Jo McMillan - Motherland - Hodder & Stoughton

Time remaining

  • -- days
  • -- hours
  • -- minutes
  • -- seconds
Other Formats
  • Paperback £8.99
    More information
    • ISBN:9781473612020
    • Publication date:16 Jun 2016
  • E-Book £P.O.R.
    More information
    • ISBN:9781473612013
    • Publication date:02 Jul 2015

Motherland

A Novel

By Jo McMillan

  • Hardback
  • £16.99

A charming, witty and original debut reminiscent of Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit.

Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit meets Goodbye Lenin.

'I hadn't expected the Berlin Wall to be clean and white and smooth. It looked more like the edge of the swimming baths than the edge of the Cold War. On the grass of No-man's Land, fat rabbits ate and strolled about as if they'd never been hunted and nothing could disturb them. This was their land and they ruled it, and there were three parts to Berlin: East, West and Rabbit.'

It is 1978, Jess is thirteen and she already has a reputation - as the daughter of the only communist in town. But then, it's in the blood. The Mitchells have been in the Party since the Party began. Jess and her mother Eleanor struggle to sell socialism to Tamworth - a sleepy Midlands town that just doesn't want to know.

So when Eleanor is invited to spend a summer teaching in East Germany, she and Jess leap at the chance to see what the future looks like. On the other side of the Iron Curtain they turn from villains into heroes. And when Eleanor meets widower Peter and his daughter, Martina, a new, more peaceful life seems possible.

But the Cold War has no time for love and soon the trouble starts. Peter is dispatched for two years of solidarity work in Laos. Friends become enemies, and Jess discovers how easy it is to switch sides, and how sides can be switched for you, sometimes without you even knowing.

Motherland is a tender mother-daughter story and a tragi-comic portrait of a childhood overcome with belief. It's about loss of faith and loss of innocence, and what it's like to grow up on the losing side of history.

Biographical Notes

Jo McMillan grew up in the UK and has lived and worked in China and Malaysia. She is currently based in Berlin. Motherland is her first novel.

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9781473611993
  • Publication date: 02 Jul 2015
  • Page count: 272
  • Imprint: John Murray
Funny, smart, and packed full of all the melancholy you would expect from a novel that slowly sheds a child's innocence — Red
There's a great deal of humour in Motherland, all underpinned with a sober tone . . . Jess makes an engaging narrator — alifeinbooks
In its warm and witty portrait of offbeat mother-daughter relations, Motherland often recalls Nina Stibbe's Man At The Helm. Jess's gift for wry observations also gives rise to some wonderfully quotable lines — Lady
Motherland cuts a swathe through history without feeling like a lesson . . . Even though Motherland is full of historical detail, between 1980s Tamworth and the GDR, the oppression of the era never overwhelms. At the heart, and most important are the human relationships and which bonds survive — Emerald Street
I'm sure that these are characters (and the voice of a new novelist) that I for one will gladly revisit over and over again . . . A beautiful story tinged with fun, sadness and insight — Bookbag
A delightful tragi-comic novel, primarily about a mother/daughter relationship (hence the title) and also about coming of age and disillusionment . . . Motherland combines a teenager's cold-eyed view of adult absurdities and a wistfulness for lost certainties; a compelling blend — Historical Novel Review
A funny and poignant first novel — Daily Mail
This assured debut from Jo McMillan was a delight from start to finish; I was immediately drawn into the lives of the main characters and was sorry to get to the end. McMillan is now based in Berlin and she writes convincingly of both sides of the Cold War, she has a very distinct voice and will be a writer to watch in the future — We Love This Book
McMillan's writing is excellent; she captures brilliantly the voice of Jess, naive and committed at the start of the book, knowing and more questioning by the end. Although there's perhaps a certain irony in places in her portrayal of the various members of the counter-culture groups, she never belittles their belief and their faith in their cause . . . Motherland is McMillan's debut, and it's an excellent one - highly recommended! — Kaggsy's Bookish Ramblings
For those of us who remember how well youthful politics can entangle teenage love, this funny, sweet, sad first novel is both a delight and a glorious journey back to a time and place many of us only recall with a wry shake of the head — Stella Duffy
An ambitious coming-of-age novel from debut author Jo McMillan, which is wonderfully written and filled with quirky details and descriptions . . . A touching and poignant read, which uniquely explores this period in time in a way in which few other authors have attempted to — Herald
Genuinely funny — Socialist Worker
A touching and poignant read, which uniquely explores this period in time in a way in which few other authors have attempted to — Press Association
An ambitious coming-of-age story, filled with quirky details and descriptions — Scotsman
It's an ambitious coming-of-age novel from debut author Jo McMillan, which is wonderfully written and filled with quirky details and descriptions . . . a touching and poignant read, which uniquely explores this period in time in a way in which few other authors have attempted to — Catholic Universe
The book (sometimes very funny, sometimes desperately embarrassing and sad, always absorbing and moving) is full of her ineradicable love for her batty, determined Stalinist mother . . . I urge you to [read it] — Mail Online
Sceptre

The End of Loneliness

Benedict Wells
Authors:
Benedict Wells

The international bestseller, translated by the award-winning translator of The Tobacconist, Charlotte Collins Winner of the European Union Prize for Literature 'Original and captivating . . . its quiet charm in straightforward prose belies its sharp insight into the human condition' Stylist'It is impossible to look away from it' Guardian'Dazzling' John Irving***************I've known Death a long time but now Death knows me.When their idyllic childhood is shattered by the sudden death of their parents, siblings Marty, Liz and Jules are sent to a bleak state boarding school. Once there, the orphans' lives change tracks: Marty throws himself into academic life; Liz is drawn to dark forms of escapism; and Jules transforms from a vivacious child to a withdrawn teenager. The only one who can bring him out of his shell is his mysterious classmate Alva, who hides a dark past of her own, but despite their obvious love for one another, the two leave school on separate paths. Years later, just as it seems that they can make amends for time wasted, the past catches up with them, and fate - or chance - will once again alter the course of a life. Told through the fractured lives of the siblings, The End of Loneliness is a heartfelt, enriching novel about loss and loneliness, family and love.***************'This novel has been rightfully described as something of a masterpiece. One thing is for sure - it is not easily forgotten' Sunday Post'Beautifully rendered: moving and wise, occasionally timeless . . . when Wells most needs to be sophisticated, he is' Irish Times'A superbly insightful story' BookRiot

Hodder & Stoughton

Golden Son

Pierce Brown
Authors:
Pierce Brown

Ender's Game meets The Hunger Games in this, the second in an extraordinary trilogy from an incredible new voice.'I'm still playing games. This is just the deadliest yet.' Darrow is a rebel forged by tragedy. For years he and his fellow Reds worked the mines, toiling to make the surface of Mars inhabitable. They were, they believed, mankind's last hope. Until Darrow discovered that it was all a lie, and that the Red were nothing more than unwitting slaves to an elitist ruling class, the Golds, who had been living on Mars in luxury for generations. In RED RISING, Darrow infiltrated Gold society, to fight in secret for a better future for his people. Now fully embedded amongst the Gold ruling class, Darrow continues his dangerous work to bring them down from within. It's a journey that will take him further than he's ever been before - but is Darrow truly willing to pay the price that rebellion demands?Hic sunt leones.A life-or-death tale of vengeance with an unforgettable hero at its heart, Golden Son guarantees Pierce Brown's continuing status as one of fiction's most exciting new voices.

John Murray Learning

Start German (Learn German with the Michel Thomas Method)

Michel Thomas
Authors:
Michel Thomas

Learn over 50 essential words at the heart of German and how to put them together to make yourself understood. This 1-hour basic introduction to German with the Michel Thomas Method will get you speaking the language immediately: no books, no pens, no memorizing - just listen, connect and speak.How does it work?During the course, you will join Michel Thomas and two students in a live lesson, hearing both their successes and their mistakes to keep you motivated and involved throughout the course. Within the very first hour you will be able to construct simple phrases by listening and thinking out answers for yourself without the pressure of writing or memorizing.Why is the method so successful?The Michel Thomas Method was perfected over 50 years by celebrated psychologist and linguist Michel Thomas. This unique method works with your brain and draws on the principles of instructional psychology. Knowledge is structured and organised so that you assimilate the language easily and don't forget it. The method breaks down the language into building blocks that are introduced sequentially in such a way that you create your response and move on to ever-more-complex sentences. You'll stick with it because you'll love it.Where do I go next?After you finish your Start course, you can move to the Total German course, which includes 7 hours of audio and a practice CD-ROM. Perfect German follows on from the Total course with 11 hours of audio and a practice CD-ROM.Learn anywhereDon't be tied to chunky books or your computer, Michel Thomas Method audio courses let you learn whenever you want: at home, in your car, or on the move with your MP3 player.

Camilla Morton

Camilla Morton was attending fashion shows long before she was invited. She studied at St Martin's and worked on Vogue. She moved to Paris to polish her look, rather than her French, and worked for John Galliano at Dior. She has written for the Times, Telegraph magazine, Harpers Bazaar and Time, among others. Her first book, HOW TO WALK IN HIGH HEELS, has been translated into seventeen languages.

Carolyn Parkhurst

Carolyn Parkhurst is the author of three novels: Lorelei's Secret (published in the US as The Dogs of Babel) and Lost and Found, which were both New York Times bestsellers, and The Nobodies Album. In 2010, she published her first children's book, Cooking with Henry and Elliebelly, illustrated by Dan Yaccarino. Born in New Hampshire, she lives in Washington, DC with her husband and their two children.

Carrie Snyder

Carrie Snyder is the author of two books of short fiction. Her second, The Juliet Stories, soon to be published by Two Roads, was a finalist for Canada's Governor General's Award and a Globe and Mail Top 100 book. Girl Runner, her debut novel, has been shortlisted for the Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize. Carrie lives in Waterloo, Ontario with her family and blogs as Obscure CanLit Mama. carriesnyder.com twitter.com/carrieasnyder facebook.com/carriesnyderauthor

Charles Frazier

Charles Frazier grew up in the mountains of North Carolina. COLD MOUNTAIN, his highly acclaimed first novel, was an international bestseller, selling over one million copies and winning the National Book Award in 1997. It was the inspiration for the Oscar-winning film directed by Anthony Minghella and starring Nicole Kidman, Jude Law, and Renee Zellweger.A second novel, THIRTEEN MOONS, was published by Sceptre in 2007 and NIGHTWOODS, Charles' latest novel set in a lakeside town in 1960s North Carolina, was published in September 2011. To find out more, visit Charles' Facebook page www.facebook.com/CharlesFrazierAuthor or follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/Charles_Frazier.

Chris Cleave

Chris Cleave's debut novel INCENDIARY won the Somerset Maugham Award, among others. His second, the Costa-shortlisted THE OTHER HAND, was a global bestseller and sat in the New York Times Top Ten for over a year (under the US title, Little Bee). Both books were shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers' Prizes. He lives in Kingston-upon-Thames with his wife and three children, and welcomes readers at facebook.com/ChrisCleaveBooks, www.chriscleave.com and twitter.com/chriscleave.

Ciara Geraghty

Ciara Geraghty is the author of five novels: Now That I've Found You, Saving Grace, Becoming Scarlett, Finding Mr Flood and Lifesaving for Beginners. She lives in Dublin with her husband, three children and dog.You can find out more at www.ciarageraghty.com, visit her Facebook page at www.facebook.com/pages/CiaraGeraghtyBooks, or follow her on Twitter www.twitter.com/ciarageraghty.

Clare Morrall

Clare Morrall's first novel, Astonishing Splashes of Colour, was published in 2003 and shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize that year. She has since published the novels Natural Flights of the Human Mind, The Language of Others, The Man Who Disappeared, which was a TV Book Club Summer Read in 2010, The Roundabout Man and After the Bombing.Born in Exeter, Clare Morrall now lives in Birmingham. She works as a music teacher, and has two daughters.

Danielle McLaughlin

Danielle McLaughlin's stories have appeared in publications including the New Yorker, the Stinging Fly and the Irish Times, as well as various anthologies. She has won the Willesden Short Story Prize, the Merriman Short Story Competition in memory of Maeve Binchy and the Dromineer Literary Festival short story competition. Dinosaurs on Other Planets is her first collection.

Dreda Say Mitchell

Born and bred in the East End of London, Dreda Say Mitchell has seen it all from the inside. After a string of jobs as a waitress, chambermaid and catering assistant she realised her dream of becoming a teacher. During this time she saw a new generation of East Enders grappling with the same problems she had but in an even more violent and unforgiving world. Dreda's books are inspired by the gritty, tough and criminal world she grew up in. She still lives in London's East End. Her debut, RUNNING HOT, was published in 2004 and won the Crime Writers' Association's John Creasey Memorial Dagger Award for best first novel. She is the author of eight more novels and is currently writing the FLESH AND BLOOD series, set on 'The Devil's Estate' in Mile End. In 2016, she became a Reading Ambassador for the Reading Agency to promote literacy and libraries.Website: www.dredasaymitchell.com Facebook: /dredasaymitchell Twitter: @DredaMitchell

Fredrik Backman

Fredrik Backman is a Swedish blogger, columnist and author. His debut novel A MAN CALLED OVE was a number 1 bestseller across Scandinavia, has sold over one million copies worldwide, was a Richard & Judy summer read in the UK and an instant New York Times paperback bestseller, and has been made into an acclaimed film. Fredrik's subsequent novels, MY GRANDMOTHER SENDS HER REGARDS AND APOLOGISES and BRITT-MARIE WAS HERE, also went straight to number 1 in Sweden on publication.

Gervase Phinn

Dr Gervase Phinn is a teacher, freelance lecturer, author, poet, educational consultant and visiting professor of education. For fourteen years he taught in a range of schools, then acted as General Adviser for Language Development in Rotherham before moving on to North Yorkshire, where he spent ten years as a school inspector - time that has provided much source material for his books. He has four grown up children and four grandchildren and lives near Doncaster. Visit Gervase's website, www.gervase-phinn.com.

Herman Wouk

Herman Wouk is the author of The Caine Mutiny, which won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, The Winds of War, War and Remembrance, and Inside, Outside. His latest novel is The Lawgiver, a romantic comedy about the seeming impossibility of making a movie about the life of Moses. Born in the Bronx in 1915, he has lived in Manhattan, the Virgin Islands, and Washington, DC. He now resides in Palm Springs, California.

Hilary Green

Hilary Green is a trained actress and spent many years teaching drama. Among her star pupils was the latest James Bond, Daniel Craig. She also ran a Youth Theatre Company, one of the members of which was the now acclaimed theatre director, Christopher Luscombe. She has always written, producing novels, scripts for the BBC, and short stories, one of which one the Kythira Prize awarded by the Historical Novel Society. She even wrote the book and lyrics for a school musical, which she also produced. She loves all forms of theatre, including opera and ballet. This is probably 'bred in the bone' as both her parents were in what theatre people always refer to as 'The Profession'. Her father was a singer, trained for opera in Italy, while her mother was a ballet dancer. Their pre-war experiences in variety were the inspiration for the 'Follies' series of novels. Hilary regularly gives talks about her work to book groups and other organisations where she enjoys meeting her readers and hearing their reactions to the stories. When not writing she gardens, rides horses, walks in the countryside and plays bridge as well as enjoying travel and has been round the world several times. Hilary is married, with two grown-up sons and two grandchildren.

James Frey

James Frey is originally from Ohio. His books A Million Little Pieces, My Friend Leonard, Bright Shiny Morning and The Final Testament of the Holy Bible have all been bestsellers around the world. He is married and lives in New York.

Jennifer L. Armentrout

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout lives in West Virginia. When she's not hard at work writing, she spends her time reading, working out, watching zombie movies, and pretending to write. She shares her home with her husband, his K-9 partner named Diesel, and her hyper Jack Russell, Loki. Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent her time writing short stories . . . therefore explaining her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes Adult and Young Adult Urban Fantasy and Romance. Visit Jennifer's website: www.jenniferarmentrout.com, follow her on Twitter: @JLArmentrout, or find her on Facebook: www.facebook.com/JenniferLArmentrout.

Jess Richards

Jess Richards was born in Wales in 1972, and grew up too fast in south west Scotland where she lived with her English parents and three brothers, watching the ferry boats going to and from Northern Ireland. She left home at 17, went over the border to England, and lived for a year in Carlisle, before moving to Devon. She gained a first class degree from Dartington College of Arts when she was 21. After brief stints busking and carrying on in both Leeds and London, she moved to Brighton aged 23 where she has grown up a bit slower, and has lived and worked ever since. Her debut novel, SNAKE ROPES, was shortlisted for the 2012 Costa First Novel Award and longlisted for the Green Carnation Prize.jessrichards.co.uk/www.twitter.com/jessgrr1

Jill Dawson

Jill Dawson is the author of Trick of the Light, Magpie, Fred and Edie, which was shortlisted for the Whitbread Novel Award and the Orange Prize, Wild Boy, Watch Me Disappear, which was longlisted for the Orange Prize, The Great Lover, a Richard and Judy Summer Read in 2009, Lucky Bunny and The Tell-Tale Heart. In addition she has edited six anthologies of short stories and poetry.Born in Durham, Jill Dawson grew up in Yorkshire. She has held many Fellowships, including the Creative Writing Fellowship at the University of East Anglia, where she taught on the MA in Creative Writing course. In 2006 she received an honorary doctorate in recognition of her work. She lives in the Fens with her husband, two sons and foster daughter.