Best books to read this summer

We’ve got chapter and verse on the best books for you to read this summer, whether you like crime, romance, history or humour. So, pop the kettle on, pull up a comfy chair and get reading with our top five recommendations. 

Murder Before Evensong: A Canon Clement Mystery - The Reverend Richard Coles

If you love Richard Osman’s Thursday Murder Club, you’ll want to try this thoroughly enjoyable crime debut from Britain’s favourite cleric. Canon Daniel Clement is Rector of Champton, where he lives with his widowed mother and two dachshunds, Cosmo and Hilda. When a man is found dead in the church, stabbed in the neck with a pair of secateurs, Daniel must try to keep his flock together – and teams up with the friendly policeman to catch the killer.


House Arrest: Pandemic Diaries - Alan Bennett

A witty, charming diary of life in and out of lockdown from the sharp pen of the incomparable Alan Bennett, who shares everything from his thoughts on Boris Johnson to stair lifts, park bench encounters and the filming of Talking Heads. It’s a quick read, but a worthwhile one.


Book Lovers – Emily Henry

This entertaining, witty rivals-to-romance novel charts the ups and downs of two bibliophiles who discover they have more in common than just their love of books.


Wiltshire - Pevsner Architectural Guides: Buildings of England - Julian Orbach, Nikolaus Pevsner, Bridget Cherry

Amesbury Abbey features prominently in this bible of all the great historic buildings in Britain. The Pevsner Architectural Guides were begun in the 1940s by art historian Sir Nikolaus Pevsner and are indispensable guides to the architecture of Great Britain and Ireland. Our fabulous Abbey features in Julian Orbach’s revised edition of Buildings of England: Wiltshire, and includes not one but two images to accompany it – which is almost unheard of! Hundreds of buildings have been added to this edition, which features a fully revised and updated guide to the historic architecture of Wiltshire.


And Away – Bob Mortimer

From his much-anticipated appearances on Would I Lie To You to his friendship with Paul Whitehouse in Gone Fishing, Bob Mortimer’s unique, off-the-wall humour has made him one of the nation’s favourite entertainers. This memoir sees Bob sharing his hugely enjoyable misadventures, while also reflecting on his father’s death and his own diagnosis with a serious heart condition.