Christmas is one of the few times a year where we have a prolonged period of downtime. But, with the holidays growing evermore hectic and time feeling increasingly precious, we often forget to have a moment of quiet to ourselves. There’s nothing more self-indulgent than taking a moment out to enjoy your own company and there’s no better way to put your feet up and relax alone, than with a good book.
So, take off the makeup, stick on the kettle and your warmest, winter PJs, and remove your technology! It’s time to shut out the world and fall into a good story!
1. Christmas at Little Beach Street Bakery by Jenny Colgan
Christmas At Little Beach Street Bakery available here.
This novel from Top Ten bestseller Jenny Colgan is full of festive joy, warmth and the best hot chocolate you can imagine! A tantalizing, easy read to escape into, it’s Christmas and Polly Waterford is determined to make it the best one yet!
But life doesn’t always work out as planned and when Polly’s best friend arrives with a secret that threatens the life her and her boyfriend have built together, the future begins to look uncertain. Soon a face from Polly’s past reappears and things become even more complicated! Buy it here.
2. Paris For One And Other Stories by Jojo Moyes
Paris For One available here.
From the internationally bestselling author of Me Before You comes a collection of 11 unmissable stories. Moyes introduces us to a cast of strong, relatable women in the midst of their everyday lives. A charming and funny book that spins ordinary, real-life moments of troubled relationships, romance and displacement into extraordinary, unforgettable stories!
3. The Things You Can See Only When You Slow Down by Haemin Sunim and Chi-Young Kim
The Things You Can See Only When You Slow Down available here.
This timely guide to mindfulness by Buddhist Monk Haemin Sunim offers advice on everything from handling setbacks to dealing with relationships and rest. Complete with calming, full-color illustrations, it’s a book as visually breathtaking as it is relaxing!
Everyone should get on board with Sunim’s simple messages spoken to the anxieties that have become part of modern life, reminding us all of the delight and power of slowing down.
4. Christmas With Dull People by Saki
Christmas With Dull People available here.
Everyone needs to know they’re not alone when it comes to Christmas grouches and these four stories address the most precarious aspects of the season. The short stories cover everything from visiting dull relatives and tolerating the Christmas Eve joy, to receiving unwanted gifts and the thank you cards that come after!
Demonstrating Saki at his satirical best, this Christmas collection is sure to have you in stitches!
5. Hiddensee by Gregory Maguire
Hiddensee available here.
A new take on the Christmas story of the Nutcracker. It’s an inventive novel that entwines the timeless story with the life of the toymaker who carved him. Maguire imagines the backstory of the Nutcracker, guiding a sick girl named Klara through a surreal paradise on Christmas Eve.
It’s a classic and sinister retelling of a tale we all know, one of darkness and enchantment.
6. Seven Days Of Us by Francesca Hornak
Seven Days Of Us available here.
It’s Christmas and for the first time in years, the entire Birch family will be under one roof, Weyfield Hall, their aging country estate. However, doctor Olivia is only coming home because she has to. Having just returned from treating an epidemic abroad, she’s been told she must stay in quarantine for a week, as do her family.
Separate from the outside world, in lockdown revelations and past tensions come to light. Yet nothing is more shocking than the unexpected guest who’s about to arrive.