I knew from the first couple of pages that Shades of Honorby Wendy Lindstrom was going to be a book I could sink my teeth into. It’s 1870, and the hero, Ranford Grayson, has just returned home to a small town in New York with his shy, damaged four year-old daughter. Little Rebecca’s mother is very plausibly out of the picture, and the child’s caregivers have been less than ideal – the first one, a beloved nanny, abandoned her to start her own family, and the second was an abuser. Ranford goes home to his mother and three younger brothers, knowing it will be best for Rebecca.
May 10: On this day in 1907 Kenneth Grahame wrote the first (or the first extant) of a series of letters to his son, Alastair, describing the Toad, Rat, Mole, and Badger adventures that eventually became the beloved children's classic The Wind in the Willows: "Have you heard about the Toad? He was never taken prisoner by brigands at all. It was all a horrid low trick of his…."
What's a talented writer to do when he's got new stories to set in a thoughtfully imagined world, fans are clamoring for an extension of a beloved series -- and the traditional publishing route to continuing the cycle is closed? Just a couple of decades or so ago, the answer to that question would have been simple: slink off into the sunset and develop a serious drinking habit. But nowadays the Internet and the spread of ebooks offers many a route to continued storytelling.
Certain canonical authors and their creations are so beloved that any new bit of Holy Text relating to them arrives with the force of welcome revelation. Such is the case with Dashiell Hammett's two story treatments, written prior to the films that eventually bore the titles After the Thin Man and Another Thin Man. These novellas deliver with parsimonious stylishness all the detective thrills that a diehard fan of Nick and Nora Charles could want.
Grieving the death of her beloved uncle and alienated from her family, 14-year-old June finds solace in an unexpected friendship. Love and compassion course through Carol Rifka Brunt's tender coming-of-age story with an elegiac, emotional resonance that reminds us of Marilynne Robinson's Housekeeping. A Discover Great New Writers selection.
A nation in name for only 150 years, Italy and her citizens nevertheless have a distinctive and beloved national character extending back for millennia -- a character beautifully captured in these evocative portraits by master photographer Leonard Freed, whose fifty-year career (he died in 2006) culminated in this album of a land and people whom he immediately fell in love with upon his first visit to New York's Little Italy.
This dark satire by Paul Theroux, beloved chronicler of travel and trains, tells the story of a small-town bank caper carried out by a trio of oldsters looking to do something patriotic. (The bank is run by a man they think might be a Communist.) Set in the strange Sixties, against the backdrop of war and the draft, and replete with quirky characters, this, Theroux's third novel, originally published in 1969, is an unusual work by a master storyteller.
By turns poignant and impassioned, Aria Minu-Sepehr's eloquent memoir, We Heard the Heavens Then, a Summer 2012 Discover Great New writers selection, captures the calamitous effects of political and social change on his family -- and their beloved country -- after the 1979 overthrow of the Shah, revealing a world rarely seen by outsiders. Here Minu-Sepehr talks about a childhood shaped by revolution, Iranian society, and more.
An Alzheimer’s researcher, mourning the death of his beloved wife, finds a set of index cards that challenge his memory of their marriage—and the nature of memory itself. Science and modern love are enfolded in a wonderfully assured first novel.
What's astonishing about this ingeniously crafted dual love story -- in which a mysterious letter prompts a young journalist to investigate the fate of an affair forty years in the past, changing her own life in the process -- is how swiftly and effortlessly Jojo Moyes pulls you in to this novel of lost memory and second chances. Like an afternoon spent watching a beloved old movie, made wonderfully new.
At the time of her death in 2010, beloved author Beryl Bainbridge was working on this rollicking tale of a young Englishwoman who, in 1968, joins a man on a cross-country road trip through a turbulent America. Bainbridge's long-time friend and editor, Brendan King, picked up where the author left off, based on her manuscript and notes. This farewell offers us just what readers of novels like The Bottle Factory Outing have longed for: Bainbridge's sparkling wit, nuanced characters, and an engrossing story.