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Our Best Books

 

FICTION

ONCE UPON RIVERONCE UPON A RIVER by DIANE SETTERFIELD

Well over 10 years ago Diane Setterfield's 'The Thirteenth Tale' was the first book I recommended again and again and again.  Not long working in the bookshop, it was the book that gave me confidence as a bookseller, recommending books to people I didn't know.  Now, she has done it again, another absolutely fabulous read, I loved it from page 1 to the end.
On a dark midwinter's night in an ancient inn on the Thames, the regulars are entertaining themselves by telling stories when the door bursts open and in steps an injured stranger. In his arms is the drowned corpse of a child. Hours later, the dead girl stirs, takes and breath and returns to life.  Is it a miracle?And most importantly, who does the little girl belong to? A multi-layered mystery brimming with folklore, suspense and romance.

CRAWDADSWHERE THE CRAWDADS SING by DELIA OWENS

For years, rumors of the "Marsh Girl" have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say.  Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. When two young men from town become intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new life - until the unthinkable happens.

BEEKEEPERTHE BEEKEEPER OF ALEPPO by CHRISTY LEFTERI

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.

BIG SKYBIG SKY by KATE ATKINSON

JACKSON BRODIE 5

Jackson Brodie has relocated to a quiet seaside village in North Yorkshire, in the occasional company of his recalcitrant teenage son Nathan and ageing Labrador Dido, both at the discretion of his former partner Julia. It's a picturesque setting, but there's something darker lurking behind the scenes.  Jackson's current job, gathering proof of an unfaithful husband for his suspicious wife, seems straightforward, but a chance encounter with a desperate man on a crumbling cliff leads him into a sinister network-and back into the path of someone from his past. 

professor chandraPROFESSOR CHANDRA FOLLOWS HIS BLISS by RAJEEV BALASUBRAMANYAM

Professor Chandra is an expert at complex problems. There's just one he can't crack: the secret of happiness.  In the moments after the bicycle accident, Professor Chandra doesn't see his life flash before his eyes, but his life's worK - He's just narrowly missed out on the Nobel Prize (again) and even though he knows he should get straight back to his pie charts, his doctor has other ideas. All this work. All this success.  All this stress. It's killing him. He needs to take a break, start enjoying himself.
In short, says his doctor (who is from California), Professor Chandra should just follow his bliss. He doesn't know it yet, but Professor Chandra is about to embark on the trip of a lifetime.

 

harvestingHARVESTING by LISA HARDING

Absolutely the best book of the year so far... everyone must read this book, talk about and open their eyes to the issues it addresses.  Pure genius!

Sammy is a spiky, brittle and sharp fifteen-year-old girl living in Dublin; Nico is a warm and conscientious teenage girl living in Moldova. When they are thrown together in a Dublin brothel in a horrific twist of fate, a peculiar and important bond is formed. Lisa Harding's startling novel is heartbreaking, gritty and raw, but there is also redemption - in friendship and in unexpected acts of kindness.


NON-FICTION

CHOICETHE CHOICE by EDITH EGER

In 1944, sixteen-year-old ballerina Edith Eger was sent to Auschwitz.
Separated from her parents on arrival, she endures unimaginable experiences, including being made to dance for the infamous Josef Mengele. When the camp is finally liberated, she is pulled from a pile of bodies, barely alive. However, the horrors of the Holocaust didn't break Edith, in fact, they helped her learn to live again with a life-affirming strength and a truly remarkable resilience. 'The Choice' is her unforgettable story. It shows that hope can flower in the most unlikely places.

 

notes to selfNOTES TO SELF by EMILIE PINE

In this vivid and powerful collection of essays, Emilie Pine boldly confronts the past to better understand herself, her relationships and her role in society. Tackling subjects like addiction, fertility, feminism and sexual violence, and where these subjects intersect with legislation, these beautifully written essays are at once fascinating and funny, intimate and searingly honest. 

 

educatedEDUCATED by TARA WESTOVER

Tara Westover grew up preparing for the End of Days, watching for the sun to darken, for the moon to drip as if with blood. She spent her summers bottling peaches and her winters rotating emergency supplies, hoping that when the World of Men failed, her family would continue on, unaffected.  She hadn't been registered for a birth certificate. She had no school records because she'd never set foot in a classroom, and no medical records because her father didn't believe in doctors or hospitals. According to the state and federal government, she didn't exist.  As she grew older, her father became more radical, and her brother, more violent. At sixteen Tara decided to educate herself. Her struggle for knowledge would take her far from her Idaho mountains, over oceans and across continents, to Harvard and to Cambridge.

shoe dogSHOE DOG by PHIL KNIGHT

In 1962, fresh out of business school, Phil Knight borrowed $50 from his father and created a company with a simple mission: import high-quality, low-cost athletic shoes from Japan.  Selling the shoes from the boot of his Plymouth, Knight grossed $8000 in his first year. Today, Nike's annual sales top $30 billion.  Knight, the man behind the swoosh, has always remained a mystery. Now, for the first time, he tells his story.


 

CRIME

CHAINTHE CHAIN by DRIAN McKINTY

*YOUR PHONE RINGS. A STRANGER HAS KIDNAPPED YOUR CHILD. TO FREE THEM YOU MUST ABDUCT SOMEONE ELSE'S CHILD.

YOUR CHILD WILL BE RELEASED WHEN YOUR VICTIM'S PARENTS KIDNAP ANOTHER CHILD. IF ANY OF THESE THINGS DON'T HAPPEN:YOUR CHILD WILL BE KILLED. YOU ARE NOW PART OF THE CHAIN

 

lost manTHE LOST MAN by JANE HARPER 

A brilliantly written atmospheric thriller which keeps you engrossed and guessing all the way to the last page.

From the author of 'The Dry' and 'Force of Nature' comes an atmospheric

Whatever had been going through Cameron's mind when he was alive, he didn't look peaceful in death.  Two brothers meet at the remote border of their vast cattle properties under the unrelenting sun of the outback. In an isolated part of Australia, they are each other's nearest neighbour, their homes hours apart. They are at the stockman's grave, a landmark so old that no one can remember who is buried there.  But today, the scant shadow it casts was the last hope for their middle brother, Cameron. The Bright family's quiet existence is thrown into grief and anguish. Something had been troubling Cameron.
Did he choose to walk to his death? Because if he didn't, the isolation of the outback leaves few suspects..

 

slow horsesJACKSON LAMB SERIES by MICK HERRON

Book 1: Slow Horses

You don't stop being a spook just because you're no longer in the game. Banished to Slough House from the ranks of achievers at Regent's Park for various crimes of drugs and drunkenness, lechery and failure, politics and betrayal, Jackson Lamb's misfit crew of highly trained joes don't run ops, they push paper. But not one of them joined the Intelligence Service to be a 'slow horse'.  A boy is kidnapped and held hostage. His beheading is scheduled for live broadcast on the net. And whatever the instructions of the Service, the slow horses aren't going to just sit quiet and watch.

Books in the series - Slow Horses, Dead Lions, Real Tigers, Spook Street, London Rules and Joe Country (just published July 2019)

 

death noticeDEATH NOTICE by HAOHUI ZHOU

First in a new series, translated, China's best selling series. 

Not without faults but pacey and refreshingly original

 For nearly two decades an unsolved double homicide has haunted Sergeant Zheng Haoming of the Chengdu Police Department. Now it looks as if the long-dormant killer has resurfaced, taunting law enforcement with 'death notices' proclaiming their next victim and the date of 'execution'. Perhaps modern police techniques - criminal profiling, online surveillance, SWAT teams - can catch a killer who previously evaded justice? Or perhaps this killer is more than a match for the Chengdu Police Department.

 

red sparrowRED SPARROW SERIES by JASON MATTHEWS

Book 1: Red Sparrow

Dominika Egorov, former prima ballerina, is sucked into the heart of Putin's Russia, the country she loved, as the twists and turns of a betrayal and counter-betrayal unravel. American Nate Nash, idealistic and ambitious, handles the double agent, codenamed MARBLE, considered one of CIA's biggest assets. He needs to keep his identity secret for as long as the mole can keep supplying golden information. Will Dominika be able to unmask MARBLE, or will the mission see her faith destroyed in the country she has always passionately defended?

Books in the series - Red Sparrow, Palace of Treason, The Kremlin’s Candidate

 

snapSNAP - BELINDA BAUER

On a stifling summer's day, eleven-year-old Jack and his two sisters sit in their broken-down car, waiting for their mother to come back and rescue them. Jack's in charge, She never comes back...and life as the children know it is changed for ever. Three years later, Jack is still in charge - of his sisters, of supporting them all, of making sure nobody knows they're alone in the house, and - quite suddenly - of finding out the truth about what happened to his mother.


 

TEEN

orphan monsterORPHAN MONSTER SPY by MATT KILLEEN

Sarah has played many roles - but now she faces her most challenging of all. Because there's only one way for a Jewish orphan spy to survive at a school for the Nazi elite. And that's to become a monster like them.  They think she is just a little girl. But she is the weapon they never saw coming... with a mission to destroy them all.

 

white rabbitWHITE RABBIT, RED WOLF by TOM POLLOCK

Seventeen-year-old Peter Blankman is a maths prodigy. He also suffers from severe panic attacks. Afraid of everything, he finds solace in the orderly and logical world of mathematics and in the love of his family: his scientist mum and his tough twin sister Bel, as well as Ingrid, his only friend.  However, when his mother is found stabbed before an award ceremony and his sister is nowhere to be found, Pete is dragged into a world of espionage and violence where state and family secrets intertwine.

scytheSCYTHE by NEAL SHUSTERMAN

In a world where disease, war and crime have been eliminated, the only way to die is to be randomly killed ("gleaned") by professional scythes.  Citra and Rowan are teenagers who have been selected to be scythes' apprentices, and despite wanting nothing to do with the vocation, they must learn the art of killing and understand the necessity of what they do. Only one of them will be chosen as a scythe's apprentice and as Citra and Rowan come up against a terrifyingly corrupt Scythedom, it becomes clear that the winning apprentice's first task will be to glean the loser.

moonriseMOONRISE by SARAH CROSSAN

Joe’s elder brother Ed is on death row. Now Ed's execution date has been set and Joe is determined to spend those last weeks with him, no matter what other people think .

Watch out for Sarah Crossan's new book 'Toffee' coming soon in 2019


9-12

kat wolfe 1KAT WOLFE INVESTIGATES by LAUREN St JOHN

Kat Wolfe loves her new home in idyllic Bluebell Bay, especially as it comes with a resident wildcat. But when she starts pet-sitting for pocket money, she finds that beneath the town's perfect surface lie some dark and dangerous secrets .

 

maisie dayTHE INFINITE LIVES OF MAISIE DAY by CHRISTOPHER EDGE

How do you know you really exist?

It's Maisie's birthday and she can't wait to open her presents. She's hoping for the things she needs to build her own nuclear reactor. But she wakes to an empty house and outside the front door is nothing but a terrifying, all-consuming blackness.  Trapped in an ever-shifting reality, Maisie knows that she will have to use the laws of the universe and the love of her family to survive.

 

children castle rockTHE CHILDREN OF CASTLE ROCK by NATASHA FARRANT

When Alice Mistlethwaite is shipped off to boarding school in Scotland it's nothing like she imagines. Run by the mysterious Major, there are no punishments and the students are more likely to be taught about body painting or extreme survival than maths or English!Then Alice's dad goes missing and she must run away to find him.

So begins an epic quest across wild Scottish highlands and islands, where friendships will be made and broken, lies will be untangled and the children will face danger and excitement at every turn.

 

looking at the starsLOOKING AT THE STARS by JO COTTERILL

What if the only thing you had left were the stories in your head?

Amina's homeland has been ravaged by war, and her family is devastated.  The women of the family - Amina, her two sisters and their mother - have no choice but to leave their home town, along with thousands of others, and head for a refugee camp. But there are even more challenges ahead.


 

CHILDREN 5+

teacup houseTEACUP HOUSE by HAYLEY SCOTT

Meet the Twitches, four tiny rabbits who live inside a Teacup House. They belong to a girl called Stevie and she loves playing with them.

But guess what? These toy rabbits have a secret - they come alive when Stevie isn't looking!

 

isadora sleepoverISADORA MOON by HARRIET MUNCASTER

A fantastic series for both boys and girls. 

Half vampire, half fairy, totally unique! Isadora Moon is special because she is different. Her mum is a fairy and her dad is a vampire and Isadora is a bit of both. 9 in series

princess blackPRINCESS IN BLACK by SHANNON HALE

Who says princesses can't wear black? When trouble raises its blue monster head, Princess Magnolia ditches her flouncy dresses and becomes the Princess in Black. This is the first in a funny, action-packed series for young readers who like their princesses not only prim and perfect, but also dressed in black!

Princess Magnolia is having hot chocolate and scones with Duchess Wigtower when... Brring! Brring! The monster alarm! A big blue monster is threatening the goats! Stopping monsters is no job for dainty Princess Magnolia, but luckily Princess Magnolia has a secret - she's also the Princess in Black, and stopping monsters is the perfect job for her!

4 in series - ‘...And the perfect princess party’, ‘...takes a holiday’, ‘...and the hungry bunny horde’

GIRLS F.C. by HELENA PIELICHATY

Join the Girls FC as they show the world what it really means to play "like a girl"!"  

Do GoalKeepers Wear Tiaras?

Nine-year-old Megan Fawcett loves football and is desperate to be on her school team. She tries everything to get the coach to notice her (even wearing a tiara!), but nothing seems to do the trick.  Then Megan has her big brainwave: she could start her own team. An all-girls team! Now she just needs a pitch, a coach - oh, and ten other players...

4 in series - Can ponies take penalties, are all brothers foul, is an own goal bad

dinosaur detectivesTHE DINOSAUR DETECTIVES by STEPHANIE BAUDET

The Dinosaur Detectives is a fun filled adventure series following the story of Matt Sharp and his family as they hunt for dinosaur eggs. This fact meets fiction series is great for inspiring the young explorer and particularly popular amongst young readers aged 7+.

In the Amazon Rainforest

Matt Sharp has a secret talent: if he touches dinosaur eggs, he experiences mysterious visions of the prehistoric world. This is lucky because Matt wants to be a palaeontologist just like his dad. Now that he's twelve, he's allowed to join his father on an exciting search for dinosaur eggs in the Amazon rainforest - too bad his annoying eleven-year-old cousin, Jo, is tagging along.  Even worse, it looks like Matt's dad's rival is following them! Who will win the race and find the fossils first?

6 in series

ultimate football heroesULTIMATE FOOTBALL HEROES by MATT & TOM OLDFIELD

The biographies of the world’s best footballers, from Messi to Ronaldo, Sterling to Kane and everyone in between, aimed at readers of 8+

Meet Messi - Ultimate Football Hero. . .

Lionel Messi is a legend - Barcelona's star player and the world's best footballer. But when was young, he was so small that his friends called him 'Little Leo' and coaches worried he wasn't big enough. Yet through bravery, talent and hard work, he proved them wrong.

Messi tells the magical story of how the tiniest boy in South America grew up to become the greatest player on earth.

JACK STALWARTJACK STALWART by ELIZABETH SINGER HUNT

Follow the adventures of Secret Agent Jack Stalwart as travels around the world solving crimes and mysteries. Each book features a different country and a different problem to be solved: from France and the mystery of the Mona Lisa to China and the puzzle of the missing Panda

Escape of the Deadly Dinosaur

An eager young scientist has brought to life a dangerous flesh-eating dinosaur by crossing its DNA with that of his pet dog, Freddie. Can Secret Agent Jack Stalwart capture the dinosaur before it destroys New York City?


PICTURE BOOKS

ELEPHANT DIGGERYOU CAN'T LET AN ELEPHANT DRIVE A DIGGER by PATRICIA CLEVELAND-PECK

The brilliant follow-up to the bestselling 'You Can't Take an Elephant on the Bus'

Elephants driving diggers? Gorillas on scooters? A shark in the bath? A kangaroo ... on the loo? Join in with the fun as an array of improbable creatures tries to be helpful (with hilarious consequences) in this laugh-out-loud picture book.

 

COOK KINGTHE COOK AND THE KING by JULIA DONALDSON

(illustrated by David Roberts)

'There once was a very hungry king, Who needed a cook like anything...'

but the king is very fussy, and none of the cooks he tries can make a dish that tastes just right. Then the most unlikely of chefs comes along: the shuffling, shaking Wobbly Bob. He's scared of everything, from catching fish to digging for potatoes, but can he convince the hungry king to give him the job?


 


Awards

Irish-Times-award-2014

Irish Times Bookshop of the Year, 2014

Contact Details

Bridge Street,
Wicklow Town,
Co. Wicklow,
Ireland

Opening Hours: Mon-Sat, 9:30am-6pm
(Closed Bank Holiday Mondays)

Tel: (0404) 62240
Email: info@bridgestreetbooks.ie
Website: www.bridgestreetbooks.ie

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