From Alan Bennett's Baffled at a Bookcase, to Lucy Mangan's Library Rules, famous writers tell us all about how libraries are used and why they're important. Tom Holland writes about libraries in the ancient world, while Seth Godin describes what a library will look like in the future. Lionel Shriver thinks books are the best investment, Hardeep Singh Kohli makes a confession and Julie Myerson remembers how her career began beside the shelves.
Using memoir, history, polemic and some short stories too, The Library Book celebrates 'that place where they lend you books for free' and the people who work there.
All royalties go to The Reading Agency, to help their work supporting libraries.
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About the Author
Susan Hill is the winner of numerous literary prizes including the Somerset Maugham award. She was awarded CBE for her services to literature earlier this year. Author of the Simon Serrailler crime series and numerous other novels, her literary memoir, Howards End Is On The Landing and the ghost stories The Man In The Picture, The Small Hand, Dolly and Printers Devil Court are all published by Profile. The Woman in Black, which was has been running in the West End for over twenty years, and was a huge film in 2012 is published by Profile in hardback.
Lucy Mangan is a journalist and columnist. She spent two years training as a solicitor, but left as soon as she qualified and went to work much more happily in a bookshop instead. She got a work experience placement at the Guardian in 2003 and hung around until they gave her a job. She has a weekly column in Stylist magazine. Lucy's memoir BOOKWORM, a personal history and celebration of children's literature, was published by Square Peg in March 2018.
Val McDermid has published twenty-eight crime novels, which have sold millions of copies worldwide, been translated into sixteen languages and won multiple awards. Her series featuring criminal profiler Tony Hill was the basis for the TV series The Wire in the Blood for ITV.
Forensics will be published in partnership with the Wellcome Collection. Wellcome Collection is a free visitor destination that explores the connections between medicine, life and art. In 2012, its critically acclaimed programme of events and exhibitions welcomed over 490,000 visitors.
Lionel Shriver's books include Orange Prize-winner We Need to Talk About Kevin , So Much for That, The Post-Birthday World, A Perfectly Good Family and Ordinary Decent Criminals. She is widely published as a journalist, writing features, columns, op-eds, and book reviews for many publications. She is frequently interviewed on television, radio, and in print media. She lives in London and Brooklyn, NY.
Bella Bathurst is a writer and photojournalist. Her books include The Lighthouse Stevensons which won the 1999 Somerset Maugham Award, The Wreckers, which became a BBC Timewatch documentary, and The Bicycle Book, which was shortlisted for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year 2011.
Michael Brooks is the author of the bestselling non-fiction title 13 Things That Don't Make Sense . He holds a PhD in quantum physics, is a consultant at New Scientist and writes a weekly column for the New Statesman.