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Whistles Book Club: 6 Classics To Read Now

Now more than ever, we’re seeking fresh inspiration for our reading lists. Here we have rounded up the classic titles that will keep you engaged – and there’s something for everyone.

The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton
 
It is 1866, and Walter Moody has come to make his fortune upon the New Zealand goldfields. On arrival, he stumbles across a tense gathering of twelve local men, who have met in secret to discuss a series of unsolved crimes. A wealthy man has vanished, a woman has tried to end her life and an enormous fortune has been discovered in the home of a luckless drunk. Moody is drawn into the mystery: a network of fates and fortunes that is as complex and exquisitely patterned as the night sky.

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgdon Burnett
 
“People never like me and I never like people,” Mary thought. When Mary Lennox is sent to Misselthwaite Manor to live with her uncle, everybody says she is the most disagreeable-looking child ever seen. It is true, too. Mary is pale, spoilt and quite contrary. But she is also terribly lonely. Then one day she hears about a garden in the grounds of the Manor that has been kept locked and hidden for years. And when a friendly robin helps Mary find the key, she discovers the most magical place anyone could imagine.

Camera Lucida by Roland Barthes
 
Examining the themes of presence and absence, the relationship between photography and theatre, history and death, these ‘reflections on photography’ begin as an investigation into the nature of photographs. Then, as Barthes contemplates a photograph of his mother as a child, the book becomes an exposition of his own mind.

Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult
 
When a newborn baby dies after a routine hospital procedure, there is no doubt about who will be held responsible: the nurse who had been banned from looking after him by his father. What the nurse, her lawyer and the father of the child cannot know is how this death will irrevocably change all of their lives, in ways both expected and not.

Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell
 
Six interlocking lives – one amazing adventure. In a narrative that circles the globe and reaches from the 19th century to a post-apocalyptic future, Cloud Atlas erases the boundaries of time, genre and language to offer an enthralling vision of humanity’s will to power, and where it will lead us.

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
 
Sixteen-year-old Starr lives in two worlds: the poor neighbourhood where she was born and raised and her posh high school in the suburbs. The uneasy balance between them is shattered when Starr is the only witness to the fatal shooting of her unarmed best friend, Khalil, by a police officer. Now what Starr says could destroy her community. It could also get her killed. Inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement, this is a powerful and gripping novel about one girl’s struggle for justice.

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