Search the Kerry Library Book Club Collection
Kerry Library currently holds a Book Club collection comprising of over 70 titles available for your book club to reserve and borrow. With a mix of contemporary and classic titles to choose from there's something to suit or challenge all reading tastes!
Limitless: From Dingle to Cape Horn, Finding My True North in the Earth's Vastest Oceans by Nuala Moore
The sea has always been a part of Nuala Moore's life: her earliest memory is of jumping off her father's fishing boat in Dingle Harbour and swimming back to shore. Since then, she's swum in some of the coldest, remotest and most dangerous waters in the world, from the Bering Strait to the Drake Passage. After years of marathon swimming, Nuala struggled to balance sacrifice and achievement. Her work-life balance, coupled with caring for her father, forced a change in her pathway. She turned to ice swimming. For Nuala, these extreme situations offered freedom and a chance to find her true north. Nuala believes that everyone is capable of greatness, whatever shape that might take. 'Limitless' is her breathtaking memoir, detailing what goes through her mind when she's in the water and how, when she returns home, she processes the fallout of pushing herself to the brink.
The Secret Keeper, is a spellbinding story of mysteries and secrets, murder and enduring love, moving between the 1930s, the 1960s and the present.1961: On a sweltering summer's day, while her family picnics by the stream on their Suffolk farm, sixteen-year-old Laurel hides out in her childhood tree house dreaming of a boy called Billy, a move to London, and the bright future she can't wait to seize. But before the idyllic afternoon is over, Laurel will have witnessed a shocking crime that changes everything.2011: Now a much-loved actress, Laurel finds herself overwhelmed by shades of the past. Haunted by memories, and the mystery of what she saw that day, she returns to her family home and begins to piece together a secret history. A tale of three strangers from vastly different worlds - Dorothy, Vivien and Jimmy - who are brought together by chance in wartime London and whose lives become fiercely and fatefully entwined.
Alice Munro captures the essence of life in her brilliant new collection of stories. Moments of change, chance encounters, the twist of fate that leads a person to a new way of thinking or being: the stories in Dear Life build to form a radiant, indelible portrait of just how dangerous and strange ordinary life can be.
Lydia is the favourite child of Marilyn and James Lee; a girl who inherited her mother's bright blue eyes and her father's jet-black hair. Her parents are determined that Lydia will fulfill the dreams they were unable to pursue - in Marilyn's case that her daughter become a doctor rather than a homemaker, in James's case that Lydia be popular at school, a girl with a busy social life and the centre of every party. But Lydia is under pressures that have nothing to do with growing up in 1970s small town Ohio. When Lydia's body is found in the local lake, James is consumed by guilt and sets out on a reckless path that may destroy his marriage.
In Shaker Heights, a placid, progressive suburb of Cleveland, everything is meticulously planned - from the layout of the winding roads, to the colours of the houses, to the successful lives its residents will go on to lead. And no one embodies this spirit more than Elena Richardson, whose guiding principle is playing by the rules. Enter Mia Warren - an enigmatic artist and single mother- who arrives in this idyllic bubble with her teenage daughter Pearl, and rents a house from the Richardsons. Soon Mia and Pearl become more than just tenants: all four Richardson children are drawn to the mother-daughter pair. But Mia carries with her a mysterious past, and a disregard for the rules that threatens to upend this carefully ordered community.
Douglas Petersen understands his wife's need to 'rediscover herself' now that their son is leaving home. He just thought they'd be doing their rediscovering together. So when Connie announces that she will be leaving, too, he resolves to make their last family holiday into the trip of a lifetime: one that will draw the three of them closer, and win the respect of his son. One that will make Connie fall in love with him all over again. The hotels are booked, the tickets bought, the itinerary planned and printed. What could possibly go wrong?
The truth drifts out to sea, riding the waves out of sight. And then the tide turns. Elizabeth Keane returns to Ireland after her mother's death, intent only on wrapping up that dismal part of her life. There is nothing here for her; she wonders if there ever was. The house of her childhood is stuffed full of useless things, her mother's presence already fading. And perhaps, had she not found the small stash of letters, the truth would never have come to light. 40 years earlier, a young woman stumbles from a remote stone house, the night quiet but for the tireless wind that circles her as she hurries further into the darkness away from the cliffs and the sea. She has no sense of where she is going, only that she must keep on.
Sally Diamond cannot understand why what she did was so strange. She was only doing what her father told her to do, to put him out with the rubbish when he died. Now Sally is the centre of attention, not only from the hungry media and police detectives, but also a sinister voice from a past she cannot remember. As she begins to discover the horrors of her childhood, Sally steps into the world for the first time, making new friends and big decisions, and learning that people don't always mean what they say. But who is the man observing Sally from the other side of the world? And why does her neighbour seem to be obsessed with her? Sally's trust issues are about to be severely challenged...
Liz Nugent's novel of psychological suspense is a complex and elegant study of the making of a sociopath in the tradition of Barbara Vine and Patricia Highsmith. Oliver Ryan is a handsome and charismatic success story. He lives in the leafy suburbs with his wife, Alice, who illustrates his award-winning children's books and gives him her unstinting devotion. Their life together is one of enviable privilege and ease - enviable until, one evening after supper, Oliver attacks Alice and puts her into a coma. In the aftermath, as everyone tries to make sense of his astonishing act of savagery, Oliver tells his story.
Dublin 1907, a city of whispered rumours. A young actress begins an affair with a damaged older man. Rebellious and flirtatious, Molly Allgood is a girl of the inner city tenements, dreaming of stardom in America. She has dozens of admirers but in the backstage of her life there is a secret.
September 1943: German forces occupy Rome. SS officer Paul Hauptmann rules with terror. The war's outcome is far from certain. An Irish priest, Hugh O'Flaherty, dedicates himself to helping those escaping from the Nazis. His home is Vatican City, the world's smallest state, a neutral, independent country within Rome where the occupiers hold no sway. Here Hugh brings together an unlikely band of friends to hide the vulnerable under the noses of the enemy. But Hauptmann's net begins closing in on the Escape Line and the need for a terrifyingly audacious mission grows critical. By Christmastime, it's too late to turn back.
Florence, the 1560s. Lucrezia, third daughter of Cosimo de' Medici, is free to wander the palazzo at will, wondering at its treasures and observing its clandestine workings. But when her older sister dies on the eve of marriage to Alfonso d'Este, heir to the Duke of Ferrara, Modena and Reggio, Lucrezia is thrust unwittingly into the limelight: Alfonso is quick to request her hand in marriage, and her father to accept on her behalf. Having barely left girlhood, Lucrezia must now make her way in a troubled court whose customs are opaque and where her arrival is not universally welcomed. Perhaps most mystifying of all is her husband himself, Alfonso. Is he the playful sophisticate he appears before their wedding, the aesthete happiest in the company of artists and musicians, or the ruthless politician before whom even his formidable sisters seem to tremble?
He is a brilliant maths professor with a peculiar problem - ever since a traumatic head injury some seventeen years ago, he has lived with only eighty minutes of short-term memory. She is a sensitive but astute young housekeeper with a ten-year-old son, who is entrusted to take care of him. Each morning, as the Professor and the Housekeeper are reintroduced to one another, a strange, beautiful relationship blossoms between them. The Professor may not remember what he had for breakfast, but his mind is still alive with elegant equations from the past.He devises clever maths riddles - based on her shoe size or her birthday - and the numbers, in all of their articulate order, reveal a sheltering and poetic world to both the Housekeeper and her little boy. With each new equation, the three lost souls forge an affection more mysterious than imaginary numbers, and a bond that runs deeper than memory.
Micheál Burns lives alone in his family's bungalow at the end of Kerry Head in Ireland. It is a picturesque place, but the cliffs have a darker side to them: for generations they have been a suicide black spot. Micheál's mother saw the saving of these lost souls - these visitors - as her spiritual duty, and now, in the wreckage of his life, Micheál finds himself continuing her work. When his sisters tell him that they want to sell the land, he must choose between his siblings and the visitors, a future or a past.
In eight unforgettable sections, The Buddha in the Attic traces the extraordinary lives of these women, from their arduous journeys by boat, to their arrival in San Francisco and their tremulous first nights as new wives; from their experiences raising children who would later reject their culture and language, to the deracinating arrival of war.
Julie Otsuka has written a spellbinding novel about identity and loyalty, and what it means to be an American in uncertain times
Julie Otsuka has written a spellbinding novel about identity and loyalty, and what it means to be an American in uncertain times
She can’t recall what started her collection. Maybe it was in a fragment of conversation overheard as she cleaned a sink? Before long (as she dusted a sitting room or defrosted a fridge) she noticed people were telling her their stories. Perhaps they always had done, but now it is different, now the stories are reaching out to her and she gathers them to her…When Janice starts cleaning for Mrs B – a shrewd and tricksy woman in her nineties – she meets someone who wants to hear her story. But Janice is clear: she is the keeper of stories, she doesn’t have a story to tell. At least, not one she can share.Mrs B is no fool and knows there is more to Janice than meets the eye. What is she hiding? After all, doesn’t everyone have a story to tell?
An Affair With My Mother: A Story of Adoption, Secrecy and Love by Catríona Palmer
A moving and gripping story of love, denial and a daughter's quest for the truth. Caitriona Palmer had a happy childhood in Dublin, raised by loving adoptive parents. But when she was in her late twenties, she realized that she had a strong need to know the woman who had given birth to her. She was able to locate her birth mother, Sarah, and they developed a strong attachment. But Sarah set one painful condition to this joyous new relationship: she wished to keep it - to keep Caitriona - secret from her family, from her friends, from everyone.
In the spring of 2020, Lara's three daughters return to the family's orchard in Northern Michigan. While picking cherries, they beg their mother to tell them the story of Peter Duke, a famous actor with whom she shared both a stage and a romance years before at a theater company called Tom Lake. As Lara recalls the past, her daughters examine their own lives and relationship with their mother, and are forced to reconsider the world and everything they thought they knew. Tom Lake is a meditation on youthful love, married love, and the lives parents have led before their children were born. Both hopeful and elegiac, it explores what it means to be happy even when the world is falling apart. As in all of her novels, Ann Patchett combines compelling narrative artistry with piercing insights into family dynamics. The result is a rich and luminous story, told with profound intelligence and emotional subtlety, that demonstrates once again why she is one of the most revered and acclaimed literary talents working today.
Here is rehab, where Ben - the only son of a rich South Dublin banker - is piecing together the shattered remains of his life. Abruptly cut off, at the age of 27, from a life of heedless privilege, Ben flounders through a world of drugs and dead-end jobs, his self-esteem at rock bottom. Even his once-adoring girlfriend, Clio, is at the end of her tether. Then Ben runs into an old school friend who wants to cut him in on a scam: a shady property deal in the Balkans. The deal will make Ben rich and, at one fell swoop, will deliver him from all his troubles: his addictions, his father's very public disgrace, and his own self-loathing and regret. Problems solved. But something is amiss. For one thing, the Serbian partners don't exactly look like fools. (In fact they look like gangsters.) And, for another, Ben is being followed everywhere he goes.
Aging and reclusive Hollywood movie icon Evelyn Hugo is finally ready to tell the truth about her glamorous and scandalous life. But when she chooses unknown magazine reporter Monique Grant for the job, no one is more astounded than Monique herself.Summoned to Evelyn's luxurious apartment, Monique listens in fascination as the actress tells her story. From making her way to Los Angeles in the 1950s to her decision to leave show business in the '80s, and, of course, the seven husbands along the way, Evelyn unspools a tale of ruthless ambition, unexpected friendship, and a great forbidden love. Monique begins to feel a very real connection to the legendary star, but as Evelyn's story near its conclusion, it becomes clear that her life intersects with Monique's own in tragic and irreversible ways.
Over a dozen stories from the lives of some of Ireland's greatest sports stars, these are gripping stories in plain English for emerging readers. Contributions from : Keith Earls -- Katie Taylor -- Ronnie Delaney -- Gavin Bazunu -- Philly McMahon -- Sonia O'Sullivan -- A.P. McCoy -- Valerie Mulcahy -- Barry McGuigan -- Cora Staunton -- Niall Quinn -- Bonnar Ó Loingsigh -- Rosemary Smith -- Henry Shefflin -- Paul O'Connell.
Since 1998, Open Door has been introducing readers new and old to some of Ireland s finest writers. In this our first collection of stories, we have gathered a range of voices to suit every taste. With themes ranging from family and friendship to ageing, love and childhood, there is something for everyone. So come on in! Featuring writing from: Blindboy Boatclub Dermot Bolger Marita Conlon-McKenna Sinéad Crowley Martina Devlin Roddy Doyle Christine Dwyer Hickey Rachael English Patrick Freyne Yan Ge Carlo Gébler Ciara Geraghty Ruth Gilligan Emily Hourican Úna-Minh Kavanagh Louise Kennedy Sinéad Moriarty Graham Norton Nuala O Connor Roisín O Donnell Sheila O Flanagan Colm O Regan Paul Perry Deirdre Purcell Donal Ryan Patricia Scanlan Melatu Uche Okorie.
Roy is a conman living in a leafy English suburb, about to pull off the final coup of his career. He is going to meet and woo a beautiful woman and slip away with her life savings. But who is the man behind the con and what has he had to do to survive this life of lies? And why is this beautiful woman so willing to be his next victim?
1974, on the island of Cyprus. Two teenagers, from opposite sides of a divided land, meet at a tavern in the city they both call home. The tavern is the only place that Kostas, who is Greek and Christian, and Defne, who is Turkish and Muslim, can meet, in secret, hidden beneath the blackened beams from which hang garlands of garlic, chilli peppers and wild herbs. This is where one can find the best food in town, the best music, the best wine. But there is something else to the place: it makes one forget, even if for just a few hours, the world outside and its immoderate sorrows.