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A Horse Walks into a Bar

David Grossman (Author) , Jessica Cohen (Translator)

WINNER OF THE INTERNATIONAL MAN BOOKER PRIZE 2017

The setting is a comedy club in a small Israeli town. An audience that has come expecting an evening of amusement instead sees a comedian falling apart on stage; an act of disintegration, a man crumbling, as a matter of choice, before their eyes. They could get up and leave, or boo and whistle and drive him from the stage, if they were not so drawn to glimpse his personal hell. Dovaleh G, a veteran stand-up comic – charming, erratic, repellent – exposes a wound he has been living with for years: a fateful and gruesome choice he had to make between the two people who were dearest to him.

A Horse Walks into a Bar is a shocking and breathtaking read. Betrayals between lovers, the treachery of friends, guilt demanding redress. Flaying alive both himself and the people watching him, Dovaleh G provokes both revulsion and empathy from an audience that doesn’t know whether to laugh or cry – and all this in the presence of a former childhood friend who is trying to understand why he’s been summoned to this performance.

Martin Luther

Lyndal Roper (Author)

SHORTLISTED FOR THE WOLFSON HISTORY PRIZE 2017
SHORTLISTED FOR THE ELIZABETH LONGFORD PRIZE 2017

'A magnificent study of one of history's most compelling and divisive figures' Richard J. Evans

When Martin Luther nailed a sheet of paper to the church door of a small university town in 1517, he set off a process that changed the Western world for ever.

Within a few years Luther’s ideas had spread like wildfire. His attempts to reform Christianity by returning it to its biblical roots split the Western Church, divided Europe and polarised people’s beliefs, leading to religious persecution, social unrest and war; and in the long run his ideas would help break the grip of religion on every sphere of life.

Yet Luther was a deeply flawed human being: a fervent believer tormented by spiritual doubts; a prolific writer whose translation of the Bible would shape the German language yet whose attacks on his opponents were vicious and foul-mouthed; a married ex-monk who liberated human sexuality from the stigma of sin but who insisted that women should know their place; a religious fundamentalist, Jew-hater and political reactionary who called ‘for the private and public murder of the peasants’ who had risen against their lords in response to his teaching. And perhaps surprisingly, the man who helped create in the modern world was not modern himself: for him the devil was not a figure of speech but a real, physical presence.

As an acclaimed historian, Lyndal Roper explains how Luther’s impact can only be understood against the background of the times. As a brilliant biographer, she gives us the flesh-and-blood figure. She reveals the often contradictory psychological forces that drove Luther forward and the dynamics they unleashed, which turned a small act of protest into a battle against the power of the Church.

A New Statesman, Spectator, History Today, Guardian and Sunday Times Book of the Year

Sacred Country

Rose Tremain (Author)

With an Introduction by Peter Tatchell

We're all something else inside…

1952. Standing in a cold Suffolk field with her family, six-year-old Mary Ward has a revelation: I am not Mary. That is a mistake. I am not a girl. I'm a boy.

So begins Mary’s heroic struggle to change gender. Moving from the claustrophobic rural community of the 1950s to London in the swinging Sixties and beyond to the glitter of America in the Seventies, Sacred Country is the story of a journey to find a place of safety and fulfilment in a savage and confusing world.

Over a million Rose Tremain books sold

‘A writer of exceptional talent ... Tremain is a writer who understands every emotion’ Independent I

‘There are few writers out there with the dexterity or emotional intelligence to rival that of the great Rose Tremain’ Irish Times

‘Tremain has the painterly genius of an Old Master, and she uses it to stunning effect’ The Times

‘Rose Tremain is one of the very finest British novelists’ Salman Rushdie

‘Tremain is a writer of exemplary vision and particularity. The fictional world is rendered with extraordinary vividness’ Marcel Theroux, Guardian

Van Gogh's Ear

Bernadette Murphy (Author)

In December 1888, Vincent van Gogh cut off his ear. It is the most famous story about any artist in history. But what really happened on that dark winter night?

In Van Gogh's Ear, Bernadette Murphy reveals the truth. She takes us on an extraordinary journey from major museums to forgotten archives, vividly reconstructing Van Gogh's world. We meet police inspectors and café patrons, prostitutes and madams, his beloved brother Theo and fellow painter Paul Gauguin.

Why did Van Gogh commit such a brutal act? Who was the mysterious 'Rachel' to whom he presented his macabre gift? Did he really remove his entire ear? Murphy answers these important questions with her groundbreaking discoveries, offering a stunning portrait of an artist edging towards madness in his pursuit of excellence.

BBC RADIO 4 BOOK OF THE WEEK
PRIMETIME BBC2 DOCUMENTARY WITH JEREMY PAXMAN

A Climate of Fear

Fred Vargas (Author) , Sian Reynolds (Translator)

THE NEW INSPECTOR ADAMSBERG NOVEL

Shortlisted for the CWA International Dagger 2017

A woman is found dead in her bath. The murder has been disguised as a suicide and a strange symbol is discovered at the scene.

Then the symbol is observed near a second victim, who ten years earlier had also taken part in a doomed expedition to Iceland.

How are these deaths, and rumours of an Icelandic demon, linked to a secretive local society? And what does the mysterious sign mean? Commissaire Adamsberg is about to find out.

Freya

Anthony Quinn (Author)

Freya Wyley meets Nancy Holdaway amid the wild celebrations of VE Day, the prelude to a devoted and competitive friendship…

Freya, ambitious and outspoken, pursues a career on Fleet Street while Nancy, less self-confident, struggles to get her first novel published. Both friends become entangled with Robert Cosway, a charismatic young man whose own ambition will have a momentous bearing on their lives.

Flitting from war-haunted Oxford to the bright new shallows of the 1960s, Freya plots the unpredictable course of a woman’s life and loves in extraordinary times.

Fen

Daisy Johnson (Author)

A FOYLES Fiction Book of the Year 2016

Shortlisted for The Edge Hill Short Story Prize 2017

Longlisted for The Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award 2017

The Fen is a liminal land. Real people live their lives here. They wrestle with sex and desire, with everyday routine. But the wild is always close at hand, ready to erupt.

This is a place where animals and people commingle and fuse, where curious metamorphoses take place, where myth and dark magic still linger. So here a teenager may starve herself into the shape of an eel. A house might fall in love with a girl. A woman might give birth to a, well, what?

The Red Parts

Maggie Nelson (Author)

Selected as a Book of the Year 2017 in the Guardian

'Maggie Nelson’s short, singular books feel pretty light in the hand... But in the head and the heart, they seem unfathomably vast, their cleverness and odd beauty lingering on' Observer

In 1969, Jane Mixer, a first-year law student at the University of Michigan, posted a note on a student noticeboard to share a lift back to her hometown of Muskegon for spring break. She never made it: she was brutally murdered, her body found a few miles from campus the following day.

The Red Parts is Maggie Nelson’s singular account of her aunt Jane’s death, and the trial that took place some 35 years afterward. Officially unsolved for decades, the case was reopened in 2004 after a DNA match identified a new suspect, who would soon be arrested and tried. In 2005, Nelson found herself attending the trial, and reflecting with fresh urgency on our relentless obsession with violence, particularly against women.

Resurrecting her interior world during the trial – in all its horror, grief, obsession, recklessness, scepticism and downright confusion – Maggie Nelson has produced a work of profound integrity and, in its subtle indeterminacy, deadly moral precision.

A Walk in the Park

Travis Elborough (Author)

'A fascinating, informative, revelatory book' William Boyd, Guardian

Parks are such a familiar part of everyday life, you might be forgiven for thinking they have always been there. In fact, public parks are an invention. From their medieval inception as private hunting grounds through to their modern incarnation as public spaces of rest and relaxation, parks have been fought over by land-grabbing monarchs, reforming Victorian industrialists, hippies, punks, and somewhere along the way, the common folk trying to savour their single day of rest.

In A Walk in the Park, Travis Elborough excavates the history of parks in all their colour and complexity. Loving, funny and impassioned, this is a timely celebration of a small wonder that – in an age of swingeing cuts – we should not take for granted.

Bridget Jones’s Baby

Helen Fielding (Author)

** The funniest book of the year **
** The new Bridget Jones novel **

8.45 P.M. Realise there have been so many times in my life when have fantasised about going to a scan with Mark or Daniel: just not both at the same time.

Before motherhood, before marriage, Bridget, with biological clock ticking very, very loudly, finds herself unexpectedly pregnant at the eleventh hour: a joyful pregnancy which is dominated, however, by a crucial but terribly awkward question – who is the father? Mark Darcy: honourable, decent, notable human rights lawyer? Or Daniel Cleaver: charming, witty, notable fuckwit?

9.45 P.M. It’s like they’re two halves of the perfect man, who’ll spend the rest of their lives each wanting to outdo the other one. And now it’s all enacting itself in my stomach.

In this gloriously funny, touching story of baby-deadline panic, maternal bliss, and social, professional, technological, culinary and childbirth chaos, Bridget Jones – global phenomenon and the world’s favourite Singleton – is back with a bump.

Serious Sweet

A.L. Kennedy (Author)

LONGLISTED FOR THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE

Jon is 59 and divorced: a senior civil servant in Westminster who hates many of his colleagues and loathes his work, he is a good man in a bad world.

Meg is a bankrupt accountant – two words you don’t want in the same sentence, or anywhere near your CV. Living on Telegraph Hill, she can see London unfurl below her. Somewhere out there is safety.

As Jon and Meg navigate the sweet and serious heart of London – passing through 24 hours that will change them both for ever – they tell a very unusual, unbearably moving love story.

A Passing Fury

A. T. Williams (Author)

A Daily Telegraph Book of the Year
Shortlisted for the CWA Gold Dagger for Non-Fiction 2017

After the Second World War, the Nuremberg Tribunal became a symbol of justice in the face of tyranny, aggression and atrocity. But it was only a fragment of retribution as, with their Allies, the British embarked on the largest programme of war crimes investigations and trials in history.

This book exposes the deeper truth of this endeavour, moving from the scripted trial of Goering, Hess and von Ribbentrop to the makeshift courtrooms where the SS officers, guards and executioners were prosecuted. It tells the story of the investigators, lawyers and perpetrators and asks the question: was justice done?

Man Up

Rebecca Asher (Author)

'A valuable book for parents' Barbara Ellen, Observer

Why are boys three times more likely than girls to be suspended from school? And four times more likely to have behavioural difficulties? Why do men make up 75% of suicides and 95% of prisoners?

From babyhood through school and adolescence, to work and relationships, fatherhood and old-age, Man Up investigates the unique difficulties boys and men encounter today. Through fascinating research and real-life case studies, this book shows that change is possible and that there is room for men and boys to find greater fulfilment and happiness – to the benefit of everyone.

The Swordfish and the Star

Gavin Knight (Author)

The Penwith Peninsula in Cornwall is where the land ends. In The Swordfish and the Star Gavin Knight takes us into this huddle of grey roofs at the edge of the sea at the beginning of the twenty-first century.

He catches the stories of a whole community, but especially those still working this last frontier: the Cornish fishermen. These are the dreamers and fighters who every day prepare for battle with the vast grey Atlantic. Cornwall and its seas are brought to life, mixing drinking and drugs and sea spray, moonlit beaches and shattering storms, myth and urban myth. The result is an arresting tapestry of a place we thought we knew; the precarious reality of life in Cornwall today emerges from behind our idyllic holiday snaps and picture postcards. Even the quaint fishermen’s pubs on the quay at Newlyn, including the Swordfish and its neighbour the Star, turn out to be places where squalls can blow up, and down again, in an instant.

Based on immersive research and rich with the voices of a cast of remarkable characters, this is an eye-opening, dramatic, poignant account of life on Britain’s most dangerous stretch of coast.

Praise for Hood Rat
'A gripping novelistic immersion' Louis Theroux
'A must-read' Owen Jones
'Britain's Gomorrah' Independent

War and Turpentine

Stefan Hertmans (Author) , David McKay (Translator)

WINNER OF THE VONDEL PRIZE 2017

LONGLISTED FOR THE 2017 MAN BOOKER INTERNATIONAL PRIZE

Selected as a Book of the Year 2016 in The Times, Sunday Times and The Economist, and one of the 10 Best Books of 2016 in the New York Times

Shortly before his death, Stefan Hertmans' grandfather Urbain Martien gave his grandson a set of notebooks containing the detailed memories of his life. He grew up in poverty around 1900, the son of a struggling church painter who died young, and went to work in an iron foundry at only 13. Afternoons spent with his father at work on a church fresco were Urbain’s heaven; the iron foundry an inferno.

During the First World War, Urbain was on the front line confronting the invading Germans, and ever after he is haunted by events he can never forget. The war ends and he marries his great love, Maria Emelia, but she dies tragically in the 1919 flu epidemic. Urbain mourns her bitterly for the rest of his life but, like the obedient soldier he is, he marries her sister at her parents' bidding. The rest is not quite silence, but a marriage with a sad secret at its heart, and the consolations found in art and painting. War and Turpentine is the imaginative reconstruction of a damaged life across the tumultuous decades of the twentieth century; a deeply moving portrayal of family, grief, love and war.

Politics

Nick Clegg (Author)

'Compelling' Ian McEwan 'Engrossing' Alan Johnson 'Essential' Robert Peston

*THE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER*

Politics has changed. For decades Britain was divided between Left and Right but united in its belief in a two-party state. Now, with nationalism resurgent and mainstream parties in turmoil, stark new divisions define the country and the centre ground is deserted.

Nick Clegg witnessed this change from the inside. Here he offers a frank account of his experiences and puts the case for a new politics based on reason and compromise.

He writes candidly about the tense stand-offs within government and the decision to enter coalition with the Conservatives in the first place. He also lifts the lid on the arcane worlds of Westminster and Brussels, the vested interests that suffocate reform, as well as the achievements his party made despite them.

Whatever your political persuasion, if you wish to understand politics in Britain today you cannot afford to ignore this book.

The Girls

Emma Cline (Author)

THE WORLDWIDE BESTSELLER

If you’re lost, they’ll find you…

Evie Boyd is fourteen and desperate to be noticed.

It’s the summer of 1969 and restless, empty days stretch ahead of her. Until she sees them. The girls. Hair long and uncombed, jewelry catching the sun. And at their centre, Suzanne, black-haired and beautiful.

If not for Suzanne, she might not have gone. But, intoxicated by her and the life she promises, Evie follows the girls back to the decaying ranch where they live.

Was there a warning? A sign of what was coming? Or did Evie know already that there was no way back?

‘A coming-of-age tale like no other … the book of the summer’ Grazia

A Rising Man

Abir Mukherjee (Author)

'An exceptional historical crime novel' C.J. Sansom
'A thought-provoking rollercoaster' Ian Rankin

**SELECTED AS ONE OF WATERSTONES' BEST CRIME BOOKS OF 2017**
**WINNER OF THE CWA ENDEAVOUR HISTORICAL DAGGER 2017**

India, 1919. Desperate for a fresh start, Captain Sam Wyndham arrives to take up an important post in Calcutta's police force.

He is soon called to the scene of a horrifying murder. The victim was a senior official, and a note in his mouth warns the British to leave India – or else.

With the stability of the Empire under threat, Wyndham and Sergeant 'Surrender-not' Banerjee must solve the case quickly. But there are some who will do anything to stop them...

'One of the most exciting debut novels I've read in years'
Val McDermid

'Highly entertaining...set in a Calcutta so convincingly evoked that readers will find sweat bursting from their foreheads'
Daily Telegraph

'This vivid murder mystery moves at breakneck speeds'
Sunday Times

'Intoxicating... utterly captivating'
Daily Mail

If you enjoyed A Rising Man, the second Sam Wyndham mystery, A Necessary Evil, is available now.

Death Zones

Simon Pasternak (Author) , Martin Aitken (Translator)

A shocking murder

Belorussia, 1943. When a General and his wife are found dead, German detective Heinrich Hoffmann is put in charge of the case.

A single clue

There is one witness. A six-year-old girl provides him with an essential lead: a drawing of a bird.

Detective Hoffmann must uncover the truth

Hoffmann soon finds evidence of corruption at the highest levels of the SS. He is determined to catch the killer – but he must trust no one.

Winner of the Danish Crime Book Award

Peak

Anders Ericsson (Author) , Robert Pool (Author)

You don't have to be a genius to achieve extraordinary things.

In this fascinating book, Anders Ericsson and Robert Pool explain that learning new skills doesn't need to be daunting. Musical prodigies, sports stars and leading scientists acquire their special abilities through training – and all of us can do the same.

Based on thirty years of pioneering research, Peak shows that success simply requires the right kind of practice and offers essential advice on setting goals, receiving guidance and motivating ourselves. The astonishing stories prove that whether we're at work or at school, in the music room or on the sports field, we can master almost anything.

'Remarkable...who among us doesn't want to learn how to get better at life?'
Stephen J. Dubner, co-author of Freakonomics

'This book...could truly change the world'
Joshua Foer, author of Moonwalking with Einstein

'Groundbreaking...brilliantly useful'
Daniel Coyle, author of The Talent Code

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