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Here is a question for you. Is there a scent that you associate with books? I don’t mean the smell of the paper, or the leather when you walk into a room full of old books. I mean, is there a smell that immediately transports you to reading heaven? Do you associate a perfume with a particular memory of reading, or a particular book?

For me, it is an easy ask. The minute I catch even a whiff of jasmine, I am in sensory heaven – jasmine poking through the paling fence, a sprig or two tucked behind one ear, sun on my back, book in my hand, sheltered from the cold early spring wind in a walled courtyard, pot of tea steaming by my Continue reading

One Day by David Nicholls – Soon someone will recommend you read it.

The Galaxy National Book Awards honour the best books and authors of the year. The winner of the 2010 Galaxy Book of the Year was One Day by David Nicholls.

Even though people made lots of noise about One Day when it was released and even though it received good reviews and was visible on the web and in bookshops and sold lots and lots of copies, 99.99% of readers have yet to read it.

But this will change. One Day is the book friends recommend to friends. It is the book  writers offer as an example of what writers can achieve – a near perfect synthesis of popular and literary needs. Easy to read, engaging and yet so true and well observed that it delivers a punch and leaves a mark – something most novels fail to do.

And it is this capacity to move us which will ensure that One Day becomes the book we readily recommend. One Day will pass from hand to hand, infiltrate markets undreamed of by the publisher and will still be read in ten years time. So few books reach this enviable position.

UPDATE: News from the UK -

David Nicholls’ One Day (Hodder) has broken the record for the biggest ever weekly sale from an adult-readership novel in the month of August.

Across all print editions, One Day sold 92,336 copies at UK booksellers in the seven days to 27th August, beating the previous record, set by Dan Brown’s The Lost Symbol (Corgi) last year, by more than 15,000 copies.

It brings total sales of the bestselling novel to 1,090,000 copies across all editions, meaning it has become only the 30th novel to surpass the one million print sales mark since Nielsen BookScan records began in 1998. The February 2010-published mass-market edition of the book sold 52,142 copies at UK booksellers last week, and tops the Official UK Top 50 ahead of the more recent film tie-in edition (39,937 copies sold). more…

The blurb…

‘I can imagine you at forty,’ she said, a hint of malice in her voice. ‘I can picture it right now.’

He smiled without opening his eyes. ‘Go on then.’

15th July 1988. Emma Morley and Dexter Mayhew meet for the first time on the night of their graduation. Tomorrow they must go their separate ways.

So where will they be on this one day next year? And the year after that? And every year which follows?

One Day is a funny/sad love story spanning twenty years, a book about growing up – how we change, how we stay the same.

One Day is a wonderful, wonderful book: wise, funny, perceptive, compassionate and often unbearably sad. It’s also, with its subtly political focus on changing habits and mores, the best British social novel since Jonathan Coe’s What A Carve Up.John O’Connell, The Times.

‘The funniest, loveliest book I’ve read in ages. Most of all it is horribly, cringingly, absolutely 100% honest and true to life. I lived every page.’ – Jenny Colgan.

‘A brilliant book about the heartbreaking gap between the way we were and the way we are…the best weird love story since The Time Traveller’s Wife’ – Tony Parsons.

‘Finished One Day by David Nicholls last night and now there is a big whole in my life. If you haven’t read it, you must. Utterly brilliant.’ Pippa Masson – Sydney literary agent via twitter.

Guardian review – here

Wanna read an excerpt? Continue reading

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