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The Sparsholt Affair

The Sparsholt Affair
Author: Alan Hollinghurst
Publisher: Knopf
ISBN: 1101874589
Pages: 432
Year: 2018-03-13
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“Call Me By Your Name meets Evelyn Waugh in a gorgeous novel about the generations-long aftershocks of a youthful tryst.” —Esquire From the winner of the Man Booker Prize, a masterly novel that spans seven transformative decades as it plumbs the complex relationships of a remarkable family. In 1940, David Sparsholt arrives at Oxford to study engineering, though his sights are set on joining the Royal Air Force. Handsome, athletic, charismatic, he is unaware of his powerful effect on others—especially on Evert Dax, the lonely and romantic son of a celebrated novelist who is destined to become a writer himself. With the world at war, and the Blitz raging in London, Oxford exists at a strange remove: a place of fleeting beauty, of secret liaisons under the cover of blackouts. A friendship develops between David and Evert that will influence their lives for decades to come. Alan Hollinghurst's sweeping new novel evokes across three generations the intimate relationships of a group of friends brought together by art, literature, and love. We witness shifts in taste and morality through a series of vividly rendered episodes: a Sparsholt holiday in Cornwall; eccentric gatherings at the Dax family home; the adventures of David's son Johnny, a painter in 1970s London. Richly observed, emotionally charged, this dazzling novel of fathers and sons, of family and legacy, explores the social and sexual revolutions of the past century, even as it takes us straight to the heart of our current age.

The Sparsholt Affair

The Sparsholt Affair
Author: Alan Hollinghurst
Publisher: Knopf Canada
ISBN: 0345809742
Pages: 304
Year: 2018-03-13
View: 745
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From the internationally acclaimed winner of the Man Booker Prize, a sweeping new novel that explores richly complex relationships between fathers and sons as it spans seven transformative decades in England, from the 1940s through the present. David Sparsholt is a man who commands attention. As a student at Oxford during the early days of World War II, he's handsome, powerful and alluring to all who meet him--both women and men. His two closest friends, Evert and Freddie, are aspiring artists who are quickly drawn into Sparsholt's magnetic field even as the mores of the day complicate their ambitions--aesthetic, romantic and otherwise. Twenty years later, all three men find themselves in unexpected positions--sometimes rewarded, but sometimes thwarted--vis-à-vis love and career; money and stature. David Sparsholt is now married with a wife and son, having claimed fame as a fighter pilot in the war, but also infamy after a scandalous affair rocked his entire family--especially his teenage son, Johnny. It's the 1960s, and upheavals of all sorts are rampant in England and around the world, including as we follow Johnny's struggles to untangle his own private web of identity, art and sexuality. Together, these men's trials and triumphs present a complicated portrait of masculinity and artistic worth in England's upper echelons, where one's name carries the legacy, but also the telling scars, of the generations before him. Engaging, atmospheric, told in lush and gorgeous prose, The Sparsholt Affair is a brilliant novel about sensuality and scruples set against a backdrop of radical social change, from a writer whose work is as provocative as it is precisely rendered.

The Sparsholt Affair

The Sparsholt Affair
Author: Alan Hollinghurst
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
ISBN: 1447211456
Pages:
Year: 2017-10-05
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In October 1940, the handsome young David Sparsholt arrives in Oxford. A keen athlete and oarsman, he at first seems unaware of the effect he has on others – particularly on the lonely and romantic Evert Dax, son of a celebrated novelist and destined to become a writer himself. While the Blitz rages in London, Oxford exists at a strange remove: an ephemeral, uncertain place, in which nightly blackouts conceal secret liaisons. Over the course of one momentous term, David and Evert forge an unlikely friendship that will colour their lives for decades to come . . . Alan Hollinghurst’s masterly new novel evokes the intimate relationships of a group of friends bound together by art, literature and love across three generations. It explores the social and sexual revolutions of the most pivotal years of the past century, whose life-changing consequences are still being played out to this day. Richly observed, disarmingly witty and emotionally charged, The Sparsholt Affair is an unmissable achievement from one of our finest writers.

The Folding Star

The Folding Star
Author: Alan Hollinghurst
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA
ISBN: 1596918101
Pages: 448
Year: 2008-12-17
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The 1995 Booker Prize finalist finally back in print. Alan Hollinghurst's hypnotic and exquisitely written novel tells the story of Edward Manners, a disaffected 33-year-old who leaves England to earn his living as a language tutor in a Flemish city. Almost immediately he falls in love with one of his pupils, but can only console himself with other, illicit affairs. With this novel, Hollinghurst exposes us fearlessly to the consequences of unfulfillable, annihilating desire.

The Stranger's Child

The Stranger's Child
Author: Alan Hollinghurst
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307700445
Pages: 448
Year: 2011-10-11
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From the Man Booker Prize–winning author of The Line of Beauty: a magnificent, century-spanning saga about a love triangle that spawns a myth, and a family mystery, across generations. In the late summer of 1913, George Sawle brings his Cambridge schoolmate—a handsome, aristocratic young poet named Cecil Valance—to his family’s modest home outside London for the weekend. George is enthralled by Cecil, and soon his sixteen-year-old sister, Daphne, is equally besotted by him and the stories he tells about Corley Court, the country estate he is heir to. But what Cecil writes in Daphne’s autograph album will change their and their families’ lives forever: a poem that, after Cecil is killed in the Great War and his reputation burnished, will become a touchstone for a generation, a work recited by every schoolchild in England. Over time, a tragic love story is spun, even as other secrets lie buried—until, decades later, an ambitious biographer threatens to unearth them. Rich with Hollinghurst’s signature gifts—haunting sensuality, delicious wit and exquisite lyricism—The Stranger’s Child is a tour de force: a masterly novel about the lingering power of desire, how the heart creates its own history, and how legends are made. This eBook edition includes a Reading Group Guide.

The Line of Beauty

The Line of Beauty
Author: Alan Hollinghurst
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA
ISBN: 159691808X
Pages: 448
Year: 2008-12-17
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Winner of the 2004 Man Booker Prize and a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award and the NBCC award. From Alan Hollinghurst, the acclaimed author of The Sparsholt Affair, The Line of Beauty is a sweeping novel about class, sex, and money during four extraordinary years of change and tragedy. In the summer of 1983, twenty-year-old Nick Guest moves into an attic room in the Notting Hill home of the Feddens: conservative Member of Parliament Gerald, his wealthy wife Rachel, and their two children, Toby-whom Nick had idolized at Oxford-and Catherine, who is highly critical of her family's assumptions and ambitions. As the boom years of the eighties unfold, Nick, an innocent in the world of politics and money, finds his life altered by the rising fortunes of this glamorous family. His two vividly contrasting love affairs, one with a young black clerk and one with a Lebanese millionaire, dramatize the dangers and rewards of his own private pursuit of beauty, a pursuit as compelling to Nick as the desire for power and riches among his friends. Richly textured, emotionally charged, disarmingly comic, this is a major work by one of our finest writers.

The Spell

The Spell
Author: Alan Hollinghurst
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0140286373
Pages: 257
Year: 2000
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The lives and relationships of four men intersect in this tale of gay love set during a long summer in England. By the author of The Swimming-Pool Library. Reprint.

The Swimming-Pool Library

The Swimming-Pool Library
Author: Alan Hollinghurst
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 030780660X
Pages: 352
Year: 2011-09-21
View: 389
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A literary sensation and bestseller both in England and America, The Swimming-Pool Library is an enthralling, darkly erotic novel of homosexuality before the scourge of AIDS; an elegy, possessed of chilling clarity, for ways of life that can no longer be lived with impunity. "Impeccably composed and meticulously particular in its observation of everything" (Harpers & Queen), it focuses on the friendship of two men: William Beckwith, a young gay aristocrat who leads a life of privilege and promiscuity, and the elderly Lord Nantwich, an old Africa hand, searching for someone to write his biography and inherit his traditions. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Mr. Lear

Mr. Lear
Author: Jenny Uglow
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
ISBN: 1466828234
Pages: 608
Year: 2018-04-17
View: 699
Read: 725

A sparkling biography of the poet and artist Edward Lear by the award-winning biographer Jenny Uglow Edward Lear, the renowned English artist, musician, author, and poet, lived a vivid, fascinating life, but confessed, “I hardly enjoy any one thing on earth while it is present.” He was a man in a hurry, “running about on railroads” from London to country estates and boarding steamships to Italy, Corfu, India, and Palestine. He is still loved for his “nonsenses,” from startling, joyous limericks to great love poems like “The Owl and the Pussy Cat” and “The Dong with a Luminous Nose,” and he is famous, too, for his brilliant natural history paintings, landscapes, and travel writing. But although Lear belongs solidly to the age of Darwin and Dickens—he gave Queen Victoria drawing lessons, and his many friends included Tennyson and the Pre-Raphaelite painters—his genius for the absurd and his dazzling wordplay make him a very modern spirit. He speaks to us today. Lear was a man of great simplicity and charm—children adored him—yet his humor masked epilepsy, depression, and loneliness. Jenny Uglow’s beautifully illustrated biography, full of the color of the age, brings us his swooping moods, passionate friendships, and restless travels. Above all, Mr. Lear shows how this uniquely gifted man lived all his life on the boundaries of rules and structures, disciplines and desires—an exile of the heart.

Eucalyptus

Eucalyptus
Author: Murray Bail
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
ISBN: 1466840587
Pages: 264
Year: 2007-08-21
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Winner of the Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best Book A New York Times Book Review Notable Book of the Year On a property in New South Wales, a widower named Holland lives with his daughter, Ellen. Over the years as she grows into a beautiful woman, Holland plants hundreds of different eucalyptus trees on his land, filling the landscape, making a virtual outdoor museum of trees. When Ellen is nineteen, Holland announces that she may only marry the man who can correctly name the species of each and every gum tree on his property. A strange contest begins, and Ellen is left unmoved by her suitors until she chances on a strange young man resting under the Coolibah tree whose stories will amaze and dazzle her. A modern fairy tale, and an unforgettable love story, that bristles with spiky truths and unexpected wisdom about art, feminine beauty, landscape, and language. Eucalyptus affirms the seductive power of storytelling itself.

Some Hell

Some Hell
Author: Patrick Nathan
Publisher: Graywolf Press
ISBN: 1555979882
Pages: 288
Year: 2018-02-13
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A wrenching and layered debut novel about a gay teen’s coming-of-age in the aftermath of his father’s suicide Middle school hasn’t been going well for Colin. His teenage sister teases him mercilessly, his autistic brother lashes out at him, and he has a crush on his best friend, Andy. But after the tragic night when his father commits suicide, none of that matters. Diane, his mother, seeks solace in therapy. Colin is awash in guilt, and casts about for someone to confide in: first his estranged grandfather, then a predatory science teacher. But nothing helps as much as the strange writing his father kept in a series of notebooks locked in his study. Colin looks for answers there—in fragments about disaster scenarios, the violence of snow, mustangs running wild in the west—but instead finds the writing infecting his worldview. Diane, meanwhile, has a miserable fling with a co-worker, and leans more heavily on Colin for support as things go from bad to worse. But spring is unfolding, and a road trip to Los Angeles gives them a tantalizing glimpse of what the future might hold. In Some Hell, a debut novel of devastating intensity and aching, pointillistic detail, Patrick Nathan shows how unspeakable tragedy shapes a life, and how imagination saves us from ourselves.

The Color of Bee Larkham's Murder

The Color of Bee Larkham's Murder
Author: Sarah J. Harris
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1501187910
Pages: 368
Year: 2018-06-12
View: 409
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“In this fantastic debut, Harris enters the technicolor mind of thirteen-year-old Jasper Wishart…Readers enamored of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time and The Rosie Project will delight in Harris’s sparkling novel.” –Publishers Weekly (starred review) A captivating mystery about a boy with synesthesia—a condition that causes him to see colors when he hears sounds—who tries to uncover what happened to his beautiful neighbor, and if he was ultimately responsible. Thirteen-year-old Jasper Wishart lives in a world of dazzling color that no one else can see, least of all his dad. Words, numbers, days of the week, people’s voices—everything has its own unique shade. But recently Jasper has been haunted by a color he doesn’t like or understand: the color of murder. Convinced he’s done something terrible to his new neighbor, Bee Larkham, Jasper revisits the events of the last few months to paint the story of their relationship from the very beginning. As he struggles to untangle the knot of untrustworthy memories and colors that will lead him to the truth, it seems that there’s someone else out there determined to stop him—at any cost. Both a refreshing coming-of-age story and an intriguing mystery, The Color of Bee Larkham’s Murder is a poignant and unforgettable read—perfect for fans of bestselling authors such as Fredrik Backman and Graeme Simsion.

The Secret of Magic

The Secret of Magic
Author: Deborah Johnson
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0425272788
Pages: 416
Year: 2015-01-06
View: 349
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Working for a prominent member of the NAACP in 1946 when a request comes from her favorite childhood author to investigate the murder of a black war hero, Regina Robichard travels to Mississippi, where she navigates the muddy waters of racism, relationships, and her own tragic past.

The Nothing

The Nothing
Author: Hanif Kureishi
Publisher: Faber & Faber
ISBN: 057133203X
Pages: 288
Year: 2017-05-02
View: 357
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One night, when I am old, sick, right out of semen, and don't need things to get any worse, I hear the noises growing louder. I am sure they are making love in Zenab's bedroom which is next to mine. Waldo, a fêted filmmaker, is confined by old age and ill health to his London apartment. Frail and frustrated, he is cared for by his lovely younger wife, Zee. But when he suspects that Zee is beginning an affair with Eddie, 'more than an acquaintance and less than a friend for over thirty years,' Waldo is pressed to action: determined to expose the couple, he sets himself first to prove his suspicions correct - and then to enact his revenge. Written with characteristic black humour and with an acute eye for detail, Kureishi's eagerly awaited novella will have his readers dazzled once again by a brilliant mind at work.

An Affair with My Mother

An Affair with My Mother
Author: Caitríona Palmer
Publisher: Penguin UK
ISBN: 0241971721
Pages: 256
Year: 2016-03-03
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'Incredibly moving' --Anne Enright, winner of the Man Booker Prize An Affair with My Mother by Caitriona Palmer: a moving and gripping story of love, denial and a daughter's quest for the truth. Caitriona Palmer had a happy childhood in Dublin, raised by loving adoptive parents. But when she was in her late twenties, she realized that she had a strong need to know the woman who had given birth to her. She was able to locate her birth mother, Sarah, and they developed a strong attachment. But Sarah set one painful condition to this joyous new relationship: she wished to keep it - to keep Caitriona - secret from her family, from her friends, from everyone. Who was Sarah, and why did she want to preserve a decades-old secret? An Affair with My Mother tells the story of Caitriona's quest to answer these questions, and of the intense, furtive 'affair' she and her mother conducted in carefully chosen locations around Dublin. By turns heartwarming and heartbreaking, An Affair with My Mother is a searing portrait of the social and familial forces that left Sarah - and so many other unwed Irish mothers of her generation - frightened, traumatized and bereft. It is also a beautifully written account of a remarkable relationship. 'Caitriona Palmer has called out the false shame of her origins, with a kind of anguished courage that is incredibly moving. An Affair With My Mother is a forensic account of how it feels to be - in the interests of Catholic "respectability" - excluded from the facts of your own life. In its commitment to family love, to joy and truth, it is a gift.' Anne Enright, winner of the Man Booker Prize

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