Nightbitch: Stylist’s cult breakout
‘OUTRAGEOUS, SMART, FUN’ BONNIE GARMUS, Sunday Times bestselling author of Lessons in Chemistry
‘INCREDIBLE’ Carmen Maria Machado
One day, the mother was a mother but then, one night, she was quite suddenly something else…
At home full-time with her two-year-old son, an artist finds she is struggling. She is lonely and exhausted. Her husband, always travelling for his work, calls her from faraway hotel rooms. One more toddler bedtime, and she fears she might lose her mind.
Instead, she starts gaining things, surprising things that happen one night when her child will not sleep. New appetites, new instincts. And from deep within herself, a new voice…
‘Terrifically alive’ Observer
‘I tore through it’ Lisa McInerney
‘The spiritual successor to Angela Carter’ Evening Standard
‘Funny and unnerving as hell’ Jenny Offill
Doom 94 is Jonevs’ debut novel, published first as Jelgava 94 in Latvia in 2013 and was quickly proved to be a big hit and bestseller. Translated into 11 languages already, it is here for the first time in English.
The story is set in the 1990s in the Latvian city of Jelgava and looks at the burgeoning craze during this decade for the alternative culture of heavy metal music. Jonevs takes the reader deep inside the world of music, combining the intimate diary of a youngster trying to find himself by joining a subculture, as well as a skilful, detailed, and almost documentary-like depiction of the beginnings of the second independence of Latvia–where Jonevs is the first writer to stir up memories of this period through a fully-fledged literary depiction.
Doom 94 is a portrait of a generation searching for their identity and up against the world, trying not to become ‘one of them’. But is it for real? Can any adult keep the promise made as a child?
Under the intense summer sun on the Essex coast a gull falls from the sky and strikes an unassuming local council worker sitting on the beach below. From that moment on he is obsessed, a crazed visionary repeatedly depicting the scene and the unknown figure within it who filled his view at the moment of impact. The mysterious beauty of his creations draw others to him, but can they lay hold of that which possesses him? And what of his anonymous muse? MAN WITH A SEAGULL ON HIS HEAD is an insightful exploration of art, love and creativity. We follow Ray Eccles and his unlikely muse, their lives becoming intertwined with others as they advance on their bizarre journey through the London art scene. We meet Grace Zoob, an insecure heiress in search of meaning, validation and love; Amanda Parsons, an ambitious girl from the suburbs who suspects there’s more to life than marriage and children but finds herself consumed by both; and Grace’s daughter, Mira, a beautiful, damaged young woman. Five very different lives, linked by a common thread, for all have experienced the true and extraordinary beauty of life, bursting through the veil of daily existence, only to disappear again before it can be fully grasped.
Gabriela Babnik’s novel Dry Season breaks the mould of what we usually expect from a writer from a small, Central European nation. With a global perspective, Babnik takes on the themes of racism, the role of women in modern society and the loneliness of the human condition. Dry Season is a record of an unusual love affair. Anna is a 62-year-old designer from Slovenia and Ismael is a 27-year-old from Burkina Faso who was brought up on the street, where he was often the victim of abuse. What unites them is the loneliness of their bodies, a tragic childhood and the dry hamartan season, during which neither nature nor love is able to flourish. She soon realizes that the emptiness between them is not really caused by their skin colour and age difference, but predominantly by her belonging to the Western culture in which she has lost or abandoned all the preordained roles of daughter, wife and mother. Sex does not outstrip the loneliness and repressed secrets from the past surface into a world she sees as much crueller and, at the same time, more innocent than her own. Cleverly written as an alternating narrative of both sides in the relationship, the novel is interlaced with magic realism.
Television’s most popular car show presenter lives his life in the shadow of his career and his persona. He has the perfect job. He doesn’t have the perfect family. His wife retches in the bathrooms of exclusive restaurants; his daughter’s obsession with a friend is consuming her; his son lives a double life selling pornography by day and gaming on-line by night. The presenter views his family from the outside and watches as they slowly disintegrate in front of him, unable to control anything that is not scripted. Socrates Adams perfectly mirrors what magazines sell to their readers in a bleak, satirical look at what modern families might think they want to be.
This is a book that lives in two parts – one set in the Ottoman empire of the 16th century, and the other in our own 21st century reality. Here we have the story of two friends, both taken as children from their homes and inducted into the Turkish Sultan’s private guard: Sokollu Mehmed Pasha, the Serbian shepherd boy who rose to the position of Grand Vizier and Koca Mimar Sinan, the ‘Michelangelo of the East’. Between them they represent both destruction and creation, while at the same time providing us with a harrowing insight into the heart of religion and identity. Back in our own time, we hear the voice of the author, sharing with us his experiences in the modern world, and his musings on faith, identity and nation. This is a truly ambitious book that rewards the reader with insights into some of the great questions of our time.