We think we said it best last year in our Winter Recommended Reading Blog: Stories can be a powerful motivator for social action: through connecting us to people and the experience of others to highlighting causes we may not have been aware of, we are able to learn and be inspired, ultimately leading us to creating and being a part of positive change.
Student Hubs will be closed over the winter period from the 21st December as we all take a well deserved break. We hope no matter what you are doing over this time, you find some time to rest. Maybe you’re on the lookout for something to read – if so, we have you covered! This year, along with our recommendations from the team, we’ve included a list of our favourite independent bookshops, many of which have online stores if you’re not based nearby, and don’t forget to check out your local Library – membership is free and a great way to support your local services.
Where to buy books
- The Small City Bookshop in Redfield, Bristol
- Dreadnought Books in Brandon Hill, Bristol
- Heffers Bookshop in Cambridge
- Topping & Company Booksellers in Ely
- Gay’s The Word Bookshop in Saint Pancras, London
- Hurlingham Books in Fulham, London
- October Books in Portswood, Southampton
- P&G Wells in Winchester
- Daisy Jones and The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid Documenting the rise of a 1970s rock group with their exciting lead singer and exploring the mystery behind their break up. Fiona recommends this read as one of their best books of the year.
- The Essex Serpent by Sarah Perry You may have spotted this one before as it was turned into a miniseries, but this historical fiction novel follows newly widowed Cora as she moves from a small Essex town to Victorian London.
- Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens Sorcha recommends this coming of age story with a dual timeline unveiling a deeper mystery.
- Fifteen Dogs by Andre Alexis What would happen if you gave dogs a human level of intelligence? A bar bet between Hermes and Apollo explores whether dogs could be happy if they had the same intelligence as humans. This heartbreaking (and warming) short story explores a wide variety of themes including language, death, poetry, and love.
- Someone Who Will Love You In All Your Damaged Glory by Raphael Bob-Waksbery A collection of short stories written by the creator of Bojack Horseman is exactly what you would expect. An odd collection of stories exploring the theme of love in all its forms in a variety of written mediums.
- Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel Also recently made as a TV show, Station Eleven is a post-apocalyptic tale which explores the importance of art even when all hope seems lost.
- The Secret History by Donna Tartt Unsal recommends this iconic novel which helped coin the term ‘dark academia’. Set in an elite American college, a group of students under the guidance of an eccentric explore the boundaries of their morals.
- Twas The Nightshift Before Christmas by Adam Kay Catherine recommends this read after having read Kay’s first book during the pandemic which was a devastating but excellent look into the life of a junior doctor – this time, there’s a festive twist.
- The Long Game by Dorie Clark Feeling rushed, exhausted, and pushed to the limit all the time? Fiona recommends this read which challenges you to think about breaking out of that box and to start thinking long-term even when the world around you is trying to steal your short term attention.
- Hello World by Hannah Fry This book takes us on a tour of how algorithms are all around us, from the good to bad, and explores whether or not they’re actually beneficial to us.
- Regrets of the Dying by Georgina Scull Hear us out, this might sound like a bit of a depressing read, but this book is beautiful and moving, and definitely one to read if you’re looking for reflection prompts over the New Year.
- How to be Perfect: The Correct Answer to Every Moral Question by Michael Schur Sim recommends this one written by the creator and writer of The Good Place. Shcur explores what the philosophical greats tell us on how to be a good person. Written in an easy and engaging way, this is a great introduction to some core philosophical topics.
- The Walker’s Guide to Outdoor Clues and Signs by Tristan Gooley Sorcha recommends this book noted as the ultimate guide to the land, sun, stars, plants, trees, and more. If you’re looking to spend some more time outdoors this winter break, you should definitely check this out.
- Big Feelings: How to Be Okay When Things Are Not Okay by Liz Fosslien and Mollie West Duffy Sometimes it can be tough to know how to deal with our emotions when they feel big and unyielding. This book breaks down feelings such as regret and despair, and provides practical ways of supporting you to move through them. Liz and Mollie also have a great instagram account you can follow for smaller pick-me-ups.
We’ll be back on the 3rd January – till then, Happy Reading!
If you are looking to get more involved with reading in the new year, you should join our book club. Student Hubs is launching our brand new book club in January 2023, and after only being open to our staff team, we’re happy to announce that the club is open to all! Joining us as we read and discuss a mix of genres of books over the year on Discord.
Join our Discord Server here: https://discord.gg/kRWSwExuz8