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The cabin reading list

There’s no one way to enjoy a cabin. Some might go for the adventures to be had nearby, some for the rustic food cooked up over the fire, and others, perhaps nothing but downtime in a beautiful place. But whether you’re feeling active, or restful, you’ll get an hour or two to yourself here and there to just chill out, and finally get to lose yourself in that book you’ve had by the bed for months. We asked around the office to see what the team have been saving for a special occasion.

The Things You Can See Only When You Slow Down

Written by South Korean Zen Buddhist, Haemin Sunim, ‘The Things you can see only when you slow down’ is a mindfulness guide that journeys from pillar to pillar of important elements of your life, be that relationships, love or spirituality. It’s an incredible read that reminds us to slow down and keep focus on that which truly matters.

‘I got this book when I was in hospital for a week, due to working crazy hours (before working for C&S!) I picked it up because it’s such a pretty book & inside it has even more beautiful illustrations! At that time the title resonated with me so much and I was glad I got that book.’

– Kelly, Pricing and Performance Manager

The Collected Autobiographies of Maya Angelou

You’ve read her heart-wrenching, soul uplifting poetry, now find out more about the artist herself. Through six volumes that span the length of her incredible life, learn more about the hardships, the strife, and even the beauty of her struggle to grow in a world that refused to recognise her. From her early life in the American South, to her adventures abroad – this series marks the events that shaped this American hero.

‘There are 6 volumes – I’m at the end of volume 2 and am absolutely hooked – the woman had a most fascinating and crazy life – you couldn’t make it up if you wanted to. Whole-heartedly recommended.’

– Lianka, Guest Experience Executive


Written by Amy Jeffs, whom you may know from Storyland, Wild is spread across seven themed chapters that retell English medieval texts, describing a rich world of natural wonders and beauty, paired with stunning wood engravings – by the author herself – to illustrate the flora and fauna encountered along the way.

‘The best book I’ve read recently is Wild by Amy Jeffs. It’s a fairly quick read, beautifully written, and would provide a gorgeous backdrop to a UK weekend break. A series of stories from medieval Britain, reimagined and at times woven together, told in the context of the wild places they feature and giving a compassionate voice to figures who would’ve been marginalised at the time, including women, mad men, and “monsters”.’

– Helen, Social Media and Content Executive

Botanical Folk Tales of Britain and Ireland

Written by Lisa Schneidau, this book is a compendium of different tales, a mix of folklore and other traditional tales that involve the flora of Britain and Ireland. From the trees to the lowliest of plants, it draws attention to how the natural world is inexorably linked to us as humans, how they shape us, and we shape them. It crosses many terrains, from the urban to the most remote woodland and along the way teaches us a little more about ourselves.

‘I would really recommend Botanical Folk Tales of Britain and Ireland – it is a quick read & full of short, quirky folk law stories. It would be a great read if you are glamping/ doing some nature stuff.’

– Isobel, Digital Coordinator

The Old Man and the Sea

Regarded by some to be one of the finest novellas, ever, Ernest Hemingway won the 1953 Pulitzer Prize for fiction for this work. On its face, it’s a simple tale of a worn-out old fisherman, going to sea, and fighting a battle against a marlin, man vs fish, in a battle of wills to survive just that little bit longer. Look a little deeper, and you’ll see the analogy of the older person, the retiree, fighting to be relevant, to be useful, to be respected, as the inevitable last act looms. It’s moving, easy to read, and short. Most of all, well worth a read.

‘A great novella. Humanity, nature, determination, kindness, grief – some big themes, all digestible in a weekend, via a story where not a lot actually happens!’

– Tom, Founder & Director

Talking Turkeys

The man, the writer, the dub poet, the legend – Benjamin Zephaniah’s collection flows with timeless style and effortless fun. In theory, it’s a children’s book. But in your heart, you know that all poetry is for all ages, and to deny yourself the magic of the rhyming word, the cleverness of the turn of phrase, the magic of realising the analogy – would be a terrible crime indeed.

‘So great for dipping into over a weekend. Funny, heart-warming, thought provoking… some poems about environment, social issues and a cracking poem about turkeys too!’

– Tom, Founder & Director

Olive Kitteridge

Written by Elizabeth Strout in 2008, the book’s been turned into a TV series in 2014 with a star-studded cast. There are 13 different narratives interwoven into this story, all through the lens of one incredible, titular character. Another Pulitzer Prize winner, it covers all the topics that make for any heart-wrenching novel: love, desire, jealousy, despair and hope. It demonstrates the complex and larger than life inner worlds that pass us every day in the street, the great mystery, of other people.

‘My favourite book ever. I read this at a time where escapism was at the forefront of my needs. It’s a collection of stories mostly centred around Olive, a brutally honest but extremely caring lady.’

– Craig, Head of Platform