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
'TV book shows could help BBC survive' says Robert Harris:
@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
Yes! @DanRhodes101 will be here October 1st - free event for the launch of @AardvarkBureau's release of Professor!
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.

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