3 Books Weekly #16: Featuring Lost My Name founder David Cadji-Newby

09.00, Friday 17 Jun 2016

The following was first posted on the 3 Books Weekly email newsletter and has since been archived here.

Hi folks

Today I am super delighted (and a bit awe-struck) to have recommendations from David Cadji-Newby – BBC comedy writer, novelist, children’s author, and co-founder of Lost My Name. I’ve been googling him - as you do - and this interview stood out, it’s worth a read for David’s take on the world and the story of the company. An inspiring story, as you’d expect.

Find him over here on Twitter: @DavidCadjiNewby

Lost My Name creates personalised (and beautiful!) kids books, and they’re a phenomenal success. It’s where Machine Supply is located this month – it’s for staff only except on event days. I’m doing a talk there next week… follow that previous link to find out more. You’ll find David’s book picks in stock and a bunch more.

Let’s see, what else? I got some Machine Supply badges made! They’re hard enamel and feature the logo designed by Common Works. I’m really pleased with them. Here’s a pic. I’ll be in touch with everyone who has shared recommendations for the vending machine soon, I’d like to send you a badge in the post.

And if you’d like to share recommendations, I’d love to stock your books too :) The form I use to collect recommendations is right here.

Okay, let’s get on with the show. Happy Friday all!


#1. The Road Home (Bello), by Jim Harrison

Escapism is often used in a disparaging way, for pulp fiction packed full of thrills, suspense and implausible plots. But Jim Harrison writes novels so poetic and profound, so beautifully written and full of humour, that just the reading of the words, never mind the plot (which there isn’t a lot of) takes you away to a different place. This novel is a sprawling family epic of the mid-West, but that hardly matters. I’d read Jim Harrison’s guide to flat-pack furniture, frankly, just to enjoy his unique and wonderful voice.

The Road Home (Bello): Amazon / Amazon UK

#2. A Perfect Spy, by John Le Carré

People often think of John le Carré as a slightly old-fashioned, oh-so-British espionage writer. Well, they’re half right. But only half. This book is half spy novel, half Bildungsroman, and full of contradictions, the main one (in my opinion) being that it is simultaneously one heck of a page-turner, and also a gobsmackingly brilliant postmodern exploration into the unreliability of both identity and narrative. Philip Roth called it ‘the best English novel since the war,’ and I reckon he’s right.

A Perfect Spy: Amazon / Amazon UK

#3. Into Thin Air, by Jon Krakauer

I’ve never climbed a mountain in my life and, to be honest, I don’t want to. It sounds like hard work and, after you’ve read this, bloody dangerous with it. But this account of a doomed expedition to summit Mount Everest is insanely compelling. Egos, hubris, heroes, villains, selfishness, selflessness, endurance, tragedy, it’s got the lot. I read it on a plane from Nepal. I’m scared of flying, but this time I was too engrossed to be scared. It reads like a novel (often said about non-fiction, usually a lie) and the best thing is, no matter how unreal a lot of it sounds, it actually happened.

Into Thin Air: Amazon / Amazon UK

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