Ryder, a renowned pianist, arrives in a Central European city he cannot identify for a concert he cannot remember agreeing to give. But then as he traverses a landscape by turns eerie and comical – and always strangely malleable, as a dream might be – he comes steadily to realise he is facing the most crucial performance of his life. Ishiguro’s extraordinary study of a man whose life has accelerated beyond his control was met on publication by consternation, vilification – and the highest praise.
Anthony Burgess - A Clockwork Orange
Fifteen-year-old Alex and his three friends start an evening's mayhem by hitting an old man, tearing up his books and stripping him of money and clothes. Or rather Alex and his three droogs tolchock an old veck, razrez his books, pull off his outer platties and take a malenky bit of cutter. For Alex's confessions are written in 'nadsat' - a teenage argot of a not-too-distant future. Because of his delinquent excesses, Alex is jailed and made subject to 'Ludovico's Technique', a chilling experiment in Reclamation Treatment... Horror farce? Social Prophecy? Penetrating study of human choice between good and evil? A Clockwork Orange is all three, dazzling proof of Anthony Burgess's vast talents.
Sylvia Plath - The Bell Jar
The first and only novel by Sylvia Plath, originally published in 1963. When Esther Greenwood wins an internship on a New York fashion magazine in 1953, she is elated, believing she will finally realise her dream to become a writer. Instead she finds herself spiralling into depression and eventually a suicide attempt, as she grapples with difficult relationships and a society which refuses to take women’s aspirations seriously.
Virginia Woolf - To the Lighthouse
This novel is an extraordinarily poignant evocation of a lost happiness that lives on in the memory. For years now the Ramsays have spent every summer in their holiday home in Scotland, and they expect these summers will go on forever. In this, her most autobiographical novel, Virginia Woolf captures the intensity of childhood longing and delight, and the shifting complexity of adult relationships. From an acute awareness of transcience, she creates an enduring work of art.
Kazuo Ishiguro - Never Let Me Go
From the Booker Prize-winning author of The Remains of the Day comes a devastating new novel of innocence, knowledge, and loss. As children Kathy, Ruth, and Tommy were students at Hailsham, an exclusive boarding school secluded in the English countryside. It was a place of mercurial cliques and mysterious rules where teachers were constantly reminding their charges of how special they were. Now, years later, Kathy is a young woman. Ruth and Tommy have reentered her life. And for the first time she is beginning to look back at their shared past and understand just what it is that makes them special–and how that gift will shape the rest of their time together. Suspenseful, moving, beautifully atmospheric, Never Let Me Go is another classic by the author of The Remains of the Day.
Yann Martel - Life of Pi
After the tragic sinking of a cargo ship, one solitary lifeboat remains bobbing on the wild, blue Pacific.The crew of the surviving vessel consists of a hyena, a zebra (with a broken leg), a female orang-utan, a 450-pound Royal Bengal tiger and Pi - a 16-year-old Indian boy.The scene is set for one of the most extraordinary pieces of literary fiction of recent years. Yann Martel's Life of Pi is a transformative novel, a dazzling work of imagination that will delight and astound readers in equal measure. It is a triumph of storytelling and a tale that will, as one character puts it, make you believe in God.
Kazuo Ishiguro - The Remains of the Day
It is the summer of 1956, and the ageing butler of Darlington Hall takes a rare holiday. But it is a journey that will also take him deep into his past. The Remains of the Day is a remarkable story: a man's exploration of his own life, and his heart-breaking attempt to make sense of it.
Haruki Murakami - Kafka on the Shore
Kafka on the Shore follows the fortunes of two remarkable characters. Kafka Tamura runs away from home at fifteen, under the shadow of his father's dark prophesy. The aging Nakata, tracker of lost cats, who never recovered from a bizarre childhood affliction, finds his pleasantly simplified life suddenly turned upside down. Their parallel odysseys are enriched throughout by vivid accomplices and mesmerising dramas. Cats converse with people; fish tumble from the sky; a ghostlike pimp deploys a Hegel-spouting girl of the night; a forest harbours soldiers apparently un-aged since WWII. There is a savage killing, but the identity of both victim and killer is a riddle. Murakami's new novel is at once a classic tale of quest, but it is also a bold exploration of mythic and contemporary taboos, of patricide, of mother-love, of sister-love. Above all it is an entertainment of a very high order.
Ian McEwan - Atonement
In this rich novel by the author of the Booker Prize-winning novel "Amsterdam", a young girl unwittingly tells a tale that turns her family upside down. Brilliant and utterly enthralling in its depiction of childhood, love and war, England and class, "Atonement" is at its center a profound--and profoundly moving--exploration of shame and forgiveness, of atonement and the difficulty of absolution.
Kazuo Ishiguro - An Artist of the Floating World
In the face of the misery he saw in his homeland, the bohemian artist Masuji Ono envisioned a strong and powerful Japan of the future and put his work in the service of the imperialist movement that led Japan into World War II. Now, as the mature Ono struggles through the devastation of that war, memories of his youth and of the "floating world" - the nocturnal realm of leisure, entertainment, and drink - offer him both escape and redemption, even as they punish him for betraying his early promise as an artist. Drifting in disgrace in postwar Japan, indicted by society for its defeat and reviled for his past aesthetics, he relives the personal history that makes him both a hero and a coward. "Kazuo Ishiguro is...not only a good writer but also a wonderful novelist." (New York Times Book Review)
Murakami Haruki - A kurblimadár krónikája I–III.
Tokió külvárosában egy Okada Toru nevű munka nélküli fiatalember először csak felesége elveszett macskája keresésére indul, idővel aztán rádöbben, hogy a felesége is elhagyta. A város békés felszíne alatt rejtőző föld alatti világba keveredve különös ismeretséget köt egy testvérpárral, akik a görög szigetvilág két tagjáról kapták a nevüket. A szomszédban lakó bolondos lány révén beavatást nyer a parókakészítés rejtelmeibe, egy nyugalmazott tiszt pedig a mandzsúriai háború tapasztalatait osztja meg vele. A zenekedvelő és rezignált Toru titokzatos állást vállal az inkognitójukat messzemenőkig őrző Szerecsendiónál és Fahéjnál, s eltűnt háziállatának és házastársának felkutatása miatt szó szerint sötét és mély kútba kell alászállnia. Murakami valóságot és misztikumot ötvöző regényének felzaklató történeteit az elbeszélés szenvtelen nyugalma ellensúlyozza, feszült kíváncsiságot ébresztve az olvasóban, aki az események sodrásának engedve képtelen letenni a könyvet. A lapok közül pedig minduntalan kihallatszik a világ mozgásban tartásáért felelős, láthatatlan kurblimadár hangja: gíííííííí...
J. D. Salinger - The Catcher in the Rye
Ever since it was first published in 1951, this novel has been the coming-of-age story against which all others are judged. Read and cherished by generations, the story of Holden Caulfield is truly one of America's literary treasures. Salinger's classic coming-of-age story portrays one young man's funny and poignant experiences with life, love, and sex.
Ernest Hemingway - Fiesta: The Sun Also Rises
Fiesta: The Sun Also Rises tells the story of Jake Barnes, an expatriate living in Paris. He was wounded in World War I, and is now a journalist who spends his time drinking with other American expatriates. The group of characters travel from Paris to Pamplona for the running of the bulls.
Virginia Woolf - Orlando / Mrs. Dalloway / To the Lighthouse
Gathered together in one volume, three of Virginia Woolf`s greatest novels. ORLANDO has lived as both a man and a woman through the centuries. Written as a tribute to Vita Sackville-West, this exuberant and entertaining novel is a unique contribution to twentieth-century literature. MRS DALLOWAY follows the toughts and memories of a fashionable society hostess during a single day in June as she prepares for a party that evening. As she takes her heroine through the day, Virginia Woolf breaks new ground in English fiction-writing. TO THE LIGHTHOUSE The Ramsay family and their guests are holidaying on the Isle of Skye. Virginia Woolf`s most celebrated novel explores, through the postponement of a visit to a nearby lighthouse, the complexities and tensions of family life.
Harper Lee - To Kill a Mockingbird
The unforgettable novel of a childhood in a sleepy Southern town and the crisis of conscience that rocked it, To Kill A Mockingbird became both an instant bestseller and a critical success when it was first published in 1960. It went on to win the Pulitzer Prize in 1961 and was later made into an Academy Award-winning film, also a classic. Compassionate, dramatic, and deeply moving, To Kill A Mockingbird takes readers to the roots of human behavior - to innocence and experience, kindness and cruelty, love and hatred, humor and pathos. Now with over 18 million copies in print and translated into forty languages, this regional story by a young Alabama woman claims universal appeal. Harper Lee always considered her book to be a simple love story. Today it is regarded as a masterpiece of American literature.
Yann Martel - Pi élete
Pi Patel különös fiú. Egyesek szerint (közéjük tartoznak a szülei is) bogaras. Tizenhat évesen elhatározza, hogy nemcsak hindu akar lenni (születésénél fogva az), hanem keresztény és moszlim is. És keresztül is viszi az akaratát: nemcsak hogy megkeresztelkedik, de beszerez egy imaszőnyeget is. Hősünknek már a neve is furcsa: keresztnevét - Piscine Molitor - egy párizsi uszodáról kapta. Iskolatársai persze Pisisnek csúfolják, mire ő lerövidíti a nevét, és a gyengébbek kedvéért felírja a táblára: π=3,14. Az is furcsa, hogy egy állatkertben lakik Pondicherry városában, amelynek apja a tulajdonosa és vezetője. És éppen itt kezdődnek a bajok: az állatkert nem jövedelmező - a család úgy dönt, hogy eladja az állományt, s átköltöznek Kanadába. Az Észak-Amerikába szánt példányok egy része velük utazik a Cimcum nevű teherhajón. A hajó egy éjszaka valahol a Csendes-óceán kellős közepén elsüllyed. Az egyetlen túlélő Pi Patel - valamint egy mentőcsónak-rakományra való állat: egy zebra, egy orangután, egy hiéna - és egy bengáli tigris! Kezdetét veszi a jámbor, vallásos és vegetáriánus Pi több mint kétszáz napos hányódása a végtelen vizeken. Vajon mennyi és miféle leleményességre van szükség ahhoz, hogy egy kamasz gyerek meg egy két és fél mázsás tigris kialakítson valamiféle békés egymás mellett élést? S ha ez sikerül is, honnan és hogyan szereznek ételt-italt ilyen hosszú időn át? Egyáltalán: mivel telhet ilyen hosszú idő a végtelen, de korántsem kihalt tengeren? Milyen kalandok, milyen élmények várnak rájuk? Meg lehet-e úszni ép ésszel az ilyesmit? A Spanyolországban született, Kanadában élő Yann Martel egy csapásra világhírű lett ezzel a lebilincselően izgalmas és fájdalmasan szép könyvvel, amellyel elnyerte a Booker-díjat is.
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.
Gabriel García Márquez - Love in the Time of Cholera
On the Caribbean coast at the dawn of the twentieth century hopeless romantic Florentino Ariza falls passionately for beautiful Fermina Daza - but tragically his love is rejected. Instead Fermina marries distinguished Dr. Juvenal, while Florentino can only forget her in the arms of other women. Yet fifty-one years, nine month and four days later, Florentino has an another chance to profess his enduring love for Fermina when her husband anexpectedly dies in a bizarre axcident. Can a love over half a century old remain unrequited?
Gabriel García Márquez - One Hundred Years of Solitude
One Hundred Years of Solitude tells the story of the rise and fall, birth and death of the mythical town of Macondo through the history of the Buendía family. Inventive, amusing, magnetic, sad, and alive with unforgettable men and women -- brimming with truth, compassion, and a lyrical magic that strikes the soul -- this novel is a masterpiece in the art of fiction.
David Foster Wallace - Infinite Jest
A gargantuan, mind-altering comedy about the Pursuit of Happiness in America Set in an addicts' halfway house and a tennis academy, and featuring the most endearingly screwed-up family to come along in recent fiction, Infinite Jest explores essential questions about what entertainment is and why it has come to so dominate our lives; about how our desire for entertainment affects our need to connect with other people; and about what the pleasures we choose say about who we are. Equal parts philosophical quest and screwball comedy, Infinite Jest bends every rule of fiction without sacrificing for a moment its own entertainment value. It is an exuberant, uniquely American exploration of the passions that make us human - and one of those rare books that renew the idea of what a novel can do.