Curling up with a good book at bedtime is a great way to calm your mind and get ready for sleep. In honour of World Book Day on the 3rd March, we thought we'd share what's on our must-read list at the moment. Here are three novels we'll have by our bedside in the next few weeks...
1. The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters "In a dusty post-war summer in rural Warwickshire, a doctor is called to a patient at Hundreds Hall. Home to the Ayres family for over two centuries, the Georgian house, once grand and handsome, is now in decline, its masonry crumbling, its gardens choked with weeds, the clock in its stable yard permanently fixed at twenty to nine. Its owners – mother, son and daughter – are struggling to keep pace with a changing society, as well as with conflicts of their own. But are the Ayreses haunted by something more sinister than a dying way of life? Little does Dr Faraday know how closely, and how terrifyingly, their story is about to become entwined with his." Find out more about The Little Stranger here
2. Slade House by David Mitchell
"Turn down Slade Alley - narrow, dank and easy to miss, even when you're looking for it. Find the small black iron door set into the right-hand wall. No handle, no keyhole, but at your touch it swings open. Enter the sunlit garden of an old house that doesn't quite make sense; too grand for the shabby neighbourhood, too large for the space it occupies. A stranger greets you by name and invites you inside. At first, you won't want to leave. Later, you'll find that you can't. This unnerving, taut and intricately woven tale begins in 1979 and reaches its turbulent conclusion around Hallowe'en, 2015. Because every nine years, on the last Saturday of October, a guest is summond to Slade House. But why has that person been chosen, by whom and for what purpose? The answers lie waiting in the long attic at the top of the stairs..." Find out more about the author and read the first chapter by visiting the Simon Mayo Book Club website - click here to go straight there.
3. Coffin Road by Peter May
"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. A detective crosses rough Atlantic seas to a remote rock twenty miles west of the Outer Hebrides of Scotland. With a sense of foreboding he steps ashore where three lighthouse keepers disappeared more than a century before - a mystery that remains unsolved. But now there is a new mystery - a man found bludgeoned to death on that same rock, and DS George Gunn must find out who did it, and why. A teenage girl lies in her Edinburgh bedroom, desperate to learn the truth about her father's death. Two years after the discovery of the pioneering scientists suicide note, Karen Fleming still cannot accept that he would wilfully abandon her. And the more she discovers about the nature of his research, the more she suspects that others were behind his disappearance." Find out more here.
Top sleep tip for story lovers: Remember that sensing light levels is the way our body knows it's time to go to sleep. Blue light emitted from kindles and the like act like a wake up call - so they are not ideal for helping you sleep. A directional bedside light and a paperback might be a better bet. If you struggle to drift off but don't want to miss out on your bedtime story - try headphones (so as not to disturb your beloved) and an audio book. Just switch out the light, snuggle up warm and press play.
PS> Want to buy that cushion? Find it at etsy.com/uk