Related to: 'Scrapers'

Trapped at the Altar

Excerpt

Read a little of legendary romance author Jane Feather's latest novel, Trapped at the Altar.

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Hunted

G X Todd
Authors:
G X Todd

Hunted by G X Todd is the second novel in the Voices series, highlighted as being 'of a piece with Stephen King's The Stand' in the Independent. The battle between Good and Evil continues to play out in a world where the Voice in your head can save or slaughter you. A must-read for fans of Neil Gaiman and Joe Hill.'Compelling, suspenseful and altogether extraordinary' Lee ChildThe birds are flying. The birds are flocking. The birds sense the red skies are coming. One man is driven by an inner voice that isn't his - this Other is chewing at his sanity like a jackal with a bone and has one purpose. To find the voice hiding in the girl. She has no one to defend her now. But in an inn by the sea, a boy with no tongue and no voice gathers his warriors. Albus must find the girl, Lacey . . . before the Other does. And finish the work his sister Ruby began. Hunted is the second book in the acclaimed Voices series, where the battle between Good and Evil holds you in its vice-like grip. #HearTheVoices

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Six Tudor Queens: Anne Boleyn, A King's Obsession

Alison Weir
Authors:
Alison Weir
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Apollo

Zack Scott
Authors:
Zack Scott

Explore the iconic Apollo space missions and moon landings through these stunning infographics and data visualisations. If you like space, this book is for you.The Apollo Program ran from 1961 until 1972, and marks one of the greatest accomplishments in all of human endeavour - man walking on the moon. On 20th July 1969, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin achieved this most remarkable feat, becoming the first humans to visit another celestial body.Apollo is an extraordinary visual history of the story of this iconic space programme, based on recently released NASA data about the various missions of that name. Using beautifully designed infographics, Apollo takes us through all the astonishing facts and figures, as well as some quirky little-known details, and gives us a detailed and elegant history of the seventeen missions which saw twelve humans step on the surface of the moon. Apollo gives us an insight in to the incredible individuals who made that journey.What readers are saying about Apollo:'Always loved NASA and the Apollo missions and this book breaks down all the rockets and missions so you can understand every detail''Love it, would highly recommend. Easy for everyone to understand and a great gift''Five stars'

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Any Bitter Thing

Monica Wood
Authors:
Monica Wood

ANY BITTER THING is a novel about how much we can and should forgive, by Monica Wood, the acclaimed author of THE ONE-IN-A-MILLION BOY, and perfect for fans of Anne Tyler and Joanna Cannon. 'If you liked THE SECRET LIFE OF BEES, try ANY BITTER THING' GlamourAfter surviving a near-fatal accident, thirty-year-old Lizzy Mitchell faces a long road to recovery. She remembers little about the days she spent in and out of consciousness, save for one thing: she saw her beloved deceased uncle, Father Mike, the man who raised her until she was nine, when she was abruptly sent away.Though her troubled marriage and broken body need tending, Lizzy knows she must uncover the details of her accident - and delve into the events of twenty years ago, when whispers and accusations forced a good man to give up the only family he had.

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Defender

G X Todd
Authors:
G X Todd
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The Wasp That Brainwashed the Caterpillar

Matt Simon
Authors:
Matt Simon
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Pattern

Emma Bridgewater
Authors:
Emma Bridgewater
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Empire of the Moghul: Traitors in the Shadows

Alex Rutherford
Authors:
Alex Rutherford
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The Human Age

Diane Ackerman
Authors:
Diane Ackerman

'Our relationship with nature has changed . . . radically, irreversibly, but by no means all for the bad. Our new epoch is laced with invention. Our mistakes are legion, but our talent is immeasurable.'In The Human Age award-winning nature writer Diane Ackerman confronts the fact that the human race is now the single dominant force of change on the planet. Humans have 'subdued 75 per cent of the land surface, concocted a wizardry of industrial and medical marvels, strung lights all across the darkness'. We now collect the DNA of vanishing species in a 'frozen ark', equip orang-utans with iPads, create wearable technologies and synthetic species that might one day outsmart us. Ackerman takes us on an exciting journey to understand this bewildering new reality, introducing us to many of the people and ideas now creating - perhaps saving - the future.The Human Age is a surprising, optimistic engagement with the dramatic transformations that have shaped, and continue to alter, our world, our relationship with nature and our prospects for the future. Diane Ackerman is one of our most lyrical, insightful and compelling writers on the natural world and The Human Age is a landmark book.

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Empire of the Moghul: The Serpent's Tooth

Alex Rutherford
Authors:
Alex Rutherford

The new Moghul Emperor Shah Jahan reigns over a colossally wealthy empire of 100 million souls. Yet to gain his throne he has followed the savage 'throne or coffin' traditions of his ancestors - descendants of Genghis Khan and Tamburlaine. Ever since the Moghuls took India, brother has fought brother and sons their fathers for the prize and Shah Jahan has been no exception.As his reign dawns, now is the time for Shah Jahan to secure his throne by crushing his enemies. Instead, devastated by the death of his beautiful wife Mumtaz, he becomes obsessed with building an epic monument to their perfect love - the Taj Mahal. His overwhelming grief isolates him from his sons and he does not see the rivalries, indeed hatreds, building between them. When he falls ill, civil war breaks out - ruthless, murderous and uncontrollable - and the foundations of the empire itself begin to shake.

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The Universe Next Door

Marcus Chown
Authors:
Marcus Chown

Can time run backwards? Can we live forever? Could our universe have been created as a DIY experiment by superior beings in another universe? These questions may sound crazy but they explore the limits of our current knowledge and highlight the key issues modern scientists are wrestling to understand.As Cosmology Consultant at the New Scientist, Marcus Chown often comes across ideas that leave his head spinning. In this hugely entertaining, accessible and mind-blowing book, he explores the ramifications of, as he puts it, science with the 'wow!' factor.

Diane Ackerman

Diane Ackerman has been the finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Non-fiction in addition to many other awards and recognitions for her work, which include the international bestsellers The Zookeeper's Wife and A Natural History of the Senses. She lives with her husband Paul West in Ithaca, New York.

Emma Bridgewater

Emma Bridgewater established her successful pottery business in 1985. She found a manufacturer in Stoke-on-Trent to produce a range of mugs, jugs and teapots inspired by traditional shapes and spongeware designs. She now employs over 230 people and continues to make all her ceramics in Staffordshire, the historic home of pottery manufacture in Britain. Emma is married with four children and lives outside Oxford, where she was brought up.Follow Emma on Twitter: @EmmaBridgewater www.emmabridgewater.co.uk

Jon Butterworth

Jon Butterworth is a leading physicist on the Large Hadron Collider, and Head of Physics and Astronomy at UCL. He writes the popular Life & Physics blog for the Guardian and has written articles for a range of publications including the Guardian and New Scientist. Jon often discusses physics in public, including talks at the Royal Institution and the Wellcome Trust and appearances on BBC Radio 4's Today Programme, The Infinite Money Cage, BBC Newsnight, Horizon, Channel 4 News and Al Jazeera. He was awarded the Chadwick Medal of the Institute of Physics in 2013 for his pioneering work in high energy particle physics, especially in the understanding of hadronic jets. His book Smashing Physics was shortlisted for the 2015 Royal Society Winton Prize.

Marcus Chown

Marcus Chown is the Cosmology Consultant for New Scientist magazine. He has a first-class degree in physics from the University of London and an MSc in astrophysics from the California Institute of Technology.

Matt Simon

Matt Simon is a journalist who writes Wired Science's 'Absurd Creature of the Week' column. He has also edited Wired's 'This Day in Tech blog', which was compiled into the book Mad Science, and writes a second column called 'Fantastically Wrong' that explores the strangest mistakes in folklore and science. He lives in San Francisco.

Tasmina Perry

Tasmina Perry is the author of the huge Sunday Times Top Ten bestsellers Daddy's Girls, Gold Diggers, Guilty Pleasures, Original Sin, Kiss Heaven Goodbye, Private Lives and Perfect Strangers. She left a career in law to enter the world of women's magazine publishing, going on to win the New Magazine Journalist of the Year award, edit numerous national publications and write on celebrity and style for titles such as Elle and Glamour. In 2004 she launched her own travel and fashion magazine, Jaunt, and was Deputy Editor of InStyle magazine when she left the industry to write books full time. Her novels have been published in seventeen countries.

Zack Scott

ZACK SCOTT joined the Royal Air Force at the age of twenty, where he worked as an aircraft technician for several years. He then returned to civilian life to work on high-speed trains, before pursuing his lifelong passion for design. Zack achieved his degree in graphic design in 2013 and has since been working in-house for a couple of companies, while using his free time to work on writing his books, 2017's Apollo and 2018's Scrapers. Zack has a keen interest in the sciences and loves to create graphics that make complex ideas easy to digest.

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

Posted by Morgan McCarthy, Author

Blog: Fitzgerald's THE GREAT GATSBY, and THE OTHER HALF OF ME

The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald's Jazz Age masterpiece, has been one of my favourite novels since I first read it in school. The elegant, spare construction, the exquisite prose and the brutally vivid characters defined for me what writing ought to be, and (while I can only hope to capture them a fraction as well as Fitzgerald) its themes of beauty, longing and loss have had a strong influence on my first novel, The Other Half of Me. When the narrator of The Great Gatsby, Nick Carraway, arrives at Long Island's old-money community of East Egg, he is at first enchanted by this idyll of ease and privilege. His cousin Daisy, her husband Tom and their set drift effortlessly through life, buoyed by wealth and their sense of being rightfully placed at the very apex of society. Gatsby, a newcomer to Long Island, appears to be the most languidly purposeless of all, presiding over his endless, legendary parties. But below the surface Gatsby is lashed on by his own fierce dreams, while East Egg society is underlaid by desperation and violence, glimpsed when Tom breaks his mistress's nose, then finally laid bare with three sudden, bloody deaths. I took inspiration from this while writing my first novel, The Other Half of Me. It begins with its narrator, Jonathan Anthony, looking back on his own his early life with his family at Evendon, their remote, greenly beautiful country estate, which is presided over by his charismatic grandmother Eve. But Jonathan's paradise is seductive and as shaky as Gatsby's, and he finds himself watching as family secrets, drugs, and mental illness threaten this delicately balanced existence. In The Great Gatsby Fitzgerald also meditates on the power of the past. I've never forgotten the novel's painfully lovely, melancholic final line: 'So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past'. Gatsby, after a brief romance, has spent his life dreaming of having Daisy: a longing that becomes all-consuming, expressing his ideas of heaven on earth. As Nick observes, once Gatsby has found Daisy again: 'his dream must have seemed so close he could hardly fail to grasp it. But what he did not know was that it was already behind him, somewhere in the vast obscurity beyond the city.' Similarly, Jonathan's model of himself - his forward-facing ambition - has its roots in his early vision of Eve; the moment she arrived at Evendon with the power to repair his disordered childhood and make everything right. Both Jonathan and Gatsby think they are looking to the future, striving for a happiness they can't truly comprehend, but their dream is actually of something in their past. In both cases, the dream is already over. Gatsby's story ends in death, though Nick Carraway - and Jonathan - get a second chance.