Recommendations

Mefus yn y Glaw

A lively and sensitive novel about friendship and the lives of older women. We follow a day in the life of Lili Daniels, a 50 year old authoress who is having difficulty in finding inspiration to write her fifth novel.

Tonfedd Heddiw: Eiliad ac Einioes

Her first volume of poetry for adults by Casia Wiliam, comprising sensitive poems responding to the brittleness of life and the passage of time - from the first sweet kiss that disappears in a second to the mystical feelings that stay with us forever.

The Seaweed Collector's Handbook: From Purple Laver to Peacock's

Seaweed is so familiar and yet its names - pepper dulse, sea lettuce, bladderwrack - are largely unknown to us.


In this short, exquisitely illustrated portrait, the Dutch poet and artist Miek Zwamborn shares her discoveries of its history, culture and use, from the Neolithic people of the Orkney Islands to sushi artisans in modern Japan. Seaweed troubled Columbus on his voyages across the Atlantic, intrigued von Humboldt in the Sargasso Sea and inspired artists from Hokusai to Matisse.


Covering seaweed's collection by Victorians, its adoption into fashion and dance and its potential for combating climate change, and with a fabulous series of recipes based around the 'truffles of the sea', this is a wonderful gift for every nature lover's home.



Ar Lwybr Dial

An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth? Do people who have sinned deserve to be punished? One killer thinks so and that's why there are bodies being found in strange situations. Can Taliesin MacLeavy find the killer before more people have to die?

#futuregen: Lessons from a Small Country

The inside story behind Wales' unprecedented Wellbeing of Future Generations Act and its potential as a model for policy makers worldwide.

Dyn Dweud Drefn yn yr Ardd

The man who gives others a good telling off is back, and his rebukes are stronger than ever before! He has travelled to Europe to follow the Welsh football team! But Welsh supporters need to be on their toes, as he is on their heels, ready to chide them!

'Y Mae y Lle yn Iach' - Chwarel Dinorwig 1875-1900

A volume that focuses on the health and care requirements of the inhabitants of the slate communities of Dyffryn Peris and surrounding areas in Snowdonia. When the industry was at its height, there were 14,000 miners in Gwynedd. The dangers at work, together with the infections and illnesses that arose from poverty and lack of health provision contributed to industrial unrest.

The mermaid of Black Conch

'Monique Roffey is a unique talent and most daring and versatile of writers' - Bernardine Evaristo


April 1976: St Constance, a tiny Caribbean village on the island of Black Conch, at the start of the rainy season. A fisherman sings to himself in his pirogue, waiting for a catch – but attracts a sea-dweller he doesn’t expect. Aycayia, a beautiful young woman cursed by jealous wives to live as a mermaid, has been swimming the Caribbean Sea for centuries. And she is entranced by this man David and his song.


But her fascination is her undoing. She hears his boat’s engine again and follows it, and finds herself at the mercy of American tourists, landed on the island for the annual fishing competition. After a fearsome battle, she is pulled out of the sea and strung up on the dock as a trophy. It is David who rescues her, and gently wins her trust – as slowly, painfully, she starts to transform into a woman again. But transformations are not always permanent, and jealousy, like love, can have the force of a hurricane, and last much longer


The novel’s characters are an unlikely mix: a mermaid, a fisherman, a deaf boy, a Caribbean artist and sweetman and a benevolent white landowner. Miss Arcadia Rain’s own love story is interwoven with Aycayia and David’s and the rivalries and affections in both family and community are brought brilliantly to life. Themes of unconditional love, friendship, family and loss, are examined without sentimentality. Roffey manages to write convincingly about a mermaid, a 'legend drawn from the sea', returned to land, to survive, heal and live again, as a real woman in modern times.



Llyfr Adar Mawr y Plant

A beautifully illustrated, factual book about 50 birds seen in Wales, with a double page for each bird, comprising facts, photographs, poems and especially commissioned illustrations. Details include bird descriptions, size, habitat and food together with a useful glossary.

Exiles

This well-crafted novel is one of the few novels in either Irish or English that explores this generation of Irish people, often termed the 'silent' or 'lost generation' when over a half-a-million people emigrated, primarily to Britain to work in the post-war economy there - 'building England up and tearing it down again'.

Before the Coffee Gets Cold

What would you change if you could go back in time? In a small back alley in Tokyo, there is a cafe which has been serving carefully brewed coffee for more than one hundred years. But this coffee shop offers its customers a unique experience: the chance to travel back in time. In Before the Coffee Gets Cold, we meet four visitors, each of whom is hoping to make use of the cafe's time-travelling offer, in order to: confront the man who left them, receive a letter from their husband whose memory has been taken by early onset Alzheimer's, to see their sister one last time, and to meet the daughter they never got the chance to know. But the journey into the past does not come without risks: customers must sit in a particular seat, they cannot leave the cafe, and finally, they must return to the present before the coffee gets cold . . . Toshikazu Kawaguchi's beautiful, moving story - translated from Japanese by Geoffrey Trousselot - explores the age-old question: what would you change if you could travel back in time? More importantly, who would you want to meet, maybe for one last time?



In My Mind's Eye: A Thought Diary

So begins this extraordinary book, a collection of diary pieces that Jan Morris wrote for the Financial Times over the course of 2017.


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