A Small Illustrated Guide to the Universe by Ella Frances Sanders
Release Date: Early Nov
While this book doesn’t necessarily tell you everything about the universe, it’s a heroic and very readable attempt. It covers concepts like gravitation and planetary motion, the properties of light, why everything is made of stars, why plants act like plants and much, much more. Each thing gets a page or two of text and an illustration rather than a diagram. It’s written in a light, conversational but informative style and would be fine for younger readers and adult science fans alike. It’s also a very nice little hardcover, which I think makes it a very nice gift idea.

Strange Planet by Nathan Pyle
Release Date: Late Nov
There’s a good chance that anyone who spends time on social media has encountered the short comic strips of Nathan Pyle. In them, a variety of spheroid-headed aliens are shown having a variety of very human experiences while engaging in a literal commentary on the situation. Some of them are cute, some are sad and some are funny, but there’s an odd kind of sincerity mixed with a kind of observational comedy in them too. Readers can look forward to subjects like; The Emergence Day, Being Gains a Sibling, The Being Family Attains a Beast,  Celebration of Special Days, Being Begins a Vocation, Health Status of a Being, The Being Reflects on Life While Watching the Planet Rotate and many more. This is for anyone who just wants something to make them smile.

Choose Your Own Apocalypse with Kim Jong-Un and Friends by Rob Sears
Release Date: Early Nov
I don’t think there are many people who think that world leaders are doing a good job as a whole, and there are many who are sure that we’re fast approaching an inevitable doom. This book answers the global call to action, though not in quite the way intended. In this book you get to take a seat among the movers and shakers and decide the fate of the world. Can you stop Elon Musk’s nanobots from turning everything into grey goo? Or make sure no itchy fingered despot starts a nuclear Armageddon? Or will you just run out the clock of climate change? The choices are yours. Best of all, unlike the real world, if you don’t like it you can start over. A darkly funny choose-your-own-adventure for grownups who aren’t.

The Gashlycrumb Tinies by Edward Gorey
Release Date: Early Nov
So this one is not remotely new, having been first published in 1963. But this is a brand new deluxe slipcase edition, so I think that counts. The Gashlycrumb Tinies is an illustrated alphabet book about dead children, which while being entirely true is probably the most inaccurate thing I’ve ever written about a book. The book is however, like the above statement gloriously wrong. A favourite of luminaries like Tim Burton, Neil Gaiman and Guillermo Del Toro, Edward Gorey was famous for his odd, surreal, sometimes transgressive but always amusing art and writing. While The Gashlycrumb Tines is not his best work in my opinion, it is probably the best known. Beginning with A is for Amy who fell down the stairs, the book is hilariously macabre journey thought the alphabet that you should probably only share with your strangest friends. For the curious, my favourite is ‘N’.

Die Hard Christmas Gift Set by Doogie Horner
We’ve had the Die Hard Christmas book before, but this year they’ve upped their game somewhat with this presentation gift edition with a little companion plush doll. You’ve heard of Elf on a Shelf? Well get ready for McClane in Pain!  The book is an illustrated retelling of the classic Celement Clarke Moore poem Twas the Night Before Christmas, but with a Die Hard theme. Just the sort of thing to win over those last few hold-outs who refuse to recognise it as a Christmas movie. This is also a great one to read to kids, assuming that don’t want to be invited back next year, since it’s pretty bloody and ends with the film’s iconic line.

I Am C-3PO by Anthony Daniels
Release Date: Early Nov
As far as I can tell, Anthony Daniels is the only Star Wars actor to have appeared in every Star Wars movie as well as nearly all the animated shows, specials, games. He’s also hosted or appeared in at least five documentaries. So in addition to his thoughts on playing C-3PO for more than forty years, from rough practical effects in the desert to the slick modern era, he’s also a living witness to the birth and life of the Star Wars phenomenon. In this memoir he shares his first moments with C-3PO as little more than concept drawings, through half a lifetime spent in the role. I doubt there is anyone who could have a wider and more varied set of stories about the reality behind Star Wars. Joys and sadness, friendships and hardships and sometimes real danger are shared in a funny and sincere way. This is a must for any Star Wars fan.

Supernatural Cookbook by Julia Tremaine & Jessica Torres
Release Date: Early Nov
I’m not quite sure when it happened, but it seems that you haven’t really made it as a fandom until they write a cookbook for you. For all that it’s a tie-in with a TV series, it’s also a serious cookbook and after fans have done the ‘its all going to be pies’ joke they find that it’s got a lot of very tasty looking things in it. It is mostly what could be called ‘roadhouse’ style recipes and a lot of them look pretty good though there are a couple, like the Elvis burger that are pretty extreme. All in all, it’s a pretty good cookbook. And yes, for all the Dean fans, there are several pie recipes

Vargic’s Curious Cosmic Compendium by Martin Vargic
Release Date: Mid Nov
This is another of my adventures in to non-fiction, an updated guide to the universe. Using lots of design infographics and visualisations this book pulls together a lot of the new things we know about the universe as well things you may already know, but presents them in a unique and with new kind of clarity. Visually stunning, this a book for people interested in space-science of any age.