Fiction

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Post  on Mon Dec 11, 2017 2:20 pm


Here are some books I couldn't put down (recently).

The Road

By Cormac McCarthy



Publisher description:

"In this post-apocalyptic novel, a father and his son walk alone through burned America. Nothing moves in the ravaged landscape save the ash on the wind. It is cold enough to crack stones, and when the snow falls it is gray. They sky is dark. Their destination is the coast, although they don't know what, if anything, awaits them there. They have nothing; just a pistol to defend themselves against the lawless bands that stalk the road, the clothes they are wearing, a cart of scavenged food--and each other. This book boldly imagines a future in which no hope remains, but in which the father and his son, "each the other's world entire," are sustained by love. It is an unflinching meditation on the worst and the best that we are capable of: ultimate destructiveness, desperate tenacity, and the tenderness that keeps two people alive in the face of total devastation."

A few of its reviews:

‘The first great masterpiece of the globally warmed generation. Here is an American classic which, at a stroke, makes McCarthy a contender for the Nobel Prize for Literature’ - Andrew O’Hagan

‘McCarthy conjures from this pitiless flight the miracle of unswerving humanity. Gripping beyond belief’  - Sunday Telegraph

‘One of the most shocking and harrowing but ultimately redemptive books I have read. It is an intensely intimate story. It is also a warning’ - Observer Books of the Year

‘So good that it will devour you. It is incandescent’  - Daily Telegraph

‘You will read on, absolutely convinced, thrilled, mesmerized. All the modern novel can do is done here’ - Guardian

‘A masterpiece that will soon be considered a classic’ - Herald


Awards:

Pulitzer Prize for Fiction (2007), James Tait Black Memorial Prize for Fiction (2006), The Quill Award for General Fiction (2007), Puddly Award for Fiction (2010), National Book Critics Circle Award Nominee for Fiction (2006), Believer Book Award (2006), The Rooster - The Morning News Tournament of Books (2007), Tähtivaeltaja Award (2009), Cena Akademie SFFH for Kniha roku (Book of the Year) (2008), Prix des libraires du Québec for Lauréats hors Québec (2009). (Source)





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Post  on Fri Apr 06, 2018 10:13 am


Room

By Emma Donoghue



Authors description:

"Room is the story of a five-year-old called Jack, who lives in a single room with his Ma and has never been outside. When he turns five, he starts to ask questions, and his mother reveals to him that there is a world beyond the walls. Told entirely in Jack’s voice, Room is no horror story or tearjerker, but a celebration of resilience and the love between parent and child." (More)

Awards:

Man Booker Prize Nominee (2010), Orange Prize Nominee for Fiction Shortlist (2011), ALA Alex Award (2011), Indies Choice Book Award for Fiction (2011), Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Award for Hughes & Hughes Irish Novel of the Year (2010), Canadian Booksellers Association Libris Award for Fiction Book (2011), Abraham Lincoln Award Nominee (2014), Galaxy National Book Award for WHSmith Paperback of the Year (2011), Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best Book in Caribbean and Canada (2011), Trillium Book Award Nominee for English-language (2011), UC Book of the Year (2014), Eason Novel of the Year (2010), Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize (2010), Ontario Library Association Evergreen Award (2011), Goodreads Choice Award for Fiction, Nominee for Favorite Heroine (2010). (Source)
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Post  on Fri Apr 06, 2018 10:14 am


Neverwhere

By Neil Gaiman



From the authors website:

"Richard Mayhew is an unassuming young businessman living in London, with a dull job and a pretty but demanding fiancee. Then one night he stumbles across a girl bleeding on the sidewalk. He stops to help her--and the life he knows vanishes like smoke.

Several hours later, the girl is gone too. And by the following morning Richard Mayhew has been erased from his world. His bank cards no longer work, taxi drivers won't stop for him, his landlord rents his apartment out to strangers. He has become invisible, and inexplicably consigned to a London of shadows and darkness a city of monsters and saints, murderers and angels, that exists entirely in a subterranean labyrinth of sewer canals and abandoned subway stations. He has fallen through the cracks of reality and has landed somewhere different, somewhere that is Neverwhere.

For this is the home of Door, the mysterious girl whom Richard rescued in the London Above. A personage of great power and nobility in this murky, candlelit realm, she is on a mission to discover the cause of her family's slaughter, and in doing so preserve this strange underworld kingdom from the malevolence that means to destroy it. And with nowhere else to turn, Richard Mayhew must now join the Lady Door's entourage in their determined--and possibly fatal--quest.

For the dread journey ever-downward--through bizarre anachronisms and dangerous incongruities, and into dusty corners of stalled time--is Richard's final hope, his last road back to a "real" world that is growing disturbingly less real by the minute."


Neverwhere won the Mythopoeic Fantasy Award Nominee for Adult Literature (1998), Prix Julia Verlanger (1999). (source)
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Post  on Fri Apr 06, 2018 10:15 am


The Sea of Tranquillity

By Kaja Millay



From the back cover:

"Two and a half years after an unspeakable tragedy left her a shadow of the girl she once was, Nastya Kashnikov moves to a new town determined to keep her dark past hidden and hold everyone at a distance. But her plans only last so long before she finds herself inexplicably drawn to the one person as isolated as herself: Josh Bennett. Josh's story is no secret. Every person he loves has been taken from his life until, at seventeen years old, there is no one left. When your name is synonymous with death, everyone tends to give you your space. Everyone except Nastya who won't go away until she's insinuated herself into every aspect of his life. But as the undeniable pull between them intensifies, he starts to wonder if he will ever learn the secrets she's been hiding, or if he even wants to."

Written from two or three peoples perspectives. Each chapter is titled with the persons name.

Awards:

School Library Journal Best Book of the Year (2013), ALA Alex Award (2014), Goodreads Choice Award Nominee for Best Young Adult Fiction (2012). (source)
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Post  on Fri Apr 06, 2018 10:17 am


A Thousand Splendid Suns

By Khaled Hosseini



From its back cover:

"Mariam is only fifteen when she is sent to Kabul to marry the troubled and bitter Rasheed, who is thirty years her senior. Nearly two decades later, in a climate of growing unrest, tragedy strikes fifteen-year-old Laila, who must leave her home and join Mariam's unhappy household. Laila and Mariam are to find consolation in each other, their friendship to grow as deep as the bond between sisters, as strong as the ties between mother and daughter.

With the passing of time comes Taliban rule over Afghanistan, the streets of Kabul loud with the sound of gunfire and bombs, life a desperate struggle against starvation, brutality and fear, the women's endurance tested beyond their worst imaginings. Yet love can move a person to act in unexpected ways, lead them to overcome the most daunting obstacles with a startling heroism. In the end, it is love that triumphs over death and destruction.

A Thousand Splendid Suns is an unforgettable portrait of a wounded country and a deeply moving story of family and friendship. It is a beautiful, heart-wrenching story of an unforgiving time, an unlikely bond and an indestructible love."


Awards:

British Book Award for Best Read of the Year (2008), Book Sense Book of the Year Award for Adult Fiction (2008), Exclusive Books Boeke Prize Nominee (2007), California Book Award Silver Medal for Fiction (2007), Abraham Lincoln Award Nominee (2011). (Source)

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Post  on Fri Apr 06, 2018 10:17 am

In The After

By Demitria Lunetta



This is a young persons book, but I enjoyed it.

From the authors website:

"Amy is watching TV when it happens, when the world is attacked by Them. These vile creatures are rapidly devouring mankind. Most of the population is overtaken, but Amy manages to escape—and even rescue “Baby,” a toddler left behind in the chaos. Marooned in Amy’s house, the girls do everything they can to survive—and avoid Them at all costs.

After years of hiding, they are miraculously rescued and taken to New Hope, a colony of survivors living in a former government research compound. While at first the colony seems like a dream with plenty of food, safety, and shelter, New Hope slowly reveals that it is far from ideal. And Amy soon realizes that unless things change, she’ll lose Baby—and much more.

Rebellious, courageous, and tender, this unforgettable duo will have you on the edge of your seat as you tear through the pulse-pounding narrow escapes and horrifying twists of fate in this thrilling debut from author Demitria Lunetta."


In The After is an ABA (American Booksellers Association) 2013 Best Book for Children and an Amazon Top Twenty Best Teen Book for 2013.
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Post  on Mon Apr 09, 2018 12:56 pm

Blindness

By José Saramago



From Goodreads:

"A city is hit by an epidemic of "white blindness" that spares no one. Authorities confine the blind to an empty mental hospital, but there the criminal element holds everyone captive, stealing food rations and assaulting women. There is one eyewitness to this nightmare who guides her charges—among them a boy with no mother, a girl with dark glasses, a dog of tears—through the barren streets, and their procession becomes as uncanny as the surroundings are harrowing. As Blindness reclaims the age-old story of a plague, it evokes the vivid and trembling horrors of the twentieth century, leaving readers with a powerful vision of the human spirit that's bound both by weakness and exhilarating strength."

Awards:

1998 Nobel Prize for Literature, Premio San Clemente for Novela Estranxeira (1999).
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Post  on Wed Apr 11, 2018 1:33 pm


The Outcast

By Sadie Jones



From Goodreads:

It is 1957, and Lewis Aldridge, straight out of prison, is journeying back to his home in Waterford, a suburban town outside London. He is nineteen years old, and his return will have dramatic consequences not just for his family, but for the whole community.

A decade earlier, his father's homecoming has a very different effect. The war is over and Gilbert has been demobilized. He reverts easily to suburban life—cocktails at six-thirty, church on Sundays—but his wife and young son resist the stuffy routine. Lewis and his mother escape to the woods for picnics, just as they did in wartime days. Nobody is surprised that Gilbert's wife counters convention, but they are all shocked when, after one of their jaunts, Lewis comes back without her.

Not far away, Kit Carmichael keeps watch. She has always understood more than most, not least from what she is dealt by her own father's hand. Lewis's grief and burgeoning rage are all too plain, and Kit makes a private vow to help. But in her attempts to set them both free, she fails to foresee the painful and horrifying secrets that must first be forced into the open.

In this brilliant debut, Sadie Jones tells the story of a boy who refuses to accept the polite lies of a tightly knit community that rejects love in favor of appearances. Written with nail-biting suspense and cinematic pacing, The Outcast is an emotionally powerful evocation of postwar provincial English society and a remarkably uplifting testament to the redemptive powers of love and understanding.


Awards: Orange Prize Nominee for Fiction Shortlist (2008), Guardian First Book Award Nominee for Longlist (2008), Costa Book Award for First Novel (2008)
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Post  on Wed Apr 11, 2018 1:43 pm

In My Fathers Den

By Maurice Gee



This is by a NZ author.

From the back cover:

When Celia Inverarity, aged seventeen, is found brutally murdered in a secluded West Auckland park one Sunday afternoon, Paul Prior, her English teacher and mentor, is suspected of being her murderer.

Celia's death and the violence which follows send Prior back to examine the past – which proves as secret as his father's den in the old poison shed. Eventually the murderer is exposed, but not before a family has been split apart and old wounds revealed.


The novel was adapted to film in 2004
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Post  on Wed Apr 11, 2018 1:51 pm

A Canticle For Leibowitz

By Walter M. Miller Jr



Winner of the 1961 Hugo Award for Best Novel and widely considered one of the most accomplished, powerful, and enduring classics of modern speculative fiction, Walter M. Miller, Jr.'s A Canticle for Leibowitz is a true landmark of twentieth-century literature -- a chilling and still-provocative look at a post-apocalyptic future. (Goodreads)

Back cover:

In the depths of the Utah desert, long after the Flame Deluge has scoured the earth clean, a monk of the Order of Saint Leibowitz has made a miraculous discovery: holy relics from the life of the great saint himself, including the blessed blueprint, the sacred shopping list, and the hallowed shrine of the Fallout Shelter.

In a terrifying age of darkness and decay, these artifacts could be the keys to mankind's salvation. But as the mystery at the core of this groundbreaking novel unfolds, it is the search itself—for meaning, for truth, for love—that offers hope for humanity's rebirth from the ashes.


Awards: Hugo Award for Best Novel (1961), Locus Award for All-Time Best Novel (1975)
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Post  on Wed Apr 11, 2018 1:57 pm

Gone Girl

By Gillian Flynn



From the back cover:

Who are you?
What have we done to each other?

These are the questions Nick Dunne finds himself asking on the morning of his fifth wedding anniversary, when his wife Amy suddenly disappears. The police suspect Nick. Amy's friends reveal that she was afraid of him, that she kept secrets from him. He swears it isn't true. A police examination of his computer shows strange searches. He says they weren't made by him. And then there are the persistent calls on his mobile phone.

So what really did happen to Nick's beautiful wife?

Awards: Barry Award Nominee for Best Novel (2013), Anthony Award Nominee for Best Novel (2013), Romantic Times Reviewers' Choice Award (RT Award) for Suspense/Thriller Novel (2012), Shirley Jackson Award Nominee for Novel (Finalist) (2012), Edgar Award Nominee for Best Novel (2013), Puddly Award for Fiction (2013), Women's Prize for Fiction Nominee for Longlist (2013), Grand Prix des lectrices de Elle for roman policier (2013), Goodreads Choice Award for Best Mystery & Thriller (2012). (Source)
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Post  on Wed Apr 11, 2018 2:32 pm

The Shack

By WM. Paul Young



This was a self published book which became a best seller.

From the back cover:

Mackenzie Allen Phillips’s youngest daughter, Missy, has been abducted during a family vacation, and evidence that she may have been brutally murdered is found in an abandoned shack deep in the Oregon wilderness. Four years later, in this midst of his great sadness, Mack receives a suspicious note, apparently from God, inviting him back to that shack for a weekend. Against his better judgment he arrives at the shack on wintry afternoon and walks back into his darkest nightmare. What he finds there will change his life forever.
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