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New non-fiction for May 2016

Written by · Published May 3, 2016

Don't you leave me here: my life by Wilko Johnson

Don’t you leave me here: my life by Wilko Johnson

Don't you leave me here: my life by Wilko Johnson

In 2013, Dr Feelgood founder Wilko Johnson was diagnosed with terminal cancer. With ten months to live, he decided to accept his imminent death and went on the road. He recorded Going Back Home with Roger Daltrey and prepared for the worst. Then the strangest thing happened: he didn’t die. ‘Don’t You Leave Me Here’ is the story of his life in music, his life with cancer, and his life now - in the future he never thought he would see.

The private lives of the Tudors: uncovering the hidden secrets of Britain’s greatest dynasty by Tracy Borman

The private lives of the Tudors: uncovering the hidden secrets of Britain's greatest dynasty by Tracy Borman

The Tudor monarchs were constantly surrounded by an army of attendants, courtiers and ministers. Even in their most private moments, they were accompanied by a servant specifically appointed for the task. A groom of the stool would stand patiently by as Henry VIII performed his daily purges, and when Elizabeth I retired for the evening, one of her female servants would sleep at the end of her bed. These attendants knew the truth behind the glamorous exterior and this book reveals the previously unexamined details about the characters we think we know so well.

Paul McCartney: the biography by Philip Norman

Paul McCartney: the biography by Philip Norman

This book offers a first-hand, insider’s account of the life of a member of one of the most influential and widely-imitated band of all time, making this a fascinating fly-on-the-wall chronicle. Philip Norman has previously published definitive books on The Beatles and John Lennon.

Shut up legs by Jens Voigt

Shut up legs by Jens Voigt

Even by the standards of a sport that requires enormous stamina and capacity for suffering, Jens Voigt is in a class on his own. Beloved by cycling fans for his madcap one-man breakaways as much as his sense of humour and quotable catchphrases, Jens is one of the most popular personalities in cycling. This book is a funny, insightful, and entertaining look at the tough realities of professional cycling, told in Jens’s trademark irreverent and inimitable style.

A life discarded: 148 diaries found in a skip by Alexander Masters

A life discarded: 148 diaries found in a skip by Alexander Masters

In 2001 Alexander and his friends found 148 journals discarded in a skip. This book describes Alexander’s attempts to unravel the mysterious writer of these journals – leading us into the oddly fascinating life of an entirely unremarkable person.

Cheer up love: adventures in depression with the crab of hate by Susan Calman

Cheer up love: adventures in depression with the crab of hate by Susan Calman

Susan Calman will be familiar to listeners of The News Quiz on Radio 4. You may not know that she also suffers from depression. Despite being one of the funniest women in the UK she has had her own black dog, the Crab of Hate , whispering in her ear since she can remember. And her answer? To talk about it. A woman who measures the length of her depression by box sets (‘Cracker’ good, ‘West Wing’ bad) and who has made therapy more of a hobby than a medical requirement, Susan has written the book on what’s it’s like to be gloomy and enjoy it. Certain that the world needs people with a more cynical outlook on life, the book is a celebration of what she, and if statistics are to be believed, one in four of us, go through daily.

First light: a celebration of Alan Garner edited by Erica Wagner

First light: a celebration of Alan Garner edited by Erica Wagner

For more than 50 years, Alan Garner has enraptured generations of readers with works like The Weirdstone of Brisingamen , The Owl Service , Red Shift , and The Stone Book Quartet . Philip Pullman has described him as ‘the most important British writer of fantasy since Tolkien’. Alan Garner has inspired readers and writers alike. Now, to celebrate his 80th birthday, comes First Light. A collaboration by many of the acclaimed writers, artists, archaeologists and historians he has influenced over the years, this anthology includes original contributions from David Almond, Margaret Atwood, John Burnside, Susan Cooper, Helen Dunmore, Stephen Fry, Neil Gaiman, Elizabeth Garner, Paul Kingsnorth, Katherine Langrish, Helen Macdonald, Robert Macfarlane, Gregory Maguire, Neel Mukherjee, Philip Pullman, and many, many more.

The wicked boy: the mystery of a Victorian child murderer by Kate Summerscale

The wicked boy: the mystery of a Victorian child murderer by Kate Summerscale

The author of The Suspicions of Mr Whicher returns to Victorian crime. Early in the morning of Monday 8 July 1895, 13-year-old Robert Coombes and his 12-year-old brother Nattie set out from their small terraced house in East London to watch a cricket match at Lord’s. Their father had gone to sea the previous Friday, the boys told their neighbours, and their mother was visiting her family in Liverpool. Over the next ten days Robert and Nattie spent extravagantly, pawning their parents’ valuables to fund trips to the theatre and the seaside. But as the sun beat down on the Coombes house, a strange smell began to emanate from the building.

Brandon King

I work in the Suffolk Libraries Stock Team