SLAY IN YOUR LANE: THE BLACK GIRL BIBLE, BY YOMI ADEGOKE AND ELIZABETH UVIEBINENÉ, IS OUT NOW!

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The wait is finally over as Yomi Adegoke and Elizabeth Uviebinené’s highly anticipated inspirational guide to life for young black women, SLAY IN YOUR LANE, is out today in hardback from Fourth Estate. Celebrating the achievements of black British women, SLAY IN YOUR LANE encourages readers to make lemonade out of lemons and find success in their careers, relationships, and in their lives.

In the run-up to publication, SLAY IN YOUR LANE, has been included in multiple best of lists, including The Observer’s ‘18 for 2018’, Elle’s ‘12 addictive books you have to read to get through in 2018’, Metro’s ‘best new books  in 2018’ and the BBC’s ‘hotly anticipated debut authors for 2018’. Mostly Lit’s Clarissa Pabi called it ‘a book I can genuinely say I've been waiting for’, and The Bookseller praise it as ‘a valuable framework to help navigate the murky world of working – and existing – while black and female’.

“Black women today are well past making waves we’re currently creating something of a tsunami. Women who look like us, grew up in similar places to us, talk like us, are shaping almost every sector of society.” 

From education to work to dating, this inspirational, honest and provocative book recognises and celebrates the strides black women have already made, while providing practical advice for those who want to do the same and forge a better, visible future.

Illustrated with stories from best friends Elizabeth Uviebinené and Yomi Adegoke’s own lives, and using interviews with dozens of the most successful black women in Britain including BAFTA Award-winning director Amma Asante, British Vogue publisher Vanessa Kingori and Olympic gold medallist Denise Lewis, SLAY IN YOUR LANE is essential reading for a generation of black women inspired to find success in every area of their lives.

SLAY IN YOUR LANE will be Book of the Week next week (starting 9th July), on BBC Radio 4. You can read an interview with Yomi and Elizabeth and an extract from the book in The Times, here, and in The Observer, here.

Yomi Adegoke is an award-winning journalist and senior writer at The Pool. She writes about race, feminism, popular culture and how they intersect, as well as class and politics. In 2013 she founded Birthday Magazine, a publication aimed at black teenage girls, and this year was listed as one of the 200 Women Redefining the Creative Industry by The Dots. She was also named as a 'frontline pioneer' bringing the fight to 'a new generation', by the Evening Standard.

Elizabeth Uviebinené is a Brand Marketer from London; upon graduating from Warwick University with a Politics degree she has gone on to work for some of the biggest global brands in Finance, and was promoted to a Marketing Manager.

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Praise for SLAY IN YOUR LANE:

‘Hotly-anticipated… Best friends Yomi and Elizabeth decided to write the book because they realised there was a huge gap in the market - these were the stories they wanted to read about, so they decided to write it themselves. They also scatter in anecdotes from their own lives in their bid to tackle the challenges facing black women today, and plenty of advice.’ — Lauren Turner, BBC, Books look ahead 2018

‘In SLAY IN YOUR LANE, Adegoke and Uviebinene have created a valuable framework to help navigate the murky world of working – and existing – while black and female. It puts into words the amorphous, intangible feelings we walk around with and counters them with inspirational stories from industry leaders.’ — The Bookseller

‘What better choice for a summer read than this inspirational guide to life for the modern British black woman, promising to help you “make lemonade out of lemons, and find success in every area of your life”.’ — Elle, 12 Addictive Books You Have To Read To Get Through 2018

‘Quite literally a bible, this is the quintessential black woman’s guide to life for a generation of British women ‘inspired to make Lemonade out of lemons.’ Read Adegoke’s wisdom-filled essays on work, dating, beauty, representation, money, education and health and how being black and female affects each of these.’ — Melan Mag, Best titles by BME authors 2018

 ‘An inspiring read’ — Phoebe Hurst, The Pool

‘We could not put it down after reading the first page… a true insight into being a black woman in today’s Britain’ — BLACK BEAUTY MAGAZINE

‘As a young black British woman and an avid reader of books on personal development and success, this is a book I can genuinely say I've been waiting for, from at least when I discovered the genre a decade ago. I suspect many others have been waiting even longer, too…representative, thought-provoking, honest, humorous and inspirational. It recognises the waves and tsunamis black British women have already made, whilst providing practical advice and inspiration for slaying and succeeding even further, in your own way.’ — Clarissa Pabi, Waterstones Blog, Mostly Lit’s Must Reads

‘SLAY IN YOUR LANE is the black girl bible — an indispensable guide to living today…it’s provocative, uplifting, timely and important.’ — Netgalley, Top 10 Pick for July 

LYNDALL GORDON’S GROUP BIOGRAPHY, OUTSIDERS, NOW OUT IN PAPERBACK

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OUTSIDERS, Lyndall Gordon’s visionary interlinked biography of five female writers and the experiences that shaped them, is available in paperback from Virago. Described as a ‘thought-provoking group biography’ in The New Statesmen by Erica Wagner and as a book written with ‘passionate intelligence’ by Tessa Hadley in The Guardian, OUTSIDERS was included in New Statesman, Books Live and The Irish Times Books of the Year lists in 2017.

OUTSIDERS tells the stories of five novelists – Mary Shelley, Emily Brontë, George Eliot, Olive Schreiner, Virginia Woolf – and their famous novels. We have long known their individual greatness but in linking their creativity to their lives as outsiders, this group biography throws new light on the genius they share. At that time a woman's reputation was her security and each of these five lost it. But as writers, they made the identities of ‘outsider’, ‘outlaw’, ‘outcast’, their own, taking advantage of their separation from the dominant order to write their brilliant books. What they have in common also is the way they inform one another, and us, across the generations.  Lyndall Gordon names each of these five as prodigy, visionary, outlaw, orator and explorer and shows how they came, they saw and left us changed.

Lyndall has attended a number of festivals and literary events to discuss these inspirational women, including the Bath Festival and Cambridge Literary Festival. Lyndall will be giving the Annual Burnt Norton Lecture at The T. S. Eliot International Summer School in July, discussing the prestigious writer and the women in his life. Rights to OUTSIDERS have recently been acquired by Larrad in Spain and Shanghai Literature & Art Publishing House in China.

Lyndall Gordon's biographies have always shown the indelible connection between life and art: an intuitive, exciting and revealing approach that has been highly praised and much read and enjoyed Like all Lyndall’s books OUTSIDERS will continue to delight and inspire readers for a long time to come.

Praise for OUTSIDERS:

‘Fascinating… The strength of spirit of these outsiders shines from the pages and through the ages as Gordon takes us deep inside their minds, hearts, and books.’ — Anita Sethi, The Observer

‘As the role of women undergoes yet another convulsion, it’s good to read, in Lyndall Gordon’s OUTSIDERS, of the robust intelligence of five women who made a powerful contribution. The work and lives of Emily Brontë, George Eliot, Mary Shelley, Olive Schreiner and Virginia Woolf are well known. Gordon’s thesis sets out just how original and brave they were – and at what cost. We owe them much.’ — Joan Bakewell, New Statesman, Books of the Year 2017

‘I love how Lyndall Gordon thinks and I love the clarity and reach of her writing, combining imaginative audacity with scholarly scruple. Her OUTSIDERS, a collection of portraits of George Eliot, Emily Brontë, Virginia Woolf, Olive Schreiner and Mary Shelley, builds into a lucid meditation on how certain writers become lighthouses for each other.’ — Joseph O’Connor, Irish Times Books of the Year 2017

‘Visionary, beautiful’ — Karina Szczurek, Books Live, The best books of 2017 

‘A lively and enterprising group biography’ — Catherine Taylor, Financial Times

NANCY TUCKER’S THAT WAS WHEN PEOPLE STARTED TO WORRY OUT NOW

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In her new book THAT WAS WHEN PEOPLE STARTED TO WORRY, published in hardback and ebook by Icon Books, Nancy Tucker brings together the experiences of sixty young women aged 16-25 to present the wide scope of mental illness and the impact it has on everyday life. Nancy’s writing is frank, funny and compassionate, offering readers the opportunity to better understand what it is to live with an unwell mind. Nancy’s book is also out in audio with Audible UK.

‘In the waiting room, I see a lot of people who I could tell had real, serious Problems. They deserve to be here. I don’t. I’m a fraud. A lazy wreck seeking an excuse for her incompetence. I’m useless.’ Abby, 24

THAT WAS WHEN PEOPLE STARTED TO WORRY examines modern perceptions of mental illness, placing women’s lived experience at the centre of that narrative. Nancy encourages readers to examine their preconceptions of these conditions with tongue-in-cheek ‘guidebook’ sections, and throughout these chapters we hear Nancy’s own voice and experiences, creating a compelling and cohesive narrative.

Through these stories of women pushed to the very edge, Nancy reveals something universal about what it means to grow up a woman, and shines a light on perspectives recognisable for anyone who has been affected, directly or indirectly, by mental illness. The result is a book that is unique: in turns funny, disturbing and deeply moving; sensitively handled, and intimate without being

Nancy’s first book THE TIME IN BETWEEN (Icon Books, 2016) explored her own struggle with anorexia and bulimia nervosa. In the Sunday Times Christina Patterson praised the memoir as ‘astonishingly good’ and in The Psychologist Sara Gilbert wrote it was ‘an illustration of the complexity of an eating disorder.’

Nancy Tucker is a 22-year-old writer and student, currently studying for a degree in Experimental Psychology at Pembroke College, Oxford. Nancy’s first book, THE TIME IN BETWEEN (Icon, 2016), explored her own struggle with anorexia and bulimia nervosa. Nancy aspires to eventually apply her understanding of mental illness to a career in clinical psychology, and has a particular interest in the treatment of binge eating disorder and personality disorders. 

You can read an extract from Nancy’s new book from The Observer here.

Praise for Nancy Tucker:

‘A startlingly affecting, starkly written account of her anorexia. This isn't just another anorexia misery memoir — it's a work of literature’ — Jacqueline Wilson

‘I found Tucker’s account of her illness clear-sighted, eye-opening, moving and wise.’ — The Bookseller

‘THE TIME IN BETWEEN is a tremendous achievement’ — New Statesman

‘THE TIME IN BETWEEN is stylish an incisive and Tucker weaves her tale of fear and food, confusion and calories grippingly and with skill.’ — Joanna Moorhead, The Guardian

‘A haunting first-person account of Tucker’s struggle with anorexia as a child… Her writing is distinctive, engaging and slightly spiky.’ — Helen Nianias, The Independent

 

AN ANTHOLOGY OF WRITING FOR BLACK BRITISH MEN: SAFE EDITED BY DEREK OWUSU ACQUIRED BY TRAPEZE

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SAFE, a comprehensive anthology of writing by and for Black British men edited by Derek Owusu, co-host of the successful literature podcast Mostly Lit, has been bought by Trapeze. Commissioning Editor Emma Smith acquired UK & Commonwealth rights from Juliet Pickering for SAFE: On Black British Men Reclaiming Space. The anthology will be published in hardback, ebook and audio in March 2019.

What is the experience of black men in Britain? With continued conversation around British identity, racism and diversity, there is no better time to explore this question and give black British men a platform to answer it. SAFE: On Black British Men Reclaiming Space, is that platform. Including essays from top poets, writers, musicians, actors and journalists, this timely and accessible book brings together a selection of powerful reflections exploring the black British male experience and what it really means to reclaim and hold space in the landscape of our society.  Where do black men belong in school, in the media, in their own families, in the conversation about mental health, in the LGBT community, in grime music – and how can these voices inspire, educate and add to the dialogue of diversity already taking place? Following on from discussions raised by THE GOOD IMMIGRANT and WHY I’M NO LONGER TALKING TO WHITE PEOPLE ABOUT RACE, this collection takes readers on a rich and varied path to confront and question the position of black men in Britain today, and shines a light on the way forward.

Emma Smith said: “This book was impossible not to publish. It’s necessary, authentic and high-calibre writing by an impressive roster of contributors who collectively hold the power to shape attitudes and shift discourse. SAFE will amplify black British male voices, open minds and forge a conversation about cultural identity. I am so proud to be working with Derek on this agenda-setting book that will resonate for generations to come.”

Derek Owusu said: “This is a book about mental health, about violence, about racism, about homophobia, about colourism, but it’s also a book about love, about learning, about compassion and about community. I’m so grateful to have been given the chance to work on this book with so many amazing writers, people as passionate as I am about adding to the current discourse.”

Derek Owusu is a writer, host of hit podcast Mostly Litand mentor to young people at Urban Synergy. He discovered his passion for literature aged 23 – before then, he had never read a book cover-to-cover. It was a revelation that came too late for his university path, so instead of switching course, he snuck into English literature lectures at The University of Manchester.

SUBMISSIONS OPEN

Amongst contributors such as poet Suli Breaks, award-winning author Alex Wheatle, Channel 4 news reporter Symeon Brown, writer and Musician Musa Okwonga and Guardian editor Joseph Harker, a competition is now open for essay submissions – the winner of which will feature as the final contributor to SAFE. For more information and terms, please see https://www.mostly-lit.com/safe-competition

Follow Mostly Lit on Twitter or listen to their podcasts

ICON BOOKS ACQUIRES THE TALE OF A REAL-LIFE ROBINSON CRUSOE

Tom Webber, commissioning editor at Icon Books, has bought UK & Commonwealth rights (ex. Canada) rights to THE OTHER EXILE, THE REMARKABLE STORY OF FERNÃO LOPES, THE ISLAND OF ST HELENA AND A PARADISE LOST by Abdul Rahman Azzam from Isobel Dixon at Blake Friedmann. Appealing to readers of Jon Krakauer’s INTO THE WILD or even Cheryl Strayed’s WILD, THE OTHER EXILE is a historical adventure story, a tale of a real-life Robinson Crusoe and his total retreat from human society.

 Abdul Rahman Azzam, who gained his Dphil in History at Oxford and now lives between Cambridge and Qatar, presents through an expertly-paced narrative the largely untold story of 16th Century Portuguese nobleman Fernao Lopes. A Muslim convert who jumped ship en route from Goa to his native Portugal, Lopes made the newly-discovered island of St Helena his home in almost total isolation for 30 years. 

Based on entirely new research, the book is at once a historical narrative, a meditation on solitude, remoteness and the soul’s inward journey, and a short history-cum-travelogue of the fascinating island of St Helena. 

Webber says ‘The extraordinary story of Fernao Lopes immediately captures the imagination, and Abdul Rahman Azzams’s careful and lyrical narrative voice is perfectly suited to telling it. Lopes lived a life of amazing contrasts, and his remarkable journey from adventurer to desert-island dwelling hermit is a fascinatingly resonant one of a longing for peace and self-knowledge that has instant appeal.’

Azzam says ‘This book is a labour of love and I’m delighted that it will be brought to market by Icon Books, who I know will publish it with verve and enthusiasm. I’m already enjoying working with Tom and I’m very much looking forward to doing the same with the rest of the team there.’

 Icon will publish as a £20 Royal hardback, and as an ebook, in June 2017.