October: A Month in Books
With autumn in full swing and darkness encroaching on our evenings, it’s the perfect time to put your feet up, break out the chunky knit jumper and grab a book to read. We’ve compiled a list of some of this month’s best releases, along with a selection of some great new films.
We Were Eight Years in Power, Ta-Nehisi Coates, 3 October
Ta-Nehisi Coates’s Between the World and Me – published in 2015 – created a dialogue about race relations in modern day America, evoking a striking and compelling portrait of a nation still coming to terms with the repercussions of its violent and oppressive history. Coates’s latest book, We Were Eight Years in Power, continues on this theme and features a series of essays on race, Barack Obama’s presidency, as well as the oppresive realities of day-to-day life for people of colour living in a seemingly multi-cultural, inclusive society.
The Sun and Her Flowers, Rupi Kaur, 3 October
This is the second collection of poetry from award winning author Rupi Kaur. Kaur’s work originally started as a series of posts via Instagram before the huge success of her first self-published collection Milk and Honey. Illustrated by Kaur, The Sun and Her Flowers celebrates love in all its forms and tackles issues of feminism, trauma and healing.
Uncommon Type: Some Stories, Tom Hanks, 17 October
This is Tom Hanks’s first step into the world of published writing. Uncommon Type is a series of short stories which demonstrate the actor’s talent for storytelling. From a WW2 veteran dealing with the emotional and physical effects of war, to a woman adjusting to life after her divorce and a second-rate actor who finds himself thrust into the limelight, these stories highlight the imperfections of the human condition.
Like Water, Rebecca Podos, 17 October
The second novel by YA writer Rebecca Podos is about identity, millennial anxiety and first love. It tells the story of Savannah, a teenage girl stuck in a small town caring for a father with Huntington’s disease, drifting from boy to boy and working at a water park. Her life changes when she meets Leigh, whose desire to escape the confines of small-town life brings her and Savannah together. As their friendship grows, difficult questions arise for Savannah, who is forced to confront much deeper truths about herself.
The Book of Dust, Philip Pullman, 19 October
The Book of Dust is a story in three parts by beloved author Philip Pullman. La Belle Sauvage is the first part of the trilogy and centres on the struggle between a totalitarian organisation that wants to stifle critical thinking and those who believe in free speech. Focusing on new characters with appearances from characters that fans of Pullman’s previous work will recognise, La Belle Sauvage will be published 22 years after Northern Lights.
Blade Runner 2049, Denis Villeneuve, 6 October
Loosely based on Phillip K Dick’s novel, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, The original Blade Runner, directed by Ridley Scott, has entered iconic film status since its release in 1983. The sequel stars Ryan Gosling, a blade runner who uncovers a terrible secret that could bring about the end of humanity. With Harrison Ford reprising his role as Deckard and acclaimed French filmmaker Denis Villeneuve directing, this has all the elements of a successful sequel.
The Mountain Between Us, Henry Abu-Assad, 6 October
Based on the book by Charles Martin, The Mountain Between Us tells the story of a photojournalist and doctor who must work together to survive in the wilderness after surviving a plane crash.
So B. It, Stephen Gyllenhaal, 6 October
So B. It is a coming-of-age tale based on the novel of the same name by Sarah Weeks. It tells the story of Heidi, a young girl with a mentally disabled mother who goes in search of answers regarding her family’s history. Travelling from Nevada to New York, she begins to uncover the secrets of her past.
Dates for Your Diary
Ness Book Fest 5-8 October
Dundee Literary Festival 18-22 October
Scottish International Storytelling Festival 20-31 October