The Twyford Code: By Janice Hallett, Viper Books, 384 pages, Rs. 799.
In her first best-seller, The Appeal, Janice Hallett reveals the plot slowly, through a series of emails and texts. In The Twyford Code, she employs a similar technique—only this time, it’s transcripts of over 200 voice recordings from an iPhone—to peel back the layers of a plot about a missing teacher (the popular 20th century children’s writer “Edith Twyford”, an obvious stand-in for Enid Blyton) who may or may not have hidden a secret code in her Super Six series of books, and a few of her students who set out to unravel the mystery after 40 years. It takes a little time to settle in, but once you have, the book, written with sensitivity and humour, is unputdownable. — Shrabonti Bagchi
Glorious Reinvention—The Rebirth of Ajax Amsterdam: By Karan Tejwani, Pitch Publishing, 272 pages, £16.99 (around Rs. 1,700, import hardcover), Rs. 449 (Kindle)
AFC Ajax is one of the world’s most successful football clubs. In Glorious Reinvention: The Rebirth Of Ajax Amsterdam, football writer Karan Tejwani takes the reader through the club’s history— from the 1900s to the late 1990s, and further—and its journey to becoming the most successful team in the Netherlands. The book throws light on the role of key individuals—such as Johan Cruyff, whose footballing philosophy solidified the club’s foundations, and Louis van Gaal, who took the club to Champions League success in 1995. In recent decades, it has had to regain its footing in the changing, and commercial, world of football. And it has done so without losing its true identity. Tejwani looks at how the club’s reinvention came to be. Releasing worldwide on 18 April. —Nitin Sreedhar
Homeward— Towards A Poetics Of Space: Edited by Soibam Haripriya, Zubaan, 256 pages, Rs. 1,200
What is home? Is it a space where those related by blood or law reside together? Is it a place of kinship, not limited to such bonds? How many of us are lucky to experience such a space? For some of us, home is a concept residing only in the sticky bittersweetness of nostalgia. Barring the slightly academic tone in the introduction by the editor Soibam Haripriya, Homeward: Towards A Poetics Of Space is an eclectic collection of essays, poems and illustrations, with a focus on the North-East. Contributors—including known names like Janice Pariat, with three poems, and graphic designer Gayatri Thangjam, with an illustration of childhood memories—dip into their idea of home and homeland, and how this is shaped both by politics and geography. —Vangmayi Parakala