The Versions Of Us – Laura Barnett

The Versions Of Us - Laura BarnettThe Versions Of Us
Laura Barnett

What if you had said yes . . . ?

Eva and Jim are nineteen, and students at Cambridge, when their paths first cross in 1958. Jim is walking along a lane when a woman approaching him on a bicycle swerves to avoid a dog.

What happens next will determine the rest of their lives.

We follow three different versions of their future – together, and apart – as their love story takes on different incarnations and twists and turns to the conclusion in the present day.

The Versions of Us is an outstanding debut novel about the choices we make and the different paths that our lives might follow.

What if one small decision could change the rest of your life?

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In a Dark Dark Wood – Ruth Ware

In a Dark Dark Wood - Ruth WareIn a Dark, Dark Wood
Ruth Ware

Nora hasn’t seen Clare for ten years. Not since the day Nora walked out of her old life and never looked back.

Until, out of the blue, an invitation to Clare’s hen party arrives. A weekend in a remote cottage – the perfect opportunity for Nora to reconnect with her best friend, to put the past behind her.

But something goes wrong.

Very wrong.

As secrets and lies unravel, out in the dark, dark wood the past will finally catch up with Nora.

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The One-in-a-Million Boy – Monica Wood

The One in a Million Boy - Monica WoodThe One-in-a-Million Boy
Monica Wood

Miss Ona Vitkus has – aside from three months in the summer of 1914 – lived unobtrusively, her secrets fiercely protected.

The boy, with his passion for world records, changes all that. He is eleven. She is one hundred and four years, one hundred and thirty three days old (they are counting). And he makes her feel like she might be really special after all. Better late than never…

Only it’s been two weeks now since he last visited, and she’s starting to think he’s not so different from all the rest.

Then the boy’s father comes, for some reason determined to finish his son’s good deed. And Ona must show this new stranger that not only are there odd jobs to be done, but a life’s ambition to complete…

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Naked Slaughter – Nigel Lampard

Naked Slaughter - Nigel LampardNaked Slaughter
Nigel Lampard

Upper Slaughter is a quintessential English village, yet underneath the cosy veneer of small village life lurk many festering secrets. Enchanted by the village and its surrounds, Sarah and Phillip move into Primrose Cottage with great expectations. However, paths cross, fates twist, misunderstandings occur and the one issue that exists between Sarah and Phillip rears up, causing fissures in their marriage. Phillip thinks Sarah has left him, Sarah thinks a sexual deviant has kidnapped her, and a very close friend with lesbian tendencies uses this opportunity to play the seductive predator. In the shadows of this previously idyllic setting, one man, a loner, seems to be in control of everyone’s destiny except his own. Despite the beauty of their new home, the journey for Sarah and Phillip is fraught with danger, anguish, and betrayal. Naked Slaughter is a noir mystery exposing the sinister side of humanity and the wavering flame of love’s pallid candle.

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Season To Taste – Natalie Young

Season To Taste - Natalie YoungSeason to Taste or How to Eat Your Husband
Natalie Young

Meet Lizzie Prain. Ordinary housewife. Fifty-something. Lives in a cottage in the woods, with her dog Rita. Likes cooking, avoids the neighbours. Runs a little business making cakes.

No one has seen Lizzie’s husband, Jacob, for a few days. That’s because last Monday, on impulse, Lizzie caved in the back of his head with a spade. And if she’s going to embark on the new life she feels she deserves after thirty years in Jacob’s shadow, she needs to dispose of his body. Her method appeals to all her practical instincts, though it’s not for the faint-hearted. Will Lizzie have the strength to follow it through?

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The Boy That Never Was – Karen Perry

The Boy That Never Was - Karen PerryThe Boy That Never Was
Karen Perry

Three-year-old Dillon vanished in the middle of the night. His father Harry can’t forgive himself for not protecting his only child. Yet Harry isn’t blamed by his wife Robin: she bares her own secret guilt.

Five years later, thousands of miles away, Harry spots an eight-year-old boy in a crowd – a boy he is convinced is Dillon.

Desperate to find his missing son, Harry’s obsession tears apart his marriage, exposing shameful secrets and shattering the one thing he and Robin had left – trust.

Why won’t Robin believe Harry? What is she hiding? Can the boy really be Dillon? And how far will Harry go to find their lost son?

The Boy That Never Was is a deeply atmospheric and masterfully crafted tale of love and loss that will chill you to the bone. Fans of Rosamund Lupton and Sophie Hannah will fall in love with this debut from Karen Perry.

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The Bazaar of Bad Dreams – Stephen King

The Bazaar of Bad Dreams - Stephen KingThe Bazaar of Bad Dreams
Stephen King

A generous collection of thrilling stories – some brand new, some published in magazines, all entirely brilliant and assembled in one book for the first time – with a wonderful bonus: in addition to his introduction to the whole collection, King gives readers a fascinating introduction to each story with autobiographical comments on their origins and motivation…

The No. 1 bestselling writer has dazzled readers with his genius as a writer of novellas and short story fiction since his first collection Night Shift was published. He describes the nature of the form in his introduction to the book: ‘There’s something to be said for a shorter, more intense experience. It can be invigorating, sometimes even shocking, like…a beautiful curio for sale laid out on a cheap blanket at a street bazaar.’

In The Bazaar of Bad Dreams there is a curio for every reader – a man who keeps reliving the same life, repeating the same mistakes over and over again, a columnist who kills people by writing their obituaries, a poignant tale about the end of the human race and a firework competition between neighbours which reaches an explosive climax. There are also intriguing connections between the stories; themes of morality, guilt, the afterlife and what we would do differently if we could see into the future or correct the mistakes of the past.

Effervescent yet poignant, juxtaposing the everyday against the unexpected, these stories comprise one of King’s finest gifts to his constant reader as well as to those fascinated by the autobiographical insights in his celebrated non-fiction title On Writing.

‘I made them especially for you’, says King. ‘Feel free to examine them, but please be careful. The best of them have teeth.’

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Seeing Other People – Mike Gayle

Seeing Other People - Mike GayleSeeing Other People
Mike Gayle

From My Legendary Girlfriend to Turning Forty, Mike Gayle’s bestselling novels have taken his millions of readers through many key times for the modern man – friendship, courtship, stag weekends, marriage, work, holidays, significant birthdays – but Seeing Other People is perhaps his most heart-warming, heart-stopping, heartbreaking novel yet.

Joe Clarke is about 78% sure he’s just had an affair. Well, that is the beautiful office intern in bed next to him…

But, if Joe really has just cheated, why can’t he remember anything about it?

Confused but mortified Joe vows to be a better husband and father. Until his wife Penny puts two and two together and leaves him.

Devastated, Joe will do anything to win his family back. But when he realises that the key to saving his marriage lies in the hands of the mean-spirited ghost of his least favourite ex-girlfriend, Joe knows he’s in real trouble.

Seeing Other People is a hilarious and bittersweet novel about love, parenthood and fidelity and how easy it is to get lost on the way to your own happy ending.

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