BFLA Authors in best of 2015 lists

It’s that time of year again when everyone's sharing their ‘Best of’ lists, and we’re extremely proud that our authors have been included in many of them. Below is a summary of the great places they were included and the great quotes that accompanied their pick.



Kirkus Reviews Best Books of 2015:
"A delightful debut, tender and funny. The mystery takes on the worldwide problem of abused women while revealing both the beauties and problems of South Africa. And the recipes will make you want to drop everything and start cooking."

Wall Street Journal Best Mystery Book of 2015:
“The exotic locale, the lovely patois and the heroine’s unique sensibility make Ms. Andrew’s “Recipes” a blue-ribbon winner.”

Samantha Gibb, Sunday Times SA Best book of 2015:
“The quintessential feel-good SA whodunit, complete with recipes and advice. A must read.”

LUNGDON by Edward Carey




NPR Guide to 2015’s Great Reads:
“A magnificently engrossing indictment of our late capitalist modernity.”





THE FETCH by Finuala Dowling

Margaret von Klemperer, Fiona Snyckers & Helené Prinsloo, Sunday Times SA Best book of 2015:
‘A sparkling comedy of manners, but under the froth there are serious issues, and it is Dowling’s sensitive handling of them that makes this such a lovely book’ – Margaret von Klemperer

‘Comparisons with Jane Austen are not misplaced.’ – Fiona Snyckers

‘The characters from THE FETCH by Finuala Dowling haunted my dreams. The story led me to a garden cottage in the deep south where I kept waiting to happen upon someone like William.’ – Helené Prinsloo


THE DARKEST HOUR by Barbara Erskine



Books Covered, Favourite Book Covers of 2015:
‘Tender, romantic, and earnest, just like the brilliant story within. The gold foil adds a luxuriousness without being flashy and the whole designs speaks of the era so perfectly. This is a standout cover in this area of the market.’




JELLYFISH by Janice Galloway

Zoe Strachan, The Herald:
‘Janice Galloway prefaces her new collection of stories, JELLYFISH (Freight, £12.99), with a quote from David Lodge: “Literature is mostly about having sex and not much about having children; life’s the other way round.” In fact she gives us plenty of both, but it’s the stories about mothers and children that really cut to the quick.’

Sara Crowley and Kaite Welsh, Bristol Prize Best Short Story Reads of 2015:
‘My most eagerly awaited publication of 2015 was Janice Galloway’s JELLYFISH (Freight) which I am reading very slowly so as to savour each brilliant word.’ – Sara Crowley

‘Galloway has hit a rich seam of imagination as she returns to the short story as a form. It’s perfect for her style – wry, slightly off-kilter and always returning to the theme of parent and child, the kind of subject matter that offers Galloway the chance to delve once more into the murky depths of human relationships.’ – Kaite Welsh

Scots Whay Hae! Best Books of 2015:
‘Janice Galloway has always been an innovative and playful writer, but never to the detriment of her prose… JELLYFISH is a timely reminder that she is one of the finest writers around. Each story, each sentence, is beautifully crafted by someone who cares enough to take such care… If you read a better book than Jellyfish this year you are a very lucky person indeed.’




Alice Thompson, The Herald:
‘In these stories, the powerful juxtaposition of scientific intellect and emotional frailty is played out engagingly. The stories also imply no matter how objective scientific genius is, the scientists themselves, like the rest of us, are subject to moral failings.’




YOU ARE DEAD by Peter James



Guardian Best Crime and Thriller books of 2015:
‘Peter James showed that a diversion this year into ghost stories with THE HOUSE ON COLD HILL had not diverted energy from his consistently impressive sequence of DS Roy Grace policiers, the 11th of which, YOU ARE DEAD (Macmillan), confidently combines a cold case with a very hot one.’




THE LAST PILOT by Benjamin Johncock

Isabella Costello Literary Sofa ‘My Year in Books’:
‘Ben Johncock’s debut has all the things I love about American fiction and he’s not even American. Gorgeous spare prose, authentic sense of time and place, a poignant story told with sensitivity and restraint – I have raved about this book so much it’s embarrassing.’

Reading Groups’ Staff Picks for 2015:
‘With echoes of Tom Wolfe’s THE RIGHT STUFF and Richard Yates’ REVOLUTIONARY ROAD, THE LAST PILOT re-ignites the thrill and excitement of the space race through the story of one man’s courage in the face of unthinkable loss.’

Ian Rankin’s End of Year Roundup

Utter Biblio, Top 10 of 2015

ICARUS by Deon Meyer



Financial Times’ Crime Books of the Year

Boston Globe's Best Mystery Books of 2015:
‘An website-related murder and a parallel plot that delves into the dregs of South Africa’s wine industry keep Benny Griessel and his cadre of Cape Town coppers on their toes.’




GREEN LION by Henrietta Rose-Innes


Ben Williams, Fiona Snyckers & Jennifer Malec, Sunday Times SA Best book of 2015:
‘And if readers missed Henrietta Rose-Innes’s GREEN LION (Umuzi) … they’d best not let 2015 expire without acquainting themselves’ – Ben Williams

‘Rose-Innes goes from strength to strength, refining her craft with each new book.’ – Fiona Snyckers

‘Masterful’ – Jennifer Malec



THE FOLLY by Ivan Vladislavic



Flavorwire’s 15 Worthwhile Books You Might Have Missed in 2015:
‘Praised by the likes of Coetzee and others — it’s not hard to see why…’




101 DETECTIVES by Ivan Vladislavic

Michelle Magwood, Jennifer Malec & Sophie Kohler Sunday Times SA Best book of 2015:
‘Mordantly funny, acutely perceptive and exquisitely styled, this collection of short stories is a definitive showcase of Vladislavic’s talents.’ – Michelle Magwood

‘Witty, enthralling and pleasurably disorientating.’ – Jennifer Malec

‘The stories are bewildering in their refusal to provide a clear resolution, but this is to their credit, in that each leaves a mystery to be solved.’ – Sophie Kohler




 Rose Prince, Spectator Best New Cookery Books 2015:
‘There is food in A Wong: The Cookbook (Mitchell Beazley, £25) for home cooks, but it is also a chef’s book. May every aspiring one buy it. If they did, Chinese food in Britain would go through a true revolution.’

Observer 25 best food books 2015:
‘At his Pimlico restaurant, Wong is keen to prove that Chinese food can be just as considered as other, more revered cuisines.’

HAPPY GUY FAWKES! - LUNGDON by Edward Carey is out!

November 2015 marks the drawing to a close of Edward Carey’s exceptional Iremonger trilogy, with LUNGDON being published in the UK (Hot Key), US (Overlook) and Canada (HarperCollins) this month. Like its predecessors (HEAP HOUSE and FOULSHAM) LUNGDON is published in hardback with a stunning cover, endpapers and internal illustrations by Edward himself – even more wonderful Iremonger images than ever before in this stunning final instalment!

With a grand finale taking place in the Houses of Parliament (with Queen Victoria making a cameo appearance), Guy Fawkes seems an appropriate publication day for LUNGDON. Edward wrote this piece on Guy Fawkes (illustrated with his own reversible Halloween/Guy Fawkes card) for Electric Literature and will be introducing his fans in Austin, Texas to this very British celebration today. The US launch will take place at the Uncommon Objects store at 7:30 pm tonight and will feature the cutting (and consuming) of a House of Parliament cake and much LUNGDON signing!

FOULSHAM and HEAP HOUSE continue to receive amazing reviews. FOULSHAM was selected by for the best YA Books of July, who called it ‘an eagerly awaited return to an unusual gothic world of trash and treasure… There is much to learn and marvel at from beginning to end.’ Edward Carey has been likened to HARRY POTTER by Nancy Pearl, who gave HEAP HOUSE two thumbs up in her talk with Marcie Sillman on Seattle News & Information. HEAP HOUSE was a New York Times Notable Book.

Recently the Antonia Jannone gallery hosted the first ever exhibition of the Iremonger world to coincide with Bompiani’s Italian publication of FOULSHAM and Edward Carey’s visit to Milan for the Bookcity festival. Thirty original illustrations were on display – ten for each book. Edward Carey and his agent Isobel Dixon attended the launch of the exhibition last weekend, Edward’s second invitation from Bompiani this year following his visit to the Bologna book fair to launch HEAP HOUSE. The Iremonger trilogy is sold in twelve countries and the audio edition is due for release soon. Check out Grasset’s trailer for Le Château des Ferrailleurs (HEAP HOUSE) here.

In LUNGDON, the Iremonger family is at large in London, the ruins of the town of Foulsham left burning behind them. They need a new home and they intend to find one ... Londoners are beginning to notice bizarre happenings – loved ones disappearing, strange objects appearing and a creeping darkness that seems to swallow up the daylight. The Police have summoned help, but is their cure more deadly than the feared Iremongers? What role will Clod play: returning son or rebel? Heartbroken child or hero? And where are all the rats coming from?

The interlocking fates of the odd and marvellous Iremongers are now to be unravelled and disclosed in the thrilling conclusion to the Iremonger trilogy. Will servant girl Lucy Pennant and young Clod Iremonger be reunited? Will the Heaps, their ramshackle ancestral home, continue to stand? Will their birth objects, discarded items – a door knob, a bathtub plug, a matchbox, what-have-you – given to them at birth with lives and histories of their own, continue to exert their uncanny pull? All will be revealed in LUNGDON.

Novelist, visual artist and playwright Edward Carey is the author of two acclaimed adult novels as well, published in many countries around the world. OBSERVATORY MANSIONS was shortlisted for the Borders Discover New Writers Award and described by John Fowles as ‘proving the potential brilliance of the novel form’. ALVA AND IRVA was longlisted for the 2005 IMPAC Literary Award. Both were accompanied by Edward’s artworks.

Follow Edward on Twitter

Visit the Iremongers on Edward’s marvellous website

Praise for the IREMONGER trilogy:

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

‘Edward Carey's HEAP HOUSE-- delightful, eccentric, heartfelt, surprising, philosophical, everything that a novel for children should be.’ – Eleanor Catton, author of THE LUMINARIES

‘IREMONGER torques and tempers our memories of Dickensian London into a singularly jaunty and creepy tale of agreeable misfits. Read it by gas lamp, with a glass of absinthe at your wrist and a fireplace poker by your knee. ’ – Gregory Maguire, author of WICKED

‘Fabulously strange and in the tradition of Mervyn Peake... Astonishing and inventive, it calls out to be read.' – Sunday Times’ Best Children’s Books of 2013 

‘Spectacularly weird’ – New York Times Books Review, Editor’s Choice

A Hot Key Books home for Edward Carey’s Iremongers!

CAREY, Edward - preferred (cr. Tom Langdon - free to use).jpg

Sara O'Connor, Editorial Director of Hot Key Books has acquired UK and BC rights (excluding Canada) to three books in Edward Carey's new IREMONGER trilogy, which in the vein of Neil Gaiman, Roald Dahl or Mervyn Peake, will work for young and old alike.

Novelist, visual artist and playwright Edward Carey is the author of two acclaimed novels, published in many countries around the world. OBSERVATORY MANSIONS was shortlisted for the Borders Discover New Writers Award and ALVA AND IRVA was longlisted for the 2005 IMPAC Literary Award. Both were accompanied by artworks by the author.

The IREMONGER TRILOGY takes readers into 'a stunning, dark world full of striking characters and so much heart. ' says Sara O'Connor, adding: 'We loved it at first sight'. HEAP HOUSE is set in Filching, an imaginary borough of Victorian London world where the Iremonger family ('kings of mildew, moguls of mould') make a fortune from junk. Young Clod Iremonger is about to be unwillingly betrothed to his Cousin Pinalippy when he meets orphan girl Lucy Pennant and family secrets begin to unfold.

Edward Carey says: "I am so happy that Hot Key with all its passion and brilliance are taking on the Iremongers, it's absolutely the perfect home for them. I can't wait."

"Hot Key's offer came in with such vigour and imagination, an excellent match for Edward's marvellous work," says Isobel Dixon of Blake Friedmann. "I'm thrilled that Sara O'Connor, Sarah Odedina and the whole Hot Key team fell in love with Clod & Lucy as they did. It's the agency's first deal with Hot Key, and I look forward to seeing their innovative and energetic publishing in action in bringing Edward Carey's writing to a new array of fans."

The first title, HEAP HOUSE, will be published in September 2013, to be followed by FILCHING and LUNGDON.

Italian rights in all three titles were sold on the Friday before the Frankfurt Book Fair to Bompiani.

Click here and here to read more on the deal.

Praise for Edward Carey:

'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. There are echoes in his work of other great idiosyncratics from Angela Carter to Russell Hoban, but he supersedes even them in the downright oddity of his mind.' - Observer

'Edward Carey is a writer whose books confound and amaze me. …He's brilliant and precocious and spectacularly imaginative.' - Katharine Weber, The Readerville Journal

'Carey writes with such persuasive authority, and we are inclined to believe him …The emphasis on detail in Carey's sweetly detached, exact prose has forebears in the illuminated dreams of Borges and Calvino and Georges Perec.' - Carey Harrison, The New York Times Review of Books