My Year In Books :: Jan to May 2016

Recent Reads Jan-May-16

I love reading and having found Alyson’s ‘Recent Reads’ feature at Sky Blue Pink Designs, I’ve been inspired to follow her example and chronicle all the books I read during a year – above are the books I’ve completed so far in 2016.

From hereon in I’ll make my next book post at the end of June and then aim to list them on a traditional quarterly basis. I plan to give a brief review of my thoughts about the titles I read (liked it, loathed it, could be better) without giving away any spoilers. Not having attempted reviews of any kind before, this will be an interesting (hopefully educational) exercise for me.

Of the eleven books so far read, I’ll just say more about those I found most engrossing/enjoyable, as eleven reviews all in one go is just be a bit too daunting for me until I get the hang of it! So, favourite first, here we go…

The Illegal Gardener – Sara Alexi
I really loved this book, the first in Sara Alexi’s Greek Village series, it is my favourite read of 2016 so far. This charming, gentle, beautifully descriptive story of an English woman living in Greece and a Pakistani immigrant is a heart-warming story of a growing friendship that survives and develops despite many setbacks and misfortunes.

The Swimmer – Joakim Zander
On a remote Swedish island, Klara grows up without a father. Now, twenty years later, she discovers a secret that powerful men will kill to keep hidden. Being an enthusiast of crime thrillers, especially political crime, I was looking forward to reading The Swimmer. Set between the Middle East, Belgium, France & Sweden, with all the different threads wound together I sometimes found myself a bit confused as to who was who, what was what, where was where. An otherwise really good story, full of suspense and twists well worth occasionally going back over some pages to get everything set straight.

Behind Closed Doors – B A Paris
This debut novel is a psychological thriller which seems to have polarised reviewers between hating it and loving it. I find myself somewhere in the middle, for although having read the book in a couple of days because I desperately wanted to know the outcome, I did at times become frustrated with Grace, the main character of the story. When Grace meets and marries Jack, she cannot believe her good fortune, he’s the perfect man: handsome, successful, rich and incredibly caring. Behind Closed Doors is a glimpse into the perfect marriage… or is it?

The remaining eight titles are listed in order of my enjoyment:

  • The Miniaturist
  • The Colour of Water
  • Don’t Be Afraid
  • Afterwards
  • The State We’re In
  • The Other Hand
  • One Day
  • Spare Brides

What are you reading right now?

’till next time,

  ES SigB Crop

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