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.
The War of the Worlds
Part of Penguin’s beautiful hardback Clothbound Classics series, designed by the award-winning Coralie Bickford-Smith, these delectable and collectible editions are bound in high-quality, colourful, tactile cloth with foil stamped into the design.
From the planet of war they came to conquer the Earth …
The night after a shooting star is seen streaking across the sky, a cylinder is discovered on Horsell Common. Fascinated and exhilarated, the local people approach the mysterious object armed with nothing more than a white flag. But when gruesome alien creatures emerge armed with all-destroying heat-rays, their rashness turns rapidly to fear. As the rays blaze towards them, it soon becomes clear they have no choice but to flee – or die.
The forces of the Earth, however, may prove harder to beat than they at first appear …
J SS Bach is the story of three generations of women from either side of Germany’s 20th Century horror story – one side, a Jewish family from Vienna, the other linked to a ranking Nazi official at Dachau concentration camp – who suffer the consequences of what men do.
Fast forward to 1990s California, and two survivors from the families meet. Rosa is a young Australian musicologist; Otto is a world-famous composer and cellist. Music and history link them. A novel of music, the Holocaust, love, and a dog.
Long Listed for The Asian Man Literature Prize when published in India as THE LAST PRETENCE. When Malika loses her longed-for daughter at birth, it is not the only loss in the family: the surviving twin -a boy – loses the love of his mother. He grows up needing to be the daughter his mother wants, the son his scientist father accepts, and more, with the guilt of being the one who survived. In a recently independent India, haunted by its colonial past and striving to find its identity, he struggles to find his own self. Sarayu Srivatsa has created a moving family portrait, richly-coloured by the vibrant culture and landscape of India, where history, religion and gender collide in a family scarred by the past and struggling with the future.
Malka Sabbatto is a young woman who flees the confines of her traditional family in Jerusalem, followed by Moshe, a Russian immigrant and her father’s top student. After falling in with a sinister cult in Safed she escapes to Jaffa, where she starts to build a new life under the wing of an Arab chef. When she feels she has finally found contentment, a family tragedy forces her to return to Jerusalem. RAISING SPARKS reveals the hidden worlds, shared histories and unknown stories of the modern Middle East.
Travels with Chinaski is the lonely lurch into lunacy, anarchy, the drunken fall into disassociation, the paralytic collapse into alienation – the utter, utter headlong, bar-storming leap into the liberation of madness. Chinaski: the freedom, the fuck death, to fuck your only friend’s girl, to fuck over rat-infested bed-sit-land, to fuck your kidneys, your liver, your numerous court appearances and then to fucking care about your beautiful beat-up neighbour as she cries in the night. Chinaski walks into your life, side-stepping last night’s cold sick on the floor, he kicks you out of bed, he’s back from the dead and he is going to make you dance, rage and drink with sheer life. Chinaski is there for you like a hangover that’s moved in to stay.
Madness Can Set You Free
“Daithidh MacEochaidh’s words are delightfully wordy, swimming in the deep end of the language baths… I’m rereading Kerouac for ‘The Big Read’, and it seems to me that MacEochaidh shares some of his linguistic exuberance. More power to him!” – Ian McMillan
“Prose as raw as a manhir, designed to skin your knuckles” – Dai Vaughan
How did the girl who once dreamed of being a Charlie’s Angel become such a cowed and submissive woman? Marion’s life appears perfectly fine but she is controlled and bullied by her husband, her only respite a once a week trip to the local swimming pool. A chance meeting with an old school-friend develops into a secret relationship. She could leave her abusive and unfaithful husband. But is it too late?