September Staff Choices


Sweet – Yotam Ottolenghi & Helen GohYotam Ottolenghi and his long-time collaborator Helen Goh bring the Ottolenghi hallmarks of fresh, evocative ingredients, exotic spices and complex flavourings – including fig, rose petal, saffron, aniseed, orange blossom, pistachio and cardamom – to indulgent cakes, biscuits, tarts, puddings, cheesecakes and ice cream. It includes 110 new recipes and the photographs are enough to set your mouth watering before you get around to baking anything at all! Another amazing Ottolenghi book to add to the collection!”  – Fiona

Golden House – Salman RushdieWhen powerful real-estate tycoon Nero Golden immigrates to the States under mysterious circumstances, he and his three adult children assume new identities, taking ‘Roman’ names, and move into a grand mansion in downtown Manhattan. Arriving shortly after the inauguration of Barack Obama, he and his sons, each extraordinary in his own right, quickly establish themselves at the apex of New York society. It’s a great read, an excellent commentary on the changing political landscape of America and characters that keep you totally immersed”. – Brian

Beautiful Poetry of Donald Trump – Robert SearsWhat if there’s a hidden dimension to Donald Trump; a sensitive, poetic side? Driven by this question, Rob Sears began combing Trump’s words for signs of poetry.What he found was a revelation. By simply taking the 45th President of the United States’ tweets and transcripts, cutting them up and reordering them, Sears unearthed a trove of beautiful verse that was just waiting to be discovered. Who’d have thought Trump was capable of producing such meaningful and moving material? This is definitely the best parody book I’ve ever come across.” – Lisa

Motherfoclóir – Darach Ó Séaghdha‘Motherfocloir’ is a book based on the Twitter account @theirishfor. As the title suggests, ‘Motherfocloir’ takes an irreverent, pun-friendly and contemporary approach to the Irish language. The translations are expanded on and arranged into broad categories that allow interesting connections to be made, and sprinkled with anecdotes and observations about Irish and Ireland itself, as well as language in general. As a long-time follower of the super witty @theirishfor, I was absolutely delighted to get my hands on this!” – Emily



August Staff Choices


Seinfeldia – Jennifer Keishin Armstrong This is an exploration of how a show about nothing became one of the most-watched tv shows of all time and defined ‘the sitcom’. Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld never thought their show would get off the ground but audiences loved neurotic George, imperious Elaine and eccentric Kramer and loyally watched their antics for nine seasons. It’s packed with facts, trivia and photos and Armstrong’s writing is hilarious. Though I only rewatched the whole series recently, it made me want to start from the beginning again! – Emily



Hunger – Roxane Gay heartbreaking look at Roxane Gay’s relationship with her body and the events in her life that led her to where she is today. Roxane understands the tension between desire and denial, between self-comfort and self-care. In ‘Hunger’, she casts an insightful and critical eye on her childhood, teens, and twenties, including the devastating act of violence that acted as a turning point in her young life-and brings readers into the present and the realities, pains and joys of her daily life. Roxanne explores what it’s like to be overweight in a time where the bigger you are, the less you are seen. A deeply emotional read. – Fiona


Unwomanly Face of War – Svetlana Alexievich In the late 1970s, Alexievich set out to write ‘The Unwomanly Face of War’ when she realized that she grew up surrounded by women who had fought in the Second World War but whose stories were absent from official narratives. She spent years interviewing hundreds of Soviet women who had experienced the war on the front lines, on the home front and in occupied territories. After completing the manuscript in 1983, Alexievich was not allowed to publish it because it went against the state-sanctioned history of the war. These women describe scenes so shocking and sad that they are almost unbelievable. – Brian



Book of Barb – Nadia Bailey While few people were surprised that the Netflix series Stranger Things was a smash hit, no one expected that one of the show’s minor characters, the nerdy, faithful underdog, Barb, to break the internet. But it turns out, in a world of Nancys, we are all Barb. This book is a celebration of TV’s most relatable and tragic bestie. Bringing you inspiration from the ultimate wing woman and trend setting style icon – Barb has style tips, quotes and life advice straight from the Upside-Down. So excited for season 2 in October! – Lisa




July Staff Choices


No is Not Enough – Naomi Klein – “This is Klein’s attempt to figure out how and why the current and confusing political climate of America came to be, as well as a call to arms against the Trump administration and the shock politics that are being used globally to generate crisis after crisis. She predicts how things could worsen if we remain passive and make no attempt to affect change – and the world she predicts is a scary one. She looks at the historical trends that led to Trump’s election and somehow makes sense of how and why he was elected. Klein is great at avoiding heavy political jargon and fearlessly tackles this divisive issue – she’s definitely one of the most important writers of our time.” – Fiona



Timekeepers – Simon Garfield – In this book, Simon Garfield explores the human obsession with time and why it governs our lives the way it does. He tells us some illuminating stories and asks whether we’ve all gone completely nuts about time. He tracks time’s arrow in the modern age and looks at particular periods and events in history which pushed us into our current reliance on the concept of time, noting the figures and movements which are credited with the creation of ‘time’ as we understand it today. It’s a really interesting and quirky book and Garfield keeps you grinning throughout! – Emily



Field Guide to Getting Lost – Rebecca Solnit – A Field Guide to Getting Lost draws on emblematic moments and relationships in Solnit’s own life to explore the issues of wandering, being lost, and the uses of the unknown. The result is a distinctive and poignant voyage of discovery. It’s a collection of seemingly random essays on the subject of being lost that Solnit manages to connect to one another. Her writing takes you on a journey through her unique and far-reaching trains of thought that often end in unexpected places. The essays seem like eloquent musings rather than structured thoughts and are a pleasure to read. – Lisa



Conversations With Friends – Sally Rooney – Frances and Bobbi, best friends and spoken word performers, are spotted by Melissa, a photographer and essayist whose life is fascinating to Frances. The girls become entangled in Melissa’s life and Frances begins to question everything she believed she stood for. This book can be read in several different ways – as a romantic comedy, a feminist text, however it appeals to you. That and the relatability of the characters make it a great read. – Brian


June Staff Choices


American Gods – Neil Gaiman “Haven’t got around to watching this one yet, but the book is fantastic! Just before he is released from prison, Shadow Moon’s wife dies in a freak accident. He then boards a plane home where he meets the enigmatic Mr Wednesday, who professes both to know Shadow and to be king of America. Together they embark on a strange road trip across the USA, encountering a kaleidoscopic cast of characters along the way. Yet all around them a storm threatens to break. Great storytelling as always from Neil Gaiman!” – Brian



Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood “People have been flocking to the shop to buy the Handmaid’s Tale’ in anticipation of the release of the tv series. The Handmaid’s Tale is set in a dystopian future America in which a new world order has been implemented. In this future, women have been stripped of their rights and are separated into strict categories. The narrator is Offred, a handmaid, whose sole function is to breed. The story is an account of her life in her Commander’s house and her relationships with others who live there. Filled with palpable tension and paranoia from start to finish, it grips your attention from the opening sentence.” – Fiona



It – Stephen King  “We’re all super excited to see the new adaptation of ‘It’ coming out in September! Although already a bone-chilling favourite among Stephen King fans, it’s definitely worth a re-read in the lead up to the movie. Children in the town of Derry are terrorised by ‘it’. The story moves between past and present with the children of Derry having to confront ‘It’ again as adults, opening up the terrible memories of their past and moving into a horrific new reality.” – Lisa



Wonder Woman: The Ultimate Guide to the Amazon  Warrior – DK  “The new Wonder Woman movie is amazing!  We have a range of Wonder Woman comics available in our second hand bookshop, both new and second hand, as well as this spectacular guide to the character. This book is filled with all the information you need to know about Wonder Woman. It gives an in-depth look at the most iconic Wonder Woman comics as well as exploring her timeline and looking at all the different incarnations of the character there have been to date.” – Emily


May Staff Choices

‘Men Without Women’ – Haruki Murakami“This is a collection of seven stories centering around seven men with one thing in common – they’re alone. Each one, through different sets of circumstances, has begun to live a solitary life, be it due to a fault of their own, a death or an unfaithful wife. Each protagonist has his own quirk, a particular interest in something such as cooking or reading and purposely distances himself from others. Murakami, paying homage to one of his inspirations as he is wont to do, lifted the title from Hemingway 1927 collection of the same name in which it is said that men should never put themselves in a position where they could lose someone. Murakami takes this same message and applies it to the modern day with his wry, sarcastic edge.”Fiona

‘I’d Die for You and Other Lost Stories’– F. Scott FitzgeraldThese are quite a departure from Scott’s renowned roaring 20s. These eighteen stories were ‘lost’ until this book, some were physically lost, and some were rejected by publishers and magazines who wished for Fitzgerald’s writing to forever mirror ‘The Great Gatsby’. It’s a collection of darker stories than Scott’s famous works, with many of them being inspired by events in his own life such as his wife Zelda’s institutionalisation and the Great Depression. Each story is accompanied by biographical notes and pictures, giving the reader an insight into Fitzgerald’s turbulent and fascinating life and providing context for each story’s composition. It’s amazing to get new writing from a favourite author who has been dead for 77 years!”Brian

‘Admissions’ – Henry Marsh‘Admissions’ is the second volume of Marsh’s memoir, following on from the wildly successful ‘Do No Harm’. As he is facing the end of his long and illustrious career as a neurosurgeon, Marsh reflects upon encounters with patients in England and the extreme conditions he worked under during his time in Nepal and Ukraine. It is a deeply personal look at the struggle of surgeons, how they deal with the human misery they witness, the overwhelming responsibility they carry and the change in the profession in recent years due to the interference of the NHS. Marsh is frank and humble throughout the book – these characteristics along with his honesty and natural knack for storytelling make it impossible to put down.”  – Emily


‘Vinyl. Album. Cover. Art.: The Complete Hipgnosis Catalogue’ – Aubrey Powell“This is the complete catalogue of Hipgnosis, the company responsible for the design of album and record covers for the world’s biggest bands, such as Led Zepplin, The Police and AC/DC. The book contains all 372 Hipgnosis covers, including details about them from one of the company’s founders, Aubrey Powel, along with the stories behind their creation. This volume showcases the diversity of acts that Hipgnosis created for, with covers ranging from wacky to downright insane (see: Led Zepplin – ‘Houses of the Holy’). Many of these covers have already gone down as the most iconic in history such as Pink Floyd’s prism for ‘Dark Side of the Moon.’ It’s an amazing collection, a great one to have a flick through.” Lisa


April Staff Choices

East West Street by Philippe Sands
Intended to be an exploration into the mysterious life of Sands’ grandfather, the book turned out to be a blend of memoir and historical commentary as Sands began to unfurl more and more of his grandfather’s story. It’s a fascinating account of the two prosecutors  who christened the concepts of ‘crimes against humanity’ and ‘genocide’ during the Nuremberg Trials. Sands’ impeccable research provides a new and profound insight into the political landscape during World War II. An absolute must-read for the history buffs!– Fiona


Descent of Man by Grayson Perry
“This man is so wonderfully unique that he single-handedly makes up for Brexit” – Caitlin Moran
Following on from the 3 part documentary series, ‘All Man’, that Perry filmed for Channel 4, he has further delved into the idea of what masculinity is. He condemns the common tropes and expectations of masculinity, offering a more well-rounded and inclusive understanding of the word. Engaging us from the outset with his notorious wit, Perry provides us with much food for thought and honestly discusses his own experiences with gender issues.– Lisa


The Norse Myths by Carolyne Larrington
Norse mythology has inspired so much of modern fantasy with writers from Tolkien to George R. R. Martin drawing from its expansive universe. Carolyne Larrington traces this influence and tells the stories of the Gods and the many facets of their world using extracts translated directly from the Old Norse. Really accessible and easy to read while still containing loads of fascinating information!– Emily


To Be a Machine by Mark O’ Connell
This book is the first in-depth exploration of transhumanism – the belief  that the human race can evolve beyond its current physical and mental limitations through science and technology. Mark O’ Connell writes about his meetings with the key figures of the movement and his trips to cryogenics facilities and labs where the aim is to go beyond the current human condition and perhaps even ‘solve’ death. O’ Connell is a complete outsider to the topic and approaches it with an open mind and a relatable (and funny) perspective.– Brian