So, here's my list of the best 5 general books you can buy someone for Xmas (obviously use your judgement - what you know about the person will affect what's best to buy for them.)
- The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak - suitable for young and old, a heart-breaking yet somehow uplifting story of the Holocaust written beautifully and sincerely, and narrated by Death.
- Live By Night by Dennis Lehane - a tale of gangsters set in the 1920s and written by the spellbinding Dennis Lehane. Suitable for a lot of dudes and a fair few chicks, anyone who's ever liked Boardwalk Empire, Shutter Island, or The Shawshank Redemption will love it. A follow-up to The Given Day, you really don't have to have read the previous book to love this one.
- The Mystery of Edwin Drood by Charles Dickens - annoyingly unfinished, this is an unfortunately often ignored classic, but in my opinion one of Dickens' best. A moody gothic tale of lust and opium.
- Dead Witch Walking by Kim Harrison - the tale of a young witch detective, this has sass, magic, and humour. Awesome urban fantasy perfect for anyone who reads vampire novels - particularly vampire romances.
- Angels and Demons by Dan Brown - I know, it's never going to be a masterpiece. But this is perfect for reluctant adult readers, or those who just don't read that often. It's also one that blokes will enjoy and not feel too macho to read in front of other people.
What I've been reading today:
The Big Issue magazine
Shakespeare on Toast by Ben Crystal
Othello by William Shakespeare
Some random bits and pieces of poetry