No catches, no fine print just unadulterated book loving, with your favourite books saved to your own digital bookshelf.
New members get entered into our monthly draw to win £100 to spend in your local bookshop Plus lots lots more…Find out more
Looking for books that are transcendent, were released decades ago yet remain current to this day? Then look no further. This section of the LoveReading site is dedicated to the books that we think will stand the test of time and continue to capture the hearts of their readers for many years to come.
20th Anniversary Edition When Griet’s father, a notable tile-maker, is blinded she goes to work for artist Vermeer to support her destitute family. She’s an outsider from the start, a poor Protestant in a well-to-do Catholic household who’s regarded with suspicion by her fellow staff, especially when she alone is entrusted to venture into the master’s studio. Soon enough Griet experiences the magic of artistic creation, of seeing colour anew, of seeing everything anew. But, as her passion for art is aroused so too is an ache of guilt as she grows ever distant from her family. Then there’s the attention and lusts of the handsome butcher’s son who seeks her hand in marriage, and the lascivious approaches of her master’s wealthy patron. The intrigue and tension of the Vermeer household, and the ebb and flow of life in a 17th century Dutch market town are described in painterly detail through Griet’s keenly observant eyes as a swelling scandal spills to the outside world from within the duplicitous household. At once a compelling page-turner and a tour de force of tension and coming-of-age turmoil, this novel remains a must-read for historical fiction fans some twenty years after publication.
Who would have believed back in 1985 that this first introduction into the madcap Discworld which satirised fantasy novels and introduced us to some fantastic characters would turn into the Discworld series numbering some thirty works. If you have wondered where to start in this huge series (which need not be read in order) then start here and read The Light Fantastic straight after it. They are great books. A "Piece of Passion" from the publisher... ‘The very first novel in what turned into the celebrated, magisterial Discworld series, this novel was first published by Corgi in 1985. Although the more recent novels in the series have become more layered, satirical and thoughtful (number thirty-seven, Unseen Academicals, is the most recent) The Colour of Magic must remain one of my all-time favourites, for its soaring inventiveness, sparky parody and madcap humour – and for introducing us in the first place to that flat World so very different from, yet so very like our own. ' Marianne Velmans, Publishing Director at Transworld
A wonderful fantasy adventure, Tailchaser’s Song is the debut of Tad Williams, first published in 1985. Fritti Tailchaser is a young cat who embarks on an epic quest in search of a friend who has disappeared, as his adventure continues, despair and destruction start to stalk the pages. If we could hear cats talk, we would hear them tell this heroic adventure, it would be one of their great sagas, spoken of and passed down the years. Tad Williams ensures that we see, feel and become part of this fantasy world by setting customs, folklore and society in the story. There are some thoughts by the author himself, written in 2000, set at the beginning of the novel, however if this is your first foray into his work, you may want to read these at the end. Williams has a little gentle fun along the way with a couple of references that Lord of the Rings fans will undoubtedly pick up. Yes this could be described as a mix between Watership Down and The Hobbit, however it’s also a classic fantasy tale in its own right and a perfectly captivating read for older teens and adults alike. ~ Liz Robinson
Published over 20 years ago this book is still a best seller, bringing complicated science to the masses. Gravity, black holes, the Big Bang - all kinds of topics are covered in a way that helps the less scientifically gifted among us get some way to grasping these concepts. Fascinating stuff. A "Piece of Passion" from the publisher... ‘Steven Hawking is responsible for enthusing millions worldwide and on an unprecedented scale with the world of science. His A Brief History of Time has broken all records for a bestselling science book and its sheer brilliance continues to stimulate and inspire the thousands of people curious about the origins of the universe’. Sally Gaminara, Publishing Director at Transworld
Editor's Comments: Since its publication in 1993 Birdsong has established itself as one of the most important novels of recent years. A novel that brings alive the horrors of war and the redemptive power of love there are few books that have moved people as much as Birdsong or that continue to have such resonance years after publication.Voted one of the fifteen Vintage Future Classics (one of the books that readers across the country thought that we will still be reading in 100 years time) Birdsong is at times moving, emotional, horrifying and enchanting but above all else it is a truly wonderful read.
Editor's Comments: Since its publication in 1993 Birdsong has established itself as one of the most important novels of recent years. A novel that brings alive the horrors of war and the redemptive power of love there are few books that have moved people as much as Birdsong or that continue to have such resonance years after publication.Recently voted one of the fifteen Vintage Future Classics (one of the books that readers across the country thought that we will still be reading in 100 years time) Birdsong is at times moving, emotional, horrifying and enchanting but above all else it is a truly wonderful read.
This book was shortlisted for the Booker prize it has been described as 'triumphant' (Sunday Telegraph) and 'dazzling' (New York Review of Books). Blessed with a quick wit and sparkling charm, Robert Merivel rises quickly, soon finding favour with the King, and privileged with a position as 'paper groom' to the youngest of the King's mistresses. But by falling in love with her, Merivel transgresses the one rule that will cast him out from his new-found paradise...
When Marlowe next encounters Lavery, he's denying nothing - on account of the two bullet holes in his heart. Now Marlowe's on the trail of a killer, who leads him out of smoggy LA all the way to a murky mountain lake ...
But Claudia's life is entwined with others and she must allow those who knew her, loved her, the chance to speak, to put across their point of view. There is Gordon, brother and adversary; Jasper, her untrustworthy lover and father of Lisa, her cool conventional daughter; and then there is Tom, her one great love, found and lost in wartime Egypt.
If you have only recently discovered Coelho, or if you have yet to discover this utterly brilliant and breathtaking author, who until quite recently was one of the world’s most unsung authors then jump into one of his novels right now and The Alchemist was his first. His books have such a rare quality that if you have a heart you can’t fail to be captivated.
Allie Fox is going to re-create the world. Abominating the cops, crooks, junkies and scavengers of modern America, he abandons civilisation and takes the family to live in the Honduran jungle. There his tortured, messianic genius keeps them alive, his hoarse tirades harrying them through a diseased and dirty Eden towards unimaginable darkness.
'In eighteenth-century France there lived a man who was one of the most gifted and abominable personages in an era that knew no lack of gifted and abominable personages. His name was Jean-Baptiste Grenouille, and if his name has been forgotten today, it is certainly not because Grenouille fell short of those more famous blackguards when it came to arrogance, misanthropy, immorality, or, more succinctly, wickedness, but because his gifts and his sole ambition were restricted to a domain that leaves no traces in history: to the fleeting realm of scent ...
The History of Love explores the lasting power of the written word and the lasting power of love. The book was short-listed for the Orange Prize for Fiction 2006 and was the winner of the 2006 Prix du Meilleur Livre Etranger. Published as a Penguin Essential for the first time.
The Evergreens - For books that stand the test of time.
Research carried out by Nielsen BookScan revealed twelve titles that have remained in their top 5,000 chart for every week since 1995 (The Bookseller, 1 August 2008). These evergreen titles have sold at least 100 copies a week in the UK in order to remain in the top 5,000. The twelve books are:
Sebastian Faulks, Birdsong
Eric Carle, The Very Hungry Caterpillar
J. R. R. Tolkien, The Hobbit
Delia Smith, Complete Cookery Course
Michael Rosen, We’re Going on a Bear Hunt
James Redfield, The Celestine Prophecy
Terry Pratchett, The Colour of Magic
Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom
Stephen Hawking, A Brief History of Time
M. Scott Peck, The Road Less Travelled
Terry Pratchett, The Light Fantastic
Terry Pratchett, Mort