Jim Dixon has accidentally fallen into a job at one of Britain’s new red brick universities. A moderately successful future in the History Department beckons. As long as Jim can survive a madrigal-singin weekend at Professor Welch’s, deliver a lecture on ‘Merrie England’ and resist Christine, the hopelessly desirable girlfriend of Welch’s awful son Bertrand.
By Dai Sijie
A rapturous and uproarious collision of East and West, a novel about the dream of love and the love of dreams. Fresh from eleven years in Paris studying Freud, bookish Mr. Muo returns to China to spread the gospel psychoanalysis. His secret purpose is to free his college sweetheart from prison. To do so he has to get on the food side of the bloodthirsty Judge Di, and to accomplish that he must provide the judge with a virgin maiden.
This may prove difficult in a China that has embraced Western sexual mores along with capitalism — since Muo, while indisputably a romantic, is no ladies’ man. Tender, laugh-out-loud funny, and unexpectedly wise. Mr. Muo’s Travelling Couch introduces a hero as endearingly inept as Inspector Clouseau and as valiant as Don Quixote.
This book is a compilation of two Salinger’s novella which was originally published in The New Yorker in 1955 and 1959. It’s two parts that follows the Glass family narratives. Raise High is narrated by Buddy Glass, the second of the Glass brothers, describing Buddy’s visit on Army leave (during World War II, in 1942) to attend the wedding of his brother Seymour to Muriel and tells of the aftermath when Seymour fails to show.
While Seymour: An Introduction is Buddy’s attempt to introduce the reader to his brother Seymour, who had committed suicide in 1948. The story is told in a stream of consciousness narrative as Buddy reminisces in his secluded home. Like others concerning the Glass family, touches upon Zen Buddhism, haiku, and the Hindu philosophy of Vedanta.
By Orhan Pamuk
An exiled poet named Ka returns to Turkey and travels to the forlorn city of Kars. His ostensible purpose is to report on a wave of suicides among religious girls forbidden to wear their head scarves. But Ka is also drawn by his memories of the radiant Ipek, now recently divorced.
Amid blanketing snowfall and universal suspicion, Ka finds himself pursued by figures ranging from Ipek’s ex-husband to a charismatic terrorist. A lost gift returns with ecstatic suddenness. A theatrical evening climaxes in a massacre. And finding God may be the prelude to losing everything else. Touching, slyly comic, and humming with cerebral suspense. Snow is of immense relevance to our present.
Pamuk’s one of our personal favourite with his poetic narration, unfolding each characters beliefs, motives and ideologies a picturesque plot to follow.
By Chad Harbach
By Markus Zuzak
It is 1939, Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier and will become busier still.
By her brother’s graveside, Liesel Meminger finds her life changed when she picks up a single object, partially hidden in the snow. It is The Grave Digger’s Handbook, left there by accident, and it is her first act of book thievery. So begins a love affair with books and words, as Liesel, with the help of her accordion-playing foster father, learns to read. Soon she is stealing books from Nazi book-burnings, the mayour’s wife’s library, wherever there are books to be found.
But these are dangerous times. When Liesel’s foster family hides a Jewish man in their basement, Liesel’s world is both opened up and closed down.
In superbly crafted writing that burns with instensity, award-winning author Markus Zuzak has given us one of the most enduring stories of our time.
First published in 1846, Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s novella The Double is a classic doppelganger and the second major work published by the author. It is the story of Yajov Petrovich Golyadkin, a government clerk who believes that a fellow clerk has taken over his identity and is determinded to bring about his ruin.
Considered the most Gogolesque of Dostoyevsky’s works, the novella brilliantly depicts Golyadkin’s descent into madness in a way that is hauntingly poetic. The Double illustrates Dostoyevsky’s uncanny ability at capturing the complexity of human emotion especially the darker side of the human psyche.
This hilarious extravaganza presumes the existence of a secret society of revolutionaries sworn to destroy the world. There are seven members of the Central Anarchist Council who, for reasons of security, call themselves by the names of the days of the week — Sunday, Monday, and so on. But events soon cast a doubt upon their real identities, for Thursday (the Man Who Was Thursday) is not the passionate young poet he appears to be, but a Scotland Yard Detective. Who and what are the others? Chesterton unravels the fantasy in his own inventive and exuberant way and then uses this nightmare of paradox and surprise to probe the mysteries of human behaviour and belief.
This book is a 1962 copy.
One gloomy Sunday afternoon, Gregoire Bouillier answers a call from a woman who left him five years before. She’s not calling to apologize but to invite him to be the “mystery guest” at a birthday party of a woman he’s never met.
By Umberto Eco
Nineteenth-century Europe abounds with conspiracy both ghastly and mysterious. Jesuits plot against Freemasons. Italian priests are strangled with their own intestines. French criminals plan bombings by day and celebrate black masses by night. every nation has its own secret service, perpetrating forgeries, plots, and massacres. But what if, behind all this conspiracies, lies just one man?
By Anton Chekov
These six stories — here presented in memorable new translations — represent Chekov’s narrative genius at the full range and power of its maturity. As masterfully constructed as his earlier stories but with far greater richness and dimension, they deal with human beings suffering the pain of existence, their lives illumined by the author’s rigorous objectivity.
The novella Ward Six, with its hauntingly symbolic depiction of the world of an insane asylum; The Duel, with its theme of moral degradation, its hint of regeneration; and A Dull Story, with its relentless depiction of a culture that corrupts and alienates … these and others present a vivid portrait of what Rufus W. Mathewson calls a “blighted” society, seen through the eyes of a writer whose understanding of “human foolishness” is without equal.