It’s that time of year (the last reading day of 2013) where I pick my favourite and bests. The first nine are in no particular order:
Barracuda by Christos Tsiolkas – a sure-fire conversation starter.
The Last Banquet by Jonathan Grimwood – it’s melodramatic, it’s over the top, it’s a brilliant read.
99 Reasons Why by Caroline Smailes – truly creative writing and clever publishing. It’s a reading ‘experience’.
The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion – yes, it’s pure rom-com but the characters linger, unlike other books in the same genre.
A Thousand Pardons by Jonathan Dee – I always enjoy the way Dee balances the ludicrous with the everyday.
The Gourmet by Muriel Barbery – best read in one sitting to truly appreciate the punchline ending.
The Other Typist by Suzanne Rindell – if there’s one book that has frustrated the shit out of readers this year, it’s this one. But boy, what a page-turner.
Message From an Unknown Chinese Mother by Xinran – traumatic, heartbreaking, unforgettable.
Seating Arrangements by Maggie Shipstead – at first you laugh… But there’s depth in the story that stays with you.
My favourite book of 2013 – Burial Rites by Hannah Kent – beautiful, memorable.
I’m exceptionally bad at sticking to the rules. Honourable mentions to:
My Notorious Life by Kate Manning (like The Last Banquet, it’s an action-packed page-turner).
The Post Office Girl by Stefan Zweig – unexpected gem.
Little Known Facts by Christine Sneed – Sneed is one to watch.
The Middlesteins by Jami Attenberg – best ‘family drama’ I read this year.
What Nora Knew by Linda Yellin – not released until 2014 but it’s chick-lit perfection.