Top Five Winter Reads

There’s nothing better than curling up with a good book in the colder weather. If you’re looking for your next novel, try one of these top five winter reads, recommended by our friends at BOOK FACE.


Long Island

Colm Tóibín

Eilis Lacey is Irish, married to Tony Fiorello, a plumber and one of four Italian American brothers, all of whom live in neighbouring houses on a cul-de-sac in Lindenhurst, Long Island. It is the spring of 1976 and Eilis is now forty with two teenage children. Though her ties to Ireland remain stronger than those that hold her to her new land and home, she has not returned in decades.

One day, when Tony is at work, an Irishman comes to the door asking for Eilis by name. He tells her that his wife is pregnant with Tony’s child and that when the baby is born, he will deposit it on Eilis’s doorstep. It is what Eilis does —and what she refuses to do — in response to this stunning news that makes Tóibín’s novel so riveting and suspenseful.


Blue Sisters

Coco Mellors

The three Blue sisters are exceptional — and exceptionally different. After the death of their fourth sister, Avery, Bonnie and Lucky are left reeling. A year later, as they each navigate grief, addiction and ambition, they find they must return to New York to stop the sale of the apartment they were raised in.

But coming home is never as easy as it seems. As the sisters reckon with the disappointments of their childhood and the loss of the only person who held them together, they realise the greatest secrets they’ve been keeping might not have been from each other, but from themselves.

Table for Two

Amor Towles

From the bestselling author of The Lincoln Highway, A Gentleman in Moscow and Rules of Civility, is this richly detailed and sharply drawn collection of stories set in New York and Los Angeles. The stories, most of which are set around the turn of the millennium, take up everything from the death-defying acrobatics of the male ego to the fateful consequences of brief encounters, and the delicate mechanics of compromise which operate at the heart of modern marriages.

Throughout the stories, two characters often find themselves sitting across a table for two, where the direction of their futures may hinge upon what they say to each other next. Written with his signature wit, humour and sophistication, Table for Two is a glittering addition to Towles’s canon of stylish and transporting historical fiction.


A Refiner’s Fire

Donna Leon

When two teenage gangs are arrested after clashing violently in one of Venice’s campi, the son of a local hero is implicated. But when Commissario Guido Brunetti is asked by a wealthy foreigner to vet this man, Monforte, for a job, he discovers that Monforte might not be such a hero after all. This seeming contradiction, and a brutal attack on one of Brunetti’s colleagues, concentrate Brunetti’s attentions. Soon he discovers the sordid hypocrisy surrounding Monforte’s past, culminating in a fiery meeting of two gangs and a final opportunity for redemption.

This is Donna Leon at her very best: an elegant, sophisticated storyteller whose indelible characters become richer with each book, and who constantly interrogates the ambiguity between moral and legal justice.


Caledonian Road

Andrew O’Hagan

The story of one man’s epic fall from grace. Campbell Flynn, art historian and celebrity intellectual, is entering the empire of middle age. Fuelled by an appetite for admiration and the finer things, controversy and novelty, he doesn’t take people half as seriously as they take themselves. Which will prove the first of his huge mistakes. The second? Milo Manghasa, his beguiling and provocative student. Milo inhabits a more precarious world, has experiences and ideas which excite his teacher. He also has a plan.

Over the course of an incendiary year, a web of crimes and secrets and scandals will be revealed, and Campbell Flynn may not be able to protect himself from the shattering exposure of all his privilege really involves. A brilliant state-of-the-nation novel that pulls down the facades of high society.


Find these books and more in-centre at BOOK FACE, now open in St Ives Shopping Village.

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