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Literary Presses

New Life

New Life

Alighieri, Dante
$14.00
The New Life is the masterpiece of Dante's youth, an account of his love for Beatrice, the girl who was to become his lifelong muse, and of her tragic early death. An allegory of the soul's crisis and growth, combining prose and poetry, narrative and meditation, dreams and songs and prayers, The New Life is a work of crystalline beauty and fascinating complexity that has long taken its place as one of the supreme revelations in the literature of love.

The New Life is published here in the beautiful translation by the English poet Dante Gabriel Rossetti, an inspired poetic re-creation comparable to Edward Fitzgerald's Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam and a classic in its own right.

Girl in the Polka Dot Dress

Girl in the Polka Dot Dress

Bainbridge, Beryl
$15.00
In the tumultuous spring of 1968 a young English woman, Rose, travels from London to the United States to meet a man she knows as Washington Harold. In her suitcase are a polka dot dress and a one-way ticket. In an America recently convulsed by the April assassination of Martin Luther King and subsequent urban riots, they begin a search for the charismatic and elusive Dr. Wheeler- sage, prophet and, possibly, redeemer-who rescued Rose from a dreadful childhood and against whom Harold holds a seething grudge.

As they follow their quarry cross-country in a camper they encounter the odd remnants of Wheeler acolytes who harbor festering cultural and political grievances. Along the way, a famous artist is shot in New York, mutilated soldiers are evacuated from Vietnam, race hatred explodes in ghettos and suburbs and casual madness blossoms at revival meetings.

Many believe America's only hope is presidential candidate Robert Kennedy, whose campaign trail echoes Rose and Harold's pilgrimage. Both will conclude in Los Angeles at the Ambassador Hotel one infamous night in June.

Subversive, sinister and marvelously vivid, Beryl Bainbridge's great last novel evokes a nation on the brink of self-destruction with artful brilliance.

Strange Country

Strange Country

Barbery, Muriel
$18.00

From the author of the New York Times international bestseller, THE ELEGANCE OF THE HEDGEHOG, comes an epic fantasy rich in poetry and imagination about the eternal conflict between good and evil.

Alejandro de Yepes and Jesús Rocamora, young officers in the Spanish regular army, are stationed alone at Castillo when, out of nowhere, a friendly redhead appears to them in the cellar. There is something magnetic and deeply mysterious about this Petrus. Alejandro and Jesús are bewitched, and, in the middle of the sixth year of the longest war humankind has ever endured, they abandon their post to follow him across a bridge only he can see.

Petrus brings them to a world of lingering fog, strange beings, poetry, music, natural wonders, harmony, and extraordinary beauty. This is where the fate of the world and all its living creatures is decided. Yet this world too is under threat. A long battle against the forces of disenchantment is drawing to a climactic close. Will poetry and beauty prevail over darkness and death? And what role will Alejandro and Jesús play? Muriel Barbery's new richly imagined novel, the sequel to The Life of Elves, will transport readers to a lost world exposed to the constant churn of civilizations and remind them of the power of poetry and imagination.

Elegance of the Hedgehog

Elegance of the Hedgehog

Barbery, Muriel Anderson,Aliso
$15.00

The phenomenal New York Times bestseller that "explores the upstairs-downstairs goings-on of a posh Parisian apartment building" (Publishers Weekly).

In an elegant hôtel particulier in Paris, Renée, the concierge, is all but invisible--short, plump, middle-aged, with bunions on her feet and an addiction to television soaps. Her only genuine attachment is to her cat, Leo. In short, she's everything society expects from a concierge at a bourgeois building in an upscale neighborhood. But Renée has a secret: she furtively, ferociously devours art, philosophy, music, and Japanese culture. With biting humor, she scrutinizes the lives of the tenants--her inferiors in every way except that of material wealth.
Paloma is a twelve-year-old who lives on the fifth floor. Talented and precocious, she's come to terms with life's seeming futility and decided to end her own on her thirteenth birthday. Until then, she will continue hiding her extraordinary intelligence behind a mask of mediocrity, acting the part of an average pre-teen high on pop culture, a good but not outstanding student, an obedient if obstinate daughter.
Paloma and Renée hide their true talents and finest qualities from a world they believe cannot or will not appreciate them. But after a wealthy Japanese man named Ozu arrives in the building, they will begin to recognize each other as kindred souls, in a novel that exalts the quiet victories of the inconspicuous among us, and "teaches philosophical lessons by shrewdly exposing rich secret lives hidden beneath conventional exteriors" (Kirkus Reviews).

"The narrators' kinetic minds and engaging voices (in Alison Anderson's fluent translation) propel us ahead."--The New York Times Book Review

"Barbery's sly wit . . . bestows lightness on the most ponderous cogitations."--The New Yorker

Sacred Darkness

Sacred Darkness

Berdzenishvili, Levan
$17.00

Based on true events, this novel set in a Soviet prison is "both a feat of fractured storytelling and a beautiful excavation of a recent, haunting past" (Publishers Weekly).

As a political dissident, Berdzenishvili lands in jail, serving a sentence on trumped-up charges of activism and agitation. But rather than being the hell he expected, jail allows him access to a wide array of intellectuals, professionals, citizens of all walks of life, many of whom, he freely admits, he would not have had the chance to meet if he had not been in jail.
Here he bears witness to those lives. Each chapter carries a single person's name and focuses on a single story. Collectively, however, these portraits create a multifaceted and vast picture of life in the Soviet Union, including during its demise. A nation seeks to suppress its brightest citizens, to keep them locked away in the dark. But in that darkness, unbeknown to the jailor, bonds stronger than walls were forming.

New Sublime

New Sublime

Boitani, Piero
$18.00

Boitani's presentation of the classics is as entertaining and unexpected as it is informative. He invites the reader to discover the timeless beauty and wisdom of ancient literature, highlighting its profound and surprising connections to the present.

With their emphasis on the mutability and fluidity of identity and matter, their examination of the power and position of women in society, and their enduring treatments of force and subjugation, fate and free will, the ethical life, hospitality, love, compassion, and mysticism, the classics play active roles in our lives and can help us refine our opinions and our values.

Ranging from Homer to Tacitus, with Thucydides, Aristotle Sophocles, Cicero, and many others in between, Boitani's A New Sublime is a fresh, inspiring reminder of the enduring importance and beauty of the classics of the Western canon.

Blues for Outlaw Hearts and Broken Whores

Blues for Outlaw Hearts and Broken Whores

Carlotto, Massimo
$17.00

International secret police operations, drug trafficking, prostitution, and identity theft set the stage for the eternal struggle between Good and Evil.

Acclaimed as one of today's best contemporary noir writers, Massimo Carlotto reaches new heights in the most complex "Alligator" novel to date. Rich with biting humor, humanity, and psychological insight, this is an exemplary noir novel from a crime writer at the top of his game.

Marco Buratti, a.k.a. the Alligator, and his partners Max the Memory and Beniamino Rossini have fallen into a trap laid by their worst enemy, Giorgio Pellegrini, a wanted man who has no intention of living as a fugitive for the rest of his life and turns state evidence, but something goes wrong. Blackmailed by a high government official, the Alligator and his partners are forced to investigate. But they've been framed: even if they discover who's behind the crime, they'll rot in prison. To survive, some rules will have to be bent, and others broken.

Elena Ferrante. Key Words

Elena Ferrante. Key Words

de Rogatis, Tiziana
$18.00

"I greatly admire the work of Tiziana de Rogatis. She is a reader of deep refinement. Often I think that she knows my books better than I. So, I read her with admiration and remain silent."--ELENA FERRANTE, in the magazine, San Lian Sheng Huo Zhou Kan

Ferrante's four-volume novel cycle known in English as the Neapolitan quartet has become a global success, with over ten million readers in close to fifty countries. Her readers recount feeling "addicted" to the novels; they describe a pleasure in reading that is as rare as it is irresistible, a compulsion that leads them either to devour the books or to ration them so as to prolong the pleasure.

De Rogatis here addresses that same transnational, diverse, transversal audience. Elena Ferrante's Key Words is conceived as a lighted path made of luminous key words that synthesize the multiform aspects of Ferrante's writing and guide us through the labyrinth of her global success.

My Mother-in-Law Drinks

My Mother-in-Law Drinks

De Silva, Diego
$17.00

A hapless Italian lawyer is wrapped up in the mock trial of a mafia boss in this "rollicking novel"--a "hilarious and touching" satire of the digital age (Minneapolis Star-Tribune).

A mild-mannered computer engineer has pulled off a seemingly impossible crime--kidnapping the Neapolitan mafia boss he believes is responsible for the death of his son. He plans to conduct an impromptu trial on live television during which he will list the various crimes of the accused, sentencing him before a captivated national audience and executing him accordingly.
The standoff between law enforcement officers and the kidnapper quickly escalates into a tragi-comic reality show. The only hope of a happy ending rests with Vincenzio Malinconico, Neapolitan lawyer and walking mid-life crisis. Vincenzio hardly has a reputation for decisiveness, but now is called upon to resolve this drama with, hopefully, no loss of life--especially his own.
In this hilarious sequel to his Naples Prize-winning novel I Hadn't Understood, Diego De Silva revisits the hapless yet charismatic Vincenzo Malinconico--"the sort of man you marry twice, and leave both times."

Girl Returned

Girl Returned

Di Pietrantonio, Donatella
$16.00

WINNER OF THE CAMPIELLO PRIZE

LONGLISTED FOR THE 2020 TRANSLATED BOOK AWARDS

A 2019 BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR (Washington PostKirkus ReviewsDallas Morning News)

A pitch-perfect rendering in English by Ann Goldstein, Elena Ferrante's translator.

"I was the Arminuta, the girl returned. I spoke another language, I no longer knew who I belonged to. The word 'mama' stuck in my throat like a toad. And, nowadays, I really have no idea what kind of place mother is. It is not mine in the way one might have good health, a safe place, certainty."

Told with an immediacy and a rare expressive intensity that has earned it countless adoring readers and one of Italy's most prestigious literary prizes, A Girl Returned is a powerful novel rendered with sensitivity and verve by Ann Goldstein, translator of the works of Elena Ferrante. Set against the stark, beautiful landscape of Abruzzo in central Italy, this is a compelling story about mothers and daughters, about responsibility, siblings, and caregiving.

Without warning or explanation, an unnamed 13-year-old girl is sent away from the family she has always thought of as hers to live with her birth family: a large, chaotic assortment of individuals whom she has never met and who seem anything but welcoming. Thus begins a new life, one of struggle, tension, and conflict, especially between the young girl and her mother. But in her relationship with Adriana and Vincenzo, two of her newly acquired siblings, she will find the strength to start again and to build a new and enduring sense of self.

Doppelgänger

Doppelgänger

Drndic, Daša
$15.95

Two elderly people, Artur and Isabella, meet and have a passionate sexual encounter on New Year's Eve. Details of the lives of Artur, a retired Yugoslav army captain, and Isabella, a Holocaust survivor, are revealed through police dossiers. As they fight loneliness and aging, they take comfort in small things: for Artur, a collection of 274 hats; for Isabella, a family of garden gnomes who live in her apartment. Later, we meet the ill-fated Pupi, who dreamed of becoming a sculptor but instead became a chemist and then a spy. As Eileen Battersby wrote, "As he stands, in the zoo, gazing at a pair of rhinos, in a city most likely present-day Belgrade, this battered Everyman feels very alone: 'I would like to tell someone, anyone, I'd like to tell someone: I buried Mother today.'" Pupi sets out to correct his family's crimes by returning silverware to its original Jewish owners through the help of an unlikely friend, a pawnbroker.

Described by Dasa Drndic as "my ugly little book," Doppelgänger was her personal favorite.

My Brilliant Friend 1/5/16 BC

My Brilliant Friend 1/5/16 BC

Ferrante, Elena
$17.00

Now an HBO series: the first volume in the New York Times-bestselling "enduring masterpiece" about a lifelong friendship between two women from Naples (The Atlantic).

Beginning in the 1950s in a poor but vibrant neighborhood on the outskirts of Naples, Elena Ferrante's four-volume story spans almost sixty years, as its main characters, the fiery and unforgettable Lila and the bookish narrator, Elena, become women, wives, mothers, and leaders, all the while maintaining a complex and at times conflicted friendship. This first novel in the series follows Lila and Elena from their fateful meeting as ten-year-olds through their school years and adolescence.

Through the lives of these two women, Ferrante tells the story of a neighborhood, a city, and a country as it is transformed in ways that, in turn, also transform the relationship between two women.

"An intoxicatingly furious portrait of enmeshed friends." --Entertainment Weekly

"Spectacular." --Maureen Corrigan, NPR's Fresh Air

"Captivating." --The New Yorker

Story of a New Name 2/2/16 BC

Story of a New Name 2/2/16 BC

Ferrante, Elena
$18.00

A novel in the bestselling quartet about two very different women and their complex friendship: "Everyone should read anything with Ferrante's name on it" (The Boston Globe).

The follow-up to My Brilliant Friend, The Story of a New Name continues the epic New York Times-bestselling literary quartet that has inspired an HBO series, and returns us to the world of Lila and Elena, who grew up together in post-WWII Naples, Italy.

In The Story of a New Name, Lila has recently married and made her entrée into the family business; Elena, meanwhile, continues her studies and her exploration of the world beyond the neighborhood that she so often finds stifling. Marriage appears to have imprisoned Lila, and the pressure to excel is at times too much for Elena. Yet the two young women share a complex and evolving bond that is central to their emotional lives and a source of strength in the face of life's challenges. In these Neapolitan Novels, Elena Ferrante, "one of the great novelists of our time" (The New York Times), gives us a poignant and universal story about friendship and belonging, a meditation on love and jealousy, freedom and commitment--at once a masterfully plotted page-turner and an intense, generous-hearted family saga.

"Imagine if Jane Austen got angry and you'll have some idea of how explosive these works are." --The Australian

"Brilliant . . . captivating and insightful . . . the richness of her storytelling is likely to please fans of Sara Gruen and Silvia Avallone." --Booklist (starred review)

Story of the Lost Child 4/5/15 BC

Story of the Lost Child 4/5/15 BC

Ferrante, Elena
$18.00

The "stunning conclusion" to the bestselling saga of the fierce lifelong bond between two women, from a gritty Naples childhood through old age (Publishers Weekly, starred review).

The Story of the Lost Child concludes the dazzling saga of two women, the brilliant, bookish Elena and the fiery, uncontainable Lila, who first met amid the shambles of postwar Italy. In this book, life's great discoveries have been made; its vagaries and losses have been suffered. Through it all, the women's friendship remains the gravitational center of their lives.

Both women once fought to escape the neighborhood in which they grew up. Elena married, moved to Florence, started a family, and published several well-received books. But now, she has returned to Naples to be with the man she has always loved. Lila, on the other hand, never succeeded in freeing herself from Naples. She has become a successful entrepreneur, but her success draws her into closer proximity with the nepotism, chauvinism, and criminal violence that infect her neighborhood. Yet, somehow, this proximity to a world she has always rejected only brings her role as unacknowledged leader of that world into relief.

"Lila is a magnificent character." --The Atlantic

"Everyone should read anything with Ferrante's name on it." --The Boston Globe

Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay 3/1/16 BC

Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay 3/1/16 BC

Ferrante, Elena
$18.00

Part of the bestselling saga about childhood friends following different paths by "one of the great novelists of our time" (The New York Times).

In the third book in the New York Times-bestselling Neapolitan quartet that inspired the HBO series My Brilliant Friend, Elena and Lila have grown into womanhood. Lila married at sixteen and has a young son; she has left her husband and the comforts her marriage brought and now works as a common laborer. Elena has left the neighborhood, earned her college degree, and published a successful novel, all of which has opened the doors to a world of learned interlocutors and richly furnished salons. Both women are pushing against the walls of a prison that would have seen them living a life of misery, ignorance, and submission. They are afloat on the great sea of opportunities that opened up for women during the 1970s. And yet, they are still very much bound to each other in a book that "shows off Ferrante's strong storytelling ability and will leave readers eager for the final volume of the series" (Library Journal).

"One of modern fiction's richest portraits of a friendship." --NPR

Frantumaglia : A Writer's Journey

Frantumaglia : A Writer's Journey

Ferrante, Elena; Goldstein, An
$17.00

One of The Guardian's Best Books of the Year: Personal writings by the anonymous author who became a literary phenomenon with My Brilliant Friend.

The writer known as Elena Ferrante has taken pains to hide her identity in the hope that readers would focus on her body of work. But in this volume, she invites us into Elena Ferrante's workshop and offers a glimpse into the drawers of her writing desk--those drawers from which emerged her three early standalone novels and the four installments of the Neapolitan Novels, the New York Times-bestselling "enduring masterpiece" (The Atlantic).

Consisting of over twenty years of letters, essays, reflections, and interviews, it is a unique depiction of an author who embodies a consummate passion for writing. In these pages, Ferrante answers many of her readers' questions. She addresses her choice to stand aside and let her books live autonomous lives. She discusses her thoughts and concerns as her novels are being adapted into films. She talks about the challenge of finding concise answers to interview questions. She explains the joys and the struggles of writing, the anguish of composing a story only to discover that that story isn't good enough. She contemplates her relationship with psychoanalysis, with the cities she has lived in, with motherhood, with feminism, and with her childhood as a storehouse for memories, impressions, and fantasies. The result is a vibrant and intimate self-portrait of a writer at work.

"Everyone should read anything with Ferrante's name on it." --The Boston Globe

Lost Daughter

Lost Daughter

Ferrante, Elena; Goldstein, An
$16.00

Basis for the upcoming Maggie Gyllenhaal film starring Olivia Colman and Dakota Johnson: An edgy tale of mixed feelings and motherhood by the author of My Brilliant Friend.

Leda, a middle-aged divorcée, is alone for the first time in years after her two adult daughters leave home to live with their father in Toronto. Enjoying an unexpected sense of liberty, she heads to the Ionian coast for a vacation. But she soon finds herself intrigued by Nina, a young mother on the beach, eventually striking up a conversation with her. After Nina confides a dark secret, one seemingly trivial occurrence leads to events that could destroy Nina's family in this "arresting" novel by the author of the New York Times-bestselling Neapolitan Novels, which have sold millions of copies and been adapted into an HBO series (Publishers Weekly).

"Although much of the drama takes place in [Leda's] head, Ferrante's gift for psychological horror renders it immediate and visceral." --The New Yorker

"Ferrante's prose is stunningly candid, direct and unforgettable. From simple elements, she builds a powerful tale of hope and regret." --Publishers Weekly

My Brilliant Friend : Childhood, Adolescence

My Brilliant Friend : Childhood, Adolescence

Ferrante, Elena; Goldstein, An
$17.00

Now an HBO series: the first volume in the New York Times-bestselling "enduring masterpiece" about a lifelong friendship between two women from Naples (The Atlantic).

Beginning in the 1950s in a poor but vibrant neighborhood on the outskirts of Naples, Elena Ferrante's four-volume story spans almost sixty years, as its main characters, the fiery and unforgettable Lila and the bookish narrator, Elena, become women, wives, mothers, and leaders, all the while maintaining a complex and at times conflicted friendship. This first novel in the series follows Lila and Elena from their fateful meeting as ten-year-olds through their school years and adolescence.

Through the lives of these two women, Ferrante tells the story of a neighborhood, a city, and a country as it is transformed in ways that, in turn, also transform the relationship between two women.

"An intoxicatingly furious portrait of enmeshed friends."--Entertainment Weekly

"Spectacular."--Maureen Corrigan, NPR's Fresh Air

"Captivating."--The New Yorker

Andrea says: This book has such a strong feeling of starting out in the world, that it took my breath away. Get caught up in the lives of Lila and Elena.

Shooting Down Heaven

Shooting Down Heaven

Franco, Jorge
$18.00

A MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK OF 2020
Translated LitBig Other

Expertly told by one of Latin America's most exciting voices, Shooting Down Heaven follows the children raised by 1990s Colombia's most dangerous drug cartels and the consequences that shape their adulthood.

After twelve years away, Larry comes home to his native country of Colombia after his father, an old associate of Pablo Escobar, is murdered. Larry returns to collect his remains from a mass grave and give him a proper burial...but not before a reunion with his childhood friend, Pedro. Pedro picks him up at the airport to take him directly to the Alborada celebration--a popular festival where fireworks explode over Medellín, and the entire city loses its inhibitions. This is where Larry's story really begins.

His long-awaited homecoming quickly becomes a rude awakening. The years of luxury living in bodyguard-surrounded mansions are now firmly in the past, as Larry watches his family--including his ex-beauty queen mother and troubled brother--fall deeper into depression, drug addiction, and the traps of the family business.

Faced by an uncertain reality, Larry is forced to confront his family's turbulent history and reclaim himself from the dark remnants of a city still trying to rediscover itself. Unflinching and remarkably controlled, Jorge Franco creates a stunning portrait of a generation wounded by their parents' mistakes.

Life with Picasso

Life with Picasso

Gilot, Françoise
$17.95

Françoise Gilot's candid memoir remains the most revealing portrait of Picasso written, and gives fascinating insight into the intense and creative life shared by two modern artists.

 

Françoise Gilot was in her early twenties when she met the sixty-one-year-old Pablo Picasso in 1943. Brought up in a well-to-do upper-middle-class family, who had sent her to Cambridge and the Sorbonne and hoped that she would go into law, the young woman defied their wishes and set her sights on being an artist. Her introduction to Picasso led to a friendship, a love affair, and a relationship of ten years, during which Gilot gave birth to Picasso's two children, Paloma and Claude. Gilot was one of Picasso's muses; she was also very much her own woman, determined to make herself into the remarkable painter she did indeed become.

 

Life with Picasso is an indispensable record of his thinking about art, as well as an often very funny account of his relationships with other artists and with dealers and hangers-on. It is also about Françoise Gilot. This is a brilliant self-portrait of a young woman of enormous talent and exacting intelligence figuring out who she wants to be.

Nora says: Fascinating, well-written and intelligent account of life with Picasso. Gilot can write!

Dry Heart

Dry Heart

Ginzburg, Natalia
$12.95
The Dry Heart begins and ends with the matter-of-fact pronouncement: "I shot him between the eyes." As the tale--a plunge into the chilly waters of loneliness, desperation, and bitterness--proceeds, the narrator's murder of her flighty husband takes on a certain logical inevitability. Stripped of any preciousness or sentimentality, Natalia Ginzburg's writing here is white-hot, tempered by rage. She transforms the unhappy tale of an ordinary dull marriage into a rich psychological thriller that seems to beg the question: why don't more wives kill their husbands?
Have-Nots

Have-Nots

Hacker, Katharina
$14.95
Jakob and Isabelle meet at a party on September 11. They marry and move to London, where Jakob takes the post of a colleague killed in the World Trade Center attack. But the couple's relationship, like the world they once knew and the happiness they once shared, proves more fragile with each passing day.
Hangover Square

Hangover Square

Hamilton, Patrick
$14.95
Hamilton . . . is a sort of urban Thomas Hardy: . . . always a pleasure to read, and as social historian he is unparalleled.-Nick Hornby A much better writer than Auden, Isherwood . . . and his novels are still true now. You can go into any pub today and see it going on.-Doris Lessing, The Times Adrift in the grimy pubs of London at the outbreak of World War II, George Bone is hopelessly infatuated with Netta, a contemptuous, small-time actress. George suffers from occasional blackouts, during which one thing is horribly clear: he must murder Netta. Patrick Hamilton enjoyed worldwide popularity during the 1930s. His play Rope was made into a film by Alfred Hitchcock, and another, Gaslight, was a great success on the stage before being made into a film starring Ingrid Bergman.
World is a Wedding

World is a Wedding

Jones, Wendy
$16.00

The sequel to The Thoughts and Happenings of Wilfred Price Purveyor of Superior Funerals "It was a pleasant delight to be invited back into this world" (The Bookbag).

Set in 1926, two years after the end of The Thoughts and Happenings of Wilfred Price Purveyor of Superior Funerals, Wendy Jones's The World Is a Wedding finds Wilfred Price married to Flora Myffanwy and trying to be the perfect husband. His efforts only intensify when he learns that Flora is expecting. But something doesn't feel right to Flora: she doesn't feel at home.
Meanwhile, Grace (to whom Wilfred was very briefly married before he met Flora) has fled Narberth for London, trying to escape what has happened to her and the secret she carries because of it. But secrets are not so easily escaped--and Grace's will affect Wilfred and Flora, too.
A sophisticated comedy of manners, The World Is a Wedding captures life in a small town in Wales and explores the complexities of marriage, motherhood, and masculinity and femininity with equal wit and insight.

"Sometimes it's just really nice to find a book that is well-written, straightforward and tells a relatively simple story . . . There are touches of Dylan Thomas in the villagers' characters, with their whispered gossip and nightly drunkenness, but they're not a bad lot. Naturally, there's some tragedy and some joy, and good things that come out of bad situations. Thoroughly enjoyable."--The Irish Times

"The book is humorous throughout, often hilariously funny."--Star Tribune

Little Criminals

Little Criminals

Kerrigan, Gene
$17.00

Frankie Crowe is not one of the great criminal masterminds. A small time thug, he thinks-to the extent he can-that kidnapping one of Dublin's newly rich businessmen just may be the low-risk fast track to the status and money he knows he deserves. When the local crime boss refuses him permission to make the snatch, he shoots the boss and commences with his plan-such as it is.

After a somewhat haphazard selection, Frankie's crew of casually vicious miscreants kidnaps the wife of a moderately prosperous lawyer rather than the spouse of the wealthy banker Frankie thought he had chosen. From that point forward, no one from Inspector John Grace to that pillar of Dublin gangland Jo-Jo Mackendrick can predict the next twist in a scheme that has gone from wrong to bad to worse.

Like Elmore Leonard's, Kerrigan's writing is propelled by character. His novel is alive to the codes and expectations of the varied sections of modern Irish society. His narrative is taut and harrowing, his dialogue spot-on. The resulting story is everything Frankie Crowe is not: smart, assured and confident-forming an exciting combination of entertainment and art available only in superior crime fiction.

Bad Side of Books

Bad Side of Books

Lawrence, D.H.
$19.95
You could describe D.H. Lawrence as the great multi-instrumentalist among the great writers of the twentieth century. He was a brilliant, endlessly controversial novelist who transformed, for better and for worse, the way we write about sex and emotions; he was a wonderful poet; he was an essayist of burning curiosity, expansive lyricism, odd humor, and radical intelligence, equaled, perhaps, only by Virginia Woolf. Here Geoff Dyer, one of the finest essayists of our day, draws on the whole range of Lawrence's published essays to reintroduce him to a new generation of readers for whom the essay has become an important genre. We get Lawrence the book reviewer, writing about Death in Venice and welcoming Ernest Hemingway; Lawrence the travel writer, in Mexico and New Mexico and Italy; Lawrence the memoirist, depicting his strange sometime-friend Maurice Magnus; Lawrence the restless inquirer into the possibilities of the novel, writing about the novel and morality and addressing the question of why the novel matters; and, finally, the Lawrence who meditates on birdsong or the death of a porcupine in the Rocky Mountains. Dyer's selection of Lawrence's essays is a wonderful introduction to a fundamental, dazzling writer.
After the War

After the War

Le Corre, Hervé
$19.00

The legacy of the Second World War persists in this multi-layered tale of vengeance and retribution.

1950s Bordeaux is a city plagued by memories of the Second World War. The scars of collaboration and resistance are more keenly felt than ever and citizens struggle to move on. But across the sea, another war has already begun. The young men of France are sent in droves to Algeria, where they wage brutal battle in a conflict so new it hasn't yet been given a name.

Twenty-year-old Daniel has heard the stories. Whispers of massacres and mutilations, of ambushes and patrols played out under a burning north African sun. He knows that he is next in line to join the fight, but with just a month left before his departure he is unsure of his path. The loss of his parents and sister in the atrocities of the last war haunt him, and leave him questioning why he is going to fight in the first place.

Meanwhile, Albert Darlac, the godfather of Bordeaux, finds himself tormented by a past that won't disappear. Corrupt police chief, fascist sympathizer and one-time collaborator, Darlac soon discovers that some things won't remain buried. Before long, a series of explosive events will set off a spiral of violence that will bring the horrific legacy of wars past and present to the streets of Bordeaux.

Hervé Le Corre has produced a truly uncompromising, multi-layered masterpiece set in a world driven by and built on vengeance.

Winter's Night

Winter's Night

Manfredi, Valerio Massimo
$18.00
Set during the first half of the twentieth century, this is the story of the Brunis, a family of farmers from the Italian Padan Plain who have worked the land since time immemorial. And it is a story about the homeless multitudes, travelers, and tinkers, roaming Europe during the hardscrabble nineteen-twenties and thirties. In this expansive novel, reminiscent of Bertolucci's masterpiece 1900 in its scope and subject matter, these two worlds meet when the Brunis open their great barn and offer it as a refuge for those in need of a warm, dry, and safe place to sleep and eat.

The barn becomes font and inspiration for a series of vivid stories involving sundry strangers, the Bruni parents themselves, and their nine children--seven boys and two girls--who will grow into young men and women during World War I and its aftermath. Told in the tradition of country folktales and framed by the devastating years of strife--two world wars and the years of fascism--these stories will delight readers from the first page to the last. Manfredi's A Winter's Night provides a timely reminder that simple values and a sense of solidarity with our fellow human beings remain of vital importance, above all in a world undergoing momentous and rapid change.

In The City of Gold and Silver

In The City of Gold and Silver

Mourad, Kenize
$17.00

An enthralling historical novel based on the little-known female warrior in nineteenth century India who led a revolt against the British.

Here is the long-forgotten story of Begum Hazrat Mahal, queen of Awadh and the soul of the Indian revolt against the British, brought to vivid life by the author of Regards from the Dead Princess, a major bestseller in her native France.Begum was an orphan and a poetess who captured the attentions of King Wajid Ali Shah of Awadh and became his fourth wife. As his wife, she incited and led a popular uprising that would eventually prove to be the first step toward Indian independence.
Begum was the very incarnation of resistance: as chief of the army and the government in Lucknow, she fought battles on the field for two years; she was a freedom fighter, a misunderstood mother, and an illicit lover. She was a remarkable woman who risked everything only to face the greatest betrayal of all.

Agathe, or the Forgotten Sister

Agathe, or the Forgotten Sister

Musil, Robert
$17.95
From the author of 'A Man without Qualities, ' a novel about spirituality in the modern world.

Agathe is the sister of Ulrich, the restless and elusive "man without qualities" at the center of Robert Musil's great, unfinished novel of the same name. For years Agathe and Ulrich have ignored each other, but when brother and sister find themselves reunited over the bier of their dead father, they are electrified. Each is the other's spitting image, and Agathe, who has just separated from her husband, is even more defiant and inquiring than Ulrich. Beginning with a series of increasingly intense "holy conversations," the two gradually enlarge the boundaries of sexuality, sensuality, identity, and understanding in pursuit of a new, true form of being that they are seeking to discover.

Robert Musil's The Man Without Qualities is perhaps the most profoundly exploratory and unsettling masterpiece of twentieth-century fiction. Agathe, or, The Forgotten Sister reveals with new clarity a particular dimension of this multidimensional book--the dimension that meant the most to Musil himself and that inspired some of his most searching writing. The outstanding translator Joel Agee captures the acuity, audacity, and unsettling poetry of a book that is meant to be nothing short of life-changing.

Neapolitan Chronicles

Neapolitan Chronicles

Ortese, Anna Maria; Goldstein,
$16.95

"A major inspiration for Elena Ferrante."--The New York Times

A riveting classic of European literature, this superb collection of fiction and reportage is set in Italy's most vibrant and turbulent metropolis--Naples--in the immediate aftermath of World War Two. These writings helped inspire Elena Ferrante's best-selling novels and she has expressed deep admiration for the author of this volume, originally edited in Italian by Italo Calvino. Goyaesque in its depiction of the widespread suffering and brutal desperation that plagued the city, it comprises a mix of masterful storytelling and piercing journalism. This book, with its unforgettable portrait of Naples high and low, is also a stunning literary companion to the great neorealist films of the era by directors such as Vittorio de Sica and Roberto Rossellini. Neapolitan Chronicles is exquisitely rendered in English by Ann Goldstein and Jenny McPhee, two of the leading translators working from Italian today. Included in the collection is "A Pair of Eyeglasses," one of the most widely praised Italian short stories of the last century.

Anna Maria Ortese (1914-1998) is one of the most celebrated and original Italian writers of the last century. Neapolitan Chronicles brought her widespread acclaim in her native country when it was first published in 1953 and won the prestigious Premio Viareggio.


Kolyma Stories

Kolyma Stories

Shalamov, Varlam
$22.95
Now in its first complete English translation, this masterpiece chronicles life in a Soviet gulag, based on the author's own years in a USSR prison camp.

Kolyma Stories is a masterpiece of twentieth-century literature, an epic array of short fictional tales reflecting the fifteen years that Varlam Shalamov spent in the Soviet Gulag. This is the first of two volumes (the second to appear in 2019) that together will constitute the first complete English translation of Shalamov's stories and the only one to be based on the authorized Russian text.

Shalamov spent six years as a slave in the gold mines of Kolyma before finding a less intolerable life as a paramedic in the prison camps. He began writing his account of life in Kolyma after Stalin's death in 1953. His stories are at once the biography of a rare survivor, a historical record of the Gulag, and a literary work of unparalleled creative power, insight, and conviction.

Trick

Trick

Starnone, Domenico
$16.00

A weary man faces the ghosts of his past while caring for his grandson in Naples in this National Book Award finalist novel by the acclaimed author of Ties.

In Tricks, Domenico Starnone presents an unusual duel between two formidable minds. One is Daniele Mallarico, a once-successful illustrator who feels his artistic prowess fading. The other is Mario, Daniele's four-year-old grandson. Daniele is living in virtual solitude in Milan when his daughter asks him to come to Naples to babysit Mario for a few days.
Shut inside his childhood home--an apartment in the center of Naples that is filled with memoires of Daniele's past--grandfather and grandson match wits as Daniele heads toward a reckoning with his own ambitions and life choices. Meanwhile, Naples pulses outside, a wily, passionate city whose influence can never be shaken.
As translator Jhumpa Lahiri says in her introduction, Tricks is "an extremely playful literary composition" by the Strega Prize-winning novelist whom many consider to be one of Italy's greatest living writers.

Abigail

Abigail

Szabo, Magda
$16.95
From the author of The Door, a beloved coming-of-age tale set in WWII-era Hungary.


Abigail, the story of a headstrong teenager growing up during World War II, is the most beloved of Magda Szabó's books in her native Hungary. Gina is the only child of a general, a widower who has long been happy to spoil his bright and willful daughter. Gina is devastated when the general tells her that he must go away on a mission and that he will be sending her to boarding school in the country. She is even more aghast at the grim religious institution to which she soon finds herself consigned. She fights with her fellow students, she rebels against her teachers, finds herself completely ostracized, and runs away. Caught and brought back, there is nothing for Gina to do except entrust her fate to the legendary Abigail, as the classical statue of a woman with an urn that stands on the school's grounds has come to be called. If you're in trouble, it's said, leave a message with Abigail and help will be on the way. And for Gina, who is in much deeper trouble than she could possibly suspect, a life-changing adventure is only beginning.

There is something of Jane Austen in this story of the deceptiveness of appearances; fans of J.K. Rowling are sure to enjoy Szabó's picture of irreverent students, eccentric teachers, and boarding-school life. Above all, however, Abigail is a thrilling tale of suspense.

Followers

Followers

Wait, Rebecca
$17.00

"A profoundly unsettling, brilliantly executed, and deeply humane depiction of a slow slide toward an unspeakable act . . . A remarkable novel" (Emily St. John Mandel, author of Station Eleven).

Judith has been visiting her mother, Stephanie, in prison once a month for the last eight years. She still can't bring herself to talk with her mother about what brought them here--or about Nathaniel, the man whose religious cult almost cost them their lives.
When Stephanie first meets him, she is a struggling single mother and Nathaniel is a charismatic outsider, unlike anyone she's ever known. In deciding to join the group he's founded, Stephanie thinks she's doing the best thing for her daughter: a new home, a new purpose. Judith and Stephanie are initiated into a secret society whose "followers" must obey the will of a zealous prophet. As Stephanie immerses herself in her new life, Judith slowly realizes the moral implications of the strict lifestyle Nathaniel preaches. Tensions deepen, faith and doubt collide, and a horrifying act of violence changes everything. In the shattering aftermath, it seems that no one is safe.
With "propulsive plotting" (The Guardian), The Followers is a novel about love, hope, and identity that asks: are we still responsible for our actions if we remake ourselves in someone else's image? And can there be a way back?

"With skillful judgment, Wait shows us that not everyone can be trained or scared into submission. The tenderness and the transformative nature of the ending are truly moving."--The Independent

"Brooding tension . . . building to a page-turning finish."--Daily Mail

Natural Way of Things

Natural Way of Things

Wood, Charlotte
$17.00
"A Handmaid's Tale for the 21st century" (Prism Magazine), Wood's dystopian tale about a group of young women held prisoner in the Australian desert is a prescient feminist fable for our times. As the Guardian writes, "contemporary feminism may have found its masterpiece of horror."

Drugged, dressed in old-fashioned rags, and fiending for a cigarette, Yolanda wakes up in a barren room. Verla, a young woman who seems vaguely familiar, sits nearby. Down a hallway echoing loudly with the voices of mysterious men, in a stark compound deep in the Australian outback, other captive women are just coming to. Starved, sedated, the girls can't be sure of anything--except the painful episodes in their pasts that link them.

Drawing strength from the animal instincts they're forced to rely on, the women go from hunted to hunters, along the way becoming unforgettable and boldly original literary heroines that readers will both relate to and root for.

The Natural Way of Things is a lucid and illusory fable and a brilliantly plotted novel of ideas that reminds us of mankind's own vast contradictions--the capacity for savagery, selfishness, resilience, and redemption all contained by a single, vulnerable body.

Winner
2016 Stella Prize
2016 Prime Minister's Literary Award in Fiction

An Australian Indie Best Fiction Book & Overall Book of the Year Winner

Finalist
2017 International Dublin Literary Award
2016 Voss Literary Prize
2016 Victorian Premier's Award
2016 The Miles Franklin Award