Critically acclaimed debut novel, FEVER CITY, by Tim Baker (UK, Faber & Faber; US, Europa) has been shortlisted for the Private Eye Writers of America (PWA) 2017 Shamus Awards, in the ‘Best First Private Eye Novel’ category to be announced in September.

An extract of FEVER CITY was previously shortlisted, and ‘highly commended’ for the CWA Debut Dagger, and the published novel (UK, Faber 2016) was shortlisted for the CWA John Creasey dagger.The novel has also been published in Italy (Mondadori), and in Japan (Shogakukan).

FEVER CITY is a searing counter-factual conspiracy thriller with three intertwining narratives. Nick Alston, a Los Angeles private investigator, is hired to find the kidnapped son of America's richest and most hated man; Hastings, a gun-for-hire in search of redemption, is also linked to the case. But both men soon become ensnared by a sinister cabal that spreads from the White House all the way to Dealey Plaza and the assassination on JFK. Decades later in Dallas, Alston's son stumbles across evidence that might link his father to the shot heard round the world.

Faber will publish Tim’s next novel, CITY WITHOUT STARS, in January 2018

Praise for FEVER CITY:

‘[A] remarkable first novel …inspired writing, memorable characters and an exhilarating, all but overpowering story.’ – Patrick Anderson, Washington Post

‘Ambitious debut… a bare knuckle take… a noirish storm of corruption, violence and depravity…’ —The New York Times, USA

An inventive take on the great American conspiracy theory...’ —The Sunday Times, Crime Club Newsletter January Picks 2016

‘Sprawling, ambitious and atmospheric…this debut author is the natural successor to such hallowed crime writers as Raymond Chandler and James Ellroy.’—Stylist UK

'Tim Baker paints a lurid, sinister portrait of mid-century America, skilfully layering fact and fiction in a way that will forever change the way you think about the Kennedy assassination. An impressive debut.' – Peter Swanson

‘Another mighty impressive debut by a British author...Baker has the audacity to revisit the web of conspiracies surrounding the JFK assassination and despite the sterling previous contributions to the fictional subject by James Ellroy, Don De Lillo and even Stephen King, comes up trumps.’ – Maxim Jakubowski, LoveReading.com

‘Phenomenal. It's a brilliantly conceived and executed thriller that deftly combines smack-you-in-the-mouth intensity with imagery and prose to die for. It's beautifully stark, brutal when it needs to be, and thoroughly engrossing. There have been some truly great books written about the events surrounding the Kennedy assassination, and Fever City can stand with any of them.’ – Rob Reynolds, author of THE DARK INSIDE

Zakes Mda’s LITTLE SUNS shortlisted for the Sunday Times Barry Ronge Fiction Prize 2017

LITTLE SUNS by Zakes Mda, has been shortlisted for South Africa’s Sunday Times Barry Ronge Fiction Prize 2017 which seeks to showcase “writing of rare style and imagination, stories that chose the personal over the political, and themes that are fresh and provocative.” The chair of the judges, Rehana Rossouw, describes the books as having ‘words that strike at the reader’s heart.’

‘Zakes Mda is on song with this book,” said one judge, “it brings people from our past gorgeously to life.’

It is 1903. A lame and frail Malangana – 'Little Suns' – searches for his beloved Mthwakazi after many lonely years spent in exile. Mthwakazi was the young woman he had fallen in love with twenty years earlier, before the assassination of Magistrate Hamilton Hope began a war that ripped the two of them apart.

Intertwined with Malangana's story is the account of Hope – a colonial magistrate who, in the late nineteenth century, was undermining the local kingdoms of the Eastern Cape in order to bring them under the control of the British. It was he who wanted to coerce Malangana’s king and his people, the amaMpondomise, into joining his battle – a scheme Malangana’s conscience could not allow. Based on real historical events – after these frontier wars were quelled, Zakes Mda’s own ancestors were exiled to Lesotho – Mda has drawn on published accounts and the oral stories of family members and local praise poets, woven together with his uniquely vigorous prose, historical insight and humour.

Umuzi published in Southern Africa, and Jacaranda Books will publish on their Global Classics list in 2018.

The Barry Ronge Fiction Prize is awarded as part of the Sunday Times Literary Awards and along with its twin prize, the Alan Paton Award for Non-Fiction, is one of South Africa’s most prestigious prizes. The winner goes home with R100,000. The full shortlist can be found here.

Zakes Mda is one of South Africa’s pre-eminent writers, and many of his era-defining plays and novels are hailed as classics of the literary canon. He divides his time between South Africa and the U.S., working as a professor of Creative Writing at Ohio University, director of the Southern African Multimedia AIDS Trust in Sophiatown, and dramaturge at the Market Theatre, Johannesburg. He is a patron of the Etisalat Prize.

Praise for Zakes Mda:

‘The great South African novelist of his generation, a writer rich in both imagination and ironic political attitude.’ The Philadelphia Inquirer

 ‘A voice for which one should feel not only affection but admiration’ – New York Times

‘It’s a different kind of South African literature, a South African magical realism …I can’t wait to read more’. Barbara Kingsolver on WAYS OF DYING

‘In novel after novel, Zakes Mda seems to have cultivated a mode of writing in which the realistic and the magical co-exist with unruffled ease.’ – Harry Garuba, Independent

'Zakes Mda is among the most acclaimed exponents of a new artistic freedom. His fiction has a beguiling lyricism and humour.' – Maya Jaggi, The Guardian

Follow Zakes Mda on Twitter @ZakesMda

No 1. Ebook bestseller NEED YOU DEAD out in US bookstores today!

NEED YOU DEAD final cover Macmillan.jpg

In the first part week of publication, and after a splendid Brighton launch, NEED YOU DEAD by Peter James raced to Number 2 on the UK bestseller lists – and now his 13th Detective Superintendent Roy Grace novel has topped the e-Book bestseller charts at Number 1. NEED YOU DEAD is published today, 6 June, in the US by Macmillan and Peter James begins his American tour in Los Angeles.

The Bookseller says: "Peter James has capsized Paula Hawkins' two weeks of smooth sailing in the Weekly E-Book Ranking number one spot, as NEED YOU DEAD blasted straight to the chart's summit in its first week on sale... Peter James seems to benefit from stratospheric e-book sales alongside strong hardbook volumes... his Roy Grace titles still sell in excess of 100,000 paperbacks."

Peter James is touring the US this month. Tomorrow he will be at the Landmark Theatre in Los Angeles with Michael Connelly in an invitation-only BAFTA event. On 10 June he is in conversation with Brenda Novak at the Brea Library in Los Angeles, and on 11 June fans can catch him with T. Jefferson Parker at Book Carnival in Orange, California. He will then be attending Thrillerfest in New York City from the 11 to 15 July. See more details on all his events here.

In NEED YOU DEAD, Lorna Belling, desperate to escape the marriage from hell, falls for the charms of another man who promises her the earth. But, as Lorna finds, life seldom follows the plans you’ve made. A chance photograph on a client’s mobile phone changes everything for her.

When the body of a woman is found in a bath in Brighton, Detective Superintendent Roy Grace is called to the scene. At first it looks an open-and-shut case with a clear prime suspect. Then other scenarios begin to present themselves, each of them tantalizingly plausible, until, in a sudden turn of events, and to his utter disbelief, the case turns more sinister than Grace could ever have imagined.

The Roy Grace series has been translated into 37 languages, with 18 million copies of Peter James’ books sold worldwide.

See much, much more on Peter’s website.

Do also check out the array of excellent crime writer interviews and information on Peter James TV.

Follow Peter on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


Praise for Roy Grace:

‘James’s superior 13th novel … This skilful twister shows why James was awarded the 2016 CWA Diamond Dagger.’ — Publishers Weekly Starred Review

‘Sinister and riveting… Peter James is one of the best British crime writers, and therefore one of the best in the world.’ – Lee Child

‘Peter James is one of the best crime writers in the business’ – Karin Slaughter

‘Probably the closest we’ll get to a British Stephen King’ – The Financial Times

‘Peter James is one of the most fiendishly clever crime fiction plotters’ – The Daily Mail

Edward Carey’s brilliant LITTLE to Riverhead in the US

North American rights to Edward Carey’s ‘wondrous pageant of a novel’ LITTLE have been acquired in a significant deal by Cal Morgan of Riverhead Books, who will publish in 2018. Aardvark Bureau, the world fiction imprint of the Belgravia Books Collective, will also publish LITTLE in the UK in Autumn 2018.

Carey’s return to writing for adults, after his acclaimed IREMONGER trilogy for younger readers (chosen by The New York Times, NPR, and Kirkus for their Best Books of the Year and now optioned for film), traces the fascinating life of a young Swiss girl, Marie Grosholtz, who would go on to become famous for her waxworks as Madame Tussaud.

Marie’s extraordinary career started in Berne, Switzerland, in the household of Dr Philippe Curtius. A physician skilled in creating anatomical wax models, it was Curtius who taught Tussaud the art of wax modelling and took her to pre-revolutionary France. During the French Revolution she was imprisoned and narrowly escaped execution – but cast the heads of many of those who were not so lucky...

Far from being a chamber of horrors, Edward Carey’s telling of Marie’s story is an affecting and exuberant tale crossing countries and covering a tumultuous period in history, told through the eyes of a cast of quirky and sympathetic characters. It is an unconventional love story, the tale of a woman’s rise to success against the odds, and a hymn to the strange beauty of the human body.

The text will be peppered with the author’s haunting illustrations.  Edward has drawn international praise both for his imaginative novels and their original imagery and his Italian publisher has had several exhibitions of his work for the illustrations from HEAP HOUSE, FOULSHAM and LUNGDON, the Iremonger trilogy.  


Cal Morgan said:

‘I’m so thrilled to be able to bring Edward Carey and LITTLE, his wondrous pageant of a novel, to Riverhead. Many of us here had followed Edward since the days of OBSERVATORY MANSIONS; others still have his illustrations for HEAP HOUSE fixed fondly to their walls. But this is the book Edward was born to write: a cavalcade of artists and eccentrics, rogues, royals, and radicals, set against the roil of the French Revolution. And at its centre, the tiny strong fierce little girl named Marie, nicknamed Little, eventually celebrated by the world as Madame Tussaud. It’s a book that brings me joy whenever I think of it – which is constantly. And I’m delighted we have a chance to bring it to American readers.’


Edward Carey said:

‘I could not be happier that the extraordinarily wise and brilliant Calvert Morgan will be the editor on LITTLE. It's taken me fifteen years to get here with this book and I can't believe how lucky I am that it has fallen into such exceptional US hands. I'm drawing furiously every day for it. Over the years I never dreamed that this might be the outcome, I'm completely overjoyed that Riverhead will publish this story about a diminutive woman who lived in a cupboard in Versailles and got to hold most of the famous heads of the French Revolution after they'd been disconnected from their bodies.’


Isobel Dixon, Edward’s agent at Blake Friedmann, said:

‘It’s a thrill to make this journey with the plucky, perspicacious Marie aka Little and her comrades, who are much loved in the agency. I’m delighted that Cal Morgan will be introducing her to North American readers, joining Jane Aitken and Emily Boyce of Aardvark Bureau in the UK. It’s an unfolding pleasure following the wonders from Edward Carey’s pen as he shares his drawings on Twitter every day, further illuminating this incredible story. So, happy meetings all round – and many more international adventures to follow!’


Alongside the IREMONGER trilogy (UK: Hot Key; US: Overlook; Canada: HarperCollins and many other markets in translation), Edward Carey is the author of two previous works of literary fiction – OBSERVATORY MANSIONS (Picador, 2000, shortlisted for the Borders Discover New Writers Award) and ALVA AND IRVA (Picador, 2003, longlisted for the IMPAC).  


Follow Edward Carey on Twitter – and see his daily illustrations for LITTLE!

Visit Edward Carey's website


Praise for Edward Carey:

‘Delightful, eccentric, heartfelt, surprising, philosophical’ - Eleanor Catton

‘It's hard to imagine a better subject for Edward Carey's particular genius than the life of Madame Tussaud’ - Charles Lambert

‘Edward Carey is an enormously talented writer’ - Publishers Weekly

‘Edward Carey is one of the strangest writers we are privileged to have in this country’ - Observer

‘Carey writes with such persuasive authority, and we are inclined to believe him’ - New York Times Review of Books

‘If this were music, Carey would be Eric Satie. If it were film, he would be Tim Burton’ - Newsday

‘Conveyed with so much sympathy and acute observation that it is hard not to be beguiled’ - The Times

Carole Blake Open Doors Programme: Live that Publishing Dream

by Ada Igwegbu

  Ada on the Hachette rooftop, at the Kim Scott Walwyn Awards

Ada on the Hachette rooftop, at the Kim Scott Walwyn Awards

From the outside, and when I say outside I mean the furthest corners of the non-literary world (namely the oil-centric city of Aberdeen, Scotland), publishing appears impossibly closed. The stories that enshrine the industry, paradoxically, shield it from the public. One of those stories is that to participate in publishing—to be an editor, because we are told that this is the one, shining trophy of publishing jobs—you must already belong to the privileged class. If Daddy cannot get you the job, you simply cannot do it. If you do not have relatives in publishing, if you are not middle class and Oxbridge-educated, if you are not London-bred, publishing simply is not for you. However, one thing that we often forget about stories is that they do not always reflect all facets of the truth. Somewhere along the line, the truth gets twisted, skewed and repeated and twisted and skewed and repeated and repeated, and so on. When I first, seriously, considered a career in publishing earlier this year, these stories were the substance of my largest fear. With no literary connections, a pending-geology degree and nowhere to live in London, how could I work in publishing?

Fast forward to now—June, roughly half way through 2017—and I realise that that fear is not strictly necessary. If I had to give one word to describe my experience on the Carole Blake Open Doors Programme, I would have to use “comforting”. It was a comforting experience. Not the most obvious choice of words maybe, but what struck me most while at Blake Friedmann was how haphazardly everyone sort of tumbled into their careers. Tens of interesting, different people in different corners of the industry from publishing houses to literary agents from all over the UK, and in some cases all over Europe, getting a job on the back of chance, and becoming associate agents, editors, publicists, sales managers, marketers. Altogether, there was a lot of failure, a lot of rejections but a lot of hard work and a lot of hope. For me, this is extremely comforting. The message is clear: try, try and try again. Apply, apply, apply. Get your foot in the door, even if that means working for your dream company in a less-than-dreamy role. Mobility is common: people come, go, swap round and come back again, so that first job, whatever it is, may be the ticket to the gold. We often talk about the publishing ‘industry’ when really there should be more mention of the publishing ‘community’. People within the community recognise how difficult it can be, particularly when you are first starting out, and if you work well, there will be always be a myriad of people to support you and guide you in your career. Publishing really is the most friendly of industries.

Interning at Blake Friedmann solidified the vision of friendliness within publishing. Everyone at Blake Friedmann was incredibly generous with their time and willing to explain what foreign rights involved, the negotiation process for new books, what contracts look like and try to do for authors but also, what is next for them and how they hope to grow in their careers. The Carole Blake Open Doors Programme gives interns the opportunity to meet and speak with people involved at different parts of the publishing process, many of whom started off their careers as interns at Blake Friedmann. Over the course of the fortnight, I shadowed literary agents, met authors, spoke to publicists, marketers, editors, sales managers from independent organisations like Jacaranda Publishing and Allen & Unwin to imprints of larger publishers, such as Picador, Two Roads, Hodder, and even Amazon. On more sedentary days at the agency, I read submissions and wrote copy for their website. I was even fortunate enough to go down to Brighton for the Peter James launch party! The experience covered everything I could possibly hope for, and it was made even more accessible through the kindness of David Hicks and The Book Trade Charity, who were so wonderful and provided accommodation during my time in London.

All in all, the Carole Blake Open Doors Programme was a whirlwind of a time—a real door-flinging-wide experience, one which I thoroughly enjoyed and would encourage anyone and everyone to get involved with. Forget Daddy’s connections or an Oxbridge degree; what you really need is a fervent desire to press books into readers’ palms and the drive to work to make that happen.

If you are passionate about good books and want to get into publishing, apply to the Carole Blake Open Doors Programme, join the Society of Young Publishers, scour the Bookseller for jobs. Your publishing story starts with you.