Top Ten Tuesday: Recent favourites


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme is all about recent five-star reads…. 

I’ve only completed ten books so far this year so for the purposes of this list I’m taking ‘recent’ to mean ‘in the last six months’…

1, Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe. When I think over the ‘best’ books I’ve read over the past six months, this one stands head and shoulders above almost all of the others. I’m still surprised that such a stark book can be so powerful.

2, The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid. Overall I had mixed feelings about this book but there’s no escaping the fact that it was absolutely absorbing. I couldn’t tear myself away from it.

3, On Tangled Paths by Theodor Fontane. I loved this. It was quiet  and understated but beautifully written.

4, Lady Audley’s Secret by Mary Elizabeth Braddon. At the other end of the spectrum, a melodramatic bit of Victorian romance can also go a long way…

5, War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy. Without a doubt this ranks as the best book I read, not just recently, but in a very long time. I think it’s spoiled me though – nothing I’ve read since then has captured my imagination in quite the same way.

6, The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett. This witty novella was exactly the thing to get me through my first bout of post-Tolstoy blues.

7, The Quickening Maze by Adam Foulds. Vividly imagined but not quite carrying the depth I wanted it to, I look back quite fondly on this now that I’ve had a week to think it over.

……………….. And this is where I run out of ideas. Only seven truly enjoyable reads in six months? That’s pretty sad really. I need to get myself out of this reading funk soon. Does anyone else ever feel like this? What do you do to bring yourself out of it?

8 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Recent favourites

  1. Interesting! I tried to remember all the books I’ve read in the past six months, but that was not so easy! I re-read a lot of War and Peace, also my absolute favourite. Last summer I read and loved Tove Janson’s Summerbook and later ordered the rest of her books (for grown ups), but they were not as good as the Summerbook:-( I just finished Reading Lolita in Tehran from Azar Nafisi, great book, it really makes you think about books and life. Happy reading:-)


  2. Well I’m super-impressed that you just dropped War & Peace in there! It’s one of those big ticket books that I haven’t read (yet) and, having just seen the brilliant BBC production of W&P, I’m feeling like I won’t get to reading it for quite some time (I can’t do books and movies back-to-back because it all blurs).

    Here’s my TTT –

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ha! One of the lesser known joys of reading War and Peace is being able to drop it quietly into conversations to impress people! I really loved the BBC production so I can understand why you might want to give it a while. I don’t like reading and watching too close together either. Thanks for the comment!

      Liked by 1 person

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