In the spring of 1924, Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes agreed to perform a dangerous job for the emperor of Japan. At the time, Russell encountered a young Japanese woman on board their ship who tutored the two foreigners about her country and guided them into a secret meeting with the Prince Regent himself. Now, when Russell heads for Oxford to resume her long-delayed studies, she comes face-to-face with that very same young Japanese woman --- and quickly realizes that Miss Sato Haruki is not all that she seems.
Newlywed painter and sometime somnambulist Angus Lordie might be sleepwalking his way into trouble with Animal Welfare when he lets his dog, Cyril, drink a bit too much lager at the local bar. Meanwhile, the long-suffering Bertie --- on the cusp of his seventh birthday party --- has taken to dreaming about his 18th, a time when he will be able to avoid the indignity of unwanted girl attendees and the looming threat of a gender-neutral doll from his domineering mother, Irene.
Sergeant Hamish Macbeth is alarmed to receive a report from a woman in the small village of Cronish in the Scottish Highlands. She has been brutally attacked, and the criminal is on the loose. But upon further investigation, Hamish discovers that she was lying about the crime. So when the same woman calls him back about an intruder, he simply marvels at her compulsion to lie. This time, though, she is telling the truth. Her body is found in her home, and Hamish must sort through all of her lies to solve the crime.
Charles Baxter’s new book is a collection of 10 interrelated stories, the first five named after virtues, the second after vices. Baxter’s point is that all of us cover the spectrum of moral qualities, as do his characters --- from the pediatrician conflicted about his work to the altruistic missionary who contracts a disease in Ethiopia and, upon returning stateside, commits robbery to pay for medicine. In Baxter’s world, as in life, decisions are rarely easy.
A year has passed since Ari gave birth to Walker, though it went so badly awry she has trouble calling it “birth” and still can't locate herself in her altered universe. When Mina, a one-time cult musician --- older, self-contained, alone and nine-months pregnant --- moves to town, Ari sees the possibility of a new friend, despite her unfortunate habit of generally mistrusting women. Soon they become comrades-in-arms, and the previously hostile terrain seems almost navigable.
U., a “corporate anthropologist,” is tasked with writing the Great Report, an all-encompassing ethnographic document that would sum up our era. Yet at every turn, he feels himself overwhelmed by the ubiquity of data, lost in buffer zones, wandering through crowds of apparitions, willing them to coalesce into symbols that can be translated into some kind of account that makes sense. As he begins to wonder if the Great Report might remain a shapeless, oozing plasma, his senses are startled awake by a dream of an apocalyptic cityscape.
Propelled into the priesthood by a family tragedy, Odran Yates is full of hope and ambition. Forty years later, his devotion is caught in revelations that shatter the Irish people’s faith in the Catholic Church. He sees his friends stand trial, colleagues jailed and the lives of young parishioners destroyed. But when a family event opens wounds from his past, he is forced to confront the demons that have raged within the church and to recognize his own complicity in their propagation.
How did the Vietnam War change the way we think of ourselves as a people and a nation? Christian G. Appy, author of the widely praised oral history of the Vietnam War, PATRIOTS, now examines the relationship between the war’s realities and myths, and its impact on our national identity, conscience, pride, shame, popular culture and postwar foreign policy.
Lady Montfort has been planning her annual summer costume ball for months with scrupulous care. But when her husband's degenerate nephew is found murdered, it's more than the ball that’s ruined. In fact, Lady Montfort fears that the official police enquiry is pointing towards her son as a potential suspect. Taking matters into her own hands, she enlists the help of her pragmatic housekeeper, Mrs. Jackson, to investigate the case, track down the women who vanished the night of the murder, and clear her son's name.
Twenty-two-year-old Raf spends his days walking Rose, a bull terrier who guards the transmitters for a pirate radio station, and his nights at raves in warehouses and launderettes. When his friend Theo vanishes without a trace, Raf’s efforts to find him will lead straight into the heart of a global corporate conspiracy. Meanwhile, he’s falling in love with a beautiful young woman he met at one of those raves, but he’ll soon discover that there is far more to Cherish than meets the eye.