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January 2018

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Jealousy, Rivalry, Insecurity, Frustration... Non Pratt Explores the World of Female Teenage Friendships
16th January 2018 - Non Pratt

 Jealousy, Rivalry, Insecurity, Frustration... Female Friendship in YA Fiction

 

Non PrattNon Pratt worked as an editor and publisher before her first novel, Trouble, shot her to fame as a YA novelist in her own right. She is a regular visitor to schools and festivals across the UK. In her new novella, Second Best Friend, Jade and Becky have always been best friends; inseparable and often indistinguishable. But when a spiteful comment from an awful ex pushes Jade to the edge, she begins to see that she has always been second best in everything. When the school election offers her the chance to finally be number one, Jade learns just how far she is willing to go to be better than her closest friend. Below, exclusively for Foyles, Non explores friendship in YA novels and especially those that depict the imperfect middle ground.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cover of Second Best FriendRecently there have been some fantastic YA novels that explore the uplifting elements of female friendship – the central trio of Evie, Amber and Lottie in Holly Bourne’s The Spinster Club series are fabulous and I love the positive dynamics between the female characters in Freshers by Tom Ellen and Lucy Ivison. These are characters I wish were real, because then they could be my friends too.

Friendship fascinates me because it’s something that I find a struggle – one that can be traced directly back to my days at school. For all my adult self wants to see young women tirelessly supporting each other, this is not always the reality for all of us. School is a hotbed of insecurities and frustrations and it can be hard to navigate the troubled waters of close friendship when insecurity sends your moral compass into a spin.

Obviously there are books that are rooted firmly in the least healthy end of the friendship spectrum (if you want a look into a dark place, go for Genuine Fraud by E. Lockhart) but my experience of friendship doesn’t go quite that far – I’m more interested in the imperfect middle ground.

Second Best Friend is about the way it feels to believe you’re being compared to your best friend. I can’t be the only person who puts their friends on a pedestal, creating a trap for myself so that all it takes is a little nudge of self-doubt and all of a sudden I believe that this is how everyone sees us: a wonderful human, witty and likeable and popular… and then me, snivelling about in the shadows like Peter Pettigrew. (Because let’s be real, he’s no one’s favourite Marauder.)

When Jade’s lousy (but hot) ex-boyfriend casually whips off her rose-tinted spectacles by sneeringly comparing her to her best friend Becky, she’s forced to see the world anew. And all she can see is her own failure.

As anyone who’s ever failed (all of us, then) knows, the only antidote to feeling like a failure is SUCCESS! For Jade her opportunity comes in the form of a school election. Politics isn’t about being book smart. It’s not about being hot. It’s about being prepared to do anything to win the vote.

And Jade is desperate – and desperate people do not always make the best choices. Or even the second best choices. They frequently make the worst.

Other stories that I love for the way they look at how rivalry can affect a friendship is Sophia Bennett’s You Don’t Know Me about a group of friends who enter an X-Factor-esque reality show as a girl group only to find themselves split up and (worse still) the drama of this is played out on national television, giving everyone an ill-informed view of what happens. Liz Flanagan turns the story around in Eden Summer – Jess’s best friend Eden has gone missing already, but in looking for her, Jess takes us on a retrospective look at how two people who love each other can still fall out of step. And then there’s Lisa Williamson’s anarchic Mia in All About Mia who seems almost wilfully set on ripping wildly through everything in life, including her friends without contemplating the consequences.

And it really is impossible to talk about books about friendship without mentioning Radio Silence by Alice Oseman – the central friendship between Frances and Aled is the heart driving the narrative of the book and it’s refreshing to be presented with a male/female friendship where platonic love is presented as more important, more compelling than any romantic expectations society might have.

Because the problem with teen friendships so rarely comes from within – they’re pushed and strained and scrutinised from the outside. The key is working out how to resist letting an outside perspective skew your own feelings – something I think we all need a little help with sometimes!

 

Photo of Non © Jordan Curtis Hughes

 

 

#FoylesFive: Pre-orders
15th January 2018 - Matt Blackstock

 

#FoylesFive: Pre-Orders

Would you like to read something new, mysterious, stunning, ambitious or captivating? Then look no further, we have a Foyles Five of some of the most fantastic books released at the beginning of 2018.

 

The Mermaid and Mrs HancockFire SermonWhite ChrysanthemumSeventeenKintu

 

 

 

The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock

Let me show you something; it won’t take long, but it might change your life... Mr Hancock has a potential fortune drop into his lap when he finds himself in possession of a mermaid, a creature of intrigue and wonder. Will it be enough to capture the second most talked about sensation of the season, Angelica Neal? Imogen Hermes Gowar has crafted a deliciously tempting and mysterious novel that you will find yourself lost in, with no desire to escape.

 

The Fire Sermon

The Fire Sermon is a masterpiece of a debut focusing on an affair that pulls and wrenches at its protagonists heart. Jamie Quatro’s astute observations of the psyche of a person falling apart, their relationship with god and the meanings of love are told with a unique and engrossing voice. The Fire Sermon licks at one's soul, teaching us that with lust often comes betrayal, guilt and loss. 

 

White Chrysanthemum

Hana and Emi are two sisters separated during war when one of them saves the other from a terrifying fate. This harrowing but beautifully written story shines a light upon one of the darkest episodes of recent history, all but forgotten and left untold. Mary Lynn Bracht’s debut novel is an astonishing achievement, that not only pulls at your heart but broadens the mind. 

 

Seventeen

From the author of Six Four, Hideo Yokoyama, comes Seventeen. When the deadliest air disaster in history hits Japan the North Kanto Times and its reporters are thrown into chaos and the horrors of disaster. Many years later, memories surface from these life changing events, and an unsolved mystery rears its head yet again…

 

Kintu

1750: Kintu Kidda while on his way to visit the new leader of the Buganda Kingdom unleashes a curse that dogs his family forever. A fantastic mix of myth, folktale and history, Kintu is a marvellous and extraordinary read, with colourful and exciting characters that are a delight to meet. Not offically published yet, but available now!

 

 

Emily Koch Introduces Some of Fiction's Most Memorable Narrators
10th January 2018 - Emily Koch

 

Emily Koch on Unforgettable First-Person Narrators

 

 

 

Emily KochEmily Koch is an award-winning journalist living in Bristol. She is a graduate of the Bath Spa Creative Writing programme. In her debut If I Die Before I Wake, everyone believes Alex is in a coma, unlikely to ever wake up. As his family debate withdrawing life support, and his friends talk about how his girlfriend Bea needs to move on, he can only listen. But Alex soon begins to suspect that the accident that put him here wasn't really an accident. Even worse, the perpetrator is still out there and Alex is not the only one in danger. As he goes over a series of clues from his past, Alex must use his remaining senses to solve the mystery of who tried to kill him, and try to protect those he loves, before they decide to let him go. Below, exclusively for Foyles, Emily introduces some of her favourite and most memorable first person narrators.
 

 

 

Cover of If I Die...The narrator of my novel If I Die Before I Wake is living his worst nightmare. Alex has Locked-in Syndrome – which he says is like being buried alive. He can feel pain, and hear everything that goes on around him, but he cannot see, move or talk.

 

I suppose this is what has led people to say he is an ‘unforgettable’ narrator. But, at the time of writing, this wasn’t a word I would have used to describe him. Difficult, yes. Challenging, certainly. Writing from the perspective of someone who can’t see properly, and who is confined to a hospital room for the entirety of the story, was a tough task. But, after several drafts, I got there, and I’m really proud of the version of Alex who now guides the reader through.

 

A first-person narration is sometimes looked down upon as an easy option in writing circles, but there are some amazing and memorable narrators out there in the literary world. Here are some of my favourites.

 

 

 

 

The Lovely Bones coverThe Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold: When I started writing from Alex’s point-of-view, I had this novel in mind. I didn’t always know Alex had Locked-in, and at first I tried playing around with his voice as a more supernatural, omniscient presence. In The Lovely Bones, 14-year-old Susie Salmon is raped and murdered, and narrates the story from the afterlife as her friends and family cope with the aftermath of her death.

 

 

 

 

Cover of Before...Before I Go to Sleep by S J Watson: I love this thriller, narrated by amnesiac Christine. She cannot form new memories, so every night when she falls asleep she forgets everything that has happened to her that day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cover of NutshellNutshell by Ian McEwan: This re-telling of Hamlet shouldn’t work, but it does. The story is narrated by Hamlet, re-imagined as an unborn baby, growing increasingly alarmed about his mother’s plot to murder his father. I read this one when I was pregnant, and found it rather unnerving to think about how my unborn daughter was experiencing the world through me.

 

 

 

 

 

Cover of RoomRoom by Emma Donoghue: This story is told by 5-year-old Jack, who is trapped with his mother in the same small room where he was born. He knows nothing of the outside world – and this perspective is what makes him so unforgettable as a narrator.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vernon God LittleVernon God Little by D B C Pierre: It is the voice and unique character of this novel’s narrator, 15-year-old Vernon Gregory Little, which made it stand out for me. Vernon’s life falls apart when his best friend shoots their classmates before committing suicide, and Vernon is pulled in for questioning. It’s a grim scenario but the way he tells his story is hilarious – and you feel like he is sitting across the room chatting to you.

 

 

 

 

* Emily will be talking about her debut novel at the Vintage New Writers event at Foyles, Charing Cross Road on 6th February.

 

 

Even the Smallest Life can Leave the Loudest Echo
8th January 2018 - Joanna Cannon

 

Even the Smallest Life can Leave the Loudest Echo

 

 

Joanna CannonJoanna Cannon graduated from Leicester Medical School and worked as a hospital doctor, before specialising in psychiatry. Her first novel The Trouble With Goats and Sheep was a top ten bestseller in both hardback and paperback and was a Richard and Judy pick. You can read more about the book and an exclusive interview for Foyles with Joanna here. She lives in the Peak District with her family and her dog. Whereas her debut centred on two young girls, her new novel, Three Things About Elsie, looks at the other end of life: it centres around 84 year-old Florence, who has had a fall in her flat at Cherry Tree Home for the Elderly. As she waits to be rescued, Florence wonders if a terrible secret from her past is about to come to light... Below, exclusively for Foyles, Joanna introduces her book and discusses how no matter how long we are here, and no matter who we are, the world will always be ever so slightly different because we once existed.

 

 

 

 

Cover of Three Things About ElsieHaving worked in psychiatry, I have always been fascinated (and more than a little disturbed) by the fact that one of the many reasons people were once admitted to asylums was ‘nostalgia’ (along with other gems such as laziness, novel reading and bad company.) Nostalgia, as a form of melancholy, was seen as a flaw. A weakness. The word itself is a combination of the Greek names for ‘home’ and ‘pain’. Now of course, in a fickle, throw-away world, we crave nostalgia, and whole industries are founded purely upon our need to reminisce, albeit only briefly.

Set in the 1970s, my first novel, The Trouble With Goats and Sheep, is filled with nostalgia and I knew with my next story, Three Things About Elsie, I wanted to continue exploring my fascination with the past. However, this time around, I decided to revisit my own personal history, which is why I chose to set part of the book around Whitby in North Yorkshire - the destination of our summer family holiday for as long as I can remember.

We all have pockets of memories stored in the unlikeliest of places. Sometimes, the memories are hiding in a certain smell or in a song that instantly takes us back to our childhood. Sometimes, it’s a particular kind of food (Angel Delight, perhaps?) or the sound of a distant ice-cream van. Very often, though, we leave pieces of our childhood within a landscape and for me, that landscape will always be Whitby. As a baby, I was pushed around Whitby in a pram. A few years later, I toddled along the sea front, holding my parents’ hands. Many years later, as a moody teenager, I sat in the grounds of its famous abbey, listening to David Bowie on my prized Sony Walkman. I don’t remember all the details of the last summer holiday we spent there, but I know, even now, whenever I revisit, those memories are waiting for me. The hours spent wandering around Woolworth’s, choosing posters and stuffing myself with pick n mix. The benches where I sat with people long since gone. The beaches I walked, filling my pockets with pebbles I just couldn’t bear to leave behind. From the arch of the whalebones to the elegance of Botham’s Tea Rooms, from the cry of the seagulls as they circle the harbour, to the tiny path that ribbons its way to Sandsend, Whitby holds on to my childhood for me and keeps it safe.

It’s important, I think, to keep the past safe. Three Things About Elsie is all about how we view the past, and how it can help us to understand the present. It’s main narrator, Florence, is eighty-four and she has fallen in her flat at Cherry Tree Home for the Elderly. As Florence lies on a wipe-clean carpet, waiting to be rescued, she thinks about her own past and the decisions she’s made, and she starts to wonder – as we all do from time to time – whether her life had any value at all. However, as Florence tells her story, we realise that she has, in fact, made a very big difference to the world. Far more than she could ever imagine. Florence’s journey to understand the past takes her on a weekend away, and – along with her friends Elsie and Jack – she visits Whitby, which is where Florence’s past and my own past join together.

Taking my characters to Whitby was such an easy decision. Not only was it fun to write about such a wonderful place, but I have never met anyone who has visited Whitby and not fallen in love with it. Perhaps it’s because the town itself is so rooted in history and so we all feel a wave of nostalgia as we walk its streets. Despite the scattering of amusement arcades and candy floss stalls, Whitby hasn’t given itself up to the tourists. It still keeps its feet firmly planted in the past. Perhaps it’s the statue of Captain Cook, staring out to sea from the majesty of the West Cliff. Perhaps it’s the cross of the whalebones, reminding us of long-ago sailors, who left the harbour not knowing what dangers lay ahead. It might even be the ghost of Bram Stoker and the whisper of Dracula, echoing around its many snickets and alleyways. I think it’s more than that, though. I think there is a certain magic about Whitby, and soaked into its cobbles and the stone of its buildings, everyone’s past waits to be remembered.

In Three Things About Elsie, when Florence revisits Whitby, she also revisits her own childhood and she realises something I have always strongly believed: no matter how long we are here, and no matter who we are, the world will always be ever so slightly different because we once existed. At the place where the Yorkshire cliffs meet the North Sea she discovers - as I did – that even the smallest life can leave the loudest echo.

* Read an exclusive interview with Joanna about her debut novel, The Trouble With Goats and Sheep

 

 

Some Novels Are More Experimental Than Others
3rd January 2018 - Tony White

 

Some Novels Are More Experimental Than Others

 

 

 

Tony WhiteTony White is the author of five novels including Foxy-T and Shackleton's Man Goes South, as well as numerous short stories. He was creative entrepreneur in residence in the French department of King's College London, and has been writer in residence at London's Science Museum and the UCL School of Slavonic and East European Studies. He has also collaborated with Faber Social to co-curate ‘Under the Paving Stones: a night of experimental fiction’ on 19 February 2018, featuring live readings from Joanna Walsh, Eley Williams, Stewart Home, Kirsty Gunn, Iphgenia Baal and White himself. His latest novel The Fountain in the Forest transforms the traditional crime narrative into something dizzyingly unique: an avant-garde linguistic experiment, thrilling police procedural, philosophical meditation on liberty and counter-culture bildungsroman. Below, exclusively for Foyles, Tony talks about the joys of experimental fiction, and recommends three classic works by Stein, Burroughs and Calvino

 

 

 

 

 

Cover of The Fountain in the ForestWriting in the TLS recently, Rosie Šnajdr said that 2017 had been ‘a sensational year for experimental fiction,’ adding that small presses were leaders in this form of literary innovation. To back up her point, Šnajdr was reviewing a number of critically acclaimed recent works, including two highly original short story collections from small presses: Attrib. and Other Stories by Eley Williams, which is published by London’s Influx Press, and Worlds from the Word’s End by Joanna Walsh, from Sheffield’s And Other Stories. Both are books that I too would highly recommend, from small but influential publishers, each of whom continually take risks with their world class lists.

As well as referring to literary innovation, Šnajdr uses the word ‘experimental’ to mean literature that is opposed to the dominant forces of realism, the mainstream and celebrity. Which is an excellent counter to the old saw that goes something like this: since the novel as a literary form has always been infinitely open to reinvention, then all novels are by definition experimental. Well, that always felt like a bit of a stretch. All novels are experimental, we might concede with apologies to Orwell, but some novels are more experimental than others… I’m fascinated, for example, by the overtly experimental work of Oulipo – the Ouvroir de Littérature Potentielle, or Workshop of Potential Literature – a group of writers including the great Georges Perec, who from 1960 onwards produced literary works using mathematical and other constraints – among them ‘lipograms’ (works in which a specified word or letter is absent), or ‘mandated vocabularies’, where the words to be used in writing a story are somehow predetermined. Perec’s work in particular is highly experimental, and all the more thrilling for that.

Finding something original and innovative, a book that can take such risks and make you look at language or writing – and perhaps the world – anew, remains one of the great pleasures and surprises of reading. Here then are three books, particular favourites of mine and each experimental in its own way, which readers might enjoy:

 

Cover of Three LivesThree Lives by Gertrude Stein

Comprisiing three novella-length stories, each focusing on a very distinctive single female character, and written in strikingly unusual prose styles, Three Lives is hypnotic, repetitive and deeply affecting. Influenced as she was by the artists Paul Cézanne and Picasso, Stein suggested that her own contribution to innovation in literature was to adopt a painterly approach to composition, so that, just as with the brush strokes in a Cézanne painting, every part of the text might be as important as any other, each part ‘as important as the whole’. Three Lives draws on the work of Paul Cézanne in other ways, too. Supposedly, all three characters and their stories were inspired by a single painting: Cézanne’s 1881 portrait of his wife, which – bought by Stein’s brother Leo – hung above her desk while she was writing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cover of Nova ExpressNova Express by William S. Burroughs

One of Burroughs’ so called ‘Nova Trilogy’ of novels from the 1960s written using ‘the cut-up’ and ‘fold-in’ techniques (text collage processes developed with his friend and collaborator the artist Brion Gysin), by means of which existing texts are literally cut and recombined to create something new. Once available only as a pulp science fiction paperback, Nova Express has recently been restored and reissued, with an introduction by Burroughs scholar Oliver Harris. Railing in dense and fractured prose against control in its many forms – bureaucracy, the war on drugs, big business, planetary pillage, language itself Nova Express is shot through with rage and very bleak comedy. Featuring Nova Mob criminals like The Subliminal Kid and Izzy the Push, Nova Express is a darkly hallucinatory space age nightmare, like Damon Runyon on very bad acid.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cover of The Castle of Crossed DestiniesThe Castle of Crossed Destinies by Italo Calvino

‘In the midst of a thick forest there was a castle that gave shelter to all travellers overtaken by night on their journey…’ But in The Castle of Crossed Destinies, as in any fairy story or a folk tale, such hospitality comes at a price. Guests find that they have lost their powers of speech, and are compelled to introduce themselves and to tell their stories by dealing tarot cards. This of course means that Calvino must do likewise, and indeed, the margins running alongside each of the stories that make up this extraordinarily vivid short novel are filled with tiny reproductions of the particular cards used to generate them. By dawn, the table is covered by a grid of cards. In the second half of the novel, travellers find themselves in a tavern, dealing from a different tarot deck, but with the same timeless, human compulsion to tell stories.

In an author’s note, Calvino tells how he ‘realised the tarots were a machine for constructing stories’, and saw the grids that he created in writing the novel (in which stories read both ‘across’ and ‘down’) as ‘a kind of crossword puzzle made of tarots instead of letters’. I was dumbfounded to read these words again just a month or two ago, when I picked the book up for the first time in perhaps 30 years. These two ideas of Calvino’s must have lodged somewhere in my unconscious, and cross-fertilised, for it was a similar imperative that found me using the solutions to actual crossword puzzles from a particular period in history – the 90 days in 1985, between the end of the Miners’ Strike and the notorious Battle of the Beanfield – as precisely ‘a machine for constructing stories’, an Oulipian ‘mandated vocabulary’ that is at the heart of my latest novel, The Fountain in the Forest.

 

Author photo © Chris Dorley Brown

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#FoylesFive: Foreign Languages Part Three
21st December 2017

 
 

#FoylesFive: Foreign Languages - Part Three

Our knowledgeable Languages Department have put together a great selection of books, to help share the magic of reading in every language. Here are their choices for Japanese, Chinese and Arabic.

 

Japanese Children's FavouritesTotoroSushi

 

Japanese

My Neighbor Totoro by Studio Ghibli
The well known character from Studio Ghibli's anime comes alive in this novel. Full of stills from the movie, this book tells the story of two sisters dealing with their mother's illness, thanks to a creature of the forest. A book of love and magic that will capture the attention of the young ones.
 
 
Sushi (bilingual guide) by Kazuo Naygayama
Renowned sushi chef Kazuo Nagayama’s own personal recipes are presented here with exquisitely photographed examples that provide a glimpse into the art of making sushi. In both Japanese and English, this is the ultimate guide on how to make this delicacy.
 
 
Japanese Proverbs by David Galef
This delightful compilation of traditional Japanese proverbs will show you the subtleties and wisdom of Japanese culture. Full of quotes and illustrations, it makes the perfect present for lovers of Japan.
 
 
The latest work by the most loved Japanese writer of our times. The novel relates the story of an artist living in Tokyo. When his wife suddenly wants a divorce, he goes on a month-long road trip to Hokkaido and Tohoku before settling in a house on the top of a mountain in rural Odawara, where he plans to paint for himself for the first time in years. Not yet translated into English, it's a perfect gift for any Murakami fan.
 
 
A collection of many enchanting stories for children. The sparking illustrations by Yoshisuke Kurosaki are a visual treat that accompany the readers. The watercolors bring to life the fascinating tales of fairy cranes, eel catchers, and singing turtles, among many others. 
 

Chinese Phrase a Day Wild Swans Chineasy

CHINESE

A Chinese Phrase a Day 

This calendar like desk companion is divided into monthly topics and builds upon itself, one day at a time for 365 days. Each page includes four components: the simplified Chinese characters; the romanized Chinese (hanyu pinyin); the English phrase; a related cultural note to put the phrase into context. Audio for all of the 'A Chinese Phrase A Day' entries is available online. A great gift for learners of Chinese that will last them for a whole year.

 

Heaven Kid

Di Zi Gui (Heaven Kid) is a book and DVD adapted from the teachings of Confucius; a child-specific version teaching the essence of Chinese culture. Introducing Heaven Kid, an original character animation that will help children learn Chinese and understand the culture of such a vast country.

 

Wild Swans

Through the story of three generations of women in her own family – the grandmother given to the warlord as a concubine, the Communist mother and the daughter herself – Jung Chang reveals the epic history of China's twentieth century.

 

Tales and Traditions vol.1

Tales and Traditions was specially created to help learners of Chinese, by collecting adaptations and selections from the most well-known works in the Chinese literary and folk canon in a series of convenient supplementary readers.

 

Chineasy

ShaoLan Hsueh has created a simple system for quickly understanding the basic building blocks of the written Chinese language.

Working with renowned illustrator Noma Bar, she has developed a unique set of illustrations that are engaging and delightful. The books main section introduces the radicals, the key characters on which the language is built and reveals how they can be combined to form a wealth of more complex words and phrases. In fewer than 200 pages, readers of all ages will have made the first steps towards a genuine appreciation of Chinese characters.

 

Grandma Nafeesa Mystery of the Falcon's Eye Jamilia

ARABIC

My Grandma Nafeesa

Majid's parents are too busy to stay at home with him today but he doesn't mind – he knows he will have a wonderful time with his grandmother Nafeesa who is energetic, fun and always full of exciting surprises. Not only is this award-winning book of lovely, intricate drawings of typical Arab home and street scenes, it offers a positive representation of older people and honours their importance in children's lives. Our most popular Arabic children book this year.

 

The Mystery of the Falcon's Eye

When seventeen-year-old Ziad comes across an intriguing mystery about his family and their past, he is determined to solve it. With the help of his sister and his friends, he begins a journey full of danger and adventure in which he learns a lot about himself and his roots. This is a rare gem of an Arabic young adult novel - entertaining and fast-paced with some genuinely tense moments but also dealing with serious subjects such as displacement, family responsibilities and the importance of not forgetting where you came from.

 

Children of the Alley

The great-granddaddy of Egyptian fiction, this epic is possibly the most famous and definitely the most controversial novel ever to be written in Arabic. After its publication the author was stabbed in the neck by an assailant reportedly incensed by his allegory of the Abrahamic prophets and the tyrannical, distant master whose blessings they desperately seek. Despite this, the book is less an attack on religion than a lament about the cruelty of patriarchy and life in an authoritarian state. It's not exactly an easy read, but well worth the effort.

 

Jamilia

In rural Kyrgystan during World War Two, the lonely and restless Jamilia, whose indifferent husband is fighting at the front, meets Daniyar, an eigmatic stranger recently returned from battle. As much a coming of age as a love story, it is narrated from the unusual perspective of Seit, Jamilia's teenage brother-in-law whose job it is to watch over her. Torn between his duty to protect his family's honour and his joy at the way Jamilia and Daniyar make the world come alive for him, Seit describes their forbidden relationship and the beautiful but unforgiving environment in which they live with sparse but unforgettable detail. A gorgeous and unique little book.

 

A Thousand and One Nights

When the evil King Shahryar decides to marry a new wife every day then have her killed the next morning, courageous Sheherezade resolves to step up and put an end to his reign of terror. After volunteering to be his latest bride, she beguiles him each night with a series of intricate and unending tales, including Sinbad the Sailor, Aladdin and Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves. But can Sheherzade win over the crazy king and save her life? A beautifully illustrated retelling of the ancient folktales, aimed at older children.

 

 

 
 
 
 

Latest Blog
Jealousy, Rivalry, Insecurity, Frustration... Non Pratt Explores the World of Female Teenage Friendships
16/01/2018

Non explores friendship in YA novels and especially those that depict the imperfect middle ground.

#FoylesFive: Pre-orders
15/01/2018

Matt from our Web Team jumps into the future and brings back some reading recommends for 2018.

Emily Koch Introduces Some of Fiction's Most Memorable Narrators
10/01/2018

Exclusively for Foyles, Emily introduces some of her favourite and most memorable first person narrators.

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