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Art inspired by The Railway Detective

Tuesday, July 31st, 2012

We love hearing from our readers and take great pleasure in getting news from our authors about particularly lovely fanmail they’ve received. In today’s world where everyone seems so busy, it’s nice that readers still find the time to write to the authors they love. And so we’d like to share this delightful illustration that […]


The Olympig Games…

Monday, July 30th, 2012

Last week Michael Bond was in the office. Best known for his Paddington Bear creation, he also writes our fabulously funny Monsieur Pamplemousse series  starring sniffer dog extraodinaire, Pommes Frites. Lesser known are his Tales of Olga da Polga, any mention of which makes our publicity manager’s eyes glaze over with childhood nostalgia. Olga in […]


Getting into the Olympic spirit…

Friday, July 27th, 2012

The Booed… Anyone else a bit confused about the Olympic Games starting a few days before the opening ceremony? Not half as confused as the North Korean women’s football team whose faces were shown on a screen next to the South Korean flag, just before kick-off. As the two countries are technically still at war […]


Review of The Dark Knight Rises

Thursday, July 26th, 2012

Last week I went to see the new Batman film, The Dark Knight Rises, and promised you all a review.  In a nutshell – I enjoyed it… for what it was…but it wasn’t anything special.  As good as the previous two in Christopher Nolan’s trilogy? Absolutely not. The strength of the first film (Batman Begins) […]


Wednesday Cover Story: Out of the mouths of babes

Wednesday, July 25th, 2012

Our Wednesday Cover Story blogs are a simple but excellent in their premise: we talk about the design of books, what they say, what response they elicit from us. It all boils down to whether they pull their weight as a sales tool but on many levels we’re not all that different from this six-year-old […]


Kjell Eriksson spotted in Nairobi airport

Tuesday, July 24th, 2012

Yes, that’s a fact. The week before last, I spotted Kjell Eriksson in Nairobi airport. Well, not the actual man himself, but his books – but I was thrilled nonetheless.  There I was, in this miniscule bookshop at 5am in the morning – passing the time waiting for my connecting flight – when I spotted […]


Literary places I’d love to visit…

Monday, July 23rd, 2012

I recently read an article in The Guardian on the top ten homes in literature, and immediately I began to think of the literary places I’d love to visit. The columnist’s choices included Miss Havisham’s decaying home, Thrushcross Grange in Wuthering Heights, and Dr Jekyll’s residence – intriguing, yes, but there are others I’d prefer… […]


Alanna Knight at Reader’s Day in Irvine

Friday, July 20th, 2012

Saturday 27th October,  9.30am-3.30pm    WELLWOOD, IRVINE A chance for readers to meet and share their love of reading. Four talented authors, Alanna Knight (author of the acclaimed Inspector Faro and Rose McQuinn series), Maggie Craig, James Robertson and Sara Sheridan will be leading various book group sessions at a Reader’s Day in Wellwood, 28 Eglinton […]


The (Unintentional) Book Thief

Friday, July 20th, 2012

It’s a long-running joke in our house that we’re destined to be penniless due to my inability to return library books on time. Personally, I like to think of the overdue fines as small (but regular) contributions towards keeping libraries afloat, but for some reason this justification is no longer washing with my other half. […]


Portrait of the author

Thursday, July 19th, 2012

Last summer I finally ‘did’ the whole National Portrait Gallery one afternoon. By the end of it my legs were absolutely aching but it was well worth it. I particularly loved seeing the original portraits of authors that I’ve come across in biographies or on frontispieces in the past. If the idea of that appeals […]


Wednesday Cover Story: Christopher Buckley’s new look

Wednesday, July 18th, 2012

Presenting my new favourite covers of the moment – the gorgeously retro design for the reissues of Christopher Buckley‘s brilliant satires Thank You For Smoking (which was made into a very good film starring Aaron Eckhart) and Little Green Men. I’m a big fan of Buckley’s books and already have all his titles gracing my […]


D E Meredith at Wilderness Festival in Oxfordshire

Tuesday, July 17th, 2012

D E Meredith (author of the Victorian crime novel, ‘Devoured’), will be giving a talk with fellow authors Essie Fox and Lynn Sheperd entitled ‘MAYHEM, MYSTERY AND MURDER: The Victorian World Re-imagined’, at this summer’s Wilderness Festival.


Bookswapping in Zanzibar

Tuesday, July 17th, 2012

Back from my honeymoon in Tanzania. The first week was spent marvelling at wildlife on safari (6am starts and the joys are watching elephants amble by only 50 yards from our tent meant there was little time for reading). The second week however was spent melting on a beach in Zanzibar and a lifestyle that […]


Shocking reads…

Monday, July 16th, 2012

Recently I’ve been reading a book called Sheepshagger by Niall Griffiths, and while it’s a very good read, it’s also quite shocking at times. No, the title isn’t meant literally, but it contains a lot of violence described in very minute detail, and is generally a very visceral book. Despite feeling slightly sick in parts […]


Share the love

Friday, July 13th, 2012

Did you know that last Friday was National Kissing Day? Can’t say I noticed anyone getting any more action than usual, but then half the population probably had their heads buried in a certain book or three. In belated honour of this osculatory event (someone’s been at the thesaurus), dab on a bit of Vaseline, […]


A&B Classics

Thursday, July 12th, 2012

It’s always great when I get to work on a book I really enjoy, and lately with the new additions to our Allison & Busby Classics collection, I’ve been spoilt for choice. Aside from oohing and aahing at the lovely covers, I’ve also really enjoyed reading the books. Bias aside, even if I didn’t work […]


Wednesday’s Cover Story – A Cover’s Vacancy

Wednesday, July 11th, 2012

The one news item in the publishing trade that (briefly) eclipsed Fifty Shades (enough already – we get it, porn sells!)  was the unveiling of the cover design for JK Rowling’s The Casual Vacancy. To say this was a highly anticipated moment in cover design history is the understatement of the year and of course […]


Festival in Val D’Orcia

Tuesday, July 10th, 2012

Now that we’re in ‘summer’ (using the term very loosely, of course) we’re also in the middle of festival season. But, having experienced the dubious delights of a UK festival with a tent perched on a hill with a mud-slide threatening, the idea of the gorgeous Tuscan countryside is more than a little appealing. For […]


Decades in Literature (Part 6): the present day

Monday, July 9th, 2012

And now we reach the end of my six-part ‘Decades in Literature’, and face a tricky question: what are the best books of the past ten years? A quick Googling on the subject reveals many different opinions; a mixture of Ian McEwan, Barack Obama, Richard Dawkins, J.K. Rowling, Zadie Smith . . . the list […]


My Olympic hurdle: 6 a.m. alarm call

Friday, July 6th, 2012

We’ve got Olympics on the brain here in the A&B office. Well, on the brain in that we’re trying to plan out what stationery we need to get in before London comes to a standstill, which deliveries will be rescheduled, which commuting routes we need to rethink. All that boring logistics might take the shine […]


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