Little Fires Everywhere
By Celeste Ng
'I am loving Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng. Maybe my favorite novel I've read this year' John Green, author of The Fault in Our Stars'To say I love this book is an understatement. It's a deep psychological mystery about the power of motherhood, the intensity of teenage love, and the danger of perfection. It moved me to tears' Reese WitherspoonThe brilliant new novel from the author of the New York Times bestseller, Everything I Never Told You. Everyone in Shaker Heights was talking about it that summer: how Isabelle, the last of the Richardson children, had finally gone around the bend and burned the house down. In Shaker Heights, a placid, progressive suburb of Cleveland, everything is meticulously planned - from the layout of the winding roads, to the colours of the houses, to the successful lives its residents will go on to lead. And no one embodies this spirit more than Elena Richardson, whose guiding principle is playing by the rules.Enter Mia Warren - an enigmatic artist and single mother- who arrives in this idyllic bubble with her teenage daughter Pearl, and rents a house from the Richardsons. Soon Mia and Pearl become more than just tenants: all four Richardson children are drawn to the mother-daughter pair. But Mia carries with her a mysterious past, and a disregard for the rules that threatens to upend this carefully ordered community.When old family friends attempt to adopt a Chinese-American baby, a custody battle erupts that dramatically divides the town - and puts Mia and Elena on opposing sides. Suspicious of Mia and her motives, Elena is determined to uncover the secrets in Mia's past. But her obsession will come at an unexpected and devastating cost...
At the End of the Century
By Ruth Prawer Jhabvala
With an introduction by Anita Desai.Over the course of her glittering literary career, Ruth Prawer Jhabvala wrote some of the most wonderful novels of the twentieth century and screenplays to some of the most beloved films - but she was also a master of the short story form. This stunning new collection brings together the jewels in the crown of her writing: it is a showcase of astonishing storytelling power.
The Old Man and the Knee
By Christopher Matthew
Although in his seventies, Christopher Matthew is convinced he is not yet old. No one one has ever stood up for him on a crowded bus or tube. He plays golf and walks the dog. He has all his own teeth, hair, and does not require a hearing aid. He is, in short, enjoying late middle age and is making the best of it while he still can. 'I know it can't last for ever, but while it does, it gives me the chance to look at life in the last lane, as I am now experiencing it, and to consider what might be to come.' Subjects range from what's the point of a grandparent; the perils and pleasures of replacing one's partner with a younger model; and acquiring new interests and hobbies (bridge? ocean cruising? ballet? marathon running?) to the arrival of old age and the last leg of all. How do we know when we are old? Does old age creep up slowly or arrive out of the blue? Will we be able to summon up some half-decent last words and what should they be? Witty, like Oscar Wilde's about the wallpaper, or helpful like the 1st Lord Grimthorpe's 'We are low on marmalade'?
By Charles Allen
COROMANDEL. A name which has been long applied by Europeans to the Northern Tamil Country, or (more comprehensively) to the eastern coast of the Peninsula of India.This is the India highly acclaimed historian Charles Allen visits in this fascinating book. Coromandel journeys south, exploring the less well known, often neglected and very different history and identity of the pre-Aryan Dravidian south. During Allen's exploration of the Indian south he meets local historians, gurus and politicians and with their help uncovers some extraordinary stories about the past. His sweeping narrative takes in the archaeology, religion, linguistics and anthropology of the region - and how these have influenced contemporary politics. Known for his vivid storytelling, for decades Allen has travelled the length and breadth of India, revealing the spirit of the sub-continent through its history and people. In Coromandel, he moves through modern-day India, discovering as much about the present as he does about the past.
A Good Face for Radio
By Eddie Mair
Eddie Mair is, by his own account, one of Britain's most beloved broadcasters.Born in Dundee, Scotland, he has worked in radio all his adult life. From the foothills of commercial radio in his hometown, through the sunlit uplands of the BBC in Scotland, he has reached the peaks of his profession, with BBC network radio in London. And he's never afraid to work a metaphor beyond endurance.In addition he's appeared on most of the BBC's TV channels, including ones that are no longer on TV. He witnessed the handover of Hong Kong and once asked Arnold Schwarzenegger a question - though he takes no responsibility for either.For nearly twenty years he has been at the helm of Radio 4's PM: a nightly news round up that means Eddie works for just one hour a day, giving him plenty time to knock together these diaries.Whether he's interviewing politicians, getting people to share their personal experiences, or just imparting his favourite zesty chicken recipes, Eddie is never happier than when he is at the microphone. Except when he is at the microphone with a large martini.In truth, his neediness is an irritation to everyone who knows him and if you buy this book he might get out of their hair.Eddie's other work, as a humanitarian and tireless, secret worker for charity is not mentioned in these pages.
David Sedaris Diaries: A Visual Compendium
By David Sedaris
Hear Me Out
By Armando Iannucci
A celebration of music from the creator of Alan Partridge, The Thick of It, Veep and The Death of Stalin.All my days, I've felt pressurized by the anonymous Keepers of the Cool who tell us what we should be wearing this year, what digital boxsets we should bunker ourselves in to enjoy, what amazing app is the only one we should be shrieking emotions at our recently acquired friends with. Thankfully, I have the one consolation that if I don't quite fit into all of this, everyone else probably feels the same way. So, I say defiantly, I get more moved and excited by classical music than by any other musical genre. I believe that it is there for us all, inviting us to reach out and touch it.In Hear Me Out Armando Iannucci brilliantly conveys the joy of his musical exploration, each discovery suggesting a fresh direction of travel, another piece, another composer, another time.
By Thomas Mullen
'A brilliant blending of crime, mystery, and American history. Terrific entertainment' Stephen King on DarktownLightning Men follows the multi-award-nominated, highly acclaimed crime debut Darktown into a city on the brink of huge and violent change - and full of secrets. Atlanta, 1950. In a divided city, crime comes home. White officer Denny Rakestraw joins Lucius Boggs and Tommy Smith from Atlanta's Negro Officer precinct to face the Klan, gangs and family warfare in their rapidly changing city.Black families - including Smith's sister and brother-in-law - are moving into Rake's formerly all-white neighbourhood, leading Rake's brother-in-law, a proud Klansman, to launch a scheme to 'save' their streets. When those efforts leave a man dead, Rake is forced to choose between loyalty to family or the law. Meanwhile, Boggs has outraged his preacher father by courting a domestic, whose dangerous ex-boyfriend is then released from prison. As Boggs, Smith, and their all-black precinct contend with violent drug dealers fighting for turf in new territory, their personal dramas draw them closer to the fires that threaten to consume Atlanta once again. Praise for Thomas Mullen 'Magnificent and shocking' Sunday Times'Written with a ferocious passion that'll knock the wind out of you' New York Times'Superb'Ken Follet
By Roy & Lesley Adkins
For over three and a half years, from 1779 to 1783, the tiny territory of Gibraltar was besieged and blockaded, on land and at sea, by the overwhelming forces of Spain and France. It became the longest siege in British history, and the obsession with saving Gibraltar was blamed for the loss of the American colonies in the War of Independence. Located between the Mediterranean and Atlantic, on the very edge of Europe, Gibraltar was a place of varied nationalities, languages, religions and social classes. During the siege, thousands of soldiers, civilians and their families withstood terrifying bombardments, starvation and diseases. Very ordinary people lived through extraordinary events, from shipwrecks and naval battles to an attempted invasion of England and a daring sortie out of Gibraltar into Spain. Deadly innovations included red-hot shot, shrapnel shells and a barrage from immense floating batteries.This is military and social history at its best, a story of soldiers, sailors and civilians, with royalty and rank-and-file, workmen and engineers, priests, prisoners-of-war, spies and surgeons, all caught up in a struggle for a fortress located on little more than two square miles of awe-inspiring rock. Gibraltar: The Greatest Siege in British History is an epic page-turner, rich in dramatic human detail - a tale of courage, endurance, intrigue, desperation, greed and humanity. The everyday experiences of all those involved are brought vividly to life with eyewitness accounts and expert research.
The House of Unexpected Sisters
By Alexander McCall Smith
By Mike Brearley
LONGLISTED FOR THE WILLIAM HILL SPORTS BOOK OF THE YEARWhat is being on form? How does it relate to feeling 'in the zone'?Are these states in the lap of the gods, a matter of which side of the bed we got out of that morning? Or is there anything we can do to make their arrival more likely?In this fascinating book, former England cricket captain and psychoanalyst Mike Brearley examines many of the elements of being in and out of form across a number of different disciplines - not only in cricket and psychoanalysis but also in finance, music, philosophy, medicine, teaching, tree surgery and drama. Drawing on his own experiences, both on and off the field, Brearley describes various states of mind, from the conscious determination involved in training and practice through to that almost spiritual state of being 'inspired'. To achieve any level of form requires us to be able to hold different tensions in mind, and to tolerate both ambivalence and ambiguity. Neither form nor creativity can be guaranteed - Brearley illustrates in depth the frequent ways we lose form - though understanding, in a full sense, enables us to make drastic loss of form less likely.Perceptive and engaging, On Form is an exploration of the benefits and risks of being on form and can help us all reflect on the range of conditions that block or liberate us.PRAISE FOR THE ART OF CAPTAINCY:'A work of real substance, valued for its practicality and its precision as well as its balanced humanity and insight' Hilary Mantel'The best book on captaincy, written by an expert' Mike Atherton'A subtle, wise book' Ed Smith'The man-management skills demonstrated by Brearley's handling of Ian Botham remain an inspiration' Nasser Hussain'The Art of Captaincy was, and is, an outstanding book. I would add only three words which I always bear in mind. Keep it simple' Richie Benaud
The Influential Mind
By Tali Sharot
A cutting-edge, research-based inquiry into how we influence those around us, and how understanding the brain can help us change minds for the better.Part of our daily job as humans is to influence others; we teach our children, guide our patients, advise our clients, help our friends and inform our online followers. We do this because we each have unique experiences and knowledge that others may not. But how good are we at this role? It turns out we systematically fall back on suboptimal habits when trying to change other's beliefs and behaviors. Many of these instincts-from trying to scare people into action, to insisting the other is wrong or attempting to exert control-are ineffective, because they are incompatible with how the mind operates. The principle idea of this book is that an attempt to change will be successful if it is well-matched with the core elements that govern how our brain works. Sharot unveils the hidden power of influence, good and bad, and enables us to identify instances in which we fall prey to delusions. The book will search deep below the surface-relying on the latest research in neuroscience and psychology-to provide new insight into human behavior.
By Val McDermid
'Murdered people don't kill themselves . . .'A quiet night on a country road. The stillness shattered by a car engulfed in flames, and a burned body discovered in the driver's seat. As the investigation unfolds, DCI Carol Jordan and psychological profiler Tony Hill quickly realise that this is more than just a tragic accident. And so begins the hunt for a truly terrifying killer, someone who believes he is invisible, untraceable and untouchable.As other victims are found to have met the same terrible fate, and with more women at risk, Tony and Carol are drawn into a dark and twisted web of fear and revenge that will force them to question their own ideas of justice . . .Discover the pulse-pounding new novel from the inimitable queen of crime and number one bestseller, Val McDermid, featuring two of the most iconic and unforgettable characters in crime fiction: Tony Hill and Carol Jordan