Welcome to Day 14 of Blogmas!
Every year, my family ask me to write a Christmas list and every year without fail it’s around 70% books. Throughout the year I note down books I really want after reading reviews on blogs, or ones I’ve seen my friends reading on Goodreads, and then distribute them around to those who ask for present ideas.
Ever since I was little, Christmas was the time I’d get the majority of my books. I have such fond memories of opening up my presents and stacking up my books, looking at, feeling and reading the back of each one, thinking about all the different stories they contained that I just couldn’t wait to read. I’m still like that now. I love the thought that over the next year I’ll be reading all these books, getting introduced to new characters and new worlds. If you’re not that into reading I probably sound absolutely mad, but if you are, hopefully you know exactly what I mean!
This year, I thought I’d give you a little insight into my book wishlist for Christmas, in case you’re looking for a few to add to your list too! There’s a bit of a mix this year; sequels to ones I’ve already got and some I’ve had my eye on for a while. It might sound like quite a few books, but I like to give people some options, then any I don’t receive for Christmas I’ll buy for myself in the new year. Let me know if you’ve read any of these, I’d love to know what you thought!
Anxious People by Frederick Backman
“In a small town in Sweden it appears to be an ordinary day. But look more closely, and you’ll see a mysterious masked figure approaching a bank… Two hours later, chaos has descended. A bungled attempted robbery has developed into a hostage situation – and the offender is refusing to communicate their demands to the police. Within the building, fear quickly turns to irritation for the seven strangers trapped inside. If this is to be their last day on earth, shouldn’t it be a bit more dramatic? But as the minutes tick by, they begin to suspect that the criminal mastermind holding them hostage might be more in need of rescuing than they are . . .” – Waterstones
I actually read a review of this book on Chapters of May and added it straight to my list! As soon as I read the synopsis, I knew it was for me, and the review just cemented it. I love books that focus on characters that begin as strangers to each other so you learn all about their stories and how they intertwine as the characters do, like Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty or A Spark of Light by Jodi Picoult.
Us by David Nicholls
“Douglas Petersen understands his wife’s need to ‘rediscover herself’ now that their son is leaving home. He just thought they’d be doing their rediscovering together. So when Connie announces that she will be leaving, too, he resolves to make their last family holiday into the trip of a lifetime: one that will draw the three of them closer, and win the respect of his son. One that will make Connie fall in love with him all over again. The hotels are booked, the tickets bought, the itinerary planned and printed. What could possibly go wrong?” – Waterstones
I’ve seen this book in Tesco recently (I always have a look at the book section when I’m there) and I’ve been eyeing it up but thought I’d add it to my Christmas list instead. I read One Day by David Nicholls when I was in high school and I absolutely adored it. It was one of those ‘miss the characters when you’re not reading’ type of books and I really want to read another book by him.
The Switch by Beth O’Leary
“When overachiever Leena Cotton is ordered to take a two-month sabbatical after blowing a big presentation at work, she escapes to her grandmother Eileen’s house for some overdue rest. Eileen is newly single and about to turn eighty. She’d like a second chance at love, but her tiny Yorkshire village doesn’t offer many eligible gentlemen.
Once Leena learns of Eileen’s romantic predicament, she proposes a solution: a two-month swap. Eileen can live in London and look for love. Meanwhile Leena will look after everything in rural Yorkshire. But with gossiping neighbours and difficult family dynamics to navigate up north, and trendy London flatmates and online dating to contend with in the city, stepping into one another’s shoes proves more difficult than either of them expected.
Leena learns that a long-distance relationship isn’t as romantic as she hoped it would be, and then there is the annoyingly perfect – and distractingly handsome – school teacher, who keeps showing up to outdo her efforts to impress the local villagers. Back in London, Eileen is a huge hit with her new neighbours, but is her perfect match nearer home than she first thought?” – Waterstones
Earlier this year, I read The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary and absolutely adored it! I wrote a review if you’re wondering whether to read it. Spoiler alert: you definitely should. At the end of the book, there was a little teaser for The Switch and I knew I had to read that too! I love O’Leary’s writing and I think she’s definitely going to go on my ‘auto-buy’ list.
The Cousins by Karen McManus
“The Storys are the envy of their neighbours: owners of the largest property on their East Coast island, they are rich, beautiful, and close. Until it all falls apart. The four children are suddenly dropped by their mother with a single sentence: You know what you did. They never hear from her again.
Years later, when 18-year-old cousins Aubrey, Milly and Jonah Story receive a mysterious invitation to spend the summer at their grandmother’s resort, they have no choice but to follow their curiosity and meet the woman who’s been such an enigma their entire lives. This entire family is built on secrets, right? It’s the Story legacy. This summer, the teenagers are determined to discover the truth at the heart of their family. But some secrets are better left alone.” – Waterstones
Another author on my auto-buy list! I’ve read all of Karen McManus’ books, loved all of them and wrote a couple of reviews, so when I heard this book was being released, I knew I had to have it. I love the sound of the premise of this one and I’m sure there will be a review up as soon as I’ve read it!
The Testaments by Margaret Attwood
“Picking up ten years after its predecessor’s tantalisingly open-ended conclusion, The Testaments provides a new window into Atwood’s dystopian world, as seen through the eyes of three women of Gilead: a girl brought up within its confines, another on the run beyond its walls, and a woman at the very heart of the regime’s dark designs with secrets of her own. Each has a unique perspective on the world of Gilead and each will be crucial in deciding its fate.” – Waterstones
Although I haven’t read it yet, the sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale has been on my list for a while. I know that once I’ve read the first one, I’ll absolutely have to read this, so I’m just planning in advance for that when the time comes!
Ghosts by Dolly Alderton
“32-year-old Nina Dean is a successful food writer with a loyal online following, but a life that is falling apart. When she uses dating apps for the first time, she becomes a victim of ghosting, and by the most beguiling of men. Her beloved dad is vanishing in slow motion into dementia, and she’s starting to think about ageing and the gendered double-standard of the biological clock. On top of this she has to deal with her mother’s desire for a mid-life makeover and the fact that all her friends seem to be slipping away from her…” – Waterstones
This is one I’ve seen on so many blogs recently! I really trust the opinions of other bloggers, especially when I’ve seen they’ve read and loved a lot of the same books I have, so I think I’ll really enjoy this one.
Women Don’t Owe You Pretty by Florence Given
“Florence’s debut book will explore all progressive corners of the feminist conversation; from insecurity projection and refusing to find comfort in other women’s flaws, to deciding whether to date or dump them, all the way through to unpacking the male gaze and how it shapes our identity. Women Don’t Owe You Pretty is an accessible leap into feminism, for people at all stages of their journey who are seeking to reshape and transform the way they view themselves. In a world that tells women we’re either not enough or too much, it’s time we stop directing our anger and insecurities onto ourselves, and start fighting back to re-shape the toxic structures of our patriarchal society.” – Waterstones
Earlier this year, I read ‘Feminists Don’t Wear Pink… And other lies’ by Scarlett Curtis and I loved reading something feminist and non-fiction that I felt was really beneficial to my education and well-being. I’ve heard that this book has a similar tone so I cannot wait to read it!
If you’re still looking for more ideas, I posted a haul of all the books I got for my birthday this year, so you may find something you like there too!
Have you got any books on your Christmas list this year? Let me know which ones!