Looking for a good book? Staff favourites, week four.

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The girl with all the gifts/ M. L. Carey
Not every gift is a blessing. Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class. When they come for her, Sergeant Parks keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don't like her. She jokes that she won't bite. But they don't laugh. Melanie is a very special girl.


Readalikes:
The passage / Justin Cronin
The Chrysalids/ John Wyndham
The Stand/ Stephen King

The golden age/ Joan London
Thirteen-year-old Frank, survivor of Nazi-occupied Hungary, is learning to walk again after contracting polio. In hospital, he befriends Sullivan, a poet, who inspires Frank with his love of words and how they can change a life.When Frank is moved to The Golden Age, the polio convalescent home, he enters a little world that reflects the larger one, where everything occurs: love and desire, death and poetry. Where children must learn that they're alone, even within their families. Then one day Frank sees twelve-year-old Elsa in the Girls' ward, and they quickly form a forbidden, passionate bond.

Readalikes:
In the shadow of the Banyan/ Vaddey Ratner
The Lowland/ Jhumpa Lahiri

A house without windows/ Nadia Hashimi

 For two decades, Zeba was a loving wife, a patient mother, and a peaceful villager. But her quiet life is shattered when her husband, Kamal, is found brutally murdered with a hatchet in the courtyard of their home. Nearly catatonic with shock, Zeba is unable to account for her whereabouts at the time of his death. Barely escaping a vengeful mob, Zeba is arrested and jailed. As Zeba awaits trial, she meets a group of women whose own misfortunes have also led them to these bleak cells. Is Zeba a cold-blooded killer, these young women wonder, or has she been imprisoned, as they have been, for breaking some social rule? For these women, the prison is both a haven and a punishment. Removed from the harsh and unforgiving world outside, they form a lively and indelible sisterhood. Into this closed world comes Yusuf, Zeba's Afghan-born, American-raised lawyer, whose commitment to human rights and desire to help his motherland have brought him back. With the fate of this seemingly ordinary housewife in his hands, Yusuf discovers that, like Afghanistan itself, his client may not be at all what he imagines.

Readalikes:
A thousand splendid suns
The pearl that broke its shell/ Nadia Hashimi
A fort of nine towersQais Akbar Omar.

The lady in the lake / Raymond Chandler
Derace Kingsley's wife ran away to Mexico to get a quickie divorce and marry a Casanova-wannabe named Chris Lavery. Or so the note she left her husband insisted. Trouble is, when Philip Marlowe asks Lavery about it he denies everything and sends the private investigator packing with a flea lodged firmly in his ear. But when Marlowe next encounters Lavery, he's denying nothing - on account of the two bullet holes in his heart. Now Marlowe's on the trail of a killer, who leads him out of smoggy LA all the way to a murky mountain lake..

Readalikes:
The lady from Zagreb/ Phillip Kerr
The Chicago way/ Michael Harvey
Harry's World: A novel in five parts/ A. B Patterson

The Crane Wife/ Patrick Ness
One night, George Duncan - decent man, a good man - is woken by a noise in his garden. Impossibly, a great white crane has tumbled to earth, shot through its wing by an arrow. Unexpectedly moved, George helps the bird, and from the moment he watches it fly off, his life is transformed.

 Readalikes:
The buried giantKazuo Ishiguro
The ocean at the end of the lane/ Neil Gaiman
The bone clocks/ David Mitchell


The Alchemist/Paulo Coelho
A mystical story of Santiago, an Andalusian shepherd boy who yearns to travel in search of a worldly treasure. His quest will lead him to riches far different—and far more satisfying—than he ever imagined. Santiago's journey teaches us about the essential wisdom of listening to our hearts, of recognizing opportunity and learning to read the omens strewn along life's path, and, most importantly, to follow our dreams.

 Readalikes:
Soul mountain / Gao Xingjian ; translated from the Chinese by Mabel Lee
The five people you meet in heaven/ Mitch Albom
Siddhartha/ Herman Hesse

Want More? 
Looking for something new to read these holidays? Let the Library help! During January, fill in the reading profile form on the library website, tell us about the books you like and don't like and we'll suggest a personalised list of 3 books we think you'll love.


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