Well, it seems as though the easing of lockdown is going to be delayed again. We can't say we're not disappointed, but in the meantime, don't despair. If you can't get away to a beach with white shores and a bright blue sea, then never fear - we've put together nine books you can read to imagine yourself escaping abroad. Curl up, choose one of our picks, and be transported to far-off places without even having to open your own front door.
Emma Kennedy£7.99 £7.43
Best friends Agnes and Bea decide to embark on one last adventure before their adult lives begin. For Agnes's mother Florence, a fresh chapter is starting as her youngest flies the nest and her marriage settles into a new routine. But she can't help feeling that something is missing. As Agnes travels to London and Florence follows her heart to Europe, both will discover a world of possibilities they never could have dreamed of...
Veronica Henry£7.99 £7.43
Escape to the coast with this delicious collection of short stories and beach-hut inspired recipes from Sunday Times bestselling author Veronica Henry - the perfect summer treat. On a shimmering summer's day, the waves are calling, the picnic basket is packed, and change is in the air. It's just the start of an eventful day for a cast of holidaymakers: over one day, sparks will fly, the tide will bring in old faces and new temptations, a proposal is planned, and an unexpected romance simmers...
Holly Martin£7.99 £7.43
Bella has always had a sunny outlook and caring nature, despite recently falling on hard times. When she finds a handsome homeless man on her doorstep, her kind heart tells her she must help him. So, she invites Isaac into her cottage and into her life in ways she could never have imagined... But Isaac is not what he seems. He's keeping a huge secret from Bella, yet he never expected to fall for this open, generous and charming woman. Bella can't ignore the chemistry between her and Isaac, but she's had her trust badly broken in her past. Will she run when she learns the truth about Isaac, or will he be the one man who can help Bella believe in love again?
Ivy Marin’s life implodes after discovering that her late husband had spent their life savings on a beach house. Strapped for cash as an art teacher and with nowhere to go, Ivy and her recently jilted sister head to Summer Beach to recreate their lives. If only renovating a historical home didn’t unveil a host of hidden secrets in the beachside community—and the mayor wasn’t her former high school crush. Bennett Dylan led a campaign against Ivy’s late husband to block the rezoning of the beach house land for a high-rise resort. Although it’s been ten years since his wife’s death, Bennett is avoiding the pain of loving—and possibly losing—another woman. And then the FBI shows up… Ivy’s demands for a zoning variance for a bed-and-breakfast couldn’t come at a worse time for him. Despite distractions, Ivy has one summer to sway the town to salvage her livelihood and the new life in Summer Beach she’s come to love.
Mhairi McFarlane£9.99 £9.29
She kissed the groom. She’s not the bride… Edie thought she’d found The One…until he told her he was marrying someone else. And on the day of his wedding, when he kisses her, life really does go pear-shaped… Labelled as a home-wrecker and office outcast, when her boss offers her the chance to get out of town Edie jumps at it, even though moving back in with her eccentric father and prickly sister isn’t exactly the escape she needs. When her work throws her into the path of rising star and heartthrob Elliot, Edie is expecting a highly strung diva. But as their unexpected friendship develops, Elliot isn’t the only one in the spotlight… Who’s that girl? Edie is ready to find out.
Sophie Ranald£8.99 £8.36
Charlotte has always been a good girl. But being good is getting boring... She's not just stuck in a rut - she's buried in it up to her chin. The only company she has in bed is the back catalogue of Netflix and falling in love feels like the stuff of fairy tales. So when she stumbles across a popular podcast, 'Sorry Not Sorry', which challenges women to embrace their inner bad girl, she jumps at the chance to shake things up. Old Charlotte would never ask for a stranger's number, go on a blind date or buy lacy lingerie... But New Charlotte is waving goodbye to her comfort zone (with a side order of margaritas). And it turns out that good things happen to bad girls...
Cecily Blench£8.99 £8.36
It's 1941 and Kate is living in Rangoon, Burma, a world away from her traditional English upbringing. When she meets Edwin, a young teacher from London, she senses that he too is looking for a place to call home, and soon a friendship develops between them. As their bond grows, Kate begins to learn of the secrets in Edwin's past and the tragic events that brought them both to Burma. But war is coming and, when the Japanese forces invade, Kate and Edwin are forced to flee, along with thousands of others. They begin a perilous journey to India but soon become separated. As Kate continues on alone, she can't get this troubled young man out of her head. With the fallout of war all around them, in a place far from home, will Kate and Edwin survive their journey and find the new beginning they both seek?
Sheila O'Flanagan£9.99 £9.29
Juno Ryan thought life was going well. The divorce is behind her, she loves her job, and she's been seeing Brad, a doctor who seems to have fallen as much in love with her as she has with him. Then one morning Brad's face appears on the TV screen in a news report. In a heartbeat, she learns the shocking truth. And knows she will never see him again. Juno's world is shattered. She's without the man she loves, and she can't see how to get the answers she needs. And so Juno flees to the enchanting Villa Naranja in Spain. The blue skies and orange groves - along with Pep, the local winemaker's handsome son - begin to soothe her broken heart. But just when she begins to feel whole again, another bombshell drops. Juno might have run away from her secrets, but the past isn't finished with her...