I mentioned in my last post that I love publishers who reprint out of print classics that have slipped under the radar for whatever reason. Now with e-books, it’s even easier for a canny publisher to bring back an author’s backlist without the thought of being left with a warehouse full of unsold hard copies. I discovered Martin Edwards through his wonderful Lake District series. He also wrote an earlier series featuring Liverpool lawyer Harry Devlin but most of the titles have been out of print for some time. I borrowed Waterloo Sunset from work & enjoyed it very much & Arcturus Classics have recently reprinted the first in the series, All the Lonely People. Now, Andrews UK have reprinted most of the rest of the series as POD paperbacks & e-books. Distinguished crime writers have contributed new Introductions & Martin has written a “Making Of” feature for each title & there’s a teaser chapter of the next book in the series. All the details are here at Martin’s blog.
Martin’s blog also reminded me of Bello, Pan Macmillan’s new e-book imprint. They have some fantastic authors, including Josephine Bell, a mystery novelist I read in the dim dark past but would love to read more of her books. She also wrote historical novels which are part of the new Bello list as well. Other authors include Vita Sackville-West, Eva Ibbotson, R C Sherriff (author of the terrific Persephone reprint, The Hopkins Manuscript), Francis Durbridge & Lillian Beckwith. I’m especially interested in the Lillian Beckwith books as I love stories set in Scotland & her memoirs & novels set in the Hebrides have been out of print for some time.
I’m reading Susanna Kearsley’s novel The Shadowy Horses at the moment. I read all her books as they were published but this was an especial favourite & I recently read a rave review (I can’t remember where now) that made me long to read it again. It’s just as good as I remember & looking at Fantastic Fiction to find out when it was published (easier than going back in my e-book), I discovered that Susanna has a new book due out next March called The Firebird. Tantalisingly that’s all I can find out about it. There’s no blurb on Amazon & nothing on Susanna’s website.
O Douglas is another of my recent favourites, discovered thanks to Greyladies in Edinburgh. They’re publishing two new books next month & one of them is by O Douglas, The Day of Small Things. I think it’s a sequel to The Proper Place which I enjoyed & reviewed here.
Finally, two books that I’ve pre-ordered & can’t wait to get my hands on. Michael Slater’s biography of Charles Dickens was published a few years ago & I loved it. Now, he’s written a book (published in September) about Dickens’s relationship with Nelly Ternan, The Great Charles Dickens Scandal. He not only describes the relationship between Dickens & Nelly & the lengths Dickens went to to keep it a secret but also discusses how the relationship was finally revealed & the many intrigues that accompanied each revelation.
Maggie Lane has been writing about Jane Austen for many years & her thoughts are always insightful & beautifully expressed. Her new book (published in October), Understanding Austen, was the result of a series of articles she wrote for Jane Austen’s Regency World magazine. The articles explored some of Austen’s favourite words which express her ideas about human worth – elegance, openness, fortitude. It’s sure to send me back to reread at least one of the novels.
Well, I can never say I have nothing to read & nothing to look forward to!