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Concentration

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Are Women Human? by Dorothy L. Sayers

One of the first women to graduate from Oxford University, Dorothy Sayers pursued her goals whether or not what she wanted to do was ordinarily understood to be "feminine." Sayers did not devote a great deal of time to talking or writing about feminism, but she did explicitly address the issue of women's role in society in the two classic essays collected here. Central to Sayers's...

Duchessina by Carolyn Meyer

Young Catherine de' Medici is the sole heiress to the entire fortune of the wealthy Medici family. But her life is far from luxurious. After a childhood spent locked away behind the walls of a convent, she joins the household of the pope, where at last she can be united with her true love. But, all too soon, that love is replaced with an engagement to a boy who is cold and aloof. It...

God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater by Kurt Vonnegut

Eliot Rosewater - drunk, volunteer fireman, and President of the fabulously rich Rosewater Foundation - is about to attempt a noble experiment with human nature... with a little help from writer Kilgore Trout.

Henry VIII: The King and His Court by Alison Weir

Henry VIII, renowned for his command of power and celebrated for his intellect, presided over one of the most magnificent - and dangerous - courts in Renaissance Europe. Never before has a detailed, personal biography of this charismatic monarch been set against the cultural, social, and political background of his glittering court.

Journeys by Ian R. MacLeod

From a changed Jerusalem to windmills which draw their own wind. From windswept British campsites to vast slave empires which have never been. MacLeod's breadth of vision in this collection is extraordinary, but what unites these stories is his abiding interest in humanity, and the way in which he combines the fantastically strange and with the memorably everyday. Expect widescreen...

Shanghai Girls by Lisa See

In 1937, Shanghai is the Paris of Asia, a city of great wealth and glamour, the home of millionaires and beggars, gangsters and gamblers, patriots and revolutionaries, artists and warlords. Thanks to the financial security and material comforts provided by their father's prosperous rickshaw business, twenty-one-year-old Pearl Chin and her younger sister, May, are having the time of...

The Four Seasons by Laurel Corona

In glittering 18th-century Venice, music and love are prized above all else - and for two sisters coming of age, the city's passions blend in intoxicating ways. Chiaretta and Maddalena are as different as night and day. The two sisters were abandoned as babies on the steps of the Ospedale della Pietß, Venice's world-famous foundling hospital and musical academy. High-spirited and...

The Gypsy Piano Tuner by Janna Eliot

This is a collection of punchy short stories about various Romani people, well told and authentic. There is humour and pathos - a thoroughly good read.

The Man in the Brown Suit by Agatha Christie

Pretty, young Anne came to London looking for adventure. In fact, adventure comes looking for her - and finds her immediately at Hyde Park Corner tube station. Anne is present on the platform when a thin man, reeking of mothballs, loses his balance and is electrocuted on the rails. The Scotland Yard verdict is accidental death. But Anne is not satisfied. After all, who was the man in...

Townie by Andre Dubus III

After their parents divorced in the 1970s, Dubus and his three siblings grew up with their exhausted working mother in a depressed Massachusetts mill town saturated with drugs and crime. To protect himself and those he loved from street violence, Andre learned to use his fists so well that he was even scared of himself. He was on a fast track to getting killed - or killing someone...

Vernon God Little by DBC Pierre

The title character is a fifteen-year-old boy who lives in a small town in the U.S. state of Texas. When his friend Jesus Navarro commits suicide after killing sixteen bullying schoolmates, suspicion falls on Vernon, who becomes something of a scapegoat in his small hometown of Martirio. Fearing the death penalty, he goes on the run to Mexico.

Villainology by Arthur Slade

Villainology is a veritable who's who of characters from the underworld. Be they fictitious or all-too-genuine baddies, they are bound together by their infamous deeds. Slade takes a lighthearted view, nonetheless, and provides personal stats, their likes and dislikes, their high-school memories and an amazing array of cool facts along with up close and personal "interviews." Readers...