All the Rage

A L Kennedy
(Jonathan Cape)

This collection confirms A L Kennedy as one of the most innovative and accomplished
short story writers. Ricocheting into and out of the characters’ consciousness, each
story is a fresh revelation of what can be done in the brief form. This is short story
writing of the highest quality.

 

Gone Are the Leaves

Anne Donovan
(Canongate)


 historical novel, tinged with fantasy and myth, in which the life of a young embroideress becomes linked with that of a singer with a mysterious past. The language, with its unique blend of Scots and English, proves as inventive as the novel’s rich medievalism itself.

 

Where Memories Go

Sally Magnusson
(Two Roads)


An assured, deft and very controlled piece of writing. Its deeply-felt emotion arises from
first-hand contact with dementia and memory loss in the family, watching a much-loved
mother sink from sight and recognition; the situation is unflinchingly well
described without self-pity.

Cala Bendita ‘s a Bheannachdan

Màrtainn Mac an t-Saoir
(Salt)


Centred on family life, the reader is skilfully guided through the ins and outs of the lives of
different families. The author allows them all to speak for their own lives and in their own
languages, and he blends their stories together into a rich and profound tapestry.

The James Plays

Rona Munro
(Nick Hern Books)


The trilogy follows the fortunes of James I, II and III, using a fluid cast and setting to
imagine the tremendous variety of Scottish court life. The voices are modern and the
emotions unfixed by historical period. Above all, the plays simmer with energy, and seem
set to become classics of their kind.

How To Be Both

Ali Smith
(Hamish Hamilton)

This is in fact two novels which interpenetrate each other despite being set centuries
apart which can be read in either order, for copies are distributed some with
the first, some with the second. An exhilarating read as one grapples
with the material which challenges comprehension and understanding, but
richly rewards the effort.

 

The winner of the Literary Book of the Year will be announced at the Saltire Literary Awards on 11th November, details and book tickets HERE.