New and forthcoming

Diary of an Ordinary Schoolgirl

Margaret Forster

23 February
Results rolling in! Algebra, 6th = 74%. Not bad. Latin = 55% Thrilled! History top = 85% smashing! Geography, disgusting, 2nd = 67%.

In 1954 in Carlisle lived an ordinary 15-year-old schoolgirl called Margaret. She would go on to become an acclaimed writer, the author of the novels Georgy Girl and Diary of an Ordinary Woman as well as biographies and memoirs. But this is her diary from that year; her life. Hers might be a lost world, but her daily observations bring it back in vivid, irresistible detail.

7 May
Wonderful feat accomplished yesterday by Roger Bannister! At last, the 4 minute mile. Glad an Englishman got it before anyone else.

24 July
Bought a pair of shorts – white, very short with two pockets. Super but rather daring!

2 September
Mum’s coming back on Saturday. Miss her every minute! I'll never marry and have a family -- housekeeping for two for a week is bad enough -- but for life!

George I (Penguin Monarchs)

Tim Blanning (and others)

George I was not the most charismatic of the Hanoverian monarchs to have reigned in England but he was probably the most important. He was certainly the luckiest.

Born the youngest son of a landless German duke, he was taken by repeated strokes of good fortune to become, first the ruler of a major state in the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation and then the sovereign of three kingdoms (England, Ireland and Scotland).

Tim Blanning's incisive short biography examines George's life and career as a German prince, and as King. Fifty-four years old when he arrived in London in 1714, he was a battle-hardened veteran, who put his long experience and deep knowledge of international affairs to good use in promoting the interests of both Hanover and Great Britain. When he died, his legacy was order and prosperity at home and power and prestige abroad. Disagreeable he may have been to many, but he was also tough, determined and effective, at a time when other European thrones had started to crumble.

James I (Penguin Monarchs)

Thomas Cogswell

James's reign marked one of the rare breaks in England's monarchy. Already James VI of Scotland, he rode south on Elizabeth I's death to become James I of England and Ireland, uniting the British Isles for the first time and founding the Stuart dynasty which would, with several lurches, reign for over a century. His descendant still occupies the throne.

Thomas Cogswell's dramatic new biography brings James to life as a complex, learned, curious man and great survivor, one who drastically changed court life in London and presided over the Authorized Version of the Bible and the establishment of English settlements across the globe. Although he failed to unite England and Scotland, he insisted that ambassadors acknowledge him as King of Great Britain, and that vessels from both countries display a version of the current Union Flag.

Cogswell tells the story of James's personal life and private passions as much as his public achievements. James was often accused of being too informal and insufficiently regal - but when his son, Charles I, decided to redress these criticisms in his own reign he was destroyed. This is a vivid portrait of an often underappreciated monarch.

Cnut (Penguin Monarchs)

Ryan Lavelle

Cnut, or Canute, is one of the great 'what ifs' of English history. The Dane who became King of England after a long period of Viking attacks and settlement, his reign could have permanently shifted eleventh-century England's rule to Scandinavia. Stretching his authority across the North Sea to become king of Denmark and Norway, and with close links to Ireland and an overlordship of Scotland, this formidable figure created a Viking Empire at least as plausible as the Anglo-Norman Empire that would emerge in 1066.

Ryan Lavelle's illuminating book cuts through myths and misconceptions to explore this fascinating and powerful man in detail. Cnut is most popularly known now for the story of the king who tried to command the waves, relegated to a bit part in the medieval story, but as this biography shows, he was a conqueror, political player, law maker and empire builder on the grandest scale, one whose reign tells us much about the contingent nature of history.

Simon Wiesenthal

Tom Segev

Simon Wiesenthal was the legendary 'Nazi hunter', a Holocaust survivor who dedicated his life to the punishment of Nazi criminals. A hero in the eyes of many, he was also attacked for his unrelenting pursuit of the past, when others preferred to forget.

For this definitive biography, Tom Segev has obtained access to Wiesenthal's hundreds of thousands of private papers and to sixteen archives, including records of the U.S., Israeli, Polish and East German secret services. Segev is able to reveal the intriguing secrets of Wiesenthal's life, including his stunning role in the capture of Adolf Eichmann, his controversial investigative techniques, his unlikely friendships with Kurt Waldheim and Albert Speer, and the nature of his rivalry with Elie Wiesel.

Tom Segev has written a brilliant character study of a 'hunter' who was driven by his own memories to ensure that the destruction of European Jewry never be forgotten.

An Autobiography

Edwin Muir

Orkney at the turn of the century was a quiet place; a place of lichen-spotted stones and gleaming seas where Edwin Muir listened to family tales of wrecks and witches and distant wars – little imagining that he was to become one of Scotland’s great men of letters. But at the age of fourteen he was flung from this magic isle into the slums, offices and factories of Glasgow to endure such misery that he could not write of it, even after many years, without grief and anger. Escape came through his socialism, his love for Willa and his writing, leading him south to join the wandering intelligentsia of Bloomsbury and Europe as teacher, poet and critic.

This renowned autobiography lets us share both the beauty of Edwin Muir’s childhood and the hardship of his youth, carrying us with him on his journey to fame. With its gentle, lyrical prose and its tolerant openness to change, it is, unmistakably, the work of a writer of genius.

Blood Ties

Niamh O'Connor

Husband against wife ...
Wife against husband ...
Discover what happens when the bonds of family break ...

Find out more about the gruesome case of the so-called 'Scissor Sisters', whose bloody slaughter of their mother's lover ended with an unsolved mystery as to the final resting place of the victim's head - see the only interview with killer Charlotte Mulhall since she entered prison. .

Read the most up-to-date account of the murder of mother-of-two Rachel O'Reilly, including her husband's latest appeal.

And get the full story behind the sensational case of Sharon Collins and the 'Lying Eyes' hitman-for-hire scandal.

As a leading crime reporter for the Sunday World, Niamh O'Connor has interviewed killers, has sat in court as justice was done, and spoken to the condemned in prison to give us the inside stories on three of Ireland's most notorious murder cases.

Carrington's Letters

Dora Carrington (and others)

‘Your letters are a great pleasure. I lap them down with breakfast and they do me more good than tonics, blood capsules or iron jelloids’ Lytton Strachey

Dora Carrington was considered an outsider to Bloomsbury, but she lived right at its heart. Known only by her surname, she was the star of her year at the Slade School of Fine Art, but never achieved the fame her early career promised. For over a decade she was the companion of homosexual writer Lytton Strachey, and killed herself, stricken without him, when he died in 1932. She was also a prolific and exuberant correspondent.

Carrington was not consciously a pioneer or a feminist, but in her determination to live life according to her own nature – especially in relation to her work, her passionate friendships and her fluid attitude to sex, gender and sexuality – she fought battles that remain familiar and urgent today. She was friends with the greatest minds of the day and her correspondence stars a roster of fascinating characters – Virginia Woolf, Vanessa Bell, Rosamund Lehmann, Maynard Keynes to name but a few.

Carrington’s Letters introduces the maverick artist and compelling personality to a new generation for the first time with fresh correspondence never before published. Unmediated, passionate, startlingly honest and very playful, reading Carrington’s letters is like having her whisper in your ear and embrace you gleefully.

Avedon

Norma Stevens (and others)

Richard Avedon was arguably the world’s most famous photographer – as artistically influential as he was commercially successful. Over six richly productive decades, he created landmark advertising campaigns, iconic fashion photographs (as the star photographer for Harper’s Bazaar and then Vogue), groundbreaking books and unforgettable portraits of everyone who was anyone. He also went on the road to find and photograph remarkable uncelebrated faces, with an eye toward constructing a grand composite picture of America.

Avedon dazzled even his most dazzling subjects. He possessed a mystique so unique it was itself a kind of genius – everyone fell under his spell. But the Richard Avedon the world saw was perhaps his greatest creation: he relentlessly curated his reputation and controlled his image, managing to remain, for all his exposure, among the most private of celebrities.

No one knew him better than Norma Stevens, who for thirty years was his business partner and closest confidant. In Avedon: Something Personal – equal parts memoir, biography and oral history, including an intimate portrait of the legendary Avedon studio – Stevens and co-author Steven M. L. Aronson masterfully trace Avedon’s life from his birth to his death, in 2004, at the age of eighty-one, while at work in Texas for The New Yorker (whose first-ever staff photographer he had become in 1992). The story of his two failed marriages and the love affairs he kept hidden – Avedon was a man haunted by guilt – is told here for the first time.

The book contains startlingly candid reminiscences by Mike Nichols, Calvin Klein, Claude Picasso, Renata Adler, Brooke Shields, David Remnick, Naomi Campbell, Twyla Tharp, Jerry Hall, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Bruce Weber, Cindy Crawford, Donatella Versace, Jann Wenner and Isabella Rossellini, among dozens of others.

Avedon: Something Personal is the confiding, compelling full story of a man who for half a century was an enormous influence on both high and popular culture, on both fashion and art – to this day he remains the only artist to have had not one but two retrospectives at the Metropolitan Museum of Art during his lifetime. Not unlike Richard Avedon’s own defining portraits, the book delivers the person beneath the surface, with all his contradictions and complexities, and in all his touching humanity.

The Chapel Is On Fire

Michael Levey

In this evocative memoir Michael Levey recreates a between-the-wars English childhood outwardly ordinary and undramatic, but inwardly rich, stirring, sometimes bewildering, and altogether far from typical, not least in its pervasive Catholic ethos.An only child, intensely self-aware, devout, yet questioning, as well as imaginative, drawn to Shakespeare and the theatre, and to all things visual, he grew up in Leigh-on-Sea on the Essex coast. He attended a succession of Catholic schools, before joining the Army at the very end of the War. Notably entertaining is his account of service life, spent partly in Egypt, as is the final chapter, which finds him arriving at the National Gallery in London, to begin a career that would culminate in his being appointed Director.With its precise evocation of a child's relationship with the world around him and with his parents - a couple united in reticent affection and intelligence, but totally opposed in temperament - The Chapel is on Fire will surely become a classic in the literature of childhood.

Klopp

Raphael Honigstein

Jürgen Klopp was confirmed as manager of Liverpool FC in October 2015 to a rapturous reception. His super-sized personality and all-or-nothing style of football and management made him the perfect choice to pump up the volume at Anfield and lift Liverpool out of a slump.

The appointment sparked hysteria in the city with fans and club officials delighted to get the coach they’d long admired from afar and eager to see the impact he would have on the club and the Premier League.

Klopp is the manager to turn players into winners, to get that little bit more from them and transform teams like mid-table Borussia Dortmund into title winners and one of Europe’s most admired sides in just two seasons. He’s authentic, approachable and funny, charming media and fans alike. He’s also merciless and exceptionally driven, his quick temper bubbling away barely under the surface.

Expectations have been high and even when results haven’t gone their way, Liverpool’s exciting football and Klopp’s pitch-side passion have enthralled, culminating in a triumphant return to Champions League football in 2017/18.

Renowned football correspondent on both the German and English games, Raphael Honigstein tells the definitive story of Klopp’s career, transformative footballing genius and how he is bringing the noise to Anfield.

Give Work

Leila Janah

Charity is not the answer. Work is. Leila Janah, social entrepreneur and founder of
Samasource, is shaping the future of business: give work and access to income,
and empower the world's most destitute citizens with the resources to change their
lives forever.

When asked if they'd rather receive aid or work, the world's poorest people
choose work every time. According to Leila Janah, giving dignified, steady,
fair-wage work is the most effective way to eradicate poverty. Samasource, a
nonprofit she founded with the express purpose of outsourcing work from the
tech industry to the bottom billions, has provided over $10 million in direct
income to tens of thousands of people the world had written off, changing the
trajectory of their lives for the better. Janah and her team go into the world's
poorest communities--from the refugee camps of Kenya to rural Arkansas to the
blighted neighborhoods of California--and train people to do digital work from
companies like Google, Walmart, and Microsoft.

Picking up where Dambisa Moyo's Dead Aid leaves off, Give Work debunks
traditional and cutting edge aid models and literature--and then, critically, offers
solutions. Based on Janah's firsthand experience, from a school for the blind in
Ghana to the World Bank, she has tested various Give Work business models in all
corners of the world, offering a blueprint to change it for good. A
Harvard-educated former management consultant, Janah shares her
entrepreneurial journey as well as the poignant stories of thousands who have
benefited from Samasource's work.

We can end extreme poverty. And in Give Work, Leila Janah shows readers that
the best way is to give people economic agency through work. Give work and you
give the poorest people on the planet a chance at happiness. Give work, and you
give people the freedom to choose how to develop their own communities. Give
work, and you create infinite possibilities.

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