Friday 25 September 2015

Compass Points 141

Wow! Or should that be Oink!  I think it’s fair to say that we have never had a book whose contents have made ALL the front pages of ALL the newspapers – and exploded all over social media as well! Call Me Dave by Michael Ashcroft and Isabel Oakeshott (hb, £20.00, 978 1849549141) has had the largest ever initial print run for any Biteback title – so congratulations to them, thank you very much Daily Mail, and good luck booksellers – I hope you all sell lots and lots of copies when it is published on 5 October! Scroll down to the end of this newsletter to see the best of the jokes on Twitter!

And I think you really know you’ve made it as a publisher when Cassetteboy makes a film based on one of your books! Watch Gettin' Piggy With It here!

Talking of the Daily Mail; one of its most popular columns is ‘And Finally’ – a readers’ problems page by Bel Mooney. Bel is unique among agony aunts in that she gives of herself to her readers in return for their confidences, and readers regularly write to say that this is the first thing they turn to in the newspaper.  Bel Mooney has been one of this country’s best-loved journalists for over 40 years, and this hugely popular Daily Mail column reaches around six million people every week. Now, for the first time, these columns have been revised, updated, and collected in a bedside book: Bel Mooney’s Lifelines: Words to Help You Through which is packed with insight from a writer whose own life experiences have taught her much about the workings of the human heart. Designed for dipping into, these mini essays and accompanying quotations encompass joy, family life, sadness, resilience, the love of nature, gratitude, possibility, hope and encouragement. These are anecdotes and insights to challenge and uplift, to entertain and inform. Bel Mooney’s Lifelines: Words to Help You Through (pb, £9.99 9781849549325) is published by Robson Press at the end of October and you can find out more and order it here

A great review from the Times on Saturday, for Ascension by Gregory Dowling (pb, £9.99, 978 1846973130), who have made it their Historical Fiction Book of the Month. Entitled “death, drag and deceit in Venice they describe it as “stylish, clever and gripping”. Ascension is the first in a new series of mystery thrillers set in 18th century Venice, and as the Times says; it is a fast-paced gripping story, with lots of action, murder, romance, and long-buried secrets. Set in 1749, the city has become Europe’s pleasure capital, famous for its gambling dens, its courtesans, its hectic carnival, its music, art and theatre – and the most highly organised secret service in Europe. Something momentous is being planned for the Feast of the Ascension, Venice’s most important and spectacular holiday, but can the hero, a reluctant spy - prevent the day from turning into bloody mayhem? This is a very handsome paperback - dripping in gold foil and really rather gorgeous; It’s just been published by Polygon and you can find out more and order it here.

Ooh who doesn’t love a novel set in Venice – here’s a good list of the top ten as voted for by readers on – and since films set in Venice are equally alluring – here’s the Telegraph's top ten list of movies featuring this dazzling city.

There’s a terrific review for Music, Sense and Nonsense: Collected Essays and Lectures by Alfred Brendel (hb, £25.00, 978 1849549059) in this Saturday’s Guardian. Alfred Brendel is arguably the greatest living pianist of our time, and in addition, he has long been one of the world’s most influential writers on music. Alan Rusbridger says “it’s difficult to think of any other living figure who could have produced a book like this” – you can read the full review here. This important book brings the clarity and originality of expression that characterise Brendel’s performances to the printed page. Whether discussing Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Liszt, Schoenberg or other pianists, his reflections will prove invaluable to music lovers. It contains all of Brendel’s essays and articles, (published originally in two classic books, Musical Thoughts and Afterthoughts and Music Sounded Out), along with new, previously unpublished material, bringing it completely up to date. There was an interview with Brendel talking about this book on Classic FM at the start of September, and also a review in the Independent calling it a “glorious compendium of the great pianist's writings on music” which you can read here: and an Alfred Brendel special on BBC Radio 3, Music Matters focusing on the book, which is published by Biteback .

For a bit of tranquillity in your life, here is five minutes of Brendel playing one of his favourite composers - Schubert. Now that’s just what you need to calm you down on a frenetic Friday!

Well, I’m afraid there’s no doubt that we are drawing ever closer to you know what – yes, the elves have already lined the shelves of Sainsbury’s with crackers and puds. For those readers still full of innocent wide eyed appreciation rather than cynical world-weary irritation; comes The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus (pb, £7.99, 978 1843915904) by L Frank Baum; published by Hesperus Minor in October. L. Frank Baum (author of course of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz) takes us back to the fantastical origins of so many of our Christmas traditions as well as the humble origins of Santa Claus himself. I’m willing to bet that none of you knew that, as a baby, Santa Claus was found by a woodsman in the Forest of Burzee, and placed into the care of the lioness, Shiegra, and the wood nymph, Necile? When he grew up, they encouraged him to leave the forest so that he could see for himself the sad things in the world such as war and poverty, of course once Santa came to understand these issues, he made it his mission to cheer up us all up a bit and do good deeds. Ho ho ho! This tale unfolds the surprising reasons why Santa Claus invented toys, why he must deliver them at night and how he came to use reindeers to take him all over the world. Adults and children alike will be captivated by this magical, feel-good story, full of panache and imagination;  it’s clearly the ideal stocking filler and I think this attractive B-format paperback could do very well indeed! Hesperus Minor are doing a fab job bringing forgotten children’s classics back into print for new generations to discover and older generations to revisit – and there is no other mainstream edition of this title available. Find out more and order The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus here

Last week I mentioned Suffragette: My Own Story by Emmeline Pankhurst (978 1843915591, £7.99, pb) the original autobiography of Emmeline Pankhurst If you are getting together all your women’s rights titles to tie in with the new film Suffragette, then don’t forget to also include Lady Constance Lytton: Aristocrat, Suffragette, Martyr by Lyndsey Jenkins (hb, £16.00, 978 1849547956) which was published back in March by Biteback. This fascinating biography tells the story of Lady Constance - the most unlikely of suffragettes who began life as one of the elite, but abandoned a life of privilege to fight for women s rights.

Who doesn’t love a bit of Hank Williams? The world is about to remember just what a great singer/songwriter he was, with the release of a major new biopic I Saw the Light at the end of November,  starring Tom Hiddleston as Hank  and Elizabeth Olsen  as his wife. You can watch a short clip of Tom talking about it here. The film is based on Hank Williams: A Biography (published by Little, Brown) and its author expert Colin Escott, has referrenced Your Cheatin’ Heart by Chet Flippo as the classic Hank text. Your Cheatin’ Heart: A Biography of Hank William by Chet Filippo (pb, 978 0859652322 £14.99) comes out in paperback in October by Plexus. It’s a meticulously researched, compelling biography; a history of country music encapsulated in one man’s career. Hank Williams was the first musician to truly lift country out of the backwoods and into the charts, courtesy of such heartfelt hits as Your Cheatin’ Heart, Cold Cold Heart and I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry – songs of such undeniable emotive force that they transcend time, place and audience. Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen have hailed him as a major influence, and his songs have been recorded by such diverse artists as Elvis Costello, the Carpenters and the Cowboy Junkies. But few could have known that Williams was privately suffering most of what he sang about so convincingly. Raised in Alabama in abject poverty, with an absentee father, a controlling mother, and an equally domineering first wife, he also had a crippling defect of the lower spine. Left untreated, the condition eventually drove him to drugs and alcohol. Your Cheatin’ Heart is 256 pages, with 60 photos and you can find out more and order it here.

And here is  a little bit of Hank to finish! Lovely!

Compass is on Twitter! Follow us @CompassIPS. This week the twittersphere appears to have been taken over by #piggate...

Gary Lineker @GaryLineker  
A bacon sandwich for breakfast has lost its just never know do you?
Jack Seale @jackseale  
Because that was almost as good as "Toff on swine, toff on the corpses of swine"
Louise Ann Davies @louanndavies  
Imagine waking up and thinking "I hope no one mentions my sexual abuse of a dead pig today" - the life of a UK PM
David Cameron @DavidChameron  
As a final word on #piggate can I just say in my defence that she looked nothing like her Tinder profile picture.
Sallyjo @sallyjo  
Markymark @themarkster  
Dave's mates told him it was snouts in the trough.  But that was old hat, so he changed it to toffs in the snout.
UK Uncut @UKuncut  
Why didn't the BBC report on #PigGate?! It's silence of the hams...
Sue Frent @frenton  
I hope the migrants coming to this country respect these ancient British traditions and are prepared to integrate fully with our native farm animals.
MissusVee @MissusVee 
"Sorry David, I can't hear you very well... is there some crackling on your end?" 
Joe Bloggs @Blogsy 
Well the debate as to whether he prefers West Ham to Aston Villa is finally over.
Maeve B @MaeveyB
#Piginapoke or #pokeinapig?
BBC Newsnight @BBCNewsnight  
"I mean who cares?" Cameron biographer @AnthonySeldon on #piggate.

That’s all for now folks! More next week!

This newsletter 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.

Wednesday 16 September 2015

Compass Points 140

There has been a LOT of feature coverage over the summer for a new film Suffragette which will have its world premiere in London on 7 October, at the beginning of the London film festival, before opening nationwide in the UK on 30 October. You can watch a trailer for it here and it looks terrific! The cast stars Carey Mulligan and Meryl Streep and the film tells the story of the working-class British women who, inspired by the suffragette leader Emmeline Pankhurst, took their fight for enfranchisement to the male establishment in Westminster. Director Sarah Gavron was the first ever film-maker working on a commercial project to receive permission to film inside the Houses of Parliament, and the film also stars Helena Bonham Carter, Anne-Marie Duff, Ben Wishaw and Brendan Gleeson so there will be loads more publicity on it to come, I’m sure. Hesperus Nova are publishing Suffragette: My Own Story by Emmeline Pankhurst (978 1843915591, £7.99, pb) which is the original autobiography the most famous and controversial suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst: played in the film by Meryl Streep. With insight and great wit, Emmeline’s autobiography chronicles the beginnings of her interest in feminism through to her militant and controversial fight for women’s right to vote. While she received a good education, she rebelled against conventional women’s roles. At the age of fourteen a meeting of women’s rights activists sparked a lifelong passion in her to fight for women’s freedom and she would later claim that it was on that day she became a suffragist. As one after another of the proposed feminist bills were defeated in parliament, Pankhurst was inspired to turn to extreme actions. While she was the figurehead of the suffragette movement, it advocated some controversial tactics such as arson, violent protest and hunger strikes. Even today there is still debate about the effectiveness of her extreme strategies, but her work is recognised as a crucial element in achieving women's suffrage in Britain. The film is absolutely certain to stir new interest in her legacy – so make sure you have Suffragette: My Own Story on the shelves: you can order it here.

Ahh, who doesn’t love a bit of Meryl Streep! Watch here for an entertaining trawl through of her top ten film performances – maybe her interpretation of Emmeline Pankhurst is set to become another classic!

Another book that there has been a great deal of publicity for is the new James Bond title Trigger Mortis, written by Antony Horowitz. If you are a fan of James Bond (and frankly, who isn’t) , then you’ll probably enjoy this quiz in the Guardian – where you can see if you can identify original  James Bond quotes written by Ian Fleming, versus those from the newbie Horowitz!

This brings me neatly onto the next title we have for you; which is coming from Robson Press in October.  Ian Fleming: A Personal Memoir by Robert Harling (hb, £20.00 978 1849549356) is a fascinating and unprecedented insight into the mind and life of the creator of James Bond, from one of those who knew him best, which is a timely bit of publishing with the new James Bond movie, Spectre opening across the UK on 26 October – here's a trailer for it – looks pretty cracking to me!  Ian Fleming: A Personal Memoir is Robert Harling’s account of his enduring friendship with one of the twentieth century’s most iconic writers, a relationship forged in the Second World War that helped define the lives of both men. The war made the men fast friends, and Fleming would later write Harling into his Bond novels Thunderball and The Spy Who Loved Me. Despite the author’s close relationship with his subject, this book is a searching psychological investigation, and frequently critical of its protagonist. Indeed, as the narrative develops, Fleming becomes a tragic figure; his magnetism and charm often tempered by bouts of depression and failing health, and a deep-rooted misogyny, which meant that his relationships with women were destined to end in failure and recrimination. In this extraordinary memoir, which the author stipulated should not be published before his death and which features a cast of characters from General Patton to Noel Coward, Evelyn Waugh and John Betjeman, Harling brings a unique and authoritative perspective to a compelling subject. This sounds very interesting to me, and I am sure it will be very widely reviewed. An excellent present for those hard to buy for uncles and fathers I think!

There is a fascinating 1963 interview with Ian Fleming on Desert Island Discs – it’s just 10 mins, and well worth a listen, which you can do here.

U.A. Fanthorpe, who would go on to become one of England’s most popular contemporary poets, (she was awarded the CBE in 2001 and the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry in 2003) started out in 1974 as a clerk-receptionist in a neuro-psychiatric hospital. It was a job that would define her early years, not least as “poetry struck during my first month behind the desk.” Berowne’s Book is a witty commentary on what she saw around her, and includes some of her very earliest poems. Hilarious, tender, profound and deeply humane, this series of snapshots of hospital life in the 1970s shocks partly because so much is immediately familiar today. On Saturday, the Guardian will feature one of the poems as their weekly poem. Berowne's Book (pb, 978 1910392133, £9.99) by U A Fanthorpe is published by Enitharmon Press and you can you can find out more and order it here

Biteback are clearly in a mood to spend a bit of money at the moment! Firstly they recently acquired Berlusconi: the Epic Story of the Billionaire Who Took Over Italy by Alan Friedman .The Italian media tycoon and billionaire turned Prime Minister, Silvio Berlusconi has co-operated with the bestselling author and award-winning journalist Alan Friedman in the telling of his life story “warts and all” ; and in a series of “candid and revealing” interviews, Berlusconi discusses “everything from the infamous bunga-bunga parties” to his “most secret moments” with world leaders including Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin. Starting from the bottom in his incredible rise to power, Berlusconi was a cruise-ship crooner as a young man, became a real estate tycoon in the '70s, started the first commercial television network in history, and turned AC Milan into a world-class soccer club. And that was all before he entered and survived the squalid swampland of Italian politics, becoming the longest-serving Italian Prime Minister in history, and generating, arguably, the most controversy of any world leader today. Biteback MD Iain Dale said: “Silvio Berlusconi is undoubtedly the most colourful character to have graced the world’s political stage in recent years. Alan Friedman has done a remarkable job at really getting Berlusconi to open up about his astonishing life. The result is a book full of candid insights and fresh revelations, and I am delighted that Biteback will be publishing it.” Berlusconi by Alan Friedman (hb, 978 1849549868 £18.99) will be published in October and you can find out more abut it here.

Biteback also announced this week that they have acquired world rights to a biography on the newly-elected Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn entitled Comrade Jeremy: A Very Unlikely Coup: How Jeremy Corbyn Stormed to the Labour Leadership by journalist Rosa Prince. Comrade Jeremy will tell the story of "the most unexpected leadership contest ever to take place in modern British politics". It will discuss Corbyn’s “cosy rural upbringing” and his “long espousal of contentious causes, including Irish republicanism and free Palestine”. The biography will also attempt to answer questions such as “how did this very British iconoclast manage to snatch the leadership of a party he spent forty years rebelling against?” and "what exactly happened over the space of an extraordinary summer to propel an old lefty called Jeremy to inspire and excite hundreds of thousands of people, and breathe new life into the socialist ideals he has, almost alone, held true to for so many years?" Prince said: “Jeremy Corbyn’s unlikely journey to the leadership of the Labour Party is one of the great adventures of modern British political history. I am so honoured to have been trusted with the task of telling his extraordinary story.” Iain Dale commented: “The 2015 Labour Leadership election has been a riveting episode, and Jeremy Corbyn’s unlikely victory will go down in political history. Love him or hate him, Corbyn is a fascinating character, and I’m delighted that Biteback will be publishing his remarkable story.” Comrade Jeremy will be published in January 2016 and will be supported by a major press campaign. There has already been a plug for it in the Telegraph – its author Rosa Prince is their Political Editor – so there will no doubt be lots more publicity here to come!

Rebecca F. John ‘s short stories Clown’s Shoes was shortlisted for the Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award, and the PEN International/New Voices Award and although she did not win, the fact that she was a finalist was already something of a win considering the stature of the other shortlisted writers. A series of stories from the collection will be broadcast on Radio 4 Extra for five days between 9-13 November 2015. Clown’s Shoes is a dazzling, ambitious debut collection from a new young talent and these critically acclaimed stories dip into the shadows and spotlights of life. From the pale waking hours to the darkling places, Clown’s Shoes introduces a cast of lost characters trying to find their way, and those who populate the exciting and intriguing world of this alluring paperback, really do have stories that enthrall the imagination. As I’ve said before, short story collections are becoming increasingly popular, and this is as diverse and impressive a collection as you will find. Clown’s Shoes by Rebecca F. John (pb, £8.99) 978 1910409671) is published by Parthian in October and you can find out more and order it here.

You can find out a bit more about Rebecca on her website here.

And to finish, who enjoys a bit of Kurt Cobain? If you are a fan, who will no doubt be excited to hear that the soundtrack (featuring unheard music by Cobain) of  the recent Kurt Cobain film, Montage of Heck, will be released as the same day as the DVD of the film comes out, on 6 November. You can read more about that here. The accompanying book, Kurt Cobain: A Montage of Heck by Brett Morgen and Richard Bienstock (hb, 978 1783059669, £24.95) was published by Omnibus in August. It includes full transcripts of interviews with Cobain’s family members and friends, many of whom have never spoken in public before as well as interviews with Courtney Love and Wendy O’ Connor (Kurt’s mother). The book also includes stunning animation by award-winning animator Hisko Hulsing, and never before seen photographs, journal pages and other artefacts, offering revealing new insights into the life and character of Kurt Cobain. The release of the DVD and soundtrack are sure to provoke new focus on Kurt – more than 20 years have passed since he killed himself and his legacy still continues to fascinate and inspire people. This riveting chronicle paints an illuminating and honest portrait of the complex Nirvana frontman; and you can order A Montage of Heck here.

You can watch a trailer for the Montage of Heck film here.

We are currently very much enjoying #VeryBritishProblems on Twitter and Facebook! Here are some of our favourites!
  • Being 100% certain that you'd mess up the saying your name bit on University Challenge.
  • Saying sorry to someone for no reason and receiving the reply "that's okay" instead of "sorry".
  • "That Friday feeling" - Translation: Watching telly while tired.
  • How to receive directions: 1) Look very serious 2) Repeat last two instructions 3) Say thank you and drive immediately to a dead end
  • Hanging up after three rings in case someone answers the phone.
  • Demonstrating that there's nothing on TV tonight by reading out everything that's on TV tonight.
  • Spotting someone you know in the supermarket and immediately burying yourself in a pile of onions.
  • Being sure you're about to deposit your keys, wallet and phone the moment before dropping a letter into the post box.
  • "What are you having?" - Translation: Please say you're having booze because I want booze
That’s all for now folks! More next week!

This blog is taken from a newsletter 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 11 September 2015

Compass Points 139

I daresay many of you, like us here at Compass Towers, are on tenterhooks as we await the results of the Labour leadership election tomorrow – but in the meantime the country is run by a man who many feel still remains an enigma to those outside his tight-knit inner circle. However, a new unauthorised biography is set to change all that. Call Me Dave is on of the most hotly anticipated political books of the year, and promises to reveal the real David Cameron – Britain’s youngest Prime Minister for nearly 200 years. Co-authored by Lord Ashcroft, former deputy chairman of the Tory Party, and Isabel Oakeshott, award-winning political journalist; Call Me Dave will be published on the eve of the Conservative Party Conference and will be serialised in a major newspaper – which guarantees plenty of publicity!  Based on hundreds of interviews; with everyone from Westminster insiders to intimate friends; this book takes us from Eton to Oxford, through his gap-year adventures in Russia to Dave’s early days as a party apparatchik and his stint as a PR man. It scrutinises Cameron’s journey to the premiership and his record so far as the most powerful man in the land. Call Me Dave by Michael Ashcroft and Isabel Oakeshott (hb, 978 1849549141) contains 8 pages of colour pics, and is published by Biteback in October.  You can find out more and order it here

And if you really want to find out who’s running the country - have a look here at the brilliant Cassetteboy’s take on the latest news!

Talking of power-crazed dictators… take yourself back to October 2011 when in the dying days of the Libyan civil war, Muammar Gaddafi was hiding out in his home town of Sirte along with his closest advisors. As we know (but of course he did not); that October night was to be Gaddafi’s final one. The Dictator’s Last Night is a gripping imagining by Yasmina Khadra of what these last hours of President Gaddafi might have been like – providing us with a fascinating insight into the mind of one of the most complex and controversial figures of recent history – one who thinks  “People say I am a megalomaniac. It is not true. I am an exceptional being, providence incarnate, envied by the gods, able to make a faith of his cause.” In this short paperback, Gaddafi reflects on an extraordinary life, whilst still raging against the West, his fellow Arab nations and the ingratitude of the Libyan people. The novella ends with Gaddaffi’s thoughts as he is dragged out of a water drain, beaten and eventually shot dead.  Yasmina Khadra is a bestselling author with sales of 3 million copies in 42 countries: one reviewer said of his writing that “like all the great storytellers of history, Khadra espouses the contradictions of his characters, who carry in themselves the entirety of the human condition." This is an interesting title, by an author who the TLS describe as “a skilled storyteller working at the height of his powers” – you can read a thoughtful review by a blogger here. The Dictator’s Last Night (pb, 978 1910477137, £7.99) is published by Gallic in October and you can find out more and order it here.

You know we love a bit of Harry Potter gossip in Compass Points, and OMG – apparently we’ve been pronouncing Voldemort’s name wrong all these years! Read here how JK thinks he who cannot be named should be said!

Thanks very much for all your support of The Moor’s Account (pb, 978 1859644270, £9.99) by Laila Lalami published by Periscope which is selling strongly – so far it’s the 7th bestselling title on the Booker Longlist of thirteen titles  – which is pretty good considering it wasn’t released when the longlist was announced! There’s less than a week (Tuesday 15th September) to go until the shortlist is announced – have a look at this article in the Bookseller here which tells you how all the titles are doing and what the odds are on the winner!

And if you haven’t got round to reading all the titles yet, have a look at some extracts from each of them here to give you a flavour!

Paul Gambaccini is going to be all over the airwaves and press next week publicising his autobiography:  Love, Paul Gambaccini (hb, £20.00, 978 1849549110). Subtitled My Year Under the Yewtree, this book could not be more topical – and this full, no-holds-barred story of Paul Gambaccini’s twelve months of horror and trauma before being told he would not face historic sex assault charges looks set to trigger a change in how we prosecute allegations of abuse in the UK. Paul Gambaccini was arrested in October 2013. Forced awake in the middle of the night, he had many of his possessions confiscated for more than a year. He was disgraced in the press and made unemployable, despite having to pay tens of thousands of pounds in legal fees during a year in which he had no income. Finally, and inevitably, he became the latest celebrity to be exonerated over allegations of historic sexual abuse. The serialisation of this first person account has just begun the Mail on Sunday , and you can also read these articles in the Daily Telegraph, the The Times  and the  Daily Mail – The Mail on Sunday serialisation continues this weekend. 
Paul will be on ITV’s Loose Women next Tuesday, and also that day he’ll be interviewed on BBC Radio 4, on the Today Programme and there will be a live interview that evening with Evan Davies. Then the next morning (Weds) he’ll be on Radio 5 Live Breakfast –with Nicky Campbell and The Victoria Derbyshire Programme and BBC Radio 2, talking to Jeremy Vine at lunchtime, then HardTALK for an interview with Stephen Sackur and finally a live interview with Huw Edwards the BBC News ChannelLove, Paul Gambaccini is published this week by Biteback and you can order it and find out more here.

Imagine a young mother, standing on Tower Bridge, holding her baby, ready to jump. No, this isn’t the start of some gripping new thriller – but an event that really happened. This single defining moment was Mary Daniels' darkest time – and the point when her life changed forever. Wild Awakening tells the story of what happened next, the journey to 'self' that she never saw coming and the discovery of nine simple, yet powerful questions that truly saved her life. Wild Awakening: 9 Questions that Saved my Life is an uplifting and moving story of how a series of events culminated in nine powerful questions that not only saved Mary’s  life, but have gone on to become a transformative process for many others. This deeply moving story reveals how all it takes is 9 minutes each morning – so this is the ideal guide for real people, living real lives, who are looking for a 'doable' daily practice for lasting change. An inspiring speaker, powerful storyteller and original 'wild woman', Mary Daniels and this title, Wild Awakening, will feature in a future issue of the Daily Express, the November issue of Soul & Spirit magazine and also in Kindred Spirit magazine. Wild Awakening (pb, 978 1781805831, £10.99) is published by Hay House in October and you can find out more and order it here.

If the above title is not your cup of tea, you may be one of the many booksellers with a deep suspicion of anything “new agey” or “dippy hippie”. Perhaps you also believe that food intolerances are an entirely 21st century invention, and that it’s the abandoning of meat and two veg every day that has plunged the world into decline? Well, you might be surprised to know that the world’s first ever raw, gluten-free, vegan restaurant actually opened in 1917! Mrs Vera Richter was something of a trailblazing guru whose restaurant in LA served up a delicious array of soups, pies and confections, enticing diners to the table throughout the 1920s. Vintage Vegan: Recipes from Inside the World’s First Vegan Restaurant collects over 100 of her most mouth-watering recipes for readers to recreate at home. From cow-less ice-cream to egg-less mayonnaise, gluten-free tamales to homemade almond milk, Vintage Vegan relies upon choppers and blenders; but never the oven or the hob. One hundred percent raw, the vitamin content of her dishes was never compromised by conventional baking or frying methods. Thanks to endorsements from A-list celebrities like Beyoncé and Gwyneth Paltrow and a vast array of bloggers online; interest in the raw food and vegan lifestyle is at an all-time high. Over 60% of the British population is either obese or overweight, with 45% of people suffering from gluten intolerance, and Vintage Vegan offers a more wholesome, healthier lifestyle; guaranteed to make you glow from the inside out while shedding a few pounds in the process. It also provides a tantalising taste of the Roaring Twenties – what’s not to love! Vintage Vegan by Mrs Vera Richter (hb, 978 0859655446, £12.99) is published by Plexus in October and you can find out more about it here.

Mind you; if we’re on the subject of retro diets – I think I’d probably prefer to follow Fats Waller’s – here he is with all that meat and no potatoes!

Following the same vintage theme, Make Do and Send: Carrying on and Keeping Calm About Rationing by Sam Taylor is a very amusing collection of original letters of complaint which were sent from all over Britain about food and clothes rationing from 1940 to 1954. In 1941 clothes rationing was announced as a result of the war with Germany, while food rationing had already been introduced. The propaganda was upbeat under the banner Make Do and Mend; but one of the UK’s favourite national pastimes – grumbling - soon followed! For example, civil war on the War Office was openly declared when in 1943 women weren't getting enough corsets, yet men won their battle for turn-ups on trousers to make a long-wished-for come back! In Make Do and Send, Sam Taylor has gathered together the most arch, polemical, amusing and interesting letters on issues that enraged wartime Britain that will make anyone smile with its nod to Dads Army. It is a hilarious record of the stiff British upper lip that trembled with ill-concealed disgust whenever an injustice or unfair advantage was spotted. Sam Taylor is a novelist, editor of The Lady magazine and a features writer for the Daily Mail, and this compilation is an ideal Christmas gift hardback for families who can laugh at bickering! Collections of letters are sell very well  Outraged of Tunbridge Wells by Nigel Cawthorne is a bestseller, as is Am I Alone in Thinking – the unpublished letters to the Telegraph; and Make Do and Send (hb, 978 1783340866, £9.99) is very much in the same vein. It’s published by Gibson Square in October - find out more here!

I expect there are times when you wonder whether it would be better to be an author than a bookseller – none of that tiresome stock-checking or unpacking boxes – and plenty of working in your pyjamas and drinking warm white wine at parties! But maybe it’s not all fun fun fun – here’s an entertaining list  of the many fears that plague writers!

There’s been quite a bit of publicity coming up for 101 Gins to Try Before You Die by Ian Buxton (£12.99, hb, 978 1780272993) from Birlinn. There’s going an interview with Ian coming up in the Times, and there’s just been a feature in the Daily Record. Also many local papers have featured it – including the Irish News, the Liverpool Echo and the Manchester Evening News. Here are two videos which you may enjoy – firstly Ian talking about his book and then secondly,  a one minute film showing us how to make the perfect gin based cocktail – just the pick-me-up required for a tired bookseller on a Friday evening I would think! Cheers!
And you can order 101 gins here (the book that is – sadly not literally 101 gins.)

Compass is on Twitter! Follow us @CompassIPS. Here are some of our favourite tweets from last week...
We're delighted to announce that @freightbooks is joining forces with @cargopublishing
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@urbanebooks @deanlilleyman @CompassIPS Amazing interview. Must read Billy and the Devil but scared for personal reasons. Such candidness is admirable.
Thrilled to see a nice pile of The Miner at Foyles Waterloo.
Great storytelling....5 stars....I love this book....thrilling... Eden-Burning
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History from a Woman's Perspective- A Book Blog: The Lady Agnès Mystery - Volume 1: The Season of t...

That’s all for now folks! More next week!

This blog is taken from a newsletter 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.