08 August 2016 UK Non-fiction

August 2016 : New Titles

Ryan Avent | The Wealth of Humans | Allen Lane 9780241201039 | £25 | 25th

To work is human: it has always been one of the defining characteristics of life. Yet today 47% of American employment is at risk of automation within the next two to three decades, while professional work in law, medicine and accounting is or soon will be at risk.

Drawing on research from around the world – from Volvo’s operations in Sweden to a vast Foxconn production facility in Shenzhen, via Indian development economists and Silicon Valley venture capitalists – Economist correspondent Ryan Avent investigates what this revolution in the world of work means not only for our economies but also our societies.

Joe Desis | Batman : Facts and Stats From the Classic TV Show | £12.99 | 19th

KA-POW! BOFF! ZAP! This action-packed compendium is the perfect introduction and guide to the beloved 1960s Batman TV series. The dynamic duo, the colourful villains, the gadgets, that theme tune –it’s all here! Filled with fascinating facts, statistics and quotes, this fun-filled Bat-book is loaded with great photos. The ideal gift for all Bat-fans!

Britain's Best Real Heritage Pubs

Geoff Brandwood | Britain’s Best Real Heritage Pubs | CAMRA 9781852493349 | £9.99 | 

A lavishly illustrated record of pubs with interiors of special historic interest. Compiled following years of research by dedicated CAMRA volunteers.


Lucinda Hawksley | Bitten By Witch Fever : Wallpaper & Arsenic in the Victorian Home | Thames & Hudson
9780500518380 | £28 | 

Beautiful to look at and compelling to read, Bitten by Witch Fever is a highly original and captivating volume that interleaves facsimile sections of alluring, arsenic-laden wallpapers with thought-provoking narrative, tracing the arresting story of the use and effects of the toxic pigments ingrained in popular wallpapers of the nineteenth century. Lucinda Dickens Hawksley presents the history of Scheele’s green and schweinfurt green, pigments created using arsenic, which produced the vibrant shades whose brilliance made them instant favourites with wallpaper designers and householders alike. With the aid of contemporary case studies and reports in the press, she reveals how, by the middle of the century, manufacturers were producing millions of rolls of arsenical wallpaper, with devastating consequences for those working in their factories and for those living in rooms decorated with the deadly designs. The wallpaper sections display dazzling long- lost work from the great designers and printers of the age, including Christopher Dresser, Corbière, Son & Brindle, Charles Knowles & Co. and Morris & Co. – whose owner was famously dismissive of the fatal effects of living with arsenic-filled wallpapers.

Acknowledgements : Amazon UK

Bethany Kehdy | The Jewelled Kitchen | Watkins Publishing 9781848990623 | £14.99 | 18th

“In the Middle East, cooking is a truly intuitive art form …There is a saying that if you run with your senses, especially your sense of smell, that you will find inspiration. It is never about exact measurements, and always about instinct.” The Jewelled Kitchen takes you on an unforgettable adventure of Middle Eastern and North African cuisines. We are all familiar with a few mezze favourites – hummus, falafel, tabbouleh and stuffed vine leaves – but Bethany offers up a whole host of other treasures. From Tuna Tartare with Chermoula and Sumac-Scented Chicken Parcels, to Cardamom-Scented Profiteroles and Ma’amoul Shortbread Cookies, here are mouth-watering dishes for you to try. Bethany’s recipes stem from her childhood, as she mixes traditional country fare with cosmopolitan feasts, and adds contemporary twists. In this book she unveils a culinary heritage that is as rich as it is diverse.

Trent Morse | Ballpoint Art | Laurence King 9781780678528 | £17.95 | 15th

This stunning book is the first compendium of art made with ballpoint pens. Ballpoint drawing has evolved into a thriving art form since the pen emerged as a writing tool in the 1940s. Throughout the 1950s and ’60s, as the ballpoint became cheaper and more accessible, Alberto Giacometti, Jean Dubuffet, Andy Warhol, Francis Bacon, Nam June Paik, Louise Bourgeois, and many others, sketched with the pens. Today, those who make art with ballpoint pen are no longer confined by size or style. This book features 30 artists from around the world who are currently creating masterpieces with ballpoint, and discusses their methods, the messages in their work, and their personal connections to the pen.

Acknowledgements : Amazon UK

Kay Plunkett-Hogge | A Sherry & A Little Plate of Tapas | Mitchell Beazley 9781784721541 | £15.99 | 11th

Tapas and sherry bars are everywhere: Berlin, London, LA, Paris, Munich. Now it’s time to bring the trend home and serve this glorious marriage of flavours to friends. In A Sherry & A Little Plate of Tapas Kay Plunkett-Hogge tells the story of tapas and its beloved companion, sherry, and offers 80 easy-to-cook-at-home recipes.

The book begins by exploring the mysteries of sherry, one of the world’s oldest wines, considering the five key types, how they’re made and how they’re served, with tips on the best food and sherry matches and a selection of sherry cocktails. Kay then plunges into the tapas, with chapters on cold tapas – hams and olives and their like – and latillas; montaditos or ‘mounted’ tapas; pintxos, or ‘things on sticks’; and on cooked tapas, with chapters on vegetables, eggs and dairy, seafood and meat. Kay has even created some delicious sherry-based desserts.

Joseph Stiglitz | The Euro and its Threat to the Future of Europe | Allen Lane 9780241258156 | £20 | 16th

Solidarity and prosperity fostered by economic integration: this principle has underpinned the European project from the start, and the establishment of a common currency was supposed to be its most audacious and tangible achievement. Since 2008, however, the European Union has ricocheted between stagnation and crisis. The inability of the eurozone to match the recovery in the USA and UK has exposed its governing structures, institutions and policies as dysfunctional and called into question the viability of a common currency shared by such different economies as Germany and Greece.

Designed to bring the European Union closer together, the euro has actually done the opposite: after nearly a decade without growth, unity has been replaced with dissent and enlargements with prospective exits. Joseph Stiglitz argues that Europe’s stagnation and bleak outlook are a direct result of the fundamental flaws inherent in the euro project – economic integration outpacing political integration with a structure that promotes divergence rather than convergence. Money relentlessly leaves the weaker member states and goes to the strong, with debt accumulating in a few ill-favoured countries. The question then is: Can the euro be saved?

Laying bare the European Central Bank’s misguided inflation-only mandate and explaining why austerity has condemned Europe to unending stagnation, Stiglitz outlines the fundamental reforms necessary to the structure of the eurozone and the policies imposed on the member countries suffering the most. But the same lack of sufficient political solidarity that led to the creation of a flawed euro twenty years ago suggests that these reforms are unlikely to be adopted. Hoping to avoid the huge costs associated with current policies, Stiglitz proposes two other alternatives: a well-managed end to the common currency; or a bold, new system dubbed ‘the flexible euro.’ This important book, by one of the world’s leading economists, addresses the euro-crisis on a bigger intellectual scale than any predecessor.

9780750969888
Bruce Wexler | The History of Rock in Fifty Guitars | The History Press 9780750969888 | £12.99 | 4th

Popular music in the 1920s called out for a guitar sound that was more dominant. Early experiments with steel cones or resonators, Hawaiian electric guitars and the first Electric Spanish style 6-string guitar in 1936 made musicians suddenly realise that it was possible to produce notes that could be amplified to any desired volume and this gave birth to the new less restrained style of playing. Finally the guitar could take the lead part and as rock music evolved the guitar was a natural choice of instrument. This stunning book traces the development of the instrument and the artists who achieved fame with it over seven decades, from Bill Haley to Jimi Hendrix.

August 2016 : New Paperbacks

Noam Chomsky | Because We Say So | Penguin 9780241972489 | £9.99 | 4th

In 1962, the eminent statesman Dean Acheson enunciated a principle that has dominated global politics ever since: that no legal issue arises when the United States responds to a challenge to its ‘power, position, and prestige’. In short, whatever the world may think, U.S. actions are legitimate because they say so.

Spanning the impact of Edward Snowden’s whistleblowing and Palestinian-Israeli relations to deeper reflections on political philosophy and the importance of a commons to democracy, Because We Say So takes American imperialism head on.

Roger Crowley | Conquerors : How Portugal Forged the First Global Empire | Faber 9780571290901 | £9.99 | 4th

As remarkable as Columbus and the conquistador expeditions, the history of Portuguese exploration is now almost forgotten. But Portugal’s navigators cracked the code of the Atlantic winds, launched the expedition of Vasco da Gama to India and beat the Spanish to the spice kingdoms of the East – then set about creating the first long-range maritime empire. In an astonishing blitz of thirty years, a handful of visionary and utterly ruthless empire builders, with few resources but breathtaking ambition, attempted to seize the Indian Ocean, destroy Islam and take control of world trade.

Told with Roger Crowley’s customary skill and verve, this is narrative history at its most vivid – an epic tale of navigation, trade and technology, money and religious zealotry, political diplomacy and espionage, sea battles and shipwrecks, endurance, courage and terrifying brutality. Drawing on extensive first-hand accounts, it brings to life the exploits of an extraordinary band of conquerors – men such as Afonso de Albuquerque, the first European since Alexander the Great to found an Asian empire – who set in motion five hundred years of European colonisation and unleashed the forces of globalisation.

An Improbable Friendship

Anthony David | An Improbable Friendship | Simon & Schuster 9781471154607 | £8.99 | 11th

An Improbable Friendshipis the dual biography of Israeli Ruth Dayan, now ninety-seven, who was Moshe Dayan’s wife for thirty-seven years, and Palestinian journalist Raymonda Tawil, Yasser Arafat’s mother-in-law, now seventy-four. It reveals for the first time the two women’s surprising and secret forty-year friendship and delivers the story of their extraordinary and turbulent lives growing up in a war-torn country.

Based on personal interviews, diaries, and journals drawn from both women-Ruth lives today in Tel Aviv, Raymonda in Malta-author Anthony David delivers a fast-paced, fascinating narrative that is a beautiful story of reconciliation and hope in a climate of endless conflict. By telling their stories and following their budding relationship, which began after the Six-Day War in 1967, we learn the behind-the-scenes, undisclosed history of the Middle East’s most influential leaders from two prominent women on either side of the ongoing conflict.

David Hall | Worktown | Weidenfeld & Nicolson 9781780227801 | £9.99 | 11th

The astonishing story of the 1930s project that gave birth to Mass Observation

Peter Holmes, Ben Caudell and saul Wordsworth | Would I Lie to You? The 100 Most Popular Lies of All Time | Faber 9780571328109 | £7.99 | 4th

The cheque’s in the post. I’m still at the office. That looks great on you. Lies make the world go round. And in this book the Would I Lie To You? team celebrates the fine art of the everyday fib.

Like the deliriously funny contributions of Rob Brydon, Lee Mack and David Mitchell in the hugely successful panel game, here is a delightful collection of 100 fibs that all of us can recognise. Lies like: I didn’t even notice she was pretty; I’m working from home tomorrow; and wow, your tattoo looks really… interesting. Written in the same warm, witty and inspired tone that’s made the TV show such a hit, the book uncovers the little deceptions that strike a chord with all of us. There are the lies we tell others, the lies people tell us and the lies we tell ourselves. Each entry in the book is laugh-out-loud funny, and filled with more than a little bit of painful truth.

Ben Judah | This is London | Picador 9781447276272 | £9.99 | 11th

This is the new London: an immigrant city. Over one-third of Londoners were born abroad, with half arriving since the millennium. This has utterly transformed the capital, for better and for worse.

Ben Judah is an acclaimed foreign correspondent, but here he turns his reporter’s gaze on home, immersing himself in the hidden world of London’s immigrants to reveal the city in the eyes of its beggars, bankers, coppers, gangsters, carers and witch-doctors. From the backrooms of its mosques, Tube tunnels and nightclubs to the frontlines of its streets, Judah has supped with oligarchs and spent nights sleeping rough, worked on building sites and talked business with prostitutes; he’s heard stories of heartbreaking failure, but also witnessed extraordinary acts of compassion.

This is London explodes fossilized myths and offers a fresh, exciting portrait of what it’s like to live, work, fall in love, raise children, grow old and die in London now. Simultaneously intimate and epic, here is a compulsive and deeply sympathetic book on this dizzying world city from one of our brightest new writers.

9781841656601

Dermot Turing | Prof : Alan Turing Decoded | The History Press 9781841656601 | £9.99 | 4th

Alan Turing was an extraordinary man who crammed into a life of only 42 years the careers of mathematician, codebreaker, computer scientist and biologist. He is widely regarded as a war hero grossly mistreated by his unappreciative country and it has become hard to disentangle the real man from the story. It is easy to cast him as a misfit, the stereotypical professor. But actually Alan Turing was never a professor, and his nickname ‘Prof’ was given by his codebreaking friends at Bletchley Park. Now, Alan Turing’s nephew, Dermot Turing, has taken a fresh look at the influences on Alan Turing’s life and creativity, and the later creation of a legend. For the first time it is possible to disclose the real character behind the cipher-text: how did Alan’s childhood experiences influence the man? Who were the influential figures in Alan’s formative years? How did his creative ideas evolve? Was he really a solitary, asocial genius? What was his wartime work after 1942, and why was it kept even more secret than the Enigma story? What is the truth about Alan Turing’s conviction for gross indecency, and did he commit suicide? What is the significance of the Royal Pardon granted in 2013? In Dermot’s own style he takes a vibrant and entertaining approach to the life and work of a true genius.