Block of Books
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  • LONDON OVERGROUND : A DAYS WALK AROUND THE GINGER LINE
    LONDON OVERGROUND : A DAYS WALK AROUND THE GINGER LINE
    SINCLAIR IAIN
    ISBN: 9780241971499
    Title: LONDON OVERGROUND : A DAYS WALK AROUND THE GINGER LINE
    Author: SINCLAIR IAIN
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: TEMPORARILY OUT OF STOCK

    'A walk around the circuit of the elevated railway, that accidental re-mapping of London, in a single day.'

    The completion of the full circle of London Overground provides Iain Sinclair with a new path to walk the shifting territory of the capital. It is a route haunted by the unquiet voices of the city's many literary ghosts. With thirty-three stations and thirty-five miles to tramp - plus inevitable and unforeseen detours and false steps - he embarks on a marathon circumnavigation at street level, tracking the necklace of garages, fish farms, bakeries, convenience cafés, cycle repair shops and Minder lock-ups which enclose inner London.

    'A delirious, often hilarious urban palimpsest where pin-sharp observation, cultural hauntings and offbeat memoir fuse in sentences that catch your breath.' Independent

    'A haunting vivisection of London. For the aficionado, London Overground will deliver all the delights of Sinclair's edgy and hard-edged prose, for those who do not know his work it is an accessible starting point for one of the most rewarding oeuvres in 21st-century literature.' Scotland on Sunday

    'Necessary and triumphant.' Observer

    'Utterly sincere, highly personal - and, for the most part, right.' The Times Literary Supplement

    'For my money the most crucial and most bar-adjusting voice currently resonating in the English language. Those who aspire to understand what is happening in modern writing should start here.' Alan Moore



    Imprint: PENGUIN BOOKS
    RRP: $24.99
    Price: $24.99
  • LONELY PLANETS GLOBAL CHOCOLATE TOUR
    LONELY PLANETS GLOBAL CHOCOLATE TOUR
    ISBN: 9781788689458
    Title: LONELY PLANETS GLOBAL CHOCOLATE TOUR
    Format: HARD COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Chock-full of the world's tastiest chocolate experiences, the latest book in our Global Tour series is sure to satisfy the sweet tooth of cocoa lovers near and far. From South America to Europe to Australia, Lonely Planet's Global Chocolate Tour includes master chocolatiers and artisan producers, exotic cocoa plantations, and must-visit shops, plus illustrated spreads on the history, production, and science of chocolate making.

    Imprint: LONELY PLANET
    RRP: $29.99

    Price: $29.99
  • LOST CONTINENT : Travels in Small-Town America
    LOST CONTINENT : Travels in Small-Town America
    BRYSON BILL
    ISBN: 9781784161804
    Title: LOST CONTINENT : Travels in Small-Town America
    Author: BRYSON BILL
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    ‘I come from Des Moines. Somebody had to’

    And, as soon as Bill Bryson was old enough, he left. Des Moines couldn’t hold him, but it did lure him back. After ten years in England, he returned to the land of his youth, and drove almost 14,000 miles in search of a mythical small town called Amalgam, the kind of trim and sunny place where the films of his youth were set. Instead, his search led him to Anywhere, USA; a lookalike strip of gas stations, motels and hamburger outlets populated by lookalike people with a penchant for synthetic fibres. He discovered a continent that was doubly lost; lost to itself because blighted by greed, pollution, mobile homes and television; lost to him because he had become a stranger in his own land.

    Bryson’s acclaimed first success, The Lost Continent is a classic of travel literature – hilariously, stomach-achingly, funny, yet tinged with heartache – and the book that first staked Bill Bryson’s claim as the most beloved writer of his generation.

    Imprint: Black Swan
    RRP: $24.99

    Price: $24.99
  • LOST JAPAN
    LOST JAPAN
    KERR ALEX
    ISBN: 9780141979748
    Title: LOST JAPAN
    Author: KERR ALEX
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Once Japan was a place of primeval forest and pristine mountains. In recent decades, this ancient world has almost been destroyed. Alex Kerr's evocative, prize-winning Lost Japan ranges over Kabuki theatre, tea ceremonies, art, landscape, financial bubbles and his own childhood in Japan to explore a vanishing culture.

    'Alex Kerr's book carries a powerful message applicable to all cultures. He is on a life-long quest for beauty.' Issey Miyake

    'This deeply personal witness to Japan's wilful loss of its traditional culture is at the same time an immensely valuable evaluation of just what that culture was.' Donald Richie, author of The Japanese Film

    'Alex Kerr loves Japan as much as anyone, but he knows more about it than most.' Stephen Hesse, Japan Times



    Imprint: Penguin Books
    RRP: $24.99
    Price: $24.99
  • LOST PIANOS OF SIBERIA
    LOST PIANOS OF SIBERIA
    ROBERTS SOPHY
    ISBN: 9780857524959
    Title: LOST PIANOS OF SIBERIA
    Author: ROBERTS SOPHY
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Siberia's story is traditionally one of exiles, penal colonies and unmarked graves. Yet there is another tale to tell.

    Dotted throughout this remote land are pianos - grand instruments created during the boom years of the Nineteenth Century, and humble, Soviet-made uprights that found their way into equally modest homes. They tell the story of how, ever since entering Russian culture under the influence of Catherine the Great, piano music has run through the country like blood.

    How these pianos travelled into this snow-bound wilderness in the first place is testament to noble acts of fortitude by governors, adventurers and exiles. That stately instruments might still exist in such a hostile landscape is remarkable. That they are still capable of making music in far-flung villages is nothing less than a miracle.

    But this is Siberia, where people can endure the worst of the world - and where music reveals a deep humanity in the last place on earth you would expect to find it.

    Imprint: Doubleday Publishers
    RRP: $32.99

    Price: $32.99
  • LOST PIANOS OF SIBERIA
    LOST PIANOS OF SIBERIA
    ROBERTS SOPHY
    ISBN: 9781784162849
    Title: LOST PIANOS OF SIBERIA
    Author: ROBERTS SOPHY
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: January 2021 New Release

    'Stunningly written' Sunday Times
    'Richly absorbing' Guardian
    'Hooks you in from the start' Times
    'Masterful' Independent
    'Hugely compelling' Observer
    'Wonderful' Financial Times

    Siberia's story is traditionally one of exiles, bitter cold and suffering. Yet there is another tale to tell. Dotted throughout this remote land are pianos created during the boom years of the nineteenth century. They tell the story of how, ever since entering Russian culture under the influence of Catherine the Great, piano music has run through the country like blood. How these pianos travelled into this snow-bound wilderness in the first place is remarkable. That stately instruments might still be capable of making music in such a hostile landscape is nothing less than a miracle.

    The Lost Pianos of Siberia is a story about a piano hunt - a quixotic journey through two centuries of Russian history and nine time zones stretching across an eleventh of the world's land surface. It reveals not only music, but profound humanity in the last place on earth you might expect to find it.

    Imprint: Black Swan
    RRP: $19.99
    Price: $19.99
  • MADE IN AMERICA
    MADE IN AMERICA
    BRYSON BILL
    ISBN: 9781784161866
    Title: MADE IN AMERICA
    Author: BRYSON BILL
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Funny, wise, learned and compulsive' - GQ Bill Bryson turns away from travelling the highways and byways of middle America, so hilariously depicted in his bestselling The Lost Continent, The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid and Notes from a Big Country, for a fast, exhilarating ride along the Route 66 of American language and popular culture.

    In Made in America, Bryson tells the story of how American arose out of the English language, and along the way, de-mythologizes his native land - explaining how a dusty desert hamlet with neither woods nor holly became Hollywood, how the Wild West wasn't won, why Americans say lootenant' and Toosday', how they were eating junk food long before the word itself was cooked up - as well as exposing the true origins of the words G-string, blockbuster, poker and snafu. A tremendously sassy work, full of zip, pizzazz and all those other great American qualities' Will Self, Independent on Sunday

    Imprint: Black Swan
    RRP: $24.99

    Price: $24.99
  • MAGDALENA : River of Dreams
    MAGDALENA : River of Dreams
    DAVIS WADE
    ISBN: 9781847926111
    Title: MAGDALENA : River of Dreams
    Author: DAVIS WADE
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    A captivating new book from Wade Davis - winner of the Samuel Johnson Prize for Into the Silence - that brings vividly to life the story of the great Rio Magdalena, illuminating Colombia's complex past, present, and future.

    Travellers often become enchanted with the first country that captures their hearts and gives them license to be free. For Wade Davis, it was Colombia. Now in a masterful new book, the bestselling author tells of his travels on the mighty Magdalena, the river that made possible the nation. Along the way, he finds a people who have overcome years of conflict precisely because of their character, informed by an enduring spirit of place, and a deep love of a land that is home to the greatest ecological and geographical diversity on the planet. Only in Colombia can a traveller wash ashore in a coastal desert, follow waterways through wetlands as wide as the sky, ascend narrow tracks through dense tropical forests, and reach verdant Andean valleys rising to soaring ice-clad summits. This wild and impossible geography finds its perfect coefficient in the topography of the Colombian spirit- restive, potent, at times placid and calm, in moments tortured and twisted.

    Both a corridor of commerce and a fountain of culture, the wellspring of Colombian music, literature, poetry and prayer, the Magdalena has served in dark times as the graveyard of the nation. And yet, always, it returns as a river of life. At once an absorbing adventure and an inspiring tale of hope and redemption, Magdalena gives us a rare, kaleidoscopic picture of a nation on the verge of a new period of peace. Braiding together memoir, history, and journalism, Wade Davis tells the story of the country's most magnificent river, and in doing so, tells the epic story of Colombia.

    Imprint: Bodley Head
    RRP: $35.00

    Price: $35.00
  • MAIDEN VOYAGES : Women and the Golden Age of Transatlantic Travel
    MAIDEN VOYAGES : Women and the Golden Age of Transatlantic Travel
    EVANS SIAN
    ISBN: 9781473699038
    Title: MAIDEN VOYAGES : Women and the Golden Age of Transatlantic Travel
    Author: EVANS SIAN
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    A VIVID PORTRAIT OF WOMEN'S LIVES DURING THE GOLDEN AGE OF TRANSATLANTIC TRAVEL

    Before convenient air travel, transatlantic travel was the province of the great ocean liners and never more so than in the glory days of the interwar years. It was an extraordinary undertaking made by many women. Some travelled for leisure, some for work; others to find a new life, marriage, to reinvent themselves or find new opportunities. Their stories have remained largely untold - until now.

    Maiden Voyages is a fascinating portrait of these women, and their lives on board magnificent ocean liners as they sailed between the old and the new worlds. The ocean liner was a microcosm of contemporary society, divided by class: from the luxury of the upper deck, playground for the rich and famous, to the cramped conditions of steerage or third class travel. These iconic liners were filled with women of all ages, classes and backgrounds: celebrities and refugees, migrants and millionairesses, aristocrats and crew members.

    Full of incredible gossip, stories and intrigue, Maiden Voyages has a diverse cast of inspiring women - from A-listers like Josephine Baker, a dancer from St Louis who found fame in Paris, Marlene Dietrich and Wallis Simpson, Violet 'the unsinkable' Jessop, a crew member who survived the sinking of the Titanic, and entrepreneur Sibyl Colefax, a pioneering interior designer.

    Whichever direction they were travelling, whatever hopes they entertained, they were all under the spell of life at sea, a spell which would only break when they went ashore. Maiden Voyages is a compelling and highly entertaining account of life on board: part dream factory, part place of work, independence and escape - always moving.

    Imprint: TWO ROADS
    RRP: $32.99
    Price: $32.99
  • MARCHES
    MARCHES
    STEWART RORY
    ISBN: 9780099581895
    Title: MARCHES
    Author: STEWART RORY
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    His father Brian taught Rory Stewart how to walk, and walked with him on journeys from Iran to Malaysia. Now they have chosen to do their final walk together along 'the Marches' - the frontier that divides their two countries, Scotland and England. This book is about their experiences and a chronicle of contemporary Britain.

    Imprint: Vintage
    RRP: $19.99

    Price: $19.99
  • MEANING OF RICE : And Other Tales from the Belly of Japan
    MEANING OF RICE : And Other Tales from the Belly of Japan
    BOOTH MICHAEL
    ISBN: 9781784704230
    Title: MEANING OF RICE : And Other Tales from the Belly of Japan
    Author: BOOTH MICHAEL
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    **Shortlisted for the 2017 Andre Simon Food and Drink Book Awards****Shortlisted for the 2018 Fortnum & Mason Food Book Award**'The next Bill Bryson.' New York TimesFood and travel writer Michael Booth and his family embark on an epic journey the length of Japan to explore its dazzling food culture. They find a country much altered since their previous visit ten years earlier (which resulted in the award-winning international bestseller Sushi and Beyond). Over the last decade the country's restaurants have won a record number of Michelin stars and its cuisine was awarded United Nations heritage status. The world's top chefs now flock to learn more about the extraordinary dedication of Japan's food artisans, while the country's fast foods - ramen, sushi and yakitori - have conquered the world. As well as the plaudits, Japan is also facing enormous challenges. Ironically, as Booth discovers, the future of Japan's culinary heritage is under threat.Often venturing far off the beaten track, the author and his family discover intriguing future food trends and meet a fascinating cast of food heroes, from a couple lavishing love on rotten fish, to a chef who literally sacrificed a limb in pursuit of the ultimate bowl of ramen, and a farmer who has dedicated his life to growing the finest rice in the world... in the shadow of Fukushima.

    Imprint: Vintage
    RRP: $22.99

    Price: $22.99
  • MERMAIDS SINGING AND PEEL ME A LOTUS
    MERMAIDS SINGING AND PEEL ME A LOTUS
    CLIFT CHARMIAN
    ISBN: 9780732268862
    Title: MERMAIDS SINGING AND PEEL ME A LOTUS
    Author: CLIFT CHARMIAN
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: December 2020 New Release

    These two classic travel works by Charmian Clift describing the bohemian life that she and her husband, writer George Johnston, and their family, led in Greece in the 1950's are re-released here in one beautiful new edition.

    'Today we bought the house by the well'.

    In 1951 the writer Charmian Clift and her husband, the novelist George Johnston, left Australia and went first to London, before decamping for Greece in 1954, along with their two young children. Settling first on the tiny Greek island of Kalymnos, then Hydra, their intent was to live cheaply and focus on their creative writing.From this period of their lives sprang two of Charmian Clift's best known and most loved books, the memoirs Mermaid Singing and Peel Me a Lotus. These works paint an evocative picture of the sundrenched rhythms and routines of traditional island life, intertwined with the bohemian life of the family, their friends and visitors to the island.

    Wry, lyrical and blazing with life, Charmian Clift was a glorious writer - and these two memoirs of life on a Greek island are powerfully human and vividly alive.

    Imprint: Harper Collins
    RRP: $27.99

    Price: $27.99
  • MICROCOSMS
    MICROCOSMS
    MAGRIS CLAUDIO
    ISBN: 9781784871307
    Title: MICROCOSMS
    Author: MAGRIS CLAUDIO
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    In the tiny borderlands of Istria and Italy, from the forests of Monte Nevoso, to the hidden valleys of the Tyrol, to a Trieste cafe, this book pieces together a mosaic of stories - comic, tragic, picaresque, nostalgic - from life's minor characters.

    Imprint: Vintage Classics
    RRP: $19.99

    Price: $19.99
  • MONTMARTRE : Paris's Village of Art and Sin
    MONTMARTRE : Paris's Village of Art and Sin
    BAXTER JOHN
    ISBN: 9780062431899
    Title: MONTMARTRE : Paris's Village of Art and Sin
    Author: BAXTER JOHN
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    In the second portrait of his series Great Parisian Neighborhoods, award-winning raconteur John Baxter leads us on a whirlwind tour of Montmartre, the hill-top village that fired the greatest achievements of modern art while also provoking bloody revolution and the sexual misbehavior that made Paris synonymous with sin

    High on the northern edge of Paris, Montmartre has always attracted bohemians, political radicals, the searchers for artistic inspiration as well as those hungry for pleasure. In its winding, windmill-shadowed streets, which, only fifty years before, saw the anarchist rising of the Commune, Renoir, Picasso and van Gogh seized a similar freedom to remake painting, while, in the tenderloin of Pigalle, Toulouse-Lautrec drew the cancan dancers of the Moulin Rouge, celebrating a hedonism that titillated the world,

    In Montmartre, bestselling author and IACP Award winner John Baxter lifts the curtain on a district that visitors to Paris seldom see. From the tumbledown workshops of the Bateau Lavoir in which Picasso and Braque created Cubism to Clichy's Cabaret of Nothingness where guests dined at coffins under lamps of human bones, the whole of this mysterious enclave is ours to explore.

    For visitors and armchair travelers alike, Montmartre captures the excitement and scandal of a fascinating quarter that condenses the elusive perfumes, colors and songs of Paris.

    Imprint: HARPER COLLINS
    RRP: $22.99

    Price: $22.99
  • MONTPARNASSE : Paris's District of Memory and Desire
    MONTPARNASSE : Paris's District of Memory and Desire
    BAXTER JOHN
    ISBN: 9780062679048
    Title: MONTPARNASSE : Paris's District of Memory and Desire
    Author: BAXTER JOHN
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    In the third portrait of his series Great Parisian Neighborhoods, award-winning raconteur John Baxter takes readers on a dazzling excursion of Montparnasse.

    By the IACP Award-winning author of the national bestseller The Most Beautiful Walk in the World, MONTPARNASSE reveals the history and present delights of the iconic neighborhood that is best associated with the vibrant 1920-30s-era Paris-a romantic time and place evoked in Hemingway's memoir A Moveable Feast and Henry Miller's Tropic of Cancer. From the first meeting of Hemingway and F. Scott Fitzgerald to their friendship's bitter conclusion; from the courage of the anti-Nazi resistance to the clubs where German generals partied; from the attempted murder of Samuel Beckett to the rise of Josephine Baker to stardom; from the high life of the Coupole and the Cafe du Dôme to the bawdy music halls of rue de la Gaité; no Paris quarter has witnessed more tumultuous events than Montparnasse.

    In a ground-breaking reappraisal of this most glamorous of Paris's districts, Baxter looks beyond the nostalgia to the secret history of Montparnasse, a district where desire effaced memory and every taste could be satisfied-even those which were unexpressed. If, as Oscar Wilde suggested, all good Americans went to Paris when they died, it was Montparnasse that brought them back to life.

    Imprint: HARPER COLLINS
    RRP: $22.99

    Price: $22.99
  • MOST BEAUTIFUL WALK IN THE WORLD : A PEDESTRIAN IN PARIS
    MOST BEAUTIFUL WALK IN THE WORLD : A PEDESTRIAN IN PARIS
    BAXTER JOHN
    ISBN: 9780061998546
    Title: MOST BEAUTIFUL WALK IN THE WORLD : A PEDESTRIAN IN PARIS
    Author: BAXTER JOHN
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Walking is the best way to experience the romance, history, and off-the-beaten-path pleasures of Paris (and life itself, perhaps). In that spirit, the author of the popular IMMOVEABLE FEAST: A PARIS CHRISTMAS, reveals the most beautiful walks through Paris, including the favorite routes of the many brilliant artists and writers who have called the city home. Paris, by history and design, is a walker's city. Plenty of guide books exist to explain where you are, but there are none on how best to get there on foot or what to look at while you walk. Not to mention the fact that some of the most interesting parts of the city are located on side streets and back alleys, far from the traditional tourist destinations. John Baxter's THE MOST BEAUTIFUL WALK IN THE WORLD is an unforgettably charming little book about Paris as a city where the act of walking has been raised to the level of art. It's also a unique and fascinating history of the city, as each walk tells a different side of the City of Lights. The narrative begins when, advised by his doctor to take more exercise, Baxter accepts an invitation from the director of the Paris Writers Workshop to give literary walks to visiting writers and students. As he plans these tours and makes a few trial attempts - some successful, some comically disastrous - he picks the brain of his friends and colleagues on what they regard as their 'most beautiful walk'. One tells him how she strolls along the edge of the Seine, under Pont Neuf, to the tiny triangular park at the point of the Ile de la Cite, where the Templars were burned. A famous chef walks Baxter through the professional cooks' favourite but little-known market at Place d'Aligre, overflowing with the best ingredients. Baxter also searches the work of earlier expatriate artists for their beautiful walks: Hemingway followed a particular route when he walked from Place de la Contrescarpe to visit Sylvia Beach at Shakespeare and Company bookshop. Gertrude Stein took the same constitutional each day, strolling down Rue de Fleurus to the seldom-visited Little Luxembourg Gardens. And of course Baxter discloses his own most beautiful walk.

    Imprint: Harper Collins
    RRP: $19.99

    Price: $19.99
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