Comments 4

Books I read and Nearly read in 2016


In 2016 I started to read 22 books and finished 12 (nearly 13).  If a book has not grabbed me by about page 50, I will put it down and move on the next.  I always have a list of books I want to read which of course is way longer than the books I have read so far, so I am never without a book to read (or at least start!).

I started three books before I read my first book of 2016 which was ‘The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend‘ by Katarina Bivald.  It was an easy read and not particularly amazing but I enjoyed it.

A Man Called Ove‘ by Fredrik Bakman is my top book of the year, it is full of wonderful characters and is funny and heart searching all at once.  All revolving around an elderly grumpy man called Ove!  Characterful books are my absolute favorite.

Having said that, I also read ‘My Grandmother Told Me to tell you She’s Sorry‘ by Fredrik Bakman and I didn’t love it so much.  The story entwines with a fairy tale/dream type narrative which I didn’t always enjoy.

In the summer I had a run on great books which started with ‘Harry Potter and the Cursed Child’ by Jack Thorne which is the script from the stage play of the same name and based on a story co-written by J.K. Rowling. I honestly read the book thinking what the hey, I might as well jump on this bandwagon.  I read it in under a week and really liked it, it was a very entertaining addition to the Harry Potter legacy.

I followed this with ‘Amy Snow‘ by Tracy Rees and I loved it, it is a historic novel set in Britain and I am no historical novel reader but the characters and plot twists in this kept it moving along.

Then came the amazing ‘Harmony‘ by Carolyn Parkhurst which I whizzed through.  It is chock full of people to love and hate and wonder about.

Another great read was ‘Before the Fall‘ by Noah Hawley, it is a fast paced and character driven story. I would describe it as a thoughtful but exciting read.

The new Emma Donoghue book ‘The Wonder’ was another favorite of mine, a minimal cast of characters but what a story!  Brilliant stuff.

So that was eight of the books, the others I finished were

The Girls by Emma Cline

The Trouble with Goats and Sheep by Joanna Cannon. The title and the cover drew me to this book and the fact that it is set in the UK closed the deal.

In a Dark Dark Wood by Ruth Ware

Art Inc by Lisa Congdon (I don’t usually read non-fiction cover to cover, but this one I did)

Books I started and didn’t finish and will not go back to are –

Among the Ten Thousand Things by Julia Pierpont

Drawing Blood by Molly Crabapple

All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders – I might go back to this one.

The Flood Girls by Richard Fifield

Be Frank with Me by Julia Claiborne Johnson

These are the ones I started and may pick up again

Avenue of Mysteries by John Irving

Hitman Anders and the Meaning of it all by Jonas Jonasson I will almost certainly read at some point.

The Girl Who Slept with God by Val Brelinksi I will certainly read, I stopped reading it this year because ‘The Girls’ came into the library and I knew I would only have a couple of weeks to get it back to the library.

Today will be Different by Maria Semple.  I loved ‘Where’d you go Bernadette’ so I want to give this book another go.

I am currently reading ‘I’ll Take you There‘ by Wally Lamb which is going well so I am optimistic that I will finish!

All of these books I borrowed from the library except ‘My Grandmother says to tell you she’s sorry’ which I bought to take on holiday and ‘Hitman Anders’ which is on my shelf.  Yay for libraries!

Happy Reading and Happy Friday!




  1. Hi Clare! I’m not familiar with most of these books so I’ll check out the ones you most recommended. Since I read on Kindle and listen to books on Audible I bet I could reconstruct a 2016 books of my own using the data on the apps and websites. For 2017 I’ll document the books I read in a journal. Still trying to figure out what kind of journaling style will work for me. Do you know about the Gutenberg project? You can download classic books whose copyrights have expired in several digital formats. I’ve read some WS Maugham books and Middlemarch by George Elliot. Exquisite writing and storytelling, takes me back to a different time and place. I’m now reading another book by George Elliot. Have a great weekend, thanks for inspiring me to try out recording my books read and journaling 🙂

    • Hi Keren, I just jot the books I start down in the calendar section at the front of my Moleskine daily diary, that way I can see what I read and what I finished! I love hearing what other people are reading, best way to find a good book I think.

  2. I love keeping track of my reading and ‘to be read’ pile and you’ve reminded me Clare that I really need to do a little round-up of my 2016 reading. I started using Goodreads half-way through the year and hit my ‘goal’ of reading 20 books. I’d like to go for 30 this year but so far it’s been all about the magazines… You’ve shared some interesting titles here to check out though! x

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