Friday, 31 December 2021
Monday, 27 December 2021
What makes life perfect? Insurance mathematician Henri Koskinen knows the answer because he calculates everything down to the very last decimal.
And then, for the first time, Henri is faced with the incalculable. After suddenly losing his job, Henri inherits an adventure park from his brother – its peculiar employees and troubling financial problems included. The worst of the financial issues appear to originate from big loans taken from criminal quarters … and some dangerous men are very keen to get their money back.
But what Henri really can’t compute is love. In the adventure park, Henri crosses paths with Laura, an artist with a chequered past, and a joie de vivre and erratic lifestyle that bewilders him. As the criminals go to extreme lengths to collect their debts and as Henri's relationship with Laura deepens, he finds himself faced with situations and emotions that simply cannot be pinned down on his spreadsheets…
Warmly funny, rich with quirky characters and absurd situations, The Rabbit Factor is a triumph of a dark thriller, its tension matched only by its ability to make us rejoice in the beauty and random nature of life.
Abandoned at the gates of a London park one winter's night in 1850, baby Lily Mortimer is saved by a young police constable and taken to the London Foundling Hospital. Lily is fostered by an affectionate farming family in rural Suffolk, enjoying a brief childhood idyll before she is returned to the Hospital, where she is punished for her rebellious spirit. Released into the harsh world of Victorian London, Lily becomes a favoured employee at Belle Prettywood's Wig Emporium, but all the while she is hiding a dreadful secret...
Across the years, policeman Sam Trench keeps watch over the young woman he once saved. When Sam meets Lily again, there is an instant attraction between them and Lily is convinced that Sam holds the key to her happiness - but might he also be the one to uncover her crime and so condemn her to death?
What can a father do, when the only solution offered to his rare and troubled boy is to put him on psychoactive drugs? What can he say when his boy comes to him wanting an explanation for a world that is clearly in love with its own destruction? The only thing for it is to take the boy to other planets, while all the while fostering his son's desperate campaign to help save this one.
Saturday, 25 December 2021
Enter the latest round of six: Libby Rhodes and Nico de Varona, unwilling halves of an unfathomable whole, who exert uncanny control over every element of physicality. Reina Mori, a naturalist, who can intuit the language of life itself. Parisa Kamali, a telepath who can traverse the depths of the subconscious, navigating worlds inside the human mind. Callum Nova, an empath easily mistaken for a manipulative illusionist, who can influence the intimate workings of a person’s inner self. Finally, there is Tristan Caine, who can see through illusions to a new structure of reality—an ability so rare that neither he nor his peers can fully grasp its implications.
When the candidates are recruited by the mysterious Atlas Blakely, they are told they will have one year to qualify for initiation, during which time they will be permitted preliminary access to the Society’s archives and judged based on their contributions to various subjects of impossibility: time and space, luck and thought, life and death. Five, they are told, will be initiated. One will be eliminated. The six potential initiates will fight to survive the next year of their lives, and if they can prove themselves to be the best among their rivals, most of them will.
Most of them.
Meanwhile, when rumours of a 'fallen angel' cause a frenzy across London, a surgeon desperate for fame and fortune finds himself in the grips of a dangerous obsession, one that will place the women he seeks in the most terrible danger . . .
THE GIFTS is the astonishing debut adult novel from the lauded author of BEARMOUTH. A gripping and ambitious book told through five different perspectives and set against the luminous backdrop of nineteenth century London, it explores science, nature and religion, enlightenment, the role of women in society and the dark danger of ambition
Tara Hunter is a therapist on a mission to restore Longhampton's community spirit after catastrophic flooding. But with her boyfriend AWOL, her family fragmented, and only a cat for company, Tara's own life is crumbling.
Then the storm...
On top of everything, Tara's father - last seen as he walked out on her when she was ten years old - is suddenly back, with a surprising offer that could change everything.
And after the rain...
Dr David Dalloway is Longhampton Wellness Centre's new star counsellor. He's charming, caring and has a knack for reading people's minds - which is the last thing Tara needs right now. Will having David and her dad around make for a bigger storm on the horizon? Or is this Tara's chance for a fresh start?
Yannia teams up with the groom, Robbert, a wheelchair-using fan of detective fiction, and Wishearth, her ever-loyal Hearth Spirit, who surprises her by taking an active role in the investigation. But as the clock ticks towards the big day, the sabotage continues and the contradictions mount. The case turns sinister when Yannia herself is targeted, and Wishearth has to act quickly to rescue her.
But can they solve the mystery and save the wedding before somebody loses their life?
This is a "sideways" story in the Wilde Investigations series (number 3.5!)
Monday, 20 December 2021
In the eleventh century, the rulers of the lands surrounding the North Sea are all hungry for power. To get power they need soldiers, to get soldiers they need silver, and to get silver there is no better way than war and plunder. This vicious cycle draws all the lands of the north into a brutal struggle for supremacy and survival that will shatter kingdoms and forge an empire.
The Wolf Age takes the reader on a thrilling journey through the bloody shared history of England and Scandinavia, and across early medieval Europe: from the wild Norwegian fjords to the wealthy cities of Muslim Andalusia. Warfare, plotting, backstabbing and bribery abound as prize-winning historian Tore Skeie weaves together sagas and skaldic poetry with bold dramatization to bring the world of the Vikings and Anglo-Saxons to vivid life.
'Skeie has a unique ability to conjure images of the richest detail, everything from chaotic battles to the period's exhausting day-to-day life' A-MAGASINET
Tore Skeie is one of Norway's most acclaimed historians, having written several prize-winning and bestselling works of medieval history. Tore is known for his eye for historical and human drama, while his books have been praised both for their thrilling style and the way they challenge traditional nation-oriented historical narratives. The Wolf Age was a bestseller in Norway, won the prestigious Sverre Steen award and is the first of Tore's books to be translated into English.
Oh how I wish I could turn back the clock and tell the younger me who thought history was boring that it was anything but!! This was a wonderfully absorbing look back at the extraordinary times of the Vikings and Anglo-Saxons - Game of Thrones seems very tame compared to some of the tales of the goings on during the 10th and 11th centuries in this book!!
The author has extensively researched the goings on of the time and presents it in such a fantastically relatable way that I couldn't put it down! It reads just like a novel, and knowing these things happened just make it even more astounding! There's a great overview of the characters involved, and the chronology of the events that unfolded and it was just utterly fascinating!
The story ebbs from England to Scandinavia and Medieval Europe and the action never stops! From feuding Kings to raiding Vikings, this is a brutal and political history showing the benefits of alliances and showing the treachery of others, all in the pursuit of power. You can just picture the sight of the ships venturing in to the estuaries and coastal towns around England and there's also mention of the archeological finds relating to ships of the time and it has just made me so intrigued to find out more about the time .
It features some amazing characters, with amazing names such as Harald Bluetooth, Sweyn Forkbeard, Olaf, Cnut... extraordinary names for extraordinary people! Their quests are epic and often brutal. There's also a look at the rituals of the time, and the ever changing religions and beliefs of the people of the time. Life was brutal and the intensity of the raids and destruction was just shocking to read about.
A must read for all lovers of all things historical!!
ABOUT THE BOOK
The author wrote this book to try and understand grief, and his approach is nothing short of remarkable. When the main character dies, there are no tears shed for him, and he finds himself at a little tea shop, where Hugo fixes the world with cups of teas and is also the ferryman waiting to take you on to the other side.
As Wallace spends time amongst these people, and drinks more cups of tea than he ever thought possible, he begins to wake up to himself in the realisation that there was more to life but it took him dying to find that out.
This was such a beautiful story! The connection with drinking tea was so simple but it worked so well! It's grounding, it's normal and also allows reflection. Wallace evolves so much throughout this book that it's just wonderful to witness. A delight - but don't forget to have tissues by your side!!