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We love these books!
Southwark library staff reveal some of their favourite reads
At Southwark libraries we are passionate about books and want to share some of our favourites with you. When you visit Southwark libraries you'll find a We love these books! collection which features a diverse range of superb reads recommended by library staff.
The collection is continually updated and to date over 300 titles have been recommended by library staff. The collections can be found at:
- Blue Anchor Library
- Camberwell Library
- Canada Water Library
- Dulwich Library
- John Harvard Library
- Peckham Library
You can also pick up We love these books! booklets at any of these libraries, which feature a full list and reviews of the current collection. Here are just a few highlights:
by Brett Easton Ellis
A quasi-autobiographical gothic story sees Ellis haunted by his own creations, his father and himself. This mock memoir exposes the authors egotism and self-absorption while exploring links in parent-child relationships - all set against a background of horror, suburbia and the boring onset of middle age for a narcissist. This engaging, quirky story with surreal, dark humour running throughout, makes for an unputdownable, highly inventive read.
Recommended by Nuala at Canada Water Library
Check availability of Lunar Park at your local library
by Taichi Yamada
An atmospheric, haunting story of love and loss. Lonely and divorced TV script writer Harada visits the run-down Tokyo district of his childhood where he lived with his parents before their premature deaths. Harada meets a couple who look exactly like his dead parents and begins to pay them regular visits. Starting to lose his grip on reality, a love affair with a neighbour leads to an unexpected and shocking conclusion. This is a short and beautifully written “ghost story” that you will find difficult to put down and even harder to forget.
Recommended by Brian at Library Support Services
Check availability of Strangers at your local library
The uninvited guests
by Sadie Jones
The setting of the novel is a disorganised Edwardian upper middle class household, with a collection of mainly adolescent children gathered for a birthday party. There is a light witty touch to the characterisation, with a grumpy teenager at odds with his - actually rather sweet - stepfather and a benignly overlooked youngest child. Suddenly a group of mysterious strangers arrives at the door, the victims of a train crash, seeking shelter. This introduces a touch of magical realism with a supernatural element. The rest of the story takes place over one bizarre night's events. The book becomes a psychological thriller with a dream-like element - reminding me of A Midsummer Nights Dream - a mad scary caper but with a heartwarming resolution to many plot threads at the end. A delightful page-turner, with a light touch, and embracing many themes such as family conflict and class differences.
Recommended by Sheila at Blue Anchor Library
Check availability of The Uninvited Guests at your local library
by C S Forester
Mr Marble, a suburban bank clerk trapped in a humdrum job and marriage, is in dire financial straits. When a long lost wealthy relative suddenly arrives from Australia, he believes it’s the answer to his prayers. But is it? This is the gripping story of a crime driven by temptation – and desperation – that has consequences the culprit could never have foreseen. The fast paced plot will keep you in suspense until the final unexpected twist in the tale. Superbly written, this fascinating study of guilt and retribution is one of the most intriguing crime novels I’ve read.
Recommended by Alice at Canada Water Library
Check availability of Payment deferred at your local library
by Michel Houllebecq
Imagine The Office written by a drunken French existentialist and you will come somewhere close to capturing the feel of this blisteringly terrifying novel. Whatever details in excruciating detail the life of a bored chain smoking computer programmer as he winds his way through the French provinces teaching civil servants how to use a new software package. His only companion is his sexually frustrated and hideously ugly colleague Raphael Tisserand. This is a novel of failure, of disgust and of longing. It is a novel about how we live now and and it is a novel which left me utterly shell-shocked.
Recommended by Mark at John Harvard Library
Check availability of Whatever at your local library
Please follow the links for the complete booklists by year: