The spotlight is on Nicolas Cheetham, our digital publisher and deputy MD.

I’m currently reading Peter the Great by Robert K. Massie. Every bit as good as its monumental, Pulitzer-prize winning reputation suggests.

If I were a character from fiction, I would be HAL 9000 from 2001. Those pod bay doors are closed because the metadata says they should be.

My top 10 books are:

Can I just say that these are in no particular order?

  1. The Sotweed Factor by John Barth. Humungous, preposterous, riotous, satirical and philosophical. The most fun ever had with a historical novel. The Last Voyage of Somebody the Sailor, also by the same author is almost as good.
  2. The Wasp Factory by Iain Banks. The best novel to read when you are 13 EVER (I double dare you Little, Brown to release a YA edition)
  3. Lanark by Alasdair Gray. I think this one’s on everyone’s list, but its still the best novel to read when you are 18 EVER.
  4. The Age of Spiritual Machines by Ray Kurzweil. The future of humanity and the ultimate fate of the universe. All in one handy tome.
  5. The Weight of Numbers by Simon Ings. Future generations will wonder why we’ve taken so long to cotton on to Simon Ings’ utter genius.
  6. The Forgotten Soldier by Guy Sajer. Fact or fiction? Doesn’t matter: life and death on the Eastern front in World War Two.
  7. Ilium by Dan Simmons. Shakespeare and Proust-loving robots battle Greek gods on Mars. And the hero gets eaten by an Allosaur in the first chapter. What’s not to like?
  8. All of Boris Akunin’s Erast Fandorin novels. The entire universe of crime fiction in just one series. Just when you think Akunin can’t get any better… along comes his next book.
  9. La Femme du Magicien by François Boucq and Jerome Charyn. A graphic novel without compare. Both story and art break down the barriers between the real and the magical. If you can find a copy, get it.
  10. Bad to the Bone by James Waddington. Are there great novels about cycling? YES! The Rider by Tim Krabbe is pretty good, but this one wins the yellow jersey. It’s a surreal, strangely prophetic, Faustian tale. Should be made into a film. My brother and I tried to option the film rights years ago. Shall we try again? Who’s in?