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The Hours Before Dawn by Celia Fremlin (re-issue)

  A young mother feels her sanity slipping from sheer exhaustion. Her baby isn't sleeping and her husband's frustration nearly pushes her over the edge. To make ends meet, they take in a lodger. But when strange things begin happening, Louise and her husband both get the feeling they've seen this woman before. But where? …

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Jane Austen Bicentenary: 1817 – 2017

  Tomorrow marks the 200th anniversary of the death of Jane Austen. Austenites world-wide have been in a tizzy of activity all year, organizing programs and events scheduled out past the bicentenary date. Every site associated with her life will be buzzing this summer, converged upon by fans the world over. Joining them in their …

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New books about Austen, Woolf and the Brontës

  2017: A Year of Literary Nonfiction Celebrating British Women Writers Hat tip to nonfiction scribblers assiduously churning out new literary biographies and criticism about these iconic female authors each and every year. Convinced surely there could be no new angle, I’m always pleasantly surprised when out pops a new one. Wherever this New Idea …

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Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

IT book of the Summer: 2017 Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman   I'm not normally one to read the IT books of the summer. When a book garners too much attention, I get suspicious. When I get suspicious, I reach for something else. The quality of popular books is too unreliable, too …

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Nailing Jess by Triona Scully – but mostly, a lecture on craft

Every now and then I make a mad grab for a book, something I run across serendipitously while perusing bookshop events or stumble over in my email. A title or description will catch my eye, I'll shoot off an email to the publisher and request a review copy. How often this works out satisfactorily to …

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Walter Scott Prize goes to…. and a John Cleese event

  After all the build up, an exciting evening was had at the Walter Scott Prize event. Having read all the shortlist candidates save one, determining Sebastian Barry's Days Without End the rightful winner, he did, indeed, come away with the award. http:// It was an unseasonably warm day last Saturday. Temperatures were in the 20s …

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Walter Scott Prize Shortlist: Jo Baker & Francis Spufford, plus a recap

  As time draws to a close before the prize winner is announced tomorrow in Melrose, Scotland, it's time to opine on the last two novels from the shortlist which I'd planned to read and talk about. Namely: A Country Road, A Tree by Jo Baker and Francis Spufford's Golden Hill.         …

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