By this point last year, I’d read The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach. Had I not read another good book for the remainder of the year, I would have been satisfied that 2012 had been a ‘good reading year’. In fact, 2012 got even better when I read Lisa Klaussman’s Tigers in Red Weather.
But 2013 is another story.
When I saw this week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic – best books read so far this year – the first thing I thought was ‘This year, I haven’t found ‘the one’.’ I’ve read some great books (as the list below demonstrates) but I haven’t found the one book that I press onto everyone I meet.Yet.
So this list of excellent books comes with qualifiers – I loved all of these novels but I’m not necessarily recommending them to ALL THE PEOPLE (although The Rosie Project comes darn close).
1. Foal’s Bread by Gillian Mears – this is cheating because I read it at the end of last year, too late to make my 2012 ‘best of’ lists. But it is breathtaking.
2. 99 Reasons Why by Caroline Smailes – like nothing I’ve ever read before (and I still haven’t looked up the alternative endings!).
3. A Thousand Pardons by Jonathan Dee – Dee does the family in crisis and #firstworldproblems so beautifully.
4. The Gourmet by Muriel Barbery – for lovers of a punchline ending.
5. Little Known Facts by Christine Sneed – this book took me by surprise – I was expecting fluff but got excellent, compelling writing instead #huzzah
6. Seating Arrangements by Maggie Shipstead – for characters you love to loathe.
7. The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion – so, so funny.
8. The Middlesteins by Jami Attenberg – need more families in crisis? This one’s a winner.
9. The Other Typist by Suzanne Rindell – if all the people just read this book then we could have a sensible and open discussion about the ending. Until then, sorry, no spoilers here.
10. Big Brother by Lionel Shriver – the ending will make some people scream and throw the book across the room. I thought, Shriver, you’re brilliant because I never saw that coming.