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David Booker – General Manager
Brute, Emily Skaja
A very dark and disturbing collection of poetry about an abusive relationship and ultimatley breaking free. Beautifully written and the deserved winner of the Walt Whitman Award.
Eve Booker – Assistant Manager
Picnic in the Storm, Yukiko Motoya
Picnic in the Storm is a collection of short stories. They are quite strange and never end as you would expect. I couldn’t put this book down. Very unusual.
Sophie Barker-Wood – Bookseller, Online Orders, YFRP
The Gallow’s Pole, Benjamin Myers
Beautifully stark and illuminating prose telling the story of the Cragg Vale Coiners. Set in pre-industrial revolution Yorkshire Dales, this book has a powerful sense of place and pioneers fictional nature-writing and alternative historical fiction.
For fans of: Jon McGregor, Amy Liptrot and Roger Deakin.
Les Hurst – Finance Manager & Health & Safety
The Mass Psychology of Facism, Wilhelm Reich
“Like sadism, war among one’s own kind is an acquisition of ‘civilized’ man…” In this great work written at Hitler’s rise and revised during Worl War II, Reich examines the irrational hateds which still permeate society in the 21st Century.
Charlotte Lunn – Bookseller, Social Media & Events Co-ordinator
Rabbit, Sophie Robinson
Rabbit is caught in the age of social media yearning to connect. Poignant images weighted in trauma and structurally playful. Chosen for the Poetry Book Society Wild Card.
Ashton Marriott – Bookseller
I’m a Joke and So Are You: Reflections on Humour and Humanity, Robin Ince
A fascinating and erudite examination of what it means to be human. I’m a big fan of Ince: his wide ranging knowledge (Laurel and Hardy to Quantum Physics) and tangential thoughts are brought together here brilliantly. Conversations with psychologists, neuroscientists, fellow comedians and occultists culminate in not only one of the best books I’ve read this year but also one which, for me, most directly engages with what it means to be a flailing lump of matter, trying to make sense of it all. His interviews with Alan Moore and Nina Conti about the psychology of creativity were particular highlights.
Overall a wonderfully uplifting and insightful book. I give it 9 Jilly Cooper’s out of 10.*
*10 if it was Riders by Jilly Cooper. Sadly, few books are.
Bev De’Ath – Bookseller & Second-hand Stock Control
The Story of Lucy Gault, William Trevor
Trevor’s arrangement of words in a sentence is a masterly appropriation of Irish syntax. A melancholy realism of thoughts unspoken drives the narrative. There is beauty in both the telling and the tale. Lucy’s story is how it is, Trevor is saying, not how we would like it to be (ed. Nicely said Bev).
Ruben Ramirez – Cafe Staff (& Susan Sontag Impersonator)
Novacene, James Lovelock
A great book for anyone moderatley interested in delaying the imminent destruction of all life on Earth.
Gareth Hill – Part-Time Shop Assistant
Mindfulness, Mark Williams & Danny Penman
An amazingly simple book. It helps you to make sitting quietly into a habit. It has helped me enormously. To reduce anxiety, build confidence and even inprove my health. If you think it might help, try it.