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Lisa Owens' sharply funny debut and more

This week’s book recommendations from our contributors span the globe, from wartime Egypt and France, to the solitude of one person’s flat, via a maximum security prison in Yorkshire.

Q & A: Jonas Jonasson

Jonas Jonasson discusses our Book Club title of the week: Hitman Anders and the Meaning of It All.

Fiction Book of the Month: The Reader on the 6.27

Jean-Paul Didierlaurent’s The Reader on the 6.27 has been something of a sensation in its native France, topping the bestseller charts and very much underlining Didierlaurent’s transition as a short-story writer of some repute toward transforming into a full-blown novelist. The Reader on the 6.27 has bagged numerous literary awards and has been translated into twenty-six languages. Here, Didierlaurent talks about moving away from the form of the short tale and how he set about creating the extraordinary world of The Reader on the 6.27. Introduced by regional buyer Martha Greengrass

Non-fiction Book of the Month: The Last Act of Love

For some years, Cathy Rentzenbrink was a fellow soldier-in-arms at Waterstones, beginning her career as a bookseller across several of our stores in London. Ultimately she fled the nest to become Project Director to the charity Quick Reads and now, as a full-time writer and books journalist, a familiar voice in British publishing. Regional buyer Martha Greengrass introduces Cathy’s heartbreakingly honest memoir, The Last Act of Love.

Children's Book of The Month: The Girl of Ink & Stars

The Girl of Ink & Stars is the much-anticipated choice for our Children’s Book of the Month. That rare thing – a genuinely timeless, heart-on-its-sleeve adventure – this fictional debut from Oxford-based Kiran Millwood-Hargrave is as beautifully produced as it is written.

Thriller of the Month: The Cartel

Winslow's complex epic The Cartel has been described as the ‘War and Peace of dope-war books’.

Rediscovered Classic: Towards The End of The Morning

Michael Frayn's skewering of the press remains as relevant as ever.

The Saffron Tales: An Introduction to Persian Cooking

The Saffron Tales is a love-letter to Iran, its food, and its people. Its author Yasmin Khan has been kind enough to present for Waterstones an evocative overview of these culinary pleasures, introduced here by our non-fiction buyer Bea Carvalho.

Dominic Lieven wins this year’s Pushkin House Russian Book Prize

We are delighted to confirm that Dominic Lieven’s Towards the Flame: Empire, War and the End of Tsarist Russia is the winner of this year’s Pushkin House Russian Book Prize.