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Archive for October 3rd, 2017

From Rupi Kaur to Orhan Pamuk: these are the five must-read international titles for October

the sun and her flowers
Rupi Kaur

From Rupi Kaur, the top ten Sunday Times bestselling author of milk and honey, comes her long-awaited second collection of poetry. Illustrated by Kaur, the sun and her flowers is a journey of wilting, falling, rooting, rising and blooming. It is a celebration of love in all its forms.

this is the recipe of life
said my mother
as she held me in her arms as i wept
think of those flowers you plant
in the garden each year
they will teach you
that people too
must wilt
fall
root
rise
in order to bloom

Praise for Sunday Times bestseller milk and honey:

‘Kaur is at the forefront of a poetry renaissance’ Observer

‘Kaur made her name with poems about love, life and grief. They resonate hugely’
Sunday Times

‘Poems tackling feminism, love, trauma and healing in short lines as smooth as pop music’ New York Times

‘Caught the imagination of a large, atypical poetry audience … Kaur knows the good her poetry does: it saves lives’ Evening Standard

‘Breathing new life into poetry … It has people reading, and listening’ The Pool

Rupi Kaur is a top ten Sunday Times bestselling author and illustrator of two collections of poetry. She started drawing at the age of five when her mother handed her a paintbrush and said – draw your heart out. After completing her degree in rhetoric and professional writing, she published her first collection of poetry.

The Boat Runner
Devin Murphy

Beginning in the summer of 1939, fourteen-year-old Jacob Koopman and his older brother, Edwin, enjoy lives of prosperity and quiet contentment. Many of the residents in their small Dutch town have some connection to the Koopman lightbulb factory, and the locals hold the family in high esteem.

On days when they aren’t playing with friends, Jacob and Edwin help their Uncle Martin on his fishing boat in the North Sea, where German ships have become a common sight. But conflict still seems unthinkable, even as the boys’ father naively sends his sons to a Hitler Youth Camp in an effort to secure German business for the factory.

When war breaks out, Jacob’s world is thrown into chaos. The Boat Runner follows Jacob over the course of four years, through the forests of France, the stormy beaches of England, and deep within the secret missions of the German Navy, where he is confronted with the moral dilemma that will change his life – and his life’s mission – forever.

Epic in scope and featuring a thrilling narrative with precise, elegant language, The Boat Runner tells the little-known story of the young Dutch boys who were thrown into the Nazi campaign, as well as the brave boatmen who risked everything to give Jewish refugees safe passage to land abroad. Through one boy’s harrowing tale of personal redemption, here is a novel about the power of people’s stories and voices to shine light through our darkest days, until only love prevails.

Devin Murphy grew up near Buffalo, NY in a family with Dutch roots. He holds an MFA from Colorado State University, a PhD from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and is an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at Bradley University. He has worked various jobs in national parks around the country and once had a three-year stint at sea that led him to over fifty countries on all seven continents. His fiction has appeared in over 60 literary journals and anthologies, including The Missouri Review, Glimmer Train, and the Chicago Tribune. He lives with his wife and children in Chicago.

The History of Bees
Maja Lunde

England, 1851. William is a biologist and seed merchant, who sets out to build a new type of beehive – one that will give both him and his children honor and fame.

United States, 2007. George is a beekeeper and fights an uphill battle against modern farming, but hopes that his son can be their salvation.

China, 2098. Tao hand paints pollen onto the fruit trees now that the bees have long since disappeared. When Tao’s young son is taken away by the authorities after a tragic accident – and is kept in the dark about his whereabouts and condition – she sets out on a grueling journey to find out what happened to him.

Haunting, illuminating, and deftly written, The History of Bees joins these three very different narratives into one gripping and thought provoking story that is just as much about the powerful relationships between children and parents as it is about our very relationship to nature and humanity.

Maja Lunde is a Norwegian author and screenwriter. Lunde has written ten books for children and young adults. She has also written scripts for Norwegian television, including for the children’s series Barnas supershow (“The Children’s Super Show”), the drama series Hjem (“Home”) and the comedy series Side om Side (“Side by Side”). The History of Bees is her first novel for adults. She lives with her husband and three children in Oslo.

The Red-Haired Woman
Orhan Pamuk

A virtuosic and spell-binding novel from Orhan Pamuk – the Nobel Prize-winner’s tenth novel.

“Many years have now gone by, and jealousy compels me to keep her name a secret, even from my readers. But I must provide a full and truthful account of what happened.”

It is mid-1980s Istanbul and Master Mahmut and his apprentice use ancient methods to dig wells – they are desperate to find water in a barren land. This is the tale of their struggle, but it is also a deeper investigation – through mesmerising stories and images – into Pamuk’s prevailing themes: fathers and sons, the state and individual freedom, reading and seeing.

It is also a richly literary work: The Red-Haired Woman borrows from the tradition of the French conte philosophique and asks probing questions of ethics and of the role of art in our lives. It is both a short, realist text investigating a murder which took place thirty years ago near Istanbul – and a fictional inquiry into the literary foundations of civilizations, comparing two fundamental myths of the West and the East respectively: Sophocles’s Oedipus Rex (a story of patricide) and Ferdowsi’s tale of Rostam and Sohrab (a story of filicide).

The Red-Haired Woman is a masterful and mesmerising work which further confirms Orhan Pamuk as one of our greatest novelists.

Orhan Pamuk, is the author of many celebrated books, including The White Castle, Istanbul and Snow. In 2003 he won the International IMPAC Award for My Name is Red, and in 2006 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. His most recent novel, The Museum of Innocence, was an international bestseller and shortlisted for the Man Booker International Prize. Orhan Pamuk lives in Istanbul.

The Secret Books
Marcel Theroux

Nothing is more dangerous than a story

A world on the brink of catastrophe.

A two thousand year old mystery.

A lost gospel.

Seeking adventure, a young man flees the drudgery of shopkeeping in Tsarist Russia to make a new life among the bohemians and revolutionaries of 19th century Paris.

Travelling undercover in the mountains of British India, he discovers a manuscript that transforms the world’s understanding of the historical Jesus. Decades later, in a Europe threatened by unimaginable tragedy, he makes a despairing attempt to right a historic injustice.

This breathtaking novel by the award-winning author of Far North and Strange Bodies tells the extraordinary tale of Nicolas Notovitch and his secret gospel. It is the epic story of a young man on the make in a turbulent world of spies and double-cross, propaganda and revolutionary violence, lost love and nascent anti-semitism – a world which eerily foreshadows our own era of posttruth politics.

Based on real events, The Secret Books is at once a page-turning adventure and an examination of the stories that humans are willing to kill and die for.

Marcel Theroux is the author of four previous novels: The Paperchase, winner of the 2002 Somerset Maugham Award; A Blow to the Heart; Far North, which was shortlisted for America’s prestigious National Book Award; and Strange Bodies. He lives in London.

Book details

Also available in eBook format

Also available in eBook format

Also available in eBook format

Also available in eBook format

Also available in eBook format


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Listen: Eusebius McKaiser in conversation with Redi Tlhabi

KhweziIn August 2016, following the announcement of the results of South Africa’s heated municipal election, four courageous young women interrupted Jacob Zuma’s victory address, bearing placards asking us to ‘Remember Khwezi’.

Before being dragged away by security guards, their powerful message had hit home and the public was reminded of the tragic events of 2006, when Zuma was on trial for the rape of Fezekile Ntsukela Kuzwayo, better known as Khwezi. In the aftermath of the trial, which saw Zuma acquitted, Khwezi was vilified by his many supporters and forced to take refuge outside of South Africa.
 
Ten years later, just two months after this protest had put Khwezi’s struggle back into the minds and hearts of South Africans, Khwezi passed away … But not before she had slipped back into South Africa and started work with Redi Tlhabi on a book about her life.

How as a young girl living in ANC camps in exile she was raped by the very men who were supposed to protect her; how as an adult she was driven once again into exile, suffering not only at the hands of Zuma’s devotees but under the harsh eye of the media.

In sensitive and considered prose, journalist Redi Tlhabi breathes life into a woman for so long forced to live in the shadows. In giving agency back to Khwezi, Tlhabi is able to focus a broader lens on the sexual abuse that abounded during the ‘struggle’ years, abuse which continues to plague women and children in South Africa today.

Redi recently discussed her significant book with Eusebius McKaiser. Listen to their conversation here:

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