The Vanishing Witch by Karen Maitland

Posted by Guy Pringle, 31st July 2014

In a THEY SAY, WE SAY in nb82 we looked at Karen Maitland's new novel, The Vanishing Witch, as we had been big fans of her bestselling and critically acclaimed debut Company of Liars.   We revisit the book here because we now have on site (see Home page) a reading group guide AND a view...

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The Thing about December by Donal Ryan

Posted by Guy Pringle, 27th November 2013

This book reeks of cowshit and . . . it’s brilliant! Anybody who’s ever tiptoed across a farmyard, hoping to reach the other side with their footwear unsullied, would recognize the Cunliffe’s farm in Tipperary. Johnsey is our hero, a big, quiet late adolescent with Special view...

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One for the money, two for the show . . .

Posted by Guy Pringle, 15th November 2013

Great to see two recent faves on the shortlist for the Guardian First Book Award as reported by The Bookseller:   Donal Ryan is the only man on the shortlist with novel The Spinning Heart (Doubleday Ireland), which has already achieved success at the 2012 Irish Book Awards, winning view...

Posted in My Books and Other Animals

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When Mr Dog Bites

Posted by Guy Pringle, 27th September 2013

I had insider information about this book as Helen Boyle, editor of tBkmag, had raved about it. In fact, wearing another hat she had bid for the publishing rights only to lose out to Bloomsbury. Shame about that, Helen.   Anyway, what a rip-roaring ride it is! 16 year old Dylan Mint has view...

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Is this us?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 27th September 2013

“Whoever is the best at connecting authors’ works with the end consumers — they win.” So said Peter McCarthy, founder of McCarthy Digital and former vice president of marketing innovation for Random House.   He was speaking at the Digital Book World Marketing + view...

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On the move

Posted by Madelaine Smith, 6th August 2013

Just a reminder that the newbooks offices are relocating and the office will be closed until August 19. Many apologies for the inconvenience, and we will be up and running again as soon as possible.  view...

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Longbourn

Posted by Guy Pringle, 1st August 2013

I can't be the first person to wonder why an established author would choose to write a sequel, prequel or alternative version of a much loved classic. Yet many have done so. Indeed, the estate of Ian Fleming has turned the writing of further James Bond books into something of a franchise for which view...

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I told you they were good!

Posted by Guy Pringle, 23rd July 2013

Extremely pleasing to see Donal Ryan's The Spinning Heart and NoViolet Bulawayo's We Need New Names on the Man Booker longlist just announced as I have raved about them both here and in the magazine. Fingers crossed they make it to the shortlist - and on for one of them to view...

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The Melissa Nathan Award

Posted by Guy Pringle, 22nd July 2013

Take a bow, those of you who were involved in this year's preliminary reading . . .   THE MELISSA NATHAN AWARD FOR FICTION ABOUT LIFE AND LOVE 2013 I am delighted to announce that the winner of the Melissa Nathan Award for Comedy Fiction about Life and Love is WHERE’D YOU GO, view...

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nb77 Featured title review

Posted by Guy Pringle, 18th July 2013

Too late for us to get it on the page but Ruth Smith of Leeds has just sent us this: After Flodden Rosemary Goring (Author) 'After Flodden' is Rosemary Goring's debut novel and although I am never usually attracted to historical novels, I was very impressed by this intense and thrilling view...

Posted in Our next issue

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Jonathan Dee's A Thousand Pardons

Posted by Guy Pringle, 25th June 2013

Good to hear Jonathan Dee on Radio 4's Front Row last night talking to Mark Lawson who said the book physically shook in his hand when he got to the one line twist at the end of the first chapter. Perhaps it was the fact it was a 50 page first chapter that had something to do with it??? Anyway, I view...

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Feedback on our readers day

Posted by Guy Pringle, 24th June 2013

  Firstly from Ann Smout (pron. out, not oot)   Dear Guy,   Thank you so much for laying on such a magnificent day which I thoroughly enjoyed.   I had read only 1 of the authors - Sadie Jones and have another - Jennie Rooney - on my increasingly unmanageable "to view...

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Eye Contact by Fergus McNeill

Posted by Guy Pringle, 21st June 2013

Just finished Eye Contact ahead of meeting Fergus this afternoon (as prep to tomorrow’s readers day) – and delighted to say Rose was absolutely right; it’s a cracking read!   Graham Harland is set to be another police Detective on your screens very soon with issues galore view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

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Reg Seward

Posted by Guy Pringle, 20th June 2013

When posting out review books recently, I saw that Reg Seward, reviewer of this parish, had requested First Steps to Living with Dementia and thought to include a postcard hoping that the choice wasn’t driven by personal circumstances. What follows is his heart-rending letter back to view...

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More on The Spinning Heart by Donal Ryan

Posted by Guy Pringle, 13th June 2013

  Having personally raved about "The Spinning Heart" by Donal Ryan to the point where the publisher gave in and let us both interview him and feature his book, I was delighted to receive the following review:   

The past in Ireland remains  a misty mire of religion, view...

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We Need New Names by NoViolet Bulawayo

Posted by Guy Pringle, 30th May 2013

The title is palpably wrong with a cast of delightfully named characters such as Bastard (11), Godknows, (10), Sbho (9) and Stina who doesn’t have a birth certificate. So we’re informed by our narrator, Darling (10) and not forgetting Chipo (11) who we learn in chapter one is pregnant. view...

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More about Ben Aaronovitch

Posted by Guy Pringle, 17th May 2013

I'm proof-reading the next issue and was pleased to concur with this letter from Diana Barnes which will be in Write Back!   "I was rather intrigued by the Ben Aaronovitch sample extract in nb72, and decided to start at the beginning of the series, so I have now read Rivers of London view...

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Nathan Davidson

Posted by Guy Pringle, 7th May 2013

Thanks to immense patience on Nathan's part I am delighted to announce that guisegifts.com is now officially open! Obviously, there are improvements to be made so I'd be grateful for your forebearance and please feel free to email me - guy.pringle [at] newbooksmag.com* so we can correct any view...

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Return of the Native by Thomas Hardy

Posted by Guy Pringle, 3rd May 2013

For me this is comfort food or a warm blanket beside the fire – or better still a glass of Lucozade when I was a kid ‘cos it proved I really was ill.   Just the thought of Diggory Venn, Reddleman is enough to make the hairs do what they do. Each time I return to this book view...

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The Burial by Courtney Collins

Posted by Guy Pringle, 25th April 2013

Some books are just destined to find you and so it was with The Burial. Anne is the Kiwi of reading group 1 – or is it two? – and her daughter, Antonia, lives in Australia where she just happens to be a friend of Courtney Collins, the debut author of  . . . The view...

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A Guest blog post from one of our readers

Posted by Guest Blogger, 27th March 2013

It’s nice to relax with a good book after long day. At the end of the day, after deadlines have demanded to be met, when you can stop living up to the expectations of the daily grind, a book doesn’t require anything fromyou; you can just enjoy it comfortably and passively.   My view...

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Annabel Pitcher

Posted by Guy Pringle, 22nd March 2013

"Annabel Pitcher was named a "genuine literary star" last night (Thursday 21st March) as she won the Waterstones Children's Book Prize for Ketchup Clouds, published by Indigo. Pitcher was declared winner at a ceremony at Waterstones Piccadilly, having also been crowned champion in the teen view...

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A matter of gender?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 7th March 2013

Having watched Harold Fry’s inexorable progress up the bestseller charts – partly, we’d like to think, because of the influence of our Book of the Year – the time had come for reading group 1 (or is it 2?) to discuss the unlikely pilgrimage.   As the only man in the view...

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Bloggers unite

Posted by Madelaine Smith, 6th February 2013

We know that a number of our reviewers write regular book blogs and we would like to invite you to write an entry for our My Books and Other Animals topic on the newbooks blog.   If you would like to have a go write to madelaine@newbooksmag.com with a brief outline of a topic you would like view...

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Coincidence?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 3rd January 2013

It takes me a while to work my way through the weekend's papers, especially when it's the Christmas break, so I've only just got round to last Saturday's Guardian Review. Interesting to see Linda Buckley-Archer reviewing Maggot Moon by Sally Gardner view...

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Mike Shatzkin

Posted by Guy Pringle, 18th December 2012

Mr Shatzkin is the visionary behind The Idea Logical Company in the US and is truly a lateral thinker about the publishing industry. His blog today posits his ideas on  Rethinking book marketing and its organization in the big houses (see view...

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My books of 2013 which are

Posted by Guy Pringle, 14th December 2012

The Spinning Heart by Donal Ryan – best Irish book since Angela’s Ashes to my mind. The Universe Vs Alex Woods by Gavin Extence – you’ll hear Curious Incident mentioned when it hits. Ketchup Clouds by Annabel Pitcher – My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece was an view...

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A peculiar lack of imagination?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 11th December 2012

I guess it was inevitable that the Guardian would come up with a piece like this - http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/shortcuts/2012/dec/09/learn-to-write-erotica-centaurs   What I found depressing when I MC'd Gosport's reading group quiz last Thursday was a display of recently published view...

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Nicholas Clee

Posted by Guy Pringle, 22nd November 2012

Nick is not only one of our team of interviewers but also co-founder (with Liz Thomson, another of our interviewers) of BookBrunch, a book industry information website worth checking out. Necessarily, both of them really have their finger on the pulse of what's happening in the world of publishing view...

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The Spinning Heart by Donal Ryan

Posted by Guy Pringle, 21st November 2012

My father still lives back the road past the weir in the cottage I was reared in. I go there every day to see if he is dead and every day he lets me down. He hasn't yet missed a day of letting me down. With an opening like this things can only get worse - and they do.   On the eve of the view...

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The Universe vs Alex Woods

Posted by Guy Pringle, 14th November 2012

OK, I got the title the wrong way round last posting but this is a book to watch in 2013 if I have anything to do with it. I can't reveal much of the plot without risking spoiling it for you, but suffice to say that 17 year old Alex goes out of his way to help the laconic American, Mr view...

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Riding a wave

Posted by Guy Pringle, 9th November 2012

Rosie Gailer, one of our favourite publicists, is currently promoting a clutch of books that have got us all excited!   Madelaine has been raving about Ros Barber's The Marlowe Papers for some time, such that we've scheduled coverage in a future issue - in which she wants to be view...

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Some random thoughts on Guildford Readers Day authors – as gleaned from them!

Posted by Guy Pringle, 22nd October 2012

Once again an outstanding day with a delightful selection of authors displaying a rainbow of talents. Steve Mosby and Sadie Jones took the hardest slot when people had only just arrived and were feeling their way into the day. When crime aficionado Steve confessed he found character easy but plot view...

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Ben Aaronovitch

Posted by Guy Pringle, 4th September 2012

Once upon a time, many decades, let alone years ago, when I discovered a new author I would proceed to devour everything with their name on the jacket. I suspect, like a lot of us, that started with Enid Blyton, and progressed to the likes of Alistair MacLean and Ian Fleming, to name some obvious view...

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May I introduce . . . Laurie Graham

Posted by Guy Pringle, 19th July 2012

Perhaps you’re already aware of Laurie Graham. It’s entirely possible being the inquisitive reader you are. But then again, I get the feeling she’s something of a well-kept secret. Ms Graham seems to have had a chequered career - the 12 books on her website (4 of which I’ve view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

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My how the time flies!

Posted by Guy Pringle, 18th July 2012

When I launched the search for a newbooks Book of the Year back in 2002 I thought I’d done well to keep the magazine going for 2 years. If I remember rightly, the award only came about because there was an empty page in the September/October issue that I needed to fill at short notice. And view...

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National Women's Register

Posted by Guy Pringle, 9th July 2012

I spent Saturday afternoon with 250 women at the NWR conference in Birmingham. I was the only man in the room, and they let me talk about books. For those of you who have met me you'll know it's not difficult to get me to do that but they listened very attentively and even joined in. In fact, they view...

Posted in People we like

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Betrayal by Gregg Olsen

Posted by Guy Pringle, 9th July 2012

I’ve been rattling through a clutch of young adult novels in the last few months, Betrayal being the latest and it’s right up there with My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece, Saving June and Maggot Moon/I, Coriander – all books with much to commend them to adult readers and reading view...

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And our first poem

Posted by Guy Pringle, 3rd July 2012

Mandy is first again with her choice of poem:   The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost   Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, And sorry I could not travel both And be one traveller, long I stood And looked down one as far as I could To where it bent in the undergrowth;   Then view...

Posted in Readers Gatherings

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The Submission by Amy Waldman

Posted by Guy Pringle, 2nd July 2012

As well as picking up a laudatory review in a recent Guardian Review, Ms Waldman's book has today been announced as one of Waterstones next 12 titles in its quarterly Book Club.   Of course, newbooks readers are already able to claim a copy free (all we ask, as ever, is that view...

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Our first book nomination is in!

Posted by Guy Pringle, 29th June 2012

Mandy Jenkinson is joining us again (her third visit to le Rieu) and ventures the first book for us to consider in September:   'My book is Mornings in Jenin by Susan Abulhawa. Since visiting Israel earlier this year, I've become very interested in the Palestinian problem, and this book is view...

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Holiday reading?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 25th June 2012

I loaded up the Kindle for a brief week away and set to on At Home, the story of how our houses became the places they are. As a long time Bill Bryson fan I persevered as long as possible but the lists of information and the shortage of his dry sense of humour weighed heavy. So I diverted in to view...

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The Virgin Cure by Ami McKay

Posted by Guy Pringle, 8th June 2012

In the trade it’s called hand-selling – you may have had it done to you? It’s where the bookseller physically puts a book in your hand with a heartfelt recommendation. And the really smart operators make sure there’s some kind of physical contact – just hand on hand, view...

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May 2012: And this is what the rest thought

Posted by Guy Pringle, 7th June 2012

Peter Sides, Warminster Apart from Guy I was the other token male - "husband of "- and I did wonder how I would fit in, having only read one of the books (The Book Thief). But with the poetry, quizzes & general discussions and the open atmosphere of friendliness (plus red wine and beer) I view...

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MAY 2012: DAY TWO

Posted by Guy Pringle, 6th June 2012

Book Thief wasn't our first adventure. That was the meeting ups: Angela at Portsmouth ferry terminal all according to plan; Wilma and Elaine on the catamaran in a flurry of hugs of recognition and Fran with a firm handshake and a thousand yard stare. Plan A continued when we picked up the foot view...

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May 2012: The first verdict is in!

Posted by Guy Pringle, 1st June 2012

This just in from Gilly Wood:   "Do you like reading and discussing books with like minded people? Do you like the idea of shrugging of the stresses and strains of everyday life? Would you like to relax in beautiful, peaceful surroundings? Well I did so I went to Guy's French Retreat to view...

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May 2012: DAY ONE

Posted by Guy Pringle, 29th May 2012

We're all back in the UK now but I thought I'd post for a few days how things went. There are also some lovely photos coming in from the others which we'll upload onto the website as soon as we can.   "So, the first proper day after we all travelled in has just ended and the house is quiet. view...

Posted in Readers Gatherings

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What is it about Wilfred Price?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 18th May 2012

Forgive the chutzpah, if you will, but over the years I feel we’ve made a forte of our ability to spot promising debuts. (There are, of course, many other books that failed to catch our readers’ attention but they have been quietly swept under the carpet – which is the way with view...

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Nightwalk by Chris Yates

Posted by Guy Pringle, 10th May 2012

Mr Yates hasn't appeared on my radar previously, probably because I'm not an angler, a theme that runs extensively through his media work and his writing. However, in his new book he's moved away from that interest to exploring the countryside at night and without the aid of a torch. Book blurbs view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

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Little Boy Lost by Marghanita Laski

Posted by Guy Pringle, 21st March 2012

This is one of those books that will take a while to sink in and the chances are my opinion is going to shift back and forth. Which is why it’s going to be such a good book to discuss at the French Readers Gathering in May.   There’s a distinct shift when the little French view...

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Please Look After Mother

Posted by Guy Pringle, 16th March 2012

As on of our featured books this issue it came as no surprise to hear that Kyung-sook Shin has become the first woman to win the Man Asian Literary Prize, Asia's most prestigious award for writers, for her novel. The South Korean novelist attended the black tie Prize Dinner at The Conrad Hotel in view...

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Adelaide writers week 2012 - Sue Harmer

Posted by Madelaine Smith, 13th March 2012

A blog post in the form of an email from my friend Sue attending Adelaide Writers' Week - send from her ipad   I'm in Adelaide for Writers Week. It's been a couple of years since I was last at this event and this year, it has had a makeover - new director, new committee, new configuration of view...

Posted in My Books and Other Animals

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Thursdays in the Park by Hilary Boyd

Posted by Guy Pringle, 22nd February 2012

One of three books I agreed to read for this year’s Melissa Nathan Award for Comedy Romance shortlisting, I really enjoyed it! (A veil will be drawn over the other two as I didn’t even make it past chapter two of either – but then I’m not exactly target market for this kind view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

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Isla Donaldson, 15!

Posted by Guy Pringle, 14th February 2012

Isla's mother, Clare, reviewer of this parish, ‘volunteered’ her daughter as a reviewer for Saving June by Hannah Harrington, a book on which I eulogised a few posts back - and on which Clare initially demurred.   Clare first: “I’m attaching Isla’s (Age 15) view...

Posted in People we like

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Persephone Books

Posted by Guy Pringle, 9th February 2012

On a recent trip to London I found myself not far from Lamb’s Conduit Street which is where you will find Persephone Books. Knowing that Little Boy Lost by Marghanita Laski, one of our titles for the May gathering, is published by them I took a small detour.   If you’re view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

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More on Mantelpiece

Posted by Guy Pringle, 19th January 2012

This just in from Kath Rhodes   'Dear Guy,   Just had to say thank you so much for the extra surprise present at Christmas. I'm referring to 'My Sister lives on the Mantelpiece' of course. When I first saw it I'll admit I was a little dubious I thought it didn.t look like my kind of view...

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Lotus Eaters part two

Posted by Guy Pringle, 16th January 2012

Isn’t it great when ambivalence about a book shifts into genuine engagement? The shift from 1975 in chapter one back to 1963 in two and then ’65 in three annoyed but I’ve got over myself as the characters have filled out. Helen Adams’ arrival in Vietnam as a war view...

Posted in Readers Gatherings

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Who'd a tho't it?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 12th January 2012

Did you know there's an Apostrophe Protection Society? No, neither did I but boy am I being careful typing this out. The society's chairman, John Richards, is incandescent - not surprisingly - that Waterstone's are becoming Waterstones. Apparently, that apostrophe is troublesome and out view...

Posted in Miscellaneous

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The Lotus Eaters

Posted by Guy Pringle, 10th January 2012

After a Christmas of urns on mantelpieces, I'm back to the reading for our upcoming Readers Gathering this May. The tally so far looks like this:   READ with my personal ratings Room by Emma Donoghue 5/5 Dark Matter by Michelle Paver 4/4 The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls view...

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Sheila Grant

Posted by Guy Pringle, 10th January 2012

  With readers like Sheila life feels that little more special!   "I have to say one of my best decisions was taking out a subscription to newBOOKSmag [as it then was] many years ago.  I am constantly pleasantly surprised at all the new books (from writers I have never view...

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Saving June by Hannah Harrington

Posted by Guy Pringle, 4th January 2012

Back in the early 90s, as the new Marketing Director at Collins’ Educational division I was acutely aware of the public’s ‘brand recognition’ of Collins dictionaries and road atlases. It was a no-brainer to ‘extend the brand’ ie pinch it for the division’s view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

Number of comments: 3

Praise for Mantelpiece

Posted by Guy Pringle, 3rd January 2012

Many readers have been kind enough to send comments of approval for the free copy of My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece which went out to UK subscribers with the last issue. I’ll single out here two slightly longer notes which may encourage you to spread the word further:   "Anyway the view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

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Lindy Gomm - who may well have appeared here before . . .

Posted by Guy Pringle, 3rd January 2012

The following greetings from Canada allow me to at least keep my New Year’s resolution to blog more regularly (well, at least for the first week of 2012).   “Hello Guy, Happy New Year! Regarding Elsbeth's queries about reading gratification during tough times: For myself, I view...

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Our reviewers

Posted by Guy Pringle, 21st December 2011

Even in this crazy run up to Christmas, when we all have more to do than is good for us it's incredible how supportive our reviewers are.   Alison has just put out a quick question in her weekly newsletter asking, How worthwhile is our index in the magazine of reviews added to the website? view...

Posted in People we like

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Angela and Sarah

Posted by Guy Pringle, 15th December 2011

That's Ms Hicken, Hampshire's Literature Development Officer and Ms Greenaway, Events and Development Officer at Gosport Discovery Centre to give them their full titles. But last Thursday, Angela had devised the quiz and she and Sarah had promoted the evening, bringing together around 50 women view...

Posted in People we like

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Damian Kelleher

Posted by Guy Pringle, 13th December 2011

Damian Kelleher, a good friend of our sister magazine - tBkmag for pre-teen readers - was on Radio 4's Front Row last night. Damian has 'deep background' in children's books and was talking about his pick of the titles available for this Christmas. And up popped VIII by Harriet - HM - Castor which view...

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Glass Castle morphs into My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece

Posted by Guy Pringle, 12th December 2011

From The Glass Castle, a dysfunctional – real-life - American family I’ve moved straight on to a dysfunctional – fictional - British family in My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece by Annabel Pitcher.   If you’re a subscriber to newbooks then a copy of this Young Adult view...

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newbooks ahead of The Telegraph

Posted by Guy Pringle, 9th December 2011

I only mention this because it is highly unlikely that we'll ever beat a national daily newspaper to the story again but, after my Showrooming part 2 post yesterday, you'll find The Telegraph's take on the story view...

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Showrooming part 2

Posted by Guy Pringle, 8th December 2011

Have clipped this from Moby Lives, a website for Melville House Books who in turn credit Businessweek reporter Rachel King, “Amazon.com Inc. wants shoppers to do a price check the next time they’re at the store. The world’s largest online retailer is offering a 5 percent view...

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Glass Castle part 2

Posted by Guy Pringle, 6th December 2011

I'm feeling a little guilty after my last posting on this book where I commented on Jeannette Walls' 'mouth full of teeth'. That's because I've just reached the bit where, aged about 12 or 13, she confesses that she has buck teeth. Since their way of living hasn't improved, she realises that the view...

Posted in Readers Gatherings

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Showrooming - it's official

Posted by Guy Pringle, 5th December 2011

Both reading groups are fed up with me going on about supporting our local Waterstone’s by buying from them at least some of the books we read. I’ve declared previously that I’ve acquired a Kindle so obviously I’m not following my own advice entirely. However, I’d like view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 4

Is this a childhood I would have loved or hated?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 2nd December 2011

I’ve begun my reading for the next Readers Gathering in May 2012 and been lucky enough to choose an easy one to start. I don’t think any of our choices are going to be heavy chores but when you set out on something like this it’s nice to feel positive from day view...

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She's only 11!

Posted by Guy Pringle, 23rd November 2011

Alicia Hayden, 11, is the winner of the Poetry & Prose category of WWF’s My True Nature online competition with her poem . . .   LeopardFirst, I took amber and fireAnd I had his eyes.Then I took sunset and dawnAnd I had his coat.I added charcoal and inkAnd I had his spots.Next I view...

Posted in Miscellaneous

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Fiction Addiction - A Guest Blog by Joanne Ashmore

Posted by Guest Blogger, 11th November 2011

    It has recently occurred to me that I am pressing on in years.  Since I turned 37 I have begun to measure my life in reading capacity, and each day takes me closer to that great library in the sky.  I scan the unread classics and literary greats in my bookcases and know view...

Posted in My Books and Other Animals

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My favourite Dickens

Posted by Guy Pringle, 1st November 2011

We're compiling our favourite Dickens across the in house team for a celebratory spread in the next issue. And there's the dilemma for me because every one I've ever read - and I've managed most of them at least once - are the best when I'm reading it. I don't know how he does it because the sheer view...

Posted in My Books and Other Animals

Number of comments: 5

Kevin deserved it

Posted by Guy Pringle, 1st November 2011

One of the reading groups went to see We Need to Talk About Kevin last week and although it wasn't as gripping as the book, we were certainly stunned when we left the cinema. Tilda Swinton isn't my favourite actress but there's no denying that she makes the part of Eva hers in a way you can't view...

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The next one - May 19-26, 2012

Posted by Guy Pringle, 1st November 2011

I'm planning the next one and thought I might as well post some info here as anywhere. Several people have picked up on an earlier announcement and this is what I've circulated to date:   As yet, no one has booked and it’s not my intention to rush anyone into doing so. Instead, to help view...

Posted in Readers Gatherings

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Barbara Graebe

Posted by Guy Pringle, 1st November 2011

Just thought I'd share this with you   Dear Guy, I have just completed what I believe to be my fiftieth review and feel that now might be an appropriate time to retire. Although my son has given me an iPad which I am still struggling to learn how to use, it more often than not defeats me view...

Posted in People we like

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If the book were to vanish . . . ?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 21st October 2011

I was in my local IKEA recently and, having made my way through The Labyrinth, I descended through the Floor of Marketplace to the Great Hall of Warehouse. Having travelled this way more times than I care to remember, I was struck by a subliminal observation: Billy bookcases weren’t displayed view...

Posted in My Books and Other Animals

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Reverse publicity

Posted by Guy Pringle, 17th October 2011

The whole point of publicity is to raise awareness before an event. Obvious, yes? So it’s just as well I’m not claiming to be a publicist as it’s only when author Nina Bell sent me the following thank you note that I’ve thought to mention last Saturday’s view...

Posted in People we like

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Pyg, the Memoirs of a Learned Pig edited by Russell Potter

Posted by Guy Pringle, 13th October 2011

This is a brave piece of publishing by Canongate who are renowned for their willingness to tackle projects more cautious heads might let pass. Fortunately for them their track record is good – securing Barack Obama’s Dreams from My Father way, way ahead of his success in the US view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

Number of comments: 2

Going Public - Private Rules of Reading

Posted by Madelaine Smith, 5th October 2011

“I can’t stop. I’ve started now.” “How complicated your life must be. All these rules you make for yourself. Couldn’t you break just this one just this once and not spoil Persuasion for yourself?”   It was this conversation in the book The Ready view...

Posted in My Books and Other Animals

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In at number 18, with a bullet?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 26th September 2011

  Actually, it wasn't a bullet that killed Stieg Larsson. According to Wikipedia, Larsson died on '9 November 2004 in Stockholm at the age of 50 of a heart attack after climbing seven flights of stairs to his office because the lift was not working. There were rumours that his death was in view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 2

A problem for Kindle - or just one book?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 12th September 2011

Given that William Goldman wrote the screenplays for 3 of my all time top 10 films - All the President's Men, Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid and The Princess Bride -  I indulged my shiney new Kindle with a download of his novel, Magic. This, too, has been made into a film view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

Number of comments: 3

How much prescience can you cope with?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 8th September 2011

Following on from my last post - and at risk of blowing our trumpet too much - as well as our R&J successes this week, AD Miller's Snowdrops has gone through to the shortlist for this year's Man Booker prize. And acclaim, too, for Dori Ostermiller's Outside the Ordinary World which has view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

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A Kind of Prescience?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 1st September 2011

The choice of autumn books for Richard and Judy's Book Club has just been announced and it's gratifying to find that two of the eight books are among our selections. Whatever you may say about the sainted R&J - and plenty of book trade pundits have had their digs - they do seem to have the view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

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Eileen Shaw takes up the cudgels!

Posted by Guy Pringle, 19th August 2011

Elsbeth's editorial in the latest issue has obviously touched a nerve as several readers have sent in responses, the following being from Eileen Shaw, Leeds. "I think we are even more in danger, these days, of losing our notion of reading as an adventure. Some publishers like to stick to novels view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 1

Writers’ walk around Winchester

Posted by Madelaine Smith, 6th August 2011

The third Thursday of every month sees the meeting of a very odd mix of people in the cellar of my local pub. The group meets to read to each other.   It isn’t a reading group and it isn’t a writing group, but rather something of a hybrid. We call it a Bring Your own Literature view...

Posted in My Books and Other Animals

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Back issues anyone?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 28th July 2011

Reader Anne Upton is downsizing and is looking for a good home for her back issues,   "Dear Guy, I have 50 copies of newbooks magazine which I no longer have the room to store, they date from issue 3, 2001 to issue 61, Jan/Feb 2011, but are not a complete run. A list of those issues I have view...

Posted in Miscellaneous

Number of comments: 1

Caroline goes to Latitude

Posted by Guy Pringle, 25th July 2011

Reviewer Caroline Field sent us an account of a recent cultural outing:   'Had a great time at Latitude last week with the only frustration being so much choice that I missed stuff I’d normally go out of my way to see – Alan Hollinghurst and Adam Ant for two! The toilets were view...

Posted in My Books and Other Animals

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newbooks helps make a Kindle No 1 bestseller!

Posted by Guy Pringle, 18th July 2011

Author, Leigh Russell, writes . . .'I was thrilled that my new book, Dead End, was so enthusiastically reviewed by Ann Marie Muldoon in newbooks magazine and thank you very much for including me in issue 64. My detective Geraldine Steel is currently number 1 bestselling female detective on view...

Posted in Miscellaneous

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London's Best Keep Secret!

Posted by Debbie Davies, 13th July 2011

by Lou Morrish   Last night, I was introduced to London's best kept secret – Wilton's Music Hall.  A stone's throw from the Tower of London, this stunningly atmospheric building is steeped in a rich, colourful history.  Many of our greatest past performers, such as Champagne view...

Posted in My Books and Other Animals

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Pam Hume steps forward

Posted by Guy Pringle, 6th July 2011

When, where and why do I read? Over the years, it's the why that's changed most. During childhood I read tucked away in a corner of the lounge, often surrounded by noise. To this day I can read in a room full of people, oblivious to their presence. Today I stretch out on the sofa, or sometimes on a view...

Posted in My Books and Other Animals

Number of comments: 2

Some politics, the art of browsing and where can't you read a book???

Posted by Guy Pringle, 4th July 2011

Dawn Churchill from Belper in Derbyshire  keeps us rolling - do send in you My Books and Other Animals to info@newbooksmag.com 'I was so pleased to see that you featured Smoke Portrait by Trilby Kent in your Directory. I met this author and, of course, purchased a signed copy of her view...

Posted in My Books and Other Animals

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Edge of Heaven: The Yorkshire Coast

Posted by Guy Pringle, 1st July 2011

Growing up in the north east I got to know the Yorkshire coast well. Family holidays at Marske – sand, spade, toe incident apparently – and Scarborough (in the rain). As a boy scout I vividly recall sleeping under a tarpaulin on the coast path and walking, shortly after daylight, into view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

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Holiday reading without the weight!

Posted by Guy Pringle, 30th June 2011

I’ve finally succumbed to a Kindle which has brought a dilemma. As someone lucky enough to be surrounded by a choice of – physical - new books every day, what do I load on to this new device for my short holiday?   So here goes: The Dark Tower 1 by Stephen King because I enjoyed view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

Number of comments: 2

And I thought I was a bookaholic!

Posted by Guy Pringle, 29th June 2011

Last Saturday I was a guest speaker at the first Read It, Swap It (RISI) conference in Birmingham. I knew something of this website as several of its members also review for newbooks, among other outlets.   RISI does pretty much what it says on the tin as it’s effectively a social view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 8

Canadian thoughts

Posted by Guy Pringle, 27th June 2011

Canadian subscriber, Lindy Gomm, is the first of our subscribers to add to our new initiative here - My Books and Other Animals. Just to reiterate, we know we're all bookish folk but this is a chance to share not just books but your cultural life as well. To take part just email view...

Posted in My Books and Other Animals

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Lighting the Fires: A week on an Arvon Course

Posted by Madelaine Smith, 16th June 2011

We arrived later than expected at Hebden Bridge station. On our cross country journey the train hit a cow.  As we walked out of the station, it started to rain. And it was getting dark, and there were no taxis. Feeling rather like a couple of townies my colleague Catherine and I asked the view...

Posted in My Books and Other Animals

Number of comments: 1

A Perfectly Lovely Evening.

Posted by Alison Glinn, 14th June 2011

Thursday evening saw Madelaine and me driving from Winchester to Petersfield. It was one of those evenings that England does so well; with shadows lengthening and the warmth of the day still lingering. The drive along the A272 is a pretty route with lovely views to the south, and the atmosphere in view...

Posted in My Books and Other Animals

Number of comments: 1

To begin . . .

Posted by Guy Pringle, 10th June 2011

As publisher, it falls to me to start the ball rolling on this new initiative which we're calling My Books and Other Animals. Given the willingness of nb readers to debate and discuss, this is a chance to share our cultural lives beyond the world of books. You probably recognize the cannibalization view...

Posted in My Books and Other Animals

Number of comments: 1

Teen crossover to watch out for

Posted by Guy Pringle, 4th May 2011

Not only is Helen Boyle the Editor of tBkmag, newbooks’ sister magazine for pre-teen readers, she somehow also finds the time to be a Commissioning Fiction Editor for Templar, a well-respected children’s publisher. And Helen it was who put a copy of VIII by HM Castor in my hands. view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 1

Which one are you?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 14th April 2011

I'm not a Daily Mail reader by inclination but I came across this on their website and wondered if you recognised any of your group members therein - or even yourself???   THE HARRIED MOTHER She’s the staple of every book group, well-intentioned but over-stretched. She always arrives view...

Posted in Reading group related

Number of comments: 3

Flipbooks?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 12th April 2011

A review copy of one of my favourite author's books arrived here the other day. But I read Chris Cleave's The Other Hand a year or two ago, so why a review copy now? Well, because it is in a remarkably different format and, no, it's not one of those 'new technology platforms' - although view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

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Isn't this what it's all about?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 25th March 2011

Pat Clark sent me this report on her book group following a long telephone conversation. She has a particular interest in The Jewel of St. Petersburg as well as having found it to be a brilliant book, because she happens to know the author, Kate Furnivall, personally.   Anyway, apart from view...

Posted in Reading group related

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Orange prescience

Posted by Guy Pringle, 18th March 2011

The release of this year's longlist gave me pause for thought - didn't I recognise several of those names from books we'd previously featured in newbooks?   Checking back I found that Carol Birch's Come Back, Paddy Riley was a featured book in nb17 and Julie Orringer's How to Breathe view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

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World Book Night 4

Posted by Guy Pringle, 18th March 2011

I have corresponded with Margaret Paterson for a couple of years or more now - and was lucky enough to meet her once at a Devon Libraries Readers Day. Margaret personifies, for me, the spirit of the newbooks reader - intrepid and passionate about her reading and how important it is as part of our view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 1

World Book Night 3

Posted by Guy Pringle, 17th March 2011

Julie Cohen is an author who brought a lump to my throat and tear to my eye in these cynical times. An author who willingly promotes another author's book and goes out of her way to cheer up folks whose current lives are not as sunny as they might be.   Julie chose to give RACHEL'S HOLIDAY view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

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World Book Night 2

Posted by Guy Pringle, 14th March 2011

Debbie Davies understands Twitter - which I don't - and that's a good thing because she represents newbooks to the Twitterati (see what I did there?). Remarkably, in a matter of months, and particularly since Christmas, she has taken the number of our/her followers stratospheric. OK, not Stephen view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

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Blurbs - Shortest? Yes. Cleverest? Quite possibly.

Posted by Guy Pringle, 9th March 2011

People are often dismissive of book blurbs - what appears on the outside back cover of a book - but few realise how much thought is put into what you read there. Like the front cover, it has the briefest of chances to persuade you to buy that book as opposed to all the others on display. Most book view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

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World Book Night 1

Posted by Guy Pringle, 8th March 2011

World Book Night seems not only to have been a success on the night but to have created a will to repeat the event next year. And I have to say originator Jamie Byng handled a delicate situation well on Radio 4’s Front Row last week. Mark Lawson hosted a conversation between Jamie and an view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 2

Bargains at Lidl!

Posted by Guy Pringle, 28th February 2011

Pam Mayhew was kind enough to alert me to the following:   Hello Guy,   I was doing my weekly supermarket shop on Friday in Lidl and was browsing along the special offers of the week, when I came across paperback books for £1.49. Of course, I couldn't resist, but to my view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

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TV and books - why so hard?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 18th February 2011

I recently watched the TV Book Club for the first time but couldn’t understand why they’d decided to film it in the foyer of the Crossroads motel. And much as I approve of any media coverage that encourages reading and talking about books it did seem a motley crew of celebs. However, view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 3

There, their or they're?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 16th February 2011

I've been gently taken to task by Liz Holliday: 'Hello,I was having a look at your website when I came across this - I think it's a typo, not a joke? "I mention the publisher because I had a rye smile when I saw them credited in the foreword of Andrea Levy's The Long Song as one of the 'best view...

Posted in Miscellaneous

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World Book Night taking off

Posted by Guy Pringle, 11th February 2011

newbooks subscriber Judy Gillespie in Fife wrote recently to let me know she was successful in the World Book Night lottery. For her book to distribute on 5th March she chose All Quiet on the Western Front. Her plan is to provide a set for history students at our local school and hand out others in view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 1

The Verdict? Not quite ready yet.

Posted by Guy Pringle, 10th February 2011

We’ve been trying to get a new feature off the ground but early attempts have plunged head first back to earth. The Verdict is meant to recount the discussion a group has about a soon to be published book. So, not a review – although there would be a synopsis to start the spread and view...

Posted in Reading group related

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Relative values?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 4th February 2011

On the day before a national day of protest in the UK about library cuts it seemed eerie to read the following on the MobyLives blog  'In a week that’s been described as chaotic and now violent, the unrest in Egypt seems not to have given way to the large-scale looting of view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

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The lady apparently known as Barry Norman's wife

Posted by Guy Pringle, 1st February 2011

I was saddened to hear that Diana Norman has died aged 77, although slightly nonplussed that the BBC website felt they had to identify her as 'Barry Norman's novelist wife'! Diana was one of the guests at the first Readers Weekend I organised back in 2002 and a speaker at a Guildford Book Festival view...

Posted in People we like

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Libraries Day of Action coming up - Sat Feb 5th

Posted by Guy Pringle, 31st January 2011

These are difficult times for the world of libraries and our many friends therein. Thank heavens the great and the good seem to be galvanising some kind of mass reaction.   Ten days ago Philip Pullman gave an impassioned speech in Oxfordshire where the current plan is to close 20 of the view...

Posted in People we like

Number of comments: 3

Why am I buying books???

Posted by Guy Pringle, 27th January 2011

In reading group 1 the other day - or was it 2? – we got onto the ‘why buy books from bookshops when there’s Amazon, charity shops, friends to borrow from’ debate. And I surprised some of the others by railing slightly at all three.   I’ve left libraries off view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

Number of comments: 1

Luddite alert

Posted by Guy Pringle, 20th January 2011

You’d think a gadget boy like me would have jumped onto the Kindle/e-reader bandwagon by now, but no. Anything with an Apple logo on it has me drooling from the mouth and here at newbooks Towers my colleagues are amazed I haven’t found an excuse to buy an iPad yet.   But view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 4

Good resolutions

Posted by Guy Pringle, 7th January 2011

I've had the good fortune to sneak away for some winter sun and found myself a quiet corner with a pile of books. So to get my journal entries off to a cracking start for 2011, I can already claim to have finished The Fountainhead/Ayn Rand – loved it although a little didactic in parts; view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 2

Looking ahead to 2011

Posted by Guy Pringle, 23rd December 2010

Adéle Geras is not just an accomplished author for children and adults but she is also a passionate reader – something I tend to think is highly desirable in a writer. Having met at various events in the last 10 years, Adéle and I have an ongoing e-conversation about which of view...

Posted in Miscellaneous

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James William Guercio, anyone?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 21st December 2010

You probably have to be a bloke of a certain age to recognise the name James William Guercio. But if you take a look at his life as reported by Wikipedia this is a man of many talents who seems to have been consistently in the right place at the right time.  If you were around in the view...

Posted in Miscellaneous

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Boy, am I stoopid!

Posted by Guy Pringle, 21st December 2010

What is it about blokes that they can’t turn down the testerone, even when it’s an innocuous challenge and from a lady at that? I was feeling a little smug about being so well-read, now that The Fountainhead is going so swimmingly. And I let slip as much to reviewer of this parish, view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 1

The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand

Posted by Guy Pringle, 7th December 2010

A somewhat curious choice in that Anne talked about this book enthusiastically at reading group, having re-read it recently. At the next meeting - which Anne was unable to attend - we were raking around for something to add to our programme when the idea of The Fountainhead was suddenly centre view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

Number of comments: 2

A prejudice laid to rest

Posted by Guy Pringle, 1st December 2010

It was John Harding at this year's Guildford Readers Day who made me face up to my long-standing prejudice. John is the author of One Big Damn Puzzler, a featured book in nb33, and, most recently, Florence and Giles.   His brief on the day was to talk about his favourite reads of 2010 view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

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Books in the media

Posted by Guy Pringle, 29th November 2010

This weekend two book-related stories caught my eye in The Sunday Times. First, Jamie Oliver’s book sales broke the £100 million mark, making him second only to JK Rowling (albeit by a still hefty margin). This struck me as something of a dog-bites-man story. Since The Naked Chef view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 1

Re-reading - a double edged sword

Posted by Guy Pringle, 12th November 2010

Double-guessing the preferences and interests of newbooks readers for our March 2011 Readers Gathering has enlivened many coffee and tea breaks here at nb HQ. The nb crew are so widely read that the suggestions ranged from the exotic, to the esoteric, through to the extraordinary. But view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

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Sweets for my sweet, sugar for my honey . . .

Posted by Guy Pringle, 11th November 2010

Around the time The Searchers were trilling these inane lyrics (that I store in my grey cells for some unknown reason), you could still buy a chocolate bar called Fry's Five Boys. As I recall, each of the five segments was imprinted with a different smiling boy's face - or perhaps it was only view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

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The book selection for our next get together

Posted by Guy Pringle, 5th November 2010

As you may have seen from previous blogs about le Rieu, our very first Readers Gathering was an outstanding success – for which I am mightily relieved. Bringing together - for the very first time – a disparate group of people as a ‘reading group’ to engage on a view...

Posted in Readers Gatherings

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Mike Jenkinson’s Guide to Normandy Tourist Traps

Posted by Guy Pringle, 21st October 2010

Mike has a serious interest in the military history of the area and has assiduously worked his way through the majority of those associated specifically with the Second World War. Below is his assessment of: • how long you should plan to spend there • how much the entry fee is (in view...

Posted in Le Rieu

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Mr Perfect

Posted by Guy Pringle, 20th October 2010

Steve Jarvis, by his own admission (see below) came along for the ride but found more to entertain and engage than expected. Better still - because I am no cookist - Steve volunteered to supervise the final heating of Kaye's prepared dishes, delivered in late afternoon.   "I attended the view...

Posted in Le Rieu

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Once a lonely traveller . . .

Posted by Guy Pringle, 19th October 2010

Judy Gillespie signed up for our Reviewers Conference back in April, but a certain volcano meant she was unable to fly out of Edinburgh. Undaunted, this time she resorted to bus and train as being more likely to get her to her destination.   "Leaving Dundee at 6.05am on a dark and rainy view...

Posted in Le Rieu

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What a very nice man!

Posted by Guy Pringle, 18th October 2010

A happy wife tends to mean a happy husband, and as Mandy's previous comments were certainly of a positive nature then I had hopes that Mike might be so, too. In fact, he's done us proud with the following: "As someone who is used to rushing off to see sights, the Reading Retreat at Le Rieu was view...

Posted in Le Rieu

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The verdict's in - and it's good (well, the first one).

Posted by Guy Pringle, 14th October 2010

Mandy Jenkinson, reviewer of this parish had the following to say about our very first Readers Gathering: 'I love reading. Books are my passion. I love reading them, discovering new ones, thinking about them, talking about them and discussing them with like-minded people - or even unlike-minded view...

Posted in Le Rieu

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Our first Readers Gathering

Posted by Guy Pringle, 13th October 2010

More to come shortly but to start here's Kaye's recipe for Normandy Pork Chops, preceded by Vivienne's verdict:       ‘We had all quickly come to appreciate Kaye’s culinary skills and sense of humour, and looked forward to her car pulling up each afternoon.  view...

Posted in Le Rieu

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'Foyle's bookseller makes first real profit for a decade'

Posted by Guy Pringle, 24th September 2010

Elsewhere on this website we've started posting pix of bookshops we love but this headline in today's Guardian took me back to one of my favourites. At various times in my career I've called on the world famous Charing Cross Road shop, then the only branch of Foyle's, to sell the wares of whichever view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

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The Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead pt 3

Posted by Guy Pringle, 21st September 2010

Which book characters would you invite to a dinner party, and why? I’m not deliberately avoiding this question when I say I haven’t a clue. When I’m reading I immerse myself - worryingly - deeply in the book of the moment but once finished could be (should be?) alarmed at the view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 1

The Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead pt 2

Posted by Guy Pringle, 20th September 2010

Which book do you wish you had written? Pretty much anything by Dickens or Hardy – even though I still haven’t managed to read all of what those two giants published. For some reason Jane Austen doesn’t join their company for me, even though I love her work – and all of view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

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The Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead pt 1

Posted by Guy Pringle, 18th September 2010

I’m not an author - and have no desire to write a book – but, as you should be aware by now, I am a passionate reader. So when Sandra Rabiasz of RBWM asked for our support for an October promotion I was happy to offer the following (which I'm stretching over 3 blogs!)   What view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 1

Franzen Schmanzen

Posted by Guy Pringle, 17th September 2010

The Guardian today reports that 'Nine years after Jonathan Franzen derided Oprah Winfrey's choice of "schmaltzy, one-dimensional" novels for her book club, becoming the first author to be formally disinvited to appear on her show, these two giants of American cultural life appear to have view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 1

Wolf Hall - finished at last!

Posted by Guy Pringle, 15th September 2010

I wouldn't say I understood all of Wolf Hall but I did want to finish it and found myself sad when the end arrived. Whether I'll be up for reading the continuation Ms Mantel is currently working on is yet to be decided but there's no denying the quality of her writing. Here at newbooks Towers, view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

Number of comments: 4

Nicola Barranger/The Interview Online

Posted by Guy Pringle, 2nd September 2010

At times the last 10 years have felt like a drunken shuffle - three forward, two back. Too often, meetings with publishers and the great plans we’ve hatched have evaporated before the caffeine hit faded. At least it’s not two forward and three back but it has to be said the book view...

Posted in People we like

Number of comments: 0

My favourite read of the last 10 years

Posted by Guy Pringle, 1st September 2010

For our forthcoming 10th birthday issue, some bright spark thought it would be a good idea to ask the team one of those impossible questions. Now I know what it feels like to be on Desert Island Discs – of course it’s invidious to only be allowed one from so many. One of the biggest view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

Number of comments: 0

One of our own featured books

Posted by Guy Pringle, 24th August 2010

I can't resist a wry smile when someone in the two reading groups I belong to here in Winchester suggests as a group read a book we've featured in newbooks. Pleasingly, (smugly???) those selections usually turn out well (although we did draw a veil over Howard Jacobson's Kalooki Nights which nobody view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

Number of comments: 1

Fair Stood the Wind for France - how did that suddenly turn into such a good book?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 20th August 2010

As part of the build up to our readers gathering in early October, I'm working my way through a selection of books on the theme of war. I daren't think how long ago it was I last read HE Bates but suffice to say I thought The Larkins were old hat (until I saw Catherine Zeta Jones in the TV view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

Number of comments: 1

Naugahyde part two

Posted by Guy Pringle, 6th August 2010

Having finished All Quiet of the Western Front – brilliant, don’t put off reading it – I’ve moved on to The Complete Maus by Art Spiegelman. This is a graphic novel about the Holocaust and equally as gripping as All Quiet although its a very different experience to view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

Number of comments: 0

I'm sorry, I tried, I really did . . .

Posted by Guy Pringle, 3rd August 2010

I’m happier to give up on books than I used to be – too many to read, not enough time etc. However, a deeply rooted Protestant work ethic insists I can’t do it lightly. Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese is tomorrow night’s discussion book for reading group 1 – view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

Number of comments: 2

I bet you've never quite got round to reading it either

Posted by Guy Pringle, 29th July 2010

In choosing the books for our first Readers Gathering, I have to admit to an element of self-interest. Once we'd decided on a theme of war, we needed a reliable selection of books on a variety of criteria. They had to: • be in print and easily/cheaply available • be highly view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

Number of comments: 0

Future subjects for our A Life's Work coverage

Posted by Guy Pringle, 26th July 2010

Pamela Lewis kindly volunteered a future subject for this article we've made a feature of in recent issues   "I would like to submit Daphne Du Maurier as a suggestion for the Life's Work feature. Her books are consistently brilliant, she has a huge following and each of her books remains as view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

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Websites, don't you just love 'em?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 26th July 2010

This fourth incarnation of our website is the closest yet to what I thought I was getting back in 2003. Since then I've become sanguine about what is and isn't achievable without massive spend but Park Corner Design have certainly delivered our best effort yet. Inevitably, however, there have view...

Posted in Miscellaneous

Number of comments: 0

The Laundry goes live!

Posted by Guy Pringle, 21st July 2010

This probably doesn't mean much to you but for me to be able to say that there is now a communal laundry at the Reading Retreat is both an achievement and a relief. When I go on holiday I take enough clothes to last me for the duration. Even going somewhere by plane for 2 weeks I'd rather squeeze view...

Posted in Le Rieu

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Back issues available

Posted by Guy Pringle, 21st July 2010

What nice people our readers are, is a phrase that often echoes round newbooks Towers. Evidence this email, received from Steve Valentine who, for reasons unknown but I suspect downsizing, has to relinquish an extensive collection of back issues of newbooks. Anyone taking up this offer will see a view...

Posted in Miscellaneous

Number of comments: 3

ORANGE PRIZE FINALISTS SET UP NEW LITERARY EVENT

Posted by Guy Pringle, 20th July 2010

I get loads of press releases by email these days, most of which are rapidly deleted but every so often one comes along that catches my imagination. Below is one such from an enterprising lady called Dawn Barnes. Although I've never met her I suspect I very soon will but for the moment I offer news view...

Posted in Reading group related

Number of comments: 1

nb59 View from Here

Posted by Guy Pringle, 20th July 2010

As we approach the next issue I thought I'd drop in Elsbeth's editorial as, once again, she's nailed an interesting subject that may well have crossed your mind. I'd like to think the 'guy-thing' was meant to have a lower case 'g', although I have to admit I've been tempted to buy an view...

Posted in Our next issue

Number of comments: 3

It's not what you know . . .

Posted by Guy Pringle, 13th July 2010

Proof copies of high-profile books aren't unusual in this neck of the woods - it's one of our innocent pleasures, opening the packages that arrive each day.  However, when they are accompanied by a hand-written card from the Trade Group Sales & Marketing Director of one of the UK's view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 0

Should you judge a book by its cover?

Posted by Guy Pringle, 9th July 2010

Designing book jackets is definitely an art and I doff my hat to the creative souls who have to visualise books they haven't read and keep the author, agent, editor, marketeers and sales people happy - not forgetting the retailers - before it gets anywhere near you or I. Even the simplest view...

Posted in Bookish thoughts

Number of comments: 1

Gender politics in reading groups

Posted by Guy Pringle, 8th July 2010

This week I had the happy circumstance of discussing The Glass Room with both the groups I belong to here in Winchester. The book was my suggestion because I had enjoyed it as a personal read and thought there was potential for a group read.   At this point I should declare that I am view...

Posted in Reading group related

Number of comments: 1

To begin . . .

Posted by Guy Pringle, 7th July 2010

The What We're Reading page in the magazine is regularly praised when our readers tell us what they think of newbooks. So our spanking new website is the obvious place to add further information about the books we're loving - and not - and who knows, spark some debate about what's worth seeking view...

Posted in What I'm reading - Guy

Number of comments: 4

After a dodgy start . . .

Posted by Guy Pringle, 6th July 2010

The fact that there's only one washing machine on site is raising some practical difficulties - until such time as I can run water and power to one of the barns to make a communal laundry area. This became slightly contentious for the Harrisons as they'd been travelling for some days before view...

Posted in Le Rieu

Number of comments: 0

The joys of running French gites

Posted by Guy Pringle, 29th June 2010

Just before 10pm last night I arrived home from a gruelling but fun weekend in France. Sue, our usual changeover lady, was back in the UK for a week so I was required to deputise. Although we're some way from genuinely being able to call ourselves a reading retreat the early signs are good. Having view...

Posted in Le Rieu

Number of comments: 0