Max, Cassandra Leigh’s long-term partner, is handsome, charismatic, sophisticated – and married. Now he’s abandoned Cass for a year and taken his wife off to America, leaving her all alone in her dank little cottage. Cass always dreamed that one day she and Max would be married, but now she is waking up to reality like an elderly Sleeping Beauty and realising that not only is the prince missing, there isn’t even a half-way decent frog in the offing. Meanwhile, Jason, one of her oldest friends, has developed a worrying crush on her and she’s had an encounter of a closer kind than she bargained for with Dante Chase, the new owner of the U.K’s most ghost-infested manor house, a man even more haunted by his past than Cass is by hers. Now, the vicar wants to sell Cass off to the highest bidder at the local charity slave auction, and Max, Jason and Dante are each determined to bid for her. And somehow Cass knows that they’re all after more than a little light dusting.
Emma Tennant - Pemberley
As Jane Austen’s beloved novel Pride and Prejudice comes to a close, Elizabeth Bennet proudly announces her engagement to Mr. Darcy, boasting, “We are to be the happiest couple in the world.” But after the nuptials, can a marriage between two people as strong-willed as Elizabeth and Darcy survive? With all the wit and style of Jane Austen, Emma Tennant brilliantly imagines both the perils and pleasure of such a marriage. It’s now a year after the wedding, and the time has come for Elizabeth and Darcy to invite their families to visit Pemberley—but not without trepidation, for any gathering that includes both Mrs. Bennet and Lady Catherine de Bourgh must occasion gaffes and hurt feelings. And when Darcy becomes increasingly distant and Elizabeth falls prey to vicious gossip, the forces of pride and prejudice are at work once again in this “eminently enjoyable” continuation of Pride and Prejudice.
Kate Harrison - The Secret Shopper Unwrapped
Christmas is coming, and while the bells are ringing, the tills aren’t. But Sandie – the rising star of the retail spying world – is busier than ever, rooting out the best and worst in festive customer care through her company. The former Charlie’s Shopping Angels are helping out, too. Glamorous widow Grazia is going undercover under the duvet at boutique hotels, in between dating a succession of toyboys and trying to remember which lie she’s told about her age. Meanwhile, not-quite-yummy mummy Emily investigates the child-friendliness of the high street with the help of three-year-old Freddie, when she’s not working flat out with her partner to save their fledging village shop from the un-festive credit crunch. The shoppers are back, but is the happiness they’ve worked so hard for, about to disappear faster than a Louis Vuitton handbag in the Harrod’s sale?
Sarah Waters - Fingersmith
Fingersmith is the third slice of engrossing lesbian Victoriana from Sarah Waters. Although lighter and more melodramatic in tone than its predecessor Affinity, this hypnotic suspense novel is awash with all manner of gloomy Dickensian leitmotifs: pickpockets; orphans; grim prisons; lunatic asylums; „laughing villains” and, of course, „stolen fortunes and girls made out to be mad”. Oliver Twist (which is mentioned on the opening page), The Woman in White and The Prince and the Pauper all exert an influence on it but none overawe. Like Peter Ackroyd, Waters has an uncanny gift for inventive reconstruction. Divided into three parts, the tale is narrated by two orphaned girls whose lives are inextricably linked. It begins in a grimy thieves kitchen in Borough, South London with 17-year-old orphan Susan Trinder. She has been raised by Mrs Sucksby, a cockney Ma Baker, in a household of fingersmiths (pickpockets), coiners and burglars. One evening Richard „Gentleman” Rivers, a handsome confidence man, arrives. He has an elaborate scheme to defraud Maud Lilly, a wealthy heiress. If Sue will help him she'll get a share of the „shine”. Duly installed in the Lillys' country house as Maud's maid, Sue finds that her mistress is virtually a prisoner. Maud's eccentric Uncle Christopher, an obsessive collector of erotica (loosely modelled on Henry Spenser Ashbee) controls every aspect of her life. Slowly a curious intimacy develops between the two girls and as Gentleman's plans take shape, Sue begins to have doubts. The scheme is finally hatched but as Maud commences her narrative it suddenly becomes more than a tad difficult to tell quite who has double-crossed who. Waters' penchant for Byzantine plotting can get a bit exhausting but even at its densest moments–and remember this is smoggy London circa 1862–it remains mesmerising. A damning critique of Victorian moral and sexual hypocrisy, a gripping melodrama and a love story to boot, this book ingeniously reworks some truly classic themes.–Travis Elborough
Daphne du Maurier - Rebecca
Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again . . . Working as a lady's companion, the heroine of Rebecca learns her place. Life begins to look very bleak until, on a trip to the South of France, she meets Maxim de Winter, a handsome widower whose sudden proposal of marriage takes her by surprise. She accepts, but whisked from glamorous Monte Carlo to the ominous and brooding Manderley, the new Mrs de Winter finds Max a changed man. And the memory of his dead wife Rebecca is forever kept alive by the forbidding Mrs Danvers . . . Not since Jane Eyre has a heroine faced such difficulty with the Other Woman. An international bestseller that has never gone out of print, Rebecca is the haunting story of a young girl consumed by love and the struggle to find her identity.
Trisha Ashley - Every Woman For Herself
First comes marriage. Then comes divorce. Then it’s every woman for herself … Every Woman for Herself is a hilarious account of divorce and dating from Sunday Times besteller Trisha Ashley. Perfect for fans of Katie Fforde and Carole Matthews,the country setting and rom-com storyline make this the perfect summer paperback. When Charlie’s husband Matt tells her that he wants a divorce she has to start from scratch. Suddenly single, broke and approaching 40 she is forced to return to her childhood home in the Yorkshire moors. Living with her father and eccentric siblings could be considered a challenge but soon Charlie finds her new life somewhat refreshing. Now that she’s single she’s got no need to dye her roots nor to be the perfect wife and she can return to her first love- painting. But just as she begins to feel settled, handsome, bad-tempered actor Mace North moves in down the road and starts mixing things up for Charlie in more ways than one …
Muriel Spark - The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie
Romantic, heroic, comic and tragic, unconventional schoolmistress Jean Brodie has become an iconic figure in post-war fiction. Her glamour, freethinking ideas and manipulative charm hold dangerous sway over her girls at the Marcia Blaine Academy - the 'crème de la crème' - who become the Brodie Set, introduced to a privileged world of adult games that they will never forget.
Trisha Ashley - Twelve Days of Christmas
Christmas has always been a sad time for young widow Holly Brown, so when she's asked to look after a remote house on the Lancashire moors, the opportunity to hide herself away is irresistible -- the perfect excuse to forget about the festivities. Sculptor, Jude Martland, is determined that this year there will be no Christmas after his brother runs off with his fiancee and he is keen to avoid the family home. However, he will have to return by Twelfth Night, when the hamlet of Little Mumming hold their historic festivities and all of his family are required to attend. Meanwhile, Holly is finding that if she wants to avoid Christmas, she has come to the wrong place. When Jude unexpectedly returns on Christmas Eve he is far from delighted to discover that Holly seems to be holding the very family party he had hoped to avoid. Suddenly, the blizzards come out of nowhere and the whole village is snowed in. With no escape, Holly and Jude get much more than they bargained for -- it looks like the twelve days of Christmas are going to be very interesting indeed!
Trisha Ashley - Chocolate Wishes
Life is sweet for chocolate maker Chloe Lyon! In the picture-perfect Lancashire village of Sticklepond, Confectioner Chloe dispenses inspirational sweet treats containing a prediction for each customer. If only her own life was as easy to forecast - perhaps Chloe could have foreseen being jilted at the altar! But when a new Vicar arrives in the village, the rumour mill goes into overdrive. Not only is Raffy Sinclair the charismatic ex-front man of rock band 'Mortal Ruin', he's also the Chloe's first love and the man who broke her heart. Try as she might, Chloe can't ignore this blast from her past. Could now be the time for her to make a wish - and dare to believe it can come true? A charming novel for chocoholics everywhere, perfect for fans of Katie Fforde, Jill Mansell and Carole Matthews.
Trisha Ashley - Chocolate Shoes and Wedding Blues
When Tansy Poole inherits a run-down shoe shop tucked away in the village of Sticklepond, 'Cinderella's Slippers' is born - providing the footwear to make any fairytale wedding come true... Carrying everything a bride would want to walk down the aisle in, Tansy's shop soon expands to carry shoe-themed wedding favours, bridesmaid gifts and even delicious chocolate shoes. It's the dream destination for any shoe-lover! If only everything in her personal life could be as heavenly - but with a fiance trying to make her fit into a size 8 wedding dress, not to mention the recent discovery of disturbing family revelations, Tansy takes refuge in the shop's success. But one man isn't thrilled by the stream of customers hot-footing it to Cinderella's Slippers...Actor Ivo Hawksley, resident of the cottage next to the shop, is troubled by a dark secret in his past and has come to Sticklepond to nurse his own broken heart. However, Ivo realises that he and Tansy have a link in their past and soon, they both find out how secrets shared can make a very strong bond indeed... Forget the Jimmy Choos, _Chocolate Shoes and Wedding Blues_ is the only accessory you need for spring 2012...
Mary Shelley - Frankenstein (angol)
"Remarkably, a nineteen-year-old, writing her first novel, penned a tale that combines tragedy, morality, social commentary, and a thoughtful examination of the very nature of knowledge", writes Leslie S. Klinger. Mary Shelley's Frankenstein is often reductively dismissed as a monster film or a cautionary tale about experimental science gone haywire. Illuminating every hidden dimension of the "first truly modern myth", Klinger does for Shelley's story of early nineteenth-century horror what he did for Sherlock Holmes, Dracula and H.P. Lovecraft, bringing this gothic tale to nightmarish life by reproducing the original text with the most lavishly illustrated and comprehensively annotated edition to date.
Jenny Colgan - Christmas at Rosie Hopkins’ Sweetshop
Rosie Hopkins is looking forward to Christmas in the little Derbyshire village of Lipton, buried under a thick blanket of snow. Her sweetshop is festooned with striped candy canes, large tempting piles of Turkish Delight, crinkling selection boxes and happy, sticky children. She's going to be spending it with her boyfriend, Stephen, and her family, flying in from Australia. She can't wait. But when a tragedy strikes at the heart of their little community, all of Rosie's plans for the future seem to be blown apart. Can she build a life in Lipton? And is what's best for the sweetshop also what's best for Rosie? Treat yourself and your sweet-toothed friends to Jenny Colgan's heart-warming new novel. The irresistibly delicious recipes are guaranteed to get you into the festive spirit and will warm up your Christmas celebrations.
Iris Murdoch - The Sea, The Sea
Charles Arrowby, leading light of England's theatrical set, retires from glittering London to an isolated home by the sea. He plans to write a memoir about his great love affair with Clement Makin, his mentor, both professionally and personally, and amuse himself with Lizzie, an actress he has strung along for many years. None of his plans work out, and his memoir evolves into a riveting chronicle of the strange events and unexpected visitors-some real, some spectral-that disrupt his world and shake his oversized ego to its very core.
Kate Furnivall - Shadows on the Nile
'I'll find him. I will.' It's 1932 and 27-year-old Jessica is living London life to the full when her younger brother Tim, an ancient Egyptian archaeology expert, goes missing. Teaming up with Sir Montague Chamford - who can resist neither a damsel in distress nor the chance of adventure - Jessie vows to find her beloved brother. Following the clues Tim has left in his wake, Jessie and Monty head to Egypt. In the relentless heat of the desert, romance is kindled between them, but danger also lurks in every shadow. And then Jessie starts to wonder how much Monty really knows about her brother's disappearance . . . A dramatic story of adventure, excitement, love and romance can all be found in the SHADOWS ON THE NILE
Emily Brontë - Wuthering Heights
Is Mr. Heathcliff a man? If so, is he mad? And if not, is he a devil?' Heathcliff, an orphan, wild and unkempt, is taken in by Mr Earnshaw and raised as his son at Wuthering Heights on the bleak Yorkshire moors. He is drawn to Earnshaw's daughter Catherine, and as the pair grow up together they become bound by an intense and passionate love. But when Catherine's father dies, Heathcliff is condemned to servitude, and social disparity drives a wedge between them that will eventually become their downfall.
Kate Harrison - The Starter Marriage
Tess thought matrimony was for life, but her husband has decided that their marriage is the relationship equivalent of a starter home: cramped, claustrophobic and something he's definitely outgrown. Now, at thirty-five, Tess is in the biggest mess of her life. Known to all her friends as 'Tip Top Tess' because of her dogged pursuit of the perfect home, the perfect marriage and the perfect career, she's now a candidate for How Clean Is Your House? And it's all because Barney has walked out. But there's a life raft on the horizon: The Divorce Survival Class. It may be uncomfortable, overcrowded and nearly sinking under the weight of excess baggage, but it's a boot-camp for the broken-hearted. Over eight weeks, Tess and her battle-weary classmates will lay bare the darkest secrets of their failed marriages - from the thrills of a threesome to the monotony of monogamy. And course leader William, an alchemist for the unloved and rejected, will turn their lives around in truly spectacular style...
Joss Stirling - Finding Sky
When Sky catches a glimpse of Zed for the first time, lounging against his motorbike at school, she is drawn to him just like every other girl in Wickenridge. But Zed sees something special in her that the other girls don't have. Zed tells her they are both Savants - people with special powers like telepathy and the ability to see into the future. Not only that, she is a Savant too, and his soulfinder - meant to be together. When a soulfinder speaks telepathically to her partner, it's like all the lights coming on in a building. You lit me up like Vegas. But for Sky it's just not that easy - she's a mystery to herself, haunted by nightmares from her past before she was adopted, and riddled with doubt and insecurity. Just when Sky is slowly coming round to the idea of being with Zed she is kidnapped by a family of criminal Savants. In a chilling twist, Sky and Zed's relationship is put to the ultimate test and the fate of those she loves lie in Sky's hands. Will Sky have the strength to embrace her power and be brave enough to control her own destiny, or will the dark demons of her past prevent her from realising her true potential?
E. L. James - Fifty Shades Darker
Daunted by the singular sexual tastes and dark secrets of the beautiful, tormented young entrepreneur Christian Grey, Anastasia Steele has broken off their relationship to start a new career with a Seattle publishing house. But desire for Christian still dominates her every waking thought, and when he proposes a new arrangement, Anastasia cannot resist. They rekindle their searing sensual affair, and Anastasia learns more about the harrowing past of her damaged, driven and demanding Fifty Shades. While Christian wrestles with his inner demons, Anastasia must confront the anger and envy of the women who came before her, and make the most important decision of her life.
Nicholas Evans - The Horse Whisperer
In the still of a snow-covered morning in upstate New York, a girl out riding her horse is hit by a 40-ton truck. Though horribly injured, both thirteen-year-old Grace Maclean and her horse Pilgrim survive. But the impact on their lives and the lives of those who love them is devastating. Grace is the only child of a prominent New York magazine editor, Annie Graves, and her lawyer husband Robert. In a way which none of them at first understands, their destiny comes to depend upon Pilgrim's. So mutilated and traumatized is he that even the vet who saved his life now wishes he hadn't. Annie refuses to have him destroyed, sensing that if she does, something in Grace will die too. She hears about a man in Montana, a 'whisperer' who is said to have the gift of healing troubled horses. Abandoning her job, Annie sets off across the continent with Grace and Pilgrim to find him. The man's name is Tom Booker and he lives on the Rocky Mountain Front, a place of daunting beauty. Here, under the massive Montana sky, all their lives are changed forever.
E. L. James - Fifty Shades of Grey
When literature student Anastasia Steele is drafted to interview the successful young entrepreneur Christian Grey for her campus magazine, she finds him attractive, enigmatic and intimidating. Convinced their meeting went badly, she tries to put Grey out of her mind – until he happens to turn up at the out-of-town hardware store where she works part-time. The unworldly, innocent Ana is shocked to realize she wants this man, and when he warns her to keep her distance it only makes her more desperate to get close to him. Unable to resist Ana’s quiet beauty, wit, and independent spirit, Grey admits he wants her – but on his own terms. Shocked yet thrilled by Grey’s singular erotic tastes, Ana hesitates. For all the trappings of success – his multinational businesses, his vast wealth, his loving adoptive family – Grey is man tormented by demons and consumed by the need to control. When the couple embarks on a passionate, physical and daring affair, Ana learns more about her own dark desires, as well as the Christian Grey hidden away from public scrutiny. Can their relationship transcend physical passion? Will Ana find it in herself to submit to the self-indulgent Master? And if she does, will she still love what she finds? Erotic, amusing, and deeply moving, the Fifty Shades Trilogy is a tale that will obsess you, possess you, and stay with you forever.