Lifestyle shot of Vintage books on a shelf with spines facing out, against a beige background. To the left of the books are two white candles and a plate of festive biscuits. To the right is a miniature Christmas tree decorated with baubles.

The Biscuit by Lizzie Collingham (2020)

From the humble digestive devotee to the discerning Garibaldi guzzler, we all have our opinion on which biscuit is the best, and more biscuits are bought and eaten in Britain than in any other country. This gorgeously illustrated book takes us from Roman times up to the present day as Lizzie Collingham traces the history of our favourite snack. It’s the perfect thing to read while munching through a bumper selection tin on Boxing Day.

Be More Keanu by James King, illustrated by Kate Holderness (2020)

What would the world look like if we were all a little more like Keanu Reeves? Film critic and Keanu super-fan James King unpacks what makes Mr Reeves so special in this hilarious spiritual guidebook. Learning from the star’s iconic roles in films such as Bill & Ted and John Wick, as well as his Zen life outlook, King provides countless tips to help us all #bemorekeanu in 2021. New Year’s resolutions sorted.

Christmas Angels by Rowan Dobson (2020)

After being forgotten in the attic for eleven months of the year, it’s time for our favourite festive companions to take the spotlight once more. Christmas angels come in a wonderful variety of styles, from the sublime to the ridiculous to the better-suited-to-Halloween, each with personalities and foibles of their own. Rowan Dobson celebrates these timeless tree-toppers with a collection of portraits and the personal stories that go with them.

How to Be Successful Without Hurting Men’s Feelings by Sarah Cooper (2018)

Comedian and Netflix star Sarah Cooper has been hailed as the ‘Trump slayer’ for her TikTok lip syncs of Trump’s speeches this year. Before her viral fame, she worked at companies such as Yahoo! and Google, where she learned the unspoken rules for how women should behave in the workplace. How to Be Successful Without Hurting Men’s Feelings is a hilarious tongue-in-cheek guide to building your career without damaging any fragile male egos along the way.   

 

Sapiens: A Graphic History, Volume 1 by Yuval Noah Harari, David Vandermeulen and Daniel Casanave (2020)

With fans such as Bill Gates, Janelle Monáe and Barack Obama, Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari has become an international phenomenon as well as a Sunday Times #1 bestseller. In the first volume of this new graphic adaptation, co-written by David Vandermeulen and illustrated in full colour by Daniel Casanave, the story of humankind’s creation and evolution has never been more accessible or more beautiful to look at.

Murder Most Festive by Ada Moncrieff (2020)

What could be more festive than a good murder mystery? In this debut from Ada Moncrieff, the assembled friends and family at Westbury Manor wake to discover a body in the snow on Christmas morning. Although it initially appears to be a suicide, amateur detective Hugh Gaveston is not so sure. Brilliantly plotted, witty and atmospheric, this is the perfect next read for fans of Agatha Christie and James Runcie.

The Roasting Tin Around the World by Rukmini Iyer (2020)

Rukmini Iyer, the genius of easy one-tin recipes, is back with a new Roasting Tin cookbook that reinvents our favourite dishes from around the globe. With everything from all-in-one paella to s’mores rocky road, weeknight dinners, vegan options, family lunches and desserts, it’s the ideal gift for any foodie – or anyone tired of all the Christmas washing up.

Glass Town by Isabel Greenberg (2020)

Before they invented Heathcliff or Mr Rochester, Wildfell Hall or Wuthering Heights, the Brontë children had the imaginary world of Glass Town, a collaboration that took them far from the parsonage in Haworth. The New York Times bestselling Isabel Greenberg weaves history with fantasy in a stunning reimagining of their childhood, questioning the relationship between creators and creation. For the Brontë buffs in your life, it’s the ultimate gift to go under the tree.

The Swallow by Stephen Moss (2020)

While we’re shivering through the British winter, one of our most familiar bird species is arriving in South Africa for the season. Stephen Moss, author of The Robin and The Twelve Birds of Christmas, turns his attention to their extraordinary 12,000-mile round trip in The Swallow. With beautiful illustrations throughout, Moss documents a year in the life of this much-loved bird and the key part that it plays in traditional and popular culture.

They Don’t Teach This by Eniola Aluko (2019)

Earlier this year, Eni Aluko announced her retirement from professional football after an illustrious career. With 102 caps for England and 33 goals to her name, she’s one of England’s most decorated female players, as well as the first female pundit on Match of the Day, an ambassador for UN Women and a Guardian columnist. In her memoir, which was shortlisted for the Telegraph Sports Book Awards, she relives her journey along with the challenges and life lessons that met her along the way.

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