• Strange Weather in Tokyo by Hiromi Kawakami

    The Heights Bar

    Tsukiko is in her late 30s and living alone when one night she happens to meet one of her former high school teachers, 'Sensei', in a bar. He is at least thirty years her senior, retired and, she presumes, a widower. After this initial encounter, the pair continue to meet occasionally to share food and drink sake, and as the seasons pass - from spring cherry blossom to autumnal mushrooms - Tsukiko and Sensei come to develop a hesitant intimacy which tilts awkwardly and poignantly into love. Perfectly constructed, funny, and moving, Strange Weather in Tokyo is a tale of modern Japan and old-fashioned romance. Review 'With its flying-waitress cover and kooky title, this Japanese novel - shortlisted for the Man Asian Literary Prize - hints at Murakami-style weirdness. ... Delicate marks of the passing seasons reveal Kawakami's frank debt to classical Japanese poetry, while the odd couple's shared meals will tickle foodie palates. An elegiac sense of speeding time, and yawning distance, drizzles the story - sensitively translated by Allison Markin Powell - with a sweet sadness.' --Boyd Tonkin

  • The Good Immigrant USA

    The Heights Bar

    An urgent collection of essays by first and second-generation immigrants, exploring what it's like to be othered in an increasingly divided America. From Trump's proposed border wall and travel ban to the marching of White Supremacists in Charlottesville, America is consumed by tensions over immigration and the question of which bodies are welcome. In this much-anticipated follow-up to the bestselling UK edition, hailed by Zadie Smith as 'lively and vital', editors Nikesh Shukla and Chimene Suleyman hand the microphone to an incredible range of writers whose humanity and right to be in the US is under attack. Chigozie Obioma unpacks an Igbo proverb that helped him navigate his journey to America from Nigeria. Jenny Zhang analyzes cultural appropriation in nineties fashion, recalling her own pain and confusion as a teenager trying to fit in. Fatimah Asghar describes the flood of memory and emotion triggered by an encounter with an Uber driver from Kashmir. Alexander Chee writes of a visit to Korea that changed his relationship to his heritage. These writers, and the many others in this singular collection, share powerful personal stories of living between cultures and languages while struggling to figure out who they are and where they belong. By turns heartbreaking and hilarious, troubling and uplifting, the essays in The Good Immigrant USA come together to create a provocative, conversation-sparking, multivocal portrait of America now. Essays from: Porochista Khakpour Nicole Dennis-Benn Rahawa Haile Teju Cole Priya Minhas Walé Oyéjidé Fatimah Asghar Tejal Rao Maeve Higgins Krutika Mallikarjuna Jim St. Germain Jenny Zhang Chigozie Obioma Alexander Chee Yann Demange Jean Hannah Edelstein Chimene Suleyman Basim Usmani Daniel José Older Adrián Villar Rojas Sebastián Villar Rojas Dani Fernandez Fatima Farheen Mirza Susanne Ramírez de Arellano Mona Chalabi Jade Chang *This book will be released in March

  • If Beale Street Could Talk by James Baldwin

    The Heights Bar

    The inspiration for the new film from Oscar award-winning director Barry Jenkins 'Achingly beautiful' Guardian Harlem, the black soul of New York City, in the era of Aretha Franklin and Ray Charles. The narrator of Baldwin's novel is Tish nineteen, and pregnant. Her lover Fonny, father of her child, is in jail accused of rape. Flashbacks from their love affair are woven into the compelling struggle of two families to win justice for Fonny. To this love story James Baldwin brings a spare and impassioned intensity, charging it with universal resonance and power. 'If Beale Street Could Talk affirms not only love between a man and a woman, but love of a type that is dealt with only rarely in contemporary fiction - that between members of a family' Joyce Carol Oates Review If Beale Street Could Talk affirms not only love between a man and a woman, but love of a type that is dealt with only rarely in contemporary fiction - that between members of a family (Joyce Carol Oates) Soulful . . . Racial injustice may flatten "the black experience" into one single, fearful, constantly undermined way of life-but black life, black love, is so much larger than that . . . It's one of the signature lessons of Baldwin's work that blackness contains multitudes ( Vanity Fair)

  • June Meetup - Book TBD by vote

    The Heights Bar

    This month’s book will be decided by vote based on recommendations from members. Further details will be posted/emailed shortly.

  • Kill The Black One First - A Memoir by Michael Fuller

    Absorbing... revealing and affecting. There are pleasures here, and lessons to be learnt, whatever colour you are' - The Sunday Times A story about race, identity, belonging and displacement, Kill the Black One First is the memoir from Michael Fuller - Britain's first ever black Chief Constable, whose life and career is not only a stark representation of race relations in the UK, but also a unique morality tale of how humanity deals with life's injustices. Michael Fuller was born to Windrush-generation Jamaican immigrants in 1959, and experienced a meteoric career in policing, from the beat to the Brixton inferno, through cutting edge detective work to the frontline of drug-related crime and violence on London's most volatile estates. He took a pivotal role in the formation of Operation Trident, which tackled gun crime and gang warfare in the London community, and was later appointed as chief constable of Kent. Kill the Black One First is a raw and unflinching account of a life in policing during a tumultuous period of race relations throughout the UK. A hard-hitting and honest memoir from Michael Fuller, Britain's first black Chief Constable, who reflects on his astonishing life growing up in care and his extraordinary experience of the race and cultural barriers in his career. About the Author Michael Fuller was the first ever ethnic minority chief constable in the UK. He joined the Metropolitan Police Service in 1975 as a cadet and served in uniformed and CID positions throughout London. Michael has helped set up the Racial and Violent Crime Task Force and Operation Trident.