10 Books to Escape the World with Right Now
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10 Books to Escape the World with Right Now

From Eat, Pray, Love to Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

Lose yourself in these enthralling and escapist reads; we guarantee you won’t be able to put these page-turners down.

13 Books Everyone Should Read at Least Once

10 Books to Escape the World with Right Now


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Normal People

Normal People by Sally Rooney

Vogue recently reported that model Kaia Gerber had launched her own book club on Instagram – starting with Sally Rooney’s Normal People. The hit novel – now a sensational BBC series available to watch on iPlayer – became an instant best-seller, winning Best Novel at the 2018 Costa Book Awards and an enviable place on The Guardians list of the 100 best books of the 21st century. A millennial love story revolving two compelling and complex characters, we guarantee you won’t want to put this one down.

Favourite quote: ‘Life offers up these moments of joy despite everything.’

Faber, £6.99, waterstones.com

Little Women

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

A stirring tale of four sisters, Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women never fails to draw us in. And since its recent film adaptation featuring the likes of Emma Watson and Meryl Streep, now’s the time to fall in love with the uplifting novel all over again.

Favourite quote: ‘When you feel discontented, think over your blessings, and be grateful.’

Penguin, £6.99, waterstones.com

Image courtesy of Penguin Classics

Little Fires Everywhere

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

Soon to be a TV series starring Reese Witherspoon, Celeste Ng’s Little Fires Everywhere is another compelling page-turner. Based in Ng’s very own home town in Ohio, the novel follows two disparate and complex families, and the chain of tumultuous events which occur when their children’s lives intertwine.

Favourite quote: ‘Sometimes you need to scorch everything to the ground, and start over. After the burning the soil is richer, and new things can grow. People are like that, too. They start over. They find a way.’

Penguin, £8.99, waterstones.com

Eat Pray Love

Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert

As escapist reads go, this inspiring memoir is a classic. ‘One Woman’s Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia’, Eat, Pray, Love – also a feature film starring Julia Roberts – is the ultimate escapist novel. Follow Elizabeth Gilbert on her sensational journey of self-discovery as she eats her way through Italy, discovers spiritual peace in India and finally, finds love in Bali.

Favourite quote: ‘You are, after all, what you think. Your emotions are the slaves to your thoughts, and you are the slave to your emotions.’

Bloomsbury, £8.99, waterstones.com


Emma by Jane Austen

The 19th Century inspiration for Clueless, Jane Austen’s beloved Emma follows a spirited and somewhat spoiled Miss Emma Woodhouse and the romantic entanglements which prevail when she seeks to play matchmaker. A timeless romantic comedy cherished by generation after generation.

Favourite quote: ‘Were I to fall in love, indeed, it would be a different thing; but I have never been in love; it is not my way, or my nature; and I do not think I ever shall.’

Penguin, £4.99, waterstones.com

Image courtesy of Penguin Classics


Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur

Perhaps more timely than ever, Rupi Kaur’s Milk and Honey revolves the concept of survival. The beautiful book of poetry from the then 25-year-old sold over an impressive 2.5 million times, ascertaining the literary world’s long-lost love of poetry. Interchanging between light and dark themes, the collection is both discomforting and uplifting; a wonderful and captivating read to get lost in.

Favourite quote: ‘we are all born/ so beautiful/ the greatest tragedy is/ being convinced we are not’

Simon & Schuster, £9.99, waterstones.com


Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

A novel which needs no introduction, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland still rouses the imagination 155 years after publication. The fantastical tale comprising an anthropomorphic white rabbit, cheshire cat and Queen of Hearts has inspired feature films, fashion, art and even exhibitions – Alice: Curiouser and Curiouser is set to open at the V&A this year.

Favourite quote: ‘Imagination is the only weapon in the war against reality.’

Penguin, £5.99, waterstones.com

Image courtesy of Penguin Classics

St. Tropez Soleil

St Tropez Soleil by Simon Liberati

‘You were never told that Saint-Tropez was paradise?’ – Karl Lagerfeld.

Escapist reads don’t get much better than this. Take flight to the glamorous French Riviera with this beautiful coffee table book by award-winning French writer Simon Liberati, featuring stunning imagery and fascinating tales of St Tropez past and present.

Assouline, £70, assouline.com

Mrs Dalloway

Mrs Dalloway by Virginia Woolf

There’s so much to love about this 20th Century novel, from Woolf’s gritty exploration of post-war England to her exposition of high society and the all-but-ordinary every-day. Author Michael Cunningham branded it ‘one of the most moving, revolutionary artworks of the twentieth century’.

Favourite quote: ‘It might be possible that the world itself is without meaning.’

Penguin, £7.99, waterstones.com

How to Be Parisian

How to be Parisian Wherever You Are by Anne Berest, Caroline De Maigret, Audrey Diwan and Sophie Mas

Ever wondered how Parisian women appear to style and abide so effortlessly?  How to be Parisian has all the answers. From first dates to going to the gym, approaching art, politics and where to associate in Paris, get lost in the ultimate guide to living as the Parisians do.

Favourite quote: ‘She drinks vodka in the evening and green tea in the morning.’

Penguin, £16.99, waterstones.com

Featured image: GettyImages

MORE ESCAPIST READS: 5 Books to Make You Feel like You’re on a Beach / Must-Have Fashion Coffee-Table Books