By Ophelia Field
'An incredible story crackling with royal passion, envy, ambition and betrayal ... Field's account of the psychological power play between Queen Anne and her confidante is surely definitive. A tour de force' Lucy WorsleySarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough, was as glamorous as she was controversial. Politically influential and independently powerful, she was an intimate, and then a blackmailer, of Queen Anne, accusing her of keeping lesbian favourites - including Sarah's own cousin Abigail Masham.Ophelia Field's masterly biography brings Sarah Churchill's own voice, passionate and intelligent, back to life. Here is an unforgettable portrait of a woman who cared intensely about how we would remember her.
By Walter Mosley
Winner of the 1996 Black Caucus of the American Library Association Literary Award in FictionSoupspoon Wise is dying on the unforgiving streets of New York City, years and worlds away from the Mississippi delta, where he once jammed with blues legend Robert "RL" Johnson. It was an experience that burned indelibly into Soupspoon's soul - never mind that they said RL's gift came from the Devil himself. Now it's Soupspoon's turn to strike a deal with a stranger. An alcoholic angel of mercy, Kiki Waters isn't much better off than Soupspoon, but she too is a child of the South, and knows its pull. And she is determined to let Soupspoon ride out the final notes of his haunting blues dream, to pour out the remarkable tale of what he's seen, where he's been - and where he's going.
The Man In My Basement
By Walter Mosley
The man at Charles Blakey's door has a proposition almost too strange for words. The stranger offers him $50,000 in cash to spend the summer in Charles's basement, and Charles cannot even begin to guess why. The beautiful house has been in the Blakey family for generations, but Charles has just lost his job and is behind on his mortgage payments. The money would be welcome. But Charles Blakey is black and Anniston Bennet is white, and it is clear that the stranger wants more than a basement view. There is something deeper and darker about his request, and Charles does not need any more trouble. But financial necessity leaves him no choice. Once Anniston Bennet is installed in his basement, Charles is cast into a role he never dreamed of. Anniston has some very particular requests for his landlord, and try as he might, Charles cannot avoid being lured into Bennet's strange world. At first he resists, but soon he is tempted--tempted to understand a set of codes that has always eluded him, tempted by the opportunity to understand the secret ways of white folks. Charles's summer with a man in his basement turns into an exploration of inconceivable worlds of power and manipulation, and unimagined realms of humanity. Walter Mosley pierces long-hidden veins of justice and morality with startling insight into the deepest mysteries of human nature
Five Days of Fog
By Anna Freeman
'My mum always said, a fistful of rings is as good as a knuckleduster' As the Great Smog falls over London in 1952, Florrie Palmer has a choice to make. Will she stay with the Cutters, a gang of female criminals who have terrorized London for years and are led by her own mother? Or leave it all behind to make a safer, duller life with the man she loves? And what will she do if she's too crooked to go straight, and too good to go bad? Over the next five days, Florrie will have to find her own path and the courage to stumble along it - in a fog so thick that she can't see her own feet. Following the last days of a crumbling female gang in post-war London, this is a story of family, of love, of finding your way, and of deciphering a route through the greyest areas of morality.
By Boris Akunin
The latest book in the internationally bestselling Erast Fandorin Mysteries series'Readers can expect prime Akunin - ingenious, twisty, exotic' Daily Mail Crimea, 1914. When the Tzar's head of security is assassinated, Fandorin is called to investigate: the killer has been overheard mentioning a 'black city' so Fandorin and his trusty companion, Masa, head to Baku, the burgeoning capital of oil. But as soon as they arrive, they are attacked and Fandorin almost drowns in an oil well. Saved by a stranger who hides him in the labyrinth of Baku's Old City, Fandorin begins to suspect the plot might be part of something larger - and much more dangerous. With war brewing in the Balkans, and Europe's empires struggling to contain the threat of revolution, Fandorin must try and solve his difficult case yet before time runs out.An explosive, edge-of-your-seat finale, filled with intrigue, wit and Boris Akunin's unforgettable characters.What readers are saying about the Erast Fandorin Mysteries:'Think Tolstoy writing James Bond with the logical rigour of Sherlock Holmes' Guardian'There's a dark twist at the end that has me anxious to continue in this series' Neil on Goodreads (five stars)'Erast Petrovich Fandorin is a man with lightning-fast reactions, a probing analytical mind and a great arsenal of concealed weaponry' Daily Telegraph'These books are a fun, riotous read that you don't want to put down' Jill on Goodreads (five stars)'Gloriously tounge-in-cheek but seriously edge-of-your-seat at the same time' Daily Express
The Best of A. A. Gill
By A.A. Gill
For over twenty years, people turned to A. A. Gill's columns every Sunday - for his fearlessness, his perception, and the laughter-and-tear-provoking one-liners - but mostly because he was the best. 'By miles the most brilliant journalist of our age', as Lynn Barber put it. This is the definitive collection of a voice that was silenced too early but that can still make us look at the world in new and surprising ways.In the words of Andrew Marr, A.. A. Gill was 'a golden writer'. There was nothing that he couldn't illuminate with his dazzling prose. Wherever he was - at home or abroad - he found the human story, brought it to vivid life, and rendered it with fierce honesty and bracing compassion. And he was just as truthful about himself. There have been various collections of A. A. Gill's journalism - individual compilations of his restaurant and TV criticism, of his travel writing and his extraordinary feature articles. This book showcasesthe very best of his work: the peerlessly funny criticism, the extraordinarily knowledgeable food writing, assignments throughout the world, and reflections on life, love, and death. Drawn from a range of publications, including the Sunday Times, Vanity Fair, Tatler and Australian Gourmet Traveller, The Ivy Cookbook and his books on England and America, it is by turns hilarious, uplifting, controversial, unflinching, sad, funny and furious.
By Craig Nelson
On 7 December 1941, an armada of 354 Japanese warplanes launched a surprise attack on the United States, killing 2,403 people and forcing America's entry into the Second World War. With vivid prose and astonishing detail, Craig Nelson combines thrilling historical drama with individual concerns and experiences, following an ensemble of sailors, soldiers, pilots, diplomats, admirals, generals, the emperor and the president.Unmatched in breadth and depth, Pearl Harbor: From Infamy to Greatness in a portrait of the terror, chaos, violence and tragedy of the attack that would prove to be a turning point of the war.
By Alan Furst
'Complex, intelligent, hugely intriguing - Alan Furst is in a class of his own' William Boyd 'Furst's ability to recreate the terrors of espionage is matchless' Robert Harris'Furst never stops astounding me' Tom HanksChosen as one of the 50 Best Modern Crime Novels by Marcel Berlins, crime reviewer, The TimesBulgaria, 1934. Khristo Stoianev sees his brother kicked to death by a gang of fascist thugs. Taking a risk on the promise of Communism, he flees to Moscow and is trained as an agent of the NKVD, the Soviet secret intelligence service. His first mission is to go to Catalonia, where he is soon caught up in the bloody horrors of the Spanish Civil War. Warned that he is about to become a victim of Stalin's purges, Khristo must again take flight, this time to Paris, where he is a small player on the wrong end of a social scene that is simultaneously decadent and doomed. One of the twentieth century's greatest spy novels, Night Soldiers is a thrilling portrait of one man's extraordinary adventures and of Europe teetering on the brink of the Second World War. 'Alan Furst's mastery of the espionage novel puts him beyond any would-be rival' Literary Review 'A spy novel, a war story, an adventure, a survivor's tale - Night Soldiers is all this and more' Seattle Times
By Richard Crompton
In the slums of Nairobi there is a place where the fires burn constantly and the stench of decay never fades. Dandora, the city's dumping ground, is filled with shadowy figures the world has left behind. Here too are rumours of the night runners - those said to be possessed by spirits, or the devil.Detective Mollel understands what it means to be an outsider. Born in a Maasai village and forever at odds with the corrupt ranks of the city police, he is drawn to the case of a Fatima, a young girl who has gone missing in the slum. His search takes him deep into Nairobi's underworld, from rap clubs to voodoo healers, and to the lair of the self-styled overlord of Dandora. He learns that Fatima is not the first person to have disappeared, and to find out what has happened to her, Mollel must open his mind to things he cannot see...
By Philip Norman
Eric Clapton is acknowledged to be rock's greatest virtuoso, the unrivalled master of its most essential tool, the solid-body electric guitar. Clapton transfigured three of the 1960s' most iconic bands, the Yardbirds, Cream and Blind Faith, walking away from each when it failed to measure up to his exacting standards. He was the only outsider be an honorary member of the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, and the studio musician of choice for solo superstars from Bob Dylan to Aretha Franklin.Yet even as a rock god in excelsis, his true passion was always the blues. Even his own blues heroes, the likes of Muddy Waters, B. B. King and Buddy Guy, would recognise the supremacy of this wispy white boy from the English county of Surrey.No life has been more rock 'n' roll than Clapton's in his epic consumption of drugs and alcohol, his insatiable appetite for expensive cars, clothes, and women - most famously revealed when he fell in love with Pattie Boyd, the wife of his best friend, George Harrison, and the inspiration for 'Layla'.With the benefit of unrestricted access to family members, close friends and fellow musicians, and his encyclopedic knowledge of sixties music and culture, Philip Norman has written the definitive portrait of the insecure, often pain-racked man.
Who's In, Who's Out: The Journals of Kenneth Rose
By Kenneth Rose
Kenneth Rose was one of the most astute observers of the establishment for over seventy years. The wry and amusing journals of the royal biographer and historian made objective observation a sculpted craft. His impeccable social placement located him within the beating heart of the national elite for decades. He was capable of writing substantial history, such as his priceless material on the abdication crisis from conversations with both the Duke of Windsor and the Queen Mother. Yet he maintained sufficient distance to achieve impartial documentation while working among political, clerical, military, literary and aristocratic circles. Relentless observation and a self-confessed difficulty 'to let a good story pass me by' made Rose a legendary social commentator, while his impressive breadth of interests was underpinned by tremendous respect for the subjects of his enquiry. Brilliantly equipped as Rose was to witness, detail and report, the first volume of his journals vividly portrays some of the most important events and people of the last century, from the bombing of London during the Second World War to the election of Margaret Thatcher, Britain's first woman Prime Minister, in 1979.
By Guillem Balague
The definitive biography of Cristiano Ronaldo, named Football Book of the Year at the Cross Sports Book Awards 2016Fully updated to include the 2017-18 season and Ronaldo's transfer to JuventusCristiano Ronaldo is one of the greatest footballers of all time, a dream he pursued from the age of just twelve when he left his humble origins on Madeira behind.It wasn't long before he had the biggest clubs in Europe knocking on his door, but it was Manchester United who won the race for his signature. Under the tutelage of Sir Alex Ferguson, Ronaldo developed into the complete footballer and athlete, winning three league titles and a Champions League along the way.He then became the biggest galáctico of them all when he transferred to Real Madrid for a record-breaking fee. Unprecedented success in the Champions League and a record-equalling five Ballons d'Or followed, before his sensational move to Juventus in the summer of 2018.Guillem Balagué, respected football journalist and expert on the Spanish game, provides the definitive account of a twenty-first-century footballing icon.
General Jack's Diary 1914-18
By John Terraine
At the outbreak of the First World War in 1914 Captain J. L. Jack was serving with the First Cameronians, one of the earliest British regiments to arrive in France. Almost every day while serving in France and Flanders, Jack kept a secret diary. This diary is unique. It presents the detail of a regular officer's life at war during virtually the whole of the First World War on the Western Front. Jack was witness not only to the horror and wretchedness of much that happened in the trenches but also to the bravery and spirit that kept the British soldiers in the line going through to the momentous battles of 1918 and final victory. Poignant and moving, as well as describing the reality of war on the Western Front, these diaries have been edited and linked with commentaries by the distinguished military historian John Terraine.