Staff Picks

Pride, Prejudice and Other Flavours

Pride, Prejudice and Other Flavours

It is a truth universally acknowledged that only in an overachieving Indian American family can a genius daughter be considered a black sheep.

Dr. Trisha Raje is San Francisco's most acclaimed neurosurgeon. But that's not enough for the Rajes, her influential immigrant family who's achieved power by making its own non-negotiable rules:

  • Never trust an outsider
  • Never do anything to jeopardize your brother's political aspirations
  • And never, ever, defy your family

Trisha is guilty of breaking all three rules. But now she has a chance to redeem herself. So long as she doesn't repeat old mistakes.

Up-and-coming chef DJ Caine has known people like Trisha before, people who judge him by his rough beginnings and place pedigree above character. He needs the lucrative job the Rajes offer, but he values his pride too much to indulge Trisha's arrogance. And then he discovers that she's the only surgeon who can save his sister's life.

As the two clash, their assumptions crumble like the spun sugar on one of DJ's stunning desserts. But before a future can be savored there's a past to be reckoned with...

A family trying to build home in a new land.

A man who has never felt at home anywhere.

And a choice to be made between the two. 

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The Road Trip

The Road Trip

Addie and her sister are about to embark on an epic road trip to a friend's wedding in rural Scotland. The playlist is all planned and the snacks are packed.

But, not long after setting off, a car slams into the back of theirs. The driver is none other than Addie's ex, Dylan, who she's avoided since their traumatic break-up two years earlier. 

Dylan and his best mate are heading to the wedding too, and they've totalled their car, so Addie has no choice but to offer them a ride. The car is soon jam-packed full of luggage and secrets, and with four hundred miles ahead of them, Dylan and Addie can't avoid confronting the very messy history of their relationship... 

Will they make it to the wedding on time? And, more importantly... is this really the end of the road for Addie and Dylan? 
 

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King of Scars

King of Scars

Nikolai Lantsov has always had a gift for the impossible. No one knows what he endured in his country's bloody civil war - and he intends to keep it that way. Now, as enemies gather at his weakened borders, the young king must find a way to refill Ravka's coffers, forge new alliances, and stop a rising threat to the once-great Grisha Army.

Yet with every day a dark magic within him grows stronger, threatening to destroy all he has built. With the help of a young monk and a legendary Grisha Squaller, Nikolai will journey to the places in Ravka where the deepest magic survives to vanquish the terrible legacy inside him. He will risk everything to save his country and himself. But some secrets aren't meant to stay buried--and some wounds aren't meant to heal.

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Cinderella is Dead

Cinderella is Dead

It's 200 years since Cinderella found her prince, but the fairytale is over. 

Sophia knows the story though, off by heart. Because every girl has to recite it daily, from when she's tiny until the night she's sent to the royal ball for choosing. And every girl knows that she has only one chance. For the lives of those not chosen by a man at the ball … are forfeit. 

But Sophia doesn't want to be chosen – she's in love with her best friend, Erin, and hates the idea of being traded like cattle. And when Sophia's night at the ball goes horribly wrong, she must run for her life. Alone and terrified, she finds herself hiding in Cinderella's tomb. And there she meets someone who will show her that she has the power to remake her world … 

An electrifying twist on the classic fairytale that will inspire girls to break out of limiting stereotypes and follow their dreams!

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Venus Betrayed

Venus Betrayed

Édouard Vuillard was so secretive that he berated himself for betraying his emotions in conversation. He was a reticent, impassioned man, a timid stalker and a social climbing anarchist, caught in conflicting desires. From the 1880s until the advent of World War II, using styles from academic to Pointillist to Nabi to Fauve, he abundantly revealed his love and hatred in his paintings: models pose beside a plaster torso cast from the Venus of Milo, women appear without faces, anxiety radiates from many masterpieces, while other works were left unfinished for months or years.

Drawing on insights and images from Vuillard’s still unpublished diaries, Julia Frey takes the reader into Vuillard’s private world of cabarets, experimental theatres, holiday resorts and intimate boudoirs, showing how his art reflects his fraught personal relations and his artistic struggles. Frey chooses many of his finest works, from the famous intimate interior scenes to book illustrations and poster designs, and examines his complex relationships with friends such as Pierre Bonnard, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Stéphane Mallarmé, Felix Vallotton, and the women he loved: his mother and sister, penniless models and rich men’s wives. 
 

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The Ripping Tree

The Ripping Tree

Early 1800s. Thomasina Trelora is on her way to the colonies. Her fate: to be married to a clergyman she's never met. As the Australian coastline comes into view a storm wrecks the ship and leaves her lying on the rocks, near death. She's saved by an Aboriginal man who carries her to the door of a grand European house, Willowbrae.

Tom is now free to be whoever she wants to be and a whole new life opens up to her. But as she's drawn deeper into the intriguing life of this grand estate, she discovers that things aren't quite as they seem. She stumbles across a horrifying secret at the heart of this world of colonial decorum - and realises she may have exchanged one kind of prison for another.

The Ripping Tree is an intense, sharp shiver of a novel, which brings to mind such diverse influences as The Turn of the Screw, Rebecca and the film Get Out as much as it evokes The Secret River. A powerful and gripping tale of survival written in Nikki Gemmell's signature lyrical and evocative prose, it examines the darkness at the heart of early colonisation. Unsettling, audacious, thrilling and unputdownable.

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Writers & Lovers

Writers & Lovers

Casey has ended up back in Massachusetts after a devastating love affair. Her mother has just died and she is knocked sideways by grief and loneliness, moving between the restaurant where she waitresses for the Harvard elite and the rented shed she calls home. Her one constant is the novel she has been writing for six years, but at thirty-one she is in debt and directionless, and feels too old to be that way - it’s strange, not be the youngest kind of adult anymore.

And then, one evening, she meets Silas. He is kind, handsome, interested. But only a few weeks later, Oscar walks into her restaurant, his two boys in tow. He is older, grieving the loss of his wife, and wrapped up in his own creativity. Suddenly Casey finds herself at the point of a love triangle, stuck between two very different relationships that promise two very different futures. 

Lily King's Writers & Lovers follows Casey in the last days of a long youth, a time when everything - her family, her work, her relationships - comes to a crisis. Hugely moving and impossibly funny, it is a transfixing novel that explores the terrifying and exhilarating leap between the end of one phase of life and the beginning of another. It is a novel about love and creativity, and ultimately it captures the moment when a woman becomes an artist. 
 

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Cherry Beach

Cherry Beach

We arrived on a Tuesday, I can remember that. I can remember Hetty’s hand in mine as we moved slowly down the steps of the escalator, as if standing completely still would have been harder than moving. 

Hetty and Ness, best friends since childhood, have left suburban Melbourne for the first time to live abroad. Hetty is charming and captivating, the life of the party. Ness is a wallflower, hopelessly in love with her. In the student quarter of Toronto, the pair take a room in a share house full of self-assured creatives. Hetty disappears into barkeeping work and a whirlwind nightlife, while Ness drifts aimlessly. 

But when Ness finds Hope one day in the art gallery, an intense affair develops. There are new friends, too, and a job: at last her life starts to make some sense. And Hetty’s starts spectacularly to fall apart, in a mess of bad drugs and bad men. As winter freezes the lakeside city, the dark undercurrents of Hetty’s character—abusive relationships, a dangerous obsession with bodies of water—become ever stronger. Ness may lose the person she loves more than anyone else in the world. 

Beautifully written and intimate, Cherry Beach is a revelatory story of friendship and desire.

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The Silence

The Silence

It is 1997, and in a basement flat in Hackney Isla Green is awakened by a call in the middle of the night: her father, Joe, phoning from Sydney. 

30 years ago, in the suffocating heat of summer 1967, the Greens' next-door neighbour Mandy disappeared. Joe claims he thought she had gone to start a new life; but now Mandy's family is trying to reconnect, and there is no trace of her. Isla's father was allegedly the last person to see her alive, and he's under suspicion of murder. 

Back home in Sydney, Isla's search for the truth takes her back to 1967, when two couples lived side by side on a quiet street by the sea. Could her father be capable of doing something terrible? How much does her mother know? And is there another secret in this community, one which goes deeper into Australia's colonial past, which has held them in a conspiracy of silence? 

Deftly exploring the deterioration of relationships and the devastating truths we keep from those we love, The Silence is a stunning debut from a rising literary star.

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Meet Me in the Bathroom

Meet Me in the Bathroom

An intriguing oral history of the post-9/11 decline of the old-guard music industry and rebirth of the New York rock scene, led by a group of iconoclastic rock bands.  

In the second half of the twentieth-century New York was the source of new sounds, including the Greenwich Village folk scene, punk and new wave, and hip-hop. But as the end of the millennium neared, cutting-edge bands began emerging from Seattle, Austin, and London, pushing New York further from the epicentre. The behemoth music industry, too, found itself in free fall, under siege from technology. 

Then 11/9/2001 plunged the country into a state of uncertainty and war - and a dozen New York City bands that had been honing their sound and style in relative obscurity suddenly became symbols of glamour for a young, web-savvy, forward-looking generation in need of an anthem. 

Meet Me in the Bathroom charts the transformation of the New York music scene in the first decade of the 2000s, the bands behind it - including The Strokes, The Yeah Yeah Yeahs, LCD Soundsystem, Interpol, and Vampire Weekend - and the cultural forces that shaped it, from the Internet to a booming real estate market that forced artists out of the Lower East Side to Williamsburg. 

Drawing on 200 original interviews with James Murphy, Julian Casablancas, Karen O, Ezra Koenig, and many others musicians, artists, journalists, bloggers, photographers, managers, music executives, groupies, models, movie stars, and DJs who lived through this explosive time, journalist Lizzy Goodman offers a fascinating portrait of a time and a place that gave birth to a new era in modern rock-and-roll.

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