Roberto Ampuero’s ‘The Neruda Case’ Out Today!

Happy Publication Day to Roberto Ampuero for his widely acclaimed novel, The Neruda Case.

Neruda Case draft jacket

Translated by Carolina de Robertis, this is the first of Ampuero’s novels to be translated into English.

Already a prize-winning sensation in the Hispanic world and across Europe, this is the first UK and Commonwealth publication of a major new series of crime novels.

In 1970’s Chile the world-famous poet Pablo Neruda can sense his impending death, as well as the end of an era in Chilean politics, but there is one final secret he must resolve. Neruda recruits Cayetano Brulé, a Cuban émigré who has moved to Chile, as his “own private Maigret”(Neruda lends him Simenon’s novels as a crash course in the job). Brulé travels through Neruda’s past and political faiths, retracing the poet’s life from Cuba to Berlin, while Pinochet moves to take power in Chile and all the poet has believed in is threatened.

Evocative and romantic, The Neruda Case spans continents, cultures and the convulsive end of an era and is an intriguing glimpse of Pablo Neruda as well as a gripping political thriller.

Buy a copy of The Neruda Case here.

Most Haunted…?

Chateau d’Hérouville*, once favoured by the biggest British recording artists including Elton John (the French chateau inspired the name of his ‘Honky Chateau’ album), The Rolling Stones, Cat Stevens, Fleetwood Mac and David Bowie, has been put up for sale this month. But it wasn’t just the musical great and good that frequented this French chateau.

According to David Bowie, the Chateau d’Hérouville was haunted, and by none other than the ghost of Frédéric Chopin, who is said to have lived at Hérouville with his mistress. Bowie even refused to sleep in the master bedroom, due to the strange energy of the Chateau.

But why cross the Channel for a spot of ghost-hunting, when here in Britain we have such a wealth of spooky places for you to explore! Where the Ghosts Walk by Peter Underwood is the culmination of a lifetime’s work from the UK’s leading authority on the paranormal. The book is a thorough guide to places across Britain where ghosts have been seen outside – that is, public places, not buildings or private houses, or French chateaux.

If you’re after famous names, you can discover the ghost of Anne Boleyn in the grounds of Hever Castle in Kent and Napoleon at Lulworth Cove. You can also find screaming figures in Norfolk at Castle Rising, Kings Lynn, and at the Shrieking Pits in Aylmerton… and if you’re lucky you might even find a ghost train in Dunphail, Scotland.

So instead of heading to France, take a ghostly tour of the British Isles under the expert guidance of Peter Underwood.

Where the Ghosts Walk cover*You can read more about the Chateau d’Hérouville on the Guardian website.

E-book offer: Telling Tales in Latin

As part of the Amazon Kindle Summer deals, Telling Tales in Latin by Lorna Robinson will be available for the bargain price of £1.19 throughout August.

An exciting new Latin course and storybook for children, it brings Latin to life with its captivating stories taken from Ovid’s Metamorphoses, and narrated by Ovid himself, combined with the lively, fun illustrations by Soham De.

What have the reviews been saying so far?

“Really inviting and engaging, with clear explanations and beautiful and fun illustrations by Soham De… an inviting, absorbing, and embracing learning experience. Young students new to the language will enjoy themselves, and love their learning, both of Latin and classical mythology, and be inspired to learn more. It’s a beautiful beginners’ book, the like of which most of us never had in the past, and I look forward to its success and the love that its students will have for it in years to come.” – The Classics Library

“This would be an excellent choice of text to teach children aged 9 and upwards the rudiments of Latin, and as the book has all the vocabulary needed for the OCR exam, it is a very versatile text indeed.” – The Garden Window blog

“‘Telling Tales in Latin’ will delight all who read it… This little book focuses excellently on the importance of literacy and language and makes it a superb and stimulating introduction to learning Latin… It is one of the best Latin course books currently available and will undoubtedly prove to be a great success, particularly with younger children. Congratulations to Lorna Robinson who has produced a real masterpiece, which brings the subject to life.” – Stephen Addis

And as if that wasn’t exciting enough, Lorna Robinson is in the process of putting together a Teacher’s Guide to Telling Tales in Latin, which will be available for free through the Iris Project website. We’ll be letting you know when the Teacher’s Guide is available, so if you’re interested keep checking back here!

Telling Tales in Latin

Address Unknown at the Soho Theatre: What the Papers Say

If you are a regular reader of our Take Home a Souvenir blog, no doubt you will have seen last month’s blog post about Address Unknown, the book by Katherine Kressmann Taylor, now taken to the stage at the Soho Theatre. With performances in French and English (though the French performances have now finished their run), this fascinating play is garnering rave reviews from all sections of the press.

Take a look at the round up of reviews for Address Unknown at the Soho Theatre:

“Address Unknown is a poignant story of broken friendship that deals in high tragedy while refusing to slip into melodrama. … Steve Marmion’s production effectively emphasises the frustrating sense of helplessness that comes from the distance between the characters, with snippets of broadcasts and radio static adding to the mounting tension.” – Evening Standard, 4 stars.

“A shockingly potent story that is well worth hearing, and one that reminds how easily politics, prejudice and circumstance destroy lives.” – The Guardian, 3 stars.

“An absorbing hour that offers a vivid depiction of how a sense of betrayal can lead to desperate measures.” – The Times, 3 stars.

“A must see.” – One Stop Arts, 4 stars.

“A stunning play … It’s a powerful piece, well staged and well acted … Essential viewing for our modern times.” – The Gay UK, 4 stars.

“Normally a home primarily to new writing, the theatre has taken a gamble on staging a 75-year-old play. And that gamble has paid off. … a provocative and devastating hour of friendship and betrayal.” – A Younger Theatre.

Address Unknown is showing at the Soho Theatre until 27th July. You can book tickets now, and be sure to pick up a copy of the book before you see the play!

address unknown

Author Corner: Maths and Anxiety by Steve Chinn

Steve Chinn is the author of The Fear of Maths: How to Overcome It. With over thirty years’ experience of work and research in special and mainstream education, he specialises in maths learning difficulties and dyscalculia. In 1986 he founded and developed a specialist secondary school for dyslexic boys, which went on to win several major national awards.

His experience has led him to realise that anxiety is a major contributor to the mental block that many people develop when it comes to doing maths, and his blog post below explores the five biggest causes of maths anxiety, with suggestions as to how to overcome them.

What’s Holding You Back: Maths and Anxiety
By Steve Chinn

 What is it about maths that creates so much anxiety in so many people? We know that there is maths anxiety, but why not art anxiety or history anxiety?

These are the five most common causes that I have come across for maths anxiety and a few suggestions on how to combat the problem:

1.      Fear of negative evaluation

One of the issues with maths is that the answers to questions are right or wrong and few of us like being told that we are wrong. This is exacerbated when we are wrong in front of other people. Doing maths in public, say working out the tip in a restaurant in front of friends is going to create anxiety.

Building skills for estimating can help. In many situations ‘close enough’ is just as good as ‘spot on’.

2.      Doing maths quickly

It is part of the culture of maths that questions should be answered quickly. It’s hard to know when this demand began, but 6 x7 is 42 whether you take 2 seconds to answer or 10 seconds. Having to do things that you find difficult quickly creates anxiety. Slow down and give yourself time to think. This will give you a chance to be certain of your answer, and will make you less likely to make small mistakes that creep in when you are in a rush.

3.      Knowing the multiplication facts (times tables)

I don’t know why, but I do know that the reality is that some people find rote learning these facts a BIG problem. It is a part of maths that hasn’t changed over time so parents feel able to help their children, so they buy CDs of multiplication facts songs to play on the school run…. anxiety before the child even gets to school.

Start with the easiest times tables (x1, x2, x5 and x10) to build confidence, and then use what you have learnt here to move on to the more challenging ones.

4.      Mental arithmetic

To be successful at mental arithmetic you have to have a good short-term memory, or you won’t remember the question, which is quite a handicap. You also need a good working memory, the memory you use to do things ‘in your head’. Not everyone has good short-term and working memories. This is the way it is. Being able to jot down notes and memory-joggers can be a help and should not generate guilty feelings.

5.      Fractions, division and algebra

These three topics really create anxiety in children and adults. Most people master addition. They find subtraction a bit harder, multiplication a bit harder still and division pretty close to impossible. That, in turn, makes algebra very difficult and thus very anxiety-generating. To be good at algebra you have to understand addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. Not just remember the procedures, but really understand. It can be made much easier than you might think. Maths is logical and most things are inter-linked. That inter-linking can be good if you can understand each link, but it becomes a real problem if even one link is missing. Maths is a great subject, but learners need to have the concepts explained in ways that they can understand and that means something far more educational than just feeding facts into memory.

FEAR-OF-MATHS-web-jacket

The Fear of Maths by Steve Chinn is published by Souvenir Press. It is available now in paperback and as an e-book.

For more help with maths, take a look at the Maths Made Easy series of books from Souvenir Press. And don’t forget to check out the rest of our Author Corner blog posts!

 

Reviews round-up

This week has got off to a flying start here at Souvenir Press as we arrived in to the office this gloomy Monday morning to a selection of wonderful reviews of our new and recent titles. Have you written a review of a Souvenir Press title and want it to be included in our next review round-up here on the blog? Send me a message in the comments, on Facebook, on Twitter, or by email using the address in the Contact Us page.

Telling Tales in Latin by Lorna Robinson

“Each chapter tells a story and draws the reader straight into Latin with stories, exercises and suggestions, cleverly set out to give the reader confidence that he can read and understand Latin. The colourful illustrations add greatly to the enjoyment of the book. It’s a very interesting approach which shows that Latin is still relevant and enjoyable today.” – Parents In Touch (read the full review)

Telling Tales in Latin is an inviting, absorbing, and embracing learning experience. Young students new to the language will enjoy themselves, and love their learning, both of Latin and classical mythology, and be inspired to learn more. It’s a beautiful beginners’ book, the like of which most of us never had in the past, and I look forward to its success and the love that its students will have for it in years to come.” – The Classics Library (read the full review)

Where the Ghosts Walk by Peter Underwood

“‘Where the Ghosts Walk’ is set to become the handbook and must-read for every seasoned and every would-be paranormal investigator. … If I could give this book 12 out of 10 then I would. Excellent work Mr Underwood….excellent, excellent work.” – Ghost Investigators blog (read the full review)

Welcome to Biscuit Land by Jessica Thom

“An honest, moving account… This book is a valuable one for anyone who lives with Tourettes or knows someone who does. …  Jessica Thom is inspirational and her story will help, encourage and amuse millions of people around the globe who understand or want to learn what it’s like living with Tourettes.” – Blogcritics (read the full review)

Code Name Caesar by Jerome Preisler and Kenneth Sewell

“The only submarine in history to sink another submarine in underwater combat.” – Britain at War

Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain by Betty Edwards

“The standard work for artists, teachers and millions of students and amateur artists… It should be on every artist’s bookshelf.” – The Artist, June 2013 issue

Tintin in the New World by Frederic Tuten

“A playful and imaginative expansion of the boy reporter’s life experience; he loses his virginity and receives instruction from the main characters in Thomas Mann’s cerebral door-stopper The Magic Mountain.” – Times Literary Supplement (read the full blog)

Out today: Where the Ghosts Walk by Peter Underwood

Things are getting more spooky today at Souvenir Press with the publication of WHERE THE GHOSTS WALK: A Gazetteer of Haunted Britain by Peter Underwood.

Britain is the most haunted country in the world with a wealth of places that feed the imagination. From Cape Head in the north of Scotland to Beachy Head in the south of England, it is a land of ghosts and phantoms.

Peter Underwood’s fiftieth published book, WHERE THE GHOSTS WALK is the culmination of a lifetime’s work devoted to investigating the haunted places of Britain. In this his definitive work, Underwood puts together a thorough guide to places across Britain where ghosts have been seen outside – that is, public places, not buildings or private houses, which can be visited by anyone at any time.

It is arranged by the various environments where ghosts appear: airfields, ancient sites, bridges, battlefields, graveyards, gardens, highways, railways, ruins, seascapes, and woods. From the ghosts of Jacobite soldiers in Gallows Tree Lane, the ghost of King Arthur which has been seen in Tintagel, to the phantom Spitfire of Biggin Hill airfield, WHERE THE GHOSTS WALK is an indispensable guide to the rich world of the unexplained.

Peter Underwood is Britain’s leading authority on the paranormal. He is Life President of the Ghost Club Society and President of the Society for Psychical Studies. He has devoted his life to investigating the haunted places of Britain, over 70 years and 50 books.

“The world’s leading ghost hunter” – The Observer

WHERE THE GHOSTS WALK is now available in paperback and as an e-book.

Where the Ghosts Walk cover