Top 10 Best Summer Holiday Books for Adults

Whether you're planning a peaceful staycation, an exciting trip abroad or a visit to the seaside, we're sure you'll find the perfect book for your summer holiday in the list below. Featuring gripping thrillers, poignant romances, fun non-fiction and more, see below for the best summer holiday books for adults.

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1. The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency

Alexander McCall Smith

If you've got a problem and no-one else can help you, pay a visit to Precious Ramotswe, Botswana's only - and finest - female private detective. With warmth, wit and sharp intuition on her side, she's sure to solve the most mysterious cases - including wayward daughters, missing husbands, philandering partners and curious conmen. Discover the colourful Botswanan culture whilst enjoying the heart-warming and gripping story of Precious Ramotswe.

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2. Reading Allowed

Chris Paling

Chris Paling works in a small-town library in southern England. In this book, he introduces some of the quirky characters who regularly use this invaluable service. They include street-sleepers Brewer, Wolf and Spencer; the ever-cheerful Trish, who's always dressed in pink; and Sons of Anarchy Alan, a young man with Down's Syndrome who loves the popular American drama. Some of their stories are tragic, others amusing, and others genuinely bizarre. This poignant and humorous book celebrates libraries and their important role as one of the few places people from all backgrounds can visit to interact and explore the world of books.

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3. Art Therapy: An Anti-Stress Colouring Book

Richard Merritt

Sit back, put your feet up and unwind with this therapeutic adult colouring book. Bursting with doodling, colouring and drawing fun, you can enjoy all kinds of activities, including creating free-flowing lines and swirls and shading in beautiful patterns. Every illustration in this stunning book has been carefully crafted so that even beginners can enjoy creating a wonderful work of art. There are no rules in this art book, making for a truly imaginative, unique and creative experience, perfect for stress relief.

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4. Swing Time

Zadie Smith

This enthralling novel travels from North West London to West Africa and features two girls who dream of being dancers, but only one has the talent. The other has ideas about rhythm, time, black bodies and black music. The close and complicated friendship between the girls ends in their early 20s, but is never forgotten.

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5. The Perplexing Theft of the Jewel in the Crown

Vaseem Khan

For centuries, the Koh-i-Noor diamond has caused nothing but bloodshed. Now, it's part of the British Crown Jewels. Security is of utmost importance when they go on display in Mumbai, but when Inspector Chopra visits the exhibition, the diamond is stolen from under his very nose in a seemingly impossible act of theft. Will he - and his elephant - be able to find the criminal? This quirky, charming and enthralling book will delight fans of cosy crime.

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6. Cathy Bramley Collection

Cathy Bramley

For something a bit more cheerful, this is the perfect heart-warming collection. It features 3 feel-good reads: Appleby Farm, which follows Freya Moorcroft as she tries to find love and friendship between her farming work; Ivy Lane, in which Tilly Parker looks for a fresh start, fresh air and a fresh attitude; and Conditional Love, in which some serious surprises are in store for Sophie Stone when a mysterious benefactor leaves her an inheritance. There's just one catch: she must meet the father she's never even seen...

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7. The Constant Princess

Philippa Gregory

This sumptuous and engrossing novel follows Katherine of Aragon, the first wife of Henry VIII. Discover the story of the Spanish Infanta, born to ruthless warrior rulers and betrothed to Arthur, Prince of Wales, at the age of four. Find out how she came to be Henry VIII's queen through turbulent events, and how she rose above the dangerous politics of the English court to become a powerful ruler, despite giving birth to only one surviving child: Mary. But Henry VIII is determined to have a son, and as Katherine grows older, he will go to unprecedented lengths to get what he wants...

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8. The Sunshine Diet

Shelina Permalloo

Perfect for summer, MasterChef champion Shelina Permalloo offers an assortment of scrumptious, satisfying yet healthy recipes in this beautiful cookbook. Shelina's nutritious recipes, inspired by her exotic holidays and Mauritian heritage, feature easy-to-follow instructions and a calorie, sugar and fat count for each portion. Highlights include Steamed Hake with Wasabi, Soy and Ginger, Baked Moroccan Eggs, Make-ahead Banana Bread and an Orange Blossom and Rose Creme Brulee - delicious!

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9. Millie Marotta's Wild Savannah

Millie Marotta

This beautiful colouring book is inspired by the swaying grasslands of Africa, Asia and Australia. Sit back and relax as you colour in pictures of crocodiles, kangaroos, ostriches, gazelles and so much more, as well as a number of exotic environments, and be whisked away to exciting locations.

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10. Me Before You

Jojo Moyes

Lou Clark leads a modest but comfortable life, working at the delightful Buttered Bun teashop, trying to find time to see her fitness-mad boyfriend, Patrick. But everything changes when the teashop closes down. Lou finds a new job supporting a quadriplegic man named Will, whom she initially finds utterly infuriating, his moods erratic, his comments cutting. But then she learns his shocking secret - and it seems it's up to her to save his life... This touching story is amusing, striking and poignant.

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  • AABFV
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    Splendid and sumptuous historical novel from this internationally bestselling author, telling of the early life of Katherine of Aragon. We think of her as the barren wife of a notorious king; but behind this legacy lies a fascinating story. Katherine of Aragon is born Catalina, the Spanish Infanta, to parents who are both rulers and warriors. Aged four, she is betrothed to Arthur, Prince of Wales, and is raised to be Queen of England. She is never in doubt that it is her destiny to rule that far-off, wet, cold land. Her faith is tested when her prospective father-in-law greets her arrival in her new country with a great insult; Arthur seems little better than a boy; the food is strange and the customs coarse. Slowly she adapts to the first Tudor court, and life as Arthur's wife grows ever more bearable. But when the studious young man dies, she is left to make her own future: how can she now be queen, and found a dynasty? Only by marrying Arthur's young brother, the sunny but spoilt Henry. His father and grandmother are against it; her powerful parents prove little use. Yet Katherine is her mother's daughter and her fighting spirit is strong. She will do anything to achieve her aim; even if it means telling the greatest lie, and holding to it. Philippa Gregory proves yet again that behind the apparently familiar face of history lies an astonishing story: of women warriors influencing the future of Europe, of revered heroes making deep mistakes, and of an untold love story which changes the fate of a nation.
  • AAFQZ
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    Wayward daughters. Missing Husbands. Philandering partners. Curious conmen. If you've got a problem, and no one else can help you, then pay a visit to Precious Ramotswe, Botswana's only - and finest - female private detective. Her methods may not be conventional, and her manner not exactly Miss Marple, but she's got warmth, wit and canny intuition on her side, not to mention Mr J. L. B. Matekoni, the charming proprietor of Tlokweng Road Speedy Motors. And Precious is going to need them all as she sets out on the trail of a missing child, a case that tumbles our heroine into a hotbed of strange situations and more than a little danger ...Delightfully different, THE NO.1 LADIES' DETECTIVE AGENCY offers a captivating glimpse of an unusual world.
  • Art Therapy: An Anti-stress Colouring Book - Paperback - 9781782434436 - Richard Merritt
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    Sit back, relax and unwind with this thoroughly enjoyable and sophisticated adult colouring book, Art Therapy: An Anti-stress Colouring Book, which is filled with lots of adult doodling, colouring and drawing fun.

    From creating free-flowing lines, swirls and shading in beautifully intricate patterns, each and every illustration in this colouring book for adults has been carefully crafted so that even beginners to art can enjoy the satisfaction of creating something exceptionally stunning.

    Packed with absolutely no rules, instructions nor guides, this adult colouring book is the perfect anti-stress activity - just let your imagination run wild and your creativity shine.
  • ADJWI
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    Lou Clark knows lots of things. She knows how many footsteps there are between the bus stop and home. She knows she likes working in The Buttered Bun tea shop and she knows she might not love her boyfriend Patrick. What Lou doesn't know is she's about to lose her job or that knowing what's coming is what keeps her sane. Will Traynor knows his motorcycle accident took away his desire to live. He knows everything feels very small and rather joyless now and he knows exactly how he's going to put a stop to that. What Will doesn't know is that Lou is about to burst into his world in a riot of colour. And neither of them knows they're going to change the other for all time.
  • SHIN
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    MasterChef winner Shelina Permalloo provides a selection of delicious recipes that will keep you full while helping you keep fit!

    Full of Shelina's favourite healthy recipes that have been inspired by her exotic holidays and Mauritian heritage, the cookbook is full of easy-to-follow instructions for delicious dishes that helped her lose 3 stone! Each recipe even comes with a calorie, sugar and fat count for each portion.

    Full of home-made, whole food packed with flavour, among the highlights are Steamed Hake with Wasabi, Soy and Ginger, Baked Moroccan Eggs, Make-ahead Banana Bread and an Orange Blossom and Rose Creme Brulee.
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    Millie Marotta's previous adult colouring book, Animal Kingdom, is a huge favourite with Book People customers so we're delighted to have her latest incredible book available at an unbelievable price.

    Wild Savannah is inspired by the swaying grasslands of Africa, Asia and Australia. You'll find mindfulness as you colour in pictures of crocodiles, kangaroos, ostriches, gazelles and so much more.

    Incredibly appealing, this book has so many designs that you will love adding your personal touch to...
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    Inspector Chopra returns for his second case in The Perplexing Theft of the Jewel in the Crown.

    For centuries, the Koh-i-Noor diamond has caused nothing but bloodshed. It's now part of the British Crown Jewels and when they go on display in Mumbai, security is of the utmost importance. Yet when Inspector Chopra visits the exhibition, the diamond is stolen from under his nose in a seemingly impossible act of thievery. Will he - and his elephant - be able to find the criminal?

    Vaseem Khan's debut, The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra, was a huge favourite with Book People customers and we're pleased to say this new book is just as quirky, charming and enthralling. It will appeal to fans of Alexander McCall Smith.
  • RALL
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    Chris Paling works in a small-town library in the south of England and in Reading Allowed he introduces some of the quirky characters who use this invaluable service on a day-to-day basis.

    There are the street-sleepers Brewer, Wolf and Spencer who are always first through the doors; The Mad Hatter - an elderly man who scurries around manically searching for books; and Sons of Anarchy Alan, a young man with Down's Syndrome who is addicted to the popular American drama.

    There's also the relentlessly cheerful Trish, who is always dressed in pink and has never been married although everyone else's marital status is of huge interest to her. Some of the characters' stories are tragic, some are amusing and some are genuinely surreal. Together they show just how important libraries are and what a huge impact they have on local communities.

    One of the few places left where people of all ages, incomes and backgrounds can wander in and speak to someone about their concerns or just for a general chat, this book is a celebration of libraries and their important role in society.
  • Cathy Bramley Collection - 3 Books - Collection - 9780552173780 - Cathy Bramley
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    Three feel-good reads from Cathy Bramley, an author who specialises in writing heart-warming love stories that are ideal for drifting away with.

    Appleby Farm follows Freya Moorcroft as she attempts to find love, friendship and do a bit of farming; Ivy Lane follows Tilly Parker as she looks for a fresh start, fresh air and a fresh attitude; and Conditional Love looks at the surprises life has in store for Sophie Stone when a mysterious benefactor leaves her an inheritance. There's only one catch - she has to meet the father she has never seen.

    Perfect for fans of Katie Fforde and Carole Matthews, these books are sweet and sure to keep you smiling. Perfect escapism.
  • AWBZO
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    Longlisted for the Man Booker Prize 2017, White Teeth author Zadie Smith's Swing Time is an ambitious, extraordinary and beautifully written novel about two brown girls who meet in a dance class in West London.

    Both girls dream of being dancers but only one has the requisite talent. The other is full of ideas about rhythm, time and what it means to belong and to be free. They have a close but complicated childhood friendship that comes to abrupt end in their early 20s. Although it's never revisited, neither girl forgets what it meant...

    This is a story about music and identity, race and class, and about those who follow the dance and those who lead it . . .