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"Nuri is a beekeeper; his wife, Afra, an artist. They live a simple life, rich in family and friends, in the beautiful Syrian city of Aleppo--until the unthinkable happens. When all they care for is destroyed by war, they are forced to escape. But what Afra has seen is so terrible she has gone blind, and so they must embark on a perilous journey through Turkey and Greece towards an uncertain future in Britain. As Nuri and Afra travel through a broken world, they must confront not only the pain of their own unspeakable loss, but dangers that would overwhelm the bravest of souls. Above all, they must journey to find each other again. Moving, powerful, and beautifully written, The Beekeeper of Aleppo brings home the idea that the most ordinary of lives can be completely upended in unimaginable ways"--
This unforgettable novel puts human faces on the Syrian war with the immigrant story of a beekeeper, his wife, and the triumph of spirit when the world becomes unrecognizable. “A beautifully crafted novel of international significance that has the capacity to have us open our eyes and see.”—Heather Morris, author of The Tattooist of Auschwitz WINNER OF THE ASPEN WORDS LITERARY PRIZE • FINALIST FOR THE DAYTON LITERARY PEACE PRIZE • NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY REAL SIMPLE Nuri is a beekeeper and Afra, his wife, is an artist. Mornings, Nuri rises early to hear the call to prayer before driving to his hives in the countryside. On weekends, Afra sells her colorful landscape paintings at the open-air market. They live a simple life, rich in family and friends, in the hills of the beautiful Syrian city of Aleppo—until the unthinkable happens. When all they love is destroyed by war, Nuri knows they have no choice except to leave their home. But escaping Syria will be no easy task: Afra has lost her sight, leaving Nuri to navigate her grief as well as a perilous journey through Turkey and Greece toward an uncertain future in Britain. Nuri is sustained only by the knowledge that waiting for them is his cousin Mustafa, who has started an apiary in Yorkshire and is teaching fellow refugees beekeeping. As Nuri and Afra travel through a broken world, they must confront not only the pain of their own unspeakable loss but dangers that would overwhelm even the bravest souls. Above all, they must make the difficult journey back to each other, a path once so familiar yet rendered foreign by the heartache of displacement. Moving, intimate, and beautifully written, The Beekeeper of Aleppo is a book for our times: a novel that at once reminds us that the most peaceful and ordinary lives can be utterly upended in unimaginable ways and brings a journey in faraway lands close to home, never to be forgotten. Praise for The Beekeeper of Aleppo “This book dips below the deafening headlines, and tells a true story with subtlety and power.”—Esther Freud, author of Mr. Mac and Me “This compelling tale had me gripped with its compassion, its sensual style, and its onward and lively urge for resolution.”—Daljit Nagra, author of British Museum “This novel speaks to so much that is happening in the world today. It’s intelligent, thoughtful, and relevant, but very importantly it is accessible. I’m recommending this book to everyone I care about.”—Benjamin Zephaniah, author of Refugee Boy
A RICHARD & JUDY BOOK CLUB CHOICE 2020 A BBC RADIO 2 BOOK CLUB CHOICE 2019 WINNER OF THE ASPEN WORDS LITERARY PRIZE THE READING AGENCY'S PICK FOR NATIONAL READING GROUP DAY OVER A MILLION COPIES SOLD WORLDWIDE 'This is a novel of international significance. Courageous, provocative, haunting, it will open our eyes' Heather Morris, author of The Tattooist of Auschwitz In the midst of war, he found love In the midst of darkness, he found courage In the midst of tragedy, he found hope What will you find from his story? Nuri is a beekeeper; his wife, Afra, an artist. They live a simple life, rich in family and friends, in the beautiful Syrian city of Aleppo - until the unthinkable happens. When all they care for is destroyed by war, they are forced to escape. As Nuri and Afra travel through a broken world, they must confront not only the pain of their own unspeakable loss, but dangers that would overwhelm the bravest of souls. Above all - and perhaps this is the hardest thing they face - they must journey to find each other again. Moving, powerful, compassionate and beautifully written, The Beekeeper of Aleppo is a testament to the triumph of the human spirit. Told with deceptive simplicity, it is the kind of book that reminds us of the power of storytelling. Look out for Christy Lefteri's next novel, Songbirds, out summer 2021. ___ 'This book dips below the deafening headlines, and tells a true story with subtlety and power' Esther Freud 'A beautiful novel, intelligent, thoughtful; and relevant. I'm recommending this book to everyone I care about. So I'm recommending this book to you' Benjamin Zephaniah 'Powerful, thought-provoking and beautifully crafted' Choice Magazine
Book A Watermelon, a Fish and a Bible Description/Summary:
A moving novel of love and war by the author of The Beekeeper of Aleppo It is July 1974 and on a bright, sunny morning, the Turkish army has invaded the town of Kyrenia in Cyprus. For many people, this means an end to life as they know it. But for some, it is a chance to begin living again. Everyone has always talked about Koki. They never believed she was her father's daughter and her mother died too soon to quiet their wagging tongues. And when she became pregnant and there was no sign of a husband, her fate was sealed. So she lives outside the town and hides from her neighbours' eyes. But, held captive with the very women who have made her life so lonely, Koki is finally able to tell them the truth. To talk of the Turkish shoe-maker who came to the town and took her heart away with him when he left. And how she has longed for him all these years. Meanwhile, Adem Berker finds himself back in Kyrenia, his former home, now as a member of the invading force. Here he left everything he ever wanted and, by cover of darkness, risking his life, he is searching every house, every cafe, every old pathway, for just a glimpse of the only woman he has ever loved. For readers of The Island, The Book Thief and The Kite Runner.
Book The Beekeeper: Rescuing the Stolen Women of Iraq Description/Summary:
The true story of a beekeeper who risks his life to rescue enslaved women from Daesh Since 2014, Daesh (ISIS) has been brutalizing the Yazidi people of northern Iraq: sowing destruction, killing those who won’t convert to Islam, and enslaving young girls and women. The Beekeeper, by the acclaimed poet and journalist Dunya Mikhail, tells the harrowing stories of several women who managed to escape the clutches of Daesh. Mikhail extensively interviews these women—who’ve lost their families and loved ones, who’ve been sexually abused, psychologically tortured, and forced to manufacture chemical weapons—and as their tales unfold, an unlikely hero emerges: a beekeeper, who uses his knowledge of the local terrain, along with a wide network of transporters, helpers, and former cigarette smugglers, to bring these women, one by one, through the war-torn landscapes of Iraq, Syria, and Turkey, back into safety. In the face of inhuman suffering, this powerful work of nonfiction offers a counterpoint to Daesh’s genocidal extremism: hope, as ordinary people risk their own lives to save those of others.
"From the prize-winning author of The Beekeeper of Aleppo, a stunning novel about the disappearance of a Sri Lankan nanny and how the most vulnerable people find their voices. "It began with a crunch of leaves and earth. So early, so cold, the branches shone with ice. I'd returned to collect the songbirds. They are worth more than their weight in gold." Yiannis is a poacher, trapping the tiny protected songbirds that stop in Cyprus as they migrate each year from Africa to Europe and selling them on the black market. He dreams of finding a new way of life, and of marrying Nisha, who works on the island as a nanny and maid--having left her native Sri Lanka to try to earn enough to support her daughter, left behind and raised by relatives. But Nisha has vanished; one evening, she steps out on a mysterious errand and doesn't return. The police write off her disappearance as just another runaway domestic worker, so her employer, Petra, undertakes the investigation. Petra's unravelling of Nisha's last days in Cyprus lead her to Nisha's friends--other maids in the neighborhood--and to the darker side of a migrant's life, where impossible choices leave them vulnerable, captive, and worse. Based on the real-life disappearance of domestic workers in Cyprus, Christy Lefteri has crafted a poignant, deeply empathetic narrative of the human stories behind the headlines. With infinite tenderness and skill, Songbirds offers a triumphant story of the fight for truth and justice, and of women reclaiming their lost voices"--
1914. Thomas Maggs is thirteen and lives with his parents and sister at the Blue Anchor pub, in the village of Dunwich on the Suffolk coast. Born in winter while the sea stormed, Thomas is the youngest child, and the only son surviving. In Dunwich, life is quiet and shaped by the seasons: fishing and farming, the summer visitors, and the girls who come down from the Highlands to gut and pack the herring. Thomas visits his brothers' grave in the churchyard, sketches the boats from the harbor, and longs for adventure -- a chance to go to sea. Then one day a mysterious Scotsman and his red-haired wife arrive in the village. The man's name is Charles Rennie Mackintosh, but the locals are soon calling him Mac. Mac and his wife are both artists, regarded as eccentrics in town, but a source of wonder and fascination for Thomas. Yet just as Thomas and Mac's friendship begins to bloom, war with Germany is declared. The summer guests flee, replaced by regiments of soldiers on their way to Belgium. And as the war weighs increasingly heavily on the community, the villagers on the home front become increasingly suspicious of Mac and his curious behavior. Mr. Mac and Me is the story of an unlikely friendship, and a vivid portrait of one of the most brilliant and misunderstood artists of his generation.
1938: The Great Depression lingers. Hitler is threatening Europe, and world-weary Americans long for wonder. They find it in two giraffes who miraculously survive a hurricane while crossing the Atlantic. What follows is a twelve-day road trip in a custom truck to deliver Southern California’s first giraffes to the San Diego Zoo. Behind the wheel is the young Dust Bowl rowdy Woodrow Wilson Nickel. Present day: At 105, Woody feels his life ebbing away. When he learns giraffes are going extinct, he finds himself recalling an experience he cannot take to his grave. In retelling his story, he explores what it means to be changed by the grace of animals, the kindness of strangers, and the passing of time. -- adapted from jacket
An eye for an eye. It's very simple. You choose your homeland like a hyena picking and choosing where he steals his next meal from. Scavenger. Yes you grovel to the feet of Mengistu and when his people spit at you and kick you from the bowl you scuttle across the border. Scavenger. As a violent civil war rages back home in Ethiopia, teenager Alem and his father are in a bed and breakfast in Berkshire. It's his best holiday ever. The next morning his father is gone and has left a note explaining that he and his mother want to protect Alem from the war. This strange grey country of England is now his home. On his own, and in the hands of the social services and the Refugee Council, Alem lives from letter to letter, waiting to hear something from his father. Then he meets car-obsessed Mustapha, the lovely 'out-of-your-league' Ruth and dangerous Sweeney – three unexpected allies who spur him on in his fight to be seen as more than just the Refugee Boy. Lemn Sissay's remarkable stage adaptation of Benjamin Zephaniah's bestselling novel is published here in the Methuen Drama Student Edition series, featuring commentary & notes by Professor Lynette Goddard (Royal Holloway, University of London, UK) that help the student unpack the play's themes, language, structure and production history to date.
Book The Beekeeper's Apprentice Description/Summary:
The Twentieth-Anniversary Edition of the First Novel of the Acclaimed Mary Russell Series by Edgar Award–Winning Author Laurie R. King. An Agatha Award Best Novel Nominee • Named One of the Century's Best 100 Mysteries by the Independent Mystery Booksellers Association In 1915, Sherlock Holmes is retired and quietly engaged in the study of honeybees in Sussex when a young woman literally stumbles onto him on the Sussex Downs. Fifteen years old, gawky, egotistical, and recently orphaned, the young Mary Russell displays an intellect to impress even Sherlock Holmes. Under his reluctant tutelage, this very modern, twentieth-century woman proves a deft protégée and a fitting partner for the Victorian detective. They are soon called to Wales to help Scotland Yard find the kidnapped daughter of an American senator, a case of international significance with clues that dip deep into Holmes's past. Full of brilliant deduction, disguises, and danger, The Beekeeper's Apprentice, the first book of the Mary Russell–Sherlock Holmes mysteries, is "remarkably beguiling" (The Boston Globe).
Book The Map of Salt and Stars Description/Summary:
This powerful and lyrical debut novel is to Syria what The Kite Runner was to Afghanistan; the story of two girls living eight hundred years apart—a modern-day Syrian refugee seeking safety and an adventurous mapmaker’s apprentice—“perfectly aligns with the cultural moment” (The Providence Journal) and “shows how interconnected two supposedly opposing worlds can be” (The New York Times Book Review). This “beguiling” (Seattle Times) and stunning novel begins in the summer of 2011. Nour has just lost her father to cancer, and her mother moves Nour and her sisters from New York City back to Syria to be closer to their family. In order to keep her father’s spirit alive as she adjusts to her new home, Nour tells herself their favorite story—the tale of Rawiya, a twelfth-century girl who disguised herself as a boy in order to apprentice herself to a famous mapmaker. But the Syria Nour’s parents knew is changing, and it isn’t long before the war reaches their quiet Homs neighborhood. When a shell destroys Nour’s house and almost takes her life, she and her family are forced to choose: stay and risk more violence or flee across seven countries of the Middle East and North Africa in search of safety—along the very route Rawiya and her mapmaker took eight hundred years before in their quest to chart the world. As Nour’s family decides to take the risk, their journey becomes more and more dangerous, until they face a choice that could mean the family will be separated forever. Following alternating timelines and a pair of unforgettable heroines coming of age in perilous times, The Map of Salt and Stars is the “magical and heart-wrenching” (Christian Science Monitor) story of one girl telling herself the legend of another and learning that, if you listen to your own voice, some things can never be lost.
Book Invasive Aliens: The Plants and Animals From Over There That Are Over Here Description/Summary:
‘The story of “invasive species” is really the story of human history, and Eatherley tells it with great verve ... Fascinating’ Daily Telegraph A unique history of plant and animal invaders of the British isles spanning thousands of years of arrivals and escapes, as well as defences mounted and a look to the future.
“Filled with kindness and hope, but also with the harsh realities of the horrors of war, this heartbreaking book is a necessary reminder of what many people live through every day.” —Booklist (starred review) Nadia’s family is forced to flee their home in Aleppo, Syria, when the Arab Spring sparks a civil war in this timely coming-of-age novel from award-winning author N.H. Senzai. Silver and gold balloons. A birthday cake covered in pink roses. A new dress. Nadia stands at the center of attention in her parents’ elegant dining room. This is the best day of my life, she thinks. Everyone is about to sing “Happy Birthday,” when her uncle calls from the living room, “Baba, brothers, you need to see this.” Reluctantly, she follows her family into the other room. On TV, a reporter stands near an overturned vegetable cart on a dusty street. Beside it is a mound of smoldering ashes. The reporter explains that a vegetable vendor in the city of Tunis burned himself alive, protesting corrupt government officials who have been harassing his business. Nadia frowns. It is December 17, 2010: Nadia’s twelfth birthday and the beginning of the Arab Spring. Soon anti-government protests erupt across the Middle East and, one by one, countries are thrown into turmoil. As civil war flares in Syria and bombs fall across Nadia’s home city of Aleppo, her family decides to flee to safety. Inspired by current events, this novel sheds light on the complicated situation in Syria that has led to an international refugee crisis, and tells the story of one girl’s journey to safety.
THE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER 'A unique and thoughtful musical memoir' Observer 'Gritty coming-of-age story . . . plenty of anecdotes to keep us hooked, and his memories of Joy Division's Ian Curtis are poignant' Daily Mirror Before he was responsible for some of the most iconic drumming in popular music, Stephen Morris grew up in 1960s and '70s industrial Macclesfield, on a quiet road that led seemingly to nowhere. Far removed from the bright lights and manic energy of nearby Manchester, he felt stifled by suburbia and feared he might never escape. Then he joined Joy Division - while they were still known as Warsaw - a pioneer of the rousing post-punk sound that would revolutionise twentieth-century rock. Following two landmark albums and widespread critical acclaim, Joy Division were at the height of their powers and poised to break the US, when lead singer, Ian Curtis, committed suicide. Part memoir, part scrapbook and part aural history: Stephen Morris's innate sense of rhythm and verve pulses through Record Play Pause. From recollections of growing up in the North West to the founding of New Order, Morris never strays far from the music. And by turns profound and wry, this book subverts the mythology and allows us to understand music's power to define who we are and what we become.
The remarkable story of a small, makeshift library in the town of Daraya, and the people who found hope and humanity in its books during a four-year siege. Daraya lies on the fringe of Damascus, just southwest of the Syrian capital. Yet for four years it lived in another world. Besieged by government forces early in the Syrian Civil War, its people were deprived of food, bombarded by heavy artillery, and under the constant fire of snipers. But deep beneath this scene of frightening devastation lay a hidden library. While the streets above echoed with shelling and rifle fire, the secret world below was a haven of books. Long rows of well-thumbed volumes lined almost every wall: bloated editions with grand leather covers, pocket-sized guides to Syrian poetry, and no-nonsense reference books, all arranged in well-ordered lines. But this precious horde was not bought from publishers or loaned by other libraries--they were the books salvaged and scavenged at great personal risk from the doomed city above. The story of this extraordinary place and the people who found purpose and refuge in it is one of hope, human resilience, and above all, the timeless, universal love of literature and the compassion and wisdom it fosters.
In Karachi, a writer house-sits for her father and his cat, while keeping track of his - the cat’s - list of obsessions: ironed white sheets, kheer, KFC fries, warm custard, finely chopped sausages, and the flaky tops of chicken patties. In San Francisco, a couple adopt a cat, without anticipating what it will do to their relationship. In Noida, a cat and two dogs line up peacefully every morning for their daily dose of vitamin syrup. In Bombay, a lyricist and screenwriter roots through the litter tray first thing in the morning, to investigate if his cat’s UTI is better. In wintry London, a young millennial wonders if she is actually a cat. Capturing the many moods of felines and their humans, in many forms and voices, Cat People, is a timely celebration of the most memed creature today: the cat. This collection of short stories, personal essays, lists, original art and photographs is are a treat, not just for cat lovers everywhere, but for all who love a story well-told – and, on occasion, a theory well-spun.
Daljit Nagra possesses one of the most distinctive voices in contemporary English poetry. British Museum is his third collection, following his electrifying version of the epic Ramayana, and marks a significant departure of style to something quieter, more contemplative and inquisitive, at times valedictory. His political edge has been honed in a series of meditations and reflections upon our heritage, our legacy, and the institutions that define them: the BBC, Hadrian's Wall, the Sikh gurdwaras of our towns, the British Museum of the title poem. With compassion and charisma, Nagra explores the impact of the first wave of mass migration to our shores, the Arab Spring, the allure of extremism along with a series of personal poems about the pressures of growing up in a traditional community. British Museum is a book that asks profound questions of our ethics and responsibilities at a time of great challenge to our sense of national identity.
“An engrossing, suspenseful family saga filled with unpredictable twists and turns.” —Chanel Cleeton, New York Times bestselling author of Next Year in Havana “With an equal mix of historical fiction, dramatic family conflict, and mystery, this tale should please fans of Christina Baker Kline, Lisa Wingate, and Kate Quinn.” —Booklist The Washington Post Books to Read Now Ms. Magazine Reads for the Rest of Us Bustle Most Anticipated Books PopSugar Best Books of December BiblioLifestyle Most Anticipated Historical Fiction Books Book Riot Book Recommendations Finer Things Book Lover Gifts They’ll Actually Love Perfect for fans of Julia Alvarez and Silvia Moreno-Garcia, this exhilarating novel transports you to the lush tropical landscape of 1920s Ecuador, blending family drama, dangerous mystery, and the real-life history of the coastal town known as the “birthplace of cacao.” As a child in Spain, Puri always knew her passion for chocolate was inherited from her father. But it’s not until his death that she learns of something else she’s inherited—a cocoa estate in Vinces, Ecuador, a town nicknamed “París Chiquito.” Eager to claim her birthright and filled with hope for a new life after the devastation of World War I, she and her husband Cristóbal set out across the Atlantic Ocean. But it soon becomes clear someone is angered by Puri’s claim to the estate… When a mercenary sent to murder her aboard the ship accidentally kills Cristóbal instead, Puri dons her husband’s clothes and assumes his identity, hoping to stay safe while she searches for the truth of her father’s legacy in Ecuador. Though freed from the rules that women are expected to follow, Puri confronts other challenges at the estate—newfound siblings, hidden affairs, and her father’s dark secrets. Then there are the dangers awakened by her attraction to an enigmatic man as she tries to learn the identity of an enemy who is still at large, threatening the future she is determined to claim… “A lush Ecuadoran cacao plantation is the setting for this imaginative historical drama filled with sibling rivalry and betrayals. Threaded throughout this dramatic family saga are descriptions of cocoa-making that will leave your mouth watering for chocolate.” —The Washington Post “A sweepingly elegant historical novel.” —Ms. Magazine “A lushly written story of bittersweet family secrets and betrayals.” —Andrea Penrose, author of Murder at the Royal Botanic Gardens “Passionate and suspenseful, The Spanish Daughter is a satisfying historical mystery set in a lush tropical land.” —Foreword Reviews STARRED REVIEW “Engrossing…As addictive as chocolate.” —Publishers Weekly “Richly captivating.” —Woman’s World “A fascinating historical.”—PopSugar
"When Type-A Manhattan lawyer Dannie Cohan is asked this question at the most important interview of her career, she has a meticulously crafted answer at the ready. Later, after nailing her interview and accepting her boyfriend's marriage proposal, Dannie goes to sleep knowing she is right on track to achieve her five-year plan. But when she wakes up, she's suddenly in a different apartment, with a different ring on her finger, and beside a very different man. The television news is on in the background, and she can just make out the scrolling date. It's the same night -December 15 - but 2025, five years in the future. After a very intense, shocking hour, Dannie wakes again, at the brink of midnight, back in 2020. She can't shake what has happened. It certainly felt much more than merely a dream, but she isn't the kind of person who believes in visions. That nonsense is only charming coming from free-spirited types, like her lifelong best friend, Bella. Determined to ignore the odd experience, she files it away in the back of her mind. That is, until four-and-a-half years later, when by chance Dannie meets the very same man from her long-ago vision."--Publisher website.
Book Jeeves and the Leap of Faith Description/Summary:
Jeeves and Wooster return in a new espionage caper full of japes, high jinks, and jiggery-pokery in a series that is “impossible to read without grinning idiotically” (Evening Standard). The Drones club’s in peril. Gussie’s in love. Spode’s on the war path. Oh, and His Majesty’s Government needs a favor . . . I say! It’s a good thing Bertie’s back, what? In his eagerly anticipated sequel to Jeeves and the King of Clubs, Ben Schott leads Jeeves and Wooster on another elegantly uproarious escapade. From the mean streets of Mayfair to the scheming spires of Cambridge, we encounter a joyous cast of characters: chiseling painters and criminal bookies, eccentric philosophers and dodgy clairvoyants, appalling poets and pocket dictators, vexatious aunts and their vicious hounds. But that’s not all: Who is ICEBERG, and why is he covered in chalk? Why is Jeeves reading Winnie-the-Pooh? What is seven across and eighty-five down? How do you play Russian Roulette at The Savoy? These questions, and more, are answered in Jeeves and the Leap of Faith — an homage to P.G. Wodehouse, authorized by his estate, and essential reading for fans of The Master. Tinkety-tonk!