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The Waterstones Round Up: January's Best Books

Posted on 4th January 2021 by Mark Skinner

Plunge headlong into 2021 with us as we select our favourite reads for January. From the return of Kate Mosse's The Burning Chambers sequence to exciting debuts from Abigail Dean and Raven Leilani, and from John Sopel's eye-opening dispatches from last year's US election to Rachel Clarke's profound meditation on Covid-19, the new year's publishing really is off to a stellar start. 

 

Fiction

£20.00
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The second captivating instalment of the Burning Chambers series finds Minou and her family facing ever greater peril as sixteenth-century France is plunged once more into religious strife and regal intrigue.

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£6.99
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One of our most lyrical novelists brings his rich facility for language and psychological insight to the final hours of the great painter Francis Bacon, in this majestic tour de force.
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£16.99 £8.49
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Marbled with magical effects, The Living Sea of Waking Dreams is a story about love, vanishing and finding ways to survive, from the Booker Prize-winning author of The Narrow Road to the Deep North.
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£14.99
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Audacious and provocative, Leilani’s firecracker of a debut charts Edie’s awkward slalom through modern life, from dead-end hook ups and crushed ambitions to a romantic liaison that has disaster written all over it.

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£18.99 £9.49
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Following the lives of two young enslaved men in the Halifax plantation, this visionary and deeply evocative debut carves a radiant love story out of the bleakest of landscapes.
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£12.99
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Another deliciously dark and brooding gothic mystery from the author of The Silent Companions and Bone China, The Shape of Darkness sets a silhouette artist and a child medium on the trail of a ruthless serial killer in Victorian Bath.

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£14.99
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Tired of her job and desperate for a sympathetic ear, Death befriends a writer who begins to work on her memoir in this much-awaited, tantalising debut novel from poet Salena Godden.
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£14.99
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As a result of a psychotic episode that installs a god-like voice in his head, a once-brilliant legal student takes part in a drug trial in search of ‘normality’ in this heart-rending novel.
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£14.99 £6.49
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Set in contemporary India, Majumdar’s debut is a pulsating character study based in the aftermath of a terrorist attack and the complex, conflicting legacy that the atrocity unleashes on ordinary people’s lives.
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Crime & Thrillers

£12.99
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Age-old superstitions, haunting visions and vanished teenagers plague a town and its newly appointed vicar in this provincial noir from the bestselling author of The Chalk Man.

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£14.99
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Following the news that their abusive mother has died in prison, Lex and her siblings must face the horrors of their past once more in this arresting debut that is both a page-turning thriller and a searing portrait of survival.

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£14.99
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A body found on the beach in a small coastal town triggers a chain of questions and tears open old wounds in this powerful, absorbing thriller from the author of The Dry.

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£18.99 £16.99
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A house on the verge of being washed into the North Sea reveals a macabre secret in MacBride’s ingenious police thriller featuring ex-Detective Inspector Ash Henderson.
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£12.99
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Set on a remote farm and filled with lingering dread, The Last Thing to Burn is a chilling depiction of an obsessively controlling relationship driven to its breaking point.

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£12.99 £6.49
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Mind games, deadly ambitions and unforgiven pieces of the past mount to a terrible climax when five old friends gather for a reunion in a deserted lodge in the French Alps.
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£16.99
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From the award-winning author of Scrublands, this dark and haunting Sydney-set thriller sees a woman fleeing from what once happened to her in the corrupted world of the powerful and the privileged.

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From the creator of TV’s Death in Paradise and perfect reading for fans of Richard Osman’s The Thursday Murder Club, Thorogood’s charmingly eccentric whodunit features a trio of unlikely provincial detectives determined to bring a brutal killer to justice.
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Science Fiction & Fantasy

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Set in an alternate world where slavery and colonialism never happened, A River Called Time is at once a timely exploration of social inequality and a story about love and the search for the truth.
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Immensely clever and deftly plotted, this slice of apocalyptic science fiction from the author of Norwegian By Night imagines a blasted future world where ancient knowledge is being systematically destroyed just as an astounding technological discovery is made.
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Home & Lifestyle

£26.00
Hardback
5+ in stock
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Boasting one hundred delicious and nourishing recipes and down-to-earth tips, Eat Better Forever is an inspiring take on healthy eating from the River Cottage star.
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£12.99
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In this inspiring guide to eco-friendly cleaning, Nancy Birtwhistle shares her expert tips for keeping your home spotless in a sustainable way.

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£14.99 £7.49
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Cutting through the Instagram wellness bubble, No Such Thing as Normal offers down-to-earth discussion about what people really need to feel better.

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£16.99
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From the bestselling author of Calm and Happy, Speak Your Truth is a powerful collection of essays about finding your true voice.
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£16.99
Paperback
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The follow-up to the perennial bestseller The Artist’s Way, The Listening Path offers six weeks’ worth of rewarding lessons on how to become a better listener and cultivate attentiveness in everyday life.
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Biography

£16.99
Hardback
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By turns shocking, inspiring and deeply moving, Coker Burks account of caring for men with HIV and AIDS in conservative 1980s America affirms the ignorance and prejudice with which the condition was treated and the courage and determination displayed by those willing to defy the strictures of authority.

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£30.00
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Written with access to Bacon’s letters and papers and drawing from extensive new research material, this definitive new biography paints an unforgettable picture of one of the twentieth century’s most extraordinary artists.

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£12.99
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Through the lives and works of great minds from Proust to Sebald, this elegant collection of essays from the author of Call Me by Your Name explores the significance of possibility to our understanding of time, memory and reality.

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History & Politics

£25.00
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The bestselling author of The Surgeon of Crowthorne and The Map that Changed the World transforms the seemingly-dry topic of land ownership into a panoramic global history that goes to the heart of history, heredity and human rights.
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Poignant and inspiring, the memoir of Holocaust survivor Thomas Geve brings the true horror of the Nazi concentration camps to life through a series of simple yet remarkably accurate drawings that Geve composed shortly after his release.
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£25.00
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Through the stories entwined with Europe’s longest river, Hartley chronicles the fascinating history of Russia from the seventh century to our day.
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£20.00
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Tracing the astonishing lives of the author’s mother and two aunts, How to Be a Refugee illuminates an element of the Holocaust seldom discussed – the individual’s suppression of Jewish heritage in order to evade the Nazi genocide.
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The BBC’s North America correspondent gives his take on the most turbulent US election campaign in living memory, with characteristic wit, insight and effortlessly readable prose.
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£16.99
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With hard data and scholarly understanding, Koa Beck’s revisionist history of feminism confronts the ways in which elitism and racial prejudice have shaped women’s movements and shut communities out of the conversation.
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£20.00
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In an eagerly awaited follow-up to Higher Loyalty, James Comey draws from his extensive and varied career in law to shed light on the federal justice system and the challenges it faced during the Trump Presidency.
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£18.99
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An urgent, incisive account of how the depredations of its imperial past dog Britain’s view of itself today, Empireland is provocative, meticulously researched writing of the highest order.

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Popular Science & Nature

£16.99
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From the bestselling author of Dear Life, Breathtaking is a compassionate, heartbreaking and compelling account of an NHS doctor in the midst of the greatest public health crisis in living memory.
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£16.99 £8.49
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From the author of Island Dreams, this deeply touching account of caring for a society in crisis follows the effects of Covid-19 in both urban and rural communities through the eyes of a GP.
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A haunting journey through the world’s abandoned places, Flyn’s wide-ranging and reflective meditation on how nature continues in humanity’s absence is an eerie yet ultimately optimistic account of ecological diversity.
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