As 2018 comes to an end it is time to look back on some of my favourite books from the past year. The number of books I managed to read in 2018 was 79 which exceeded my annual Goodreads target of 75 but was down on the 100 I managed in 2017. However, whilst I didn’t manage to read as many there were so many brilliant books this year and I also got round to reading some big books that have been on my TBR for a few years (The Goldfinch and Alias Grace to name two that I really enjoyed this year) For the purposes of this list I am choosing books published in 2018 only, and whilst it was as ever difficult to choose these are the books that came to mind straight away that I have been recommending and will continue to encourage others to read.
Without further ado (in publication date order) here are my top 5 reads of 2018:
The Seven Deaths Of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton
Publisher: Raven Books
Publication Date: 8th February 2018
My thoughts: A book that needs little introduction given its popularity and appearance on many a prize shortlist, I was one of many readers captivated by Stuart Turton’s brilliantly imaginative debut novel. A classic murder mystery with a twist as its protagonist awakes each day to find themselves in the body of a different host, piecing together the clues to solve the mystery of Evelyn Hardcastle’s untimely death. This was a story which had me hooked, with a web of secrets and lies that were a joy to unravel.
The Darkness by Ragnar Jonasson
Publisher: Penguin Michael Joseph
Publication Date: 15th March 2018
My thoughts: I have been a fan of Ragnar Jonasson’s writing for a few years now having enjoyed his Dark Iceland series. And The Darkness marks the start of a new series and it is one which I have included amongst my favourites for this year as it was one I couldn’t put down. With its intriguing plot surrounding a mysterious death in an unforgiving landscape, this was a chilling and atmospheric crime thriller which has left me eager to read other books in the Hidden Iceland series.
Notes On A Nervous Planet by Matt Haig
Publication Date: 5th July 2018
My thoughts: Last year I included How To Stop Time in my top 5 and this year I have Matt Haig’s latest non-fiction book. I’m not a big non-fiction reader, but this book was one that proved important to me, and one that came along at just the right time for me to read it. This is an important book that explores the modern world and the aspects of which have an impact on our mental wellbeing. The format makes this an accessible read which is wonderfully written with passages of writing I will likely return to again and again.
The Corset by Laura Purcell
Publisher: Raven Books
Publication Date: 20th September 2018
My thoughts: I loved this compelling, gothic Victorian novel in which the lives of two women from different walks of life become intertwined. When a poor, teenage seamstress is awaiting trial for murder, she is visited by a wealthy young woman who tries to find out more about this girl, a girl who claims to have been able to kill through the power of her stitches. A chilling and atmospheric read with a few surprises along the way that had me hooked.
Little by Edward Carey
Publisher: Gallic Books
Publication Date: 4th October 2018
My thoughts: As a historical fiction fan I was intrigued by the premise of Little, which tells the story of the life of Madame Tussaud. I loved this extraordinary and fascinating book which re-imagines the weird and wonderful life of this remarkable woman and the challenges she faced on the way to becoming a household name. I adored this book, and quickly became engrossed in her story, and was a little sad to leave her behind.
These are just a few of many brilliant books I read over the past year. Let me know which books you loved this year, or if you have enjoyed any of my choices!