Best new books: winter 2020
Reading is pandemic-proof. In what has been a tough year for the arts, book sales have boomed. In May, research by Nielsen showed that the nation’s average time spent reading books had increased from three-and-a-half hours to six hours a week. In October, bookshops reported an ‘early Christmas’ with bumper sales – but now they're closed again, during their most crucial period. (That said, most offer home delivery, so do order from your local independent or Waterstones, if possible.)
And as the nights draw in, let’s make the most of lockdown's silver lining: uninterrupted reading time. Combining today’s most urgent themes – inequality, race, the environment – with a dash of escapism, our pick of the best new titles, fiction followed by non-fiction, should see you through to January.
By Madeleine Feeny