I honestly cannot believe that we are at this point of the year already! Wrapping up my books of the year is always my favourite thing to do, and this year has been a bit of a cracker for books. Having started my new job in September, the amount of books read this year started to trail off towards the end of the year but I still managed (as of the 23rd December) to read 47 books this year. Narrowing the list town to a ‘best of’ was tricky, but I’m really happy with the ones I’ve chosen for my Top 10! These books are by no means ranked from best to worst, just a collection of books that I would recommend to anyone looking for a decent read.
One of the first books I read this year was a translation from the German, The Trap (Die Falle) by Malanie Raabe. It was a book that had been recommended to me by a work colleague and I felt very lucky to have read it. The story follows a German author who witnessed the escape of her sister’s murderer, seeing the perpetrator’s face as a result. When she sees the man presenting on the news, she finds herself eager to arrange an interview with him to finally avenge her sister’s death.
The Reader on the 6.27 follows a Frenchman, Guylain Vignolles, who catches the same train to work every day. Every day, he reads aloud to his fellow commuters. When he finds a pendrive, full to the brim with romantic musings, he makes it his task to find their writer. A joyful, happy story full of beautiful language.
Arguably my favourite read of 2017, and definitely the one that evoked the most emotion-wise, was When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi. Written autobiographically in the last days of his life, the story follows Paul, a surgeon, as he suffers from lung cancer. There are no words to describe the book other than devastating and if you do anything in 2018, I would recommend getting a copy of this book.
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas has been a popular choice for a lot of people and I really enjoyed reading the book. It is particularly relevant nowadays, with all the trouble worldwide involving police brutality and maltreatment towards people of colour. It was a poignant read and one that I’d happily read over and over. Angie Thomas’ debut has impressed beyond words, to the extent that filming has already commenced for the film adaptation.
If you know me at all, you’ll know that I love a good old fashioned contemporary romance as much (possibly more) than the next person and Miss You by Kate Eberlen satisfied all of my sop cravings. It reminded me a little of One Day, following two characters around as they ‘missed’ one another, over and over, until one day, they don’t. It’s beautifully romantic and was quite rightly included on the Richard and Judy booklist for Summer 2017. A must read. Another beautiful contemporary that I read in 2017 was The Keeper of Lost Things by Ruth Hogan.
When I was sunning it up in Barcelona, the only book on my reading list was How to Stop Time by Matt Haig and it wouldn’t be right if I didn’t include it on this list. There’s something about Matt’s writing style that pulls me in from the word go and How to Stop Time did exactly the same that. It follows a man who has lived through centuries worth of adventures and experiences, aging at a minute scale. The story is heart warming and exciting and one for readers of all genres.
A bit of a strange inclusion on the list is Nina LaCour’s We Are Okay. Not my usual type of book, I was pleasantly surprised to find that it was probably one of the best books I’ve read in a very long time. It’s a really easy read and perfect for the YA lover.
Another book I read whilst traveling was the much acclaimed We Have Always Lived in The Castle by Shirley Jackson. I think this book is a bit like marmite- either you love it or you hate it- and I definitely loved it. It was creepy and mysterious and kept me guessing right until the very end. A fantastic read that really ought to get more recognition.
One of my more recent (and loved) reads is of course, Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie. The mystery kept me guessing right until the very end and I was really disappointed in myself for not having read it before!
Which books have you read this year? What do I need to be adding to my TBR pile for 2018? Let me know!