Understanding Balance in Life to Benefit Storytelling
April 19, 2018
War Reportage by Omar Sabbagh
April 30, 2018

April Reads

Here are some books for you to enjoy in the spring sunshine. (That line is bound to age horribly.) James


"This vast novel covers generations of the same family, beginning with two sisters. Born on the Gold Coast of Africa, one sister marries a slave trader; the other is sold into slavery and put on a ship bound for America’s cotton-picking plantations. Gyasi follows the story of their descendants, tracking from Ghana to the US and back again. Charting the devastation of the slave trade and its impact right up to the present day, this is a truly epic novel." - Louise Hare

Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi


"I loved Hot Milk, and Things I Don't Want to Know, so was keen to read this. In her fifties, with her world thrown into unexpected chaos, Levy hurtles through life and London on her e-bike then harnesses her wise, wild and wonderful thoughts in her writing shed. Very funny, moving and exciting." - Kate Ellis

The Cost of Living by Deborah Levy


"Well-crafted, complex and entertaining in its many ironies. Posing as a work of historical fiction, this speculative, dystopian novel suggests that it is not power itself that corrupts but the power to inflict harm that corrupts absolutely. Unlike "The Handmaid's Tale," there is no overall premise that women in general are the more humane sex. It appealed to my latent, dark side and was a great page turner." - Elinor Johns

The Power by Naomi Alderman


"Kudos concludes Cusk's Outline trilogy. Reading it was like sitting down and letting long conversations between intelligent strangers wash over me. I still can't quite figure out why these exchanges are so compelling, but they are." - Kate Ellis

'Kudos' by Rachel Cusk


"Spotting the spines of Anne Enright on my shelves of favourite fiction, I was reminded of her exquisite 2015 novel, The Green Road. The story of a fragmented family hurtling towards a 'last Christmas' together invites the reader, chapter by chapter, into the past and present inner worlds of each sibling and that of their mother, Rosaleen, the source of all their heartache. Enright’s words scatter and twinkle like gems on the page, leaving traces of her wisdom and humour long after reading." - Stella Klein

The Green Road by Anne Enright


"Set in a small Ukrainian town just after the German invasion in 1941, Rachel Seiffert’s latest novel focuses on the three days that follow the arrival of the SS. Ephraim is rounded up with the rest of the Jews, but his two sons have gone missing. This is a devastating story, but not without hope, and it will stay with me for a long time." - Louise Hare

A Boy in Winter by Rachel Seiffert


"I was given this book for Christmas and finally got around to reading it. I love Atwood's science fiction, it always feels far too close to home and this story is no different. After a global recession leaves them in poverty, Stan and Charmaine opt to live in a comfortable prison rather than destitute in their car. It doesn't take long for comfy to become boring though and the couple's comical attempts to find a bit of excitement put them in serious danger. I was cringing all the way through and thoroughly enjoyed it." - Melanie Jones

The Heart Goes Last by Margaret Atwood


"This has been a bestseller at work (in Brick Lane Bookshop) since its release and recently won this year's Jhalak Prize. Eddo-Lodge writes in searing prose about the presence, experience and problem of racism in Britain today. A vital read." - Kate Ellis

Why I'm No Longer Talking to White People about Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge