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New non-fiction for June 2018

Written by · Published May 30, 2018

In Montparnasse, In Your Defence, The Race to Save the Romanovs

The Crossway, by Guy Stagg

After suffering years of severe mental illness, Stagg embarks on a journey from Canterbury to Jerusalem hoping to be healed. Along the way he is caught in snowstorms, demonstrations in Istanbul and a terrorist attack.

This has been chosen as a Radio 4 Book of the Week.

The Incurable Romantic and other unsettling revelations, by Frank Tallis

Clinical psychologist Tallis introduces us to a dozen case histories of people he has treated, including a man who visits prostitutes because he says he is possessed by a demon and the woman who has fallen hopelessly in love with her dentist.

In Your Defence: stories of law and life, by Sarah Langford

Barrister Sarah Langford brings alive the cases of 11 people she has represented in both criminal family courts during her career at the Bar.

The Secret World: a history of intelligence, by Christopher M. Andrew

What difference have security and intelligence operations made to course of history? The author of The Defence of the Realm: the authorised history of MI5 returns with this history of intelligence and its uses.

In Montpartnasse: the emergence of surrealism in Paris, from Duchamp to Dali, by Sue Roe

“This is the story of Surrealism. Beginning with Marcel Duchamp and the wonderfully eccentric and avant garde Dada movement, Sue Roe goes on to tell the story of the moving death of Modigliani, the birth of Surrealist photography with Man Ray and his muse Kiki de Montparnasse, the love triangle between writer Paul Eluard, his wife Gala and artist Max Ernst, and finally the arrival of Salvador Dali in Paris in 1929.

In Montparnasse describes the extraordinary, revolutionary work these artists undertook as much as the salons, cafe life friendships, rows and love affairs that were their background.”

Sue Roe’s In Montmartre: Picasso, Matisse and modernism in Paris 1900-1910 was a surprise hit in 2014. This follow-up, a colourful, gossipy account of the birth of surrealism, has already been chosen as a Radio 4 Book of the Week.

The Race to Save the Romanovs: the truth behind the secret plans to rescue Russia’s Imperial Family, by Helen Rappaport

“On 17 July 1918, the whole of the Russian Imperial Family was murdered. There were no miraculous escapes. The former Tsar Nicholas, his wife Alexandra, and their children - Olga, Tatiana, Maria, Anastasia and Alexey - were all tragically gunned down in a blaze of bullets.

“On the 100-year-anniversary of these brutal murders, historian Helen Rappaport sets out to uncover exactly why the Romanovs’ European royal relatives and the Allied governments all failed to get them out of Russia to safety.”

Room to Dream: a life in art, by David Lynch & Kristine McKenna

“In this memoir, David Lynch - co-creator of Twin Peaks and writer and director of groundbreaking films like Eraserhead, The Elephant Man, Blue Velvet and Mulholland Drive - opens up about a lifetime of extraordinary creativity, the friendships he has made along the way and the struggles he has faced - sometimes successful, sometimes not - to bring his projects to fruition.”

Autobiographical work by the Twin Peaks co-creator. This is based on interviews with Lynch and many of his friends and collaborators.

The Secret Cyclist: real life as a rider in the professional peloton

“Omertà is the strict code of silence that governed cycling during the Lance Armstrong era of doping. While it no longer rules the peloton, only anonymity can allow a rider to truly reveal what the world of modern professional cycling is really like.

“Every aspect of a rider’s life is here: the pressure and the pitfalls in joining the pro ranks, the highs and lows of having teammates and being away for months at a time, the desperation of injuries, the glory of success, the spectre of drugs - everything about what it’s actually like to ride a bike for a living.

“The Secret Cyclist takes us inside the team bus, along the road with the peloton and in the breakaways to hear the hidden, often weird and always entertaining stories of life as a racer.”

Brandon King

I work in the Suffolk Libraries Stock Team