Sophie Roell

Sophie Roell

Sophie Roell is editor and one of the founders of Five Books.

Interviews with Sophie Roell

The Best Classic Crime Fiction, recommended by Sophie Roell

Since the early stories of the 18th and 19th centuries, crime fiction has been an incredibly popular and enduring genre, the investigation of murder somehow capturing the imagination of millions of readers around the globe. Here, Sophie Roell, editor of Five Books, uses strict but simple criteria to pick out the best classic crime fiction, from the Victorian age through to the 1950s.

Award Winning Biographies of 2022, recommended by Sophie Roell

In telling stories of lives that are often very different from our own and yet connected to us by our common humanity, biographies are some of the most compelling nonfiction books around. Five Books editor Sophie Roell rounds up some of the biographies that have won or been shortlisted for prizes in 2022.

Award Winning Nonfiction Books of 2022, recommended by Sophie Roell

It’s that time of year when there are dozens of the best-of-the-year lists. Which books are worth reading? One way of narrowing it down is by looking at the various awards that celebrate books across a range of nonfiction categories. Five Books editor Sophie Roell does a roundup of nonfiction books that won prizes in 2022.

Nonfiction of 2022: Fall Roundup, recommended by Sophie Roell

Reading nonfiction books is an excellent way of getting a grip on the realities of the world around us, whether it’s how to live, how to run a country, or understanding how the universe works. Five Books editor Sophie Roell looks at some notable new nonfiction books published since June.

Notable Nonfiction of Spring 2022, recommended by Sophie Roell

In the past few months, lots of history books about the past as well as excellent insights into the present have hit the shelves. Some are gripping reads offering a few hours of escapism, others contributions to our human quest to make the world a better place. Some manage both. Five Books editor Sophie Roell offers a roundup of the most notable new books of nonfiction published in March, April and May 2022.

Gifts for Book Lovers, recommended by Sophie Roell

What gifts are ideal for a book lover—other than books, that is? Here our editor, Sophie Roell, has compiled a list of some of her essential non-book items, including the best book journal to keep a record of your reading as well as some book-related apps and gadgets.

Notable Nonfiction of Early 2022, recommended by Sophie Roell

Even though we’re still in the first couple of months of 2022, there are already lots of really interesting nonfiction books either out or just about to be published. Five Books editor Sophie Roell surveys the flood of books that cover everything from Neolithic archaeology to the latest insights of neuroscience and genetics, as well as books that explore where we work, what we feel, and how we die.

The Best Nonfiction Books of 2021, recommended by Sophie Roell

As the Covid pandemic gets another lease of life with the appearance of the omicron variant, those of us spending additional time at home may need a few more books to read. Here, Five Books editor Sophie Roell shares some of her favourite nonfiction books of the year, from history to economics, lessons on how to write like Chekhov to the part each of us can play in reducing political polarization.

The Best Crime Fiction of 2021, recommended by Sophie Roell

If you’re into crime fiction as a form of relaxation, a wide range of books continue to be published, set in places around the world. Sophie Roell, editor of Five Books and a keen reader of the genre, picks out some of her favourites from 2021.

Best Crime Fiction of 2020, recommended by Sophie Roell

If you’re looking for escapism, crime novels can be a good way to go. Which is strange, given that nearly all of them revolve around murder. Sophie Roell, editor of Five Books and an avid consumer of the genre, picks her personal favourites published in 2020.

The Best Nonfiction Books of 2020, recommended by Sophie Roell

As the world went into lockdown early in 2020, many of us without frontline jobs and lucky enough not to fall sick with Covid-19 found more time to read than usual. The sudden change to a slower gear also left more room to reflect on the state of the world and our place as humans in it. Sophie Roell, editor of Five Books, takes us through her personal choice of the best nonfiction books of 2020.  

Favourite Books, recommended by Sophie Roell

It goes without saying that I have more than five favourite books and some important ones are missing from this page (even though I’ve cheated and included six). I suppose the nonfiction ones are books that opened doors for me in some way or enabled me to see the world more clearly, including professionally. The fiction ones are ones I was completely overexcited about when I read them.

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