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J K Rowling, David Nicholls, Evie Wyld and Jonathan Coe have all been involved in reaching a crowdfunding target this past week. The authors joined forces for a campaign to create an anthology, The Good Immigrant, of essays on race and immigration by fifteen British authors of black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds. The crowdfunding campaign reached its funding goal in just three days following the social media support of these big-name authors. Rowling herself posted a link to the campaign on Twitter, as well as promising a donation of £5,000.

In more book news: 

The Scottish author William (Willie) McIlvanney died on Saturday 5 December at the age of 79. McIlvanney, viewed by his admirers as one of the greatest Scottish – and certainly Glaswegian – writers working today, was known for his detective novels featuring the character Jack Laidlaw.

Sweden has announced an exciting campaign for teenagers across the country. All sixteen year olds will receive a free copy of Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s We Should All Be Feminists through a school distribution plan implemented by the Swedish Women’s Lobby. The essay – on the importance of feminism in the modern world – initially came to public attention with Adichie’s TED talk.

The Girl on the Train, the massive best-selling novel of 2015 by author Paula Hawkins, has won W.H. Smith’s Book of the Year competition.girl-on-the-train-bookPublishing house Gollancz has announced it will be publishing a sequel to the classic science fiction novel The War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells. The sequel, set in London of the 1920s, will be written by the British award-winning author Stephen Baxter and will be called The Massacre of Mankind. Following on from the events of Wells’s iconic story, Baxter’s finds the invading aliens returning to try to conquer Earth once more. Unfortunately we have to wait until January 2017 to read what should, hopefully, be an exciting continuation of the classic and highly influential tale of extraterrestrial terror.

In typical Christmas fashion, The Gruffalo will be making another appearance on our shelves. This will be is 100th printing, and in celebration of this long-running book, publisher Macmillan are arranging a Christmas giveaway of the book along with some goodies (such as, for a lucky few, tickets to the Gruffalo Live theatre show). The giveaway campaign begins Monday 7 December.

It is now nearing the end of the year, so lists galore are appearing, from ranked ‘best of the year’ selections to books to look forward to for 2016. The Guardian have published their favourite books of the year. Dan Wagstaff at The Casual Optimist has revealed his notable (in other words, gorgeous and seriously worth your time) book covers of 2015.

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