As winter hangs on by its icy fingernails, and we all long for the warmth of spring, our lovely librarian Michele has the perfect pick-me-ups to see you through. From hairy adventures to gangland thrillers, settle down and get ready to enjoy this month’s top reads.
Top non-fiction: Roam Alone by Mandy Huggins
A unique title from Bradt showcasing a collection of travellers’ tales by solo travellers who were all initially reluctant and apprehensive about taking the plunge to go it alone after years of travel with a partner or friend.
Some have embarked on the trip of a lifetime, walking or cycling alone through potentially hostile countries, but finding only kindness and hospitality – with a few hairy adventures thrown in.
It was reassuring to read that not all solo travellers are super-confident and know exactly where they are going. This book will fill you with new confidence and a hunger for the next adventure!
Top fiction: A Ladder To The Sky by John Boyne
A seductive psychodrama following one brilliant, ruthless man who will stop at nothing in his pursuit of fame.
Maurice Swift is handsome, charming, and hungry for success. The one thing he doesn’t have is talent – but he’s not about to let a detail like that stand in his way. After all, a would-be writer can find stories anywhere. They don’t need to be his own.
A Ladder To The Sky is a rollercoaster of a story, with clever twists and turns and highly emotive characters that have you gripped to the last page.
Top audio book: Betrayal by Martina Cole
Betrayal by Martina Cole is a dark, gripping thriller about the bonds that make – or break – a family. Aiden O’Hara has been head of the family since he was a kid, and he’s going to keep it that way. However, no one’s indestructible and when you’re at the top, that’s when you’ve got to watch the hardest.
Narrated by Annie Aldington, this gangland thriller has all the usual gritty realism of a Martina Cole book, combined with a fast-paced narrative that is brought to a tense and violent climax.
Top kids’ book: Charlie And Me – 421 Miles From Home by Mark Lowery
Thirteen-year-old Martin and his younger brother Charlie are on a very special journey. They’re going to be travelling 421 miles all the way from Preston to the very tip of Cornwall. By train, bus and taxi, they are determined to get there. It’s a journey that’s full of challenges and surprises.
An unforgettable novel that is by turns funny and heart-breaking.
“This is a special one” says Morris Gleitzman on the front cover, and it really is.
Librarians’ choice: The Music Shop by Rachel Joyce
A love story and a journey through music, The Music Shop is exquisite and perfectly pitched. Set in the 1980s, it follows record shop owner Frank, who has a gift for music therapy. He can find the right piece of music to help his customers through difficult times in their lives.
The Music Shop introduced me to music I had not heard before and also a different way of listening to music. The narrative is clever and funny, and the book has a beautiful ending and a playlist that I am still listening to two months later!
Have you read any of the books featured this month? We’d love to hear what you thought! Leave your reviews in the comments below. Missed last month’s top five? Catch up on them here.
You can find out more about libraries in East Sussex by visiting the East Sussex County Council website.