< Back < Back


World Books Day 2018

Bad News book coverUniv is celebrating World Book Day 2018, which takes place on 1 March, by sharing some of our College community’s recommended books – from childhood favourites and literary classics to modern best sellers. As Hemingway (or was it Lemony Snicket?) put it, “There is no friend as loyal as a book.”

We hope you enjoy this small selection of recommendations from the Univ family; happy reading…

Bad News by Edward St Aubyn – Venetia Welby, Univ OM (1999, Classics).

A Perfect Spy by John Le Carre
“I grew up on spy novels, but it wasn’t until my mid-twenties that I discovered they could be this this good — clever, thrilling and haunting, it’s a book that lingers.” – Chris Birkett, Univ OM (1979, PPE).

The Picture of Dorian Gray book coverThe Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame – (childhood choice) Mitch Robertson, 2016, DPhil in History.

The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde – Amber Madden-Nadeau. 2016, DPhil Volcanology in Earth Sciences.

The Silent World by Jaques Cousteau
“The invention of the aqualung and underwater photography, all with colour plates, in my Grandmother’s shelves.” – Susie Wilson, Univ OM (1994, English).

After You’d Gone by Maggie O’Farrell – Jenny Wilkinson, Senior Development Officer.

On Broadway book coverOn Broadway by Damon Runyon
“For its inimitable literary style and for the advice, via Sam the Gonoph, ‘I long ago come to the conclusion that all life is 6 to 5 against.’” – Jonathan Hourigan, Univ OM (1079, PPE).

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier – Dr Laura Varnam, Lecturer in Old and Middle English Literature.

Howards End by E M Forster
“It was the first book I fell in love with, as you do a person, possessively and passionately, for being so funny, so wise, and changing how I saw the world.” – Amanda Brookfield, Univ OM (1979, English).

wind in the willows book coverFive on Kirrin Island Again (or any of the Famous Five books) by Enid Blyton – Bob Maskell, Head Porter.

The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame
“My favourite book of all time is The Wind in the Willows. It is timeless, a magical story of nature and seasons and friendship and its gentle progress through a lifetime. It cannot be bettered!” – Angela Unsworth, Domestic Bursar.

The Story of a New Name by Elena Ferrante – Cameron Ott, Academic Support Administrator.

The Grapes of Wrath book coverThe Dictionary of Imaginary Places by Alberto Manguel and Gianni Guadalupi
“This is a relatively recent discovery for me, but one that’s going to provide a lifetime of enjoyment, not only because it’s enormous but because it’s full of descriptions of the most amazing fantasy worlds invented by writers across the centuries. It’s wonderful as something to read on its own or as a source of recommendations for other books to explore.” – Jessica Woodward, Assistant Librarian.

The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck – Lady Crewe.

Five Minutes’ Peace by Jill Murphy
“My favourite childhood book (probably because it was my Mum’s favourite) was Five Minutes’ Peace. Jill Murphy’s much-loved character Mrs Large searched for an elusive five minutes’ peace from her adorable but demanding little brood… I’m sure my Mum could relate.” – Louise Wright, Executive PA to the Master.

The Great Gatsby book coverA Street Cat Named Bob by James Bowen – Teresa Strike, Head of Hospitality & Accommodation.

Clayhanger by Arnold Bennett – Bruce Taylor, Head Gardener.

The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald
“Fitzgerald’s dazzling portrait of decadence, ambition and doomed obsession is unsurpassed; a product of its time, yet timeless. Like Gatsby, I believe in the green light…” – Justin Bowyer – Digital Communications Manager.

Published: 27 February 2018

Explore Univ on social media
University College Oxford

Contact Univ

If you have any questions or need more information, just ask: