Independent publishers given chance to shine

BOOK OF THE WEEK The Last Pilot by Benjamin Johncock.
BOOK OF THE WEEK The Last Pilot by Benjamin Johncock.
Students with disabilities have opened a new shop in Arundel Street in Portsmouth City Centre called The Gallery

Students turn shopkeepers at new Portsmouth store

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Book enthusiast Melanie Mitchell aims to get the community reading more. To spur you on, she offers her Book of the Week and Books to Watch choices

Myriad Editions, based along the coast in Brighton, is an excellent example 
– its aim being to ‘establish a literary niche against the mainstream’.

Book expert Melanie Mitchell

Book expert Melanie Mitchell

I’m sure they will be (rightly) expecting great things from this week’s Book of the Week.

Allison & Busby are getting in on the hugely popular young adult series act, and then we’re back down to the south coast with Chichester-based Summersdale who specialise in travel writing and humour.

n My Book of the Week is The Last Pilot by Benjamin Johncock (published by Myriad Editions on July 9).

An arresting debut from Norwich-based writer Johncock, The Last Pilot has already garnered some impressive critical attention.

In 1960s America the space race is underway and Jim Harrison, test pilot in the United States Air Force, is offered a ticket to the moon.

Set against the backdrop of one of the most exciting and emotionally charged periods in American history, this is a breathtaking story of an everyday hero under unrelenting pressure at home and work.

Comparisons to Cormac McCarthy aren’t wide of the mark – heartbreaking and brilliant.

n Books to Watch include Ink and Bone by Rachel Caine (published by Allison & Busby on July 7).

An epic new young adult fantasy series, this is perfect summer reading for teens 
– or adults who like magical escapism.

Jess Brightwell lives in a world where owning an original book is a crime.

Here the Great Library of Alexandria wasn’t completely destroyed in 48AD and has become its own country, powerful with the accumulated knowledge of the ancient world.

Jess thought he knew about the darker side of life 
– but he was wrong.

n Narrowboat Nomads by Steve Haywood (published 
by Summersdale on July 9).

Narrowboat enthusiast Haywood has already told many a tale of life on the picturesque waterways of England – but this time he’s taking his wife with him.

Em joins Steve for an adventure afloat and finds out what it really means to be a narrowboat nomad.

This is travel writing 
with an irrepressible sense of humour – for fans of 
Bill Bryson and couples tempted to leave the rat race behind.