Julian Fellowes's Belgravia is the story of a secret. A secret that unravels behind the porticoed doors of London's grandest postcode. Set in the 1840s, when the upper echelons of society began to rub shoulders with the emerging industrial nouveau riche, Belgravia is peopled by a rich cast of characters. But the story begins on the eve of the Battle of Waterloo in 1815. At the Duchess of Richmond's now legendary ball, one family's life will change forever.
London 1893: When Cora Seaborne and her son Francis reach Essex, rumours spread from further up the estuary that the mythical Essex Serpent, once said to roam the marshes claiming lives, has returned to the coastal parish of Aldwinter. Cora, a keen amateur naturalist is enthralled, convinced that it may be a previously undiscovered species. As she sets out on its trail she meets William Ransome, Aldwinter's vicar.
"An Authentic Voice"
The Clifton Chronicles is Jeffrey Archer's most ambitious work in four decades as an international best-selling author. The epic tale of Harry Clifton's life begins in 1920, with the chilling words, 'I was told that my father was killed in the war'. But it will be another twenty years before Harry discovers how his father really died, which will only lead him to question: who was his father?
Invictus is a gripping, authentic and exciting audiobook of the Roman army from best-selling author Simon Scarrow. Not to be missed by fans of Conn Iggulden and Bernard Cornwell. It is AD 54. The soldiers of the Roman army patrol a growing empire from the Mediterranean to the North Sea, from the Atlantic to the banks of the Nile. Rome brutally enforces its rule, and its legions are the most efficient and aggressive fighting force in the world.
"Best Scarrow yet"
Author of the National Book Award-winning All the Pretty Horses, Cormac McCarthy is one of the most provocative American stylists to emerge in the last century. The striking novel Blood Meridian offers an unflinching narrative of the brutality that accompanied the push west on the 1850s Texas frontier.
"Madness, Violence and Greed"
The brand-new novel in Bernard Cornwell's number one best-selling series on the making of England and the fate of his great hero, Uhtred of Bebbanburg. BBC2's major TV show The Last Kingdom is based on the first two novels in the series. From the day it was stolen from me, I had dreamed of recapturing Bebbanburg. The great fort was built on a rock that was almost an island; it was massive, it could be approached only on land by a single narrow track - and it was mine.
"Typical Cornwell historical drama"
Marie Laure lives with her father in Paris within walking distance of the Museum of Natural History where he works as the master of the locks (there are thousands of locks in the museum). When she is six, she goes blind, and her father builds her a model of their neighbourhood, every house, every manhole, so she can memorize it with her fingers and navigate the real streets with her feet and cane. When the Germans occupy Paris, father and daughter flee to Saint-Malo on the Brittany coast, where Marie-Laure's agoraphobic great uncle lives in a tall, narrow house by the sea wall.
"Great story, woeful narration"
When their father dies, Star D'Aplièse and her six sisters, all adopted by him from the four corners of the world, are left with few clues to their heritage. But Star - the most enigmatic of the sisters - is hesitant to step out of the safety of the close relationship she shares with her sister CeCe. In desperation, she decides to follow her first clue, which leads her to an antiquarian bookshop in London, and the start of a whole new world....
Beobrand is compelled by his brother's almost-certain murder to embark on a quest for revenge in the war-ravaged kingdoms of Northumbria. The land is rife with danger, as warlords vie for supremacy and dominion. In the battles for control of the region, new oaths are made and broken, and loyalties are tested to the limits. With no patronage and no experience, Beobrand must form his own allegiances and learn to fight with sword and shield. Relentless in pursuit of his enemies, he faces challenges which transform him from a boy to a man.
In 1886, a mysterious travelling circus becomes an international sensation. Open only at night, constructed entirely in black and white, Le Cirque des Rêves delights all who wander its circular paths and warm themselves at its bonfire. Although there are acrobats, fortune-tellers and contortionists, the Circus of Dreams is no conventional spectacle. Some tents contain clouds, some ice.
"A comic book in wolf's clothing"
What if you could go back in time and change the course of history?11.22.63, the date that Kennedy was shot - unless.... King takes his protagonist Jake Epping, a high school English teacher from Lisbon Falls, Maine, 2011, on a fascinating journey back to 1958 - from a world of mobile phones and iPods to a new world of Elvis and JFK, of Plymouth Fury cars and Lindy Hopping, of a troubled loner named Lee Harvey Oswald and a beautiful high school librarian named Sadie Dunhill who becomes the love of Jake's life.
The first book in a brand-new series, The Last Kingdom is set in England during the reign of King Alfred. Uhtred is an English boy, born into the aristocracy of ninth-century Northumbria. Orphaned at 10, he is captured and adopted by a Dane and taught the Viking ways. Yet Uhtred's fate is indissolubly bound up with Alfred, King of Wessex, who rules over the only English kingdom to survive the Danish assault. The struggle between the English and the Danes and the strife between christianity and paganism is the background to Uhtred's growing up.
"Fate is unstoppable"
On a hot July day in 1967, Odelle Bastien climbs the stone steps of the Skelton gallery in London, knowing that her life is about to change forever. Having struggled to find her place in the city since she arrived from Trinidad five years ago, she has been offered a job as a typist under the tutelage of the glamorous and enigmatic Marjorie Quick. Although Quick takes Odelle into her confidence and unlocks a potential she didn't know she had, she remains a mystery - no more so than when a lost masterpiece with a secret history is delivered to the gallery.
"A great book"
Having signed up for the US Army in the 1850s, aged barely 17, Thomas McNulty and his brother-in-arms, John Cole, go on to fight in the Indian wars and ultimately the Civil War. Orphans of terrible hardships themselves, despite the horrors they both see and are complicit in, they find these days to be vivid. Both an intensely poignant story of two men and the lives they are dealt and a fresh look at some of the most fateful years in America's past.
"What a wonderful book."
Ai-Ming tells the story of her family in revolutionary China, from the crowded teahouses in the first days of Chairman Mao's ascent to the events leading to the Beijing demonstrations of 1989. It is a history of revolutionary idealism, music and silence, in which three musicians - the shy and brilliant composer, Sparrow; the violin prodigy, Zhuli; and the enigmatic pianist, Kai - struggle during China's relentless Cultural Revolution to remain loyal to one another and to the music they have devoted their lives to.
"Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun"
Fighting in Sweden for an ambitious warlord, Sigurd Haraldarson and his small but loyal band of oath-sworn warriors are winning fame and reputation. But Sigurd knows that to take on his hated enemy, the oath breaker King Gorm - the man who betrayed his father, a man Sigurd has vowed to kill - he must earn riches enough to build an army.
Tudor England. Henry VIII is on the throne, but has no heir. Cardinal Wolsey is charged with securing his divorce. Into this atmosphere of distrust comes Thomas Cromwell - a man as ruthlessly ambitious in his wider politics as he is for himself. His reforming agenda is carried out in the grip of a self-interested parliament and a king who fluctuates between romantic passions and murderous rages.
"A worthy challenge."
The new novel in Bernard Cornwell's number-one best-selling series on the making of England and the fate of his great hero, Uhtred of Bebbanburg. BBC2's major autumn 2015 TV show The Last Kingdom is based on the first two books in the series. A fragile peace is about to be broken.... King Alfred's son, Edward, and formidable daughter, Æthelflaed, rule Wessex, Mercia and East Anglia. But all around the restless Northmen, eyeing the rich lands and wealthy churches, are mounting raids.
When Katherine of Aragon is brought to the Tudor court as a young bride, the oldest princess, Margaret, takes her measure. With one look each knows the other for a rival, an ally, a pawn, destined - with Margaret's younger sister, Mary - to a sisterhood unique in all the world. The three sisters will become the queens of England, Scotland, and France.
Winner of the British Book Awards, Book of the Year, 2005.
A murder in the silent, late night halls of the Louvre reveals a sinister plot to uncover a secret that has been protected by a clandestine society since the days of Christ. The victim is a high-ranking agent of this ancient society who, in the moments before his death, manages to leave gruesome clues at the scene that only his cryptographer daughter and her symbologist friend can untangle.
"The stressful car-ride to work?"
World War II is over, and former German intelligence officer Captain Gregor Reinhardt has returned to Berlin, having been hired back onto Berlin's police force. When a man is found slain, Reinhardt embarks on a gruesome investigation. It seems a serial killer is on the loose, and matters only escalate when it's discovered that one of the victims was the brother of a Nazi scientist.
When Russian soldiers invade Eastern Europe during WWII, they ravage the countryside and terrorize the people. After her mother is murdered, young Ludmelia Kudirka flees to the safety of the forest. Vowing vengeance, she joins the partisan resistance in a David-and-Goliath struggle against Stalin's mighty war machine. A Soviet military officer ordered to crush the Lithuanian resistance is enraged by Ludmelia's escape.
When bodies go missing from the cemetery, Lincoln and the Ministry of Curiosities investigate. But not Charlie. As a housemaid at Lichfield Towers, she doesn't get involved in ministry business. Instead she conducts investigations of her own. She searches for details about her real mother and makes inquiries into Lincoln's background. What she learns has the power to destroy the fragile trust they've built or bring them closer together.
Ellen Craft is property; in this case, of her half-sister Debra, to whom she was given as a wedding gift. The illegitimate daughter of a Georgia plantation owner and a house slave, she learned to hate her own image, which so closely resembled that of her "father": the same wiry build, the same blue eyes, and the same pale - indeed, lily-white - skin. Ellen lives a solitary life until she falls, unexpectedly, in love with a dark-skinned slave named William Craft, and together they devise a plan to run north.
Reina de los Angeles is being terrorized by a masked swordsman who marks the faces of his victims with Zorro's trademark Z. But is this the real Zorro? The governor of California offers a reward for the capture of Don Diego Vega (who is known to have previously been Zorro) dead or alive, while an army - led by the ruthless Captain Rocha - is in hot pursuit of the outlaw. Assisted by a coterie of allies and the native Cocopah tribe, Don Diego seeks to establish his innocence and unmask the evil imposter.
In the dying days of the Raj, Anglo-Indian schoolgirl Adela Robson dreams of a glamorous career on the stage. When she sneaks away from school in the back of handsome Sam Jackman's car, she knows a new life awaits - but it is not the one she imagined.
The summer of 1917 should have been a summer like any other. Stephen Robbins should have been doing the same thing he'd been doing for years past. As a young boy he'd fled his life in a secluded mountain cove and risen through the ranks to become the manager of the South's finest resort, the elegant Mountain Park Hotel. By all rights, he should have spent this summer as host to some of the wealthiest gentry on the East Coast. But war will change everything that should have been in that summer of 1917.
Lars Bonner rode into the little town of Rocky Canyon with the bodies of two outlaws tied across their horses. He is also returning the money the two had robbed from the town's bank. The town doesn't have a sheriff. It seems the last one to hold that positon left town without so much as a goodbye. At first it seems he will have nowhere to deliver the corpses in order to collect his bounty. However, the mayor who is also the banker agrees to sign the required affidavits.
This is a short tale about life in the Appalachian Mountains in the 1800s. It entails the hardships of lonely mountain men and a beautiful red-headed woman with the body of a duck.
Caecilia, Roman born but Etruscan wed, forsakes Rome to return to her husband, Vel Mastarna, exposing herself to the enmity of his people while knowing the Romans will give her a traitor's death if Veii falls. Semni, a reckless Etruscan servant in the House of Mastarna, embroils herself in schemes that threaten Caecilia's son and Semni's own chance for love. Pinna, a destitute Roman prostitute, uses coercion to gain the attention of Rome's greatest general at the risk of betraying Caecilia's cousin.
Stories of the old West were filled with bad men who lived by the speed of their gun hands. Well, meet Buck Tarrant, who could outdraw them all. His secret: He didn't even have to reach for his weapon. This original blend of the Western tale with a story of the uncanny, "The Draw" was written by Jerome Bixby, an American short story writer, editor, and scriptwriter best known for his work in science fiction, although he also wrote many Westerns.
Welcome to Cedar Mill, a late-19th century industrial town in the heart of the New Jersey Pine Barrens. Rachel Morris - young, outspoken, and impulsive - becomes involved in a consuming relationship with David Cranmer, her long-time friend and partner-in-crime. Set against the backdrop of a vividly-imagined historical town that is itself in the throes of major change, this relationship comes to affect Rachel and David in ways that are simultaneously deeply-felt, heartbreaking and revealing.
Civil War hero Daniel South leaves the Union Army in the closing days of the Civil War to return to his hometown of Pecan Township. As he battles his way home, he saves the beautiful but mysterious Tanya from a deadly gang of murderers intent on robbing him. As the two of them finally reach Pecan Township, South finds that the whole town has changed. The sheriff and judge have been killed, and a group of murderers calling themselves the Clinton Gang have taken over.
Unholy Seduction is a first-rate novel, filled with intrigue, deception, seduction, betrayal and murder - mankind's timeless issues. It is set during the colorful Vietnam War era, when millions of kids championed free love, while repudiating the establishment, they turned America upside down. But there were others with a different goal. They fought equally hard to establish a perfect church - one where everything was held in common. Ryan Parker was one of them.
With her husband, Nick, away fighting, Dora struggles to keep the home fires burning but finds herself in a difficult position when she is put in charge of a ward of injured German POWs. Can she find it in her heart to care for her enemies? Fellow nurse Kitty faces a similar struggle looking after the men who killed her beloved brother. But her life becomes even more complicated when she falls for one of the prisoners. And Helen Denton returns from nursing in Europe with a secret. She has her own reasons for hating the Germans.
St Angelus runs like a family: the workers take care of their own - a lesson the mysterious new assistant matron, Miss Van Gilder, is about to learn the hard way. Little Joe has had trouble breathing but the doctors don't take his sister Lily's concerns seriously, least of all Miss Van Gilder. The nurses of Lovely Lane have a secret which is dividing their close knit group and when Nurse Pammy Tanner once again breaks the rules, her actions threaten them all.
As children, Eva Rosselli and Angelo Bianco were raised like family but divided by circumstance and religion. As the years go by, the two find themselves falling in love. But the church calls to Angelo and, despite his deep feelings for Eva, he chooses the priesthood. Now, more than a decade later, Angelo is a Catholic priest and Eva is a woman with nowhere to turn. With the Gestapo closing in, Angelo hides Eva within the walls of a convent.
Oswald is now King of Northumbria. However, his plans for further alliances and conquests are quickly thrown into disarray when his wedding to a princess of Wessex is interrupted by news of a Pictish uprising. Rushing north, Oswald leaves Beobrand to escort the young queen to her new home. Their path is fraught with danger and uncertainty, Beobrand must try to unravel secrets and lies if they are to survive. Meanwhile, old enemies are closing in, seeking brutal revenge.
Warlords battle across Britain to become the first king of the English. After a stunning victory against the native Waelisc, Beobrand returns a hero. His valour is rewarded with wealth and land by Oswald, king of Northumbria. He retires to his new estate with his bride only to find himself surrounded by enemies old and new. With treachery and death on all sides, Beobrand fears he will lose all he holds dear. On a quest for revenge and redemption, he accepts the mantle of lord, leading his men into the darkest of nights and the bloodiest of battles.
There is nothing hidden that will not be revealed...On an autumn day in 1686, eighteen-year-old Nella Oortman knocks at the door of a grand house in the wealthiest quarter of Amsterdam. She has come from the country to begin a new life as the wife of illustrious merchant trader Johannes Brandt, but instead she is met by his sharp-tongued sister, Marin. Only later does Johannes appear and present her with an extraordinary wedding gift.
"If you love me, you will obey my commandments"
Team Yankee, the New York Times best-seller by Harold Coyle, presents a glimpse of what it would have been like for the soldiers who would have had to meet the relentless onslaught of Soviet and Warsaw Pact divisions. Using the geo-political and military scenarios described by General Sir John Hackett, former NORTHAG commander and author of World War Three; August 1985, Team Yankee follows the war as seen from the turret of Captain Sean Bannon's tank.
"More from Harold Coyle, please"
Some women are destined to arouse in men either fierce hatred or insatiable desire. Such a woman was Katie Mulholland. At 15, a scullery maid in the house of the Rosires, she had been raped by the master. Now, many years later, she had enough money to maintain three carriages if she wanted to and she was on her way to see Bernard Rosier under very different circumstances.
"A PAGE TURNER I COULDN'T PUT DOWN!"
Recipient of the 1966 Tanizaki Prize, it has been called Endo's supreme achievement" and "one of the twentieth century's finest novels". Considered controversial ever since its first publication, it tackles the thorniest religious issues of belief and faith head on. A novel of historical fiction, it is the story of a Jesuit missionary sent to seventeenth century Japan, who endured persecution that followed the defeat of the Shimabara Rebellion.
"How a man comes face to face with God"
Napoleon, escaped from Elba, pursues his enemies across Europe like a vengeful phoenix. If he can corner the British and Prussians before their Russian and Austrian allies arrive, his genius will lead the French armies to triumph at Waterloo. In the Balkans, preparing a thrust northwards into Central Europe to block the Russians and Austrians, a horde of Muslim mercenaries is gathering.
"Best narration ever !!"
As the Second World War rages, the Japanese Imperial Army enters Burma, and the British rulers prepare to flee. But the human legacy of the British Empire will be left behind in the shape of 62 Anglo-Burmese children, born to local women after affairs with foreign men. Half castes, they are not acknowledged by either side, and they are to be abandoned with no one to protect them.
"Great easy to listen story."
Having survived a long and desperate adventure in the Great South Sea, Captain Jack Aubrey and Stephen Maturin return to England to very different circumstances. For Jack it is a happy homecoming, at least initially, but for Stephen it is disastrous: his little daughter appears to be autistic, incapable of speech or contact, while his wife, Diana, unable to bear this situation, has disappeared, her house being looked after by the widowed Clarissa Oakes.
"Third time of listening, just gets better!"
Life ashore may once again be the undoing of Jack Aubrey in The Yellow Admiral, Patrick O'Brian's best-selling novel and eighteenth volume in the Aubrey/Maturin series. Aubrey, now a considerable though impoverished landowner, has dimmed his prospects at the admiralty by his erratic voting as a member of Parliament; he is feuding with his neighbor, a man with strong navy connections who wants to enclose the common land between their estates.
Set at the turn of the century, this is one of Catherine Cookson's most unusual novels, powerfully portraying a woman dangerously driven by desire and ambition.
"has the appeal of a Cookson novel but slow to star"
Hailed by The New York Times as "a marvel of storytelling", The Things They Carried's portrayal of the boots-on-the-ground experience of soldiers in the Vietnam War is a landmark in war writing. Now, three-time Emmy Award winner-Bryan Cranston, star of the hit TV series Breaking Bad, delivers an electrifying performance that walks the book's hallucinatory line between reality and fiction and highlights the emotional power of the spoken word.
"What is a true war story?"
Napoleon has been defeated at Waterloo, and the ensuing peace brings with it both the desertion of nearly half of Captain Aubrey's crew and the sudden dimming of Aubrey's career prospects in a peacetime navy. When the Surprise is nearly sunk on her way to South America - where Aubrey and Stephen Maturin are to help Chile assert her independence from Spain - the delay occasioned by repairs reaps a harvest of strange consequences.
"A fitting end ... Ish"
The year is 1703, and Matthew Corbett, professional "problem solver", is missing. Last seen by his friends in New York before he departed on a lucrative, seemingly straightforward mission for the Herrald Agency in Charles Town, he's been too long absent. His comrade-in-arms Hudson Greathouse has an increasing sense the young friend he thinks of as a son must have met with some unexpected peril.
"I'm hooked - despite myself"
East Sussex, 1914. It is the end of England's brief Edwardian summer, and everyone agrees that the weather has never been so beautiful. Hugh Grange, down from his medical studies, is visiting his aunt Agatha, who lives with her husband in the small, idyllic coastal town of Rye. Agatha's husband works in the Foreign Office, and she is certain he will ensure that the recent sabre rattling over the Balkans won't come to anything.
"A good listen"
In the year 1689, a cabal of Barbary galley slaves, including one "Half-Cocked Jack" Shaftoe, devises a daring plan to win freedom and fortune. A great adventure ensues that will place the intrepid band at odds with the mighty and the mad, with alchemists, Jesuits, great navies, pirate queens, and vengeful despots across vast oceans and around the globe.
"'Epic' now has a whole new definition..."
From the author of The First to Land, a novel set during World War II. They called them the Scrapyard Flotilla. After a quarter of a century of service, the eight destroyers had seen all kinds of action. Now they were to be used in raids to open the way for the invasion of Occupied Europe.
In which Daniel Waterhouse, fearless thinker and courageous Puritan, pursues knowledge in the company of the greatest minds of Baroque-era Europe -- in a chaotic world where reason wars with the bloody ambitions of the mighty, and where catastrophe, natural or otherwise, can alter the political landscape overnight.
"Ambitious and entertaining"