The astonishing tale of a little girl who was different, her cat and how they brought a family together.
'Different is brilliant . . .'
Iris Grace is different. From the moment she was born she found the world a strange and terrifying place: she neither smiled nor spoke. The doctors couldn't help, telling her parents she might never be able to communicate - she'd never call them mummy or daddy.
But then Iris met Thula.
This special kitten and Iris became instant best friends. They did everything together - painting, playing, bathing, snuggling, sleeping, exploring. And then a miracle happened: Iris said her first words.
The story of the amazing bond between Iris and Thula is a heartwarming tale of finding hope and happiness in the most unexpected places.
Because different really is brilliant.
'Moving, honest and full of hope. Wonderful' Daily Mail, Books of the Year
'An astonishing talent' Daily Express
'A miracle' Best
'Astonishing, remarkable' ITV News
'Iris's astonishing tale of talent and relationship with Thula is lovingly told' Daily Mail
As compulsively page-turning as a thriller, Carmen Martin Gaite's drama of broken dreams, lies, and the search for love is an intense meditation on the strange adventure of living
"Ever since the beginning of the world, living and dying have been two sides of one coin, tossed in the air - But for me - to be perfectly honest - living's the strange thing"
The protagonist of this novel, a 35-year-old woman who has lived hard and loved hard, has just lost her mother. Struggling to keep her curiosity about an inexplicable world intact, she finds her precarious equilibrium constantly besieged by resurfacing oddballs from her past and her own tendency to daydream. To force a little structure into her life, she decides to pick up her old, unfinished doctoral dissertation about an extravagant 18th century adventurer. As she wades through old papers in a dusty archive, she is forced to confront her own strange childhood, her parents' strange relationship, and the feelings that bond her to the strange architect she shares a life with.
When Bill Masen wakes up blindfolded in hospital there is a bitter irony in his situation. Carefully removing his bandages, he realizes that he is the only person who can see: everyone else, doctors and patients alike, have been blinded by a meteor shower. Now, with civilization in chaos, the triffids - huge, venomous, large-rooted plants able to 'walk', feeding on human flesh - can have their day.
The Day of the Triffids, published in 1951, expresses many of the political concerns of its time: the Cold War, the fear of biological experimentation and the man-made apocalypse. However, with its terrifyingly believable insights into the genetic modification of plants, the book is more relevant today than ever before.
John Wyndham was born in 1903. After a wide experience of the English preparatory school he was at Bedales from 1918 to 1921. Careers which he tried included farming, law, commercial art, and advertising, and he first started writing short stories, intended for sale, in 1925. During the war he was in the Civil Service and afterwards in the Army. In 1946 he began writing his major science fiction novels including "The Kraken Wakes", "The Chrysalids" and "The Midwich Cuckoos".
In the middle of the night in 1997, Doctors Without Borders administrator Christophe André was kidnapped by armed men and taken away to an unknown destination in the Caucasus region. For three months, André was kept handcuffed in solitary confinement, with little to survive on and almost no contact with the outside world. Close to twenty years later, award-winning cartoonist Guy Delisle (Pyongyang, Jerusalem, Shenzhen, Burma Chronicles) recounts André’s harrowing experience in Hostage, a book that attests to the power of one man’s determination in the face of a hopeless situation.
Marking a departure from the author’s celebrated first-person travelogues, Delisle tells the story through the perspective of the titular captive, who strives to keep his mind alert as desperation starts to set in. Working in a pared down style with muted colour washes, Delisle conveys the psychological effects of solitary confinement, compelling us to ask ourselves some difficult questions regarding the repercussions of negotiating with kidnappers and what it really means to be free. Thoughtful, intense, and moving, Hostage takes a profound look at what drives our will to survive in the darkest of moments.
Unrivalled in scope and brimming with human drama, A People’s Tragedy is the most vivid, moving and comprehensive history of the Russian Revolution available today.
‘A modern masterpiece’ Andrew Marr
‘The most moving account of the Russian Revolution since Doctor Zhivago’ Independent
Opening with a panorama of Russian society, from the cloistered world of the Tsar to the brutal life of the peasants, A People’s Tragedy follows workers, soldiers, intellectuals and villagers as their world is consumed by revolution and then degenerates into violence and dictatorship. Drawing on vast original research, Figes conveys above all the shocking experience of the revolution for those who lived it, while providing the clearest and most cogent account of how and why it unfolded.
Illustrated with over 100 photographs and now including a new introduction that reflects on the revolution’s centennial legacy, A People’s Tragedy is a masterful and definitive record of one of the most important events in modern history.
Does an understanding of history and a deep cultural awareness help us to live a better, richer and more useful life? Or is it just as good to rely on the internet for data and to live only in the moment?
Set in 2006, Paris Echo follows Hannah, a 31-year-old American post-doctoral researcher looking into the lives of women during the German Occupation of Paris in 1940-44; and Tariq, a 19-year-old boy who has run away from his home in Morocco, searching for sex and adventure.
Through their culture clash we are taken back into the hidden Paris of the Dark Years, the Algerian war and the simmering discontents of the Banlieue. This is not the Paris of croissants and little bistros. This is a haunted city of injustice and bad faith, of ghettos and betrayal.
As both characters fight to preserve their integrity and their sanity, they find their future shaped by the lives of the dead, by the ghosts of the Paris Metro.
For years, world renowned naturopathic doctor, Dr Nigma Talib, has been solving skin problems and answering the million dollar question, ‘what can I do to look and feel younger?’ From every day patients with chronic skin conditions such as acne and psoriasis, to high profile names who need to look picture-perfect on the red carpet, Nigma has seen the powerful results of her inside-out approach that starts with the gut. Now, for the first time, she shares the secrets to youthful-looking skin in her complete, 360-degree guide that everyone can adopt into their everyday life and enjoy.
In this effortless, but eye-opening journey, you’ll discover how to make a remarkable difference to:
Rejuvenate ageing skin Reduce the appearance of fine line, wrinkles and sagging skin Solve persistent skin problems Control hormones that could be wreaking havoc on skin
This is not just an anti-ageing plan. This is a new life plan. We can’t stop the clock, but we can tip the scales in our favour.
Man Walks Into A Bar 2 is the second volume of the hugely popular and hilariously funny joke book series. A one-stop shop for anyone who likes to hear and tell jokes. The jokes are ordered thematically - wives, husbands, doctors, lawyers, the French, the Germans, jokes about nuns, jokes about monkeys, the lot. There are also regular panels which group jokes by type too - Essex girls, changing a lightbulb etc. Our material will turn you into the toast of your local pub or make you loathed in your own home - remember, it is all in the telling. From the sublimely erudite to stuff Frank Carson would turn down, this book can service you with every joke you'll ever need.
Including such gems as the following:
Why have elephants got big ears? Because Noddy won't pay the ransom.
A magic tractor is driving down a country road and turns into a field.
An amnesiac walks into a bar. 'Do I come here often?'
I went to a book shop and asked the saleswoman where the Self Help section was. She said if she told me it would defeat the purpose.
How do you know when you're a pirate? You just arrrrrggghh.
The best libraries in Victorian Britain kept this tome under lock and key, permitting access only to doctors and professors. Scotland Yard had a copy in their reference library, and even Sherlock Holmes may have had recourse to a copy in certain investigations. In private collections across the English speaking world, it was kept on top shelves, or safely stowed in locked cabinets, beyond the reach of minors, domestics and spouses. Any woman who gazed upon its pages was said to have fainted away. The church campaigned to have it banned and the German translation was burned at Nuremberg. Many antiquarian book sellers believe the book to have been a myth, others claimed it changed hands at enormous cost, and some are certain all original copies are now lost. But Curious Pleasures does exist and is back in print - nearly a century since it's last apocryphal edition. This encyclopaedic treasure of adult pleasures, dysfunctions and unacceptable female behaviour has been fully restored with the original illustrations intact. In modern hands, this forbidden work of scholarly madness will prove hilarious.
'The least well-known wonderful writer I've ever come across' - Jenni Murray, BBC Radio 4 Woman's Hour
'Alexievich's artistry has raised oral history to a totally different dimension' - Antony Beevor
Haunting stories from the Soviet-Afghan War from the winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature
- A new translation based on the revised text -
From 1979 to 1989 Soviet troops engaged in a devastating war in Afghanistan that claimed thousands of casualties on both sides. While the Soviet Union talked about a 'peace-keeping' mission, the dead were shipped back in sealed zinc coffins. Boys in Zinc presents the honest testimonies of soldiers, doctors and nurses, mothers, wives and siblings who describe the lasting effects of war.
Weaving together their stories, Svetlana Alexievich shows us the truth of the Soviet-Afghan conflict: the killing and the beauty of small everyday moments, the shame of returned veterans, the worries of all those left behind. When it was first published in the USSR in 1991, Boys in Zinc sparked huge controversy for its unflinching, harrowing insight into the realities of war.
Topsy and Tim find fun and adventure in the real world. Their engaging stories are reassuring for young children having first experiences of their own. In Topsy and Tim: Go to Hospital, Tim has fallen out of a tree and bumped his head. He's a little nervous about going to hospital, but he soon finds out how nice the Doctors and Nurses are, and there are lots of other children on the ward to play with too. The only problem now is making sure Topsy doesn't feel left out!
A trusted and well-loved pair who can help guide parents and children through 'first experiences', Topsy and Tim books have been beautifully updated with contemporary artwork. Topsy & Tim remain instantly recognisable to parents while in a fresh style that will appeal to a new generation of fans. These wonderful books deserve a place on every child's bookshelves.
'God put me on this earth to raise sheer hell.' Richard Burton 'I was a sinner. I slugged some people. I hurt many people. And it's true, I never looked back to see the casualties.' Richard Harris 'Booze is the most outrageous of all drugs, which is why I chose it.' Peter O'Toole 'I don't have a drink problem. But if that was the case and doctors told me I had to stop I'd like to think I would be brave enough to drink myself into the grave.' Oliver Reed
This is the story of four of the greatest thespian boozers who ever walked - or staggered - off a film set into a pub. It's a story of drunken binges of near biblical proportions, parties and orgies, broken marriages, drugs, riots and wanton sexual conquests. They got away with it because of their extraordinary acting talent and because the public loved them. They were truly the last of a breed, the last of the movie hellraisers.
Man Walks Into A Bar is a one-stop shop for anyone who likes to hear and tell jokes. The jokes are ordered thematically - wives, husbands, doctors, lawyers, the French, the Germans, jokes about nuns, jokes about monkeys, the lot. There are also regular panels which group jokes by type too - Essex girls, changing a lightbulb etc. Our material will turn you into the toast of your local pub or make you loathed in your own home - remember, it is all in the telling. From the sublimely erudite to stuff Frank Carson would turn down (the book has a 'world's worst jokes' section), this book can service you with every joke you'll ever need.
What do you call an eskimo chav? Innuinnit
What did the zen student say at the hamburger stand? Make me one with everything
What's Irish and lives in the garden? Paddy O'Furniture
Reykjavík, August 1941. When a travelling salesman is found murdered in a basement flat, killed by a bullet from a Colt .45, the police initially suspect a member of the Allied occupation force.
The British are in the process of handing over to the Americans and the streets are crawling with servicemen whose relations with the local women are a major cause for concern.
Flóvent, Reykjavík’s sole detective, is joined by the young military policeman Thorson. Their investigation focuses on a family of German residents, the retired doctor Rudolf Lunden and his estranged son Felix, who is on the run, suspected of being a spy.
Flóvent and Thorson race to solve the case and to stay ahead of US counter-intelligence, amid rumours of a possible visit by Churchill. As evidence emerges of dubious experiments carried out on Icelandic schoolboys in the 1930s,Thorson becomes increasingly suspicious of the role played by the murdered man’s former girlfriend, Vera, and her British soldier lover.
Fredrik Welin is a seventy-year-old retired doctor. Years ago he retreated to the Swedish archipelago, where he lives alone on an island. He swims in the sea every day, cutting a hole in the ice if necessary. He lives a quiet life. Until he wakes up one night to find his house on fire.
Fredrik escapes just in time, wearing two left-footed wellies, as neighbouring islanders arrive to help douse the flames. All that remains in the morning is a stinking ruin and evidence of arson. The house that has been in his family for generations and all his worldly belongings are gone. He cannot think who would do such a thing, or why. Without a suspect, the police begin to think he started the fire himself.
Tackling love, loss and loneliness, After the Fire is Henning Mankell’s compelling last novel.
Bumps in the Night is one of the titles in Allan Ahlberg's iconic children's picture book series about skeletons, Funnybones. Despite being set in a dark dark house, this brightly coloured book is perfect for early readers!
No matter where they are, the two skeletons keep going bump in the night - clonk!
There's only one thing to do: "Send for Doctor Bones!"
'There can be few families in the British Isles who do not possess at least one well-thumbed Ahlberg' - Independent on Sunday
Allan Ahlberg has published over 100 children's books and with his late wife Janet, created such award-winning children's picture books, including Peepo!, Each Peach Pear Plum and the Kate Greenaway Medal winning The Jolly Postman. Other titles in the Funnybones series include Funnybones, Mystery Tour, The Ghost Train, The Pet Shop, The Black Cat, Dinosaur Dreams, Skeleton Crew, Give the Dog a Bone and A Brilliant Bone Rattling Collection, all of which are available from Puffin.
'She has examined the heart of man with an understanding ... that no other writer can hope to surpass' Tennessee Williams
Often cited as one of the great novels of twentieth-century American fiction, Carson McCullers' prodigious first novel was published to instant acclaim when she was just twenty-three. Set in a small town in the middle of the deep South, it is the story of John Singer, a lonely deaf-mute, and a disparate group of people who are drawn towards his kind, sympathetic nature. The owner of the café where Singer eats every day, a young girl desperate to grow up, an angry socialist drunkard, a frustrated black doctor: each pours their heart out to Singer, their silent confidant, and he in turn changes their disenchanted lives in ways the could never imagine. Moving, sensitive and deeply humane, The Heart is a Lonely Hunter explores loneliness, the human need for understanding and the search for love.
'I was twenty-six years old and an associate beauty editor at Lucky, one of the top fashion magazines in America. That’s all that most people knew about me. But beneath the surface, I was full of secrets: I was a drug addict, for one. A pillhead. I was also an alcoholic-in-training who guzzled warm Veuve Clicquot after work alone in my boss’s office with the door closed; a conniving and manipulative uptown doctor-shopper; a salami-and-provolone-puking bulimic who spent a hundred dollars a day on binge foods when things got bad (and they got bad often); a weepy,wobbly, wildly hallucination-prone insomniac; a tweaky self-mutilator; a slutty and self-loathing downtown party girl; and – perhaps most of all – a lonely weirdo. But, you know, I had access to some really fantastic self-tanner.'
By the age of 15, Cat Marnell longed to work in the glamorous world of women's magazines - but was also addicted to the ADHD meds prescribed by her father. Within 10 years she was living it up in New York as a beauty editor at Condé Nast, with a talent for 'doctor-shopping' that secured her a never-ending supply of prescribed amphetamines. Her life had become a twisted merry-go-round of parties and pills at night, while she struggled to hold down her high-profile job during the day.
Witty, magnetic and penetrating - prompting comparisons to Bret Easton Ellis and Charles Bukowski - Cat Marnell reveals essential truths about her generation, brilliantly uncovering the many aspects of being an addict with pin-sharp humour and beguiling style.
'New York's enfant terrible...Her talent has resided in her uncanny ability to write about addiction from the untidy, unsafe, unhappy epicentre of the disease, rather than from some writerly remove.' Telegraph
'I LOVE this book' Catriona Innes, Cosmopolitan Magazine UK
'An unputdownable, brilliantly written rollercoaster' Shappi Khorsandi
'Brilliantly written and harrowing and funny and honest' Louise France, The Times Magazine
'Easily one of the most anticipated memoirs of the year...[Marnell's] got an inimitable style (and oh my god, so many have tried) and a level of talent so high, it's impossible not to be rooting for her.' NYLON
A Wayne in a Manger is the hilarious compilation of nativity stories by Gervase Phinn.
Discover some wonderfully funny and touching nativity play anecdotes, including children forgetting their lines, ad-libbing, falling of the stage, picking their noses and showing their knickers.
One brilliant anecdote tells of an innkeeper who generously says there's plenty of room for Mary and Joseph, while another child, jealous of Joseph's starring role, allows Mary to come in but not Joseph, who can 'push off' ... There's the baby Jesus who suddenly pipes up with 'My name is Tammy, are you my Mommy?' and funniest of all, Mary who tells Joseph, 'I'm having a baby - oh and it's not yours'.
Gervase Phinn's A Wayne in a Manger is the perfect gift this Christmas.
'Gervase Phinn's memoirs have made him a hero in school staff-rooms' Daily Telegraph
Gervase Phinn is an author and educator from Rotherham who, after teaching for fourteen years in a variety of schools, moved to North Yorkshire to be a school inspector. He has written autobiographies, novels, plays, collections of poetry and stories, as well as a number of books about education. He holds five fellowships, honorary doctorates from Hull, Leicester and Sheffield Hallam universities, and is a patron of a number of children's charities and organizations. He is married with four adult children. His books include The Other Side of the Dale, Over Hill and Dale, Head Over Heels in the Dales, The Heart of the Dales, Up and Down in the Dales and Trouble at the Little Village School.
Sometimes life is like a bad waiter - it serves you exactly what you don't want. The women of Freesia Court have come together at life's table, fully convinced that there is nothing that good coffee, delectable desserts and a strong shoulder can't fix. Laughter is the glue that holds them together - the foundation of a book group they call AHEB (Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons) - an unofficial club that becomes a lifeline.
The five women each have a story to tell. There's Faith, the newcomer, a housewife and mother who harbours a terrible secret; big, beautiful Audrey, the resident sex queen who knows that with good posture and attitude you can get away with anything; Merit, the shy doctor's wife with the face of an angel and the private hell of an abusive husband; Kari, a wise woman with a wonderful laugh who knows that the greatest gifts appear after life's fiercest storms; and finally, Slip, activist and adventurer, a tiny spitfire who looks trouble straight in the eye and challenges it to arm wrestle.
Holding on through forty eventful years - through the swinging Sixties, the turbulent Seventies, the anything-goes Eighties, the nothing's-impossible Nineties, to the present day - they take the plunge into the chaos that inevitably comes to those with the temerity to stay alive and kicking.