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National Read a Book Day 2023

National Read a Book Day 2023




Happy National Read a Book Day 2023! If you’re not an avid reader, today is the day to pick up a good book and give it a go, whatever that book may be. It can be daunting if you’ve not been a reader since you were in education, or you only read by the side of a pool on your hols, though. We totally get it - there’s far too much choice out there, and who knows if you’d prefer War and Peace over the Argos catalogue?

National Read a Book Day 2023

Our team have lovingly hand-picked their recommendation for National Read a Book Day 2023, with everything from big-thinking epics to fun, pulpy stories and even a bit of non-fiction thrown in for good measure. Take a read of their picks and see if any take your fancy!

India’s Pick: “So You’ve Publicly Shamed” by Jon Ronson

It explores the history behind online shaming and cancel culture, why people feel shame and how to overcome it. It includes interviews with people who have been cancelled, so it was really interesting to hear both sides of the story and hear more about the aftermath of online shaming. I’ve just bought his next book called “The Psychopath Test” too!

Aimee’s Pick: “Under The Whispering Door” by TJ Klune

I’m literally obsessed with all his books at the moment - I’ve just started another one! Whispering Door is just the most beautiful fantasy novel about a ghost that refuses to “cross over” and falls in love with his ferryman. I laughed, cried, gasped, and even threw it across the floor in anger at parts. It’s the most wholesome story about death that I've ever read.

Yasin’s Pick: “Tyger” by SF Said

I’ve only just started it, but I’m a massive fan of his two “Varjak Paw” books which feature some crazy art by illustrator Dave McKean. Tyger is about a magical creature found in a rubbish dump in London, amongst a world on the brink of destruction.

Elish’s Pick: “Along Came a Spider” by James Patterson

It’s the first novel in the Alex Cross series. When two children are kidnapped from a prestigious private school, Detective Cross is thrown into a challenging game of cat and mouse. If you love a good thriller with lots of twists and turns, this one is definitely for you!

Matt’s Pick: “Start with Why” by Simon Sinek

Start With Why follows Sinek’s mantra: “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it”. He introduces the concept of The Golden Circle, with “Why” at the very centre, followed by “How” and “What”. It’s all about thinking from the inside out. Although this book focuses on business and entrepreneurship, the concept of starting with “Why” can also be applied to personal goals like forming new habits and hobbies.

Tim’s Pick: “Call of the Weird” by Louis Theroux

Theroux revisits America and some the people who have fascinated him the most, all the while digging deep into what drives him to spend so much time amongst strange people. He questions whether he has manipulated these “weird” people, or whether he’s been manipulated by them, and he attempts to understand his own mind as well as those who have made his illustrious career what it is.

Darcy’s Pick: “Cleopatra and Frankenstein” by Coco Mellors

Cleo, 24, has moved from the UK to New York, where she meets Frank, 45, just as her visa is about to expire. In a whirlwind romance, they get married, and what follows is an exploration of love and life set against a New York backdrop as you meet a growing cast of characters, each of whom has a part to play in the complexity of Cleo and Frank's relationship. The characters are satisfyingly unloveable and yet relatable. Mellors explores love, loneliness, illness, and friendship in a beautiful and gripping way!

Jamie K’s Pick: “Written in Bone” by Professor Sue Black

A forensic anthropologist for the police tells of some of the weirdest criminal and historic cases she has been involved with, however, it’s written like an anthology, so at times it almost feels like you’re reading a novel. It covers all the bones in the human skeleton, from the neurocranium to the metatarsals, and explains how you can determine where a person is from (or whether you’re looking at a piece of human bone at all), what they ate, their social class, how they died, all sorts. Not one to read while hungover but I highly recommend!

Joe’s Pick: “Violeta” by Isabel Allende

A beautifully written novel about a woman who born amid the 1920 Spanish Flu epidemic, and is recounting her life while on her deathbed in 2020 (finding her current situation all too familiar). It’s a wonderful insight into what a person can overcome in their lifetime, the versions of themselves they experience, and its depiction of ageing and growth feels so real. Even though there aren’t many huge twists and turns, Allende’s writing is so colourful and honest that it feels like you’re talking to someone who has experienced every corner of life.

Got a recommendation that isn’t on this list? Let us know on our Twitter/X or Threads!

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