this family of things

On his way back up from the yard Bird had seen something white and round – a girl who had curled herself into a ball. Lifting her was like retrieving a ball of newspaper from out of the grass or an empty crisp bag that someone had flung over the ditch. She seemed to lack the bones and meat and muscle of real people. She felt as if she was filled with feathers.

On the day Midge Connors comes hurtling into Bird Keegan’s life, she flings open his small, quiet world. He and his two sisters, Olive and Margaret, have lived in the same isolated community all their lives, each one more alone than the others can know. 

Taking in damaged, sharp-edged Midge, Bird invites the scorn of his neighbours and siblings. And as they slowly mend each other, family bonds – and the tie of the land – begin to weigh down on their tentative relationship. Can it survive the misunderstandings, contempt and violence of others?

A poignant and powerful study of the emotional lives of three siblings and the girl who breaks through their solitude.

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Little Beauty

An unforgettable story about one woman’s struggle to do the best for her child

1975: Laura Quinn has spent her life on the remote and beautiful Inis Miol Mor - Whale Island- off the west coast of Ireland. After the death of her parents, and faced with the continuing reluctance of her lover, Martin, to marry her, she realizes she needs to leave the island for her life really to begin.

She accepts a job as a housekeeper with a wealthy couple on the mainland. But a year later, Laura is back, and this time she is not alone. She has at last found the love of her life: a baby son named Matthew. But what sort of life can an unmarried mother have on a remote Irish island in the 1970s? In this complex situation is revealed a picture of a tightly knit community where Laura inevitably comes under pressure to conform to the rules of society.

At times humorous and ultimately heart-breaking, Alison Jameson’s Little Beauty is a brilliant portrayal of love, motherhood and sacrifice that will mesmerize readers and linger long in the mind.

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Under My Skin

Hope and Larry marry on a whim. They are twenty-two and crazy for each other. What Larry doesn’t know is that behind her bohemian spirit and off-beat humour, Hope hides a secret. What Hope doesn’t know is that secrets tear people apart…

The only person Hope confides in is New Yorker Matilda, an internet friend who says the right things and Hope has grown to trust. After she and Larry break up, Hope knows Matilda will be there for her no matter what.

Hope never really gives up on Larry and when she hears he has disappeared in New York, she drops everything and goes to look for him. And, despairing at ever finding him, she turns to Matilda.

But Matilda online and Matilda in real life are two very different people. And Hope is about to find out that what you hide about yourself - from friends and from lovers - can have unforeseen consequences ...

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This Man and Me

Until her French father walks out of her life at twelve Helen Wilton is Hélène Fournier. Apart from her name, the plucky, smart and affectionate young girl also loses an indefinable part of her essence.

Helen grows up to become a mass of intriguing contradictions: as warm-hearted as she is sharp-witted, as steadfast in her friendships as she is eclectic in her loves, as worldly and stylish as she is bookish and academic. And when she gets tripped up by the contradictions—or by the absurd and confusing vagaries of love—Helen picks herself up and gets on with it because she’s too much of a one-off to wait around to be rescued.

Maybe she’ll never stop having to pick herself up. Or maybe she’ll realize that rediscovering the inner Hélène and facing the loss of her father are the keys to her future ... and to finding real love.

In this stunning debut novel Alison Jameson has created a captivating heroine and written a wonderfully witty, tender, knowing and truly original story of modern love.

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