ABC Book Club: Ten Classic Beach Reads

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The ABC Book Club Top Ten Classic Beach Reads, as voted by viewers, were announced on Tuesday night. Have you read all of these? 

1. Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie
About the book:
The tranquillity of a cruise along the Nile was shattered by the discovery that Linnet Ridgeway had been shot through the head. She was young, stylish and beautiful. A girl who had everything… until she lost her life.
Did you know?
Published in 1937 and still in print, this is the17th of 33 books featuring Hercule Poirot, the famous Belgian detective.
 2.The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
About the book:
This is the debut novel by Afghan-American author Khaled Hosseini.
It is the unforgettable, heartbreaking story of the unlikely friendship between a wealthy boy and the son of his father’s servant
Did you know?
 The author was rejected more than 30 times before finding a literary agent willing to take him on.The kite Runner has been made into a movie and a graphic novel. Khaled Hosseini has also since written two more New York Times bestselling novels  And the Mountains echoed and  A Thousand Splendid Suns.
3.  The Beach by Alex Garland
 About the book:
Richard, a gap-year student, is introduced to a beautiful island by the mysterious Daffy. But with drugs and the glamorized violence of Vietnam War films haunting his perception of his Thai paradise, Richard soon finds the hideaway becomes a nightmare.
 Did you know?
This cult debut novel was published to critical acclaim being reprinted 25 times in less than a year. Garland also wrote the screenplay for the film adaptation of the book called 28 days later.

4. The Shipping News  by Annie Proulx
About the book:
Quoyle, a third-rate newspaper hack, with a “head shaped like a crenshaw, no neck, reddish hair...features as bunched as kissed fingertips,” is wrenched violently out of his workaday life when his two-timing wife meets her just deserts. An aunt convinces Quoyle and his two emotionally disturbed daughters to return with her to the starkly beautiful coastal landscape of their ancestral home in Newfoundland. Here, on desolate Quoyle’s Point, in a house empty except for a few mementos of the family’s unsavory past, the battered members of three generations try to cobble up new lives.
Did you know?
This book won the 1994 Pulitzer Prize for fiction. Her short story Brokeback Mountain was released as a movie in 2005, to massive critical acclaim and winning three Academy Awards.

5. The world according to Garp by John Irving (request a copy via Interlibrary Loan).
About the book:
A tragi-comic novel, this is the life and times of T. S. Garp, the bastard son of Jenny Fields, a feminist leader ahead of her time. The  life and death of a famous mother and her almost-famous son.

Did you know?
With more than ten million copies in print, published in thirty languages in more than forty different countries, John Irving's fourth novel has been a worldwide best seller since its publication in 1978. 


6. The Secret History by Donna Tartt
About the book:
Under the influence of their charismatic classics professor, a group of clever, eccentric misfits at an elite New England college discover a way of thinking and living that is a world away from the humdrum existence of their contemporaries. But when they go beyond the boundaries of normal morality their lives are changed profoundly and for ever.
 Did you know?
This is the debut novel of Pulitzer Prize winning novelist Donna Tartt.
 7. My Family and other Animals by Gerald Durrell (Request a copy via Interlibrary Loan).
About the book:
A charming and comic autobiographical novel. Fleeing the gloomy British climate, the Durrell clan move to Corfu carrying the bare essentials of life: acne cures for Margo; revolvers for Leslie; books for Larry and a jam jar full of caterpillars for Gerry.
Did you know?
This book has been made into a movie. It is the first book in the Corfu Trilogy.  Gerald 'Gerry' Durrant OBE, was an author, naturalist, zookeeper, conservationist and television presenter.

8. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
About the book:
Just how well can you ever know the person you love? This is the question that Nick Dunne must ask himself on the morning of his fifth wedding anniversary, when his wife Amy suddenly disappears. The police immediately suspect Nick. Amy's friends reveal that she was afraid of him, that she kept secrets from him. He swears it isn't true. A police examination of his computer shows strange searches. He says they aren't his. And then there are the persistent calls on his mobile phone. So what really did happen to Nick's beautiful wife? And what was in that half-wrapped box left so casually on their marital bed? In this novel, marriage truly is the art of war...
Did you know?
This is Gillian Flynn's third novel, preceded by  Sharp Objects and Dark Places.



About the book:
The disappearance forty years ago of Harriet Vanger, a young scion of one of the wealthiest families in Sweden, gnaws at her octogenarian uncle, Henrik Vanger. He is determined to know the truth about what he believes was her murder. He hires crusading journalist Mikael Blomkvist, recently at the wrong end of a libel case, to get to the bottom of Harriet's disappearance. Lisbeth Salander, a twenty-four-year-old, pierced, tattooed genius hacker, possessed of the hard-earned wisdom of someone twice her age--and a terrifying capacity for ruthlessness--assists Blomkvist with the investigation. This unlikely team discovers a vein of nearly unfathomable iniquity running through the Vanger family, an astonishing corruption at the highest echelon of Swedish industrialism--and a surprising connection between themselves.
Did you know?
The first book in this trilogy was published in 2005, one year after the author Stieg Larsson’s death.
It received The Glass Key Award from Crime Writers of Scandinavia in 2006.
The Millennium Trilogy has together sold 60 million copies in more than 50 countries. 


10. The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough (Electronic
About the book:
The epic story of a priest torn between God and human passion and a beautiful girl desiring only what she cannot have, spanning five decades of ambition, fear, longing and revenge, and set against the vast horizons of Australia's Outback.
Did you know?
A global publishing phenomenon, this novel made Colleen McCullough, a neurophysicist, a multimillionaire overnight.



Want more? Find all thirty titles in the Library catalogue by searching under Classic Beach Reads 2014. 





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