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  • Welcome to Pitshanger Books

    A 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 bookshop

    Located on lovely, leafy Pitshanger Lane. We stock over 3000 titles. As well as books, we sell cards, wrapping paper, stationery and games.
  • Serving our community

    Everybody 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 Man Booker Prize 2014 - Longlist announced

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The first Man Booker prize to admit novels from across the globe as long as hey are written in English has published its longlist. Following much discussion, the six judges chaired by philosopher Anthony Grayling chose 13 books by four Americans, six Britons, two Irish writers and one Australian.

To Rise Again at a Decent Hour by Joshua Ferris (Hardback, £16.99)

The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan (Hardback, £16.99)

We are all Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler (Paperback, £7.99)

The Blazing World by Siri Hustvedt (Hardback, £18.99 - currently reprinting)

J by Howard Jacobson (Hardback, £18.99 - to be published on 14 August)

The Wake by Paul Kingsnorth (Hardback, £16.99 - currently reprinting)

The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell (Hardback, £20 - to be published on 2 September)

The Lives of Others by Neel Mukherjee (Hardback, £16.99)

Us by David Nicholls (Hardback, £20 - to be published on 30 September)

The Dog by Joseph O'Neill (Hardback, £16.99)

Orfeo by Richard Powers (Paperback, £8.99)

How to be Both by Ali Smith (Hardback, £16.99 - to be published on 4 September)

History of the Rain by Niall Williams (Hardback, £18.99 - currently reprinting)

Cold Blood by Richard Kerridge

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As a boy, Richard Kerridge loved to encounter wild creatures and catch them for his back-garden zoo. In a country without many large animals, newts caught his attention first of all, as the nearest he could get to the African wildlife he watched on television. There were Smooth Newts, mottled like the fighter planes in the comics he read, and the longed-for Great Crested Newt, with its huge golden eye.The gardens of Richard and his reptile-crazed friends filled up with old bath tubs containing lizards, toads, Marsh Frogs, newts, Grass Snakes and, once, an Adder. Besides capturing them, he wanted to understand them. What might it be like to be cold blooded, to sleep through the winter, to shed your skin and taste wafting chemicals on your tongue? Richard has continued to ask these questions during a lifetime of fascinated study.Part natural-history guide to these animals, part passionate nature writing, and part personal story, Cold Blood is an original and perceptive memoir about our relationship with nature. Through close observation, it shows how even the suburbs can seem wild when we get close to these thrilling, weird and uncanny animals.


Book at Bedtime

The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton

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There is nothing hidden that will not be revealed ...On an autumn day in 1686, eighteen-year-old Nella Oortman knocks at the door of a grand house in the wealthiest quarter of Amsterdam. She has come from the country to begin a new life as the wife of illustrious merchant trader Johannes Brandt, but instead she is met by his sharp-tongued sister, Marin. Only later does Johannes appear and present her with an extraordinary wedding gift: a cabinet-sized replica of their home.It is to be furnished by an elusive miniaturist, whose tiny creations mirror their real-life counterparts in unexpected ways ...Nella is at first mystified by the closed world of the Brandt household, but as she uncovers its secrets she realizes the escalating dangers that await them all. Does the miniaturist hold their fate in her hands? And will she be the key to their salvation or the architect of their downfall? Beautiful, intoxicating and filled with heart-pounding suspense, The Miniaturist is a magnificent story of love and obsession, betrayal and retribution, appearance and truth.

Scottish Independence

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If you are interested in reading up on this fascinating subject ahead of the referendum, here are a couple of books that might whet your appetite. In 'Scottish Independence Yes or No', two of the nation's leading political commentators address both sides of this historic debate. George Kerevan puts forward the case for voting Yes, and Alan Cochrane makes the case for voting No.Both authors present the distinctive arguments for both sides, fully preparing you to make up your own mind on a decision that will shape the future of Scotland and of Great Britain.

In 'Independence: An Argument for Home Rule' Alasdair Gray argues that a truly independent Scotland will only ever exist when people in every home, school, croft, farm, workshop, factory, island, glen, town and city feel that they too are at the centre of the world. Independence asks whether widespread social welfare is more possible in small nations such as Norway and New Zealand than in big ones like Britain and the U.S.A. It describes the many differences between Scotland and England.It examines the people who choose to live north of the border. It shows Scotland's relevance to the rest of the world. It attempts to conjure a vision of how a Scots parliament might benefit the people of this small but dynamic nation.

These are the books that were most popular with our customers last week......

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1. The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

2. The Hundred-Year-Old Man who Climbed out of the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson

3. The Fault in our Stars by John Green

4. Life after Life by Kate Atkinson

5. An Officer and a Spy by Robert Harris

6. The Lie by Helen Dunmore

7. The Girl who Saved the King of Sweden by Jonas Jonasson

8. And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini

9. Bridget Jones: Mad about the Boy by Helen Fielding

10. A Girl is a Half-formed Thing by Eimear McBride

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

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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.

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Forthcoming events

  • Watch this Space!
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We are taking a break from our Events Programme over the summer period, as so many people are taking well-deserved breaks, but we are planning many more events for the autumn, so keep an eye on this page for more details. Also, if there are particular events which you would be keen to see us running, then do let us know.