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Andrew Wilson is the author of Beautiful Shadow: A Life of Patricia Highsmith, which was shortlisted for the Whitbread Prize and won the Edgar Allan Poe Award for best biography. He has written for most of Britain's national newspapers, including The Daily Telegraph, The Guardian and the Daily Mail. He lives in London.
Author photo © Johnny Ring
In the early hours of 15 April 1912, after the majestic liner Titanic had split apart and the 1,500 men, women and children struggled to stay alive in the freezing Atlantic, the sea was alive with the sound of screaming. Then, as the ship sank to the ocean floor and the passengers slowly died from hypothermia, a deathly silence settled over the sea. Yet the echoes of that night reverberated through the lives of each of the 705 survivors.
'I wouldn't scream if I were you. Unless you want the whole world to learn about your husband and his mistress.' Agatha Christie, in London to visit her literary agent, boards a train, preoccupied and flustered in the knowledge that her husband Archie is having an affair. She feels a light touch on her back, causing her to lose her balance, then a sense of someone pulling her to safety from the rush of the incoming train. So begins a terrifying sequence of events. Her rescuer is no guardian angel; rather, he is a blackmailer of the most insidious, manipulative kind. Agatha must use every ounce of her cleverness and resourcefulness to thwart an adversary determined to exploit her genius for murder to kill on his behalf. 'Wilson not only knows his subject but he deftly moves the tale away from mere literary ventriloquism and into darker territory. Great fun, too' Observer 'The queen of crime is the central character in this audacious mystery, which reinvents the story of her mysterious disappearance with thrilling results' Guardian 'A thoroughly clever entertainment and a fitting homage to the great author, but it has a chilling melancholy all its own' The Tablet What readers are saying about A Talent for Murder: 'The initial premise of the story is pure genius, and when the reader realises by the end of chapter one whose head they are inside, goose bumps are guaranteed to occur' Greg, Goodreads, 4 stars 'A darkly twisting tale of murder and manipulation' Erin Britton, NetGalley, 4 stars 'This is a must-read for crime fiction fans, and Agatha Christie fans especially who will discover a new side to the Queen of Crime herself!' Vincent, Goodreads, 5 stars 'I enjoy Agatha Christie and this book did not disappoint. I devoured this book in two days' Annie, Goodreads, 4 stars 'Great mystery and action novel featuring Agatha Christie as you've never seen her before. Part biography/part thrill ride this is one novel I didn't want to end' Nikkia Neil, NetGalley, 5 stars 'An intriguing homage that stirs the imagination of the amateur sleuth in all of us ... A Talent for Murder is one novel that definitely deserves attention and praise' Elspeth G. Perkin, Goodreads, 4 stars 'This was a really good read especially for fans of Agatha Christie and even those who have never read her books' Teresa, Goodreads, 4 stars 'So, so enjoyable! Great for book club discussion due to the real mystery behind it' Kaylee Mitchell, Goodreads, 5 stars 'A fun read for Christie fans'Roman Clodia, NetGalley, 4 stars 'I'll admit to being totally drawn along by this novel; I couldn't wait to keep reading and find out how it would all turn out. I really would recommend this book as an interesting account of Christie's missing eleven days; you will be entertained' Kate Baty, 4 stars, NetGalley 'An exciting novel, a must for all Christie fans! Did you see what was happening? Did you spot the red herrings? The obvious clues. No? I didn't and that is probably what makes this a very clever novel' Joanne D'arcy, NetGalley, 5 stars 'A very enjoyable read, in the tradition of Christie herself, well researched and inventive ... plenty of unexpected plot twists to keep you on your toes. What fun!' Lisa Friel, NetGalley, 4 stars 'Unusual and entertaining' Tina Stringer, NetGalley 4 stars 'Entertaining, feasible plotting and an authentic narrative make this a highly enjoyable read' J Graham, NetGalley, 4 stars
Wild About Notting Hill & North Kensington by Andrew Wilson
When Alexander McQueen committed suicide in February 2010, aged just 40, a shocked world mourned the loss of its most visionary fashion designer. McQueen had risen from humble beginnings as the youngest child of an East London taxi driver to scale the heights of fame, fortune and glamour. He designed clothes for the world's most beautiful women including Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell. In business he created a multi-million pound luxury brand that became a favourite with both celebrities and royalty, most famously the Duchess of Cambridge who wore a McQueen dress on her wedding day. But behind the confident facade and bad-boy image, lay a sensitive soul who struggled to survive in the ruthless world of fashion. As the pressures of work intensified, so McQueen became increasingly dependent on the drugs that contributed to his tragic end. Meanwhile, in his private life, his failure to find lasting love with a string of boyfriends only added to his despair. And then there were the dark secrets that haunted his sleep... A modern-day fairy tale infused with the darkness of a Greek tragedy, Alexander McQueen: Blood Beneath the Skin is soon to be adapted for film, directed by Andrew Haigh (45 Years). This book tells the sensational story of McQueen's rise from his hard East London upbringing to the hedonistic world of fashion. Those closest to the designer - his family, friends and lovers - have spoken for the first time about the man they knew, a fragmented and insecure individual, a lost boy who battled to gain entry into a world that ultimately destroyed him.
The most acute, informed, and up-to-date account available today of Ukraine and its people, now in its fourth edition. An interesting and provocative read, which will, one hopes, contribute to the Western understanding of what Ukraine is and why it matters. -Volodymyr Kulyk, Harvard Ukrainian Studies A spirited and eminently learned investigation of who Ukranians say that they are, how they came to be so, and how others view them. . . . If you re add only one book of Ukraine, this should probably be it. -Elizabeth Luchka Haigh, H-Net Reviews
'RHS Small Garden Handbook...show[s] the process of planning, planting and maintaining an outdoor space that will lift your heart every time you step outside.' - The Independent 'Clear and practical principles of design' - BBC Gardens Illustrated A garden offers invaluable space for relaxing entertaining, and, above all, enjoying the huge pleasure of growing your own flowers, shrubs, trees, and crops. However, a small garden can present challenges to even the most experience gardener: it may be overlooked, which can impact upon your privacy; there may be more shade than you would like; and it may not be immediately obvious how to create a space that is both multifunctional and beautiful. RHS Small Garden Handbook provides an all-in-one guide for small space gardeners and draws on the experience in growing, planting, landscaping and design for which the RHS is world famous. It begins by explaining how to assess your plot so that you are aware of the soil, orientation, microclimate, existing materials and proportions that you have to work with, before revealing the principles of good design. Showing how your decisions on layout, colour and texture will affect the finished design and what tricks can be played to create a greater sense of space - with everything from expert design advice on boundaries, hedges and fences to clever ideas for containers and storage - every gardener will gain confidence in creating a garden to enjoy no matter how big the plot. Each of the nine chapters includes 15 ways to make instant improvements and a real-life case study to inspire change. All the gardens featured in the book's 300 photographs are accessible, achievable and truly inspirational. Contents Includes... Basics Design Styles Materials Boundaries Structures Water Planting Upkeep ... and much much more!
Student is sent by Destiny to find the truth. Fate guides him to the palace of the Chess King. After meeting a unique stranger, he is introduced to the palace guards. Once he passes the test, he will discover life's great secrets. The Chess King explains the Game of Life through the pieces on the ancient game board with stunning accuracy, truth, and entertaining wisdom. After an unbelievable mathematical formula is revealed by the Chess King, Student finds the answer to the emotional and philosophical challenges people face, with Winning Strategies that has helped so many rise above the adversity of life at every level.
This book is the first in English to explore both Belaruss complicated road to nationhood and to examine in detail its politics and economics since 1991, the nations first year of true independence. Andrew Wilson focuses particular attention on Aliaksandr Lukashenkas surprising longevity as president, despite human rights abuses and involvement in yet another rigged election in December 2010.Wilson looks at Belarusian history as a series of false starts in the medieval and pre-modern periods, and at the many rival versions of Belarusian identity, culminating with the Soviet Belarusian project and the establishment of Belaruss current borders during World War II. He also addresses Belaruss on-off relationship with Russia, its simultaneous attempts to play a game of balance in the no-mans-land between Russia and the West, and how, paradoxically, Belarus is at last becoming a true nation under the rule of Europes last dictator.
While the impulse to choose high energy primaries or cool blues is often a matter of personal preference, Wilson helps gardeners make a success of those choices by showing how garden colour (in both plants and hard landscaping) works. The size of a garden, light levels, the amount of colour and association with other colours are all critical to the process of making successful colour choices. Colour is a powerful component in the garden and this book is intended to nudge people out of their colour ruts, shake new life into mixed borders and encourage a more experimental approach to the way gardeners perceive, choose and use colour in their gardens. Photographic material is drawn from all over the world and includes both well-known designer gardens and ordinary backyards. * Showcases all the latest hot plant colours * Taps into current awareness that plants and hard landscaping are equally important when designing a garden and the two should work together * Colour is a cheap route to a garden makeover * Standout gardens in Britain, France, New Zealand, Morocco, Mexico and the U.S.A.
Journalist and traveller Andrew Wilson (1831-1881) was born in India to colonial missionaries. Educated in Europe, he later edited the China Mail in Hong Kong, and the Bombay Times. This, his best known work, was published in 1868, and recounts the suppression of the Taiping uprising in 1863-1864 by Colonel Charles G. ('Chinese') Gordon, leading a small multinational force. The Taiping rebellion against the Qing dynasty lasted from 1850 to 1864, and it is estimated that some 20 million people died as a result. Wilson was given access to Gordon's journals to write the book. Wilson was very pro-Chinese, and was quite critical of British colonial policy towards China. Despite this bias, the work contains much fascinating information on nineteenth-century China, and sheds light on the early career of one of Britain's greatest Victorian military heroes.
Patricia Highsmith - author of STRANGERS ON A TRAIN and THE TALENTED MR RIPLEY - had more than her fair share of secrets. During her life, she felt uncomfortable about discussing the source of her fiction and refused to answer questions about her private life. Yet after her death in February 1995, Highsmith left behind a vast archive of personal documents - diaries, notebooks and letters - which detail the links between her life and her work. Drawing on these intimate papers, together with material gleaned from her closest friends and lovers, Andrew Wilson has written the first biography of an author described by Graham Greene as the 'poet of apprehension'. Wilson illuminates the dark corners of Highsmith's life, casts light on mysteries of the creative process and reveals the secrets that the writer chose to keep hidden until after her death.
EVER-VICTORIOUS ARMY A History of the Chinese Campaign (1860-64) Under Lt-Col C. G. Gordon by Andrew Wilson
Harold Robbins, the godfather of the airport novel, changed the face of publishing with classics such as The Carpetbaggers , The Dream Merchants and The Lonely Lady . His readers loved his steamy tales of money, soft porn, drugs, corruption, greed and, just sometimes, redemption. The world's first playboy writer, Robbins reportedly frittered away $50 million on fast cars, loose women and high living. But obsessed with fame and fortune, Robbins was a deeply complex and often controversial man, and even his closest friends and lovers could only guess at the past of the man behind the perma-tanned mask and gigantic mirrored sunglasses. This is the fascinating story of his extraordinary life.
This book is a comprehensive study of the work of the American author Norman Mailer, charting his response to critical events in his country's development since 1945. Focusing on Mailer's descriptions of World War II, 1960s counter-culture, the Vietnam War, the Apollo 11 mission and the execution of Gary Gilmore in Utah in 1977, the book analyses the native vernaculars in ten of his most critically acclaimed works. Moving beyond politically orientated scholarship, the author outlines Mailer's New York, American GI, Mid-West and Southern styles, contextualising his prose against earlier American authors, including Henry Adams, Ernest Hemingway and John Dos Passos, and positioning his writing alongside contemporary notables such as Joan Didion, William Burroughs and Truman Capote. Incorporating over forty years of scholarship in the form of articles, reviews and interviews, this book pinpoints the American attributes in Mailer's writing with a view to identifying trends in post-war American literary movements, the Beat Generation, New Journalism and Pop Art among others.