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
Hodder Paperbacks

The A-List Family

Christina Hopkinson
Authors:
Christina Hopkinson

Imagine a world where your bikini body has to last all year.Where paparazzi turn up for the school run.Where EVERYBODY knows your name, and your eight-year-old daughter's.Welcome to everyday life in an A-List Family.Newly employed to look after the daughter of a super-rich and famous power couple, Anna is about to find out what life is really like behind the closed doors of celebrity. And soon she starts to wonder: once you're in, can you get out?

Hodder Paperbacks

Turning Thirty

Mike Gayle
Authors:
Mike Gayle

Unlike most people Matt Beckford is actually looking forward to turning thirty. At last, he thinks his career, finances and love life are all sorted. But life has other plans, and after splitting up with his girlfriend Matt is forced to move back in with his parents.This scenario soon has Matt feeling nostalgic, and desperate for some sanity. So, one by one, he tracks down his old school mates - the rest of the Magnificent Seven.But when you're turning thirty nothing's as simple as it used to be.

Hodder & Stoughton

Panic

Lauren Oliver
Authors:
Lauren Oliver

An utterly gripping thriller from bestselling author Lauren Oliver. Panic began as so many things do in Carp, a poor town of twelve thousand people in the middle of nowhere: because it was summer, and there was nothing else to do.Heather never thought she would compete in panic, a legendary game played by graduating seniors, where the stakes are high and the payoff is even higher. She'd never thought of herself as fearless, the kind of person who would fight to stand out. But when she finds something, and someone, to fight for, she will discover that she is braver than she ever thought.Dodge has never been afraid of panic. His secret will fuel him, and get him all the way through the game; he's sure of it. But what he doesn't know is that he's not the only one with a secret. Everyone has something to play for.For Heather and Dodge, the game will bring new alliances, unexpected revelations, and the possibility of first love for each of them - and the knowledge that sometimes the very things we fear are those we need the most.In this gritty, spellbinding novel, bestselling author Lauren Oliver delivers a gripping narrative of friendship, courage, survival, and hope.

Hodder Paperbacks

A Hundred Pieces of Me

Lucy Dillon
Authors:
Lucy Dillon

WINNER OF THE ROMANTIC NOVELISTS' ASSOCIATION CONTEMPORARY ROMANTIC NOVEL AWARD, 2015.As heart wrenching and life-affirming as One Day or Me Before You, A HUNDRED PIECES OF ME is a story about what it means to finally live life to the full.Letters from the only man she's ever truly loved.A keepsake of the father she never really knew.A blue glass vase that catches the light on a grey day.Gina Bellamy is starting again, after a few years she'd rather forget. But the belongings she's treasured for so long don't seem to fit who she is now.So Gina makes a resolution. She'll keep just a hundred special items - the rest can go.But that means coming to terms with her past and learning to embrace the future, whatever it might bring . . .'Bittersweet, lovely and ultimately redemptive; the kind of book that makes you want to live your own life better.' Jojo Moyes'Such a brilliant book. So satisfying and clever and deeply moving. I'll be passing it on to all my friends.' Sophie Kinsella'This vibrant and uplifting novel has not only entertained me hugely, but made me change the way I look at life.' Katie Fforde

Two Roads

Eleven Days

Lea Carpenter
Authors:
Lea Carpenter

LONGLISTED FOR THE BAILEYS WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION 2014'SUPERB' - SIMON SEBAG MONTEFIORE, LONDON EVENING STANDARD BOOKS OF THE YEAR 2013'EXTRAORDINARY' - KEVIN POWERS, AUTHOR OF THE YELLOW BIRDS'THINK HOMELAND IN FICTION FORM...' - RED'AN EXTRAORDINARILY GIFTED WRITER' - MICHIKO KAKUTANI, NEW YORK TIMESEleven Days is, at its heart, the story of a mother and a son.It begins in May 2011: Sara's son Jason has been missing for nine days in the aftermath of a special operations forces mission. Out of devotion to him, Sara has made herself knowledgeable about things military, but she knows nothing more about her son's disappearance than the press corps camped out in her driveway. In a series of flashbacks we learn about Jason's absentee father - a man who died, according to "insiders," helping to make the country safer - and Jason's decision to join the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis after 9/11 and enter into the toughest military training in the world: for the U.S. Naval Special Warfare's Navy SEAL Teams. Through letters Jason wrote his mother while training, we see him becoming a strong, compassionate leader. But his fate will be determined by events that fall outside the sphere of his training, and far outside the strong embrace of his mother's love. As well as a touching picture of the bond between a mother and a son this is a unique look into the training, history and culture of one of the world's elite forces. Page-turning and haunting, this is an astonishing debut which questions the very nature of sacrifice and love.

Sceptre

The Tell-Tale Heart

Jill Dawson
Authors:
Jill Dawson
John Murray

The Virgins

Pamela Erens
Authors:
Pamela Erens

'Erens brilliantly captures the dark side of adolescence . . . On a par with the likes of Jeffrey Eugenides' The Virgin Suicides' Independent'Flawlessly executed and irrefutably true' John Irving'A must for fans of Nabokovian tragedy' Irish TatlerThe events of 1979-80 reverberate around the campus of Auburn Academy and linger many years later in the mind of narrator Bruce Bennett-Jones. Aviva Rossner and Seung Jung are an unlikely couple at the elite East Coast boarding school and are not shy in flaunting their newly discovered sexuality. Their blossoming relationship is watched with envy and fascination by Bruce and other classmates, who believe their liaison to be one of pure, unadulterated passion and pleasure.But nothing is what it seems, and as Aviva and Seung struggle to understand themselves and each other, things begin to fall apart. Their ultimate descent into shame and betrayal has disastrous consequences beyond their own lives.

Hodder Paperbacks

The Supremes at Earl's All-You-Can-Eat

Edward Kelsey Moore
Authors:
Edward Kelsey Moore

Told with wit, charm and heart, this debut novel set in small-town Indiana from the 1960s to the present day will appeal to anyone who loved The Help or Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe.Pull up a chair at Big Earl's diner and meet the 'Supremes': three women from Plainview, Indiana, who've been best friends since their high-school days in the Sixties.Clarice is a pious wife and mother struggling with her husband's infidelity; Barbara Jean must confront the tragic reverberations of a youthful love affair; and Odette, whose fearlessness has saved her friends many times, now faces a terrifying situation of her own.Come join the inseparable trio as they share the juiciest gossip, the occasional tear, and the most uproarious laughter at Earl's All-You-Can-Eat.

John Murray

The Demolition of the Century

Duncan Sarkies
Authors:
Duncan Sarkies
Hodder & Stoughton

The Last Kiss Goodbye

Karen Robards
Authors:
Karen Robards
Two Roads

Red Hook Road

Ayelet Waldman
Authors:
Ayelet Waldman
Hodder Paperbacks

The Love Detective

Alexandra Potter
Authors:
Alexandra Potter
Two Roads

Under the Wide and Starry Sky

Nancy Horan
Authors:
Nancy Horan

THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLERAt the age of thirty-five, Fanny van de Grift Osbourne has left her philandering husband in San Francisco to set sail for Belgium to study art, with her three children and nanny in tow. Not long after her arrival, however, tragedy strikes, and Fanny and her brood repair to a quiet artists' colony in France where she can recuperate. There she meets Robert Louis Stevenson, ten years her junior, who is instantly smitten with the earthy, independent, and opinionated belle Americaine.A woman ahead of her time, Fanny does not immediately take to the young lawyer who longs to devote his life to literature rather than the law - and who would eventually write such classics as Treasure Island and The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. In time, though, she succumbs to Stevenson's charms, and the two begin a fierce love affair-marked by intense joy and harrowing darkness that spans decades as they travel the world for the sake of his health following their art and dreams eventually settling in Samoa where Robert Louis Stevenson is buried, with these words on his grave: Under the wide and starry sky,Dig the grave and let me lie.Glad did I live and gladly die,And I laid me down with a will.This be the verse you grave for me:Here he lies where he longed to be;Home is the sailor, home from sea,And the hunter home from the hill.(Requiem, Robert Louis Stevenson)

Hodder Paperbacks

Darkest Fear (Birthright Book One)

Cate Tiernan
Authors:
Cate Tiernan

What is your birthright? Vivi Neves has rejected everything her parents hold dear - their heritage, culture, traditions - and their dark family secret: they're haguari - cat people, shapeshifters who turn into jaguars, as their ancestors have done for thousands of years. Then, tragically, her parents are killed. Vivi can cling to her own beliefs and live her life the way she wants -or she can embrace her heritage and avenge her parents' deaths. With danger closing in on her, her decision is forced . . . and she's pulled deeper into a mystery that gets darker and more dangerous until finally she must face her heritage . . . or die.

Hodder & Stoughton

Roomies

Sarah Zarr, Tara Altebrando
Authors:
Sarah Zarr, Tara Altebrando
Hodder & Stoughton

Hunted

Karen Robards
Authors:
Karen Robards

Caroline Wallace is one of New Orleans Police Department's top hostage negotiators, and she's never failed to get every hostage out alive. But this time, it's different: the hostages include her father - the superintendent of police - and the mayor. And this time, she's trying to negotiate with Reed Ware, a former co-worker who left the force in disgrace, and who is considered to be volatile and extremely dangerous. As police snipers arrive on the scene, Caroline has only a few moments left to persuade the hot-headed, reckless (and extremely handsome) Reed to turn himself in before anyone gets hurt. But when the SWAT team runs out of patience and launches an attack, Reed manages to escape - taking Caroline hostage in the chaos. He then tells her he's uncovered corruption at the highest levels of the police department and city government, and those involved will stop at nothing to keep him from exposing what he knows . . . including murder. Now Caroline must question everything she thought she knew about her job and her city and join Reed on the run . . . putting both her life - and her heart - in jeopardy.

Sceptre

Visitation Street

Ivy Pochoda
Authors:
Ivy Pochoda

Summer in Red Hook, Brooklyn, a blue collar neighbourhood where hipster gourmet supermarkets push against tired housing projects, and the East River opens into the bay. Bored and listless, fifteen-year-old June and Val are looking for some fun. Forget the boys, the bottles, the coded whistles. Val wants to do something wild and a little crazy: take a raft out onto the bay.But out on the water, as the bright light of day gives way to darkness, the girls disappear. Only Val will survive, washed ashore semi-conscious in the weeds.June's shocking disappearance will reverberate in the lives of a diverse cast of Red Hook residents. Fadi, the Lebanese bodega owner, trolls for information about the crime. Cree, just beginning to pull it together after his father's murder, unwittingly makes himself the chief suspect - although an elusive guardian seems to have other plans for him. As Val emerges from the shadow of her missing friend, her teacher Jonathan, Juilliard drop-out and barfly, will be forced to confront a past riddled with tragic sins of omission.In VISITATION STREET, Ivy Pochoda combines intensely vivid prose with breathtaking psychological insight to explore a cast of solitary souls, pulled by family, love, and betrayal, who yearn for a chance to escape, no matter the cost.

Sceptre

The Professor of Poetry

Grace McCleen
Authors:
Grace McCleen
Sceptre

Grace and Mary

Melvyn Bragg
Authors:
Melvyn Bragg
Sceptre

Cooking With Bones

Jess Richards
Authors:
Jess Richards

My sister is a formwanderer: she is a mirror of want. Each person she meets sees what they want, when they look at her. And she changes for each pair of eyes.Two sisters, fleeing the city of Paradon, find their way to a village by the sea, where Old Kelp's cottage - and her recipe book - await them.Amber feels this is where she finally belongs, baking honey cakes each night for the villagers to collect in the morning, using a set of bone spoons that allow her to add truth, lust and confusion to her pies and puddings.Her little sister Maya is a formwanderer, engineered to reflect the wants of others. All her life she has been like a twin to Amber, but now Amber has changed her mind, and wants Maya to learn how to be herself.Kip, a child growing up amongst the songs and stories of the village, delivers Amber's ingredients. When an act of terrible violence stirs and sets free the secrets of a generation, only one of these three can reveal the truth . . .