Are you looking for your next great read? Why not try out the books from across the pond? Despite from what governments say, books are essential and are needed now, more than ever. So if you are need of a variety and want to read diverse stories, then I suggest you try out some British and Irish titles!
There are not that many UK and Irish releases this month so I decided to skip it this month and name recent released books from the UK and Ireland that make perfect holiday gifts! Remember to support your independent bookstores by shopping at Bookshop.org and Hive.co.uk.
You can buy these titles from BookDepository.com, a subsidiary of Amazon. They provide free international delivery, although this is being affected right now due to the pandemic. You can also try with the British bookstore, Blackwell’s, also with Wordery.com. Now on with the recommendations!
The book titles linked to the Waterstones Bookstore.
Medusa: The Girl Behind The Myth by Jessie Burton
Exiled to a far-flung island by the whims of the gods, Medusa has little company except the snakes that adorn her head instead of hair. But when a charmed, beautiful boy called Perseus arrives on the island, her lonely existence is disrupted with the force of a supernova, unleashing desire, love and betrayal…
Filled with glorious full-colour illustrations by award-winning Olivia Lomenech Gill, this astonishing retelling of Greek myth is perfect for readers of Circe and The Silence of the Girls. Illuminating the girl behind the legend, it brings alive Medusa for a new generation. (Credit: Bloomsbury Publishing)
The Comfort Book by Matt Haig
Reflections on hope, survival and the messy miracle of being alive.
It is a strange paradox, that many of the clearest, most comforting life lessons are learned while we are at our lowest. But then we never think about food more than when we are hungry and we never think about life rafts more than when we are thrown overboard.
The Comfort Book is a collection of consolations learned in hard times and suggestions for making the bad days better. Drawing on maxims, memoir and the inspirational lives of others, these meditations celebrate the ever-changing wonder of living. This is for when we need the wisdom of a friend or a reminder we can always nurture inner strength and hope, even in our busy world.
A book of timeless comfort for modern minds. (Credit: Cannongate Books)
You Are A Champion: Unlock Your Potential, Find Your Voice and Be The BEST You Can Be by Marcus Rashford with Carl Anka
Tear up the rule book. Find your own lane. You are only in competition with yourself.
Marcus Rashford MBE is recognised worldwide for his journey both on and-off the pitch – but how did a boy from the South of Manchester become not only an International footballer but also one of the leading activist voices in the UK? In this inspiring, positive and practical guide, Marcus gives YOU the tools you need to reach your full potential and will show you that your possibilities really can be endless.
In You Are a Champion: Unlock Your Potential, Find Your Voice and Be the BEST You Can Be, Marcus Rashford MBE draws on stories from his own life to show you that success is all about the mindset. You’ll find out how positive thinking can change your life, build mental resilience, learn how to navigate adversity and discover the unstoppable power of your own voice. You already have the tools you need to achieve your dreams; you just might not know it yet.
Full of practical advice and engaging illustrations and infographics, this is the empowering and life changing first children’s book from Marcus Rashford MBE, written in collaboration with journalist Carl Anka and featuring top tips from performance psychologist Katie Warriner. (Credit: Pan Macmillan)
This beautiful guided journal will allow you to gather your thoughts on the books you have read, with 50 templates to fill in. You will also find advice on how to organize a successful book club, pick your discussion topics and make the most of your reading time, plus 200 book recommendations arranged into 20 themed reading lists, carefully curated by Sanne Vliegenthart, book reviewer and creator of hugely popular book videos at Books and Quills.
With timeless quotes on the joy of reading peppered throughout, this makes a gorgeous gift, whether for someone else or just for yourself. (Credit: Octopus Publishing Group)
Tomorrow is Beautiful: Poems to Comfort, Uplift and Delight edited by Sarah Crossan
Sometimes it’s hard to find the right words. This poetry anthology provides the antidote, offering calm, hope and peace to all. Focusing on positivity, this is the perfect collection to dip into whenever you need a boost.
Containing a selection of classic poems from Langston Hughes, Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson and Christina Rossetti, as well as contemporary poems chosen by Sarah Crossan – the go-to verse novelist in the UK – this beautiful book will lift your spirits time and time again. An essential read and the perfect gift for anyone in need of comfort, joy and hope. (Credit: Bloomsbury Publishing)
A Poet For Every Day of the Year edited by Allie Esiri
Allie Esiri’s beautiful gift anthology, A Poet for Every Day of the Year, is the perfect introduction to 366 of the world’s greatest ever verse writers.
Perfect for reading aloud and sharing with all the family, it is bursting at the seams with familiar favourites and exciting new discoveries. Shakespeare, William Wordsworth, Christina Rossetti and Emily Bronte sit alongside Roger McGough, Wendy Cope, Imtiaz Dharker, Leonard Cohen, Sylvia Plath and Ocean Vuong.
Each of the 366 poems features a small introduction that gives a sense of who the writer was, and not just the greatness of their work. Some offer insightful biographical details or key historical context, while others may provide quirky, humorous anecdotes.
The day-to-day format of the anthology invites readers to make poetry a part of their daily routine, and makes sure that they discover something inspirational, life affirming, provocative, moving or entertaining each and every day. (Credit: Pan Macmillan)
Julia and the Shark by Kiran Millwood Hargrave and illustrated by Tom de Freston
When her father is required to repair an old lighthouse on a remote island, Julia finds herself on a strange and magical summer holiday. Her mother becomes increasingly determined to find the great Greenland shark – an awesome yet elusive creature that soon fills Julia’s thoughts as well. But when her mother’s determination tips over into obsession, Julia is forced to dive into an adventure with hidden depths and turbulent emotional currents which threatens to submerge them all.
With breathtaking black, white and yellow illustrations created using the ashes from the fire that destroyed de Freston’s studio, Julia and the Shark is both a testament to artistic rebirth and an exquisite reflection on family, science and the fragile yet sublime beauty of the environment. Intoxicating and impossible to put down, it is a future classic whose beauty and heart will resound for generations. (Credit: Pan Macmillan)
The Literary Almanac: A Year of Seasonal Reading by Francesca Beauman
Spanning the dreary, cold days of January to the first flushes of spring and then the blazing August heat, bibliophile Francesca Beauman offers up a wealth of book recommendations. From The Count of Monte Cristo to Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan Quartet, each has been selected to chime with a particular time of year and provide a richer reading experience.
Beautifully illustrated throughout, this charming guide will delight, inspire and seriously extend your ‘To Be Read’ list! (Credit: Pan Macmillan)
The Appeal (Waterstones Edition) by Janice Hallett
In a town full of secrets… Someone was murdered. Someone went to prison. And everyone’s a suspect. Can you uncover the truth?
Dear Reader – enclosed are all the documents you need to solve a case. It starts with the arrival of two mysterious newcomers to the small town of Lockwood, and ends with a tragic death. Someone has already been convicted of this brutal murder and is currently in prison, but we suspect they are innocent. What’s more, we believe far darker secrets have yet to be revealed.
Throughout the Fairway Players’ staging of All My Sons and the charity appeal for little Poppy Reswick’s life-saving medical treatment, the murderer hid in plain sight. Yet we believe they gave themselves away. In writing. The evidence is all here, between the lines, waiting to be discovered. Will you accept the challenge? Can you uncover the truth?
The standout debut thriller of 2021 that delivers multiple brilliant twists, and will change the way you think about the modern crime novel. (Credit: Profile Books)
Storyland: A New Mythology of Britain by Amy Jeffs
Soaked in mist and old magic, Storyland is a new illustrated mythology of Britain, set in its wildest landscapes.
It begins between the Creation and Noah’s Flood, follows the footsteps of the earliest generation of giants from an age when the children of Cain and the progeny of fallen angels walked the earth, to the founding of Britain, England, Wales and Scotland, the birth of Christ, the wars between Britons, Saxons and Vikings, and closes with the arrival of the Normans.
These are retellings of medieval tales of legend, landscape and the yearning to belong, inhabited with characters now half-remembered: Brutus, Albina, Scota, Arthur and Bladud among them. Told with narrative flair, embellished in stunning artworks and glossed with a rich and erudite commentary. We visit beautiful, sacred places that include prehistoric monuments like Stonehenge and Wayland’s Smithy, spanning the length of Britain from the archipelago of Orkney to as far south as Cornwall; mountains and lakes such as Snowdon and Loch Etive and rivers including the Ness, the Soar and the story-silted Thames in a vivid, beautiful tale of our land steeped in myth. It Illuminates a collective memory that still informs the identity and political ambition of these places. (Credit: Quercus Publishing)
Black and British: An Illustrated History by David Olusoga
The essential starting place for anyone who wants to learn about Black British History. David Olusoga’s thought provoking text charts the forgotten histories of Black people in Britain from Roman times right through to the present day. From Roman Africans guarding Hadrian’s Wall, to an African trumpeter in the court of Henry the Eighth, Black Georgians fighting for the abolition of slavery, Black soldiers fighting for Britain in the First World War, Windrush and right up today. These are the stories that brought us all together in this country. (Credit: Pan Macmillan)
The Dublin Railway Murder by Thomas Morris
Dublin, November 1856: George Little, the chief cashier of the Broadstone railway terminus, is found dead, lying in a pool of blood beneath his desk.
He has been savagely beaten, his head almost severed; there is no sign of a murder weapon, and the office door is locked, apparently from the inside. Thousands of pounds in gold and silver are left untouched at the scene of the crime.
Augustus Guy, Ireland’s most experienced detective, teams up with Dublin’s leading lawyer to investigate the murder. But the mystery defies all explanation, and two celebrated sleuths sent by Scotland Yard soon return to London, baffled.
Five suspects are arrested then released, with every step of the salacious case followed by the press, clamouring for answers. But then a local woman comes forward, claiming to know the murderer…(Credit: Vintage Publishing)