The Urban Guide to the Countryside
Bucks & Oxon Edition

Category: Books

Top Ten Kids’ Picture Books for Xmas

13 Dec 2015

Here, in no particular order, is the lovely Woodstock Bookshop’s Top 10 Children’s Picture Books for this Christmas. The first two are timeless books which have been reprinted recently and will be much loved by the present generation, with the latter offered as more recent classics-in-the-making.

Little Bear by Else Holmelund Minarik

With charming illustrations by Maurice Sendak, this book tells the tale of an adventurous little bear exploring the world.

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READ ME: Top Ten Fiction Books for Xmas

30 Nov 2015

There are some Muddy features that I just love editing and this is one of them. The Christmas book guides, created by the best local bookshops, give a really good steer on the must-buy gifts for Crimbo.

We’ll be covering off kids, teens, coffee table books etc in the next two weeks but let’s kick off with the Top Ten Fiction Books, provided by the lovely Gerrard’s Cross Bookshop.

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How to write a book, by Griselda Heppel

2 Sep 2015


I’ve done the writer thing. Written four chapter and a synopsis, found an agent, sniffed snobbishly when they insisted on a pink sparkly cover and, er, shelved the project. So I am in no way qualified to give advice on how to write a book!

I tell who is though – Oxford-based Griselda Heppel(above), cool lady, plucky self-publisher and, let’s not forget, award-winner of People’s Prize for Children’s Fiction 2013.

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Author Griselda Heppel’s Secret Oxford

21 Jan 2014

Griselda Heppel is an award-winning children’s author. Her book ‘Ante’s Inferno’, a modern re-telling of Dante’s story of his journey through Hell, won the Children’s award in the People’s Book Prize 2013. Currently working on her new novel ‘The Tragickall History of Henry Fowst’, she lives in Oxford with her husband and four children.

The Painted Room, Cornmarket Street, Oxford

I’m really excited about this. 

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Author Gill Hornby

30 Sep 2013

Gill Hornby lives in Kintbury, Berkshire with her husband, the author Robert Harris, with whom she has four children. Sister to Nick Hornby, she enjoyed critical success earlier this year with the publication of her first book, ‘The Hive’, a sharply observed novel focusing on playground politics. Gill Hornby is talking at the Henley Literary Festival tomorrow (2nd Oct). These are her favourite places in Oxon, Bucks and beyond.

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Whey-hey! Thame Literary & Arts Festival programme now up

20 Aug 2013

I’ve been watching with interest as Thame, my nearest Oxfordshire town, has pumped new life into its streets over the last few years with its well-regarded food festival and the Thame Arts & Literature Festival, now in its fourth year.

Cargo Homeshop, which has its HQ in Thame, is helping sponsor it this year  (*sigh*, we so love that at Muddy), a reflection of  how popular this little festival has become.

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Small but perfectly formed

9 Jan 2013

I love a good book. I really do. It’s just I never seem to have the time to read them. I’ve just been introduced to flash fiction, (very) short stories that have to work really hard to connect with you in just 250 words by Sarah Taylor who lives in Haddenham. She recently won Highly Commended in the International Bridport Prize 2012 with her flash fiction story Popping Your Cherry, clever lady.

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The Urban Guide to the Countryside -
Bucks & Oxon Edition