“I believe there is another man inside every man, a stranger . . .” writes Wilfred Leland James in the early pages of the riveting confession that makes up “1922,” the first in this pitch-black quartet of mesmerizing tales from Stephen King. For James, that stranger is awakened when his wife, Arlette, proposes selling off the family homestead and moving to Omaha, setting in motion a gruesome train of murder and madness.
In “Big Driver,” a cozy-mystery writer named Tess encounters the stranger along a back road in Massachusetts when she takes a shortcut home after a book-club engagement. Violated and left for dead, Tess plots a revenge that will bring her face-to-face with another stranger: the one inside herself.
“Fair Extension,” the shortest of these tales, is perhaps the nastiest and certainly the funniest. Making a deal with the devil not only saves Dave Streeter from a fatal cancer but provides rich recompense for a lifetime of resentment.
When her husband of more than twenty years is away on one of his business trips, Darcy Anderson looks for batteries in the garage. Her toe knocks up against a box under a worktable and she discovers the stranger inside her husband. It’s a horrifying discovery, rendered with bristling intensity, and it definitively ends a good marriage.
Like Different Seasons and Four Past Midnight, which generated such enduring films as The Shawshank Redemption and Stand by Me, Full Dark, No Stars proves Stephen King a master of the long story form.
Agatha Christie - By the Pricking of My Thumbs
In the nursing home where Tommy Beresford's aunt Ada now lives, fellow resident Mrs. Lancaster stirs up worry among those in charge with her bizarre, disjointed ramblings about 'your poor child' and 'something behind the fireplace'. Intrigued, Tommy and his wife Tuppence, who are now in their sixties, conduct an investigation that leads them down some dark and dangerous paths, and possibly into a confrontation with a child killer...
Agatha Christie - Dumb Witness
Everyone blamed Emily’s accident on a rubber ball left on the stairs by her frisky terrier. But the more she thought about her fall, the more convinced she became that someone was trying to kill her. On April 17th she wrote her suspicions in a letter to Hercule Poirot. Mysteriously he didn’t receive the letter until June 28th… by which time Emily was already dead… ‘One of Poirot’s most brilliant achievements.’ Glasgow Herald
Agatha Christie - The Pale Horse
To understand the strange events at The Pale Horse inn, Mark Easterbrook knew he had to begin at the beginning. But where exactly was the beginning? Was it the savage blow to the back of Father Gorman's head? Or the priest's visit, just minutes before, to a woman on her death bed? Or was there a deeper significance to the violent squabble which Mark Easterbrook had himself witnessed earlier?
Agatha Christie - 4.50 from Paddington
A friend of Miss Marple claims to have seen a murder committed on a passing train, but the police dismiss it, as no body has been found in the train or surrounding area, so the two women begin an investigation of their own.
Agatha Christie - A Pocket Full of Rye
When wealthy Rex Fortescue dies while having tea, the police are baffled. Mr. Fortescue died during his morning tea in his office and the diagnosis was that a poison, taxine - a poison found as a diterpene in berries of the yew tree - had killed him. His wife was the main suspect in the murder, until she also was murdered, after she drank tea laced with cyanide. Her lover, Vivian Dubois, was the suspect next, as well as just about everyone that knew the family. Going on the only clue, a pocket full of rye found on the victim, Miss Marple begins investigating. Marple realizes the murders are arranged according to the pattern of a childhood nursery rhyme, Sing a Song of Sixpence.
Agatha Christie - Cards on the Table
A facsimile first edition hardback of the Poirot book, introducing Ariadne Oliver in Christie’s exemplary ‘murder in a locked room’ scenario. Mr Shaitana was famous as a flamboyant party host. Nevertheless, he was a man of whom everybody was a little afraid. So, when he boasted to Poirot that he considered murder an art form, the detective had some reservations about accepting a party invitation to view Shaitana’s private collection. Indeed, what began as an absorbing evening of bridge was to turn into a more dangerous game altogether!
Agatha Christie - Partners in Crime
Tommy and Tuppence Beresford are restless for adventure, so when they are asked to take over Blunt's International Detective Agency, they leap at the chance. Their first case is a success - the triumphant recovery of a pink pearl. Other cases soon follow - a stabbing on Sunningdale golf course; cryptic messages in the personal columns of newspapers; and even a box of poisoned chocolates, But can they live up to their slogan of 'Any case solved in 24 hours'?
Agatha Christie - Peril at End House
Hercule Poirot’s relaxing holiday on the Cornish coast takes an unexpected turn when he meets young and pretty Nick Buckley. For it seems to Poirot that someone is trying to kill Nick and he determines that she needs his protection. But even hiding her away in a nursing home does not prevent another attempt on Nick’s life and Poirot has to resort to subterfuge and cunning to solve this tricky case.
J. K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone
Harry Potter is an ordinary boy who lives in a cupboard under the stairs at his Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon’s house, which he thinks is normal for someone like him who’s parents have been killed in a ‘car crash’. He is bullied by them and his fat, spoilt cousin Dudley, and lives a very unremarkable life with only the odd hiccup (like his hair growing back overnight!) to cause him much to think about. That is until an owl turns up with a letter addressed to Harry and all hell breaks loose! He is literally rescued by a world where nothing is as it seems and magic lessons are the order of the day. Read and find out how Harry discovers his true heritage at Hogwarts School of Wizardry and Witchcraft, the reason behind his parents mysterious death, who is out to kill him, and how he uncovers the most amazing secret of all time, the fabled Philosopher’s Stone! All this and muggles too. Now, what are they?? The Author: This is Jo’s first book and she has already written seven outlines for Harry’s further adventures at Hogwarts. She lives in Edinburgh.
Agatha Christie - Mrs. McGinty's Dead
Mrs McGinty dies from a brutal blow to the back of her head. Suspicion immediately falls on her shifty lodger, James Bentley, whose clothes reveal traces of the victim's blood and hair. Yet something is amiss: Bentley just doesn't look like a murderer. Poirot believes he can save the man from the gallows - what he doesn't realise is that his own life is now in great danger...
Stephen King - Under the Dome
On an entirely normal, beautiful fall day in Chester's Mill, Maine, the town is inexplicably and suddenly sealed off from the rest of the world by an invisible force field. Planes crash into it and fall from the sky in flaming wreckage, a gardener's hand is severed as "the dome" comes down on it, people running errands in the neighboring town are divided from their families, and cars explode on impact. No one can fathom what this barrier is, where it came from, and when--or if--it will go away. Dale Barbara, Iraq vet and now a short-order cook, finds himself teamed with a few intrepid citizens--town newspaper owner Julia Shumway, a physician's assistant at the hospital, a select-woman, and three brave kids. Against them stands Big Jim Rennie, a politician who will stop at nothing--even murder--to hold the reins of power, and his son, who is keeping a horrible secret in a dark pantry. But their main adversary is the Dome itself. Because time isn't just short. It's running out.
George R. R. Martin - A Storm of Swords: Blood and Gold
Reissued for September 2011 in B format. Split into two books for the paperback, the third volume in George R.R. Martin's superb and highly acclaimed epic fantasy A Song of Ice and Fire continues the richest, most exotic and mesmerising saga since The Lord of the Rings. The Seven Kingdoms are divided by revolt and blood feud, and winter approaches like an angry beast. Beyond the Northern borders, wildlings leave their villages to gather in the ice and stone wasteland of the Frostfangs. From there, the renegade Brother Mance Rayder will lead them South towards the Wall. Robb Stark wears his new-forged crown in the Kingdom of the North, but his defences are ranged against attack from the South, the land of House Stark's enemies the Lannisters. His sisters are trapped there, dead or likely yet to die, at the whim of the Lannister boy-king Joffrey or his depraved mother Cersei, regent of the Iron Throne. And Daenerys Stormborn will return to the land of her birth to avenge the murder of her father, the last Dragon King on the Iron Throne.
George R. R. Martin - A Storm of Swords
The third volume of the high fantasy saga that began with A Game of Thrones and continued in A Clash of Kings is one of the more rewarding examples of gigantism in contemporary fantasy. As Martin's richly imagined world slides closer to its 10-year winter, both the weather and the warfare worsen. In the north, King Joffrey of House Lannister sits uneasily on the Iron Throne. With the aid of a peasant wench, Jaime Lannister, the Kingslayer, escapes from jail in Riverrun. Jaime goes to the other youthful ruler, Robb Stark, to secure the release of Joffrey's prisoners, Robb's sisters Arya and Sansa Stark. Meanwhile, in the south, Queen Daenarys tries to assert her claim to the various thrones with an army of eunuchs, but discovers that she must choose between conquering more and ruling well what she has already taken. The complexity of characters such as Daenarys, Arya and the Kingslayer will keep readers turning even the vast number of pages contained in this volume, for the author, like Tolkien or Jordan, makes us care about their fates. Those two fantasy greats are also evoked by Martin's ability to convey such sensual experiences as the heat of wildfire, the chill of ice, the smell of the sea and the sheer gargantuan indigestibility of the medieval banquet at its most excessive. Perhaps this saga doesn't go as far beyond the previous bounds of high fantasy as some claim, but for most readers it certainly goes far enough to command their attention.
Mary Westmacott - The Burden
A superb novel of possessive love. Laura Franklin bitterly resented the arrival of her younger sister Shirley, an enchanting baby loved by all the family. But Laura's emotions towards her sister changed dramatically one night, when she vowed to protect her with all her strength and love. While Shirley longs for freedom and romance, Laura has to learn that loving can never be a one-sided affair, and the burden of her love for her sister has a dramatic effect on both their lives. A story of consequences when love turns to obsession Famous for her ingenious crime books and plays, Agatha Christie also wrote about crimes of the heart, six bittersweet and very personal novels, as compelling and memorable as the best of her work.
Agatha Christie - The Murder of Roger Ackroyd
Roger Ackroyd was a man who knew too much. He knew the woman he loved had poisoned her first husband. He knew someone was blackmailing her – and now he knew she had taken her own life with a drug overdose. The one thing he didn’t know was the identity of the mystery blackmailer… But the evening post brought Roger this last scrap of information. But before he’d finished reading the letter, Roger was dead – stabbed through the neck where he sat in his study… ‘A classic – the book has worthily earned its fame.’ Irish Independent
Agatha Christie - The Body in the Library
It's seven in the morning. The Bantrys wake to find the body of a young woman in their library. She is wearing evening dress and heavy make-up, which is now smeared across her cheeks. But who is she? How did she get there? And what is the connection with another dead girl, whose charred remains are later discovered in an abandoned quarry? The respectable Bantrys invite Jane Marple to solve the mystery... before tongues start to wag.
Agatha Christie - Lord Edgware Dies
Poirot had been present when Jane bragged of her plan to ‘get rid of’ her estranged husband. Now the monstrous man was dead. And yet the great Belgian detective couldn’t help feeling that he was being taken for a ride. After all, how could Jane have stabbed Lord Edgware to death in his library at exactly the same time she was seen dining with friends? And what could be her motive now that the aristocrat had finally granted her a divorce? ‘The whole case is a triumph of Poirot’s special qualities.’ Times Literary Supplement
Agatha Christie - The Thirteen Problems
The Tuesday Night Club gathers at Miss Marple’s house where the conversation turns to unsolved crimes… As each of her guests is mystified by the sinister tales they tell one another, there is a ruthless precision in Miss Marple’s pursuit of the killers…and a few surprises in store for ‘The Tuesday Night Club’. ‘The plots are so good that one marvels… most of them would have made a full-length thriller.’ Daily Mirror
Agatha Christie - Problem at Pollensa Bay
All great crime writers have their favourite creations. Similarly, every great sleuth has their own preferred method of deduction. Take the charming Parker Pyne, who relies upon an intuitive knowledge of human nature to solve the Problem at Pollensa Bay. Or Mr Satterthwaite, who seeks inspiration through his collaboration with the enigmatic Mr Quin in The Harlequin Tea Set mystery. Then, of course, there’s Poirot, whose measured analysis of motive and opportunity is tested to the full in Yellow Iris, when he receives an anonymous call about a matter of life and death… ‘The acknowledged queen of detective fiction.’ Observer
Agatha Christie - After the Funeral
When Cora is savagely murdered, the extraordinary remark she made the previous day at her brother funeral takes on a chilling significance. At the reading of Richard's will, Cora was clearly heard to say, "It's been hushed up very nicely, hasn't it...But he was murdered, wasn't he?" In desperation, the family solicitor turns to Hercule Poirot to unravel what happened next ...