Relax with one of these excellent reads

From tales of pioneering mountaineers to a history of the world in 500 walks, our resident bookwork, Dan Lewis, rounds up the best reads this June.

1) 60 Degrees North by Malachy Tallack

60 Degrees North

60 Degrees North is as much an exploration of wild expanses as it is a bereaved son's search for catharsis. Exploring the wildernesses of the northern latitude parallel, Tallack experiences unforgiving landscapes and beautiful places that are peppered with strong communities and a sense of relentless isolation.

The very best travel and nature writing often has a deeply personal story at its heart and Tallack shares his journey to understand his father, himself and his home of Shetland is shared in deeply honest and intimate detail. A book with real strength and sincerity.

Out 13 June, £7.99

2) Climbing Days by Dan Richards

Climbing Days

Dan Richards sets out to celebrate the remarkable life of his great-great aunt, the mountaineer Dorothy Pilley. Pilley was one of the most pioneering mountaineers of her day, yet for some reason the story of this female adventurer has been lost over time.

However, following a rediscovered copy of her memoir, also called Climbing Days, Richards is able to follow in her footsteps across Europe’s mountains, with the book as his guide. In doing so, this proud great-great nephew places Dorothy where she belongs, in the vanguard of 20th-century trailblazers.

Out 16 June, £16.99

3) White Sands by Geoff Dyer

White Sands

Geoff Dyer, the man who brought us the superlative Yoga for People Who Can’t Be Bothered, returns to travel writing, and about time too. Expect customary wit and insight as Dyer explores the human need to travel through ten journeys that take in Mexican deserts, Beijing’s Forbidden City, Gauguin’s ghost and everything in between.

Out 30 June, £16.99





4) The Shark and the Albatross by John Aitchison

The Shark and the Albatross

If the name John Aitchison isn’t immediately familiar, his work as a leading wildlife filmmaker will be. Aitchison was behind the camera for landmark series such as Frozen Planet, Life, Yellowstone and The Hunt.

His new book gives us an insight into just what it takes to tell nature’s secret stories on film. This is no technical manual though, rather the reminiscences of a truly passionate and knowledgeable naturalist who makes the planet personal, relatable and magical. There’s as much joy in these pages as there are in his films - and that’s no small feat.

Out 2 June, £8.99


5) Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee

Go Set a Watchman

Go Set a Watchman
was destined to be a controversial. The long-lost sequel to To Kill a Mockingbird divided opinion from readers when it was published last year as readers were forced to come to terms with the evolution of much-loved characters such as Scout and Atticus Finch.

Debate has only intensified since Harper Lee’s death a few months ago and the book’s paperback release gives anyone who has yet to read it the chance to see what all the fuss is about. GCSE English will never be the same again.

Out 16 June, £7.99

6) Crisis by Frank Gardner


The BBC’s Security Correspondent, Frank Gardner, has decided to draw on his considerable personal experience and insider knowledge to create a visceral and intelligent page-turner.

Luke Carlton, the hero of Crisis, gives Lee Child’s Jack Reacher a run for his money in his debut outing as a commando-turned-MI6-agent in a race against time to save London from an unimaginably awful terror attack. This perfectly paced thriller is worthy of space in your suitcase this summer.

Out 2 June, £12.99

A Walk in the Park by Travis Elborough

A Walk in the Park

Travis Elborough is a fact magpie. His books (The Bus We Loved, The Long-Player, A London Year) display the telltale signs of an obsession to collect every scrap of interesting, illuminating and just downright odd material that catches his eye.

Elborough’s quietly effervescent style manages to transform the reader from being someone with a passing interest in whatever topic he happens to be writing about into a fully-fledged Routemaster/LP/London loon.

This time around he waxes lyrical about public parks, taking the reader through their history, and making an impassioned case for their place in human culture.

Out 2 June, £18.99

The Trains Now Departed by Michael Williams

The Trains Now Departed

It seems our love affair with rail travel is far from over - or the “Golden Age” at least, rather than the over-priced, standing-room only commuter hell many of us experience daily.

Michael Williams collects tales of Britain’s “lost trains” in this wonderfully evocative book. You cannot fail to be swept up in the romance of it all as the men and women who created, operated and travelled on these since departed trains are brought back to life by Williams’ magical prose.

Out 16 June, £8.99


9) A History of the World in 500 Walks by Sarah Baxter

A History of the World in 500 Walks

Perfect for Father’s Day on 19 June, Sarah Baxter has put together a beautiful book that demands to be sipped slowly, like a well-aged whisky. This selection of 500 fascinating walks leads you step by step through history - from the ancient world to the present day.

It hits exactly the right balance of fact and practical details and is filled with beautiful illustrations that will make even the most dedicated armchair traveller want to get up and take a walk themselves.

Out 15 June, £20

10) The Muse by Jessie Burton

The Muse

For many of you, there’s no need for me to recommend this book at all. You’ll read “From the author of The Miniaturist” and be off like a shot to your local book emporium.

Still, I’m going to say it: READ THIS BOOK. Jessie Burton turns in another unforgettable tale packed with character, intrigue and suspense, split between 1930s Spain and 1960s London. It’s an accomplished and highly enjoyable novel that proves Burton is no one-hit-wonder.

Out 30 June, £12.99




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