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Polly Courtney - Author

About the Author

The publication of Polly Courtney's debut novel Golden Handcuffs, a fictional exposé of her career in the Square Mile, earned Polly acclaim in the Observer, The Times, Sunday Times, Independent, Guardian, Daily Express, Daily Mail, Evening Standard and many other publications. Her second novel, Poles Apart, came out in 2008 and is an eye-opening depiction of life as a young migrant in England today. The Day I Died came out in 2009 and tells the tale of a young woman struggling with her own identity in the aftermath of an explosion. Aside from writing, Polly plays in a semi-proffesional string quartet, No Strings Attached, which inspired the all-girl band in The Fame Factor. She has a Masters degree from Cambridge and now lives in London.

Featured books by Polly Courtney

It's a Man's World

It's a Man's World

Author: Polly Courtney Format: Paperback Release Date: 15/09/2011

If you can't beat 'em, join 'em! Alexa Harris loves a challenge. So when she's asked to head up Senate Media's lads' mag, Banter, she doesn't need much persuasion. But life on the all-male editorial team proves harder than Alexa had imagined -- and not just because of her ambitious targets. As Alexa battles with a testosterone-fuelled office, she decides to play the boys at their own game. As success hits, she's forced to look at who she has become. Has she forfeited her principles in return for praise from the lads? And what price will there be to pay?

Other books by Polly Courtney

Poles Apart

Poles Apart

Author: Polly Courtney Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/12/2013

You're lucky, being a girl. You can always get au pair work or a job in a Polish bakery. Apparently they're springing up all over the country. Marta grits her teeth and nods. She is used to the assumption that she moved to England to change nappies and mop floors. It couldn't be further from the truth. As a graduate of one of Poland's top universities, Marta has ambitious plans for her new life. But things don't work out as the young migrant had planned. Her qualifications are unpronounceable, let alone recognisable, and her new friends seem more interested in spending their cash than helping Marta make hers. As yet another door slams shut in her face, Marta finds herself alone in the English rain with a broken suitcase, no money and nowhere to go... and the phone number of a young woman she barely knows. Based on a true story, Poles Apart is the moving and funny account of one young migrant's search for recognition in a foreign land - and everything that happens along the way.

Golden Handcuffs The Lowly Life of a High Flyer

Golden Handcuffs The Lowly Life of a High Flyer

Author: Polly Courtney Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/12/2013

A job at Cray McKinley is whatever you make of it. For the real high flyers, there's no limit to what you can achieve. Abby is a high flyer. But she's not your average banker. Driven by something other than money and status, she has her own reasons for climbing the ladder. And so does Mike. An ambitious young graduate with an equally impressive CV, Mike is in it for the six-figure salaries and fast cars. He's got the skills, the grades and the swagger to make it all the way to the top. But neither Abby nor Mike is prepared for the life that awaits them behind the mirrored glass doors. In a world where verbal abuse is commonplace, greed is everywhere and sexual harassment is just part of the fun, the young bankers are forced to find new ways to compete - and not just against one another. Based on the author's experiences as a junior investment banker, Golden Handcuffs is a fresh, gripping insight into life in the Square Mile and what it really means to sell your soul to the City.

Feral Youth

Feral Youth

Author: Polly Courtney Format: eBook Release Date: 01/09/2013

The truth is, it ain't just a race thing. They talk like it is, but really and truly it's black against white, young against old, authorities against the rest. It's countless of things. There's bare reasons for feeling vexed right now. Growing up on a south London estate and excluded from every school that would take her, Alesha is the poster girl for the nation's 'feral youth'. When a young teacher makes an unexpected reappearance in the 15-year-old's life, opening the door to a world of salaries, pianos and middle-class housemates, Alesha's instinct is to pull up her hood and return to the streets. But fuelled by a need to survive, she falls into a cycle of crime, violence and drug-dealing, her one true ally deserting her when she needs him most. While everyone around her is rallying against the authorities in a war of haves and have-nots, Alesha finds herself caught in the crossfire, inextricably linked to the people she is trying to fight against. Can she see a way out? And as riots sweep the nation, whose side will she take?

Feral Youth

Feral Youth

Author: Polly Courtney Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/08/2013

The truth is, it ain't just a race thing. They talk like it is, but really and truly it's black against white, young against old, authorities against the rest. It's countless of things. There's bare reasons for feeling vexed right now. Growing up on a south London estate and excluded from every school that would take her, Alesha is the poster girl for the nation's `feral youth'. When a young teacher makes an unexpected reappearance in the 15-year-old's life, opening the door to a world of salaries, pianos and middle-class housemates, Alesha's instinct is to pull up her hood and return to the streets. But fuelled by a need to survive, she falls into a cycle of crime, violence and drug-dealing, her one true ally deserting her when she needs him most. While everyone around her is rallying against the authorities in a war of haves and have-nots, Alesha finds herself caught in the crossfire, inextricably linked to the people she is trying to fight against. Can she see a way out? And as riots sweep the nation, whose side will she take? Born in South London and a resident of Ealing, an area affected by the London riots, Polly wrote Feral Youth `to give a voice to the thousands of frustrated youths who, like Alesha, feel marginalised and ignored by the rest of society'. She believes that the real causes of the riots have not gone away and that further unrest will happen in a matter of time. Feral Youth is a work of contemporary adult fiction that covers various topical themes, including the riots, youth culture, gangs and knife and gun crime. It sits alongside Stephen Kelman's Pigeon English and Emma Donoghue's Room in that it is aimed primarily at the adult reader and provides an alternative perspective on a world we think we know.

Feral Youth

Feral Youth

Author: Polly Courtney Format: eBook Release Date: 01/08/2013

The truth is, it ain't just a race thing. They talk like it is, but really and truly it's black against white, young against old, authorities against the rest. It's countless of things. There's bare reasons for feeling vexed right now. Growing up on a south London estate and excluded from every school that would take her, Alesha is the poster girl for the nation's 'feral youth'. When a young teacher makes an unexpected reappearance in the 15-year-old's life, opening the door to a world of salaries, pianos and middle-class housemates, Alesha's instinct is to pull up her hood and return to the streets. But fuelled by a need to survive, she falls into a cycle of crime, violence and drug-dealing, her one true ally deserting her when she needs him most. While everyone around her is rallying against the authorities in a war of haves and have-nots, Alesha finds herself caught in the crossfire, inextricably linked to the people she is trying to fight against. Can she see a way out? And as riots sweep the nation, whose side will she take?Born in South London and a resident of Ealing, an area affected by the London riots, Polly wrote Feral Youth 'to give a voice to the thousands of frustrated youths who, like Alesha, feel marginalised and ignored by the rest of society'. She believes that the real causes of the riots have not gone away and that further unrest will happen in a matter of time. Feral Youth is a work of contemporary adult fiction that covers various topical themes, including the riots, youth culture, gangs and knife and gun crime. It sits alongside Stephen Kelman's Pigeon English and Emma Donoghue's Room in that it is aimed primarily at the adult reader and provides an alternative perspective on a world we think we know.

Defying Gravity

Defying Gravity

Author: Polly Courtney Format: eBook Release Date: 01/02/2011

Tony Sharp is an ambitious manager in a company leading the creation of a new business unit. Six weeks into the job, his division is under threat, his staff won't take responsibility and attempts to improve efficiency have had little effect. He realises that a more radical approach is required, but can he convince those around him to take the risk? Successful novelist Polly Courtney, whose works include Golden Handcuffs and TheFameFactor, has teamed up with business entrepreneurs Peter Sayburn andGideon Hyde, who founded company Market Gravity. Their book Defying Gravity is an unputdownable page-turner, combining Polly's colourful and lively writing style with solutions to real business problems that keep managers awake at night, including; what to do when a key member of your team walks out?Or when there's a hiring freeze?How do you convince the board to invest without setting unachievable targets? Delivering on these key business issues and many more, Defying Gravity will appeal to people working at any level in a large company, facing constant battles to get new ideas and projects delivered. It is aimed at those who are ambitious and aspire to be entrepreneurs, who are interested in business and also want an enjoyable read. The book is inspired by Richard Branson's Screw It Let's Do It and The Goal by Dr. Eliyahu M.Goldratt.

Poles Apart

Poles Apart

Author: Polly Courtney Format: eBook Release Date: 01/09/2008

"e;You're lucky, being a girl. You can always get au pair work. Or a job in a Polish bakery - apparently they're springing up all over London"e;. Marta grits her teeth and nods. She is used to this now: the assumption that she has come to England to abandon her career and make a fortune changing nappies and cleaning floors. It couldn't be further from the truth. Poles Apart tells the story of an ambitious young graduate from the outskirts of Warsaw who moves to London in search of fresh challenges and the opportunity to make a name for herself. But it's harder than she had anticipated. Her qualifications are unpronounceable - let alone recognisable - and the workplace isn't the only area riddled with prejudice. Marta's new set of 'friends' are quick to turn their backs on the newcomer, as are the men in her life - of which there are many. Based on a true story, Poles Apart is an insightful, funny, cynical look at London life through the eyes of a young migrant. It is a book for anyone who has ever encountered preconceptions or prejudice.

Golden Handcuffs

Golden Handcuffs

Author: Polly Courtney Format: eBook Release Date: 02/04/2007

Everyone's got a child, a friend or a neighbour who works in the City. The six-figure bonuses and golden hellos are no secret, nor are the hundred-hour weeks, the highpressure deals or the regular rounds of redundancies in the Square Mile. It's a cut-throat world...everyone knows that. But do they know what it's like for the thousands of fresh-faced young graduates who pour into the City each year? Do they know what it's like to get woken up at three in the morning by a taxi outside your window, ready to haul you back into the office? What it's like to feel guilty for sloping off to the gym at nine o'clock at night? This cynical but entertaining novel follows two 'high-flyers' through their first year in the City. Based on the writer's experience at an American investment bank, it reveals a world that doesn't quite match up with the fast-paced, exhilarating one that was painted so enticingly on the undergraduate milk-round. "e;Golden Handcuffs"e; is about twenty-something graduates in the City. It tells of ambition, hard work and disillusionment. It has been called a 'latter day version of "e;Liar's Poker"e; by Michael Lewis', a 'must-read for all young professionals' and strikes a similar chord to "e;I Don't Know How She Does It"e; by Allison Pearson, though it is aimed at a younger reader. A witty insight into the City, it is told with a fresh, young style that cannot fail to appeal to this as-yet untapped market.