Dinner with the Schnabels
Things haven't gone well for Simon Larsen lately. He adores his wife and children, but since his business failed and he lost the family home, he can't seem to get off the couch. His larger-than-life in-laws, the Schnabels, won't get off his case. To keep everyone happy, Simon needs to do one little job: he has a week to landscape a friend's backyard for an important Schnabel family event.
But as the week progresses, Simon is derailed by an unexpected house guest. As his world spins out of control, who can Simon really count on when the chips are down?
From the award-winning, bestselling author of Addition and Nine Days, a superbly crafted and captivating literary mystery about a lost book and a secret love.
Inga Karlson died in a fire in New York in the 1930s, leaving behind three things: a phenomenally successful first novel, the scorched fragments of a second book—and a literary mystery that has captivated generations of readers.
Nearly fifty years later, Brisbane bookseller Caddie Walker is waiting in line to see a Karlson exhibition featuring the famous fragments when she meets a charismatic older woman. The woman quotes a phrase from the Karlson fragments that Caddie knows does not exist—and yet to Caddie, who knows Inga Karlson’s work like she knows her name, it feels genuine.
Caddie is electrified. Jolted her from her sleepy, no-worries life in torpid 1980s Brisbane she is driven to investigate: to find the clues that will unlock the greatest literary mystery of the twentieth century.
Our Tiny, Useless Hearts
Henry has ended his marriage to Caroline and headed off to Noosa with Mercedes’ grade three teacher, Martha.
Caroline, having shredded a wardrobe-full of Henry’s suits, has gone after them.
Craig and Lesley have dropped over briefly from next door to catch up on the fallout from Henry and Caroline’s all-night row.
And Janice, Caroline’s sister, is staying for the weekend to look after the girls because Janice is the sensible one. A microbiologist with a job she loves, a fervent belief in the beauty of the scientific method and a determination to make a solo life after her divorce from Alec.
Then Craig returns through the bedroom window expecting a tryst with Caroline and finds Janice in her bed, Lesley storms in with a jealous heart and a mouthful of threats, Henry, Caroline and Martha arrive back from the airport in separate taxis—and let’s not even get started on Brayden the pizza guy.
Janice can cope with all that. But when Alec knocks on the door things suddenly get complicated.
Harnessing the exquisite timing of the great comedies to the narrative power and emotional intelligence for which she is famous, Toni Jordan brings all her wit, wisdom and flair to this brilliant, hilarious novel.
One family. Nine momentous days. An unforgettable novel of love and folly and heartbreak.
It is 1939 and although Australia is about to go to war, it doesn’t quite realise yet that the situation is serious. Deep in the working-class Melbourne suburb of Richmond it is business—your own and everyone else’s—as usual. And young Kip Westaway, failed scholar and stablehand, is living the most important day of his life.
Kip’s momentous day is one of nine that will set the course for each member of the Westaway clan in the years that follow. Kip’s mother, his brother Francis and, eventually, Kip’s wife Annabel and their daughters and grandson: all find their own turning points, their triumphs and catastrophes, in days to come.
But at the heart of all their stories is Kip, and at the centre of Kip’s fifteen-year-old heart is his adored sister Connie. They hold the threads that will weave a family.
In Nine Days Toni Jordan has harnessed all the spiky wit, compassion and lust for life that drew readers in droves to Addition and Fall Girl. Ambitious in scope and structure, triumphantly realised, this is a novel about one family and every family. It is about dreams and fights and sacrifices. And finally, of course, it is—as it must be—about love.
Grace Lisa Vandenburg counts. The letters in her name (19). The steps she takes every morning to the local café (920); the number of poppy seeds on her slice of orange cake, which dictates the number of bites she’ll take to finish it. Grace counts everything, because numbers hold the world together. And she needs to keep an eye on how they’re doing.
Seamus Joseph O'Reilly (also a 19, with the sexiest hands Grace has ever seen) thinks she might be better off without the counting. If she could hold down a job, say. Or open her kitchen cupboards without conductng an inventory, or make a sandwich containing an unknown number of sprouts.
Grace’s problem is that Seamus doesn’t count.
Her other problem is…he does.
Addition is a fabulous debut novel. Grace is witty, flirtatious and headstrong. She’s not a bit sentimental but even so, she may be about to lose track of the number of ways she can fall in love.