The phenomenal Number One Bestseller Winner of the Specsavers National Book Award 2014 Waterstones Book of the Year 2014 Selected for the Richard & Judy Book Club 2015 There is nothing hidden that will not be revealed . . . On an autumn day in 1686, eighteen-year-old Nella Oortman knocks at the door of a grand house in the wealthiest quarter of Amsterdam. She has come from the country to begin a new life as the wife of illustrious merchant trader Johannes Brandt, but instead she is met by his sharp-tongued sister, Marin. Only later does Johannes appear and present her with an extraordinary wedding gift: a cabinet-sized replica of their home. It is to be furnished by an elusive miniaturist, whose tiny creations mirror their real-life counterparts in unexpected ways . . . Nella is at first mystified by the closed world of the Brandt household, but as she uncovers its secrets she realizes the escalating dangers that await them all. Does the miniaturist hold their fate in her hands? And will she be the key to their salvation or the architect of their downfall? Beautiful, intoxicating and filled with heart-pounding suspense, Jessie Burton's magnificent debut novel The Miniaturist is a story of love and obsession, betrayal and retribution, appearance and truth.
Set in seventeenth century Amsterdam—a city ruled by glittering wealth and oppressive religion—a masterful debut steeped in atmosphere and shimmering with mystery, in the tradition of Emma Donoghue, Sarah Waters, and Sarah Dunant. ”There is nothing hidden that will not be revealed . . .“ On a brisk autumn day in 1686, eighteen-year-old Nella Oortman arrives in Amsterdam to begin a new life as the wife of illustrious merchant trader Johannes Brandt. But her new home, while splendorous, is not welcoming. Johannes is kind yet distant, always locked in his study or at his warehouse office—leaving Nella alone with his sister, the sharp-tongued and forbidding Marin. But Nella’s world changes when Johannes presents her with an extraordinary wedding gift: a cabinet-sized replica of their home. To furnish her gift, Nella engages the services of a miniaturist—an elusive and enigmatic artist whose tiny creations mirror their real-life counterparts in eerie and unexpected ways . . . Johannes’ gift helps Nella to pierce the closed world of the Brandt household. But as she uncovers its unusual secrets, she begins to understand—and fear—the escalating dangers that await them all. In this repressively pious society where gold is worshipped second only to God, to be different is a threat to the moral fabric of society, and not even a man as rich as Johannes is safe. Only one person seems to see the fate that awaits them. Is the miniaturist the key to their salvation . . . or the architect of their destruction? Enchanting, beautiful, and exquisitely suspenseful, The Miniaturist is a magnificent story of love and obsession, betrayal and retribution, appearance and truth.
Sold in over thirty territories, this evocative debut in the tradition of Sarah Dunant, Tracey Chevalier and Emma Donoghue is set among a wealthy, dysfunctional family living in Amsterdam in 1686 during the decline of the Dutch Golden Age "There is nothing hidden that will not be revealed . . ." On an autumn day in 1686, eighteen-year-old Nella Oortman knocks at the door of a grand house in the wealthiest quarter of Amsterdam. She has come from the country to begin a new life as the wife of the illustrious merchant trader Johannes Brandt, but instead she is met by his sharp-tongued sister, Marin. Only later does Johannes appear and present her with an extraordinary wedding gift: a cabinet-sized replica of their home. It is to be furnished by an elusive miniaturist, whose tiny creations mirror their real-life counterparts in unexpected ways . . . Nella is at first mystified by the closed world of the Brandt household, but as she uncovers its secrets she realizes the escalating dangers that await them all. Does the miniaturist hold their fate in her hands? And will she be the key to their salvation or the architect of their downfall? Beautiful, intoxicating and filled with heart-pounding suspense, The Miniaturist is a magnificent story of love and obsession, betrayal and retribution, appearance and truth.
The Sunday Times Number One Bestseller and Richard and Judy Book Club selection. A picture hides a thousand words . . . On a hot July day in 1967, Odelle Bastien climbs the stone steps of the Skelton gallery in London, knowing that her life is about to change forever. Having struggled to find her place in the city since she arrived from Trinidad five years ago, she has been offered a job as a typist under the tutelage of the glamorous and enigmatic Marjorie Quick. But though Quick takes Odelle into her confidence, and unlocks a potential she didn't know she had, she remains a mystery - no more so than when a lost masterpiece with a secret history is delivered to the gallery. The truth about the painting lies in 1936 and a large house in rural Spain, where Olive Schloss, the daughter of a renowned art dealer, is harbouring ambitions of her own. Into this fragile paradise come artist and revolutionary Isaac Robles and his half-sister Teresa, who immediately insinuate themselves into the Schloss family, with explosive and devastating consequences . . . Seductive, exhilarating and suspenseful, The Muse is an unforgettable novel about aspiration and identity, love and obsession, authenticity and deception - a masterpiece from Jessie Burton, the million-copy bestselling author of The Miniaturist.
'A tale of immense originality and intrigue. The Miniaturist is every bit as perfect and detailed as a Mughal painting should be. Well crafted in all its details of colour and texture, it is an intensely passionate creation' Observer Set in the court of the Emperor Akbar in 16th-century India, this is a richly detailed and sensuous tale of art, sex and political intrigue. Bihzad is the son of the emperor's chief artist and as such, he is groomed to follow in his father's footsteps. A child prodigy, Bihzad is shielded from life as he grows up in the stunning fortress town of Agra. But soon word of his talent - his wild, imaginative drawings free from the normal restrictions of court painting - spreads. When the emperor decides to move the court to Fatehpur Sikri, Bihzad is favoured among the other artists and musicians. In his spare time he paints a series of richly, erotic scenes. But as his fame increases, he begins to make enemies who are jealous of his success and who will use his hidden drawings to destroy him.
Author: Deborah Moggach
Publisher: Random House
Release Date: 2012-03-31
Soon to be a major film starring Oscar winners Alicia Vikander, Christoph Waltz and Dame Judi Dench, and adapted for the screen by Sir Tom Stoppard. From the bestselling author of The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel comes a thrilling story of power, lust and deception set in seventeenth-century Amsterdam Seventeenth-century Amsterdam – a city in the grip of tulip fever. Sophia’s husband Cornelis is one of the lucky ones grown rich from this exotic new flower. To celebrate, he commissions a talented young artist to paint him with his beautiful young bride. But as the portrait grows, so does the passion between Sophia and the painter; and ambitions, desires and dreams breed an intricate deception and a reckless gamble.
'A lovely piece of work; finely researched and beautifully, atmospherically written' Sarah Dunant A gripping historical novel that brings tumultuous medieval Europe to life. Not to be missed by readers of Hilary Mantel, Peter Ackroyd and C. J. Sansom. Johann Gutenberg's first printed Bibles amazed and shocked medieval Europe. He had started a revolution that would one day put books in the hands of any man or woman who wanted them. The project was fraught with danger, for it threatened the power of politicians and the Catholic church. Who was this Gutenberg? In Alix Christie's evocative and compelling novel, he comes vividly to life - driven, caustic and ruthless. Behind him stands a brilliant young scribe, Peter Schoeffer, whose genius is to stay true to his artistic values in the cauldron of the printer's workshop. Caught between the old ways and the new, the two men struggle with one another and the world outside to prevail against overwhelming obstacles... and change history. A semifinalist for the VCU Cabell First Novelist Award.
Author: Lisa See
Publisher: A&C Black
Release Date: 2014-06-03
It's 1938 and the exclusive Oriental nightclub in San Francisco's Forbidden City is holding auditions for showgirls. In the dark, scandalous glamour of the club, three girls from very different backgrounds stumble into each other lives. All the girls have secrets. Grace, an American-born Chinese girl, has fled the Midwest and an abusive father. Helen is from a Chinese family which has deep roots in San Francisco's Chinatown. And, as both her friends know, Ruby is Japanese passing as Chinese. Then, in a heartbeat, everything changes. The Japanese attack Pearl Harbor and paranoia, suspicion, and a shocking act of betrayal, threaten to destroy their lives.
THE MOST THRILLING HISTORICAL DEBUT OF 2017 Based on the shocking true story of the infamous witchfinder Matthew Hopkins, this haunting and gripping novel is perfect for fans of The Miniaturist, Sarah Waters and The Essex Serpent. 'The number of women my brother Matthew killed, so far as I can reckon it, is one hundred and six...' 1645. When Alice Hopkins' husband dies in a tragic accident, she returns to the small Essex town of Manningtree, where her brother Matthew still lives. But home is no longer a place of safety. Matthew has changed, and there are rumours spreading through the town: whispers of witchcraft, and of a great book, in which he is gathering women's names. To what lengths will Matthew's obsession drive him? And what choice will Alice make, when she finds herself at the very heart of his plan? 'VIVID AND TERRIFYING' Paula Hawkins, author of The Girl on the Train 'If you loved The Essex Serpent...then you may have met your new favourite' Apple Books 'At once a feminist parable and an old-fashioned, check-twice-under-the-bed thriller' Patrick Gale 'A tense, surprising and elegantly-crafted novel' Ian McGuire, author of The North Water 'A richly told and utterly compelling tale, with shades of Hilary Mantel' Kate Hamer, author of The Girl in the Red Coat 'Anyone who liked Cecilia Ekback's Wolf Winter is going to love this' Natasha Pulley, author of The Watchmaker of Filigree Street 'Beth Underdown cleverly creates a compelling atmosphere of dread and claustrophobia... Even from the distance of nearly four hundred years, her Matthew Hopkins is a genuinely frightening monster' Kate Riordan 'Superb: dark, terrifying and utterly compelling' Tracy Borman
Author: David Park
Publisher: A&C Black
Release Date: 2012-04-01
It is December in Belfast, Christmas is approaching and three sets of people are about to make their way to Amsterdam. Alan, a university art teacher, goes on a pilgrimage to the city of his youth with troubled teenage son Jack; middle-aged couple Marion and Richard take a break from running their garden centre to celebrate Marion's birthday; and Karen, a single mother struggling to make ends meet, joins her daughter's hen party. As these people brush against each other in the squares, museums and parks of Amsterdam, their lives are transfigured as they encounter the complexities of love in a city that challenges what has gone before.
Author: David Shafer
Publisher: Penguin UK
Release Date: 2015-06-04
David Shafer's acclaimed Whiskey Tango Foxtrot: A brilliant, visionary and deeply human cyber-thriller Deep in the forest near Burma's border with China, a young woman sees something she wasn't supposed to see. In Portland, Oregon, a troubled young man crashes his bicycle on his way to work - and then gets fired. In New York, a famous self-help author goes on daytime TV - and suddenly conceives 'a book that would take him beyond talk shows'. What connects these three people - though they don't know it yet - is that they have come to the attention of the Committee, a global cabal that seeks to privatize all information. And each of them will, in their different ways, come to take part in the secret resistance struggle spearheaded by a scarily clever hacktivist collective - a struggle built on radical politics, classic spycraft and eye-popping technology. Along the way, they are forced to confront their own demons, reconsider their values, and contemplate the meaning of love, family, friendship and community. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot is at once a page-turning thriller, a deeply absorbing psychological novel, and a visionary exploration of the possibilities and hazards of our online lives. 'A paranoid, sarcastic and clattering pop thriller that reads as if it were torn from the damp pages of Glenn Greenwald's fever journal ... Reading [Shafer's] prose is like popping a variant of the red pill in The Matrix: everything gets a little crisper' New York Times 'Genius techno-thriller à la Neal Stephenson, powered by social-media info-conspiracy à la Dave Eggers' Time 'A stylish, absorbing, sharply modern hybrid of techno-thriller and psychodrama that bristles with wit and intellect' Maggie Shipstead, author of Seating Arrangements 'A fine example of what happens when big, brainy ideas are successfully mated with good old-fashioned plot thrust ... The next time the Fiction is Dead brigade demand to know why novels deserve a place in popular culture, the constant reader might well cite this book as Exhibit A for the defence' Irish Times 'Exciting, funny, moving and thought-provoking' Irish Independent
Amsterdam, 1943 Hanneke spends her days procuring and delivering sought-after black-market goods to paying customers, her nights hiding the true nature of her work from her concerned parents, and every waking moment mourning her boyfriend, who was killed on the front line when the Germans invaded. She likes to think of her illegal work as a small act of rebellion. But one day Hanneke gets a very unusual request. One of her regular customers asks her to find a girl. A girl who has disappeared from the secret room in her house. A Jewish girl . . . As she searches for clues Hanneke is drawn into a dangerous web of lies, secrets and mysteries. Can she find the runaway before the Nazis do? Meticulously researched, intricately plotted and beautifully written, The Girl in the Blue Coat is an extraordinarily gripping novel from a bright new voice in YA fiction. 'a gripping historical mystery' Publishers Weekly, starred review
#1 UK Bestseller “A joy.” — Guardian “Enchanting.” — People “Triumphant.” — Sunday Telegraph “Stunningly crafted and constantly surprising . . . An utterly convincing love story about two people destined to be together somehow, no matter what.” — Times “One Day meets Sliding Doors.” — Elle A dazzling novel about the ways the smallest decisions give shape to our lives, The Versions of Us charts a relationship through three possible futures. Cambridge, 1958. Late for class, Eva Edelstein swerves to miss a dog and crashes her bike. Jim Taylor hurries to help her. In that brief moment, three outcomes are born for Eva and Jim. As the strands of their lives weave together and apart across the decades from college through wildly different successes and disappointments, seductions and betrayals, births and funerals, joys and sorrows, the only constant is the power of their connection. TheVersions of Us is a tour de force of storytelling. “Barnett renders an irresistible concept in sweet, cool prose — a bit like a choose-your-own-adventure book in which you don’t have to choose.” — Observer “One of the most engrossing novels either of us has read in years.” —Richard Madeley, Richard and Judy Book Club “I simply adored this wonderful novel.” — Jessie Burton, author of The Muse and The Miniaturist
A RICHARD AND JUDY BOOK CLUB READ AN OBSERVER NEW FACE OF FICTION 2015 A HUFFINGTON POST 'ONE TO WATCH IN 2015' LONGLISTED FOR THE CWA JOHN CREASEY (NEW BLOOD) DAGGER 2015 'I was gripped by Catherine Chanter's The Well immediately. The beauty of her prose is riveting, the imagery so assured. This is an astonishing debut' Sarah Winman, author of When God was a Rabbit 'I loved this book!' JESSIE BURTON, author of The Miniaturist When Ruth Ardingly and her family first drive up from London in their grime-encrusted car and view The Well, they are enchanted by a jewel of a place, a farm that appears to offer everything the family are searching for. An opportunity for Ruth. An escape for Mark. A home for their grandson Lucien. But The Well's unique glory comes at a terrible price. The locals suspect foul play in its verdant fields and drooping fruit trees, and Ruth becomes increasingly isolated as she struggles to explain why her land flourishes whilst her neighbours' produce withers and dies. Fearful of envious locals and suspicious of those who seem to be offering help, Ruth is less and less sure who she can trust. As The Well envelops them, Ruth's paradise becomes a prison, Mark's dream a recurring nightmare, and Lucien's playground a grave.
Author: Lauren Owen
Publisher: Random House
Release Date: 2014-04-03
You are about to discover the secrets of The Quick – But first, reader, you must travel to Victorian England, and there, in the wilds of Yorkshire, meet a brother and sister alone in the world, a pair bound by tragedy. You will, in time, enter the rooms of London’s mysterious Aegolius Club – a society of the richest, most powerful men in England. And at some point – we cannot say when – these worlds will collide. It is then, and only then, that a new world emerges, a world of romance, adventure and the most delicious of horrors – and the secrets of The Quick are revealed. 'Sly and glittering' Hilary Mantel 'Impossible to resist' Kate Atkinson