A Song I Knew by Heart
by Bret Lott
Lott brings gravitas and a biblical cadence to his story of seventysomething Naomi, a widow forced to confront death once again when her son, Mahlon, is killed in a car accident. Lott's rhythmic and repetitive phrasing, revealing the source of his inspiration -- the Book of Ruth -- is both artful and soothing. This is a radiant, achingly tender portrait of the grieving process.
A Walk to Remember
by Nicholas Sparks
It's 1958, and high school senior Landon Carter is falling in love with the last girl he expected to: Jamie, the shy daughter of the Baptist minister. Little does Landon know that being with Jamie will change his life forever...
by William Gaddis
William Gaddis' final work of fiction is a subtle, concentrated culmination of his art and ideas. For more than fifty years Gaddis collected notes for a book about the mechanization of the arts, told via a social history of the player piano in America. In the years before his death in 1998, he distilled the whole mass into a fiction, a dramatic monologue by an elderly man with a terminal illness. This "man in the bed" lies dying, thinking anxiously about the book he still plans to write, grumbling about the deterioration of civilization and trying to explain his obsession to the world before he passes away or goes mad.
by Louise Dean
After more than half a century of marriage, Dorothy and George are embarking on their first journey abroad together. Three decades younger, Jan and Annemieke are taking the last in their tumultuous union. At first the luxury of a Caribbean resort is no match for the habits of domestic life. Then the couples'paths cross, and a series of surprises ensues.
Beyond the Waves
by Elizabeth Marek
Psychologist Abby Cohen is still reeling from the loss of her beloved daughter when another young girl arrives in her life -- twelve-year-old Miranda, who appears at Abby's hospital mute, terrified, and completely alone. In her struggle to connect with this deeply disturbed child and unravel the mystery of her past, Abby must grapple with her own frozen self.
by Helen Dunmore
When Rebecca's and Adam's daughter, Ruby, dies in a playground accident, their lives are forever changed. In Dunmore's elegant hands, such a simple and sorrowful synopsis is transformed into an elegiac tale of unbearable suffering and unexpected redemption as lyrical and lush as life itself.
State of Happiness
by Stella Duffy
Jack and Cindy are immediately attracted to one another from the moment they meet at a friend's party, and in time this first infatuation develops into a passionate and enduring love affair. Five years later, Jack and Cindy believe that they have navigated every obstacle when a sudden crisis threatens their blissful state. Cindy falls dangerously ill, and as she battles her body's betrayal, the couple must also confront their diverging paths and uncharted future.
The Life You Longed For
by Maribeth Fischer
Grace Connolly's youngest son, three-year-old Jack, is terminally ill following a baffling, heartbreaking diagnosis of mitochondrial disease. At times, Grace, a full-time mother of three with a background in epidemiology, feels that everyone else around her (Jack's medical specialists; husband Stephen) has given up hope. Desperate to reclaim her "normal" life, Grace reignites a romance with her first love.
The Poet of Tolstoy Park
by Sonny Brewer
In 1925, when 67-year-old Henry Stuart is given a year to live, the path he must follow is immediately clear. Stuart leaves his Idaho home and moves to a ten-acre patch of isolated paradise in Fairhope, AL, which was founded by freethinker Henry George — who shared Stuart's love of Tolstoy. Stuart's decision shocks his sons and his lifelong friend, Preacher Will Webb, but his drive to live out the remainder of his life in simplicity and solitude is irresistible.
You're Not You
by Michelle Wildgen
College student Bec is dangerously adrift. Self-conscious and increasingly uncertain about her long-term plans, she's studying a major that no longer interests her and is caught up in a bewildering affair with a married professor. In an impulsive attempt to redeem herself, she answers a want ad seeking a caregiver. What she finds is a wealthy, cultivated woman in her midthirties. Once an advertising executive, accomplished chef, and skilled decorator, Kate is now in the advanced stages of ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease).