Fiction

New novels.

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The book of form and emptiness

The book of form and emptiness

Ozeki, Ruth, 1956- author
2021

"After the tragic death his beloved musician father, fourteen-year-old Benny Oh begins to hear voices. The voices belong to the things in his house-a sneaker, a broken Christmas ornament, a piece of wilted lettuce. Although Benny doesn't understand what these things are saying, he can sense their emotional tone; some are pleasant, a gentle hum or coo, but others are snide, angry and full of pain. When his mother, Annabelle, develops a hoarding problem, the voices grow more clamorous. At first, Benny tries to ignore them, but soon the voices follow him outside the house, onto the street and at school, driving him at last to seek refuge in the silence of a large public library, where objects are well-behaved and know to speak in whispers. There, Benny discovers a strange new world, where "things happen." He falls in love with a mesmerizing street artist with a smug pet ferret, who uses the library as her performance space. He meets a homeless philosopher-poet, who encourages him to ask important questions and find his own voice amongst the many. And he meets his very own Book-a talking thing-who narrates Benny's life and teaches him to listen to the things that truly matter."-- Provided by publisher.

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The book of magic

The book of magic

Hoffman, Alice, author
2021

"The Owens family has been cursed in matters of love for over three hundred years, but all of that is about to change. The novel begins in a library, the best place for a story to be conjured, when beloved aunt Jet Owens hears the deathwatch beetle and knows she has only seven days to live. Jet is not the only one in danger--the curse is already at work." -- Provided by publisher.

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The butler : a novel

The butler : a novel

Steel, Danielle, author.
2021

"The moment the plane touched down at Ministro Pistorini Airport in Buenos Aires, Joachim von Hartmann knew in every fiber of his being that he was home. It was almost as if his heart and soul, and even his body, knew it. He had left as a boy of seventeen, twenty-five years before, when he moved to France with his mother, and new French stepfather. Eight years later, he went to England on a lark, which turned into a worthy career for the past seventeen years. His roots are now firmly planted in Europe, but he realized as he breathed the air of Buenos Aires that his heart had remained here."-- Provided by publisher.

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Child of light

Child of light

Brooks, Terry, author
2021

"At nineteen, Auris Afton Grieg has led an . . . unusual life. Since the age of fifteen, she has been trapped in a sinister prison. Why? She does not know. She has no memories of her past beyond the vaguest of impressions. All she knows is that she is about to age out of the children's prison, and rumors say that the adult version is far, far worse. So she and some friends stage a desperate escape into the surrounding wastelands. And it is here that Auris's journey of discovery begins, for she is rescued by a handsome yet alien stranger. Harrow claims to be Fae--a member of a magical race that Auris had thought to be no more than legend. Odder still, he seems to think that she is one as well, although the two look nothing alike. But strangest of all, when he brings her to his wondrous homeland, she begins to suspect that he is right. Yet how could a woman who looks entirely human be a magical being herself? Told with a fresh, energetic voice, this fantasy puzzle box is Terry Brooks as you have never seen him before, as one young woman slowly unlocks truths about herself and her world--and, in doing so, begins to heal both"-- Provided by publisher.

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Dear Santa : a novel

Dear Santa : a novel

Macomber, Debbie, author
2021

Lindy Carmichael isn't feeling particularly joyful when she returns home to Wenatchee, Washington, for Christmas. Reading through a box of childhood letters to Santa and reminiscing about what she'd wished for as a young girl may be just the inspiration Lindy needs. With her mother's encouragement, she decides to write a new letter to Santa, one that will encourage her to have faith and believe just as she'd done all those years ago. Little does Lindy know that this exercise in gratitude will cause her wishes to unfold before her in miraculous ways.

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Em

Em

Thúy, Kim, author
2021

In the midst of war, an ordinary miracle: an abandoned baby tenderly cared for by a young boy living on the streets of Saigon. The boy is Louis, the child of a long-gone American soldier. Louis calls the baby em Hong, em meaning "little sister," or "beloved." Even though her cradle is nothing more than a cardboard box, em Hong's life holds every possibility. Through the linked destinies of a family of characters, the novel takes its inspiration from historical events, including Operation Babylift, which evacuated thousands of biracial orphans from Saigon in April 1975, and the remarkable growth of the nail salon industry, dominated by Vietnamese expatriates all over the world. From the rubber plantations of Indochina to the massacre at My Lai, Kim Thúy sifts through the layers of pain and trauma in stories we thought we knew, revealing transcendent moments of grace, and the invincibility of the human spirit.

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The hidden child : a novel

The hidden child : a novel

Fein, Louise, author
2021

Londoners Eleanor and Edward Hamilton have wealth, status, and a happy marriage--but the 1929 financial crash is looming, and they're harboring a terrible, shameful secret. How far are they willing to go to protect their charmed life--even if it means abandoning their child to a horrific fate? Eleanor Hamilton is happily married and mother to a beautiful four-year-old girl, Mabel. Her wealthy husband, Edward, a celebrated war hero, is a leading light in the burgeoning Eugenics movement--the very ideas that will soon be embraced by Hitler--and is increasingly important in designing education policy for Great Britain. But when Edward and Eleanor's otherwise perfectly healthy daughter develops debilitating epileptic seizures, their world fractures. Mabel's shameful illness must be hidden or Edward's life's work will be in jeopardy and the family's honor will be shattered. When Eleanor discovers Edward has been keeping secrets, she calls into question everything she believed about genetic inferiority, and her previous unshakeable faith in her husband disintegrates. Alarmed, distressed, and no longer able to bear the family's burden, she takes matters into her own hands.

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An Irish country Yuletide

An Irish country Yuletide

Taylor, Patrick, 1941- author
2021

"December 1965. 'Tis the season once again in the cosy Irish village of Ballybucklebo, which means that Doctor Fingal Flahertie O'Reilly, his young colleague Barry Laverty, and their assorted friends, neighbours, and patients are enjoying all their favourite holiday traditions: carolling, trimming the tree, finding the perfects gifts for their near and dear ones, and anticipating a proper Yuletide feast complete with roast turkey and chestnut stuffing. There's even the promise of snow in the air, raising the prospect of a white Christmas. Not that trouble has entirely taken a holiday as the season brings its fair share of challenges as well, including a black-sheep brother hoping to reconcile with his estranged family before it's too late, a worrisome outbreak of chickenpox, and a sick little girl whose faith in Christmas is in danger of being crushed in the worst way. As roaring fireplaces combat the brisk December chill, it's up to O'Reilly to play Santa, both literally and figuratively, to make sure that Ballybucklebo has a Christmas it will never forget! Bonus: This heart-warming Yuletide tale also includes several mouth-watering recipes, straight from an Irish country kitchen."-- Provided by publisher.

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The jasmine throne

The jasmine throne

Suri, Tasha, author
2021

"Imprisoned by her tyrannical brother, Malini spends her days in isolation in the Hirana: an ancient temple that was once the source of the powerful, magical deathless waters--but is now little more than a decaying ruin. Priya is a maidservant, one among several who make the treacherous journey to the top of the Hirana every night to clean Malini's chambers. She is happy to be an anonymous drudge, so long as it keeps anyone from guessing the dangerous secret she hides. But when Malini accidentally bears witness to Priya's true nature, their destinies become irrevocably tangled. One is a vengeful princess seeking to claim a throne. The other is a priestess seeking to find her family. Together, they will change the fate of an empire"-- Provided by publisher.

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The judge's list

The judge's list

Grisham, John, author
2021

As an investigator for the Florida Board on Judicial Conduct, Lacy Stoltz sees plenty of corruption among the men and women elected to the bench. Stoltz took on a crime syndicate that was paying millions to a crooked judge. Now, the crimes are even worse. The man hiding behind the black robe is not taking bribes - but he may be taking lives.

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The last checkmate : a novel

The last checkmate : a novel

Saab, Gabriella, author
2021

Vowing to avenge the murder of her family, Maria, a young Polish resistance worker imprisoned in Auschwitz, plays chess in exchange for her life, and, in doing so, challenges the man who destroyed her family to one last game that will end in either failure or justice.

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A master of djinn

A master of djinn

Clark, P. Djèlí, author.
2021

"Cairo, 1912: Though Fatma el-Sha'arawi is the youngest woman working for the Ministry of Alchemy, Enchantments and Supernatural Entities, she's certainly not a rookie, especially after preventing the destruction of the universe last summer. So when someone murders a secret brotherhood dedicated to one of the most famous men in history, al-Jahiz, Agent Fatma is called onto the case. Al-Jahiz transformed the world forty years ago when he opened up the veil between the magical and mundane realms, before vanishing into the unknown. This murderer claims to be al-Jahiz, returned to condemn the modern age for its social oppressions. His dangerous magical abilities instigate unrest in the streets of Cairo that threaten to spill over onto the global stage. Alongside her Ministry colleagues and a familiar person from her past, Agent Fatma must unravel the mystery behind this imposter to restore peace to the city--or face the possibility he could be exactly who he seems..."--Provided by publisher.

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The mystery of right and wrong

The mystery of right and wrong

Johnston, Wayne, author
2021

Wade Jackson, a young man from a Newfoundland outport, wants to be a writer. In the university library in St. John's, where he goes every day to absorb the great books of the world, he encounters the fascinating, South African-born Rachel van Hout, and soon they are lovers. Rachel is the youngest of four van Hout daughters. Her father, Hans, lived in Amsterdam during the Second World War, and says he was in the Dutch resistance. When the war ended, he emigrated to South Africa, where he met his wife, Myra, had his daughters and worked as an accounting professor at the University of Cape Town. Something happened, though, that caused him to uproot his family and move them all, unhappily, to Newfoundland. Wade soon discovers that Rachel and her sisters are each in their own way a wounded soul. The oldest, Gloria, has a string of broken marriages behind her. Carmen is addicted to every drug her Afrikaner dealer husband, Fritz, can lay his hands on. Bethany, the most sardonic of the sisters, is fighting a losing battle with anorexia. And then there is Rachel, who reads The Diary of Anne Frank obsessively, and diarizes her days in a secret language of her own invention, writing to the point of breakdown and beyond--an obsession that has deeper and more disturbing roots than Wade could ever have imagined.

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Sistersong

Sistersong

Holland, Lucy, author.
2021

"In the ancient kingdom of Dumnonia, there is old magic to be found in the whisper of the wind, the roots of the trees, the curl of the grass. King Cador knew this once, but now the land has turned from him, calling instead to his three children. Riva can cure others, but can't seem to heal her own deep scars. Keyne battles to be seen for who he truly is-the king's son. And Sinne dreams of seeing the world, of finding love and adventure. All three fear a life of confinement within the walls of the hold, their people's last bastion of strength against the invading Saxons. However, change comes on the day ash falls from the sky. It brings with it Myrdhin, meddler and magician. And Tristan, a warrior whose secrets will tear them apart. Riva, Keyne and Sinne-three sisters entangled in a web of treachery and heartbreak, who must fight to forge their own paths. Their story will shape the destiny of Britain."-- Provided by publisher.

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The strangers : a novel

The strangers : a novel

Vermette, Katherena, 1977- author
2021

Cedar has nearly forgotten what her family looks like. Phoenix has nearly forgotten what freedom feels like. And Elsie has nearly given up hope. Nearly. After time spent in foster homes, Cedar goes to live with her estranged father. Although she grapples with the pain of being separated from her mother, Elsie, and sister, Phoenix, she's hoping for a new chapter in her life, only to find herself once again in a strange house surrounded by strangers. From a youth detention centre, Phoenix gives birth to a baby she'll never get to raise and tries to forgive herself for all the harm she's caused (while wondering if she even should). Elsie, struggling with addiction and determined to turn her life around, is buoyed by the idea of being reunited with her daughters and strives to be someone they can depend on, unlike her own distant mother. These are the Strangers, each haunted in her own way. Between flickering moments of warmth and support, the women diverge and reconnect, fighting to survive in a fractured system that pretends to offer success but expects them to fail. Facing the distinct blade of racism from those they trusted most, they urge one another to move through the darkness, all the while wondering if they'll ever emerge safely on the other side.

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The sweetness of water

The sweetness of water

Harris, Nathan, author
2021

In the waning days of the Civil War, brothers Prentiss and Landry - freed by the Emancipation Proclamation - seek refuge on the homestead of white farmer George Walker and his wife, Isabelle. Parallel to their story runs a forbidden romance between two Confederate soldiers. But when their secret is discovered, the resulting chaos brings convulsive repercussions for the entire community. With candor and sympathy, this novels introduces an unforgettable cast of characters, depicting Georgia in the violent crucible of Reconstruction.

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The Vinyl Cafe celebrates

The Vinyl Cafe celebrates

McLean, Stuart, 1948-2017, author
2021

For more than two decades, Stuart McLean entered the hearts and homes of Canadians via The Vinyl Cafe radio show, his many tours across the country, and multiple books. His charming, humane, and side-splitting stories brought the trials and triumphs of Dave, Morley, Sam, and Stephanie to life, and made their memorable circle of friends, family, and neighbours as real as our own. This collection is both timely and timeless, a rich celebration of Stuart McLean's inimitable voice, and of the importance of love, community, kindness, and the healing power of laughter.

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The wish

The wish

Sparks, Nicholas, author
2021

1996 was the year that changed everything for Maggie Dawes. Sent away at sixteen to live with an aunt she barely knew in Ocracoke, a remote village on North Carolina's Outer Banks, she could think only of the friends and family she left behind . . . until she meets Bryce Trickett, one of the few teenagers on the island. Handsome, genuine, and newly admitted to West Point, Bryce gradually shows her how much there is to love about the wind-swept beach town-and introduces her to photography, a passion that will define the rest of her life. By 2019, Maggie is a renowned travel photographer. She splits her time between running a successful gallery in New York and photographing remote locations around the world. But this year she is unexpectedly grounded over Christmas, struggling to come to terms with a sobering medical diagnosis.

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