Welcome to Pitshanger BooksA warm welcome to our new website. Please feel free to explore the site and let us know what you think of it.
Your local independent bookshopLocated on lovely, leafy Pitshanger Lane. We stock over 3000 titles. As well as books, we sell cards, wrapping paper, stationery and games.
Serving our communityEverybody that works here lives locally. We all love the area and we all love books so please feel free to ask if there's anything you need.
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The Baileys Womens Prize for Fiction 2014
Baileys is the new sponsor for the most prestigious book award for fiction written by a woman (previously the Orange Prize) and the 2014 winner has just been announced. A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing by Eimear McBride - according to The Guardian - 'languished unpublished for a decade before being picked up by a fledgling independent publishing house'.
Eimear McBride's debut tells, with astonishing insight and in brutal detail, the story of a young woman's relationship with her brother, and the long shadow cast by his childhood brain tumour. Not so much a stream of consciousness, as an unconscious railing against a life that makes little sense, and a shocking and intimate insight into the thoughts, feelings and chaotic sexuality of a vulnerable and isolated protagonist, to read A Girl Is A Half-Formed Thing is to plunge inside its narrator's head, experiencing her world first-hand.This isn't always comfortable - but it is always a revelation. Touching on everything from family violence to sexuality and the personal struggle to remain intact in times of intense trauma, McBride writes with singular intensity, acute sensitivity and mordant wit. A Girl is a Half-formed Thing is moving, funny - and alarming.
Last Man Off by Matt Lewis
Last Man Off by Matt Lewis - a first-hand account of an ocean tragedy. The waters of Antarctica, June 6th 1998. 23-year-old Matt Lewis has just started his dream job. An observer aboard a deep sea fishing boat, he is mesmerized by his new surroundings: glistening icebergs, killer whales and majestic albatross. As the crew haul in their lines for the day, the waves seem bigger than usual - they are casting shadows on the deck. A storm is brewing. What follows is an astonishing story of human courage, folly and tragedy. With the captain missing, and the crew forced to abandon ship, Lewis leads the escape onto three life rafts, where the battle for survival begins. This brilliantly written and thrilling hour-by-hour account will be enjoyed by readers of non-fiction classics such as A Perfect Storm and Touching the Void, as well as fans of Deadliest Catch, Captain Phillips and 127 Hours.As heard on BBC Radio 4. Matt Lewis was born in Bristol, England, in 1974. He trained as a marine biologist first at Bangor University and then at Aberdeen University, and has an MSc with distinction in Marine and Fisheries Science.In 1998 he got his first deployment as an observer aboard a deep sea fishing boat in the Southern Ocean. The trip was to end in tragedy. He now lives with his wife and two children in Aberdeen.
Book at Bedtime
A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman
There is something about Ove. At first sight, he is almost certainly the grumpiest man you will ever meet. He thinks himself surrounded by idiots - neighbours who can't reverse a trailer properly, joggers, shop assistants who talk in code, and the perpetrators of the vicious coup d'etat that ousted him as Chairman of the Residents' Association. He will persist in making his daily inspection rounds of the local streets. But isn't it rare, these days, to find such old-fashioned clarity of belief and deed? Such unswerving conviction about what the world should be, and a lifelong dedication to making it just so? In the end, you will see, there is something about Ove that is quite irresistible...The word-of-mouth bestseller causing a sensation across Europe, Fredrik Backman's heartwarming debut is a funny, moving, uplifting tale of love and community that will leave you with a spring in your step - and less ready to judge on first impressions a man you might one day wish to have as your dearest friend.
If you have been following the news items about North Korea, you might be interested in either or both of these gripping books. The Orphan Master's Son is a novel which won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 2013 and evokes a powerful sense of what it must be like to live in North Korea, while telling an absolutley gripping tale. Escape from Camp 14 is the true story of Shin Dong-hyuk who was born inside the Camp, one of five sprawling political prisons in the mountains of North Korea. Located about 55 miles north of Pyongyang, the labor camp is a 'complete control district,' a no-exit prison where the only sentence is life. No one born in Camp 14 or in any North Korean political prison camp has escaped.No one except Shin.
These are the books that were most popular with our customers last week......
1. An Officer and a Spy by Robert Harris
2. The Deaths by Mark Lawson
3. The Hundred-Year-Old Man who Climbed out of the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson
4. The Girl who Saved the King of Sweden by Jonas Jonasson
5. And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini
6. Bridget Jones: Mad about the Boy by Helen Fielding
7. A Girl is a Half-formed Thing by Eimear McBride
8. The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
9. The Lie by Helen Dunmore
10. Minecraft Construction Handbook
If you would like to read any of these books, please send us a message from our contacts page, and we will reserve a copy for you.
The Hundred-Year-Old Man who Climbed out of the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson
It all starts on the one-hundredth birthday of Allan Karlsson. Sitting quietly in his room in an old people's home, he is waiting for the party he-never-wanted-anyway to begin. The mayor is going to be there.The press is going to be there. But, as it turns out, Allan is not...Slowly but surely Allan climbs out of his bedroom window, into the flowerbed (in his slippers) and makes his getaway. And so begins his picaresque and unlikely journey involving criminals, several murders, a suitcase full of cash, and incompetent police.As his escapades unfold, we learn something of Allan's earlier life in which - remarkably - he helped to make the atom bomb, became friends with American presidents, Russian tyrants, and Chinese leaders, and was a participant behind the scenes in many key events of the twentieth century. Already a huge bestseller across Europe, The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared is a fun, feel-good book for all ages. Now having sold over 3 million copies worldwide, this quirky novel has now been adapted into a major film.Read More
Your local bookshop
Pitshanger Bookshop has been a feature on Pitshanger Lane for nearly 20 years. My name is Fiona Kennedy and I've owned the shop since August 2011.
There are 5 of us working here at various times: myself, Hazel, Carole, Ruth and Beatrice. We all live locally and love the neighbourhood. And of course we all love books too! You can see what we're reading at the moment on the right hand side of this home page. We love chatting about books, making recommendations, and hearing what our customers recommend too. We offer a friendly service so please feel free to approach any of us if you need help or advice when you're in the shop. We look forward to seeing you soon.