A shiny new book that opens to reveal an entrancing read...could there be a greater bibliophile treat? In this spirit, Shiny New Books has launched this week: an independent quarterly online magazine edited by some of Britain's most respected book bloggers. "At Shiny New Books, we think a bookshop isn’t necessarily the first place you want to hear about a new book, and that anticipating books, whether by new or established authors, is a particular readerly pleasure."
As well as reviews, the magazine will also feature interviews and posts by authors, explaining the background to forthcoming releases and giving a glimpse behind the scenes of the writing process. I'm delighted to say that I'm among those authors in the inaugural edition that features some prestigious names, including Sebastian Barry, Jill Dawson and Helen Oyeyemi. You can follow this link to the piece I wrote about an unexpectedly moving event during high season in Provence.
There's so much to read, with articles ranging from re-issues and a translation of the biography of Tove Janssen, to a masterly assessment of Emile Zola that I guarantee you won't be able to stop at one. The introduction to Zola - to mark Penguin's publication of a selection of his novels that have not been in translation for more than a hundred years - by Victoria Best, shows us exactly how high the standard is and why this new venture is likely to produce some of the best literary criticism you are likely to find anywhere.