877 results 21-40
SHORTLISTED FOR THE WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION 2018
Selin, a tall, highly strung Turkish-American from New Jersey turns up at Harvard and finds herself dangerously overwhelmed by the challenges and possibilities of adulthood. She studies linguistics and literature, and spends a lot of time thinking about what language – and languages – can and cannot do. Along the way she befriends Svetlana, a cosmopolitan Serb, and obsesses over Ivan, a mathematician from Hungary.
Selin ponders profound questions about how culture and language shape who we are, how difficult it is to be a failed writer, and how baffling love is. At once clever and clueless, Batuman’s heroine shows us with perfect hilarity and soulful inquisitiveness just how messy it can be to forge a self.
Ngugi wa Thiong’o’s powerful prison memoir begins half an hour before his release on 12 December 1978. A year earlier, he recalls, armed police arrived at his home and took him to Kenya’s Kamiti Maximum Security Prison. There, Ngugi lives in a block alongside other political prisoners, but he refuses to give in to the humiliation. He decides to write a novel in secret, on toilet paper – it is a book that will become his classic, Devil on the Cross.
Wrestling with the Devil is Ngugi’s unforgettable account of the drama and challenges of living under twenty-four-hour surveillance. He captures not only the pain caused by his isolation from his family, but also the spirit of defiance and the imaginative endeavours that allowed him to survive.
*** Selected as a 2017 Book of the Year in the Guardian, Daily Telegraph, Observer and The Economist ***
‘A gripping story of Churchill’s unlikely rise to power’ Observer
London, May 1940. Britain is under threat of invasion and Neville Chamberlain’s government is about to fall. It is hard for us to imagine the Second World War without Winston Churchill taking the helm, but in Six Minutes in May Nicholas Shakespeare shows how easily events could have gone in a different direction.
It took just six minutes for MPs to cast the votes that brought down Chamberlain. Shakespeare moves from Britain’s disastrous battle in Norway, for which many blamed Churchill, on to the dramatic developments in Westminster that led to Churchill becoming Prime Minister. Uncovering fascinating new research and delving into the key players’ backgrounds, Shakespeare gives us a new perspective on this critical moment in our history.
‘Totally captivating. It will stand as the best account of those extraordinary few days for very many years’
‘Superbly written… Shakespeare has a novelist’s flair for depicting the characters and motives of men’
‘Utterly wonderful… It reads like a thriller’
THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
WINNER OF THE 2017 LA TIMES BOOK PRIZE FOR SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
'Awe-inspiring… You will learn more about human nature than in any other book I can think of' Henry Marsh
'One of the best scientist-writers of our time' Oliver Sacks
Why do human beings behave as they do?
We are capable of savage acts of violence but also spectacular feats of kindness: is one side of our nature destined to win out over the other?
Every act of human behaviour has multiple layers of causation, spiralling back seconds, minutes, hours, days, months, years, even centuries, right back to the dawn of time and the origins of our species.
In the epic sweep of history, how does our biology affect the arc of war and peace, justice and persecution? How have our brains evolved alongside our cultures?
This is the exhilarating story of human morality and the science underpinning the biggest question of all: what makes us human?
'Original...witty...playful…a wonderfully funny book' James Wood
‘Fiercely intelligent, very funny and unlike anything else I’ve ever read’ Mark Haddon
'A triumph – a genuinely new story' A. S. Byatt
‘Destined to become a classic’ Garth Risk Hallberg
Eleven-year-old Ludo is in search of a father. Raised singlehandedly by his mother Sibylla, Ludo’s been reading Greek, Arabic, Japanese and a little Hebrew since the age of four; but reading Homer in the original whilst riding the Circle Line on the London Underground isn’t enough to satisfy the boy’s boundless curiosity. Is he a genius? A real-life child prodigy? He’s grown up watching Seven Samurai on a hypnotising loop – his mother’s strategy to give him not one but seven male role models. And yet Ludo remains obsessed with the one thing his mother refuses to tell him: his real father’s name. Let loose on London, Ludo sets out on a secret quest to find the last samurai – the father he never knew.
NOW FEATURED ON ITV'S ZOE BALL BOOK CLUB 2018
LONGLISTED FOR THE 2018 CWA GOLD, STEEL AND HISTORICAL DAGGERS
SHORTLISTED FOR THE 2018 WILBUR SMITH ADVENTURE WRITING PRIZE
India, 1920. Captain Sam Wyndham and Sergeant Banerjee of Calcutta Police must investigate the dramatic assassination of a Maharaja's son...
Sam Wyndham is visiting the kingdom of Sambalpore, home to diamond mines and the beautiful Palace of the Sun.
But when the Maharaja’s eldest son is assassinated, Wyndham realises that the realm is riven with conflict. Prince Adhir was unpopular with religious groups, while his brother – now in line to the throne – appears to be a feckless playboy.
As Wyndham and Sergeant ‘Surrender-not’ Banerjee endeavour to unravel the mystery, they become entangled in a dangerous world. They must find the murderer, before the murderer finds them.
Praise for the Sam Wyndham series:
‘An exceptional historical crime novel’
‘A thought-provoking rollercoaster’
‘Confirms Abir Mukherjee as a rising star of historical crime fiction’
‘Cracking… A journey into the dark underbelly of the British Raj’
If you enjoyed A Necessary Evil, pre-order the third Sam Wyndham mystery, Smoke and Ashes, now.
The twisting new thriller from international sensation Ruth Ware, author of Sunday Times bestsellers In a Dark, Dark Wood and The Woman in Cabin 10
‘Another heart-stopping belter of a thriller from an epic talent’
The text message arrives in the small hours of the morning: I need you.
Isa drops everything, takes her baby daughter and heads straight to Salten. She spent the most significant days of her life at boarding school on the marshes there, days which still cast their shadow over her.
Isa and her three best friends used to play the Lying Game, competing to convince people of outrageous stories. Now, after seventeen years of hiding the truth, something terrible has been found on the beach. The friends’ darkest secret is about to come to light…
‘I could not put this book down’
‘Atmospheric, mysterious, gripping’
Now available for pre-order: Ruth Ware’s brand new psychological thriller, The Death of Mrs Westaway. Coming June 2018.
From the author of the Sunday Times Number One Bestseller Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House
Rupert Murdoch is one of the greatest deal-makers alive. His companies possess extraordinary political and cultural power. Whether it is the Sun and the rise of Thatcher, BSkyB and the transformation of football, or Fox News and the war on terror, we have been living in the age of Murdoch since the late seventies. But who is he? What drives him?
With unprecedented access to Murdoch and his inner circle, Michael Wolff chronicles the astonishing growth of the mogul’s giant media kingdom. Drawing upon hundreds of hours of interviews he offers us a portrait of a Machiavellian titan; overbearing, but loving, father; love-struck husband; and a cynical and brilliant newsman. The resulting book is unrivalled in its intimacy and candour and tells a tale of business that is both the story of a man’s life, and the story of our times.
The story of Catholicism in Britain from the Reformation to the present day, from a master of popular history – 'A first-class storyteller' The Times
Throughout the three hundred years that followed the Act of Supremacy – which, by making Henry VIII head of the Church, confirmed in law the breach with Rome – English Catholics were prosecuted, persecuted and penalised for the public expression of their faith. Even after the passing of the emancipation acts Catholics were still the victims of institutionalised discrimination.
The first book to tell the story of the Catholics in Britain in a single volume, The Catholics includes much previously unpublished information. It focuses on the lives, and sometimes deaths, of individual Catholics – martyrs and apostates, priests and laymen, converts and recusants. It tells the story of the men and women who faced the dangers and difficulties of being what their enemies still call ‘Papists’. It describes the laws which circumscribed their lives, the political tensions which influenced their position within an essentially Anglican nation and the changes in dogma and liturgy by which Rome increasingly alienated their Protestant neighbours – and sometime even tested the loyalty of faithful Catholics.
The survival of Catholicism in Britain is the triumph of more than simple faith. It is the victory of moral and spiritual unbending certainty. Catholicism survives because it does not compromise. It is a characteristic that excites admiration in even a hardened atheist.
Selected as a Book of the Year by the New York Times, Times Literary Supplement and The Times
Despite his status as the most despised political figure in history, there have only been four serious biographies of Hitler since the 1930s. Even more surprisingly, his biographers have been more interested in his rise to power and his methods of leadership than in Hitler the person: some have even declared that the Führer had no private life.
Yet to render Hitler as a political animal with no personality to speak of, as a man of limited intelligence and poor social skills, fails to explain the spell that he cast not only on those close to him but on the German people as a whole. In the first volume of this monumental biography, Volker Ullrich sets out to correct our perception of the Führer. While charting in detail Hitler’s life from his childhood to the eve of the Second World War against the politics of the times, Ullrich unveils the man behind the public persona: his charming and repulsive traits, his talents and weaknesses, his deep-seated insecurities and murderous passions.
Drawing on a wealth of previously neglected or unavailable sources, this magisterial study provides the most rounded portrait of Hitler to date. Ullrich renders the Führer not as a psychopath but as a master of seduction and guile — and it is perhaps the complexity of his character that explains his enigmatic grip on the German people more convincingly than the clichéd image of the monster.
This definitive biography will forever change the way we look at the man who took the world into the abyss.
Can horses feel shame? Do deer grieve? Why do roosters deceive hens?
We tend to assume that we are the only living things able to experience feelings but have you ever wondered what’s going on in an animal’s head? From the leafy forest floor to the inside of a bee hive, The Inner Life of Animals opens up the animal kingdom like never before. We hear the stories of a grateful humpback whale, of a hedgehog who has nightmares, and of a magpie who commits adultery; we meet bees that plan for the future, pigs who learn their own names and crows that go tobogganing for fun. And at last we find out why wasps exist.
‘This book is so, so good. Forensic, beautiful and gripping’
**WINNER OF THE 2017 MCILVANNEY PRIZE FOR SCOTTISH CRIME BOOK OF THE YEAR**
**CHOSEN BY THE TELEGRAPH AS ONE OF THE BEST CRIME BOOKS OF 2017**
**CHOSEN BY THE FINANCIAL TIMES AS ONE OF THE BEST CRIME BOOKS OF 2017**
**CHOSEN BY THE GUARDIAN AS ONE OF THE BEST CRIME BOOKS OF 2017**
**CHOSEN BY THE SCOTSMAN AS ONE OF THE BEST CRIME BOOKS OF 2017**
Glasgow, 1957. It is a December night and William Watt is desperate. His family has been murdered and he needs to find out who killed them.
He arrives at a bar to meet Peter Manuel, who claims he can get hold of the gun that was used. But Watt soon realises that this infamous criminal will not give up information easily.
Inspired by true events, The Long Drop follows Watt and Manuel along back streets and into smoky pubs, and on to the courtroom where the murder trial takes place. Can Manuel really be trusted to tell the truth? And how far will Watt go to get what he wants?
‘The extraordinary story of a 1950s Glasgow murder mystery’
‘A masterpiece by the woman who may be Britain’s finest living crime novelist’
‘Absorbing… this is a bravura performance, a true original’
‘Revisits a dark episode in Glasgow’s past… Mina navigates the uneasy territory between fact and fiction with consummate grace’
SHORTLISTED FOR THE BAILLIE GIFFORD PRIZE 2017
'An eye-opening, well-written and very timely book' Yuval Noah Harari
'The best sort of book for our disordered days: timely, urgent and illuminating' Pankaj Mishra
'It strikes a blow…for common humanity' Sunday Times
The Muslim world has often been accused of a failure to modernise and adapt. Yet in this sweeping narrative and provocative retelling of modern history, Christopher de Bellaigue charts the forgotten story of the Islamic Enlightenment – the social movements, reforms and revolutions that transfigured the Middle East from the early nineteenth century to the present day. Modern ideals and practices were embraced across the region, including the adoption of modern medicine, the emergence of women from purdah and the development of democracy.
The Islamic Enlightenment looks behind the sensationalist headlines in order to foster a genuine understanding of Islam and its relationship to the West. It is essential reading for anyone engaged in the state of the world today.
From Dylan Thomas’s eighteen straight whiskies to Sylvia Plath’s desperate suicide in the gas oven of her Primrose Hill kitchen; from Chatterton’s Pre-Raphaelite demise to Keats’ death warrant in a smudge of arterial blood, the deaths of poets have often cast a backward shadow on their work.
The post-Romantic lore of the dissolute drunken poet has fatally skewed the image of poets in our culture. Novelists can be stable, savvy, politically adept and in control, but poets should be melancholic, doomed and self-destructive. Is this just an illusion , or is there some essential truth behind it? What is the price of poetry?
In this book, two contemporary poets embark on a series of journeys to the death places of poets of the past, in part as pilgrims, but also as investigators, interrogating the myth.
‘An extraordinary book of real passionate research’ Edmund de Waal
In 1945, Ezra Pound was due to stand trial for treason for his broadcasts in Fascist Italy during the Second World War. But before the trial could take place Pound was pronounced insane. Escaping a potential death sentence he was shipped off to St Elizabeths Hospital near Washington, DC, where he was held for over a decade.
At the hospital, Pound was at his most contradictory and most controversial: a genius writer – ‘The most important living poet in the English language’ according to T. S. Eliot – but also a traitor and now, seemingly, a madman. But he remained a magnetic figure. Eliot, Elizabeth Bishop, Robert Lowell and John Berryman all went to visit him at what was perhaps the world’s most unorthodox literary salon: convened by a fascist and held in a lunatic asylum.
Told through the eyes of his illustrious visitors, The Bughouse captures the essence of Pound – the artistic flair, the profound human flaws – whilst telling the grand story of politics and art in the twentieth century.
**A New York Times top 100 Notable Book of the Year**
Alexander Bruno is a man with expensive problems. Sporting a tuxedo and trotting the globe, he has spent his adult life as a professional gambler. His particular line of work: backgammon, at which he extracts large sums of money from men who think they can challenge his peerless acumen. In Singapore, his luck turned.
Maybe it had something to do with the Blot – a black spot which has emerged to distort Bruno’s vision. It’s not showing any signs of going away. As Bruno extends his losing streak in Berlin, it becomes clinically clear that the Blot is the symptom of something terrible. There’s a surgeon who can help, but surgery is going to involve a lot of money, and worse: returning home to the garish, hash-smoke streets of Berkeley, California. Here, the unseemly Keith Stolarsky – a childhood friend in possession of an empire of themed burger bars and thrift stores – is king. And he’s willing to help Bruno out. But there was always going to be a price.
Kate, a grieving, semi-alcoholic film student, invites an elderly woman to take part in an oral-history documentary. Jean declines, but makes her a bizarre counter-offer: if Kate can stay sober for four days, she will tell her a story. If she can stay sober beyond that, there will be another, and then another, amounting to the entire history of one family’s life.
Gradually, Jean offers a heart-breaking account, not only of her own history – a lost lover, a family scarred by war – but of the American century itself; as a deep connection emerges between the women which will transform both of their lives.
‘A brilliant novel… courageous, necessary and deeply touching’ Guardian
Édouard Louis grew up in a village in northern France where many live below the poverty line. His bestselling debut novel about life there, The End of Eddy, has sparked debate on social inequality, sexuality and violence.
It is an extraordinary portrait of escaping from an unbearable childhood, inspired by the author’s own. Written with an openness and compassionate intelligence, ultimately, it asks, how can we create our own freedom?
‘A mesmerising story about difference and adolescence’
New York Times
‘Édouard Louis…is that relatively rare thing – a novelist with something to say and a willingness to say it, without holding back’
‘Louis’ book has become the subject of political discussion in a way that novels rarely do’
Garth Greenwell, New Yorker
‘As a writer, Carrère is straight berserk’ Junot Díaz
In this non-fiction novel – road trip, confession, and erotic tour de force – Emmanuel Carrère pursues two consuming obsessions: the disappearance of his grandfather amid suspicions that he was a Nazi collaborator in the Second World War; and a violently passionate affair with a woman that he loves but which ends in destruction. Moving between Paris and Kotelnich, a grisly post-Soviet town, Carrère weaves his story into a travelogue of a journey inward, travelling fearlessly into the depths of his tortured psyche.
*Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award*
*Shortlisted for the Costa Biography Award*
*Shortlisted for the Jhalak Prize*
*Shortlisted for the Rathbones Folio Prize 2018*
*A Sunday Times Book of the Year*
Xiaolu Guo meets her parents for the first time when she is almost seven. They are strangers to her.
When she is born in 1973, her parents hand her over to a childless peasant couple in the mountains. Aged two, and suffering from malnutrition on a diet of yam leaves, they leave Xiaolu with her illiterate grandparents in a fishing village on the East China Sea.
Once Upon a Time in the East takes Xiaolu from a run-down shack to film school in a rapidly changing Beijing, navigating the everyday peculiarity of modern China: censorship, underground art, Western boyfriends. In 2002 she leaves Beijing on a scholarship to study in Britain. Now, after a decade in Europe, her tale of East to West resonates with the insight that can only come from someone who is both an outsider and at home.
'This generation's Wild Swans' Daily Telegraph