By Ian Leslie
In Born Liars, Ian Leslie takes the reader on an exhilarating tour of ideas that brings the latest news about deception back from the frontiers of psychology, neuroscience, and philosophy, and explores the role played by lies - both black and white - in our childhoods, our careers, and our health, as well as in advertising, politics, sport and war. Drawing on thinkers as varied as Augustine, Charles Darwin, Sigmund Freud and Joni Mitchell, the author argues that, far from being a bug in the human software, lying is central to who we are; that we cannot understand ourselves without first understanding the dynamics of deceit. After reading Born Liars you'll never think about lies - or life - in quite the same way again.
By William Shaw
WHAT DRIVES GOOD MEN TO MURDER?'The most gripping book I've read in years. William Shaw is, quite simply, an outstanding storyteller' Peter May'Grips the reader by the throat and never lets go' Independent Sergeant William South has always avoided investigating murder. A passionate birdwatcher and quiet man, he has few relationships and prefers it that way.But when his only friend is found brutally beaten, South's detachment is tested. Not only is he bereft - it seems that there's a connection between the suspect and himself.For South has a secret. He knows the kind of rage that killed his friend. He knows the kind of man who could do it. He knows, because Sergeant William South himself is a murderer. Moving from the storm-lashed, bird-wheeling skies of the Kent Coast to the wordless war of the Troubles, The Birdwatcher is a crime novel of suspense, intelligence and powerful humanity about fathers and sons, grief and guilt and facing the darkness within.
The Black Notebook
By Patrick Modiano
A writer discovers a set of notes in his notebook and sets off on a journey through the Paris of his past, in search of the woman he loved forty years previously.Set in the Montparnasse district of Paris, the author, Jean, retraces his nocturnal footsteps around the left bank during France's period of decolonisation during the 1960's. He tries to remember what brought him into contact with a gang that frequented the hotel Unic in the area. His quest through seedy cafés and cheap hotels becomes an enquiry into a woman, Dannie, whom Jean loved and who once tried to admit to a terrible crime. Over the course of several voyages between past and present, we meet various shady characters, and discover that Dannie may have killed "someone". As his memories overlap with the discovery of an old vice squad dossier, Jean reinvestigates the closed case of a crime where he could well be the last remaining witness.Translated from the French by Mark Polizzotti
By Daša Drndic
Andreas Ban is a writer and a psychologist, an intellectual proper, full of empathy, but his world has been falling apart for years. When he retires with a miserable pension and finds out that he is ill, he gains a new perspective on the debris of his life and the lives of his friends. In defying illness and old age, Andreas Ban is cynical and powerful, and in his investigations into his own past, he learns stories told by the disempowered, hunted down and helpless, stories that uncompromisingly lay bare a gamut of taboos.In Belladonna, Dasa Drndic pushes to the limit the issues about illness and the (im)possibility of living (and dying) in contemporary, utterly dehumanised world where old age and illness are the scarlet letters of shame thrown in the face of the advertised eternal youth and beauty. Belladonna brings together fiction and reality, and Andreas Ban stands for a true hero of our times; he is a castaway intellectual of a society which subdues every critical thought under the disguise of political correctness.
The Blood Card
By Elly Griffiths
On the eve of the Queen's coronation, DI Stephens and Max Mephisto uncover an anarchist plot and a ticking bomb at the same time as solving the murder of a man close to them - from the author of the bestselling Dr Ruth Galloway mysteries.'Mixes cosiness and sharpness in a way that recalls the best of Agatha Christie' Sunday Express (on Smoke and Mirrors)Elizabeth II's coronation is looming, but the murder of their wartime commander, Colonel Cartwright, spoils the happy mood for DI Edgar Stephens and magician Max Mephisto. A playbill featuring another deceased comrade is found in Colonel Cartwright's possession, and a playing card, the ace of hearts: the blood card. The wartime connection and the suggestion of magic are for Stephens and Mephisto to be summoned to the case.Edgar's ongoing investigation into the death of Brighton fortune-teller Madame Zabini is put on hold. Max is busy rehearsing for a spectacular Coronation Day variety show - and his television debut - so it's Edgar who is sent to New York, a land of plenty worlds away from still-rationed England. He's on the trail of a small-town mesmerist who may provide the key, but someone silences him first. It's Edgar's colleague, DS Emma Holmes, who finds the clue, buried in the files of the Zabini case, that leads them to an anarchist group intent on providing an explosive finale to Coronation Day.Now it's up to Edgar, Max and Emma to foil the plot, and find out who it is who's been dealing the cards . . .
Bill Bailey's Remarkable Guide to British Birds
By Bill Bailey
A humorous and very personal guide written by Bill Bailey about his favourite British birds, complete with drawings, notes and cartoons by the comedian himself.'When herons are spooked they have a habit of vomiting as a defence. Half-digested pieces of eel and water vole skull on your head is not a good look. Just so you know.'Bill Bailey's Remarkable Guide to British Birds is all about comedian Bailey's love of birds. A visual feast - it is packed with illustrations, sketches and notes by Bailey - as well as informative, it is funny and insightful, and positively crackles with energy, knowledge and wit as he takes us on a journey around the British isles, zooming in on those birds that enthuse him the most. Whether it's what they eat, where they fly to or how they communicate, these birds are always fascinating, and Bailey introduces us to their weird and wonderful ways in a manner that is always entertaining. If you're a parent who'd like to appear a bit clever when your child asks you the name of a bird; if you want to find a new and healthy hobby that takes you outdoors; or whether, quite simply, you want to understand a bit more about our natural environment and have a laugh at the same time, this is the perfect companion book to have.Alongside music and stand-up, one of Bailey's favourite pastimes is birdwatching, which he has been doing since he was a child in the West Country. His fondest memories are of family outings with parents, grandparents and cousins, ticking the birds off in his little Observer's Book of Birds. As he has said about those formative years, 'birdwatching gave a purpose to the day and a love of the natural world which has carried on into my adult life'. A beautifully and originally designed hardback, it will delight Bailey's fans as well as those who like a bit of armchair escapism.
By Jorge Carrión
Why do bookshops matter? How do they filter our ideas and literature? In this inventive and highly entertaining extended essay, Jorge Carrion takes his reader on a journey around the world, via its bookshops. His travels take him to Shakespeare & Co in Paris, Wells in Winchester, Green Apple Books in San Francisco, Librairie des Colonnes in Tangier, the Strand Book Store in New York and provoke encounters with thinkers, poets, dreamers, revolutionaries and readers. Bookshops is the travelogue of a lucid and curious observer, filled with anecdotes and stories from the universe of writing, publishing and selling books. A bookshop in Carrion's eyes never just a place for material transaction; it is a meeting place for people and their ideas, a setting for world changing encounters, a space that can transform lives.Written in the midst of a worldwide recession, Bookshops examines the role of these spaces in today's evershifting climate of globalisation, vanishing high streets, e-readers and Amazon. But far from taking a pessimistic view of the future of the physical bookshop, Carrion makes a compelling case for hope, underlining the importance of these places and the magic that can happen there. A vital manifesto for the future of the traditional bookshop, and a delight for all who love them.Translated from the Spanish by Peter Bush
The Book of Tides
By William Thomson
An idiosyncratic, richly illustrated guide to Britain's rivers, seas and shores, for everyone who loves the water and the natural world - a Norwegian Wood for Britain's watersThis is a book for those who want to understand better how the waters surrounding us affect our daily lives, how it imperceptibly but crucially shapes our actions, and has shaped our landscape for millenia. It's for anyone who knows and loves our coast, and who wants to understand, discover, surf, or sail it better.Inspired by his own witnessing of the power of the sea through travelling around Britain's coastline in a panel van with his young family, William Thomson tells the story of the cycles of the sea. He combines a lyrical, passionate narrative with graphically beautiful renderings of the main forms of water which affect Britain: Rip, Rapids, Swell, Stream, Tide, Wave, Whirlpool, Tsunami.The Book of Tides is a book for all of us who feel the pull of the sea and the tug of the tide.
The Black Friar
By S.G. MacLean
Rebellion in the city, and a Royalist spy in his own ranks - Damian Seeker, Captain of Oliver Cromwell's guard, must eradicate both in this twisty, action-packed historical thriller for fans of CJ Sansom, Rory Clements and The Three Musketeers. 'MacLean skilfully weaves together the disparate threads of her plot to create a gripping tale of crime and sedition in an unsettled city' Sunday TimesLondon, 1655, and Cromwell's regime is under threat from all sides. Damian Seeker, Captain of Cromwell's Guard, is all too aware of the danger facing Cromwell. Parliament resents his control of the Army while the Army resents his absolute power. In the east end of London, a group of religious fanatics plots rebellion. In the midst of all this, a stonemason uncovers a perfectly preserved body dressed in the robes of a Dominican friar, bricked up in a wall in the crumbling Black Friars. Ill-informed rumours and speculation abound, but Seeker instantly recognises the dead man. What he must discover is why he met such a hideous end, and what his connection was to the children who have started to disappear from around the city. Unravelling these mysteries is challenging enough, and made still harder by the activities of dissenters at home, Royalist plotters abroad and individuals who are not what they seem...
Between the Wars
By Philip Ziegler
At the end of 1918 one prescient American historian began to write a history of the Great War. "What will you call it?" he was asked. "The First World War," was his bleak response.In Between the Wars Philip Ziegler examines the major international turning points - cultural and social as well as political and military - that led the world from one war to another. His approach is panoramic, touching on all parts of the world where history was being made, examining Gandhi's March to the Sea and the Chaco War in South America alongside Hitler's rise to power.It is the tragic story of a world determined that the horrors of the First World War would never be repeated, yet committed to a path which in hindsight was inevitably destined to end in a second, even more devastating conflict.Each chapter bears the unmistakable stamp of Ziegler's scholarship: a keen eye for the telling anecdote, elegant and fluid prose, and calm and fair judgments. In a world that grows ever more uncertain, its perspective on how hopes of peace can dissolve into the promise of war becomes more relevant with each passing day.
Beneath the Surface
By Jo Spain
From top-ten Irish bestselling author Jo Spain comes the second novel in the Inspector Tom Reynolds seriesRyan Finnegan, a high-ranking government official, is brutally slain in Leinster House, the seat of the Irish parliament. Detective Inspector Tom Reynolds and his team are called in to uncover the truth behind the murder. As the suspects start to rack up, Tom must untangle a web of corruption, sordid secrets and sinister lies.At first, all the evidence hints at a politically motivated crime, until a surprise discovery takes the investigation in a dramatically different direction. Suddenly the motive for murder has got a lot more personal . . . but who benefits the most from Ryan's death?
Blood and Bone
By Valentina Giambanco
Detective Alice Madison is back in a gripping new thriller, perfect for fans of Angela Marsons, Kathryn Croft and Sharon Bolton.After two years in the Seattle Police Department, Detective Alice Madison has finally found a peace she has never known before. When a local burglary escalates into a gruesome murder, Madison takes charge of the investigation. She finds herself tracking a killer who has haunted the city for years - and whose brutality is the stuff of myth in high security prisons. As she delves deeper into the case, Madison learns that the widow of one of the victims is being stalked - is the killer poised to strike again? As pressures mount, Madison will stop at nothing to save the next innocent victim . . . even if it means playing a killer's endgame.Discover more Detective Alice Madison in the must-read, critically acclaimed series beginning with The Gift of Darkness and The Dark.
Between Three Plagues
By Jaan Kross
Jaan Kross' first major novel dramatises the life of the renowned Livonian/Estonian Chronicler Balthasar Russow, whose Livonian Chronicle describes the effects of the Livonian War on the peasantry of what is now Estonia.For all his subsequent eminence, Russow was born the humble son of a peasant, and Between Three Plagues, chronicles his rise. As a boy, his thirst for knowledge is supported by his father, and good fortune allows him to study in various German universities, returning to Tallinn as a German-speaking clergyman. As Livonia continues to be used as a political football by the warring powers of Russia, Sweden, Poland and Lithuania, Russow continues to climb the slippery pole of power and influence. Like Hilary Mantel's Thomas Cromwell, he is a diamond in the rough, a thoroughly modern man in an Early Modern world, achieving greatness through wit and learning alone.
By James Henry
THE NEW ESSEX-BASED CRIME SERIES FROM THE BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF THE DI JACK FROST PREQUELS.'A fast-moving thriller with strong characters, dark humour and a terrific sense of place. I was totally absorbed' Elly Griffiths'James Henry's writing is vivid and compelling, with great evocation of the 1980s period' Peter JamesJanuary 1983, Colchester CID A new year brings new resolutions for Detective Inspector Nicholas Lowry. With one eye on his approaching fortieth birthday, he has given up his two greatest vices: smoking, and the police boxing team. As a result, the largest remaining threat to his health is now his junior colleague's reckless driving.If Detective Constable Daniel Kenton's orange sports convertible is symbolic of his fast track through the ranks, then his accompanying swagger, foppish hairstyle and university education only augment his uniqueness in the department. Yet regardless of this, it is not DC Kenton who is turning station heads.WPC Jane Gabriel is the newest police recruit in Britain's oldest recorded town. Despite a familial tie to top brass, Gabriel's striking beauty and profound youth have landed her with two obstacles: a young male colleague who gives her too much attention, and an older one who acts like she's not there.January 1983, Blackwater EstuaryA new year brings a new danger to the Essex shoreline. An illicit shipment, bound for Colchester - 100 kilograms of powder that will frantically accelerate tensions in the historic town, and leave its own murderous trace.Lowry, Kenton and Gabriel must now develop a tolerance to one another, and show their own substance, to save Britain's oldest settlement from a new, unsettling enemy.
By Pierre Lemaitre
Sophie is haunted by the things she can't remember - and visions from the past she will never forget.One morning, she wakes to find that the little boy in her care is dead. She has no memory of what happened. And whatever the truth, her side of the story is no match for the evidence piled against her. Her only hiding place is in a new identity. A new life, with a man she has met online. But Sophie is not the only one keeping secrets . . .For fans of Gone Girl and Lemaitre's own internationally bestselling Alex, Blood Wedding is a compelling psychological thriller with a formidable female protagonist.Translated from the French by Frank Wynne
Birth of a Bridge
By Maylis de Kerangal, Maylis de Kerangal
Coca, Southern California. A small town on a wild river, at the margins of the red-rocked desert and the forest where the last of the state's Native Americans still make their home. When Boa, the charismatic new mayor, decides to put Coca on the map, he plans a monumental new project: a six-lane bridge, two hundred metres high, designed and destined to catapult the city into the third millennium. Workers from across the globe flock to California: to earn a living, to escape their pasts, to bear witness to man's mastery of nature. But the project's majestic scope has no regard for the legacy of this ancient land, and within this monochrome Babel festers a very human cocktail of fears and passions. At once timeless and yet exquisitely of its moment, Maylis de Kerangal's multi-award-winning novel follows its broad cast of construction workers and architects, diggers and dreamers, as they navigate both the intricacies of their project and the depths of the human heart.
By Anders Roslund, Börge Hellström
THE INTERNATIONALLY BESTSELLING AUTHORS OF THREE SECONDS AND CELL 8 INTRODUCE DCI EWERT GRENS TO THE CRUEL REALITY OF HUMAN TRAFFICKING.'This is crime writing at its most ambitious and morally complex' Financial TimesLydia Grajauskas will never forget the face.The face of the trafficker who brought her to Stockholm: the man responsible for three unrelenting years of forced prostitution and slavery.DCI Ewert Grens will never forget the name.The name of the prisoner the day his life was destroyed: the man responsible for twenty-five years of torturous heartache.Sweden will never forget their revenge . . .Box 21 is a steely, airtight thriller containing both the harshest aspects of degradation and retaliation, and the toughest questions surrounding the morality of violent and obsessive reprisal.Looking for a companion to Box 21? Look no further than Roslund & Hellström's Pen 33 . . .
The Bickford Fuse
By Andrey Kurkov
The Great Patriotic War is drawing to a close, but a darkness has fallen over Soviet Russia. And for a disparate, disconnected clutch of wanderers - many thousands of miles apart, linked only by a common goal - four parallel journeys are just beginning.Goritch and his driver, rolling through water, sand and snow on an empty petrol tank; the Occupant of a black airship, looking down benevolently as he floats above his Fatherland; young Andrey, who leaves his religious community in search of a new life; and Kharitonov, who trudges from the Sea of Japan to Leningrad, carrying a fuse that, when lit, could blow all and sundry to smithereens.Taking its name from William Bickford, the English inventor who developed the safety fuse and paved the way for dynamite, The Bickford Fuse explores the origins and dead-ends of the Soviet mentality from the end of World War II to the time of the nation's collapse. Blending metaphor and fable with real events from Russian history, it evokes - with Kurkov's customary brio - the absurdity and tragedy of those turbulent years.
By Davide Longo
Once a year, Corso Bramard receives a message from the man who destroyed his life.He left the police after a serial killer he was tracking murdered his wife and daughter, but fifteen years later he is still taunted by his old adversary. Mocking letters arrive at his home outside Turin, always from a different country, always typed on the same 1972 Olivetti. But this time the killer may have gone too far. A hair left in the envelope of his latest letter provides a vital clue. Bramard is a teacher now - no gun, no badge, just a score to settle. Isa, an academy graduate whose talent just about outweighs her attitude is assigned to fight his corner.They're a mismatched team, but if they work together they have a chance to unmask the killer before he strikes again - and to uncover a devastating secret that will cut Corso Barmard to the bone.
The Blood of the Hoopoe
By Naomi Foyle
Astra is the long prophesied icon of unification for the peoples of Non-Land, but is she ready to accept her destiny?War is breaking out in Kadingir. Still struggling to accept her role as a long prophesied icon of unification between Is-Land and Non-Land, Astra Ordott is on a journey across the wind sands to join her father and his people - the mystics of Shiimti, who claim to hold the secret of truly healing the damaged relationship between human beings and the Earth. Astra's desperate to get there quickly, but when her guide and companion, the shepherd Muzi, leads her off course into the path of a vicious sandstorm, she is forced to confront what the gods of their devastated world might be telling her: that there will be no refuge from her destiny.