View all newsletters
Sign up to our newsletters

Support 110 years of independent journalism.

  1. Culture
20 November 2019updated 14 Jul 2021 9:40am

NS Recommends: new books from David Skelton, Ben Okri and Grace Blakeley

By New Statesman

Little Platoons
David Skelton

The 2016 Brexit vote was in part a plea and protest from Britain’s regions against metropolitan hegemony. Ordinary towns felt forgotten and disenfranchised. In this pithy book, the Tory thinker David Skelton looks at how this loss of faith in the social contract can be mended. He identifies a populace that is no longer centrist in its views and how a mixture of initiatives, from community-based social reform and private enterprise, to greater devolution and reindustrialisation, can put things right. His is a call for revamped One Nation Conservatism.
Biteback Publishing, 304pp, £12.99

Prayer for the Living
Ben Okri

Ben Okri ranges widely in this collection of 23 stories. His cast of characters includes a murderer, a man in the mirror, a prison door and even Okri himself. The settings meanwhile take in London and Byzantium, Lagos and the Andes. An air of magic hovers over many of the tales – a doll’s house that comes alive, a tulip salesman who seems to resemble one of his flowers – while others have the familiar cadences of fairy tales. Some are very short, a scenario rather than a story, while others develop their otherworldliness more fully. What really makes a tale, Okri shows, is how it is told.
Head of Zeus, 240pp, £14.99

Stolen: How to Save the World from Financialisation
Grace Blakeley

The 2008 financial crash was not an aberration but the inevitable result of a system in which banks had become the masters rather than the servants of the economy. In her incisive debut book, Grace Blakeley charts the historical origins of the crisis and outlines a vision of a democratic socialist alternative. Today’s left must draw inspiration not from New Labour, she contends, but from the early Thatcherites of the 1970s and lead a counter-revolution. For those who relish, or fear, that prospect, Blakeley’s book is essential reading. 
Repeater Books, 300pp, £10.99

Content from our partners
Unlocking the potential of a national asset, St Pancras International
Time for Labour to turn the tide on children’s health
How can we deliver better rail journeys for customers?

This article appears in the 20 Nov 2019 issue of the New Statesman, They think it’s all over

Select and enter your email address Your weekly guide to the best writing on ideas, politics, books and culture every Saturday. The best way to sign up for The Saturday Read is via The New Statesman's quick and essential guide to the news and politics of the day. The best way to sign up for Morning Call is via Our Thursday ideas newsletter, delving into philosophy, criticism, and intellectual history. The best way to sign up for The Salvo is via Stay up to date with NS events, subscription offers & updates. Weekly analysis of the shift to a new economy from the New Statesman's Spotlight on Policy team. The best way to sign up for The Green Transition is via
  • Administration / Office
  • Arts and Culture
  • Board Member
  • Business / Corporate Services
  • Client / Customer Services
  • Communications
  • Construction, Works, Engineering
  • Education, Curriculum and Teaching
  • Environment, Conservation and NRM
  • Facility / Grounds Management and Maintenance
  • Finance Management
  • Health - Medical and Nursing Management
  • HR, Training and Organisational Development
  • Information and Communications Technology
  • Information Services, Statistics, Records, Archives
  • Infrastructure Management - Transport, Utilities
  • Legal Officers and Practitioners
  • Librarians and Library Management
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • OH&S, Risk Management
  • Operations Management
  • Planning, Policy, Strategy
  • Printing, Design, Publishing, Web
  • Projects, Programs and Advisors
  • Property, Assets and Fleet Management
  • Public Relations and Media
  • Purchasing and Procurement
  • Quality Management
  • Science and Technical Research and Development
  • Security and Law Enforcement
  • Service Delivery
  • Sport and Recreation
  • Travel, Accommodation, Tourism
  • Wellbeing, Community / Social Services
Visit our privacy Policy for more information about our services, how New Statesman Media Group may use, process and share your personal data, including information on your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications.