Winter Reads

Back in September I shared my Autumn Reads and I've noticed that I definitely change my reading habits as the seasons change. In the Autumn it was all about getting outdoors, observing wildlife and cooking. In deep January it's my idea of heaven to curl up with a great novel, immerse myself in another world and forget about the biting cold and the long, dark days. This is the current pile of books on my bedside table.  Books to wrap myself up in and get lost in the story, books to inspire, books to nurture and comfort, my Winter Reads. 

Do/Fly - Gavin Strange - A book that helps you focus on your goals and doing work that you love. It's an easy, simple read to encourage, motivate and change your perspective on how to work in a creative field. It's given me a kick up the arse and I've found it pretty useful in putting myself out there a little more. I'll be sharing some of these soon!  (Salts Mill). 

The Book of Hygge - Louisa Thomsen Brits - Now I wasn't going to fall for the whole Hygge book buying thing (seriously, how many books are there on this subject?), but after reading some of Louisa's blog over the Christmas period I realised how much more there is to Hygge than just burning a few candles and sticking a blanket over the sofa. It's essentially a way of life for the Danes, a cultural language and attitude that we sadly are lacking over here.  This book is part history, part philosophy and broken down into six main themes - belonging, shelter, comfort, wellbeing, simplicity and observance. A book that is a pleasure to dip into and full of little pearls of wisdom too. (Waterstones). 

Lie With Me - Sabine Durrant - If you are like me and your guilty pleasure is indulging in a crime novel, then I can really recommend the brilliant website Dead Good Books that I stumbled upon a few weeks ago. It's stuffed full of brilliant new novels to read and picks from other crime writers as well as reviews of television crime dramas and movies. I spent ages on the site making notes of all the crime books I wanted to read and then checking the online library catalogue to try and track some of them down. Sabine Durrant's novel was on the list but was out on loan but I did manage to get one of her previous books, Remember Me This Way and I enjoyed it immensely. I spotted Lie With Me and Susie Steiner's Missing Presumed on a buy one get one half price at WHSmiths this week so I treated myself to both. I haven't read either of them yet but both had great reviews on Dead Good Books and after I've finished reading them they will be posted up to my Mum. (WHSmiths)

The Professor of Truth - James Robertson - One of my favourite Scottish authors (I am bias though as James gave me my very first job as a bookseller many years ago!).  This is a tale of a man whose wife and daughter were murdered twenty-one years ago in the bombing of a plane over Scotland. The husband doubts the official version of events surrounding the incident and is sure that the man convicted of the atrocity was not responsible. It's a gripping tale of one man's search for the truth and justice for his lost family and although ficitional, it is obviously referencing the sad events of the Lockerbie bombing back in 1988.  (Library)

The Taxidermist's Daughter - Kate Mosse  -  This is the book I'm currently reading and simply loving. I've always enjoyed Kate's books, they are perfect for hiding under the duvet and immersing yourself in a different world. This gothic novel set in 1912 is the story of a girl who has grown up in a crumbling old house full of decaying stuffed birds and animals. After her Mother died in childbirth, she is raised by her alcoholic father who drinks to escape the past. A body lies close by waiting to be discovered. It is a novel of secrets, lies, murder and intrigue. Not one for the faint hearted as there are some quite graphic descriptions of the art of taxidermy! If you like reading novels that are a little eerie then I also recommend Kate's book The Winter Ghosts, which is a ghost story set during a snowstorm in the French Pyrenees in 1928. Perfect to read by candlelight on a dark, stormy evening. (Library)

** Before I buy a book I try to see if our local library has a copy. If not, I try to buy from bookshops or online from Hive where they give money to independent bookshops on your behalf. I've highlighted all these titles from Hive but I didn't get any of them there this time, although we do usually get books from them every month.  Instead I've popped in brackets where I bought the book or have taken it out of the library.