Related to: 'Tom Vowler'

Headline Review

The Coffin Path

Katherine Clements
Authors:
Katherine Clements

**Longlisted for the HWA Gold Crown**An eerie and compelling ghost story set on the dark wilds of the Yorkshire moors. For fans of The Witchfinder's Sister and The Silent Companions, this gothic tale will weave its way into your imagination and chill you to the bone. 'Spine-tingling... the scariest ghost story I have read in a long time' Barbara Erskine 'A wonderful, macabre evocation of a lost way of life' The Times 'Like something from Emily Bronte's nightmares' Andrew Taylor, author of The Ashes of London Maybe you've heard tales about Scarcross Hall, the house on the old coffin path that winds from village to moor top. They say there's something up here, something evil.Mercy Booth isn't afraid. The moors and Scarcross are her home and lifeblood. But, beneath her certainty, small things are beginning to trouble her. Three ancient coins missing from her father's study, the shadowy figure out by the gatepost, an unshakeable sense that someone is watching.When a stranger appears seeking work, Mercy reluctantly takes him in. As their stories entwine, this man will change everything. She just can't see it yet. What readers are saying about The Coffin Path: 'A fantastic eerie ghost story to settle down with on a winters night''Compelling and chilling, the slow build-up of tension had me completely on edge''I couldn't put it down. I felt I was there on the moors, being watched by the unseen'

Headline

Quieter Than Killing (D.I. Marnie Rome 4)

Sarah Hilary
Authors:
Sarah Hilary

A gripping, chilling and twisty novel from Sarah Hilary, winner of the Theakstons Crime Novel of the Year, returns with a new DI Marnie Rome novel, QUIETER THAN KILLING. For fans of Val McDermid, Alex Marwood and Claire Mackintosh'Hilary is my drop-everything writer; always original, always bang-on psychologically, always gripping. I am a huge fan' Alex Marwood 'Tremendous' Ian RankinIt's winter, the nights are dark and freezing, and a series of assaults is pulling DI Marnie Rome and DS Noah Jake out onto streets of London. When Marnie's family home is ransacked, there are signs that the burglary can have only been committed by someone who knows her. Someone out there is playing games. It is time for both Marnie and Noah to face the truth about the creeping, chilling reaches of a troubled upbringing.

Tinder Press

To the Bright Edge of the World

Eowyn Ivey
Authors:
Eowyn Ivey

Set in the Alaskan landscape that she brought to stunningly vivid life in THE SNOW CHILD (a Sunday Times bestseller, Richard and Judy pick and finalist for the Pulitzer Prize), Eowyn Ivey's TO THE BRIGHT EDGE OF THE WORLD is a breathtaking story of discovery set at the end of the nineteenth century, sure to appeal to fans of A PLACE CALLED WINTER.*NOMINATED FOR THE INTERNATIONAL DUBLIN LITERARY AWARD 2017*'A clever, ambitious novel' The Sunday Times'Persuasive and vivid... Breathtaking' GuardianWinter 1885. Lieutenant Colonel Allen Forrester accepts the mission of a lifetime, to navigate Alaska's Wolverine River. It is a journey that promises to open up a land shrouded in mystery, but there's no telling what awaits Allen and his small band of men.Allen leaves behind his young wife, Sophie, newly pregnant with the child he had never expected to have. Sophie would have loved nothing more than to carve a path through the wilderness alongside Allen - what she does not anticipate is that their year apart will demand every ounce of courage of her that it does of her husband.

Headline

No Other Darkness (D.I. Marnie Rome 2)

Sarah Hilary
Authors:
Sarah Hilary
Tinder Press

Season to Taste or How to Eat Your Husband

Natalie Young
Authors:
Natalie Young

Always let the meat rest under foil for at least ten minutes before carving...Meet Lizzie Prain. Ordinary housewife. Fifty-something. Lives in a cottage in the woods, with her dog Rita. Likes cooking, avoids the neighbours. Runs a little business making cakes.No one has seen Lizzie's husband, Jacob, for a few days. That's because last Monday, on impulse, Lizzie caved in the back of his head with a spade. And if she's going to embark on the new life she feels she deserves after thirty years in Jacob's shadow, she needs to dispose of his body. Her method appeals to all her practical instincts, though it's not for the faint-hearted. Will Lizzie have the strength to follow it through?Dark, funny and achingly human, Season to Taste is a deliciously subversive treat. In the shape of Lizzie Prain, Natalie Young has created one of the most remarkable heroines in recent fiction.

Headline

That Dark Remembered Day

Tom Vowler
Authors:
Tom Vowler

LONGLISTED FOR THE GUARDIAN NOT THE BOOKER PRIZEOne family, one town, devastated by one tragic event. Can you ever know what those closest to you are really capable of?When Stephen gets a phone call to say his mother isn't well, he knows he must go to her straight away. But he dreads going back there. He has never been able to understand why his mother chose to stay in the town he grew up in, after everything that happened. One day's tragic events years before had left no one living there untouched.Stephen's own dark memories are still poisoning his life, as well as his marriage. Perhaps now is the time to go back and confront the place and the people of his shattered childhood. But will he ever be able to understand the crime that punctured their lives so brutally? How can a community move on from such a terrible legacy?

Headline

Someone Else's Skin (D.I. Marnie Rome 1): Winner of the Crime Novel of the Year

Sarah Hilary
Authors:
Sarah Hilary

Winner of the Theakston's 2015 Crime Novel of the Year, and a 2014 Richard and Judy Book Club pick.Devastating and brilliant, Sarah Hilary's SOMEONE ELSE'S SKIN has been acclaimed as 'stunning' by Mark Billingham and 'superbly disturbing' by the Observer.Some secrets keep you safe, others will destroy you...Detective Inspector Marnie Rome. Dependable; fierce; brilliant at her job; a rising star in the ranks. Everyone knows how Marnie fought to come back from the murder of her parents, but very few know what is going on below the surface. Because Marnie has secrets she won't share with anyone.But then so does everyone. Certainly those in the women's shelter Marnie and Detective Sergeant Noah Jake visit on that fateful day. The day when they arrive to interview a resident, only to find one of the women's husbands, who shouldn't have been there, lying stabbed on the floor.As Marnie and Noah investigate the crime further, events begin to spiral and the violence escalates. Everyone is keeping secrets, some for survival and some, they suspect, to disguise who they really are under their skin.Now, if Marnie is going to find the truth she will have to face her own demons head on. Because the time has come for secrets to be revealed...

Headline

What Lies Within

Tom Vowler
Authors:
Tom Vowler

A tightly spun, atmospheric and powerful psychological suspense.Living in a remote Devon farmhouse, Anna and her family have always been close to nature, surrounded by the haunting beauty of the moor. But when a convict escapes from nearby Dartmoor prison, their isolation suddenly begins to feel more claustrophobic than free. Fearing for her children's safety, Anna's behaviour becomes increasingly irrational. But why is she so distant from her kind husband Robert, and why does she suspect something sinister of her son Paul? All teenagers have their difficult phases...Meanwhile, a young idealistic teacher has just started her first job, determined to 'make a difference'. But when she is brutally attacked by one of her students, her version of events is doubted by even those closest to her. Struggling to deal with the terrible consequences, she does what she can to move on and start afresh. As the two narratives converge, the tension builds to a devastating denouement, shattering everything you thought you believed about nature, nurture and the true meaning of family.

Headline

The Survivors Club

Lisa Gardner
Authors:
Lisa Gardner

THE SURVIVORS CLUB is the second standalone thriller from The Sunday Times and New York Times bestseller LISA GARDNER. REVENGE IS SWEET BUT IS IT WORTH THE PRICE YOU PAY? Karin Slaughter calls Lisa Gardner 'an amazing writer'. Have you read her yet?Jillian Hayes, Carol Rosen and Meg Pesaturo's lives changed forever in an instant, when Eddie Como - the College Hill Rapist - came into their lives. But they refused to be victims; instead, they chose to be survivors. Helping to put him away was one form of justice but they couldn't deny that secretly they wanted his life destroyed, as he destroyed theirs. So when Eddie is shot down outside the courtroom on the eve of the trial, they are both relieved and revenged. But now they're also prime suspects and surviving is about to get tougher still. Detective Roan Griffin thinks this was a professional hit and all that remains is to work out who ordered it. He knows that the women are key but when another woman is savagely attacked, the situation gets a lot more complicated. For Griffin, the hunt is on to find the person responsible, before membership of the exclusive club grows...

Headline Review

One Cretan Evening and Other Stories

Victoria Hislop
Authors:
Victoria Hislop

Set in Greece and in England, One Cretan Evening, The Pine Tree, By the Fire, The Warmest Christmas Ever and Aflame in Athens are five unmissable stories told in Victoria's unique voice. This ebook includes the opening of The Thread, Victoria's new novel: a powerful tale of love and loyalty set in the vibrant city of Thessaloniki, Greece.

Headline

Get The Edge

Geoff Beattie
Authors:
Geoff Beattie
Hachette Scotland

Death of a Ladies' Man

Alan Bissett
Authors:
Alan Bissett

By day, Charlie Bain is the school's most inspiring teacher. By night he prowls the stylish bars of Glasgow seducing women. Fuelled by art, drugs and fantasies of being an indie star, Charlie journeys further into hedonism, unable to see the destruction his desires are leading everyone towards...One of Scotland's dazzling young writing talents tackles the modern phenomenon of sex addiction. Dark, funny and deliciously erotic, DEATH OF A LADIES' MAN is an intense portrait of male vanity, written with verve and emotional rawness.

Tinder Press

Small Island: Winner of the 'best of the best' Orange Prize

Andrea Levy
Authors:
Andrea Levy

Small Island by bestselling author Andrea Levy won the Orange Prize for Fiction, as well as the Commonwealth Writers' Prize and the Whitbread. It is possibly the definitive fictional account of the experiences of the Empire Windrush generation. Now a major BBC drama starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Naomie Harris, its enduring appeal will captivate fans of Maya Angelou and Zadie Smith. 'A great read... honest, skilful, thoughtful and important' - GuardianIt is 1948, and England is recovering from a war. But at 21 Nevern Street, London, the conflict has only just begun. Queenie Bligh's neighbours do not approve when she agrees to take in Jamaican lodgers, but Queenie doesn't know when her husband will return, or if he will come back at all. What else can she do? Gilbert Joseph was one of the several thousand Jamaican men who joined the RAF to fight against Hitler. Returning to England as a civilian he finds himself treated very differently. It's desperation that makes him remember a wartime friendship with Queenie and knock at her door. Gilbert's wife Hortense, too, had longed to leave Jamaica and start a better life in England. But when she joins him she is shocked to find London shabby, decrepit, and far from the golden city of her dreams. Even Gilbert is not the man she thought he was...

Posted by Leah Woodburn, Editorial

Blog: A Taste of Christmas from our authors

Peace on earth and good will to men is all very well, but everyone knows what Christmas is really about: eating and drinking to excess. In preparation for the big day, we in the Headline office have been taking the task of expanding our stomachs very seriously and have spent the last few weeks limbering up with a steady intake of quality streets and mince pies, and maybe even a spot of sherry too.

TOUCH AND GO

The Sunday Times top ten bestseller Lisa Gardner's latest thriller, TOUCH AND GO, is out now in paperback. Here's an exclusive look at chapter one to whet your appetite...

Posted by Leah Woodburn, Editorial

Blog: Our First Blog Post!

Welcome! We’re very excited that we now have somewhere to air our news and views on all things publishing and beyond. Think of it as a work in progress for now: it will, before we know it, be a slick and well-oiled machine. Until then, be kind…

Posted by Richard Roper, Editorial

Blog: Musical Mystery Tour II

Click here to read part two of our Headline authors' guide to the music that inspires them. This time it's the turn of Sheila O'Flanagan and James Forrester to tell us about the music that has influenced their writing.

By Clemency Burton-Hill

New York, New York

Being a freelance writer has its upsides and its down; but an indisputable up is the ability to choose one’s office daily. As I write, I am sitting in a small café on Hudson and Charles, spotted on a whim as I crossed over the street from Seventh Avenue. It boasts walls of exposed old brick and studiedly shabby wooden furniture; a vinyl record of jazz turns on a gramophone in the corner. October sunlight slants lazily across the street and slinks in through the café windows, gilding a wall of analogue photographs depicting the proprietor’s great-grandparents in curling sepia. It is late 2012; the New York headquarters of some of the twenty-first-century’s most cutting-edge technology companies are in the vicinity; but with this chipped mug of coffee in my hands here and that Charlie Parker LP spinning there, I could be occupying the sort of contemplative corner spot that any number of human characters in New York may have occupied before me. Other years, other faces, other times. People sometimes complain that Greenwich Village, like much in Manhattan, has “altered beyond recognition” and I’m sure in many ways it has – it is in the very nature of this town; the very name of this town, to enshrine the possibility of change. But I also know, I feel intuitively, that there is still in these streets the unwavering spirit of the old city, catering generously and eternally to the needs of those whose hearts are open, curious and yearning. There’s no place like this on earth. In other words, New York’s still got it. **** When I turned eighteen, I was given a subscription to the New Yorker for my birthday. A decade later, almost to the day, I moved to Manhattan and for the first few months I lived here, the simplest and most wondrous of the inestimable gifts this city bestows seemed to be this: that I could open those storied pages, flip to Goings On About Town, and, if I so desired, “go on about town”. I could read about a jazz gig, a book reading, a film opening, a symphony or rock concert, an opera, a play, a new restaurant and, bank balance permitting, experience it that same night. Back in my hometown of London – itself a city not without wonder – reading the Goings On section of the New Yorker became a weekly act of masochism, yielding predictable twists of almost palpable longing. To read about what was happening that same night across the Atlantic; to dream, to imagine, but to only be able to imagine – to not be in New York was sometimes too much to bear. Yet this is a city that has always been created by the imagination; a metropolis lovingly constructed in ink and paper and celluloid and dreams as much as it is by bricks and mortar, steel and glass. To borrow an insight from that master observer of New York, E. B. White, there are roughly three New Yorks: that of the natives, that of the commuters, and that of the settlers. That notion was true when White wrote “Here is New York” in 1948, and it strikes me as being resoundingly true today. Like him, I believe that the third New York will always be the most important, the most vital, because it is the one whose foundations are laid first in the minds of human beings born and living elsewhere – those for whom New York City is the ultimate destination. When the settler-dreamers hit the bedrock, having crossed bodies of water, been coughed up through tubes or tunnels or deposited by planes, it is up to them – to us – to turn those dreams into something resembling reality. And because New York has a unique capacity to absorb whatever is thrown at it and whomever arrives on its shores, they invariably do play their own unique part in shaping what happens next in the mighty pageant that is life here. Although, not always: New York also spits out more dejected and disappointed souls than any other city on earth. We transplanted “New Yorkers” must also live with the lurking shadow of that possibility every day. **** The music fades, the needle lifts, and a bearded barista with complicated tattoos on his forearms whom I’d wager lives in Brooklyn goes to flip the record to its B-Side. Which reminds me of a startling fact: the first jazz disc ever to be cut in the world was cut in New York. Ever in the world! It was Nick La Rocca’s Original Dixieland Jazz Band with “Livery Stable Blues”, in early 1917. But I plucked that particular “first” from the sky; really it’s not so startling – New York is a city of firsts. A city of human beings calmly doing things that will forever alter the direction of how those things can be done. From sculptors to subway contractors; from traders of sundries to traders of derivatives; from writers of music to writers of insurance to writers of code. Right now, I wonder, how many blocks am I from wonder? A short stroll in any direction and I might run into a movie crew shooting on a corner of Bleecker whose young director, as yet unknown, will win an Oscar next year; I might walk past an innocuous office building on Houston in which employees at a start-up whose name we’ve never heard of are busy inventing the next game-changing technology that we will soon all take for granted; I may glance at construction workers on a downtown skyscraper site whose silhouette will one day be a byword, a metaphor, a symbol for something the whole world understands – or maybe will just be a building so beautiful it makes people weep. This guy sitting next to me, meanwhile, tapping away on his laptop; for all I know he could be writing the world’s next Booker-winning novel. This is New York. Since arriving at this café, moreover, I have seen through these sunlit windows every sort of human face pass along Hudson Street. Even here, in this achingly well-heeled neighborhood where a brownstone townhouse around the corner on Perry is apparently on the market at fifteen million dollars (“What the hell – I’ll take two!”) I have seen faces old and young; faces black and brown and pink and white and many shades of grey. Faces beautiful and completely unmemorable; faces brimful of life; faces seemingly close to death. Perhaps these faces come from Puerto Rico, from Sierra Leone, from Mexico, England, Haiti, Cuba, Latvia, Kenya, Russia, Ireland or Italy. Perhaps from China, Tunisia, Wales, India, Jamaica, New Zealand, Greece or Poland. Perhaps they were born in a gleaming hospital uptown, or in a railroad apartment in an outer borough; perhaps they were born half way around the world. But here in New York they are. And as White memorably observed: “the collision and the intermingling of these millions of foreign-born people representing so many races and creeds make New York a permanent exhibit of the phenomenon of one world.” The phenomenon of one world. We know all this, of course. New York as a racial melting pot, a magnet for all comers, a global crucible of creativity: all of this has been said in myriad ways, by multitudes and over many years. But just as New York has every type of potential racial problem and for the most part enjoys a continuing and frankly miraculous city-wide tolerance, an “inviolate truce” between peoples, what astounds me is how the things we know about the city – the clichés and stereotypes, the myths and legends – go on being true, and indeed, get truer. Why? How? How do you work, New York? How are you even plausible? **** When you tell people you live in New York, I have found, reactions generally divide into those whose eyes widen with envy and those who wrinkle their brows in horror – or, worse, pity. “Oh no,” they shake their head, “I could never live there – so noisy, so dirty, so smelly. And why does everyone have to be so unbelievably rude?” There are also those who grumble that New York has somehow lost its character; been homogenised and commercialised and overrun by identical shops, adverts and tourists who genuinely appear to think queuing outside Abercrombie & Fitch a valid use of time. Well, yes. Surely Broadway has its grim bits; clearly one does well to avoid Times Square. Obviously you ignore the horse-and-cart guys in Central Park and of course you don’t eat at Olive Garden or wait forty-five minutes for a Magnolia Bakery cupcake. And of course New York is smelly and dirty and busy and crowded. If White thought in 1948 that “the normal frustrations of modern life are here multiplied and amplified” he would possibly be dismayed (but not surprised) to discover that more than half a century on there is still “not enough air and not enough light, and there is usually either too much heat or too little”. But in general, I believe, New York still has more life and curiosity and character in a single city block than even – dare I say it – London. And I’m a born and bred London girl who once suspected that if you were to cut my veins I would bleed the Thames. (I have also lived in Paris, and - hit me over the head with a baguette – I’m afraid that glorious capital does not compare either.) For more than three years, for example, my local Subway stop has been Grand Central. Rushing across the Main Concourse before I head underground to catch a train, I try always to look up at the ceiling and promise myself I will never, ever take such a sight for granted. When back in London, equally, I remind myself not to sigh in inevitable disappointment when I board the Piccadilly Line to go home. It’s a grossly unfair comparison, of course: how could poor old Hammersmith, my local Tube, ever hope to win against those majestic cathedral glories on 42nd Street? But that’s the point, isn’t it? **** In January 2012, the population of the entire New York City metropolitan area hit nineteen million people. It can be lonely here; sometimes unutterably so: a teeming place of human isolation and even desperation. By Grand Central Station I have indeed sat down and wept. But as White also captured brilliantly: “Although New York often imparts a feeling of great forlornness or forsakenness… you always feel that either by shifting your location ten blocks or by reducing your fortune by five dollars you can experience rejuvenation.” Reducing one’s fortune by five dollars here, by the way, remains the easiest damn thing in the world. Another cup of coffee at this very café, especially if accompanied by one of those artisanal sea-salt cookies they bake downstairs, will barely leave me change from twice that. In a doorway down the street, some wit has stuck a poster referencing the iconic slogan: I CAN’T AFFORD TO  NY. It has probably never been more difficult or more expensive to live in New York. Yet I and so many others would not be anywhere else in the world. Shifting my location, I will take my five bucks and get another coffee at some other place, ten blocks away, twenty, or who knows where. It doesn’t matter where I go: I open the door and the universe awaits. CLEMENCY BURTON-HIL, NEW YORK CITY, OCTOBER 2012

Peggy Riley

Peggy Riley is a writer and playwright. She recently won a Highly Commended prize in the 2011 Bridport Prize and was published in their latest anthology. Her short fiction has been broadcast on BBC Radio and published in "New Short Stories 4", Mslexia Magazine (Third prize - Women's Short Fiction Competition 2010), and as an app on Ether Books. Her plays have been commissioned and produced off-West End, regionally, and on tour. She has been a festival producer, a bookseller, and writer-in-residence at a young offender prison. Originally from Los Angeles, Peggy now lives on the North Kent coast in Britain.

The Headliners' Verdict...

Blog: The Man Booker Prize 2012

Bringing Up the Bodies by Hilary Mantel It was love at first sight. Our romance started this summer in Wolf Hall, where Thomas Cromwell and I were first acquainted. At first I was unsure of him: he grew up on the wrong side of the tracks, had a penchant for loose women and was quick to swing a sword around. However, after a brief spell abroad Cromwell reinvented himself, and I swiftly fell head over heels for the most complex fictional character I have ever come across. He is man of contradictions, conflicting passions and sometimes less than altruistic motives. In Bringing Up the Bodies, we see a darker side of Cromwell but he is just as compelling to watch in action. He has achieved the ultimate position of power, but at what price, and how long will he sit at Henry VIII’s side? Mantel’s series is dazzling, noisy, crowded, rich, bloody and brilliant. The fact that my review has basically consisted of me banging on about her main character as if he were a real person is testament to her skill as a storyteller – and her ability to breathe new life into a historical period which has been much represented. I will be cheering on for her and Cromwell come Booker Night. Bring it! Sam Eades, Publicity Umbrella by Will Self Will Self’s first novel is a paragraph-free stream-of-consciousness affair, with a perplexing smattering of italics. Challenging – yes. And I like a challenge. The problem is – and perhaps this is some self-indulgent weakness on my part as a reader – I’m the sort that likes to be rewarded for it, too. I love Ulysses. Perhaps I didn’t discover this until I read it through for the second time, when I began to appreciate its rhythms, its many personalities, its celebration of the complex, surreal, heterogeneous nature of human experience. And I loved it because of its audaciousness: breaking new literary ground, becoming, of course, a byword for Modernist experimentation in form. And I think that was my beef with Umbrella. I hesitate to say that all fiction must have a point, but, in a sense, perhaps it should. It should, in some way, contribute to or challenge our understanding of ourselves and of the world in which we live. And I’m afraid I didn’t feel that Umbrella was making any such contribution. It felt, instead, like a kind of literary historical re-enactment. Joyce was smashing preconceptions of what a novel should be, putting up two fingers to the form that had, in one way of another, persisted for several centuries. Will Self, meanwhile, is aping Joyce – a writer who did the same thing, only far better, almost a century ago. Lucy Foley, Editorial Swimming Home by Deborah Levy Coming in at under 200 pages, this is the skinniest book on the shortlist, but one that packs a significant punch. It’s the story of some family friends whose villa holiday in the South of France is disturbed when they find a naked woman swimming in the pool. It turns out to be an unstable young woman called Kitty, who believes she has a special connection to a member of the party, Joe, a famous poet. Levy is brilliant on atmosphere and from the moment Kitty emerges from that pool, you sense that any equilibrium that existed between the characters assembled at this villa has been irreversibly disturbed, to be replaced by an uneasiness that pervades the entire novel. Levy’s writing is super sharp and taut; every sentence is charged and every scene is loaded. The end result is massively compelling and hugely unsettling; this is a novel that leaves a strange taste in your mouth, in the very best way. Leah Woodburn, Editorial The Lighthouse by Alison Moore ‘The Honeymoon was dreadful – they had delayed fights and lost luggage, twin beds and upset stomachs, bad weather and arguments.’ A bleak tale of a man’s continual attempts to explain the tragedy of his past – from his mother’s abandonment to his wife leaving him after yet another betrayal. The protagonist, Futh, leaves for Germany in an attempt to escape his demons. But by stumbling into the paths of an unhappily married couple running the hotel in Hallhaus, his fate is sealed as soon as he unwittingly adds to their misery. Alison Moore’s skill is to keep the tension high in what is an otherwise immensely depressing story. Richard Roper, Editorial The Garden of Evening Mists by Tan Twan Eng This novel was a pleasure to read. Tan Twan Eng’s writing style is so calming, despite at times describing the horrors of life in a slave labour camp for our protagonist, Teoh Yun Ling. She is a fascinating character, soul survivor of a prisoner-of-war camp who becomes a judge, prosecuting war criminals and terrorists both to seek justice for the tortures she endured and to find out more information about the camp. The novel is split between the present day, where she has recently retired and is reconnecting with old friends in Malaya and 1951, when she first starts out as prosecutor and is forced to face her demons and seek out Aritomo, ‘a man who had been the gardener of the Emperor of Japan’ to ask him to build a garden for her sister who did not survive the camp. Both characters are unapologetic of their feelings and beliefs regarding the hostilities but Aritomo agrees to teach Yun Ling the art of Japanese gardening so she can build the garden herself. It is full of cultural and historical complexities that do echo other books that I’ve read but there are some fascinating concepts unearthed, which I absolutely relished. Laura Skerritt, Creative and Marketing Narcopolis by Jeet Thayil I’d heard good things about this unusual, opium-soaked tome, and was pleased to find it as eccentric, vibrant and narcotically stimulating as I’d been led to expect. I’ve always been intrigued by portraits of drug addiction (Melvin Burgess’ Junk, anyone?!), and Thayil paints a disturbing but charged portrait of a group of people enslaved by opium, and their slow descent into hallucinatory madness. And through the opium smoke is an evocation of the chaotic city of Bombay and the quirky, diverse people who populate it. I’d recommend this for anyone who wants something different – or a reading experience which is the literary equivalent to meandering through an opium-induced dreamworld. Emily Kitchin, Editorial