The Best Foreign Fiction & Non-Fiction We Published in November

Fire and Blood: 300 Years Before A Game of Thrones (A Targaryen History)

George R.R. Martin

Set 300 years before the events in A Song of Ice and Fire, FIRE AND BLOOD is the definitive history of the Targaryens in Westeros as told by Archmaester Gyldayn, and chronicles the conquest that united the Seven Kingdoms under Targaryen rule through to the Dance of the Dragons: the Targaryen civil war that nearly ended their dynasty forever.

The thrilling history of the Targaryens comes to life in this masterly work by the author of A Song of Ice and Fire, the inspiration for HBO’s Game of Thrones. With all the fire and fury fans have come to expect from internationally bestselling author George R.R. Martin, this is the first volume of the definitive two-part history of the Targaryens in Westeros.

Centuries before the events of A Game of Thrones, House Targaryen – the only family of dragonlords to survive the Doom of Valyria – took up residence on Dragonstone. Fire and Blood begins their tale with the legendary Aegon the Conqueror, creator of the Iron Throne, and goes on to recount the generations of Targaryens who fought to hold that iconic seat, all the way up to the civil war that nearly tore their dynasty apart. What really happened during the Dance of the Dragons? Why was it so deadly to visit Valyria after the Doom? What were Maegor the Cruel’s worst crimes? What was it like in Westeros when dragons ruled the skies? These are but a few of the questions answered in this essential chronicle, as related by a learned maester of the Citadel, and featuring more than eighty all-new black-and-white illustrations by artist Doug Wheatley. With all the scope and grandeur of Gibbon’s The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Fire and Blood is the ultimate game of thrones, giving readers a whole new appreciation for the dynamic, often bloody, and always fascinating history of Westeros.

9780008312732 | Hardback | 736 pages | INR 999


Roar | Cecelia Ahern

‘These stories sing and cry and shout and whisper from the page. They’re sharp, clever, witty…a joy to read.’ — Donal Ryan, international bestselling author of The Spinning Heart

I am woman. Hear me roar.

Have you ever imagined a different life?

Have you ever stood at a crossroads, undecided?Have you ever had a moment when you wanted to roar?

The women in these startlingly original stories are all of us: the women who befriend us, the women who encourage us, the women who make us brave. From The Woman Who Slowly Disappeared to The Woman Who Was Kept on the Shelf and The Woman Who Returned and Exchanged her Husband, discover thirty touching, often hilarious, stories and meet thirty very different women. Each discovers her strength; each realizes she holds the power to make a change.

Witty, tender, surprising, these keenly observed tales speak to us all, and capture the moment when we all want to roar.

9780008324216 | Paperback | 352 pages | INR 399


Bad Advice: How to Survive and Thrive in the Age of Bullshit

Venus Nicolino

You Are a Badass meets The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck, Bad Advice is a fiercely smart wake-up call that dismantles the damaging neo-folk wisdom of pop psychology and offers empowering strategies for moving forward transformed, from larger-than-life Bravo personality and psychologist Dr. V.

Psychologist Dr. Venus Nicolino has the looks of a “Real Housewife,” the brains of a Ph. D., and the soul of a take-no-prisoners Italian Matriarch. Bubbling with charm, vivacity, and always at the ready with an honest-but-kind dose of straight-talk, Dr. V is known for taking a match to what she calls the useless “neo-folk wisdom of pop psychology,” which she believes is deeply damaging, even as it pretends to lend insight into the human condition. We live in a world of Instagram “Inspira-porn”–ubiquitous inspirational quotes and truisms we eat up, readily accepting them as useful guidelines to living a fulfilling life. But from “Follow Your Bliss” to “Just Be Yourself”, Dr. V contends that these nuggets of received wisdom aren’t just empty or trite–they’re actually deeply pernicious.

Delightfully counterintuitive and biting, Bad Advice unmasks how these ‘folkisms’ actually play an insidious role in holding us back from living fulfilling lives. Dedicating a chapter to each of the worst offenders, Dr. V traces an arc from our first encounters with these ideas in childhood on through adulthood, exposing commonly-held ‘truths’ like:

  • “You Get What You Get and You Don’t Get Upset”
  • “You Can’t Love Anyone Until You Love Yourself”
  • “Live Each Day Like It Was Your Last”
  • “Nobody Can Make You Feel Bad Without Your Permission”

Sassy, salty, but always on the reader’s side, Dr. V exposes and dismantles the seductive mechanics of each hackneyed mantra; digs deep to illuminate their origins; and replaces with them mindful and authentic advice, laying out startlingly empowering and actually inspiring counter-strategies for moving forward transformed.

A tough-love approach with incredible heart, Bad Advice is a warm and hilarious wake-up call to battle against the harmful ideas that have a vice grip on our psyches, and to help us move ahead–with courage–toward the lives we deserve.

9780062570352 | Hardback | 240 pages | INR 499


Ed Sheeran | Sean Smith

Ed Sheeran has conquered the musical world. Avoiding flashy showmanship and fleeting fashion, he has let his talent do the talking. His moving and uplifting songs forge a lasting connection with the millions of people around the world who love his music. Bestselling biographer Sean Smith has travelled to the quiet Suffolk backwater that Ed still calls home. Seeing the sunset over the famous ‘Castle on the Hill’ for himself, he follows in the footsteps of Ed’s amazing journey from the boy who could barely hold a tune to the man who sold out Wembley Stadium. He tells the story of Ed’s remarkable mum and dad who gave their son the courage and confidence to pursue his dream, the friends and mentors who taught and encouraged him and the lovers who inspired his most famous songs.

Ed Sheeran was fifteen when he recorded his first album in his bedroom. But while he was well known for performing his own songs in local pubs and clubs before he was even old enough to drink, he was not ‘discovered’ or groomed for stardom. Instead he left High School before completing his A-Levels and moved to London where he went to college two days a week, performed hundreds of gigs on the capital’s thriving music scene and sold his self-financed CDs from his rucksack. At the end of the evening, he would head to friends’ flats to sleep on a sofa or on the floor. It was far from glamorous and sometimes the struggle threatened to overwhelm him. Somehow, Ed’s determination won through and his fortunes changed when he was taken on by Elton John’s management company.

Smith explores the joy of a record deal when past rejections were forgotten; the song that changed everything and how he conquered America with a little help from Taylor Swift. After three number one albums, he is now the biggest earning music star in the UK and the richest under thirty, worth more than £80 million. Surrounded by a world of excess, he found it difficult to cope with his phenomenal fame before a new relationship with a girl from his home town brought him stability and a fresh purpose in life.

Ed Sheeran the book is a fascinating and revealing insight into Ed Sheeran the man…and his music.

9780008267520 | Paperback | 320 pages | INR 699


(Featured image: George R.R. Martin [Courtesy: Getty Images])

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