Anna is content with her well-ordered life in San Francisco. But her world is turned upside down when her beloved grandfather, Max, reveals a startling secret: Anna is part of an aristocratic family who lost everything during World War II. What’s more, Max was forced to leave behind a precious item over seventy years ago in their estate in old Prussia. It’s now his ardent wish that Anna retrieve it.
Anna burns with questions as she heads for Germany: What memento could be so important to her grandfather? And why did he keep their history hidden? As she searches for answers, she finds herself drawn to Wil, a man who may hold the key to unlock the mystery. Together they discover that her family’s secrets are linked with an abandoned apartment in Paris, and these secrets go deeper than she ever imagined.
Alternating between 1930s Europe and the present, The House by the Lake illuminates the destiny of a family caught in the tumult of history. Buy this novel today for only 99p. Audiobook: £3.49.
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George III came to the throne in 1760 as a man with a mission. He wanted to be a new kind of king, one whose power was rooted in the affection and approval of his people. And he was determined to revolutionise his private life too – to show that a better man would, inevitably, make a better ruler. Above all he was determined to break with the extraordinarily dysfunctional home lives of his Hanoverian forbears. For his family, things would be different.
But the lives of the women in George’s life – and of the princesses in particular – were shaped by a kind of undaunted emotional resilience that most modern women will recognise. However flawed George’s great family experiment may have been, in the value the princesses placed on the ideals of domestic happiness, they were truly their father’s daughters.
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London, spring 1939. Eighteen-year-old Ada Vaughan, a beautiful and ambitious seamstress, has just started work for a modiste in Dover Street. A career in couture is hers for the taking if only she can break free from the dreariness of family life in Lambeth.
A chance meeting with the enigmatic Stanislaus von Lieben catapults Ada into a world of glamour and romance. When he suggests a trip to Paris, Ada is blind to all the warnings of war on the continent.
Anticipation turns to despair when war is declared and the two are trapped in France.
This dramatic tale of love, conflict, betrayal and survival is selling for £1.49 today.
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Honor Bright is a sheltered Quaker who has rarely ventured out of 1850s Dorset when she impulsively emigrates to America. Opposed to the slavery that defines and divides the country, she finds her principles tested to the limit when a runaway slave appears at the farm of her new family.
In this tough, unsentimental place, where whisky bottles sit alongside quilts, Honor befriends two spirited women who will teach her how to turn ideas into actions.
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Spring, 1919. James ‘Max’ Maxted, former Great War flying ace, returns to the trail of murder, treachery and half-buried secrets he set out on in The Ways of the World. He left Paris after avenging the murder of his father, Sir Henry Maxted, a senior member of the British delegation to the post-war peace conference.
But he was convinced there was more – much more – to be discovered about what Sir Henry had been trying to accomplish. And he suspected elusive German spymaster Fritz Lemmer knew the truth of it.
Now, enlisted under false colours in Lemmer’s service but with his loyalty pledged to the British Secret Service, Max sets out on his first – and possibly last – mission for Lemmer.
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Alan Bennett’s A Life Like Other People’s is a poignant family memoir offering a portrait of his parents’ marriage and recalling his Leeds childhood, Christmases with Grandma Peel, and the lives, loves and deaths of his unforgettable aunties Kathleen and Myra. Bennett’s powerful account of his mother’s descent into depression and later dementia comes hand in hand with the uncovering of a long-held tragic secret.
A heartrending and at times irresistibly funny work of autobiography by one of the best-loved English writers alive today. Buy it for only 99p today.
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The Midwife’s Revolt (Only 99p Audiobook £3.49) On a dark night in 1775, Lizzie Boylston is awakened by the sound of cannons. From a hill south of Boston, she watches as fires burn in Charlestown, in a battle that she soon discovers has claimed her husband’s life.
Alone in a new town, Lizzie grieves privately but takes comfort in her deepening friendship with Abigail Adams. Soon, word spreads of Lizzie’s extraordinary midwifery and healing skills, and she begins to channel her grief into caring for those who need her. But when two traveling patriots are poisoned, Lizzie finds herself with far more complicated matters on her hands—she suspects a political plot intended to harm Abigail and her family.
Our Own Country (£1.00 Audiobook £3.49) In 1770s Boston, a prosperous merchant’s daughter, Eliza Boylston, lives a charmed life—until war breaches the walls of the family estate and forces her to live in a world in which wealth can no longer protect her.
As the chaos of the Revolutionary War tears her family apart, Eliza finds herself drawn to her uncle’s slave, John Watkins. Their love leads to her exile in Braintree, Massachusetts, home to radicals John and Abigail Adams and Eliza’s midwife sister-in-law, Lizzie Boylston. But even as the uprising takes hold, Eliza can’t help but wonder whether a rebel victory will grant her and John the most basic of American rights.
1859. Two children dash past gravestones playing hide-and-seek. A freshly dug grave should provide the ideal hiding place, if it weren’t for an unscheduled body occupying the spot.
The body is that of Vivian Quayle, director of the Midland Railway and pillar of the community, whose mysterious death baffles local police and necessitates Scotland Yard’s assistance. As Inspector Colbeck and Sergeant Leeming piece together the victim’s final moments, and suspects and motives multiply, an unpleasant picture emerges. This is a case only the Railway Detective can solve.
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You know the music… but do you know the man?
Ludwig van Beethoven’s life — its dramas, conflicts, loves and losses, his deafness coupled with continuous health problems, his epic struggle with his sister-in-law for sole custody of her son, his nephew — is played out in his music.
Now John Suchet has portrayed the real man behind the music in this compelling biography of a musical genius. He reveals a difficult and complex character.
This is not the god-like immortal portrayed in statues and paintings in heroic pose garlanded with laurel leaves. Beethoven may have been one of the greatest artists who ever lived, but he was still a man who had to live among fellow mortals, eat and drink, fall in love, pay his rent. This is the real Beethoven, and Suchet brings him effortlessly to life. Buy this biography today for only 99p.
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He was egotistical, verbose and hot-headed to a fault. But he did not deserve to die… His name was Will Fowler, an actor in the esteemed theatrical company called Lord Westfield’s Men, a vibrant young man flushed from the success of a recent performance at The Queen’s Head theatre. So exuberant was he that he persuaded the resourceful manager of the company, Nicholas Bracewell, to quaff a pint or two at a nearby pub. Alas, it was to be Will’s last taste of beer.
A tavern brawl left him dead – but not before he gasped for Nicholas to find his fast-fleeting, red-bearded murderer and administer a just revenge. Yet finding Will’s murderer in London’s dark, crowded streets was a seemingly impossible task – not to mention the fact that Lord Westfield’s Men were just commanded to appear at the court of Elizabeth I – an honour one dare not refuse .
This historical mystery is selling for only 99p today. Audiobook: £3.49.
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