'Read me like a book' recommendations

At each meeting one member has been asked to recommend a book that has meant something special to them. 

The Story of Ferdinand
by Munro Leaf
Recommended by Jane

As a child, I loved this book about the gentle bull who liked to sit under a cork tree smelling flowers. It made a lasting impression because Ferdinand was true to himself and steadfast. When I revisited it recently I discovered that it was also popular with adults when first published in the 1930s, banned in Spain until Franco’s death and ordered to be burned by Hitler!

Date of recommendation: 24th October 2022
Brideshead Revisited
by Evelyn Waugh
Recommended by John

I couldn't settle for just one book so have a number to mention: Winnie the Pooh and Just So Stories which my father read to me; Spy Who Came in from the Cold by Le Carre - the twist was a shock; Thomas Hardy for Mayor of Castorbridge and Jude the Obscure; Herman Hesse, Narziss and Goldmund. An Equal Music by Vikram Seth - novelists usually get it wrong when writing about music, but Seth didn’t. Robert Macfarlane for Mountains of the Mind. And the ending of Brideshead Revisited.

Date of recommendation: 25th July 2022
by Daphne du Maurier
Recommended by Caroline

This is a fantastic novel about finding your identity, with the protagonist haunted by thoughts of her husband's first wife. A gothic setting and a brilliant plot twist makes this 1938 classic a brilliant read.

Date of recommendation: 27th June 2022
The Little Grey Men
by B B
Recommended by Janet

I loved reading it as a child as it made me look at the countryside in a magical way - as if river banks and woodlands had gnomes and fairies living in them. It is a tale of 'adventuring' beyond your home and comfort zone, which has stuck with me.

Date of recommendation: 25th April 2022
Pass the Parcel
by Neil Turner
Recommended by Neil

A thriller set in the financial markets, this is my first novel and based on spending my career in finance and seeing so many ways in which everything can go spectacularly wrong. I have lots more thrillers to write!

Date of recommendation: 28th March 2022
Wuthering Heights
by Emily Bronte
Recommended by Sarah

On my first reading I didn't really enjoy this book but on the second reading during the summer holidays when I was 16 lying beside a pool in Lanzarote, I fell completely in love with this book. I loved the landscape, the characters and their complex relationships, the tension between the families and the beautiful writing. This book is very dark and emotionally intense which I could definitely relate to as an emotional and slightly crazy teenage girl. I have read it numerous times since and I always seem to gain a different perspective from the book but the wilderness and setting of the book always stays with me, and when I think of this book even now I am transported to my childhood room in October where outside surrounded by a dark, rainy and windy night but still I have sense of comfort.

Date of recommendation: 28th February 2022
Catch 22
by Joseph Heller
Recommended by Graham

When published as a paperback in the UK in 1962 this became the number one bestseller and I, a student at the time, bought my copy. After a post-war diet of serious war stories here was something very different, a satirical war novel that pokes fun at military rules and procedures, and yet in a way that shows the true horror of war. The book has a zany logic to it, exemplified in the famous Catch-22 itself. As you read it, its style and structure seems random but is almost certainly deliberate. I had read nothing else quite like it.

Date of recommendation: 31st January 2022