A Year of Reading Aloud – Georgina Rodgers (editor)
If you love poetry, try this collection of ‘52 poems to learn and love’, where you’ll find well-known names such as Sylvia Plath, E.E Cummings, William Blake and Maya Angelou alongside newer poets. Most of the poems are short enough to learn without too much difficulty, and they’re accompanied by a paragraph about the poet and the reason why the poem has been selected. Take up the challenge of learning one each week, or just dip in and out when you need an extra dose of beauty in your life.
365 Days of Creativity – Lorna Scobie
As the blurb says, “Creativity is not just about making your mark on the paper. It’s about looking at the world a little differently.” If you’re stuck in a creative rut, this book might help you get out of it. The daily artistic challenges are split into how they help you feel, so you can choose one based on whether you want to feel calm, inspired, energetic or reflective. They range from drawing patterns on a snake to capturing the view through a doorway. Whether you take five minutes or five hours on each one is up to you.
Grow Cook Eat Diary 2020 – Sarah Raven
If you love gardening and cooking this could be the diary for you. Each month has a short list of what to sow, plant and harvest in your garden, along with other garden-related tasks and a simple recipe using in-season produce. Dishes range from Cauliflower and Chickpea Curry to Beef Carpaccio with Fennel Flowers. As you’d expect, there are plenty of stunning flower photographs throughout the diary, with one image for each week.
A Year of Living Thankfully – Lois Blyth
Can being more grateful change your life? According to this book it can, and Lois Blyth is on a mission to show you how. Each week, you’ll work through an activity to help you embrace gratitude and take pleasure in the little things. There’s guidance on turning negative thoughts around, learning to appreciate what you have and not letting others spoil your mood.
Farrow & Ball Recipes for Decorating – Joa Studholme
Planning to redecorate this year? This book might help you come up with a plan. There are thirteen case studies, from city centre apartments to a classic Georgian house, as well as tips and tricks for decorating each room of your home. There’s also plenty of advice on decorating in general, including making small rooms look bigger and using colour to make an impact.
Booker Prize Shortlist 2019 – Various
Looking for a new fiction book to lose yourself in on a long winter’s night? Fancy trying something a bit different to your usual genre? Treat yourself to the six novels from the Booker Prize shortlist. Stories range from Chigozie Obioma’s An Orchestra of Minorities to Elif Shalak’s 10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World. Read them all to see whether you agree with the judges’ final decision.