Fiction Book of the Month – The Halfways by Nilopar Uddin
Nasrin and Sabrina are two sisters, who on the face of things live successful and enviable lives in London and New York. When their father, Shamsur suddenly dies, they rush to be with their mother at the family home and restaurant in Wales, but reluctantly step back into the stifling world of their childhood.
When Shamsur’s will is read, a devastating secret is revealed that challenges all that people thought and loved about him. It also profoundly changes the lives and identities of the sisters and creates an irreparable family rift.
“Set between Wales, London, New York, and Bangladesh, The Halfways is a beautiful, atmospheric family drama spanning four decades. This breath-taking debut novel, from Oswestry born Nilopar Uddin – an exciting new voice in fiction – is a quiet, intricate, and richly told story of belonging and home, secrets, reputation, and finding your own path. Uddin cleverly examines how upbringing and environment root us just as strongly as heritage and religion, how fraught with complexity the bonds between generations lie, and how love will always leave a path to forgiveness.” – Ruth, Bookshop Manager
Non-Fiction Book of the Month – Birdgirl by Mya-Rose Craig
“Birdwatching has never felt like a hobby, or a pastime I can pick up and put down, but a thread running through the pattern of my life, so tightly woven in that there’s no way of pulling it free and leaving the rest of my life intact.” – Mya-Rose Craig
One of the most anticipated memoirs of 2022, Birdgirl is the perfect read for fans of H is for Hawk, Diary of a Young Naturalist, and any young or aspiring environmentalists.
Meet Mya-Rose – otherwise known as ‘Birdgirl’. Birder, environmentalist, diversity activist. To date she has seen over five thousand different types of bird: half the world’s species. Every single bird a treasure. Each sighting a small step in her family journey – a collective moment of joy and stillness amidst her mother’s deepening mental health crisis. And each helping her to find her voice.
Since she was young, she has visited every continent to pursue her passion, seeing first-hand the inequality and reckless destruction we are inflicting on our fragile planet. And the simple, mindful act of looking for birds has made her ever-more determined to campaign for all our survival.
This is her story; a journey defined by her love for these extraordinary creatures. Because large or small, brown, patterned, or jewelled, there is something about birds that makes us, even for just moments at a time, lift our eyes away from our lives and up to the skies.
“Lyrical, poignant and insightful.” – Margaret Atwood
“Mya-Rose Craig has done more than anyone to promote birding and environmental issues to young people from all backgrounds – especially women of colour – and deserves our admiration and praise.” – Stephen Moss, author of THE ROBIN
“Mya-Rose’s passion and dedication for the causes she believes in are testament to what we humans can achieve when we are at our best.” – Liz Bonnin, President of the Wildlife Trust