Festive reads

Not sure what books friends and family would like for Christmas? Here’s a round up of our favourites to give you a helping hand…

For her

Downton-AbbeyA Year in the Life of Downton Abbey by Jessica Fellowes (Headline Books, £20)

Fans of Downton will appreciate this beautifully illustrated book about life above and below stairs. Packed with photos of the stunning great house and costumes of the period plus interviews with the cast, it’ll also look pretty on the coffee table.


Fashion in the 70s by Emmanuelle Dirix and Charlotte Fiell (Goodman Fiell, £30)

The style of the 70s covered hippy chic, glam rock, disco and punk but to name a few. With over 400 original phototgraphs featuring the trendsetters of the time, it’s a great read for a fashionista.

For him

sherlock-holmesSherlock Holmes, The Man Who Never Lived and Will Never Die by Alex Werner (Ebury Press, £25)

Written by the Head of History Collections at the Museum of London, this book gives a fascinating insight into the world of the greatest fictional detective.


jeremy-clarksonWhat Could Possibly Go Wrong? By Jeremy Clarkson (Penguin, £20)

The latest book for petrol heads – although it’s not all about the cars – as Jeremy shares his humorous observations of the world.


For Everyone

the-world-of-ice-and-fireThe World of Fire and Ice by George R.R. Martin, (Harper Voyager, £14.95)

If you enjoy Game of Thrones then this book will enthrall you – giving an insight into the history and folklore behind the creation of the seven kingdoms, with maps and illustrations too.


borisWhere’s Boris? (Orion, £7.99)

Have fun with the family tracking Boris all over the world! There are jokes and bonus material thrown in plus some cameo appearances from old chums.


home-comforts-Home Comforts by James Martin, (Quadrille Publishing Ltd, £16)

Ideal if you want to cook hearty British food with a modern twist, this book is packed with recipes from all over the world, as well as tasty comfort food such as home-made pickle and chicken kiev.


now-book-Now that’s what I call Music Book (Exclusively for Sainsbury’s, £5)

This interesting book will keep music fans entertained as it traces the history of the longest running music compilations with lots of pics and miscellaneous features.


Christmas Chic Lit – You know you want it….

shopaholicShopaholic to the Stars (Bantam Press, £18.00)

Becky Brandon is back and she has ideas of grandeur as she takes her daughter, Minnie, to join husband Luke in LA. It’s funny with some great one-liners – a laugh- a-minute read.


Christmas-supriseThe Christmas Surprise by Jenny Colgan (Sphere, £12.99)

Sweet-shop owner Rosie Hopkins is in for a few surprises this Christmas, both good and bad. It’s another charming read by Jenny Colgan and there are lots of delicious recipes included too!


mr-miracle-Mr Miracle by Debbie Macomber (Arrow, £5.99)

Guardian Angel, Harry Mills, is playing matchmaker to Addie and her neighbour Erich – he has a lot of work to do because they can’t actually stand the sight of one another. A little romance in time for Christmas.


snow-angel-The Snow Angel by Lulu Taylor (Pan, £7.99)

If you’re looking for complete escapism then this family saga, full of deep secrets over two generations, will keep you guessing until the end.


For Children

bbc-life-story-Life Story by Rupert Barrington and Michael Gunton (BBC Books, £25)

Following the gripping BBC One natural history series, Life Story, explains the amazing lengths to which animal will go to secure their future. Packed with dramatic pictures and stills from the programme, it’s an unforgettable account of the natural world.


ballet-Ballet Spectacular by Lisa Miles (Carlton Kids, £14.99)

For budding ballerinas everywhere – discover the magical world of The Royal Ballet with interviews with current dancers and an insight into what goes on behind the scenes. There are lots of beautiful photographs from the archives, a lovely gift for all young dancers.


Pocket Activity Fun and Games Christmas (Carlton Kids, £14.99)


A great way to keep excited kids busy in the run up to Christmas; making cookies, writing a letter to Santa, designing Christmas cards, there’s a host of activities to keep them entertained.


the-map-to-everywhereThe Map to Everywhere by Carrie Ryan and JP Davis (Orion, £9.99)

This new book is the first in a new series introducing an enchanting cast of characters set in the dangerous waters of the Pirate Stream. It’s an enthralling tale of magic and adventure – a perfect gift for avid young readers.


diary-of-wimpy-kid-9-The Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney (Puffin, £5)

The hugely anticipated ninth book in the series has arrived about Greg who lives with his very ordinary family, his parents and two brothers, Rodrick and Manny.

The story is about a road trip the family decide to take together, all noted in Greg’s diary – a humorous read for kids.


daisy-saves-the-dayDaisy Saves the Day by Shirley Hughes (Walker Books, £10.39)

Daisy works as a maid in a big house and she works hard to please her employers. Her greatest moment occurs when a disaster strikes on the day of the coronation of George V. Written and illustrated by the award-winning Shirley Hughes, it also contains stunning scenes of London to capture the imagination.


miffyChristmas with Miffy: Sticker Activity Book (Simon & Schuster, £4.99)

Everyone loves Miffy! This book is jam-packed with festive stickers and exciting things to do and will keep little ones amused throughout the Christmas holidays!


And so to bed…

animal-stories-The Mumsnet book of Animal Stories (Walker Books, £12.99)

This gloriously illustrated storybook contains ten winning tales from over 600 entries to the Mumsnet, Gransnet and Walker Books writing competition. Little ones will be captivated by the stories and pictures alike.


do-you-speak-english-Do you Speak English, Moon? By Francesca Simon and Ben Cort, read by Lenny Henry. (Orion Children’s Books, Book and CD £7.99)

Children are fascinated by the moon and this charming book answers every question a child could possibly ask. It’s accompanied by a CD read by actor Lenny Henry – parents will love it too!

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