From the Capsule team
Moms always love a good read – give her a few hours of “me time” with a good book! If you’re on the hunt for a Mother’s Day gift, here are six of the best choices for every type of mom, from historical fiction, quirky who-dunnits, thrilling action tales and the story of a Kiwi couple who overcame everything for love.
The top 6 books for Mother’s Day gifts:
Lauren Chater’s winter dress
An image-rich historical novel from the best-selling author of The Lace Weaver, this beautiful book is perfect for snuggling up on a Sunday afternoon. Two women are separated by centuries but connected by a beautiful silk dress in a tale based on a real shipwreck discovered off the island of Texel in the Netherlands.
Textile historian and Dutch expat Jo Baaker is brought back to the island where she was born to investigate the provenance of a 17th-century silk dress. Salvaged by local divers from a sunken wreck, the robe offers tantalizing clues to how people lived and died during Holland’s famous Golden Age.
Jo’s research leads her to Anna Tesseltje, a poor Amsterdam laundress turned ladies’ companion who served the enigmatic artist Catharina van Shurman. The two women were said to share a powerful bond, so why did Anna abandon Catharina at the height of her misfortune? Jo is convinced that the truth is hidden between the folds of this extraordinary dress. But as she digs deeper into Anna’s story, disturbing details about her own past begin to emerge.
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Nina Prose’s Maid
This one is escapist and charming with a main character you’ll love as much as Eleanor Oliphant – and was most recently our book club read of the month!
Molly the maid is all alone in the world. A person. She’s used to being invisible in her job at the Regency Grand Hotel, plumping the pillows and wiping away grime, dust and secrets from passing guests. She’s just a housekeeper – why should anyone know?
But Molly is put in the spotlight when she discovers an infamous guest, Mr Black, dead in her bed. It’s not a mess that can be easily cleaned up. And as Molly gets involved in the hunt for the truth, following clues whispered through the halls of the Regency Grand, she discovers a power she never knew existed. She’s just a maid – but what can she see that others forget?
The Maid is a story about how the truth isn’t always black and white – it’s found in the dirtiest gray areas in between.
The Language of Food by Annabel Abbs
A sultry treat from a novel exploring freedom, friendship and the quiet joy of cooking – perfect if your mom’s happy place is in the kitchen.
England 1835. Eliza Acton is a poet who dreams of seeing her words printed. But when she takes her new manuscript to a publisher, she is told that “poetry is not a lady’s business”. Instead, they want her to write a cookbook. This is what readers really want from women. England is full of exciting new ingredients, from spices to exotic fruits. But no one knows how to use them
Eliza leaves the office in dismay. But when her father is forced to flee the country due to bankruptcy, she has no choice but to consider the proposal. Having never cooked before, she is determined to learn and discover, if she can, the poetry in recipe writing. To help her, she enlists 17-year-old Ann Kirby, the impoverished daughter of a war-crippled father and dementia-stricken mother.
Over the course of ten years, Eliza and Ann developed an unusual friendship – a friendship that crossed social class and divides – and together they broke the mold of traditional cookbooks and changed the course of the world forever. culinary writing. The perfect gift for Mother’s Day!
The Leonard Girls by Deborah Challinor
Love, loss and the pain of war come together in Deborah Challinor’s riveting series of novels The Restless Years.
Rowie is pro-war, her sister Jo is a protester. And they are both in Vietnam. In 1969, at the height of the Vietnam War, nurse Rowie Leonard served a 12-month tour. It supports the war and is committed to treating the wounded of New Zealand and Australian troops. After a few months, however, she realizes that nothing at all about the conflict is as clear cut as she had assumed.
His younger sister, Jo, is the opposite: a student at the University of Auckland, a folk singer and an outspoken anti-war protester. But when Jo falls in love with professional soldier Sam Apanui, on leave at home to visit her sick father, she finds herself torn between her feelings and her convictions. As all three grapple with love, loss, the stresses and sorrows of war, each will be forced to confront and question everything they believed in.
The Diamond Eye of Kate Quinn
A haunting tale of heroism from the author of The Rose Code, this book, although set in the 1940s, is remarkably relevant to the present day.
She is the deadliest sniper of the war. And the one they least expect. In the snowy city of kyiv, budding historian Mila Pavlichenko’s life revolves around her young son – until Hitler’s invasion of Russia changes everything. Suddenly, she and her friends must take up arms to save their country from the Führer’s destruction.
Handed over a rifle, Mila discovers a gift – and months of blood, sweat and tears turn the young woman into a deadly sniper: the deadliest Nazi hunter.
Yet success is bittersweet. Mila is plucked from the battlefields of the Eastern Front and sent to America as war still rages. There she finds an unexpected ally in First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, and an unexpected promise of a different future.
But when an old enemy from Mila’s past teams up with a terrifying new foe, she finds herself in the deadliest duel of her life.
The Diamond Eye is a haunting novel of heroism born out of desperation, of a mother-turned-soldier, of a woman who found her place in the world and forever changed the course of history.
Modern Singhs by Abbey and Money Singh
This is a heartwarming and true New Zealand story of a marriage of two cultures. Abbey and Money Singh are better known as The Modern Singhs, Kiwi social media celebrities with a rich and tangled love story to tell.
Shared through the eyes of this inspiring duo, The Modern Singhs reveal their experiences as migrants to New Zealand as they struggled to find footing in a new environment. They describe how they met and pursued a relationship forbidden by Money’s culture, where he felt he had to choose between his family and the love of his life. The couple talk about the difficult birth of their son, their journey with mental health, a complicated sense of belonging and what it’s like to raise bilingual children in three cultures.
The rest is history – or at least has been uploaded to YouTube, where Abbey and Money’s joyous vision and celebration of tradition unites 1.3 million viewers around the world, encouraging others to embrace the difference with an open heart. What could be better for a Mother’s Day gift than a true love story?