Heron Books

  • Welcome to Heron Books

    Heron Books

    Heron Books is an imprint of Quercus Books, focussed on publishing high-quality storytelling in both fiction and non-fiction. A small and selective list, we have the advantage of being able take time to care for and develop authors and projects, allowing authors the chance to be as involved in the publishing process as they want and cultivating a lasting creative relationship.
    • James Heneage

      The Towers of Samarcand

      With an Ottoman army at the gates and Constantinople set to submit, Luke Magoris must make an epic journey across a continent to the ancient city of Samarcand to approach the last hope for the Byzantine world; the Mongolian conqueror Tamerlane.
    • The Incredible Unlikeliness of Being

      Alice Roberts

      Alice Roberts takes you on the most incredible journey in nature, revealing your path from a single cell to a complex embryo to a living, breathing, thinking person. It's a story that with our distant ancestors and an extraordinary, unlikely chain of events that shaped human development and left their mark on all of us. This is your story, told as never before. Alice Roberts uses the latest research to uncover the evolutionary history hidden in all of us, from the secrets found only in our embryos and genes, to those visible in your anatomy. This is the incredible story of you!
    • A community for history lovers

      H For History

      From ancient Rome to the Tudor Court, revolutionary Paris to the Second World War, discover the best historical fiction and non-fiction at H For History

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    Heron Books

    The Rocks

    By Peter Nichols

    Set on the island of Mallorca, The Rocks is a double love story told in reverse. Opening in 2005 with a dramatic event that seems to seal the mystery of two lives, the story moves backwards in time, unravelling over sixty years, amid the olive groves and bars, the boats and poolside parties, the lives and relationships of two intertwined families within an expat community of endearing and flawed characters. As one story is revealed, another, sweeter one, a love story of a couple from the younger generation, arises in the wake of their elder's failures.

    The Rocks is a darkly comic, bittersweet, finally heartbreaking novel, that slips back in time to reveal the shocking incident that marked and altered these lives for ever.

    Set over 60 years, this family drama will completely consume you.I have admired Peter Nichols for a long time. He shows an unflinching honesty in his writing and he brings to light the intricate dynamics of human relationships, both the noble and the small. Nothing escapes him.A beautifully crafted love story set against an idyllic backdrop of ocean breezes and lemon groves. Nichols expertly weaves a tale that stretches across decades and generations, giving us a unique and unforgettable cast of characters.A Mediterranean idyll, a family saga, a mystery. A love story that's as weird as real life, as rich and surprising and tender and affecting. The Rocks is all these things. Like Beautiful Ruins, it reminds me of all the reasons I read novels.An involving and erudite sagaGorgeously absorbing... Told in flashback, with wit, passion and charm'Peter Nichols's wondrous novel The Rocks is clearly the odyssey he was born to undertake, the book he was destined to write' Richard Russo.This is a sophisticated and ambitious novel but I'm going to keep my verdict simple: it is one of the best books I've read in a long time . . . The setting, the engaging cast of characters and the changes in morals and society over the decades are vividly painted and fascinating. The Rocks has everything I look for in a work of fiction but rarely find between one set of covers.Three generations, two families and the dangerous delights of a Mediterranean island, The Rocks is a bittersweet chronicle of unresolved feuds.For fans of The Cazalet Chronicles, the Clifton Chronicles and Tigers in Red Weather.A wonderful portrait of changing social mores over the decades.A remarkable new fiction author, with a writing style that recalls One Day.Highly promotable author will be available for events in the UK.
    Heron Books

    Love Notes for Freddie

    By Eva Rice

    We don't have long. Dancers are like dragonflies - in one day, dead in the water the next.

    Love Notes for Freddie is a rich, remarkable novel of what happens when three people see an open door.

    Marnie Fitzpatrick has a celebrated, dysfunctional stepfather, a twin brother who photographs family rows for fun, and has never met a boy that she prefers to a maths conundrum. Yet one afternoon in the company of wayward rebel, Rachel Porter, changes all of that. Forever.

    Julie Crewe once danced barefoot in Central Park with man she has never been able to forget, but after breaking her heart and both her ankles, re-invented herself as a teacher at St Libby's - a highly-rated girls' school in Hertfordshire.

    Freddie Friday - an electrician in the Shredded Wheat factory - wants to break away from everything that is expected of him, but circumstances and his past imprison him, except when he's moving to music.

    This is the story of what happened in the unsuspecting town of Welwyn Garden City during the long hot summer of 1969. It's about first love, and last love and all the complicated stuff in between, that can't be explained by any mathematical equation.

    This is what happened when they saw the open door.

    I so enjoyed this emotional, engaging, vivid and different coming-of-age story . . . The thought-provoking narrative twists between Marnie's and Julie's points of view, and is beautifully written, intelligent and grippingA beautiful tale of first loves, secret passions and, er, mathsA forbidden love. An impossible dream. A young man breaks hearts and boundaries in this romantic novel by the author of The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets.Eva Rice has written four novels and one non-fiction book. She is married to a musician and has three children. She lives in London.The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets was a Richard and Judy Book Club choice and has sold over 250,000 copies through the UK TCM.The author is the daughter of Sir Tim Rice, and a songwriter in her own right.A coming-of-age story about dancing beyond class and gender boundaries in the vein of Billy Elliot.For fans of Elizabeth Jane Howard, Katie Fforde and Joanna Trollope.

    Contact Heron Books

    For more information, please contact Email: info@heronbooks.co.uk Visit us: 55 Baker Street, 7th Floor, London W1U 8EW Phone: 020 7291 7200 To discover more information on Historical Fictionist visit www.histfictionist.com Follow us on Twitter @heronbooks and @histfictionist
    Heron Books

    Turning the Stones

    By Debra Daley

    Georgian England, mid-eighteenth century.

    As a foundling the young Em Smith is brought to the Cheshire country home of the ambitious Waterland family, where she serves as a companion to their daughter, Eliza. But as they grow up, Em's position becomes uncertain and she is increasingly troubled by the mystery of her birth. When Eliza goes in pursuit of a husband and a fortune in London, Em finds herself implicated in a horrific crime and must flee for her life.

    Her frantic escape takes her across country and onto the high seas, where she is at the mercy of the enigmatic smuggler, Captain McDonagh. But there is a more potent force drawing Emily on: a spirit whose presence she has felt all her life, and whose irresistible design - be it malicious or benevolent - will force her onwards to a distant shore. There she will confront the astonishing secret of her origins.

    'A glorious, intricate period romance: a perfect mix of Georgian high society blended with wild Irish magic. Em is a feisty heroine and the denoument is as perfect as it is unexpected' Manda Scott.'I marvelled at this novel. Gripping, assured and powerfully atmospheric; you know at once you are in the hands of a master storyteller' Rowan Pelling.'Gripping, tautly plotted and hauntingly beautiful: Debra Daley is a writer to watch' Vanora Bennett.An orphaned girl fights for survival in Georgian England, in a spirited novel for fans of Sarah Waters and Susan Hill.For fans of Sarah Waters, Susan Hill and Daphne du Maurier.Set in the same period as Philippa Gregory's Wideacre series.
    Heron Books

    The Towers of Samarcand

    By James Heneage
    The follow-up to The Walls of Byzantium.The third in the series will be published July 2015.For fans of Game of Thrones and The Da Vinci Code.
    The Walls of Byzantium

    Book one in The Mistra Chronicles series

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    Heron Books

    Dodger of the Dials

    By James Benmore
    a cracking plot replete with reversals and triumphs. Long may this series run.tremendous fun - with an underlying theme which is deadly serious'Blows its predecessor away ... Emotive, cathartic and inspired ... How James Benmore has managed to mix Dickensian England and characters with a modern humour and outlook on the world and retain that feeling of the original is a marvel' Parmenion Books.'Dodger is back! And oh, how I've missed him! The book is a gripping, fast-paced adventure with memorable moments, both light and dark ... Benmore has matured as an author and the quality of his writing shines through ... Please sir, I want some more' Bookbag.James Benmore studied literature at the Open University and has since completed an MSt in Creative Writing at Oxford University. He won the AM Heath prize in 2010 for best work of fiction by a writer graduating from Kellogg College. His short stories have been published in various anthologies. He lives in London.
    Meet the team

    About Us

    Heron Books, an imprint of Quercus Books, publishes high-quality storytelling in both fiction and non-fiction. Our fiction list is concentrated in narrative of the past – stories which resonate across the ages, reflecting the modern day and bringing characters, culture and history to life. Heron Books’ non-fiction includes thought-provoking and narrative-driven explorations in science, politics and history. Our selective approach enables us to take time to care for and develop authors, projects and new approaches to publishing – allowing authors the chance to be as involved in the publishing process as they want and cultivating a lasting creative relationship.
    Heron Books

    The Incredible Unlikeliness of Being

    By Alice Roberts
    'Witty, personal and above all informed by passion and deep knowledge' Adam Rutherford.'Her guided tour of the human body takes us on a fascinating journey of self-discovery' Desmond Morris.'Alice Roberts's engagingly personal style connects you to your ancestors, to your own beginnings as a single cell ... You emerge from her book entertained and with a deeper understanding of yourself' Richard Dawkins.Alice Roberts is an anatomist, osteoarchaeologist, anthropologist, television presenter, author and professor at the University of Birmingham. She has presented The Incredible Human Journey and Coast on BBC 2 and Inside Science on Radio 4. She lives in Bristol with her husband and two children.Shortlisted for the Wellcome Book Prize 2015BBC 2 TV series under negotiation.The Incredible Human Journey sold 15,000 copies through the UK TCM.Alice Roberts has 80,000 twitter followers and is often compared to Brian Cox.Appearances at Hay, Cheltenham, Glastonbury, Birmingham Science Festival and Chalke Valley History Festival