Windmill Books

  • Anglais Aquarium

    David Vann

    Startlingly brilliant' Spectator 'A triumph' Daily Mail 'One of America's most powerful writers' Times Literary Supplement Twelve-year-old Caitlin lives alone with her mother - a docker at the local container port - in subsidised housing next to an airport in Seattle. Each day, while she waits to be picked up after school, Caitlin visits the local aquarium to study the fish. Gazing at the creatures within the watery depths, Caitlin is transported to a shimmering universe beyond her own.

    When she befriends an old man at the tanks one day, who seems as enamoured by the fish as she, Caitlin cracks open a dark family secret and propels her once-blissful relationship with her mother towards a precipice of terrifying consequence.

  • Florida

    Lauren Groff

    Florida is a magnificent collection, executed with tremendous depth and precision, unsettling in the best possible way. Lauren Groff is a virtuoso.' Emily St John Mandel, author of Station Eleven In her vigorous and moving new book, Lauren Groff brings her electric storytelling and intelligence to a world in which storms, snakes and sinkholes lurk at the edge of everyday life, but the greater threats and mysteries are of a human, emotional and psychological nature. Among those navigating it all are a resourceful pair of abandoned sisters; a lonely boy, grown up; a restless, childless couple; a searching, homeless woman; and an unforgettable, recurring character a steely and conflicted wife and mother.

    The stories in this collection span characters, towns, decades, even centuries, but Florida - its landscape, climate, history, and state of mind - becomes its gravitational centre: an energy, a mood, as much as a place of residence. Groff transports the reader, then jolts us alert with a crackle of wit, a wave of sadness, a flash of cruelty, as she writes about loneliness, rage, family and the passage of time. With shocking accuracy and effect, she pinpoints the moments and decisions and connections behind human pleasure and pain, hope and despair, love and fury - the moments that make us alive. Startling, precise and affecting, Florida is a magnificent achievement.

  • THIS STORM

    James Ellroy

    ________________________ 'Ellroy writes with raw power ... undeniably one of the most influential crime writers of our time' THE TIMES 'a tangled fever-dream ... Ellroy offers a grandiose, Wagnerian vision of wartime LA' SUNDAY TIMES ________________________ A brilliant historical crime novel, set in Los Angeles and Mexico during the pulse-pounding aftermath of the attack on Pearl Harbor.

    January, '42. L.A. reels behind the shock of Pearl Harbor. Local Japanese are rounded up and slammed behind bars. Massive thunderstorms hit the city. A body is unearthed in Griffith Park.

    The cops tag it a routine dead-man job. They're wrong. It's an early-warning signal of Chaos.

    There's a murderous fire and a gold heist exploding out of the past. There's Fifth Column treason - at this moment, on American soil. There are homegrown Nazis, commies and race racketeers. There's two dead cops in a dive off the jazz-club strip. And three men and one woman have a hot date with History.

    Elmer Jackson is a corrupt Vice cop. He's a flesh peddler and a bagman for the L.A. Chief of Police. Hideo Ashida is a crime-lab whiz, lashed by anti-Japanese rage. Dudley Smith is a PD hardnose working Army Intelligence. He's gone rogue and gone all-the-way fascist. Joan Conville was born rogue. She's a defrocked Navy lieutenant and a war profiteer to her core.

    L.A., '42. Homefront madness ascendant. Early-wartime inferno - This Storm is James Ellroy's most audacious novel yet. It is by turns savage, tender, elegiac. It lays bare and celebrates crazed Americans of all stripes.
    ________________________ 'Epic crime writing from a master' DAILY MAIL 'Ellroy is unique. There is nobody writing this way ... Nobody has done or is doing what he is doing' BOOKMUNCH

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  • A GENTLEMAN IN MOSCOW

    Amor Towles

    ***Soon to be a major TV series starring Kenneth Branagh*** OVER A MILLION COPIES SOLD THE TIMES BOOK OF THE YEAR 2017 A SUNDAY TIMES BOOK OF THE YEAR 2017 A MAIL ON SUNDAY BOOK OF THE YEAR 2017 A DAILY EXPRESS BOOK OF THE YEAR 2017 AN IRISH TIMES BOOK OF THE YEAR 2017 ONE OF BARACK OBAMA'S BEST BOOKS OF 2017 NOMINATED FOR THE 2018 INDEPENDENT BOOKSELLERS WEEK AWARD 'This novel is astonishing, uplifting and wise. Don't miss it' Chris Cleave 'No historical novel this year was more witty, insightful or original than Amor Towles's A Gentleman in Moscow' Sunday Times, Books of the Year 'Charming ... shows that not all books about Russian aristocrats have to be full of doom and nihilism' The Times, Books of the Year '[A] supremely uplifting novel ... It's elegant, witty and delightful - much like the Count himself.' Mail on Sunday, Books of the Year On 21 June 1922, Count Alexander Rostov - recipient of the Order of Saint Andrew, member of the Jockey Club, Master of the Hunt - is escorted out of the Kremlin, across Red Square and through the elegant revolving doors of the Hotel Metropol.

    Deemed an unrepentant aristocrat by a Bolshevik tribunal, the Count has been sentenced to house arrest indefinitely. But instead of his usual suite, he must now live in an attic room while Russia undergoes decades of tumultuous upheaval.

    Can a life without luxury be the richest of all?

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  • Enon

    Paul Harding

  • A really powerful novel' President Obama AMAZON.COM's 2015 BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER BARACK OBAMA'S BOOK OF THE YEAR A FINALIST FOR THE 2015 NATIONAL BOOK AWARD SHORTLISTED FOR THE 2015 NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD Every story has two sides.
    Every relationship has two perspectives.
    And sometimes, it turns out, the key to a great marriage is not its truths but its secrets.

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  • The September pick for Reese Witherspoon's Hello Sunshine Book Club _______________ 'A thrilling, seductive and utterly compelling novel. I absolutely loved it!' SARAH WINMAN _______________ TWO FEMALE SPIES. A BANNED MASTERPIECE. A BOOK THAT CHANGED HISTORY.

    1956. A celebrated Russian author is writing a book, Doctor Zhivago, which could spark dissent in the Soviet Union. The Soviets, afraid of its subversive power, ban it.

    But in the rest of the world it's fast becoming a sensation.

    In Washington DC, the CIA is planning to use the book to tip the Cold War in its favour.

    Their agents are not the usual spies, however. Two typists - the charming, experienced Sally and the talented novice Irina - are charged with the mission of a lifetime: to smuggle Doctor Zhivago back into Russia by any means necessary.

    It will not be easy. There are people prepared to die for this book - and agents willing to kill for it. But they cannot fail - as this book has the power to change history.

    Sold in twenty-five countries and poised to become a global literary sensation, Lara Prescott's dazzling first novel is a sweeping page turner and the most hotly anticipated debut of the year.
    ________________ 'A riveting story of secrets, forbidden passions and the dark arts of espionage. I couldn't put it down!' LISA JEWELL 'Enthralling... This is a rare page-turner with prose that's as wily as its plot.' VOGUE 'A proto-feminist Mad Men transposed to the world of international espionage - mid-century style and intrigue set against real, indelible history.' ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY 'I loved this book. So vivid and engaging. A joy to read a story about spies that has lots of women in active roles.' CATHY RENTZENBRINK 'All the pre-publication hype is fully justified ... Prescott's debut novel turns out to be a truly wonderful blend of historical romance, spy thriller and insights into the myriad aspects of love in troubled times... Loved it.' CRIME TIME 'A fascinating story, so cleverly told, of the long chain of people who helped to bring Pasternak's masterpiece into the world. I gulped it down.' GILL HORNBY 'The insight into the workings of the CIA, the portrait of the 1950s and a threatened love affair in the West ... make for riveting reading.' DAILY MAIL 'Well-researched and cleverly constructed... An intriguing and little-known chapter of literary history is brought to life.' KIRKUS (starred review) 'Triumphant ... This debut shines as spy story, publication thriller and historical romance with a twist.' PUBLISHERS WEEKLY 'This captivating novel is so assured that it's hard to believe it's a debut - and very easy to see why there's huge buzz around it.' SUNDAY MIRROR ________________ Early readers can't stop talking about The Secrets We Kept:

    'I absolutely devoured it. Totally compelling, it made my heart swoop until the very last page.' 'Thrilling, moving and utterly compelling - one of those rare books that makes you forget the outside world.' 'The Secrets We Kept is a brilliant twist on the traditional Cold War spy thriller. It's told through a cast of intelligent and intriguing women and is full of secrets, glamour and love.' 'I absolutely loved it, adored it even, and I can't stop talking about The Secrets We Kept' 'The Secrets We Kept is like nothing else I've read before. The story is vivid and alluring, and one that will stay with you forever.' 'The Secrets We Kept reads like a high-stakes, Mad Men inspired, spy thriller. Classy and glamorous, yet revealing and complex, it has a cast of spectacular characters and a truly emotional core. This really is something special!

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  • A dazzlingly assured first novel... This clever book, with the moreish astringency of a negroni, is a perfect summer cocktail.' - Sunday Times 'A whirlwind of a first novel. There is great pathos in the Swans' woundings and in their inevitable decline. And the character of Truman himself shimmers through the novel in a wonderful blaze of eccentricity and excess. Outstanding.' - Rose Tremain ___________________________ They told him everything.

    He told everyone else.

    Over countless martini-soaked Manhattan lunches, they shared their deepest secrets and greatest fears. On exclusive yachts sailing the Mediterranean, on private jets streaming towards Jamaica, on Yucatan beaches in secluded bays, they gossiped about sex, power, money, love and fame. They never imagined he would betray them so absolutely.

    In the autumn of 1975, after two decades of intimate friendships, Truman Capote detonated a literary grenade, forever rupturing the elite circle he'd worked so hard to infiltrate. Why did he do it, knowing what he stood to lose? Was it to punish them? To make them pay for their manners, money and celebrated names? Or did he simply refuse to believe that they could ever stop loving him? Whatever the motive, one thing remains indisputable: nine years after achieving wild success with In Cold Blood, Capote committed an act of professional and social suicide with his most lethal of weapons . . . Words.

    A dazzling debut about the line between gossip and slander, self-creation and self-preservation, SWAN SONG is the tragic story of the literary icon of his age and the beautiful, wealthy, vulnerable women he called his Swans.

    'Writers write. And one can't be surprised if they write what they know.' ______________________________ 'A completely fascinating novel and a marvellously skilful re-imagining of real people, times and places. Outstanding.' - William Boyd 'Scandalous, frenetic, amusing and tragic.' - Daily Mail 'Our generation's The Secret History' - Pendora 'Brilliantly written, deeply researched, funny, sharp and moving.' - Kate Williams, bestselling author of Josephine

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  • Sharp, moving memoir . . . Wamariya tells her own story with feeling, in vivid prose. She has remade herself, as she explains was necessary to do, on her own terms.' New York Times A riveting tale of dislocation, survival, and the power of stories to break or save us Clemantine Wamariya was six years old when her mother and father began to speak in whispers, when neighbours began to disappear, and when she heard the loud, ugly sounds her brother said were thunder. In 1994, she and her fifteen-year-old sister, Clare, fled the Rwandan massacre and spent the next six years wandering through seven African countries, searching for safety-perpetually hungry, imprisoned and abused, enduring and escaping refugee camps, finding unexpected kindness, witnessing inhuman cruelty. They did not know whether their parents were dead or alive.

    When Clemantine was twelve, she and her sister were granted refugee status in the United States, where she embarked on another journey, ultimately graduating from Yale. Yet the years of being treated as less than human, of going hungry and seeing death, could not be erased. She felt at the same time six years old and one hundred years old.

    In The Girl Who Smiled Beads, Clemantine provokes us to look beyond the label of 'victim' and recognize the power of the imagination to transcend even the most profound injuries and aftershocks. Devastating yet beautiful, and bracingly original, it is a powerful testament to her commitment to constructing a life on her own terms.

  • Anglais NIGHT FILM

    Marisha Pessl

    When the daughter of an enigmatic cult horror film director is found dead in an abandoned Manhattan warehouse, veteran investigative journalist Scott McGrath, disbelieving the official suicide ruling, probes into the strange circumstances of the young woman's death while being drawn into the director's eerie world. By the author of Special Topics in Calamity Physics .

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  • Fifteen years old and blazing with the hope of a better life, Hattie Shepherd fled the American South on a dawn train bound for Philadelphia. Hattie's is a tale of strength and resilience that spans six decades. Her American dream is shattered time and again: a husband who lies and cheats and nine children raised in a cramped little house.

  • GNOMON

    Nick Harkaway

    A GUARDIAN BOOK OF THE YEAR 'Gnomon is an extraordinary novel, and one I can't stop thinking about some weeks after I read it. It is deeply troubling, magnificently strange, and an exhilarating read.' Emily St. John Mandel, author of Station Eleven 'Nick Harkaway's most ambitious novel yet. [A] story of near-future mass surveillance, artificial intelligence and human identity ... An amazing and quite unforgettable piece of fiction.' Guardian 'Harkaway dazzles.' Daily Mail 'Wonderfully good.' Sunday Times Near-future Britain is a state in which citizens are constantly observed and democracy has reached a pinnacle of 'transparency.' Every action is seen, every word is recorded and the System has access to thoughts and memories.

    When suspected dissident Diana Hunter dies in custody, it marks the first time a citizen has been killed during an interrogation. Mielikki Neith, a trusted state inspector, is assigned to find out what went wrong. Immersing herself in neural recordings of the interrogation, what she finds isn't Hunter but rather a panorama of characters within Hunter's psyche.

    Embedded in the memories of these impossible lives lies a code which Neith must decipher to find out what Hunter is hiding. The staggering consequences of what she finds will reverberate throughout the world.

  • Vaclav and Lena seem destined for each other. They first meet as children at their English class in Brooklyn. Vaclav dreams of becoming a famous magician with Lena his lovely assistant. But then Lena disappears; it seems that life can play cruel tricks too.

  • 'Generation A' mirrors the structure of 1991's 'Generation X' as it champions the act of reading and storytelling as one of the few defences we still have against the constant bombardment of the senses in a digital world. Like much of Coupland's writing, it occupies the perplexing hinterland between optimism about the future and everyday, apocalyptic paranoia, and is his most ambitious and entertaining novel to date.

  • A MILE DOWN

    David Vann

    David Vann has loved boats all his life. So when his academic career seems to be stuck in the doldrums, he leaps at the opportunity to start an educational charter business, teaching creative writing workshops aboard a sailboat. But a trip to Turkey seems him dreaming bigger - and before he knows it, he is at the helm of his own ninety-foot boat, running charters along the Turkish coast.

    And here his troubles begin. Sinking deep into debt, and encountering everything from a lost rudder to freak storms, Vann is on the verge of losing everything - including his life.

    Part high-seas adventure, part journey of self-discovery, A Mile Down is a gripping and unforgettable story of struggle and redemption, by a writer at the top of his game.

  • ***SHORTLISTED FOR THE WALTER SCOTT PRIZE FOR HISTORICAL FICTION*** From the bestselling author of Asylum, Trauma and Spider 'Ghosts of the theatre and the spectre of fascism haunt cold and grimy London in this atmospheric tale from a master of the grotesque.' Guardian JANUARY 1947.

    London is in ruins, there's nothing to eat, and it's the coldest winter in living memory.

    To make matters worse, Charlie Grice, one of the great stage actors of the day, has suddenly died. His widow Joan, the wardrobe mistress, is beside herself with grief.

    Then one night she discovers Gricey's secret. Plunged into a dark new world, Joan realises that though fascism might hide, it never dies. Her war isn't over after all.

    'McGrath is one of the age's most elegantly accomplished divers into the human psyche . . . a master writer.' John Banville 'McGrath is that rare yet essential thing, a writer who can expose our darkest fears without making us run away from them.' New Statesman 'Wonderfully sinister ... a delight ... you are in for a thrilling ride.' Spectator 'A brilliant evocation of the theatrical world's seedy glamour, The Wardrobe Mistress is also a moving portrait of a woman struggling to make sense of her past and imagine a future for herself.' Sunday Times '[A] rich and highly spiced feast of a novel, even before it reaches its classically gothic McGrath climax.' Reader's Digest

  • A razor-sharp portrait of a morally bankrupt and gleefully wicked modern man, Worst. Person. Ever. is Douglas Coupland's gloriously filthy, side-splittingly funny and unforgettable novel.

    Meet Raymond Gunt. A decent chap who tries to do the right thing. Or, to put it another way, the worst person ever: a foul-mouthed, misanthropic cameraman, trailing creditors, ex-wives and unhappy homeless people in his wake. Men dislike him, women flee from him.

    Worst. Person. Ever. is a deeply unworthy book about a dreadful human being with absolutely no redeeming social value. Gunt, in the words of the author, "is a living, walking, talking, hot steaming pile of pure id." He's a B-unit cameraman who enters an amusing downward failure spiral that takes him from London to Los Angeles and then on to an obscure island in the Pacific where a major American TV network is shooting a Survivor-style reality show. Along the way, Gunt suffers multiple comas and unjust imprisonment, is forced to re-enact the 'Angry Dance' from the movie Billy Elliot and finds himself at the centre of a nuclear war. We also meet Raymond's upwardly failing sidekick, Neal, as well as Raymond's ex-wife, Fiona, herself 'an atomic bomb of pain'.

    Even though he really puts the 'anti' in anti-hero, you may find Raymond Gunt an oddly likeable character.

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  • LONGLISTED FOR THE BAILEYS WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION 2016 A BBC RADIO 2 BOOK CLUB PICK 'Memoirs of a Geisha meets The Piano Teacher, in the best way.' InStyle Amaterasu Takahashi has spent her life grieving for her daughter Yuko and grandson Hideo, who were victims of the atomic bomb dropped on Nagasaki in 1945.

    Now a widow living in America, she believes that one man was responsible for her loss; a local doctor who caused an irreparable rift between mother and daughter.

    When a man claiming to be Hideo arrives on her doorstep, she is forced to revisit the past; the hurt and humiliation of her early life, the intoxication of a first romance and the realisation that if she had loved her daughter in a different way, she might still be alive today.

  • Haunting, uplifting, beautiful: the final work from Helen Dunmore Helen Dunmore passed away in June 2017, leaving behind this remarkable collection of short stories. With her trademark imagination and gift for making history human, she explores the fragile ties between passion, love, family, friendship and grief, often through people facing turning points in their lives:

    A girl alone, stretching her meagre budget to feed herself, becomes aware that the young man who has come to see her may not be as friendly as he seems.

    Two women from very different backgrounds enjoy an unusual night out, finding solace in laughter and an unexpected friendship.

    A young man picks up his infant son and goes outside into a starlit night as he makes a decision that will inform the rest of his life.

    A woman imprisoned for her religion examines her faith in a seemingly literal and quietly original way.

    This brilliant collection of Helen Dunmore's short fiction, replete with her penetrating insight into the human condition, is certain to delight and move all her readers.

  • SHORTLISTED FOR THE GOLDSMITHS PRIZE 2017 'When I finished Sara Baume's new novel I immediately felt sad that I could not send it in the post to the late John Berger. He, too, would have loved it and found great joy in its honesty, its agility, its beauty, its invention. Baume is a writer of outstanding grace and style. She writes beyond the time we live in.' Colum McCann Struggling to cope with urban life - and with life in general - Frankie, a twenty-something artist, retreats to the rural bungalow on 'turbine hill' that has been vacant since her grandmother's death three years earlier. It is in this space, surrounded by nature, that she hopes to regain her footing in art and life. She spends her days pretending to read, half-listening to the radio, failing to muster the energy needed to leave the safety of her haven. Her family come and go, until they don't and she is left alone to contemplate the path that led her here, and the smell of the carpet that started it all.

    Finding little comfort in human interaction, Frankie turns her camera lens on the natural world and its reassuring cycle of life and death. What emerges is a profound meditation on the interconnectedness of wilderness, art and individual experience, and a powerful exploration of human frailty.

  • In this shattering and iconic novel, Smith Henderson explores the complexities of freedom, community, grace, suspicion and anarchy, brilliantly depicting America's disquieting and violent contradictions. FOURTH OF JULY CREEK is an unforgettable, unflinching debut that marks the arrival of a major literary talent.

  • WINNER OF THE AUTHORS' CLUB BEST FIRST NOVEL AWARD 2015 SHORTLISTED FOR THE COSTA FIRST NOVEL AWARD 2015 AND THE DESMOND ELLIOTT PRIZE 2015 Meet the Bradleys.

    In lots of ways, they're a normal family:
    Zippy is sixteen and in love for the first time; Al is thirteen and dreams of playing for Liverpool.

    And in some ways, they're a bit different:
    Seven-year-old Jacob believes in miracles. So does his dad.

    But these days their mum doesn't believe in anything, not even getting out of bed.

    How does life go on, now that Issy is gone?

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