February 2024 nonfiction catalogue

 

Terrible Maps
The joys of the world, one terrible map at a time – this is the ultimate gift book for the budding geographer or anyone who wants to have a laugh. Ever wondered about the average jean colour across the United States? Or what ‘pedestrians’ look like in Denmark? What unites Brokenwind, Upton Snodsbury, and Crackpot? And have you ever tried to take a train in Antarctica? Well, Terrible Maps is the book for you! Put together by the creator behind the tremendously-popular social media feed, this is the ultimate humour book for the budding geographer in your life. From countries that eat their national animals to nations that have declared war on birds (and lost), Terrible Maps celebrates pointless cartography in all its glory. Don’t leave home without it!
Cartography/Humour | HC | $37.99

The Tetris Effect (The Cold War Battle for the World’s Most Addictive Game)
Ackerman, Dan
21 February 1989. Three men fly into Moscow, representing software giants from Britain, America, and Japan. Each of them is determined to undercut the others – in order to secure a technology, so powerfully addictive it has brought the government department that created it to a standstill. In a country on the brink of seismic change, where spycraft is about to give way to cutthroat capitalism, Tetris has become the grand prize. Featuring corporate espionage, unmarked government organisations, courtroom drama and international conspiracies, the origin of the world’s most popular video game is a gripping, fast-paced thriller of the highest order. Not only this, but it is also the tale of a one-in-a-million software start-up, a unique example of an idea, a product and an era coming together – at exactly the right moment. Tetris was perfectly (if accidentally) crafted to hit primal triggers in our minds and, in Ackerman’s hands, its story is unputdownable.
History | PBK | $22.99

Dinosaur Behavior (An Illustrated Guide)
Benton, Michael J & Nicholls, Bob (illustrator)
Palaeobiology has advanced from a speculative subject to a cutting-edge science. Today, researchers are applying the latest forensic technologies to the fossil record, revealing startling new insights into the lives of dinosaurs. This illustrated guide explores the behaviour, evolution, physiology, and extinction of dinosaurs, taking readers inside the mysterious world of these marvellous animals. With specially commissioned illustrations by Bob Nicholls, Dinosaur Behavior explains how the dinosaurs lived and courted, fought and fed, signalled and interacted with each other, and much more. Features a wealth of breathtaking illustrations throughout; offers new perspectives on the prehistoric world inhabited by dinosaurs; sheds light on how dinosaurs actually looked, how they moved, and how fast they ran; explains the feeding habits of carnivores, herbivores, scavengers, and solitary hunters; discusses sight, hearing, smell, spatial orientation, and intelligence; brings to life the social behaviour of dinosaurs, from mating and parenting to herd dynamics and migration; and, takes readers behind the scenes of the latest, most thrilling discoveries.
Science | HC | $59.99

Cave of Bones (A True Story of Discovery, Adventure, and Human Origins)
Berger, Lee & Hawks, John
A true-life scientific adventure story, this thrilling book takes the reader deep into South African caves to discover fossil remains that compel a monumental reframing of the human family tree. In the summer of 2022, Lee Berger lost 50 pounds in order to wriggle though impossibly small openings in the Rising Star cave complex in South Africa – spaces where his team has been unearthing the remains of Homo naledi, a proto-human likely to have coexisted with Homo sapiens some 250,000 years ago. The lead researcher on the site, still Berger had never made his way into the dark, cramped, dangerous underground spaces where many of the naledi fossils had been found. Now, he was ready to do so. Once inside the cave, Berger made shocking new discoveries that expand our understanding of this early hominid – discoveries that stand to alter our fundamental understanding of what makes us human. So what does it all mean? Join Berger on the adventure of a lifetime as he explores the Rising Star cave system and begins the complicated process of explaining these extraordinary finds – finds that force a rethinking of human evolution, and discoveries that Berger calls ‘the Rosetta stone of the human mind.’
Science | TP | $36.99

Apocalypse (Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook)
Borgenicht, David & Piven, Joshua
It’s the apocalypse – now, what? Prepare for the end of civilisation with the help of the world’s bestselling survival guide series and learn how to pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and start all over again. The doomsday clock is seconds from midnight. Extinction-level dangers draw closer with every tick. But, fear not! Here is an indispensable guide to preparing for and surviving the ultimate in worst-case scenarios, with humour to lighten the load. You can’t panic, if you’re laughing. Dozens of survival experts provide illustrated, step-by-step instructions on: how to pack a go bag in 30 minutes; how to make your bunker feel like home; how to survive an alien invasion; how to defeat a robot uprising; how to survive the next pandemic; how to fend off a hostile clan; how to eat insects and rodents; and how to rebuild a utopian society. You’ve gotten this far. Don’t let zombies take you out.
Survival | HC | $42.99

The Hidden Language of Cats (Learn what your feline friend is trying to tell you)
Brown, Sarah
A renowned cat behaviour scientist of over 30 years, Dr Sarah Brown has been at the forefront of research in the field, discovering how cats use tail signals to interact with each other and their owners. Now, she reveals the previously unexplored secrets of cat communication in a book that is both scientifically grounded and utterly delightful. Each chapter dives into a different form of communication, including vocalisations, tail signals, scents, rubbing, and ear movements. The iconic meow, for example, is rarely used between adult cats – cleverly mimicking the cries of a human infant, the meow is a feline invention for conversing with people. Through observing the behaviour of two cat colonies in rural England, readers will also have the opportunity to glimpse into the lives of some of the cats behind Dr Brown’s science. Can we understand what cats’ meows and other signals mean? How do cats actually perceive us? And how can we use this information to inform how we talk back to our feline friends? Referencing historical records, exploring modern scientific studies of cat-human communication, and including simple, elegant line drawings, The Hidden Language of Cats is perfect for any cat lover, who wants to learn more about their companion.
Cats/Science | HC | $35.00

How to Survive History (How to Outrun a Tyrannosaurus, Escape Pompeii, Get Off the Titanic, and Survive the Rest of History’s Deadliest Catastrophes)
Cassidy, Cody
A detailed guide to surviving history’s most challenging threats, from outrunning dinosaurs to making it off the Titanic, alive! History is the most dangerous place on earth. From dinosaurs the size of locomotives to meteors big enough to sterilise the planet, from famines to pandemics, from tornadoes to the Chicxulub asteroid, the odds of human survival are slim, but not zero – at least, not if you know where to go and what to do. In each chapter of How to Survive History, Cody Cassidy explores how to survive one of history’s greatest threats: getting eaten by dinosaurs, being destroyed by the asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs, succumbing to the lava flows of Pompeii, being devoured by the Donner Party, drowning during the sinking of the Titanic, falling prey to the Black Death, and more. Using hindsight and modern science to estimate everything from how fast you’d need to run to outpace a T. rex to the advantages of different body types in surviving the Donner Party tragedy, Cassidy gives you a detailed battle plan for survival, helping you learn about the era at the same time. History may be the most dangerous place on earth, but that doesn’t mean you can’t visit. You can, and you should. And, with a copy of How to Survive History in your back pocket, you just might make it out, alive.
History | PBK | $24.99

How to Read Now
Castillo, Elaine
How many times have we heard that reading builds empathy? That we can travel through books? How often have we were heard about the importance of diversifying our bookshelves? Or claimed that books saved our lives? These familiar words – beautiful, aspirational – are sometimes even true. But award-winning novelist Elaine Castillo has more ambitious hopes for our reading culture, and in this collection of linked essays, she moves to wrest reading away from the aspirations of uniting people in empathetic harmony and reposition it as thornier, ultimately more rewarding work. How to Read Now explores the politics and ethics of reading, and insists that we are capable of something better: a more engaged relationship not just with our fiction and our art, but with our buried and entangled histories. Smart, funny, galvanising, and sometimes profane, Castillo attacks the stale questions and less-than-critical proclamations that masquerade as vital discussion: reimagining the cartography of the classics, building a moral case against the settler colonialism of lauded writers like Joan Didion, taking aim at Nobel Prize winners and toppling indie filmmakers, and celebrating glorious moments in everything from popular TV, like The Watchmen to the films of Wong Kar-wai, and the work of contemporary poets like Tommy Pico. At once, a deeply personal and searching history of one woman’s reading life, and a wide-ranging and urgent intervention into our globalised conversations about why reading matters today, How to Read Now empowers us to embrace a more complicated, embodied form of reading, inviting us to acknowledge complicated truths, ignite surprising connections, imagine a more daring solidarity, and create space for a riskier intimacy – within ourselves, and with each other.
Books/Reading | PBK | $24.99

Fowl Play (A History of the Chicken from Dinosaur to Dinner Plate)
Coulthard, Sally
From dinosaur to dinner plate, Sally Coulthard tells the fascinating – and sometimes shocking – story of the domestic chicken. Earth is home to 23 billion chickens – at least, 10 times more than any other bird. For every human on the planet, there are three chickens. Despite being capable of flying only a few metres, this most adaptable animal has somehow managed to conquer the world. In Fowl Play, Sally Coulthard probes every aspect of the genus Gallus: the evolution and domestication of the chicken; its social behaviour and array of physically striking varieties, from Rhode Island Reds to Belgian d’Uccles, and from Buff Orpingtons to White Leghorns; its importance in ancient Egyptian religion, Roman augury, and Christian theology; its role as egg-providing companion on farms and smallholdings and in suburban back gardens; and the darker reality of modern poultry farming and society’s insatiable appetite for chicken breasts, wings and nuggets. This is a story of evolutionary change, epic global travel, and exploitation, as well as biophilia, companionship, and human ingenuity.
Science/History | PBK | $22.99

Running Up That Hill (50 Visions of Kate Bush)
Doyle, Tom
Kate Bush: the subject of murmured legend and one of the most idiosyncratic musicians of the modern era. Comprising 50 chapters, or ‘visions’, Running Up that Hill is a multifaceted biography of this famously elusive figure, viewing her life and work from fresh and illuminating angles. Featuring details from the author’s one-to-one conversations with Kate, as well as vignettes of her key songs, albums, videos, and concerts, this artful, candid and often brutally funny portrait introduces the reader to the refreshingly real Kate Bush. Along the way, the narrative also includes vivid reconstructions of transformative moments in her career and insights from the friends and collaborators closest to Kate, including her photographer brother John Carder Bush and fellow artists David Gilmour, John Lydon, and Youth. Running Up that Hill is a vibrant and comprehensive re-examination of Kate Bush, and her many creative landmarks.
Music | PBK | $24.99

How the Tricolor Got Its Stripes (And Other Stories About Flags)
Dubilet, Dmytro
Starting with flags that we know, this captivating history explains the origins and hidden meanings of flags, taking a chatty but always entertaining path through this universal subject. Each chapter starts with a well-known flag and shows how that flag led to a number of other flags – so, for example, how the French tricolour led to the red, white, and green Il Tricolore of Italy, and then to a host of other tricolours in different parts of the world. Many of the over 200 colour illustrations feature alternative versions of existing flags – the flags that might have been – such as the red Canadian maple leaf between two bands of blue, representing the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. This entertaining and very likeable history of flags was written by Ukrainian businessman and ex-cabinet minister Dmytro Dubilet, and first published in Ukrainian six months before the start of the Ukrainian-Russian war.
Flags | HC | $39.99

The Ransomware Hunting Team (A Band of Misfits’ Improbable Crusade to Save the World from Cybercrime)
Dudley, Renee & Golden, Daniel
Scattered across the world, an elite team of code-cracking techies is working tirelessly on your behalf to thwart the most notorious cyber scourge of our time. You’ve probably never heard of them. But if you work for a school, a business, a hospital, or a municipal government, especially if its cybersecurity is imperfect, chances are that you’re painfully familiar with the group’s sworn enemy: ransomware. Again and again, these ordinary people, mostly self-taught and often struggling to make ends meet, have outwitted the shadowy networks of hackers and criminal gangs that lock computer networks and extort huge payments in return for the key. The Ransomware Hunting Team is the incredible true story of a band of misfits who have used their extraordinary skills to save millions of ransomware victims from paying billions of dollars to criminals. Working in their free time from bedrooms and back offices, they offer their services pro bono to those whom the FBI, other government agencies, and the private sector are unwilling or unable to help. This book follows the teammates, as they respond to dire calls for help – and tracks the ups and downs of their work as they race to rescue precious files and communicate directly with their adversaries. Urgent, uplifting, and entertaining, Renee Dudley and Daniel Golden’s The Ransomware Hunting Team is a real-life technological thriller set in a dangerous new era of cybercrime.
Cybercrime | TP | $36.99

Building a Second Brain (A Proven Method to Organise Your Digital Life and Unlock Your Creative Potential)
Forte, Tiago
Find order, creativity, and productivity with this revolutionary system. Discover the full potential of your ideas and make powerful, meaningful improvements in your work and life by Building a Second Brain. For the first time in history, we have instantaneous access to the world’s knowledge. There has never been a better time to learn, to create and to improve ourselves. Yet, rather than being empowered by this information, we’re often overwhelmed, paralysed by believing we’ll never know or remember enough. This eye-opening and accessible guide shows how you can easily create your own personal system for knowledge management, otherwise known as a Second Brain. A trusted and organised digital repository of your most valued ideas, notes and creative work, a Second Brain gives you the confidence to tackle your most important projects and ambitious goals. From identifying good ideas, to organising your thoughts, to retrieving everything swiftly and easily, it puts you back in control of your life and information.
Project management | PBK | $24.99

Albertus (Biography of a Typeface)
Garfield, Simon
One of the most beautiful, handcrafted typefaces in the world, Albertus is also one of the most enduring. The face of thousands of book jackets, and the chosen look for David Bowie, Coldplay, Star Wars, and London street signs, Albertus is as warmly enticing on film posters, as it is on memorial plaques. The story of the font is one displacement (its designer, Berthold Wolpe, was a German Jewish refugee who went on to design the masthead for The Times), but also one of permanence, for it has proved a fresh, vibrant, and indestructible face for almost a century. In this unique celebration, the designer’s children reveal the history of its creation and the erratic brilliance of their father, while the book grapples with one of the fundamental artistic questions: what makes great art not only survive, but flourish, in each new age and medium?
Design history | HC | $34.99

Baskerville (Biography of a Typeface)
Garfield, Simon
The classic elegant English typeface, still widely used as a book text, more than 250 years since its creation. Baskerville is a transitional design, poised between the first metal types and modern styles, notable for its combination of fat and thin strokes. When it was first used, there was genuine concern that it would damage readers’ eyes. John Baskerville was a maverick lacquer maker and printer in Birmingham, a flamboyant dresser, an important figure in the Enlightenment. Though, it earned him little money, he was obsessive about both his typeface and its appearance on the page, a perfectionism culminating in his magnificent Bible. The story encompasses one of the first powerful women of the printing world, his wife Sarah Baskerville, and the many typefaces the Baskervilles inspired. And it examines why John Baskerville’s body was dug up and buried, many times, before it was finally allowed to rest in peace.
Design history | HC | $34.99

Hellish Nell (Last of Britain’s Witches)
Gaskill, Malcolm
The strange and poignant story of a Second World War witchcraft trial. One of the last criminal trials – using the 1735 Witchcraft Act – was, improbably, in London in 1944. The accused was Helen Duncan, a middle-aged Scotswoman. This is her extraordinary story. Helen Duncan – known since childhood as ‘Hellish Nell’, for her uncontainable nature – was one of the most popular mediums of the 20th century, holding séances around the country where she was believed to manifest the spirits of the dead. What happens, when we die? It was the question of the age for a generation which had endured one world war and, now, was living through another. Mrs Duncan’s séances offered an answer. But when she started foretelling naval disasters, she also attracted the unwelcome attention of the secret service. And, so, just weeks before the Normandy landings, absurdly, anachronistically, she was prosecuted for witchcraft and jailed. Was Nell a conjurer, a martyr or a security risk? Hellish Nell was first published in 2001 to widespread acclaim. It remains, in this revised edition, a fascinating window into the unsettled spiritual and psychological mood of the times – a sensational tale of spectacle, credulity and cruelty, and of Britain’s last witch.
Witch hunts | PBK | $24.99

Smoke and Ashes (Opium’s Hidden Histories)
Ghosh, Amitav
When Amitav Ghosh began the research for his monumental cycle of novels, the Ibis trilogy, 10 years ago, he was startled to find how the lives of the 19th century sailors and soldiers, he wrote of, were dictated not only by the currents of the Indian Ocean, but also by the precious commodity carried in enormous quantities on those currents: opium. Most surprising at all, however, was the discovery that his own identity and family history was swept up in the story. Smoke and Ashes is at once a travelogue, memoir, and an essay in history, drawing on decades of archival research. In it, Ghosh traces the transformative effect the opium trade had on Britain, India, and China, as well as the world, at large. The trade was engineered by the British Empire, which exported Indian opium to sell to China and redress their great trade imbalance, and its revenues were essential to the Empire’s financial survival. Yet, tracing the profits further, Ghosh finds opium at the origins of some of the world’s biggest corporations, of America’s most powerful families and prestigious institutions (from the Astors and Coolidges to the Ivy League), and of contemporary globalism itself. Moving deftly between horticultural histories, the mythologies of capitalism, and the social and cultural repercussions of colonialism, Ghosh reveals the role that one small plant had in the making of our world, now teetering on the edge of catastrophe.
History/Science | TP | $34.99

If Nietzsche Were a Narwhal (What Animal Intelligence Reveals About Human Stupidity)
Gregg, Justin
A myth-busting expose of how human intelligence may be more a liability, than a gift, and a refreshing new way to understand the animal kingdom and our place on earth. What if human intelligence is actually more of a liability than a gift? After all, the animal kingdom, in all its diversity, gets by just fine without it. At first glance, human history is full of remarkable feats of intelligence, yet human exceptionalism can be a double-edged sword. With our unique cognitive prowess comes severe consequences, including existential angst, violence, discrimination, and the creation of a world teetering towards climate catastrophe. What if human exceptionalism is more of a curse than a blessing? As Justin Gregg puts it, there’s an evolutionary reason why human intelligence isn’t more prevalent in the animal kingdom. Simply put, non-human animals don’t need it to be successful. And, miraculously, their success arrives without the added baggage of destroying themselves and the planet in the process. In seven mind-bending and hilarious chapters, Gregg highlights features seemingly unique to humans – our use of language, our rationality, our moral systems, our so-called sophisticated consciousness – and compares them to our animal brethren. What emerges is both demystifying and remarkable, and will change how you look at animals, humans, and the meaning of life, itself.
Science | PBK | $24.99

Poison (The History of Potions, Powders and Murderous Practitioners)
Hubbard, Ben
‘As every amateur toxicologist knows, the difference between a poison and medicine is often simply the dose.’ There is no weapon as insidious, as seductive, or as mysterious as poison. In this terrifying account of history’s silent assassin, discover the gripping tales of users, abusers, and victims of these mysterious substances, from Cleopatra and Catherine de’ Medici to contemporary secret service agents and terrorists. Documenting royal scandal, political upheaval and personal tragedies, Poison details a gruesome thread that runs often undetected through human history.
Science/True crime | PBK | $24.99

The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World
Hughes, Bettany
A revelatory new history of the ancient world, told through its seven greatest monuments. Their names still echo down the ages: the Great Pyramid at Giza; the Hanging Gardens of Babylon; the Temple of Artemis; the statue of Zeus at Olympia; the mausoleum of Halikarnassos; the Colossus at Rhodes; and the Lighthouse of Alexandria. The Seven Wonders of the World were staggeringly audacious impositions on our planet. They were also brilliant adventures of the mind, test cases for the reaches of human imagination. Now, only the great pyramid remains fully standing, yet the scale and majesty of these seven wonders still enthral us today. In a thrilling, colourful narrative enriched with the latest archaeological discoveries, bestselling historian Bettany Hughes walks through the landscapes of both ancient and modern time. This is a journey whose purpose is to ask why we wonder, why we create, why we choose to remember the wonder of others. She explores traces of the Wonders, themselves, and the traces they have left in history. A magisterial work of historical storytelling, The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World reinforces the exciting and nourishing notion that humans can make the impossible happen.
History | TP | $34.99

A Cold Spell (A Human History of Ice)
Leonard, Max
Taking us from the beginning of our story to the present day, A Cold Spell examines how ice has shaped our thoughts, actions, and societies – and what it means for us that it is rapidly disappearing from our planet. Ice has confounded, delighted and fascinated us since the first sparks of art and culture in Europe and it now underpins the modern world. Without ice, we would not feed ourselves or heal our sick as we do, and our towns and cities, countryside and oceans would look very different. Science would not have progressed along the avenues it did and our galleries and libraries would be missing many masterpieces. A Cold Spell uses this vital link to understanding our past to tell a surprising story of obsession, invention, and adventure – how we have lived and dreamed, celebrated and traded, innovated, loved and fought over thousands of years. It brings together a sacrificial Incan mummy, Winston Churchill’s secret plans for unusual aircraft carriers, strange bones that shook Victorian beliefs about the world and a macabre journey into the depths of the human body. It is an original and unique way of looking at something that is literally all around us, whose loss confronts us daily in the news, but whose impact on our lives has never been fully explored.
Science/History | TP | $34.99

Critical Hits (Writers on Gaming and the Alternate Worlds We Inhabit, anthology)
Machado, Carmen Maria & Lennon, J Robert (editors)
An anthology of essays on video games, by some of today’s best literary writers. Whether you’re an avid gamer, a Twitch subscriber, or just an incidental Subway Surfer, video games have changed the way you interact with the world, and have been part of our lives for over 50 years. Critical Hits is a celebration of play and playfulness, and the lasting impact of videogames. Composed of sharp, impassioned, and inquisitive essays, this collection begins with an introduction by Carmen Maria Machado and presents video games through the eyes of 18 writer-gamers, as they straddle real and artificial worlds. In games, they find solace from illness and grief, test ideas about language, bodies, race, and technology, and see their experiences and identities reflected in – or complicated by – the interactive virtual realities they inhabit. From a deep dive into ‘portal fantasy’ games by Charlie Jane Anders and a comic by MariNaomi about her time as a video game producer, to the overlaps in gaming and poetry by Stephen Sexton, Critical Hits illuminates fragments of an industry that is wildly popular, grossly misunderstood, and absolutely spellbinding.
Gaming | TP | $34.99

For Profit (A History of Corporations)
Magnuson, William
The first 2000-year history of corporations and the way they have shaped our lives. We have long been suspicious of corporations, recklessly pursuing profit and amassing wealth and power. But the story of the corporation didn’t have to be like this. For most of history, they were not amoral entities, but public institutions designed to promote the societies that granted them charter. Magnuson reveals how the corporation has evolved since its beginnings in the ancient world. What happens in this next chapter of the global economy depends on whether we can return to their public-minded spirit, or whether we have sunk irrevocably into the swamp of high profit at all costs. Epic and compelling in scope, For Profit illuminates the roles corporations played, for good and evil, in the making of the modern world.
History/Business | PBK | $24.99

Exploring the World (Two centuries of remarkable adventurers and their journeys)
Maitland, Alexander
A one-volume history of exploration told through the stories of the Royal Geographical Society’s remarkable gold-medal winners. Explorers and travellers have always been attracted by the lure of the unknown. By traversing and mapping our planet, they have played a vital role in mankind’s development. For almost 200 years, the Royal Geographical Society has recognised their achievements by awarding its prestigious gold medals to those who have contributed most to our knowledge of the world. Taking us on a journey across mountains and deserts, oceans and seas, Exploring the World tells the stories of more than 80 of these extraordinary men and women. Some, such as David Livingstone, Scott of the Antarctic, and Jacques-Yves Cousteau, are well known; while others, such as William Chandless and Ney Elias, are today less familiar. Some dreamed of being the first to sight a lake or a river; others sighted some of the world’s greatest natural features by chance. Some were naturalists, anthropologists, or mountaineers; others went in search of explorers who had vanished without trace, or had been shipwrecked, or marooned. Filled with epic tales of endurance and perseverance, Exploring the World celebrates a group of exceptional individuals possessed of indomitable courage, boundless determination, and adventurous spirit. It portrays a variety of fascinating lives driven by curiosity, wanderlust, and the pursuit of knowledge – and, in doing so, provides a unique overview of two centuries of exploration.
History | PBK | $24.99

Blood in the Machine (The Origins of the Rebellion Against Big Tech)
Merchant, Brian
The most urgent story in modern tech begins not in Silicon Valley but 200 years ago in rural England, when workers known as the Luddites rose up rather than starve at the hands of factory owners who were using automated machines to erase their livelihoods. The Luddites organised guerrilla raids to smash those machines – on punishment of death – and won the support of Lord Byron, enraged the Prince Regent, and inspired the birth of science fiction. This all-but-forgotten class struggle brought 19th-century England to its knees. Today, technology imperils millions of jobs, robots are crowding factory floors, and artificial intelligence will soon pervade every aspect of our economy. How will this change the way we live? And what can we do about it? The answers lie in Blood in the Machine. Brian Merchant intertwines a lucid examination of our current age with the story of the Luddites, showing how automation changed our world – and is shaping our future.
Impact of technology | HC | $49.99

Grimoire Girl (Creating an Inheritance of Magic and Mischief)
Morgan, Hilarie Burton
Since childhood, Hilarie Burton Morgan has felt the call to record, keep, and catalogue life in all its strange wonder. It was a whimsical habit, with no clear goal. And then, when she became a mother, the importance of all that collecting snapped into focus. In an effort to patchwork together an anthology of traditions, curiosity, and magical thinking that she could pass down, Burton Morgan realised she was crafting a grimoire. In her most intimate book, yet, Burton Morgan shares how she’s creating an inheritance of mischief and magic that will outlive her. What’s more, she shows readers how they too can look at the elements of their lives and collect the pieces into a tangible collection of a lifetime of learning. Because in its purest form, a grimoire was a guide to keep you alive. Like the grimoires of old, full of life-saving wisdom, these pages record the people, places, ideas, and habits that have kept Burton Morgan alive, in her signature voice that is at once honest, witty, and charming. Accompanied by whimsical two-colour illustrations by Olivia Faust, the book also includes Simple Spells, which are ways to bring magic into your daily life: create an altar that delights and inspires, practice candle magic and poetry spells, make an oracle deck, or channel your inner kitchen witch with recipes and potions. So, begin creating your own inheritance, take a long look inward and decide… What wisdom will be written on the pages of your Grimoire?
Memoir | HC | $59.99

The Mongol Storm (Making and Breaking Empires in the Medieval Near East)
Morton, Nicholas
How the Mongol invasions of the Near East reshaped the balance of world power in the Middle Ages. For centuries, the Crusades have been central to the story of the medieval Near East, but these religious wars are only part of the region’s complex history. As The Mongol Storm reveals, during the same era the Near East was utterly remade by another series of wars: the Mongol invasions. In a single generation, the Mongols conquered vast swaths of the Near East and upended the region’s geopolitics. Amid the chaos of the Mongol onslaught, long-standing powers such as the Byzantines, the Seljuk Turks, and the crusaders struggled to survive, while new players, such as the Ottomans, arose to fight back. The Mongol conquests forever transformed the region, while forging closer ties among societies spread across Eurasia. This is the definitive history of the Mongol assault on the Near East and its enduring global consequences.
History | PBK | $24.99

How To Speak Whale (A Voyage into the Future of Animal Communication)
Mustill, Tom
Wildlife filmmaker Tom Mustill had always liked whales. But when one breached onto his kayak, nearly killing him, he became obsessed. This book traces his extraordinary investigation into the deep ocean and the cutting-edge science of animal translation. What would it take to speak with a whale? Are we ready, for what they might say?
Science | PBK | $24.99

Space: the Human Story
Peake, Tim
Only 650 people in human history have left Earth. Fifty years after an astronaut last walked on the moon, the journey is set to begin again. In 2025, the first woman will step on the lunar surface. What will separate these upcoming moonwalkers from the legendary Apollo crews? Does it still take a derring-do attitude, super-human fitness, intelligence, plus the ‘Right stuff’ – a fabled grace, under pressure? And how will astronauts travel even further – to Mars, and beyond? Astronaut Tim Peake takes readers on a thrilling journey through the history of human space travel – and where we are headed to next. From Yuri Gagarin to Neil Armstrong, from the Shuttle crews to the teams on the ISS and at SpaceX, Peake traces the personal stories of the men and women who have forged the way. Full of human drama and astonishing detail only an astronaut would know, the book reveals what life in space is really like: the wondrous view, the surreal weightlessness, the extraordinary danger, the surprising humdrum, the humour, the newfound perspective, the psychological pressures, the gruelling physical toll, the thrill of launch, and the trepidation of re-entry. The book also examines the surprising, shocking and often poignant stories of astronauts’ lives back on earth, which are forever changed as they readjust to terra firma, emotionally, physically, and in their family lives.
Space exploration | TP | $36.99

Fantasy Fiction: A Writer’s Guide and Anthology (Bloomsbury Writer’s Guides & Anthologies)
Pullen, Jennifer
The first fantasy-writing textbook to combine a historical genre overview with an anthology and comprehensive craft guide, this book explores the blue prints of one of the most popular forms of genre fiction. The first section will acquaint readers with the vast canon of existing fantasy fiction and outline the many subgenres encompassed within it; before examining the important relationship between fantasy and creative writing, the academy and publishing. A craft guide follows which equips students with the key concepts of storytelling as they are impacted by writing through a fantastical lens. These include: character and dialogue; point of view; plot and structure; world-building settings, ideologies and cultures; style and revision. The third section guides students through the spectrum of styles as they are classified in fantasy fiction from epic and high fantasy, through Lovecraftian and Weird fiction, to magical realism and hybrid fantasy. An accompanying anthology will provide students with a greater awareness of the range of possibilities open to them as fantasy writers and will feature such writers as Ursula Le Guin, China Miéville, Theodora Goss, Emrys Donaldson, Ken Liu, C S E Cooney, Vandana Singh, Sofia Samatar, Rebecca Roanhorse, Jessie Ulmer, Yxta Maya Murray, and Rachael K Jones. With writing exercises, prompts, additional online resources and cues for further reading throughout, this is an essential resource for anyone wanting to write fantastical fiction.
Writing | TP | $52.99

Northern Mythology (Tales From Norse, Sámi, Finnish and Baltic Traditions)
Rayborn, Tim
Discover the complex mythology of the legendary Nordic people who inspired Hollywood films, epic novels, and more. Beautiful goddesses, fierce warriors, formidable beasts, and Ragnarok, itself – these magical tales have enthralled audiences for centuries. This classic collection of tales offers fascinating insights into Nordic cultures. Stunningly illustrated and depicting Sámi, Finnish, and Norse myths, this captivating book dives deep into the rich history of the region and recalls both the most popular and little-known tales of the north. Inside, you’ll find: an in-depth introduction to Scandinavian and Nordic folklore; extensive profiles of deities, magical beings, monsters, giants, and more; and a vast array of stories across northern European traditions. This phenomenal compendium of northern European folklore is informed by archaeology and literature. Celebrating the intricacies of a long-lost world, Northern Mythology breathes new life into the tales of the distant past.
Mythology | HC | $39.99

Why We Read (On Bookworms, Libraries, and Just One More Page Before Lights Out)
Reed, Shannon
We read to escape, to learn, to find love, to feel seen. We read to encounter new worlds, to discover new recipes, to find connection across difference, or simply to pass a rainy afternoon. No matter the reason, books have the power to keep us safe, to challenge us, and perhaps most importantly, to make us more fully human. Shannon Reed, a long-time teacher, lifelong reader, and New Yorker contributor, gets it. With one simple goal in mind, she makes the case that we should read for pleasure above all else. In this whip-smart, laugh-out-loud-funny collection, Reed shares surprising stories from her life as a reader and the poignant ways in which books have impacted her students. From the varied novels she cherishes (Gone Girl, Their Eyes Were Watching God) to the ones she didn’t (Tess of the d’Urbervilles), Reed takes us on a rollicking tour through the comforting world of literature, celebrating the books we love, the readers who love them, and the ways in which literature can transform us for the better.
Books | HC | $62.95

Heroines of Olympus (The Forgotten Women of Greek Mythology)
Roberts, Ellie Mackin
Heroines of Olympus retells the tales of 50 classic characters, plucking the threads of their lives from the myriad narratives in which they have appeared and weaving them together to create the full stories of these legendary women. Each story is accompanied by a captivating illustration and followed by a critical analysis of their role in the tradition of Greek storytelling, and in ancient society.
Mythology | PBK | $24.99

Bibliotherapy (The Healing Power of Reading)
Shah, Bijal
In Bibliotherapy, bibliotherapist and counsellor Bijal Shah draws on her personal experience, work with clients and research to explore the healing power of reading. From the history of how therapeutic reading evolved – and the important role played by great writers such as the Stoics, Montaigne, Eliot, and Wordsworth in its popularisation – to first-hand stories from clients who have struggled with grief, relationships and illness, this book explores just how comforting and life-changing reading can be. Bijal imparts practical advice and explains how bibliotherapy really works, while offering an A–Z reading list of books for every mood and taste. This is a wonderful, sumptuous celebration of reading that will invite you to see books as more than just an escape, but a legitimate form of self-care.
Books | HC | $39.99

The Astral Geographic (The Watkins Guide to the Occult World)
Sharp, Andy
Explore the landscapes of the occult – expand the horizons of your consciousness… This ground-breaking new approach to the history of magic explores the occult, through geography; inviting you to embark on 10 astral travel journeys that span centuries and continents. Each itinerary comes complete with a route map, postcards of the sites, artworks of magical artefacts and an essay exploring a key occult theme, from necromancy and alchemy to standing stones and drowned cities. Follow in the hoof steps of the Devil from ancient Egypt to London’s Hellfire Club to the black magic venues of 1960s San Francisco; invoke angels and demons in the Algerian desert; meet witches in the Mediterranean temples of Hekate and Circe and the ancient cemeteries of Scandinavia; practise cloud divination in druidic Ireland then travel to the English countryside in search of hidden hexes… and much more! Finally, try practising magic for yourself, using the Grimorium Terra, a manual that teaches how to use geography as a magical tool. Discover how to perform rituals in different terrains, use your surroundings to catalyse altered states of consciousness, explore astral travel, and seed your own lucid dreams!
Astral travel | PBK | $49.99

Relic (Object Lessons)
Simon, Ed
Every culture, every religion, every era has enshrined otherwise regular objects with a significance which stretches beyond their literal importance. Whether the bone of a Catholic martyr, the tooth of a Buddhist lama, or the cloak of a Sufi saint, relics are material conduits to the immaterial world. Yet, relics aren’t just a feature of religion. The exact same sense of the transcendent animates objects of political, historical, and cultural significance. From Abraham Lincoln’s death mask to Vladimir Lenin’s embalmed corpse, Emily Dickinson’s envelopes to Jimi Hendrix’s guitar pick, relics are the objects which the faithful understand as being more than just objects. Material things of sacred importance, relics are indicative of a culture’s deepest values.
History | PBK | $22.99

Benny the Blue Whale (A Fantasy in Chaos)
Stanton, Andy
Bestselling children’s author Andy Stanton has made a career out of writing differently from the unconventional ‘hero’ of his bestselling Mr Gum series to his penchant for absurdist plots, his children’s books are anything but formulaic. When a friend introduces him to ChatGPT, the new large language chatbot, Andy is as sceptical as he is curious. Can this jumble of algorithms really mimic the spontaneity of human thought? Could it one day replace human authors like him for good? And are we soon to be ruled over by despotic robot overlords. He decides there’s only one thing for it he must test this bot’s capabilities. Eventually, he settles on a prompt that will push the algorithm to its creative limits – ‘tell me a story about a blue whale with a tiny penis’, Chaos ensues. What follows is a surprising and illuminating battle between Andy and ChatGPT… that, maybe, just maybe, might help us all understand AI, a little bit better. Join Andy and his beleaguered AI lackey on a rollicking metafictional journey through the art of storytelling. Presenting his prompts and the AI-generated narrative alongside extensive commentary, Stanton provides a startling paean to the art of a good story and boundless human creativity. Hopeful and hilarious, Benny the Blue Whale provides a joyfully anarchic meditation on AI, literature, and why we write.
Artificial intelligence | HC | $39.99

Weird Medieval Guys (How to Live, Laugh, Love (and Die) in Dark Times)
Swarthout, Olivia
A guide to living in dark times, from people who really did… Bursting with wisdom and artwork from the Middle Ages, this handy guide will give you time-tested solutions for all of life’s biggest problems. Whether it’s choosing an appropriate dog name, like Garlik or Filthe; becoming an irresistible suitor, even though you can’t joust; surviving encounters with rabbits and dragons; or coming to terms with your inevitable demise, this book is full of illuminating advice that is sure to brighten up the darkest of times. Full of quizzes, how-to-guides, diagrams, and flow charts that take you from birth to your gruesome death, this is the ultimate laugh-out-loud read for history buffs.
History | HC | $36.99

How AI Thinks (How we built it, how it can help us, and how we can control it)
Toon, Nigel
Those who understand how AI thinks are about to win big. Leading AI entrepreneur Nigel Toon explains why it’s so exciting, and how it can be controlled. We are used to thinking of computers as being a step up from calculators – very good at storing information, and maybe even at playing a logical game like chess. But, up to now, they haven’t been able to think in ways that are intuitive, or respond to questions as a human might. All that has changed, dramatically, in the past few years. Our search engines are becoming answer engines. Artificial intelligence is already revolutionising sectors from education to healthcare to the creative arts. But how does an AI understand sentiment, or context? How does it play and win games that have an almost infinite number of moves? And, how can we work with AI to produce insights and innovations that are beyond human capacity, from writing code in an instant to unfolding the elaborate 3D puzzles of proteins? We stand at the brink of a historic change that will disrupt society and at the same time create enormous opportunities for those who understand how AI thinks. Nigel Toon shows how we train AI, to train itself, so that it can paint images that have never existed before, or converse in any language. In doing so, he reveals the strange and fascinating ways that humans think, too, as we learn how to live in a world shared by machine intelligences of our own creation.
Artificial intelligence | TP | $36.99

The Original Rider Waite Book of Ceremonial Magic
Waite, A E
From renowned scholar of the occult and creator of the world-famous Rider Waite Tarot Deck, A E Waite comes a new edition of his landmark book on magic. Featuring the original intricate illustrations, The Book of Ceremonial Magic offers an in-depth exploration of the darker side of grimoire, ceremony, demons and spirits. This is a spellbinding book for anyone interested in the grotesque detail of black magic and the ceremonies and rituals that surrounded it. With whole chapters dedicated to describing how early incarnations of the occult prepared to engage with demons, this book will illustrate the deeper historical context of esoteric arts and the development of the occult, setting the context for how we perceive and understand magic today.
Magick (reissue) | HC | $39.99

Most Delicious Poison (From Spices to Vices – The Story of Nature’s Toxins)
Whiteman, Noah
A deadly secret lurks within our kitchens, medicine cabinets and gardens. Scratch beneath the surface of a coffee bean, a red pepper flake, or an apple seed, and we find a bevy of strange chemicals. We use these to greet our days (caffeine), titillate our tongues (capsaicin), and even kill our enemies (cyanide). But what is the reason plants and fungi produce such chemicals? And how did we come to use and abuse them? Based on cutting-edge science in the fields of evolution, chemistry, and neuroscience, Most Delicious Poison is the first book to reveal the origins of plant and fungal toxins, the mechanisms animals have evolved to overcome them, and how a co-evolutionary arms race made its way into the human experience. This perpetual chemical war not only drove the diversification of life on Earth; but is, also, intimately tied to our own successes and failures as a species.
Science | HC | $39.99

Lost Realms (Histories of Britain from the Romans to the Vikings)
Williams, Thomas
This is the world of Arthur and Urien; of the Picts and Britons and Saxon migration; of magic and war, myth and miracle. In Lost Realms, Thomas Williams uncovers the forgotten origins and untimely demise of Britain’s ancient kingdoms: lands that hover in the twilight between history and fable, whose stories hum with gods and miracles, with giants and battles and ruin. Why did some realms – like Wessex, Northumbria, and Gwynedd – prosper, while others fell? And how did their communities adapt to the catastrophic changes of their age? Drawing on Britain’s ancient landscape and bringing together new archaeological revelations with the few precious fragments of surviving written sources, Williams spectacularly rebuilds a lost past.
History | PBK | $24.99

Explanatorium of Science
Winston, Robert
Welcome to the Explanatorium, where amazing photography shows and explains how chemistry, physics, and biology work! Open up this book, to reveal how science really works! Watch, as mixtures merge and matter changes state. Discover how some chemical changes can be reversed, yet others can’t, and why some reactions produce a bang! See bacteria at work in the world around us, and even inside the human digestive system. Understand the tricks that light plays and unlock the secrets of electricity to find out how it powers your home. Whether it is elements, evolution, or energy, the world of science is brought to life by stunning photographic explanations that answer the biggest and smallest questions about our Universe. Packed full of astounding close-up images, Explanatorium of Science is the ultimate guide to how the world works, explaining every aspect of science from gigantic galaxies to tiny cells and miniscule atoms.
Science | HC | $55.00

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