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What to Read Now: Vol LXXXV

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Lapidarium: The Secret Lives of Stones
by Hettie Judah

From cave paintings to crystals, Stonehenge to the houses built from sandstone, rocks have always been at the forefront of our history. Travelling thousands of years into the past, renowned art critic Hettie Judah delves deeper into the stories and mysteries of stones than anyone before her.  Spanning Greek mythology to 18th century Russia, moon rocks to present-day fossil-hunters, Lapidarium is a wonderfully eye opening story of history and culture.

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A Heart Full of Headstones
by Ian Rankin

From one of the most popular and bestselling crime writers of our times, Rankin’s latest has readability written across every page. Although this isn’t the first time legendary detective John Rebus has been taken to court, it may be the last. At the same time Detective Inspector Siobhan Clarke is pulled in two different directions, with her loyalties being both questioned and tested. Written with Rankin’s trademark fast-paced, addictive prose, this is a writer at the top of their game.

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The World: A Family History
by Simon Sebag Montefiore

950,000 years ago, a family walked along a beach. From there, human history, society and culture have been shaped by hundreds of epochal families. In his latest historical epic, master storyteller Montefiore takes us through the history of humanity, told through the lens of our most influential families. Told in a way that is as engaging and captivating as fiction, Montefiore is an historian who leaves no story untold in his journey to furthering the narratives of our collective history. 

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Seven Empty Houses
by Samanta Schweblin, trans. by Megan McDowell

Twice nominated for the International Booker Prize, Schweblin’s first collection of stories is now finally published in English. Contained within these seven stories are seven houses; houses that are strange and ever changing. Things go missing within their walls, whether they be memories, moments or people. Written in prose that is creepy, cunning and completely masterful, Schweblin’s incredible ability to craft mesmerizing stories is a true delight. 

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Tudor England: A History
by Lucy Wooding

When we think of Tudor England we are often compelled to only imagine the lives of kings and monarchs. In Wooding’s latest, however, she brings us beyond the castle walls and into the thousands of ordinary lives being lived by the people of that time. With a incredible amount of range and depth, Wooding takes us into the homes of the men and women who, between 1485 and 1603, contended with war, rebellion, plague, poverty and, throughout it all, a significant amount of change. 

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Meanwhile Back on Earth …
by Oliver Jeffers 

Oliver Jeffers is back, and he has brought with him yet another book of delight and intrigue for young and old(er) readers alike. As a father takes his children into space and through an adventure like no other, together they look back to Earth and to all of its histories and conflicts, reflecting on what drives us apart but, more importantly, what brings us together. With his trademark wit and wonderful illustrations, Jeffers’ latest is perfect for readers aged 4+

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