I’ve never done this before, but I thought it would be fun. Like all “great” ideas, it’s turned out to be more difficult than I ever expected, but nonetheless, here it is: my suggestions for great gift ideas for the readers in your lives. Some of these books I’ve blogged about before, in which case I’ve linked to that post so you can read more about the selection than I can put here. Not all of these have been published this year. Some are older, those books that have been hanging around on the bookshelf for a while feeling lonely. I also decided not to include links to publishers or on-line sites. We all know where we like to buy our books, but if I may, while I’m suggesting things, may I suggest that you buy from your favourite local independent bookshop? These places need our support, they are the places which are more likely to stock a wide range of work, and anyway, they’re fun.  So, from all of us who write to all of us who read, happy shopping:

The Coward’s Tale   First and foremost, at the top of the list. Just recently published, this magical novel is the debut of the much feted short story writer, Vanessa Gebbie.

Getting the Picture by Sarah Salway, which I wrote about here.

State of Wonder by Ann Patchett, which I wrote about here.

The Hare with Amber Eyes by Edmund De Waal, which I also wrote about here.

The Spy Who Came in from the Cold by John Le Carre. Ridiculous that I hadn’t read any of his books before. My, what I’ve been missing.

The Wasteland, The App  by T S Eliot and Faber. To my mind, the best example of what all this technology can do for literature. I wrote about it here.

Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter by Mario Vargas Llosa, another wonderful writer who I never got around to reading until recently.

The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery which I wrote about here. This is a novel with characters you long remember, even after you’ve forgotten where they came from.

Home by Marilynne Robinson. Some say this isn’t as good as her previous novels, especially Gilead. But if this is only her second best…

Seeing Stars by Simon Armitage. Don’t worry about whether it’s poetry or prose. Just enjoy it.

Where the Air is Rarified by Susan Richardson. Poetry about the environment, beautifully illustrated by Pat Gregory.

While I’m on the subject of poetry, several wonderful poets have brought out books recently (using that term loosely – I’ve lost track of time). But regardless, I’d love to point you to the work of Billy Collins, Carrie Etter, Katy Evans-Bush, Ruth O’Callaghan, Carolyn Oulton,  Sue Rose, John Siddique, Kelley Swain, Todd Swift.

I purposefully didn’t include above any writers published by my own publisher, Ward Wood Publishing because they are all new publications and all my friends. But if I do say so myself, you can’t go wrong with any of them.