Good afternoon my loves!
I hope you all had a lovely Christmas and New Year, if you celebrate it, and are feeling invigorated for the new decade! Today I have not one, but FOUR posts for you. Each of them will showcase my favourite books of the year, from proofs that I read, to 2019 fiction and non-fiction releases and the best of the best backlist books that I read in the year. I had planned to do just 10 favourites, but honest I read so many incredible books that there was no way I could narrow it down! So, today I have 5 books in each category for you. First up, we have the proofs! As always, I am eternally grateful to the publishers that have sent me books and I am looking forward to working with them again this year.
The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern **
I had seen this doing the rounds on Twitter and knew that I had no hope of getting my hands on a proof – those things were like unicorns! But, I have one of the bestest friends ever. Amy manages the best bookshop this side of the equator and knew I’d been dying for it. So, she actually managed to get me a proof! I know! I cried too! This is the second book from the superb Erin Morgenstern. Honestly? I read this book months ago and I still have no idea how to review it. Complex and utterly beautiful. This is definitely going to be an all-time favourite for me.
The Silent Treatment by Abbie Greaves **
I was super grateful to be sent this by the lovely folk at William Morrow but wasn’t sure when I would get around to reading it. Then one day it called to me and it is turns out it is one of the most heartbreaking a hopefully books I’ve read it a long time. I sobbed uncontrollably while reading and devoured it all in just one sitting. The story of Frank and Maggie. Married all their lives, but can they break the deathly silence that has grown between them before it is too late? Gosh, such a brilliant book. Unfortunately this one isn’t out until April, but I promise you it’ll be worth the wait!
Hamnet by Maggie O’Farrell **
If you know me at all, then you’ll know that I am completely and utterly head over heels in love with Maggie O’Farrell’s writing – both fiction and non-fiction. So imagine how loudly I squealed when this sought after proof landed on my doorstep. As I’m writing this I’m really struggling to concisely describe, so here’s some of the blurb: Warwickshire in the 1580s. Agnes is a woman as feared as she is sought after for her unusual gifts. She settles with her husband in Henley street, Stratford, and has three children: a daughter, Susanna, and then twins, Hamnet and Judith. The boy, Hamnet, dies in 1596, aged eleven. Four years or so later, the husband writes a play called Hamlet. Exquisitely written in the way that only Maggie could do. Hitting the shelves in March, be sure you get your copy!
American Dirt by Jeanine Cummins **
The story of Lydia, a bookstore owner from the beautiful Acapulco, Mexico, whose live is turned completely shattered when he journalist husband and 15 other members of her family are slaughtered in one fell swoop. Lydia and her gorgeous little boy Luca must make the most dangerous journey in the world in order to stay alive. Without a doubt the most powerful and necessary book of our time. I won’t say much more because I am planning a full review closer to the release date (21st of January). Here is a little spoiler though, top 3 favourite of all time, without a doubt!
The Strawberry Thief by Joanne Harris **
The 4th and hopefully not the last installment in the excellent Chocolat series, The Strawberry Thief is probably the darkest of the books thus far, but it is definitely my favourite. Vianne has settled down in Lansquenet-sous-Tannes with her special daughter, Rosette but it is not long before we start to see the darker side of Viannes magic and just how dangerous it can sometimes be. A brilliant installment of a great series and I sincerely hope that we don’t have to wait too long before we get the next one. A beautiful blend of contemporary fiction, set in the stunning French landscape with the perfect amount of magic, Joanne Harris certainly knows how to write.
And there we have it, the best of the best proofs that I read in 2019! Have you read any of these books? I’d love to hear your thoughts on them in the comments below.
Peace and pages