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August 1939. On her summer break from her studies at the Royal Academy of Music, the exquisitely talented young South African pianist, Olda Mehr, and her parents, leave London to visit relatives in Eastern Europe. A dreamy holiday descends into nightmare when Germany invades Poland, and the Mehrs find themselves, as Jews, caught up in Hitler's Holocaust. For Olda, Gestapo torture and the threat of the gas chamber are relieved by letters from her boyfriend, the artist-musician-doctor, Bennie Hermer, now a captain in the South African army fighting in North Africa. After the Allied disaster at Tobruk, Ben is imprisoned in the dusty, dysentery-ridden POW camp at Benghazi.
This is a novel in the guise of a classic 'whodunit'. It's a story about what makes us human and about how we bring both love and pain to our family relationships. Fossil artist weaves matters of the heart and mind into a compelling story of one family, which traverses time and place, from the East End of London in the early 1900s to great archaeological sites in Africa. Powerful insights into the evolution of the human soul, of our expression of love and war, and of art and language, all emerge in this great story of our constant search for personal understanding. Russ Codron, a well-meaning optician, has dark secrets that not even his wife has been able to dig out of him. But when he is confronted with the mummified remains of his fossil-hunter father, in the pages of the Sunday Times, the chaos of his past crashes into the stability of his present. Needing desperately to find out what really happened to his father, he begins a quest that will lead him to the very core of the biggest scientific fraud of all time - the forgery of the Piltdown Man fossils - and to a discovery what it really means to be able to love.
Two experts tackle the big questions about intimacy and relationships, in this book that aims to change how you think about long-term love
We can't get enough of doomed lovers torn apart by betrayal, taboo, and violence--as long as they stay on the screen or the page. In our own beds we want the happy ending. But all around us, divorce statistics rocket as the hopes of lonely singles plummet. In an age of financial and political uncertainty, love is the only thing left to believe in. So why do we give up on it so easily? Through interlocking stories that are moving, funny, and all too familiar, Joanne Fedler and Graeme Friedman combine their years of personal and professional experience to tackle the toughest of questions around intimacy, such as "How does romance sour into incompatibility? Are men really frightened by intimacy? Why don't women understand that sex is intimacy? Is staying in an unhappy relationship better than being alone? How do we keep passion and intimacy alive with the same person over time"? Finding and keeping intimacy is a massive challenge, but it's not impossible, once you know the secrets.
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