Monday 17 October 2011

Bloomsbury Reader

I briefly mentioned Bloomsbury's latest project the other day - Bloomsbury Reader - and now I'll hand over to their press release to tell you a bit more, before recommending the titles which have Stuck-in-a-Book approval...

Actually, I'll save time.  Here is their Press Release.  To summarise: it's a good idea.

And it's all very exciting for those of you who have e-readers.  I'll be cheering from the sidelines.  And now for my subjective bit... amongst their many upcoming titles are many I know nothing about, but also some books I think are brilliant, but which haven't previously been the easiest to track down.  Here is my brief selection from Bloomsbury Reader...

Faster! Faster! by E.M. Delafield
One of my favourite of EMD's non-Provincial Lady books, this novel tells of career-woman Claudia and her mid-life crisis.  Some sad scenes, some of EMD's irrepressible humour, and a title taken from Through the Looking-Glass to boot.  If you buy one Bloomsbury Reader title, make it this one.  (They're also doing Women Are Like That and No One Now Will Know, but I've not read those yet...)

Told By An Idiot by Rose Macaulay
Ok, being totally honest I haven't actually read this, but I've read enough of RM's other novels to know that she's all-round great.  Very dry, very witty, and generally needs more attention from the blogging world and the reading world at large.

any of the titles by Ivy Compton-Burnett
It's no secret that I adore Dame Ivy and, to be honest, her books are all so similar that it doesn't really matter which you read.  They are mostly in dialogue, and are constantly surprising and unusual and deadpan-hilarious.  People will debate the proper use of a verb for pages, and then drop into conversation that someone is dead.  You'll either love Ivy or hate her - most seem to hate her, but if you love her then you'll really love her.

Ok, that's quite a brief glimpse at what they've got going on, but click here to read the whole list, and let me know what you've got your eye on.


  1. How totally serendipitous--I just discovered them as well. Last week I was browsing about online and came across this imprint (?) and had a little heydey downloading books and samples onto my Nook. So far I have: Angela Lambert's Love Among the Single Classes, Pamela Haines's Men on White Horses and The Diamond Waterfall (probably more romance-ish than you might be interested in) and samples of 1939, A Long Walk to Wimbledon, Late and Soon (Delafield), and The Long Night. I can see this is going to be very, very dangerous but hope the continue issuing more titles! :)

  2. Oh--and plan on loading all the Delafield's eventually. I have a Virago of that Macaulay and have decided she is an author I very much like after finally reading one of her books recently. And I have yet to try ICB--but will eventually!

  3. Eventually I will get to it all. When is the million dollar question but thanks a lot for the links. Fabulous list though Delafield is yet my first choice.

  4. Looking through the catalogue, it is clear that I am going to have to investigate Anne Melville's Lorimer books. I grew up reading R.F. Delderfield's soapy family sagas so a series which covers one family from the 1870s to the 1940s sounds quite perfect to me! And it looks like the Lorimer books are being published in paperback too - ideal!

  5. I want the Delafields! Also some of the Monica Dickens. I'm not sure I'll be able to download the ebooks as I tried to download Faster! Faster! from the Book Depository & it didn't work... Still waiting to hear from them. As the ebooks are half the price of the paperbacks & instant, I really hope I can sort this out.

  6. All available via Kindle - oh joy :) Spoilt for choice but looks like "Scary Tales to Tell in the Dark" will be heading to my Kindle asap.

  7. I'm most pleased to see Ann Bridge's Julia Probyn novels, as I have six but the two I'm missing have been too ridiculously expensive to consider ordering. My next priority, I think, will be the Monica Dickens titles I don't have. And then there are quite a few more!

  8. I found the list quite hard to navigate through - why can't things be alphabetical or in some way less tedious to sort through (gave up after the first 6 pages) I also think they're a bit expensive, don't understand (and consider it the thin end of the wedge) why ebooks attract vat when paper ones don't, and definitely think £15 for the physical books is steep especially if Vinatge can do them for £10.
    Guess who's had a grotty day!

  9. Danielle - wonderful! I know nothing about any of those titles, except Late and Soon which I read nearly a decade ago, and enjoyed. Not remotely PL-esque, quite sombre.
    And I'll be supporting you all the way when you try ICB! To be honest, most people fail to enjoy her, but... I'm holding out hope :)

    Mystica - this should be really good for lovers of old British literature living in countries where it's difficult to find it.

    Claire - never heard of the Lorimer novels before, so I look forward to seeing what you have to say about them in due course!

    Lyn - oh, I hope you manage to sort that out - I assumed they sold internationally, but I don't know how rights work with e-books...

    Alison - I do feel a bit dirty, recommending ebooks so much!

    Jane - being able to get these novels (fairly) cheaply is wonderful - the other day I had to pay for a fairly ugly POD copy of a novel which was avaiable free on Kindle, and that's about the only time I've been jealous of my kindling friends...

    Hayley - oh dear, Hayley! I agree that the list was difficult to navigate, hope they sort that out, and I certainly would only buy novels which were very difficult to track down in their originals - which quite a few of them are, but not (for instance) a lot of the Monica Dickens ones.


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