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The books below are recommended for improving your skills in English and Media Studies. You can click the links to buy from or take the ISBN number to your local bookshop.


Click to buy from with the English Anthology for AQA A
by Imelda Pilgrim
ISBN: 043510604X
Written by a senior examiner, this book takes you through activities for the 'Different Cultures' poems in the Anthology. It also helps to develop skills for answering in the exam.
Click to buy from the English and English Literature Anthology for AQA A
by Tony Childs
ISBN: 0435102885
Also written by a senior examiner (not Imelda Pilgrim - Amazon mistake, not mine), this book offers revision questions and guidance on the exam. It's a good buy as it covers all exams that involve the Anthology.
Click to buy from English GCSE Specification A: Students' Book
by Geoff Barton
ISBN: 019831888X
This book covers the basics for both English and English Literature GCSEs.
Click to buy from to GCSE
by Geoff Barton
ISBN: 0198314477
An excellent way of devloping comprehension skills for Paper One of AQA'a specification A English GCSE.
Click to buy from English for AQA A
by Imelda Pilgrim
ISBN: 0435106023
Written by a senior examiner, this book is the companion of Working with the English Anthology for AQA A. It covers pretty much everything other than the Anthology for English.
Click to buy from Skills in GCSE English for AQA A
by Imelda Pilgrim
ISBN: 0435106031
As the title suggests, a good book for brushing up on your basic skills in reading and writing.

Media Studies

Click to buy from Than Meets the Eye: An Introduction to Media Studies
by Graeme Burton
ISBN: 0340762047
Now in its third edition, this book is an excellent all-round textbook. It has material to suit GCSE and A Level study.
Click to buy from Media Studies for OCR
by Richard Harvey et al
ISBN: 0340801301
£varies - available used
Aimed specifically at OCR's AS Media Studies specification, this book has material on key concept areas and each of the assessment units.
Click to buy from Media Studies for OCR
by Tanya Jones et al
ISBN: 0340847778
Like the AS version, this book is specifically targetted at OCR's A2 Media course. It has advice on production work and guidance on undertaking the research task.
Click to buy from Cinema Book
edited by Pam Cook
ISBN: 0851707262
A highly recommended starting point for any work you do on film. It covers film history, genre theory, production techniques and lots more besides!
Click to buy from Elements 3 (PC)
An excellent value for money image editor. This will do most things you will need to do for GCSE and AS/A2 Media. Definitely one to carefully consider.

Home Page Recommendations

by Ian McEwan
ISBN: 0099429799

A novel set in upper-middle class England in 1935, France in the second world war and almost present day, Atonement tells the story of Briony Tallis and both her crime and her attempt to atone for it. As with many of McEwan's novels, the ending forces the reader to question the impressions created earlier in the reading, making a re-reading all the more tempting.

Sonny Liston Was A Friend Of Mine
by Thom Jones
ISBN: 0571201903

This is a very powerful set of short stories. Jones' writing is very energetic and edgy, well suited to his subject matter of boxing, the Vietnam war and social outcasts. The first story is particularly memorable.

by Don DeLillo
ISBN: 0330369954

An imposing novel in every sense, Don DeLillo's epic is thoroughly worth the effort. Whilst engaging the reader with a vast time span - the second half of the twentieth century - he still manages to offer closely observed details from the lives of his characters. To single out anything would be to detract from the riches this novel offers.

by Matt Ridley
ISBN: 185702835X

A science book - as in real science. Admittedly 'pop science', Genome is still a very insightful book. By concentrating on the story of the discovery of one gene from each chromosome, Matt Ridley makes what could by rather dry illuminating and at times compelling.

House of Leaves
by Mark Z Danielewski
ISBN: 038560310X

Without a doubt a strange book - at times you have to turn the book upside-down, on its side and double-back on yourself. I assure you, it's not a pretentious as it sounds. The first hundred pages especially are effective in creating suspense and horror, as the story of a film about a mysterious hallway is introduced. As much an experiment in how layout can interact with content as an intriguing story, this is definitely one book you will remember.

by Sebastian Faulks
ISBN: 0099387913

Birdsong is highly recommended for its exploration of trench and tunnelling life during the First World War. This is a challenging novel, with graphic content, and reading it is certainly a powerful experience. Everyone should read this novel, but anyone preparing for AQA's A2 English Literature Synoptic Unit should consider it essential.

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