10 books for 2015

There will be many others I don’t yet know about. And I’m sure I will not read everything listed below. But here are 10 books to be published in 2015 I’m looking forward to, summarised in alphabetical order.

3 moments of an explosion, China Mieville

Mieville’s powerful imagination explores social issues through vivid sci-fi: I am looking forward to this collection of short stories.

1606: William Shakespeare and the Year of Lear, James Shapiro

Shapiro’s 1599 set Shakespeare’s writing of Henry IV Part 1, Henry V, Julius Caesar, and Hamlet in the context of year of political and religious turmoil: in 1606 he studies the year in which he wrote both King Lear and Macbeth.

Cameron’s Coup, Polly Toynbee and David Walker

This promises to be a forensic study of the Coalition’s dismemberment of what remains of British social democracy.

Dictator, Robert Harris

The final part of Harris’s trilogy of the life of the Roman orator Cicero: the first two parts are absorbing historical fiction.

Four Futures: Life After Capitalism, Verso Books, Peter Frase

Frase argues that technological advancements and environmental threats will inevitably push us beyond capitalism, and imagines two futures that might be constructed by the left – reimagined versions of ‘socialism’ and ‘communism’ – and two by the right – ‘rentism’ and ‘exterminism’.

Postcapitalism: A Guide to our Future, Paul Mason

A brilliant journalist with the capacity to make fascinating connections – I am looking forward to Mason’s analysis of the future imagined by new left movements such as Syriza and Podemos, and the technological and cultural impulses that are driving us towards ‘postcapitalism’.

Raw Concrete – A Field Guide To British Brutalism, Barnabas Calder

A study of the guiding philosophy and built legacy of a fascinating strand in British postwar architectural modernism.

Rebel, Rebel, Chris O’Leary

O’Leary is one of Bowie’s most acute commentators: Rebel Rebel catalogs Bowie’s songs from 1964 to 1976, charting the influences behind each track.

The Buried Giant, Kazuo Ishiguro

Ishiguro’s new novel is set in Arthurian Britain, the war-ravaged, post-Roman landscape from which the tales of Arthur emerged.

The Happiness Industry: How the Government and Big Business Sold us Well-Being, William Davies

An examination of the emerging cult of ‘well-being’, and the commercialisation of ‘happiness’.

The Wolf Border, Sarah Hall

This sounds too complex to summarise in my own words – so I will simply quote the publisher’s note:

Set against a background of political tumult – Scottish independence, land reform, and power struggles – The Wolf Border investigates the fundamental nature of wilderness and wildness, both animal and human. It explores our concepts of ecology and evolution, re-wilding projects and the challenges faced by modern rural landscapes.