How To Be a Woman, by Caitlin Moran (Winner)
1913 – Suffragette throws herself under the King’s horse.
1969 – Feminists storm Miss World.
NOW – Caitlin Moran rewrites The Female Eunuch from a bar stool and demands to know why pants are getting smaller.
There’s never been a better time to be a woman: we have the vote and the Pill, and we haven’t been burnt as witches since 1727. However, a few nagging questions do remain…
Why are we supposed to get Brazilians? Should you get Botox? Do men secretly hate us? What should you call your vagina? Why does your bra hurt? And why does everyone ask you when you’re going to have a baby?
Part memoir, part rant, Caitlin Moran answers these questions and more in How To Be A Woman – following her from her terrible 13th birthday (‘I am 13 stone, have no friends, and boys throw gravel at me when they see me’) through adolescence, the workplace, strip-clubs, love, fat, abortion, TopShop, motherhood and beyond.
Madeleine, by Kate McCann
‘The decision to publish this book has been very difficult, and taken with heavy hearts … My reason for writing it is simple: to give an account of the truth … Writing this memoir has entailed recording some very personal, intimate and emotional aspects of our lives. Sharing these with strangers does not come easily to me, but if I hadn’t done so I would not have felt the book gave as full a picture as it is possible for me to give. As with every action we have taken over the last four years, it ultimately boils down to whether what we are doing could help us to find Madeleine. When the answer to that question is yes, or even possibly, our family can cope with anything …
What follows is an intensely personal account, and I make no apology for that …
Nothing is more important to us than finding our little girl.’
Kate McCann, May 2011
Map of a Nation, by Rachel Hewitt
Map of a Nation tells the story of the creation of the Ordnance Survey map – the first complete, accurate, affordable map of the British Isles. The Ordnance Survey is a much beloved British institution, and Map of a Nation is, amazingly, the first popular history to tell the story of the map and the men who dreamt and delivered it. The Ordnance Survey’s history is one of political revolutions, rebellions and regional unions that altered the shape and identity of the United Kingdom over the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. It’s also a deliciously readable account of one of the great untold British adventure stories, featuring intrepid individuals lugging brass theodolites up mountains to make the country visible to itself for the first time.
The Good, The Bad and The Multiplex, by Mark Kermode
The Good, The Bad and the Multiplex takes us into the belly of the movie-industry beast asking: ‘What’s wrong with the modern movie business – and how can we make it right?’ Outspoken, opinionated and hilariously funny, this book will win over a whole new generation of film buffs.
Wonders of the Universe, by Brian Cox
Professor Brian Cox is back with another insightful and mind-blowing journey through both space and time to show you something of unimaginable age and size: 13.7 billion years old, 93 billion light years across and filled with over 100 billion galaxies, each containing hundreds of billions of stars.
Brian shows how the vast and unfathomable phenomena of deep space can be explained, and even experienced, by re-examining the familiar here on Earth, bringing the whole incredible and unfathomable Universe back down to Earth.
History of the World in 100 Objects, by Neil MacGregor
Drawing on Neil MacGregor’s landmark radio series, this book takes a dramatically original approach to the history of humanity, using objects which previous civilisations have left behind them, often accidentally, as prisms through which we can explore past worlds and the lives of the men and women who lived in them. The book’s range is enormous. It begins with one of the earliest surviving objects made by human hands, a chopping tool from the Olduvai gorge in Africa, and ends with an object from the 21st century which represents the world we live in today.
Neil MacGregor’s aim is not simply to describe these remarkable things, but to show us their significance. Each chapter immerses the reader in a past civilisation accompanied by an exceptionally well-informed guide. Seen through this lens, history is a kaleidoscope – shifting, interconnected, constantly surprising, and shaping our world today in ways that most of us have never imagined. An intellectual and visual feast, it is one of the most engrossing and unusual history books published in years
About the Galaxy National Book Awards
The gala ceremony, recorded at the Mandarin Oriental was hosted by comedian (and author of Tickling the English in 2010) Dara O Briain and actress Helen Baxendale. The Awards showcase the best of British publishing and celebrate titles that boast both wide popular appeal and critical acclaim. Produced by Cactus TV, the Awards are to be broadcast over six weeks of national TV programming, BOOKED – Stars of the Galaxy National Book Awards will air on 13th November and run until 18th December on More4. Each show will include features on each of the winners and in-depth interviews with the season’s biggest celebrity authors, including Katie Price, Rob Brydon and Jason Manford.
From Saturday 5th November, the public are invited to vote online for the Galaxy Book of the Year, the nominees of which comprise winners of all eleven categories. Last year’s winner of the overall accolade, One Day, by David Nicholls recorded over 300% sales growth during December 2010, going on to become the biggest selling paperback of 2011 along with a Hollywood film release. Who will triumph this year?