Christmas on Coronation Street by Maggie Sullivan
This book makes me feel nostalgic because one of my earliest memories is staying the night with my grandmother, with my younger sister and two cousins and being given a chunk of Dairy Milk chocolate to watch before an episode of Coronation Street began. I remember watching Elsie Tanner, one of the legendary earlier cast members of this iconic show and this book follows her story from when she was a young fourteen-year-old peering longingly into a Christmas inspired story window through the dark days of the war, loss, heartache, a bullying father, through to hope and her first marriage and moving to Number 11, Coronation Street. A nostalgic read.
The Milton St John Series by Christina Jones
Okay, this isn’t one book, it’s a series of four, but I couldn’t choose between Jumping to Conclusions, Running the Risk, Going the Distance or Dancing in the Moonlight, so had to choose all four for this list. I just know her new series coming this year and introduced with the Christmas novella, Christmas at Sandcastle Cottage is going to be worth waiting for, too. I think these books make me nostalgic because of they way they’re written. I always get a gorgeously, cosy feeling when I read this author’s books and in one of them she has a racehorse called Bonne Nuit – named after a beautiful bay on the north coast of Jersey and the reference to the island where I live.
Octavia by Jilly Cooper
This was the first book I read in my late teens that gave me a life long love of Jilly Cooper’s books. In fact, this is another series I could recommend because I’ve read them all: Bella, Prudence, Harriet, Imogen, Lisa, Emily. Loved them all, but Octavia was my first and favourite of these books. I loved these light-hearted, fun reads filled with gorgeous heroes and heroines I could relate to. When Octavia Brennan meets publisher, Jeremy West she’s determined to forget that he recently became engaged to her friend, Gussie. She is determined to hook him, but that’s before she bumps into Gareth Llewellyn and things don’t go according to her plans.
Legend by Jude Deveraux
A friend introduced me to Jude Deveraux. I only read my first book by this author because my friend was so passionate about her books and collected them. When she kept nagging for me to at least read one and leant a book to me, I had to give in and do it. I didn’t think I’d enjoy reading a book that included time travel, but this one truly swept me away. It’s about Kady, a baker who is making the wedding cake for an up an coming wedding and tries on an antique wedding dress transporting herself back in time to a delicious hero…
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows
January 1946: London is emerging from the shadow of the Second World War, and writer Juliet Ashton is looking for her next book subject. Who could imagine that she would find it in a letter from a man she’s never met, a native of the island of Guernsey, who has come across her name written inside a book by Charles Lamb. . . . Coming from the larger of the Channel Islands, Jersey, I see the coast of Guernsey most days when driving along St Ouen’s Bay, so naturally I was interested in reading this brilliant book set just after and during the occupation of the island in the Second World War. Timeless and wonderful, no wonder it was made into a film.
Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen
This book has to be on my list simply because it’s the book I’ve read the most times. I can recall the first time I read Pride and Prejudice on a wintery day sitting by the fire and it totally transported me to another time and place and the romance of it was utterly perfect. Each time I read it I relish every word.
The Dwelling Place by Catherine Cookson
Reading about Cissie Brody taking on the care of her younger siblings determined to keep them out of the workhouse and ending up living in a cave-like dwelling on the Fells was something that made me think about people whose poverty was so abject that they had to take unusual steps to survive. Catherine Cookson’s books are so easy to get lost in, but I think this was one of my favourites and probably one of the first I read.