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Book News: March 2011

from The Book Case, who have been providing our community with books for over 25 years


TOP TEN: February bestsellers at The Book Case

Local interest wins again, with four novels and a children's book making up the remainder of bestsellers at The Book Case. And we're delighted to see you agreed with our Fiction and Non-Fiction Book of Month selections for February!

1. The Good Ship Calder High and other tales from the 1950s - Peter Thomas (?5.00)
The Good Ship has bobbed to the top this month: it tells of life at the experimental new school in Mytholmroyd.

2. At the Foot of the Lud - Sheena Ellwood (?9.99)
Even though we've been supplying several other outlets with this well-researched history of Luddenden Foot, Sheena's book still managed to reach the second place at The Book Case.

3. Backbone of England - Andrew Bibby (?8.99)
Now in a portable paperback version, life and landscape on the Pennine watershed, from a well-known local author and walker. He'll be talking about the book on 16th March at the Methodist Church.

4. Hebden Bridge: a short history of the area - Peter Thomas (?5.99)
Peter Thomas's account of the history of our area from ancient times to the present day - it wasn't out of our Top Ten for long!

5. Long Song - Andrea Levy (?7.99)
Shortlisted for the Man Booker and longlisted for the Orange Prize, a hauntingly beautiful tale set in Jamaica during the last turbulent years of slavery and the early years of freedom that followed.

6. The Hand That First Held Mine - Maggie O'Farrell (?7.99)
Costa Novel winner: a story of love, memory and motherhood; an extraordinary portrait of two women separated by fifty years, but connected in ways that neither could ever have expected.

7. South Riding - Winifred Holtby (?8.99)
The classic novel set near Hull during the Depression - a young woman returns to her home town to shake up the local school as headmistress and encourage girls to think beyond being "wives and mothers". Meanwhile the local squire lives a personal tragedy. TV series.

8. Mornings in Jenin - Susan Abulhawa (?7.99)
The multi-generational story of a Palestinian family. Forcibly removed from the olive-farming village of Ein Hod by the newly formed state of Israel in 1948, the Abulhejos are displaced to live in canvas tents in the Jenin refugee camp.

9. Yorkshire's Real Heritage Pubs - ed. David Gamston (CAMRA) (?4.99)
"Pub interiors of special historic interest in Yorkshire and Humber". Quite a few in Halifax, the White Horse in Sowerby Bridge, Old Ship in Brighouse, Glen View in Cornholme.

10. Lily Alone - Jacqueline Wilson (?12.99)
Lily isn't home alone - but she sort of wishes she was; looking after her three younger siblings is a lot of responsibility. When Mum goes off on holiday with her new boyfriend and her stepdad fails to show up, Lily is determined to keep the family together and show they can cope without any grown-ups.


It's a month of book events - today it's World Book Day, and World Book Night follows this weekend: see below.

Later in the month is the first of a series of Literary Lectures co-hosted with Hebden Bridge Literary and Scientific Society when Andrew Bibby will talk about "Life and Landscape on the Pennine Watershed". See below for details, and for a reading in Hebden Bridge by Glyn Hughes from his new book "A Year in the Bull Box" and for a poem by John Siddique read on Radio 4's "Poetry Please".

The Book Case blog is growing and topics so far include e-readers, nursery rhymes and folk songs and music, Faulks on fiction, the covers on the Penguin John Wyndhams and North German novels. We welcome comments and input.

First of a series of Literary Lectures
Andrew Bibby will talk about his book Backbone of England: Life and Landscape on the Pennine Watershed
Wednesday 16th March, 7.30pm,
Hebden Bridge Methodist Church, Admission free

Local Interest

Yorkshire's Real Heritage Pubs - ed. David Gamston (CAMRA) (?4.99)
"Pub interiors of special historic interest in Yorkshire and Humber". Quite a few in Halifax, the White Horse in Sowerby Bridge, Old Ship in Brighouse, Glen View in Cornholme.

A Look into the History of Warley - June Illingworth (?5.99)
Illustrated A4 booklet that gives you a potted history of the area and then takes you for a guided tour around the town and area.

Pennine Way: Edale to Kirk Yetholm
- Keith Carter; Scott Carter (?11.99)
Third edition of this Trailblazer guide to Britain's best-known National Trail. Includes 137 large scale maps (1:20,000), itineraries for all walkers, flora and fauna info, practical information for all budgets and public transport info.

In Town - Mark Steel
"On the way to a show in Skipton, I noticed a road sign to a town called Keighley. So later, during the show, I mentioned this, asking the audience, 'Is that your rival town?' And the room went chillingly quiet, until one woman called out with understated menace, 'Keighley is a sink of evil.'" A celebration of the quirks of small town life in a country of increasingly homogenized high streets. (?12.99)

Local Authors

John Siddique's poem "Making It Up"
from his popular book of poems for children Don't Wear It On Your Head is being featured this coming Sunday, March 6th, 4pm, on Radio 4's Poetry Please! Congratulations to John, and be sure to tune in and listen! Meanwhile, you can enjoy "Rowan Moon" from John's book Recital here.

A Year in the Bull Box - Glyn Hughes (?9.99 pb, ?12.99)
The award-winning local author's new book of poems published by Arc Publications of Todmorden - "This book follows the course of a year's cancer from acceptance to joyous life again through closeness to nature. On one of my first nights on the oncology ward, I dreamed that a wall-clock at the foot of my bed was replaced by a scroll covered in runes. I had to decipher these in order to regain health. On waking, I instantly understood. There were three parts to my recovery. One was the medical attention that I was receiving. The second was my mental attitude. The third lay in my spiritual strength. These poems belong to the third of these categories. I had recently acquired the use of an isolated stone hut (the 'Bull-Box') in the Ribble Valley. The time spent there was my healing." (The Irish Times).

Glyn will be reading from his new book on Sunday March 6th at 3.00 pm, at The Artsmill, Linden Mill, Linden Rd

The Joy of Plumbing : A Guide to Living the Life You Really, Really Want - Hattie Hasan (?11.99)
From the Lumbutts-based founder of Stopcocks Women Plumbers, a book to inspire women to break down employment stereotypes - if you have ever thought 'if only I had ...', then this book will take you on a journey that will let you explore and revisit those possibilities, and guide you practically into making those dreams a reality. For school-leaver to office worker, frustrated housewife to business woman this book breaks it all down into manageable chunks. Peppered with stories from her own experience, Hattie shows that starting your own business is the key to controlling your life. Living the life you really, really want starts with buying this book!

A Cure for Woodness - Michael Haslam (?9.99)
A reaffirmation of the nature, language and music with which the poet finds himself surrounded in his hilltop home in the Pennines. The third part of the trilogy of which the first two parts were The Music Laid Her Songs in Language and A Sinner Saved by Grace.

Woody Guthrie, American Radical (Music in American Life) - Will Kaufman (?20)
Reclaims the politically radical profile of America's greatest balladeer. Although he achieved a host of national honours and adorns US postage stamps, and although his song "This Land Is Your Land" is often considered the nation's second national anthem, Woody Guthrie committed his life to the radical struggle. The book utilises a wealth of previously unseen archival materials such as letters, song lyrics, essays, personal reflections, photos, and other manuscripts. Will Kaufman lives in Hebden Bridge and is a professional folksinger and multi-instrumentalist as well as a professor of American literature and culture at the University of Central Lancashire.

Wild Therapy: Undomesticating Inner and Outer Worlds - Nick Totton (?16.99)
Therapy is by nature wild; but a lot of it at the moment is rather tame. This book tries to help shift the balance back towards wildness by showing how therapy can connect with ecological thinking, seeing each species, each being, each person inherently and profoundly linked to each other. Connecting the attitudes of forager cultures with contemporary Western understandings of consciousness, it delineates a mode of being present in all cultures, 'Wild Mind'; and explores how this can be supported through a 'wild therapy', bringing together a wide range of already-existing ideas and practices. It suggests that wild therapy has a role to play in the work of creating a new culture which can live well on the earth without damaging ourselves and other beings.

World Book Night, Saturday 5th March

Members of the public were invited to apply to be one of the 20,000 givers of 48 copies of their favourite book chosen from a list of 25 titles. Most givers were expected to be passionate readers who would take pleasure in recommending a book they love to other readers. World Book Night will also encourage givers to pass the books on to others who either may be reluctant readers or who are part of communities with less access to books, bookshops and libraries.

The Book Case has been a collection point for local Givers who nominated us and various of you have been staggering off with their loads of books to bring pleasure to many.


Faulks on Fiction

To open the BBC Year of Books, Sebastian Faulks presented a four-part series, Faulks on Fiction, on BBC2, looking at enduring fictional characters in the British novel as follows. We have most of the books in stock, and the series certainly provoked interest in some of the titles.


  • Robinson Crusoe, 1719, Daniel Defoe
  • Tom Jones, 1749, Henry Fielding
  • Vanity Fair (Becky Sharp), 1847, William Makepeace Thackeray
  • Sherlock Holmes, 1887, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
  • 1984 (Winston Smith), 1948, George Orwell
  • Lucky Jim (Jim Dixon), 1954, Kingsley Amis
  • Money (John Self), 1984, Martin Amis


  • Pride and Prejudice (Mr Darcy), 1813, Jane Austen
  • Wuthering Heights (Heathcliff), 1847, Emily Bront?
  • Tess of the D'Urbevilles, 1891, Thomas Hardy
  • Lady Chatterley's Lover (Lady Chatterley), 1928, D.H. Lawrence
  • The End of the Affair (Maurice Bendrix), 1951, Graham Greene
  • The Golden Notebook (Anna Wulf), 1962, Doris Lessing
  • The Line of Beauty (Nick Guest), 2004, Alan Hollinghurst


  • Emma, 1815, Jane Austen
  • Diary of a Nobody (Mr Charles Pooter), 1892, George & Weedon Grossmith
  • Jeeves, 1915, P.G. Wodehouse
  • The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, 1961, Muriel Spark
  • James Bond, 1953, Ian Fleming
  • Brick Lane (Chanu), 2003, Monica Ali
  • Great Expectations (Pip), 1860, Charles Dickens


  • Clarissa (Lovelace), 1748, Samuel Richardson
  • Oliver Twist (Fagin), 1838, Charles Dickens
  • A Woman in White (Count Fosco), 1859, Wilkie Collins
  • Gormenghast (Steerpike), 1950, Mervyn Peake
  • Lord of the Flies (Jack), 1954, William Golding
  • The Raj Quartet (Merrick), 1965, Paul Scott
  • Notes on a Scandal (Barbara Covett), 2003, Zo? Heller