Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Books of the year

Not my photo, I got it from stock.xchng

I decided to look back on the books I read this year and try to do a little top 5 of the best. Some books may not exactly be recent so these are the books of the year for me.
I'd also like to add that my opinions are extremely relative: I'm conscious that the fact that I like or dislike a book is very related to the context in which I've read it - my mood, my surroundings, my state of mind...I think those explain the fact that I like crappy books sometimes. But hey, here it is: my top 5, full of ambiguities...

no. 5 - Hy Brasil by Margaret Elphinstone
Already mentioned a while back. It's a little hard to read because it has a look of references to places that don't exist but the beauty of it is when you realize you already know where those places are. You get to know an imaginary place and thanks to your own imagination!

no. 4 - Case Histories by Kate Atkinson
A detective story inside a novel. I love this author and all her books. This one is a little different because there's a mystery behind it concerning missing persons but it only adds more interest to the story. I can't say too much because I'm biased when it comes to this woman.

no. 3 - Going Gently by David Nobbs
This is about a woman with 99 years, looking back at her life from a hospital bed. It's not depressing at all, it's very witty and funny. I really enjoyed this one and was amazed at how much stuff a person can do in 99 years. There's a lot of characters in the book, her family members and friends, but slowly you get to know them all and their little quirks. It's really good.

no. 2 - The Accidental by Ali Smith
Finished this one last night and really enjoyed it. In case you haven't heard of it, it earned plenty of awards and acclaims. It's about a woman that comes accidentally into the life of a family and the book contains the views of the four members of that family on that "accident". It's one of those books that you notice how much work it must have been put into it...

no. 1 - Mother Tongue by Bill Bryson
Bill Bryson is a genious of funny writing. He is well known for his books on travelling but he is also very knowledgeable in linguistics. In this book he studies the origins and development of the english language. This is the best example I have ever found of a book that can be truly informative and completely hilarious at the same time. I learned so much from this book. Thank you, Bill!!

A special reference to other two books: "How I live now" from Meg Rosoff is a truly emotional and disturbing book - the proof that it is good is how disturbing it can be and also how surprising the plot is. It's really good but, at the same time, extremely depressing. The other book I enjoyed was "On Beauty" by Zadie Smith. It has really good dialogues and it's a very visual book, but it doesn't deliver the promise her first book had. Still, it's better than the Autograph Man - that was really weak.


holychaos said...

Those books sound good . I am going to check them out.

your Christmas dinner sounds great.
the traditional American dinner, isn't that healthy at all! but it is still good!

sophie said...

marvellous photo!
i just love seeing peoples
i have decided to get mother
tongue based on your review -
my book of the year is
"einstein's dreams"
LOVE it;)


Devil Mood said...

Holy: I have a feeling your dinner is more yummy but tradition makes things yummy, I think. :)

Sophie: I have too many bookshelves to put in one photo lol
I'm heading to amazon to check that one out :)

fb said...

That's a good idea, I've read a fair amount too this year suprisingly...

It will be interesting to hear what you make of Murakami since it seems quite a few people have been reading him.

I'll get around to posting a post...

Devil Mood said...

FB: So far I've been enjoying the book. It seems that lots of people come up to him and tell him their live stories - I don't know if that happened in other books, but it's a bit silly. Will be interested in reading about your books of the year.

Ps said...

Chanced upon your blog while browsing.I looked for the comments tag and finally saw the "pull"tag! Cute!I love books and intend checking out whatever you recommended.I liked your blog name too."love is stronger than Pride".So true!

Ps said...

Am also linking your blog to mine.

Devil Mood said...

Oh thanks so much, Ps! :)
I'm glad you enjoyed your visit!