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Forward Book of Poetry: 2015
(Paperback)
Various Poets; Jeremy Paxman

Whether you're looking for an overview of the best contemporary UK poets, a selection of the year's finest poems, relief from the bewildering array of prizewinners, or even just a not-too-long anthology with a pretty yellow cover, this book is perfect. The voices in here are kaleidoscopic and diverse, unified only by their talent, skill, and freshness of approach. A must for all poetry lovers.

Marion, Fiction

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The Sense of an Ending
(Paperback)
Julian Barnes
I've never before experienced a writer so in command of character and its function. This deftly crafted treatise upon memory distortion and denial is the antithesis of a vanity piece, wherein not a single paragraph is wasted. The Sense of An Ending is tragic and oppressive in tone yet everything has its own space. - Benjamin
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The Awakening
(Paperback)
Kate Chopin; Margo Culley
Edna is a young married Orleans woman in the late 19th century. A summer holiday sets her on a path that has her questioning her place in society and leads to her rejection of a life that is prescribed by contemporary norms of the day. Chopin's other stories follow this thread and asks us 'are we ready to separate from the herd and be counted as individuals. - Tomi.
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Moby Dick
(Paperback)
Herman Melville; Hershel Parker;...
I was on that boat until the bitter end hunting down that white whale for the treasured gold doubloon fixed to that mast. My eyes were locked and there was no turning back until that last full-stop. Loved it. - Tomi.
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The Writer's Journey: Mythic ...
(Paperback)
Christopher Vogler
For those who worry about whether 'play-off' should be hyphenated or if 'machiavellian' should be capitalised (the answers are in the way I've just written them both), or the difference between Catch-22 and catch-22 - one is a novel, one is a turn of phrase, see? This is an indispensable guide for any fledgling copy writer or script editor, or anyone who just enjoys being pompously right! It’s also a handy grammar guide, so it'll speak to the personal pronoun in you. - Benjamin
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Moby-Dick: or, the Whale: Or, the Whale
(Paperback)
Herman Melville; Tom Quirk; Andrew...
I was on that boat until the bitter end hunting down that white whale for the treasured gold doubloon fixed to that mast. My eyes were locked and there was no turning back until that last full-stop. Loved it. - Tomi.
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Selected Stories
(Paperback)
Katherine Mansfield; Angela Smith
 

I started reading this several weeks ago, and I still haven’t finished. My friends will verify that this is extremely unusual behaviour. It’s not that it’s dense, it’s just so good that I’ve been drawing it out as long as possible, like Charlie and his chocolate bar. It’s an excellent motivator: cleaned the house? Read one of these. Finished your vegetables? Read one of these. Despite her premature death at 34, Mansfield’s work had a huge influence on the evolution of the short story. Read these masterful examples and you’ll understand why. 

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Life
(Paperback)
Keith Richards
 

I don't think I exaggerate if I describe this as a vision of celeb autobiography perfection. The writing process is essentially an oral history taken from one of rock n'roll's great hellraisers and
raconteurs. Keith's voice is clearly captured here. While some of what he says is quite ugly, reading the book gives some nice insights into the music and the people who made it.

George, Lifestyle & Travel

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Labyrinths: Selected Stories and ...
(Paperback)
Jorge Luis Borges; Donald A. Yates;...
A planet that doesn't exist. A coin that can't be forgotten. A man who writes a book that already exists. This collection of Borges' magical, literary short stories is full of adventure. You'll meet Argentine rebels, detectives, wizards, theologians, spies, immortals, and more. But more than that, Labyrinthsis a cavalcade of wonders; its mind-expanding and metaphysical mysteries and paradoxes are quick and concise, and full of a sense of musing. Borges' tone throughout is playful, mythic, serious, faux-serious, poignant, elegiac - rendering each of these salacious intellectual tidbits with an incredible richness, rendering their simplicity giant. Yet Borges' greatest legacy, for me, comes of his seamless weaving of truth and tale. He invents long, feasibly deadpan histories for his factish fictions, weaving them back through our established past; he fabricates intellectuals in our history of ideas and embeds dusty new footnotes in our consensual bibliography. Just as, in one of the stories contained, the natural conclusion of a man who's dreamed another into being is to consider himself a dream, so Borges' work leaves us with the notion that what we've been calling reality is in fact the perfect, total fiction - and what we've been calling fiction, simply another shade of reality. This book is special. Vanquishing the unvanquishable, Labyrinths has reworked my scepticism and instilled in me a romance for mysticism, an unlikely optimism, and a faith, in the possibility of faith. Has it changed my life? Maybe not. But has it changed me? Certainly. - Gary
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Will You Please Be Quiet, Please
(Paperback)
Raymond Carver
Human nature laid bare, no gloss, no adornment, just simple language to describe those feelings that make us who we are. - Tomi.
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The Call of Cthulhu: And Other Weird...
(Paperback)
H. P. Lovecraft; S. T. Joshi; S. T....
Lovecraft's 'cosmic terror' displays an indifference to the concerns of humanity, sidestepping science, religion and the other mortal obsessions which horror often fixates upon. It is instead a tribute to that horrendous moment when your stomach falls through your toes as you learn that all of your life's convictions are a sham. Rich in fantastical possibility, filtered through the tales of weakened humans and ignorant voodoo cults that should know better, this is the horror of all things glimpsed, not pornographically dissected before you. - Benjamin
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Wind, Sand and Stars
(Paperback)
Antoine de Saint-Exupery; William...

What makes a book a 'classic'? Brilliance and durability seem to be the key criteria: the way a text can ring true for reader after reader down the ages, ad infinitum. But no matter how virtuosic or breathtaking the writing, the designation of 'classic' tends to connote an air of settledness, in the way of a longterm lover, or a well-worn armchair. Quite the opposite of freshness, for example.

Well, this book is one of the freshest classics I know. I turn to it whenever I want a stiff breeze (and maybe a little sand) to blow the cobwebs out of my brain. It's about deserts, stars, solitude, courage, sandstorms, mountains, machines, and beauty. But more than that, it's a refresher course in being human.

Marion, Fiction

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The Earthsea Quartet:
(Paperback)
Ursula K. Le Guin
Every lover of fantasy should read the Earthsea Quartet! It is the kind of book that draws you hypnotically into its world. The Earthsea Archipelago is an ancient land of magic and mystique; wizards and dragons; darkness and light. Excellent plot, believable characters and intriguing twists, the four volumes of the Earthsea Saga follow the story of Ged from childhood as an apprentice wizard to adulthood, when he becomes the greatest wizard of his time. Touching, beautiful, the Earthsea Quartet is one of the masterpieces of fantasy literature. - Cindy.
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Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: The...
(Paperback)
Mark Twain; Victor Fischer; Lin...
Well, if this isn’t the original Great American Novel, I don’t know what is. On the surface, this is an adventure, the tale of Huck Finn as a runaway, rafting down the Mississippi River with the slave Jim as his companion and of the evolution of their unlikely friendship. Published in the post-US Civil War era, this is also a satirical send-up of genteel, yet very racist, Southern society. Read this book to understand the true beginnings of American literature. - Cindy.
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The Thing: A Phenomenology of Horror
(Paperback)
Dylan Trigg
 

Some books you should read without knowing anything about them.  This is one of those books, so I will say just two things:
It is yellow.
You really should read it!
Trust me.  I'm a bookseller.

 

Janette, Store Manager

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The Bloomsbury Introduction to ...
(Paperback)
Christine Berberich
 

This fantastic and wide-ranging collection of essays provides a comprehensive grounding in a range of genres you probably think you know and will soon discover you actually don't - or at least, not nearly as well as you could. From its Victorian beginnings to contemporary phenomenons like Harry Potter, through genres stalwart (Sci Fi) to fleeting (Lad Lit), via HG Wells and Sarah Waters, this volume charts popular fiction's issues with censorship and power; class, race, gender and language; the market and the 'masses'; troubling categories and definitions and challenging long-held assumptions about literary merit along the way.

Marion, Fiction

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