New Year’s Day, 1906. A family celebrates, skating on the ice of a vast lake, far north in Russia. Cousins of the Romanov Tsars, this is the Rumovsky family – Prince Pyotr, his wife Princess Sofia, their son Ivan and twins Yelena and Alexander, and their young Irish governess,
Miss Harriet. With them is the patriarch of the family, old Prince Mikhail, a strange, towering figure, a man from another century, with his fabulous Boyars’ court at the castle, a Tamburlaine of the snows…Behind the Rumovsky family and their mediaeval island castle lie 300 years of autocratic but peaceful rule. Ahead of them, the old Prince expects the same for his descendants. It is not to be. Firesong is the story of the Rumovskies – their lives, deaths and hazardous escapes in the nightmarish new Russia that soon engulfs them: a land stricken by famine, pestilence, war and death. A story both intimate and epic, reminiscent of Dr Zhivago, this is a dramatic saga of men and women who fight for their destiny, in love and peace, against all the odds of war and dissolution.
An epic story of passion, courage and adventure in ancient Sparta, by the author of the ALEXANDER trilogy. Herodotus tells us that not all of the three hundred Spartan warriors died at the hands of Xerxes, King of the Persians, in the battle of the Thermopylae: two were saved
bringing a life-saving message back to the city…This is the saga of a Spartan family, torn apart by a cruel law that forces them to abandon one of their two sons – born lame – to the elements. The elder son, Brithos, is raised in the caste of the warriors, while the other, Talos, is spared a cruel death and is raised by a Helot shepherd, among the peasants. They live out their story in a world dominated by the clash between the Persian empire and the city-states of Greece – a ferocious, relentless conflict – until the voice of their blood and of human solidarity unites them in a thrilling, singular enterprise.
Bullied at school for his suspiciously dark skin and lack of a father, Hart soon learns to fight — and win. At eighteen, his world is shaken by his mother’s revelation that his anonymous father is willing to give him a vast inheritance — provided he can prove himself worthy of the prize as an officer in the King’s Dragoon Guards. At a time when racism and prejudice are rife in Victorian society, Hart struggles to come to terms with his identity. Forced to leave the army, he decides to head to South Africa, and a fresh start. But George Hart has soldiering in his blood, and once in Africa the urge to serve again is strong. Yet now he is caught between two fierce and unyielding forces as Britain drives towards war with the Zulus. Hart must make a choice — and fight for his life.
In his latest adventure Hector Lynch follows his quest for the young Spanish woman, Maria, with whom he has fallen in love. His search takes him and his friends on a nightmare passage around Cape Horn where they come across a small warship entombed on an icefloe, her only crew two skeletons – the captain frozen to death in his cabin and a dog. The corpse is the long-missing brother of a local Spanish governor in Peru. In gratitude for learning his brother’s fate, the governor tells Hector that Maria has moved to the Ladrones, the Thief Islands, on the far side of the Pacific.On the way there, Hector’s ship picks up an emaciated native fisherman adrift on a sinking boat. He dupes his rescuers into thinking that his home is rich in gold. But his poverty-stricken island proves to be the jealousy guarded by a Japanese warlord who treats the visitors as trespassers. Only when Jezreel, the ex-prize fighter, defeats the Japanese swordsman in a duel can they escape. Reaching the Thief Islands, Hector allies with the native people, the Chamorro, to launch a night raid on the Spanish fort and is finally reunited with Maria. But will the young couple ever be able to settle down? As a known sea robber, Hector will only be safe where the law cannot touch him so their journey continues..
Every politician has a secret. And when the daughter of a politically connected family is kidnapped abroad, America’s new president will agree to anything, even a deadly and ill-advised rescue plan in order to keep his secret hidden. But when covert counter-terrorism operative Scot Harvath is assigned to infiltrate one of the world’s most notorious prisons and free the man the kidnappers demand as ransom, he quickly learns that there is much more to the operation than anyone dares to admit. As the subterfuge is laid bare, Harvath must examine his own career of ruthlessly hunting down and killing terrorists and decide if he has what it takes to help one of the world’s worst go free.
This is a debut novel by Indian author Aravind Adiga, providing the details of India’s class struggle in a globalized world. Told though the retrospective narration from the character Balram Halwai, it shed insights on issues of religion, caste, loyalty, corruption and poverty in India. Dark yet amusing, the story slowly unfolds and explains how the character Balram transcend his sweet-maker caste and becomes a successful entrepreneur, after murdering his master.
First published in 2008, and won the 40th Man Booker Prize in the same year.
Blomkvist arrives at Hedeby Island on January 3rd. Henrik gives him a tour and points out some of the major suspects in the disappearance of Harriet Vanger all those years ago. Harald Vanger is Henrik’s 92-year-old brother, a hermit and lifelong member of the Nazi party. Henrik doesn’t speak to him. Isabella Vanger is 75 years old, and the mother of Harriet. She was a hands-off mother with few parenting skills. Cecilia Vanger is 56, which means she was 20 when Harriet disappeared. She’s Harald’s daughter but has nothing to do with the guy. Henrik likes her. Her sister, Anita, lives in London.
Memories define us. So what if you lost yours every time you went to sleep? Your name, your identity, your past, even the people you love – all forgotten overnight. And the one person you trust may only be telling you half the story. Welcome to Christine’s life.
The narrator of The Zahir is a bestselling novelist who lives in Paris and enjoys all the privileges money and celebrity bring. His wife of ten years, Esther, is a war correspondent who has disappeared along with a friend, Mikhail, who may or may not be her lover.
Was Esther kidnapped, murdered, or did she simply escape a marriage that left her unfulfilled? The narrator doesn’t have any answers, but he has plenty of questions of his own. Then one day Mikhail finds the narrator and promises to reunite him with his wife. In his attempt to recapture a lost love, the narrator discovers something unexpected about himself.