Welcome to Muirs Bookshop & Café

Look for our new summer reading catalogue - click to readWe are a large Independent bookshop in the Main Street of Gisborne offering a wide range of best-selling and eclectic literary fiction, non-fiction and carefully selected children’s books.  We also have an increasing second hand book selection in our Cemetary of Forgotten Books.

We have one of the most comprehensive collections of Maori books in print and most Maori children’s books too.

All Gisborne books still in print are on our shelves, as well as a great range in the  New Zealand reference section.

We offer the full shopping experience, tremendous selection, great reading atmosphere, gift-wrapping and a beautiful range of cards, and can even put things in the post for you.  The staff are all readers and only too willing to impart their knowledge and choices should you ask.

Our café offers delicious coffee, a sun-soaked outdoor balcony overlooking Gladstone Road Gisborne, delicious cakes and slices and a lovely range of salads and savoury treats.

And we have Wi-fi, thanks to the local Gizzy-Fi wireless facility.

Good reads from our collection.......

 

Tears of Rangi Anne SalmondTears of Rangi: Experiments Across Worlds by Anne Salmond

RRP $65

During the nineteenth century, Maori women produced letters and memoirs, wrote off to newspapers and commissioners, appeared before commissions of enquiry, gave evidence in court cases, and went to the Native Land Court to assert their rights. He Reo Wahine is a bold new introduction to the experience of Maori women in colonial New Zealand through Maori women's own words - the speeches and evidence, letters and testimonies that they left in the archive. Drawing from over 500 texts in both English and te reo Maori written by Maori women themselves, or expressing their words in the first person, He Reo Wahine explores the range and diversity of Maori women's concerns and interests, the many ways in which they engaged with colonial institutions, as well as their understanding and use of the law, legal documents, and the court system. The book both collects those sources - providing readers with substantial excerpts from letters, petitions, submissions and other documents - and interprets them. Eight chapters group texts across key themes: land sales, war, land confiscation and compensation, politics, petitions, legal encounters, religion and other private matters. Beside a large scholarship on New Zealand women's history, the historical literature on Maori women is remarkably thin. This book changes that by utilising the colonial archives to explore the feelings, thoughts and experiences of Maori women - and their relationships to the wider world.

A Bold and Dangerous FamilyA Bold And Dangerous Family: The Rossellis and The Fight Against Mussolini by Caroline Moorehead

RRP $38

Mussolini was not only ruthless: he was subtle and manipulative. Black-shirted thugs did his dirty work for him: arson, murder, destruction of homes and offices, bribes, intimidation and the forcible administration of castor oil. His opponents - including editors, publishers, union representatives, lawyers and judges - were beaten into submission. But the tide turned in 1924 when his assassins went too far, horror spread across Italy and twenty years of struggle began. Antifascist resistance was born and it would end only with Mussolini's death in 1945. Among those whose disgust hardened into bold and uncompromising resistance was a family from Florence: Amelia, Carlo and Nello Rosselli. Caroline Moorehead's research into the Rossellis struck gold. She has drawn on letters and diaries never previously translated into English to reveal - in all its intimacy - a family driven by loyalty, duty and courage, yet susceptible to all the self-doubt and fear that humans are prey to. Readers are drawn into the lives of this remarkable family - and their loves, their loyalties, their laughter and their ultimate sacrifice.

Red Sky at Noon Red Sky At Noon by Simon Sebag Montefiore

RRP $37

"The black earth was already baking and the sun was just rising when they mounted their horses and rode across the grasslands towards the horizon on fire...". Imprisoned in the Gulags for a crime he did not commit, Benya Golden joins a penal battalion made up of Cossacks and convicts to fight the Nazis. He enrols in the Russian cavalry, and on a hot summer day in July 1942, he and his band of brothers are sent on a desperate mission behind enemy lines. Switching between Benya's war in the grasslands of Southern Russia, and Stalin's plans in the Kremlin, between Benya's intense affair with an Italian nurse and a romance between Stalin's daughter and a journalist also on the Eastern Front, this is a sweeping story of passion, bravery and human survival where personal betrayal is a constant companion, and death just a hearbeat away.

Into The Water Paula HawkinsInto The Water by Paula Hawkins

RRP $38

The addictive new psychological thriller from the author of The Girl on the Train, the runaway Sunday Times No. 1 bestseller and global phenomenon. In the last days before her death, Nel called her sister. Jules didn't pick up the phone, ignoring her plea for help. Now Nel is dead. They say she jumped. And Jules has been dragged back to the one place she hoped she had escaped for good, to care for the teenage girl her sister left behind. But Jules is afraid. So afraid. Of her long-buried memories, of the old Mill House, of knowing that Nel would never have jumped. And most of all she's afraid of the water, and the place they call the Drowning Pool...With the same propulsive writing and acute understanding of human instincts that captivated millions of readers around the world in her explosive debut thriller, The Girl on the Train, Paula Hawkins delivers an urgent, satisfying read that hinges on the stories we tell about our pasts and their power to destroy the lives we live now.

The Blood Miracles Lisa McInerneyThe Blood Miracles by Lisa McInerney

RRP $38

The second novel from the author of the Baileys Prize-winning The Glorious Heresies'Fast paced, compelling, and thrilling, Lisa McInerney writes the type of fiction that is both beautifully crafted and immensely enjoyable' Louise O'Neill'The Blood Miracles has all the brio, street smarts and vicious linguistic verve of The Glorious Heresies, but with this follow up Lisa McInerney also reminds us just how brilliantly accomplished and ruthlessly focused a storyteller she is' Colin BarrettLike all twenty-year-olds, Ryan Cusack is trying to get his head around who he is. This is not a good time for his boss to exploit his dual heritage by opening a new black market route from Italy to Ireland. It is certainly not a good time for his adored girlfriend to decide he's irreparably corrupted. And he really wishes he hadn't accidentally caught the eye of an ornery grandmother who fancies herself his saviour. There may be a way clear of the chaos in the business proposals of music promoter Colm and in the attention of the charming, impulsive Natalie. But now that his boss's ambitions have rattled the city, Ryan is about to find out what he's made of, and it might be that chaos is in his blood.

The Husband Hunters Anne de CourcyThe Husband-Hunters: Social Climbing in London and New York by Anne de Courcy

RRP $38

Towards the end of the nineteenth century and for the first few years of the twentieth, a strange invasion took place in Britain. The citadel of power, privilege and breeding in which the titled, land-owning governing class had barricaded itself for so long was breached. The incomers were a group of young women who, fifty years earlier, would have been looked on as the alien denizens of another world - the New World, to be precise. From 1874 - the year that Jennie Jerome, the first known 'Dollar Princess', married Randolph Churchill - to 1905, dozens of young American heiresses married into the British peerage, bringing with them all the fabulous wealth, glamour and sophistication of the Gilded Age. Anne de Courcy sets the stories of these young women and their families in the context of their times. Based on extensive first-hand research, drawing on diaries, memoirs and letters, this richly entertaining group biography reveals what they thought of their new lives in England - and what England thought of them.

Anything Is Possible Elizabeth StroutAnything Is Possible by Elizabeth Strout

RRP $35

An unforgettable cast of small-town characters copes with love and loss from the No. 1 New York Times bestselling and Man Booker long-listed author of My Name is Lucy Barton Anything is Possible tells the story of the inhabitants of rural, dusty Amgash, Illinois, the hometown of Lucy Barton, a successful New York writer who finally returns, after seventeen years of absence, to visit the siblings she left behind. Reverberating with the deep bonds of family, and the hope that comes with reconciliation, Anything Is Possible again underscores Elizabeth Strout's place as one of America's most respected and cherished authors.

The 7th Function of LanguageThe 7th Function Of Language by Laurent Binet

RRP $35

Roland Barthes, one of the twentieth-century's towering literary figures, is knocked down in a Paris street by a laundry van. It's February 1980 and he has just come from lunch with Francois Mitterrand, who is locked in a battle for the Presidency. Barthes dies soon afterwards. History tells us it was an accident. But what if it were an assassination? What if Barthes was carrying a document of unbelievable, global importance? That document was the key to the seventh function of language - an idea so powerful it gives whoever masters it the ability to convince anyone, in any situation, to do anything. Police Captain Jacques Bayard and his reluctant accomplice Simon Herzog set off on a global chase that takes them from the corridors of power and academia to backstreet saunas and midnight rendezvous. What they discover is a global conspiracy involving the President, murderous Bulgarians and a secret international debating society. In the world of intellectuals and politicians, everyone is a suspect. And who can you trust when the idea of truth itself is at stake?

The Holocaust Laurence ReesHolocaust: A New History by Laurence Rees

RRP $40

This landmark work answers two of the most fundamental questions in history - how, and why, did the Holocaust happen? Laurence Rees has spent twenty-five years meeting survivors and perpetrators of the Third Reich and the Holocaust. Now, in his magnum opus, he combines largely unpublished testimony with the latest academic research to create the first accessible and authoritative account of the Holocaust in over three decades. Rees argues that whilst hatred of the Jews was always at the epicentre of Nazi thinking - and the Holocaust was the most appalling crime in history - what happened cannot be fully understood without considering the murder of the Jews alongside other Nazi plans to kill millions of non-Jews as well. He also reveals the inner machinations of the Nazi state and shows how there was no single "decision" to start the Holocaust; instead, a series of escalations cumulatively created the horror. Through a chronological, intensely readable narrative, featuring the latest historical research and enthralling eyewitness testimony, this is the compelling story of humanity's lowest point.

The Baltimore Boys Joel DickerThe Baltimore Boys by Joel Dicker

RRP $37

Fresh from the staggering success of The Truth about the Harry Quebert Affair, Marcus Goldman is struggling to write his third novel. A chance encounter in Florida throws him some inspiration from a surprising source: Alexandra Neville, the beautiful, phenomenally successful singer and Marcus's first love. All at once, memories of his childhood come flooding back. Memories of a family torn apart by tragedy, and a once glorious legacy reduced to shame and ruin. The Baltimore Boys. The Goldman Gang. That was what they called Marcus, and his cousins Hillel and Woody. Three brilliant young men with their whole lives ahead of them, before their kingdom crumbled beneath the weight of lies, jealousy and betrayal. For years, Marcus has struggled with the burdens of his past, but now, he must attempt to banish his demons and tell the real story of the Baltimore Boys. Translated from the French by Alison Anderson

To Become a Whale Ben HobsonTo Become A Whale by Ben Hobson

RRP $33

To Become a Whale tells the story of 13-year-old Sam Keogh, whose mother has died. Sam has to learn how to live with his silent, hitherto absent father, who decides to make a man out of his son by taking him to work at Tangalooma, then the largest whaling station in the southern hemisphere. What follows is the devastatingly beautiful story of a gentle boy trying to make sense of the terrible reality of whaling and the cruelty and alienation of his new world, the world of men. Set around Moreton Island and Noosa in 1961, To Become a Whale is an extraordinarily vivid and haunting novel that reads like an instant classic of Australian literature.

Jews Queers Germans Martin DubermanJews Queers Germans: A Novel/History by Martin Duberman

RRP $37

Set in a time when many men in the upper classes in Europe were closeted gay, Jews Queers Germans revolves around three men: Prince Philipp von Eulenburg, Kaiser Wilhelm II's closest friend who becomes the subject of a 1907 trial for homosexuality; Magnus Hirschfeld, a famed Jewish sexologist; and Harry Kessler, a leading proponent of modernism, whose famous diaries allude to his own homosexuality. The central theme is the gay life of a very upper crust intellectual milieu that had a real impact on the major political upheavals that would shape the modern world.

Fallen Land Taylor BrownFallen Land Taylor Brown

RRP $25

Fallen Land is Taylor Brown's debut novel set in the final year of the Civil War, as a young couple on horseback flees a dangerous band of marauders who seek a bounty reward. Callum, a seasoned horse thief at fifteen years old, came to America from his native Ireland as an orphan. Ava, her father and brother lost to the war, hides in her crumbling home until Callum determines to rescue her from the bands of hungry soldiers pillaging the land, leaving destruction in their wake. Ava and Callum have only each other in the world and their remarkable horse, Reiver, who carries them through the destruction that is the South. Pursued relentlessly by a murderous slave hunter, tracking dogs, and ruthless ex-partisan rangers, the couple race through a beautiful but ruined land, surviving on food they glean from abandoned farms and the occasional kindness of strangers. In the end, as they intersect with the scorching destruction of Sherman's March, the couple seek a safe haven where they can make a home and begin to rebuild their lives. Dramatic and thrillingly written with an uncanny eye for glimpses of beauty in a ravaged landscape, Fallen Land is a love story at its core, and an unusually assured first novel by award-winning young author Taylor Brown.

Sirens Joseph KnoxSirens Jospeh Knox

RRP $37

It starts with the girl. How it ends is up to DC Aidan Waits. Isabelle Rossiter has run away again. When Aidan Waits, a troubled junior detective, is summoned to her father's penthouse home - he finds a manipulative man, with powerful friends. But retracing Isabelle's steps through a dark, nocturnal world, Waits finds something else. An intelligent seventeen-year-old girl who's scared to death of something. As he investigates her story, and the unsolved disappearance of a young woman just like her, he realizes Isabelle was right to run away. Soon Waits is cut loose by his superiors, stalked by an unseen killer and dangerously attracted to the wrong woman. He's out of his depth and out of time. How can he save the girl, when he can't even save himself?

Istanbul Istanbul: A Tale of Three Cities Bettany Hughes

RRP $38

Istanbul explores a city which stands as a gateway between the east and west, one of the indisputably greatest cities in the world. Previously known by the names Byzantium and Constantinople, this is the most celebrated metropolis in the world to sit on two continents, straddling the dividing line of the Bosphorus Strait between Europe and Asia. During its long history, Istanbul has served as the capital of the Roman, Byzantine, Latin and Ottoman Empires. Its architecture reflects these many cultures, including the Hagia Sophia (Byzantine), the Blue Mosque (Ottoman), the Valens Aqueduct (Roman), the Topkapi Palace (Ottoman), and more modern Art Nouveau avenues built in the 19th and 20th centuries - many of which are UNESCO World Heritage sites. With the founding of the Republic of Turkey by Ataturk in 1923, Istanbul was overlooked and Ankara became the capital. Over the next 90 years, Istanbul has undergone great structural change, and in the 1970s the population of the city rocketed as people moved to the city to find work, turning Istanbul into the cultural, economic and financial centre of Turkey. Events there recently have again brought Istanbul to the forefront of global attention. Indeed, while writing this book, Bettany was caught with her daughters in the crossfire of Taksim Square. Bettany Hughes has been researching and writing this rich portrait of one of the world's most multi-faceted cities for over a decade. Her compelling biography of a momentous city is visceral, immediate and sensuous narrative history at its finest.

Under The Almond TreeUnder The Almond Tree Laura McVeigh

RRP $38

If you lost everything you loved, how would you survive and begin again? Under the Almond Tree tells the story of one refugee family fleeing conflict and war in Afghanistan in the 1990s as they travel towards freedom and safety. Fifteen year old Samar, the middle child, shares the story of her incredible journey on the Trans-Siberian Express - with the help of Napoleon, the Ticket Collector, Tolstoy's Anna Karenina, and her parents and siblings. Forced to flee Kabul as the Russians, then the Taliban, turn their lives inside out, the children and their parents face the loss of their world and their place in it. Throughout, our storyteller Samar bravely holds onto family and hope, often when all survival seems impossible. With the true strength that comes from love, learning and imagination, Samar reveals her extraordinary resilience and the discovery that anything may be possible - if you can just hold on to hope and love.

The Hearts Invisible FuriesThe Heart's Invisible Furies John Boyne

RRP $38

Cyril Avery is not a real Avery or at least that's what his adoptive parents tell him. And he never will be. But if he isn't a real Avery, then who is he? Born out of wedlock to a teenage girl cast out from her rural Irish community and adopted by a well-to-do if eccentric Dublin couple via the intervention of a hunchbacked Redemptorist nun, Cyril is adrift in the world, anchored only tenuously by his heartfelt friendship with the infinitely more glamourous and dangerous Julian Woodbead. At the mercy of fortune and coincidence, he will spend a lifetime coming to know himself and where he came from - and over his three score years and ten, will struggle to discover an identity, a home, a country and much more. In this, Boyne's most transcendent work to date, we are shown the story of Ireland from the 1940s to today through the eyes of one ordinary man. The Heart's Invisible Furies is a novel to make you laugh and cry while reminding us all of the redemptive power of the human spirit.

Idaho Emily RuskovichIdaho Emily Ruskovich

RRP $37

One hot August day a family drives to a mountain clearing to collect birch wood. Jenny, the mother, is in charge of lopping any small limbs off the logs with a hatchet. Wade, the father, does the stacking. The two daughters, June and May, aged nine and six, drink lemonade, swat away horseflies, bicker, sing snatches of songs as they while away the time. But then something unimaginably shocking happens, an act so extreme it will scatter the family in every different direction. In a story told from multiple perspectives and in razor-sharp prose, we gradually learn more about this act, and the way its violence, love and memory reverberate through the life of every character in Idaho.

Lincoln In The BardoLincoln In The Bardo George Saunders

RRP $33

The extraordinary first novel by the bestselling, Folio Prize-winning, National Book Award-shortlisted George Saunders, about Abraham Lincoln and the death of his eleven year old son, Willie, at the dawn of the Civil War The American Civil War rages while President Lincoln's beloved eleven-year-old son lies gravely ill. In a matter of days, Willie dies and is laid to rest in a Georgetown cemetery. Newspapers report that a grief-stricken Lincoln returns to the crypt several times alone to hold his boy's body. From this seed of historical truth, George Saunders spins an unforgettable story of familial love and loss that breaks free of realism, entering a thrilling, supernatural domain both hilarious and terrifying. Willie Lincoln finds himself trapped in a transitional realm - called, in Tibetan tradition, the bardo - and as ghosts mingle, squabble, gripe and commiserate, and stony tendrils creep towards the boy, a monumental struggle erupts over young Willie's soul. Unfolding over a single night, Lincoln in the Bardo is written with George Saunders' inimitable humour, pathos and grace.

Your Cabin In The WoodsYour Cabin In The Woods Conrad E. Meinecke

RRP $50

For 70 years, readers have been enjoying Meinecke's classic odes to the simple life, Your Cabin in the Woods (1943) and Cabin Craft and Outdoor Living (1947). For the first time, these books are combined into a deluxe two-color vintage package, featuring hundreds of charming illustrations by Victor Aures, known for his work with the Boy Scouts of America. In writing both practical and inspirational, Meinecke details how to turn your dream into a reality, from building plans to choosing land to using tools. However the book's enduring appeal owes in large part to its warmly engaging tone and firm belief in the restorative power of nature. He delights in the satisfaction of hard work, writing "in the doing you find yourself tired, muscles a bit sore, hands hardened and rough, but you will say over and over again, 'I did it.'"

Days Without EndDays Without End Sebastian Barry

RRP $37

After signing up for the US army in the 1850s, aged barely seventeen, Thomas McNulty and his brother-in-arms, John Cole, go on to fight in the Indian wars and, ultimately, the Civil War. Having fled terrible hardships they find these days to be vivid and filled with wonder, despite the horrors they both see and are complicit in. Their lives are further enriched and imperilled when a young Indian girl crosses their path, and the possibility of lasting happiness emerges, if only they can survive. Moving from the plains of the West to Tennessee, Sebastian Barry's latest work is a masterpiece of atmosphere and language. Both an intensely poignant story of two men and the lives they are dealt, and a fresh look at some of the most fateful years in America's past, Days Without End is a novel never to be forgotten.

A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever LivedA Brief History Of Everyone Who Ever Lived Adam Rutherford

RRP $40

This is a story about you. It is the history of who you are and how you came to be. It is unique to you, as it is to each of the 100 billion modern humans who have ever drawn breath. But it is also our collective story, because in every one of our genomes we each carry the history of our species - births, deaths, disease, war, famine, migration and a lot of sex. Since scientists first read the human genome in 2001 it has been subject to all sorts of claims, counterclaims and myths. In fact, as Adam Rutherford explains, our genomes should be read not as instruction manuals, but as epic poems. DNA determines far less than we have been led to believe about us as individuals, but vastly more about us as a species. In this captivating journey through the expanding landscape of genetics, Adam Rutherford reveals what our genes now tell us about history, and what history tells us about our genes. From Neanderthals to murder, from redheads to race, dead kings to plague, evolution to epigenetics, this is a demystifying and illuminating new portrait of who we are and how we came to be.

Moonglow Michael ChabonMoonglow Michael Chabon

RRP $45

Moonglow unfolds as a deathbed confession. An old man, his tongue loosened by powerful painkillers, his memory stirred by the imminence of death, tells stories to his grandson, uncovering bits and pieces of a history long buried. Why did he try to strangle a former business partner with a telephone cord? What was he thinking when he and a buddy set explosives on a bridge in Washington, D.C.? What did he feel while he hunted down Wernher von Braun in Germany? And what did he see in the young girl he met in Baltimore after returning home from the war? From the Jewish slums of pre-war Philadelphia to the invasion of Germany, from a Florida retirement village to the penal utopia of a New York prison, from the heyday of the space programme to the twilight of 'the American Century', Moonglow collapses an era into a single life and a lifetime into a single week.

Appetites A CookbookAppetites: A Cookbook Anthony Bourdain

RRP $53

Brash, wild, original and badass. This is Anthony Bourdain's interpretation of a normal cookbook. As a restaurant professional, Bourdain spent his life on the fringes of normality - he worked while normal people played, and played while normal people slept. Since then he has settled (kind of) into family life and is cooking for the people he loves rather than people who pay. These are the recipes he turns to when called in for pancake service at sleepover parties or when preparing a violence-free family dinner. Each and every word is informed by his years in the industry and a life dedicated to food. This is a man who has declared the club sandwich as America's Enemy and wants you to understand the principles of Bad Sandwich Theory. He has distilled his views on dessert to this: it should always be Stilton. With a striking Ralph Steadman illustration for the cover and photography that somehow manages to be both strangely beautiful and utterly grotesque, this cookbook - Bourdain's first in ten years - is a home-cooking, home-entertaining cookbook like no other.

The Wish ChildThe Wish Child Catherine Chidgey

RRP $30

At the heart of Catherine Chidgey's extraordinary new novel is an enigmatic voice that tells the story of German families caught up in a nation's dream. It's 1939. Two children watch as their parents become immersed in the puzzling mechanisms of power. Sieglinde lives in the affluent ignorance of middle-class Berlin, her father a censor who cuts prohibited words such as love and mercy out of books. Erich is an only child living a rural life near Leipzig, tending beehives, aware that he is shadowed by strange, unanswered questions. Drawn together as Germany's hope for a glorious future begins to collapse, the children find temporary refuge in an abandoned theatre amidst the rubble of Berlin. Outside, white bedsheets hang from windows; all over the city people are talking of surrender. The days Sieglinde and Erich spend together will shape the rest of their lives. The Wish Child is a profound meditation on the wreckage caused by a corrupt ideology, on the resilience of the human spirit, and on crimes that cannot be undone. I am the wish child, the future cast in water. I am the thrown coin, the blown candle; I am the fallen star.

Homo DeusHomo Deus Yuval Noah Harari

RRP $40

Yuval Noah Harari, author of the bestselling Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, envisions a not-too-distant world in which we face a new set of challenges. Now, in Homo Deus, he examines our future with his trademark blend of science, history, philosophy and every discipline in between. Homo Deus explores the projects, dreams and nightmares that will shape the twenty-first century - from overcoming death to creating artificial life. It asks the fundamental questions: Where do we go from here? And how will we protect this fragile world from our own destructive powers? This is the next stage of evolution. This is Homo Deus. War is obsolete You are more likely to commit suicide than be killed in conflict Famine is disappearing You are at more risk of obesity than starvation Death is just a technical problem Equality is out - but immortality is in What does our future hold?

4 3 2 1 Paul Auster4 3 2 1 Paul Auster

RRP $37

On March 3, 1947, in the maternity ward of Beth Israel Hospital in Newark, New Jersey, Archibald Isaac Ferguson, the one and only child of Rose and Stanley Ferguson, is born. From that single beginning, Ferguson's life will take four simultaneous and independent fictional paths. Four Fergusons made of the same genetic material, four boys who are the same boy, will go on to lead four parallel and entirely different lives. Family fortunes diverge. Loves and friendships and intellectual passions contrast. Chapter by chapter, the rotating narratives evolve into an elaborate dance of inner worlds enfolded within the outer forces of history as, one by one, the intimate plot of each Ferguson's story rushes on across the tumultuous and fractured terrain of mid twentieth-century America. A boy grows up-again and again and again. As inventive and dexterously constructed as anything Paul Auster has ever written 4 3 2 1 is an unforgettable tour de force, the crowning work of this masterful writer's extraordinary career.

The Golden Legend The Golden Legend Nadeem Aslam

RRP $33

When shots ring out on the Grand Trunk Road, Nargis' life begins to crumble around her. Her husband, Massud - a fellow architect - is caught in the crossfire and dies before she can confess to him her greatest secret. Under threat from a powerful military intelligence officer, who demands that she pardon her husband's American killer, Nargis fears that the truth about her past will soon be exposed. For weeks someone has been broadcasting people's secrets from the minarets of the city's mosques and, in a country where the accusation of blasphemy is a currency to be bartered, the mysterious broadcasts have struck fear in Christians and Muslims alike. Against this background of violence and fear, two outsiders - the young Christian woman Helen and the mysterious Imran from Kashmir - try to find an island of calm in which their love can grow. In his characteristically luminous prose, Nadeem Aslam reflects Pakistan's past and present in a single mirror - a story of corruption, resilience, and the hope that only love and the human spirit can offer.

The Good People Hannah KentThe Good People Hannah Kent

RRP $38

The fires on the hills smouldered orange as the women left, pockets charged with ashes to guard them from the night. Watching them fade into the grey fall of snow, Nance thought she could hear Maggie's voice. A whisper in the dark. "Some folk are born different, Nance. They are born on the outside of things, with a skin a little thinner, eyes a little keener to what goes unnoticed by most. Their hearts swallow more blood than ordinary hearts; the river runs differently for them." Nora Leahy has lost her daughter and her husband in the same year, and is now burdened with the care of her four-year-old grandson, Micheal. The boy cannot walk, or speak, and Nora, mistrustful of the tongues of gossips, has kept the child hidden from those who might see in his deformity evidence of otherworldly interference. Unable to care for the child alone, Nora hires a fourteen-year-old servant girl, Mary, who soon hears the whispers in the valley about the blasted creature causing grief to fall upon the widow's house. Alone, hedged in by rumour, Mary and her mistress seek out the only person in the valley who might be able to help Micheal. For although her neighbours are wary of her, it is said that old Nance Roche has the knowledge. That she consorts with Them, the Good People. And that only she can return those whom they have taken...

The Wonder Emma DonoghueThe Wonder Emma Donoghue

RRP $35

An eleven-year-old girl stops eating, but remains miraculously alive and well. A nurse, sent to investigate whether she is a fraud, meets a journalist hungry for a story. Set in the Irish Midlands in the 1850s, The Wonder - inspired by numerous European and North American cases of 'fasting girls' between the sixteenth century and the twentieth - is a psychological thriller about a child's murder threatening to happen in slow motion before our eyes. Pitting all the seductions of fundamentalism against sense and love, it is a searing examination of what nourishes us, body and soul.

Commonwealth Ann PatchettCommonwealth Ann Patchett

RRP $33

A powerful story of two families brought together by beauty and torn apart by tragedy, the new novel by the Orange Prize-winning author of Bel Canto and State of Wonder is her most astonishing yet It is 1964: Bert Cousins shows up at Franny Keating's christening party uninvited and notices a heart-stoppingly beautiful woman. When he kisses Beverly Keating, his host's wife, he sets in motion the joining of two families whose shared fate will be defined on a day seven years later. In 1988, Franny Keating, now twenty-four, has dropped out of law school and is working as a cocktail waitress in Chicago. When she meets the famous author Leon Posen one night at the bar, and tells him about her family, she unwittingly relinquishes control over their story. Told with equal measures of humour and heartbreak, Commonwealth is a powerful tale of a family's far-reaching bonds of love and responsibility - and a meditation on inspiration, interpretation and the ownership of stories.

Homegoing Yaa GyasiHomegoing Yaa Gyasi

RRP $37

Effia and Esi: two sisters with two very different destinies. One sold into slavery; one a slave trader's wife. The consequences of their fate reverberate through the generations that follow. Taking us from the Gold Coast of Africa to the cotton-picking plantations of Mississippi; from the missionary schools of Ghana to the dive bars of Harlem, spanning three continents and seven generations, Yaa Gyasi has written a miraculous novel - the intimate, gripping story of a brilliantly vivid cast of characters and through their lives the very story of America itself. Epic in its canvas and intimate in its portraits, Homegoing is a searing and profound debut from a masterly new writer.

Out Of The Ordinary

Old Age A Beginners GuideOld Age: A Beginner's Guide - $28

The notorious baby boomers are approaching the end and starting to plan their final moves in the game of life. 'What was that all about?' they're asking. 'Was it about acquiring things or changing the world? Was it about keeping all your marbles? Or is the only thing that counts after you're gone the reputation you leave behind?' In Old Age: a beginner's guide, Michael Kinsley answers the questions we are all forced to confront sooner or later.

Evolution Ladybird ExpertEvolution (A Ladybird Expert Book) - $21

Part of the new Ladybird Expert series, Evolution is a clear, simple and entertaining introduction to Charles Darwin's pioneering and revolutionary theory of how all life changes through natural selection. Written by broadcaster, prize-winning author and geneticist Professor Steve Jones, it explores the extraordinary diversity of life on our planet through the complex interactions of one very simple theory. You'll discover the common origins of dogs and Brussels sprouts, how it is we're all mutants, where wings, ears and tails came from, why sex is good for you, how some dinosaurs evolved and survived, and why human evolution may finally have stopped.

The Little Book of HyggeThe Little Book Of Hygge - $30

Denmark is often said to be the happiest country in the world. That's down to one thing: hygge. 'Hygge has been translated as everything from the art of creating intimacy to cosiness of the soul to taking pleasure from the presence of soothing things. My personal favourite is cocoa by candlelight...' You know hygge when you feel it. It is when you are cuddled up on a sofa with a loved one, or sharing comfort food with your closest friends. It is those crisp blue mornings when the light through your window is just right. Who better than Meik Wiking to be your guide to all things hygge? Meik is CEO of the Happiness Research Institute in Copenhagen and has spent years studying the magic of Danish life. In this beautiful, inspiring book he will help you be more hygge: from picking the right lighting and planning a dinner party through to creating an emergency hygge kit and even how to dress. Meik Wiking is the CEO of the Happiness Research Institute in Copenhagen. He is committed to finding out what makes people happy and has concluded that hygge is the magic ingredient that makes Danes the happiest nation in the world.

Time TravelTime Travel - $35

From the acclaimed author of The Information and Chaos, a mind-bending exploration of time travel: its subversive origins, its evolution in literature and science, and its influence on our understanding of time itself. Gleick's story begins at the turn of the twentieth century with the young H. G. Wells writing and rewriting the fantastic tale that became his first book, an international sensation, The Time Machine. A host of forces were converging to transmute the human understanding of time, some philosophical and some technological - the electric telegraph, the steam railroad, the discovery of buried civilisations, and the perfection of clocks. Gleick tracks the evolution of time travel as an idea in the culture - from Marcel Proust to Doctor Who, from Woody Allen to Jorge Luis Borges. He explores the inevitable looping paradoxes and examines the porous boundary between pulp fiction and modern physics. Finally, he delves into a temporal shift that is unsettling our own moment: the instantaneous wired world, with its all-consuming present and vanishing future.

The Wisdom of Prince PhilipThe Wisdom Of Prince Philip - $15

Prince Philip - or to give him his proper due, His Royal Highness the Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, Earl of Merioneth and Baron Greenwich, KG (Knight of the Garter), KT (Knight of the Thistle), OM (Order of Merit), GBE (Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the British Empire), AK (Knight of the Order of Australia), QSO (Companion of The Queen's Service Order), PC (Privy Counsellor) - is a gentleman and a senior Royal of such standing, it's only fitting that a book celebrate the great wisdom he has accrued in his 93 magnificent years on earth. A tireless public servant to the Commonwealth, who can forget such pearlers as "If it has four legs and it is not a chair, if it has got two wings and it flies but is not an aeroplane and if it swims and it is not a submarine, the Cantonese will eat it" as said to a World Wildlife Fund meeting in 1986? Or, observing to a wheelchair-bound Susan Edwards alongside her guide dog in 2002, "Do you know they have eating dogs for the anorexic now?". Of course, Australians fondly remember his deep and abiding interest in the country. We will always remember his asking "Do you still throw spears at each other?" to Indigenous leader William Brin in 2002? Or when offered a koala to stroke "Oh no, I might catch some ghastly disease"? But perhaps Prince Philip best summed up his illustratrious career when commenting to Jeremy Paxman that "Any bloody fool can lay a wreath at the thingamy".

Norwegian Wood: Chopping, Stacking and Drying Wood the Scandinavian Way - $55Wood

"Every man looks at his wood-pile with a kind of affection" Henry David Thoreau Chopping and stacking wood is a pastime where the world makes sense once more. Because our relationship to fire is so ancient, so universal, it seems that in learning about wood, you can also learn about life. And who better to impart this wisdom than an expert from Scandinavia, where the extreme climate has obliged generations to hone and share their skills with tools, wood and heat production. Lars Mytting has distilled the wisdom of enthusiasts, from experienced lifelong growers, stackers and burners to researchers and professionals of combustion and tree culture. Part guide to the best practice in every aspect of working with this renewable energy source, part meditation on the human instinct for survival, this definitive handbook on the art of chopping, stacking and drying wood in the Scandinavian way has resonated across the world. Whether you are a seasoned woodcutter, or your passion is yet to be kindled, Norwegian Wood is the perfect fireside read. As featured on Chris Evans' Breakfast Show on BBC Radio 2.

You could say the book has spread like wildfire. For the world's first comprehensive book about firewood is high in bestseller lists in Britain and generating heated discussions online and in pubs, offices, cafes and bars - about logs, log-piles and the best fire. Daily Mail. A how-to book with poetry at its heart. -- Brian Morton Times Literary Supplement. As much as Mytting captures the romance of the great outdoors, the nobility of the honest graft of wood chopping, and our close relationship with trees, it is also a step-by-step guide to preparing your wood store. -- Sophie Morris Independent.