What Engineers Read

By Fiona Erskine

By Fiona Erskine

A bunch of books to persuade engineers to read more fiction

The Starlings of Bucharest

Sarah Armstrong

£8.99 £8.54

Set in1970's Europe, at the height of the Cold War, Ted moves to London to get away from the working-class fishing community he was born into. Hoping to train as a journalist, he moves to London and slides into debt. Things look up when he is given an opportunity to travel east. But others are watching him. And listening. 'The threats people hold over us are most often imagined. We even create them for ourselves' There has never been a better book on the art of listening, a masterclass in the art of manipulation.

Spring Journal: after Louis MacNeice

Jonathan Gibbs

£8.99 £8.54

This extraordinary poem was written during lockdown in 2020. It mirrors Autumn Journal by Louis MacNeice, written as Europe teetered on the brink of the second world war. Spring Journal follows the evolution of the pandemic in England and the politics of denial. Sometimes, in writing, less is more. Sometimes you need a poet’s observation skills, razor sharp insight and artistry to cut through the darkness and shine a light on what matters.

Go, Went, Gone

Jenny Erpenbeck

£8.99 £8.54

Death Deserved

Thomas Enger and Jorn Lier Horst

£8.99 £8.54


Gert Hofmann

£8.99 £8.54

We know from the start how things will play out which makes the skill of the author all the more impressive. Narrated by a child who only half understands what is going on around him, this tragedy is utterly moving in its simplicity.


Olga Tokarczuk

£9.99 £9.49

A collection of fragments woven into a tapestry. The weft consists of linear stories, multiple tales each set in a different historical time and place: a sultan escapes the hareem, an anatomist dissects his own leg, the James Bond of ecology helps an old friend, a bookseller's family disappear, the professor takes his final cruise. Some stories span the full width of the loom - other appear and disappear to add texture. The warp structure comes from the connecting ideas - of travel, or movement, of restless legs, of change - linking the story threads across time.

Pereira Maintains

Antonio Tabucchi

£8.99 £8.36

Slum Virgin

Gabriela Cabezon Camara

£9.99 £9.49


Kamila Shamsie

£8.99 £8.54

Isma is about to start a graduate program in the States. After helping raise her much younger siblings, twins Aneeka (headstrong and beautiful) and Parvaiz (dangerously aimless), she hopes to start a new life. But the family’s past is about to catch up with them all. 'For girls, becoming women was inevitability; for boys, becoming men was ambition.'

The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle

Haruki Murakami

£10.99 £10.44

The mesmerising Japanese shadow guide never fails to transport, making the mundane surreal, lulling you into a dream-like state before unleashing a nightmare.

The Birdwatcher: a dark, intelligent thriller from a modern crime master

William Shaw

£8.99 £8.54

Migrating birds are arriving on the English coast when a man is murdered. A local policeman, and fellow birder, is reluctantly drawn into the investigation. Can he find justice for his neighbour while keeping his own past a secret?


Gregory David Roberts

£10.99 £10.44

In the early 80s, Gregory David Roberts, an armed robber and heroin addict, escaped from an Australian prison to India, where he lived in a Bombay slum. 'It took me a long time and most of the world to learn what I know about love and fate …but the heart of it came to me in an instant, while I was chained to a wall and being tortured.'

The Left Hand of Darkness

Ursula K. Le Guin

£9.99 £9.49

A human ambassador is sent to the icebound planet of Winter and struggles to come to terms with a host society where where the inhabitants’ gender is fluid. 'I don’t mean love… I mean fear. The fear of the other.'


Ronan Hession

£9.99 £9.49

The uplifting story of friendship between quiet men, a story suffused with gentleness and kindness. “As sometimes happens with boys who prefer games to sports, Leonard had few friends but lots of ideas.”

Phosphate Rocks: A Death in Ten Objects

Fiona Erskine

£8.99 £8.54

Killing State

Judith O'Reilly

£7.99 £7.59

What Falls Between the Cracks

Robert (Author) Scragg

£8.99 £8.54

Open Grave

A.M. Peacock

£8.99 £8.54

The Man on the Street

Trevor Wood

£8.99 £8.54

Till Morning is Nigh

Rob Parker


Inside Out

Chris McGeorge

£8.99 £8.54

A Modern Family

Helga Flatland

£8.99 £8.54

Captain Jesus

Colette Snowden

£9.99 £9.49

An uplifting, cathartic exploration of grief. Bring tissues.

SHOULD WE FALL BEHIND -The BBC Two Between The Covers Book Club Choice

Sharon Duggal

£9.99 £9.49

A story where generosity and love, innocence and acceptance, enriches the giver as much as the receiver.

When We Fall

Carolyn Kirby

£8.99 £8.54

Fascinating wartime story of a female Polish fighter pilot , a British Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA) and a German spy.

The Library of the Dead

T. L. Huchu

£9.99 £9.49

The Sound Mirror

Heidi James

£9.99 £9.49

The mystery in the novel is not just the how and why but also the who, a a carefully constructed puzzle with a very simple key.

The Cat Who Saved Books

Sosuke Natsukawa

£9.99 £9.49

Animal's People

Indra Sinha

£9.99 £9.49


Susanna Clarke

£8.99 £8.54

Currently listening to this on audio. The repetition gives it a mesmerising rhythm and the apparent simplicity is satisfyingly deceptive

The Angel in the Stone

R. L. McKinney

£8.99 £8.54


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