Sometimes you don't want your book to take you somewhere dark. You might be looking for family drama, romance or plain escapism, but there will be something here to keep you entertained, whether that is curled up in winter with the rain lashing outside, or some mental diversion on your sunlounger on holidays.
This book got a little overlooked when published as a hardback because it was simply gigantic. I predict late success with the paperback, it has been longlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction and is a superb summer read.
MARILYN has somehow fallen into motherhood and spent four decades married to DAVID, who's pretty certain he loves her more than anyone has ever loved another person.
WENDY, their eldest, a cause for concern, soothes herself with drink after being widowed young, while VIOLET, lawyer-turned-stay-at-home-mother, is disturbed by the reappearance of a son placed for adoption fifteen years earlier. LIZA, a professor, is pregnant with a baby she's not sure she wants by a man she's not sure she loves and GRACE, their dawdling youngest daughter, lives a lie that no one in her family suspects. 'A gripping and poignant ode to a messy, loving family in all its glory' Madeline Miller, author of Circe and The Song of Achilles'
Everything about this brilliant debut cuts deep: the humor, the wisdom, the pathos' Rebecca Makkai
$13.00In a peaceful retirement village, four unlikely friends meet up once a week to investigate unsolved murders. But when a brutal killing takes place on their very doorstep, the Thursday Murder Club find themselves in the middle of their first live case.
Elizabeth, Joyce, Ibrahim and Ron might be pushing eighty but they still have a few tricks up their sleeves. Can our unorthodox but brilliant gang catch the killer before it's too late?The Times Crime Book of the MonthGuardian Best Crime and Thrillers----------'A warm, wise and witty warning never to underestimate the elderly' Val McDermid'I completely fell in love with it' Shari Lapena'This is properly brilliant. The pages fly and I can't stop smiling' Steve Cavanagh'Steeped in Agatha Christie joy' Araminta Hall'Pure escapism' Guardian
Love, mess, secrets; this story of four generations of women is shot through with Ruth Jones's warmth and wisdom.' JOJO MOYES'A hug in a book'
The funny, moving and uplifting new novel from Ruth Jones, co-creator of Gavin & Stacey and author of the Sunday Times bestsellers Never Greener and Us Three. Grace is about to turn ninety and she doesn't want parties or presents or fuss. She just wants a quiet celebration: her daily swim in the sea and a cup of tea with granddaughter Elin and great-granddaughter Beca.
More than anything, she wants to heal the family rift that's been breaking her heart for decades. And to do that she must find her daughter, Alys - the only person who can help to put things right. But thirty years is a long time.
And many words have been left unsaid. So is it too late now to heal the pain of the past?This is a story about mothers and daughters: the love inherent in that bond and the heartache that miscommunication can bring. More than anything, it's about the importance of being true to oneself.
A new novel from the wonderful Niall Williams ( History of the Rain, Four Letters of Love).
One of my favourite books of 2020 - Linda
Change is coming to Faha, a small Irish parish unaltered in a thousand years. For one thing, the rain is stopping. Nobody remembers when it started; rain on the western seaboard is a condition of living.
But now - just as Father Coffey proclaims the coming of the electricity - the rain clouds are lifting. Seventeen-year-old Noel Crowe is idling in the unexpected sunshine when Christy makes his first entrance into Faha, bringing secrets for which he needs to atone. Though he can't explain it, Noel knows right then: something has changed.
As the people of Faha anticipate the endlessly procrastinated advent of the electricity, and Noel navigates his own coming-of-age and his fallings in and out of love, Christy's past gradually comes to light, casting a new glow on a small world. Harking back to a simpler time, This Is Happiness is a tender portrait of a community - its idiosyncrasies and traditions, its paradoxes and kindnesses, its failures and triumphs - and a coming-of-age tale like no other. Luminous and lyrical, yet anchored by roots running deep into the earthy and everyday, it is about the power of stories: their invisible currents that run through all we do, writing and rewriting us, and the transforming light that they throw onto our world.
OLIVE & MABEL: two of the internet's favourite dogs!
ANDREW COTTER: one of our best-loved commentators.
In a year like no other, the antics of two beautiful Labradors, Olive and Mabel - along with hilarious commentaries by Andrew Cotter - lightened the darkest days of lockdown. With nearly 90 million views on social media, Olive and Mabel’s videos have resonated with dog lovers around the world.
Now, OLIVE, MABEL & ME tells the heart-warming story of Andrew's two famous Labradors. Olive - sensible, measured but always keen to roll in something she shouldn't. Mabel - endearing, slightly scatty but game for any adventure. Their star quality has taken the internet by storm and continues to give us all a much-needed treat in tough times.
Beautifully written, touching and laugh-out-loud funny, this is not only the story of Olive and Mabel but also the story of the love we have for our dogs and the boundless joy they bring us each and every day.
THE NO.1 NEW YORK TIMES & SUNDAY TIMES TOP TEN BESTSELLER
I am your maid. I know about your secrets. Your dirty laundry.
But what do you know about me? Molly the maid is all alone in the world. A nobody. She's used to being invisible in her job at the Regency Grand Hotel, plumping pillows and wiping away the grime, dust and secrets of the guests passing through.
She's just a maid - why should anyone take notice? But Molly is thrown into the spotlight when she discovers an infamous guest, Mr Black, very dead in his bed. This isn't a mess that can be easily cleaned up. And as Molly becomes embroiled in the hunt for the truth, following the clues whispering in the hallways of the Regency Grand, she discovers a power she never knew was there.
She's just a maid - but what can she see that others overlook? Escapist, charming and introducing a truly original heroine, The Maid is a story about how the truth isn't always black and white - it's found in the dirtier, grey areas in between . . .
$12.00Small town. Huge scandal.
Beverley Franklin will do whatever it takes to protect her local school's reputation. So when a scandal involving her own daughter threatens to derail the annual school musical's appearance on national television, Beverley goes into overdrive. But in her efforts to protect her daughter and keep the musical on track, she misses what's really going, both in her own house and in the insular Glass Lake community - with dramatic consequences.
Glass Lake primary school's reputation is about to be shattered... 'Eithne Shortall mixes humour and tragedy with a deftness reminiscent of Marian Keyes' Irish Times
Delaney never succumbs to cliche, but creates a vividly realised narrative in which you long for her characters to break free and triumph' OBSERVER'
I had dreams once, but never for anything as extravagant as happiness. Still, Auntie Bell and me have fresh cream cakes every Saturday. They're sweet enough to take the edge off. I hope they're enough to get me through being outed as a fraud.
Turns out, I'm more my missing mother's daughter than anyone first suspected. There was a time when Lindy Morris escaped to London and walked along the Thames in the moonlight. When life was full and exciting.
Decades later, Lindy lives back with her Auntie Bell on the edge: on the edge of Donegal and on the edge of Granda Morris's land. Granda Morris is a complicated man, a farmer who wanted sons but got two daughters: Auntie Bell and Lindy's mother, who disappeared long ago. Now, Lindy and Bell live the smallest of lives, in a cottage filled with unfulfilled dreams.
But when the secrets they have kept for thirty years emerge, everything is rewritten. Will Lindy grasp who she is again?
$13.00Chemist Elizabeth Zott is not your average woman. In fact, Elizabeth Zott would be the first to point out that there is no such thing.
But it's the early 1960s and her all-male team at Hastings Research Institute take a very unscientific view of equality. Except for one: Calvin Evans, the lonely, brilliant, Nobel-prize nominated grudge-holder who falls in love with - of all things - her mind. True chemistry results.
Like science, life is unpredictable. Which is why a few years later, Elizabeth Zott finds herself not only a single mother, but the reluctant star of America's most beloved cooking show, Supper at Six. Elizabeth's unusual approach to cooking ('combine one tablespoon acetic acid with a pinch of sodium chloride') proves revolutionary.
But as her following grows, not everyone is happy. Because as it turns out, Elizabeth Zott isn't just teaching women to cook. She's daring them to change the status quo.
$13.00Grandpa used to say it all the time: books have tremendous power. But what is that power really? Natsuki Books was a tiny second-hand bookshop on the edge of town. Inside, towering shelves reached the ceiling, every one crammed full of wonderful books.
Rintaro Natsuki loved this space that his grandfather had created. He spent many happy hours there, reading whatever he liked. It was the perfect refuge for a boy who tended to be something of a recluse.
After the death of his grandfather, Rintaro is devastated and alone. It seems he will have to close the shop. Then, a talking tabby cat called Tiger appears and asks Rintaro for help.
The cat needs a book lover to join him on a mission. This odd couple will go on three magical adventures to save books from people who have imprisoned, mistreated and betrayed them. Finally, there is one last rescue that Rintaro must attempt alone .
. . The Cat Who Saved Books is a heart-warming story about finding courage, caring for others - and the tremendous power of books. If you enjoyed Tales from the Cafe, and Before the Coffee Gets Cold, you will love this.
Sosuke Natsukawa's international bestseller, translated from Japanese by Louise Heal Kawai, is a story for those for whom books are so much more than words on paper.
$12.00One life-changing summer Charlie meets Fran... In 1997, Charlie Lewis is the kind of boy you don't remember in the school photograph. His exams have not gone well.
At home he is looking after his father, when surely it should be the other way round, and if he thinks about the future at all, it is with a kind of dread. Then Fran Fisher bursts into his life and despite himself, Charlie begins to hope. But if Charlie wants to be with Fran, he must take on a challenge that could lose him the respect of his friends and require him to become a different person.
He must join the Company. And if the Company sounds like a cult, the truth is even more appalling. The price of hope, it seems, is Shakespeare.
Poignant, funny, enchanting, devastating, Sweet Sorrow is a tragicomedy about the rocky path to adulthood and the confusion of family life, a celebration of the reviving power of friendship and that brief, searing explosion of first love that can only be looked at directly after it has burned out.
$25.00Every relationship has one beginning. This one has two endings.
Andy loves Jen. Jen loved Andy. And he can't work out why she stopped.
Now he is. . .
1. Without a home2. Waiting for his stand-up career to take off3.
Wondering why everyone else around him seems to have grown up while he wasn't lookingSet adrift on the sea of heartbreak at a time when everything he thought he knew about women, and flat-sharing, and his friendships has transformed beyond recognition, Andy clings to the idea of solving the puzzle of their broken relationship. Because if he can find the answer to that, then maybe Jen can find her way back to him. Andy still has a lot to learn, not least his ex-girlfriend's side of the story.
From the bestselling author of Ghosts and Everything I Know About Love: a sharply funny, beautifully observed and exquisitely relatable story of heartbreak and friendship, and how to survive both.
**Featured on BBC Radio 4 A Good Read**'
FROM THE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF THE UNMUMSY MUM.
Beth has never stuck at anything. She's quit more jobs and relationships than she can remember and she still sleeps in her childhood bedroom. It's not that she hasn't tried to grow up, it's just that so far, the only commitment she's held down is Friday drinks at the village pub. Then, in the space of a morning, her world changes.
An unspeakable tragedy turns Beth's life upside down, and she finds herself guardian to her teenage niece and toddler nephew, catapulted into an unfamiliar world of bedtime stories, parents' evenings and cuddly elephants. Having never been responsible for anyone - or anything - it's not long before she feels seriously out of her depth. What if she's simply not up to the job? With a little help from her best friend Jory (purely platonic, of course ...) and her lovely, lonely next-door neighbour, Albert, Beth is determined that this time she's not giving up.
It's time to step up. This is a story about digging deep for strength you never knew you had and finding magic in things that were there all along.
Toshikazu Kawaguchi's poignant Before We Say Goodbye, translated from Japanese, explores the age-old question: what would you do if you could travel back in time? More importantly, who would you want to meet, maybe for one last time?
The regulars at the magical Cafe Funiculi Funicula are well acquainted with its famous legend and extraordinary, secret menu time travel offering.
But the journey is not without risks and there are rules to follow. Travellers must have visited the cafe previously and most importantly, must return to the present in the time it takes for their coffee to go cold. In the tradition of Kawaguchi's sensational 'Before the Coffee Gets Cold' series, readers are be introduced to a new set of visitors:- The husband with something important left to say- The woman who couldn't bid her dog farewell- The woman who couldn't answer a proposal- The daughter who drove her father away .
Catch up on the rest of the series with Before the Coffee Gets Cold, Tales from the Cafe and Before Your Memory Fades.
Two sworn enemies. One failing hotel. Love is the last thing they need .
. . It's the busiest time of the year, and Forest Manor Hotel is quite literally falling apart.
So when sworn enemies Izzy and Lucas are given the same shift on the hotel's front desk, they have no choice but to put their differences aside. The hotel won't stay afloat without some sort of miracle. But when Izzy returns a guest's lost wedding ring, the reward convinces management this might fix everything.
With four rings still sitting in lost property, the race is on for Izzy and Lucas to save their beloved hotel - and their jobs. As their bitter rivalry turns into something much more complicated, Izzy and Lucas begin to wonder if there's more at stake here than the hotel's future. Can the two of them make it through the season with their hearts intact?'
Magical' Lindsey Kelk'Heart-warming, touching, sharp and sexy' Lia Louis'Gorgeous, evocative' Carley Fortune'Bursts with Beth's signature heart, wit, and charm' Amy Lea'
$13.00A heart-warming and hilarious novel about life, love, and the weight of all we leave unsaid, Duffy & Son is a quietly moving masterpiece from one of Ireland's most gifted comic writers. Eugene Duffy is turning 70; his son Jim is turning 40. For decades now, they've been running the family hardware shop and living in good-natured bachelor harmony.
But time is marching on, and with thoughts of old age weighing heavily on his mind, Eugene is growing increasingly concerned about his son's future. He resolves to help in the best way possible: by finding Jim a wife. And he's not going to let anyone - let alone Jim himself - stand in his way.
Reminiscent of Fredrik Backman's bestselling novel A Man Called Ove, Duffy and Son contains a likeable but curmudgeonly main character, wry humour, tremendous heart, as well as a strong sense of community
Will and Rosie meet as teenagers. They're opposites in every way.
She overthinks everything; he is her twin brother's wild and unpredictable friend. But over secret walks home and late-night phone calls, they become closer - destined to be one another's great love story. Until, one day, tragedy strikes, and their future together is shattered.
But as the years roll on, Will and Rosie can't help but find their way back to each other. Time and again, they come close to rekindling what might have been. What do you do when the one person you should forget is the one you just can't let go
'Spellbinding, beautiful, lyrical and tender...a dazzling debut.
I loved every word and was left longing for more' ROSIE WALSH, author of THE MAN WHO DIDN'T CALL
$13.00In a tiny flat in West London, sixteen-year-old Marina lives with her emotionally delicate mother and three ancient Hungarian relatives. Imprisoned by her family's crushing expectations and their traditions, she knows she must escape. At Combe Abbey, a traditional English private boarding school in the Dorset countryside, Marina realizes she's made a terrible mistake.
Here, among the boathouses, chapel services and unspoken social hierarchy, she is the awkward half-foreign girl who doesn't know how to fit in, flirt, or even exist. Meanwhile, her mother has her own painful secrets to deal with - especially the surprising return of the very last man she'd expect to see. And Marina's disastrous spiral at Combe Abbey is going unnoticed .
. . 'A deliciously funny tale of dysfunctional families.
$25.00This is a story about Peter Duke who went on to be a famous actor. This is a story about falling in love with Peter Duke who wasn't famous at all. It's about falling so wildly in love with him - the way one will at twenty-four - that it felt like jumping off a roof at midnight.
There was no way to foresee the mess it would come to in the end. It's spring and Lara's three grown daughters have returned to the family orchard. While picking cherries, they beg their mother to tell them the one story they've always longed to hear - of the film star with whom she shared a stage, and a romance, years before.
Tom Lake is a meditation on youthful love, married love, and the lives parents lead before their children are born. Both hopeful and elegiac, it explores what it means to be happy even when the world is falling apart. 'One of our greatest living chroniclers of love and marriage ...
$12.00Who are you?Emma loves her husband Leo and their young daughter Ruby: she'd do anything for them. But almost everything she's told them about herself is a lie. And she might just have got away with it, if it weren't for her husband's job.
Leo is an obituary writer and Emma is a well-known marine biologist, so, when she suffers a serious illness, Leo copes by doing what he knows best - reading and writing about her life. But as he starts to unravel her past, he discovers the woman he loves doesn't really exist. Even her name is fictitious.
When the very darkest moments of Emma's past life finally emerge, she must somehow prove to Leo that she really is the woman he always thought she was . . .
But first, she must tell him about the love of her other life. 'Stunning' Daily Mail'A winning combination of big emotions and didn't-see-that-coming twist' Good Housekeeping
Taylor Jenkins Reid captures all the sweat, rivalry and glamour of elite sport' THE TIMES'
Carrie Soto is the greatest player the world has ever seen. But six years after her last match, she watches a young British tennis player steal her world record - and Carrie knows she has to go back and reclaim her rightful place at the top.
Even if the world doesn't believe in her. Even if it almost breaks her. This is a story about the cost of greatness and the burden of fame.
The fight for a place in history is about to begin . . .
'It artfully combines the heady glamour of elite sport with questions about what happens when we find ourselves winning professionally, but losing personally' STYLIST'
$23.00The Rachel Incident is an all-consuming love story. But it's not the one you're expecting. It's unconventional and messy.
It's young and foolish. It's about losing and finding yourself. But it is always about love.
When Rachel falls in love with her married professor, Dr Byrne, her best friend James helps her devise a plan to seduce him. But what begins as a harmless crush soon pushes their friendship to its limits. Over the course of a year they will find their lives ever more entwined with the Byrnes' and be faced with impossible choices and a lie that can't be taken back...
'A deliciously complicated and very real romance with some refreshing twists. O'Donoghue captures all the intensity of messy young love' MAIL ON SUNDAY
A RADIO 4 BOOK AT BEDTIME - WINNER OF THE INTERNATIONAL DUBLIN LITERARY AWARD 2023
I really enjoyed this quirky little insight into the life of personal service - probably relatable for a range of doctors, therapists and beauty providers. Translated from German.
A woman approaching the 'invisible years' of middle age abandons her failing writing career to retrain as a chiropodist in the suburb of Marzahn, once the GDR's largest prefabricated housing estate, on the outskirts of Berlin. From her intimate vantage point at the foot of the clinic chair, she keenly observes her clients and co-workers, delving into their personal histories with all their quirks and vulnerabilities. Each story stands alone as a beautifully crafted vignette, told with humour and poignancy; together they form a nuanced and tender portrait of a community.
Part memoir, part collective history, Katja Oskamp's love letter to the inhabitants of Marzahn is a stunning reflection on life's progression and our ability to forge connections in the unlikeliest of places.
$13.00How differently the Geller sisters' lives would have turned out had C. J. Reynolds not been released from prison that February. .'Marti Geller is going to die soon, and she's hoping to take her secrets with her. To do this, Marti has stipulated in her will that the family's summer home on Mount Desert Island, Maine, must be sold as soon as possible.
This request comes as a shock to her three daughters, a trio of strong-minded women who are each hiding a secret of their own. For the eldest daughter, Beck, the Maine cottage is essential to her secret wish to write a novel, and selling is the last thing she wants to do. But recently divorced Claire is privately too preoccupied with an unrequited love to be concerned about the sale, while the youngest daughter, Sophie, would never admit to her sisters that she desperately needs the sale in order to survive.
While the sisters argue over the fate of their late mother's property, enigmatic southerner C.J. Reynolds, with his own troubled past, is released from prison and begins to travel to Mount Desert Island. As this seemingly unconnected group all head for the coast of Maine, nothing is as it seems.
And everything is about to change. . .
The new novel from New York Times bestselling author Therese Anne Fowler ( A Good Neighbourhood ) follows three sisters in the aftermath of the death of their matriarch, whose last request might change everything... Perfect for fans of Celeste Ng, Mary Beth Keane and Jodi Picoult.
$15.00In Happy-Go-Lucky, David Sedaris once again captures what is most unexpected, hilarious, and poignant about recent upheavals, personal and public, and expresses in precise language both the misanthropy and desire for connection that drive us all. If we must live in interesting times, there is no one better to chronicle them than the incomparable David Sedaris. 'Unquestionably the king of comic writing' HADLEY FREEMAN, Guardian
$20.00'I have a first-day rule. Any sign of trouble, even a whiff of a problem, and I walk.'Noelle is an efficient and friendly hotel cleaner, a model employee.
Or so she'd have you think. The trouble is that she can't help taking little 'souvenirs' as she cleans. Nothing of value, just tokens of happy, normal lives: a lipstick, a hair clip, some tweezers.
And by the time the guest has noticed, she's long gone. As she starts at her 21st hotel, she's determined to beat her record of one month in a five star hotel before suspicion falls on her. But when she meets her new colleagues, her plans are complicated.
These women aren't just hands pushing carts down lonely hotel corridors: they are women with lives full of happiness and worry, pain and joy. The kind of lives Noelle has never known how to live. They make her wonder what it might be like to have real friends, people to stick around for...
Will the women at Hotel 21 give her the courage to claim the life she deserves, or will her old habits come back to haunt her?Cosmopolitan's Best Books to Read this April. 'A fresh, funny and touching read about friendship, survival and the power of human connection. Beautifully drawn and wonderfully satisfying.
$20.00Pineapple Street in Brooklyn Heights is one of New York City's most desirable residences, and home to the glamorous and well-connected Stockton family . . .
Darley, the eldest daughter, has never had to worry about money. She followed her heart, trading her job and her inheritance for motherhood - but ended up sacrificing more of herself than she ever intended. Sasha is marrying into the wealthy Stockton family, who are worlds apart from her own.
She feels like the outsider, trying to navigate their impenetrable traditions and please her new mother-in-law - plus her hesitancy to sign a pre-nup has everyone questioning her true intentions. Georgiana, the youngest, is falling in love with someone she can't (and really shouldn't) have - and is forced to confront the kind of person she wants to be. Witty, escapist and full of heart, with an unmissable cast of loveable - if flawed - characters, Pineapple Street is a beautifully observed novel about the complexities of family dynamics, the miles between the haves and the have-notes, and the all-consuming insanity of first love - while also asking the age-old question, can money really buy you happiness?
For 13+ and adults like me who enjoy a good YA read!
Juliet believes girls like her - girls with arthritis - don't get their own love stories. She exists at the edges of her friends' social lives, skipping parties to play online chess under a pseudonym with strangers around the world. There, she isn't just 'the girl with crutches'.
Ronan is the new kid: good looking, smart, a bad boy plagued by guilt over what happened to his brother Ciaran. Chesslife is his escape. Juliet thinks Ronan thinks someone like Ronan could never be interested in someone like her - and she wouldn't want him to be anyway - he always acts like he's cooler than everyone else.
Little do they know they've already discovered each other online, and have more in common than they think . . .
$12.00Lindy Morris is stuck. She lives in rural Ireland, banished to a lonely bungalow by her Granda Morris, with only her Auntie Bell and the TV for company. But one day Lindy realises that life is not quite what she thought it was: her mother's disappearance and her own lost years need to be brought out into the light.
Suddenly Lindy is awake, uncovering the very secrets that will release her from her past. Told with devastating wit and poignancy, THE SAINT OF LOST THINGS is the triumphant story of an unlikely heroine as she makes her bid for freedom.
$20.00Keep your friends close and your neighbours closer... Ciara has it all - a loving husband, well-behaved children and an immaculate home.
But behind the filters, her reality is far from what it seems. Mishti is stuck in a loveless marriage, raising her daughter in a country that is too cold, among children who look nothing like her. Lauren is mostly happy, despite being judged for letting her kids run naked, wild and free.
Then Ciara is found murdered in her pristine home and suddenly everyone is a suspect. Hushed whispers, secret rendezvous and bloody betrayals . .
. Everyone has their dirty laundry, but this goes beyond gossip. This is all-out war.
A deliciously scandalous page-turner about the dark side of suburbia that peels back the layers of Ciara's insta-perfect life to reveal friendships gone rotten, manipulation masquerading as love and families riddled with lies . . .
-------------'Bose masterfully creates deeply drawn and utterly human characters in this powerful suspense debut'
Taylor's writing is sublime, effortlessly combining humour with pathos and spot-on period detail while sensitively exploring themes such as loss, grief, love and death.
Ten years on from the events of The Miseducation of Evie Epworth and Evie is settled in London working for the BBC. She has everything she's ever dreamed of (a career, a leatherette briefcase, an Ossie Clark poncho) but, following an unfortunate incident involving Princess Anne and a Hornsea Pottery mug, she finds herself having to rethink her life and piece together work, love, grief and multiple pairs of cork-soled platform sandals.
Ghosts from the past and the spirit of the future collide in a joyous adventure that sees Evie navigate the choppy waters of her messy twenties. Can a 1960s miseducation prepare her for the growing pains of the 1970s?
** Shortlisted for Popular Fiction Book of the Year - An Post Irish Book Awards **
A heart-warming and hilarious novel about life, love, and the weight of all we leave unsaid, Duffy & Son is a quietly moving masterpiece from one of Ireland's most gifted comic writers. Eugene Duffy is turning 70; his son Jim is turning 40. For decades now, they've been running the family hardware shop and living in good-natured bachelor harmony.
But time is marching on, and with thoughts of old age weighing heavily on his mind, Eugene is growing increasingly concerned about his son's future. He resolves to help in the best way possible: by finding Jim a wife. And he's not going to let anyone - let alone Jim himself - stand in his way.
Reminiscent of Fredrik Backman's bestselling novel A Man Called Ove, Duffy and Son contains a likeable but curmudgeonly main character, wry humour, tremendous heart, as well as a strong sense of community. It is a funny and heart-warming novel which celebrates the messiness of ordinary lives and would make a perfect reading group choice.
$20.00Like circles of a Venn diagram, Mimi and Art Brotherton have always come as a pair. Devoted siblings, they're bound together in their childhood home by the tragic death of their parents.
Art believes that people - including his sister - are incapable of making sensible decisions when it comes to love. That's what algorithms are for. Mimi knows that her brother is a mathematical genius.
But she believes that maths isn't the answer to everything. Not quite. Especially when it comes to love.
Still, when Mimi begins her search for a soulmate, Art's insistence that she follow a strict mathematical plan seems reasonable. The arrival of Frank, however - a romantic stargazer who is definitely not algorithm-approved - challenges the siblings' relationship to breaking point. As their equilibrium falters, Art's mistrust of Frank grows, but so do Mimi's feelings.
Something about Frank doesn't quite add up, and only Art can see it . . .
The Theory of (Not Quite) Everything by Kara Gnodde is a tender, intelligent and uplifting novel about brothers and sisters, true love in all its forms, and how life is more than just a numbers game . . .
$20.00They'll find you love even if they can't find it for themselves. April McVey hasn't a romantic bone in her body. So how has she found herself at the door of Mrs Hart's Marriage Bureau, job application in hand? Matchmaker Martha hopes the lively Irish girl will breathe fresh air into a business struggling to keep with the times amid the tumult of 1930s Britain.
So when lonely widower Fabian arrives at the bureau, the pair's matchmaking skills - and professionalism - meet their first true test. Mrs Hart's Marriage Bureau is a charming and witty romantic comedy about friendship, loneliness, and the unexpected places where we find fulfilment.
$12.00Canon Daniel Clement is Rector of Champton, where he lives alongside his widowed mother - opinionated, fearless, ever-so-slightly annoying Audrey - and his two dachshunds, Cosmo and Hilda.
When Daniel announces a plan to install a lavatory in the church, the parish is suddenly (and unexpectedly) divided: as lines are drawn, long-buried secrets come dangerously close to destroying the apparent calm of the village. And then Anthony Bowness - cousin to Bernard de Floures, patron of Champton - is found dead at the back of the church. As the police moves in and the bodies start piling up, Daniel is the only one who can try and keep his community together...
and catch a killer.
$12.00From the Sunday Times bestselling author of Saving Missy A mother. A daughter. A secret waiting to be uncovered.
The day that Delphine stands up for herself is the day that changes everything... For too long, Delphine has been unable to let go of the past, obsessed with protecting her daughter, Em, and clinging to a secret that has cast a shadow over their lives. When a chance encounter offers a way out, Delphine seizes it with both hands.
As their lives begins to fill with colour again, can she find the courage to change their lives forever? 'An uplifting story of second chances and the hope of human connection ... full of warmth and wit' The i paper 'A beautiful story of love in all its forms' Jessica Ryn 'Glorious and heartfelt ... full of hope, humour and kindness' Sarah Haywood
Jane Ions is such a naturally, genuinely funny writer. I hugely enjoyed her first book 'Domestic Bliss and Other Disasters' and this sequel, about the same crazy family, was just as good if not better. The central narrator, Sally, is so endearing as she tries to maintain dignity and control but her circumstances - unreasonable friends, a politician husband she hardly sees, a houseful of guests that gets added to just like that - militate against this. Some super narrative hooks at the beginning - Jen's confession that she MAY have murdered her husband, Sally's indiscreet revelations about 10 Downing Street shenanigans in a letter that has 'disappeared', and a growing attachment to Max at her history course - really kept me reading, but the strength of the writing itself did the same.
I loved your book which brightened up my life no end. I laughed out loud so hard that I frightened the cat. I think you are a wonderful writer. So few books that say they are funny actually are and yours is magnificent.' Cathy Rentzenbrink
Published by Bluemoose Books, one of my favourite small publishers. Watch out for their stuff!
$20.00Grace Adams is one bad day away from saving her life. One hot summer day, stuck in traffic on her way to pick up the cake for her daughter's sixteenth birthday party, Grace Adams snaps.
She doesn't scream or break something or cry. She simply abandons her car and walks away. But not from her life - towards it.
To the daughter who won't live with her anymore and has banned her from the party. To the husband divorcing her. Towards the terrible thing that has blown their family apart .
. . Today she'll show her daughter that no matter how far we fall we can always get back up again.
Because Grace Adams was amazing. Her husband and daughter once thought so. They and the world might have forgotten.
But Grace is about to remind them . . .
Amazing Grace Adams tells the story of a life, a marriage, a family, set against a single north-London day. A rollercoaster ride of redemption and discovery, it's a powerful celebration of womanhood. 'An absolute gut punch of a book that throbs with all the rage of a middle-aged woman who refuses to go quietly' RED 'Readers will relish the letting loose of one woman's long-suppressed righteous rage .
$11.00n twenty years behind the till in The Bookshop, Wigtown, Shaun Bythell has met pretty much every kind of customer there is - from the charming, erudite and deep-pocketed to the eccentric, flatulent and possibly larcenous. In Seven Kinds of People You Find in Bookshops he distils the essence of his experience into a warm, witty and quirky taxonomy of the book-loving public. So, step inside to meet the crafty Antiquarian, the shy and retiring Erotica Browser and gormless yet strangely likeable shop assistant Student Hugo - along with much loved bookseller favourites like the passionate Sci-Fi Fan, the voracious Railway Collector and the ever-elusive Perfect Customer.
$25.00Warm, wry and genuinely funny. Alice Ryan has a great ability to describe the nuances of people.' Marian KeyesA witty and warm debut novel from a young Irish writer. A story of family, grief, and the ways we come together when all seems lost.
Molly Black has disappeared. She's been flighty since her parents died, but this time - or so says her hastily written note - she's gone for good. That's why the whole Black clan - from Granny perched on the printer to Killian on Zoom from Sydney - is huddled together in the Dublin suburbs, arguing over what to do.
Former model Lady V presumes Molly's just off taking drugs and sleeping with strangers - which is fine by her. Cousin Anne, tired of living in Molly's shadow, is keeping quiet, and cousin Bobby is distracted by his own issues. But Molly's disappearance is eerily familiar to Uncle John.
He is determined never to lose anyone again. Especially not his niece, who is more like her mum than she realises. Praise for There's Been a Little Incident: 'Here is a story that takes on grief in its many insidious guises, and yet this brave, big-hearted novel is full of warmth and wisdom.