That being said in 2013 I did still manage to read 218 books, a fair chunk of these were non-fiction and very few were re-reads. I think I read the least children's books ever this year too!
Picking my top reads was actually very hard - the top two came easily but after that I had to pour over my reading journal to narrow it down, and even then I had to cheat! Please note that these lists are simply the best books I read this year and *not* the best books published this year!
Top 10 Fiction:
- The President's Hat by Antoine Laurain
- The Yohnalasse Riding Camp for Girls by Anton Disclafani
- Wars of the Roses: Stormbird by Conn Iggulden
- The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer
- The Daughter of Time by Josephine Tey
- Austerlitz by W G Sebald
- The Marlowe Papers by Ros Barber
- Longbourn by Jo Baker
- Fortunately the Milk by Neil Gaiman
- Stoner by John Williams
Some of these choices surprise even me...I read Disclafani's book back in January and thought it was brilliant, but never expected it to stay in my top 10 let alone in my top 2 - it set the bar very high for all other books this year!
The Marlowe Papers is a book in verse and about the idea that Shakespeare's plays were written by Marlowe, I should have loathed it but instead found it gripping. Equally I've not got on that well with many of Neil Gaiman's books (to the horror of my reading group) but yet this deceptively simple book has really stuck with me.
Top 5 Non Fiction:
- An Astronaut's Guide to Life of Earth by Commander Chris Hadfield
- A Time of Gifts by Patrick Leigh Fermor
- The Old Ways by Robert MacFarlane
- One Summer: 1927 by Bill Bryson
- White Hart, Red Lion by Nick Asbury
Honorable mentions in the non fiction category have to go to the 12 short books published by Penguin to celebrate the 150th birthday of the Tube especially 32 Stops by Danny Dorling about the Central Line which was a real eye-opener.
So far I've not seen many lists of books that are to be published in 2014 and so I don't know what to expect - I'm just hoping that the next Conn Iggulden book will be out soon, but as yet there is nothing on his website.