So, after gifts for him, her and children, for Part Four of my Christmas book recommendations, I’ve come to books I want for Christmas. As you know I read a lot of books and have a big backlog anyway, but this is my wishlist. Perhaps it’ll give you some more ideas for gifts – or maybe it’ll give you some ideas about what to ask other people to get you!
I’m hoping to find some Deanna Raybourn in my stocking. I’ve really enjoyed her Lady Julia Grey series, and I’m hoping that Santa will bring me some of her standalone books – which are more expensive over here as they’re US Imports – like Night of a Thousand Stars, City of Jasmine or A Spear of Summer Grass (which after months of being c£7 for Kindle has dropped to £2.99 at time of writing, but I now can’t buy because I might be getting it for Christmas!) or the first book in her new series A Curious Beginning.
Another American import on my Christmas list is The Lure of the Moonflower – the final book in Lauren Willig‘s Pink Carnation series. I’m desperate to know what happens – I have the second last book sitting on my shelf ready to read, but I don’t dare start it because I know as soon as I read it I’ll want to read the last one *now* and then i’ll end up buying it before Christmas comes!
I’ve seen glowing reviews, but heard mixed word of mouth on Elena Ferrante‘s Neapolitan trilogy, so I’m curious to read them but can’t justify buying them myself with the to-read pile in its current state. So if anyone fancies buying me My Brilliant Friend, I’d really appreciate it! I’m also after the last in the Tales of the City series – The Days of Anna Madrigal.
Regular readers will know of my love of detective stories and cozy crime, so I’d be delighted if the latest Grantchester novel from James Runcie turned up on Christmas Day – Sidney Chambers and the Forgiveness of Sins is in a rather expensive US paperback edition or hardback (which would match the ones I already own better) at the moment. I’d also be happy to find the next book (that I don’t own) in the Tasha Alexander‘s Lady Emily series (Dangerous to Know), or one of Catriona McPherson‘s Dandy Gilvers that I haven’t read (like …and the Reek of Herrings),
I don’t tend to buy myself a lot of non fiction, what with the pile being so big and so much of it coming out in hardback first, so Christmas is a a really good opportunity for me to get a few things that I can’t justify buying with the to-read pile in its current state!
I mentioned in my Gifts for Her post that I’m not big on Roman history, but I do quite fancy Mary Beard‘s latest SPQR, but hardbacks do tend to linger on my shelf somewhat, so perhaps her Confronting the Classics might be a better choice and likewise fill in some gaps in my education. Also on the history front, I really want to read Anita Anand’s Sophia: Princess, Suffragette, Revolutionary, especially after seeing the documentary based on it on BBC One a few weeks back – which is still on iPlayer for a few more days. I’m a big fan of Helen Rappaport‘s books (she’s a great speaker too) and I’d quite like her Four Sisters: The Lost Lives of the Romanov Grand Duchesses, even though I usually find the Russian Revolution too unbearably depressing!
From this year’s crop of celebrity autobiographies and memoirs, my picks would be Sue Perkins‘ Spectacles and Drew Barrymore‘s Wildflowers or maybe Grace Jones‘s I’ll Never Write My Memoirs which is about an era which I’m fascinated by and was hoping that The Boy would ask for, but he hasn’t! She’s not a celebrity in the traditional sense, but I’m an occasional reader of The Bloggess and Jenny Lawson‘s second book Furiously Happy is on my want list – I’ve read the kindle preview and am really interested by it. It’s only in hardback at the moment, but as I still haven’t got her first book, Let’s Pretend this Never Happened, I would be happy to receive that instead/as well!
Those who know me in real-life know that I don’t wear a lot of make-up. But despite this, I do watch a lot of YouTube make-up videos. And Lisa Eldridge is one of my favourites. Consequently I’d really like her history of make-up Face Paint, but can’t justify buying it for myself. Hint. Hint. At the quirky end of the book spectrum, I’ve got a fancy for How to Climb Mount Blanc in a Skirt, and either of Shaun Usher‘s Letters of Note books – the new one sounds fabulous
On the aspirational home front, I’d really like Marie Kondo‘s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying because I am a bit of a hoarder – even when it’s not books! I’m sure The Boy would be delighted if I could find away of jettisoning some of my stuff happily, although obviously he’d be even happier if I could stop acquiring the clutter in the first place!
I know my reading habit can intimidate people and scare them off buying me books (in case I already have it or have read it) but I’m always delighted to get a book voucher – be it a National Book Token or a Kindle voucher and I try to spend them on something I consider a treat – like a nice hardback or an ebook that’s over my usual price limit. After chortling over their Bad Sex Awards for years, I’ve been eyeing up a subscription to Literary Review but can’t really justify buying myself it!
What don’t I want? No cookery books please (unless it’s a Mary Berry I don’t already have) as I still haven’t worked my way through everything I want to cook from the ones that I already have and the cookery book shelf is getting full. Don’t buy me the Booker shortlist – I’ve got so much to read already, I’ll never get around to them – as my attempts to try and improve my award-nominated book hit rate show!
And finally, if you really want me to love you forever, you could pre-order me a copy of The Rogue Less Taken from Sarah MacLean – one of my favourite purveyors of smart, funny and sexy historical romance – and do it from her local Indie bookshop Word in Brooklyn, because I really want the US version (the UK one doesn’t match my collection, but I’ll link you to it anyway in case you want it for you), and Word will send it to me signed and with bonus goodies. But even nightshift brain can’t really justify spending $22 shipping a $7.99 book to the UK. Even if I did do it for Never Judge a Lady by her Cover last year – which is also not as nice in its UK edition, which is something I never though I’d say about an American edition of a romance book. But if you do, let me know, because I may yet weaken and buy it anyway, and it would be stupid for two of us to do it….