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Our November enewsletter contains updates on news,

events, book launches and special offers on classic titles in

the Library of Wales range as well as related titles

also published by Parthian Books.
Library of Wales November 2012

Welcome to our enewsletter!

50,000 Sales for Out of Print Welsh Classics


A Welsh Government project, the Library of Wales, created to ensure that Wales’ literary heritage written in English was made available to modern audiences, has reached its 50,000th sale.
 
Titles selected for the Library of Wales are unavailable, out-of-print, or merely forgotten. They range diversely from well-known classics by Raymond Williams, Gwyn Thomas, and Dannie Abse, to forgotten works such as Lewis Jones’s behemoth Welsh epic Cwmardy, and Turf or Stone, the ‘Welsh Wuthering Heights’, by Margiad Evans.
 
Their publication has done much to reignite interest in the books, with several now appearing on university reading lists, and being adapted for theatre and radio. The series currently includes 34 titles; thirteen of which are also available as ebooks, further widening the engagement of the Library of Wales with a modern audience.
 
“The success of the Library of Wales series highlights the importance of our long-standing literary tradition here in Wales and we congratulate the publishers Parthian on their excellent work. The continuous sales of the series also testifies to the quality of the writing and the selection of titles by series Editor, Dai Smith. Former First Minister, Rhodri Morgan, noted that the Library of Wales series was a major Welsh Government’s cultural success which the Welsh Books Council are pleased to be involved with in our efforts to promote a range of quality writing from Wales.” – Elwyn Jones, Chief Executive, Welsh Books Council
 
The Library of Wales is a Welsh Government and Welsh Books Council initiative, and is published by Parthian. Launched in Cardiff, London and New York in Spring 2006, the Library of Wales was designed to ensure that all of the rich and extensive literature in Wales that has been written in English is made available to readers in and beyond Wales.
 
The Library of Wales project was born out of an understanding that a wide literary heritage is a key component in creating an ongoing sense of modern Welsh culture and history, bringing back into play the voices and actions of the human experience that has made us, in all our complexity, a Welsh people.
 
“I am delighted that the Library of Wales has reached the landmark of 50,000 sales of out of print Welsh classics and am very pleased that the Welsh Govenrment has supported the scheme to make these books available, both as traditional printed copies and e-books. Providing e-books is an excellent way to make the books accessible to as wide an audience as possible, regardless of where they live and is bringing Welsh literature written in English right up to date. Literature is an excellent way of selling our nation to the world and I am sure the Library of Wales is helping to do just that, as well as keeping our literary heritage alive for future generations.” – Huw Lewis, Minister for Heritage, Welsh Assembly 
 
Jon Gower has recently agreed to take on the challenge of reading the whole series, and has been blogging his experiences online at Wales Arts Review. His post about the first book in the series, Ron Berry’s So Long, Hector Bebb, likens Ron Berry’s writing to contemporary writer Niall Griffiths’s. Such comparisons help to explain why the Library of Wales titles are still able to engage the interest of modern readers.
 
Arthur Machen provides an example of the far-reaching influence of these forgotten writers: named by H. P. Lovecraft as one of the four “modern masters” of supernatural horror, he is credited with influencing horror writers like Stephen King, and has enjoyed a revival of interest since returning to print.
 
The Library of Wales is also partly responsible for Mari Stead Jones’s mission to continue where her father left off. Mari was eighteen when her father passed away suddenly and his papers were sealed into a large wooden chest. In 2007, Mari discovered the chest tucked away in the back of a wardrobe, full of notebooks, unpublished manuscripts and plays. Mari found herself drawn into the stories, and began to edit and rework them for a modern audience. Around this time, she was contacted unexpectedly by Dai Smith about a Library of Wales edition of Make Room for the Jester. It was speaking to Phillip Pullman, who wrote the forward to the Library of Wales edition, at the launch that convinced Mari to publish her version of Stead’s thriller Say Goodbye to the Boys (Parthian, spring 2013).
 
2013 will see an extensive anthology, featuring a range of short stories from Rhys Davies and Alun Richards to Deborah Kay Davies and Rachel Trezise, and an edition of poet, adventurer, and drinker, W. H. Davies’ Autobiography of a Super-tramp with its original preface by George Bernard Shaw.

Visit http://thelibraryofwales.com to view our full catalogue.

 

ebook of the month: Rhapsody
 

Our new ebook version of Dorothy Edwards' brilliant short story collection Rhapsody is available until the end of November for just 99p
 

"I can't think of a more wonderful collection of stories than Rhapsody by Dorothy Edwards. It's a card-carrying masterpiece. Funny, creepy, and strangely beautiful." - Dan Rhodes 
 
"Dorothy Edwards is one of the most remarkable and remarkably neglected authors in the English language of the early twentieth century. Though she was celebrated briefly in her lifetime, after her suicide at the age of thirty-one in 1934, her two books, Rhapsody of 1927 and the novel Winter Sonata of 1928, went out of print. The Virago reprints of the mid-eighties, with thoughtful introductions by Elaine Morgan, were crucial acts of rescue, but Edwards deserves more. [...] At least three of the Rhapsody stories - 'A Country House', 'Days', and the brilliant, allusive and enigmatic 'A Garland of Earth' - are small masterpieces. All of them are extremely controlled studies of constrained desire, loneliness and incomplete relationships." - Christopher Meredith, taken from the foreword of the Library of Wales edition of Rhapsody, now available on ebook.

Read More about the book and the offer: http://thelibraryofwales.com/node/110

Further links:
 
Buy our new ebook edition of Dorothy Edwards' brilliant short story collection Rhapsody from 99p on Amazon or from gwales.com
 
 
 

Book Launch: When I Came Home by George Brinley Evans

 
‘He has the gift of story telling.’ John Idris Jones

Parthian and Literature Wales will be holding an afternoon reception at the Wales Millennium Centre to mark the publication of When I Came Home, the third book in George Brinley Evans’ trilogy of South Wales.
 
The reception will be held from 12.00 noon in the Japan Room of the Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff Bay. The event is free to attend and will include refreshments. Join us for a celebration of George’s work, with an introduction from Dai Smith and readings from When I Came Home.
 
The third book in George’s autobiographical trilogy,  When I Came Home picks up the story from 2006’s Where the Flying Fishes Play, as George returns from the Far East, arriving in Banwen, Neath, to find that ex-servicemen are being treated as traitors by the ferociously Communist self-appointed commissars of the local colliery.
 
But that’s not all George has on his plate. There’s the fish and chip shop, the ice cream round, the Billiard Hall, the boxing club, Saturday afternoon football in bombed-out Swansea, and getting enough black market coupons off Jack Bach the butcher’s wife to buy a suit and marry beautiful, dark-haired Peggy the Papers.
 
George published his first book Boys of Gold at the age of 77. He is also an established painter and sculptor. As a painter, George has been praised for "just painting what he sees", and this book is an astonishingly clear-eyed look back over a long lifetime in one community. Conversations fifty or sixty years ago, tales of drunken colliers and runaway ponies, births and deaths, trips to London and Cardiff, all are remembered and told with vivid clarity and directness.
 
Everyone is welcome, but space is limited so please contact Claire Houguez at claire_parthian@ymail.com / 01792 606605 to reserve a place.
 
Further details on this event, or George’s trilogy, can be found at www.parthianbooks.com
 
Event supported by Literature Wales.
 
 

Literary Tourism Blog: Bangor and Beyond

 
Our editor Susie Wild goes on the trail of Brenda Chamberlain...



On Saturday 20th October I woke up in Caernarfon, not something I can claim to have had the pleasure of before. It seemed wholly appropriate several coffees later, as I was strolling about under the arches of the town walls and down to the water where the castle stood guard... for it was the day we were set to launch the new Library of Wales edition of The Water-castle by Brenda Chamberlain following a walk through a mountain of memories of her life. 
 
Gwynedd Museum and Art Gallery
 
Blessed with the weather, over 40 literary tourists gathered at Gwynedd Museum and Art Gallery at 2pm to go on a sunny magical mystery tour to infinity and beyond... well to Bangor and Beyond at least, we had no idea how far this beyond would be, just that we could get there and back in three hours, and part of our journey would involve a bus.
 
We took a moment to look around the current exhibition celebrating the centenary of local artist and writer Brenda Chamberlain's birth. Chamberlain twice won the Gold Medal in Fine Art at the National Eisteddfod of Wales and held seven solo exhibitions and over 30 group shows during her lifetime. The show included a selection of Brenda Chamberlain’s more abstract works from Poems with Drawings but also included works relating to her books A Rope of Vines, Tide-race and The Water-castle...
 
Read the blog in full on the Library of Wales website

Further links:
 
See the full photo album from our Brenda Chamberlain walk.
 
 
Read my blog about walking in Machen's footsteps in July and also find out about exciting Machen news for 2013.

New Titles from the Library of Wales series

Flame and Slag - Ron Berry

‘The definitive book of South Wales... frying on the streets with pavement empathy’ Alun Richards, author of Library of Wales classic Dai Country.
 
In Ron Berry’s masterpiece, and kaleidoscopic history of the South Wales valleys, lovers Rees Stevens and Ellen Vaughan must discover and interpret Ellen's father's journal.
 
Flame and Slag marks Ron's second appearance in the Library of Wales series, following publication of So Long, Hector Bebb in 2006, as the Library of Wales' inaugural title.
 

The Water-castle - Brenda Chamberlain

The Water-castle is a journal of love, romance and discord in 1950s Germany as a Welsh artist and poet, Elizabeth Greatorex, travels with her French husband to meet her former lover Klaus, a German count.
 
Brenda Chamberlain’s writing pits creative idealism, emotional hunger and sexual longing against the brutal displacements of post-war Europe.

Buy The Water-castle from the Parthian online bookshop for £8.99.
Ebook versions are also out now.
 

Library of Wales titles available as ebooks

Parthian have been developing an ebook list since 2010. We are currently converting front list titles, and select titles from our backlist including titles from the Library of Wales series. 

It's not possible to buy ebooks direct from the Library of Wales or Parthian websites, but Kindle and epub files can be easily located online from a variety of retailers, including Amazon, Waterstones, Gwales, Apple, and many others.

The Library of Wales

The Library of Wales is a Welsh Government project designed to ensure that all of the rich and extensive literature in Wales that has been written in English will now be made available to readers in and beyond Wales. The series is published by Parthian Books. See the full catalogue at 
http://thelibraryofwales.com/

In this issue:

50,000 Sales!

Ebook of the Month: Rhapsody

Book Launch: When I Came Home 
 
Photo Blog: Brenda Chamberlain Walk

Recent Releases
 
Our ebooks
 

Win Books!

Fancy having a go at reviewing an ebook? Email a 100-500 word review of a Parthian ebook to claire_parthian@ymail.com. The best reviews will be selected for display on the Parthian website and one review per month will be chosen to win free copies of our recent print titles!

Pin Ups

We've joined Pinterest! Have you? Check out our Library of Wales boards for Brenda Chamberlain, Kate Roberts, Dorothy Edwards and Arthur Machen now at http://pinterest.com/libraryofwales/

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