It’s that time of year – where bloggers look back over the books they’ve read during the past twelve months to pick their favourites. I always look forward to – reading the lists that other people compile, and choosing my favourites.
This year, I’ve managed to keep it ten – even though that meant leaving off some books I really liked by notables like Elizabeth von Arnim, Vita Sackville-West, Muriel Spark, Ivy Compton-Burnett, E.H. Young, Elizabeth Bowen… basically, the list could have been much longer. And the top book – well, it’s not the one I’ve been telling everyone it would be, because I hadn’t remembered my favourite book of the year had slipped into the first few days of 2016, rather than the last few of 2015.
My usual self-imposed rules apply – no re-reads and only one book per author. Click on the title to take you to the review!
A frivolous, funny, and entirely delightful novel that reminds me that there’s so much more to E.F. Benson than the (wonderful) Mapp and Lucia books.
This was a lovely surprise – one of the books I took with me to Edinburgh, and an extremely funny and sharp book. Another author to explore more…
A return to one of my favourite authors was a definite success – and makes me glad that I kept off making my list until the end of the year.
I only just finished this one, and haven’t reviewed yet – but the next episode of ‘Tea or Books?’ podcast will cover it. For now, I’ve linked to Rachel’s review of this observant, gentle, rather beautiful tale of a couple entering retirement.
I wasn’t sure which Adichie book to choose – I’ve read three of hers in 2016 – but it’s this one which has stayed with me the most. Her novel of Nigerian ex-pats in the UK and US is thoughtful, poignant, and brilliantly told.
I’m far from the only person who’s fallen in love with this Slightly Foxed offering – an anecdotal history of girls’ boarding schools 1939-1979.
I’ve not read any of Warner’s short stories before, but absolutely loved her touch with these when I read the collection during the #1947Club. (#1951Club to come in the spring!)
This was the first book I read especially for ‘Tea or Books?’, and I’m so glad I did! This charming memoir is rightly beloved by many.
The novel I thought would be the top one on my list – a brilliantly written portrait of two men trying to come to terms with Germany and their pasts after the Second World War.
Once I’d remembered that this was one of my first reads in 2016, how could anything else come top of my list? It’s rare to read a novel this funny, joyful, and charming – about two young women setting up a flower shop, and their witty adventures. Even better – it’s coming back into print from Scott and the Furrowed Middlebrow imprint at Dean Street Press!