Bryan Prince Bookseller

  ~ New Hardcover Releases ~  

Absolute Friends
By John Le Carre
0 670 04489 X Viking Canada
$38.00 Fiction

A superbly paced novel spanning fifty-six years in the lives of two friends. Ted Mundy, a British soldier(s son, is born in 1947 in a shining new independent Pakistan. Sasha is the refugee son of an East German Lutheran pastor and his wife who have sought sanctuary in the West. The two men first meet as students in riot-torn West Berlin in the late sixties, again later in the grimy looking-glass espionage and, most terribly, in today(s unipolar world of terror, counter-terror and the war of lies.

Le Carre's latest book is a theatrical masterstroke of tragi-comic writing and a savage fable of our times.

 
       
 

Ada Blackjack: A True Story of Survival in the Arctic
By Jennifer Niven
0 7868 6863 5 Hyperion
$36.95 Biography

It was controversial explorer Viljalmur Stefansson who, in September 1921, sent four young men and Ada Blackjack into the far North to colonize desolate, uninhabited Wrangel Island. Only two of the men had set foot in the Arctic before. They took with them six month's worth of supplies on Stefansson(s theory that this would be enough to sustain them for a year while they lived off the land itself. But as winter set in, they were struck be hardship and tragedy. As months went by and they began to starve, they were forced to ration their few remaining provisions. When three of the men made a desperate attempt to seek help, Ada was left to care for the fourth, who was too sick to travel. Soon after, she found herself totally alone.

Upon Ada's miraculous return after two years on the island, the international press heralded her as the female Robinson Crusoe. Journalists hunted her down, but she refused to talk to anyone about her harrowing experiences. Only on one occasion- after being accused of a horrible crime- did she speak up for herself. All the while, she was tricked and exploited by those who should have been her champions.

Niven narrates this remarkable true story taking full advantage of a wealth of primary resources, including Ada's never-before-seen diaries, the unpublished journals of other major characters, and interviews with Ada's second son. A gripping and ultimately inspiring tale.

 
       
 

The Singing Fire
By Lilian Nattel
0 676 97600 X Knopf Canada
$34.95 Fiction

Nattel masterfully brings the grime and bustle of Victorian London to lifein this remarkable tale of two unforgettable women and the child that unites them in the maelstrom of turn of the century London.

Nehama arrives in London with her dreams of independence, not realizing the dangers that a girl on her own must face. Tricked into prostitution, and with only the whispers of her deceased grandmother to guide her, she escapes into the alleys of the East End, where busy market stalls and penny seats at the theatre are just a hand(s breath away from the criminal warrens. In the Jewish ghetto Nehama makes a new life, remembering the lessons of the street to help another runaway, Emilia, pregnant and unwed. But Emilia refuses a hardscrabble life and, relinquishing her baby to Nehama, re-creates herself in the chic streets of the West End.

Using stunningly vivid prose Lilian Nattel beautifully renders the courage of mothers and sisters navigating dangerous realms.

 
       
 

The Lady and the Unicorn
By Tracy Chevalier
0 525 94767 1 Dutton
$36.00 Fiction

The newest novel from the author of Girl with the Pearl Earring is a tour-de-force of history and imagination surrounding a set of medieval tapestries.

Paris 1490, a shrewd French nobleman commissions six lavish tapestries celebrating his rising status at court. When he hires the charismatic, arrogant, sublimely talented Nicolas des Innocents to design them havoc soon ensues among the women of the house.

With designs in hand Nicolas leaves Paris for a Brussels workshop where the designs are to be woven. Master-weaver Georges de la Chapelle risks everything to finish the tapestries, however, he and his family will be changed forever by the project.

A story of seduction temptation in the art world.

 
       
 

Cat's Pilgrimage
By Marilyn Bowering
0 00 200523 9 HarperFlamingo Canada
$34.95 Fiction

Fourteen-year old Cathreen has a crucial choice: follow the path that has taken her to a lake at a deserted scout camp where a girl is bullied and left to drown; or retreat to the dull existence she led with her mother in a small Vancouver Island town. But long before Cathreen, there is the story of three lost stones fallen from Lucifer's crown- a story in which her father's family in Glastonbury has played a part. When Cathreen refuses to choose and flees instead to England to find her father, she steps across the boundary into a landscape where good and evil, justice, vengeance and enduring love vie for prime place in the human heart.

An intricately woven tale that blends reality and fantasy into an unforgettable world.

 
       
 

Living to Tell the Tale
By Gabriel Garcia Marquez
1 4000 4134 1 Knopf
$38.95 Memoir

In this long-awaited first volume of a planned trilogy, the most acclaimed and revered living Nobel laureate begins to tell the story of his life.

The volume spans Marquez's life from his birth in 1927 through the start of his career as a writer to the moment in the 1950s when he proposed to his wife. It has the shape, the quality, and the vividness of a conversation with the reader- a tale of people, places, and events as they occur to him.

OA radiant, powerful, and beguiling memoir that gives us the formation of Gabriel Garcia Marquez as a writer and a man.

 
 
  ~ New Children's Releases ~
     
 

A Great and Terrible Beauty
By Libba Bray
0 385 73028 4 Delacorte Press
$23.95 Fiction

Jemma Doyle isn't like other girls. Girls with impeccable manners, who speak when spoken to, who remember their station, who dance with grace, and who will lie back and think of England when it's required of them.

No, sixteen year-old Gemma is an island unto herself, sent to the Spence Academy in London after tragedy strikes her family in India. Lonely, guilt-ridden, and prone to visions of the future that have an uncomfortable habit of coming true, Gemma finds her reception a chilly one. She's not completely along though, she's been followed by a mysterious man, sent to warn her to close her mind against visions.

NBray's novel is a vividly drawn portrait of the Victorian age, a time of strict morality and barely repressed sensuality, when girls were groomed for lives as rich men's wives...and the story of a girl who saw another way.

Recommended for ages 13-16.

 
  ~ New Paperback Releases ~
   
  Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books
By Azar Nafisi
0 8129 7106 X Random House
$21.00 Memoir

Every Thursday morning for two years in the Islamic Republic of Iran, a bold and inspired teacher named Azar Nafisi secretly gathered seven of her most committed female students to read forbidden Western classics. As Islamic morality squads staged arbitrary raids in Tehran, fundamentalist seized hold of the universities, and a blind censor stifled artistic expression, the women in the reading group risked removing their veils and immersing themselves in the worlds of Jane Austen, Henry James, Vladimir Nabakov and other great writers.
 
       
  Where the River Narrows
By Aimee Laberge
0 00 648567 7 HarperPerennial Canada
$19.95 Fiction

Deeply embedded within every family is the story of the land from which they came. Mysterious and richly layered, this story unfolds in Quebec through the lives of the Tremblay family. Lucie, a child of the 1960s facing a troubled marriage, begins the long journey back, bringing to life a history she had glimpsed only in textbooks and discovering a past peopled by saints and sinners. An engrossing triumph spanning Quebec history from it's the founding to the present day.