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     Volume 4 Issue 2 | July 2, 2004 |


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Latest Best Sellers: Fiction

Sanyat Sattar

These are some of the very recent best selling fiction available at book stores in New Market and Nilkhet.


Song of Susannah: The Dark Tower VI
Stephen King
Donald M. Grant/Scribner; June 2004

King's epical Dark Tower hastens to a close, and its penultimate volume is one of the speediest. The gunslingers of Mid-World and other alternate Earths have defeated The Wolves of the Calla (2003), but lost one of their number. Susannah Dean, nee Odetta Holmes, lacking her lower legs after a minion of the Satan of Mid-World, the Crimson King, pushed her in front of a subway train, and whose personality is sometimes split between black bourgeois Odetta and viciously paranoiac Detta Walker, has been taken over by the spirit Mia to be the body in which Mia will gestate a boy who will eventually kill head gunslinger Roland. Each chapter--called a stanza and ending with two songlike quatrains advances one subset of gunslingers' progress. King keeps us on tenterhooks throughout and leaves us there. Before quite departing, he tacks on a clever coda about the gradual creation of the Dark Tower, but in which world? The series concludes with The Dark Tower that will come in September.

The Role of Four
Ian Caldwell & Dustin Thomason
Dial Press; May 2004

The Da Vinci Code started the ball rolling, but these days you can hardly pick up a thriller that doesn't involve codes lurking in ancient literature. Tom is a senior at Princeton, torn between solitary scholarship and engagement with the world. His father sacrificed his life attempting to decipher the incredible secret of Hypnerotomachia Poliphili, a rare Renaissance text, and now his brilliant friend, Paul, is on the verge of cracking it himself. Tom resists its pull, but as a half-millennium of history comes to a head in one bloody weekend on campus, he finds himself sucked into its vortex anyway. The authors, best friends since childhood, have made an impressive debut, a coming-of-age novel in the guise of a thriller, packed with history (real and invented) and intellectual excitement.

The Heart is a Lonely Hunter
Carson McCullers
Houghton Mifflin Co; April 2004

With the publication of her first novel, The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, Carson McCullers, all of 23, became a literary sensation. With its profound sense of moral isolation and its compassionate glimpses into its characters' inner lives, the novel is considered McCullers' finest work, an enduring masterpiece first published by Houghton Mifflin in 1940. At its centre is the deaf-mute John Singer, who becomes the confidant for all various types of misfits in a Georgia mill town during the 1930s. Each one yearns for escape from small town life. When Singer's mute companion goes insane, Singer moves into the Kelly house, where Mick Kelly, the book's heroine (and loosely based on McCullers), finds solace in her music. Wonderfully attune to the spiritual isolation that underlies the human condition, and with a deft sense for racial tensions in the South, McCullers spins a haunting, unforgettable story that gives voice to the rejected, the forgotten, and the mistreated -- and, through Mick Kelly, gives voice to the quiet, intensely personal search for beauty.






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