International Fiction reviews

The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern

Erin Morgenstern’s award-winning debut novel The Night Circus is one of those wonderful books that swallows you whole, rendering the world of a magical carnival in such vivid prose that you can almos…

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In Love with George Eliot by Kathy O’Shaughnessy

I have been stuck at page thirty-nine of Middlemarch for going on four years now. So when the chance to read about being in love with George Eliot arose, I grabbed it in the hope of finding the spark…

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Olive, Again by Elizabeth Strout

In Olive, Again, Elizabeth Strout returns to the familiar territory of Olive Kitteridge, the titular character of her 2008 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel and arguably the author’s most memorable creati…

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Beyond the Sea by Paul Lynch

Bolivar, an experienced, albeit aging, fisherman of meagre means and scant ambition in an unnamed South American seaside location, sets off with the inexperienced, teenaged Hector against conventiona…

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The Topeka School by Ben Lerner

I’ll start out by saying that The Topeka School is one of my favourite novels of the year. I was already a fan, having loved his previous two novels, Leaving the Atocha Station and 10:04. Like these …

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Find Me by André Aciman

If, like me, the final lines of Call Me by Your Name – André Aciman’s swoony summer tale of first love on the Italian Riviera in the 1980s – left you weeping and yearning for more of Elio and Oliver’…

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Body Tourists by Jane Rogers

Mortality, fear of aging and the desire to be young again have always been popular topics for fiction (just think The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde). In Body Tourists by Jane Rogers, which is…

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The Dutch House by Ann Patchett

Ann Patchett is indisputably one of the greatest storytellers of our time and her eighth novel, The Dutch House, is an undeniable joy to read. I recommend settling into this novel. It starts slowly b…

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Imaginary Friend by Stephen Chbosky

Twenty years ago Stephen Chbosky wrote a YA novel called The Perks of Being A Wallflower, which he made into a successful film in 2012. Be fairly warned, Imaginary Friend is not YA. This is horror, a…

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The Eighth Life (For Brilka) by Nino Haratischvili

The Eighth Life is the saga of a Georgian family – its intricate, interconnected lives, its losses, triumphs, sadnesses, and great loves, set against the sweep of Russian history across the twentieth…

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