The Reader by Bernhard Schlink

Stunningly written, this best seller centres around a terrible secret...For 15-year-old Michael Berg, a chance meeting with an older woman Hanna, leads to a passionate, clandestine love affair that leaves Michael both euphoric and confused. Years later, as a law student observing a trial in Germany, Michael is shocked to realise that the person in the dock is Hanna. Much about her behaviour during the trial does not make sense. But then suddenly and terribly, it does – Hanna is not only obliged to answer for a horrible crime, she is also desperately concealing an even deeper secret. Mesmerising.

A thriller, a love story and a deeply moving examination of a German conscience.” Independent Saturday Magazine