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Erica James' Top Ten Books

Posted on 7th March 2016 by Erica James
Erica James, author of Song of the Skylark, shares her 'firm favourites'.

It’s always tricky when asked to compile a list of favourite books as the selection can vary depending on my mood, but here are some of my absolute firm favourites with a couple of new ones thrown in. 


The Diary of a Provincial Lady – E.M. Delafield 

I have a very old copy of this book and am ashamed to admit it’s slightly water damaged after an incident in the bath many years ago.  But no matter how wrinkled some of the pages are I could never part with it as it’s such a favourite of mine, like a very dear friend and always a delight to re-read.

Mapp and Lucia – E.F. Benson

I had been meaning to read this book for more years than I care to recall and finally got around to it after loving the Steve Pemberton adaptation on the television two Christmases ago.  It’s a gloriously comic gem, which I know I will revisit many times over.


Three Men in a Boat - Jerome K. Jerome

Another comic gem which brings back happy memories of listening to an audio version in the car with my sons when they were very young. 


Love Story – Erich Segal

A perfectly formed bite-sized novel which can be read very quickly – ideal for a rainy Sunday afternoon!


We Need to Talk About Kevin – Lionel Shriver

A riveting read that attempts to dissect whether it’s nature or nurture that creates a monster.  Some of the particularly gruesome scenes have never left me.

Saint Maybe – Anne Tyler

Nobody writes better about families under pressure than Anne Tyler, and for me this is her best.

Case Histories - Kate Atkinson

This was the first of Kate Atkinson’s books which I read and it instantly turned me into a big fan.  I love how cleverly she weaves her plots together so seamlessly.


Darling Buds of May – H.E. Bates

If you’re in need of cheering up this is the perfect book – or should I say it’s the perfick book!  Packed full of charm and whimsy, it will make you want to be a part of the Larkin family.

Vegetable Growing Month by Month – John Harrison

When I need to know anything about growing vegetables, this is the book I always turn to.  It’s wonderfully down-to-earth and full of just the kind of tips I need.


This is Where I leave You – Jonathan Tropper

I spotted this mentioned on Twitter and took a punt on it.  I’m so glad I did as it made me laugh out loud again and again.  There’s nothing like a tale about a highly dysfunctional family to put a smile on your face!


Song of the Skylark by Erica James is published on the 10th of March in hardback.


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