January 1, 2015 By Rebecca Jones

Books in 2015: A look-ahead


Clear space on your shelves or fire up your e-readers for the publishing highlights of 2015.

A new novel from Kazuo Ishiguro, his first in 10 years, is arguably the literary event of the year. Ishiguro is one of a select band of authors who enjoys widespread critical acclaim as well as huge commercial success. His eighth book, The Buried Giant is set in Britain during the Dark Ages.

In a year that is relatively light on big star names in fiction, I am looking forward to new novels from Jonathan Franzen in September and from the Nobel prize-winning writer Mario Vargas Llosa.

Franzen’s Purity is the story of a young woman working to uncover her father’s identity, with a “mythical undertone”.

Vargos Llosa’s novel, The Discreet Hero, has taken two years to translate into English. A best-seller in his home country of Peru, it follows two businessmen – one the victim of extortion, and one whose children want to kill him.

The Pulitzer Prize-winner Anne Tyler marks a remarkable 50-year writing career with the publication of her 20th novel, A Spool of Blue Thread. Like many of her previous books, it is a family saga set in Baltimore.

Speaking to the BBC mid-way through writing the novel in 2013, she announced it would be her last long-form work.

Other familiar names returning in 2015 include Kate Atkinson and the best-selling author of Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, Louis de Bernieres.

There are also new novels from the former Man Booker shortlisted authors Andrew O’Hagan, Sarah Hall, Tom McCarthy, Amitav Ghosh and Patrick deWitt.

There are some noteworthy second novels to look out for too, from authors whose debuts made a splash, including Belinda McKeon and Polly Samson. AD Miller follows his best-selling Man Booker shortlisted debut, Snowdrops, with The Faithful Couple, a story of male friendship.

The coming year sees the launch of a major international project in which Shakespeare’s plays will be retold by acclaimed novelists. Jeanette Winterson’s re-imagining of The Winter’s Tale launches the series in October.

There are plenty of new books from big brand authors including Jeffrey Archer, James Patterson and Danielle Steel.

Blood on Snow is a new thriller from the Norwegian crime writer Jo Nesbo. And there is a new detective novel from Malcolm Pryce, of the cult Aberystwyth series

On the non-fiction front, there are anniversaries aplenty, with several titles commemorating two battles, Waterloo and Gallipoli. Magna Carta, signed 800 years ago, is the subject of a new book from the historian David Starkey. And the centenary of the Women’s Institute is marked in The WI Cookbook.

There are biographies of Lewis Caroll, marking the 150th anniversary of Alice in Wonderland, and TS Eliot, 50 years after his death.

The writers John le Carre and Charlotte Bronte are the subject of new books, as is The Kinks frontman Ray Davies. Eric Clapton is also the subject of a biography, released to coincide with his 70th birthday.

There is a memoir by Elvis Costello, in which he tells the story of his 40-year career. And the playwright Sir David Hare David Hare is reflecting on his life in The Blue Touch Paper.

Steve Jobs will also be the subject of a new biography which has been endorsed by the family of the co-founder of Apple.

From the best-selling author of The Hare with Amber Eyes, Edmund de Waal charts the history of porcelain in The White Road.

On the poetry shelf will be new collections from Vikram Seth and Christopher Reid, who won the 2009 Costa Book of the Year.

And Poems will contain almost 50 previously unpublished poems by the late novelist

It is also worth mentioning that Nigella Lawson will be back in the spotlight in the Autumn with a new cookbook. Simply Nigella promises recipes that can be incorporated into our daily lives with the minimum of fuss.

Plenty, then, for you to browse through in the bookshops or, if you prefer, online.

courtesy: BBC News

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