new titles


The Diving-Bell And The Butterfly

Jean-Dominique Bauby (Fourth Estate £9.99) 1* air *

French Elle editor-in-chief lean- Dominique Bauby suffered a massive stroke in December I995. Waking three weeks later in a state of physical paralySis yet retaining an active mind, Bauby dictated this book to his aides as they scanned a special alphabetic system stopping on certain letters as he batted his left eyelid. Tragically, Bauby died just as the book became a huge hit in France. A true triumph of the human spirit, for sure, but what of it as a work of literature? A riveting little read, actually, as Bauby tells his own tale of being 'locked-in' and imagining his life as it Will never be re-shooting scenes in Stagecoach, seeing himself as a hero in a Dumas epic and haVing a tracheotomy performed upon him by Serb leader Radovan Karadzic. Surreal, mowng and funny, the book deserves to be read, not simply for the effort put in to its construction but to the final product (80)

The Flamingo Book Of New Scottish Writing 1997

(Flamingo £5.99) that it at

It may speak volumes about the Scottish psyche, but Flamingo’s 24th collection of tartan shorts can certainly not be accused of parochialisrn. Eleven of the stories stand on home SOII, three dream of the exotic and four secrete themselves beyond the ilOTIZOTl Taking in a woman and her dog’s day on Glasgow's subway (’round and round on the old Clockwork Orange'), a neurotic backpackers perspective of Thailand, and a young girl's fantasy of mOVIng to Manitoba, this Is one well- travelled book. Themes? Douglas Gifford, in the introduction, discerns from the multiplicity of VOICCS 'fundamental concerns of self, family and sooety.’ Alternatively, you might Just enJOy a tale well told, be it the sumptuous magic realism of John Spence's take on the story of Icarus, or Beatrice Colin's disastrous trip to the seaside in which a mother acquaints herself With the daughter she gave up at birth. GnaWingly funny. (RE)

Killing Rage

Eamon Collins with Mick McGovern (Granta £15.99) ir~k it

Very much an 'event' book, Killing Rage is notable for being the first, first- person account of the Northern Irish conflict by a paramilitary

In the early 80s, fired up by the hunger strike, revolutionary MarXism and a brutal beating by the security forces, Eamon Collins iomed the IRA, while holding down a full time JOb in customs and excise Though he never pulled a trigger, Collins was intimately involved in the murder of at least five ’targets' in the provmce

Increasingly recognising the provos were partial to incompetence, in- fighting and criminality, Collins found his commitment gave way to disillusionment about IRA strategy. He left the organisation after escaping a life sentence for a mortar attack which killed nine policemen.

The title could suggest this book is Just a pulpy 'expose' containing little more than gleeful accounts of bloodletting and hollow atonement. But though Collins’s cold-eyed descriptions of IRA ’actions' certainly chill the blood, he chronicles With conviction his growrng alienation from his one-time compatriots. Killing Rage reads like a thriller, the pity is it will be filed under non-fiction. (Tl)

Raymond Chandler: A Biography

Tom Hiney (Chatto & Windus £l6.99) fir *‘f‘k

Raymond Chandler put the ’nou’ into 1940s crime flCilOfl, Private detective Philip Marlowe’s exploits on the seamier side of LA, evoked so brilliantly in his novels The Big Sleep and Farewell My Lovely, upset literary snobs but went on to Win millions of fans, spawning several screen adaptations. Would you guess, though, that Chandler was 50 when he wrote The Big Sleep, or that his preVious Jobs included those of World War I soldier, tennis racket stringer and oil industry executive? Hiney delves behind the erratic front Chandler presented to the world, unravelling for the first time the truths of the author's alcoholism, his dealings With Hollywood, and his fiercely private married life to a woman eighteen years his senior. If you tend to bypass biographies, break the habit and make a beeline for this one. It amounts to a riveting portrait of the man and his influence on popular culture. (DM)


Sweet Liberty

Joseph O'Connor (Picador £5.99) ****

Often likened to Bill Bryson, Sweet liberty chronicles O'Connors American odyssey during which he travelled across the country in search of the USA's nine Dublins. Raised on and seduced by American culture, his Journey attempts to pinpOint the Irish heritage of these towns. Frequently bizarre and consistently amusing. (SM)

The Stories Of Tobias Wolff

Tobias Wolff (Bloomsbury £7.99) ***t

A volume which IWins preVious short story collection, Back In The World and Hunters In The Snow With the PEN/ Faulkner Award-Winning novella The Barrack Thief. Strong on familial and marital themes, the author of This Boy’s Life has immaCulate story-telling skills unadorned by gimmickry (SM)


Brian Donaldson, Rodger Evans, Teddy Jamieson, Susan Mackenzie, Deirdre Molloy, Alan Morrison.


Come and meet


PMch err

Who will be signing copies of his latest books

at Waterstone’s, 13-14 Princes Street, Edinburgh on Friday 9th May from 5.00 to 6.00pm

If you are unable to attend, signed copies can be reserved by telephone: 0131 556 3034

W [4 In good bookshops from April 18th

An Inspector Christy Kennedy Mystery by


Detective Inspector Christy Kennedy investigates a disappearance, murder, chart-hyping and blackmail in the music business. This is a detective story with a difference: part whodunnit, part howdunnit and part love story, featuring a unique method of murder and a plot with more twists and turns than the road from Kingsmarkham to St Mary Mead. “Paul Charles is a writer set the join the ranks of Colin Dexter, RD Wingfield and Ruth Rendell.” I Love The Sound of Breaking Glass: ISBN 1 899344160-E7

Also available: Shrouded by Carol Anne Davies ISBN 1 899344 17 9 £7

THE DO-NOT PRESS PO Box4215. London SE23 zoo

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