Friday 12 October 2018

Compass Points 278

Here comes Halloween – so if you haven’t already sorted out your display, then don’t forget about these three from Lorenz. Halloween (hb, £4,99, 978 0754828396) The Pumpkin Carving Book (£6.99, hb, 978 0754825296) and Wizards and Witches (£7.99, hb, 978 1861477316) Have a look at the fantastic spreads from The Pumpkin Carving Book here – there are some brilliant ideas! And wow, look at these prices!

BBC Woman’s Hour provided a fascinating insight this week into The Honourable Ladies (£30, hb, 978 1785902444) which is just out from Biteback; the lives and achievements of the women who served as Members of Parliament You can listen to that interview here. . Containing profiles of every woman MP from 1918 to 1996, and with female contributors from Mary Beard to Caroline Lucas, Ruth Davidson to Yvette Cooper and Margaret Beckett to Ann Widdecombe, The Honourable Ladies is an indispensable and illuminating testament to the stories and achievements of some remarkable women.

From those women who’ve earned their place in history to those who’ve just been born into it; it was Princess Eugenie’s wedding today – what do you mean you weren’t invited? You clearly don’t have the right friends – have a look here at this quiz to tell you which famous friends you should have – and who you’ll get to marry as a result. And if you just want to look at pictures of famous people looking gorgeous – then this is one for you! I also very much like this list from book blogger Girl with her Head in a Book of the Top Ten Fictional Princesses.

The Leadership Lab (£14.99, pb, 978 0749483432) was included in the Financial Times Business Books of the Month for October saying, “Drawing on interviews with top executives, it makes a case for thoughtful, inclusive leadership, steering clear of short-termism and distraction.” Bestselling author Chris Lewis and superstar megatrends analyst Dr Pippa Malmgren cover everything from how to build a new type of leadership trust when other spheres of public power have been overturned, to robots overtaking companies and worldwide indebtedness affecting business. This book explains not only why the old rules no longer apply, but also how to blaze a trail in this new world order and be the best leader you can be. It is a must-read for those seeking to develop a real intuition and explains how to build an empathetic, credible, stable and strong leadership path. It’s just been published by Kogan Page.

The finalists have now been announced in the Manchester Culture Awards – and hurrah, both Carcanet and Comma are there! The awards recognise the best of culture in the city over the last year and have been established by the council to recognise the massive contribution culture makes to the city's economy, and in helping make Manchester a vibrant place where people want to live, work, and play. Nearly three hundred nominations were made across twelve different award categories. Comma are shortlisted in the Inspiring Innovation and Carcanet in the Outstanding Contribution category – and the winners in all categories will be announced at a special awards ceremony being held at the Etihad Stadium on Wednesday 14 November. The full shortlist is here.  

There is no longer any doubt that the way we think affects our bodies: countless scientific studies have shown this to be true. How Your Mind Can Heal Your Body (978 1788171496, pb, £12.99) is a highly acclaimed bestseller, first published ten years ago which is just out in a new edition from Hay House. In it, Dr David Hamilton explores the effect of visualization, belief and positive thinking on the body, and shows how using our imagination and mental processes can stimulate our own defences and healing systems to combat disease, pain and illness. Dr Hamilton has added four new chapters to discuss the latest cutting-edge information and techniques which include using imagery to stimulate the immune system, using the mind to speed up rehabilitation from strokes and powerful visualization strategies to help facilitate recovery from injury and illness. David will be writing an article on his book for Top Santé (circ. 36,000) and Happiful Magazine. The title will also be featured in November’s What Doctors Don’t Tell You (circ. 30,000). David will also be the expert in Spirit and Destiny’s masterclass feature on being grateful in their January 2019 issue (circ. 30,000) and the book will also be featured in Yoga Magazine (circ. 35,000) and Psychologies (circ. 60,000).

Carcanet have just announced an exciting new imprint, Carcanet Classics, which launches officially on November 26th at the British Library. Through this series they aim to restore game-changing work for contemporary readers, by pairing classic texts and authors with exciting, contemporary scholars and poets. Carcanet Classics aim to give the book back its dynamic power and include new takes on ancient texts, new readings of the Latin classics and young poets advocating the work of their mentors. Some of the books, like the new Beowulf, are vividly annotated. Others are bare and direct, pointed in our direction with a living introduction. One generation’s classics look quite different from another’s, and this new series, which will grow by eight to ten titles a year, is an incomparable resource for literature lovers excited by experiment and keen on our living heritage. Important titles include Gilgamesh Retold by Jenny Lewis (pb, £12.99, 9781784106140) which is the myth retold from a feminist perspective and is out on 26 October. Another key title is a new translation by Jane Draycott of the medieval poem Pearl. You can read a fascinating blog post by Jane on the challenges and joys that “a chance to climb inside another poet’s imagination, their ear, their poetics, and become an apprentice to their art” gave her here. The Carcanet Classics series was featured in Book Brunch today and you can find out more on the Carcanet website here.  

Compelling, twisty, page-turner She Chose Me (£8.99, pb, 978 1787198739) by Tracey Emerson is published by Legend next week, and there’s a major amount of promotion! The book is launched at the fabulous Lighthouse Bookshop in Edinburgh on Wednesday, and there will be a feature on Tracey in the Guardian. You can see the blog tour schedule here, it includes: Crime Reads and Coffee, Literary Elf, Dorset Book Detective, Nicki’s Life of Crime, Anne Bonny Book Reviews, Random Things Through My Letterbox, Varietats, Between the Pages Book Club, Cheeky Pees Reads and Reviews, Chocolate’n’waffles, Novel Delights, Lori’s Reading Corner, Short Book and Scribes, Over the Rainbow and Mad House Family Reviews. She Chose Me is, as Lesley Glaister wrote; “dignified by deft and ingenious plotting, forensically insightful characterisation and impeccable prose, this psychological thriller delivers on all levels”.

It’s Frankfurt Book Fair this week of course – and here are Comma’s Becca Parkinson and co-editor Gvantsa Jobava talking on a Frankfurt panel about The Book of Tbilsi (£9.99, pb, 978 1910974315). The newest title in this brilliant series is The Book of Birmingham (£9.99, pb, 978 1910974377), which launched at Birmingham Lit Fest last week. There was a funny and positive review for it in Outside Left which you can read here. Few cities have undergone such a radical transformation over the last few decades as this one. Culturally and architecturally, Birminghamhas been in a state of perpetual flux and regeneration, with new communities moving in, then out, and iconic post-war landmarks making way for brighter-coloured, 21st century flourishes. Much like the city itself, the characters in the stories gathered here are often living through moments of profound change. Set against key moments of history – from Malcolm X’s visit to Smethwick in 1965, to the Handsworth riots two decades later, from the demise of the city’s manufacturing in the 70s and 80s, to the on-going tensions between communities in recent years – these stories celebrate the cultural dynamism that makes this complex, ‘second city’ far more than just the sum of its parts.

In 2015, students at the University of Cape Town demanded the removal of a statue of Cecil Rhodes, from their campus. The battle cry #RhodesMustFall sparked an international movement calling for the decolonisation of the world's universities. Today, as this movement grows, how will it radically transform the terms upon which universities exist? In Decolonizing the University (£16.99, hb, 978 0745338200), students, activists and scholars discuss the possibilities and the pitfalls of this, and provide the tools for radical pedagogical, disciplinary and institutional change. Subverting curricula, enforcing diversity, and destroying old boundaries, this is a radical call for a new era of education. The title is currently Number 2 in one of London's longest running and best radical bookshop Housman’s and really is a crucial read. It’s just been published by Pluto Press.

A great article here in the Guardian about the grim reality of being a bookseller – which argues that it may well be the most over-romanticised job in the world, and that booksellers are in fact dealing with bodily fluids, insufferable know-it-alls and shoplifters on a daily basis. It’s certainly true that whenever you see a bookshop in a film it does look pretty peachy, as in this scene with Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant from Notting Hill or this with Audrey Hepburn and Fred Astaire in Funny Face – I think the Guardian may be onto something!

There’s a continuing buzz on social media for the heart-wrenching and heart-warming Pieces of Me (£8.99, pb, 978 1787198036) by Natalie Hart including enthusiasm from notable authors such as Ali Land (Richard and Judy Sunday Times bestselling author) and Sarah Perry (author of The Essex Serpent). The novel was a Trending Book of the Week on the Kobo homepage and Nina Pottell (Prima Magazine Books editor and Costa Book Prize judge) has been tweeting about the book all month and is currently running a giveaway for the book on her account.

And finally, sometimes we all need a bit of help in life. A new title just published by Hay House from world-renowned ascension expert Diana Cooper, suggests that possibly the assistants we need most are dragons. Diana believes that dragons have been serving our planet since its inception and work with the angels in service for the highest good and her new titles Dragons: Your Celestial Guardians (978 1788171618, £12.99, pb) she shares incredibly detailed and practical knowledge about the dragons and how they can support us. You'll discover the history of dragons on earth, how they came to be here and their mission for humanity as well as how to meet your own personal dragon guide. This book will feature in December’s Spirit and Destiny (circ. 30,000) and there will also be an extract of this book in February’s Kindred Spirit (circ. 150,000).

Top Ten fictional and film dragons anyone?

This weekly blog is written for the UK book trade. If you would like to order any of the titles mentioned, then please talk to your Compass Sales Manager, or call the Compass office on 020 8326 5696. Every Friday an e-newsletter containing highlights from the blog is sent out to over 700 booksellers – and if you’d like to receive this then please contact

1 comment: