William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award 2014 longlist.

The breakawayEx boxer Mike Tyson, retired Welsh rugby star Gareth Thomas and Olympic gold-medallist Nicole Cooke are among those who have been longlisted for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award 2014.

Mike Tyson makes it for his “no-holds-barred” autobiography Undisputed Truth written with Larry Sloman. Gareth Thomas, the high-profile sportsman who came out recently, has been longlisted for his autobiography Proud. Nicole Cooke, the first British cyclist to have been ranked world number one, is listed for her autobiography The Breakaway.

Matt Dickinson’s Bobby Moore: The Man in Full

Love game: a history of tennis, from Victorian pastime to global phenomenonOliver Horowitz’s An American Caddie in St. AndrewsGrowing Up, Girls, and Looping on the Old Course

Love Game: A History of Tennis, from Victorian Pastime to Global Phenomenon by Elizabeth Wilson

Anna Krien’s Night Games: Sex, Power and Sport.

Mountaineer and long distance runner Kilian Jornet’s memoir Run or Die

Stuck in a Moment: The Ballad of Paul Vaessen by Stewart Taylor

Other contenders are (please reserve them if you fancy reading them):

Floodlights and Touchlines: A History of Spectator Sport by Rob Steen 

Alone, a biography of figure skater John Curry by Bill Jones

A round up of six Scifi titles for a Monday

The forever watch

 Here’s some recently added SciFi titles which have been recommended by readers.

The forever watch by David Ramirez — The Noah, a city-sized ship, half-way through an 800-year voyage to another planet. In a world where deeds, and even thoughts, cannot be kept secret, a man is murdered: his body so ruined that his identity must be established from DNA evidence. Within hours, all trace of the crime is swept away, hidden as though it never happened. Hana Dempsey, a mid-level bureaucrat genetically modified to use the Noah’s telepathic internet, begins to investigate

Hannu Rajaniemi’s  The Causal Angel - With his infectious love of storytelling in all its forms, his rich characterisation and his unrivalled grasp of thrillingly bizarre cutting-edge science, Hannu Rajaniemi has swiftly set a new benchmark for SF in the 21st century. And now with his third novel he completes the tale of his gentleman rogue, the many lives and minds of Jean de Flambeur. Influenced as much by the fin de siecle novels of Maurice leBlanc as he is by the greats of SF, Rajaniemi weaves intricate, warm capers through dazzling science, extraordinary visions of wild future and deep conjecture on the nature of reality and story. And now we find out what will happen to Jean, his employer Miele, the independently minded ship Perhonnen and the rest of a fractured and diverse humanity flung through the solar system

Carrie Patel’s first novel, The Buried Life  is set many years after a catastrophe has engulfed the planet, and humanity dwells underground in the vast city of Recoletta, a gas-lit realm evoking a steampunk Victorian London. The city’s rulers are draconian in their control of the knowledge of history, and the possession of unapproved texts is a crime. When eminent historian Dr Cahill is murdered, it falls to municipal inspector Liesl Malone to investigate, only to find her work on this case and subsequent murders hampered by the secretive Directorate of Preservation. The Buried Life excels on many levels, quite apart from its presentation of strong female characters: it’s a cracking whodunnit with sufficient twists and turns to make Agatha Christie proud, a vivid portrayal of a vibrant multicultural society, and an intriguing love story. (Guardian)

Gideon Smith and the brass dragonDavid Barnett – Gideon Smith and the Brass Dragon  the second volume of his Gideon Smith trilogy, he puts steampunk through the mangle and mashes it into something magical. Likable hero Gideon is on a mission to America on the trail of the evil villain Louis Cockayne, who has kidnapped Gideon’s true love, Maria the Mechanical Girl, and a brass dragon known as Apep. What follows is a breathless tale of thud and blunder, villains and monsters galore, a crazed and convoluted plot and a clever denouement that nicely sets up the third and final volume. (Guardian)

The Martian by Andy Weir  -So that’s the situation. I’m stranded on Mars. I have no way to communicate with Earth. Everyone thinks I’m dead. I’m in a Habitat designed to last 31 days. If the Oxygenator breaks down, I’ll suffocate. If the Water Reclaimer breaks down, I’ll die of thirst. If the Hab breaches, I’ll just kind of explode. If none of those things happen, I’ll eventually run out of food and starve to death. So yeah. I’m screwed

Abaddon’s gate bu James S A CoreyFor generations, the solar system – Mars, the Moon, the Asteroid Belt – was humanity’s great frontier. Until now. The alien artefact working through its program under the clouds of Venus has emerged to build a massive structure outside the orbit of Uranus: a gate that leads into a starless dark. Jim Holden and the crew of the Rocinante are part of a vast flotilla of scientific and military ships going out to examine the artefact. But behind the scenes, a complex plot is unfolding, with the destruction of Holden at its core

If I Should Die – WW1 Poetry evening with James Nash

1914: poetry remembersPoems from the First World WarNext Tuesday, September 30th 6.30-7.30pm we are celebrating the poetry from the Great War. We are really looking forward to poet James Nash  reading and discussing some of his favourite WW1 poems.

James’ always gives us some fascinating insights.

You are warmly invited to bring your own favourite poem or prose from that era so that we can have a discussion.

The event is free but places are limited so please book on 0113 2476016




#FF The Fiction Hotlist is out!

Here’s the Fiction Hotlist for this week

Already rated 5* are Sarah Harrison’s The Wildflower Path, Anna Jacobs ‘The Trader’s Reward and Camilla Lackberg – Buried Angels.

We fancy ‘The Watcher by Charlotte Link’ – Atmospheric psychological suspense novel which was bestseller in Germany, selling 16 million copies!

‘A Meal in Winter’ by Hubert Mingarelli – One morning, in the dead of winter, three German soldiers head out into the frozen Polish countryside. They have been charged by their commanders to track down and bring back for execution ‘one of them’ – a Jew.

Or how about the international bestseller  ‘Love in small letters’ by Francesc Miralles When Samuel wakes up on 1st January, he is convinced that the year ahead will bring nothing exciting or unusual – until a strange visitor bursts into his flat, determined not to leave. The appearance of Mishima, a young stray cat, leads Samuel to a strange encounter with Valdemar and his neighbour Titus, with whom he had previously never exchanged a word, and is the beginning of the incredible transformation that is about to occur in the secluded world he has built around himself


#FF Poem of the week

John Keats: poemsTo Autumn by John Keats 1795- 1821


    SEASON of mists and mellow fruitfulness, 
        Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun; 
    Conspiring with him how to load and bless 
        With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run; 
    To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees, 
        And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core; 
            To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells 
    With a sweet kernel; to set budding more, 
        And still more, later flowers for the bees, 
        Until they think warm days will never cease, 
            For Summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.


    Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store? 
        Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find 
    Thee sitting careless on a granary floor, 
        Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind; 
    Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep, 
        Drows’d with the fume of poppies, while thy hook 
            Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers: 
    And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep 
        Steady thy laden head across a brook; 
        Or by a cyder-press, with patient look, 
            Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.


    Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they? 
        Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,— 
    While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day, 
        And touch the stubble plains with rosy hue; 
    Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn 
        Among the river sallows, borne aloft 
            Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies; 
    And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn; 
        Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft 
        The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft; 
           And gathering swallows twitter in the skies

Crime novels we guarantee you’ll love

We’ve handpicked the following crime novels from recommendations by Leeds Readers. Money back if you don’t enjoy Saints of the Shadow Biblethem :)

Ian Rankin – Saints of the Shadow Bible Rebus is back on the force, albeit with a demotion and a chip on his shoulder. A 30-year-old case is being reopened, and Rebus’s team from back then is suspected of foul play. With Malcolm Fox as the investigating officer, are the past and present about to collide in a shocking and murderous fashion? And does Rebus have anything to hide? His old colleagues called themselves ‘the Saints’, and swore a bond on something called ‘the Shadow Bible’. Times have changed and the crimes of the past may not stay hidden much longer, especially with a referendum on Scottish independence just around the corner. Who are the saints and who are the sinners? And can the one ever become the other?

The house of dollsDavid Hewson – The House of Dolls Anneliese Vos, 16-year-old daughter of Amsterdam detective, Pieter Vos, disappeared 3 years ago in mysterious circumstances. Her distraught father’s desperate search reveals nothing and he leaves the police force. One day, while Vos is wasting time at the Rijksmuseum staring at a doll’s house that seems to be connected to the case, Laura Bakker, a misfit trainee detective, visits him. She tells him that Katja Prins, daughter of a local politician, has gone missing in similar circumstances. Vos finds himself drawn back into the life of a detectiveRubbernecker.

Belinda Bauer – Rubbernecker Patrick has been on the outside all his life. Thoughtful, but different, and infuriating even to his own mother, his life changes when he follows an obsession with death to study anatomy at university. When he uncovers a crime that everybody else was too close to see, he proves finally that he has been right all along: nothing is exactly as it seems, and that there have been many more lies closer to home

The strange death of Fiona GriffithsHarry Bingham – The strange death of Fiona Griffiths -When DC Fiona Griffiths says ‘yes’ to her policeman boyfriend, it’s an affirmation that she wants finally to put her psychological breakdown behind her. She still can’t resist the challenge of an undercover policing course. Finding it easy to assume a new identity, she comes top of the class. So when an ingenious payroll fraud starts to look like the tip of a huge criminal iceberg, she’s selected to infiltrate the fraudsters’ operation. Posing as a meek former payroll clerk forced to work as a cleaner, she hopes the criminals will try to recruit her – knowing that if they discover her real identity, she’s dead.The keeper

Luke Delaney – The Keeper - Different to most cops, DI Sean Corrigan’s no psychic, but his own dark past enables him to see a crime through the eyes of the offender. He understands what drives a person to commit murder, rape, arson – but sometimes his gift seems more like a burden. When the body of a brutally murdered woman is found in the woods, Corrigan and his team are on the case, yet it’s not the act of a one-time offender. They’re on the trail of someone who has been taking women from their homes and keeping them captive before disposing of their bodies

Angelica's smileJames Oswald – The hangman’s song -The body of a man is founding hanging in an empty house. To the Edinburgh police force this appears to be a simple suicide case. Days later another body is found. The body is hanging from an identical rope and the noose has been tied using the same knot. Then a third body is found. As McLean digs deeper he descends into a world where the lines of reality are blurred and that the most irrational answers become the only explanations

Andrea Camilleri – Angelica’s Smile – When members of Vigata’s elite are targeted in a series of perfectly executed burglaries, Inspector Montalbano reluctantly takes the case. It soon becomes clear however that more links these privileged few than simply their lost possessions. It isn’t long too before Montalbano finds himself taken with one of the victims, the captivatingly beautiful young Angelica. But as the detective’s attraction grows – until he can think of little else – a series of strange, anonymous letters claiming responsibility for the thefts begin to arrive. Death of a scholar

Carin Gerhardsen – Cinderella girl When (Swedish) detective Petra Westman finds an unconscious child in an undergrowth, and shortly after stumbles upon the mother’s dead body hidden inside a grit bin, the Hammarby Police team is shocked by the gruesomeness of this case. And the strangest thing is that nobody seems to be missing the victims. Soon chief investigator Conny Sjøberg is faced with another murder. A teenage girl has been killed aboard cruise ship Cinderella and her younger sister will be next if Sjøberg can’t uncover the killer.
The cuckoo's calling Susanna Gregory – Death of a scholar In 1358 the physician Matthew Bartholomew returns to Cambridge to learn his sister is in mourning after the unexpected death of her husband, Oswald. Aware that his son had no interest in the cloth trade that made his fortune, Oswald left the business to his widow, but a spate of burglaries in the town distracts Matthew from supporting Edith in her grief and keeping the peace between her and her wayward son. As well as the theft of irreplaceable items from Michaelhouse, which threatens its very survival, a new foundation, Winwick Hall, is causing consternation amongst Matthew’s colleagues

Robert Galbraith –
The cuckoo’s calling
  Galbraith =J.K. Rowling’s pseudonym. This gripping, elegant mystery is steeped in the atmosphere of London. A war veteran wounded both physically& psychologically,  Strike’s life is in disarray but the case he is working on gives him a lifeline, despite coming at a personal cost

M. C. Beaton – Death of a policeman Local police stations all over the Scottish Highlands are threatened with closure and this presents an opportunity for DCI Blair, who would love nothing more than to get rid of Sergeant Hamish Macbeth. Blair suggests that Cyril Sessions, a keen young police officer, visit the town of Lochdubh to monitor exactly what Hamish does. On hearing of Blair’s plans Hamish is fully prepared to ensure young Cyril returns back to hq with a full report, but before he can do that, Cyril is found dead and Hamish very quickly becomes the prime suspect for his murder.