Jason Morgan Elizabeth Fullerton Jeremy Hackett Ed Burstell Kate Sundara Alex Andreou Jem Lester Kathryn Alton Louise Mangos Tony Edwards Janet Todd Jamie Bartlett Natasha Garnett John Bromley-Davenport Lara Silverstone Kate Bevan Laura Tisdall Sarah Vincent Emily Chappell Nikki Owen James Miller Helen Rappaport Gill Wyness Barney Norris Richard Maher Vanessa Manko Adam White Catherine Chanter Deborah Meyler Andrew Zurcher Jake and Victor Maymudes Jessica Fellowes Edward Young Spela Strukelj Michael Halperin David Varela Jonathan Goodwin Daniel Stevens Eamonn Griffin Gilly Macmillan Gaylene Gould Selina Mills Ruby Wax Celia Imrie Revd Richard Coles Gareth Rubin Maxine Clark Graham Masterton Beryl Kingston Buffalo Pictures (Doc Martin) Dr. Elizabeth Foyster David Francis Xenobe Purvis Iman Verjee Jill Glenn Lisa Eldridge Bryony Gordon J. Kent Messum Cath Bore Poppy Campbell Robert Elms Cecilia Ekbäck Joanne Strasser Matthew Specktor John Gordon Sinclair The Gentle Author Brian Cathcart Paul Conroy Daisy Goodwin Michael Waterhouse Paula Weideger Georgie Thompson Professor Simon Schama Peter Hain Gus Casely-Hayford Aoife Walsh Neal Street Productions Michael Winner Amanda Prowse David Heathcoat-Amory Phil Hardy Maria Anderson Kishwar Desai Jesse Norman MP Rachel de Thame Tom Wilkinson Sheena Byrom Hanna Jameson Carnival Films (Downton Abbey) Harriet Sergeant Michael Heppell David Blakeley Kriss Russman Peter Sissons Sir Alistair Horne Professor Sir Peter Hall Patricia Leroy Richard Foreman Silvena Rowe Kaushy Patel Wade Davis General Sir John Wilsey Derry Moore Clive Aslet Harry Benson Phil Campion Richard Charlton Mark Dawson Lorraine Gamman Glenn Hayes John Lahutsky Ebony McKenna Lucy Lord Peter Moore James Palumbo Allison Pearson Mark Pearson Mary Quant K.A.S Quinn Sarah Raven John Rendall Mark Rice-Oxley Geoffrey Robertson Jill Shaw Ruddock Sean Ryan Robert Sackville-West Laura Santtini Samantha Scott-Jeffries Roger Scruton James Shepherd-Barron Silver River Productions William Sitwell Helen Slavin Joan Smith Norman Stone John Sweeney Niall Williams Jeanette Winterson Jonathan Zittrain Sandy Nairne Karl Miller Shireen Jilla Simon Kelner Deborah Mattinson David Linley (Viscount Linley) Twiggy Lawson Lieutenant General Sir Barney White-Spunner Ion Trewin Patrick Tilley Simon King Professor Lord Skidelsky Sir Tim Rice Christine Webber Rt Hon Lord Patten of Barnes Philip Norman Michael Nicholson Nicholas Mosley Russell Miller Professor David McLellan Sunny Jacobs and Peter Pringle Christopher Martin-Jenkins Fiona MacCarthy Tony Lewis Angela Huth Annabel Howard Martin Langfield Harriet Harvey-Wood Professor Henry Kamen Hammer Films Rt Hon Lord Hurd of Westwell Baroness Susan Greenfield Sandra Howard Philip Hook Lynda Gratton Peter Florence Rt Hon Lord Heseltine Rt Hon Lord Healey of Riddlesden David Loyn Mike Dowling Max Hastings Tony Fitzjohn Rt Hon William Hague Damien Lewis Ffion Hague David Gentleman General Sir David Fraser Ilana Fox Karen Dolby Professor M.R.D. Foot David Faber Dr Christopher Duffy Terry Coleman Alex Chance Professor Christopher Bellamy Louise Bagshawe Rt Hon Lord Ashdown Neal Ascherson Charlie Ellingworth Rowan Walker Mark Diacono Maria Eitel E B Peirse Roland Vernon Maureen Lindley Leander Deeny David Davies Matthew d'Ancona Xanthe Clay Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles Hugh Cornwell Marianne Curley Francis Cottam Liz Jones Jackie Clune Jonathan Franklin Paul Burke Nick Weston Colonel Stuart Tootal Alec Russell Glyn Prysor Pauline Prescott George Obama Brian Moynahan Adrian Fort Lord (Sebastian) Coe Evgenia Citkowitz Caroline Charles Emma Calder Rosie Boycott Pattie Boyd Peter Bowles Kay Burley Richard Attenborough Sarah Winman Marius Brill Alan Philps Bear Grylls Patrick Bishop Jimmy Burns
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History of the Rain on Book at Bedtime

Niall WilliamsHistory of the Rain will be this week’s Book at Bedtime on Radio 4 this week. Starting tonight at 10:45 PM, and continuing every weeknight until Friday 25th, we will follow Ruth Swain, voiced by Ailish Symons, as she searches for her father in the books he left behind.

History of the Rain by Niall Williams, on Book at Bedtime April 2014 Radio 4

Broadcasting Press Guild Awards nominations

We are delighted that Simon Schama’s The Story of the Jews (BBC Two) is nominated for Best Documentary Series at the Broadcasting Press Guild Awards 2014 today along with Nev Wilshire’s The Call Centre (BBC Three).


Jesse Norman longlisted for the Orwell Prize

The contenders for the Orwell Prize have just been announced, and we are pleased to announce that Jesse Norman‘s Edmund Burke is one of them.

Fourteen books were chosen out of 235 entries, and (for the Journalism Prize), 15 journalists from 167 entries. The judges for the 2014 Book Prize are Sue MacGregorRobert McCrum, andTrevor Phillips, and those for Journalism are Paul AndersonRobin Lustig, and Michael Parks.


The full list of contenders for the book prize is:

Gaiutra Bahadur, COOLIE WOMAN (Hurst)
Frank Dikotter, THE TRAGEDY OF LIBERATION (Bloomsbury)
Shereen El Feki, SEX AND THE CITADEL (Chatto)
Ahmed Errachidi, THE GENERAL (Chatto)
James Fergusson, THE WORLD’S MOST DANGEROUS PLACE (Bantam Press)
David Goodhart, THE BRITISH DREAM (Atlantic)
Jay Griffiths, KITH: THE RIDDLE OF THE CHILDSCAPE (Hamish Hamilton)
Alan Johnson, THIS BOY (Bantam Press)
Catherine Merridale, THE RED FORTRESS (Allen Lane)
Jesse Norman, EDMUND BURKE (William Collins)
David Runciman, THE CONFIDENCE TRAP (Princeton UP)
Simon Sebag Montefiore, ONE NIGHT IN WINTER (Century)
Alison Wolf, THE XX FACTOR (Profile)

Allison Pearson: Intelligence Squared Debate in Hong Kong

Allison Pearson, author of I Don’t Know How She Does It, took part in the Intelligence Squared Asia debate “The Hand that Rocks the Cradle cannot Rock the Boardroom” with Debora Spar, current president of Barnard College, in Hong Kong last week.

Standing in opposition to Allison and Debora were Zhang Xin and Helena Morrisey CBE.

Watch the lively and energetic debate here:


Our Sunday Times Best Sellers

This week, two of our clients’ wonderful novels topped the Sunday Times Best Seller charts:

Max Hastings Ruby Wax Sunday Times Best Sellers

Max Hasting‘s Catastrophe: Europe Goes To War, a chronicle of the build-up to and first few months of the Great War, holds the 5th place on the hardbacks’ list; and Ruby Wax‘s Sane New World, explaining how to break free from anxiety and stress, is 9th on the paperbacks’ list.

Tessa Evelegh - Steve Peters

Tessa Everleigh‘s The Great British Sewing Bee and Dr Steve PetersThe Chimp Paradox are also doing extremely well, respectively at the 3rd and 10th places on the Nielsen BookScan charts.

The Bookseller Industry Awards 2014 nominations

We are pleased to announce that our very own Rachel Mills has been shortlisted for the Bookseller Industry Rights Professional of the Year Award for the second year running, as the only literary agent in her category! The full list of nominees can be seen on The Bookseller’s website.

Rachel Mills literary agent foreign rights at Peters Fraser and Dunlop agency

Simenon Roundup

Il Porto Delle NebbieL'impiccato di Saint-Pholien


Georges Simenon’s audiobooks have proved to be a tremendous success. The first two Maigret audiobooks in Italian reached the top of the iTunes chart as the ‘most downloaded audiobooks’ in Italy. iTunes sold around 1,500 copies of Il porto delle nebbie (Port of Shadows) and L’impiccato di Saint-Pholien (The Hanged Man of Saint-Pholien.) The audiobooks also received great coverage on the Rolling Stone website. Two more audiobooks, Pietr the Latvian and The Yellow Dog, will be released in Italian in March. The audiobooks of Pietr the Latvian, The Late Monsieur Gallet and The Hanged Man of Saint-Pholien can also be ordered in English.


Meanwhile, Ann Cleves from The Guardian wrote a superb review this week on Simenon’s The Hanged Man of Saint-Pholien. The article titled Top 10 crime novels in translation talked of learning about a country’s preoccupations and cultures by reading its popular fiction, Simenon’s Inspector Maigret collection being among the top 10 novels having achieved this.
‘I loved the exotic setting of Parisian bars and run-down hotels, the economic storytelling, Maigret’s understanding of the frailty of men and women whatever their social status. I could have chosen any of the novels, but this one illustrates the detective’s compassion for the desperate and downtrodden and has just been re-issued.’

Christmas News Round-Up

Jeanette Winterson

Winterson Author Phot1

The wonderful Jeanette Winterson appeared on Any Questions Friday. In case you missed her storming appearance, you can catch it here.

Rachel de Thame


Rachel de Thame was busy promoting Great British Garden Revival this past week. Rachel appeared on BBC Radio 2′s Breakfast Show with Chris Evans, you can listen to it here (at 1:46:00).

Great British Garden Revival was shown on BBC2 on Thursday 12th December, it was watched by an average of 1.34 million and peaked at 2.44 million. If you missed it, you can catch-up here.

Nev Wilshire

Nev Awards

The final repeat of The Call Centre aired on BBC3 on Thursday night in preparation for the Christmas Special, which will air this week. You can catch-up on the series here.

Georges Simenon


There was amazing coverage for Georges Simenon’s new Italian audio editions in Rolling Stones Italy and in Italy’s national newspapers.

More Christmas Picks


A wonderful start to the week for PFD as a result of this weekend’s papers! Here is a selection of our books that made it into the 2013 round-ups…

Matthew D’Ancona

in it together

Rachel Sylvester in The Saturday Times chose Matthew D’Ancona’s In It Together as one of her books of the year. It was also picked as one of the best politics books of the year by the Saturday Guardian.

EVENT Magazine, the Mail on Sunday


The Mail on Sunday’s EVENT magazine chose Max Hastings’ Catastrophe: Europe goes to War 1914 as one of its History picks and also featured Max Hastings and Simon Schama talking about their favourite books of the year.


story cata


Ben Shephard in The Observer recommended both Simon Schama and Max Hastings in his History picks.

Below are some highlights of reviews for both books:

“Max Hastings easily saw off his rivals in the battle for the first world war centenary market, which took place a year ahead of schedule. His Catastrophe: Europe goes to War 1914 was old-fashioned military history, shamefully readable and spiced up with jibes at the defence policy of Blair and Brown.”

The Story of the Jews: Finding the Words, 1000BCE-1492CE found him [Simon Schama] at his best…the extraordinary breadth of Schama’s learning, wisdom and humanity was allowed to shine through.”

Cameron Gives Disraeli as Gift


During his trade trip to China on Monday evening, David Cameron presented Premier Li with a copy of Douglas Hurd and Edward Young’s extraordinary biography, Disraeli.

Disraeli was one of several biographies which Prime Minister gave to Premier Li and his wife Cheng Hong. The gifts were described in detail in both The Huffington Post and The Daily Mail.




Liz Jones speaks at Local Charity Event

Liz jones

We are delighted to report that our fabulous Liz Jones was Guest Speaker at the Cherry Lodge Cancer Care Ladies Lunch last Friday. More than 80 women attended the lunch at Old Fold Golf Club in Barnet. 

As well as speaking about her experiences in the fashion industry, Liz also spoke about her incredible new book Girl Least Likely To: 30 years of fashion, fasting and Fleet Street, which will be released in paperback in February 

The Fundraiser raised over £2000 for a very worthy cause!



Broadcast Awards 2014

jonathan goodwin

We’re pleased to report that Jonathan Goodwin’s DANGERMAN: THE INCREDIBLE MR. GOODWIN (Objective/BBC Worldwide for Watch) is shortlisted for Best International Programme Sales at the 2014 Broadcast Awards, with the likes of DOCTOR WHO and THE GREAT BRITISH BAKE OFF.

Nev Awards

Nev Wilshire’s THE CALL CENTRE (BBC Wales for BBC3 & BBC1) is also shortlisted for Best Multichannel Programme along with A YOUNG DOCTOR’S NOTEBOOK.

The awards ceremony is on Wednesday 5th February at Grosvenor House and you can view the full shortlist here: .

Award Winners


The wonderful Allison Pearson won Columnist of the Year at the Comment Awards 2013. Allison faced strong competition from Caitlin Moran and Hugo Rifkind, but ultimately came out on top.


Meanwhile Mark Diacono  has won Best Book Photographer of the Year in the Garden Media Guild Awards 2013 for My Cool Allotment.

NEWS ROUND-UP - Christmas Picks


story cata

Catastrophe by Max Hastings and The Story of the Jews  by Simon Schama were among those selected as The Telegraph’s History Books of the Year.


edmund in it

Edmund Burke by Jesse Norman and In It Together by Matthew D’Ancona were included in the best Political Books of the Year category.



CATA and don

Catastrophe was also included in The Sunday TimesHistory Book of the Year. While The Road to Le Tholonet by Monty Don was selected as one of the best Gardening Books of the Year.



breakfast silence

Writers and critics, including our own Max Hastings, selected their favourite books of 2013 for The GuardianWilliam Boyd chose Philip Hook’s Breakfast at Sotheby’swhile Stephen Frears selected Into the Silence by Wade Davis.

Twiggy on LIVING THE LIFE for Sky Arts

Living the Life with Elaine Paige

Twiggy Lawson filmed a brilliant finale to the third series of LIVING THE LIFE for Sky Arts, chatting with Elaine Paige about their rollercoaster lives growing up in 50s and 60s London.

Twiggy also recalls the dangers of fame and explains how she once had to be thrown through the open window of a limousine by her bodyguard.

Catch a preview here and the repeat on Sky Arts 1 this Sunday 24th November at 3pm.



 Jonathan Goodwin is a man who combines the skills of Houdini and Superman. He is the new breed of escapologist and a professional danger-man, putting himself in the most extreme situations and dodging death every time. Share the tension and excitement as he attempts spectacular feats of out-of-this-world bravery, agility and physical strength on his new DVD, Dangerman. These include racing to unlock himself from a rocket-launched car before it drags him off a 200-foot cliff and fighting to the surface after being buried underground – after first being bitten by a venomous snake. He also free climbs up a towering office block and attempts an incredible headline-making stunt hanging by a burning rope from the iconic London Eye! You can watch an adrenaline filled taster on The Paul O’Grady Show,  where Jonathan performed a spectacular stunt last week, if you missed it you can catch-up here.

Dangerman will be released on the 25th November, it is available for pre-order now.


There has been a flurry of activity this week in the world of PFD; here are some of the highlights:


simenon pietr


Pietr the Latvian was released last week; the first in the Maigret series to be re-published by Penguin Classics. The book was reviewed on a number of sites including The Independent, The Herald Scotland and by Crime Time. There was also the fantastic piece by Jake Kerridge, which was featured in Saturday’s Daily Telegraph Review. The re-publishing of Maigret was discussed on BBC Radio 4′s Front Row on Tuesday, you can listen to the discussion here.



Be among the first to see a brand new photography exhibition by the acclaimed Sunday Times photographer Paul Conroy. The exhibition features Syrian refugees who the British Red Cross are working with here in the UK.

This free exhibition is open from 12 noon until 7pm on Friday 15 November and 11am until 7pm on Saturday 16 November; more information here.




Another of our authors was also reviewed on BBC Radio 4′s Front Row; you can listen to Matthew Sweet reassess Dennis Wheatley here. Bloomsbury Reader are republishing all of Wheatley’s backlist, including fan favourites The Devil Rides Out, The Satanist and To the Devil a Daughter.



Two of our clients met when Robert Elms interviewed Alex Andreou on what it’s like to be employed but still homeless, you can listen to this moving interview here.

A wonderful article written by Alex was featured in The Guardian last week, where he writes about the harsh reality of homelessness in the UK.



Catastrophe by Max Hastings has been named as The Best History Book in Amazon’s Best Book of the Year

The Bookseller Association also selected Catastrophe as one of their Christmas Picks.


Our wonderful CEO Caroline Michel was also interviewed on BBC Radio 4′s Front Row this week; discussing the market for unique or bespoke editions of books. In case you missed it,  you can listen here.


Maigret Reborn


Last week Penguin Classics re-published Pietr the Latvian; the first novel which appeared in Georges Simenon‘s famous Maigret series, in a gripping new translation by David Bellos.

‘Compelling, remorseless, brilliant’  - John Gray

‘One of the greatest writers of the twentieth century . . . Simenon was unequalled at making us look inside, though the ability was masked by his brilliance at absorbing us obsessively in his stories’ –  Guardian

‘A supreme writer . . . unforgettable vividness’ –  Independent

Inevitably Maigret was a hostile presence in the Majestic. He constituted a kind of foreign body that the hotel’s atmosphere could not assimilate.

Not that he looked like a cartoon policeman. He didn’t have a moustache and he didn’t wear heavy boots. His clothes were well cut and made of fairly light worsted. He shaved every day and looked after his hands.

But his frame was proletarian. He was a big, bony man. His firm muscles filled out his jacket and quickly pulled all his trousers out of shape.

He had a way of imposing himself just by standing there. His assertive presence had often irked many of his own colleagues.

In Simenon’s first novel featuring Maigret, the laconic detective is taken from grimy bars to luxury hotels as he traces the true identity of Pietr the Latvian.

This release marks the beginning of a campaign that will release a Maigret a month, until all 75 Maigret novels are available in print again. This campaign has been received with much excitement, including a fantastic piece by Jake Kerridge in The Daily Telegraph.

The Late Monsieur Gallet will be the next novel released in the series on the 5th December, you can pre-order the novel here.


There has been a lot happening this week; here’s a small round-up of some of the stories:


Louise Mensch (@LouiseMensch) and Alex Andreou (@SturdyAlex) were among those named as Britain’s most influential Tweeters in The Telegraph this week. Louise, who came in at number 54, is a bestselling novelist and screenwriter (as Louise Bagshawe); her work has been published in nine languages, and she has adapted her novels for major Hollywood film studios, as well as being a freelance journalist. Alex also made the top 100 at number 81; Greek-born, Alex Andreou has a background in law and economics. He writes for both the Guardian and The New Statesman, whilst also running the Sturdy Beggars Theatre Company and blogging at Sturdyblog.

War Dog UK jacket

In the Daily Mail this week, there was Serial for War Dog by Damian Lewis. War Dog is a heartwarming story about an abandoned puppy and the World War II pilot who saved him…

After getting shot down in the skies over France during a daring mission over the trenches in the winter of 1939, airman Robert Bozdech stumbled across a tiny German Shepherd puppy while engaged in his own nail-biting escape from no-mans-land. He hid the dog, who he named Ant, inside his jacket, and from that moment on an unbreakable bond was formed.

In the years that followed, Robert and Ant would save each other’s lives many more times. They flew together with Bomber Command over targets in Germany and beyond, both getting injured in the line of duty, and when Ant was eventually grounded by the RAF top brass he waited patiently on the runway for his master and his fellow pilots to return from each and every sortie.

Perhaps inevitably, Ant became the mascot to Robert’s squadron, the only such mascot to fly on combat missions, or to suffer so many brushes with death under enemy fire. French by birth, but British by his and his master’s adopted nationality, by the end of the war Ant had become a very British hero – and it was only right when he was awarded the Dickin Medal, the “Animal VC.” Thrilling and moving in equal measure, WAR DOG is a story of loyalty in the face of extraordinary adversity, and of the unshakeable bond between a man and his best friend.


Dennis Wheatley was unveiled as a spook that the Government commissioned to write an anti-communist novel during the Cold War. This was revealed in an article written by Adam Luck in The Daily Mail

Bloomsbury Reader are republishing all of Dennis Wheatley’s backlist including The Forbidden TerritoryThe Satanist and of course The Devil Rides Out.


Harriet  Sergeant was one of the panelists on Thursday evening’s Question Time. They discussed everything from high-speed rail to Union bullying; if you missed this episode you can catch-up here.



And finally some PFD office news; this week we welcomed a new member of staff: Marlowe, a Poodlepom, is absolutely adorable and has already become an integral part of the PFD team. HAPPY FRIDAY!

Neil Gaiman reveals the terror of Dennis Wheatley


Neil Gaiman, author of the bestseller The Ocean at the End of the Lane, revealed himself to be a Dennis Wheatley fan from the tender age of 10. He told of how The Devil Rides Out ”was handed around from boy to boy and we read it incredibly nervously and with deep trepidation and terror”

Bloomsbury Reader are republishing all of Dennis Wheatley’s backlist novels including The Forbidden Territory, The Satanist and of course The Devil Rides Out.

Weidenfeld buys Special Forces book

Alan Samson at Weidenfeld has acquired Operation Mayhem by Steve Heaney with Damien Lewis, the story of a daring Special Forces mission by the secret elite British military unit, X Platoon, in Sierra Leone.

Weidenfeld has world rights from Annabel Merullo here at PFD.

Read more on this story on BookBrunch.

Pre-Frankfurt international deals for THE WELL

One of the most talked about pre-book fair books, debut novel The Well by Catherine Chanter has been bought for a substantial pre-empt by Editorial Director, Louisa Joyner and Jamie Byng at Canongate and Michael Heyward at Text.

The deal was made by primary agent Nelle Andrew at PFD for UK and Commonwealth rights excluding Canada after a flurry of international pre-empts handled by International Rights Director Rachel Mills.

Canongate will be the lead publisher in Louisa Joyner’s first acquisition there, co-publishing with Text in Australia, following significant pre-empts from Fischer in Germany, Ambo Anthos in The Netherlands, Bromberg in Sweden as well as Atria/Simon and Schuster in North America. Rights have also subsequently been sold at pre-empt in Norway.

Catherine Chanter was the winner of this year’s Lucy Cavendish Fiction Prize before being signed by Nelle Andrew. Her novel tells the story of a modern day Britain where it has not rained for three years except on a piece of farmland known as The Well.  A high concept literary tour de force wrapped up in a thrilling who-dunnit, it follows the story of Ruth, the owner of the land and her husband Mark as they deal with the blessing and curse of rain in the face of a nationwide drought and the devastating effect it has on their marriage, their home and the very lives of their family as they are thrown into peril.

Louisa Joyner said: “I keep having to pinch myself to believe that we really have acquired The Well by the remarkably talented Catherine Chanter. The Well is a novel of enormous power. It combines the unputdownable pace of Before I go to Sleep with the emotional pull of The Outcast and the literary quality of early Atwood, and for it to be my first acquisition at Canongate makes it all the more exciting.’

Michael Heyward of Text Publishing said:“I read The Well in a kind of trance, desperate to race ahead, but wanting to savour its sentences at the same time. Gorgeously written and fiendishly constructed, this seductive and creepy novel with its backdrop of weird weather and its cast of lost souls is about what happens when escape into rural bliss becomes a nightmare. With her eye for the unexpected word and for the phrase that tightens the screw, Catherine Chanter has written an astonishing novel, and I suspect that reading it is going to become something of a cultish activity.”

Daniel Loedel, the acquiring editor for S&S in the US also stated that: “The Well is a remarkably assured and original first novel, at once a haunting page-turner and a deeply-felt exploration of the mysterious connection between people and the places they call home.”

There has been immense international interest in the novel since its submission with requests from foreign publishers all over the world. All international rights will be handled by Rachel Mills at PFD and Alexandra Cliff and this will be a key fiction title for PFD ahead of the Book Fair.




Victor Maymudes was Bob Dylan’s tour manager, close personal friend and confidant from the golden period of the ‘60s up until the late ‘90s. He died in 2001, leaving to his son Jake over 20 hours of audiotapes which form the basis of this terrific memoir, transcribed and edited by Jake. There are also dozens of unseen/unpublished photographs and cans of likewise unseen 8mm film. The whole offers a unique and fascinating insight into Victor’s time in Dylan’s inner circle; a world only a few were privileged to be a part of, and fewer have spoken of.

Another Side of Bob Dylan spans Dylan’s formative years on the Greenwich Village circuit through to his Never Ending Tour. Along the way, it covers such landmark events as his turn to electric, the infamous motorcycle crash, and the recording of his seminal album Blood on the Tracks. Amidst the chaos of this world is Victor himself, an old hand on the ‘60s counterculture scene who acts, above all, as Bob’s friend and mentor; or, as one critic described him, the Robin to Bob’s Batman. Victor was certainly the consummate insider, and the book is teeming with intimate and revelatory accounts of life close to Dylan: from Bob’s first meeting with the Beatles, to the breakdown of his marriage to Sara Lownds. But Victor is as much the star of this memoir as Dylan himself; a witty, engaging raconteur who cut his own swathe through the turbulent counterculture – from wild cocaine-fuelled parties at Dennis Hopper’s estate to a hilarious (but gripping) drug rip-off across state lines in a Travco camper van.

Please click the following link to view a trailer for the book:

This manuscript is the talk of the town, with articles featured in The Times, Bookbrunch, Publishers Weekly and The Daily Express.

Publication Day Continues....

Today also marks the release of the wonderfully heart-warming War Dog by Damien Lewis

War Dog UK jacket

A heartwarming story about an abandoned puppy and the World War II pilot who saved him.

After getting shot down in the skies over France during a daring mission over the trenches in the winter of 1939, airman Robert Bozdech stumbled across a tiny German Shepherd puppy while engaged in his own nail-biting escape from no-mans-land. He hid the dog, who he named Ant, inside his jacket, and from that moment on an unbreakable bond was formed.

In the years that followed, Robert and Ant would save each other’s lives many more times. They flew together with Bomber Command over targets in Germany and beyond, both getting injured in the line of duty, and when Ant was eventually grounded by the RAF top brass he waited patiently on the runway for his master and his fellow pilots to return from each and every sortie.

Perhaps inevitably, Ant became the mascot to Robert’s squadron, the only such mascot to fly on combat missions, or to suffer so many brushes with death under enemy fire. French by birth, but British by his and his master’s adopted nationality, by the end of the war Ant had become a very British hero – and it was only right when he was awarded the Dickin Medal, the “Animal VC.” Thrilling and moving in equal measure, WAR DOG is a story of loyalty in the face of extraordinary adversity, and of the unshakeable bond between a man and his best friend.

You can get your copy of War Dog here.

The Terror Has Been Released.......

 The time has come…“No one is coming to your aid. We have ensured this.”


Today is the publication date of the chilling Bait by the wonderful J. Kent Messum:

Six strangers wake up on a remote island in the Florida Keys with no memory of their arrival. They soon discover their common bond: all of them are heroin addicts. As the first excruciating pangs of withdrawal make themselves felt, the six notice a yacht anchored across open water. On it lurk four shadowy figures, protected by the hungry sharks that patrol the waves. So begins a dangerous game. The six must undertake the impossible—swim to the next island where a cache of heroin awaits, or die trying. When alliances form, betrayal is inevitable. As the fight to survive intensifies, the stakes reach terrifying heights—and their captors’ motives finally begin to emerge.

Bait is available now from all good bookstores and Amazon.


Review Highlights

Last week saw the release of Catastrophe by Max Hastings and The Story of the Jews by Simon Schama. Simon’s novel has been longlisted for the Samuel Johnson Award, whilst Max has been made a Christmas Pick by the Booksellers Association.

Below are some highlights of reviews for both books, which are sure to hit the bestseller’s list this week.



Catastrophe Reviews:

“Hastings writes with an enviable grasp of pace and balance, as well as an acute eye for human details.  Even for readers who care nothing for the difference between a battalion and a division, his book is at once moving, provocative and utterly engrossing”. Dominic Sandbrook,  The Sunday Times.

“Hastings is a master of the pen portrait and the quirky fact.  Yet his greatness as a historian – never shown to better in this excellent book – lies in his willingness to challenge entrenched opinion and say what needs to be said”. Saul David, Evening Standard.

“This is history-writing at its best, scholarly and fluent, relating with equal verve the attitudes and experiences of crowned heads and peasants, generals and privates, the handful of statesmen in seven countries whose decisions started the war, and the millions of ordinary people who fought it.” Ben Macintyre, The Times.


Story of the Jews

Story of the Jews Reviews:

“This book shows Schama at his best, doing his shtick and doing it well: no hasty product of midnight oil for a television tie-in, but a labour of love, as full of memorable incident as a Bellow novel and wittier than a Woody Allen movie.  His take on Jewish history if highly idiosyncratic and will doubtless infuriate many.  Me, I can hardly wait for the second volume”. Daniel Johnson, The Times.

“This is classic Schama: playful, ironic, immensely erudite, exuding humanity. It is also deeply personal.” The New Statesman.

“Schama has written a proud and personal story of his people, one that will make a good starting point for those interested in one of history’s most fascinating and tragic tales”. Josh Glancy, Sunday Times.

“Simon Schama has returned to his roots and written an affecting and raw account of early Jewish history”. Tom Holland, The Guardian.

“Simon Schama’s history of the Jews does a splendid job in challenging stereotypes”. Financial Times.

Samuel Johnson Longlist announced

We are delighted to announce that three of our authors have been longlisted for the Samuel Johnson Prize:

Story of the Jews

Simon Schama’s Story of the Jews:

It is a story like no other: an epic of endurance against destruction, of creativity in oppression, joy amidst grief, the affirmation of life against the steepest of odds.

It spans the millennia and the continents – from India to Andalusia and from the bazaars of Cairo to the streets of Oxford. It takes you to unimagined places: to a Jewish kingdom in the mountains of southern Arabia; a Syrian synagogue glowing with radiant wall paintings; the palm groves of the Jewish dead in the Roman catacombs. And its voices ring loud and clear, from the severities and ecstasies of the Bible writers to the love poems of wine bibbers in a garden in Muslim Spain.

Within these pages, the Talmud burns in the streets of Paris, massed gibbets hang over the streets of medieval London, a Majorcan illuminator redraws the world; candles are lit, chants are sung, mules are packed, ships loaded with spice and gems founder at sea.

And a great story unfolds. Not – as often imagined – of a culture apart, but of a Jewish world immersed in and imprinted by the peoples among whom they have dwelled, from the Egyptians to the Greeks, from the Arabs to the Christians.

Which makes the story of the Jews everyone’s story, too.



Jesse Norman’s Edmund Burke:

Both conservative and subversive, Burke’s beliefs have never been more relevant than in today’s ‘Big Society’, as MP Jesse Norman explains.

Philosopher, statesman, and founder of modern conservatism, Edmund Burke is both the greatest and most under-rated political thinker of the past three-hundred years. Born in Ireland in 1729, and greatly affected by its bigotry and extremes, his career constituted a lifelong struggle against the abuse of power.

Amid the 18th century’s golden generation that included his companions Adam Smith, Samuel Johnson and Edward Gibbon, Burke’s controversial mixture of conservative and subversive theories made him first a marginal figure, and finally a revered theorist – a hero of the Romantics. He warned of the effects of British rule in Ireland, the loss of the American colonies, and most famously, he foresaw the disastrous consequences of revolution in France. This he predicted, would trigger extremism, terror and the atomisation of society – a profound analysis that continues to resonate today.

In this absorbing new biography Conservative MP Jesse Norman gives us Burke anew, vividly depicting his dazzling intellect, imagination and empathy against the rich tapestry of 18th century Europe. Burke’s wisdom, Norman shows, applies well beyond the times of empire to the conventional democratic politics practised in Britain and America today. We cannot understand the defects of the modern world, or modern politics, without him.



Douglas Hurd and Edward Young’s Disraeli:

Benjamin Disraeli was the most gifted parliamentarian of the nineteenth century. A superb orator, writer and wit, he twice rose to become Prime Minister, dazzling many with his famous epigrams along the way.

But how much do we really know about the man behind the words? How did this bankrupt Jewish school dropout and trashy novelist reach the top of the Victorian Conservative Party? And why does his reputation continue to have such a hold over British politics today?

In this engaging reassessment, Douglas Hurd and Edward Young explore the paradoxes at the centre of Disraeli’s ‘two lives’: a dandy and gambler on the one hand, a devoted servant and favourite Prime Minister of the Queen on the other. A passionately ambitious politician, he intrigued and manoeuvred with unmatched skill to get to – in his own words – ‘the top of the greasy pole’, but he also developed a set of ideas to which he was devoted. His political achievements are never quite what they seem: he despised the idea of a more classless society, he never used the phrase ‘One Nation’, and although he passed the Second Reform Act he was no believer in democracy.


The longlist has been chosen by Martin Rees, Astronomer Royal (chair of judges); classicist, Mary Beard; Director of Liberty, Shami Chakrabarti; historian, Peter Hennessy; and writer and non-fiction reviewer, James McConnachie.

The winner of last year’s prize was another of our authors, Wade Davis for the wonderful Into the Silence: The Great War, Mallory and the Conquest of Everest, published by The Bodley Head.

This year’s shortlist will be announced on 30 September, and the winner on 4 November.

When J. Kent Messum met PFD

In a wonderful article written for the Writer’s Digest, J. Kent Messum describes his journey to find an agent. This article is a must-read for all writers looking for representation; an honest, no-frills account of persistence and self-belief. See the article here.

Messum is the author of the thrilling Baita fantastic novel which has been described as “Lost meets Trainspotting meets Battle Royale” and is currently a Thriller Book of the Month on


Hodder wins Ekback auction!



Hodder’s Kate Parkin has won the auction for two books from one of our wonderful new novelists Cecilia Ekback.

Parkin bought UK and Commonwealth rights from the brilliant Nelle Andrew.

The first title Wolf Winter tells the story of a vicious murder in a small community of new settlers in 18th century Lapland, and a severe winter, known as a “wolf winter,” which descends on the inhabitants.

Parkin said Ekback, a graduate of the Royal Holloway creative writing masters, was “a real talent”, saying: “It’s rare to find a first novel that transports you so effortlessly to another time and place and holds you captive there.”

PFD has also accepted a six figure pre-empt from Droemer in Germany, with negotiations ongoing in other countries.

For the full article, see the Bookseller article.

The Story of the Jews

Last night, the first episode of the five-part series, The Story of the Jews, aired on BBC2. The show, which was chosen as The Sunday Times Culture magazine’s Pick of the Day, follows Simon Schama as he takes us through the history of Judaism, picking out stories that help explain how Judaism survived through all the persecutions.

The Telegraph called it “a rousing success”

The Story of the Jews continues on Sunday at 9pm on BBC2. You can catch-up here.

Simon Schama has also written a wonderful novel linking to the show; The Story of the Jews: Finding the Words (1000 BCE – 1492) can be pre-ordered here.

Story of the Jews

SOMETHING YOU ARE shortlisted for CWA John Creasey Dagger Award

We are absolutely thrilled to announce that Hanna Jameson’s Something You Are has been shortlisted for The Crime Writers’ Association’s John Creasey Dagger Award.

The John Creasey Dagger Award is for the best new crime writer of the year and CWA Chair, Alison Joseph, commented: “These 2013 CWA Dagger shortlists are all about inspirational story-telling and great writing. They show, once again, just why this genre continues to be so hugely popular and so greatly loved by readers.”

Hanna is one of only four writers to make the shortlist, the winner will be announced on the 24th October at the Specsavers Crime Thriller Awards.

Something You Are was described as “Fast, uncompromising and violent, Jameson’s debut evokes classic thrillers such as Get Carter. Dark and atmospheric with a bedrock of powerful and memorable characters. This is London noir with a subtle punch.”  by the Judges of the award. You can buy this thrilling debut here.



Today is the publication day for Bait  by the wonderful J. Kent Messum, in the US and Canada. We can’t help but be jealous, and who could blame us when the book has been described as “Lost meets Trainspotting meets Battle Royale”?

Six strangers wake up on a remote island in the Florida Keys with no memory of their arrival. They soon discover their common bond: all of them are heroin addicts. As the first excruciating pangs of withdrawal make themselves felt, the six notice a yacht anchored across open water. On it lurk four shadowy figures, protected by the hungry sharks that patrol the waves. So begins a dangerous game. The six must undertake the impossible—swim to the next island where a cache of heroin awaits, or die trying. When alliances form, betrayal is inevitable. As the fight to survive intensifies, the stakes reach terrifying heights—and their captors’ motives finally begin to emerge.

And if that wasn’t enough to get you excited, check out the amazing book trailer here!

Bait will be published in the UK  by Penguin, on the 26th September, it is available for pre-order now.



Edinburgh International Book Festival 2013

Team PFD hit up the Edinburgh International Book Festival last week, and had an amazing time packing in as many events, at both the Book Festival and Fringe proper, as was feasibly possible in 48 hours. Susan Greenfield and Ruby Wax were both brilliant, in sold out events, last week and signed books afterwards.

Susan Greenfield discussed her research into Alzheimers and her debut science fiction novel 2121, which was longlisted for the Edinburgh Festival First Book Award.

Ruby Wax explained some of the techniques she’s found useful in her battles with her own mental health issues, which she discovered in her research into Mindfulness based Cognitive Therapy, she describes this in more detail in her Sunday Times #1 bestselling Sane New World: Taming The Mind.

Team PFD had a great time in the Festival Bookshop, catching sight of Edmund Burke by Jesse Norman, The Road To Le Tholonet by Monty Don, The Fabulous Baker Brothers: Glorious British Grub by Tom and Henry Herbert, A Heart Bent Out of Shape by Emylia Hall, Disraeli by Douglas Hurd and Edward Young and Capturing the Light by Helen Rappaport and Roger Watson… so much to be enjoyed at the Festival this year! Well done to all our brilliant authors.




Christmas comes early for Max Hastings

Even though we’re still loving the sunshine and ignoring the rain, Christmas is only four months away! In preparation for this the Booksellers Association has already selected its Christmas Picks, which this year includes the brilliant Catastrophe: Europe Goes to War 1914 by Max Hastings. Catastrophe is a magisterial chronicle of the calamity that befell Europe in 1914 as the continent shifted from the glamour of the Edwardian era to the tragedy of total war.

Catastrophe will be released in September 2013, you can pre-order it here.

The full Christmas Catalogue will be released on the 14th September as part of the Books Are My Bag campaign.

Six weeks in the chart for TREO and a new entry for DISRAELI!

We’re thrilled to announce that two of PFD’s books are in The Sunday Times bestsellers list this week:

At Number 8 in Hardback General is Disraeli by Douglas Hurd and Edward Young, an exploration of Benjamin Disraeli; the most gifted parliamentarian of the nineteenth century.

In the charts again this week is Dave Heyhoe‘s and Damien LewisIt’s All About Treo, an account of the most highly decorated dog in Afghanistan and his handler, which is at Number 3 in Paperback GeneralThis week marks the 6th week that Treo has been in the top 10!

Sunday Times Bestsellers 4th August

Graham Masterton’s WALKERS optioned

We are thrilled to announce that Jules Stewart and her Libertine Films banner have optioned the novel Walkers by Graham Masterton.  Set in a seemingly-abandoned mental institution turned resort, the story has been described as “a modern classic of sheer hair-raising terror” and “an effective horror novel” by Publisher’s Weekly.

Stewart, a veteran Hollywood script supervisor for more than 30 years wrote and directed her debut film, K-11, in 2012 about a record producer who, after binging on drink and drugs, wakes to find himself in a section of the Los Angeles County Jail reserved for homosexuals.

Masterton, described by the San Francisco Chronicle as “the living inheritor to the realm of Edgar Allan Poe”, has published over 100 horror novels and a mass of short stories. He has won numerous awards including an Edgar and is “delighted and honoured” that Jules Stewart has optioned Walkers.

The film will be written and directed by Stewart and produced by Tom Wright of Libertine Films. The deal was orchestrated by Alan Nevins of Renaissance Literary & Talent on behalf of Libertine and Jonathan Sissons of PFD in London on behalf of Masterton.

SANE NEW WORLD travels across the pond

We are delighted to announce that Penguin USA have bought US rights in Ruby Wax’s number 1 bestseller Sane New World, for their Perigee imprint. The editor, Marian Lizzi has had huge success with Goldie Hawn’s book on mindfulness Ten Mindful Minutes, Wreck This Journal by Keri Smith, and The Out of Sync Child by Carol Kranowitz, so Ruby is in great company. They will be looking to publish in September 2014.

This is an exciting week for Ruby as it also marks her fifth week in the Sunday Times Bestsellers list!

Book trailer for BAIT by J. Kent Messum is now live!

We’re delighted to announced that the trailer for Bait by J. Kent Messum has been launched!

“Six strangers wake up on a remote island in the Florida Keys with no memory of their arrival. They soon discover their common bond: all of them are heroin addicts from the slums of Miami. As the first excruciating pangs of withdrawal make themselves felt, the six notice a yacht anchored across open water. On it lurk four shadowy figures, protected by the hungry sharks that patrol the waves. So begins a dangerous game. The six must undertake the impossible—swim to the next island where a cache of heroin awaits, or die trying. When alliances form, betrayal is inevitable. As the fight to survive intensifies, the stakes reach terrifying heights—and their captors’ motives finally begin to emerge.”

Bait is published on August 27th in the US by Plume Books and in Canada by Penguin Canada, and on September 26th in the UK by Michael Joseph. Rights have also been sold in Brazil, Greece, Czech Republic and Bulgaria.

We’re so impressed by all the hard work that’s gone into this amazing trailer, please do check it out – and then pre-order the book here!


Hanna Jameson longlisted for CWA John Creasey Dagger Award

Hanna is one of eight authors longlisted for this award, which was announced at the CWA Gala Daggers award dinner on July 15th.

The Judges described Hanna’s debut as “Fast, uncompromising and violent, Jameson’s debut evokes classic thrillers such as Get Carter. Dark and atmospheric with a bedrock of powerful and memorable characters. This is London noir with a subtle punch.”

The shortlist will be announced later on this summer, with the winner being revealed in the autumn. Find out more from the CWA website.

One-two for PFD!

Ruby Wax’s Sane New World has risen up the chart and taken the Number 1 spot this week in Hardback general, Sane New World shows us how our minds can jeopardize our sanity and how we can break free from anxiety and stress.

David Heyhoe and Damian Lewis have also risen up the ranks to claim Number 2 in Paperback general with their account of the most highly decorated dog in Afghanistan and his handler in It’s All About Treo. 

Sunday Times Bestsellers 7th July 2013

PFD Sunday Times Bestsellers!

We’re thrilled to announce that two of PFD’s books are in The Sunday Times bestsellers list this week.

At Number 6 in Hardback General is Ruby Wax’s informative and humorous manual to saner living, Sane New World.

At Number 3 in Paperback General is Dave Heyhoe’s and Damien Lewis’ account of the most highly decorated dog in Afghanistan and his handler, It’s All About Treo. 

PFD Sunday Times bestsellers 30.06.13

Jeanette Winterson one of the first authors signed up to the Hogarth Shakespeare Project

Our fantastic author Jeanette Winterson will be part of an international project by Random House’s Hogarth imprint, with the world’s finest comtemporary authors reimagining the plays of William Shakespeare. The Bard’s most loved plays will be retold by some of the most acclaimed authors of our time to increase contemporary readership, much to the delight of Shakespeare fans around the world. Award winning authors Jeanette Winterson and Anne Tyler are the first authors to be commissioned by Hogarth.

This project will give authors, such as our very own Jeanette Winterson, the chance to write prose versions of the plays, staying true to the original spirit, but being able to place their own modern twist on these classics, while still appealing to the existing fans. The concept of The Hogarth Shakespeare was devised Juliet Brooke, Senior Editor at Chatto & Windus/Hogarth, and Becky Hardie, Deputy Publishing Director. It will be launched in 2016 and the publishing initiative will be led by Hogarth UK and published in partnership with Hogarth US, Knaus Verlag in Germany, Mondadori in Spain, Knopf Canada; and Random House Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and India. The new novels will be published in print, digital and audio formats throughout the English-speaking world.

Jeanette has chosen the play The Winter’s Tale to put her own spin on. She says: ‘All of us have talismanic texts that we have carried around and that carry us around. I have worked with The Winter’s Tale in many disguises for many years. This is a brilliant opportunity to work with it in its own right. And I love cover-versions.’

After generations of reinterpretations of Shakespeare’s plays as movies, musicals and novels, The Hogarth Shakespeare will be a unique series of retellings with the aim of becoming modern classics. It is hoped that the series will please existing fans of Shakespeare as well as create new readership, both young and old, of the world’s most famous writer.

Read more about this in The Guardian.



Ruby Wax - Sane New World

Allison Pearson describes Ruby Wax’s new book Sane New World as “funny and well-researched” in her brilliant review in this Saturday’s Telegraph. In fact, Ruby has even made a convert: ”Her wonderful, painfully funny and instructive book has inspired this depressive to sign up for mindfulness training“. The full review can be read here.


If you missed Ruby at Hay Festival, you can still listen to her talk here. And she’ll also be appearing at Edinburgh Book Festival on 14th August (tickets available from 28th June

Super Thursday - 6th June

There has been a wonderful raft of new publications on what is proving to be a super Thursday for PFD.

Six books are all being published on this day spanning a variety of genres, publishers and readers to give us a bumper Thursday of brilliant new titles in the opening of what looks to be a fantastic summer…


Sane New World by Ruby Wax

Ruby Wax – comedian, writer and mental health campaigner – explains how our busy, chattering, self-critical thoughts drive us to anxiety and stress.  If we are to break the cycle, we need to understand how our brains work, rewire our thinking and find calm in a frenetic world.


Damn His Blood by Peter Moore

This nail-biting true crime story of the brutal murder of Reverend George Parker in the quiet village of Oddingley provides a fascinating glimpse into rural English life at the beginning of the nineteenth century.  Now out in paperback, Damn His Blood is a nail-biting true story of brutality, greed and ruthlessness which brings an elusive society vividly back to life.


Killing Range by Phil Campion

The second Blackstone Six thriller is out now – Steve Range believes his friend Randy is a corpse in a desert grave – until he reappears in an Al Qaeda video, spitting extremist hate and challenging Range and Blackstone Six to a desert battle that will settle a vicious blood feud.


Under the Wire by Paul Conroy

Under the Wire is the epic, untold account of the late Marie Colvin, one of the foremost war correspondents of her generation, and veteran photographer Paul Conroy’s last, tragic assignment together, documenting the bloodshed under Assad’s brutal regime in Syria. Under the Wire is a tale of courage and survival and a poignant account of a friendship forged amid the carnage of war.


A Girl Like You by Maureen Lindley 

A new novel from the acclaimed author of The Private Papers of Eastern Jewel, Maureen Lindley’s new novel follows Satomi, a Japanese teenager, growing up in the US after Pearl Harbour.


 Spitalfields Life by The Gentle Author

Out now in paperback for the first time, Spitalfields Life has drawn comparisons to the work of Pepys, Mayhew and Dickens. Everything you seek in London can be found here – street life, street art, markets, diverse food, immigrant culture, ancient houses and history, pageants and parades, rituals and customs, traditional trades and old family businesses.


The Wreck of the Mary Deare, Campbell’s Kingdom, The Lonely Skier, Wreckers Must Breathe by Hammond Innes

Fourteen titles by masterful thriller writer Hammond Innes have been reissued as Vintage Classics this week to celebrate the author’s Centenary, with introductions from the likes of Andy McNab and Stella Rimington. BBC Radio 4 will be reviewing The Lonely Skier and The Wreck of the Mary Deare by Hammond Innes on ‘Saturday Review’ on 8th June.