July 2019 : New Titles
A personal selection from a plethora of titles …
Latest from the wildly inventive and anarchic Barker concerns Charles, a 40-year-old “boutique” teddy-bear maker, who is trying to sell his house in Llandudno while estate agent Avigail tries to reign in his eccentricities during viewings. Named as one of Granta’s 20 Best of Young British Novelists in 2003, Barker’s last novel, H(A)PPY, won the Goldsmith’s Prize.
William Heinemann Ltd, £12.99, 25th July 2019, 9781785152269
A “life-affirming” tale, set in 1968, about a bookshop in rural Australia run by an Auschwitz survivor, who invites a lonely farmer to join her. Publication is timed for Independent Bookshop Week.
Faber & Faber, £8.99, 11th July 2019, 9780571349784
What happened to the person you were supposed to become? I enjoyed this contemporary novel about the gulf between the expectation of how life will turn out and the reality. It opens with Hannah, Cate and Lissa, late twentysomethings sharing a flat in east London in 2004, when life is sweet, and the world their oyster. Ten years on, each woman has her struggles with work, relationships and, most poignantly, motherhood-or not. Hope has written two historical novels, but this taps into the current conversation about finding fulfilment and living a meaningful life.
Doubleday, £12.99, 11th July 2019, 9780857524904
Gorgeous jacket for this English-language dbut, first published in 1929, about teenage rebellion among a group of Russian exiles in Paris.
Pushkin Press, £12.00, 4th July 2019, 9781782274773
Two sisters go missing in the remote Russian peninsula of Kamchatka. Clues to their disappearance lie in the lives of 12 women in the girls’ rural Russian community.
Scribner UK, £12.99, 1st June 2019, 9781471169496
Follows two US families over six decades of sweeping change, from the end of the Second World War and the struggle for civil rights, to the horrors of Vietnam to Obama’s first year as president, exploring how race, gender and class collide in the land of the free.
Jonathan Cape Ltd, £14.99, 4th July 2019, 9781787331006
In 1966, Iowan Vollie Frade enlists in the US Marine Corps to fight in Vietnam. From the Cambodian jungle, to a flophouse in Queens and then a commune in New Mexico, his path traces a secret history of life on the margins of America.
Jonathan Cape Ltd, £16.99, 18th July 2019, 9781787330795
US economics professor explores the plight of those who can’t find full-time work at a decent wage—the “underemployed”—and how their situation is contributing to widespread despair, a worsening drug problem, and the unchecked rise of right-wing populism.
Princeton University Press, £24.00, 21st May 2019, 9780691181240
This utterly enthralling family memoir draws you into a mystery from the childhood of the author’s mother, who was kidnapped from a Lincolnshire beach in 1929. Five agonising days went by before she was found. Cumming sets out to unravel what happened and why, and the result is this spellbinding portrait of life in a seaside village before the war, and of its buttoned-up world of secrets and lies. Cumming – chief art critic for the Observer since 1999-has also woven in photographs and artworks, which beautifully illuminate and complement the narrative.
Chatto & Windus, £16.99, 4th July 2019, 9781784742478
I’m much looking forward to reading this first group biography of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, whose performance on the final night of Woodstock in 1969, armed only with acoustic guitars, turned them into superstars. “Few, if any, of their contemporaries could match the recklessness of their hedonistic and often warring lifestyles as four stubborn, driven songwriters pursued chemical and sexual pleasures to life-threatening extremes.”
The Bodley Head Ltd, £25.00, 4th July 2019, 9781847925053
Beginning in 1968 at the age of 21, Elkin taught English in secondary schools for more than 30 years, including in many challenging schools in inner London, and has latterly worked as a journalist and author. In this “cultural career memoir”, she looks back on the “dangerous, free-for-all jungle” where it all began.
Book Guild Publishing Ltd, £9.99, 28th July 2019, 9781912881529
This first full biography of the “hypnotic and flawed” French Sun King for 20 years draws on many recent discoveries about his reign, and places Louis XIV in a broader European and world context. The TV series “Versailles” has stoked interest in the period.
Particular Books, £14.99, 5th July 2012, 9781846145599
“Do you ever look around you and think you’re the only one making any sense?” In this highly intriguing book-a runaway bestseller in Sweden-the behavioural-scientist author presents his simple model for understanding the idiots who surround you via four personality types: Red, Blue, Green and Yellow. Armed with information about the psychology of each type, you’ll be able to handle and get the best out of the people you deal with daily, it promises, whether at work, in public or at home.
Vermilion, £9.99, 30th July 2019, 9781785042188
This memoir by the former Liberal Democrat leader looks back on his time in politics, in a frank account of “one man’s struggle to maintain his integrity as an evangelical Christian while fully engaging in the stresses of political decision-making”.
Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, £19.99, 14th September 2019, 9780281083589
This biography of Sir Thomas Gresham—banker to Elizabeth I and founder of the Royal Exchange—draws on overlooked primary sources to give a fuller picture of a man, both ambitious and flawed, who helped to make London the financial centre of the world.
Profile Books Ltd, £25.00, 20th June 2019, 9781788162364
This short, and riveting-sounding, German bestseller tells the story of the psychosis of Nazi Germany’s final dying weeks, during which there was an extraordinary wave of suicides, not just by members of the Nazi leadership but by thousands of ordinary Germans. Huber examines what drove whole families, who had already withstood years of suffering, to do this.
Allen Lane, £20.00, 4th July 2019, 9780241399248
Billed as a definitive, character-driven history of CIA covert operations and US government-sponsored assassinations, written with unparalleled access to former operatives, ambassadors, and past directors of operations. By a Pulitzer Prize finalist.
John Murray Publishers Ltd, £25.00, 11th July 2019, 9781529378528
From crumbling hotels in the Catskill Mountains to grand mansions in Taiwan and an unfinished Elizabethan summerhouse, the illustrated stories behind dilapidated structures from around the world are told in this stunning and rather haunting book.
Amber Books Ltd, £19.99, 14th July 2019, 9781782748625
Twenty-five classic and globally inspired dessert recipes, representing a variety of Jewish cultures and traditions.
Chronicle Books, £12.99, 23rd July 2019, 9781452158969
Does diet really affect the skin? What makes the skin age? Can we prevent hair loss? In this intimate and beguiling journey around our outer covering, the prize-winning dermatologist author explores the psychological, physical and social importance of our body’s largest and yet, he says, least understood organ. He also explodes a few myths behind the multi-million-pound skin care industry. Delayed from last year.
Bantam Press, £20.00, 15th June 2018, 9780593079898
When Annie married Harry, she believed she had found her happy ever after. But with the advent of the Second World War, she finds herself not just coping with the hardships of war and two little children, but with a husband who seems like a stranger.
Pan Books, £7.99, 23rd July 2019, 9781509892686
This latest tie-in to the popular TV series “Eat Well for Less” contains 80 “effortless” recipes for healthy everyday cooking that are affordable on any budget.
BBC Books, £14.99, 4th July 2019, 9781785944437
Test your word power with this absorbing collection of themed multiple-choice vocabulary challenges; from words borrowed from the French and words connected with weather to words coined by Mark Twain.
Michael O’Mara Books Ltd, £9.99, 11th July 2019, 9781789291162
Before I read this brilliantly accessible book by the author of Smarter Than You Think, coding was something of a foggy concept to me. But as Thompson makes abundantly clear, we all need to get to grips with code and those who create it, because we now live in a world constructed of it. From the early coders, including Ava Lovelace, and other female programmers hitherto written out of the story, to Kentucky coal miners and modern crypto-hackers, there are strings of engaging insights into the anthropology of computer programmers.
Picador, £20.00, 9th July 2019, 9781529018981
Paperbacks : Fiction
“An aching tale of love and loss,” said Stylist of this tale of Mona, who experiences a sudden, tragic loss after a whirlwind marriage, and decades later is determined to find happiness.
Penguin Books Ltd, £8.99, 30th April 2019, 9780241973417
The stories of three women in post-Apartheid South Africa: pregnant teen Zodwa; wealthly socialite Ruth; and disgraced ex-nun Delilah.
Penguin Putnam Inc, £12.99, 16th July 2019, 9780593085820
Inspired by the losses of the earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand, this follows the story of Nellie and Ingrid as they fall in love during the devastation. “A joyfully eccentric book, stuffed with learning and wisdom,” said the Times.
Atlantic Books, £8.99, 4th July 2019, 9781786496058
Paperbacks : Non-fiction
A history of espionage which the FT called “brilliant in its sweep and near-miraculous in the detail and confident judgements provided on two and a half millennia of spying”.
Penguin Books Ltd, £14.99, 4th July 2019, 9780140285321
Channel Islanders reflect on what it was like to live under Nazi occupation. By the bestselling author of Sugar Girls.
Simon & Schuster Ltd, £8.99, 11th July 2019, 9781471148163
A biography of Emily Hobhouse, who saved the lives of thousands of women and children interned in camps set up by British forces during the Anglo-Boer War.
Robinson, £10.99, 11th July 2019, 9781472140920
A history of hormones and the quest to control them.
WW Norton & Co, £11.99, 18th June 2019, 9780393357080
How 13 months in 1947-48 shaped the world. A book of the year pick in the Times and the Telegraph.
Simon & Schuster Ltd, £14.99, 11th July 2019, 9781471155031
“A compass in a sea of change,” said Barack Obama of this collection of Mandela’s prison letters, published in hardback last year to mark the centenary of the former South African leader’s birth. Reviews across the board are superlative; “To me, even as a biographer of Mandela, it is a revelatory volume,” said Peter Hahn in the Telegraph; “gives us a far more rounded, interesting and, above all, human portrait of Mandela,” said the Mail.
Liveright Publishing Corporation, £12.99, 3rd September 2019, 9781631495960
A history of the Middle East, updated to cover events up until 2018.
Penguin Books Ltd, £14.99, 30th April 2019, 9780141988467
A tour of the world of liquids from the renowned scientist.
Penguin Books Ltd, £9.99, 4th July 2019, 9780241977323
Drawing upon recently declassified files, this tells the story of the more than 70 British traitors convicted of working to help Nazi Germany win the war, and the hundreds of British Fascists who were interned, without trial, on evidence that they were working on behalf of the enemy. “Fascinating,” said the Observer.
Icon Books Ltd, £10.99, 4th July 2019, 9781785785610
An indictment of the British public school system and a call for reform.
Oneworld Publications, £10.99, 4th July 2019, 9781786076120