What is Books + Bits?
It’s a place to bring together books and things that I find joyful and/or thought provoking: podcasts, movies, TV shows, journalism, poetry and a little bit of vintage shopping. I’ve loved recommending things as long as I can remember and over the years, I have done it via many means: a blog, a column, a podcast, then through Instagram Stories and now, this newsletter! (Writing this feels very much like writing a blog, so it’s all come full circle.) In short? Let me cut through the cultural overload for you.
Who are you?
I’m a journalist and broadcaster based in London, who has written for The Sunday Times (where I used to be an editor on the Style mag) The Guardian, ELLE, Vogue, Grazia, The Cut, GQ and more. I have produced and hosted multiple no.1 podcasts including the The High Low, Doing It Right and Book Chat and made several audio documentaries for The BBC (about Britney Spears and the history of reality TV). I also host a podcast about long-term missing people called The Missing.
Much of my professional life is spent interviewing people - from Margaret Atwood and Bernadine Evaristo to Margot Robbie and Daisy Edgar-Jones - and, increasingly, talking about books. I was a judge on the 2022 Women’s Prize for Fiction and I’ve also published two books - a 2020 essay collection, How Do We Know We’re Doing It Right? which was a Sunday Times bestseller and a 2022 anthology, What Writers Read: 35 Writers On Their Favourite Book, which I edited in aid of The National Literacy Trust.
When will I receive a newsletter?
All subscribers receive a free, chunky edition of Books+Bits proper every other Tuesday. (My teacher once said: “Pandora must learn the art of brevity”. I have yet to.)
For £6 a month, paid subscribers also receive: one monthly edition of The List (a curation of vintage shopping and small-brand finds); one monthly edition of Shelf Request (where I answer reader requests via a dozen or so books); two monthly Book Thoughts (where I deep -dive on one book) and Misc talking points, a letter or thread on something I can’t stop thinking about and that I want to chat about with you!
What do I do if I can’t afford a paid subscription?
Please e-mail me and I will comp you one, no questions asked.