Reading in the Time of Covid: the lifeline offered by #reading #books – List 1

Books, Books, Books

I don’t know about you, but one of the main things that’s getting me through this time of social isolation is reading. Reading has always been one of my main leisure activities, but now it’s become more of a sanity saver, escape pod, and huge source of comfort.

Reads to escape into

So, as I said in a previous post, I’m suspending my Book of the Month post for the foreseeable, and instead I’m aiming to do an occasional round-up of books I’ve recently read and enjoyed, and that I think you might enjoy too. As you’ll see my main go-to genre remains contemporary romance – which with its themes of love, hope and happy-ever-after provides just what I need at the moment .

Recommendations – not reviews

As I want to include several books per post, the round-up won’t include reviews, but if a book’s included it will be because I consider it to be a good read and one that provides some much-needed escapism.

Six Good Ones

Contemporary Romance:

If I Never Met You by Mhairi McFarlane

The New Guy by Kathryn Freeman

The Life She Wants by Maggie Christensen

My One True North by Milly Johnson

Romantic Suspense:

Cold & Deadly by Toni Anderson


Hidden by Linda Gillard

Previously read and recommended authors

Other authors who I’ve not read so recently, but who are definitely worth checking out include:

for contemporary romance – Heidi Swain, Jo Lambert, Marie Laval, Kate Field, Kate Blackadder Emma Davies, Miranda Dickinson

for historical romance – Anne Stenhouse

for alternative history/romance/suspense – Alison Morton

for contemporary/ crime thriller/romance – JJ Marsh


All the books by the above authors are available as paperbacks and/or ebooks and can be purchased from online stores and from bookshops offering online/phone ordering and postal delivery.

Over to you

Are you finding some solace in reading at the moment? If so what book(s) would you recommend? What is your go-to genre and has it changed during this challenging time? Are you looking for comfort, escapism, thrills or challenges in the books you’re reading? Maybe you’re more into non-fiction? Do share your thoughts below.

18 thoughts on “Reading in the Time of Covid: the lifeline offered by #reading #books – List 1

  1. A great list, Anne. I´m taking this time to read some classics as well as contemporary novels. Just finished The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafron and am currently reading How Green Was My Valley by Richard Llewellyn. Another good book I recently read is a YA Fantasy, The Curse of Time by MJ Mallon. So a good variety. Keep calm and read on!! Take care and stay safe. xo

    • Yes, I’m thinking of re-reading a couple of classics. I loved both the ones you mention. And good for you going for a healthy variety 🙂 Stay well xx

  2. Hi Anne, I’m escaping into Georgette Heyer and re-reading through my extensive collection. DH is doing the same with both PG Wodehouse and Greek texts (!). I’ve also been catching up on unread magazines and the book group titles. Last one was by Andrew Miller and called Now We Shall Be Entirely Free and the upcoming one is The Lost Children Archive by Valerie Luisella. Anne

  3. Just about to start reading Heidi Swain’s new book. It will be a virtual holiday to a seaside town. And yes, I know I live by the sea but a virtual trip away will be fun anyway 😊

  4. Thanks for mentioning HIDDEN, Anne. Audible is helping me cope and le Carre and Graham Greene are engrossing. Like so many others, I’ve returned to Heyer favourites. When I despaired of finding anything that I would hold my attention, I tried Hilary Mantel’s memoir, GIVING UP THE GHOST and that did the trick. Highly recommended.

    • Hi Linda, I recently began subscription to Audible and really must start listening to some books on there. I’ve noted your Hilary Mantel recommendation. Thanks for visiting and commenting. 🙂

  5. I might try JJ Marsh. I like crime thrillers. Most of my reading these days is for comfort.
    Ellis Peters 12 century monk, Cadfael is a series that’s still enjoyable and informative.

  6. You know how it is, Anne. If you can’t have it, you want it even more. Can’t seem to get JJ Marsh on Apple and I don’t have a kindle. Oh, woe is me.

    • Oh, that’s a shame, Mary. One way round it might be to download the Kindle app onto your device and then you can order and read it that way. Would that work for you?

    • Mary, PS to my previous reply – I see the first 2 books in JJ Marsh’s excellent Beatrice Stubbs series are available as audio books and available from Apple.

      • Thanks for the suggestion, Anne, will do. In the meantime, have come across JJ Marsh’s blog. Interesting articles and a free stand alone Beatrice Stubbs prequel. 👍

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