Bookseeker Literary Agency

Introducing authors and publishers.


P’kaboo Publishers – an update

pkabooMany of you will know that this agency has had a long-standing relationship with P’kaboo Publishers in South Africa. You may also have noticed that we removed all links from this web site to P’kaboo and to its sister publishing house Honeymead, shortly after the death of Iain Rossouw, along with some details of our relationship. The two main reasons behind these actions were firstly that the links to their web sites did not appear to be currently active and led nowhere except to an error notification, and secondly we were not sure what decisions were going to be made about the future of both houses.

Rather than intrude into what is still a very traumatic period for the Rossouw family, we decided to wait for a word from them. Recently Iain’s widow Lyz, who was the senior partner in P’kaboo, posted some news on her personal blog, to the following effect:

The web site is down, in fact, since January of this year, due to a server inconsistency and a subsequent dispute that remains unresolved. Other pressures mean that the dispute is not currently being taken any further, and indeed when I contacted Lyz privately we discussed the possibility of her looking for a different platform to host the house’s web site.

P’kaboo is currently ‘on hold’ as a publishing house. All P’kaboo’s current titles are still available through third parties however, notably Amazon, and the intention is to relaunch the publishing house as soon as the way becomes clear.

We wish Lyz and her family all the best, and look forward to seeing a revitalised P’kaboo in due course.


Edinburgh International Book Festival

1.1I have just spent a long fortnight in and out of the International Book Festival in Charlotte Square, Edinburgh. this has become an annual thing for me, and I have a whale of a time even though I’m actually engaged in hard work. while I’m there I’m writing, tweeting, talking, taking photos, so when I get back I don’t really want to write any more. So here’s an essay in photographs rather than words, about the scenes and faces at this year’s festival.

The photos were taken on a bog-standard Nikon D50 or an iPad.

PT

2.2 Graham Swift

Graham Swift

2.4 Ian Goldin

Ian Goldin

2.1 Ali Smith

Ali Smith

1.2 a wave of beards

A wave of beards swept through Charlotte Square. I think that’s author Philip Ardagh on the right.

2.2 Iain Macwhirter

Iain Macwhirter

Chris Close’s excellent photo-portraits of visiting writers etc. were on display again this year. The exhibition was better than ever – here are just a few faces, including Alexander McCall Smith, Gavin Francis, Joan Bakewell, Wilko Johnson, Ruby Wax, and Attila the Stockbroker. Thanks for letting me use these, Chris.

4.1 Alexander McCall Smith & Gavin Francis

4.2 Joan Bakewell & Wilko Johnson

4.3 Ruby Wax & Attila the Stockbroker

And back to my own pics…

1.4 Book Shop

1.5 posing

2.10 Michael Scott

Michael Scott

2.5 Thomas Clark

Thomas Clark

2.9 Zaffar Kunial

Zaffar Kunial

1.10 relaxation

Relaxation…

1.6 photo bunch

Photo call

2.11 Jackie Kay

Scots ‘Makar’ Jackie Kay

2.13 Roy Hattersley

Roy Hattersley

1.8 staff

2.3 Louis de Bernieres

Louis de Bernières

2.7 Gordon Brown

Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown

2.8 Richard & Daniel Susskind

Richard Susskind & Daniel Susskind. In the background is journalist Lee Randall, who chaired their event.

2.12 Carol Ann Duffy

Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy

2.6 Roger Mason

Roger Mason

1.9

1.7 Cloud

Late in the day we heard that actor Gene Wilder had left our world of pure imagination, maybe to watch from this cloud.


A great review for Lyz Russo’s ‘Freedom Fighter’!

Lyz Russo’s Solar Wind novels form a series of futuristic adventures – it would be unfair to hang the simplistic label ‘fantasy’ on them – that take its principle characters on a journey of piracy and political intrigue, mystery and mayhem, revolution and romance, through an unfamiliar seascape. Latter-day Romany errants cruise the currents of the yet-to-come, running from and striking back at the world’s ruthless rulers, the Unicate. That, and more, is what the reader gets in the pages of these books. The original Mystery of the Solar Wind was the book that the word ‘unputdownable’ was invented for, and each sequel has pushed the envelope a little further.

The third book in the series, Freedom Fighter, was recently put under scrutiny by writer and reviewer Colleen M. Chesebro, and it received an almost perfect score, 4-and-a-half stars! Believe it. Click on the picture below to read the review for yourself on Colleen’s lively blog…

freedom-fighter-lwi


Carmen Capuano secures a publishing deal with an American publisher

carmen2We’re very pleased to announce that Carmen Capuano (pictured right) has secured a publishing deal for her novel Ascension. The book will be released by American publisher Uncial.

We’ll give you more details when we have them.

Meanwhile Carmen has been hard at work giving talks to the public and readings from Split Decision. We hope to continue to have good news to pass on about Carmen, and about our other authors.


A review of ‘The Assassin’by Lyz Russo

It’s well worth sharing this review of Lyz Russo’s novel, part of her wonderful fantasy series. The review comes from the ‘Goodreads’ site.

sw2flat400.jpgCaptain Radomir Lascek and his band of unruly pirates, sailing upon his ship, the Solar Wind, continue to hide from the Unicate and their evil associates. However, there is more at stake now. Two data capsules in the Captain’s possession explain that the Rebellion is on a similar path as the Unicate, and both forces could spell the end of the world if the Captain doesn’t act soon.

When the Captain’s secret station in Antarctica is attacked, he is forced to take matters into his own hands. He employs Federi, the part-time gypsy chef/master assassin and Paean, a ship’s musician and budding genetic scientist to embark on a mission to assassinate as many of the top Unicate Officials as they can. Reluctantly, Federi teaches Paean the art of killing, something the fifteen-year-old finds to be a necessary evil in this futuristic world they are forced to survive in.

Struggling to deal with the burgeoning feelings he has for Paean, Federi confronts the “killing animal” that dwells within his heart. He knows he has the soul of an assassin. His greatest fear is that he will lose the love and admiration from the young girl, a certain loss he knows he could not endure.

As the story unfolds the reader discovers Federi and Paean share a type of gypsy intuition, a mystical connection that belongs only to them. This psychic ability blossoms into a deep love between the two, even though Federi is much older than Paean. This is gypsy love at its finest, and I was bewitched by the touching love story that drew me deeper into the adventure.

The book is long but filled with so much intrigue and suspense you gladly read on to unravel the various mysteries that are part of the whole adventure aboard the Solar Wind. For me, this book delves deeper into the characters and gives you a glimpse into the mechanics of their personalities. I like these pirates. Their humanity speaks to me. I can’t wait to dive into the third book in the series, Freedom Fighter. Stay tuned…

STAR-4.5


A little touch of haiku in the spring…

1We have heard from our client Marie Marshall that the Spring 2016 Showcase of the zen space is now published. the zen space is of course the e-zine for haiku and other short, in-the-moment writing. This issue appears to be shot through with paintings by Vincent van Gogh. When asked why, Marie shrugs and says “Why not?” Can’t argue with that! Click on Vincent’s selfie to be transported to the zen space.

By the way, Marie also tells us that the editing process has begun for her novel KWIREBOY vs VAMPIRE, the sequel to From My Cold, Undead Hand, with publication due later this year. Good news – we’re looking forward to it greatly!


Stanza 2016

StAnza header

Here are some visual memories of this year’s StAnza at St Andrews. As always, the main venues for this exciting poetry festival were the Byre Theatre and the Town Hall, each place having rooms enough for simultaneous presentations, readings, performances, and exhibitions.

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Will Philip

I got the chance to meet and chat with several interesting people and to catch some of the excellent poetry sessions. I had a long chat with Scottish poet Will Philip, in which we explored everything from the concept of art, through the poetry as communication, to theology. My good friend and colleague Damo Bullen was there, and we had a chinwag – when he wasn’t checking the Burnley v. Blackburn score on his smartphone – and caught the performance by Jemima Foxtrot together.

Helena Nelson and I, along with another visitor to the HappenStance stall at the Poetry Market, had a long discussion about lip-reading as part of the reception/interpretation of spoken performances. Helena gave me a copy of her book How (Not) To Get Your Poetry Published – thank you Helena, that’ll come in very handy – and told me I should style myself a ‘literary secret agent’ because it sounded much more glamorous.

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Helena Nelson

Yes, literary secret agent, I like that.

On top of that there were pieces of cake served on poem-bearing serviettes at the Poetry Market, macaroni pies and Schiehallion ale at the Studio Theatre, and blissful scones at the café in the Byre. StAnza is still in full swing as I write this, but alas my own visits are over until next year…

… when maybe the literary secret agent may even step into an open mic event. You never know.

Paul

 

4

Kirsten Luckins

5

Valerie Laws

 

6

Aase Berg

9

The Poetry Market

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Jemima Foxtrot


Things have been happening in The Smoke this week…

2016-02-17 01a Don Letts

Things have been happening in The Smoke (that’s London) this week. Paul made a flying visit and met up with almost-legendary musician, film-maker, and DJ Don Letts in the unlikely setting of Willesden Green Working Man’s Club. The issue of the day was the filming of a documentary for BBC4, tracing the roots of ‘skinhead’ culture back to the late 1960s. Don remembers those days well, and wanted to set the record straight. The documentary is being made by the 7Wonder production company, and it is due to be screened some time around September this year.

2016-02-18 01a Kings XBefore setting off back to the glens, Paul also called in on publishers Oneworld to drop of a book there for Jenny Parrott, who is handling their POINT BLANK series. And there was a moment of magic at Kings Cross Station – no not on Platform 9-and-three-quarters, but out in the concourse, where someone was flying a Harris Hawk. The lovely bird swooped low over travellers’ heads, perched on top of the Departures Board, returned to the falconer’s hand, and suffered itself to be the subject of photos and selfies.