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12 books born in the Cotswolds

With the season turning cold and days morphing into night, it’s the best time of year to curl up and escape into a new book.

We want to take you exploring across The Cotswolds through works of literature, from children’s books to real and imagined stories from those living in The Cotswolds. So pick out the perfect book and get ready to snuggle up with a cuppa and captivating read this winter.



The Rector's Wife by Joanna Trollope

Joanna Trollope is one of Britain’s most famous authors and she was born and raised in the village of Minchinhampton in The Cotswolds. Joanna uses her writing talents to share important social commentary on life in in the UK, and through her works of fiction she channels her Cotswolds heritage through the character’s backgrounds and settings. Some stories are even based within The Cotswolds, one which springs to mind is The Rector’s Wife, the story of a priest's wife who rebels and discovers new life and independence while working at a local supermarket.

Peter Pan by J.M.Barrie

A much-loved story of the boy that never grew up, Peter Pan was born from the rolling hills of The Cotswolds. Its author, J.M.Barrie spent the majority of his time writing this book during his summers in the impressive Stanway House in the north of The Cotswolds.

A Cotswolds Trilogy by Prue Leith

Prue Leith is better known for her cookbooks and starring on the Great British Bake Off. However she is also a keen fiction writer and channels her love of food into her characters, nearly all of whom are cooks or chefs. Her last three works of fiction, The Food of Love, The Prodigal Daughter and The Lost Son form a trilogy about two families living in The Cotswolds.

Non Fiction


A Cotswold Family Life by Clare Mackintosh

Clare Mackintosh is an author known for both her fictional and non-fiction works. However for 8 years, Clare wrote for Cotswold Life about the ups and downs of life with a young family in the countryside and decided to bring these stories altogether to form A Cotswold Family Life.

From keeping chickens to longing for an Aga and dealing with nits, Clare opens the door to Cotswold family living with warmth, humour and heart.

All Cheeses Great and Small by Alex James

Alex James shares his story of transitioning from a life in the limelight in the 1990s to his life as a farmer, artisan cheese-maker and father of five. After a pop star life of excess, Alex got married and fell in love with his new home, a huge farmhouse in The Cotswolds, set in 200 acres of beautiful countryside. The farm represents not just a new house but also a new career and way of life.

The Wild Other by Clover Stroud

Clover Stroud is an author based in The Cotswolds and her book, The Wild Other is her memoir of love, loss, motherhood, sex and danger.

Clover had a very happy childhood in Wiltshire, which ended violently when her mother fell from her horse and was left brain damaged. Clover shares how this early experience of loss and trauma has informed everything she's done since then. This story from Clover is a beautifully written account of a search for healing.

Poo Poo Parenting, Poems and parodies for perturbed parents by Sarah Jarman

There’s no training or test to pass to be a parent, and the parenting manuals don’t really tell you the whole truth of what it will be like. That’s what this book from Sarah Jarman aims to do, share the truth. A clever collection of poems and parodies, this book was written for anyone going through the struggles of parenting so they know they’re not alone.

Children’s books


The Night I Met Father Christmas by Ben Miller

Ben Miller is an actor, author and comedian based in The Cotswolds and he brings the magic of The Cotswolds to life through his wonderful children’s books. It’s only apt at this time of year to share his mischievous Christmas book, The Night I Met Father Christmas. A gorgeous tale brimming with the magic of Christmas, this book will remind everyone of the true spirit of Christmas and prove that Santa really does exist!

Dave and Darcy Go to the Beach by Lois Kingscott

Lois Kingscott has lived her whole life in Cheltenham, with the countryside on her doorstep to go horseback riding. It wasn’t until 2016 that Lois finally bought her first horse and best friend, Dave. Little did she know that Dave would become the inspiration for her series of children’s picture books, starting with the first, Dave and Darcy Go to the Beach, which was published in April 2020. A wonderful stocking filler and wholesome read for the festive period!



Kitchen Secrets by Raymond Blanc

Raymond Blanc is celebrated as a culinary legend, with a boundless love of delicious food. His book Kitchen Secrets shares more than 100 recipes from both series of Kitchen Secrets filmed at Belmont Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons in Oxfordshire, The Cotswolds. This is a fantastic read that demystifies the skills of haute cuisine and is a must-have book for anybody with a love of French cuisine and finesse.

The Pig: Tales and Recipes from the Kitchen Garden and Beyond

The first book about all things PIG! from the swanky Pig hotels, it's packed full of simple recipes, kitchen garden tips and tricks, interior inspirations and home-grown how-to's.

Their hotel in Bath has the biggest kitchen garden out of all of their hotels, complete with a Smoke House, wild flower orchard, fruit cages, a greenhouse and beehives. It's renowned for its culinary treats such as crispy pork crackling and tobacco onions, both of which you can now make from home.

The VWH Cookbook

The VWH Hunt has created a new cookbook celebrating and sharing traditional recipes. To find out more, you can visit their website or to order the cookbook, you can email