STARHAVEN CURRENT PUBLICATIONS


TO ORDER A BOOK please send a cheque to Starhaven at 42 Frognal, London NW3 6AG. Include £1 for postage in the UK, £1.50 for Europe and £2.50 for the US. Cheques in € and $ should be made out to S. Martin / Starhaven.


Doubles

Sonnets / Sonnetti

by Emanuele Zoppellari Perale & Chip Martin

There is a dialogue between languages, cultures and
generations in these sonnets, half by a twenty year
old Italian, half by an Anglo-American in his sixties.
The former uses a Petrarchan model and rhyme, the
latter Shakespearean. Italian is rendered into English,
English into Italian, freely creating hybrid prosodic
forms, in gentle appropriation of each other’s tradition.
Diverse styles and sensitivities inevitably mix, one
symbolist and metaphysical, the other narrative
and sometimes erotic. Above all meet two distinct
experiences of love and two perspectives on age and
youth, one reflecting on what is past or passing and
the relentless power of time to reap fleeting dreams,
the other seized in a whirlwind of unruly amorousness
careening between sensuality and the abyss.

2017. Paperback. 80 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-41-5
£10/€12

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Doubles

Monstrous Century
Essays in ‘the Age of the Feuilleton’

by Stoddard Martin

His subjects, even when unsympathetic in themselves,
are viewed in the round, and judged with humanity.
Yet he also has a strong moral impulse, as evidenced
by the title of this collection. So although he can roam
as far back temporally as Perkin Warbeck, and into
magical regions with Orpheus, we see in his work a
frequent return to more recent periods, and a nagging
anxiety to explain why and how Europe went so badly
wrong between 1900 and 2000 – particularly the dread
duodecennium 1939-1945. – Derek Turner, Quarterly Review

2016. Paperback. 204 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-40-7
£10/€12.50/$15

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Doubles

Doubles

by Christopher Neve

This remarkable novel is both a thriller about other selves and an excursion through post-war artistic bohemias. The narrator endures a series of often surreal misadventures in search of a lost love in Italy, Greece and Iceland, as well as Paris and Oxford. He is pursued by himself, through a world in which almost everything seems to double. In the foreground of his journey lies a discussion of painting, and of what it is like to paint, in terms you will not find elsewhere. Tricking you into its Kafkaesque finale, the novel shows the late modernist era at the mercy of a fractured psyche.

Christopher Neve is one of a rare breed, a painter who can express himself in words. – The Sunday Times

He is part topographer, part painter, part poet and part psychologist. – The Tablet

2015. Paperback. 185 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-39-3
£12/€15/$18

More of Christopher Neve's paintings of places mentioned in Doubles

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Belonging

Belonging

two novels by Eva Tucker

Berlin Mosaic paints its scenes with quick, expert strokes, moving relentlessly towards the central tragedy of the 20th century… Its vivid cameos display the complications and vicissitudes of family life in the years surrounding the Nazi Holocaust. In beautiful, laconic prose Tucker investigates the compromises and accommodations made by ordinary people. – Michael Moorcock, The Guardian

In Becoming English, the sequel to that short, outstanding work, Tucker charts the destiny of Laura (an acute self-portrait) and her mother as they take up a new life in England. Every sentence counts in this elegant – and painfully comic – account… Poised between tragedy and humour, [it] is a highly original work, a small masterpiece that deserves to endure. – Miranda Seymour, The Tablet.

2014. Paperback. 236 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-38-5
£12.50/€15

This title is also available in a Kindle edition from Amazon.

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True North

True North

by Chip Martin

Three stories – one of rainbow and cloud over a hippy New Age, another of flowers and frost in a country house dream, a third of a compost of culture accumulated over the 20th century. From the redwoods of California to the beech groves of the Thames Valley into the chiaroscuro of ‘a fond Europe of the imagination’ – these tales add up to a Dantesque triptych of what remains of value after the words have been said.

Like a good fishing hole or a secret surfing spot, True North is not easily accessed but totally worth the effort of getting there. It's the sense of place that Martin creates that is so compelling, and by place, I mean not just geographic, although he does that in spades, but the interior vista of the soul that is at once a reflection and the source of the "where and what" of his stories. – Cathleen Caballero

Martin writes acutely about the ‘code’ of hipness that defines a hedonistic scene, and how inhibiting it can be. – Christina Petrie, TLS

2013. Paperback. 115 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-37-7
£9/€12/€15

This title is also available in a Kindle edition from Amazon.

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Paramaribo

Paramaribo!

by Nigel Ryan

Horatius Ariel Otway may be a crook or he may be a hero. Certainly he is a charmer, and a survivor. Whether as a schoolboy in England of the Blitz or as a mysterious operator in Iraq during the 1958 coup, he fascinates or infuriates those with whom he comes into contact. Not least of his admirers is Sam Cork, who in a moment of panic betrays him to their bullying headmaster; years later he gets a chance to make amends when, as a reporter, he is sent out to cover the aftershocks of revolution and they meet again. In a novel whose two parts explore a child’s experience and its relation to a grown man’s, we observe the machinations behind the veneer of “old school” values, the military, the City, the press, the art-dealing world, diplomacy and the realms of charlatans, spies, men of honour and/or dishonour.

… a gripping tale of tyranny and subversion, a small local instance of the cosmic battle between good and evil. – James Howard Johnston, The Oldie

2012. Paperback. 218 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-36-9
£12/€15

This title is also available in a Kindle edition from Amazon.

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Dickeyville

Dickeyville

by Joe Abbott

A young man goes into the woods and kills a beast. It’s
the old romance of coming of age. But let’s make this hoary epic into a comedy of initiation in the language of the here-and-now. Some feckless guy from a world of sex, drugs and rock-n-roll – or surfing and fringes of the film industry (he’s from Southern California) – gets stuck in the snow in a small town in rural mid-America. How do the natives react? What pranks do they play? Are these folks malign or do they have hearts of gold once you get past the inbred noses and flappy ears? Dickeyville is tough but fun-loving, old-fashioned yet not quite so hick as a New Age sophisticate likes to think. Here the young man faces monsters he’s never imagined.

A comic novel rife with oddballs who are never quite what they seem. Abbott’s radiant prose reminds us there are plenty of snow jobs to go around. – Dan Barnett, Biblio File

You can feel wry cynicism dripping from the pages, carried by a narrative that undulates between heartfelt and humorous. – Dan O’Brien, Empirical Magazine

2012. Paperback. 263 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-35-0
£12.50/$17.50

This title is also available in a Kindle edition from Amazon.

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Shelley

Essential Meditations (series)
Percy Bysshe Shelley


selected by Ann Wroe

ALTHOUGH a self-proclaimed atheist, and condemned as such in his day, the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley had a profoundly spiritual awareness. This anthology of his visions and reflections is arranged so that a reader can travel with them in their brilliance as if from pre-dawn to deepest night. Ann Wroe provides what mystical tradition might call points for meditation.

2011. Paperback. 58 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-34-2
£4.99

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Coleridge

Essential Meditations (series)
Samuel Taylor Coleridge


selected by John Cornwell

THROUGHOUT his career the poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge dreamed of creating an all-embracing philosophical system. The great work never appeared, but the materials he collected for it lie scattered in a huge circuit of published and unpublished work. This anthology enables some of his leading insights and reflections to be read in odd moments and pondered in a manner that religious tradition would identify with spiritual exercises or points for meditation.

2011. Paperback. 64 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-33-4
£4.99

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School of London
A School of London


by Chip Martin


AMERICAN abroad, glow of Europe at a distance, London in the foreground, a background of not quite settled Englishness – it is a mix as familiar as a scenario by Henry James or pop song from an unforgotten yesterday. In this triptych of the closing years of the 20th century, a world of bohemianism comes to life again, its dreams of glory, its subtle conflicts, its disintegrative passions, heedless ambitions and slouching towards evanescent spirituality.

The story is never straight reportage. The atmosphere is heightened, at times almost fantastic; conversations are glancing and elliptical, suggesting more than is spoken; people change partners and their perception of each other like characters in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. But the world it portrays is wholly convincing within its terms of reference and one is caught up in its dramas from the first. – Linda Kelly

Martin's work is imbued with an awareness of the difficulty of living a bohemian life in contemporary Europe… Love, the biggest culprit, raises the spectre of bourgeois domesticity as often as it hold the promise of freedom… – Christina Petrie, TLS

2011. Paperback. 417 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-32-4
£12.50/$20

This title is also available in a Kindle edition from Amazon.

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Stone Poems cover

Proie

by Chip Martin

A HOUSE PARTY among Anglos near the coast in Provence. There is a fire: a handful of decadents die. Who dun it? Cui bono? One survivor, half-burnt, goes in quest for answers along the Riviera, from St Tropez to Santa Margherita Ligure and back. Encountering yachties, a wealthy designer, an actress, would-be gangsters, twin young men, an old salt and others half-reflecting his past, he moves towards a future where no motive is sure; where the hard-boiled ethics of his American father’s generation are being eclipsed by older, more ambiguous instincts.

Chip Martin is not afraid of big themes or complex structures; his work ranges widely through history and shows the mind and imagination of a true polymath, as well as an ambitious storyteller. – Deborah Moggach

2010. Paperback. 160 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-31-8
£10/€12.50/$16

This title is also available in a Kindle edition from Amazon.

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Stone Poems cover

Stone Poems

by Douglas Skrief

IN THE UPPER MIDWEST, by the U.S. Canadian border, on the edge of dividing waters sits a great stone. As far as human history is concerned, it has been there forever. Time though is relative, and what the stone has lived through and ‘seen’ may be by our standards timeless. With brevity and warmth, Douglas Skrief evokes what might be called the inner life of a stone. We are small, it rather large, yet neither much at all compared to the vastness of what has produced both.

These poems are strong, stark, and full of space. They have an incantatory quality, as if a shaman is at work. – Piers Plowright

2009. Paperback. 78 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-30-X
£9 / $15

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Rivers of Heaven cover

The Rivers of Heaven

by Anthony Gardner

A CHILD is born to a single mother. His feckless father has vanished, leaving the mother to cope as best she can, watched over by a kindly Jamaican. A country cottage is visited by a young photographer, whose happiest days of childhood were spent there; he longs to live in it again but first must negotiate the duplicities of adult and professional politics. Intimations of immortality, nostalgia and dreams of escape to a reggae or post-hippy lifestyle permeate these interwoven histories. A vivid London of the day-before-yesterday is evoked against apprehensions of a more ideal form of existence.

A lyrical vision of one soul’s Wordsworthian journey from heaven to an earth where people are still dealing with the consequencs of the paradisal 1960s. – Maggie Gee

2009. Paperback. 149 pp.
(ISBN 0-936315-29-6)
£10 / €12.50

This title is also available in a Kindle edition from Amazon.

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Becoming English cover

Becoming English

by Eva Tucker

1939. A child and her mother are refugees in a new land. The one yearns to belong, the other is too formed to do so. As war and worse impel their country and relations further into the past, the two make their way forward, separately and together. Their new home is hospitable, up to a point. The child acculturates and begins to flourish while her mother simply survives as she is able. In blunt, direct style, Eva Tucker chisels a portrait of how it was for a German girl, half Jewish, to grow up in wartime and early postwar England. We see how the uprooted manage not to fall by the wayside in a new world which, though welcoming, inevitably appears spiky and strange.

A rich, unerring, girl's-eye view of the times, portrayed in charmingly crafted prose. – Madeleine Kingsley, The Jewish Chronicle

A vivid memoir of the way things used to be. – Beryl Bainbridge, The Oldie

2009. Paperback. 116 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-28-8
£9 / €12

This title is now incorporated with Eva Tucker's Berlin Mosaic and published as Belonging.

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Henry Miller cover

Henry Miller is Under My Bed – people and places on the way to Paris

by Mary Duncan

FROM UNPROMISING BEGINNINGS, Mary Duncan went out and got a life. Granddaughter of a bootlegger, she grew up in an unfashionable suburb of San Diego. Her father was a bus driver who died when she was four; her mother worked in a bar to support the kids. Mary played sports, did well in school and married a Protestant preacher. Teaching recreation at a local university, she worked her way up to become head of department. Research on playgrounds in troubled locales took her to Belfast, Tehran and Managua. For years she had a surreptitious affair with ’60s guru Max Lerner, much of it at the Playboy Mansion West. Through Max among others, she developed a fascination for Henry Miller, Simone de Beauvoir and pioneers of the sexual revolution. Literary interests went with her to Moscow, where she married a second time and founded a Shakespeare and Company bookstore. Her transit now is between California and Paris, where she delves into subjects as diverse as Kafka’s last mistress and Northern Ireland after ‘the troubles’.

Mary Duncan’s life is fascinating and amusing, a lesson in friendship and in living to the hilt. – Noel Riley Fitch

2008. Paperback. 167 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-27-X
Out of print

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Dry Creek cover

Poems from Dry Creek

by John Dofflemyer

Winner of the Western Heritage award as Outstanding Poetry Book of 2008

I USUALLY AVOID READING POETRY because I have read so much, and I often am disappointed. But the minute I started reading [this] I sat right up and came totally awake both for subject and for language and style. That’s good stuff. I like the esoteric vocabulary too – “beaver lid” and the sweet confluence of cows with motherhood – a diverse set of poems really, political, personal, historical, in the moment. Reminding me again it’s not that there need be a “cowboy” poetry but, as we move toward it, a poetry of work and daily life and the land. Which includes history and family. – Gary Snyder

John Dofflemyer’s poetry rings with the truth of western experience. His language is precise and powerful, his images are stark and candid. As a result, this verse transcends region and touches the human heart. – Gerald Haslam

2008. Paperback. 77 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-26-1
£8 / $15

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Maddalo cover

Maddalo – Byron, Shelley & the Greek misadventure

by Chip Martin

THE GREEK WAR OF INDEPENDENCE was a precursor to the type of adventure in the east we’ve seen unravelling in recent years. Byron is living in happy decadence in Italy, dabbling in political conspiracy there, when he is pushed to it by his patrician friends back in London and by his fellow-poet Shelley, also in Italy, ostracized for atheist and radically democratic views. By the time events have lured Byron, Greece is descending into chaos, brought on not least by the rapacity and treachery of its rival chiefs…

2006. Paperback. 144 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-25-3
£8 / €10 / $12

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Encounters cover

Encounters with Animals

by Simon Burt

IN TWELVE SUCCINCT TALES a vivid collage is built up of a district of contemporary London. Out of its shops and cafes, therapy groups, hospices, tower blocks and life of the streets, voices and colliding patterns of reflection emerge, to evoke the characteristic joys and griefs, or perhaps mere quotidian irritations, of a motley populace – gay, straight, single, partnered, alienated, caring, mendacious or occasionally honourable to a fault. Simon Burt has composed a pop album of his time and place with the precision of a classical symphonist.

His hallmark is flawless dialogue and a fine sense of the visual detail. Literary Review

2005. Paperback. 135 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-23-7
£9 / €13 / $15

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South cover

South – two novellas

by Chip Martin

THESE TWO STORIES, one set in St Tropez, the other in Venice, evoke the allure of Europe over an Anglo-American sensibility in the last quarter of the 20th century. The first depicts a journey in early adulthood, the second a rumination in ripening middle-age. Though dissimilar in style, as in time of life and setting, both narratives play on common motifs of cultural attraction and resistance. While emotional dilemmas and apprehensions ensnare the main characters, the sounds and colours of the two gorgeous locations seem to intensify in power, helping to impel the respective plots towards their precarious conclusions.

His willingness to paint broad on big landscapes may attract readers otherwise stuck in a narrow Hemingway sleeping-bag. Los Angeles Times

2005. Paperback. 136 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-24-5
£9 / €12 / $15

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Mosaic cover

Berlin Mosaic

by Eva Tucker

A WORLD OF GRAND APARTMENTS, coffee mornings, concerts and theatre and religious debate; of artistic insurgency, bohemian love and political ferment; above all of home life, Sunday lunches and holiday celebrations, carries on while in the background an inexorable fate grows almost unnoticed. Dramatic irony stalks the varied, often charming members of a large bourgeois family, until events of the first half of the 20th century break in, splintering it into its communist, fascist, Jewish, Christian and other fragments. Yet this is a fate which, in the end, turns out to be less than total, as the kaleidoscope turns and a new cycle begins, promising at least partial return to old unities and modes of existence.

In beautiful, laconic prose, Tucker investigates the compromises and accommodations made by ordinary people. Her quiet irony was apparent from her first novels. Berlin Mosaic expands and … deepens her previous work and is a marvellous antidote to the often melodramatic fictions that these days are offered about the Nazi holocaust. – Michael Moorcock, The Guardian

2005. Paperback. 154 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-22-9
£10 / €14

This title is now incorporated with Eva Tucker's Becoming English and published as Belonging.

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Susanna cover

Susanna, the Captain & the Castrato – Scenes from the Burney Salon 1779-80

by Linda Kelly

SUSANNA BURNEY was by all accounts the sweetest and most ‘spirituelle’ member of the famous family which enlivened English cultural life in the later eighteenth century. Though less well-known than her sister, the novelist Fanny Burney, Susanna was the principal attraction of her father’s musical salon for the last of the great castrati, Gasparo Pacchierotti, during his triumphant season in London in 1779-80. The unspoken romance between the singer and Susanna dominates her letter-journals to her sister written during a year which also saw a near invasion of England, the Gordon Riots and the death of Captain Cook on the far side of the world, an event at which both her brother and her future husband were present. Drawing on these still-unpublished journals, Linda Kelly tells the story of the Pacchierotti affair, the eventful year and the sadly brief life of her charming young heroine with an immediacy that makes it feel almost contemporary.

…perfectly focused and beautifully composed. – Rupert Christiansen, Literary Review

2004. Paperback. 139 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-21-0
£9 / $15 / €13

This title is also available in a Kindle edition from Amazon.

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Young romantics cover

The Young Romantics – Writers & Liaisons, Paris 1827-37

by Linda Kelly

EVERY GENERATION experiences its own excitement on discovering the great era of European Romanticism. Few have enjoyed as fine an account of one of its defining moments as Linda Kelly’s The Young Romantics. First published in 1976, it was instantly acclaimed as a small classic. In the best tradition of belle-lettres, it managed to evoke a sweep of literary history without the tax on time or eye-sight required by the door-stopper biographies of following decades. As Graham Greene wrote to the author: “I have been reading with delight The Young Romantics – I admire it for its brevity and the narrative skill which keeps so many characters moving on their parallel or intersecting lines year by year.”

The Yourng Romantics conjures up the excitement of its time and succeeds in considering… the history, politics, art and intrigues of an extraordinary age. – Lucy Dallas, Times Literary Supplement

This absorbing and delightful book… wonderfully written and occasionally very funny… reminds us that writers in those days were more amusing and daring than they are now. – David McLaurin, The Tablet

2003. Paperback. 159 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-20-2
£10 / $16 / €14

This title is also available as an eBook from Smashwords (ISBN 978-1-4524-1353-2)

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End of the Road cover

The End of the Road

by Chip Martin

“CALIFORNIA!” raps a voice in this echoing band of novellas. “California, that land where the fruits of Modern Times have been plucked on such a scale that we seem to find in its ripest form what old tradition has prized – Freedom! ah, Freedom… And what is the nature of this eternal mirage?” It is one of many quests pursued through five interlinked tales, which travel from London to L.A., Southwest City to Araby, real to unreal landscapes where the Anglo has thrived, in license or pathos, until he or she begins to seem a vanishing breed. Kerouacian bodhisattvas, soap-opera plutocrats, shape-shifting femme fatales, redemptive spirits ready to lay down and die on a beach – through realms of materialism, erotic longing and anomie, a cast of personae from a receding past plays out its epic melodrama. The end of the road is at once gorgeous, grotesque, transcendental and aesthetically haunting.

2002. Paperback. 498 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-19-9
£14.99 / $19.99

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English All Over the Place cover

English All Over the Place

by Gerry Abbott & Bob Jordan

THE BRITISH EMPIRE is no more. The empire of the English language flourishes. This is in part because of the efforts of itinerant teachers in far-flung corners of what used to be called British spheres of interest. Enduring coups and odd customs, enjoying unexpected delights, two veterans of this life provide intimate recollections of what it was like to ply their profession during the decades of change between 1960 and 1990.

An absorbing weekend read, to take the mind off methodology and coursebooks... a splendid book. – English Language Gazette

2001. Paperback. 158 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-15-6
£10 / $15

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Arnost cover

Arnost

by Shelley Weiner

TWO AGEING Hungarian émigrés encounter one another in London after many decades. One is now a fully-assimilated commercial magnate who escaped hardship and death by abandoning his wife and child; the other is a synagogue care-taker who survived a labour camp only to limp through subsequent existence brooding on tragedy. Their meeting triggers an ethical crisis: confrontation with repressed guilt for the one, and with withheld forgiveness for the other.

A novel full of surprises, challenging conventional assumptions about human behaviour… That Weiner manages to be acerbically humurous in such a painful story is a measure of her consummate skill. – The Jewish Chronicle

It is part of the success of [her] … narrative that the oppressive weight of her subject matter sits comfortably alongside the story's comic levity. – The Mail on Sunday

2001. Paperback. 158 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-18-0
£9 / $13

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Float Test cover

Float Test

by Chip Martin

1980. US NAVAL warships ply the Pacific and Indian Oceans to battle-station off the coast of fundamentalist Iran. On one, a Lieutenant JG tries to come to grips with his status following a failed marriage back home. On another, a civilian professor tries to maintain moral equilibrium between ethnic rivals in his classes, officers and men on their messdecks, chaplains and varieties of irreligious types in this hermetically-sealed, yet oddly representative microcosm of America.

Martin writes with honour and colour. – L.A. Times

2001. Paperback. 151 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-16-4
£8 / $12.50

This title is available as an eBook from Smashwords (ISBN 978-1-4524-5999-8)

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Three Journeys cover

Three Journeys in the Levant

by Shusha Guppy

I have nothing but praise for Shusha Guppy's excellent book on the Levant... Her insights into the Near East... Her facility with the history, art, religions and poetry of those ancient regions... Her traveller's fascination... These, and many other delights, are presented to us with a captivating informality. – Patrick Leigh Fermor

These journeys deserve the permanent form now given them, for few have Shusha Guppy's knack of evoking the smell of a place with a deftly chosen phrase. – Sunday Telegraph

2001. Paperback. 146 pp, illustrated with line drawings by Jessica Douglas-Home.
ISBN 0-936315-17-2
Price: £10 / $14 / €16

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T.I.L.T. cover

T.I.L.T. (Time is Like Toffee)

by Robert Hobhouse

“I FELT that I had died in the wreck and that this was a carefully orchestrated afterlife.” So Peter Cobland tells us at the beginning of his tale. But what is he really suffering from? a paranoid dementia, schizophrenia, the effects of nuclear fallout, drugging by sinister authorities, the trauma of a broken relationship? In this elegant, sometimes Swiftian novella, Robert Hobhouse presents us with these questions and provides us with answers both surprising and moving.

I was totally convinced and sucked into the hero's way of thinking... Everything keeps changing. His own senses cease to be reliable. All this is captured beautifully. It has a poet's touch. – Susanna Gross

2000. Paperback. 90 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-14-8
£8 / $12 (temporarily out of print)

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New World Order cover

The New World Order of Alexander Thynn

by The Marquess of Bath

INDIVIDUALIST, DEMOCRAT, regionalist, European federalist and internationalist at the same time; champion of the welfare state, polygyny and the rights of single mothers, Alexander Thynn – better known as the Marquess of Bath – has ever been an iconoclast and free-thinker. This compact collection of his thoughts on the great issues of his time provides a rounded vision of his life's quest in all of its warmth, radicalism and far-sightedness.

A classical English romantic... Falstaff-as-philosopher mixed with Fabian flower-child. – Stoddard Martin

2000. Paperback. 88 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-13-X
£8 / $12 / €12

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Liberation cover

Liberation in the East

by Chip Martin

1990. Time of the changes in Eastern Europe. A thirty-something professor is in Poland for a conference on English Language studies. Disoriented, divided, biologically pressed, she succumbs to a brief, furious passion for her student driver. Meanwhile, her ex-lover, a London property developer, sets off for Kraków to reconcile with her but begins on his own transformational adventure instead.

Spellbinding in the most effortless way (just like the best novels of Graham Greene). – Adam Lipinski

2000. Paperback.
ISBN 0-936315-12-1
£10 / $15 / 40zl

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Cold War cover

Cold War, Common Pursuit

12 essays edited by Peter J. Conradi & Stoddard Martin

A GROUP of British writers – among them some very distinguished names – watched the post-World War II changes in Poland at close hand. Most of them lived there for three or four years; yet, apart from fictional representations, or pseudonymous articles in, say, The New Statesman, the convention of their employment made it hard for their story to be told until recently, when Foreign Office rules were changed.

A fascinating book to mark the end of a century of bizarre political experimentation and cultural waywardness. – Times Literary Supplement

1999. Paperback. 164pp.
ISBN 0-936315-11-3
£10 / $15 / 40zl (temporarily out of print)

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Season of the Witch cover

Season of the Witch
Part III of A School of London

by Chip Martin

QUIRKY, TRAGIC and maddening by turns, Margot Wingfield is a mystery to those around her: her admirers, her therapist, her husband, perhaps even herself. Is she possessed by strange forces? is she a genius? is she just a middle-class mother made odd by the macabre destinies of her sons? Questing through religion, ‘psychosynthesis’ and her craft of play-wrighting, Margot seems now and then on the verge of remarkable insight. Yet that verge is a perilous one, and she is ever in danger of pitching over into an almost inexplicable nihilism.

Last in a sequence, this novella may be read on its own or as a conclusion to stories introduced in A Journeyman in Bohemia and The Paper-Pulper’s Wife.

1999. Paperback. 139 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-10-5
Price: £9 / $12

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Paper-Pulper's Wife cover

The Paper-Pulper's Wife
Part II of A School of London

by Chip Martin

A SIMPLE, straightforward marriage was all she had wanted, Miranda Cravin believed; but her upper class husband, impeccable though he seems, has his own purposes – and secrets. Trying to compete with his sophistication, she embarks on an affair; when that doesn’t turn out to be what she’s hoped for, she embarks on another – with darkening implications. ‘Her sense will have to open, to the wrong – to what’s called Evil with a very big E,’ Henry James wrote of a similar situation 100 years ago. For inexperienced Miranda, the consequences must be played out in a social context where standards are increasingly at odds with the way their upholders behave.

1998. Paperback. 166 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-09-1
Price: £10 / $13

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Journeyman cover

A Journeyman in Bohemia
Part I of A School of London

by Chip Martin

OLIVER MURRIE moves from a conventional career in London toward his more Celtic passion, to be a painter. From realist watercolours to sci-fi semi-porn to post-modern neo-classicism, he explores the range of his art while careering across Europe in a late 20th century version of Byron’s grand tour. Winning and losing three remarkable women en route, he upstages yet impresses his sometime rival, the American writer of Rough Guides who narrates the book. While the latter struggles to learn faithfulness in a bourgeois marriage, Oliver remains on a Mediterranean beach awaiting the outcome of his gaudy bohemian pursuit.

1997. Paperback. 134 pp.
ISBN 0-936315-08-3
Price: £9 / $12

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Undead cover

The Undead

by Chip Martin

AMERICAN EXPATRIATE and reformed anti-Semite, Landon Hurst has attempted suicide but, instead of drowning, returns to life posing as a Jew. Living first in Paris and later a decadent château in the Vosges, he enjoys an increasingly privileged existence under the protection of a series of eccentric females. Eventually, however, he becomes a casualty to his own former attitudes.

It's wonderful and precise and I fully believed in it. Also the structure is so good. I mean the narrative voice carried me on. – Beryl Bainbridge

1996. Paperback. 128pp.
ISBN 0-936315-07-5
Price: £8 / $12

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