Adult Summer Reading Club: Books to take you into 2015

 Immerse yourself in a long read...

Look at me by Jennifer Egan
A coolly mesmerizing intellectual thriller of identity and imposture.

At the start of this edgy and ambitiously multilayered novel, a fashion model named Charlotte Swenson emerges from a car accident in her Illinois hometown with her face so badly shattered that it takes eighty titanium screws to reassemble it. She returns to New York still beautiful but oddly unrecognizable, a virtual stranger in the world she once effortlessly occupied. With the surreal authority of a David Lynch, Jennifer Egan threads Charlotte's narrative with those of other casualties of our infatuation with the image. There's a deceptively plain teenaged girl embarking on a dangerous secret life, an alcoholic private eye, and an enigmatic stranger who changes names and accents as he prepares an apocalyptic blow against American society.

 2666 by Roberto Bolano
The epic novel that defined one of Latin America's greatest writers and his unique vision of the 20th century.

Santa Teresa, on the Mexico-US border, is an urban sprawl that draws in lost souls. Among them are three academics on the trail of a reclusive German author; a New York reporter on his first Mexican assignment; a widowed philosopher; and a police detective in love with an elusive older woman.
But there is darker side still to the town. It is an emblem of corruption, violence and decadence, and one from which, over the course of a decade, hundreds
 of women have mysteriously, often brutally, disappeared...

The son by Philip Meyer
An epic journey spanning a century and a half in Texas, America.

Eli McCullough was born in 1836, the year that the Republic of Texas was declared an independent
state. He was the first child of this new republic. Eight years later he and his brother are kidnapped. They are left with nothing, barely their lives, whilst Eli watches his sister being raped and killed.
Slowly he learns the ways and life of the Comanches as they battle to survive themselves against the incursions of the white settlers. But his progress within the tribe is matched by the tribe's own perilous journey, as an epidemic endangers their future. Eli is forced to leave the tribe and pursue his life elsewhere. He falls in love has children and becomes a Ranger working for the Government, but finds it hard to break his Comanche memories and ways. He lives to be 100 and tells his remarkable story.
Eli's son Peter McCullough endures the First World War and several Mexican attacks. His diaries tell of momentous and dangerous times as he tries to maintain the dynasty begun by his father, now named the Colonel.
At the age of eighty-six Jeanne Anne McCullough is the fifth richest woman in Texas, She has had a fall and is perilously close to death. She goes in and out of consciousness and tells her own history; battling to keep the family alive; battling to prevent the large-scale acquisitive oil companies from buying her land; battling to hold on to her largesse and her legacy.
Three stories of one family combine to produce nothing less than a standout epic of and for our time.

Tree of smoke by Denis Johnson
Tree of Smoke-the name given to a "psy op" that might or might not be hypothetical and might or might not be officially sanctioned-is Denis Johnson's most gripping, visionary and ambitious work to date.

Set in south-east Asia and the US, and spanning two decades, it ostensibly tells the story of Skip Sands, a CIA spy who may or may not be engaged in psychological operations against the Viet Cong-but also takes the reader on a surreal yet vivid journey, dipping in and out of characters lives to reveal fundamental truths at the heart of the human condition.

The Wind Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami
Japan's most highly regarded novelist now vaults into the first ranks of international fiction writers with this heroically imaginative novel, which is at once a detective story, an account of a disintegrating marriage, and an excavation of the buried secrets of World War II. 

In a Tokyo suburb a young man named Toru Okada searches for his wife's missing cat.  Soon he finds himself looking for his wife as well in a netherworld that lies beneath the placid surface of Tokyo.  As these searches intersect, Okada encounters a bizarre group of allies and antagonists: a psychic prostitute; a malevolent yet mediagenic politician; a cheerfully morbid sixteen-year-old-girl; and an aging war veteran who has been permanently changed by the hideous things he witnessed during Japan's forgotten campaign in Manchuria.

**Don't forget to to fill in an entry form and drop it into an entry box at any of the library branches for your chance to win an Adult Summer Reading Club weekly prize. 

Ten Book Tuesday...Bookends

The ending, "...and they all lived happily ever after" is just for fairy tales. Let's finish the year with some other unforgettable final paragraphs and closing lines from some classic novels.

"I wrote at the start that this was a record of hate, and walking there beside Henry towards the evening glass of beer, I found the one prayer that seemed to serve the winter mood: O God, You've done enough, You've robbed me of enough, I'm too tired and old to learn to love, leave me alone forever."

The End of the Affair by Graham Greene

"As I left China farther and farther behind, I looked out of the window and saw a great universe beyond the plane's silver wing. I took one more glance over my past life, then turned to the future. I was eager to embrace the world."

Wild Swans by Jung Chang

"And the ashes blew towards us with the salt wind from the sea."

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

"Are there any questions?"

The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood

''I never saw any of them again — except the cops. No way has yet been invented to say goodbye to them."

The Long Goodbye by Raymond Chandler

“Yes, she thought, laying down her brush in extreme fatigue, I have my vision.”

To the lighthouse by Virginia Woolf

"I am thinking of aurochs and angels, the secret of durable pigments, prophetic sonnets, the refuge of art. And this is the only immortality you and I may share, my Lolita."

Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

 "So in America when the sun goes down and I sit on the old broken-down river pier watching the long, long skies over New Jersey and sense all that raw land that rolls in one unbelievable huge bulge over to the West Coast, and all that road going, and all the people dreaming in the immensity of it, and in Iowa I know by now the children must be crying in the land where they let the children cry, and tonight the stars'll be out, and don't you know that God is Pooh Bear? the evening star must be drooping and shedding her sparkler dims on the prairie, which is just before the coming of complete night that blesses the earth, darkens all the rivers, cups the peaks and folds the final shore in, and nobody, nobody knows what's going to happen to anybody besides the forlorn rags of growing old, I think of Dean Moriarty, I even think of Old Dean Moriarty the father we never found, I think of Dean Moriarty."

On the road by Jack Kerouac

"Archie, for one, watched the mouse. He watched it stand very still for a second with a smug look as if it exepcted nothing less. He watched it scurry away, over his hand. He watched it dash along the table and through the hands of those who wished to pin it down. He watched it leap off the end and disappear through an air vent. Go on my son! thought Archie."

White Teeth by Zadie Smith

"In your rocking-chair, by your window dreaming, shall you long, alone. In your rocking-chair, by your window, shall you dream such happiness as you may never feel."

Sister Carrie by Theodore Dreiser

 To finish:

"So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past."

 The Great Gatsby by  F.Scott Fitzgerald

 The end. 

Adult Summer Reading Club: Best fiction books of 2014...

So many books, so little time...

Everything I never told you by Celeste Ng
"Lydia is dead. But they don't know this yet. So begins the story of this exquisite debut novel, about a Chinese American family living in 1970s small-town Ohio. Lydia is the favorite child of Marilyn and James Lee; their middle daughter, a girl who inherited her mother's bright blue eyes and her father's jet-black hair. Her parents are determined that Lydia will fulfill the dreams they were unable to pursue--in Marilyn's case that her daughter become a doctor rather than a homemaker, in James's case that Lydia be popular at school, a girl with a busy social life and the center of every party. When Lydia's body is found in the local lake, the delicate balancing act that has been keeping the Lee family together tumbles into chaos, forcing them to confront the long-kept secrets that have been slowly pulling them apart.

A man called Ove by Fredrik Backman ; translated from the Swedish by Henning Koch
There is something about Ove. At first sight, he is almost certainly the grumpiest man you will ever meet. He thinks himself surrounded by idiots - neighbours who can't reverse a trailer properly, joggers, shop assistants who talk in code, and the perpetrators of the vicious coup d'etat that ousted him as Chairman of the Residents' Association. He will persist in making his daily inspection rounds of the local streets. But isn't it rare, these days, to find such old-fashioned clarity of belief and deed? Such unswerving conviction about what the world should be, and a lifelong dedication to making it just so? In the end, you will see, there is something about Ove that is quite irresistible...

The memory book by Rowan Coleman
The name of your first-born. The face of your lover. Your age. Your address. What would happen if your memory of these began to fade? Is it possible to rebuild your life? Raise a family? Fall in love again? When Claire starts to write her Memory Book, she already knows that this scrapbook of mementos will soon be all her daughters and husband have of her. But how can she hold onto the past when her future is slipping through her fingers?

Closer than you think by Karen Rose
Deacon Novak has returned home. The experienced FBI Agent knows that his move to Cincinnati's Major Crime Enforcement Squad will be challenging, but the greater challenge will be saving his younger brother before he becomes the kind of criminal Deacon is chasing. Faith Corcoran has escaped her identity. Being a therapist to victims of sex crimes was rewarding, but her work with their offenders has jeopardized her life. Her move represents a chance to build a new life in the empty old house her grandmother has left her. What Faith doesn't know is that a killer has made the house his playground, taking girls into the basement and murdering them. And now Faith is about disturb his fun. With a murderer focused on her, Faith is going to have to put her trust in Deacon if she's going to survive. Because this killer is always closer than she thinks...The first in a brand new series and Karen Rose at her tense, tantalising and thrilling best.

How to be both by Ali Smith
Passionate, compassionate, vitally inventive and scrupulously playful, Ali Smith's novels are like nothing else. How to be Both is a novel all about art's versatility. Borrowing from painting's fresco technique to make an original literary double-take, it's a fast-moving genre-bending conversation between forms, times, truths and fictions. There's a renaissance artist of the 1460s. There's the child of a child of the 1960s. Two tales of love and injustice twist into a singular yarn where time gets timeless, structural gets playful, knowing gets mysterious, fictional gets real - and all life's givens get given a second chance.

After Darkness by Christine Piper
While working at a Japanese hospital in the pearling port of Broome, Dr Ibaraki is arrested as an enemy alien and sent to Loveday internment camp in a remote corner of South Australia. There, he learns to live among a group of men who are divided by culture and allegiance. As tensions at the isolated camp escalate, the doctor's long-held beliefs are thrown into question and he is forced to confront his dark past: the promise he made in Japan and its devastating consequences.

**Don't forget to to fill in an entry form and drop it into an entry box at any of the library branches for your chance to win an Adult Summer Reading Club weekly prize. 

Adult Summer Reading Club: Books to help you unwind and chill out...

Calm your frazzled nerves with a book!
According to the University of Sussex, just six minutes a day of reading 
can reduce your stress levels by two thirds. 

Landline by Rainbow Rowell
In New York Times bestselling author Rainbow Rowell's Landline, Georgie McCool knows her marriage is in trouble. That it's been in trouble for a long time. She still loves her husband, Neal, and Neal still loves her, deeply -- but that almost seems besides the point now. Maybe that was always besides the point. Two days before they're supposed to visit Neal's family in Omaha for Christmas, Georgie tells Neal that she can't go. She's a TV writer, and something's come up on her show; she has to stay in Los Angeles. She knows that Neal will be upset with her -- Neal is always a little upset with Georgie -- but she doesn't expect to him to pack up the kids and go home without her. When her husband and the kids leave for the airport, Georgie wonders if she's finally done it. If she's ruined everything. That night, Georgie discovers a way to communicate with Neal in the past. It's not time travel, not exactly, but she feels like she's been given an opportunity to fix her marriage before it starts. Is that what she's supposed to do? Or would Georgie and Neal be better off if their marriage never happened?

After noticing his identity has been stolen and used to create various social media accounts, a man with a troubled past, Paul O'Rourke, begins to wonder if his virtual alter ego is actually a better version of himself.

"Paul O'Rourke is a man made of contradictions: he loves the world, but doesn't know how to live in it. He's a Luddite addicted to his iPhone, a dentist with a nicotine habit, a rabid Red Sox fan devastated by their victories, and an atheist not quite willing to let go of God. Then someone begins to impersonate Paul online, and he watches in horror as a website, a Facebook page, and a Twitter account are created in his name. What begins as an outrageous violation of his privacy soon becomes something more soul-frightening: the possibility that the online "Paul" might be a better version of the real thing. As Paul's quest to learn why his identity has been stolen deepens, he is forced to confront his troubled past and his uncertain future in a life disturbingly split between the real and the virtual. At once laugh-out-loud funny about the absurdities of the modern world, and indelibly profound about the eternal questions of the meaning of life, love and truth, TO RISE AGAIN AT A DECENT HOUR is a deeply moving and constantly surprising tour de force"

On June 14th, 2007, the King and Prime Minister of Sweden went missing from a gala banquet at the Royal Castle. Later it was said that both had fallen ill: the truth is different. The real story starts much earlier, in 1961, with the birth of Nombeko Mayeki in a shack in Soweto. Nombeko was fated to grow up fast and die early in her poverty-stricken township. But Nombeko takes a different path. She finds work as a housecleaner and eventually makes her way up to the position of chief advisor, at the helm of one of the world's most secret projects. Here is where the story merges with, then diverges from reality. South Africa developed six nuclear missiles in the 1980s, then voluntarily dismantled them in 1994. This is a story about the seventh missile . . . the one that was never supposed to have existed. Nombeko Mayeki knows too much about it, and now she's on the run from both the South African justice and the most terrifying secret service in the world. She ends up in Sweden, which has transformed into a nuclear nation, and the fate of the world now lies in Nombeko's hands.

The Hundred Year House by Rebecca Makkai
Meet the Devohrs: Zee, a Marxist literary scholar who detests her parents' wealth but nevertheless finds herself living in their carriage house; Gracie, her mother, who claims she can tell your lot in life by looking at your teeth; and Bruce, her step-father, stockpiling supplies for the Y2K apocalypse and perpetually late for his tee time. Then there's Violet Devohr, Zee's great-grandmother, who they say took her own life somewhere in the vast house, and whose massive oil portrait still hangs in the dining room.
Violet's portrait was known to terrify the artists who resided at the house from the 1920s to the 1950s, when it served as the Laurelfield Arts Colony – and this is exactly the period Zee's husband, Doug, is interested in. An out-of-work academic whose only hope of a future position is securing a book deal, Doug is stalled on his biography of the poet Edwin Parfitt, once in residence at the colony. All he needs to get the book back on track – besides some motivation and self-esteem – is access to the colony records, rotting away in the attic for decades. But when Doug begins to poke around where he shouldn't, he finds Gracie guards the files with a strange ferocity, raising questions about what she might be hiding. The secrets of The Hundred-Year House would turn everything Doug and Zee think they know about her family on its head – that is, if they were to ever uncover them.

Lucky us by Amy Bloom
Forging a life together after being abandoned by their parents, half sisters Eva and Iris share decades in and out of the spotlight in golden-era Hollywood and mid-twentieth-century Long Island. My father's wife died. My mother said we should drive down to his place and see what might be in it for us. So begins the story of teenage half sisters Eva and Iris in this brilliantly written, deeply moving, and fantastically funny novel by the beloved and critically acclaimed author of Away. Disappointed by their families, Iris, the hopeful star, and Eva, the sidekick, journey across 1940s America in search of fame and fortune. Iris's ambitions take the sisters from small-town Ohio to an unexpected and sensuous Hollywood, across the America of Reinvention in a stolen station wagon, to the jazz clubs and golden mansions of Long Island. With their friends in high and low places, Iris and Eva stumble and shine through a landscape of big dreams, scandals, betrayals, and war. Filled with memorable characters and unexpected turns, Lucky Us is a thrilling and resonant novel about success and failure, good luck and bad, and the pleasures and inevitable perils of family life. From Brooklyn's beauty parlors to London's West End, these unforgettable people love, lie, cheat, and survive in this story of our fragile, absurd, heroic species.

Adult Summer Reading Club...Books you can read in one sitting...

There's only 8 sleeps 'til Christmas...
 Feeling like you have no time to read? Try a short story!

All my love by Loretta Hill et al. 

Fall head over heels for five hilarious and heartwarming tales of love and other misadventures. Stories include:
One little white lie / Loretta Hill -- Eliza's home / Rachael Herron -- Dr No Commitment / Virginia Taylor -- Anybody but him / Claire Baxter -- Captivation / Nicola Moriaty.

Heat and light by Ellen Van Neerven

Winner of the 2013 David Unaipon Award. In this award-winning work of fiction, Ellen van Neerven takes her readers on a journey that is mythical, mystical and still achingly real. Over three parts, she takes traditional storytelling and gives it a unique, contemporary twist. In 'Heat', we meet several generations of the Kresinger family and the legacy left by the mysterious Pearl. In 'Water', van Neerven offers a futuristic imagining of a people whose existence is under threat. While in 'Light', familial ties are challenged and characters are caught between a desire for freedom and a sense of belonging.

Stone Mattress by Margaret Atwood

The award-winning author of The Handmaid's Tale presents a collection of short stories that features such protagonists as a widowed writer who is guided by her late husband's voice and a woman whose genetic abnormality causes her to be mistaken for a vampire.

Merciless Gods by Christos Tsiolkas

Love, sex, death, family, friendship, betrayal, tenderness, sacrifice and revelation...This incendiary collection of stories from acclaimed bestselling international writer Christos Tsiolkas takes you deep into worlds both strange and familiar, and characters that will never let you go.

Bapo by Nicholas Jose
The title of Nicholas Jose's new collection of stories refers to an unusual kind of Chinese painting, that tricks the eye into thinking it sees a collage of fragments.Bapo means 'eight broken', where eight is a Chinese lucky number and 'broken' suggests that luck has run out, though there's another kind of luck in simply surviving and holding it all together, less glorious maybe, but not so bad in the long run. The stories feature a cast of characters, artists, diplomats, entrepreneurs, refugees, families at the crossroads. They are all held by the past in some way, its hope, idealism, romance, adventure - and aware of its susceptibility to corruption, disappointment or manipulation.

Figures of fear by Graham Masterton

Are you brave enough to discover what figures of fear haunt the imagination of the master of modern horror? From the beginning of history, men and women have been haunted by figures of fear and now, in his latest short story collection, award-winning horror writer Graham Masterton reveals the figures that haunt his own imagination...

      Only the animals by Ceridwan Dovey

Insightful and poignant, this is a collection of short stories, narrated by ten different animal souls. Each story is both innovative and memorable, with animals showing humans at their best and worst in well known recognisable situations of human conflict.

The best Australian short stories edited by Amanda Lohrey

In The Best Australian Stories 2014, author Amanda Lohrey selects the outstanding short fiction of the year. Featuring a diverse selection, with new and innovative voices alongside theestablished and familiar, this anthology celebrates the craft of storytelling and the perfect short story. Previous contributors include Kate Grenville, Tony Birch, David Malouf, Mandy Sayer, DBC Pierre, Frank Moorhouse, Peter Goldsworthy, Marion Halligan, Venero Armanno, Ryan O'Neill and Romy Ash.

**Don't forget to to fill in an entry form and drop it into an entry box at any of the library branches for your chance to win an Adult Summer Reading Club weekly prize. 

Ten Book Tuesday...looking for a good book? Try one of these!

The pearl that broke its shell by Nadia Hashimi
In Kabul, 2007, with a drug-addicted father and no broth
ers, Rahima and her sisters can only sporadically attend school, and can rarely leave the house. Their only hope lies in the ancient custom of bacha posh, which allows young Rahima to dress and be treated as a boy until she is of marriageable age. As a son, she can attend school, go to the market, and chaperone her older sisters.
But Rahima is not the first in her family to adopt this unusual custom. A century earlier, her great-great grandmother, Shekiba, left orphaned by an epidemic, saved herself and built a new life the same way.
Crisscrossing in time, The Pearl the Broke Its Shell interweaves the tales of these two women separated by a century who share similar destinies. But what will happen once Rahima is of marriageable age? Will Shekiba always live as a man? And if Rahima cannot adapt to life as a bride, how will she survive?

Lila by Marilynne Robinson
Lila, homeless and alone after years of roaming the countryside, steps inside a small-town Iowa church - the only available shelter from the rain-and ignites a romance and a debate that will reshape her life. She becomes the wife of a minister and widower, John Ames, and begins a new existence while trying to make sense of the days of suffering that preceded her newfound security. Neglected as a toddler, Lila was rescued by Doll, a canny young drifter, and brought up by her in a hardscrabble childhood of itinerant work. Together they crafted a life on the run, living hand-to-mouth with nothing but their sisterly bond and a lucky knife to protect them. But despite bouts of petty violence and moments of desperation, their shared life is laced with moments of joy and love. When Lila arrives in Gilead, she struggles to harmonize the life of her makeshift family and their days of hardship with the gentle worldview of her husband which paradoxically judges those she loves. Revisiting the beloved characters and setting of Marilynne Robinson's Pulitzer Prize-winning Gilead and Orange Prize-winning Home, Lila is a moving expression of the mysteries of existence.

The weight of blood by Laura McHugh
The Dane family's roots tangle deep in the Ozark Mountain town of Henbane, but that doesn't keep sixteen-year-old Lucy Dane from being treated like an outsider. Folks still whisper about her mother, a bewitching young stranger who inspired local myths when she vanished when Lucy was still a baby. Then one of Lucy's few friends, Cheri, is found murdered, and Lucy feels haunted by both women: by the mother she never knew and the friend she couldn't protect. And when she stumbles across Cheri's necklace in an abandoned trailer, she begins to suspect that Cheri's death could be linked to her mother's disappearance.

The good girl by Mary Kubica
Born to a prominent Chicago judge and his stifled socialite wife, Mia Dennett moves against the grain as a young inner-city art teacher. One night, Mia enters a bar to meet her on-again, off-again boyfriend. When he doesn't show, she unwisely leaves with an enigmatic stranger. With his smooth moves and modest wit, at first Colin Thatcher seems like a safe one-night stand. But following Colin home will turn out to be the worst mistake of Mia's life.

The museum of extraordinary things by Alice Hoffman
Coney Island, 1911: Coralie Sardie is the daughter of a self-proclaimed scientist and professor who acts as the impresario of The Museum of Extraordinary Things, a boardwalk freak show offering amazement and entertainment to the masses. An extraordinary swimmer, Coralie appears as the Mermaid alongside performers like the Wolfman, the Butterfly Girl,and a 100 year old turtle, in her father's "museum". She swims regularly in New York's Hudson River, and one night stumbles upon a striking young man alone in the woods photographing moon-lit trees. From that moment, Coralie knows her life will never be the same. The dashing photographer Coralie spies is Eddie Cohen, a Russian immigrant who has run away from his father's Lower East Side Orthodox community. As Eddie photographs the devastation on the streets of New York following the infamous Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, he becomes embroiled in the mystery behind a young woman's disappearance and the dispute between factory owners and labourers. In the tumultuous times that characterized life in New York between the world wars, Coralie and Eddie's lives come crashing together in Alice Hoffman's mesmerizing, imaginative, and romantic new novel.

All the light we cannot see by Anthony Doer
 Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History, where he works as the master of its thousands of locks. When she is six, Marie-Laure goes blind and her father builds a perfect miniature of their neighborhood so she can memorize it by touch and navigate her way home. When she is twelve, the Nazis occupy Paris and father and daughter flee to the walled citadel of Saint-Malo, where Marie-Laure’s reclusive great-uncle lives in a tall house by the sea. With them they carry what might be the museum’s most valuable and dangerous jewel.
In a mining town in Germany, the orphan Werner grows up with his younger sister, enchanted by a crude radio they find. Werner becomes an expert at building and fixing these crucial new instruments, a talent that wins him a place at a brutal academy for Hitler Youth, then a special assignment to track the resistance. More and more aware of the human cost of his intelligence, Werner travels through the heart of the war and, finally, into Saint-Malo, where his story and Marie-Laure’s converge.

City of stairs by Robert Jackson Bennett
An atmospheric and intrigue-filled novel of dead gods, buried histories, and a mysterious, protean city--from one of America's most acclaimed young SF writers.
The city of Bulikov once wielded the powers of the gods to conquer the world, enslaving and brutalizing millions—until its divine protectors were killed. Now Bulikov has become just another colonial outpost of the world's new geopolitical power, but the surreal landscape of the city itself—first shaped, now shattered, by the thousands of miracles its guardians once worked upon it—stands as a constant, haunting reminder of its former supremacy.
Into this broken city steps Shara Thivani. Officially, the unassuming young woman is just another junior diplomat sent by Bulikov's oppressors. Unofficially, she is one of her country's most accomplished spies, dispatched to catch a murderer. But as Shara pursues the killer, she starts to suspect that the beings who ruled this terrible place may not be as dead as they seem—and that Bulikov's cruel reign may not yet be over.

Bird box by Josh Malerman
In Bird Box, brilliantly imaginative debut author Josh Malerman captures an apocalyptic near-future world, where a mother and her two small children must make their way down a river, blindfolded. One wrong choice and they will die. And something is following them -- but is it man, animal, or monster? Within these tracks, Malerman, a professional musician, discusses his love of horror and invokes an ethereal and atmospheric experience in an homage to Orson Welles à la War of the Worlds.
Elizabeth is missing by Emma Healey
 Elizabeth is Missing, Emma Healey's stunning debut novel, introduces a mystery, an unsolved crime and one of the most unforgettable characters since Mark Haddon's Christopher. Meet Maud ...'Elizabeth is missing', reads the note in Maud's pocket in her own handwriting. Lately, Maud's been getting forgetful. She keeps buying peach slices when she has a cupboard full, forgets to drink the cups of tea she's made and writes notes to remind herself of things. But Maud is determined to discover what has happened to her friend, Elizabeth, and what it has to do with the unsolved disappearance of her sister Sukey, years back, just after the war. A fast-paced mystery with a wonderful leading character: Maud will make you laugh and cry, but she certainly won't be forgotten.

Eden by Candice Fox
The breath-taking new thriller from the author of Hades, winner of the Ned Kelly award for Best Debut Crime Novel. 'I fool myself that Eden has a heart – that she would at least have trouble killing me...'
Most police duos run on trust, loyalty, and the desire to see killers in court. But Detective Frank Bennett's partner, the enigmatic Eden Archer, has nothing to offer him but darkness and danger. She doesn't mind catching killers – but it's not the courthouse where her justice is served.
And now Eden is about to head undercover to find three missing girls. The only link between the victims is a remote farm where the desperate go to hide and blood falls more often than rain. For Frank, the priority is to keep his partner monitored 24/7 while she's there – but is it for Eden's protection, or to protect their suspects from her? 

Adult Summer Reading Club: Books you've been meaning to read...

It's always the long books that make a list like this... 

Game of thrones by George R R Martin (700+ pgs.)

Magic, mystery, intrigue, romance, and adventure fill these pages and transport us to a world unlike any we have ever experienced.

Start now, because you've got a lot of reading to do! Game of Thrones, the first volume in George R. R. Martin’s magnificent cycle of novels, A Song of Ice and Fire, is 700 pages. That's just the beginning. There are another four books in the series so far, including A Storm of swords (volume 3) and A Dance with Dragons (volume 5), both of which are in two parts. Some good news for fans, rumour has it that Volume Six, Winds of Winter is expected to be published in 2015.

Goldfinch by Donna Tartt (771 pgs.)

A mesmerizing, stay-up-all-night and tell-all-your-friends triumph, an old-fashioned story of loss and obsession, survival and self-invention, and the ruthless machinations of fate.

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize 2014.
Theo Decker, a 13-year-old New Yorker, miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don't know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his longing for his mother, he clings to the one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art. As an adult, Theo moves silkily between the drawing rooms of the rich and the dusty labyrinth of an antiques store where he works. He is alienated and in love--and at the center of a narrowing, ever more dangerous circle.

The narrow road to the deep north by Richard Flanagan

A novel of the cruelty of war, tenuousness of life and the impossibility of love.

Man Booker prize winner, 2014
August, 1943. In the despair of a Japanese POW camp on the Thai-Burma death railway, Australian surgeon Dorrigo Evans is haunted by his love affair with his uncle's young wife two years earlier. Struggling to save the men under his command from starvation, from cholera, from beatings, he receives a letter that will change his life forever. This savagely beautiful novel is a story about the many forms of love and death, of war and truth, as one man comes of age, prospers, only to discover all that he has lost.

A mesmerising mystery story about friendship from the internationally bestselling author of Norwegian Wood and 1Q84 

Tsukuru Tazaki had four best friends at school. By chance all of their names contained a colour. The two boys were called Akamatsu, meaning 'red pine', and Oumi, 'blue sea', while the girls' names were Shirane, 'white root', and Kurono, 'black field'. Tazaki was the only last name with no colour in it. One day Tsukuru Tazaki's friends announced that they didn't want to see him, or talk to him, ever again. Since that day Tsukuru has been floating through life, unable to form intimate connections with anyone. But then he meets Sara, who tells him that the time has come to find out what happened all those years ago.

 The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell

An up-all-night story that fluently mixes the super-natural, sci-fi, horror, social satire, and hearbreaking realism.

Following a terrible fight with her mother over her boyfriend, fifteen-year-old Holly Sykes slams the door on her family and her old life. But Holly is no typical teenage runaway: A sensitive child once contacted by voices she knew only as “the radio people,” Holly is a lightning rod for psychic phenomena. Now, as she wanders deeper into the English countryside, visions and coincidences reorder her reality until they assume the aura of a nightmare brought to life.
 For Holly has caught the attention of a cabal of dangerous mystics—and their enemies. But her lost weekend is merely the prelude to a shocking disappearance that leaves her family irrevocably scarred. This unsolved mystery will echo through every decade of Holly’s life, affecting all the people Holly loves—even the ones who are not yet born.

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