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This is it. The place for the greatest writing: stories that transcend all other ‘genres’. Literary fiction goes above and beyond any specific genre in order to deliver stories that strike at the heart of what it means to be human.
September 2010 Good Housekeeping selection. Kehua! is a gripping tale of a young woman who flees New Zealand in the wake of a murder and finds herself haunted by a Maori ghost.
Shortlisted for the Costa First Novel Award 2010.Costa Book Awards 2010 Judges' comment: "We all found this romantic culture clash novel a delight, endlessly funny and constantly surprising." The Lovereading view... A satirical, but often touching love story about the vexed relationship between the Welsh and the English that's sure to spark debate, Debut novel Not Quite White deals with small-town racism, corruption and the selfish arrogance of those who think they know best. With a Foreword by Lord Dafydd Elis-Thomas and endorsements from leading literary figures Angharad Price, Helen Dunmore and Gillian Clarke it also provides a defence of the Welsh language from an English in-comer and thereby offers a different perspective on an age old battle. A comment for the author..."Ardderchog! - excellent news that Not Quite White has been shortlisted for the Costa. At a time when book groups are interested in so many incoming ethnic cultures in Britain, our own Welsh tribe appears to have been somewhat overlooked, despite being directly descended from the original Britons. I hope Not Quite White will amuse and provoke people on both sides of Offa’s Dyke and do a little to remedy this. I moved to Wales 13 years ago and fell in love with its magical landscape, people and hidden charms. This novel is my attempt to share that love and at the same time draw attention to a culture and way of life that could soon be lost forever." - Simon Thirsk
March 2013 Guest Editor Charles Cumming on The Spy Who Came in from the Cold... John le Carre has written longer, more complex books, but this remains his masterpiece. The story of a weary British spy who is sent out on one final mission behind the Iron Curtain, the novel is beautifully constructed and extraordinarily atmospheric. A 2011 World Book Night selection. In le Carre's breakthrough work of 1963, the spy story is reborn as a gritty and terrible tale of men who are caught up in politics beyond their imagining. As brilliant today as it was then. Our Editorial Guru, Sarah Broadhurst, has suggested others book and authors that would be perfect for you to read next or to pass on the recommendation - so your gift will keep on giving enjoyment. Her selections for this title are: Henry Porter, Ken Follett, Frederick Forsyth.
The tale of a loser editing a dingy literary magazine who decides to set up a literary festival.Written as a series of letters between various characters, affecting the life of Andrew Whittaker, this is a brilliantly funny and clever book, from the pen of the author of the equally brilliant Firmin. What a shame the author took up writing quite late in life but let’s hope he now continues for many years to come. A wonderful read.
A moment of madness determines the fate of two families in this heart-wrenching novel. A two day old child is stolen and destroys one family while pulling another together but lies cannot be hidden forever. This is thoroughly absorbing stuff you won’t be able to put down. If you like Anita Shreve or Rosie Thomas this will definitely appeal.
Shortlisted for the Galaxy Popular Fiction Book of the Year 2010. The Ice Cream Girls is an utterly gripping, thought-provoking and heart-warming slice of life that will make you wonder if you can ever truly know the people you love particularly when secrets from a tragic event in the past are unburied and revealed to those who knew those secrets and to others who didn’t. A living hell for those involved.
The comedian and satirist turns his attention to the credit crunch with this tale of a privileged futures trader who becomes bankrupt and the effect on his family and friends. It’s light and amusing but speaks to the heart of our society; touching and thought provoking, but able to make you laugh. It may be a depressing subject, but there’s no chance of this neat satire spoiling your mood for it’s the ideal thing to help you unwind poolside before the cocktail hour and count your blessings. It’s clever stuff.
A book that will sit on your shoulder for sometime after reading it. It concerns grief, reconciliation, infidelity, marriage and family upheavals and eventual honesty all in a beautiful Italian holiday setting. The author used to write entertaining chic-lit, here she has grown up. Comparison: Joanna Trollope, Elizabeth Buchan, Clare Chambers.
This fictionalised diary of a child aged 9 sold by her parents into prostitution in Mumbai is incredibly moving, heartrending and harrowing and yet it will also have you completely hooked and engrossed by the power of the words. Powerfully told through the voice of Batuk herself you live with her the daily humilation at the hands of men but you also hear how writing is her salvation. As you read you wish she could get away to her home in the country but you know in the end that just doesn’t happen and so of course there is no happy ending but instead an abiding memory that perhaps if we all read this book then perhaps we could stop this from happening, not just in Mumbai but in many places around the world.
A coming of age novel set in China. Dongliang once held high status as the grandson of an admired revolutionary but after his ancestry is questioned his life changes dramatically. This is a story about a father/son relationship but also a great insight in to the Chinese culture.
Shortlisted for the Galaxy New Writer of the Year 2010. If you enjoyed The Brief History of Tractors in Ukrainian then this is for you. It too concerns immigrants striving to become British, only here it is a German Jewish family who arrived in 1937. It is a bittersweet tale laced with humour, of a man following his dream which includes becoming British enough to be accepted by a pukka golf club and being floored by bigots and prejudice. His answer, build one! A perfect gem, slow to start but suddenly impossible to put down, the sort of book you must tell your friends about.
Winner of the Man Booker Prize 2002. Pi’s family is moving their zoo when the boat sinks and 16-year old Pi is left afloat in a lifeboat with four animals that includes a tiger. Up to that point the book is slow to get into but persevere for this unique work is stunning. It’s brutal, hopeful, humorous, philosophical, almost implausible and yet strangely believable. A tale that will remain with you for a very long time and deserves another read. Comparison: Mark Haddon (The Curious Case of the Dog in the Night-Time), Audrey Niffenegger (The Time Traveler’s Wife), Aravind Adiga (The White Tiger). This is the Young Adult edition published by Walker Canongate. To view the standard paperback edition published by Canongate of this book, click here.
Insightful, International, Thought-provoking
Literary fiction is a bit of a “catch-all” phrase. Some call it “Serious Fiction” but we prefer to think of it as all of the greatest stories ever told, all in one place. This is where you will find literary classics from literary masters past and present.
Why not have a look at our monthly featured titles for inspiration? Revisit old friends? Discover new ones? Or finally read that book that your friends have been banging on about for ages? Whatever your reasons, settle down with your favourite tipple, unwind and open your mind with the home-spun brilliance of authors like Martin Amis, Salman Rushdie, David Nicholls and Zadie Smith; or those from further afield: Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Haruki Murakami, Ben Okri, Jostein Gaarder and so many more. There are obviously so many to choose from, you could get lost in the Sea of Choices.
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A selection of authors who will feature in this Lovereading category include: