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A Thousand Splendid Suns

Author: Khaled Hosseini

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing (2008)

Mariam is only fifteen when she is sent to Kabul to marry Rasheed. Nearly two decades later, a friendship grows between Mariam and a local teenager, Laila, as strong as the ties between mother and daughter. When the Taliban take over, life becomes a desperate struggle against starvation, brutality and fear. Yet love can move a person to act in unexpected ways, and lead them to overcome the most daunting obstacles with a startling heroism.

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A Time Of Love And Tartan

Author: Alexander Mccall Smith

Part of a series: 44 Scotland Street

Publisher: Polygon (2017)

Whether caused by small things such as a cup of coffee and a book, or major events such as Stuart's application for promotion and his wife Irene's decision to go off and study for a PhD in Aberdeen, change is coming to serial fiction's favourite street. But for three seven-year-old boys - Bertie Pollock, Ranald Braveheart Macpherson, and Big Lou's foster son Finlay - it also means a getting a glimpse of perfect happiness.

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A Time To Keep

Author: George Mackay Brown

Publisher: The Hogarth Press (1969)

First published in 1969, 'A Time to Keep' has a vast cast of characters drawn from Orkney's past and present. The stories offer a range of emotions and incidents, exploring how the new and old collide and crash in a community as deeply rooted as Orkney's. 'Celia' portrays a woman who is shutting out the contemporary world, losing herself in an alcohol-fuelled haze which helps her rejects the horrors of Apartheid and the Vietnam War. In 'The Wireless Set', an old couple begins to fear the implications of new technology, as they associate the loss of their son during the war with the radio he brought to them before he left. 'A Time to Keep' reflects Brown's recent conversion five years earlier to Roman Catholicism, which is both reflected in the title and in the spiritual content of the tales.

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A Treatise On Parents And Children

Author: George Bernard Shaw

Publisher:

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A Very Distant Shore

Author: Jenny Colgan

Part of a series: A World Book Night Book 2017

Publisher: Sphere (2017)

Wanted: doctor for small island. Must like boats, the seaside and having no hope of keeping a secret … Lorna lives on the tiny Scottish island of Mure, a peaceful place where everyone helps their neighbour. But the local GP is retiring, and nobody wants his job. Mure is too small and too remote. Far away, in a crowded camp, Saif is treating a little boy with a badly cut hand. Saif is a refugee, but he’s also a doctor: exactly what Mure needs. Saif is welcome in Mure, but can he forget his past? Over one summer, Saif will find a place to call home, and Lorna’s life will change for ever.

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A View Of The Harbour

Author: Elizabeth Taylor

Publisher: Virago (2006)

She let herself out of the large, untidy house and into her own beautiful, hyacinth-scented one. She sat down in the bay-window of her bedroom and combed her hair before the mirror. She took it all down and built it up again, but there was no one to see what she had done. In the faded coastal village of Newby, everyone looks out for - and in on - each other, and beneath the deceptively sleepy exterior, passions run high. Beautiful divorcee Tory is painfully involved with her neighbour, Robert, while his wife Beth, Tory's best friend, is consumed by the worlds she creates in her novels, oblivious to the relationship developing next door. Their daughter Prudence is aware, however, and is appalled by the treachery she observes. Mrs Bracey, an invalid whose grasp on life is slipping, forever peers from her window, constantly prodding her daughters for news of the outside world. And Lily Wilson, a lonely young widow, is frightened of her own home. Into their lives steps Bertram, a retired naval officer with the unfortunate capacity to inflict lasting damage while trying to do good.

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A Visit From The Goon Squad

Author: Jennifer Egan

Publisher: Corsair (2011)

'A Visit from the Goon Squad' vividly captures the moments when lives interact, and where fortunes ebb and flow, depicting in elegant prose - and often heart-wrenching simplicity - the sad consequences for those who couldn't fake it during their wild youth. A captivating and wryly humourous story of temptation and loss.

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A Visitation Of The Plague

Author: Daniel Defoe

Part of a series: Penguin 60s Classics

Publisher: Penguin (1995)

The tears and lamentations of a city under siege. In the months leading up to the outbreak of the Great Plague of 1665 panic spread over the city of London. Trapped by poverty, a gullible populace became prey to an army of astrologers, charlatans and quack doctors who offered false promises of hope in the face of the impending horror. A Journal of the Plague Year, from which this extract is taken, is Daniel Defoe’s vivid, imaginative reconstruction of the Great Plague of London. Regarded as one of the first great English novels.

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A Week In Winter

Author: Marcia Willett

Publisher: Headline (2002)

When Maudie Todhunter finally decides she must sell Moorgate, her beautiful farmhouse on the edge of Bodmin Moor, she anticipates strong objections from her family - particularly from Selina, her stepdaughter, with whom she has never seen eye to eye. But no one could have predicted the feelings that Moorgate evokes or the consequences...

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A World Between Us

Authors: Jan Bielecki, Lydia Syson

Publisher: Hot Key Books (2012)

Spain, 1936. Felix, a spirited young nurse, has travelled to Spain to help the cause of the Republicans in the Spanish Civil War. But she is also following Nat, a passionate young man who has joined the International Brigades fighting Franco. And George - familiar George from home - is not far behind, in pursuit of Felix ... As Spain fights for its freedom against tyranny, Felix battles a conflict of the heart. With the civil war raging around her, Felix must make choices that will change her life forever.

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