What an excellent year for books 2017 was. It was tough pinning down my absolute favourites but here they are, my Top 10 reads/listens for the year:
1. Best all rounder: The Power by Naomi Alderman
Pacy, exciting and original, flawlessly written. Read my full review here.
2. Best twist: Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough
A veritable spaghetti monster of a crime novel with an absolute blinder of an ending, does the genre proud.
3. Best True Crime: The Fact of A Body by Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich
Smack, bang in the middle of a True Crime epidemic, came this superb and compelling memoir/murder case that elevated the genre to a new level. It marries the struggles the author had dealing with the case of a child killer while she was a law student, with the problems that stemmed from her own difficult childhood.
4. Best audiobook: How To Be A Boy by Robert Webb
What can I say? I was a huge fan to begin with so there was no way I was reading this book to myself when I could have the adorable Robert Webb read it to me through my ears with his actual voice. He did not disappoint. I defy any listener, male or female or other, to not fall in love with this person over and over and over again and not be heartbroken that he married someone else and not you. Beautiful, hilarious and devastating. Same goes for the book.
5. Best debut: See What I Have Done by Sarah Schmidt
This re-imagining of the Lizzie Borden murders that caused a storm in America in 1892 is a clever and confident crossover of true crime and fiction. Read my full review here.
6. Best Crime Comeback Novel: The Hidden Room by Stella Duffy
A disturbing and cautionary tale of family secrets and damaged pasts, this was a cracking return to crime for acclaimed writer, playwright, performer and activitist, Stella Duffy. Read the full review here.
7. Best Feel-Good Novel: The Keeper of Lost Things by Ruth Hogan
Also known as The Winner of Many Awards or The Stealer of Many Hearts, Keeper is the perfect antidote to the current shitstorm that’s sweeping the world. It also has one of the best opening lines ever. See full review here
8. Most Gripping Obsession-Based Novel Set In The Lake District: Exquisite by Sarah Stovell
OK so I made this category up just so that I could include this, one of the best books I read on holiday this summer. See full review here
9. Most Atmospheric and Terrifying Paranormal Literary Spookfest: Devil’s Day by Andrew Michael Hurley
Another made-up category, but only because it sounds better than ‘Best Scary Book’. For a fully immersive experience, I can recommend reading this over Halloween, which I did and devoured it in two days. The sense of place and the characters draw you in and with some of the best writing you’ll read, this is a stunning page-turner of a book.
10. Best YA novel: The Rest Of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness
Not strictly a 2017 book as it was actually published two years prior, but it was on my list so here it is. Read the full review here.
We’d love to hear what your favourite books of 2017 were and any recommendations you have for 2018. Please post any comments below.
Thanks for reading, Ann xxx