Whilst we haven’t considered buying a single present yet (we have strict ban on the C word until December 1st round these parts) we’re more than happy to use all this Black Friday palaver as an excuse to escape into a bookshop. – preferably one of these beauties.
In case you fancy doing the same, here’s Team One Book Lane’s favourite books published this year, handy if you’re stuck for gift ideas or you just want a good book to get stuck into this weekend.
Sophie P recommends . . .
“A new book from Rainbow Rowell is always a treat but this grown-up love story is my favourite yet. Landline, the much anticipated new novel from the author of Eleanor & Park and Fangirl, is the story of one woman’s mission to save her marriage with a little help from a magic telephone. It manages to be funny, heart-breaking and entirely relatable all at the same time. If you haven’t discovered Rainbow Rowell yet you are most definitely missing out.”
Hannah and Harriet recommend . . .
“This book was one of the most anticipated in the One Book Lanes offices due to Harriet’s stunning debut, Alys, Always. Early proof copies of Her were nigh on impossible to get your hands on in the office, but I managed to snaffle one and absorb the book in less than 48 hours (hey, give me a chance, I did have to fit in work too), and the reason behind it’s popularity was clear. A deeply dark and twisted tale set in there here and now – eerier still for its close proximity to your own life, whether you are a mother or not. How well can you ever know the people around you? A hauntingly written tale of who not to trust.”
“Her is such a great read because it combines incredibly observant writing about life in the north London suburbs with the pace of a thriller. The sinister undercurrent of the relationship between Nina and Emma will have you on the end of your seat and the mounting tension throughout the book is completely gripping.”
Jo recommends . . .
“The Grisha Series is a young adult fantasy trilogy that delivers everything a young adult fantasy trilogy should: magic, love, war, hope, a fantastic heroine. But it also brings more to the table. There are incredible character relationships in the story – witty, funny, moving and hostile – and they lift this trilogy above the rest of the pack, proving what a star Leigh Bardugo is.”
Jemima recommends . . .
“A book that really lives up to the hype, Terry Hayes’s I Am Pilgrim is a clever, twisting thrillfest, comparable, in terms of plot complexity, to an entire series of 24. It’s epic in scale and scope – and masterfully structured – but at its heart it’s a good, honest-to-God thriller that I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend to anyone. If you haven’t read it yet, enjoy!”
Graeme recommends . . .
“My book of the year has to be The Killing Season. To pick up a debut novel and find it so slick, so well-written was a complete treat. It was like reading a Bourne book for the first time again (remember that heart in your mouth feeling when you first read The Bourne Identity or a Jack Reacher novel?) Carter Blake was a brilliant character and the villain, Caleb Wardell was even more so. I wasn’t on the edge of my seat, I was on the floor.”
Alex recommends . . .
“A beautiful debut laced with magic realism – think The Green Mile crossed with Gabriel García Márquez. Based on death row in a prison rife with corruption and violence, we follow the silent narrator as he reflects on his own life and that of his fellow doomed men. The protagonist’s fantastical imagery of the prison contrasts with the stark reality faced by a death row investigator, who is entrusted with proving the innocence of another inmate. Beautiful and heart-rendering, this amazing debut novel takes on more resonance when you realise Rene Denfeld herself is a death penalty investigator.”
“The Falconer is the perfect winter read. Edinburgh all sparkly with snow. The 1844 Winter Season. Lady Aileana Kameron, the only daughter of the Marquess of Douglas, has just come out of mourning for her murdered mother. The rumours are that that Aileana may be her mother’s killer, but Aileana knows that truth. Her mother was murdered by a faery. Now, Aileana is in a race against time to find her mother’s murderer, find a suitable husband and save the world. Love. Revenge. Ballroom dancing.”
We’d love to hear your favourite reads from the last 12 months too, let us know in the comments below.
Team One Book Lane