"1915 means Gallipoli, the birth of the Anzac myth - the year when Australians and New Zealanders sailed off in high hopes of adventure, only to find themselves faced with disaster.
"The tragedy and violence of that event provide the climax to this very personal, sensitive, and surprisingly romantic story. With remarkable skill Roger McDonald invites you to follow a typically Australian journey which parallels the nation's progress from its country childhood, through the adolescent exuberance of its young cities, to initiation on one of the world's ancient battlefields. It is a vital journey, haunted by meance and disillusionment.
"The novel is about two boys from the bush, the thoughtful and awkward Walter and his knowing friend Billy Mackenzie, and their girls Frances and Diana. Together they discover a future which seems full of promise, drawing them into the exciting turmoil of passion and war. But theirs is a fateful alliance, in a world too quickly passing, with an outcome they could never have foreseen."
A Cool Head
"My dad used to say to me, 'Try to keep a cool head and a warm heart'. At least I think it was my dad. I don't really remember him."
Gravy worked in the graveyard - hence the name. He was having a normal day until his friend Benjy turned up in a car Gravy didn't recognise. Benjy had a bullet hole in his chest, but lived just long enough to ask Gravy to hide him and look after his gun. Gravy had looked after things for Benjy before, but never a gun. When Gravy looked in the car he found blood, a balaclava and a bag stuffed with money. Gravy's not too bright but he wants to help his friend.
So Gravy finds himself caught up in the middle of a robbery gone wrong, a woman who witnessed a murder, and some very unpleasant men who will do anything to get back the money Benjy stole...
Alice's in Wonderland & Through the Looking-Glass
This selection of Carroll's works includes "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" and its sequel, "Through the Looking-Glass", both containing the famous illustrations by Sir John Tenniel. No greater books for children have ever been written. The simple language, dreamlike atmosphere, and fantastical characters are as appealing to young readers today as ever they were.
Meanwhile, however, these apparently simple stories have become recognised as adult masterpieces, and extraordinary experiments, years ahead of their time, in Modernism and Surrealism. Through wordplay, parody and logical and philosophical puzzles, Carroll engenders a variety of sub-texts, teasing, ominous or melancholy. For all the surface playfulness there is meaning everywhere.
The author reveals himself in glimpses.
All Tomorrow's Parties
Rydell is on his way back to near-future San Francisco. A stint as a security man in an all-night Los Angeles convenience store has convinced him his career is going nowhere, but his friend Laney, phoning from Tokyo, says there's more interesting work for him in Northern California. And there is, although it will eventually involve his former girlfriend, a Taoist assassin, the secrets Laney has been hacking out of the depths of DatAmerica, the CEO of the PR firm that secretly runs the world and the apocalyptic technological transformation of, well, everything.
William Gibson's new novel, set in the soon-to-be-fact world of "Virtual Light" and "Idoru", completes a stunning, brilliantly imagined trilogy about the post-Net world.
Andersen's Fairy Tales
Andersen, Hans Christian
This collection of over forty of Andersen's most popular stories includes The Mermaid, The Real Princess, The Snow Queen, The Tinder Box, The Ugly Duckling, The Red Shoes and The Little Match Girl ans many more.
It is delightfully illustrated in black-and-white by those remarkable brothers, Charles, Thomas and William Heath Robinson.
An Insular Possession
As realist fiction, An Insular Possession is a successor to nineteenth-century novels set against the broad canvas of European wars such as Vanity Fair or War and Peace, but also intervenes in the tradition with its remembering of Europe’s long neglected Chinese frontier. In the geographical movement away from Europe and its own late twentieth-century moment, the novel, as a project of memory, puts a further postcolonial spin on its venerable realist inheritance. An Insular Possession also explores the crucial issue of individual agency in shaping history.
Annie John is growing up on the magical island of Antigua. It should be a sojourn in paradise for her but adolescence takes the brilliant, headstrong girl into open rebellions and secret discoveries, and finally to a crisis of emotions that wrenches her away from her island home.
A Passage to India
What did happen to Miss Quested in the Marabar Caves? This tantalizing question provides the intense drama of racial tension at the centre of Forster's last and greatest novel. After a mysterious incident during their visit to the caves, the charming Dr Aziz is accused of assaulting Adela Quested, a naive young Englishwoman new to India. As he is brought to trial, the fragile structure of Anglo-Indian relations collapses and the racism inherent in colonialism is exposed in all its ugliness - a theme which still has powerful, dangerous realities today.
A Portrait of the Artist as a young Man
This title includes Introduction and Notes by Dr. Jacqueline Belanger, University of Cardiff. "A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man" represents the transitional stage between the realism of Joyce's "Dubliners" and the symbolism of "Ulysses", and is essential to the understanding of the later work.
This novel is a highly autobiographical account of the adolescence of Stephen Dedalus, who reappears in "Ulysses", and who comes to realize that before he can become a true artist, he must rid himself of the stultifying effects of the religion, politics and essential bigotry of his background in late 19th century Ireland.
A Room of One's Own
"A Room of One's Own", based on a lecture given at Girton College Cambridge, is one of the great feminist polemics, ranging in its themes from Jane Austen and Charlotte Bronte to the silent fate of Shakespeare's gifted (imaginary) sister and the effects of poverty and sexual constraint on female creativity. "Three Guineas" was published almost a decade later and breaks new ground in its discussion of men, militarism and women's attitudes towards war. These two pieces reveal Virginia Woolf's fiery spirit and sophisticated wit and confirm her status as a highly inspirational essayist.
A Star Called Henry
Born in the Dublin slums of 1901, his father a one-legged whorehouse bouncer and settler of scores, Henry Smart has to grow up fast. By the time he can walk he's out robbing and begging, often cold and always hungry, but a prince of the streets. By Easter Monday, 1916, he's fourteen years old and already six-foot-two, a soldier in the Irish Citizen Army.
A year later he's ready to die for Ireland again, a rebel, a Fenian and a killer. With his father's wooden leg as his weapon, Henry becomes a Republican legend - one of Michael Collins' boys, a cop killer, an assassin on a stolen bike.
Babette's Feast and Other Stories
Dinesen, Isal (Karen Blixen)
These five rich, witty and magical stories from the author of Out of Africa include one of her most well known tales, 'Babette's Feast', which was made into the classic film. It tells the story of a French cook working in a puritanical Norwegian community, who treats her employers to the decadent feast of a lifetime. There is also a real-life Prospero and his Ariel in 'Tempests', a mysterious pearl-fisher in 'The Diver' and a brief, tragic encounter in 'The Ring'. All the stories have a mystic, fairy-tale quality, linked by themes of angels, the sea, dreams and fate.
They were among the last to be written by Isak Dinesen, and show her as a master of short fiction.
Barchester Towers is the story of the church war that takes place between Mrs Proudie, the wife of Barsetshire's newly installed bishop, and Mr Slope, the sly, scheming chaplain.
A story set in the mid-19th century, when moves to abolish slavery are at their height, and one man's world of love turns to violence when his daughter dies at the hands of her mother.
Peter Carey's novel is a fast-moving extravaganza, both funny and gripping, about a man who, recovering from death, is convinced that he is in hell.
Brokeback Mountain and Other Stories
A stand alone edition of Annie Proulx’s beloved story “Brokeback Mountain” (in the collection Close Range)—the basis for the major motion picture directed by Ang Lee, starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger, screenplay by Larry McMurtry and Diana Ossana.
Annie Proulx has written some of the most original and brilliant short stories in contemporary literature, and for many readers and reviewers, “Brokeback Mountain” is her masterpiece.
Ennis del Mar and Jack Twist, two ranch hands, come together when they’re working as sheepherder and camp tender one summer on a range above the tree line. At first, sharing an isolated tent, the attraction is casual, inevitable, but something deeper catches them that summer.
Both men work hard, marry, and have kids because that’s what cowboys do. But over the course of many years and frequent separations this relationship becomes the most important thing in their lives, and they do anything they can to preserve it.
The New Yorker won the National Magazine Award for Fiction for its publication of “Brokeback Mountain,” and the story was included in Prize Stories 1998: The O. Henry Awards. In gorgeous and haunting prose, Proulx limns the difficult, dangerous affair between two cowboys that survives everything but the world’s violent intolerance.
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When honest young Caleb Williams comes to work as a secretary for Squire Falkland, he soon begins to suspect that his new master is hiding a terrible secret. But as he digs deeper into Falkland's past and finally unearths the guilty truth, the results of his curiosity prove calamitous when even though Caleb has loyally sworn never to disclose what he has discovered the Squire enacts a cruel revenge. A tale of gripping suspense and psychological power, William Godwin's novel creates a searing depiction of the intolerable persecution meted out to a good man in pursuit of justice and equality.
Written to expose the political oppression and corrupt hierarchies its author saw in the world around him, Caleb Williams (1794) makes a radical call to end the tyrannical misuses of power.
Call It Sleep
David Schearl arrives in New York in his mother's arms to begin his new life as an immigrant in the Golden Land. David is hated by his father - an angry, violent man unable to find his niche in the New World - but is fiercely loved and protected by his Yiddish-speaking mother. An innovative, multi-lingual novel, "Call It Sleep" subtly interweaves the overwhelming love between a mother and son with the terrors and anxieties David experiences, as he seeks to find his own identity amidst the cultural disarray of early twentieth-century America.
Call of the Wild & White Fang
This book comes with an introduction and notes by Lionel Kelly, University of Reading. "The Call of the Wild" (1903) and "White Fang" (1906) are world famous animal stories. Set in Alaska during the Klondike Gold Rush of the late 1890s, "The Call of the Wild" is about Buck, the magnificent cross-bred offspring of a St Bernard and a Scottish Collie.
Stolen from his pampered life on a Californian estate and shipped to the Klondike to work as a sledge dog, he triumphs over his circumstances and becomes the leader of a wolf pack.The story records the 'decivilisation' of Buck as he answers 'the call of the wild', an inherent memory of primeval origins to which he instinctively responds. In contrast, "White Fang" relates the tale of a wolf born and bred in the wild which is civilised by the master he comes to trust and love. The brutal world of the Klondike miners and their dogs is brilliantly evoked and Jack London's rendering of the sentient life of Buck and White Fang as they confront their destiny is enthralling and convincing.
The deeper resonance of these stories derives from the author's use of the myth of the hero who survives by strength and courage, a powerful myth that still appeals to our collective unconscious.
A dark and twisty portrait of a marriage coming to its bitter end, from the mistress of domestic noir. Can Kate rid herself of her jealous husband before it's too late? Cohen's acclaimed novels include The Mistress's Revenge, The War of the Wives and Someone Else's Wedding.
Sharp comedy and a serious purpose are splendidly combined in Cloud Nive, Caryl Churchill's provocative and amusing study of sexual politics...
622 pages - hardback
Prichard, Katherine Susannah
When Coonardoo was published in 1929 it was greeted with considerable controversy. It tells the story of Coonardoo, a yound Aboriginal woman, who is trained from childhood to be housekeeper at Wytaliba station, and, as such, is destined to look adter its owner, Hugh Watt. The love between Coonardoo and Hugh, which so shocked the audience of 1929, is never acknowledged and so, degraded and twisted in on itself, destroys not only Coonardoo, but also a community which was once peaceful.
No one has a better perspective to see things from both sides of the Channel than Julian Barnes. He is not only one of the premier writers in Britain but his prize-winning work has long been admired and recognized in France. In these exquisitely crafted and turned stories spanning several centuries, Julian Barnes takes as his universal theme the British in France, our fascination with the country, our various and mixed reasons for being there and our sometimes ambiguous reception.
A punchy, taut urban thriller about that moment we all fear: losing our phone! For Louise, losing hers in a local café takes a sinister turn. Billingham has sold five million copies of his novels and has twice won the Theakston's Old Peculiar Award for Crime Novel of the Year.
The Arden Shakespeare is the established edition of Shakespeare"s work. Justly celebrated for its authoritative scholarship and invaluable commentary, Arden guides you a richer understanding and appreciation of Shakespeare"s plays.This edition of Cymbeline provides, a clear and authoritative text, detailed notes and commentary on the same page as the text, a full introduction discussing the critical and historical background to the play and appendices presenting sources and relevant extracts.
This book features pregnant women, students and journalists; farmers and birdwatchers, ex-wives, adolescent lovers - and dancing girls. All ordinary people or are they? In this collection of short stories, Margaret Atwood maps human motivation we scarcely know we have.
'Who're you working for then, Warshawski?' 'My cousin.' 'Boom Boom? He's dead.' 'I know. That's why I'm working for him.' Boom Boom's body was found floating near the docks, chewed up and spat out by a ship's propeller. More like brother and sister than cousins, Vic and Boom Boom looked out for each other.
Boom Boom grew up to be an ice hockey hero, and Vic a private eye. And now V I Warshawski would like to know how, exactly, her cousin died...
Bingham, H (Edited by)
A woman reports a crime to the police, with unexpected results The grieving widow who finds that she's about to lose more than just her husband When a man attempts the perfect murder, it's not quite as easy as he thinks Two men in prison play a deadly game of Scrabble A young woman tries to trick an old man and gets more than she bargained for Sometimes crimes are solved in ways you can't explain A murderer about to be hanged finds that's not the worst thing that can happen You never know who's going to turn up at your door Original stories from Mark Billingham, Clare Mackintosh, James Oswald, Jane Casey, Angela Marsons, Harry Bingham, Antonia Hodgson and CL Taylor - specially written for Quick Reads.
Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine
• Winner of the Costa First Novel Award 2017
• Longlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction 2018
• No.1 Sunday Times bestseller
• Soon to be a major motion picture produced by Reese Witherspoon
Eleanor Oliphant has learned how to survive but not how to live
Eleanor Oliphant leads a simple life. She wears the same clothes to work every day, eats the same meal deal for lunch every day and buys the same two bottles of vodka to drink every weekend.
Eleanor Oliphant is happy. Nothing is missing from her carefully timetabled life. Except, sometimes, everything.
One simple act of kindness is about to shatter the walls Eleanor has built around herself. Now she must learn how to navigate the world that everyone else seems to take for granted while searching for the courage to face the dark corners she’s avoided all her life.
Change can be good. Change can be bad. But surely any change is better than fine?