November 2015: A Month in Books

The days are shorter, the nights longer, the weather decidedly chilly. While some dread this time of year, we love it—cold, dark evenings are perfect for snuggling up with a good book, and there are plenty of excellent events to look forward to. Here’s just a sampling of what November has to offer:

 

Big New Book Releases

The Grown Up by Gillian Flynn - 3 November

No need to restrict your chills to Halloween: Flynn follows up Gone Girl with the story of a young woman faking it as a psychic who faces a creepy house that might, actually, be quite haunted.

Old School (Diary of a Wimpy Kid Book 10) by Jeff Kinney - 3 November

A town voluntarily unplugs and goes electronics free, giving its residents—and young Greg Heffley—a taste of life before modern conveniences in the tenth instalment of Jeff Kinney’s hilarious series.

The Bazaar of Bad Dreams by Stephen King - 3 November

Get inside the mind of a horror master. Each of the 20 stories in this collection (some new, some previously published in magazines) come with an introduction from King, who explains the origins and motivation behind each tale. An excellent choice for King fans and writers!

Even Dogs in the Wild by Ian Rankin - 5 November

Rebus is back! Unsurprisingly, he’s not taking well to retirement, so when DI Siobhan Clarke asks for his help on a case involving a murdered lawyer, he jumps at the opportunity.  

 

Scottish Book Festivals and Events

Linlithgow Book Festival, West Lothian, 30 October-1 November

Linlithgow celebrates the 10th year of its book festival with an eclectic mix of fiction, visual arts, a poetry workshop, readings from the novels of John Buchan and an appearance by former first Minister Alex Salmond.

Book Week Scotland, 23-29 November

Book Week Scotland is back and bigger than ever, with hundreds of events taking place across the country. Attend a reading by your favourite author, learn more about foraging, dive into history, get crafty, and more. Click here for a full list of events.

Tarbert Book Festival, Tarbert Castle, Loch Fyne, Scotland, 27-29 November

Tarbert will feature Julie Bertagna speaking about John Muir Earth—Planet Universe; Andrew Greig reading from At the Loch of the Green Corrie and Found at Sea, a comic art masterclass with Beano writer and artist Kev Sutherland, a storytelling event with Claire Hewitt, Ken McLeod discussing science fiction and writing poetry with Iain Banks, and plenty more, all on the banks of beautiful Loch Fyne!

 

Films etc.

The Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction - 2 November

This year's contenders include a biography of poet Ted Hughes, a meditation on words and landscape, an examination of how digital living is changing the world and rewiring us, a fresh look at autism and how we interact with autistic people, a unique view of the attempt to rebuild post-war Iraq, and the dark history of Sri Lanka's long civil war.

The Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards - 4 November (Shortlist announced) 25 November (Winner announced)

Awarding prizes in 15 categories, the Irish Book Awards aims to bring together the entire literary community in a celebration of Irish writing.

Royal Society's Young People's Book Prize - 16 November

Each year the Royal Society rewards books that best communicate science to young people. This year's books cover topics ranging from dinosaurs to microbes to the universe.

Costa Book Awards Shortlist Announced - 17 November

Find out which first novel, novel, biography, book of poetry and children's book have been shortlisted for one of literature's most prestigious prizes. The shortlist for the Costa Short Story Award will also be announced in late November.

Mockingjay - 21 November

The phenomenally popular Hunger Games trilogy-turned-quartet comes to a close. Bring tissues.

Black Mass - 27 November

Johnny Depp, Benedict Cumberbatch, Peter Sarsgaard, Kevin Bacon and Dakota Johnson bring the true story of notorious South Boston gangster James ‘Whitey’ Bulgar to life. The film, based on a book by two Boston journalists, premiered at the Venice film festival and has been getting plenty of good buzz ahead of its wide release.

Carol - 27 November

Rooney Mara and Cate Blanchett star as a 1950s department-store clerk and a pampered housewife who fall for each other. Shades of Far from Heaven (the two films share a director)? Perhaps, but this is based on the celebrated (and highly controversial) novel The Price of Salt, by Patricia Highsmith, who definitely knows how to write a good, tense story. The film received a standing ovation at the Cannes Film Festival, so there’s every reason to hope that it will live up to its groundbreaking source material.

 

Image: Autumn Walk near Lennoxlove House by Neil Roger, Flickr Creative Commons

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