Illustration of young man kicking a stone in a graveyard.
Illustrations by Dave McKean, from The Graveyard Book

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Adams Douglas

Losing your planet isn't the end of the world. Every self-respecting geek has read Douglas Adams's mega-selling cult classic, in which Arthur Dent is plucked off the planet by his friend Ford Prefect, a researcher for the revised edition of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy who, for the last fifteen years, has been posing as an out-of-work actor.

The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R.Tolkien

Before Middle-earth came to our screens it captured our imagination in this world-famous book series. The Fellowship of the Ring is the first part of JRR Tolkien's epic masterpiece - journey to Middle-earth and follow Frodo's journey to destroy the One Ring before Sauron, the Dark Lord takes control. 

The Graveyard book by Neil Gaiman

Why read it? Where do we begin? Between the awards (2010 Cilip Carnegie Medal, the Newbery Medal and the Booktrust Teenage Book Prize 2009) and stunning illustrations from Dave McKean this book has made itself a must read for all fantasy lovers.  It follows the life of Bod, an unusual boy who inhabits an unusual place-he's the only living resident of a graveyard.  

Rendezvous with Rama by Arthur C. Clarke

One of SF's classic stories told by one of it's greatest masters. Rendezvous with Rama is a hard science fiction novel set in the 2130s, the story involves a 50-kilometre cylindrical alien starship that enters Earth's solar system.

The End of Mr Y by Scarlett Thomas

When the hero of the book is a PhD student, you know it will please your inner nerd. This tale follows Ariel Manto who has been researching the 19th century writer Thomas Lumas. She finds an extremely rare copy of Lumas' novel The End of Mr. Y in a second-hand bookshop. The book is rumoured to be cursed - everyone who has read it has died not long afterwards.

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