The scene is the blue and white room in the house of the Misses Susan and Phoebe Throssel in Quality Street; and in this little country town there is a satisfaction about living in Quality Street which even religion cannot give. Through the bowed window at the back we have a glimpse of the street. It is pleasantly broad and grass-grown, and is linked to the outer world by one demure shop, whose door rings a bell every time it opens and shuts. Thus by merely peeping, every one in Quality Street can know at once who has been buying a Whimsy cake, and usually why. This bell is the most familiar sound of Quality Street. Now and again ladies pass in their pattens, a maid perhaps protecting them with an umbrella, for flakes of snow are falling discreetly. Gentlemen in the street are an event; but, see, just as we raise the curtain, there goes the recruiting sergeant to remind us that we are in the period of the Napoleonic wars. If he were to look in at the window of the blue and white room all the ladies there assembled would draw themselves up; they know him for a rude fellow who smiles at the approach of maiden ladies and continues to smile after they have passed. However, he lowers his head to-day so that they shall not see him, his present design being converse with the Misses Throssel’s maid.
J. M. Barrie - A Window in Thrums
On the bump of green round which the brae twists, at the top of the brae, and within cry of T'nowhead Farm, still stands a one-storey house, whose whitewashed walls, streaked with the discoloration that rain leaves, look yellow when the snow comes. In the old days the stiff ascent left Thrums behind, and where is now the making of a suburb was only a poor row of dwellings and a manse, with Hendry's cot to watch the brae. The house stood bare, without a shrub, in a garden whose paling did not go all the way round, the potato pit being only kept out of the road, that here sets off southward, by a broken dyke of stones and earth. On each side of the slate-coloured door was a window of knotted glass. Ropes were flung over the thatch to keep the roof on in wind.
J. M. Barrie - Tommy and Grizel
O.P. Pym, the colossal Pym, that vast and rolling figure, who never knew what he was to write about until he dipped grandly, an author in such demand that on the foggy evening which starts our story his publishers have had his boots removed lest he slip thoughtlessly round the corner before his work is done, as was the great man's way—shall we begin with him, or with Tommy, who has just arrived in London, carrying his little box and leading a lady by the hand? It was Pym, as we are about to see, who in the beginning held Tommy up to the public gaze, Pym who first noticed his remarkable indifference to female society, Pym who gave him——But alack! does no one remember Pym for himself? Is the king of the Penny Number already no more than a button that once upon a time kept Tommy's person together? And we are at the night when they first met! Let us hasten into Marylebone before little Tommy arrives and Pym is swallowed like an oyster.
Matt Haig - Reasons To Stay Alive
WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO FEEL TRULY ALIVE? Aged 24, Matt Haig's world caved in. He could see no way to go on living. This is the true story of how he came through crisis, triumphed over an illness that almost destroyed him and learned to live again. A moving, funny and joyous exploration of how to live better, love better and feel more alive, Reasons to Stay Alive is more than a memoir. It is a book about making the most of your time on earth. 'I wrote this book because the oldest clichés remain the truest. Time heals. The bottom of the valley never provides the clearest view. The tunnel does have light at the end of it, even if we haven't been able to see it . . . Words, just sometimes, really can set you free.'
Matt Haig - Echo Boy
Audrey's father taught her that to stay human in the modern world, she had to build a moat around herself; a moat of books and music, philosophy and dreams. A moat that makes Audrey different from the echoes: sophisticated, emotionless machines, built to resemble humans and to work for human masters. Daniel is an echo - but he's not like the others. He feels a connection with Audrey; a feeling Daniel knows he was never designed to have, and cannot explain. And when Audrey is placed in terrible danger, he's determined to save her. The Echo Boy is a powerful story about love, loss and what makes us truly human.
Susan Beth Pfeffer - Blood Wounds
Willa is lucky: She has a loving blended family that gets along. Not all families are so fortunate. But when a bloody crime takes place hundreds of miles away, it has an explosive effect on Willa’s peaceful life. The estranged father she hardly remembers has murdered his new wife and children, and is headed east toward Willa and her mother. Under police protection, Willa discovers that her mother has harbored secrets that are threatening to boil over. Has everything Willa believed about herself been a lie? As Willa sets out to untangle the mysteries of her past, she keeps her own secret—one that has the potential to tear her family apart.
Emily Ansara Baines - The Unofficial Downton Abbey Cookbook
Nibble on Sybil's Ginger Nut Biscuits during tea. Treat yourself to Ethel's Beloved Crepes Suzette. Feast on Mr. Bates' Chicken and Mushroom Pie with a room full of guests. With this collection of delicacies inspired by Emmy Award-winning series Downton Abbey, you'll feel as sophisticated and poised as the men and women of Downton when you prepare these upstairs and downstairs favorites. Each dish finds its roots within the kitchen of the grand estate, including: Mrs. Isobel Crawley's Smoked Salmon Tea Sandwiches Filet Mignon with Foie Gras and Truffle Sauce Walnut and Celery Salad with Pecorino Decadent Chocolate Almond Cake with Chocolate Sour Cream Icing Very Vanilla Rice Pudding You will love indulging in the splendors of another era with the snacks, entrees, and desserts from this masterpiece of a cookbook. As featured in Woman's World magazine and The Daily Mail UK!
Jodi Lynn Anderson - Peaches
Murphy McGowen has bright green eyes, a reputation as the wildest girl in Bridgewater, and a way of getting out of all the trouble she gets into. But when she's caught stealing from the Darlington Orchard, she's forced to repay her debt picking peaches in the hot Georgia sun. Leeda Cawley-Smith has professionally whitened teeth and the softest skin her boyfriend has ever touched. Unfortunately, Leeda's parents aren't too keen on her being touched anymore. Now Leeda's country-club summer is out the window -- she'll be getting a serious sock tan working at her uncle's peach orchard instead. Birdie Darlington used to dance around her family's orchard picking peaches for fun. But now that her parents are getting divorced, Birdie would rather spend the summer in the A/C eating Thin Mints than pick another peach -- too bad she doesn't have a choice. Thrown together at Darlington Orchard, Murphy, Leeda, and Birdie discover what it means to find a real soul mate, and that sometimes cute boys know a lot about peach cider. And, of course, they learn the trick to picking a perfect peach. One thing's for sure -- it's going to be a juicy summer.
Andy Clarke - Molly E. Holzschlag - Transcending CSS - The Fine Art of Web Design
As the Web evolves to incorporate new standards and the latest browsers offer new possibilities for creative design, the art of creating Web sites is also changing. Few Web designers are experiences programmers, and as a result, working with semantic markup and CSS can create roadblocks to achieving truly beautiful designs using all the resources available. Add to this the pressures of presenting exceptional design to clients and employers, without compromising efficient workflow, and the challenge deepens for those working in a fast-paced environment. As someone who understands these complexities firsthand, author and designer Andy Clarke offers visual designers a progressive approach to creating artistic, usable, and accessible sites using transcendent CSS. In this groundbreaking book, you’ll discover how to implement highly original designs through visual demonstrations of the creative possibilities using markup and CSS. You’ll learn to use a new design workflow, build prototypes that work well for designers and all team members, use grids effectively, visualize markup, and discover every phase of the transcendent design process, from working with the latest browsers to incorporating CSS3 to collaborating with team members effectively. Transcending CSS: The Fine Art of Web Design: Uses a visual approach to help you learn coding techniques Includes numerous examples of world-class Web sites, photography, and other inspirations that give designers ideas for visualizing their code Offers early previews of technical advances in new Web browsers and of the emerging CSS3 specification
Mercedes Lackey - The Fire Rose
Accepting a governess position in San Francisco after her father's death, Rosalind Hawkins is disturbed when her only contact with her new employer is through a speaking tube but finds joy in her assignment--to read wonderful literature to him.
Jennifer Bassett - Shirley Homes and the Lithuanian Case (Oxford Bookworms)
Shirley Homes is a private investigator. She is clever with computers, and knows London like the back of her hand. She laughs when people say, 'Was Sherlock Holmes your grandfather?' Sherlock Holmes, of course, was not a real person, but, like Sherlock, Shirley has good eyes, and good ears. And she knows the right questions to ask. And in the Lithuanian Case, the right questions are important. Because Shirley must find a missing person - Carrie Williams, aged fifteen. Where is she? Who is she with?
Mercedes Lackey - Beauty and the Werewolf
The eldest daughter is often doomed in fairy tales. But Bella—Isabella Beauchamps, daughter of a wealthy merchant—vows to escape the usual pitfalls. Anxious to avoid the traditional path, Bella dons a red cloak and ventures into the forbidden forest to consult with "Granny," the local wisewoman. But on the way home she's attacked by a wolf—who turns out to be a cursed nobleman. Secluded in his castle, Bella is torn between her family and this strange man who creates marvelous inventions and makes her laugh—when he isn't howling at the moon. Bella knows all too well that breaking spells is never easy. But a determined beauty, a wizard (after all, he's only an occasional werewolf) and a little Godmotherly interference might just be able to bring about a happy ending.
Mercedes Lackey - Take a thief
Mercedes Lackey's triumphant return to the best-selling world of Valdemar, Take a Thief reveals the untold story of Skif--a popular character from Lackey's first published novel, Arrows of the Queen.Skif was an orphan who would have died from malnutrition and exposure if he had never met Deke the pickpocket. By the time he was twelve, Skif was an accomplished cat burglar. But it wasn't until he decided to steal a finely tacked-out white horse, which was, oddly enough, standing unattended in the street, that this young thief discovered that the tables could turn on him--and that he himself could be stolen!
Mercedes Lackey - The Serpent's Shadow
From the magical mysteries of India to the gaslit streets of Victorian London, Mercedes Lackey's unique departure from her Valdemar series follows a young woman doctor as she searches for the secret behind the sorcery in her blood.
Mercedes Lackey - The Gates of Sleep
Marina is the cherished daughter of the wealthy Saverson family, practitioners of Elemental Magic. But all is not well in this elegant, aristocratic household. Evil portents have warned her father that Marina will be killed before her eighteenth birthday—by the hand of her own aunt. And no one is sure id the family magic is powerful enough to overturn the prophesy.
Mercedes Lackey - Phoenix and Ashes
Following her acclaimed novels The Serpent's Shadow and The Gates of Sleep, Mercedes Lackey reinvents a classic fairy tale-and gives it a new twist. In a dark and atmospheric retelling of Cinderella, she sets her story in London during the first World War.
Mercedes Lackey - The Wizard of London
The letter that introduced twelve-year-old Sarah Jane Lyon-White to Isabelle Harton, who ran the Harton School in central London, seemed quite simple and straightforward. But it was what was not written in the letter that resonated to Isabelle's own finely turned 'extra' senses - 'Sarah has gifts we cannot train,' the letter whispered to her, 'nor can anyone we know. Those we trust tell us that you can...'. And it was true, for the Harton School was far from ordinary. It was Isabelle's job to train children who possessed the odd types of magic that could not be trained by London's powerful Elemental Masters - clairvoyants, telepaths, those with the ability to sense hidden danger, the vision to see into the past, and even that rarest of all talents - the ability to see and communicate with the dead. But Isabelle was uneasy, for though she knew that Sarah Jane had a touch of telepathy, there seemed to be something else about the girl - something that had not yet manifested. And Isabelle was right to be worried, for as soon as Sarah's full talents became evident, there was an attempt made on her life. For Sarah was that rarest of magicians - a true medium, and for some reason, a powerful Elemental Master wanted her dead. Isabelle knew that to protect her ward she would have to seek help from the Elemental Masters of the city. That meant she would also see Lord David Alderscroft, the man she had once loved, but who had inexplicably chilled toward her and broken her heart long ago - for he was the leader of the city's Elemental Masters, the man who was now called the Wizard of London.
Mercedes Lackey - Reserved for the Cat
Based loosely on the tale of Puss in Boots, Reserved for the Cat takes place in 1910 in an alternate London. A young dancer, penniless and desperate, is sure she is going mad when a cat begins talking to her mind-to-mind. But her feline guide, actually an Elemental Earth Spirit, helps her to impersonate a famous Russian ballerina and achieve the success she's been dreaming of. Unfortunately she also attracts the attention of another Elemental Spirit? - a far more threatening one - and the young dancer must once again turn to her mysteriously powerful four-legged furry friend.
Mercedes Lackey - Unnatural Issue
Richard Whitestone is an Elemental Earth Master. Blaming himself for the death of his beloved wife in childbirth, he has sworn never to set eyes on his daughter, Suzanne. But when he finally sees her, a dark plan takes shape in his twisted mind--to use his daughter's body to bring back the spirit of his long-dead wife.
Peter Marshall - The Magic Circle of Rudolf II
udolf II-Habsburg heir, Holy Roman Emperor, king of Hungary, Germany, and the Romans-is one of history's great characters, and yet he remains largely an unknown figure. Via the lens of Renaissance Prague, Peter Marshall skillfully brings alive both Rudolf and his larger-than-life court in The Magic Circle of Rudolf II. Rudolf's reign (1576-1612) roughly mirrored that of Queen Elizabeth I of England, and while her famous court is widely recognized as a sixteenth century Who's Who, his collection of mathematicians, alchemists, artists, philosophers and astronomers-among them the greatest and most subversive minds of the time-was no less prestigious and perhaps even more influential. The revolutionary and sometimes heretical ideas of Rudolf's Magic Circle were the basis for monumental advances in the arts and sciences that would emerge in the coming decades. Driven to understand the deepest secrets of nature and the riddle of existence, Rudolf invited to his court an endless stream of genius without regard to faith or ethnicity-Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe, German mathematician Johannes Kepler, English magus John Dee and mannerist painter Giuseppe Archimboldo among many others. This collection of great minds was brought together in full view of the Inquisition and even for a Holy Roman Emperor, that was very dangerous ground. Rudolf believed himself to be exempt from these restrictions, however, and flaunted his Magic Circle in front of the Inquisition. Uninterested in the sectarian differences between Catholics and Protestants, he sought a universal cosmology based on truth, beauty and knowledge. No work, no language, no culture was considered out of bounds if Rudolf thought it would assist in his unending search for enlightenment. Prague, where Rudolf based his court, became the artistic and scientific center of the known world-an island of intellectual tolerance between Catholicism, Protestantism, and Islam. Combining the wonders and architectural beauty of sixteenth century Prague with the larger-than-life characters of Rudolf's court, Peter Marshall provides an exciting new perspective on the pivotal moment of transition between medieval and modern, when the foundation was laid for the Scientific Revolution and the Enlightenment.
Isao Miura - The Sacred Blacksmith 1.
Like her father and grandfather before her, Cecily Campbell has entered the knighthood and joined the ranks of the Knight Guards of Houseman. Eager to do her heritage proud and defend her city, Cecily rushes to the marketplace to stop a madman from terrorizing the populace. She quickly realizes, however, that she is hopelessly outmatched and ill-prepared for an actual fight. A lone figure named Luke Ainsworth swoops to the rescue, a swordsman and blacksmith of much renown, who will repair the broken sword Cecily has inherited from her father and take her down a road of perilous adventure beyond her wildest dreams.