This was originally going to be a ‘5 on Friday’ post, however I found it impossible to whittle my top books of 2015 down to only 5. I have read so many good books this year. In fact as I look back over my reviews I realise there have been very few books which have disappointed. These however are the books which in one way or another have made my heart sing, and compelled me to keep reading when I really should have stopped. These are the ones I have snatched a few lines or a chapter from at any available moment, and these are the ones that have stayed with me long after I finished the last page.
So without further ado and in no particular order except the one in which I read them, I give you My top 6 reads of 2015 with a few words on why they are so special
The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh – January 2015
This was my first read of 2015 and it got my reading year off to an excellent start. I knew nothing of it before I began. I was immediately engaged with the story and learnt so much about the meaning of flowers from it. Entertaining and educating, and I’ve looked at flowers in such different way since reading it.
The Heroes’ Welcome by Louisa Young – March 2015
Ever since reading ‘My Dear I Wanted to Tell You’ I had been holding out for this novel. I had unfinished business with Riley Purefoy and the surrounding cast and was desperate to pick up the story. Louisa Young has such skilful way with words and I luxuriated in her compact sentences and profound narrative. The heartache and tragedy contained within this story does not necessarily always make it an easy read but my word its worth every second spent immersed in it.
The Home Maker by Dorothy Canfield Fisher – March 2015
I came across this classic Persephone book by way of another blog and picked it up during one of my happy visits to the wonderful Persephone books this year. This novel was published in 1924 but is way ahead its time as it confronts and challenges gender stereo types. Having finished reading this I found myself wanting to go right back to the beginning and start again. A sure sign of a successful read.
A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler – April 2015
This made the shortlist for The Women’s Baileys Prize for Fiction and also the Man Booker. Sadly it didn’t win either but I was so pleased one of my favourite writers received this well deserved recognition. Another cleverly observant and sympathetic novel that deserves more than one reading.
The Secret History by Donna Tartt – August 2015
I came late to Donna Tartt and approached her with some trepidation, but oh my what a treat. I was completely thrilled with this. There were so many things I loved about this novel but none more than Tartt’s style of writing and her clever use of words which were frequently truly beautiful to read. There are sentences in this novel which I read over and over.
My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante – November 2015
I’m so thrilled to have discovered the first of this quartet of books in the Neapolitan series and I cannot wait to work my way through them all. This wonderful tale of friendships, feuds, poverty and suffering kept me enthralled during a recent holiday. The story is intense and at times claustrophobic but total immersion in it brought total joy.
Thank you to all who have stuck with me as I have shared my jumbled thoughts and opinions on all things bookish with you this year. As 2016 rapidly approaches I look forward to another year in books, because between the pages of a book really is a very happy place to be.