Fear of Light by Julietta Harvey, Forthcoming 2022 ✦ A woman is discovered locked in a cellar in a mountain village: she is suffering, and suffering too from photophobia – fear of light. Her story goes back to the Greek Civil War. It is also a tale of lost love. Fotini has disobeyed and been punished. A slow silent crime takes root, and comes to haunt the village. Her story travels throughout the land, causing division and reviving conflicts, while from front pages her face stares at the world with complaint and accusation. ✦ 222 pp. 9780936315539. ￡12.50.
The Moss in Lanthwaite Wood by Anthony Gardner, with illustrations by Rosanna Kelly, Forthcoming 2022 ✦ ‘This book is powerful. You may casually pick it up, intending merely to glance at a page or two and move on, but Anthony Gardner’s poems draw you in with their beguiling seductiveness.’ – Sue Gaisford. ✦ 64 pp. 9780936315522. ￡10.
Beneath Idle Gods: stories by Aliki Roussin with illustrations by the author, 2022 ✦ Roussin’s twelve stories capture moments of being between the real and the ideal, between vital existence and realms of the dead. Gently infusing the sensibility of her native Greece, she evokes with tenderness and anxiety what it has been to be a woman in transit through our contemporary epoch. ✦ 116 pp. 9780936315515. ￡10. Also available on Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0936315512.
Blue Boy: a tale of wasting assets, a novel by George Stubbs, 2022. ✦ Robbie Wilder is superficially charming, good- looking, a dandy in dress, cultivated and perhaps talented. As he makes a rake’s progress across recent contemporary London, we discover that he is also a liar, a petty thief, a mummy’s boy, an alcoholic, an onanist and a fantasist, expert in self- pity. What is a ‘blue boy’, his case seems to ask. What has the type ever been but a spendthrift of great expectations, adept at the art of ‘wasting assets’? With pathos, irony and a dab of Waughian wit, Stubbs evokes the malaise and perverse sense of entitlement lurking behind class privilege. ✦ 175 pp. 9780936315508. ￡10. Also available on Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0936315504.
Growing Up with Israel: a memoir by Chaim Klein, 2021. ✦ His parents left Slovakia for Israel in 1949. They lived in a moshav where Hungarian was the language. Housing was spartan, conditions rough – a thin strip of land, one cow, a lone tree. School was primitive; fun was what children could make for themselves between study and agricultural work. Locusts, water shortages and fedayeen came; military service, university. He meets a girl from the diaspora, marries, has children, travels, works. His tale is of an individual growing up at the same time as his country, told from the inside, without polemic or artifice. Past disaster and future hope frame a figure in a landscape, etched with humility and a fine eye for detail. ✦ 200 pp. ISBN 9780936315492. ￡12.50. Also available on Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0936315490.
In Glad or Sorry Hours: a memoir by Alastair Niven, Winner of the Benson Medal from the Royal Society of Literature, 2021. ✦ A model cultural civil servant, Alastair Niven has plied a career as writer, lecturer and administrator, including as director of literature at both the Arts Council and the British Council. He was president of English PEN in an epoch of change and has a special interest in Africa dating from his university years. Public service finally led him to Cumberland Lodge in Windsor Great Park, where he headed its royal foundation for discussion of educational and ethical issues. ✦ 256 pp. ISBN 9780936315485. ￡15. Also available on Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0936315482.
LINDA: A Writer’s Journey edited and illustrated by Rosanna Kelly, 2020. ✦ Linda Kelly ‘was, for me, the leading historical writer of her generation,’ says Grey Gowrie in his preface to this book. ‘In the unfair way of life, she was also the best possible company, very beautiful and in possession of two of life’s greatest attributes: courage and a merciful heart.’ A selection of passages from her work combines with a sequence of memories of her life to evoke these attributes in a woman who, in her understated way, was central to the literary culture of her time and place. ✦ 141 pp. ISBN 9780936315478.￡10. Also available on Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0936315474.
After the Storm by Molly Wyer, 2020. ✦ A lyrical coming-of-age novel describes rivalry between two brothers as they come to terms with their father’s death. Sailing together along the coast of Baja California, they encounter the irritations and joys of fellow-travelers, the fickleness of Nature and a recurrence of old storms within. Their journey toward reconciliation is narrated with humility, grace and a refreshing absence of callow sophistication. ✦ 140 pp. ISBN 9780936315461. $13. Available on Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.com/dp/0936315466.
Argonaut: Commencement tales by Chip Martin, 2019. ✦ In the summer of 1970 a dropout from Berkeley gave me a job clearing wood from the orchards being bulldozed to make way for the Silicon Valley. This enabled me to set off for Europe and try my hand at writing. A decade brought further education, jobs, travel, marriage. In an era of flux, I ended up editing a magazine and commuting back to California after each issue had been put to bed. Existence in those days depended on the affection or at least toleration of friends and lovers. Their shadows inhabit these demi-fictions. ✦ ‘Martin writes acutely about the “code” of hipness that defines a hedonistic scene, and how inhibiting it can be.’ – Christina Petrie, TLS ✦ 424 pp. ISBN 9780936315454. $15. Available on Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.com/dp/0936315458.
Three Women by Lucy Tertia George, 2018. ✦ A Sicilian contadina, an English actress, the daughter of one who runs off to New York with the grandson of the other. Three women of different generations and backgrounds deal with the perennial dilemmas of marriage and motherhood, career and family, province vs metropolis. Behind each shimmers a cast of memorable players and transformative moments. These interlinked tales of success, demoralisation and resourcefulness dovetail to illuminate the mix of magic and grit a woman needs to survive.✦ 153 pp. ISBN 9780936315447. £10. Also available on Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/093631544X.
The Pool and other poems by Anthony Gardner, 2018, with illustrations by Rosanna Kelly. ✦ ‘Anthony Gardner’s poems are adept at creating mood… You at once become master of his state of mind. You are, in effect, writing the poem with him… [His] verse is compelling and addictive. You will want to read these poems many times and then demand new ones.’ – Grey Gowrie ✦ 54 pp. ISBN 9780936315430. £8.
Consolations by Linda Kelly, 2017. ✦ ‘Shortly after I got married, more than half a century ago, my mother-in-law presented me with a beautiful red leather album. Its pristine gilt-edged pages seemed too precious to fill with anything so prosaic as recipes or addresses. I decided to use it as a commonplace book and have been keeping it, off and on, ever since… The red leather album is falling to pieces now, a good reason for gathering up its contents before it collapses altogether. There are still a few more pages to fill and I hope to go on making fresh discoveries… But this is where I’ve got so far.’ ✦ 71 pp. ISBN 9780936315423. £10. Out of print.
Sonnets / Sonetti by Emanuele Zoppellari Perale & Chip Martin, 2017. ✦ ‘There is a dialogue between languages and generations in these sonnets, half by a twenty year old Italian, half by an Anglo-American in his sixties. The former uses a Petrarchan model and rhyme, the latter Shakespearean; Italian is rendered into English, English into Italian, freely creating hybrid prosodic forms, in gentle appropriation of each other’s tradition… Two distinct experiences of love meet and two perspectives on age, reflecting on what is past or passing and the power of time to reap fleeting dreams…’ ✦ 80 pp. ISBN 0-936315-41-5. £8/€10.
Monstrous Century: Essays in ‘the Age of the Feuilleton’ by Stoddard Martin, 2016.✦ ‘His subjects, even when unsympathetic in themselves, are viewed in the round, and judged with humanity. Yet he also has a strong moral impulse, as evidenced by the title of this collection. So although he can roam as far back temporally as Perkin Warbeck, and into magical regions with Orpheus, we see in his work a frequent return to more recent periods, and a nagging anxiety to explain why and how Europe went so badly wrong between 1900 and 2000 – particularly the dread duodecennium 1939-1945.’ – Derek Turner, Quarterly Review. ✦ 204 pp. ISBN 0-936315-40-7. £10/€12.50/$15. Also available from Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0936315407.
Doubles by Christopher Neve, 2015. ✦This remarkable novel is both a thriller about other selves and an excursion through post-war artistic bohemias. The narrator endures a series of often surreal misadventures in search of a lost love in Italy, Greece and Iceland, as well as Paris and Oxford. He is pursued by himself, through a world in which almost everything seems to double. In the foreground of his journey lies a discussion of painting, and of what it is like to paint, in terms you will not find elsewhere. Tricking you into its Kafkaesque finale, the novel shows the late modernist era at the mercy of a fractured psyche. ✦ ‘Neve is one of a rare breed, a painter who can express himself in words.’ – The Sunday Times ✦ ‘He is part topographer, part painter, part poet and part psychologist.’ – The Tablet ✦ 185 pp. ISBN 0-936315-39-3. £12/€15. Available on Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0936315393.
Belonging by Eva Tucker, 2014 (incorporating Berlin Mosaic and Becoming English). ✦ ‘Berlin Mosaic paints its scenes with quick, expert strokes, moving relentlessly towards the central tragedy of the 20th century… Its vivid cameos display the complications and vicissitudes of family life in the years surrounding the Nazi Holocaust. In beautiful, laconic prose Tucker investigates the compromises and accommodations made by ordinary people.’ – Michael Moorcock, The Guardian ✦ ‘In Becoming English, the sequel to that short, outstanding work, Tucker charts the destiny of Laura (an acute self-portrait) and her mother as they take up a new life in England. Every sentence counts in this elegant – and painfully comic – account… Poised between tragedy and humour, [it] is a highly original work, a small masterpiece that deserves to endure.’ – Miranda Seymour, The Tablet. ✦ 236 pp. ISBN 0-936315-38-5. £12.50/€15. Available on Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0936315385.
True North by Chip Martin, 2013. ✦ Rainbow and cloud over a hippy New Age, flowers and frost in a country house dream, a compost of culture accumulated over the 20th century – from the redwoods of California to the beech groves of the Thames Valley into the chiaroscuro of ‘a fond Europe of the imagination’, these tales add up to a Dantesque triptych of what remains of value after the words have been said. ✦ ‘Like a good fishing hole or a secret surfing spot, True North is not easily accessed but totally worth the effort of getting there. It’s the sense of place that Martin creates that is so compelling, and by place, I mean not just geographic, although he does that in spades, but the interior vista of the soul that is at once a reflection and the source of the “where and what” of his stories.’ – Cathleen Caballero ✦ 115 pp. ISBN 0-936315-37-7. £9/€12/$15. Also available from Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.com/dp/0936315377.
Paramaribo! by Nigel Ryan, 2012. ✦ Horatius Ariel Otway may be a crook or he may be a hero. Certainly he is a charmer, and a survivor. Whether as a schoolboy in England of the Blitz or as a mysterious operator in Iraq during the 1958 coup, he fascinates or infuriates those with whom he comes into contact. .. In a novel whose two parts explore a child’s experience and its relation to a grown man’s, we observe the machinations behind the veneer of “old school” values, the military, the City, the press, the art-dealing world, diplomacy and the realms of charlatans, spies, men of honour and/or dishonour. ✦ ‘A gripping tale of tyranny and subversion, a small local instance of the cosmic battle between good and evil.’ – James Howard Johnston, The Oldie ✦ 218 pp. ISBN 0-936315-36-9. £12. Also available from Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0936315369.
Dickeyville by Joe Abbott, 2012. ✦ A young man goes into the woods and kills a beast. It’s the old romance of coming of age. But let’s make this hoary epic into a comedy of initiation in the language of the here-and-now. Some feckless guy from a world of sex, drugs and rock-n-roll – or surfing and fringes of the film industry (he’s from Southern California) – gets stuck in the snow in a small town in rural mid-America. How do the natives react? What pranks do they play? Are these folks malign or do they have hearts of gold once you get past the inbred noses and flappy ears? Dickeyville is tough but fun-loving, old-fashioned yet not quite so hick as a New Age sophisticate likes to think. Here the young man faces monsters he’s never imagined. ✦ ‘A comic novel rife with oddballs who are never quite what they seem. Abbott’s radiant prose reminds us there are plenty of snow jobs to go around.’ – Dan Barnett, Biblio File ✦ 263 pp. ISBN 0-936315-35-0. $17.50. Also available from Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.com/dp/0936315350.
Essential Meditations: Percy Bysshe Shelley selected by Ann Wroe, 2011. ✦ Although a self-proclaimed atheist, and condemned as such in his day, the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley had a profound spiritual awareness. This anthology of his visions and reflections is arranged so that a reader can travel with them in their brilliance as if from pre-dawn to deepest night. Ann Wroe provides what mystical tradition might call points for meditation. ✦ 58 pp. ISBN 0-936315-34-2. £4.99
Essential Meditations: Samuel Taylor Coleridge selected by John Cornwell, 2011. ✦ Throughout his career the poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge dreamed of creating an all-embracing philosophical system. The great work never appeared, but the materials he collected for it lie scattered in a circuit of published and unpublished work. This anthology enables some of his leading insights and reflections to be read in odd moments and pondered in a way that religious tradition would identify with spiritual exercises or points for meditation. ✦ 64 pp. ISBN 0-936315-33-4. £4.99
A School of London by Chip Martin, 2011 (incorporating A Journeyman in Bohemia, The Paper Pulper’s Wife and Season of the Witch). ‘The story is never straight reportage. The atmosphere is heightened, at times almost fantastic; conversations are glancing and elliptical, suggesting more than is spoken; people change partners and their perception of each other like characters in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. But the world it portrays is wholly convincing within its terms of reference and one is caught up in its dramas from the first.’ – Linda Kelly ✦ ‘Martin’s work is imbued with an awareness of the difficulty of living a bohemian life in contemporary Europe… Love, the biggest culprit, raises the spectre of bourgeois domesticity as often as it hold the promise of freedom…’ – Christina Petrie, TLS ✦ 417 pp. ISBN 0-936315-32-4. £12.50/$20. Also available from Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0936315326.
Proie by Chip Martin, 2010. ✦ A house party among Anglos near the coast in Provence. There is a fire: a handful of decadents die. Who dun it? Cui bono? One survivor, half-burnt, goes in quest for answers along the Riviera, from St Tropez to Santa Margherita Ligure and back. Encountering yachties, a wealthy designer, an actress, would-be gangsters, twin young men, an old salt and others half-reflecting his past, he moves towards a future where no motive is sure; where the hard-boiled ethics of his American father’s generation are being eclipsed by older, more ambiguous instincts. ✦ ‘Chip Martin is not afraid of big themes or complex structures; his work ranges widely through history and shows the mind and imagination of a true polymath, as well as an ambitious storyteller.’ – Deborah Moggach ✦ 160 pp. ISBN 0-936315-31-8. £10/€12.50/$16. Also available from Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0936315318.
Stone Poems by Douglas Skrief, 2009. ✦ In the Upper Midwest, by the U.S. Canadian border, on the edge of dividing waters sits a great stone. As far as human history is concerned, it has been there forever. Time though is relative, and what the stone has lived through and ‘seen’ may be by our standards timeless. With brevity and warmth, Douglas Skrief evokes what might be called the inner life of a stone. We are small, it rather large, yet neither much at all compared to the vastness of what has produced both. ✦ ‘These poems are strong, stark, and full of space. They have an incantatory quality, as if a shaman is at work.’ – Piers Plowright ✦ 78 pp. ISBN 0-936315-30-X. £9 / $15. Out of print.
The Rivers of Heaven by Anthony Gardner, 2009. ✦ A child is born to a single mother. His feckless father has vanished, leaving the mother to cope as best she can, watched over by a kindly Jamaican. A country cottage is visited by a young photographer, whose happiest days of childhood were spent there; he longs to live in it again but first must negotiate the duplicities of adult and professional politics. Intimations of immortality, nostalgia and dreams of escape to a reggae or post-hippy lifestyle permeate these interwoven histories. A vivid London of the day-before-yesterday is evoked against apprehension of a more ideal form of existence. ✦ ‘A lyrical vision of one soul’s Wordsworthian journey from heaven to an earth where people are still dealing with the consequences of the paradisal 1960s.’ – Maggie Gee ✦ 149 pp. ISBN 0-936315-29-6. £10 / €12.50. Also available from Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0936315296.
Becoming English by Eva Tucker, 2009 ). ✦ A child and her mother are refugees in a new land. The one yearns to belong, the other is too formed to do so. As war and worse impel their country and relations further into the past, the two make their way forward, separately and together… In blunt, direct prose, we see how it was for a German girl, half Jewish, to grow up in wartime and early postwar England, how the uprooted manage not to fall by the wayside in a new world which, though welcoming, inevitably appears spiky and strange.✦ ‘A rich, unerring, girl’s-eye view of the times, portrayed in charmingly crafted prose.’ – Madeleine Kingsley, The Jewish Chronicle ✦ ‘A vivid memoir of the way things used to be.’ – Beryl Bainbridge, The Oldie. ✦ 116 pp. ISBN 0-936315-28-8. £9 / €12. Available with Berlin Mosaic as Belonging (see above).
Henry Miller is Under My Bed People and places on the way to Paris by Mary Duncan, 2008. ✦ Granddaughter of a bootlegger, her father was a bus driver who died when she was four; her mother worked in a bar to support the kids. She played sports, did well in school and married a Protestant preacher. Teaching recreation at a local university, she worked her way up to be head of department. Research on playgrounds in troubled locales took her to Belfast, Tehran and Managua. For years she had a surreptitious affair with ’60s guru Max Lerner, much of it at the Playboy Mansion West. Through Max among others, she develops a fascination for Henry Miller, Simone de Beauvoir and pioneers of the sexual revolution. Literary interests go with her to Moscow, where she marries a second time and founds a bookstore. Settling finally in Paris, she delves into the subject of Kafka’s last mistress… ✦ ‘Mary Duncan’s life is fascinating and amusing, a lesson in… living to the hilt.’ – Noel Riley Fitch ✦ 167 pp. ISBN 0-936315-27-X. $15. Limited copies of original edition.
Poems from Dry Creek by John Dofflemyer, 2008. ✦ Winner of the Western Heritage award as Outstanding Poetry Book of 2008. ✦ ‘I usually avoid reading poetry because I have read so much, and I often am disappointed. But the minute I started reading [this] I sat right up and came totally awake both for subject and for language and style… A diverse set of poems really, political, personal, historical, in the moment. Reminding me again it’s not that there need be a “cowboy” poetry but, as we move toward it, a poetry of work and daily life and the land. Which includes history and family.’ – Gary Snyder ✦ ‘John Dofflemyer’s poetry rings with the truth of western experience. His language is precise and powerful, his images are stark and candid. As a result, this verse transcends region and touches the human heart.’ – Gerald Haslam ✦ 77 pp. ISBN 0-936315-26-1. $15.
Maddalo Byron, Shelley & the Greek misadventure by Chip Martin., 2006. ✦ The Greek War of Independence was a precursor to the type of adventure in the east we’ve seen unravelling in recent years. Byron is living in happy decadence in Italy, dabbling in political conspiracy there, when he is pushed to it by his patrician friends back in London and by his fellow-poet Shelley, also in Italy, ostracized for atheist and radically democratic views. By the time events have lured Byron, Greece is descending into chaos, brought on not least by the rapacity and treachery of its rival chiefs… ✦ 144 pp. ISBN 0-936315-25-3. £8 / €10
South by Chip Martin, 2005. ✦ Two novellas, one set in St Tropez, the other in Venice, evoke the allure of Europe over an Anglo-American sensibility in the last quarter of the 20th century. The first depicts a journey in early adulthood, the second a rumination in ripening middle-age. Though dissimilar in style, both narratives play on common motifs of cultural attraction and resistance. As emotional dilemmas and apprehensions ensnare the main characters, the sounds and colours of two gorgeous locales intensify in power, helping to impel their respective plots towards precarious conclusions. ✦ ‘His willingness to paint broad on big landscapes may attract readers otherwise stuck in a narrow Hemingway sleeping-bag.’ – Los Angeles Times ✦ 136 pp. ISBN 0-936315-24-5. £9 / €12 / $15
Encounters with Animals by Simon Burt, 2005. ✦ In twelve succinct tales, a vivid collage is built up of a district of contemporary London. Out of its shops and cafes, therapy groups, hospices, tower blocks and life of the streets, voices and colliding patterns of reflection emerge, to evoke the characteristic joys and griefs, or perhaps mere quotidian irritations, of a motley populace – gay, straight, single, partnered, alienated, caring, mendacious or occasionally honourable to a fault. A pop album of a time and place composed with the precision of a classical symphonist. ✦ ‘His hallmark is flawless dialogue and a fine sense of the visual detail.’ – Literary Review ✦ 135 pp. ISBN 0-936315-23-7. £9 / €13 / $15
Berlin Mosaic by Eva Tucker, 2005 ✦ A world of grand apartments, coffee mornings, concerts and theatre and religious debate; of artistic insurgency, bohemian love and political ferment; above all of home life carries on while in the background an inexorable fate grows almost unnoticed. ✦ ‘In beautiful, laconic prose, Tucker investigates the compromises and accommodations made by ordinary people. Her quiet irony was apparent from her first novels. Berlin Mosaic expands and … deepens her previous work and is a marvellous antidote to the often melodramatic fictions that these days are offered about the Nazi holocaust.’ – Michael Moorcock, The Guardian ✦ 154 pp. ISBN 0-936315-22-9. Available with Becoming English as Belonging (see above).
Susanna, the Captain & the Castrato Scenes from the Burney Salon 1779-80 by Linda Kelly, 2004. ✦ Susanna Burney was the most ‘spirituelle’ member of the famous family which enlivened English cultural life in the later 18th century. Though less well-known than her novelist sister Fanny, Susanna was the principal attraction of her father’s musical salon for the last of the great castrati, Gasparo Pacchierotti, during his triumphant season in London. An unspoken romance between the singer and Susanna dominates her letter-journals to her sister written in a year which also saw a near invasion of England, the Gordon Riots and the death of Captain Cook on the far side of the world, an event at which both her brother and her future husband were present. ✦ ‘…perfectly focused and beautifully composed.’ – Rupert Christiansen, Literary Review ✦ 139 pp. ISBN 0-936315-21-0. £9 / €13. Also available from Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0936315210.
The Young Romantics Writers & Liaisons, Paris 1827-37 by Linda Kelly, 2003 (revised edition). ✦ This classic account of one of the great eras of European Romanticism moved Graham Greene to remark when it was first published in 1976: “I have been reading with delight The Young Romantics – I admire it for its brevity and the narrative skill which keeps so many characters moving on their parallel or intersecting lines year by year.” ✦ ‘[It] conjures up the excitement of its time and succeeds in considering… the history, politics, art and intrigues of an extraordinary age.’ – Lucy Dallas, TLS ✦ ‘This absorbing and delightful book… wonderfully written and occasionally very funny… reminds us that writers in those days were more amusing and daring than they are now.’ – David McLaurin, The Tablet ✦ 159 pp. ISBN 0-936315-20-2. £10. Available as ebook from Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/128491.
The End of the Road by Chip Martin, 2002. ✦ “CALIFORNIA!” raps a voice in this echoing band of novellas. “a land where the fruit of Modern Times has been plucked on such a scale that we seem to find in its ripest form what old tradition has prized – Freedom! ah, Freedom… And what is the nature of this eternal mirage?” Many quests are pursued in these five interlinked tales, traversing from London to L.A., Southwest City to Araby, real to unreal landscapes where the Anglo has thrived, in license or pathos, until he or she begins to seem a vanishing breed. Kerouacian bodhisattvas, soap-opera plutocrats, shape-shifting femme fatales, redemptive spirits ready to lay down and die on a beach – a cast of personae from plays out its recessional melodrama, gorgeous, grotesque, transcendental and aesthetically haunting. ✦ 498 pp. ISBN 0-936315-19-9. £14.99 / $19.99. Also available from Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.com/dp/0936315199.
Arnost by Shelley Weiner, 2001. ✦ Two ageing Hungarian émigrés encounter one another in London after many decades. One is now a fully-assimilated commercial magnate who escaped hardship and death by abandoning his wife and child; the other is a synagogue caretaker who survived a labour camp only to limp through subsequent existence brooding on tragedy. Their meeting triggers an ethical crisis: confrontation with repressed guilt for the one, and with withheld forgiveness for the other. ✦ ‘A novel full of surprises, challenging conventional assumptions about human behaviour… That Weiner manages to be acerbically humurous in such a painful story is a measure of her consummate skill.’ – The Jewish Chronicle ✦ ‘It is part of the success of [her] … narrative that the oppressive weight of her subject matter sits comfortably alongside the story’s comic levity.’ – The Mail on Sunday ✦ 158 pp. ISBN 0-936315-18-0. £9. Limited copies of original edition.
Three Journeys in the Levant by Shusha Guppy, 2001. ✦ ‘I have nothing but praise for Shusha Guppy’s excellent book on the Levant… Her insights into the Near East… Her facility with the history, art, religions and poetry of those ancient regions… Her traveller’s fascination… These, and many other delights, are presented to us with a captivating informality.’ – Patrick Leigh Fermor ✦ ‘These journeys deserve the permanent form now given them, for few have Shusha Guppy’s knack of evoking the smell of a place with a deftly chosen phrase.’ – Sunday Telegraph ✦ 146 pp, illustrated with line drawings by Jessica Douglas-Home. ISBN 0-936315-17-2. £10 / $14 / €16. Available on Amazon and as e-book: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0936315172.
Float Test Interlinked tales of the American Navy by Chip Martin, 2001. ✦ 1980. US NAVAL warships ply the Pacific and Indian Oceans to battle-station off the coast of fundamentalist Iran. On one, a Lieutenant JG tries to come to grips with his status following a failed marriage back home. On another, a civilian professor tries to maintain moral equilibrium between ethnic rivals in his classes, officers and men on their mess decks, chaplains and varieties of irreligious types in this hermetically-sealed, yet oddly representative microcosm of America. ✦ ‘Martin writes with honour and colour.’ – L.A. Times ✦ 151 pp. ISBN 0-936315-16-4. £8 / $12.50. Also available as an ebook from Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/21486.
English All Over the Place by Gerry Abbott & Bob Jordan, 2001. ✦ The British Empire is no more. The empire of the English language flourishes. This is in part because of the efforts of itinerant teachers in far-flung corners of what used to be called British spheres of interest. Enduring coups and odd customs, enjoying unexpected delights, two veterans of this life provide intimate recollections of what it was like to ply their profession during the decades of change between 1960 and 1990. ✦ ‘An absorbing weekend read, to take the mind off methodology and coursebooks… a splendid book.’ – English Language Gazette. ✦ 158 pp. ISBN 0-936315-15-6. £10. Out of print.
T.I.L.T. (Time is Like Toffee) by Robert Hobhouse, 2000 ✦ “I FELT that I had died in the wreck and that this was a carefully orchestrated afterlife.” So Peter Cobland tells us at the beginning of his tale. But what is he really suffering from? a paranoid dementia, schizophrenia, the effects of nuclear fallout, drugging by sinister authorities, the trauma of a broken relationship? In this elegant, sometimes Swiftian novella, Robert Hobhouse presents us with these questions and provides us with answers both surprising and moving. ✦ ‘I was totally convinced and sucked into the hero’s way of thinking… Everything keeps changing. His own senses cease to be reliable. All this is captured beautifully. It has a poet’s touch.’ – Susanna Gross ✦ 90 pp. ISBN 0-936315-14-8. £8. Out of print.
The New World Order of Alexander Thynn by the Marquess of Bath, 2000. ✦ Individiualist, democrat regionalist, European federalist and internationalist at the same time; champion of the welfare state, polygyny and the rights of single mothers, Alexander Thynn – better known as the Marquess of Bath – has ever been an iconoclast and free-thinker. This compact collection of his thoughts on the great issues of his time provides a rounded vision of his life’s quest in all of its warmth, radicalism and far-sightedness. ✦ ‘A classical English romantic… Falstaff-as-philosopher mixed with Fabian flower-child.’ – Stoddard Martin ✦ 88 pp. ISBN 0-936315-13-X. £8 / €12.
Liberation in the East by Chip Martin, 2000. ✦ 1990. Time of the changes in Eastern Europe. A thirty-something professor is in Poland for a conference on English Language studies. Disoriented, divided, biologically pressed, she succumbs to a brief, furious passion for her student driver. Meanwhile, her ex-lover, a London property developer, sets off for Kraków to reconcile with her but begins on his own transformational adventure instead. ✦ ‘Spellbinding in the most effortless way (just like the best novels of Graham Greene).’ – Adam Lipinski ✦ 160 pp. ISBN 0-936315-12-1. £10 / 40zl. Also available on Amazon: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0936315121.
Cold War, Common Pursuit Essays by British Council lecturers in Poland 1939-1999, edited by Peter J. Conradi & Stoddard Martin, 1999 ✦ A group of British writers – among them some very distinguished names – watched the post-World War II changes in Poland at close hand. Most of them lived there for three or four years; yet, apart from fictional representations, or pseudonymous articles in, say, The New Statesman, the convention of their employment made it hard for their story to be told until recently, when Foreign Office rules were changed. ✦ ‘A fascinating book to mark the end of a century of bizarre political experimentation and cultural waywardness. –Lesley Chamberlain, Times Literary Supplement ✦ 164pp. ISBN 0-936315-11-3. £10 / 40zl. Available from Amazon and as ebook: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0936315113.
The first ten publications by Starhaven include individual copies of the three novellas that make up the trilogy A School of London (see above) and of three which constitute a prequel to The End of the Road (also above). A limited number of both are available upon request. Four other early titles published by Starhaven, including our first – Martha Stevens’ volume of poems Imperatives –are, alas, long out of print.