All the Books I’ve Read This Year, Ranked from Best to Worst
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After Max was born, I basically stopped reading.
This was horrifying to me, because reading is a bit like breathing as far as I’m concerned. I mean, I did a degree in English Literature just so I could spend four years reading books and calling it ‘work’, and the idea that I might not have as much time for it any more was one of the things that terrified me most about impending parenthood, along with all the stories about how I’d basically just live in my dressing gown now because there would never be time to put on ‘real’ clothes.
“That won’t happen to me,” I said confidently (and also slightly hysterically), every time someone gently tried to suggest that I might have to make some compromises once the baby was born. “I’ll accept the dressing gown thing if I absolutely have to, but I’ll still have time to read, surely?”
But no, actually, it turned out the prophecies were true. The baby was born, and I started choosing my clothes for the day based on how comfortable they’d be to sleep in, and how easily they’d wash. I thought four hours sleep was “a pretty good night”. One day I got onto a long haul flight and realized I’d been looking forward to it almost as much as the holiday that came after it, because it was going to be the first time in months that I had nothing else to do but read, which was an almost unimaginable luxury to me by that point.
On the plus side, I’m no longer scared of flying.
On the minus side, however, the 20 books I read this year still feels like quite the achievement for me, and I’m a little bit embarrassed to admit it, especially given that a lot of them weren’t even books I picked myself, but ones Terry bought back when I started writing romance novels, and decided I should probably start reading some of them, too. You know, for research.
Anyway. Even though absolutely no one asked for a list of all the books I’ve read this year, I’m going to give you one, anyway. Before I do, though, I just quickly want to add here it was really difficult to order these, because I know whether I enjoyed a book or not, but do I know whether I’d rank it 15th or 16th, or maybe 14th? Not really, it would appear. So please take it with a huge pinch of salt, and also know that while I’ve ordered them from ‘best to worst’ the fact that a particular book is lower down the list doesn’t mean that it’s a bad book, necessarily, just that there were others I personally enjoyed more than it.
So here it is: please be aware that some of my comments may contain spoilers, so proceed at your peril…
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