Inside the Book People

Make a start on your Christmas shopping with the Book People

You might think that it’s a little early to make a start on your Christmas shopping just yet – amazingly, it’s still nice and sunny outside – but it pays to be prepared. Here at the Book People, we make it our mission to make your book shopping as stress-free as possible. That’s why we’ve already assembled a huge heap of great bargains in our dedicated Christmas Shop. So why wait around? Now could be the perfect time to pick up some top books and make a start on your festive shopping.

Christmas shopping books

To make things even easier for you, we’ve hand-picked several selections of books so you can find what you’re looking for with minimal hassle. Whether you’re looking for children’s books, food and drink books or stocking fillers, here at the Book People we’ve got the lot. We’ve even got a whole host of books priced at under £10 and books costing less than just £5 – so if it’s a bargain you’re after, you can fill your boots courtesy of the Book People.

In addition, we’ve got a selection of gift books for you to choose from. Our selection of gift books includes the quirky, the informative and the entertaining, from Peter Barton’s exhaustive Battlefields of the First World War – priced at only £15 – to 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die by Robert Dimery, available for just £9.99 from the Book People.

There’s lots on offer and some huge savings to be had, with many of our books priced much lower than the recommended retail price. Just take a look at our dedicated Christmas Shop to find out what’s in store at the Book People.

The Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2014 Shortlist announced – Buy all six books for just £30!

With previous winners including The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton, Life of Pi by Yann Martel and the first two books in Hilary Mantel’s Thomas Cromwell trilogy – Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies – the Man Booker Prize for Fiction is regarded as one of the world’s most important literary awards and can change an author’s life. The longlist for the Man Booker Prize 2014 was announced back in July and today the six books that make up the shortlist for this year’s award have been announced – and you can buy them all for just £30 from the Book People!

A diverse collection of unforgettable and quite brilliant novels, by buying and reading through this collection you’ll have the chance to decide on your own favourite and see if you agree with the Man Booker judges (Jonathan Bate, Sarah Churchwell, Dr. Alastair Niven, Dr. Daniel Glaser and Erica Wagner) when they announce the official winner on Tuesday 14 October.

Awarded to the best original novel written in the English language and published in the UK, the winner of the Booker Prize receives £50,000 and all the shortlisted authors will also receive a cheque for £2,500 and a designer-bound copy of their book. The shortlisted authors will also see worldwide spikes in their book sales too – so what better way to mark today’s announcement than by buying our great-value collection, which includes all six shortlisted titles in their hardback format?


Man Booker Prize shortlist


The Man Booker Prize 2014 shortlist:

  • Joshua FerrisTo Rise Again at a Decent Hour
  • Ali SmithHow to Be Both
  • Karen Joy FowlerWe Are All Completely Beside Ourselves
  • Richard FlanaganNarrow Road to the Deep North
  • Howard JacobsonJ
  • Neel MukherjeeThe Lives of Others


To Rise Again at a Decent Hour finds curmudgeonly dentist Paul O’Rourke running a thriving practice in New York, but his life feels empty. What more could he need? He sets up a Facebook page and Twitter account and decides to discover the meaning of life – but he finds someone has already set these up in his name – and this ‘Paul’ seems to be a better man than him… How to Be Both is about two tales of love from two different centuries – a Renaissance artist from the 1460s and a child of a child of the 1960s – which somehow become entangled into a singular yarn which proves that all life’s givens get a second chance. We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves has already won the Faulkner Award for Fiction and is a funny, clever and intimate book about Rosemary, a college girl who decides not to tell anyone a thing about her family…

The Narrow Road to the Deep North transports readers back to the horror and despair of a Japanese POW camp on the Burma Death Railway… Not only is surgeon Dorrigo Evans struggling to stave off the cholera, starvation and beatings that are commonplace in the men under his command, but he’s also having personal struggles as he tries to deal with the affair he had with his uncle’s young wife… Set in Calcutta in 1967, The Lives of Others finds Supratik becoming dangerously involved in extremist political activism which leads to the fall of the family business. As everything begins to crumble, poisonous rivalries and destructive secrets begin to engulf the society – and class and generation gaps begin to widen. Shrouded in mystery, We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves follows the life of college girl Rosemary, who has decided not to tell anyone a thing about her family… all anyone knows is that she’s an only child but now she’s set to reveal all!

You can buy the Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2014 Shortlist from the Book People for just £30.

Fun ideas for celebrating Roald Dahl Day

Hoorah! Roald Dahl Day is nearly here!

A fantabulous, splendiferous author of children’s stories, Roald Dahl has captured the imagination of millions of children world wide, spanning multiple generations of readers. On 13 September (Roald Dahl’s birthday), we celebrate his legacy: the works of this world-famous children’s author and the great man himself.

Roald Dahl Day


If you have little ones who are reading Roald Dahl books now (or if you have a soft spot for the world’s greatest storyteller), you may want to find out what things there are to do to celebrate Roald Dahl Day? Well, we have some phizz-whizzing ideas to get you started…

1. Read a book by Roald Dahl… of course!

This suggestion kind of goes without saying. With 15 books to his name that are recognised as children’s classics (he has far more, of course), pick up yourself one of Roald Dahl’s books and read it to yourself or your little ones. With famous tales including Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, George’s Marvellous Medicine, Matilda and Fantastic Mr. Fox – along with the more grown-up rhymes for older children, stories and autobiographical writings – there is something in Roald Dahl’s jumpsquiffling gloriumptious collection of books for everyone.

Matilda | Roald Dahl | The Book People

2. Turn yourself (or your kiddle) into an Oompa-Loompa

A little orange face paint; a nice green wig – voila! You could even make some Willy Wonka-inspired chocolate treats for yourselves. Popping candy is a great addition to your simple, homemade rice crispy cakes to give them a great big dose of the Wonka-factor! Also, for making tasty treats it is important to make sure they have tremendous crodscollop - an absolutely great flavour! You can even visit the Puffin Books YouTube channel, where you’ll find a smorgasbord of Wonka-inspired treats from some of the nation’s top chefs.

Oompa-Loompa | Roald Dahl | The Book People

3. Pay a visit to the Roald Dahl Museum

What better way to celebrate the books of Roald Dahl than to visit the award-winning Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre in Great Missenden, Buckinghamshire? Create your own Wonka Bar, discover jumpsquiffling facts about your favourite Roald Dahl characters, take a guided tour of the village with your very own Oompa-Loompa or Mr. Willy Wonka himself and learn all about Gobblefunk: Roald Dahl’s own language (which you may have noticed we have tried to embrace within this post). Roald Dahl day is the perfect time to learn all there is to know about Roald Dahl.

Roald Dahl Museum | The Book People

4. Vote for your Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Cover on Facebook

Celebrating 50 years since its first publication, Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory has seen many different covers in its time, including the best-loved covers of his principal illustrator Sir Quentin Blake. On the Roald Dahl Facebook page this week, you can vote for the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory edition that you own for your chance to win a copy of the classic children’s book signed by Quentin Blake and Joseph Schindelman: the first person to illustrate Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. You can cast your vote here: *Winners will be chosen on Roald Dahl Day and posted by the official Roald Dahl Facebook page.

*The Book People is in no way affiliated with this competition and its associated prizes.

Roald Dahl Facebook | The Book People

5. Catch a West End show

Demand is high for tickets, but if you book in enough time you’ll be able to engross yourself in the theatrical majesty of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory or Matilda: The Musical in London’s West End. Both absolutely delightful, and the later produced by the Royal Shakespeare Company with music from the wonderful Tim Minchin, either would prove to be a real treat for yourself and the kiddies on Roald Dahl Day.

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory | London West End

6. Watch a Roald Dahl-inspired film

There are lots of really good films inspired by Roald Dahl books and if you haven’t seen any of them before we’d certainly recommend it – even if the books are better. Our personal favourite would have to be Matilda, which is directed by and stars Danny DeVito as Matilda’s less-than-lovely father Mr. Wormwood. There are also the two – yes, TWO – Charlie and the Chocolate Factory films that you can enjoy (the second of which is directed by Tim Burton and stars Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka), along with The Witches, an animated version of The BFG, James and the Giant Peach and the Wes Anderson-directed Fantastic Mr. Fox (which stars George Clooney, Meryl Streep, Bill Murray, Willem Dafoe and Owen Wilson). Hours and hours of Roald Dahl Day entertainment!

Matilda | Mara Wilson, Danny DeVito

Hopefully this will provide you with some ideas for how to celebrate Roald Dahl Day. Remember to tag @thebookpeople with any photos showing you and your children enjoying the day on Twitter or Instagram – or post them along with any questions or ideas for other parents to our Facebook page.

Revision books, core texts and study guides – find the best Back to School books at the Book People!

As we approach September and the summer holidays draw to a close, it can only mean one thing – children all over the country are preparing to go back to school. As they begin to prepare for another term full of learning, they may be starting a new school or moving up to another Key Stage, they’re sure to need plenty of books to help them along their way. Whether you’re looking for core texts, phonics books or study guides to help prepare for GCSE or A-Level exams, visit the Book People’s #BacktoSchool Shop. We’ve got all the classroom essentials covered.

Back to School revision books

Starting from just £2.99, we have books to help children throughout their whole school journey, from early years books that will reassure them as they start this major life event through to books to help them get their heads around the concepts they will have to learn all about – and excel in – during Key Stage 1, Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 3. In addition to this, we know that exam time can be one of the most troubling periods of any teenager’s (or young adult) life, so we have plenty of expert revision guides, study guides and exam practice books to help them make the most of any exams they are participating in. If you’re feeling a little baffled by what each Key Stage represents and which book would be best suited to a child you know, take a look at our guide ‘The key books for each Key Stage. Here, we have broken each Key Stage down into manageable chunks that will show not only what books every age range needs, but the kind of topics and subjects they will be learning about during this time.

To make shopping for your child’s school books even easier, we also give you the chance to shop by subject – from the core subjects of Maths, Science, English, Geography to the popular choices of Geography, History and foreign languages, as well as other subjects that GCSE and A Level students will choose as options.

The Book People’s Back to School Shop – covering the classroom essentials when it comes to books.

Book review videos – our favourite BookTubers

Keen readers all over the world love to tell us all about their favourite books on YouTube – and we are proud to support many of these BookTubers as they spread the joy of reading and share their views on everything from classic novels to the latest bestsellers. With the Book People’s YouTube channel going from strength to strength (subscribe to our channel for news, views and more here), we thought we’d focus on some of the best BookTubers to be found on YouTube.

Review site badge

If you run your own vlog, or have any suggestions for who we should check out, please feel free to tweet us, send us a message on Facebook or YouTube, comment on this blog or email

Here are our top 10 BookTube channels on YouTube:

Sophie’s BookTube

Reading anything – and everything – from young adult fiction to crime thrillers and celebrity cookbooks, Sophie is a new, charismatic book vlogger who is already admired for her frank and straight-talking approach to book reviews. Fair, insightful and always capable of provoking great discussion around books old and new, Sophie is a BookTuber whose opinion can always be trusted. Usually uploading two or three videos a week, Sophie’s BookTube channel on the Book People’s YouTube is a must for any reader!

Megan Olivier

A real star within the BookTube community, Megan was kind enough to film an exclusive unboxing books video for the Book People and if you watch it, you’re sure to find her enthusiasm for books infectious. With regular unboxing videos alongside tales of book hauls and much more, Megan is a BookTuber who will never fail to make you laugh!

Sarah Churchill

With weekly uploads and a passion for books that knows no bounds, Sarah Churchill is a very likeable girl from Wales with a lot of talent. Dipping into all the elements of the BookTube community, including bookshelf tours, readathons and the BookTubeathon, Sarah really knows her stuff. A huge fan of young adult books, she’s helpful, honest and informative. When it comes to YA fiction, you’ll want to check out her videos – she’s a big fan of graphic novels too!

Books and Quills

With over 105,000 subscribers to her YouTube channel, Sanne is a certified juggernaut in the BookTube community – and with good reason. A Dutch girl who moved to London and works for Hot Key Books, Sanne’s book review videos are fresh, funny and enlightening. She always manages to put her own twist on the literature topics she covers in her videos and communicate her thoughts in new and exciting ways. At the Book People, we particularly love her Read It First videos, which review books before their film adaptations are released.

Jean Bookishthoughts

Describing herself as a ‘part-time YouTuber’ and ‘Imaginary Dragon’, book lover Jean Menzies’ YouTube videos are fantastically varied as she delves into all kinds of fiction genres. Her great reviews of chick-lit, romance, young adult books and fantasy are testament to her passion for reading and her reviews will certainly help you make the right choice when deciding on which new book to buy next. She’s very active on Twitter ( too!


A very creative individual and a Photography student, Amy’s passion for books and reading comes through in every YouTube book review that she posts. She leads great discussion and you can trust her to provide informed recommendations for books to read.


One of the few BookTube reviewers that specialises in adult literature, 1Book1review posts a new video book review every Friday. An active member of the BookTube community, she is known for taking part in a variety of different book tags. She is also learning to play the ukulele.


Hosting a rapidly growing YouTube channel, Charlotte recently ran an under-hyped books readathon, which encouraged BookTubers to read books that weren’t widely talked about. This was – naturally – a huge success and from this she has gained a great reputation within the BookTube community. One to watch!


Incredibly mature beyond her years, Ellen posts highly in-depth book reviews, some on books that tackle very serious themes. Look out for her Bookshelf Tour video, which is one of the best of its kind on YouTube.


The only male featured on our list of best YouTube book reviewers, jessethereader is a fantastically bright and vivacious character – who reads a lot! A big fan of dystopian YA fiction, Jesse’s book vlog oozes humour and light-heartedness. Great to watch

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