The Sanatorium by Sarah Pearse

The Sanatorium by Sarah Pearse

Half-hidden by forest and overshadowed by threatening peaks, Le Sommet has always been a sinister place. Long plagued by troubling rumors, the former abandoned sanatorium has since been renovated into a five-star minimalist hotel.

An imposing, isolated getaway spot high up in the Swiss Alps is the last place Elin Warner wants to be. But Elin’s taken time off from her job as a detective, so when her estranged brother, Isaac, and his fiancée, Laure, invite her to celebrate their engagement at the hotel, Elin really has no reason not to accept.

Arriving in the midst of a threatening storm, Elin immediately feels on edge… Read more.

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Sexism
  • Victim blaming discussed
  • Rape recounted
  • Parental abandonment mentioned
  • Depression & psychotic depression
  • Panic attacks, on-page
  • Abortion recounted
  • Infertility mentioned
  • Needles
  • Graphic dead bodies, on-page
  • Emesis mentioned
  • Amputation of fingers, off-page
  • Medical experimentation & inhumane procedures discussed
  • Grief & loss depiction
  • Death of a mother from cancer recounted
  • Death of a mother in a hit-and-run accident mentioned
  • Death of a brother by drowning recounted
  • Death of a colleague by drowning
  • Murder & attempted murder, on-page
  • Drowning & attempted drowning
  • Knife violence & stabbing, on-page
  • Kidnapping, on-page
  • Physical assault
  • Disappearance of a wife
  • Avalanche, on-page
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There There by Tommy Orange

There There by Tommy Orange 

Tommy Orange’s wondrous and shattering novel follows twelve characters from Native communities: all traveling to the Big Oakland Powwow, all connected to one another in ways they may not yet realize. Among them is Jacquie Red Feather, newly sober and trying to make it back to the family she left behind. Dene Oxendene, pulling his life together after his uncle’s death and working at the powwow to honor his memory. Fourteen-year-old Orvil, coming to perform traditional dance for the very first time. Together, this chorus of voices tells of the plight of the urban Native American–grappling with a complex and painful history, with an inheritance of beauty and spirituality, with communion and sacrifice and heroism.

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Racism
  • Rape
  • Domestic violence
  • Alcoholism
  • Substance addiction
  • Gun violence & mass shooting
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House of Leaves by Mark Danielewski

House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski

Years ago, when House of Leaves was first being passed around, it was nothing more than a badly bundled heap of paper, parts of which would occasionally surface on the Internet. No one could have anticipated the small but devoted following this terrifying story would soon command. Starting with an odd assortment of marginalized youth—musicians, tattoo artists, programmers, strippers, environmentalists, and adrenaline junkies—the book eventually made its way into the hands of older generations, who not only found themselves in those strangely arranged pages but also discovered a way back into the lives of their estranged children.

Now, for the first time, this astonishing novel is made available in book form, complete with the original colored words, vertical footnotes, and newly added second and third appendices… Read more.

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Rape
  • Child abuse & neglect
  • Schizophrenia
  • Agoraphobia
  • Claustrophobia
  • Suicide
  • Hospitalisation
  • Gun violence
  • Death of a dog
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Freedom by Jonathan Franzen

Freedom by Jonathan Franzen

Patty and Walter Berglund were the new pioneers of old St. Paul—the gentrifiers, the hands-on parents, the avant-garde of the Whole Foods generation. Patty was the ideal sort of neighbor, who could tell you where to recycle your batteries and how to get the local cops to actually do their job. She was an enviably perfect mother and the wife of Walter’s dreams. Together with Walter—environmental lawyer, commuter cyclist, total family man—she was doing her small part to build a better world.

But now, in the new millennium, the Berglunds have become a mystery. Why has their teenage son moved in with the aggressively Republican family next door? Why has Walter taken a job working with Big Coal? What exactly is Richard Katz—outré rocker and Walter’s college best friend and rival—still doing in the picture? Most of all, what has happened to Patty?

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Sexual assault
  • Cheating
  • Substance addiction
  • Drug use & abuse
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The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce

Meet Harold Fry, recently retired. He lives in a small English village with his wife, Maureen, who seems irritated by almost everything he does, even down to how he butters his toast. Little differentiates one day from the next. Then one morning the mail arrives, and within the stack of quotidian minutiae is a letter addressed to Harold in a shaky scrawl from a woman he hasn’t seen or heard from in twenty years. Queenie Hennessy is in hospice and is writing to say goodbye.

Harold pens a quick reply and, leaving Maureen to her chores, heads to the corner mailbox. But then, as happens in the very best works of fiction, Harold has a chance encounter, one that convinces him that he absolutely must deliver his message to Queenie in person. And thus begins the unlikely pilgrimage. Harold Fry is determined to walk… Read more.

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Domestic abuse
  • Alcoholism
  • Suicide
  • Hospitalisation
  • Terminal illness
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Release by Patrick Ness

Release by Patrick Ness

It’s Saturday, it’s summer and, although he doesn’t know it yet, everything in Adam Thorn’s life is going to fall apart. Relationships will change, he’ll change, but maybe, just maybe, he’ll find freedom in the release.

Time is running out though, because way across town a ghost as risen from the lake. Searching, yearning, she leaves a trail of destruction in her wake…

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Homomisia
  • Victim blaming
  • Sexual assault
  • Substance addiction
  • Drug use & abuse
  • Graphic dismemberment
  • Murder
  • Strangulation
  • Drowning
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The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness

The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness

What if you aren’t the Chosen One? The one who’s supposed to fight the zombies, or the soul-eating ghosts, or whatever the heck this new thing is, with the blue lights and the death?

What if you’re like Mikey? Who just wants to graduate and go to prom and maybe finally work up the courage to ask Henna out before someone goes and blows up the high school. Again.

Because sometimes there are problems bigger than this week’s end of the world, and sometimes you just have to find the extraordinary in your ordinary life.

Even if your best friend is worshipped by mountain lions… 

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Fatmisia
  • Anxiety
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
  • Eating disorder (anorexia)
  • Parent with alcoholism
  • Suicide mentioned
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On Dublin Street by Samantha Young

On Dublin Street by Samantha Young

Four years ago, Jocelyn left her tragic past behind in the States and started over in Scotland, burying her grief, ignoring her demons, and forging ahead without attachments. Her solitary life is working well—until she moves into a new apartment on Dublin Street where she meets a man who shakes her carefully guarded world to its core.

Braden Carmichael is used to getting what he wants, and he’s determined to get Jocelyn into his bed. Knowing how skittish she is about entering a relationship, Braden proposes an arrangement that will satisfy their intense attraction without any strings attached.

But after an intrigued Jocelyn accepts, she realizes that Braden won’t be satisfied with just mind-blowing passion. The stubborn Scotsman is intent on truly knowing her… down to the very soul. 

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Parental abandonment
  • Rape
  • Panic attack
  • Cancer
  • Grief & loss depiction
  • Death of relatives in a car accident
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Run by Kody Keplinger

Run by Kody Keplinger

Bo Dickinson is a girl with a wild reputation, a deadbeat dad, and an alcoholic mom. Everyone in town knows the Dickinsons are a bad lot, but Bo doesn’t care what anyone thinks.

Agnes Atwood has never stayed out past ten p.m., never gone on a date and never broken any of her parents’ overbearing rules. Rules that are meant to protect their legally-blind daughter, but Agnes isn’t quite sure what they are protecting her from.

Despite everything, Bo and Agnes become best friends. But when Bo shows up in the middle of the night, police sirens wailing in the distance, Agnes is faced with the biggest choice she’s ever had to make. Run, or stay?

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Slut shaming
  • Toxic friendships
  • Substance addiction
  • Drug use & abuse
  • Alcohol consumption
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The DUFF by Kody Keplinger

The DUFF: Designated Ugly Fat Friend by Kody Keplinger

Seventeen-year-old Bianca Piper is cynical and loyal, and she doesn’t think she’s the prettiest of her friends by a long shot. She’s also way too smart to fall for the charms of man-slut and slimy school hottie Wesley Rush. In fact, Bianca hates him. And when he nicknames her “the Duff,” she throws her Coke in his face.

But things aren’t so great at home right now, and Bianca is desperate for a distraction. She ends up kissing Wesley. Worse, she likes it. Eager for escape, Bianca throws herself into a closeted enemies-with-benefits relationship with him.

Until it all goes horribly awry. It turns out Wesley isn’t such a bad listener, and his life is pretty screwed up, too. Suddenly Bianca realizes with absolute horror that she’s falling for the guy she thought she hated more than anyone.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Slut shaming
  • Physical child abuse
  • Parent in recovery for alcoholism
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