From the Wolfson Prize-winning author of God's Architect: Pugin and the Building of Romantic Britain
Between the fall of the Bastille in 1789 and the opening of the Great Exhibition in 1851, history changed. The grand narratives of the Enlightenment, concerned with kings and statesmen, gave way to a new interest in the lives of ordinary people. Oral history, costume history, the history of food and furniture, of Gothic architecture, theatre and much else were explored as never before. Antiquarianism, the study of the material remains of the past, was not new, but now hundreds of men - and some women - became antiquaries and set about rediscovering their national history, in Britain, France and Germany.
The Romantic age valued facts, but it also valued imagination and it brought both to the study of history. Among its achievements were the preservation of the Bayeux Tapestry, the analysis and dating of Gothic architecture, and the first publication of Beowulf. It dispelled old myths, and gave us new ones: Shakespeare's birthplace, clan tartans and the arrow in Harold's eye are among their legacies. From scholars to imposters the dozen or so antiquaries at the heart of this book show us history in the making.
From the bestselling author of The Blasphemer, shortlisted for the Costa Novel Award and a Richard & Judy Bookclub Pick
'A masterly exploration of conflicting loyalties set against the 1936 Olympic Games. Sharply characterised, richly atmospheric and completely engrossing.' JOHN PRESTON, author of THE DIG
It is the early 1930s, and Europe is holding its breath. As Hitler's grip on power tightens, preparations are being made for the Berlin Olympics. Leni Riefenstahl is the pioneering, sexually-liberated star film-maker of the Third Reich. She has been chosen by Hitler to capture the Olympics on celluloid but is about to find that even his closest friends have much to fear. Kim Newlands is the English athlete 'sponsored' by the Blackshirts and devoted to his mercurial, socialite girlfriend Connie. He is driven by a desire to win an Olympic gold but to do that he must first pretend to be someone he is not. Alun Pryce is the Welsh communist sent to infiltrate the Blackshirts. When he befriends Kim and Connie, his belief that the end justifies the means will be tested to the core.
Through her camera lens and memoirs, Leni is able to manipulate the truth about what happens when their fates collide at the Olympics. But while some scenes from her life end up on the cutting room floor, this does not mean they are lost forever...
'A novel rich in historical detail, but wearing its research lightly, and the story is told in a French Lieutenant's Woman kind of way, veering from the present to the past with superb flair.' IRISH INDEPENDENT
PRAISE FOR THE BLASPHEMER:
'A great achievement...remarkable.' Melvyn Bragg
'A book that won't leave your fingernails intact' Daily Mail
'A fine novel...unforgettable.' The Times
'Beautiful...exhilarating.' Sunday Telegraph
'A constantly engaging and witty novel from a tremendously clever writer.' Telegraph
A masterpiece of a family in crisis from twice Booker-shortlisted author Damon Galgut
'Astonishing' Colm Toibin
'A literary masterpiece' Sarah Hall
The Promise charts the crash and burn of a white South African family, living on a farm outside Pretoria.
'Joan is an unforgettable anti-heroine. I don't think I'll ever stop thinking about her' Elizabeth Day 'So insanely good and true and twisted it'll make your teeth sweat' Olivia Wilde 'Like a series of grenades exploding' Marian Keyes I drove myself out of New York City where a man shot himself in front of me. He was a gluttonous man and when his blood came out it looked like the blood of a pig. That's a cruel thing to think, I know. He did it in a restaurant where I was having dinner with another man, another married man. Do you see how this is going? But I wasn't always that way. I am depraved. I hope you like me. MEET JOAN: SUMMER 2021 A 2021 Highlight for: Guardian - Sunday Express - Independent - New Statesman - Evening Standard - Cosmopolitan - Red - Grazia - Daily Mail - Daily Express - The Week - Irish Times - i - The Sun
The bittersweet, sharply observed stories in Blue in Chicago introduce British readers for the first time to Bette Howland, a forgotten great of twentieth-century American fiction, perfect for fans of Lucia Berlin, Lydia Davis and Alice Munro.
THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
'A parable written for the age of technological disruption . . . brilliantly told' Sunday Times
The international bestselling author returns with an exploration of one of the grandest obsessions of the twentieth century
'The Bomber Mafia is a case study in how dreams go awry. When some shiny new idea drops from the heavens, it does not land softly in our laps. It lands hard, on the ground, and shatters.'
In the years before the Second World War, in a sleepy air force base in central Alabama, a small group of renegade pilots put forth a radical idea. What if we made bombing so accurate that wars could be fought entirely from the air? What if we could make the brutal clashes between armies on the ground a thing of the past?
This book tells the story of what happened when that dream was put to the test. The Bomber Mafia follows the stories of a reclusive Dutch genius and his homemade computer, Winston Churchill's forbidding best friend, a team of pyromaniacal chemists at Harvard, a brilliant pilot who sang vaudeville tunes to his crew, and the bomber commander, Curtis Emerson LeMay, who would order the bloodiest attack of the Second World War.
In this tale of innovation and obsession, Gladwell asks: what happens when technology and best intentions collide in the heat of war? And what is the price of progress?
'A savvy, subtle chronicler of contemporary malaise.' Financial Times From the author of Perfidious Albion, a darkly comic and profoundly affecting novel about resistance, radicalism and redemption. Maya is homeless.