but now he finally has the perfect excuse to talk to his cute neighbor, Lisa. Lisa has always dreamed of being a journalist and asks Stewart if she can interview him for the local paper. As she gets to know Stewart, she likes him more and more, and she's delighted to learn he shares her Christian faith. Stewart can't bring himself to tell her she's mistaken, that he's not religious at all. And that's not Stewart's only deception. When the dog shows up on the doorstep of their building, Stewart decides to harbor the furry fugitive. But this is no ordinary dog, he has a divine sense of how things should be--and recognizing how much Stewart needs Lisa, he decides to do all he can to bring them together.
Day Of Wrath
By Iris Collier
Nicholas Peverell has returned to his manor house in Sussex after visiting King Henry VIII at court to find that his loyal steward has been murdered - strangled and thrown from the manor house tower. Nicholas immediately decides to launch an investigation. He also has to deal with the unrest among the monks at his priory - King Henry is trying to reform the church and the plight of the monks is as yet unsure - could they somehow be involved? Nicholas' problems are further exacerbated when beautiful and talented local girl Jane Warrener tells him she has overheard talk of a conspiracy against the king. It is her notion that his steward's murder had something to do with it. Perhaps he overheard the conspirators and they killed him off before he could betray their plans. . .If this is the case, and with King Henry's untimely announcement of his intention to visit Peverell Manor on his way to Portsmouth in just a few days, Nicholas has no time to lose if he is to hunt down the murderous traitors and save the life of his king.
Drama Comes To Prior's Ford
By Eve Houston
The residents of Prior's Ford are facing more upheaval . . .There are new arrivals at Prior's Ford - Meredith and Genevieve Whitelaw - who are determined to shake things up. Meanwhile, Alastair Marshall finds he is missing Clarissa Ramsay, now travelling the world to recover from the shock of her husband's affair, more than he would like to admit. At Tarbethill Farm, the McNair family is struggling to make ends meet, and face the prospect of losing the livelihood that has been in their family for generations. And Jenny Forsyth is to be reunited with her step-daughter Maggie - but Maggie is now a precocious teenager very unhappy at the idea of country life, and determined to cause trouble . . .
By Elizabeth Hoyt
A MAN CONDEMNED . . .Falsely accused of murder and mute from a near-fatal beating, Apollo Greaves, Viscount Kilbourne has escaped from Bedlam. With the Crown's soldiers at his heels, he finds refuge in the ruins of a pleasure garden, toiling as a simple gardener. But when a vivacious young woman moves in, he's quickly driven to distraction . . . A DESPERATE WOMAN . . .London's premier actress, Lily Stump, is down on her luck when she's forced to move into a scorched theatre with her maid and small son. But she and her tiny family aren't the only inhabitants-a silent, hulking beast of a man also calls the charred ruins home. Yet when she catches him reading her plays, Lily realizes there's more to this man than meets the eye.OUT OF ASH, DESIRE FLARESThough scorching passion draws them together, Apollo knows that Lily is keeping secrets. When his past catches up with him, he's forced to make a choice: his love for Lily . . . or the explosive truth that will set him free.
The Discourtesy of Death
By William Brodrick
An anonymous letter sent to Larkwood's Prior accuses Peter Henderson, an academic celebrity renowned for daring ideas, of a grotesque murder: the calculated killing of Jenny, his disabled partner, believed by everyone to have died peacefully two years previously from a sudden attack of cancer.But for this letter there is no evidence, no suspect and no crime. Time has moved on. Lives have been rebuilt. Grief and loss are tempered by a comforting thought: a paralysed woman, once an acclaimed dancer, had died quickly and painlessly, spared a drawn out illness; a life marked by agonising misfortune had come to a merciful end.But now Anselm has been told the truth behind the soothing lie. He must move cautiously to expose the killer and the killing. He must think of young Timothy, Jenny and Peter's son. A boy who is still learning to live without his mother.And so Anselm begins his most delicate investigation yet, unaware that Jenny's adoring father is also thinking of Timothy's future; that this urbane former army officer is haunted by the memory of torture and shoot-to-kill operations in Northern Ireland; that he remains capable of anything, if he thinks it's for the best; that he has set out to execute Peter Henderson.Death, dying and killing, however, were never so complicated.
Death of the Black-Haired Girl
By Robert Stone
In an elite New England college, Professor Steven Brookman embarks upon a careless affair with a brilliant but reckless student, Maud Stack. She is a young woman whose passions are not easily contained or curtailed, and is known as something of a firebrand on campus. As the stakes of their relationship prove higher than either one could have anticipated, their union seems destined to yield tragic and far-reaching consequences.
The Destiny of Violet and Luke
By Jessica Sorensen
THE NUMBER ONE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHORLuke Price's life has always been about order, control, and acting tough on the outside. He uses meaningless relationships as a distraction and a way to tune out the twisted memories of his childhood. He secretly wishes that one day he could find that one perfect person, but deep down he doesn't believe that perfection really exists. Violet Hayes has had a rough life, surrounded by drugs, neglect, and irresponsible parents. She thought she could escape that kind of life when she went to college, but her past catches up with her. To protect herself from getting hurt, she acts tough and keeps her distance from everyone. But then she meets Luke. The two of them clash, yet they can't seem to stay away from each other. The more they get to know one another, the more they realise just how similar their lives are, and that maybe the perfection they've always been looking for lies in each other.
A Dual Inheritance
By Joanna Hershon
Autumn 1962: Ed Cantowitz and Hugh Shipley meet in their final year at Harvard. Ed is far removed from Hugh's privileged upbringing as a Boston Brahmin, yet his drive and ambition outpace Hugh's ambivalence about his own life. These two young men form an unlikely friendship, bolstered by a fierce shared desire to transcend their circumstances. But in just a few short years, not only do their paths diverge-one rising on Wall Street, the other becoming a kind of global humanitarian-but their friendship ends abruptly, with only one of them understanding why.Can a friendship define your view of the world? Spanning from the Cuban Missile Crisis to the present-day stock market collapse, with locations as diverse as Dar es Salaam, Boston, Shenzhen, and Fishers Island, A Dual Inheritance asks this question, as it follows not only these two men, but the complicated women in their vastly different lives. And as Ed and Hugh grow further and further apart, they remain uniquely-even surprisingly-connected.
Delilah: The Making of Red
By Jessica Sorensen
Delilah Peirce: the Invisible Girl. Men crane their necks around Delilah just to catch a glimpse of her bombshell mother. Delilah knows looks of indifference, of friendship -- but never of desire. Then she meets Dylan Sanderson, the impossibly gorgeous guy who thinks she's beautiful. When he looks at her, she feels needed. When he kisses her, her troubles disappear. And when he tells her he will never hurt her, she believes him . . .
By Robin York
When Caroline Piasecki's ex-boyfriend posts their sex pictures on the Internet, it destroys her reputation as a nice college girl. Suddenly her once-promising future doesn't look so bright. Caroline tries to make the pictures disappear; hoping time will bury her shame. Then a guy she barely knows rises to her defence and punches her ex to the ground.West Leavitt is the last person Caroline needs in her life. Everyone knows he's shady. Still, Caroline is drawn to his confidence and swagger - even after promising her dad she'll keep her distance. On late, sleepless nights, Caroline starts wandering into the bakery where West works.They hang out, they talk, they listen. Though Caroline and West tell each other they're 'just friends,' their feelings intensify until it becomes impossible to pretend. The more complicated her relationship with West gets, the harder Caroline has to struggle to discover what she wants for herself - and the easier it becomes to find the courage she needs to fight back against the people who would judge her.When all seems lost, sometimes the only place to go is deeper.
By Elliott James
This is the fifth in a series of short stories by urban fantasy author Elliott James. The first of his novels, Charming, is available now. Somewhere in Alaska is a locked house full of ripped apart bodies and one teacup poodle covered in blood. Somewhere in Alaska, the voice of a dead woman speaks through a car radio. And somewhere in Alaska, the last surviving descendant of one of John Charming's only friends is being pursued by nightmare hounds. The dog days have begun.Word count: 11,500Other Short Fiction by Elliott James: Charmed I'm SureDon't Go Chasing WaterfallsPushing LuckSurreal Estate
By Sally Beauman
In France, a young man's heart misses a beat when the blue lights of a police car signal for him to pull his Mercedes off the autoroute. For inside the attache case on the passenger seat is a very special delivery bound for the Parisian headquarters of the world-renowned fashion house, Cazares, and for fashion doyenne Maria Cazares herself. And a similar, potentially lethal delivery, is about to disrupt the quiet of the English countryside.In London, journalist Gini Hunter, newly returned from the war zones of Bosnia, is haunted by what she has seen. Knowing that her lover, Pascal Lamartine, remains there, she exists on the brink of breakdown, supported by her close friend, fashion editor Lindsay Drummond. Until the disappearance of a schoolgirl and the intervention of a new editor at her paper, Rowland McGuire, force her to do what she does best...follow a story.The hunt for fifteen-year-old Mina Landis takes Gini from a Gloucestershire country house to Amsterdam, and then to Paris at the height of the fashion collections. There, she will encounter new and very different dangers, for she must deal with two men - one a potential killer, the other a potential lover.