Making Sense of A United Ireland, Brendan O’Leary ( paperback May 2024)

£10.99

Will Ireland really reunite?A century ago the resolution to Ireland’s long struggle for independence was a settlement that saw six of its northern counties remain in the United Kingdom while the other twenty-six formed the new Republic of Ireland. Since partition the unification of the two parts of the island has seemed impossible, particularly because of the bloody legacy of past conflict. However, by 2030, if not sooner, demographic and electoral advantages of Ulster unionists, who wish to remain part of the UK, will be over.

And in the light of Brexit, the rising popularity of the Irish nationalist party Sinn Féin, political developments both sides of the border, and within Great Britain, Irish unification referendums will become increasingly likely. Yet even those who want these to happen are not prepared. Making Sense of a United Ireland is a landmark exploration of this most contentious of issues.

Distinguished political scientist Brendan O'Leary - a global expert on divided places, who has been profoundly engaged with the Irish question for nearly four decades - argues that the time to consider the future of the island of Ireland is now. 'The first comprehensive manual of Irish unification' Irish Times‘Several books have been written about this subject . .

. for sheer intellectual firepower O’Leary wins first prize’ Business Post 'A tour de force' Globe and Mail'A must-read for anyone who lives in Northern Ireland and thinks seriously about its future. [O'Leary has] thought through the implications of possible unity so deeply it would be foolish for anyone who seeks it or opposes it to ignore his book' Cathal Mac Coille

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The Rachel Incident, Caroline O’Donogue (paperback June 2024)

£16.99

The Rachel Incident is an all-consuming love story. But it's not the one you're expecting. It's unconventional and messy.

It's young and foolish. It's about losing and finding yourself. But it is always about love.

When Rachel falls in love with her married professor, Dr Byrne, her best friend James helps her devise a plan to seduce him. But what begins as a harmless crush soon pushes their friendship to its limits. Over the course of a year they will find their lives ever more entwined with the Byrnes' and be faced with impossible choices and a lie that can't be taken back...

'A deliciously complicated and very real romance with some refreshing twists. O'Donoghue captures all the intensity of messy young love' MAIL ON SUNDAY

Order now for delivery with paperback publication around 6th June !

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Prophet, Helen Macdonald ( paperback 20th June 2024)

£9.99

Present-day science fiction that feels like the best sort of spy novel - NEIL GAIMAN


This is Prophet. It knows when you were happiest. It gives life to your fondest memories and uses them to destroy you... '

An all-American diner appears overnight in a remote British field.  And the deaths quickly follow. A weapon like no other - Prophet - is targeting innocent people. But nobody knows who created it, or why.

Sunil Rao seems a surprising choice of investigator. Chaotic and unpredictable, the former agent is the antithesis of his partner Lieutenant Colonel Adam Rubenstein, the model of a military man. But Sunil has the unique ability to distinguish truth from lies: in objects, words and people, in the past and in real time.

And Adam is the only one who truly knows him, after a troubled past together. Now, as they battle this strange new reality, they are drawn closer than ever to defend what they both hold most dear. Prophet can weaponise the past.

But only love will protect the future.

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Quickly, While They Still Have Horses, by Jan Carson ( hardback April 2024)

£16.99

** limited signed copies available *** 

In sixteen sparkling stories, Jan Carson introduces us to worlds and characters that feel real enough to touch. All of life is here: the thrill of growing up, the grief when youth is over; first love, mature love, parenthood and loss - all shot through with profound compassion, warm wit, and boundless imagination.

In 'A Certain Degree of Ownership', a distracted couple on a beach fail to notice their baby crawl perilously towards the sea. In 'Troubling the Water', a rumour spreads at a public swimming pool and chaos ensues. In 'Fair Play' a dishevelled father loses his two sons in an adventure park.

Every so often, an irresistible suggestion of the other world will surprise and delight, reaffirming Carson as a thrillingly original and audacious talent, and making Quickly, While They Still Have Horses the perfect introduction for readers new to her work.  If you enjoyed Roald Dahl's Tales of the Unexpected, you will like this! 

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The BookClub Bundle ( Spring 2024)

£31.97 £30.00

Every 3 months we choose our new selection of reading for the bookclub. Even if you don't come along, many people follow along via the mailing list group, and you will receive the book review summary on this email ( and also on the blog of this website!) 

If you would like to 'read along' please email us ( linda@bookspaperscissors.co.uk) and you can order this quarter's titles all together here ...

April, Soldier Sailor - Claire Kilroy

May, Ravenous - Henry Dimbleby 

June, All the Little Bird Hearts - Viktoria Lloyd Barlow 

 

Should be £31.97 but the bundle is priced at £30.

 

 

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Hagstone, Sinead Gleeson ( hardback April 2024)

£16.99

The haunting debut novel from beloved, Irish no. 1 bestselling author, Sinéad Gleeson. The sea is steady for now.

The land readies itself. What can be done with the woman on the cliff? On a wild and rugged island cut off and isolated to some, artist Nell feels the island is her home. It is the source of inspiration for her art, rooted in landscape, folklore and the feminine.

The mysterious Inions, a commune of women who have travelled there from all over the world, consider it a place of refuge and safety, of solace in nature. All the islanders live alongside the strange murmurings that seem to emanate from within the depths of the island, a sound that is almost supernatural – a Summoning as the Inions call it. One day, a letter arrives at Nell’s door from the reclusive Inions who invite Nell into the commune for a commission to produce a magnificent art piece to celebrate their long history.

In its creation, Nell will discover things about the community and about herself that will challenge everything she thought she knew. Beautifully written, prescient and eerily haunting, Sinéad Gleeson’s debut novel takes in the darker side of human nature and the mysteries of faith and the natural world. 
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The Wren, The Wren, Anne Enright ( paperback April 2024)

£9.99

Carmel had been alone all her life. The baby knew this. They looked at each other, and all of time was there.

The baby knew how vast her mother's loneliness had been. ‘A magnificent novel’ SALLY ROONEYNell is a young woman with adventure on her mind. As she sets out into the world, she finds her family history hard to escape.

For her mother, Carmel, Nell’s leaving home opens a space in her heart, where the turmoil of a lifetime begins to churn. Over them both falls the long shadow of Carmel’s famous father, an Irish poet of beautiful words and brutal actions. From our greatest chronicler of family life, The Wren, The Wren is a story of the love that can unite us, and the individual acts that threaten this vital bond.

SHORT-LISTED FOR THE WOMEN’S PRIZE FOR FICTION 2024

WINNER OF THE WRITERS’ PRIZE FOR FICTION 2024

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The Coast Road - Alan Murrin (hardback May 2024)

£16.99

It’s 1994 in County Donegal, Ireland, and everyone is talking about Colette Crowley – the writer, the bohemian, the woman who left her husband and sons to pursue a relationship with a married man in Dublin.

But now Colette is back, and nobody knows why. Returning to the community to try and reclaim her old life, Colette quickly learns that they are unwilling to give it back to her. The man to whom she is still married is denying her access to her children, and while the legalisation of divorce might be just around the corner, Colette finds herself caught between her old life and the freedom for which she risked everything.

Desperate to see her children, she enlists the help of Izzy, a housewife and mother of two, and the women forge a friendship that will send them on a spiralling journey – one toward a path of self-discovery, and the other toward tragedy. Brilliantly observed from a sharp new literary talent, The Coast Road is a novel about a closed community and the consequences of daring to move against the tide.

‘A beautiful, accomplished debut’ LOUISE KENNEDY

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Openings, Lucy Caldwell ( paperback May 2024)

£14.99

The much-anticipated new collection from the BBC National Short Story Award-winning author of Multitudes and Intimacies.

I still sometimes wonder if one could draw a window in the wall, or in the air, and step through it together. To somewhere else, entirely new. From a passionate affair in Blitz-era London, to a highly charged Christmas party in Belfast, to a trip to Marrakech which could form a new family, the thirteen striking stories of Openings pulse with possibility and illuminate those fleeting but recognisable moments of heartbreak and hope that can change the course of a life.

'It takes a writer as subtle, compassionate and clear-eyed as Caldwell to track the hidden forces that work upon us, to illuminate our secret selves. This is prose that liberates.'CLAIRE KILROY

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The Lodgers, Eithne Shortall ( paperback May 2024)

£9.99

One house, three strangers... Tessa- Activist, 69 years young. Not ready to sell up her big seaside house, but she knows a little help around the place would do wonders.

Conn - Looking for a quiet place to heal after a family tragedy, this seaside escape would be the perfect haven if it weren't for... Chloe - Arrives to drop off a package and leaves with a room. Her life is a bit of a mess, but this could be the start of a new chapter.

She's ready for change. But is she ready for Conn?'An ideal summer read ... by turns hilarious and heartbreaking' Irish Independent'This moving, funny and charming novel is reminiscent of Marian Keyes' Louise O'Neill

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The Book of Witty Women ( paperback April 2024)

£12.99

This anthology showcases the very best in humorous short story writing, by outstanding contemporary women writers, including Kathy Lette, Sadia Azmat, Lucy Vine, Josie Long, Paula Lennon, and many more. It includes the winning and shortlisted stories from the Comedy Women in Print Short Story Prize. From tales of a narcoleptic biscuit lover, con artists with a twist, and the accidental death of a hamster; to consequences of accidental gluing, the imagined world of extreme shopping, and the delightfully surreal world of canine dating, these 15 boldly imaginative stories range across a multitude of genres and themes.

Each proves the power of the short story to disarm, tickle or simply entertain.

Edited and introduced by  Helen Lederer , Kathy Lette (Author) , Sadia Azmat (Author) , Josie Long (Author) , Lucy Vine (Author) , Paula Lennon (Author) , Kimberley Adams (Author) , Annemarie Cancienne (Author) , Kim Clayden (Author) , Jean Ende (Author)

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Wavewalker : Breaking Free by Suzanne Heywood (paperback May 2024)

£10.99

Aged just seven, Suzanne Heywood set sail with her parents and brother on a three-year voyage around the world. What followed turned instead into a decade-long way of life, through storms, shipwrecks, reefs and isolation, with little formal schooling. No one else knew where they were most of the time and no state showed any interest in what was happening to the children.

Suzanne fought her parents, longing to return to England and to education and stability. This memoir covers her astonishing upbringing, a survival story of a child deprived of safety, friendships, schooling and occasionally drinking water… At seventeen Suzanne earned an interview at Oxford University and returned to the UK. From the bestselling author of What Does Jeremy Think?, Wavewalker is the incredible true story of how the adventure of a lifetime became one child’s worst nightmare – and how her determination to educate herself enabled her to escape ‘A classic memoir of childhood.

This is a book that every parent should read to consider the consequences of their midlife crises, and every child should read to learn how to deal with impossible mums and dads, as well as boils and barnacles’ Mail on Sunday 5* ‘An electrifying story about an extraordinary childhood, and Heywood tells it with remarkable clarity and assurance .

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The Bee Sting - Paul Murray ( paperback May 2024)

£9.99

The Barnes family are in trouble.  Until recently they ran the biggest business in town, now they’re teetering on the brink of bankruptcy – and that’s just the start of their problems. Dickie and Imelda’s marriage is hanging by a thread; straight-A student Cass is careening off the rails; PJ is hopelessly in debt to the school bully. Meanwhile the ghosts of old mistakes are rising out of the past to meet them, but everyone’s too wrapped up in the present to see the danger looming .

 

WINNER OF THE NERO BOOK AWARD FOR FICTION 2023 - WINNER OF AN POST IRISH BOOK OF THE YEAR 2023 - SHORTLISTED FOR THE BOOKER PRIZE 2023 - SHORTLISTED FOR THE WRITERS’ PRIZE FOR FICTION 2024

As if all these accolades weren't enough, can I just add I really liked it too! 

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The Alternatives, Caoilinn Hughes ( hardback May 2024)

£18.99

Olwen. Nell. Maeve. Rhona. Meet the Flattery sisters. Four gifted Irish sisters confront an uncertain future in this dazzling novel from a major literary talent. Perfect for fans of Jonathan Franzen, Maggie O'Farrell and Claire Vaye Watkins.

'Surprising and delightful... The Alternatives made me laugh, cry, and think.' Louise Kennedy, author of Trespasses

Olwen, Nell, Maeve and Rhona were plunged prematurely into adulthood when their parents died in tragic circumstances. Now in their thirties, they have each carved out impressive careers – living distant lives, fighting separate battles. But Olwen's disappearance is about to change everything. A geologist haunted by the weight of the earth's past and a crushing awareness of its volatile future, Olwen abruptly vanishes from her home without a trace.

Her sisters track her down to a remote bungalow in rural Ireland, with little electricity and patchy connection to the outside world. Together for the first time in years, the sisters vie to confront old wounds and diagnose new ills – most urgently, Olwen's. Fiercely witty and unexpectedly hopeful, The Alternatives is an unforgettable portrait of a family.

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The Lost Love Songs of Boysie Singh, Ingrid Persaud ( hardback May 2024)

£18.99

From the award-winning author of Love After Love ( an award winning and popular first novel)  comes an epic of wonder, danger and risk. This is the tale of four women. Popo: brilliant, vulnerable and stuck.

She's determined to free herself from the traps of her past. Mana Lala: a devoted mother - her only connection to her man is their little boy, and she will do anything to keep them both close. For Doris, well, he's glorious and once she's licked him into shape, her husband presents an opportunity to climb the social ladder.

She's heard the awful stories, but she's sure they won't be hers. Rosie just wants to mind her business, her lover, Etty, and her store. Four lives, connected and controlled by one man: the notorious, charismatic gangster Boysie Singh.

Pull up a chair and let these women tell of the man they believed could love, help or free them, and how some of them survived to tell a tale at all.

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River East River West, Aube Rey Lescure ( paperback May 2024)

£9.99

Shortlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction 2024

Shanghai, 2007: feeling betrayed by her American mother’s engagement to their rich landlord Lu Fang, fourteen-year-old Alva begins plotting her escape. But the exclusive American School – a potential ticket out – is not what she imagined. Qingdao, 1985: newlywed Lu Fang works as a lowly shipping clerk.

Though he aspires to a bright future, he is one of many casualties of harsh political reforms. Then China opens up to foreigners and capital, and Lu Fang meets a woman who makes him question what he should settle for... A mesmerising reversal of the east–west immigrant narrative set against China’s economic boom, River East, River West is a deeply moving exploration of race, identity and family, of capitalism’s false promise and private dreams. 

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Joy In Service on Rue Tagore, by Paul Muldoon ( hardback May 2024)

£14.99

Since his debut, New Weather (1973), Paul Muldoon has created some of the most original and memorable poetry of the past half-century. Joy in Service on Rue Tagore sees him writing with the same verve and distinction that have consistently won him the the highest accolades. Here, from artichokes to zinc, he navigates an alphabet of image and history, through barleymen and Irish slavers to the last running wolf in Ulster.

The search involves the accumulated bric-a-brac of a life, and a reckoning along the way of gains against loss. In the poet's skilful hands, ancient maps are unfurled and brought into focus - the aggregation of Imperial Rome and the dismantling of Standard Oil, the pogroms of a Ukrainian ravine and of a Belfast shipyard. Through modern medicine and warfare, disaster and repair, these poems are electric in their energy, while profoundly humane in their line of enquiry.

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All the Good Things You Deserve, Elaine Feeney ( poetry April 2024)

£12.99

How do we love, trust and create in the aftermath of trauma? How do we name and speak that love?In this powerful new collection from acclaimed poet and novelist Elaine Feeney, images andmemory circle and recur, and the journey from pain towards a place of greater safety is far from linear. All the Good Things You Deserve juxtaposes violence, hurt and the tyranny of shame with love, beauty and the transformative possibilities of art.

Elaine has also written the novel ' How to Build a Boat' - also available via our website.

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Greener, Grainne Murphy ( paperback May 2024)

£9.99

As teenagers, Helen, Annie and Laura were inseparable, bonding over family, boys, and their dreams for the future. But when school ended, so did their friendship.

Twenty-five years later, a snowstorm forces the three women to spend time together, leaving them wondering if they can reconcile the gap between who they are and who they used to be.

GREENER is an exploration of the changing dynamics of adult friendships and asks whether old friends can ever let us become new people.

'Heartbreaking, philosophical and funny' Niamh Prior
'Set in the latter days of the pandemic, Greener is a quiet yet powerful novel which examines the nature of friendship and the compromises that people make in their lives' Madeleine D'Arcy
'Murphy is an accomplished writer with the gift of transferring everyday life onto the page assuredly' Anne Griffin
‘Gráinne Murphy's keen-eyed exploration of the complexities of adult friendship brims with warmth and humour' Danielle McLaughlin

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100 Happy Poems , ed Jane McMorland-Hunter ( hardback May 2024)

£12.99

A compact collection of 100 supremely jolly poems to cheer you up wherever you are. We can all benefit from a portable little nugget of happiness to soothe our weary souls in moments of stress, sadness and hardship. 100 Happy Poems gives you exactly that: 100 specially selected and sublimely happy poems to turn to in times of need, from cosy fireside idylls to exhilarating outdoor adventures, encounters with the beauty of nature, interactions with our fellow humans, and moments of quiet reflection. This little bit of happiness is always on hand, and it includes uplifting words from some of the greatest poets ever to put pen to paper, from Emily Brontë wandering on the moors and Paul Laurence Dunbar welcoming his beloved to Katherine Mansfield reliving a childhood moment, Wendy Cope sharing an orange, and Algernon Charles Swinburne chatting to his cat.

Quirkily and colourfully designed, this wonderful book is the perfect way to lift your spirits in times of turmoil. Keep it in your pocket, bag or desk drawer for an instant dose of joy when you are in need of a boost. 

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Ghost Mountain, Rónán Hession ( hardback May 2024)

£18.00

Ghost Mountain, is a simple fable-like novel about a mountain that appears suddenly, and the way in which its manifestation ripples through the lives of characters in the surrounding community. It looks at the uncertain fragile sense of self we hold inside ourselves, and our human compulsion to project it into the uncertain world around us, whether we're ready or not. It is also about the presence of absence, and how it shadows us in our lives.

Mountains are at once unmistakably present yet never truly fathomable.

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Spirit Level, Richy Craven ( paperback May 2024)

£9.99

Spirit Level is an outrageously bingeable read. It is surprising, warm, inventive and a lot of fun' - Louise Nealon'

'Craven pulled me in with his brilliant humour, only to make me feel genuine emotion. I'll never forgive him for this' - Seán Burke

Danny Hook is a directionless twenty-something year old fresh out of therapy. Dealing with his disappointed family and dead-end career, he's sure things couldn't get much worse, until a drink-driving accident leaves his best friend Nudge dead.  Danny also discovers he can see ghosts - but only when he's drunk. Saddled with a best friend who can't leave his side, they must figure out what's going on and why Nudge can't cross over. Can Danny negotiate family life, therapy and a ghost that refuses to fade into the background before time runs out?'Spirit Level is a charming, zippy and hilarious read.

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Cassandra in Reverse, Holly Smale ( paperback May 2024)

£8.99


If you had the power to change the past. . .

where would you start? Cassie has never really fitted in. She remembers everything. Understands nothing.

And consistently says the wrong thing. So when she gets dumped, fired AND her local café runs out of banana muffins - all in one day - it feels like the end of the world. But then Cassie discovers she has the power to go back and change things.

With endless chances to get it right, can she stop it all from going wrong?
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The Amendments, Niamh Mulvey, hardback ( April 2024)

£16.99

Delving into the lives of three generations of women, The Amendments by Niamh Mulvey is an extraordinary novel about love and freedom, belonging and rebellion – and about how our past is a vital presence which sits alongside us. Nell and her partner Adrienne are about to have a baby.

For Adrienne, it’s the start of a new life. For Nell, it’s the reason the two of them are sitting in a therapist’s office. Because she can’t go into this without dealing with the truth: that she has been a mother before, and now she can hardly bring herself to speak to her own mother, let alone return home to Ireland.

Nell is running out of places to hide from her past. But to Ireland and the past is where she must go, and that is where The Amendments takes us: to the heat of Nell’s teenage years in the early 2000s, as Ireland was unpicking itself from its faith and embracing the hedonism of the Celtic Tiger. To 1983, when Nell’s mother Dolores was grappling with the tensions of the women’s rights movement.

And then to the farms and suburbs and towns that made and unmade the lives at the centre of this story, bound together by the terrible secret that Nell still cannot face. 

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Peter Rabbit: Up and Away : inspired by Beatrix Potter- by Rachel Bright

£7.99

A lovely introduction to the characters and stories of Beatrix Potter. 

Peter Rabbit, Beatrix Potter's world-famous creation, is hopping off on new adventures in this brand new picture book series created by bestselling creators, Rachel Bright and Nicola Kinnear. Peter is being a helpful bunny and looking after Jemima Puddle-duck's eggs one sunny spring day. Peter soon has to put his inventive brain to use when the eggs hatch and it's time to teach the little ducklings how to fly.

But when bouncers, spinning hats and flying jumps don't work, will Peter learn that everyone learns at their own pace. This mischievous, little rabbit has been a favourite character for over 100 years and these new stories celebrate Peter's cheeky nature, adventurous spirit and never-ending curiosity in a truly modern way. 

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Evenings and Weekends, Oisin McKenna (hardback May 2024)

£16.99

Summer in London stops for no-one. Not the half-naked boozers, stoners, and cruisers, the hen parties glugging from bejewelled bottles, the drag queens puffing on hurried fags.

It’s June 2019, and everyone has converged on the city’s parks, beer gardens and street corners to revel in the collective joys of being alive. Everyone but Maggie. She’s 30, pregnant and broke.

Faced with moving back to the town she fought to escape, she’s wondering if having a baby with boyfriend Ed will be the last spontaneous act of her life. Ed, meanwhile, is trying to run from his past with Maggie’s best friend Phil and harbouring secret dreams of his own. Phil hates his office job and is living for the weekend, while falling for his housemate, Keith.

But there’s a problem: Keith has a boyfriend and there might not be room for three people in the relationship. Then there’s Rosaleen, Phil’s mother, who’s tired of feeling like a side character in her own life. She’s just been diagnosed with cancer and is travelling to London to tell Phil, if she can ever get hold of him.

As Saturday night approaches, all their lives are set to change forever. It’s the hottest summer on record and the weekend is about to begin.

A MASTERPIECE. THIS SEARING TALE OF LOVE, SEX AND CLASS WILL RESONATE FOR GENERATIONS TO COME' OWEN JONES 

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Table For Two, Amor Towles ( hardback May 2024)

£18.99

Millions of Amor Towles fans are in for a treat as he shares some of his shorter fiction: six stories based in New York City and a novella set in Golden Age Hollywood. The New York stories, most of which take place around the year 2000, consider the fateful consequences that can spring from brief encounters and the delicate mechanics of compromise that operate at the heart of modern marriages. In Towles’s novel Rules of Civility, the indomitable Evelyn Ross leaves New York City in September 1938 with the intention of returning home to Indiana.

But as her train pulls into Chicago, where her parents are waiting, she instead extends her ticket to Los Angeles. Told from seven points of view, “Eve in Hollywood” describes how Eve crafts a new future for herself—and others—in a noirish tale that takes us through the movie sets, bungalows, and dive bars of Los Angeles. Written with his signature wit, humor, and sophistication, Table for Two is another glittering addition to Towles’s canon of stylish and transporting fiction.

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The Divorcées, Rowan Beaird ( hardback May 2024)

£16.99

Lois Saunders thought that marrying the right man would finally cure her loneliness. But as picture-perfect as her husband is, she is suffocating in their loveless marriage.

In 1951, though, unhappiness is hardly grounds for divorce - except in Reno, Nevada. At the Golden Yarrow, the most respectable of Reno's 'divorce ranches' Lois finds herself living with half a dozen other would-be divorcees, all in Reno for the six weeks' residency that is the state's only divorce requirement. They spend their days riding horses and their nights flirting with cowboys, and it's as wild and fun as Lake Forest, Illinois, was prim and stifling.

But it isn't until Greer Lange arrives that Lois's world truly cracks open . . .

Gorgeous, beguiling, and completely indifferent to societal convention, Greer is unlike anyone Lois has ever met - and she sees something in Lois that no one else ever has. Under her influence, Lois begins to push against the limits that have always restrained her. But how much can she really trust her mysterious new friend? And how far will she go to forge her independence, on her own terms?Set in the glamorous, dizzying world of 1950s Reno, THE DIVORCEES is a deliciously slow-burn, atmospheric page-turner and a dazzling exploration of female friendship, desire, and freedom.

'I straight up loved it. It's so stylish, so elegant, each sentence a delectable little treat . .

. and the nods towards darkness and things unravelling are so thrilling and chicly done'Elizabeth Macneal, bestselling author of The Doll Factory'Excellent, deeply compelling'Lauren Groff, bestselling author of Matrix and Fates and Furies'A delicious literary page-turner from a fierce new voice'Rebecca Makkai, bestselling author of The Great Believers'I adored The Divorcees - such an atmospheric and layered story of female independence, solidarity and deception'Julie Mae Cohen

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Exile, Aimee Walsh - hardback May 24

£16.99

Leaving home was hard. Returning is impossible. Fiadh's life is turned completely upside down on a night out in Belfast.

Pretty soon everyone has heard about what happened; it is impossible to keep the rumours from spreading, the gossip from spiralling out of control. And just as she was beginning to finally figure everything out: she was feeling positive about her move to Liverpool, she was starting to get on top of her uni work and had made some new friends. Now her life is in freefall and Fiadh is helpless to do anything about it.

She starts missing assignment deadlines, stops turning up to class and doesn't respond to any of her friends' messages. Her nights revolve around random hook ups, fuelled by drink and drugs. Without the tightknit group of friends she left behind at home or the support of the new friends she has made in Liverpool, Fiadh's life quickly descends into chaos, a chaos that nearly costs her everything.

Aimée holds a PhD in Irish Literature and Cultural History. Exile is her debut novel.

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Master Slave Husband Wife, Ilyon Woo ( paperback May 2024)

£10.99

A NEW YORK TIMES BOOK OF THE YEAR,

WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE FOR BIOGRAPHY

The incredible true story of a couple that escaped slavery in the South and eventually made their way to the UK, Africa and beyond. The remarkable true story of Ellen and William Craft, who escaped slavery through daring, determination, and disguise, with Ellen passing as a wealthy, disabled White man and William posing as "his" slave. In 1848, a year of international democratic revolt, a young, enslaved couple, Ellen and William Craft, achieved one of the boldest feats of self-emancipation in history.

Posing as master and slave, while sustained by their love as husband and wife, they made their escape together across more than 1,000 miles, riding steamboats, carriages, and trains that took them from bondage in Georgia to the free states of the North. Along the way, they dodged slave traders, military officers, and even friends of their enslavers, who might have revealed their true identities. The tale of their adventure soon made them celebrities, and generated headlines around the country.

Audiences could not get enough of this charismatic young couple, who travelled the country drawing thunderous applause as they spoke alongside some of the greatest abolitionists of the day. But even then, they were not out of danger. With the passage of an infamous new Fugitive Slave Act in 1850, all Americans became accountable for returning refugees like the Crafts to slavery.

Then yet another adventure began, as the Crafts fled to England to embark upon a new life. With three epic journeys compressed into one monumental bid for freedom, Master Slave Husband Wife recounts both a ground-breaking quest for liberty and justice, and an unforgettable love story.

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Mrs Porter Calling, A J Pearce ( paperback May 2024)

£9.99

AJ Pearce, the beloved author of Dear Mrs Bird... Brilliant, utterly charming and uplifting’ - Jill Mansell, author of Rumour Has It'

London, April 1943. Emmy Lake is most definitely Doing Her Bit for the war effort. The readers of her magazine, Woman’s Friend, are facing the hardships of life on the Home Front and they need Emmy and her support more than ever.

But when a glamorous new owner arrives at Woman’s Friend, Emmy soon realizes that the Honourable Mrs Porter could destroy everything. And then tragedy strikes. As Emmy’s own happiness turns to devastation, she must ask herself if she can find the strength to keep going.

Can she save the magazine so many people love? And can she weather her own heartbreak?'If ever there was a book to cheer a heart, it’s Mrs Porter Calling’ - Milly Johnson, author of My One True North'

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The Garden Against Time, Olivia Laing ( hardback May 2024)

£20.00

 .’In 2020, Olivia Laing began to restore a walled garden in Suffolk, an overgrown Eden of unusual plants. The work drew her into an exhilarating investigation of paradise and its long association with gardens.

Moving between real and imagined gardens, from Milton’s Paradise Lost to John Clare’s enclosure elegies, from a wartime sanctuary in Italy to a grotesque aristocratic pleasure ground funded by slavery, Laing interrogates the sometimes shocking cost of making paradise on earth. But the story of the garden doesn’t always enact larger patterns of privilege and exclusion. It’s also a place of rebel outposts and communal dreams.

What a wonderful book this is. I loved the enchanting and beautifully written story but also the fascinating and thoughtful excursions along the way.' – Nigel Slater‘

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