Find out what’s going on in the literary world with latest releases, members suggestions, monthly book reviews, a literary festival calendar and competitions.
Dedicating time to attend a book group can be difficult – The Reading Room is an online book club that gives book-lovers the freedom to stop by and join in discussions in your free time.
The Reading Room is available to join on Facebook, where you can escape to find detailed book reviews, suggestions, meet new people and even take part in monthly competitions.
- Stop by and join discussions with fellow members
- Read book reviews
- Take part in monthly competitions
Each month members have the opportunity to vote for the next book of the month take a look at the previous months for a short synopsis, information about the author and member reviews....
December Book of the Month Winners
Congratulations to the 5 Reading Room members who have won a copy of Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult, December’s lucky winners were:
Kathy Bostrom, Patricia Burke, Liz Clift, Nikki Knights and Ian Pumfrey.
We will be looking forward to reading their reviews over the coming weeks.
Next chance to win our giveaways coming soon….
Take a look at the monthly book synopsis and learn about the author. Does one of these books take your fancy, we would love to here your thoughts.....
Ruth Jefferson is a labour and delivery nurse at a Connecticut hospital with more than twenty years’ experience. During her shift, Ruth begins a routine check-up on a new-born baby, only to be told t she’s been reassigned to another patient. The parents are white supremacists and don’t want Ruth, who is African American, to touch their child. The hospital complies, the next day the baby goes into cardiac distress while Ruth is alone in the nursery. Does she obey orders or does she intervene?
The story starts in Cornwall, spring 1920’s, a young man stands on a headland, looking out to sea. He is back from war, homeless and without family. Behind him lie the mud, bared wire entanglements and terror of the trenches. Behind him is also the most intense relationship of his life.
Christine wakes up every morning in an unfamiliar bed with an unfamiliar man. She looks in the mirror and sees an unfamiliar, middle-aged face. And every morning, the man she has woken up with must explain that he is Ben he is her husband, she is forty-seven years old, and a terrible accident two decades earlier decimated her ability to form new memories. Every day, Christine must begin again the reconstruction ......
When one story ends, another begins . . .
Lou Clark has lots of questions.
Like how it is she's ended up working in an airport bar, spending every shift watching other people jet off to new places. Or why the flat she's owned for a year still doesn't feel like home. Whether her close-knit family can forgive her for what she did eighteen months ago.....
It's 1946 and author Juliet Ashton can't think what to write next. Out of the blue, she receives a letter from Dawsey Adams of Guernsey - by chance, he's acquired a book that once belonged to her - and, spurred on by their mutual love of reading, they begin a correspondence.
Afghanistan, 1952. Abdullah and his sister Pari live with their father and stepmother in the small village of Shadbagh. Their father, Saboor, is constantly in search of work and they struggle together through poverty and brutal winters. To Abdullah, Pari - as beautiful and sweet-natured as the fairy for which she was named - is everything. More like a parent than a brother, Abdullah will do anything for her, even trading his only pair of shoes for a feather for her treasured collection. Each night they sleep together in their cot, their heads touching, their limbs tangled.
A man is washed up on a deserted beach on the Hebridean Isle of Harris, barely alive and borderline hypothermic. He has no idea who he is or how he got there. The only clue to his identity is a map tracing a track called the Coffin Road. He does not know where it will lead him, but filled with dread, fear and uncertainty he knows he must follow it. Read on...
Maud, an aging grandmother, is slowly losing her memory—and her grip on everyday life. Yet she refuses to forget her best friend Elizabeth, who she is convinced is missing and in terrible danger.
But no one will listen to Maud—not her frustrated daughter, Helen, not her caretakers, not the police, and especially not Elizabeth's mercurial son, Peter. Armed with handwritten notes she leaves for herself and an overwhelming feeling that Elizabeth needs her help, Maud resolves to discover the truth and save her beloved friend. Read on...
James and Sadie Goodenough have settled where their wagon got stuck – in the muddy, stagnant swamps of 1830s Ohio. They and their children work relentlessly to tame their patch of land, buying saplings from a local tree man known as John Appleseed so they can cultivate the fifty apple trees required to stake their claim on the property. But the orchard they plant sows the seeds of a long battle. James loves the apples, reminders of an easier life back in Connecticut; while Sadie prefers the applejack they make, an alcoholic refuge from brutal frontier life. Read on...
She is the missing girl. But she doesn't know she's lost. Kate Hamer's stand-out debut thriller is the hugely moving story of an abduction that will keep you guessing until the very last page. Carmel Wakeford becomes separated from her mother at a local children's festival, and is found by a man who claims to be her estranged grandfather. He tells her that her mother has had an accident and that she is to live with him for now. As days become weeks with her new family, 8-year-old Carmel realises that this man believes she has a special gift. Read on...
Nineteen-year-old Gwendolyn Hooper steps off a steamer in Ceylon full of optimism, eager to join her new husband. But the man who greets her at the tea plantation is not the same one she fell in love with in London.
Distant and brooding, Laurence spends long days wrapped up in his work, leaving his young bride to explore the plantation alone. It's a place filled with clues to the past - locked doors, a yellowed wedding dress in a dusty trunk, an overgrown grave hidden in the grounds, far too small for an adult. Read on...
The Book Thief centers around the life of Liesel Meminger, a nine-year-old girl living in Germany during World War II. Liesel's experiences are narrated by Death, who describes both the beauty and destruction of life in this era.
After her brother's death, Liesel arrives in a distraught state at the home of her new foster parents, Hans and Rosa Hubermann. During her time there, she is exposed to the horror of the Nazi regime and struggles to find a way to preserve the innocence of her childhood. Read on...
December 2015 - The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey
November 2015 - According to Yes by Dawn French
October 2015 - The Hundred Year Old Man... by Jonas Jonasson
September 2015 - The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters
August 2015 - The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman
July 2015 - A God in Ruins by Kate Atkinson
June 2015 - The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
April/May - Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
Jan/Feb - The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
A great way to decide whether you like the sound of a book, check out our member reviews!
Book of the Month Reviews
May - Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey
April - At the Edge of the Orchard by Tracy Chevalier
- This book received a great response in the poll. What did our members think of it? Fred Harman let's us know....
March - The Girl in the Red Coat by Kate Hamer
- Selected as the poll winner for March this book has received great reviews. Reading room members Carole Baker, Alex Rosel and Michael Bond give us their thoughts...
February - The Tea Planter's Wife by Dinah Jefferies
- February's book was a popular choice, read our first review from Alan Kingswell who couldn't put it down and read in just over 24 hours! A great selection of reviews this month read reviews from our lucky giveaway winners Alex Rosel, Sarah Bown and Daphne Sarson.
- Overall this book was well received with an average of 4 stars. Find out what our members Fred Harman, Robert Dinsmore and Sarah Thorogood thought and read reviews here »
December 15 - The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey
- Our December book read by our members over the festive season generated quite a bit of discussion on Facebook but only one review here. See what Reading Room member John Lipinski made of this tale.
November 15 - According to Yes by Dawn French - The first of our reviews are in and it's a mixed bag so far.
- Take a look at our members reviews and don't forget to join us on Facebook to join in the discussion.
October 15 - The Hundred Year Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson
- Joyce Nelson gives us her run down on this intriging book.
September 15 - The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters
- All good reviews to date, take a look and see what our winners Julie Evenden and Heather Darwent make of Septembers Book of the Month
- Opinions are mixed on our August book of the month read our members reviews»
- Read our member reviews along with an in depth review from Reading Room member Nicky Davies who enjoyed reading it so much she rated it 5/5. Read 'A God in Ruins' reviews here »
June 15 - The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
- A popular choice this appears to have been a good choice with positive feedback. Rose Gladdish gives her views»
- Discussion on Facebook were conflicted. Please let us have your thoughts, send us your review.
April 15 - We are all Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler
- Mixed feelings from members for this Book of the Month
March 15 - The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce
- We asked members to sum up their experience of the book in 'Less than 10 words', here's what they had to say, or check out the review from Reading Room member Rose Gladdish and see what she makes of this book.
January/February 15 - The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
- For an insight into members opinions on this book read our member reviews. Reviews received from Sharon Walsh, Rose Gladdish, Jackie Hannaford, Pete Tully and Rhona Morris.
Thank you to all members for taking the time to let us know your views.
General Book Reviews
General Reviews submitted by way of recommendation:-
A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry - reviewed by Vivian Melder
Godfreys Ghost, From Father to Son by Nicola Ridley - reviewed by Moira Grant
Mao's Last Dancer by Li Cunxin - reviewed by Pauline Medhurst
Only When I Laugh (Autobiography) by Paul Merton - reviewed by Tony Corbin
Red Notice by Bill Browder - reviewed by Fred Harman
The Collaborator by Gerald Seymour - reviewed by Fred Harman
The Gods of Guilt - reviewed by Fred Harman
The Last Secret of the Temple - reviewed by Fred Harman
Any of our members can become a reviewer or simply contribute to the discussions on Facebook.
To review a book simply submit a review form to firstname.lastname@example.org or complete a form online here» . A review form can act as an aid to really make you think about specific elements of a book and how they have been interpreted by the author.