I can’t believe tomorrow is the start of the new year! 2017 seems to have flown by, and I’ve managed to read quite a lot, which made it a struggle to pick my top reads of the year. But, after much deliberation here they are!
5 – ‘Eleanor Oliphant is completely fine’ by Gail Honeyman
4 out of 5 stars
Eleanor Oliphant leads a simple life. She wears the same clothes to work every day, eats the same meal deal for lunch every day and buys the same two bottles of vodka to drink every weekend. Eleanor Oliphant is happy. Nothing is missing from her carefully timetabled life. Except, sometimes, everything. One simple act of kindness is about to shatter the walls Eleanor has built around herself. Now she must learn how to navigate the world that everyone else seems to take for granted – while searching for the courage to face the dark corners she’s avoided all her life. Change can be good. Change can be bad. But surely any change is better than … fine?
4 – ‘When breath becomes air’ by Paul kalanithi
4 out of 5 stars
At the age of thirty-six, on the verge of completing a decade’s training as a neurosurgeon, Paul Kalanithi was diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer. One day he was a doctor treating the dying, the next he was a patient struggling to live. When Breath Becomes Air chronicles Kalanithi’s transformation from a medical student asking what makes a virtuous and meaningful life into a neurosurgeon working in the core of human identity – the brain – and finally into a patient and a new father.
3 – ‘Big little lies’ Liane Moriarty
4 out of 5
Fiction // mystery
Sometimes it’s the little lies that turn out to be the most lethal… A murder … a tragic accident … or just parents behaving badly? What’s indisputable is that someone is dead. But who did what?
2 – ‘A boy made of blocks’ by Keith Stuart
4 out of 5
A father who rediscovers love. Alex loves his wife Jody, but has forgotten how to show it. He loves his son Sam, but doesn’t understand him. He needs a reason to grab his future with both hands. A son who shows him how to live. Meet eight-year-old Sam: beautiful, surprising – and different. To him the world is a frightening mystery. But as his imagination comes to life, his family will be changed . . . for good.
1 – ‘Brain on fire: my month of madness’ by Susannah Cahalan
5 out of 5 stars
Susannah Cahalan was a happy, clever, healthy twenty-four-year old. Then one day she woke up in hospital, with no memory of what had happened or how she had got there. Within weeks, she would be transformed into someone unrecognizable, descending into a state of acute psychosis, undergoing rages and convulsions, hallucinating that her father had murdered his wife; that she could control time with her mind. Everything she had taken for granted about her life, and who she was, was wiped out.
What were your favourite reads of 2017?