Download Hammed: A tale of the Crusades by (François) Francois Le Fere (.PDF)

Hammed: A tale of the crusades; arranged from the memoirs of a warrior-monk by Francois Le Fere, Frank Stiles Le Fevre
Requirements: .PDF reader, 17.83 MB François
Overview: This remarkable work is a historical novel set in 14th-century Palestine and France, but beneath that lurks a unique Gothic extravaganza whose central theme is sex in a wide variety of manifestations: rapine, voyeuristic, incestuous, adulterous, premarital, polygamous, polyandrous, lesbian, clerical, as well as spoken, written and imagined versions of all these — not to mention those things often associated with sex: lust, passion, love, affection, generosity, jealousy and marriage. Most remarkably, however, the result is not pornography. This is a serious novel with an intricate and well-constructed plot; a good feel for the spirit of its medieval setting; a heavy, rhythmic diction; rounded characters; and thematic attitudes that are unusual for its time, if not for this one as well. There are no anatomical close-ups here, nor any of the flouncing diction of Victorian pornography. The author’s intention is clearly to depict the sexual excitement of the characters rather than to arouse that of the readers. Still, it is evident that any publisher of this book would have been prosecuted for obscenity at the time — or indeed at any time up until the 1960s. If this threat were not enough to scare off a commercial publisher, then the book’s heavy Gothic sensibility would have sealed its doom. The author’s writing ability (within the parameters of his chosen aims) is not the problem. The book was, in a sense, both a century behind the times and a half-century ahead of them. Scenes of extravagant horror compete with those of carnal passion. Parched soldiers on the battlefield in Palestine drink the blood of the slain. In a castle dungeon in France, a murdered villain (Coeur de Fer) is lashed to the body of an unfaithful Countess; she wakes up ravenously hungry and starts to eat the corpse of her former lover but vomits because his flesh has begun to rot. More blood is destined to be spilled in various cascades of jealousy and revenge. Blood spills in the tale almost as freely as sexual fluids. Any plot summary would be inadequate; the labyrinthine complexity of the plot helps to confirm its spirit as Gothic. The most extraordinary thing about the torrents of sexual pleasure coursing around the six main characters is that they are presented as innocent, wholesome, beautiful, generous, loving and, in fact, holy: an expression of God-like delight in the crowning expression of God’s own loving creation. There is no sniggering or titillating. A foil for this banquet of passion is presented by the Countess, Coeur de Fer and the Bishop, whose copulations are coarse, barren, loveless, and dull: the sexual equivalent of hastily gobbled fast food. The novel has perhaps just enough traces of the fantastic (premonitions, secret poisons, mesmerism, a rationalized ghost, blood drinking and flesh eating, as well as a full-blooded Gothic atmosphere) to qualify it as fantastic
Genre: Fiction > General Fiction/Classics

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Download Lost Words by Nicola Gardini (.ePUB)

Lost Words by Nicola Gardini, Michael F. Moore (Translator
Requirements: .ePUB reader, 774 KB
Overview: Winner of the Viareggio Prize, a vivid portrait of Italy on the brink of social upheaval in the 1970s.
Inside an apartment building on the outskirts of Milan, the working-class residents gossip, quarrel, and conspire against each other. Viewed through the eyes of Chino, an impressionable thirteen-year-old boy whose mother is the doorwoman of the building, the world contained within these walls is tiny, hypocritical, and mean-spirited: a constant struggle. Chino finds escape in reading.One day, a new resident, Amelia Lynd, moves in and quickly becomes an unlikely companion and a formative influence on Chino. Ms. Lynd―an elderly, erudite British woman―comes to nurture his taste in literature, introduces him to the life of the mind, and offers a counterpoint to the only version of reality that he’s known. On one level, Lost Words is an engrossing coming-of-age tale set in the seventies, when Italy was going through tumultuous social changes, and on another, it is a powerful meditation on language, literature, and culture.
Genre: Fiction > General Fiction/Classics

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Download I’ll Be Strong For You by Nasim Marashi (.ePUB)

I’ll Be Strong For You by Nasim Marashi, Poupeh Missaghi (Translator)
Requirements: .ePUB reader, 1.5 MB
Overview: Three recent college graduates in Tehran struggle to find their footing in this award-winning debut by Iranian journalist Nasim Marashi. Roja, the most daring of the three, works in an architecture firm and is determined to leave Tehran for graduate school in Toulouse. Shabaneh, who is devoted to her disabled brother and works with Roja, is uncertain about marrying a colleague as it would mean leaving her family behind. Leyla, who was unable to follow her husband abroad because of her commitment to her career as a journalist, is wracked with regret. Over the course of two seasons, summer and fall, in bustling streets and cramped family apartments, the three women weather setbacks and compromises, finding hope in the most unlikely places. Even as their ambitions cause them to question the very fabric of their personalities and threaten to tear their friendship apart, time and again Roja, Shabaneh and Leyla return to the comfort of their longtime affection, deep knowledge and unquestioning support of each other. Vividly capturing three very distinct voices, Marashi’s deeply wrought narrative lovingly brings these young women and their friendship to life in all their complexity.
Genre: Fiction > General Fiction/Classics

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Download The Promise by Damon Galgut (.ePUB)

The Promise by Damon Galgut
Requirements: .ePUB reader, 505 KB
Overview: Haunted by an unmet promise, the Swart family loses touch after the death of their matriarch. Adrift, the lives of the three siblings move separately through the uncharted waters of South Africa; Anton, the golden boy who bitterly resents his life’s unfulfilled promises; Astrid, whose beauty is her power; and the youngest, Amor, whose life is shaped by a nebulous feeling of guilt. Reunited by four funerals over three decades, the dwindling family reflects the atmosphere of its country — an atmosphere of resentment, renewal, and—ultimately—hope.
Genre: Fiction > General Fiction/Classics

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Download The French Gift by Kirsty Manning (.ePUB)

The French Gift by Kirsty Manning
Requirements: .ePUB reader, 880 KB
Overview: A forgotten manuscript threatens to unravel the past …

Fresnes Prison, 1940: Margot Bisset, a former maid from the Riviera, finds herself in a prison cell with writer and French Resistance fighter, Josephine Murant. Together, they are transferred to a work camp in Germany, where the secrets they share will bind them for generations to come.

Present-day Paris: Evie Black lives above her botanical bookshop with her teenage son, Hugo. Nursing a broken heart, Evie receives an unexpected letter; she clutches at an opportunity to spend a magical summer with Hugo on the Cote d’Azur. It’s here, on the Riviera, that the past envelops them and Evie attempts to unravel the official story of a famous novelist. If she succeeds, a murder from a lifetime ago may be solved.

Inspired by a true story of iconic French Resistance fighter, Agnes Humbert, whose secret journal shed light on a little-known aspect of World War II, The French Gift will captivate readers from beginning to unforgettable end.
Genre: Fiction > General Fiction/Classics

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Download Arborescent by Marc Herman Lynch (.ePUB)

Arborescent by Marc Herman Lynch
Requirements: .ePUB reader, 2.5 MB
Overview: In the beltline of a run-of-the-mill metropolis, an apartment complex called Cambrian Court has become the focal point of an outlandish unfurling, where even the laws of physics are becoming questioned. Embroiled within this psychic plot are three neighbours who are strangers to one another—Nohlan Buckles, Hachiko Yoshitoshi, and Zadie Chan—and whose ordinary lives have become rife with bizarre antagonists: an ogreish landlord, an ominous hooded group called the selfies, and a donkey-faced Saint Peter.

The deeper they are drawn into this otherworld the more reality becomes suspect: Nohlan is convinced he’s turning into a tree, Hachiko’s staging of a kabuki shockingly comes to life, and Zadie unwittingly begins to produce doppelgangers. Without even knowing each other, they come to realize just how dependent and intertwined their lives truly are.

In Marc Herman Lynch’s debut novel, some people explode, and others come back to life, but at the heart of it all are the fleeting yet indelible connections we make with one another. Darkly funny, lyrically charged, and gothically absurd, Arborescent is a raw and brilliantly imagined depiction of our disconnected contemporary world.
Genre: Fiction > General Fiction/Classics

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Download Touring the Land of the Dead by Maki Kashimada (.ePUB)

Touring the Land of the Dead: Two Novellas by Maki Kashimada, Haydn Trowell (Translator)
Requirements: .ePUB reader, 768 KB
Overview: A mesmerizing combination of two tales about memory, loss and love, both told with stylistic inventiveness and breath-taking sensitivity.

Taichi was forced to stop working almost a decade ago and since then he and his wife Natsuko have been getting by on her part-time wages. But Natsuko is a woman accustomed to hardship. When her own family’s fortune dried up years during her childhood, she, her brother, and her mother lived a surreal hand-to-mouth existence shaped by her mother’s refusal to accept their new station in life.

One day, Natsuko sees an ad for a spa and recognizes the place as the former luxury hotel that Natsuko’s grandfather had taken her mother to when she was little. She decides to take her damaged husband to the spa, despite the cost, but their time there triggers hard but ultimately redemptive memories relating to the complicated history of her family. The overnight trip becomes a voyage into the netherworld – a journey to the doors of death and back to life.

Modelled on a classic story by Junichiro Tanizaki, Ninety-Nine Kisses is the second story in this book and it portrays in touching and lyrical fashion the lives of the four unmarried sisters in a historical, close-knit neighbourhood of contemporary Tokyo.
Genre: Fiction > General Fiction/Classics

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Download The Inverts by Crystal Jeans (.ePUB)

The Inverts by Crystal Jeans
Requirements: .ePUB reader, 943 KB
Overview: 1921: a boy, a girl, a moonlit midnight kiss. A terrible, repulsive kiss.

AIS 6: Bettina and Bart have grown up as best friends, so surely they will end up together? After all, Bettina is young, rich, headstrong…. and gay. Bart is young, rich, charismatic… and also, definitely, gay. Any doubts are dispelled by, in short order: that ghastly kiss; a torrid encounter for Bettina in the school boiler-rooms; and an eye-opening Parisian visit for Bart.

Society will never stand for it. What else can they do but enter into a ‘lavender marriage’ and carry on indulging their true natures in secret? As the ’20s and’ 30s whizz past in a haze of cigarettes, champagne and casual sex, Bart and Bettina have no idea that they are hurtling, via Hollywood and Egypt, Paris and London, towards tragedy and bloodshed…
Genre: Fiction > General Fiction/Classics | LGBT

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Download The End of the World is a Cul de Sac by Louise Kennedy (.ePUB)

The End of the World is a Cul de Sac by Louise Kennedy
Requirements: .ePUB reader, 606 KB
Overview: The secrets people kept, the lies they told.

In these visceral, stunningly crafted stories, people are effortlessly cruel to one another, and the natural world is a primitive salve. Here, women are domestically trapped by predatorial men, Ireland’s folklore and politics loom large, and poverty – material, emotional, sexual – seeps through every crack.

A wife is abandoned by her new husband in a ghost estate, with blood on her hands; a young woman is tormented by visions of the man murdered by her brother during the Troubles; a pregnant mother fears the worst as her husband grows illegal cannabis with the help of a vulnerable teenage girl; a woman struggles to forgive herself after an abortion threatens to destroy her marriage.

Announcing a major new voice in literary fiction for the twenty-first century, these sharp shocks of stories offer flashes of beauty, and even humour, amidst the harshest of truths.
Genre: Fiction > General Fiction/Classics

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It includes:

    The End Of The World Is A Cul De Sac
    In Silhouette
    Hunter-gatherers
    Wolf Point
    Belladonna
    Imbolc
    Beyond Carthage
    What The Birds Heard
    Gibraltar
    Powder
    Hands
    Once Upon A Pair Of Wheels
    Brittle Things
    Sparing The Heather
    Garland Sunday

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Download Love Objects by Emily Maguire (.ePUB)

Love Objects by Emily Maguire
Requirements: .ePUB reader, 1.4 MB
Overview: Nic is a forty-five-year-old trivia buff, amateur nail artist and fairy godmother to the neighbourhood’s stray cats. She’s also the owner of a decade’s worth of daily newspapers, enough clothes and shoes to fill Big W three times over and a pen collection which, if laid end-to-end, would probably circle her house twice.

The person she’s closest to in the world is her beloved niece Lena, who she meets for lunch every Sunday. One day Nic fails to show up. When Lena travels to her aunt’s house to see if Nic’s all right, she gets the shock of her life, and sets in train a series of events that will prove cataclysmic for them both.

By the acclaimed author of An Isolated Incident, Love Objects is a clear-eyed, heart-wrenching and deeply compassionate novel about love and family, betrayal and forgiveness, and the things we do to fill our empty spaces.
Genre: Fiction > General Fiction/Classics

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