My Favourites

My Favourites

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What the authors read: Kerry Gibb

Planning your summer reading lists? Who better to consult for inspiration than the authors themselves. Here Surrey author Kerry Gibb shares five of her favourite reads.

When initially asked to write about my five recommended reads for Muddy Stilettos, I thought I’d struggle given that I rarely have time to pick up a good book these days! In between being a mum to my four boys and my career as an author, ‘me-time’ is a distant memory. I don’t have time to waste on a book that doesn’t inspire me and have no qualms about giving up on a book that doesn’t grab me. It was as I mulled this over that I realised choosing five to recommend was actually quite simple – as they were all books that had left a little piece of themselves with me whilst reading them. They were books that had called me back to them in the late hours of the night when I should have been sleeping!

This Is Going To Hurt

Adam Kay
‘Where was this book when I had my first child?!’ I remember commenting on my social media when I was in the midst of This Is Going To Hurt! Very rarely does a book make me laugh out loud, but this one just kept giving. I couldn’t put it down and let my sons indulge themselves in electronics so I could dedicate a Sunday afternoon to it. The guilt of neglecting them was negated by them hearing my laughter and asking me to share snippets with them – obviously edited for their little ears! Adam Kay uses his dry sense of humour to share his experiences in the struggling NHS and brings you laughter and heart break in equal measure in doing so. I was a little late to the party with this book but finally succumbed to all the media hype and don’t regret it for a second! 

The Tattooist of Auschwitz

Heather Morris
I was drawn to this book after seeing so many great reviews and I wasn’t disappointed. I would highly recommend it to anyone who hasn’t read about the Holocaust before for fear of it being too heavy going. It tells the story of Lale who was given the job of tattooing prisoners who arrived at Auschwitz and how in amongst all the suffering, he found love with Gita whose survival became as important to him as his own. The ability of the author to write in such an uplifting, beautiful way whilst navigating the reality of such a harrowing subject should not be underestimated. I was so compelled by this story that I couldn’t put it down and often found myself turning up early at school pick up so that I could squeeze a few more pages in whilst waiting in my car. 

Me Before You

JoJo Moyes

A lot of JoJo Moyes fans will rave about every book she has ever written. For me, this one stands out head and shoulders above all the others. I love reading a book where I feel such a connection to the characters that I think about them long after I’ve put the book down. This is exactly how I felt about Lou and Will in Me Before You. It is a story of how two people came into each other’s lives when, without realising it, they needed each other the most. A love story that will trigger all kinds of emotions in you and make you question what you would do if you were in their shoes, challenged with the moral dilemmas that they had to face. I read very few books more than once, but this one has drawn me back to it time and again.

Take My Hand

Kerry Fisher & Pat Sowa
This is a book that came into my life at exactly the right time. It is a real-life account of the friendship of two woman thrown into emotional turmoil when their sons both suffered life threatening illnesses. The content is tough to take at times, but I came away from it feeling empowered to deal with my own battle I was facing, and it was a stark reminder that us mums don’t give ourselves enough credit for how much strength we unconditionally give our families. I have the upmost respect for Kerry and Pat for giving so much of themselves by sharing their stories in the hope that their words may help others. When I think back to this book now, the thing that sticks with me the most is the power of their friendship.   

The Seven Sisters

Lucinda Riley

This is undoubtedly the book that brought historical fiction into my radar. It is the first book in the series and had my interest piqued from the outset with its unique story line. Each of the books is about a sister who was adopted by a wealthy man who brought them up in his mansion in Switzerland. When he suddenly died, they each discovered clues as to their biological heritage. This book moves between the wonder of Maia discovering her heritage in Rio de Janeiro coupled with a historical journey of her unknown family to Paris. It had a bit of everything for me and left me wanting to have my own adventure to these places.

Kerry Gibb is the author of the children’s book series’ It’s A Kid’s Life and The Elephant Squad. She is also the author of Kayla’s Girls, but this one is definitely for the mums and not the kids! She regularly visits primary schools to give author talks and run creative writing workshops. Kerry lives in Surrey with her husband, four sons, and three cocker spaniel dogs.

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