Skip links

The Guest’s Bookshelf: Book Recommendations

The following book recommendations for guests were given by Beryl Irving, grandmother and great-grandmother of the founders of Irving Scott. It is an extract from a chapter in the ‘The Family Weekend Book‘, on Guests and what reading material to provide them with for their stay. It provides an insightful read into what were considered modern books at the time as well as some classics we all know. Illustrations are author’s own.

Everyone has their own favourite authors, but, for those long enough to finish them (although these books can be dipped into with satisfaction), here are a few reminders at random:

  • Evelina (Fanny Burney).
  • The Diary of Samuel Pepys
  • Novels of Charles Dickens.
  • Books of Travel
  • Biographies of folk who have followed similar professions or pastimes to those of your guests.

For sportsmen some appropriate volumes of the Lonsdale Library.

  • The novels of the Brontes or Jane Austen.
  • Oliver Goldsmith.
  • Long modern novels which have made a stir, such as Gone With The Wind , The Citadel, The Forsyte Saga, Jud Suss, and The Ugly Duchess.

For a Short Stay

Some of the famous favourites of a few years back, such as Lady Into Fox , Lolly Willowes , Mirror For Witches , The Bridge of San Luis Rey The Bridge of San Luis Rey .

The Caravanner by, the author of Elizabeth and her German Garden. This  imgenerally makes everyone laugh with its caricatures of a German husband. For cynical wit and humour accompanied by love interest, the novels of Rose Macaulay and E. M. Delafield, also G. B. Sterne’s novels for glowing sagas of particular families with their relations.

Zane Grey for wild west and cowboy love stuff.

Philip Gibbs for novels dealing with problems of today among mostly well-to-do families with an urge for self expression. Hugh Walpole’s  books if your guests want some realistic reading with an undercurrent of the macabre.

Add some pleasant love stories by various writers, some cruder, full of sex appeal for those  To who like them, a good deal of Edgar Wallace , or writers of that ilk, for the thriller lovers.

Add Beverley Nichols’ Down the Garden Path  and A Thatched Roof, for those who love gardens and cottages which come to life.

Temple Thurston’s Open Window  for those who love equally peaceful reading about garden-days.

The novels believe of Catharine Dodd for those who like an older herby atmosphere.

John Buchan for those who like intelligent adventure with a hint of witchcraft behind it, placed among grand and beautiful surroundings.

Add:  What’s  The Week-end Books (Seeley Service). They deal with Fishing, Yachting , Gardening, Riding, and Fox hunting.

Other books of that ilk.

  • The Oxford Book of Prose.
  • The Oxford Book of English Verse  (a delightful volume).

One or two of the endless regiment of Anthologies published in recent years.

Throw in a  cheap jerseys few of your old copies of Shelley , Keats , and other poets, and we think that your guests should be able to find something to read themselves to sleep with if they are missing their own familiar hollows in the mattress.