New books for April as chosen by our independent booksellers

Hello and welcome to the books chosen by independent booksellers as recommended new reads. Every month we will be highlighting fifteen books hand-picked for you, and why these booksellers think you should be reading them.

Just click on any of the titles to read more and purchase from Hive, where every sale benefits your local independent bookshop.


Sous Chef: 24 Hours in the Kitchen by Michael Gibney

“If you ever wonder what really goes on behind the doors of your favourite restaurant, this book reveals all. It takes you into the heart of the kitchen for a 24-hour period and will leave you breathless with the pace and the detail. Be prepared to change your views when next you go out to eat.”

Chosen by: Richard Knowles, bookseller at Rickaro Books

Coastlines: The Story if Our Shore by Patrick Barkham

“Told through a series of walks beside the sea, this is the story of the coastlines around our island. Telling the story of the people and the landscape, this is the ultimate portrait of the British coastline.”

Chosen by: Sheila O’Reilly, bookseller at Dulwich Books

Adeline by Norah Vincent

“A well written novel re-creating the latter days of Virginia Woolf and the events that led to her suicide in the River Ouse in March 1941. The account provides an intense portrait of Woolf and her social circle, the infamous Bloomsbury Group. This will find appeal to those who enjoy a literary read with good content.”

Chosen by: Richard Knowles, bookseller at Rickaro Books

The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George

“A touching and filmic novel capturing how the broken heart of an ‘apothecary bookseller’ is mended through friendship, gentle adventure and eventually love. After many years of prescribing reading material to ease the life problems of others he finds happiness himself. A very satisfying read.”

Chosen by: Richard Knowles, bookseller at Rickaro Books

Villa America by Liza Klaussmann

“I loved Tigers in Red Weather and in this her second novel, Klaussmann does not disappoint. Based around true events and a real life couple this is a ravishing and heart breaking novel that’s unforgettable.”

Chosen by: Sheila O’Reilly, bookseller at Dulwich Books


The Axeman’s Jazz by Ray Celestin

“Set in 1919 against the heady backdrop of jazz-filled, mob-ruled New Orleans, this is an ambitious, gripping thriller that I could not put down. I loved Ida who is obsessed by Sherlock Holmes, felt sorry for Michael who is charged with finding the Axeman and was torn by his nemesis Luca. This is going to be one of the bestselling paperback crime novels of 2015.”

Chosen by: Sheila O’Reilly, bookseller at Dulwich Books

The Vintage Guide to Love and Romance by Kirsty Greenwood

“Perfect for fans of Sophie Kinsella and Marion Keyes! You can’t help but like Jessica Beam as she staggers through life, literally! The plot may have taken inspiration from My Fair Lady but it’s an enjoyable romp nonetheless. Now pass the peach cider!!”

Chosen by: Frances Hopkins, bookseller at Urmston Bookshop

A Robot in the Garden by Deborah Install

“Tang is the most delightful little robot, who Ben finds underneath a tree in his garden. I would love to find a Tang in my garden – he’s cute, clever, slightly broken, but begins to find a place in Ben’s heart and life, at a time when his marriage is becoming difficult. Their adventures together are fun, their empathy grows, and all concerned learn some important truths about themselves, and their relationships. This is a brilliant first novel, and I look forward to her next book.”

Chosen by: Jill Pattle, bookseller at Far From the Madding Crowd

Barefoot at the Lake of Bruce Fogle

“Bruce Fogle is now an acknowledged expert in his field, but perhaps had an unusual childhood. With his easy and matter-of-fact style, we read about the idyllic summers spent in a remote log cabin beside a lake in Canada until the summer when the wilderness became a backdrop to a cataclysmic change within his family, and their lives were never the same again. A wonderful memoir, with the backdrop of his enduring love of nature.”

Chosen by: Jill Pattle, bookseller at Far From the Madding Crowd

Dark Aemilia by Sally O’Reilly

“This wonderfully evocative book just draws you into Elizabethan London with all its sights and smells. Aemilia is a true heroine: intriguing, brave and passionate. Can’t wait to start hand-selling this.”

Chosen by: Frances Hopkins, bookseller at Urmston Bookshop


Cinderella’s Sister and the Big Bad Wolf by Lorraine Carey

“Oh dear, we’ve been getting those Ugly sisters and the Big Bad Wolf all wrong. We forgot about the third sister – Gertie did all the work while Cinderella lazed around. It was Gertie who had to save Little Red Riding Hood and Hansel & Gretel – and she did want to go to the ball… and so did the wolf. Could it all turn out happily? A great hilarious take on some very traditional tales.”

Chosen by: Sarah Donaldson, bookseller at Red Lion Books

The Wild Beyond by Piers Torday

“This is the story of a boy named Kester. He has brought the animals of his world back from the brink of disaster, and he believes there is hope on the other side. And, he might just be right. The final heart-stopping instalment of the Dark Wild Trilogy. I have read all the books in this trilogy and they are brilliantly written, very accessible and engaging for any readers of 9+.”

Chosen by: Sheila O’Reilly, bookseller at Dulwich Books

The Jolley Rogers and the Cave of Doom by Jonny Duddle

“It’s great to see a new title in this series as they really tick all the boxes for children just becoming independent readers. A great balance of text and Duddle’s detailed illustrations, and as usual full of mischievous mirth!”

Chosen by: Frances Hopkins, bookseller at Urmston Bookshop

Peep Inside the Garden by Anna Milbourne

“This book takes young readers to the heart of a sunny garden. Its delightful illustrations will make children see their own garden in a new light; you can discover things in the book and then explore the real world for yourself. A further title in the colourful Peep Inside series.”

Chosen by: Richard Knowles, bookseller at Rickaro Books

My Dad’s a Birdman by David Almond

“Join a father and daughter as they find their wings and take to the skies in this funny tender story. The illustrations by Polly Dunbar are gorgeous.”

Chosen by: Jill Pattle, bookseller at Far From the Madding Crowd


You can purchase all the books on this blog from Hive here and collect from your local independent bookshop, or have delivery to your home with free standard UK delivery – whilst still supporting your local bookshop.

To see more about us and how your purchases on Hive benefit local independent bookshops, please click here.

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