• 13 Fab Books To Read During Lockdown

    Hello again! I hope you’re all staying safe. As quarantine continues, we all have a little more time on our hands so I thought I’d base today’s post on some book recommendations. I’ve loved to read since I was a child – it’s a great form of escapism which I think we all need in times like this… so let’s look at some fab books to read during lockdown!

    Disclaimer: Affiliate links are included in this post and I may receive a small commission at no cost to you if you purchase. For more info please see my privacy policy.

    The Switch – Beth O’Leary

    I’ve just started this book and I’m LOVING it! Beth O’Leary is a fairly new author, I loved her debut The Flat Share (read my review here) so I was super excited when this was published on the 16th of April.

    Waterstones says…

    The Switch is simply delicious: Eileen, aged 79, and her granddaughter Leena – both looking for a bit of a change – decide to swap places for eight weeks. When Leena escapes to a sleepy Yorkshire village and Eilee takes her place in a trendy London flatshare, things get very interesting, very quickly. Delightful and witty, The Switch is a brilliant feel-good story celebrating the unpredictability of life.

    Notes to Self – Emilie Pine

    notes to self fab books to read during lockdown

    When I read about this collection, it went straight on my wishlist. It is a little different to your standard fictional novel but it’s nice to mix it up a bit! I think any woman (and man!) will be able to relate to these essays – they’re incredibly personal and it’s so comforting for authors like this to show complete vulnerability in their writing.

    Waterstones says…

    A word-of-mouth hit with our booksellers, Emilie Pine’s astonishing debut collection, Notes to Self, brings together six essays reflecting on vital aspects of life as woman today, drawn from her own – intensely personal – experiences. From memories of her father’s alcoholism, to her harrowing and redemptive journey through infertility, Pine pursues writing, thinking and feeling beyond and in spite of being afraid. By turns defiant, poignant, probing and urgent, it is a rare pleasure to find writing so raw, honest and heart-puncturingly good. Unmissable.

    The Hunting Party – Lucy Foley

    the hunting party fab books to read during lockdown

    I’m not usually into thriller novels as much but the synopsis of this really drew me in. There have been many great reviews on this book since it was published in 2019, so this is definitely near the top of the list of fab books to read during lockdown – something to really get absorbed into to distract us from these difficult times.

    Waterstones says…

    Bringing all of the appeal of an Agatha Christie-style house-party whodunit to a thoroughly modern thriller, Lucy Foley’s impressive thriller casts her readers to the lonely outreaches of the Scottish wilderness. There’s a sharp cleverness to the way Foley explores the long-held grudges of a close-knit cohort, drawing out – with real menace – the poison that lies within.

    Normal People – Sally Rooney

    At first look, I thought this was your standard novel about two people falling in love. After researching a little more, I found it was so much more than that. This novel explores poverty, class divide and vulnerability within two mismatched individuals and although deep and close to home, it is sensitive and relatable… It was so popular that it won the Waterstones Book of the Year in 2018.
    It had to be on the list of fab books to read during lockdown!

    Waterstones says…

    Capturing the zeitgeist with all the skill and subtlety of her debut, Conversations with Friends, Sally Rooney’s Normal People follows the intersecting story of Marianne and Connell as they navigate the changing landscape of their relationship into adulthood. Both a study of how one person can irrevocably shape another, and a profound examination of love, power and influence, it is the novel of our time.

    Machines Like Me – Ian McEwan

    I bought one of McEwan’s previous novels, Nutshell, which I wrote about on my blog last year so I felt it was only right to add one of his newer novels to the list! Ian McEwan’s books are admittedly an acquired taste – they’re on the alternative side (and sometimes just plain weird) but somehow still enjoyable and incredibly well written.

    Waterstones says…

    Hot on the heels of his screen adaptations of On Chesil Beach and The Children Act, McEwan turns his incisive authorial eye to the brave new world of artificial intelligence. Rewinding the clock on an alternative eighties Britain McEwan delivers a spry and accomplished novel, set in a place where the Beatles have reformed, Tony Benn has swept into office and radical technology spawns a new generation of artificial humans. A story ripe with questions about consciousness, inevitability and the nature of desire.

    Nine Perfect Strangers – Liane Moriarty

    I do like to read a good mystery book, especially because I’m so bad at predicting the outcome! Nine Perfect Strangers has countless of great reviews since it was published last year. I love that despite being a mystery, it is said to be laugh-out-loud funny and full of wit… Just what we need right now.

    Waterstones says…

    Tightly-plotted, impossibly twisty and wickedly funny, the latest page-turner from the creator of Big Little Lies serves up another wildly entertaining ride. Nine stressed out city dwellers descend upon an island paradise to recuperate, little suspecting what sinister goings-on await them there.

    Before The Coffee Gets Cold – Toshikazu Kawaguchi

    Translated from Japanese, I really wanted to include this on the list because of the message I found behind it. Four characters are offered the chance of time travel, and deciding what they would do if they could go back. This novel seems to reinforce how unpredictable the future can be and opens our eyes to the present – even reading the synopsis made me want to express gratitude of things we take for granted every day.

    Waterstones says…

    Charmingly written and nimbly translated, Kawaguchi’s life-affirming tale of café-based time travel and symbolic hot beverages has all the hallmarks of a beloved cult classic. Poignant and gently funny, Before the Coffee Gets Cold is a winning fable about regret and reclaiming lost opportunities.

    Noughts & Crosses – Malorie Blackman

    I have read many blogs that have been talking about this Young Adult novel and raving about it! Noughts & Crosses has a very powerful message – it’s all about racial inequality and the love between black and white. It’s deeply emotional and eye opening yet thoroughly enjoyable and entertaining.

    Waterstones says…

    A dystopian Romeo and Juliet that makes eloquent statements about race relations and the burning passions of the teenage heart, Noughts and Crosses is absolutely pivotal in the evolution of the Young Adult novel. The first of an astonishingly consistent series from former Waterstones Children’s Laureate Malorie Blackman, Noughts and Crosses stands as trailblazing work of literature.

    The Little Book Of Calm Colouring

    I had to add something a little different to the list as sometimes we just need to give our brain a rest! (seems to be happening a lot to me recently!)

    I’m loving colouring books to de-stress lately, I find it really cathartic to fill the lines with colour and see the image come together. Recently I’ve been sitting outside in the sunshine with an Audible audiobook on – so relaxing!

    I think it qualifies as one of the fab books to entertain us during lockdown, even if it’s not a book you read as such.

    Exciting Times – Naoise Dolan

    fab books to read during lockdown exciting times

    Exciting Times was published just two weeks ago and right now the signed addition is the same price as the original print, yay! I love to read books that are brand new, especially when they’re by debut authors like Naoise Dolan. This novel has many interesting observations on privelage, class and sexuality – it went straight on my wishlist the first time I came across it!

    Waterstones says…

    One of the most hotly-tipped debut authors of 2020, Naoise Dolan delivers an enthralling dissection of love and commitment in the international circles of contemporary Hong Kong. Politically astute and dryly funny, Exciting Times offers a fresh perspective to the grass-is-always-greener scenario, showing how power, privilege, doubt and compulsive self-searching shape – and break – modern relationships. Perfect for the fans of Sally Rooney and Kevin Kwan.

    Break Your Glass Slippers – Amanda Lovelace

    fab books to read during lockdown break your glass slippers

    I know I really shouldn’t compare writers, but the moment I saw this I was getting Rupi Kaur vibes. Poetry books are not everybody’s cup of tea but at 160 pages, it’s quite a quick read and a great series to start with. The book is based on female empowerment, realising your true worth and keeping your head held high – something we all need to remind ourselves at times like this.

    Break Your Glass Slippers is a sparkling, lyrical mix of fairy tale references and female empowerment from Amanda Lovelace. Magic, mystery and real-life musings are blended and beautifully brought to life in this collection that celebrates female resilience and recognising one’s true worth.

    Those Who Are Loved – Victoria Hislop

    fab books to read during lockdown those who are loved

    Those Who Are Loved hasn’t actually been published yet… It’s due to be released on 30/5/30, so about 30 days from me writing this. It is currently available to pre order, but because it’s yet to be sent out I obviously haven’t read it yet. However, from my research this novel seems to be historical and educational yet still engaging and is on my current wish list to order!

    Waterstones says…

    Returning to the country that has inspired some of her best-loved fiction – including the modern classic, The Island – Victoria Hislop’s enthralling new novel explores love across battle lines and the lasting repercussions of splintered loyalty. As Greece is fractured by German occupation, brutal civil war and dictatorship, one woman’s life is shaped by her country’s history, forced to choose between her principles and the promise of freedom. 

    Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll

    fab books to read during lockdown alice in wonderland

    Sorry… couldn’t resist. I don’t think I’m getting through a blog post without some sort of Alice involvement now but I had to include it, it’s a classic! There are so many adaptations of this book that it took me such a long time to choose just one for the list but finally I opted with this one. It is one of the children’s adaptations but it comes with ‘bonus material’ and the cover was too beautiful for me to pass by.

    That concludes my list of fab books to read during lockdown! As I mentioned earlier, many of these (if not all) are also available on Audible/Ebooks to listen to or read if you don’t fancy ordering a concrete book. I hope you’re all staying safe, and if you’re struggling to find activities during quarantine then check out my post Things To Do Whilst Self Isolating.

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    Lifestyle Blogger based in Devon.
    I like to write, drink tea and read great books.

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    1. Lydia
      May 2, 2020 / 12:37 pm

      Noughts and crosses has been on my list for ages!! I’ve been trying to read books outside of my usual genre while in quarantine and I’m very happy with myself! I’m currently on a classics binge

    2. May 2, 2020 / 12:45 pm

      Its a good idea to read books rather than watching too many tv series. Keep up the work

    3. May 2, 2020 / 2:25 pm

      Note to self is on my bookshelf, it sounds great. Thank you for all the recommendations x


    4. May 2, 2020 / 3:33 pm

      Hey that’s a good summary of books to read. And it’s a great hobby too rather than just lazing during the lockdown days. Keep shining. 👍👍

    5. Danielle
      May 2, 2020 / 4:59 pm

      I also love Alice, may have to read it again now…

    6. michelle twin mum
      May 2, 2020 / 9:37 pm

      Great choices, lots of variety there. I think I’d enjoy the The Switch a lot, Mich x

    7. Kathy Newport
      May 2, 2020 / 11:31 pm

      I loved 9 Perfect Strangers, which I read on holiday last year. That was the last time I finished a book, but in the new lockdown there are certainly some recommendations here that might get me reading again (instead of being glued to the tv) – and I won’t feel guilty about reading in the day time either!

    8. May 3, 2020 / 6:41 am

      Love the variety in terms of recommendations. Been really interested in thrillers lately so might have to pick up The Hunting Party sometime soon!

    9. May 3, 2020 / 9:58 am

      What wonderful suggestions! I’ll add them to my reading list!

    10. Abigail
      May 3, 2020 / 2:29 pm

      I loved Normal People! Have you seen the T.V. show yet?

    11. May 3, 2020 / 4:33 pm

      Thanks for sharing this list, one of my resolutions during lockdown was to read more as I rarely find time to read any books normally as we are always so busy. I will definitely go check these out, do you have one of this list that is your favourite?

    12. May 3, 2020 / 4:45 pm

      So many of these sound brilliant, especially the liane morriaty one! I’ll have to see if they have them on audible too.

    13. May 3, 2020 / 6:43 pm

      The lockdown has given me the chance to chill and read more books than I used to. Looking at your list, I have not read any of the books yet, but Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty sounds like my kind of book and something I would definitely love to read

    14. Rebecca Jayne
      May 3, 2020 / 6:43 pm

      Calming colouring sounds like the kind of book I need at the moment as I am still having to read for my university work so have limited time for reading for pleasure, although I have been listening to Harry Potter on audible with my daughters. I love the sounds of ‘notes to self’ to for future reading.

    15. May 3, 2020 / 10:10 pm

      I’ve only read three from this list but they are three I really enjoyed and are in my top twenty books! I will definitely be checking out the others.

    16. May 4, 2020 / 2:57 pm

      I am struggling to find time to read at the moment, but have just taken delivery of a sequel book I ordered months ago so am looking forward to getting stuck into it

    17. May 4, 2020 / 3:47 pm

      I didn’t love The Switch as much as I thought I would. I have gone on to read The Flatshare by the same author and loved it.

    18. May 4, 2020 / 4:35 pm

      I’ve been meaning to read noughts and crosses fo a while and need to get on it so I can watch the TV series. I’ve got the colouring book already and it’s been invaluable as the drawings are small/easy to finish.

    19. May 4, 2020 / 7:45 pm

      This list couldn’t have come at a better time for me – I’ve just finished my last book on my Kindle! Methinks I’ll have to read Alice in Wonderland again for sure!

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