15 beautiful books to buy travel lovers this Christmas


When you travel across pages, not even a new variant of Covid can hinder your movement. In the past year, I’ve wandered over the Pennines and deep into Wales. I’ve climbed to mist-shrouded Scottish summits, dived in Caribbean seas. I’ve splashed along the muddy roads of Madagascar, followed a river between Russia and China, and circled the Black Sea. Here are the books that took me away…

The Long Field 

by Pamela Petro 

(Little Toller, £20)

Why, a reviewer once asked, is the American Pamela Petro so obsessed with Wales? Petro’s answer is both a memoir and an exploration of hiraeth – a Welsh word for longing for all you can’t have. In it, she weaves together the essential hiraeth stories of Wales with aspects of her own life: as a gay woman, as the survivor of a train crash, as the daughter of a parent with dementia. It’s an absorbing meditation on the meaning of home.


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