The Countdown to Christmas has begun and here at Magrudy’s we’ve selected our favourite books of 2018, perfect for festive gifting. We’ve got suggestions for everyone from beautifully illustrated children’s books and gripping thrillers to brilliant business books and exquisite cookbooks.

Magrudy’s is offering 15% on all the books mentioned with the code ELFDEEC until 24th December so buy, buy, BUY!


For the Armchair Thrill-seekers:
In a House of Lies, Ian Rankin

The iconic Ian Rankin returns with a new Detective John Rebus novel – this year’s essential must-read bestseller.

Everyone has something to hide

A missing private investigator is found, locked in a car hidden deep in the woods. Worse still – both for his family and the police – is that his body was in an area that had already been searched.

Everyone has secrets

Detective Inspector Siobhan Clarke is part of a new inquiry, combing through the mistakes of the original case. There were always suspicions over how the investigation was handled and now – after a decade without answers – it’s time for the truth.

Nobody is innocent

Every officer involved must be questioned, and it seems everyone on the case has something to hide, and everything to lose. But there is one man who knows where the trail may lead – and that it could be the end of him: John Rebus.


Link: https://magrudy.com/book/in-a-house-of-lies-9781409176893/


For the Suits:
Out of the Maze: A Simple Way to Change Your Thinking & Unlock Success, Dr Spencer Johnson 

Who Moved My Cheese? offered millions of readers relief for an evergreen problem: unanticipated and unwelcome change. Now its long-awaited sequel digs deeper, to show how readers can adapt their beliefs and achieve better results in any field.

Johnson’s theme is that all of our accomplishments are due to our beliefs: whether we’re confident or insecure, cynical or positive, open-minded or inflexible. But it’s difficult to change your beliefs – and with them, your outcomes. Find out how Hem, Haw, and the other characters from Who Moved My Cheese? deal with this challenge.


Link: https://magrudy.com/book/out-of-the-maze-a-story-about-the-power-of-belief-9781785042119/


For the Foodies:
Ottolenghi SIMPLE, Yotam Ottolenghi 

Everything you love about Ottolenghi, made simple. Yotam Ottolenghi’s award-winning recipes are always a celebration: an unforgettable combination of abundance, taste and surprise. Ottolenghi SIMPLE is no different, with 130 brand-new dishes that contain all the inventive elements and flavour combinations that Ottolenghi is loved for, but with minimal hassle for maximum joy.

Bursting with colourful photography, Ottolenghi SIMPLE showcases Yotam’s standout dishes that will suit whatever type of cooking you find easy – whether that’s getting wonderful food on the table in under 30 minutes, using just one pot to make a delicious meal, or a flavoursome dish that can be prepared ahead and then served when you’re ready.

These brilliant, flavour-forward dishes are all SIMPLE in at least one (but very often more than one) way:

S – short on time: less than 30 minutes
I – 10 ingredients or less
M – make ahead
P – pantry
L – lazy
E – easier than you think


Link: https://magrudy.com/book/ottolenghi-simple-9781785031168/


For the Fitness Freaks:
The World’s Fittest Book, Ross Edgley

The Sunday Times Bestseller from the Strongman Swimmer. How to train for anything and everything, anywhere and everywhere.

The World’s Fittest Book is set to become every fitness enthusiast’s bible. Dubbed the body’s complete user guide, it will become the go-to resource for learning all you need to know about building muscle, losing fat, eating (healthy) cake and unlocking your superhuman physical potential.

Packed with workouts the author tried and tested in the pursuit of multiple world records, it’s more than a book, it’s the greatest training tool ever written! Designed for anyone who wants to make permanent and lasting changes to their food and fitness, it’s the first book to combine the teachings, tips and tricks of Olympic and World Champions into one, easy to follow resource.

This book will show you how it’s possible to:

  • Live below 10% body fat with the aid of chocolate and Mayan secrets
  • Add 27% more muscle mass, courtesy of tips from world heavyweight champions
  • Increase speed by 10%, thanks to gold medal winning Olympic sprinters
  • Squat, deadlift and bench weights you never dreamed of lifting, with the guidance of the world’s strongest men
  • Improve endurance capacity by 60%, thanks to the knowledge of world champions in multi endurance-based sports

…all of which the author has achieved during the 10-year ‘Fitness Pilgrimage’ that has taken him around the globe.


Link: https://magrudy.com/book/the-worlds-fittest-book-how-to-train-for-anything-and-everything-anywhere-and-everywhere-9780751572544/


For the Hopeless Romantics:
Normal People, Sally Rooney 



Connell and Marianne grow up in the same small town in rural Ireland. The similarities end there; they are from very different worlds. When they both earn places at Trinity College in Dublin, a connection that has grown between them lasts long into the following years.

This is an exquisite love story about how a person can change another person’s life – a simple yet profound realisation that unfolds beautifully over the course of the novel. It tells us how difficult it is to talk about how we feel and it tells us – blazingly – about cycles of domination, legitimacy and privilege. Alternating menace with overwhelming tenderness, Sally Rooney’s second novel breathes fiction with new life.


Link: https://magrudy.com/book/normal-people-9780571347292/


For the Lovers of the Past:
The New Silk Roads: The Present and Future of the World, Peter Frankopan 

‘All roads used to lead to Rome. Today, they lead to Beijing.’

When The Silk Roads was published in 2015, it became an instant classic. A major reassessment of world history, it compelled us to look at the past from a different perspective. The New Silk Roads brings this story up to date, addressing the present and future of a world that is changing dramatically.

Following the Silk Roads eastwards, from Europe through to China, by way of Russia and the Middle East, The New Silk Roads provides a timely reminder that we live in a world that is profoundly interconnected. In an age of Brexit and Trump, the themes of isolation and fragmentation permeating the western world stand in sharp contrast to events along the Silk Roads since 2015, where ties have been strengthened and mutual cooperation established. With brilliant insight, Peter Frankopan takes a fresh look at the network of relationships being formed along the length and breadth of the Silk Roads today, assessing the global reverberations of these continual shifts in the centre of power – all too often absent from headlines in the West.

This important – and ultimately hopeful – book asks us to reread who we are and where we are in the world, illuminating the themes on which all our lives and livelihoods depend.


Link: https://magrudy.com/book/the-new-silk-roads-the-present-and-future-of-the-world-9781526608062/#


For the Mindful Set:
Ikigai: The Japanese secret to a long and happy life, Francesc Miralles, Hector Garcia

We all have an ikigai. Even if we don’t know it yet.

Ikigai translates as `a reason to live’ or `a reason to jump out of bed in the morning’. It’s the place where your needs, desires, ambitions, and satisfaction meet: a point of perfect balance, and perfect fulfilment.

On the Japanese island of Okinawa, people live longer than anywhere else in the world. There, finding your ikigai is considered the key to longevity – and to happiness. The Okinawans know that all lives are valuable; for them, your ikigai is the lens that will help bring your value into focus.

Both inspiring and comforting, this book will help you uncover your own ikigai, and equip you to change your life. Leave stress and urgency behind, and throw yourself into finding your purpose, nurturing your friendships, and pursuing your passions.


Link: https://magrudy.com/book/ikigai-the-japanese-secret-to-a-long-and-happy-life-9781786330895/


For the Creative Crafters:
Craft: Techniques & Projects, DK
From textile crafts to beadwork and soap making to glass work, Craft is the most comprehensive compendium on the market crammed with more than 50 contemporary projects and over 300 techniques for crafters of all abilities.

Follow step-by-step photographs, simple text and advice on the tools and materials you need to create your own beautiful objects from a wide range of disciplines so you’ll never be short of something wonderful to make. A huge range of crafts are given a modern twist guaranteed to whet the appetite of crafters of all levels.

Full of inspiration and practical advice, Craft is the ideal bible for every crafter’s bookshelf.


Link: https://magrudy.com/book/craft-9781409383901/


For the Travellers:
Arabia: A Journey Through The Heart of the Middle East, Levison Wood 

Following in the footsteps of great explorers such as Lawrence of Arabia and Wilfred Thesiger, Arabian Journey is Levison Wood’s account of his most complex expedition yet: circumnavigating the Arabian Peninsula. Travelling through some of the harshest and most beautiful environments on earth, he seeks to challenge our perceptions of an often misunderstood part of the world, seeing how the region has changed and examining the stories we don’t often hear about in the media.


Link: https://magrudy.com/book/arabia-a-journey-through-the-heart-of-the-middle-east-9781473676329/


For the Fashion Forward:
The Little Book of Chanel, Emma Baxter-Wright, Emma Baxter-Wright

This monograph on Coco Chanel chronicles the life and legacy of one of history’s most influential couturiers. From her early days of millinery, through her revolutionary inventions in sportswear and jersey fashions for women, the classics that have made her name, such as the Chanel cardigan jacket and the little black dress, to the global empire of the brand under the helm of Karl Lagerfeld, this beautifully illustrated book offers a fascinating account of Chanel’s evolution and innovation. Detailed photographs and sketches of her designs, along with fashion photography and catwalk shots, pay tribute to one of the world’s most highly regarded fashion houses and the woman behind it.


Link: https://magrudy.com/book/the-little-book-of-chanel-9781780979021/


For Babies:
The Very Hungry Caterpillar Book and Snuggle Blanket, Eric Carle


Curl up with your very own Very Hungry Caterpillar snuggle blanket and enjoy Sleep Tight, a gentle bedtime story featuring the Very Hungry Caterpillar himself.

In Sleep Tight, Very Hungry Caterpillar, children will wish crickets, owls and ducks goodnight until . . . wait . . . who’s that curled up on the very last page? He’s snug as a bug.

The perfect bedtime treat for fans of the original Very Hungry Caterpillar.


Link: https://magrudy.com/book/the-very-hungry-caterpillar-book-and-snuggle-blanket-9780241329917/



For Toddlers (18 months – 3 years):
The Storm Whale Book and Soft Toy, Benji Davies

This stunning set is the perfect gift for fans of Benji Davies and The Storm Whale, featuring a hardback edition of the bestselling, award-winning picture book and a gorgeous soft toy.

Enjoy the story, then recreate Noi’s adventure with your very own knitted whale, perfect for cuddling at bedtime.

Noi and his father live in a house by the sea, his father works hard as a fisherman and Noi often has only their six cats for company. So when, one day, he finds a baby whale washed up on the beach after a storm, Noi is excited and takes it home to care for it. He tries to keep his new friend a secret, but but there’s only so long you can keep a whale in the bath without your dad finding out. Noi is eventually persuaded that the whale has to go back to the sea where it belongs. For Noi, even though he can’t keep it, the arrival of the whale changes his life for the better – the perfect gift from one friend to another.


Link: https://magrudy.com/book/storm-whale-book-and-soft-toy-the-9781471175343/#


For Children (4 – 6 years):
Geronimo, David Walliams


The brand-new heartwarmingly hilarious children’s picture book from number one bestselling David Walliams. Illustrated by artistic genius Tony Ross.

Meet Geronimo – the baby penguin who has one dream and one dream only – and that is to fly! But everyone knows penguins can’t fly… or can they? With a little help from his dad and friends, baby Geronimo discovers that even the wildest of dreams can come true.

A delightfully topsy-turvy book with an uplifting message about following your dreams – another blockbusting classic from David Walliams and Tony Ross!


Link: https://magrudy.com/book/untitled-picture-book-6-9780008279752/


For Children (7 – 9 years):
Hubert Horatio: How to Raise Your Grown-Ups, Lauren Child

Hubert Horatio Bartle Bobton-Trent is back in this hilarious and gloriously illustrated book for ages six and up from the superstar creator of Clarice Bean and Charlie and Lola, Lauren Child.

These stories are about the days when the Bobton-Trents had it cushy, very cushy indeed.

The Bobton-Trent seniors certainly know how to make the most of their extravagant wealth – socialising, doing things, buying things and generally being more than a little bit … irresponsible…

Luckily for them, their son Hubert Horatio is an exceptionally intelligent, talented and sensible child.

Unluckily for Hubert, this tends to mean that a lot of his spare time is spent steering his rather unruly set of grown-ups out of trouble.

Legendary children’s writer and Waterstones Children’s Laureate 2017-2019 Lauren Child revisits one of her most popular characters in these brand-new, laugh-out-loud stories about the rather unconventional Bobton-Trents! The perfect gift for children aged six and up.


Link: https://magrudy.com/book/hh-1-untitled-hh-9780008264086/



For Children (10 -12 years):
Tom Gates 15: What Monster?, Liz Pichon 

The bestselling, fully illustrated Tom Gates series is back! Winner of the Roald Dahl Funny Prize. This book contains: – MONSTERS – MYSTERY – A MUSIC FESTIVAL – MISSING stuff – ME and Marcus (Not necessarily in THAT order). AND a very strict supply teacher – but don’t let that put you off!


Link: https://magrudy.com/book/tom-gates-15-what-monster-9781407179865/


For Teenagers:
The Hate U Give, Angie Thomas

Movie tie-in edition of the No. 1 New York Times bestseller and Waterstones Children’s Book Prize winner.

Now a major motion picture from Twentieth Century Fox, starring Amandla Stenberg

Read the book that inspired the movie! Sixteen-year-old Starr lives in two worlds: the poor neighbourhood where she was born and raised and her posh high school in the suburbs. The uneasy balance between them is shattered when Starr is the only witness to the fatal shooting of her unarmed best friend, Khalil, by a police officer. Now what Starr says could destroy her community. It could also get her killed. Inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement, this is a powerful and gripping novel about one girl’s struggle for justice.


Link: https://magrudy.com/book/the-hate-u-give-9781406387933/