• When the once-in-a-century pandemic struck, it didn't matter that it was predicted and expected - nor even that we had watched it before, playing out in multiplexes over popcorn. We ambled, half-asleep, into disaster. In the first three months of 2020, perplexity drifted into mild concern that suddenly sheered into panic. Economies nose-dived. Schools workplaces closed. Populations hid inside their homes. Whole societies shut down. In most people's living memory, no crisis had caused such global upheaval so swiftly and so comprehensively. The scale and pace of the pandemic were stunning. As a palliative care doctor, Rachel Clarke found herself spending less time in the hospice and more in the hospital. Unable to convey the intensity of her days on the wards to friends and family, by night, she wrote about what she and her colleagues were going through. Breathtaking is her inside story of how the health service responded. But when she looked back over her writing, she found that what she had thought was an unrelenting stream of death and darkness was in fact illuminated by pinpricks of light. The curtailing of human contact, it seemed, was a reminder of precisely how precious it was, and just how far a little of it could go. Breathtaking depicts life, death, hope, fear, medicine at its most impotent and also at its finest, the courage of patients in enormous adversity, the stress of being torn between helping those patients and endangering your spouse and children, the long fretful nights ruminating over whether the PPE you wear fits the science or the size of the government stockpile. Faltering, fumbling, tenacious, undaunted, this is medicine in the time of coronavirus. ISBN 9781408713778
  • From acclaimed composer and biographer Jan Swafford comes the definitive biography of one of the most lauded musical geniuses in history, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. From his earliest years it was apparent that the singular imagination of Wolfgang Mozart was tirelessly at work. He hated to be bored and hated to be idle, and he responded to these threats with a repertoire of antidotes mental and physical, going at every part of his life with tremendous gusto. His circle of friends and patrons was wide, encompassing anyone who appealed to his boundless appetites for music and all things pleasurable and fun. As a man, Mozart was an inexplicable force of nature who could rise from a luminous improvisation at the keyboard to meow like a cat and leap over the furniture. He was forever drumming on things, tapping his feet, seeming both present and apart. But he also might grasp your hand and gaze at you with a profound, searching and melancholy look in his blue eyes. It was as if Mozart lived onstage and off simultaneously, a character in life's tragicomedy but also outside of it, watching, studying, gathering material for the fabric of his art. Like Swafford's biographies Beethoven, Johannes Brahms and Charles Ives, Mozart is both wide-ranging and intimate in its exploration of a genius in his life and his setting: a man who rose from a particular time and place, whose art would enrich the world for centuries to come, who would immeasurably shape the future of classical music, who from his age to ours has stood as the definition of a prodigy. As Swafford reveals, to understand the evolution of music it is vital to understand this singular genius as a man and an artist. ISBN 9780571323258
  • Heavy Light is the story of a breakdown: a journey through mania, psychosis and treatment in a psychiatric hospital, and onwards to release, recovery and healing. After a lifetime of ups and downs, Horatio Clare was committed to hospital under Section 2 of the Mental Health Act. From hypomania in the Alps, to a complete breakdown and a locked ward in Wakefield, this is a gripping account of how the mind loses touch with reality, how we fall apart and how we can be healed - or not - by treatment. A story of the wonder and intensity of the manic experience, as well as its peril and strangeness, it is shot through with the love, kindness, humour and care of those who deal with someone who becomes dangerously ill. Partly a tribute to those who looked after Horatio, from family and friends to strangers and professionals, and partly an investigation into how we understand and treat acute crises of mental health, Heavy Light's beauty, power and compassion illuminate a fundamental part of human experience. It asks urgent questions about mental health that affect each and every one of us. 'An extraordinary book: deeply moving, darkly funny and hugely powerful' Robert Macfarlane. 'One of the most brilliant travel writers of our day takes us us now to that most challenging country, severe mental illness; and does so with such wit, warmth, and humanity, that, better acquainted with its terrors, we may better face our own' Reverend Richard Coles. ISBN 9781784743529
  • Thirteen-year-old Byron needs to get away, and doesn't care how. Sick of being beaten up by lads for 'talkin' like a poof' after school. Sick of dad - the weightlifting, womanising Gaz - and Mam, who selfishly pissed off to Turkey like Shirley Valentine. Sick of the people who shuffle about Hucknall like the living dead, going on about kitchens they're too skint to do up and marriages they're too scared to leave. It's a new millennium, Madonna's 'Music' is top of the charts and there's a whole world to explore - and Byron's happy to beg, steal and skank onto a rollercoaster ride of hedonism. Life explodes like a rush of ecstasy when Byron discovers the Fallen Divas Project and the East Midlands' premier podium-dancer-cum-hellraiser, the mesmerising Lady Die. But when the comedown finally kicks in, Byron arrives at a shocking encounter that will change life forever. Unflinching, hilarious and heart-breaking, What It Feels Like For a Girl is the unique, hotly-anticipated and addictively-readable debut from one of Britain's most exciting young writers. ISBN 9780241450123
  • Since the release of her first, career-defining solo album Little Earthquakes, Tori Amos has been one of the music industry's most enduring and ingenious artists. From her unnerving depiction of sexual assault in "Me and a Gun" to her post-9/11 album Scarlet's Walk to her latest album Native Invader, her work has never shied away from intermingling the personal with the political. Amos began playing piano as a teenager for the politically powerful at hotel bars in Washington, D.C., during the formative years of the post-Goldwater and then Koch-led Libertarian and Reaganite movements. The story continues to her time as a hungry artist in L.A. to the subsequent three decades of her formidable music career. Amos explains how she managed to create meaningful, politically resonant work against patriarchal power structures-and how her proud declarations of feminism and her fight for the marginalized always proved to be her guiding light. She teaches readers to engage with intention in this tumultuous global climate and speaks directly to supporters of #MeToo and #TimesUp, as well as young people fighting for their rights and visibility in the world. Filled with compassionate guidance and actionable advice-and using some of the most powerful, political songs in Amos's canon-this book is for readers determined to steer the world back in the right direction. ISBN 9781529325614
  • Part memoir, part communal storytelling, We Are Displaced introduces readers to some of the incredible girls Malala has met on her many journeys and lets each tell her story - girls who have lost their community, relatives and often the only world they've ever known, but have not lost hope. Longing for home and fear of an uncertain future binds all of these young women, but each is unique. In a time of immigration crises, war and border conflicts, We Are Displaced is an important reminder that every single one of the 79.5 million currently displaced is a person - often a young person - with dreams for a better, safer world. Includes a new Afterword by the author. ISBN 9781474610056
  • A trailblazer for women in journalism, Hella Pick arrived in Britain in 1939 as a child refugee from Austria. Over nearly four decades she covered the volatile global scene, first in West Africa, followed by America and long periods in Europe. In her thirty-five years with the Guardian she reported on the end of Empire in West Africa, the assassination of President Kennedy, Martin Luther King's march from Selma to Montgomery, the Vietnam peace negotiation in Paris, the 1968 student revolt in France, the birth of the Solidarity movement in Poland, and the closing stages of the Cold War. A request for coffee on board a Soviet ship anchored in Malta led to a chat with Mikhail Gorbachev. A request for an interview with Willy Brandt led to a personal friendship that enabled her to come to terms with Germany's Nazi past. Her book is also a clarion call for preserving professionalism in journalism at a time when social media muddy the waters between fact and fiction, and between reporting and commentary. ISBN 9781474613743
  • This is a story about birds and fathers. About the young magpie that fell from its nest in a Bermondsey junkyard into Charlie Gilmour's life - and swiftly changed it. Demanding worms around the clock, riffling through his wallet, sharing his baths and roosting in his hair... About the jackdaw kept at a Cornish stately home by Heathcote Williams, anarchist, poet, magician, stealer of Christmas, and Charlie's biological father who vanished from his life in the dead of night. It is a story about repetition across generations and birds that run in the blood; about a terror of repeating the sins of the father and a desire to build a nest of one's own. It is a story about change - from wild to tame; from sanity to madness; from life to death to birth; from freedom to captivity and back again, via an insane asylum, a prison and a magpie's nest. And ultimately, it is the story of a love affair between a man and a magpie. ISBN 9781474609487
  • From award-winning war reporter and co-author of I Am Malala, this is the first major account to address the scale of rape and sexual violence in modern conflict.Christina Lamb has worked in war and combat zones for over thirty years. In Our Bodies, Their Battlefield she gives voice to the women of conflicts, exposing how in today's warfare, rape is used by armies, terrorists and militias as a weapon to humiliate, oppress and carry out ethnic cleansing.Speaking to survivors first-hand, Lamb encounters the suffering and bravery of women in war and meets those fighting for justice. From Southeast Asia where 'comfort women' were enslaved by the Japanese during World War Two to the Rwandan genocide, when an estimated quarter of a million women were raped, to the Yazidi women and children of today who witnessed the mass murder of their families before being enslaved by ISIS. Along the way Lamb uncovers incredible stories of heroism and resistance, including the Bosnian women who have hunted down more than a hundred war criminals, the Aleppo beekeeper rescuing Yazidis and the Congolese doctor who has risked his life to treat more rape victims than anyone else on earth.Rape may be as old as war but it is a preventable crime. Bearing witness does not guarantee it won't happen again, but it can take away any excuse that the world simply didn't know. ISBN 9780008300043
  • Lenka Janiurek first encounters tragedy with the death of her mother when she is just nine. Involving a chaotic family, early success as a playwright, disastrous relationships, motherhood, and brushes with both extreme wealth and poverty, Janiurek's rich and remarkable memoir is been a search for a kind of freedom, found in the comforting solace of swimming. Haunted by the despair, rage and addiction of men she has known best, she nevertheless explores and celebrates the beauty and pain of living life to the full. Watermarks is a stunning evocation of identity and alienation, and the restorative power of the natural world. ISBN 9780749025069
  • Frantz Fanon's urgent, dynamic critique of the effects of racism on the psyche is a landmark study of the black experience in a white world. Drawing on his own life and his work as a psychoanalyst to explore how colonialism's subjects internalize its prejudices, eventually emulating the 'white masks' of their oppressors, it established Fanon as a revolutionary anti-colonialist thinker. 'So hard to put down ... a brilliant, vivid and hurt mind, walking the thin line that separates effective outrage from despair' The New York Times Book Review 'This century's most compelling theorist of racism and colonialism' Angela Davis 'Fanon is our contemporary ... In clear language, in words that can only have been written in the cool heat of rage, Fanon showed us the internal theatre of racism' Deborah Levy ISBN 9780241396667
  • The devastating and powerful memoir from a French publisher who was abused by a famous writer from the age of thirteen 'A gut-punch of a memoir with prose that cuts like a knife' Kate Elizabeth Russell, author of My Dark Vanessa Thirty years ago, Vanessa Springora was the teenage muse of one of France's most celebrated writers, a footnote in the narrative of an influential man. At the end of 2019, as women around the world began to speak out, Springora, now in her forties and the director of one of France's leading publishing houses, decided to reclaim her own story. Consent is the story of her stolen adolescence. Devastating in its honesty, Springora's painstaking memoir lays bare the cultural attitudes and circumstances that made it possible for a thirteen-year-old girl to become involved with a fifty-year-old man. Drawing parallels between children's fairy tales, French history and the author's personal life, Consent offers intimate insights into the meaning of love and consent, the toll of trauma and the power of healing in women's lives. ISBN 9780008424923
  • Michael Patrick Smith grew up in a ramshackle farmhouse where his father beat the walls and threw dinner plates. As a restless young man left unmoored by the crashing economy, Smith cut a path to North Dakota to rent a mattress on a flophouse floor. Sleeping boot to beard with the other rough-edged men looking to earn a cent drilling for oil, Smith wanted the work to burn him clean - of his violent upbringing, his demons, his disjointed, doomed relationships. He did not expect, among these quick-fisted, foul-mouthed hands, to find a community. The Good Hand is a memoir of danger and exhaustion, of suffering, loneliness and grit, of masculinity and of learning how to reconcile yourself to yourself. 'Thrillingly and wrenchingly funny ... like Educated and Hillbilly Elegy, The Good Hand is one of those brilliant close-ups that suddenly flips to become a wide shot of the American moment. An engrossing combination of participation, reportage, self-discovery, and witness' David Lipsky. ISBN 9780008399481
  • Former Secret Service Special Agent Evy Poumpouras shares the insights and skills from one of the oldest elite security forces in the world - to help you prepare for stressful situations, instantly read people, influence how you're perceived, and live a more fearless life. From gruelling training to clandestine interrogation rooms, to protecting the President of the United States of America, Evy shares rare behind-the-scenes glimpses while also exploring the psychology of human behaviour and the strategies used by the best negotiators. Evy demonstrates how we can learn from these experiences to heighten our own natural instincts to detect BS, develop grit and become the most resilient and powerful version of ourselves. ISBN 9781785786853
  • One woman's journey to overcome grief by delving into nature. After losing her husband of 32 years, Long Litt Woon is utterly bereft. For a time, she is disoriented, aimless, lost. It is only when she wanders deep into the woods and attunes herself to Nature's chorus that she learns how the wild might restore us to hope, and to life after death. ISBN 9781911617389
  • A delightful autobiographical novel from one of Ireland's best-loved writers. Time hardly mattered in the village of Mucker, the birthplace of poet and writer Patrick Kavanagh. Full of wry humour, Kavanagh's unsentimental and evocative account of his Irish rural upbringing describes a patriarchal society surviving on the edge of poverty, sustained by the land and an insatiable love of gossip. There are tales of schoolboy skirmishes, blackberrying and night-time salmon-poaching; of country-weddings and fairs, of political banditry and religious pilgrimages; and of farm-work in the fields and kicking mares. Kavanagh's experiences inspired him to write poetry which immortalized a fast-disappearing way of life and brought him recognition as one of Ireland's great poets. ISBN 9780141184203
  • The Fall of the House of Byron follows the fates of Lord Byron's ancestors over three generations in a drama that begins in rural Nottinghamshire and plays out in the gentlemen's clubs of Georgian London, amid tempests on far-flung seas, and in the glamour of pre-revolutionary France. A compelling story of a prominent and controversial characters, it is a sumptuous family portrait and an electrifying work of social history. ISBN 9781473664326
  • When Moire O'Sullivan's husband, Pete, took his own life, she was left with a stark choice: to weep forever over the glass of milk that had just spilt or get on with the quarter that was still remaining. As Moire charts the first harrowing year after Pete's death - the shock, the loneliness and the difficulties of single parenting two young children - she also experiences glimpses of hope and acceptance as she trains to become a mountain leader. The people she meets through the mountains, as well as the peace and wild beauty of the Mournes, help Moire discover her inner strength and prove she is not alone in her struggles. ISBN 9781788492270

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