Friday 27 February 2015

Compass Points 116

Very exciting news – Compass is now on Twitter! Follow us @CompassIPS. You’ll get the breaking news on our top titles even faster – and better still, we can find out what all you lovely booksellers are up to – and retweet your news back to all of our publishers, editors and sales people! Happy days!

It’s always great to have a new publisher aboard the Compass ship, so a very warm welcome to Periscope BooksPeriscope describe themselves as “fiercely independent” and believe that “revelling in its size as a small publisher, Periscope will move nimbly in a heavily consolidated publishing environment. Dancing in the path of juggernauts, we can enable stories to be told that might otherwise be lost.” Find out a bit more about them on their website:

One of their first titles is Princess Bari by Hwang Sok-Yong (pb, 978 1859641743, 9.99) coming in April. This is an original translation of a new novel by one of South Korea’s greatest living novelists. Born in 1943, Hwang Sok-yong is a tireless human-rights activist, who was sentenced in 1993 to seven years in a South Korean prison for a ‘breach of national security’, after making unauthorised trips to North Korea to promote openness between the two countries. He is the recipient of South Korea’s most prestigious literary prizes. Princess Bari is set in contemporary London, and is an excellent and accessible way for English-language readers to discover Hwang’s work. It is a captivating novel that leavens the grey reality of North Korean cities and slums with the splendour of fable and legend.

Elaine Feinstein was reading from her new Carcanet poetry collection: Portraits (pb, £9.99 978 1847772152) this week on Woman’s Hour on Radio 4. Now in her 80s, Elaine Feinstein is a highly popular poet, performer, novelist and biographer and Portraits is an intimate new collection in which Feinstein describes writers she has known, including the Russian poet Bella Akhmadulna, and those she has loved only through their work, such as Sylvia Plath. It offers a counterpart to the memoir poems in her highly successful Carcanet collection, Cities.

How many of you out there have a degree in English Literature? Hmm, quite a few! Well here are 22 things that I don’t think you (or I!) will be saying any time soon!

Some very good pre publicity for the April Birlinn paperback of Alexander McCall Smith’s hilarious Fatty O’ Leary’s Dinner Party (pb, £6.00, 978 1846973000) this week, with Alexander McCall Smith taking over the Good Housekeeping website and Twitter account. Also Mark Lawson Talks to Alexander McCall Smith will be broadcast on BBC4 this Sunday (1/3/15).

Pep Confidential: The Inside Story of Pep Guardiola’s First Season at Bayern Munich by Marti Perarnau (978 1909715257 has just been featured in the Daily Mail   –  you can read the whole article here – and there will be a competition to win a signed copy of the book coming in the Daily Mail soon!

The Daily Mail obviously like our books at the moment, as they have also just done a big spread on Rowing After the White Whale by James Adair (pb, £8.99, 978 1846973277) Headlined Students Who Fulfilled a Drunken Bet to Become Surprise US Film Stars; you can read that piece here. Rowing After the White Whale is published by Polygon in March, and you can order it here

Well it’s a gorgeous day here in London – hope it’s as good where you are. So I’m definitely in the mood to stroll off for a springtime walk – and it will be made even better if I can have a swim along the way. Wild Swimming Walks: 28 Lake, River and Seaside Days out by Train from London (pb, £14.99 978 1910636015) would therefore be my ideal companion – it’s coming from Wild Things Publishing in May. This lovely book is written by the famous swimming Ladies of Hampstead ponds, who bring us their favourite walks with a dip, across southern and eastern England, all accessible by train, featuring secret lakes, river meadows and sandy seaside beaches. This is a beautiful retro-styled book, reminiscent of the 1930s - a perfect gift with original illustrations and practical inspiration. It contains gorgeous photography plus detailed instructions with 28 vintage maps.

I cannot think of a better film to promote the joys of a wild swimming walk than this hilarious clip from A Room with a View – must be one of my all time favourite moments in a film – I defy you not to laugh a lot!

And for those booksellers in this part of the country, look out for Wild Guide: South East England and London – also coming from Wild Things Publishing in May. This new compendium of adventures reveals over 800 secret places, wild challenges and ideas for local food and natural places to stay. It includes nationally popular areas such as the broads of Norfolk and Suffolk, the ancient forests of Sussex and Kent, idyllic Cotswolds and the New Forest. With stunning photos, engaging travel writing and 30 maps; this is perfect for those seeking new adventures with the family, or dreaming up the ultimate romantic weekend escape.

Lot of great PR coming up for God and Mrs Thatcher: The Battle for Britain’s Soul by Eliza Filby (£25.00, hb 978 1849547857) Few people are aware that Margaret Thatcher was a devout Christian or that she was a preacher before she was a politician. As a child, she would sit in the pews listening to her lay-preacher father, Alf Roberts, hammer home sermons on the Protestant work ethic, God-given liberty and the sanctity of the individual. However, Margaret Thatcher may have set out to reinvigorate the nation with the non-conformist values of her father, but in the end she created a country that was not more Christian, but more secular; and not more devout, but entirely consumed by a new religion: the free market. In upholding the sanctity of the individual, Thatcherism inadvertently signalled the death of Christian Britain. God and Mrs Thatcher is an extraordinary new perspective on the phenomena of Thatcherism and the legacy of its creator, and it’s just been published by Biteback. There was a big piece in The Sunday Times on Sunday 22nd February and it will be featured on BBC Radio 4’s Sunday Programme this weekend – 1 March. Eliza Filby is writing a piece about it for Monday’s Guardian, it will be on the Times Faith page on 7 March, and Eliza has also been on The Daily Politics Show talking about it.

If however the very mention of Margaret Thatcher brings you out in a rash, then perhaps you need The De-Stress Effect by Charlotte Watts (Pb,  £12.99 978 1781804858) which is published in March by Hay House. This is a groundbreaking book that takes a holistic approach to stress and presents the latest research on how we can bring our bodies back into balance. It shows you how you can free yourself from the emotional and physical effects of stress by reconnecting to your body and discovering what it really needs. Sounds good to me! The book will feature in Stella magazine (circ. 404,000) and the May issue of Good Housekeeping (circ. 414,000). The author will blog for to coincide with release and promote the book (70,000 unique monthly browsers) and the book will also feature on Red Online (450,000 unique monthly browsers) and (161,000 unique monthly browsers) in February. The book and author will also feature in Women’s Fitness (circ. 21,000), a future issue of Health & Fitness (circ. 20,000) and Om Yoga (circ. 70,000).  You can order The De-Stress Effect and find out more here.

Look out for the paperback of Arctic Monkeys: Pretend Memories by Rob Jovanovic (pb, 978 1905959730, £14.95) coming in April from Red Planet. It’s time for a good book about this multiple No 1 band, and this is that book! Many believe that the Arctic Monkeys are the most interesting British band of the 21st century, constantly evolving but ensuring that each album kicks just as hard and fast as the previous one. This is a band in it for the long haul and their fan base are ultra-loyal. You don’t ‘grow out’ of the Arctic Monkeys. The band is riding higher than ever, which is pretty high. Every album has gone to number one in the UK, while they have strengthened their following in the US and elsewhere overseas. Here’s a quick burst of one of their best their best tunes here to remind you, and you can find out more and order Pretend Memories here

 And finally, this week, Wolf Hall has ended (boo0) and Taylor Swift has won a Brit (yaaay)!  So I think it’s the just moment to look at a great mash up of two fabulous characters…

And here are the best of the week’s Tweets – remember you can see them all first hand by following us @CompassIPS  or click here if you are a Twitter virgin!

I love being a bookseller! A @ChocLituk proof in the staff room! This will be a good day!
Like Amelie? You'll love Antoine Laurain's new novel featuring a Parisian Bookseller & his search for a missing woman
Yay! Just found out I'll be giving out copies of Spring Tide from @HesperusPress on @WorldBookNight
Chuffed to bits to be represented by @CompassIPS - fantastic knowledge, professionalism and enthusiasm! The future's bright...
#AYearofReadingDangerously Love reading? Then make sure you check out our best European reads.
Real books are good for you? Reading from a hard copy may allow better concentration:
"I don't want to live in a Monarchy where Amazon is king, I want to live in a Republic of Booksellers." @WordPowerBooks #scotbookconf

That’s all for now folks, more next week!

This blog comes from a newsletter which is sent weekly to over 700 booksellers as well as publishers and publicists. If you would like to order any of the titles mentioned, then please click here to go to the Compass New Titles Website or talk to your Compass Sales representative.

Friday 13 February 2015

Compass Points 115

Spring is on the way – but if your garden is not providing you with the gorgeous colour you’d like, then why not settle down instead with the Kew Gardens Exotic Plants Colouring Book (£6.99, pb, 978 1784045654)! This title comes from Arcturus in May, and is a companion volume to the very popular Kew Gardens Hardy Plants Colouring Book (£6.99, pb 978 1784045616) It’s a full colour paperback book full of beautiful botanically precise illustrations of exotic plants by accomplished British botanical artists Harriet Anne Hooker, Thiselton-Dyer and Walter Hood Fitch, which originally featured in the world-famous Curtis's Botanical Magazine. Each line drawing for the reader to colour themselves is presented alongside the artist's colour original, which acts as a guide for users. It gives a glimpse into the world of the 19th-century plant hunters - their travels and their finds - as well as that of the Victorian botanical illustrators and will appeal to green-fingered artists everywhere who will delight in bringing the line drawings to life in glorious colour By copying and learning from the experts, users can progress to producing satisfying plant illustrations of their own. You can order the Kew Gardens Exotic Plants colouring book here.

And if the great outdoors isn’t your thing, then also in May comes the Crazy Contraptions Colouring Book (pb, £6.99, 978 1784045104). These black and white images by Heath Robinson are guaranteed to intrigue, make laugh and bring out your creative instincts! Each picture offers scope for users to improve their artistic skills, while at the same time giving them a finished picture of a crazy contraption! William Heath Robinson (1872 - 1944) was an English cartoonist and illustrator best known for drawings of ridiculously complicated machines for achieving simple objectives – and his work has an enduring popularity. You can order the Crazy Contraptions Colouring Book and find out more here.

And if Heath Robinson is not a name familiar to you at all, then you can watch this short five minute film about him here!

Maybe you would prefer to get out and about and look at other people’s fabulous gardens rather than just colouring in flowers! If so then Wild Garden Weekends by Tania Pascoe (pb, 978 0957157392, £16.99) from Wild Things Publishing in April will undoubtedly be the book for you. This title will show you how to explore the secret gardens, wild meadows and kitchen garden cafés of Britain, and is part of the best selling Wild Things series, which has now sold over 100,000 copies in the UK. This stunning and original British travel guide charts lesser known gardens, spectacular meadows, the best kitchen garden food, plus wild places to camp and stay. It is the first guide of its kind which includes recommendations for food and accommodation, as well as meadows and nature-friendly gardens. 
The photography is truly stunning, and there are also plenty of illustrated maps. With a wide family appeal, this title brings food, adventure and the ‘wild’ into garden tourism. There will be a full programme of PR activities for Wild Garden Weekends to coincide with National Gardening Week, and the launch coverage will begin with the Saturday Telegraph, who have confirmed that they are going to run it as their cover story on Sat 11 April. Gardening is Britain’s most popular outdoor pastime with 20 million gardens visited per year and this is a timely book which will appeal to garden-lovers, foodies and nature-lovers of all ages.

Lots of you did extremely well last year with The President’s Hat, by Antoine Laurain – it was a Waterstones Book Club and a Kindle top 5 bestseller. So you’ll be pleased to hear in that in April, Gallic are publishing the new novel by the same French author: The Red Notebook (pb, £8.99, 978 1908313867). And you’ll no doubt be intrigued to hear, its hero is a bookseller! It begins when said bookseller, Laurent Letellier comes across an abandoned handbag on a Parisian street, and feels impelled to return it to its owner. The bag contains no money, phone or contact information. But a small red notebook with handwritten thoughts and jottings reveals a person that Laurent would very much like to meet. Without even a name to go on, and only a few of her possessions to help him, how is he to find one woman in a city of millions? The Guardian called The President’s Hat “A hymn to la vie Parisienne...enjoy it for its fabulistic narrative, and the way it teeters pleasantly on the edge of Gallic whimsy” while the Library Journal said “Its gentle satirical humour reminded me of Jacques Tati’s films”. In fact the idiosyncratic love story of The Red Notebook is not like that of Amelie – and there are plenty of readers who adore this type of capricious, romantic and engaging Gallic storytelling – the hand-drawn retro cover is just right too!

So let’s immerse ourselves in a little bit of Gallic whimsy just to get ourselves in the mood for The Red Notebook – firstly here’s a morsel of Charles Trenet, then we need to add a smidgen of Jacques Tati – plus a soupcon of Amelie  – et voila! – we are now in exactly the right frame of mind!

You did very well through the Christmas season with The Official Formula 1 Season Review 2014, published by Illustrated London News (hb, 978 0957532069 £35.00). Don’t forget to keep this title on display as excitement builds for the start of the 2105 season, which begins in Australia on 15 March and ends in Abu Dhabi on 29 November.  Twenty-two drivers representing eleven teams will contest twenty Grands Prix, and the whole season will be previewed in the March edition of F1 Racing Magazine – which as a result will be the biggest selling edition of the year, with a circulation of over 50,000 copies. Illustrated News have taken out a big full page advert in it for The Official Formula 1 Season Review 2014 which you can see below!  Remember, The Official Formula 1 Season Review 2014 gives fans a unique, access-all-areas pass behind the scenes of one of the most thrilling Formula One seasons of recent years, throwing new light on all the headlines and key incidents. It is illustrated with amazing photography from LAT and with exclusive insight from the drivers them selves, this book also contains all the official statistics from an action-packed year. You can order some more copies here

Tabloid newspapers – scurrilous rags or vital champions of the masses? If you want a quick précis of one of the most famous – and what led to its closure – then there's a good 3 min summary here from CNN. Or, of course you could order Tabloid Secrets: The Stories Behind the Headlines at the World’s Most Famous Newspaper by Neville Thurlbeck. Both as chief reporter and news editor for nearly twenty years at News of the World, Neville Thurlbeck is uniquely placed to give an insider’s view of life on the paper. He served up some of the most famous, memorable and notorious headlines in the paper’s existence; including those including David Beckham, Jeffrey Archer, Fred and Rose West, Gordon Brown and Robin Cook, among many others. In Tabloid Secrets, he reveals for the very first time how he broke the award-winning stories which thrilled, excited and shocked the nation. This book contains many stories that will fascinate the reader and ensure that this book is a real page turner. Thurlbeck’s undercover investigative work is revealed in great detail, with the methods and subterfuge explained. It also describes how the reporter was recruited to MI5, the characters he met and the type of work he carried out there. It is a vivid, surprising and wildly entertaining insider account of a Fleet Street which is suddenly no more.  This is a scandalous and swashbuckling insight into some of the biggest and most sensational scoops by one of Fleet Street’s most notorious reporters.  Neville Thurlbeck worked for two decades as chief reporter and news editor and during his time at the News of the World he won numerous journalism awards, including the British Press Awards Scoop of the Year Award twice. As part of his involvement in the phone hacking scandal he served thirty-seven days of a six-month prison sentence. Tabloid Secrets includes a detailed analysis of the phone-hacking scandal and the Leveson Inquiry, and not surprisingly there will be a massive press campaign to support its publication; watch this space for more details as we get nearer to publication date! Tabloid Secrets by Neville Thurlbeck (hb, 978 1849548533, 14.99) is published by Biteback in May and you can find out more and order it here

Building your own house is one of the fastest growing trends in the UK – largely thanks to government and parliamentary support, so there will be a big market for the Eleventh Edition of The Housebuilder’s Bible (£25,00, pb,  978 1905959556) by Mark Brinkley is coming from Red Planet Publishing in April. This title has consistently been the biggest selling self-build title in its earlier editions; and was the first book in its field to mix information and advice with detailed yardstick costings for residential building projects. The author is an experienced housebuilder and renovator, and much of the detail in the book is drawn from trade experience. It’s very much an insider’s guide and experienced construction professionals have expressed amazement at the amount of detailed information in the book. But it’s also accessible and many readers who have never been involved with building before have used this book successfully to build their own homes. This eleventh edition has been completely revised and updated to reflect recent price changes. Previous editions get almost universal five star reviews on Amazon – with most describing it as “indispensible”. You can order The Housebuilder's Bible here.

So let’s finish with my top three pop songs involving houses? Can’t think of any? Well, what about this rocky little number from 1981 from Shakin’ Stevens, then it’s got to be this one from The Animals at number two I think, but the clear winner must be this absolute classic from Madness!

That’s all for now folks, more next week!

This blog is taken from a weekly newsletter sent to over 700 booksellers as well as publishers and publicists. If you would like to order any of the titles mentioned, then please click here to go to the Compass New Titles Website or talk to your Compass Sales representative.

Friday 6 February 2015

Compass Points 114

A Compass author has been centre stage in the world news this week. Yanis Varoufakis, has just been made Greek Minister of Finance – now would you want that job??  He is fast approaching rock star status following his meeting with George Osborne; his interview with Newsnight last Friday night has gained over a million views on YouTube – you can watch that here and his interview on Channel 4 News mentioned his book. The Guardian are even analysing his fashion style – have a look here at how not to dress for a meeting! His book The Global Minotaur: America, Europe and the Global Economy (pb, £8.99. 978 1780324500) is available now in a new and updated edition from Zed Books. In this remarkable and provocative book, Yanis Varoufakis explodes the myth that financialisation, ineffectual regulation of banks, greed and globalisation were the root causes of both the Eurozone crisis and the global economic crisis. Rather, he writes, they are symptoms of a much deeper malaise which can be traced all the way back to the Great Crash of 1929, then on through to the 1970s: the time when a 'Global Minotaur' was born. Just as the Athenians maintained a steady flow of tributes to the Cretan beast, so Europe and the rest of the world began sending incredible amounts of capital to America and Wall Street. Thus, The Global Minotaur became the 'engine' that pulled the world economy. Today's deepening crisis in Europe is just one of the inevitable symptoms of the weakening Minotaur; of a global 'system' which is now as unsustainable as it is imbalanced. 
Going beyond this, Varoufakis lays out the options available to us for reintroducing a modicum of reason into a highly irrational global economic order. This is an essential account of the events and hidden histories that have shaped the world as we now know it. As internationally acclaimed intellectual Professor Terry Eagleton says: “The book is one of those exceedingly rare publications of which one can say they are urgent, timely and absolutely necessary.”

Last week we mentioned The Art of Being a Brilliant Teacher by Gary Toward, Chris Henley and Andy Cope (9781845909413, £9.99, pb) which is published by Crown House Publishing in March – you can find out more and order it here. We used the hapless Jack Whitehall as an example of what NOT to do if you want to be a brilliant teacher. Well this week, I bring you an example of the exact opposite – American teacher Scott Pankey. Now this I suggest is what you need to do to be a REALLY brilliant teacher!

If we think of suffragettes, the name that usually comes to mind is Emmeline Pankhurst. But who has heard of Lady Constance Lytton? She was the most unlikely of suffragettes; the daughter of a Viceroy of India and herself a lady in waiting to the Queen, she did nothing but devote herself to her family for forty years. Then came a chance encounter with a suffragette and her life suddenly acquired a purpose. Witnessing Emmeline and Christabel Pankhurst on trial, she was converted to the cause of women’s suffrage, and went to prison. Once jailed, however, Constance soon found that her name and class singled her out for privileged treatment, though she was determined to express her support for the famous hunger-strikers by becoming one herself. Constance, therefore, decided to go to prison in disguise. Taking the name Jane Warton, she cut her hair, put on glasses and ugly clothes, and got herself arrested in Liverpool. Once in prison, she was force-fed eight times before her identity was discovered and she was released. Her case became a cause célèbre, with debate raging in The Times and questions asked in the House of Commons. Constance Lytton became an inspiration to the other suffragettes and, in the end, a martyr. Always physically weak and prone to ill health, she never fully recovered from the trauma of being force-fed and died in 1923, abandoned by her fellow suffragettes. Her life story is an extraordinary one which has never been fully told. With Meryl Streep leading an all-star cast in a film of Emmeline Pankhurst’s life, 2015 is set to be the year of commemoration of women’s suffrage and this is a fascinating and little-known true story which deserves to be told. Lady in Disguise: The Aristocrat Who Gave Her Life for the Suffragettes by Lyndsey Jenkins is published by Biteback in March and you can order it and find out more here

While we’re on the subject of what used to be called “Women’s Lib” – which would you say are the most iconic feminist moments of last year? Have a look here to find out!

The appetite for literary novels set during WW1 shows no signs of abating, and The Cartographer of No Man’s Land by PS Duffy is a truly breathtaking work of historical fiction: epic in scope but intimately rendered. This lead literary fiction title from Myrmidon centres on the Canadian assault on Vimy Ridge in 1917, which is an icon of Canadian history but much less well known in the UK. The book bloggers loved this when it came out in hardback last year.  KeenReader wrote “This is an astonishing novel…innately empathetic and insightful. I’m really surprised that more readers haven’t picked up on this book and reviewed it so far. I hope that it gets more of a widespread audience, as it is a totally worthy book, and one which serves well to remind readers of a whole different dimension of World War One. An author to look out for; and a wholeheartedly recommended read.”  And TripFiction said “PS Duffy is a real discovery. This is her first novel, but it reads as if she has had a lifetime of writing experience behind her …vivid and lifelike. The descriptions of the Front convey – in a totally non sentimental way – the absolute horror of war and life in the trenches. The descriptions of events are stark and brutal, but pick up well on the camaraderie and black humour of the troops. A book I really enjoyed. I have read a fair amount of WW1 literature, and this stands with the best of them. PS Duffy is quite definitely an author to watch for the future.”  The Cartographer of No Man’s Land (B-format pb, £8.99, 978 1910183069) is published in paperback by Myrmidon in March and you can find out more and order it here.

A big piece in the Times this week featuring an interview with two of the authors of I’ll See Myself Out Thank You: Thirty Personal Views on Why the Laws on Assisted Dying Should be Changed. Colin Brewer and Michael Irwin (who are the editors of the books together with Virginia Ironside) present a reasoned libertarian argument for people with terminal conditions, or poor quality of life due to illness or treatment, to be allowed to be helped to kill themselves. A series of recent landmark cases have highlighted the issues surrounding assisted suicide and may be shifting public opinion in the direction of greater freedom. These essays cover every aspect of the topic from the legal and religious issues to the deeply personal experiences of patients and carers, and their authors include Will Self, Stuart Lee, Lord Avebury, Peter Tatchell, Mary Warnock, and Anthony Grayling
In the interview in the Times Brewer reasons “My feeling is that as people get used to it they’ll say, “This is actually not a bad way to die.  Why have a messy death? Is there any fundamental duty to hang on until the bitter end?” What has already made waves is that in one section Brewer, a psychiatrist, lists seven people for whom he has provided psychiatric evaluations supporting their applications to Dignitas by establishing they had the mental capacity to make the decision to die. The doctors hope the book, will be read by the public and by the medical profession (polls suggest that up to 75 per cent of the population is in favour of changing the law on assisted suicide but the British Medical Association is not. I’ll See Myself Out, Thank You (pb, 978 0992627096, £10.99) has just been published by Skyscraper Publications and you can find out more and order it here

Things are really hotting up now in the run up to the general election on 7 May, with record numbers of voters saying they haven’t yet made up their minds as to who to vote for. All the more reason therefore for you to display the five Why Vote titles from Biteback. These fab five little hardbacks, all priced at £10 each are the perfect way for your customers to cut through the spin and get to the crux of what separates the main parties. Written by party insiders, exploring the party’s key policies, agendas and traditional commitments, with case studies and contributions from experts and members of the public; this enlightening new series sets out everything you need to know clearly and concisely. Why Vote Conservative 2015: The Essential Guide by Nick Herbert (978 1849547369), Why Vote Labour 2015: The Essential Guide Edited by Dan Jarvis (978 1849547345), Why Vote Liberal Democrat 2015: The Essential Guide by Jeremy Browne (978 1849547352), Why Vote UKIP 2015: The Essential Guide  by Suzanne Evans (978 1849547376), and Why Vote Green 2015: The Essential Guide by Shahrar Ali (978 1849548403) are all available now, and you can  find out more about all five Why Vote titles on the Biteback website here.

We mentioned Wolf Hall last week, and this week’s gripping episode put William Tyndale into the limelight when Cromwell received a copy of Tyndale's New Testament from Germany – translated into English, not Latin – an act that was strictly forbidden at this time. And goodness me, but the end of the episode we certainly saw how reading Tyndale's New Testament (the first English Bible of the Protestant Reformation) in public was not a choice to be made lightly.  Carcanet publish Selected Writing by Tyndale (978 1 857546 56 9 , pb, £12.95) which would be a great title to have on display on your  Wolf Hall book table – in fact why not include a couple of other Carcanet 16th century classics that are also very relevant to the series? 
Selected Poems by Sir Thomas Wyatt (978 1 857546 95 8, pb, £8.95) for example? Sir Thomas Wyatt was a popular writer of Henry VIII's court and legend has it that an entanglement with Anne Boleyn was the source of some of his most passionate and vulnerable poems. His poem These bloody days have broken my heart was allegedly written upon watching the execution of Anne Boleyn from his cell in the Tower. We're expecting a Wolf Hall cameo role for Wyatt soon! 
Or how about Selected Poems by Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey (978 0 856355 52 3, £7.95, pb.)  A contemporary of Sir Thomas Wyatt, Henry Howard was the cousin of Anne Boleyn and Catherine Howard (Henry VIII's 5th wife) and the Howards were one of the most influential families in the country. Henry Howard was a key literary figure at the time and is believed to have been the first English poet to publish poetry in blank verse.

In other news from Carcanet, we’re pleased to announce that we’re happy to announce that Gathering Evidence (pb, £9.95, 978 1 847772 62 6) by Caoilinn Hughes has been shortlisted for the Shine/Strong Award for Best First Poetry Collection. The winner will be announced at a reading at the Mountains to Sea Literary Festival in Ireland (which you can find out more about here) on the 22nd March. You can find out more about Gathering Evidence on the Carcanet website here

Look out for the paperback of Fatty O’Leary’s Dinner Party by Alexander McCall Smith (978 1846973239, pb £7.99) which is coming in April from Polygon. You’ll remember that this charming and very funny book stars the heroically proportioned Fatty, right at home in easy-going Fayetteville, Arkansas,  happily married to his childhood sweetheart Betty, and liking nothing better than the company of good friends Tubby O’Rourke and Porky Flanagan. But when Fatty and Betty head off to Ireland on the trip of a lifetime, they find that they have left their comfort zone far behind. Calamity and mayhem ensue as one mishap after another befalls the beleaguered couple. Can Fatty’s broad shoulders take the strain or will he suffer one indignity too many? Will he get his just deserts, or just dessert? Fatty O’Leary’s Dinner Party, as Scotland on Sunday said, “doles out an appropriately extra-large helping of fun” and has a much improved paperback cover. Order Fatty O'Leary's Dinner Party and find out more here

And in the week when it was announced there would be another Harper Lee for us all to enjoy this year, let’s remind ourselves of what a truly great book To Kill a Mockingbird really is. Here are twelve of its most profound quotes to inspire you on a Friday!

That’s all for now folks, more next week!

This blog is taken from a newsletter which is sent weekly to over 700 booksellers as well as publishers and publicists. If you would like to order any of the titles mentioned, then please click here to go to the Compass New Titles Website or talk to your Compass Sales representative.