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Bill Emmott's The Fate of the West takes modern day politics and economics head-on with its analysis of how liberal democracies are able to survive.

Read your way out of the chaos with our reading list!

The recent TV award winning adaption The Durrells left its 7 million fans with questions: What happened to the family - and what took them to Corfu in the first place? This book has the answers

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The traditional liberal democracies of the West are in decline, and divisive populist sentiment is on the rise. When faced with global instability and economic uncertainty, it is tempting for states to react by closing borders, hoarding wealth and solidifying power, and for citizens to look upon one another with suspicion, incomprehension and mistrust. Former Economist editor-in-chief Bill Emmott explains that we have seen this phenomenon at various times in Japan, France and Italy and now it is infecting all of Europe and America - as vividly demonstrated by the vote for Brexit in the UK and Trump in the US. This insularity, together with increased inequality of income and wealth threatens the future role of the West as a font of stability, prosperity and security. Part of the problem is that the principles of liberal democracy upon which the success of the West has been built have been suborned, with special interest groups such as bankers accruing too much power and too great a share of the economic cake. Investigative journalist Joris Luyendijk argues this environment provides the ideal conditions for populist anti-politicians to thrive. Trump, Johnson, Farage, Beppe Grillo and their ilk are cresting the waves of popularity, whilst their mainstream opponents (whose incompetence, corruption and dismissal of their constituents brought us this mess) watch on. But as mainstream technocrats are purged, and populists fall on their own swords, could something better emerge from the rubble? Could we be in the process of watching the birth of a repoliticised and refreshed democracy?
Andrew Martin on Night Trains at Campden LitFset
Annie Gray gives us a new perspective on Britain's now second longest reigning monarch: from her greed to her selfishness at the table, and her indigestion. Relying on food as a lifelong companion, with her when so many others either died or were forced away by political factors, Victoria had a huge impact on the way we all eat today. The Greedy Queen was runner up in the inaugural Jane Grigson Trust Award 2016. Annie Gray, after graduating from the University of Oxford, did her MA at the University of York and started her PhD (completed in Liverpool) where she is a research associate. Her core research interests include food and dining in public history (esp. c.1600-1960). Annie is the resident food historian on BBC Radio 4's The Kitchen Cabinet, presented Victorian Bakers on BBC2 in 2016, and is a regular contributor to BBC2's James Martin: Home Comforts. As a food historian on TV she appears with Lucy Worsley, Nigel Slater, Paul Hollywood, Heston Blumenthal and Jay Rayner, among others. Behind the scenes she advises on food and the social history around it, including for the BBC4's award-winning Calf's Head and Coffee. Annie Gray is appearing alongside A is for Arsenic author Kathryn Harkup.

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