Gayle’s Autumn Picks 2021
Selected by Gayle Lazda
Some recent fiction to take you into the autumn: The Butchers by Ruth Gilligan is the Great Mad Cow Disease Novel we’ve all been waiting for – family secrets and dying mythologies in an Ireland on the cusp of change; Lavie Tidhar’s By Force Alone gives us the Arthur and Albion our age deserves (squalid, violent, venal, stupid) in a rollicking good adventure story that brings the legend firmly into the 21st century; a long-awaited second novel from the author of You Too Could Have a Body Like Mine, Alexandra Kleeman’s Something New Under the Sun reckons with capitalism and climate catastrophe in an eerie near future Los Angeles; Tice Cin’s Keeping the House, a brilliant London novel that truly feels like the living, breathing city as it exists today; and Marlowe Granados’s debut Happy Hour, a delicious romp through New York City with a millennial Sally Jay Gorce.
Looking further ahead: later this month, the excellent Peninsula Press publish their second book from Lynne Tillman, Weird Fucks – great title, fantastic cover, can’t wait; in October, Penguin Classics bring us a long overdue reissue of Buchi Emecheta’s novel of immigration and survival in 1960s London, Second-Class Citizen; and just in time for Halloween, a really horrible haunted house novel from Cipher Press, Alison Rumfitt’s Tell Me I’m Worthless.
And lastly, something delightful to keep on your bedside table and see you through the lengthening nights: Rose Macaulay’s Personal Pleasures, recently reissued by Handheld Press, is a series of short essays about life’s minor pleasures, from the everyday (‘Bed’, both ‘Getting Into It’ and ‘Not Getting Out Of It’) to the more esoteric (‘Elephants in Bloomsbury’). A real treat to dip into.
From the publisher:
In 1935 Rose Macaulay (1881-1958) was a well-established novelist, reviewer, columnist and feminist wit. She was part of the 'intellectual aristocracy' of England, but was also passionately interested in everyday life and its foolishnesses.…
From the publisher:
'Buchi Emecheta was the foremother of black British women's writing . . . powerful fictions written from and about our lives' Bernardine Evaristo'Most dreams, as all dreamers know quite well, do have setbacks. Adah's dream was no exception,…