Owen Sheers is a Welsh author, poet and playwright, and is Professor of Creativity at Swansea University. ‘I Saw a Man’ is his third novel, following his debut ‘Resistance’, which he also adapted into a feature film, and his novella ‘White Ravens’. He has also published several volumes of poetry.
A sensitive and moving character-driven novel of great emotional depth, ‘I Saw a Man’ follows the story of Michael Turner, who, after the loss of his wife, moves to London and develops a close bond with the Nelson family next door. Josh, Samantha and their two young children seem to represent everything Michael fears he may now never have: intimacy, children, stability and a family home.
But something that begins as a casual friendship changes dramatically and leads to tragic consequences. This interestingly constructed novel spans continents, from London and Wales to New York and the Nevada deserts. Drawn from the start into the characters’ disturbing secrets and lies, the reader is kept guessing on many levels about them and what drives them, until the big reveal.
Owen Sheers has written a gripping and classy moral thriller, but much more than that too. It is beautifully written and a great read.
The Bees – Laline Paull– 4th Estate £8.99
As astonishing debut novel, deservedly garnering critical acclaim and award shortlist nominations, from British playwright Laline Paull, who resides in East Sussex.
Flora 717 is born into the lowest ‘kin’ (caste) of her Hive. However her abnormally large size and ability to speak, when the rest of her kin are mute, singles her out for the attention of her Hive’s priestesses. She is permitted to rise through the ranks of the Hive’s hierarchies to become a ‘forager’, even being admitted to serve the exalted Queen, and ultimately becoming both saviour and challenger of her Hive’s fanatically controlled regime.
‘The Bees’ is both a meditation on totalitarian regimes, bringing to mind Margaret Atwood’s ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ in its portrayal of a female-led society in which only the chosen may breed, and a fascinating insight into the hive mentality and the chemical, pheromone-soaked world of insect society. It is quite incredible how lyrically yet precisely Laline Paull renders the essential ‘bee-ness’ of scent-based communication, and immerses the reader so deeply in what is essentially an alien consciousness.
A timely subject, given the present peril of our bee populations.
Mind-blowingly imaginative, gripping and unique – my first absolute must-read this year!
Book launch at The Steyning Bookshop in association with Pan Macmillan.
Popular Worthing-based writer Pam Weaver will be launching her new novel ‘Blue Moon’, a romantic saga set in 1930’s Worthing.
Wine and Canapes will be served. Please contact us to reserve your free invitation.
Thursday 16th July 7.30 pm.
Bring your little ones along for some MONSTROUS fun with lively children’s writer / illustrator Leigh Hodgkinson, author of lots of great children’s picture books including her latest, ‘The Big Monster Snorey Book’. Leigh will read stories, do LOTS of doodling, and help children make their very own sleepy/wakey moving monster!
Suitable for ages 3 – 8.
Tickets £2 redeemable against a book. Free Refreshments.
We feel absolutely privileged and thrilled to welcome award-winning novelist Louis de Bernieres back to Steyning. Louis is perhaps best known his best-selling novel ‘Captain Corelli’s Mandolin’, and for his wonderful Turkish historical epic ‘Birds without Wings’. Louis is a fascinating speaker who has held down an astonishing array of jobs, and is also an accomplished musician and a gifted poet, so we should be in for a real treat! We will be celebrating the release of Louis’ eighth novel, ‘The Dust that Falls from Dreams’, published by Vintage, which promises to be a sweeping, moving chronicle of war and romance, as the fading Edwardian values of the late 19th century are transformed by the shifts of the First World War. ‘The Dust that Falls from Dreams’ is to be the first in a trilogy loosely based on Louis’ own family history.
Tickets cost £35, and include a copy of Louis’ latest book, and a delicious, seasonal 2 course meal.