Drawing on myth and fairy tales found across Europe – from Croatia to Sweden, Ireland to Russia – Sharon Blackie brings to life women’s remarkable ability to transform themselves in the face of seemingly impossible circumstances. These stories are about coming to terms with our animal natures, exploring the ways in which we might renegotiate our fractured relationship with the natural world, and uncovering the wildness – and wilderness – within. Beautifully illustrated by Helen Nicholson, Foxfire, Wolfskin and Other Stories of Shapeshifting Women is Blackie’s first collection of short stories.

New release available in store and online.

Over the past twenty years European cities have become the envy of the world: a Kraftwerk Utopia of historic centres, supermodernist concert halls, imaginative public spaces and futuristic egalitarian housing estates which, interconnected by high-speed trains traversing open borders, have a combination of order and pleasure which is exceptionally unusual elsewhere. In Trans-Europe Express, Owen Hatherley sets out to explore the European city across the entire continent, to see what exactly makes it so different to the Anglo-Saxon norm – the unplanned, car-centred, developer-oriented spaces common to the US, Ireland, UK and Australia. Attempting to define the European city, Hatherley finds a continent divided both within the EU and outside it.

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Costas Lapavitsas contends that the EU’s response to the Eurozone crisis represents the ultimate transformation of the union into a neoliberal citadel, which institutionally embeds austerity, privatisation and wage cuts. Concurrently, the rise of German hegemony has divided the EU into an unstable mixture of wealthy core and dependent peripheries.

These related developments make the EU impervious to meaningful reform, particularly as its institutions are fundamentally designed to uphold the … More

The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was a place that really existed, but it is long dead. By now, the word “Soviet” should be as meaningless as “Hapsburg”. Yet it endures, as in the wave of “de-communisation” in Ukraine or the strange idea that the capitalist government in Russia is “Communist”. But does the Soviet experience have anything to teach us today, or was it just an enormous cul-de-sac, a nuclear-armed reincarnation of the Russian Empire?

This book tries to find out, through walking the towns and great cities of the USSR, in an itinerary that … More

The oak is the wooden tie between heaven and earth. It is the lynch pin of the British landscape. The oak is our most beloved and most common tree. It has roots that stretch back to all the old European cultures but Britain has more ancient oaks than all the other European countries put together.

More than half the ancient oaks in the world are in Britain. Many of our ancestors – the Angles, the … More

To commemorate the second anniversary of the death of Alan Kurdi, the three-year-old Syrian boy who drowned while attempting to reach Greece in 2015, the author Khaled Hosseini, has written Sea Prayer. This imagined letter is written in the form of a monologue, delivered by a Syrian father to the son lying asleep in his lap, on the eve of their sea crossing to Europe.

On a moonlit beach a father cradles his sleeping son as they wait for dawn to break and a boat … More