Your unmissable reads for November

Brilliant books to curl up with this autumn

young brunette woman in home interior
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Brilliant books to curl up with this autumn

Promotional Feature

November is here and it’s the perfect time of year to hide away from the wind and rain and bury yourself in an engrossing read. Our pick of the new releases will whisk you from romantic royal intrigues to Arctic adventures, with stirring family dramas along the way…


Creator of the ITV series Victoria, Daisy Goodwin brings us a richly imagined novel of the young Queen in Victoria. It’s June 1837 and 18-year-old Victoria wakes up to find that she is Queen of the world’s most powerful nation. But will she be a mere puppet controlled by her mother and the sinister Sir John Conroy? Everyone wants her to marry, but Victoria would rather reign alone with a little help from her Prime Minister, Lord Melbourne. He is the only man who believes that she will be a great Queen – and who knows how to make her laugh. A husband would only get in the way... Buy it here.


Bittersweet, funny and sad, The Hope Family Calendar by Mike Gayle is a novel about grief, love and family. Tom Hope is a broken man since his wife Laura’s death. His mother-in-law Linda is there to pick up the pieces and look after his two struggling daughters, Evie and Lola. But when Tom gets arrested on the first anniversary of his loss, Linda makes a stand by leaving for Australia in a final attempt to make Tom reconnect with his daughters. Now, with two fast-maturing girls on his hands, Tom has to accept his responsibilities and navigate single fatherhood – starting immediately… Buy it here.


Morgan McCarthy’s The House of Birds is a bewitching story of love, war and second chances. When Oliver’s girlfriend Kate inherits a derelict house – and a fierce family feud – she’s determined to strip it, sell it and move on. But among the shelves of leather-bound and gilded books, he discovers a hidden diary from the 1920s. So begins a quest: to discover the identity of the author, Sophia Louis. Its story will shape the future of the abandoned house, and of Oliver, forever. Buy it here.


Set against the stark beauty of northern Greenland, and fin-de-siècle New York and London, Stef Penney’s Under a Pole Star is a compelling look at the dark side of the ‘golden age’ of exploration, as well as an incendiary love story. Scientist Flora Mackie – dubbed ‘The Snow Queen’ – heads a British expedition to Northern Greenland, but soon clashes with Jakob de Beyn whose rival expedition is led by the furiously driven Lester Armitage. All three become obsessed with the north’s violent extremes, and amid heroism and lies Armitage’s ruthless desire to be the true leader of polar discovery has an outcome that will reverberate for years to come. Buy it here.

Win all four of these brilliant new books! We’ve teamed up with women's fiction community Bookends to give away 50 bundles of our November books edit, so you'll have some great reads lined up. For your chance to win, enter here.

For exclusive author Q&As, reading group guides and insights behind bestselling women’s fiction, go to Bookends and join the conversation on its Facebook page and Twitter.

In association with Bookends, Marie Claire has selected its favourite books to read this autumn. Find more good reads here.