Adele Parks – the preview interview, for Essex Book Festival

On Tuesday 4th March, Adele Parks will be at Rayleigh Library as part of the Essex Book Festival, talking about her fascinating new novel Spare Brides. In a huge departure for Adele, Spare Brides takes us back in time, nearly 100 years, to follow the stories of four friends in a generation where few women could hope for a husband, after the appalling destruction of World War One.

In this centenary year of the beginning of that conflict, Adele took time out to answer some questions about her first historical novel from Kate, to give us a taster of what we can expect… Continue reading “Adele Parks – the preview interview, for Essex Book Festival”

Books in the post: Dodger by Terry Pratchett – preview!

Dodger is a tosher – a sewer scavenger living in the squalor of Dickensian London. Everyone who is nobody knows him. Anyone who is anybody doesn’t. He used to know his future; it involved a lot of brick-lined tunnels and plenty of filth. But when he rescues a young girl from a beating thing start to get really messy. Now everyone who is anyone wants to get their hands on Dodger.

Dodger is just one of Terry Pratchett’s many books out this year; it’s scheduled for September, following Snuff, The World of Poo, and The Long Earth, co-written with Stephen Baxter. It’s set in Dickensian London, not just because it’s the 1800s but because “Charlie” himself features heavily in this mystery thriller. Dodger and Charlie attempt to unravel the mystery as to why a young lady is viciously attacked in an alleyway on a typically British dark and rainy night, although neither trusts the other completely. Dodger is obviously a member of the criminal underclass, if a rather more noble one than most, and he sees immediately that Charlie is clever and incredibly observant – not someone to be trifled with, especially if Dodger wants to stay unnoticed in the backstreets of London.

We’ve only had a taster so far but Dodger is written in Pratchett’s typical witty and winding prose style, full of humour and perceptive observations. I can’t wait to see what happens next…

Dodger by Terry Pratchett is published on 13th September.

Kate Neilan @Magic_kitten

Books in the post: What in God’s Name by Simon Rich

How can you help mankind when they won’t help themselves? Welcome to Heaven Inc. Meet God, CEO of Heaven Inc. Its mantra? “We’ve got Earth covered”. Unless of course someone is away from their desk. But these days, God is kind of disillusioned. He knows he should be keeping an eye on genocides and stuff, but he’d rather watch the church channels on cable. And his first priority in terms of wielding his power is to get Lynyrd Skynyrd back together…

What In God’s Name is the second novel from the youngest ever writer to be hired by Saturday Night Live, Simon Rich. His previous offering, Elliot Allagash, won him many high-profile fans, including Judd Apatow and Jon Stewart, and was described as Clueless for boys. In this book, he looks to his Jewish upbringing for inspiration and creates a deeply, dryly funny and ironic view of just what the big man upstairs might be getting up to. And, of course, what his helpers might be doing to keep him on the straight and narrow. This concept isn’t new, of course – I’m thinking Dogma, or A Life Less Ordinary – but with a topic and canvas as big as this, there’s plenty of room left for interpretation.

Simon will be in the UK in August when What In God’s Name is published, by Serpent’s Tail; keep an eye out, this looks like a good one…