I usually do a Top 5 of the year but I’m lame when it comes to TV shows, films and music of 2015. All I know if that 2015 so many people become Bielebers. So I present my top 5 fiction books and my top 5 non-fiction books.
Fiction Top 5
1. A God in Ruins by Kate Atkinson. Probably my favourite book of the year, made me cry on the bus home from work! If you liked Life After Life, then pick up this companion novel! It doesn’t have to be read in order as they don’t really spoil each other.
2. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. I finally read this classic! And it was worth the read. And the day after I started it, Go Set a Watchman was released.
3. Queen of Shadows by Sarah J Maas. This is the fourth book in the series, the most recent, and I picked it as it really wowed me but the entire Throne of Glass series is a fantastic, kick ass fantasy YA series I’d really recommend.
4. Burial Rites by Hannah Kent. This one had been on my radar for a while but it wasn’t until a workmate read it and loved it that I picked it up. It’s haunting and beautiful and I know Sharon from Behind Green Eyes loved it too!
5. Faithful Place by Tana French. I read Broken Harbour too this year but I picked Faithful Place as French really nails the inner Dublin dialect and I loved the main character in this.
Honorary mentions to The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton, Elizabeth Is Missing by Emma Healey and Animal Farm by George Orwell
Non Fiction Top 5
1. Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson. I read a good few nonfiction books that tackled the theme of depression this year (Hyperbole and a Half and Reasons to Stay Alive being the main ones that stick out), but I chose this one as it stuck with me the most and it also made me laugh.
2. Pretty Honest by Sali Hughes. I love Sali’s YouTube videos and everytime I read a piece by her I’m struck by how honest she is. I love her mentally of not saving the ‘good’ stuff because it’s just a waste! A must for beauty junkies.
3. Yes Please by Amy Poehler. The main thing I took away from this book was Amy’s message of ‘Good for her. Not for me’. That you don’t need to tear down other people’s choices, just say ‘good for her. Not for me’.
4. Popular: a Memoir by Maya Van Wagenen. Maya is low down on the popularity scale in school so she decides to follow the wisdom in a 1950s popularity guide. Her writing is so sweet and I really loved this book.
5. Weird Things Customers Say in Bookshops by Jen Campbell. This made me laugh out loud and roll my eyes in equal measures, especially as I was working in a bookshop at the time of reading. Even if you’ve never worked in one, you’ll appreciate some of the things that come out of people’s mouths.
I posted that I wanted to do a challenge that Sharon from Behind Green Eyes tagged me in and later I found out it was the Popsugar Challenge. At first I just read what I wanted and matched the books up to a challenge. But half way through the year I noticed I’d have to start reading books that fit challenges and things got serious! I only doubled on one challenge (Read a book you were supposed to read in school, I read everything so this wasn’t an option for me but instead I picked it to go under To Kill a Mockingbird as even though we didn’t read it in school I should have read it back then). I’m pretty proud at myself for finishing this!
Read a book with more than 500 pages- Queen of Shadows by Sarah J Maas
A classic romance- Persuasion by Jane Austen
A book that became a movie- The DUFF by Kody Keplinger
A book published this year- Winter Siege by Ariana Franlin and Samantha Norman
A book with a number in the title- The Edible Atlas: Around the World in 39 Countries by Mina Holland
A book written by someone under 30- Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas
A book with non-human characters- Animal Farm by George Orwell
A funny book- Weird Things Customers Say in Bookshops by Jen Campbell
A book by a female author- Elizabeth Is Missing by Emma Healey
A mystery or thriller- The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
A book with a one word title- Fairest by Marissa Meyer
A book of short stories- Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh
A book set in a different country- Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
A nonfiction book- Pretty Honest by Sali Hughes
A popular author’s first book- Looking For Alaska by John Green
A book from an author you love that you have not read yet- So You’ve Been Publically Shamed by Jon Ronson
A book a friend recommends- Faithful Place by Tana French
A Pulitzer Prize winning book- To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
A book based on a true story- Burial Rites by Hannah Kent
A book at the bottom of your to-read list- The Help by Kathryn Stockett
A book your mom loves- Body 115: The Mystery of the Last Victim of the King’s Cross Fire by Paul Chambers
A book that scares you- Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
A book more than 100 years old- Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
A book based entirely on its cover- The Opposite of Loneliness by Marina Keegan
A book you were supposed to read in school but didn’t- To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
A memoir- Yes Please by Amy Poehler
A book you can finish in a day- The Strings of Murder by Oscar de Muriel
A book with antonyms in the title- Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson
A book set somewhere you’ve always wanted to visit- The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton
A book that came out the year you were born- Watchmen by Alan Moore
A book with bad reviews- Hausfrau by Jill Alexander Essbaum
A trilogy- Daughter of Smoke and Bone, Days of Blood and Starlight, and Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor
A book from your childhood- Mog the Forgetful Cat by Judith Kerr
A book with a love triangle- Crown of Midnight by Sarah J Maas
A book set in the future- Only Ever Yours by Louise O’Neill
A book set in a high school- Miss Mayhem by Rachel Hawkins
A book with a colour in the title- A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler
A book that made you cry- Academy Street by Mary Costello
A book with magic- Heir of Fire by Sarah J Maas
A graphic novel- Scott Pilgrim and the Infinite Sadness by Bryan Lee O’Malley
A book from an author you’ve read before- Let’s Explore Diabetes With Owls by David Sedaris
A book you own but have never read yet- Not My Father’s Son by Alan Cumming
A book set in your home town- Meatspace by Nikesh Shukla
A book that was originally written in another language- The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George
A book set at Christmas- Humbugs and Heartstrings by Catherine Ferguson
A book written by an author with your same intials- The Teatime Islands by Ben Fogle
A play- The Pillowman by Martin McDonagh
A banned book- Winnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne
A book based on or turned into a TV show- The Woman Who Walked in Sunshine by Alexander McCall Smith
A book you started by never finished- The Second Book of General Ignorance by John Lloyd and John Mitchinson (started in 2012!)
Phew! It was a fun challenge to do, I know Sharon completed hers too, which you can check out here. There’s a 2016 challenge if you’re interested in it but I will be doing the Book Riot Read Harder challenge this year if you’re interested in joining! Even if you don’t want to do a book challenge like these, then perhaps just set a reading resolutions goal or two. If you’re not a reader, then aim for 6 books in the year (that’s 1 for every 2 months). If you only read fiction, try to read a handful of non-fiction books. Think you’re too busy to read? Have one screen free evening a week, where you don’t look at TV, computers or phones and I bet you’ll find time to read. Now to pester my boyfriend into reading at least one book this year!