Books

Please select a book to read about.

Poetry

Sir Gawain & the Green Knight and Pearl    Christos: Lovesong of the Son of Man    Bagatelles    White    Sonnets to Ganymede   Leaving The Easy City    Fyodor Tyutchev – Selected Poems    Illuminations. Rimbaud    Selected Poems: Revised and New    Origins    Through the Looking Glass  •  Rimbaud Revisited & Une Saison en Enfer  •  The Cosmographs    Paziols: Living in the Land of the Cathars    Blizzard  A Life Spanning a Century      The Portrait Gallery    A Mouthful of Stars    Papering Over the Cracks    Other People    Breach: the Art of Commons    Day Return    Fiesta    On the Edge    First Cut    Closer to the Edge

Non-Fiction

In Search of France’s Green Meridian    Merely a Festival    When the Water Speaks: A Memoir of Ibiza    Fyodor Tyutchev – Selected Poems    A Garden Centre Calendar   Roger Martin du Gard, Moralist   Mike Oldfield – A Life Dedicated To Music    The Tormented Prince    Evolution and Delusional Jealousy    Mirror of the Soul. A Life of the Poet Fyodor Tyutchev    Paziols: Living in the Land of the Cathars    In Search of the Celts  Flute  A Life Spanning a Century    Arthur Symons, Leading Poet of the English Decadence    Joy, Light, Sorrow and Splendour    The Loving Scapegoat    Breach: the Art of Commons    Via Contemplativa, Via Activa    Rimbaud Revisited & Une Saison en Enfer    The Slippery are Very Crafty

Fiction

She was there in Spirit: And Other Strange Tales    The Divided Wood    The Sign: And Other Stories    The Old Woman of the Sea    Third Form at St. Claire’s    A Sound Like Angels Weeping    Dionysos’ Island    The Bloods of Space    The Sound of Silence  A Box of Chocolates: 50 Short Stories  •  Another Mouth Has Passed    Opening Gambit    Internal Memorandum    Diggers and Dreamers    The Foundling and Other Stories

Drama

The Reluctant Nuns    The Chosen One    The Traitor    The Brotherhood of Thieves

 

She was there in Spirit: And Other Strange Tales

by Geoffrey Martyn

She was there in Spirit: And Other Strange TalesGhosts, Strange Meetings, Visions of the Future and Unpleasant Surprises are amongst the themes of the thirteen stories in this volume… Read more

 

 

In Search of France’s Green Meridian: a serpentine cycle ride from Dunkirk to the Pyrenees

by Keith Walton

In Search of France’s Green MeridianIn 2000, to celebrate the Millennium, the Paris Meridian was designated la Méridienne verte, with thousands of trees to be planted along its length ‘establishing a strong relationship between new generations and the environment’, trailways were opened, and places of floral celebration. It was launched on Bastille Day, 2000, with la fête du Millenaire, a picnic in every commune along the length of the Meridian.

Intrigued to find out how this ‘green spine’, this new knitting-together of France, marked by trees now fifteen years grown, had developed, the author cycled it, from Dunkirk to the Pyrenees… Read more

 

 

Sir Gawain & the Green Knight and Pearl

by Gavin Bantock

Sir Gawain & the Green Knight and PearlThe two finest Middle-English poems newly rendered into modern English verse in an entirely original and eminently readable way… Read more

 

 

Merely a Festival

by Sue Evans and Adrienne Howell

Merely a Festival Merely a Festival tells the story of Mere Literary Festival in a fully-illustrated book that charts the progress, events, personalities and projects over two decades… Read more

 

 

Christos: Lovesong of the Son of Man

by Gavin Bantock

Christos: Lovesong of the Son of Man A strikingly unorthodox poetic account of the life of Jesus the Son of Man, of his soul-searching encounters with two co-protagonists – Johanan and Madelena, and of his harrowing struggle to make coherent, and to find expression for, the inspirational turmoil of his inner mind… Read more

 

 

The Divided Wood

by Keith Walton

The Divided Wood“The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge.”

A ruined splendour, a white wasteland … what has happened in the great wood?… Read more

 

When the Water Speaks: A Memoir of Ibiza

by Bonnie Cullen

When the Water Speaks: A Memoir of Ibiza When Bonnie Cullen arrives in 1976, the island of Ibiza is a backwater of post-Franco Spain, a place where farmers scythe by hand, leap over fires at Midsummer. Over the next four decades she will witness its transformation into the clubbing capital of the world… Read more

 

 

Bagatelles

by Gavin Bantock

Bagatelles A light-hearted collection of concrete poems based on music, mathematics & the alphabet. The majority of these were written on a single Christmas Eve during the mid 1970s using a simple typewriter on which all the complex line-spacings had to be calculated manually, the rest some forty years later on an Apple computer… Read more

 

White

by Gavin Bantock

White A collection of new poems based on the common theme of white, with occasional couplings to red and black… Read more

 

Sonnets to Ganymede

by Gavin Bantock

Sonnets to Ganymede A cycle of fourteen poems using the traditional sonnet form and slant rhyme (assonance), in which the author intertwines fiction, reality and intense emotion in an attempt to describe his feelings for the series of ‘Ganymedes‘ encountered or imagined over a period of some sixty years… Read more

 

The Sign: And Other Stories

by Yevgeny Zamyatin, Translated by John Dewey

The Sign: And Other StoriesYevgeny Zamyatin (1884-1937) is best known for his novel We, a major influence on Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four. Zamyatin’s dystopian vision of a totalitarian society of the future, written soon after the Russian Revolution, brought him into disfavour with the ruling Communist Party… Read more
 

Leaving The Easy City

by RJ Hansford

Leaving The Easy CityLeaving the Easy City is a collection of 35 poems (published posthumously) on the theme of wilderness, from hot deserts to the permafrost of Siberia… Read more
 

The Old Woman of the Sea

by Gavin Bantock

The Old Woman of the Sea Bruce Dinwiddy, twenty-three, an aspiring poet but innocent of the world, has been given permission by his father to stay at the family holiday house at the very edge of the sea. He has invited there his young friend Stephen Pewit, who at nineteen is already a failed child-prodigy, a drop-out and an incorrigible rebel… Read more

 

Third Form at St. Claire’s

by Gavin Bantock, writing as Enid Bantock

Third Form at St. Claire’s A wacky Enid Blyton Spoof. A girls’ boarding school with a big, big difference. By far the funniest book of the series… Read more

 

Fyodor Tyutchev – Selected Poems

by John Dewey

Fyodor Tyutchev - Selected PoemsThe lyric verse of FYODOR TYUTCHEV (1803 – 1873), one of the treasures of Russian literature, remains largely unknown in the English-speaking world. This generous new selection of 100 of his poems, in verse translations by John Dewey, offers a rewarding insight into the work of a great poet… Read more


 

Illuminations. Rimbaud

by Robert Yates

Illuminations. RimbaudIn Illuminations, Arthur Rimbaud (1854-1891) perfected the art of the French prose poem, eschewing the formalism of Bertrand’s Gaspard de la Nuit and the diffuseness of Baudelaire’s Le Spleen de Paris to create hallucinatory pieces, informed by the occult sciences and possessing genuine poetic tension… Read more
 

A Garden Centre Calendar:

Choosing the right plant for your garden at the right time

by Marilyn Norvell

A Garden Centre CalendarThe purpose of this book is to help customers at the garden centre make informed choices, when face with rows and rows of plants and seasonal delights. Getting started from scratch is buying some plants you like at the right time of the year. Every month at the garden centre will astonish you… Read more
 

Selected Poems: Revised and New

by Jenny Johnson

Selected Poems: Revised and NewThe poems in this selection range from the very spare to the very intricate. They have been written over a period of nearly forty years, but Johnson has not arranged them chronologically. The reason for this is that there are some poems that are quite unlike the others created just before them – as though they were heralds of a distant future… Read more
 

Roger Martin du Gard, Moralist

by John E Garrod

Roger Martin du Gard, MoralistRoger Martin du Gard won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1937. Although not strictly speaking a biography, this book illuminates Martin du Gard`s attitudes towards creativity, religion, politics, health, life and death, sexuality, marriage, friendship and his personal values… Read more
 

A Sound Like Angels Weeping

by Jeremy Hilton

A Sound Like Angels WeepingAysha, a very troubled and damaged girl in the care system and approaching adolescence, is befriended by Katy, a university student, and her dog Greg. As the relationship develops, Aysha’s two half-sisters and members of Katy’s extended family become part of the narrative, and in a remote cottage in the west of Scotland, an ex-alcoholic retired teacher leading a semi-reclusive existence receives a letter which will change his life for ever, and will ultimately have a profound impact on the lives of everyone in the novel… Read more
 

Mike Oldfield – A Life Dedicated To Music

by Chris Dewey

Mike Oldfield – A Life Dedicated To MusicAn account by This biography documents Mike Oldfield’s career through information gathered in interviews during the author’s 27 years producing Oldfield fan magazines.Read more
 

The Tormented Prince

by J Leigh Hirst

The Tormented PrinceAn account by Canadian author J Leigh Hirst of the life and writings of Mark Holloway. Mark, who was married to Victoria Strachey, belonged to the literary pub and club scene that flourished in Soho from the 1930s to 1950sRead more
 

Dionysos’ Island

by Keith Walton

Dionysos' IslandIn 1971 two young men, dissatisfied with their lives, head for Greece on the long land and sea journey. Richard, recovering after a traumatic affair with a student revolutionary, is hoping to recuperate in its classical calm and sun-filled clarity, while Simon seeks to empty himself in mountain walking… Read more
 

The Bloods of Space

by Stephen Owen

The Bloods of SpaceOut there in the Galaxy, other human races exist. The Bloods of Space is a story of these
other races, their politics, technology, and search for freedom…Read more

 

 

Origins

by Sebastian Hayes

Origins “What are we? Where do we come from? Where are we going?” These are the questions that the author has spent most of his life pondering, and these terse poems, some in traditional forms (sonnet, sestina), some in free verse, are a summary of his conclusions… Read more

 

The Reluctant Nuns

by Sebastian Hayes

The Reluctant Nuns Two beautiful young women from the minor gentry are entered, against their will, as novices in Shaftesbury Abbey before their father goes off to join the Fourth Crusade. Follow the professional jouster, Sir William of Palermo, and his troubadour companion, Sir Roger de Purbeck, as they attempt to extricate Angelina and Laurentia de Melbury from “the squinting walls of a provincial nunnery” and transport them to “a place of surety in sunny Sicily”… Read more

 

 

The Sound of Silence

by Clive Russell

The Sound of SilenceAuriferous Ore, a gold-bearing material, was first found in Queensland at Canoona in 1858. The prospecting area rapidly expanded and when the Nashville Rush started in 1867 at Gympie, it came as a relief from the fierce depression raging in the State at the time.

William Hann, originally from Wiltshire, was appointed by the Governor in an attempt to supervise the fledgling industry, and he himself found gold at the Palmer River in 1872. By 1880 most of the gold was being mined by companies, although many individuals still searched, and hoped, and died, while places like Charters Tors (later Charters Towers) became immensely rich centres of industry.

However one of the independent mines, south of Charters Tors and worked by an extreme religious sect, was doing very well, until in 1886 an explosion… Read more

 

 

Through the Looking Glass

by David Andrew

Through the Looking GlassI have been writing poetry that I’d been happy to read out in public for about fifty years. The earliest poem in Through the Looking Glass that I can definitely date was written in the severe winter of 1962/3 (‘Delirium in Winter’). The sequence at the end (‘Gone Away’) in 2007/8. If I am pleased about an aspect of my work it is its range… Read more

 

Rimbaud Revisited & Une Saison en Enfer,

A new translation

by Sebastian Hayes

Rimbaud’s Une Saison en EnferThis is a very readable new translation of the famous French writer’s most important work complete with extensive much needed Notes and a long essay on Rimbaud, interpreted in the light of twentieth century social and political movements… Read more

 

Evolution and Delusional Jealousy

by Syed Shah

Evolution and Delusional JealousyThis book aims to see if jealousy and a pathological variant, delusional jealousy, can be understood from an evolutionary point of view. This is with the aim of trying to explain why we see it today and to understand why it presents in the way that it does… Read more

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Mirror of the Soul. A Life of the Poet Fyodor Tyutchev

by John Dewey

Mirror of the SoulFyodor Tyutchev (1803-73) was a contemporary of Pushkin and is widely considered his equal as a lyric poet. This new biography tells the story of a fascinating life and personality as reflected in the poems, presented here in the author’s own verse translations… Read more

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The Cosmographs

by Stephen Owen

The Cosmographs deal, in part, with the dominant Archetype of Christianity. How does the West move forward? The West is arrogant and consumerist. Nature is seen as an exploitable machine. This is wrong. Lyrical Nature goes unperceived by 90% of Western urbanized humankind… Read more

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Paziols: Living in the Land of the Cathars

by Pam Kelly and Keiron Pearce

Paziols: Living in the Land of the CatharsWe are in Languedoc, land of the Cathars and the troubadours. A place of courtly love, dark deeds and ancient secret mysteries. A place where lived a peaceful and tolerant, simple-living people who were tortured and burnt at the stake for their belief that the material world was an evil sham and that the spiritual world was the true reality… Read more

 

 

In Search of
the Celts

by John H Pollard

In Search of the CeltsOne
of the great mysteries of the last 2,500 years is: where did the people
known as the Celts originate? In this book John Pollard adds his intuition
and many hours of patient research to archaeological evidence to assemble
a plausible answer… Read
more

 

 

A Box of Chocolates:
50 Short Stories

by Various Authors. Foreword by Fay Weldon.

A Box of Chocolates: 50 Short StoriesThe
fifty stories in this book were all entries in Shaftesbury Arts Centre’s
first short story competition, held in the autumn of 2008. The competition
was meant for adults, and most of the thirty-six adult entries are in this
book, but sixteen children also entered, the youngest just six years old.
Their stories are also here… Read
more

 

 

Flying into the
Blizzard

by RJ Hansford

Flying into the BlizzardThis
collection is concerned with the poet as ‘maker’, and explores
craftsmanship, nationality, and the spiritual experience… Read
more

 

Another Mouth
Has Passed

by JC Sledge

Another Mouth Has PassedThere
is a proposal to build a social housing development in the attractive village
of Horton Fence. This is not going down too well with some members of the
community, notably the more elderly and affluent ones.

As the project progresses, it gives rise to all manner of events and memories.
Some of them are rather less than welcome… Read
more

 

 

Flute

by Richard Adeney

FluteA
candid and entertaining account of his life and achievements by one of
the country’s most distinguished orchestral musicians. Flute gives
an honest portrayal of the ups and downs of a professional musician’s
life, and is full of anecdotes about many of the “big names” in
20th century music… Read more

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Richard Adeney’s biography

 

Opening Gambit

by Clive Russell

Opening GambitAn
oilcloth package, discovered at a boot-fair, leads the Narrator into a
story of a churchmouse who stows away in the portmanteau of Cardinal Campeggio.
He was the absentee Bishop of Salisbury, a fast talker but slow doer, who
the Pope had selected to act as Papal Legate at the divorce hearing of… Read
more

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Clive Russell’s biography

 

A Life Spanning a Century

by Dorothy Mules née Tabb

A Life Spanning a Century Reminiscences,
short poems and occasional pieces from a well liked Shaftesbury woman whose
life covered almost the whole of the twentieth century… Read
more

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Dorothy Mules’ biography

 

The Portrait Gallery

by Sebastian Hayes

The Portrait Gallery A
striking array of male and female personages, some historical, some
fictitious, bare their souls in a taut series of dramatic monologues… Read
more

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Sebastian Hayes’ biography

 

A Mouthful of Stars

by Sylvia Oldroyd

A Mouthful of StarsA
collection of 58 poems taking a lyrical look at a variety of life’s
facets: including language and music, New Forest places and wildlife,
family relationships, travels in Europe and world events; beginning
with the elements and ending with time and the universe… Read
more

Sylvia
Oldroyd’s biography

 

Papering Over the Cracks

by Pam Kelly

Papering Over the CracksA
wry and sometimes painful look at how we complete the jigsaw of our lives
and gradually put all the broken pieces back together… Read
more

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Pam Kelly’s biography

 

Arthur Symons, Leading Poet of the English
Decadence

by Sebastian Hayes

Arthur Symons, Leading Poet of the English Decadence During
the Eighteen Eighties Arthur Symons, the ‘English Verlaine’,
dominated the literary scene but has since then disappeared without a trace.
Sebastian Hayes argues that he deserves to be remembered for his musical,
precise and deeply felt poems and as a precursor of the Imagist movement.  Read
more

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Joy, Light, Sorrow and Splendour

by Chris Irven

Joy, Light, Sorrow and SplendourThe
Benedictine monk introducing this book describes it as ‘the most
profound and searching series of meditations on the rosary that I know.’ Lightly
combining theological insight with a human touch it engages heart and mind
page after page. Far from constraining the reader to follow a rigid form
of words it positively encourages the imagination to explore unhurried
the events in the life of Jesus, drawing one into the story like a novel.
The 200 separate thoughts are gathered into 20 packets called mysteries,
each beautifully illustrated in colour, providing a meditation that can
last from 15 minutes to an hour depending on mood and time available… Read
more

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Chris Irven’s biography

 

The Loving Scapegoat

by Chris Irven

The Loving ScapegoatIn
its use of English and its coloured illustrations this book offers a Stations
of the Cross in a direct and down-to-earth style. Following the journey
of Jesus from Pilate’s Pavement to the Place of the Skull it explores
the thoughts and feelings of the man who was also the Son of God. But we
the reader find ourselves in the shoes of those he met on his way – from
Pilate who sentenced him, to the escort commander, to Simon the stranger,
the compassionate women, the brigand dying beside him, the Centurion – each
brought into sharp self-awareness by briefly encountering this extraordinary
condemned man. Not a book for those unwilling to be challenged, The Loving
Scapegoat snaps sound theology into its rightful place in today’s
world.… Read more

Chris Irven’s biography

 

Other People

by Pam Kelly

Other PeopleOther
People
” is about innocence and experience and how our lives
are shaped and changed by the people that we meet. It starts with the
author’s childhood as a war baby and ends with the question we
all ask ourselves — what if it had all been different? Read
more

Pam Kelly’s biography

 

Breach: the Art
of Commons

By Catherine Simmonds, Rachel Sargent, Justin Orwin and Keith Walton

Breach: the Art of Commons The
Art of Commons is the response of four artists – a poet, a painter,
a photographer and a prose writer – to a Dorset Common (Breach Common,
Shaftesbury) over a six month period from the shortest day of the
year to the longest.  Read
more

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Simmonds et al biography

 

Via Contemplativa,
Via Activa

by Sebastian Hayes

Via Contemplativa, Via Activa “What
is this life if full of care,

We have no time to stand and stare.”

Present Western society has become all bustle, noise, travel and competitiveness.
Is this a good thing?  Read
more

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Sebastian Hayes’ biography

 

Day Return

by MC Wood

Day ReturnWith 44 poems, ‘Day Return‘ covers the range of human experience,
from birth to death, from humour to sadness… Read
more

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MC Wood’s biography

 

Fiesta

by Pam Kelly

FiestaBy
the author of On the Edge. Poems of varied mood and content written in
Andalucia in April and May 2007… Read
more

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Pam Kelly’s biography

 

On the Edge

by Pam Kelly

On the Edge20
poems about how one woman sees life, love, sex and death
in the 21st century, On the Edge takes reverent and irreverent looks at the way
postmodern Britain
shapes our lives. Personal, tragic, witty and thoughtful,
the poems cover… Read
more

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Pam Kelly’s biography

 

Internal Memorandum

by JC Sledge

Internal MemorandumThere
are hopes, achievements and frustrations at work, just as there are in
our personal lives. What goes on in one aspect of our lives is bound to
have an influence on what happens in the other.

As Martin Brown finds out… Read
more

JC
Sledge’s biography

 

The Slippery are Very Crafty

by David Grierson

The Slippery are Very CraftyAt
a time when China is rarely out of the western media, we have here an opportune
and personal perspective on life in the mighty People’s Republic – a
country that never fails to fascinate, bewilder, beguile and, from time
to time, frighten as well… Read
more

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David Grierson’s biography

 

Diggers and Dreamers

by Keith Walton

Diggers and DreamersRural
Languedoc. The South of France. Summer 1976.

‘There is another world, but it is in this one’— and
the characters in this novel, in their different ways, mean to find it… Read
more

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Keith Walton’s biography

 

First Cut

by Keith Walton

The First CutThe
39 poems, a selection from the work of several years, range widely,
from the precisely-observed descriptive to the philosophical, from
the lyrical to the (subtly) polemical, from moments captured to stories
told… Read
more

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Keith Walton’s biography

 

The Chosen One

by Sebastian Hayes

The Chosen OneA
group of middle class intellectuals accompanied by a mysterious
South American visitor have just ended an informal dinner
party and to pass the time start a session of Ouija. The
men present sabotage the attempt though one or two garbled
messages start coming through. Then everything starts to
go wrong… Read more

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Sebastian Hayes’
biography

 

The Foundling and Other Stories

by Sebastian Hayes

The FoundlingThirteen
remarkable tales in which you encounter a girl with gull’s
feet, a talking pheasant, a cave of nothing, a universe in
creation, a prince imprisoned in a garden of earthly delights…
They recall at once traditional folk tales, Calvino’s
clever reworkings, biblical and Gnostic parables, creation
myths… Each story is thought-provoking and hugely
entertaining.

View
Sebastian Hayes’ biography

 

The Traitor

by Arnold Hinchliffe

The TraitorIs
it better to fight against an oppressive regime, or to collaborate
with it in order to gain a position from which one can do
a little good? This is the dilemma explored in Arnold Hinchliffe’s
last play… Read more

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Arnold Hinchliffe’s biography

 

The Brotherhood of Thieves

by Arnold Hinchliffe

The Brotherhood of ThievesLondon
1776 “Man is born free but is everywhere in chains” (J-J
Rousseau). In America the colonists have just raised the
flag of revolt while in France the tottering ancien
régime
is nearing its end.
In London, magnificent and miserable London, a formidably
well-organised band of thieves led by Ne’er Hang Jack,
terrorise the wealthy, combining violence with deep revolutionary
convictions… Read more

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Arnold Hinchliffe’s biography

Closer to the Edge

by Pam Kelly

Closer to the Edge“It is time, I think, to break the silence and take a hard look at what has become the last taboo, i.e. talking about death”… Read more

View Pam Kelly’s biography