The best of the year in books so far

PileofBooksIt’s half way through 2015 and time for a literary stock take of my year so far. The bare statistics underpinning six months of reading pleasure are: total number of books – 55 books consisting of 50 novels, three works of non-fiction, one book of poetry and one play. The gender breakdown was 33 women writers and 22 male, drawn from 13 countries, with the largest number coming from Australia and Great Britain. Below are my ten favourite books (so far), not in any particular order as just selecting the ten was hard enough. One of Us by Asne Seirstad, Waiting for the Past by Les Murray and The Eye of the Sheep by Sofie Laguna deserve a special mention because they would have been on the list if the Top 10 was actually a Top13.

  • Station 11 by Emily St John Mandel
  • Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty
  • Snow Kimono by Mark Henshaw
  • The End of Days by Jenny Erpenbeck
  • River of Fire by Amitav Ghosh
  • The Truth and Other Lies by Sascha Arango
  • One Life by Kate Grenville
  • The Bees by Laline Paull
  • The Last Pilot by Benjamin Johncock
  • Department of Speculation by Jenny Offill

Full list:

Patrick Modiano Suspended Sentences
Jacqueline Yallop Malford
Haruki Murakami The Strange Library
Catherine Lacey Nobody is Ever Mssing
Maria Duenos The Heart Has Its Reasons
D.A.Mishani A Possibility of Violence
Ben Lerner 10:04
Michael Faber The Book of Strange New Things
Tom Rachman The Rise And Fall of Great Powers
Paula Hawkins The Girl on the Train
Celeste Ng Everything I Never Told You
Keigo Higashino The Devotion of Suspect X
Mark Henshaw The Snow Kimono
Keigo Higashino Salvation of a Saint
Andrew O’Hagan The Illuminations
Anne Tyler A Spool of Blue Thread
Joyce Carol Oates The Sacrifice
Donna Tarte The Goldfinch
Ayelet Tsabar The Best Place on Earth SS R
Emma Healey Elizabeth is Missing
Maxine Beneba Clark Foreign Soil SS
Timothy Brook Mr Selden’s Map of China
Alison Moore He Wants
Emily St John Mandel Station Eleven
Emily Bitto The Strays
Colm Toibin Nora Webster
Sofie Laguna The Eye of the Sheep
Ellen van Neerven Heat and Light SS R
Liane Moriarty Big Little Lies
Jo Nesbo Blood on Snow
Jane Schemilt Daughter
Atticus Lish Preparation for the Next Life
Laline Paull The Bees
Naja Marie Aidt Baboon SS R
Jenny Offill Dept. of Speculation R
Sascha Arango The Truth and Other Lies R
Jim Shepard The Book of Aron R
John Misto The Shoe-Horn Sonata
Sebastian Barry The Temporary Gentleman
Asne Seierstad One of Us
Amitav Ghosh Flood of Fire
Seni Glaister The Museum of Things Left Behind
Sonia Hartnett Golden Boys
Elizabeth Harrower The Watch Tower
Jenny Erpenbeck The End of Days
Rosamund Lupton The Quality of Silence
Sara Novic Girl at War
Les Murray Waiting for the Past
Kate Grenville One Life
Donna Leon Falling in Love
Natascha Solomon The Song Collector
Alex Hammond The Unbroken Line
Christine Piper After Darkness
Anna Funder The Girl With the Dogs
Benjamin Johncock The Last Pilot


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