Stories that traverse continents, traditions, histories and artistic practices, and explore themes as varied as motherhood, COVID-19 and life as a squirrel. While, happily, female authors are now well represented in publishing in the UK, their stories have often remained untold in history. That is what International Women 2021 responds to.
The list comprises poetry, biography, fiction and children’s literature, with authors, poets and artists hailing from Canada, South Africa, India, Italy, the USA and of course, Scotland. They all have a connection to Scotland, helping us build bridges from our wee Press out to the world.
The three poetry collections on the list explore the interplay between poetry and visual art. A Song to Keep was created in a distanced exchange between artist Domenica de Ferranti and poet Olivia Findlay. Patient Dignity features pairings of paintings and poems by Vibha Pankaj and Bashabi Fraser, both from India and now living in Scotland. Restricted Movement is, among other things, an exploration of poet Traci O’Dea’s relationship with her father, who’s paintings feature in the book and aid his struggle with addiction.
Alongside the poetry, International Women 2021 also features Marjorie’s Journey, the incredible biography of a woman who sailed from Scotland to South Africa with ten children during WWII, told by her relative Ailie Cleghorn. Firkin and the Grey Gangsters is the last in our series of republished children’s books from Ann Scott Moncrieff after many were lost in the Blitz. The series concludes with The Queen’s Lender, a historical novel exploring the life of the jeweller, George Heriot to King James VI by Jean Findlay.