A charming and brilliantly entertaining novel… shot through with the light-hearted Nesbit touch’ Penelope Lively from the introduction “When did two girls of our age have such a chance as we’ve got – to have a lark entirely on our own? No chaperone no rules no…” “No present income or future prospects said Lucilla. It’s 1919 and Jane and her cousin Lucilla leave school to find that their guardian has gambled away their money leaving them with only a small cottage in the English countryside. In an attempt to earn their living the orphaned cousins embark on a series of misadventures – cutting flowers from their front garden and selling them to passers-by inviting paying guests who disappear without paying – all the while endeavouring to stave off the attentions of male admirers in a bid to secure their independence. ‘To come upon any Nesbit today hitherto unread… is like receiving a letter from a friend whom you have believed dead’ New York Times ‘A wry charming delight of a book’ The Pool
9781447286196THE NEW YORK TIMES TOP TEN BESTSELLER WINNER OF THE 2014 KIRKUS PRIZE FOR FICTION Inspired by the true story of a woman who changed the way we understand our world. In 1933 three young gifted anthropologists are thrown together in the jungle of New Guinea. They are Nell Stone fascinating magnetic and famous for her controversial work studying South Pacific tribes her intelligent and aggressive husband Fen and Andrew Bankson who stumbles into the lives of this strange couple and becomes totally enthralled. Within months the trio are producing their best ever work but soon a firestorm of fierce love and jealousy begins to burn out of control threatening their bonds their careers and ultimately their lives . . . ‘Dazzling’ Emma Donoghue author of Room
9781529110708’Just downright brilliant… a transcendent transporting experience’ Observer A motherless girl grows up in isolated luxury hidden from the world by her wealthy father. She believes their life together is normal – but as time passes she has a growing sense that something between them is very wrong. She cannot escape so she seeks solace in her books. Her favourite tales are those that conjure ancient worlds – of angry gods and heroic mortals one of whom will some day come to her rescue. Soon she will forget where the page ends and her mind begins. ‘A full-throttle blast of storytelling mastery’ Max Porter
9780349010359’I have bought more copies of this book to give to people in a frenzy of enthusiasm than any other . . . Heartburn is the perfect bittersweet sobbingly funny all-too-true confessional novel’ Nigella Lawson Seven months into her pregnancy Rachel discovers that her husband is in love with another woman. The fact that this woman has a ‘neck as long as an arm and a nose as long as a thumb’ is no consolation. Food sometimes is though since Rachel is a cookery writer and between trying to win Mark back and wishing him dead she offers us some of her favourite recipes. Heartburn is a roller coaster of love betrayal loss and – most satisfyingly – revenge. This is Nora Ephron’s (screenwriter of When Harry Met Sally and Sleepless in Seattle) roman a clef: ‘I always thought during the pain of the marriage that one day it would make a funny book’ she once said – And it is! Books included in the VMC 40th anniversary series include: Frost in May by Antonia White; The Collected Stories of Grace Paley; Fire from Heaven by Mary Renault; The Magic Toyshop by Angela Carter; The Weather in the Streets by Rosamond Lehmann; Deep Water by Patricia Highsmith; The Return of the Soldier by Rebecca West; Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston; Heartburn by Nora Ephron; The Dud Avocado by Elaine Dundy; Memento Mori by Muriel Spark; A View of the Harbour by Elizabeth Taylor; and Faces in the Water by Janet Frame
9780141036601LONGLISTED FOR THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE 2017 SHORTLISTED FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARDS 2017 ‘Smith’s finest. Extraordinary truly marvellous’ Observer A dazzlingly exuberant novel moving from north west London to West Africa from the critically acclaimed author of White Teeth On Beauty and Grand Union Two brown girls dream of being dancers – but only one Tracey has talent. The other has ideas: about rhythm and time black bodies and black music what it means to belong what it means to be free. It’s a close but complicated childhood friendship that ends abruptly in their early twenties never to be revisited but never quite forgotten either. Bursting with energy rhythm and movement Swing Time is Zadie Smith’s most ambitious novel yet. It is a story about music and identity race and class those who follow the dance and those who lead it . . . ‘Superb’ Financial Times ‘Breathtaking’ TLS ‘Pitch-perfect’ Daily Telegraph ‘There is still no better chronicler of the modern British family than Zadie Smith’ Telegraph
9780241422243A story of forbidden sexual passion and thwarted dreams set against the backdrop of a lush summer in rural Massachusetts Seventeen-year-old Charity Royall is desperate to escape life with her hard-drinking adoptive father. Their isolated village stifles her and his behaviour increasingly disturbs her. When a young city architect visits for the summer it offers Charity the chance to break free. But as they embark on an intense affair will it bring her another kind of trap? Regarded by Edith Wharton as among her best novels Summer caused a sensation in 1917 with its honest depiction of a young woman overturning the rules of her day and attempting to live on her own terms.
9781784707422*NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER* ‘Savage funny frequently on the verge of teetering into lunacy…’ Vogue Discover this deliciously dark satire on modern privilege from the Booker-shortlisted author of Eileen It’s the year 2000 in a city aglitter with wealth and possibility; what could be so terribly wrong? Our narrator has many of the advantages of life: Young thin pretty a recent Columbia graduate she lives in an apartment on the Upper East Side of Manhattan paid for like everything else by her inheritance. But there is a vacuum at the heart of things and it isn’t just the loss of her parents in college or the way her Wall Street boyfriend treats her or her sadomasochistic relationship with her alleged best friend. Blackly funny both merciless and compassionate – dangling its legs over the ledge of 9/11 – My Year of Rest and Relaxation is a showcase for the gifts of one of America’s major young writers.
9781526614971Lose yourself in the story of a lifetime – the unforgettable Sunday Times bestseller ‘Patchett leads us to a truth that feels like life rather than literature’ Guardian Longlisted for the Women’s Prize 2020 A STORY OF TWO SIBLINGS THEIR CHILDHOOD HOME AND A PAST THAT THEY CAN’T LET GO. Like swallows like salmon we were the helpless captives of our migratory patterns. We pretended that what we had lost was the house not our mother not our father. We pretended that what we had lost had been taken from us by the person who still lived inside. ‘The best book I’ve read in years’ Rosamund Lupton ‘Her finest novel yet’ Sunday Times ‘The buzz around The Dutch House is totally justified. Her best yet which is saying something’ John Boyne ‘A masterpiece’ Cathy Rentzenbrink ‘Bliss’ Nigella Lawson
9780241983201A GUARDIAN BEST BOOK OF THE 21ST CENTURY From the Booker Prize-winning author of Regeneration Shortlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction and the Costa Novel Award There was a woman at the heart of the Trojan war whose voice has been silent – till now. Discover the greatest Greek myth of all – retold by the witness that history forgot . . . ‘Magnificent. You are in the hands of a writer at the height of her powers’ Evening Standard ‘Chilling powerful audacious’ The Times Briseis was a queen until her city was destroyed. Now she is slave to Achilles the man who butchered her husband and brothers. Trapped in a world defined by men can she survive to become the author of her own story?
9780571334650THE BBC ADAPTATION OF NORMAL PEOPLE IS NOW AVAILABLE ON BBC IPLAYER AND BBC 1 OVER ONE MILLION COPIES SOLD THE NUMBER ONE SUNDAY TIMES AND TOP FIVE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER WINNER OF THE COSTA NOVEL AWARD 2018 WINNER OF THE AN POST IRISH BOOK AWARDS NOVEL OF THE YEAR WINNER OF NOVEL OF THE YEAR AND BOOK OF THE YEAR AT THE BRITISH BOOK AWARDS WINNER OF THE SPECSAVERS NATIONAL BOOK AWARDS INTERNATIONAL AUTHOR OF THE YEAR LONGLISTED FOR THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE 2018 LONGLISTED FOR THE WOMEN’S PRIZE FOR FICTION 2019 Connell and Marianne grow up in the same small town in the west of Ireland but the similarities end there. In school Connell is popular and well-liked while Marianne is a loner. But when the two strike up a conversation – awkward but electrifying – something life-changing begins. Normal People is a story of mutual fascination friendship and love. It takes us from that first conversation to the years beyond in the company of two people who try to stay apart but find they can’t. ‘The literary phenomenon of the decade.’ – Guardian SHORTLISTED FOR THE IRISH NOVEL OF THE YEAR AWARD 2019 SHORTLISTED FOR THE RSL ENCORE PRIZE 2019 LONGLISTED FOR THE RATHBONES FOLIO PRIZE 2019
9780712353120My Husband Simon tells the story of the married life of Nevis Falconer a young woman novelist and Simon Quinn. Temperamentally unsuited they are only kept together by a mutual physical attraction in spite of innumerable quarrels. They live this superficial existence for three years until one day Nevis meets Marcus Chard her American publisher who has just arrived in London. Soon friendship develops into love. Inevitably the problem faces her. Wife or mistress? Nevis finds herself caught in a whirl of circumstances over which she has no control. Published in 1931 in the immediate aftermath of D H Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover controversy Mollie Panter-Downes’s book explores the different echelons of the increasingly self-conscious middle class and the ways in which the tensions and nuances of vocabulary dress occupation politics taste and ultimately the literary world contribute to the incompatibility of a marriage.
9781409180074THE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER SHORTLISTED FOR THE COSTA FIRST NOVEL AWARD LONGLISTED FOR THE WOMEN’S PRIZE FOR FICTION’Hilarious compelling painful enlightening honest. I loved it’ – Dolly Alderton ‘Brilliant timely funny heartbreaking’ – Jojo Moyes ‘A deliciously funny characterful topical and thrilling novel for our times’ – Bernardine Evaristo WINNER OF THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE Meet Queenie. She just can’t cut a break. Well apart from one from her long term boyfriend Tom. That’s just a break though. Definitely not a break up. Stuck between a boss who doesn’t seem to see her a family who don’t seem to listen (if it’s not Jesus or water rates they’re not interested) and trying to fit in two worlds that don’t really understand her it’s no wonder she’s struggling. She was named to be queen of everything. So why is she finding it so hard to rule her own life? A darkly comic and bitingly subversive take on life love race and family Queenie will have you nodding in recognition crying in solidarity and rooting for this unforgettable character every step of the way. Perfect for fans of Dolly Alderton Sally Rooney Diana Evans and Phoebe Waller-Bridge. ‘This is an important timely and disarming novel thirst-quenching and long overdue: one that will be treasured by any type of black girl” and hordes of other readers besides.’ – Guardian ****** LONGLISTED FOR THE JHALAK PRIZE SHORTLISTED FOR WATERSTONES BOOK OF THE YEAR SHORTLISTED FOR FOYLES BOOK OF THE YEAR BLACKWELL’S DEBUT NOVEL OF THE YEAR NAMED ONE OF THE TIMES GUARDIAN SUNDAY TIMES DAILY MAIL AND EVENING STANDARD’S BEST BOOKS OF 2019