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Reading in the park, London | © Leslie Archard/Flickr
Reading in the park, London | © Leslie Archard/Flickr
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What They’re Reading in England This Summer

Picture of Sarah Dawson
Updated: 27 June 2017
As England basks in the biggest heatwave for years, everyone is heading to the coast or out into the countryside to chill out, enjoy the sunshine and get stuck into their summer reads. Here are some of the books you’re more than likely to find in their hands…

The Girlfriend

This debut psychological thriller by English writer Michelle Frances, focuses on the potentially charged relationship between girlfriend, boyfriend and his mother. Here, boy meets girl – but soon tragedy strikes and a lie is told, that will change their lives forever. It’s a real page turner, that will have you hooked from the very start.

The Girlfriend | Courtesy of Pan Macmillan
The Girlfriend | Courtesy of Pan Macmillan

Jo Cox: More in Common

The country was devastated by the murder of Jo Cox, a young MP, campaigner, mother and wife, in June 2016. Here, her husband Brendan pens a beautifully tender portrait of Jo, the values she embraced and the incredible legacy she leaves behind. It’s a heart-breaking, yet ultimately inspiring read that will stay with you for a long time after the last page.

Jo Cox: More in Common | Courtesy of Hodder & Stoughton General Division
Jo Cox: More in Common | Courtesy of Hodder & Stoughton General Division

The Keeper of Lost Things

Hailed as the feel-good read of the summer, Ruth Hogan’s book has already found its way into a lot of English holiday makers’ beach bags. It’s a charming tale about Anthony Peardew, who has spent half his life collecting lost objects. Realising he doesn’t have much time left, he leaves his house and all these lost treasures to his assistant Laura – the only person he can trust with reuniting them with their rightful owners. Does she succeed? Well, you’ll have to read to find out…!

The Keeper of Lost Things | Courtesy of Hodder & Stoughton General Division
The Keeper of Lost Things | Courtesy of Hodder & Stoughton General Division

Mad Girl

Bryony Gordon is a hugely successful writer – both as a bestselling author and newspaper columnist – as well as a happily married mother of one, but since she was a teenager she’s lived with OCD and depression. This funny, shocking, heart-wrenching and beautifully honest account of living with mental illness is like nothing you’ve read before.

Mad Girl | Courtesy of Headline Publishing Group
Mad Girl | Courtesy of Headline Publishing Group

Admissions: A Life in Brain Surgery

In this searing, deeply personal memoir by British neurosurgeon Henry Marsh, he reflects on what 40 years spent handling the human brain has taught him. From moving moments with patients in his London hospital, to the work he has done in Nepal and Ukraine, Marsh talks about the unimaginable burden of responsibility that can come with trying to reduce human suffering. It’s eye-opening, and ultimately life-affirming.

Admissions | Courtesy of Orion Publishing Co
Admissions | Courtesy of Orion Publishing Co

Into the Water

It’s no easy feat, following up the global phenomenon that is The Girl on the Train but Paula Hawkins has done it again with this addictive new thriller. In the days before her death, Nel called her sister Jules, but she didn’t pick up, ignoring her plea for help. Now Nel is dead and they are saying she jumped, but of course things aren’t always what they seem. This deeply dark and chilling read will have you madly turning pages until you find out the truth.

Into The Water | Courtesy of Transworld Publishers Ltd
Into The Water | Courtesy of Transworld Publishers Ltd

The Handmaid’s Tale

Originally published in 1985, Margaret Atwood’s dystopian tale of 21st century America has been brought back into the English public’s conscious thanks to the recent hit TV adaptation. As a result, the book has soared up the best-sellers charts and is set to be one of the biggest books this summer.

The Handmaid's Tale | Courtesy of Vintage Publishing
The Handmaid’s Tale | Courtesy of Vintage Publishing