Ten Books to Read in Isolation

If you, like so many of us, are isolating at home right now, you might like a few book recommendations to take your imagination to other places. Personally, I love a ‘Locked Room Mystery’, in which the drama plays out in a confined space – often making for great tension, character revelation and intrigue! Here are ten novels, set, at least in part, in closed rooms or limited locations, starting with my latest thriller Lake Child:

Lake Child by Isabel Ashdown
In the heart of Norway’s ancient fjords, 17-year-old Eva awakes from a horrific accident, to find herself bed-bound and confined to the attic bedroom of her forest home. Her devoted parents watch over her night and day, but the accident has left Eva without her most recent memories – and not everything is as it seems. As secrets from that distant night begin to surface, Eva realises she has to escape and discover the truth. But what if someone doesn’t want her to find it?
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(Words from Orionbooks.co.uk)

Room by Emma Donoghue
Jack is five.
He lives with his Ma.
They live in a single, locked room. They don’t have the key. Jack and Ma are prisoners.
Room by Emma Donoghue is an extraordinarily powerful story of a mother and child kept in isolation, and the desire for, and price of, freedom.

(Words from Hive.com)

The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman
Telling the story of a nameless woman driven mad by enforced confinement after the birth of her child.

Isolated in a colonial mansion in the middle of nowhere, forced to sleep in an attic nursery with barred windows and sickly yellow wallpaper, secretly she does what she has to do – she writes. She craves intellectual stimulation, activity, loving understanding, instead she is ordered to her bedroom to rest and ‘pull herself together’.

(Words from Hive.com)

Life of Pi by Yann Martel
One boy, one boat, one tiger . . .

After the tragic sinking of a cargo ship, a solitary lifeboat remains bobbing on the wild, blue Pacific. The only survivors from the wreck are a sixteen-year-old boy named Pi, a hyena, a zebra (with a broken leg), a female orang-utan – and a 450-pound Royal Bengal tiger. The scene is set for one of the most extraordinary and best-loved works of fiction in recent years.

(Words from Hive.com)

And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
1939. Europe teeters on the brink of war.

Ten strangers are invited to Soldier Island, an isolated rock near the Devon coast. Cut off from the mainland, with their generous hosts Mr and Mrs U.N. Owen mysteriously absent, they are each accused of a terrible crime. When one of the party dies suddenly they realise they may be harbouring a murderer among their number.

(Words from Hive.com)

The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware
The Northern Lights. A luxury press launch on a boutique cruise ship.

A chance for travel journalist Lo Blacklock to recover from a traumatic break-in that has left her on the verge of collapse. Except things don’t go as planned. Woken in the night by screams, Lo rushes to her window to see a body thrown overboard from the next door cabin. But the records show that no-one ever checked into that cabin …

(Words from Hive.com)

Misery by Stephen King
King’s Classic bestseller about a famous novelist held hostage by his Number One Fan.

Misery Chastain is dead. Paul Sheldon has just killed her – with relief, with joy. Misery has made him rich; she was the heroine of a string of bestsellers. And now he wants to get on to some real writing. That’s when the car accident happens, and he wakes up in pain in a strange bed. But it isn’t hospital.

(Words from Hive.com)

The Hunting Party by Lucy Foley
In a remote hunting lodge, deep in the Scottish wilderness, old friends gather for New Year.

The beautiful one – The golden couple – The volatile one – The new parents – The quiet one – The city boy – The outsider – The victim.
Not an accident – a murder among friends.

(Words from Hive.com)

Flowers in the Attic by Virginia Andrews
Four blonde, beautiful, innocent little secrets, struggling to stay alive…
Chris, Cathy, Cory and Carrie have perfect lives – until a tragic accident changes everything. Now they must wait, hidden from view in their grandparents’ attic, as their mother tries to figure out what to do next. But as days turn into weeks and weeks into months, the siblings endure unspeakable horrors and face the terrifying realisation that they might not be let out of the attic after all.

(Words from Hive.com)

Slade House by David Mitchell
Turn down Slade Alley – narrow, dank and easy to miss, even when you’re looking for it.

Find the small black iron door set into the right-hand wall. No handle, no keyhole, but at your touch it swings open. Enter the sunlit garden of an old house that doesn’t quite make sense; too grand for the shabby neighbourhood, too large for the space it occupies. A stranger greets you and invites you inside. At first, you won’t want to leave. Later, you’ll find that you can’t.

(Words from Hive.com)

For each of the above titles I’ve included a link to Hive.com – an online community network supporting independent high street bookshops. Check them out HERE … and happy reading everyone!


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