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EVERYMAN'S LATEST RELEASES

Despite the hardship and uncertainty of 2020, Everyman’s Library has gone from strength to strength. March saw the publication of the Collected Stories of Lorrie Moore, one of America’s most revered and beloved writers, in our Adult Classics list, followed by Independent People, the epic realist novel by Nobel Prize-winning author Halldór Laxness. In autumn we published The Babur Nama, the magnificent memoirs of warrior-poet Babur, the first of the Mughal emperors of India, introduced brilliantly by William Dalrymple. 

Stephen Sondheim’s Lyrics and Montale’s Poems joined our Pocket Poets in spring, followed by Poems of Greek Antiquity and Border Lines: Poems of Migration – the first anthology of its kind in which poets from around the world give eloquent voice to the experience of migration. Prague Stories, our latest Pocket Classic, weaves a remarkable selection of fiction and non-fiction into a literary portrait of a fascinating city. 

2021 promises an especially exciting and eclectic line-up in our Pocket Classic and Pocket Poet series’, including The Best Medicine: Stories of Healing, Tree Stories, Poems of Healing and Poems of Books and Libraries, while authors such as Dostoevsky and Maupassant will be among our new Adult Classics. 

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    The Golden City of Prague has for many centuries been the intellectual centre of the western world. The writers collected here range from the early nineteenth century to the present and include both Prague natives and visitors from elsewhere. Here are stories, legends, and scenes from the city's past and present, from the Jewish fable of the Golem, a creature conjured from clay, to tales of German and Soviet invasions. The international array of writers ranges from Franz Kafka to Ivan Klíma to Bruce Chatwin, and includes the award-winning British playwright Tom Stoppard and former American Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, both of whom have Czech roots. Covering the city's venerable Jewish heritage, the glamour of the Belle Époque period, World War II, Communist rule, the Prague Spring, the Velvet Revolution and beyond, Prague Stories weaves a remarkable selection of fiction and nonfiction into a literary portrait ofa fascinating city.  

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    Montale's incandescently beautiful poetry is deeply rooted in the venerable lyric tradition that began with Dante, but he brilliantly reinvents that tradition for our time, probing the depths of love, death, faith and philosophy in the bracing light of modern history. Montale's poems teem with allusion and metaphor but at the same time are densely studded with concrete images that keep his complex musings firmly tethered to the world. Montale's reputation is international and enduring, and he has influenced generations of poets around the world. This volume contains selections from all his greatest works, rendered into English by the accomplished poet and translator Jonathan Galassi. It serves as both an essential introduction to an important poet and a true pleasure for lovers of contemporary poetry.

     
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    Louder and Funnier

    P G Wodehouse
     

    In these articles first produced for magazines and substantially rewritten for book publication, Wodehouse reveals his enduring brilliance as a comic writer of topical essays.
     
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    This is James Ellroy's pop history of the 1960s, his window-peeper's view of government misconduct, his dirty trickster's take on the great events of an incendiary era. It's a tour de force of the American idiom, and an acknowledged masterpiece.

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    Here in one volume is James Ellroy's epic re-imagining of the dark underside of postwar Los Angeles. A groundbreaking work of American crime fiction.

     
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     'America was never innocent.'

    Thus begins the Underworld U.S.A. Trilogy. It's James Ellroy's pop history of the 1960s, his window-peeper's view of government misconduct, his dirty trickster's take on the great events of an incendiary era. It's a tour de force of the American idiom, and an acknowledged masterpiece.

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     A Bend in the River is widely hailed as the greatest work of Nobel Prize-winning author V. S. Naipaul. This disturbing novel about decolonization tells the story of Salim, a young Indian trader, who moves from the coastal settlement where he has grown up but where his  community's future now seems uncertain, to a newly independent country in the African interior (largely based on the Congo), settling on that very bend in the river where Conrad had set his Heart of Darkness some seventy years before. Salim enters a ghost town, once a flourishing European outpost, which is fast returning to the bush, a place of poverty, ignorance and recent violence. A new dictator, 'the Big Man', is about to launch his nationalist programme on the people with the assistance of Raymond, 'The Big Man's White Man', a humanitarian whose plans for the country's future are arrogant and delusional. Salim struggles to build his business and a life for himself, but as the new regime turns into a project of fear, both personal and political tragedy ensue. Savagery threatens to return to the bend in the river, and there is nowhere left to run to. 

     
    A masterpiece of post-colonial literature, shortlisted for the Booker Prize in 1979, A Bend in the River powerfully conveys Naipaul's haunting vision of a place caught between the dangerously alluring modern world and its own tenacious past.
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    Rumi: Unseen Poems – the second volume of Rumi in the Everyman Pocket Poet series – is a treasury of poems which have never been translated before, researched and translated by Rumi biographer Brad Gooch and the Iranian writer Maryam Mortaz. The 13th-century Persian poet Rumi was trained in Sufism, a mystic tradition within Islam. He founded the Mevlevi Order, often known as the Whirling Dervishes, who use dance and music as part of their spiritual devotion. His poetry combines the sacred and the sensual, expressing both rapturous divine love, and aching human love for his companion and teacher, Shams of Tabriz. It has long been popular in the West, never more so than in the last twenty-five years, when a new wave of free translations introduced him to an ever-widening audience. 

            However, some of these recent translations have been more in the nature of interpretations by writers who are not Persian speakers. Cultural and Islamic references central to an understanding of Rumi's poetry have been toned down or omitted. And so vast was Rumi's output that earlier scholarly translators were obliged to be selective, leaving a rich vein of verse still unmined. From this Gooch and Mortaz have made a selection of ghazals (short lyric poems) and rubaiyat (quatrains), aiming in their own translations to achieve fidelity to the originals while preserving all Rumi's lyric exuberance.
            This book makes a perfect companion to the first Everyman volume of Rumi, which presents the very best of the 20th-century translations.
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     The hypnotic charm of Venice has seduced writer after writer through the ages. Nine stories dazzlingly reflect this literary love affair. A gorgeously jacketed hardcover anthology.

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    In Picturehouse Poems one of our oldest art forms pays loving homage to one of our newest – the thrilling art of cinema. This unique collection of poetic tributes to the silver screen ranges over a full century, from the silent era to the present, featuring poems about movie stars to bit players, epics and weepies, B-movies to Bollywood. More than a hundred poets riff on their movie memories: Langston Hughes and John Updike on the theatres of their youth, Jack Kerouac and Robert Lowell on Harpo Marx, Sharon Olds on Marilyn Monroe, Louise Erdrich on John Wayne, May Swenson on the James Bond films, Terrance Hayes on early Black cinema, Maxine Kumin on Casablanca, and Richard Wilbur on The Prisoner of Zenda. Orson Welles, Alfred Hitchcock and Ingmar Bergman share the spotlight with Ridley Scott, Robert Bresson and Leni Riefenstahl; Frankenstein and King Kong with Shirley Temple and Carmen Miranda; Bonnie and Clyde and Rashomon with Tess and Easy Rider.

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    The Prince and Betty

    P G Wodehouse
     

    A classic musical comedy plot turned into a novel, The Prince and Betty is the story of a man who gives up everything for his girl.
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    Collected here for the first time in one volume are forty stories by Lorrie Moore – originally published in the acclaimed collections Self-Help, Like Life, Birds of America and Bark, and including three additional stories excerpted from her novels. Moore is one of America's most revered writers, and this career-spanning collection showcases her exceptional talent for leavening tragedy with humor, for blending sorrow with subversive wit. Her keenly observed stories are peopled by a variety of lost souls – husbands, wives, lovers, tourists, professors, students, even a ghost – who are often grappling with pain or disappointment: a divorced man obsessed with self-help books, a washed-up Hollywood actress living in a hotel, a woman with a terminal illness. But however lovelorn or dislocated the characters--from the wisecracking wedding guest in 'Thank You for Having Me' to the self-deluded musicians in 'Wings' to the complicated parent-child pairs in 'How to Talk to Your Mother (Notes)' and 'The Kid's Guide to Divorce' – their stories are always grounded in insight and compassion. Moore's portraits of the parents of a seriously ill child in -People Like That Are the Only People Here' and of a woman haunted by guilt over the death of her friend's baby in 'Terrific Mother' achieve a notably unsentimental and yet quietly devastating power. Whether moving or darkly funny, all of these pieces channel the messiness of the human condition through Moore's characteristically knowing, wry voice, and together they confirm her as a master of the short story.

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    Newly planted or newly felled, cherished or lamented, towering in forests or flowering in gardens, trees have for thousands of years inspired lyrical meditation. In this anthology poets from Homer and Virgil to Wordsworth and Whitman, from Su Tung P’o to Seamus Heaney, celebrate sacred groves, wild woodlands and bountiful orchards, or mourn their loss. Amongst these poets lovers of trees may make some surprising discoveries. But they will also find many well-loved English and American poems – Gerard Manley Hopkins’ ‘Binsey Poplars’, Robert Frost’s ‘Birches’, A. E. Housman’s ‘Loveliest of Trees’, Marianne Moore’s ‘The Camperdown Elm’ and D. H. Lawrence’s ‘The Almond Tree’, to name but a few – and a wealth of poems in translation, including Zbigniew Herbert’s ‘Sequoia’, Eugenio Montale’s ‘The Lemon Trees’, Yves Bonnefoy’s ‘The Apples’, Pablo Neruda’s ‘Ode to a Fallen Chesnut’ and Nuala Ni Dhomhnaill’s ‘Coco-de-Mer’. In the words of American poet Stanley  Plumly, who contributes a preface to this book, here is a selection of tree poems which really ‘think with their hearts’. 

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    There is a great deal more to Greek poetry than the Iliad or the Odyssey. Shorter masterpieces abound, as the lyrical and elegiac poems, odes, and epigrams in this volume testify. Here are selections from the early Greek poets, including Hesiod, Pindar and Bacchylides, Alcaeus and Sappho; from the Alexandrian poets Theocritus, Bion, Apollonius of Rhodes, and many more. A generous section is devoted to poems from the celebrated Greek Anthology, which spans a thousand years from the Classical to the Byzantine age, and another to the Anacreontea, a delightful collection of odes on the pleasures of drink, love, and beauty. 
     
    This historical anthology draws on nearly five hundred years of English translations, from Elizabethan and Jacobean England and the great age of translation presided over by George Chapman, to the late twentieth century and modern versions by James Michie, Fleur Adcock and Robert Fagles. Editor Paul Quarrie has mustered an army of translators: poets major and minor jostle with Regius Professors of Greek, professional writers and translators with accomplished amateurs including teachers, librarians, aristocrats, diplomats, civil servants, bankers, soldiers and clergymen. The editor provides an informative preface, section introductions, and biographies of translators in which biographical detail is set off by colorful anecdote. 
     
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     From Li Bai's 'Bring in the Ale' to Ted Kooser's 'Beer Bottle'; from Robert Burns's' John Barleycorn' to Carol Ann Duffy's 'John Barleycorn' (no, you are not seeing double), the poems collected here attest to humankind's long and joyous (mostly) relationship with the world's most popular alcoholic beverage. A surprising number of authors, and perhaps some surprising authors, have added their tributes to the brew. Here, to name but a few, we find Charles Baudelaire, John Betjamen, William Blake, Bertolt Brecht, Raymond Carver, Amy Clampitt, Emily Dickinson, Benjamin Franklin, Robert Graves, Langston Hughes, Eric Idle, E. Nesbit, Flann O'Brien, Frank O'Hara, Sylvia Plath, Arthur RImbaud, Rumi and Hank Williams, all rather less than sober. Unsurprisingly, 'Anon.' is widely represented, in particularly exuberant spirits. There are recipes, and hangovers (inevitably); there's a hymn to Ninkasi, ancient Sumerian goddess of beer, Prohibition protest songs and old English drinking catches; there is philosophy (of a sort), and consolation. Whether pulling up at the celestial bar in Keats's 'Mermaid Tavern' or at the grittier, jazzier one in Carl Sandburg's 'Honky Tonk in Cleveland, Ohio', lovers of beer and poetry are sure to find something to celebrate in these pages.

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    Berlin, in the words of Philip Hensher, editor of this anthology, 'has always been a city of desperate modernity', both in terms of urban architecture – largely a creation of the progressive 19th-century, laid waste by World War II – and in ways of living and behaving. As early as the 1920s it was the gay capital of Europe; the Communist East/free West barrier presented unique problems for a divided population; and in the 1990s, in the aftermath of reunification, the cheap, run-down city became a vibrant centre for creative artists. 'The sense of making it up as you go along is never far away in Berlin.' The stories in this volume are the product of this series of multiple rebirths from the viewpoint of both insiders and outsiders. From pre-1914 there are contributions from Theodor Fontane and Robert Walser; from the Weimar Republic, Alexander Döblin, Vladimir Nabokov, Erich Kästner, Ernst Haffner, Irmgeud Keun and Christopher Isherwood; from the Third Reich, Thomas Wolfe, Hans Fallada and Heinz Rein; from the Cold War era, Peter Schneider, Thomas Brussig, Len Deighton, Christa Wolf and Ian McEwan; from post-reunification, Günter Grass, Wladimir Kaminer, Chloe Aridjis, Uwe Timm, Kevin Barry, Jean-Philippe Toussaint and Jenny Erpenbeck.
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    Sunset at Blandings

    P G Wodehouse
     

    In Wodehouse's final novel, unfinished at his death, the author returns to his favourite part of England.
    There may be trouble in the air, but at Blandings Castle it is always summer, and the powers of darkness are always ultimately defeated.
     
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    Set in the early twentieth century, Independent People, by Nobel Prize-winning author Halldór Laxness, recalls both Iceland's medieval epics and such classics as Sigrid Undset's Kristin Lavransdatter. If Bjartur of Summerhouses, the book's protagonist, is an ordinary sheep farmer, his flinty determination to achieve independence is genuinely heroic and, at the same time, terrifying and bleakly comic. Having spent eighteen years in humiliating servitude, Bjartur wants nothing more than to raise his flocks unbeholden to any man. But Bjartur's spirited daughter wants to live unbeholden to him. What ensues is a battle of wills that is by turns harsh and touching, elemental in its emotional intensity and intimate in its homely detail. Vast in scope and deeply rewarding, Independent People is a masterpiece.

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    There is a great deal more to Greek poetry than the Iliad or the Odyssey. Shorter masterpieces abound, as the lyrical and elegiac poems, odes, and epigrams in this volume testify. Here are selections from the early Greek poets, including Hesiod, Pindar and Bacchylides, Alcaeus and Sappho; from the Alexandrian poets Theocritus, Bion, Apollonius of Rhodes, and many more. A generous section is devoted to poems from the celebrated Greek Anthology, which spans a thousand years from the Classical to the Byzantine age, and another to the Anacreontea, a delightful collection of odes on the pleasures of drink, love, and beauty. This historical anthology draws on nearly five hundred years of English translations, from Elizabethan and Jacobean England and the great age of translation presided over by George Chapman, to the late twentieth century and modern versions by James Michie, Fleur Adcock and Robert Fagles. Editor Paul Quarrie has mustered an army of translators: poets major and minor jostle with Regius Professors of Greek, professional writers and translators with accomplished amateurs including teachers, librarians, aristocrats, diplomats, civil servants, bankers, soldiers and clergymen. The editor provides an informative preface, section introductions, and biographies of translators in which biographical detail is set off by colorful anecdote. 

     
     
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    Legendary composer and lyricist Stephen Sondheim made his Broadway debut with West Side Story in 1957 at the age of twenty-seven. His remarkable and wide-ranging career has spanned more than six decades since then, and he has accumulated accolades that include eight Tony Awards, an Academy Award, eight Grammy Awards, six Laurence Olivier Awards, a Pulitzer Prize, the Kennedy Center Honors, and a Presidential Medal of Freedom. Sondheim redefined musical theater with his groundbreaking work, combining words and music in ways that are by turns challenging, moving, witty, profound, and never less than exhilarating. This volume includes a selection of lyrics from across his career, drawn from shows including West Side Story, Gypsy, Company, Follies, A Little Night Music, Sweeney Todd, Sunday in the Park with George, Into the Woods, and more. The result is a delightful pocket-sized treasury of the very best of Sondheim.

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    Two centuries of short stories by twenty-five titans of Russian literature, from Pushkin and Gogol to Tatyana Tolstaya and Svetlana Alexievich, in the beautifully designed Pocket Classics series.

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    In this remarkable collection – the first of its kind – poets from around the world give eloquent voice to the trials, hopes, rewards and losses of migration. Each year, millions join the ranks of intrepid migrants who have reshaped societies throughout history. The movement of peoples across borders – whether forcible or voluntary – brings with it emotional and psychological dislocations. Whatever their circumstances, these travellers share the challenge of adapting to being strangers in a strange land. Border Lines brings together more than a hundred poets representing more than sixty nations - Imtiaz Dharker, Ruth Padel, Bernardine Evaristo, Derek Walcott, Mahmoud Darwish, 'Dreadlock Alien', Dunya Mikhail and Hédi Kaddour, to name but a few. A monument to courage and resilience, Border Lines offers an intimate and uniquely global view of the experiences of immigrants in our rapidly changing world. 

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     The story of an irrepressible orphan girl in the Swiss Alps, written in 1880–81, has long been one of the most loved and best-selling children's classics in the world.

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     An unjustly neglected classic, this sweeping 1904 novel is a Modernist masterpiece and arguably 'the great Danish novel' – but is only newly available in English.

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    A hardcover selection of the darkly witty, whimsical and macabre short stories by an acknowledged master of the form.

     
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     A beautiful hardback anthology of poems from across the ages inspired by the City of Light.

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    The extraordinary memoir of the Timurid prince Babur (1483-1530), who became the first Mughal emperor yet always considered himself a refugee. 

    A lost inheritance, a rags-to-riches journey from vagabondage in the mountains of central Asia to an imperial throne in India, warrior-poet Babur’s life was one of adventure and endurance. Descended from both Genghis Khan and Timur, Babur came to the throne of a small principality at the age of eleven; ten years of warfare later, he would lose it forever to Uzbek invaders. As he fled into exile, a lucky break led to the capture of Kabul, from which he carved out a new state for himself in Afghanistan. Two decades later, he was ready for the greatest gamble of all – no less than an invasion of Hindustan. He tells his own story with startling immediacy and a winning frankness: it was the crowning achievement of a rich tradition of Islamic autobiography. 

    There is history and politics here aplenty, but what is most striking about Babur’s memoirs is the man they reveal – ambitious but modest and self-critical, deeply attached to friends and family, sensitive to the beauties of nature, and extremely fond of a party. He paints a fascinating portrait of a sophisticated and cultured Persian-Turkic society – though he could be as coldly ruthless and brutal as any Italian Renaissance prince. Everywhere he went he created beautiful gardens. For all the treasures that his Indian conquest brought him, he remained homesick for the north; but in just four years he laid the foundations of the greatest, wealthiest and most populous of the world’s Muslim-ruled empires. 

     
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EVERYMAN’S AUTHORS’ VOICES

Listen to the voices of some of the greatest writers of the last 150 years.

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EVERYMAN’S AUTHORS’ BIOGRAPHIES

Read the specially commissioned authors' biographies by Prof. John Sutherland and Dr Ann Pasternak Slater

EVERYMAN'S BOOK OF THE MONTH

THE BABUR NAMA
Written by Babur

The extraordinary memoir of the Timurid prince Babur (1483-1530), who became the first Mughal emperor yet always considered himself a refugee. A lost inheritance, a rags-to-riches journey from vagabondage in the mountains of central Asia to an imperial throne in India, warrior-poet Babur’s life was one of adventure and endurance. He tells his own story with startling immediacy and a winning frankness: it was the crowning achievement of a rich tradition of Islamic autobiography. 

Book Of The Month
Babur
THE BABUR NAMA

Translated by Annette Beveridge, with an Introduction by William Dalrymple
ISBN: 978-1-84159-399-9
Price: £20