Terry Pratchett dies aged 66

imageWe’re very sad to hear of the death of Terry Pratchett.

He was 66 and died eight years after his Alzheimer’s diagnosis.

He wrote over 70 novels, selling more than 75m books worldwide and was one of the UK’s most-loved aithors for his Discworld novels –  The Colour of Magic was published in 1983. His 40th, Raising Steam, came out last year. He had completed  his recent work using voice-recognition software.

He worked with science fiction writer Stephen Baxter on the  “Long Earth” series of novels, the fourth -The Long Utopia – is due out in the summer.


Great Reads @BaileysPrize Fiction longlist is announced

Longlist for Bailey's Women's PrizeThe Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction longlist features some great reads. With five debut novelists and eight previously shortlisted authors, it showcases both rising stars and well-established writers.

Chair of the judging panel Shami Chakrabarti said: “The Prize’s 20th year is a particularly strong one for women’s fiction.  All judges fought hard for their favourites and the result is a 2015 list of 20 to be proud of – with its mix of genres and styles, first-timers and well-known names from around the world. There is a very strong showing of UK writers and we are all incredibly excited about the final stages of the search for the winner.”

The 20 books will be cut down to a shortlist of six and an overall winner will be chosen by 3rd June.

LonglistBAILEYS Women's Prize for Fiction

Click through on the links to find more information about the books.

Rachel Cusk-  Outline

Lissa Evans – Crooked Heart 5 star rated by Leeds readers

Patricia Ferguson – Aren’t We Sisters?

Xiaolu Guo – I Am China

Samantha Harvey –  Dear Thief

Emma Healey – Elizabeth is Missing

Emily St. John Mandel – Station Eleven

Grace McCleen – The Offering

Sandra Newman – The Country of Ice Cream Star

Heather O’Neill – The Girl Who Was Saturday Night

Laline Paull – The Bees

Marie Phillips – The Table of Less Valued Knights

Rachel Seiffert – The Walk Home

Kamila Shamsie – A God in Every Stone

Ali Smith – How to be Both

Sara Taylor – The Shore

Anne Tyler – A Spool of Blue Thread

Sarah Waters – The Paying Guests

Jemma Wayne – After Before

PP Wong – The Life of a Banana

Mortdecai – have you read the books yet?

Don't point that thing at meAnyone been to see Johnny Depp and Gwyneth Paltrow in the film ‘Mortdecai’?

You might be interested in reading the novels by Kyril Bonfiglioli on which the film is based and which have been reissued by Penguin (The Mortdecai Trilogy and The Great Mortdecai Moustache Mystery).

Sometimes compared to P G Wodehouse’s Jeeves and Wooster novels for their humour but altogether darker (Mortdecai has a thuggish sidekick called Jock and Mortdecai himself is more cunning than Bertie Wooster), the author’s wife also said Bonfiglioli owed a debt to Kipling.

Mortdecai says of himself: “I am in the prime of life, if that tells you anything, of barely average height, of sadly over-average weight and am possessed of the intriguing remains of rather flashy good looks … I like art and money and dirty jokes and drink. I am very successful. I discovered at my goodish second-rate public school that almost anyone can win a fight if he is prepared to put his thumb into the other fellow’s eye.”

We’ve got one title in stock and we’re ordering  more.

Don’t point that thing at me by Kyril Bonfiglioli –Portly art dealer and seasoned epicurean Charlie Mortdecai comes into possession of a stolen Goya, the disappearance of which is causing a diplomatic ruction between Spain and its allies. Not that that matters to Charlie … until compromising pictures of some British diplomats also come into his possession and start to muddy the waters.

A Great Opportunity for Authors @TinderPress @readingagency

Tinder Press A place called WinterTinder Press and The Reading Agency will hold an open submissions period from 2 -15 March 2015 for ‘unagented manuscripts’.  Authors will be able to send their manuscripts direct to the imprint and an event will be held to celebrate two years of Tinder Press.

 Tinder said: “Since we launched Tinder Press with the publication of ‘Instructions for a Heatwave’ by Maggie O’Farrell, we’ve had a huge amount to celebrate, and 2015 is already shaping up to be an exciting year, with new novels from Patrick Gale and Sarah Winman.

At Tinder Press we are committed to finding the freshest literary voices, and the time seems right for us to reach out directly to authors at an early stage in their careers. This business is all about discovering new talent, so we’re hoping to be surprised and delighted, and that at the end of the day we’ll find an author we can go on to work with in the future.”

 The Reading Agency will help promote the open submissions period to libraries and readers with a poster and flyer campaign in libraries, as well as using its Reading Groups for Everyone website to reach reading groups.

 Karen Brodie, head of publisher relations at The Reading Agency, said: “Knowing the close connection libraries have with writers, we are delighted to be partnering with Tinder Press to bring a unique opportunity like this to library audiences and reading groups.”

 Authors should submit 50 pages, an outline and their author biography. Only previously unpublished writers of fiction can take part, and short stories as well as novels will be considered.  All submitted books must be complete and written in English. Submissions will be read by the imprint’s editors.

 Tinder may then request a full manuscripts -selected authors will have the opportunity to meet one of the Tinder Press editors. More information can be found on the Tinder Press website


Which books do male and female readers prefer?

Hollow CityWhat do men and women want when it comes to books? Do they prefer books written by their own sex? What do they think of books written by the opposite sex?  GoodReads has surveyed 40,000 active members on their site, 20,000 men, 20,000 women, to determine what they read and what they liked.

Most popular books by a female author read by men this year, according to GoodReads, were:

City of Heavenly Fire by Cassandra Clare

We Were Liars by E Lockhart

Cress by Marissa Meyer

The Storied Life of AJ Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin

Four by Veronica Roth

 The most popular titles by male authors read by female readers were:

Hollow City by Ransom Riggs

The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan

All the Light We Cannot See – Anthony Doerr

Mr Mercedes – Stephen King

The Silkworm – Robert Galbraith

The collected works of A.J. FikrySome of the titles above are ‘Young Adult’ books – many are 5* rated on our catalogue.
Inspired by the #readwomen movement to investigate, GoodReads found out of the men’s 50 most-read titles this year, 90% were by male authors and the converse is also true. Out of the 50 books published in 2014 most read by women, 45 are by female authors, five by male (one was Robert Galbraith, aka JK Rowling). “Ultimately, when it comes to the most popular 2014 books on Goodreads we are still sticking to our own sex,”

The analysis also found that in the first year of publication, 80% of a female author’s audience will be women, compared to 50% of a male author’s audience. Yet while women appear more open to reading books by both male and female authors, they prefer books by women – as do men. “On average, women rated books by women 4 out of 5 and books by men 3.8 out of 5. Surprise! Men like women authors more, too – on average men rated books by women 3.9 out of 5 and books by men 3.8 out of five,” said Goodreads.

The survey showed men and women read the same number of books in 2014 taking into account books published in any year. But women read twice as many books published in 2014 than men did. .



Sites for budding authors

Whether you’ve begun your career as an author or would just like to start writing, these sites may help you get one step closer to The Man Booker Prize…

Mashable  – includes finding a publisher, free plagiarism checker. rank checker, editing guide and more!

 The 100 Best Websites for Writers in 2014 from  The Write Life

The Indie 50 – The 50 Best Sites for Indie and Self-Published Authors

The Writers Digest – Write better, get published

Good Web Guide for Budding Writers




Would you like to help budding authors get published?

Amazon has announced that readers can now visit its new Kindle Scout service and begin voting for the submissions they believe should be published as books. The company announced the program earlier this month and invited authors to send in excerpts of works to its crowdsourcing “reader-powered publishing program.”

Any reader can  vote for up to three submissions, with the Kindle Scout review team tabulating the votes every 30 days, and deciding which books should get published. Readers whose choices are selected  will get a free e-book edition of the book for their Kindles.

“Amazon customers are passionate readers who have long influenced which books become breakout best sellers,” said Russ Grandinetti, senior vice president of Kindle, in a press release. “With the launch of Kindle Scout, readers now have an even more direct say in what gets published and can get free books and discover new favorite authors in the process.”

Authors whose books are selected will be published by Kindle , with an advance of $1,500 advance, 50% eBook royalties, promotion on Amazon, and 5-year renewable terms.