What fiction have we been reading in the last hundred years? Who are the most popular authors and what are the most popular books and the most important genres? Such straightforward questions raise intriguing literary, cultural, social and intellectual responses which often require much detective work in the annals of lost literature.
Fully revised and updated, this second edition includes a new introduction which features additional information on the influence of television (especially the 'Richard and Judy' book club); the importance of Scottish literature; the rise of Black and Asian British writers; the continuing importance of the romance and detective genres, including hybrid genres such as 'vampire romance'; and current trends in publishing and bookselling. There are new chapters on the themes of British literature and on children's writing since 1900, including discussion Beatrix Potter, AA Milne, Enid Blyton, Roald Dahl, JK Rowling and Philip Pullman, as well as many new entries to the present day including bestsellers such as Dan Brown. The essential guide to best-selling books, authors and genres since 1900, providing a unique insight into a century of publishing and reading for specialists and non-specialists alike.
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'As an informed and witty companion to what people read and why, it is excellent.' - The Economist