Looking forward to some amazing reads in 2017? Us too. We asked our team to pick the books they’re most excited about publishing this year. Here’s a round-up of what they chose…
The Bear and the Nightingale
Katherine Arden's enchanting debut novel will transport you to a snow-bound Medieval Russia; a world where magic is real and you should always leave an offering for the Domovoi – or house spirit – who takes care of your household chores. Bear is a fantasy novel in the same way that The Martian was a science fiction novel; Katherine's beautiful writing gives it universal appeal. I've given it to people who would never read fantasy, and every one has loved it.
The One Memory of Flora Banks
This is Emily’s first book for young adults, and it completely swept me up in its atmosphere. As well as being an extremely accomplished and gripping thriller writer, Emily conveys the light and shade of life as a teenager falling in love and coming of age just brilliantly. To pull off a story narrated by a character like Flora – who has amnesia - is a fantastic achievement. I LOVE THIS BOOK.
Ruth, Children’s publishing
Homegoing is the intense and moving story of one family moving through the generations, from the Gold Coast of Africa to present-day America.
Zadie Smith said: “It is a novel I wish I could have read when I was a young woman." I could not have said it better myself! In troubled times, Homegoing shows us how fiction can help us understand ourselves a little more.
The End of Eddy
This is an autobiographical novel about growing up in a poor village in northern France, where half the villagers vote for the Front National. It begins with Eddy, 10 years old and new to school, being spat at - in the face - for being gay. The violence, and his his sense of being different, soon escalate as he desperately tries to fit in. Vivid and often brutal, but also heartfelt and deeply moving, this novel was a huge success in France, sparking debate on class, sexuality and violence. I can’t wait to bring it to English readers.
Into The Water
The Girl on the Train introduced me to Paula Hawkins’ bewitching storytelling. She is forthright in introducing us to her characters – people who are flawed and relatable, the opposite of traditional heroes and heroines – while each thread of plot is unravelled deftly, never giving too much away. And when the twists arrive, she delivers them to great effect. Her next book is about totally new characters, so I can’t wait to meet them and find out what mind traps she has in store for us. I know I’ll have to be careful not to miss my stop whilst reading it on the way to work!
A Gentleman in Moscow
If you’re looking for an absorbing book that pulls you into a different time and place, look no further. Meet Count Rostov, a Russian aristocrat who is placed under house arrest in the Metropol Hotel by the Bolsheviks. The book follows the Count’s life over the next few decades - and the relationships he forms within this enclosed space – set against the backdrop of the rise and fall of the Soviet Union. This book is witty, enlightening and utterly charming – a must-read!
Good Me, Bad Me
The hype about this book has been building since long before its release into to the world, and for good reason. It is chilling, compelling and totally unique thanks to the distinct voice of the narrator, Millie. The book follows her as she hands her mother – a serial killer – in to the police. We’re exposed to her every thought as she struggles to overcome her past and start a new life. It’s told with passion and genuine insight (the author worked as a children’s mental health nurse), and is a total page-turner.
Nothing But A Circus
The people at the top of the global pecking order always feel terribly out of reach, no matter how much they try to convince us that they’re just like us. Daniel Levin’s Nothing But A Circus brings world leaders back down to earth in a searing exploration of how the powerful achieve and cling onto their influence. This book is funny, unsettling and enraging, all at once.
The January Man
There is nowhere finer than the British countryside, and Christopher Somerville’s writing brings it to life beautifully – the nature, the landscape, the history, the people. But this is so much more than a book of nature writing; Christopher’s own story of his relationship with his father is woven into every page. A father who had seen things that were unfathomable to a son who had never been to war. A father who needed the great outdoors and taught his son to love it as much as he did. I cannot recommend this book highly enough.