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Our high-quality Family Drama selection offers the heart-breaking and heart-warming conflicts and dramas directly from the hearth, telling the stories of these families that have been struck by tragedy, conflict and drama and their struggle to survive intact.
Mary Poppins has been the world’s most famous nanny for the last 80 years and her success remains undimmed. Jane and Michael Banks need a new nanny so they set about writing a job description. In reply, blown in by the East Wind, comes Mary Poppins. From the moment that she slides up the banisters Michael and Jane know that Mary is not any ordinary nanny! Although Mary Poppins is not one to stand any nonsense, as the children soon discover, she is perfectly fair. And she is full of surprises. Soon the children are off on the most wonderful magical adventures – including flying! Find out why Cameron Mackintosh loves this book! Lovereading 4 Kids is running a competition giveaway of this book and a Blu-ray of the original Disney film - to enter click here!
Tess lives with her grandmother, Edie, in a small flat on Heyworth Street in Norwich. She has recently returned from Bell Farm, where she was evacuated during the war, and is being bullied by her schoolmates, but when the handsome Snowy White comes to her rescue she thinks her troubles are over, and returns for a working holiday to Bell Farm and her old friend Jonty. This leaves Edie to her own devices, however, and Tess is jealous of the friendship which blossoms between her grandmother and the tobacconist. Yet though Tess resents Albert, it is to him she turns when things start to go wrong.
One of our Books of the Year 2013. Ferney was one of my all time favourite books of the year it was published, 1998. It tells of a love through the ages, a tale of reincarnation, passion, longing, history and mystery. This is its sequel. Extraordinary. You do not have to have read Ferney first but I would highly recommend that you do so. This is a modern day love story bound up in the memory of past lives. It brilliantly brings together all the loose threads to a fulfilling conclusion that leaves a shiver down your back. To reunite the characters again, James Long has a school out, an archaeological dig, a busy mother and a mystified teacher all there to join up Ferney and Gally. You’ll find it difficult to put down. In a recent interview with The Bookseller, James Long explained that it had been a challenge writing a sequel to Ferney that would also work as a standalone novel for new readers. Long said that "you either bore people with the complexity of the scenario who already know about it, or you baffle them." Happily for us, after the first drafts, he hit upon a clever solution...
Continuing the life of Rosie in the Derbyshire village where she inherited her aunt’s sweetshop. You don’t need to have read the first to enjoy this but you’ll enjoy knowing the major players better if you have. Rosie is in love with Stephen, the damaged son of the village matriarch, who is now a teacher in the village school. Christmas brings Rosie’s family over from Australia, her mother, brother, his wife and children. Their arrival makes her realise just how much she has missed them and she wonders about Stephen’s intentions. This is the joy of this delightful book: will he, won’t he …? Should she, shouldn’t she …? And you are kept guessing right through. A lovely, lovely read. The first in the series, Welcome to Rosie Hopkin’s Sweetshop of Dreams won the Romantic Novel of the Year Award (2013)
November 2013 Book of the Month. Spanning fifty years and two continents, 'The Valley of Amazement' dramatises the collapse of China's imperial dynasty and the secret life of the courtesan house. Unfolding old family secrets, this novel returns readers to the compelling territory of 'The Joy Luck Club'. With her characteristic wisdom, grace and humour, she conjures a story of the inheritance of love, its mysteries and betrayals, and its illusions and truths. In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion for The Valley of Amazement a small number of Lovereading members were lucky enough to be invited to review this title - 'The Valley of Amazement is mesmerizingly beautiful, unbelievably sad and yet somehow hopeful at the same time. An evocative and absorbing read.' - Sarah Harper Scroll down to read more reviews.
Not every death is a tragedy. Not every silver lining is intact. Annie's father is dead. She isn't sorry. A rich and domineering man, he was always more passionate about money than the happiness of his wife and child. And when his lovely, fragile wife Jude died in mysterious circumstances when Annie was still very young, her father sent her to school in England, and tried to ensure that Jude was never mentioned again. Now, at last, his days of tyranny are over. And so Annie leaves London and goes back to Dublin, to the house in which he lived and her mother died, where she makes the first of several startling discoveries: he has left her the house she hated. Now, just when she thought she was free of him, she is expected to make a new life in Ireland, and live as he would have wished. Does she dare to defy him one more time? And who will be able to tell her the truth about her mother's life, and death, before she has to decide?
Judith is suddenly all alone in the world. Her husband, Jack, has left her - why, she doesn't really know. Her two sons are in Australia, and both her mother and her best friend Naomi have recently died. Embarking on a journey to Exmoor to meet the famous artist Robert Haussman, with an oddly assorted group of fellow-enthusiasts, Judith finds herself a prey to all sorts of irrational fears. Chief amongst them is the increasing conviction that Jack is dead. Why did he leave her? Where has he gone? And why does Robert Haussman exert such a strange influence on her? Set in the Somerset countryside which Susan Sallis knows so well, this heartwarming novel shows how life, love and art cannot always meet happily together.
With shades of both The Book Thief and The Lovely Bones , James Kimmel Jr.'s first novel, The Trial of Fallen Angels , is a story about what happens when we can't - or won't - let go. I remembered telling my husband I loved him and knowing I did. I remembered picking up my daughter at the end of the day and her squeals of delight when she saw me...And then my memories vanished, as if a plug had been pulled. When young lawyer Brek Cutler finds herself covered in blood and standing on a deserted railway platform, she has no memory of how she got there...For one very good reason: she's dead. But she's not allowed to grieve for her lost life, her widowed husband, or her beautiful but now motherless baby daughter - because she has a job to do. She's been chosen to join the elite lawyers who prosecute and defend souls at the Final Judgement. In a seemingly deliberate coincidence, her first client seems to hold the key to unlock the chain of events that led to Brek's death...A chain that stretches far back into the past and an array of shocking, secret crimes. And so Brek embarks on a quest that sees her traverse Heaven and Earth to bring her killer to justice. If she's ever to learn the whole truth about her death, though, she must also place her own soul on trial - and make a choice that will potentially echo throughout eternity. Telling a story of life, death and ever after, James Kimmel Jr.'s The Trial of Fallen Angels is unique, haunting and utterly unforgettable. James Kimmel Jr. received a doctorate in jurisprudence from the University of Pennsylvania and now works as a lawyer. This is his first novel. He lives in the United States.
How far would you go to make a new start? Heart-warming and romantic, Take a Look at Me Now will make you laugh, cry and cheer Nell on from start to finish. What a difference a day makes...Nell Sullivan has always been known as 'Miss Five-Year Plan'. But when she finds herself jobless and newly single on the same day, Nell decides it is time to stop planning and start taking chances. Nell blows her redundancy cheque on a trip of lifetime to a place where anything is possible - San Francisco. There she meets a host of colourful characters, including the intriguing and gorgeous Max. Very soon the city begins to feel like Nell's second home. But when it's time to return to London, will she leave the 'new Nell' behind? And can the magic of San Francisco continue to sparkle thousands of miles away?
An emotional and heart-warming portrayal of the lives of four women living in wartime London. For the girls living at No. 13 Article Row, life has never been tougher. Tilly is left heartbroken after the love of her life, Drew, returns to his hometown of Chicago to visit his family and decides to stay there. After he ends their relationship via a letter, Tilly is desperate to find out the truth behind their break-up. Agnes is shocked to discover that she has inherited a house from her estranged father who left her at the orphanage all those years ago. After not having family for so long she now has a cousin who is very keen to get to know her, but is it for the right reasons? And for Tilly's mother, Olive, her repressed feelings for the unhappily married Sergeant Dawson are finally in the open, but can either of them ever recover from the guilt? Meanwhile, Sally's life is in turmoil when George is killed in an air raid, leaving her alone and pregnant. With so much tragedy surrounding them, the four girls must support each through the hard times.
Chicky is whisked off to America by a man who soon deserts her. She tells her parents they had married and he was then killed in a car crash so she can return to Ireland a respectable widow. She buys Stone House and turns it into an upmarket guest house. This is about how she restores it and the people who stay during the first week. Each chapter is devoted to a different person or couple, a diverse bunch. We have the usual rich tapestry of characters that we have come to expect from Maeve and it is sad to think there will be no more, as this is her last book. She certainly hasn’t lost her touch and has finished on a high, only I do hear whispers of some short stories being discovered amongst her effects. The Lovereading view... Winner of the Popular Fiction Prize at the Irish Book Awards 2012. The Queen of storytelling Maeve Binchy sadly passed away in July 2012 and A Week in Winter is her last book. Full of her trademark warmth, humour and wonderful characters, you race through the pages to find out more about them. A Week in Winter tells the stories of the owner and guests staying in a beautiful and welcoming hotel overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. With a legacy of over 40 million books sold she was an inspiration to many authors and she will be sorely missed. Orion publishing director Susan Lamb said the book is "absolutely terrific, it's vintage Maeve, showing again what a brilliant observer she was, full of empathy but never sentimental". Click here to download an article from the Irish Independent about Maeve Binchy. Click here to download an article from The Belfast Telegraph about Maeve Binchy.
November 2013 MEGA Book of the Month. Author of 17 bestselling contemporary novels Joanna Trollope has used her skills of astute yet sensitive observation of the ‘human condition’ to reboot Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility from the 18th to 21st Centuries. It’s a fresh, witty and very contemporary story of love in the age of social media yet is totally respectful of the original - what’s not to like. In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion for Sense & Sensibility a small number of Lovereading members were lucky enough to be invited to review this title - 'A truly wonderful re-telling. A perfect indulgent, engaging read.' – Edel Waugh. Scroll down to read more reviews.
Tragedy Begins at Home
Whether it’s Barbara Taylor Bradford’s window into the dark secrets of dynastic powerhouses, or the hard realities of Allison Pearson’s writing: the incisively humourous observations of Nick Hornby, or the light touch of Charlotte Bingham: the engrossing passion of Jojo Moyes, or the captivating worlds conjured by Jodi Picoult and Daisy Waugh, the range of fantastic stories in the Family Drama section is almost endless. Luckily our unique expert reviews and hand-picked recommendations are here to help match you with your perfect next read. Sign up to our monthly emails to stay in touch with the latest output from warm, wise Elizabeth Buchan, insightful Kate Atkinson, sensory-stimulating Joanna Harris, huge-scale Sidney Sheldon, magical Alice Hoffman and so many more in the varied family of fantastic authors of the genre.
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