A GUARDIAN BOOK OF THE YEAR
'Gnomon is an extraordinary novel, and one I can’t stop thinking about some weeks after I read it. It is deeply troubling, magnificently strange, and an exhilarating read.' Emily St. John Mandel, author of Station Eleven
‘The best thing he’s ever written … It is an astonishing piece of construction, complex and witty … It is a magnificent achievement … He’s never written a bad book, but this is the one that’ll see him mentioned in the same breath as William Gibson and David Mitchell … This book seriously just destroyed me with joy.’ Warren Ellis
‘Nick Harkaway: bonkers, brilliant and hilarious … Effervescent, clever and entirely fantastic.’ Sunday Times
‘[Harkaway] is the missing, but somehow logical, link between David Mitchell and Terry Pratchett.’ Independent
Near-future Britain is not just a nation under surveillance but one built on it: a radical experiment in personal transparency and ambient direct democracy. Every action is seen, every word is recorded.
Diana Hunter is a refusenik, a has-been cult novelist who lives in a house with its own Faraday cage: no electronic signals can enter or leave. She runs a lending library and conducts business by barter. She is off the grid in a society where the grid is everything. Denounced, arrested and interrogated by a machine that reads your life history from your brain, she dies in custody.
Mielikki Neith is the investigator charged with discovering how this tragedy occurred. Neith is Hunter’s opposite. She is a woman in her prime, a stalwart advocate of the System. It is the most democratic of governments, and Neith will protect it with her life.
When Neith opens the record of the interrogation, she finds not Hunter’s mind but four others, none of which can possibly be there: the banker Constantine Kyriakos, pursued by a ghostly shark that eats corporations; the alchemist Athenais Karthagonensis, jilted lover of St Augustine of Hippo and mother to his dead son, kidnapped and required to perform a miracle; Berihun Bekele, artist and grandfather, who must escape an arson fire by walking through walls – if only he can remember how; and Gnomon, a sociopathic human intelligence from a distant future, falling backwards in time to conduct four assassinations.
Aided – or perhaps opposed – by the pale and paradoxical Regno Lönnrot, Neith must work her way through the puzzles of her case and find the meaning of these impossible lives. Hunter has left her a message, but is it one she should heed, or a lie to lead her into catastrophe? And as the stories combine and the secrets and encryptions of Gnomon are revealed, the question becomes the most fundamental of all: who will live, and who will die?
Time Trips is a unique and beautifully illustrated collection of Doctor Who adventures from bestselling and award-winning writers including Joanne Harris, Trudi Canavan, Nick Harkaway, A.L. Kennedy and more. Taking you from ancient Alexandria to nameless planets in the far future, these tales are at turns funny, frightening, moving and thought-provoking – short stories that are bigger on the inside.
Time Trips includes:
The Anti-Hero (featuring the Second Doctor) by Stella Duffy
Salt of the Earth (featuring the Third Doctor) by Trudi Canavan
The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Time Traveller (featuring the Third Doctor) by Joanne Harris
The Death Pit (featuring the Fourth Doctor) by A.L. Kennedy
A Handful of Stardust (featuring the Sixth Doctor) by Jake Arnott
The Bog Warrior (featuring the Tenth Doctor) by Cecelia Ahern
Keeping Up with the Joneses (featuring the Tenth Doctor) by Nick Harkaway
Into the Nowhere (featuring the Eleventh Doctor) by Jenny T. Colgan
'Gloriously exuberant and entertaining.' Guardian
'A funny, moving and thought-provoking tale ... It's brilliant.' Independent on Sunday
Sergeant Lester Ferris is a good man in need of a rest. He’s spent a lot of his life being shot at. He has no family, he’s nearly forty, burned out and about to be retired.
The island of Mancreu is the perfect place for Lester to serve out his time – and the perfect place for shady business, too, hence the Black Fleet of illicit ships lurking in the bay: listening stations, money laundering operations, drug factories and deniable torture centres. None of which should be a problem, because Lester’s brief is to turn a blind eye.
But Lester has made a friend: a brilliant, internet-addled street kid with a comic-book fixation who might, Lester hopes, become an adopted son. As Mancreu’s small society tumbles into violence, the boy needs Lester to be more than just an observer. He needs him to be a hero.
From the acclaimed author of The Gone-Away World - an adventure story, a war story, and a love story, all wound into one brilliant narrative that runs like clockwork.
Shortlisted for the Arthur C. Clarke Award for Science Fiction Literature.
Joe Spork, son of the infamous criminal Mathew ‘Tommy Gun’ Spork just wants a quiet life, repairing clockwork in a wet, unknown bit of London.
Edie Banister, former superspy, lives quietly and wishes she didn’t. She’s nearly ninety and the things she fought to save don’t seem to exist anymore. She's beginning to wonder if they ever did.
When Joe is asked to fix one particularly unusual device, his life is suddenly upended. The client? Unknown. The device? A 1950s doomsday machine. Having triggered it, Joe now faces the wrath of both the government and a diabolical South Asian dictator, Edie’s old arch-nemesis. Joe’s once-quiet world is now populated with mad monks, psychopathic serial killers, scientific geniuses and threats to the future of conscious life in the universe. The only way he can survive, is to muster the courage to fight, help Edie complete a mission she gave up years ago, and pick up his father’s old gun...
From the author of The Gone-Away World - an exhilarating espionage murder-mystery.
There has been a strange death in the quiet village of Shrewton: old Donny Caspian has lost his head. In the Copper Kettle tea rooms, Tom Rice, a junior nobody from the Treasury, puzzles over the details of the case. He has been sent by his superiors to oversee the investigation, but is he supposed to help or hinder? At the next table, octogenarian superspy Edie Banister nibbles a slice of cake and struggles not to become Miss Marple. But what is the connection between the two? Who killed Donny Caspian, and why?
Taking in Rice's present and Edie's daring past, from duels on shipboard to death in back alleys, 'Edie Investigates' is a superb short story from the incomparable Nick Harkaway.
Also included with this short, the first chapter of Nick Harkaway's long-awaited new novel Angelmaker.
The Jorgmund Pipe is the backbone of the world, and it's on fire. Gonzo Lubitsch, professional hero and troubleshooter, is hired to put it out - but there's more to the fire, and the Pipe itself, than meets the eye. The job will take Gonzo and his best friend, our narrator, back to their own beginnings and into the dark heart of the Jorgmund Company itself.
Equal parts raucous adventure, comic odyssey and Romantic Epic, The Gone-Away World is a story of - among other things - love and loss; of ninjas, pirates, politics; of curious heroism in strange and dangerous places; and of a friendship stretched beyond its limits. But it also the story of a world, not unlike our own, in desperate need of heroes - however unlikely they may seem.
Cecelia Ahern (Author)
Before embarking on her writing career, Cecelia Ahern completed a degree in journalism and media studies. Her first novel, PS, I Love You was one of the biggest-selling debut novels of 2004 and a number one bestseller. Her successive bestselling novels are Where Rainbows End, If You Could See Me Now, A Place Called Here, Thanks for the Memories, The Gift, The Book of Tomorrow, The Time of My Life, One Hundred Names, How to Fall in Love and The Year I Met You and have collectively sold 23 million copies. PS, I Love You became an International box office success, starring Hilary Swank and Gerard Butler, and Where Rainbows End was adapted to Love, Rosie starring Lily Collins and Sam Claflin. Cecelia has also co-created the hit American television comedy series Samantha Who?
Jake Arnott (Author)
Jake Arnott was born in 1961, and lives in London. His debut novel, The Long Firm, was published in 1999 to huge public and critical acclaim. He Kills Coppers, Truecrime, Johnny Come Home, The Devil’s Paintbrush and The House of Rumour have followed to equal acclaim. Both The Long Firm and He Kills Coppers have been made into widely praised TV dramas.
Trudi Canavan (Author)
Trudi Canavan lives in Melbourne, Australia. She has been making up stories about people and places that don’t exist for as long as she can remember. While working as a freelance illustrator and designer she wrote the bestselling Black Magician Trilogy, which was published in 2001-3 and was named an ‘Evergreen’ by The Bookseller in 2010. The Magician’s Apprentice, a prequel to the trilogy, won the Aurealis Award for Best Fantasy Novel in 2009 and the final of the sequel trilogy, The Traitor Queen, reached #1 on the UK Times Hardback bestseller list in 2011.
Jenny T Colgan (Author)
Jenny T Colgan has written 16 bestselling novels as Jenny Colgan, which have sold over 2.5 million copies worldwide, been translated into 25 languages, and won both the Melissa Nathan Award and Romantic Novel of the Year 2013. Aged 11, she won a national fan competition to meet the Doctor and was mistaken for a boy by Peter Davison.
Stella Duffy (Author)
Stella Duffy has written thirteen novels, over fifty short stories, and ten plays. She has twice won Stonewall Writer of the Year and twice won the CWA Short Story Dagger. She adapted her novel State of Happiness for film with Zentropa/Fiesta, HBO have optioned her Theodora novels for a TV mini-series. She is also a theatre-maker; Associate Artist with Improbable, Artistic Director of Shaky Isles Theatre. Stella is the Co-Director of Fun Palaces, the campaign for wider cultural engagement for all.
Nick Harkaway (Author)
Nick Harkaway was born in Cornwall in 1972. Author of the novels The Gone-Away World, Angelmaker and Tigerman, he lives in London with his wife and two children.
Joanne Harris (Author)
Joanne Harris is one of our best-loved and most versatile novelists. She first appeared on the scene with the bestselling Chocolat (made into an Oscar-nominated film with Juliette Binoche and Johnny Depp), which turned into the sensuous Lansquenet trilogy (with Lollipop Shoes and Peaches for Monsieur le Curé). She has since written acclaimed novels in such diverse genres as fantasy based on Norse myth (Runemarks, Runelight, The Gospel of Loki), and the Malbry cycle of dark psychological thrillers (Gentlemen & Players, Blueeyedboy, and now Different Class).
Born in Barnsley, of an English father and a French mother, she spent fifteen years as a teacher before (somewhat reluctantly) becoming a full-time writer. In 2013, she was awarded an MBE. She lives in Yorkshire, plays bass in a band first formed when she was sixteen, works in a shed in her garden, spends far too much time online and occasionally dreams of faking her own death and going to live in Hawaii.
A.L. Kennedy (Author)
A. L. Kennedy has twice been selected as one of Granta’s Best of Young British Novelists and has won a host of other awards – including the Costa Book of the Year for her novel Day. She lives in London and is a part-time lecturer in creative writing at Warwick University.