The Personals by Brian O'Connell

The Personals by Brian O'Connell

Some people do Sudoku, others watch Netflix. Brian O'Connell trawls the classified ads, both online and what remains in print.

This fascinating collection of stories shows how classified ads can help unlock a door into Irish society, and brings us extraordinary experiences from ordinary people. Why is a woman in rural Ireland selling high-tech eavesdropping equipment? Did someone really sell a pet monkey in the Evening Echo newspaper in Cork? Why was a wedding dress for sale 'never worn'?

Classified ads are not just a few commercial lines of text – they can be a treasure trove of stories and human experience; stories of nostalgia, love, loss, loneliness, isolation and redemption. Brian uses online and newspaper ads as a way into people's lives, both past and present, funny and poignant.

Greenfeast: autumn, winter by Nigel Slater

Greenfeast: autumn, winter by Nigel Slater

Great Expeditions: 50 Journeys that changed our world by Mark Steward and Alan Greenwood

Great Expeditions: 50 Journeys that changed our world by Mark Steward and Alan Greenwood