The Bone Readers: Jacob Ross

This is a thoroughly enjoyable whodunit from a Grenadian writer. Michael Digson (“Digger”) is out of work, living on the island of Camaho.[1] He is the illegitimate son (“outside child”) of a maid and her employer, the Commissioner of Police. Digger is haunted by the death of his mother, who was shot during a demonstration …

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The Ayah and Other Stories: Chanis Fernando-Boisard

The short stories in this collection capture the small but seismic shifts in a person’s life: the distraction of a tutor whose wife has left him; the regret of a woman who has walked out of her marriage of 30 years; and a woman realizing that her dream house still harbours the spirits of its …

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The Circle of Karma: Kunzang Choden

This is the story of Pema Tsomo, who grows up in a village in Bhutan. When she is born, the astrologer tells her mother that the child will be restless, always wanting to travel. But, her mother thinks, where can a girl go? Women didn’t leave their homes; they stayed and took care of their …

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WE (a story about us): Susan T. Landry

Illustrated by Benedetta C. Vialli It feels like so many people all over the world have become polarized, divided into opposing factions who do not talk to or listen to each other. The recent lockdown has not helped; it has only exacerbated isolation and forced us into our own little bubbles. In the midst of …

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The Capital: Robert Menasse

Translated from German by Jamie Bulloch The European Commission seems an unlikely setting for a novel. But by foregrounding the people who work for the EC, with their individual quirks, worries and talents, Robert Menasse brings the institution to life. Fenia Xenopolou (aka Xeno), the head of the Communication Department in the Directorate-General for Culture, …

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The Testaments: Margaret Atwood

“All things come to she who waits. Time wounds all heels. Patience is a virtue. Vengeance is mine.” Margaret Atwood says that the question she was asked most often about The Handmaid’s Tale was what happened next? How did Gilead fall? The Testaments, written 35 years after The Handmaid’s Tale, answers these questions. For those …

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Dissipatio H.G.—The Vanishing: Guido Morselli

Translated from Italian by Frederika Randall What would happen to the planet if the entire human race was to disappear? In this novella, Guido Morselli imagines a world empty of people. The book is narrated by the one man who seems to have been spared. The unnamed narrator lives near a mountain village in an …

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