RAISING SPARKS by Ariel Kahn
Raising Sparks is a magical-realist story set in Modern Israel. It reveals the hidden worlds, shared histories and unknown stories of the modern Middle East.
The story emanated from the tragedy of Ariel’s two close friends being killed in a bus explosion in the first intifada in Jerusalem where Ariel was studying.
Ariel started the first Arab-Israeli book club. The book club was re-launched on 26th September at Daunts Hampstead.
As Leone Ross says. ‘At the heart of this story is female rebellion: a young woman running towards her future, making her own rules.’
Malka Sabbatto is a young woman who flees the confines of her traditional family in Jerusalem, followed by Moshe, a Russian immigrant and her father’s top student. After falling in with a sinister cult in Safed she escapes to Jaffa where she starts to build a new life under the wing of an Arab chef. When she feels she has finally found contentment, a family tragedy forces her to return to Jerusalem.
Debut novelist, Ariel Kahn is a prize-winning writer and academic. He initially trained to be a rabbi in Israel, Ariel has won the Bloomsbury New Voices competition, the London Writing Competition.
He currently lives in North London with his partner and two children.
THE GALLOWS POLE by Benjamin Myers
An England divided. From his remote moorland home, David Hartley assembles a gang of weavers and land-workers to embark upon a criminal enterprise that will capsize the economy and become the biggest fraud in British history. They are the Cragg Vale Coiners and their business is ‘clipping’ – the forging of coins, a treasonous offence punishable by death. A charismatic leader, Hartley cares for the poor and uses violence and intimidation against his opponents. He is also prone to self-delusion and strange visions of mythical creatures. When excise officer William Deighton vows to bring down the Coiners and one of their own becomes turncoat, Hartley’s empire begins to crumble. With the industrial age set to change the face of England forever, the fate of his empire is under threat. Forensically assembled from historical accounts and legal documents, The Gallows Pole is a true story of resistance that combines poetry, landscape, crime and historical fiction, whose themes continue to resonate. Here is a rarely-told alternative history of the North.
“Powerful, visceral writing, historical fiction at its best. Benjamin Myers is one to watch.”
– Pat Barker;
“A phenomenal and highly energised novel.’ Sebastian Barry;
“From the half-forgotten history of northern working men on the brink of the Industrial Revolution, Myers has unearthed a powerful story which he tells with great vigour.” – The Sunday Times;
“This powerful novel is as darkly lovely as Emily Bronte’s work” – Joanne Harris;
“A brilliant, extraordinary book.” – Mary Anne Hobbs, 6 Music;
“A roaring furnace of a novel. In telling a big story about a small place, Benjamin Myers portrays social upheavals which have a sharp contemporary echo, as well as bringing to light a little-known and fascinating fragment of rural English history…he meets the challenge for every author of historical fiction – bringing alive the past and speaking forcefully to the readers of today” – Judges – WALTER SCOTT Prize 2018.