Book mentions in this thread

  • Votes: 4

    Hamnet

    by Maggie O'Farrell

    WINNER OF THE 2020 WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION - THE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER SHORTLISTED AN POST BOOK AWARDS IRISH NOVEL OF THE YEAR 'Richly sensuous... something special' The Sunday Times 'A thing of shimmering wonder' David Mitchell TWO EXTRAORDINARY PEOPLE. A LOVE THAT DRAWS THEM TOGETHER. A LOSS THAT THREATENS TO TEAR THEM APART. On a summer's day in 1596, a young girl in Stratford-upon-Avon takes to her bed with a fever. Her twin brother, Hamnet, searches everywhere for help. Why is nobody at home? Their mother, Agnes, is over a mile away, in the garden where she grows medicinal herbs. Their father is working in London. Neither parent knows that one of the children will not survive the week. Hamnet is a novel inspired by the son of a famous playwright. It is a story of the bond between twins, and of a marriage pushed to the brink by grief. It is also the story of a kestrel and its mistress; flea that boards a ship in Alexandria; and a glovemaker's son who flouts convention in pursuit of the woman he loves. Above all, it is a tender and unforgettable reimagining of a boy whose life has been all but forgotten, but whose name was given to one of the most celebrated plays ever written.
  • Votes: 4

    How to Be Sad

    by Helen Russell

    We live in an age when reality TV shows climax in a tearful finale. But feeling sad - genuinely sad - is still taboo. Yet, sadness happens to us all, sometimes in heartbreakingly awful ways. If we don't know how to be sad, it can be isolating for those experiencing it and baffling for those trying to help others through dark times. Today, most of us know intellectually that 'sad' is normal. But we're not always brilliant at allowing for it, in practice. Sadness is going to happen, so we might as well know how to 'do it' right. And it's time to start facing our problems and talking about them. Positive psychology may have become more accepted in mainstream culture, but rates of depression have continued to rise. We're trying so hard to be happy. But studies show that we could all benefit from learning the art of sadness and how to handle it, well. We cannot avoid sadness so we might as well learn to handle it. Helen Russell, while researching two previous books on happiness, found that today most of us are terrified of sadness. Many of us are so phobic to averse to negative emotions that we don't recognise them.
  • Votes: 4

    The Authenticity Project

    by Clare Pooley

    'A joyous, funny read that leaves you all warm inside' Beth Morrey, author of Saving Missy 'Feel-good...full of hope. A quirky cast of characters you can't help but root for'Woman & Home, Book of the Month Read the warm, poignant and uplifting New York Times bestseller and Radio 2 Book Club pick, loved by readers. Six strangers with one thing in common: their lives aren't always what they make them out to be. What would happen if they told the truth instead? Julian Jessop is tired of hiding the deep loneliness he feels. So he begins The Authenticity Project - a small green notebook containing the truth about his life. Leaving the notebook on a table in his friendly neighbourhood café, Julian never expects Monica, the owner, to track him down after finding it. Or that she'll be inspired to write down her own story. Little do they realize that such small acts of honesty hold the power to impact all those who discover the notebook and change their lives completely. -------------- Readers are falling in love with The Authenticity Project: ***** 'A charming, funny and uplifting story.' ***** 'Full of optimism . . . I defy anyone not to pick it up and be both transported and delighted.' ***** 'An absolute gem of a book . . . brings both honesty and the perfect level of escapism to give you a warm fuzzy glow inside.'
  • Votes: 3

    The Smallest Man

    by Frances Quinn

    ‘I want you to remember something, Nat. You’re small on the outside. But inside you’re as big as everyone else. You show people that and you won’t go far wrong in life.’ A compelling story perfect for fans of The Doll Factory, The Illumination of Ursula Flight and The Familiars. My name is Nat Davy. Perhaps you’ve heard of me? There was a time when people up and down the land knew my name, though they only ever knew half the story. The year of 1625, it was, when a single shilling changed my life. That shilling got me taken off to London, where they hid me in a pie, of all things, so I could be given as a gift to the new queen of England. They called me the queen’s dwarf, but I was more than that. I was her friend, when she had no one else, and later on, when the people of England turned against their king, it was me who saved her life. When they turned the world upside down, I was there, right at the heart of it, and this is my story. Inspired by a true story, and spanning two decades that changed England for ever, The Smallest Man is a heartwarming tale about being different, but not letting it hold you back. About being brave enough to take a chance, even if the odds aren’t good. And about how, when everything else is falling apart, true friendship holds people together. Praise for The Smallest Man: ‘Nat Davy is so charming that I couldn't bear to put this book down. I loved it’ Louise Hare ‘A perfect fusion of history and invention… Nat’s wit and humour make the poignancy of his story all the more powerful’ Beth Morrey 'What a page-turner! A timely tale celebrating courage, determination and friendship' Anita Frank ‘A perfectly formed masterpiece’ C.S. Quinn ‘I loved this book - a fascinating tale of extraordinary accomplishment, and a story about how anything is possible and how love has always been a beacon of hope’ Phillip Schofield 'I found myself rooting for the Smallest Man in England from the very first page' Sonia Velton ‘A beautiful, heartwarming tale, weaving history and fiction intricately and seamlessly… I loved this book’ Louise Fein ‘A beguiling and well-written tale, whose mysterious protagonist is plucked from a famous painting; the carefully crafted historic context uncannily reflects contemporary politics’ Ellen Alpsten ‘What a wonderful romp through such a turbulent period of history. I absolutely fell for the book’s narrator: an ebullient character whose voice and world view I adored’ Polly Crosby
  • Votes: 3

    The Fortnight in September

    by R C Sherriff