Aged thirteen, Theo Decker, son of a devoted mother and a reckless, largely absent father, survives an accident that otherwise tears his life apart. Alone and rudderless in New York, he is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. He is tormented by an unbearable longing for his mother, and down the years clings to the thing that most reminds him of her: a small, strangely captivating painting that ultimately draws him into the criminal underworld.
As he grows up, Theo learns to glide between the drawing rooms of the rich and the dusty antiques store where he works. He is alienated and in love - and his talisman, the painting, places him at the centre of a narrowing, ever more dangerous circle.
The Goldfinch is a haunted odyssey through present-day America and a drama of enthralling power. Combining unforgettably vivid characters and thrilling suspense, it is a beautiful, addictive triumph - a sweeping story of loss and obsession, of survival and self-invention, of the deepest mysteries of love, identity and fate.
"The most perfect of all the Dickens novels." – Virginia Woolf
Drawing on Charles Dickens's own, often difficult childhood, to create a compelling story of personal success, David Copperfield is edited with an introduction and notes by Jeremy Tambling in Penguin Classics.
David Copperfield is the story of a young man's adventures on his journey from an unhappy and impoverished childhood to the discovery of his vocation as a successful novelist. Among the gloriously vivid cast of characters he encounters are his tyrannical stepfather, Mr Murdstone; his brilliant, but ultimately unworthy school-friend James Steerforth; his formidable aunt, Betsey Trotwood; the eternally humble, yet treacherous Uriah Heep; frivolous, enchanting Dora Spenlow; and the magnificently impecunious Wilkins Micawber, one of literature's great comic creations.
In David Copperfield - the novel he described as his 'favourite child' - Dickens drew revealingly on his own experiences to create one of the most exuberant and enduringly popular works, filled with tragedy and comedy in equal measure. This edition uses the text of the first volume publication of 1850, and includes updated suggestions for further reading, original illustrations by 'Phiz', a revised chronology and expanded notes. In his new introduction, Jeremy Tambling discusses the novel's autobiographical elements, and its central themes of memory and identity.
Charles Dickens is one of the best-loved novelists in the English language, whose 200th anniversary was celebrated in 2012. His most famous books, including Oliver Twist, Great Expectations, A Tale of Two Cities, David Copperfield and The Pickwick Papers, have been adapted for stage and screen and read by millions.
Danny is only five years old, but in the words of old Mr Hallorann he is a 'shiner', aglow with psychic voltage.
When his father becomes caretaker of the Overlook Hotel, Danny's visions grow out of control. As winter closes in and blizzards cut them off, the hotel seems to develop a life of its own. It is meant to be empty. So who is the lady in Room 217 and who are the masked guests going up and down in the elevator? And why do the hedges shaped like animals seem so alive?
Somewhere, somehow, there is an evil force in the hotel - and that, too, is beginning to shine ...
In a world struggling back from the brink of apocalypse, life is harsh.
But for Elspeth Gordie, born with enhanced mental abilities, it is also dangerous.
Survival is only by secrecy and so she determines never to use her forbidden powers. But it is as if they have their own imperative and she is brought to the attention of the totalitarian Council that rules the Land.
Banished to the remote mountain institution of Obernewtyn, she must throw off her cloak of concealment and pit herself against those that would resurrect the terrible forces of the apocalypse. Only then will she learn most truly who and what she is ...
Elspeth is determined to uncover the plot and so, accompanied only by her cat, Maruman, embarks on a terrible adventure full of danger, the conclusion to which promises not just uncertainty about her safety but also that of many around her.
"When Hitler came to power I was in the bath. The wireless in the living room was turned up loud, but all that drifted down to me were waves of happy cheering, like a football match. It was Monday afternoon..."
Ruth Becker, defiant and cantankerous, is living out her days in the eastern suburbs of Sydney.
She has made an uneasy peace with the ghosts of her past - and a part of history that has been all but forgotten. Another lifetime away, it's 1939 and the world is going to war. Ernst Toller, self-doubting revolutionary and poet, sits in a New York hotel room settling up the account of his life.
When Toller's story arrives on Ruth's doorstep their shared past slips under her defences, and she's right back among them - those friends who predicted the brutality of the Nazis and gave everything they had to stop them. Those who were tested - and in some cases found wanting - in the face of hatred, of art, of love, and of history.
Based on real people and events, All That I Am is a masterful and exhilarating exploration of bravery and betrayal, of the risks and sacrifices some people make for their beliefs, and of heroism hidden in the most unexpected places.
With an introduction by Caitlin Moran
A dazzling urban satire of modern relationships?
An ironic, tragic insight into the demise of the nuclear family?
Or the confused ramblings of a pissed thirty-something?
As Bridget documents her struggles through the social minefield of her thirties and tries to weigh up the eternal question (Daniel Cleaver or Mark Darcy?), she turns for support to four indispensable friends: Shazzer, Jude, Tom and a bottle of chardonnay.
Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and winner of the Richard & Judy Best Read of the Year
"Souls cross ages like clouds cross skies . . ."
Six interlocking lives - one amazing adventure. In a narrative that circles the globe and reaches from the 19th century to a post-apocalyptic future, Cloud Atlas erases the boundaries of time, genre and language to offer an enthralling vision of humanity's will to power, and where it will lead us.
*Please note that the end of p39 and p40 are intentionally blank*
Tim Winton's Breath, winner of the Miles Franklin Literary Award, is a story about the wildness of youth and learning to live with its passing.
When paramedic Bruce Pike is called out to deal with another teenage adventure gone wrong, he knows better than his colleague, better than the kid's parents, what happened and how. Thirty years before, that dead boy could have been him.
A relentlessly gripping and deeply moving novel about the damage you do to yourself when you're young and think you're immortal.
The phenomenal international bestseller.
"Before you can fly, you have to be free..."
In a small, desperately poor village in north-east China, a young peasant boy sits at his rickety old school desk, more interested in the birds outside than in Chairman Mao's Red Book and the grand words it contains. But that day, some strange men come to his school - Madame Mao's cultural delegates. They are looking for young peasants to mould into faithful guards of Chairman Mao's great vision for China.
This is the true story of how that one moment in time, by the thinnest thread of a chance, changed the course of a small boy's life in ways that are beyond description. One day he would dance with some of the greatest ballet companies of the world. One day he would be a friend to a president and first lady, movie stars and the most influential people in America. One day he would become a star: Mao's last dancer, and the darling of the West.
Since its release in 2003, Mao's Last Dancer has sold over 500 000 copies and been turned into a major feature film. Like millions of other peasants' lives, it was a story that nearly vanished amidst revolution and chaos. It's a story of courage, a mother's love, a young boy's longing for freedom - a beautiful, rich account of an inspirational life, told with honesty, dignity and pride.
By the winner of the Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 2007, this is the story of a father and son walking alone through burned America, heading through the ravaged landscape to the coast.
The film directed by John Hillcoat, features an all-star cast including Viggo Mortensen, Charlize Theron, Guy Pearce and Robert Duvall, and introduces major talent, Kodi Smit McPhee, with a soundtrack by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis.
A work of such terrible beauty that you will struggle to look away. – The Times
So good that it will devour you, in parts. It is incandescent. – Daily Telegraph
You will read on, absolutely convinced, thrilled, mesmerised. All the modern novel can do is done here. – Guardian
The Poisonwood Bible tells the story of an American family in the Congo during a time of tremendous political and social upheaval.
The story is told by the wife and four daughters of Nathan Price, a fierce evangelical Baptist who takes his family and mission to the Belgian Congo in 1959. They carry with them all they believe they will need from home, but soon find that all of it - from garden seeds to Scripture - is calamitously transformed on African soil. This tale of one family's tragic undoing and remarkable reconstruction, over the course of three decades in postcolonial Africa, is set against one of history's most dramatic political parables.
The Poisonwood Bible dances between the darkly comic human failings and inspiring poetic justices of our times. In a compelling exploration of religion, conscience, imperialist arrogance, and the many paths to redemption, Barbara Kingsolver has written a novel of overwhelming power and passion.
This modern classic beautifully repackaged to tie-in with the paperback of Flight Behaviour.
Extra-special futuristic 3D edition! Each book comes with 3D glasses!
WITH INTRODUCTIONS BY MARGARET ATWOOD AND DAVID BRADSHAW
'One of the most important books to have been published since the war' – Daily Telegraph
Far in the future, the World Controllers have created the ideal society. Through clever use of genetic engineering, brainwashing and recreational sex and drugs all its members are happy consumers. Bernard Marx seems alone harbouring an ill-defined longing to break free. A visit to one of the few remaining Savage Reservations where the old, imperfect life still continues, may be the cure for his distress...
Huxley's ingenious fantasy of the future sheds a blazing light on the present and is considered to be his most enduring masterpiece.
One boy, one boat, one tiger . . .
After the tragic sinking of a cargo ship, a solitary lifeboat remains bobbing on the wild, blue Pacific. The only survivors from the wreck are a sixteen year-old boy named Pi, a hyena, a zebra (with a broken leg), a female orang-utan ? and a 450-pound Royal Bengal tiger. The scene is set for one of the most extraordinary and best-loved works of fiction in recent years.
Kevin Katchadourian killed seven of his fellow high-school students, a cafeteria worker and a teacher, shortly before his sixteenth birthday.
He is visited in prison by his mother, Eva, who narrates in a series of letters to her estranged husband Franklin, the story of Kevin's upbringing. A successful career woman, Eva is reluctant to forgo her independence and the life she shares with Franklin to become a mother.
Once Kevin is born, she experiences extreme alienation and dislike of Kevin as he grows up to become a spiteful and cruel child. When Kevin commits murder, Eva fears that her own shortcomings may have shaped what her son has become.
But how much is she to blame? And if it isn't her fault, why did he do it?
Grandma Poss uses her best bush magic to make Hush invisible.
But when Hush longs to be able to see herself again, the two possums must make their way across Australia to find the magic food that will make Hush visible once more.
For 30 years Possum Magic has captivated and enchanted children and adults alike. Mem Fox's lovable characters, little Hush and Grandma Poss, together with Julie Vivas' exquisite illustrations, weave a story of pure magic. Continuously in print since it was first published by Omnibus Books in 1983, Possum Magic has been embraced as a timeless Australian tale.
In mid-1970s urban India - a chaos of wretchedness on the streets and slogans in the offices - a chain of circumstances tosses four varied individuals together in one small flat.
Stubbornly independent Dina, widowed early, takes in Maneck, the college-aged son of a more prosperous childhood friend and, more reluctantly, Ishvar and Om, uncle and nephew tailors fleeing low-caste origins and astonishing hardships. The reader first learns the characters' separate, compelling histories of brief joys and abiding sorrows, then watches as barriers of class, suspicion, and politeness are gradually dissolved. Even more affecting than Mistry's depictions of squalor and grotesque injustice is his study of friendships emerging unexpectedly, naturally. The novel's coda is cruel and heart-wrenching but deeply honest.
"Plain women he regarded as he did the other severe facts of life, to be faced with philosophy and investigated by science..."
Dorothea is bright, beautiful and rebellious and has married the wrong man. Lydgate is the ambitious new doctor in town and has married the wrong woman.
Both of them long to make a positive difference in the world. But their stories do not proceed as expected and both they, and the other inhabitants of Middlemarch, must struggle to reconcile themselves to their fates and find their places in the world. Middlemarch contains all of life: the rich and the poor, the conventional and the radical, literature and science, politics and romance.
Eliot’s novel is a stunningly compelling insight into the human struggle to find contentment.
Here is the blue sheep, and here is the red sheep. Here is the bath sheep, and here is the bed sheep. But where is the green sheep?
Mem Fox and Judy Horacek take you on a wildly wonderful adventure in their rollicking search for the green sheep.
Mem has never owned a sheep, let alone a green one, but she does admit to having woolly thoughts from time to time.
Judy loves drawing things, especially sheep. This is her first flock.