In that pre-Christmas TV lull, between the end of the big Autumn dramas and the beginning of the festive schedules, the programme guides are a wasteland of nonsense, but this week a little gem of documentary really stood out.
The queen of romance sweeps us away to the beautiful, rugged coast of south-west Ireland where three sisters – daughters of the country’s last remaining knight – are coming to terms with not just his death… but his unexpected legacy.
From romance in a small Cotswold village, and drama on the wartime home front, to a lonely cat needing a loving home, and romance for a glitzy pop star, there are some gorgeous books to escape into this December.
Enjoy Santa Claus’s very own instruction manual, get hands-on with Alice in Wonderland, invent your own board games, marvel at Sleeping Beauty in colourful 3D, and meet some perfectly polite penguins in a fantastic array of children’s books.
The tragic death of a young girl on the Sussex Downs twenty-three years ago comes back to haunt crime writer Josephine Tey when she is named as a suspect in what some are now claiming was actually a murder.
A gripping tale which moves from the suburban streets of Nuneaton, Warwickshire, to the busy heart of pre-Great War London and on to the battlefront in France – Goodwin brings us the emotion-packed tale of a young woman desperately seeking a family to love.
In one way or another, it’s been quite the week for the Royals. First we had Prince Andrew’s toe-curling interview with the forensic Emily Maitlis, and then on Sunday, the third series of The Crown (Netflix, streaming now) arrived.
A storyline brimming with warm insight and wry observations on human frailties and foibles, and delicious recipes to tickle everyone’s taste buds, this is the perfect starter to the festive celebrations.