One of my resolutions this year (and every year!) is to read more books. I love books, but over the past 15 years (since I became a mom) I’ve struggled to find the time to invest in reading and the lure of the TV screen has always been hard to resist especially after a long day of work and mom duties.
I tend to get reading right during our summer holidays, however, this winter I’m planning to spend more cosy evenings on the couch in front of the fire, enjoying a cup of Rooibos tea and a good book.
Here are a few new books that promise to keep you warm this winter…
The Family Holiday by Elizabeth Noble
The Chamberlain family used to be close.
Charlie and Daphne were happily married, and their children Laura, Scott and Nick were inseparable. But then, inevitably, the children grew up and their own messy lives got in the way.
Since Daphne died, Charlie can’t help but think about happier times for the Chamberlain family – before his children drifted apart. His wife was the family’s true north, and without her guidance, Charlie fears his kids have all lost their direction.
For his eightieth birthday, all Charlie wants is to bring his family together again. And by some miracle, they’ve all said yes.
So, for the first time in a long time, the Chamberlains are going on a family holiday.
It’s only ten days… how bad could it be?
This novel is about the joys and heartbreaks of a family divided and reunited.
A character driven multi-generational family drama, filled with conflict, chaos, messiness, troubles, trauma, angst, secrets and pain that tends to comprise the nature of families.
Prior to the family holiday, we are introduced to all of the characters who are experiencing their problems, challenges and issues.
It has a charming storyline with a great mix of characters that delves into the complications of families living in the modern world.
Beautifully written, it makes for a perfect companion to cuddle up with and escape reality for a while.
Recommended Price: R190.00
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Isle by Claire Robertson
Two islands. Two women.
The year is 1289 and an injured young man washes up on an island of women. He is taken in by a sculptor who sees in him the perfect model for her Christ, although her real masterwork will be a larger-than-life Virgin. But the Church will come to reject this sisterhood of unmarried women on the island, and they are bound to lose their small freedoms.
Centuries later, a lieutenant is sent to an island to dispose of unexploded ordnance. As an erstwhile World War ii flight nurse trained to evacuate wounded soldiers, she too has gazed upon, and been haunted by, the bodies of broken young men. For her, a fraught love affair with a local man will ignite, while his teenage daughter looks on.
Binding the lives – so different and so similar – of women separated by time and place, Claire Robertson’s Isle is an all-encompassing rumination on privacy, inhibition and female desire, rendered in her masterful prose.
This is a story in two halves. The first set in 1289, on an island, where women, not quite nuns, live without men.
The way this book is written is very unique. The words, some familiar, some new, some very old, are constructed in a way that shouldn’t make sense, but they do.
The story is about a broken man who washes and broken bodies is a theme of the book. What we’re left with after what happens and what we make of it, and how we survive it.
Recommended Price: R290.00
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A Wedding in the Country – Katie Fforde
Lizzie has just arrived in London, determined to make the best of her new life.
Her mother may be keen that she should have a nice wedding in the country to a Suitable Man chosen by her. And Lizzie may be going to cookery school to help her become a Good Wife.
But she definitely wants to have some fun first.
It is 1963 and London is beginning to swing as Lizzie cuts her hair, buys a new dress with a fashionably short hemline, and moves in with two of her best friends, one of whom lives in a grand but rundown house in Belgravia which has plenty of room for a lodger.
Soon Lizzie’s life is so exciting that she has forgotten all about her mother’s marriage plans for her.
All she can think about is that the young man she is falling in love with appears to be engaged to someone else …
Romance, friendship, joy and the possibility of happy endings are the hallmark of bestselling author, Katie Fforde. This one, however, is quite different from her others as it is set in 1963 as we follow Lizzie’s strides to live independently from her well meaning, but overly-involved parents for the first time. The romance is a bit lacking, but there is much to enjoy about stepping into the London life of the 60s.
The themes of friendship and romance combined with the swinging 60’s fashion and music make this a fun, easy read that will whisk you away from the strains of real life for a while!
Recommended Price: R320.00
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The One Hundred Years of Lenni and Margot by Marianne Cronin
Life is short. No-one knows that better than seventeen-year-old Lenni living on the terminal ward. But as she is about to learn, it’s not only what you make of life that matters, but who you share it with.
Dodging doctor’s orders, she joins an art class where she bumps into fellow patient Margot, a rebel-hearted eight-three-year-old from the next ward. Their bond is instant as they realize that together they have lived an astonishing one hundred years.
To celebrate their shared century, they decide to paint their life stories: of growing old and staying young, of giving joy, of receiving kindness, of losing love, of finding the person who is everything.
As their extraordinary friendship deepens, it becomes vividly clear that life is not done with Lenni and Margot yet.
This novel is about the extraordinary gift of life and is disarmingly funny and brimming with tenderness. It revels in our infinite capacity for friendship and love when we need them most.
This story is something special. Full of life-affirming wisdom and kindness, it is emotional and sad, yet profound and joyful.
‘Lenni and Margot are two of the most wonderful, warm, witty and wise heroines I’ve ever met. Beautiful and glorious.’ CLARE POOLEY, author of The Authenticity Project
Everyone will love the two main characters, Lenni and Margot, as their vibrancy, wit and outlooks on life brim with vibrant colour.
This gorgeous, heartbreaking story is a love letter to friendship that will remain with you for long after you have closed the cover. The perfect antidote to the world right now.
Recommended Price: R285.00
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So, which of these books appeal to you most?? Or which is your most recent read?
Leave me a message in the comments below…