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On The Table Read Magazine, “the best entertainment magazine in the UK“, EnvelopeBooks, a micro-publisher founded by Dr. Stephen Games, comes to the United States.
In the summer of 2020, independent micro-publishing house, EnvelopeBooks, was established in the UK, and now in 2023 they have come to the United States. A spin-off from the UK’s largest books magazine, Booklaunch, a quarterly books and publishing freesheet that goes out to 50,000 homes every issue, the EnvelopeBooks imprint is devoted to working with authors to release top quality books.
The magazine’s founder, Dr. Stephen Games, initially began writing Booklaunch to promote new authors and bring bookshop browsing to the locked-down UK. It is through this that he found the first book he would publish; Postmark Africa.
Dr. Games explained that when he found Postmark Africa, it was so promising that he tried to sell it to a mainstream publisher first, but then offered to do it himself. EnvelopeBooks has grown since there.
It was likewise through this first publication that the thought behind the EnvelopeBooks name, as Postmark Africa inspired the envelope-style cover that would turn into a staple for the publisher’s future titles. Since then, every title has had a cover that looks like an airmail envelope and represents the book’s content, especially for books set overseas.
EnvelopeBooks plans to distribute both fiction and non-fiction, and over 20 titles will be available by the end of the year.
Quality Vs Profit
EnvelopeBooks is a welcome change of pace because its true tenets are very much in line with a prominent dichotomy in our current capitalist society: quality vs profit.
Dr Stephen Games is an enthusiast of unexplored dimensions – of both the mind and the world. The carefully picked and curated material of EnvelopeBooks is all his doing: he believes that opting for quality in something niche or unconventional far outweighs the risks of a potential failure. Cultivating creativity in any industry vigorously depends on the abnormal and the less examined, and these books won’t hesitate to talk.
A “postal service of the mind,” EnvelopeBooks delivers a high standard. The imprint promises to provide only the best materials because it has always been focused on quality.
Issues In Society
The books, some humorous, others serious, do not have a clear commercial identity… But should there even be one? EnvelopeBooks’ publications draw attention to resurgent issues of the past and their echoes in today’s society with a predominant focus on history, colonialism, and travel without judging, canceling, or being in your face. They are a feast for the brain and rare food for thought.
The list currently includes a variety of works, including a debut novel by Kirby Porter about loss and memory and a memoir about an Edwardian childhood and the trauma of the First World War, in addition to Postmark Africa.
The first book distributed by EnvelopeBooks, Postmark Africa, is both a history and a memoir. Written by Michael Holman, the journalist and writer who worked as theAfrica Editor of the Financial Times between 1984 and 2002, Postmark Africa offers a unique understanding of sub-Saharan Africa. The combination of Holman’s first-hand accounts of events, such as the atrocities in Rhodesia in the 1960s, and interviews with leaders and locals provides the reader with a comprehensive perspective.
The Hopeful Traveller
The Hopeful Traveller by Janina David is out now. This collection of short stories is described as “a world tour that is nostalgic for earlier times without being sentimental.”
The Hopeful Traveller follows a group of single women narrators on their own journeys throughout post-war Europe in the 1950s and 1960s. The women are at once cosmopolitan, self-assured, and conventional in many ways in the altered world following World War II but never far from dislocation in the fractured world they are traveling through.
PostcardBooks, an offshoot of EnvelopeBooks, providing shorter manuscripts that aim to convey clearer messages from eyewitnesses. Sand in My Shoes, written by Linda Lubbe, and Nell Norah Jane, written by Jane Reid, are two titles that are currently on the list, and four PostcardBooks will be available by the end of the year.
Dr. Stephen Games
Stephen Games came to publishing after a lifetime reflecting on creative arts. He studied graphic design and then architecture and has taught as an adjunct for Temple University, Boston University, and the University of Kent. He was an architecture correspondent for The Guardian, a documentary maker for the BBC, and an opinion writer for the Los Angeles Times.
He has a PhD from Cambridge University for his work on Sir Nikolaus Pevsner, a well-known German architectural historian. He has written four books about him and four more about Sir John Betjeman, a conservation advocate and UK poet laureate.
Find more now:
The Hopeful Traveller
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