I am starting the hugely pleasurable task of looking back over my reading matter of 2012 and picking out my favourites. Starting it now as it usually takes a while and thought I would do it in tranches as I seem to have rather a lot, both fiction and non-fiction. Here are the first titles, in no particular order at all:
- Sidney Chambers and the Shadow of Death - James Runcie*
- Involuntary Witness - Gianfranco Carofiglio
- Tom All Alone's - Lynn Shepherd
- Waiting for Sunrise - William Boyd
- Gods of Gotham - Lyndsay Faye
- Lucia on Holiday - Guy Fraser-Sampson
- The Good Wife's Castle - Roland Vernon
- In a Dry Season - Peter Robinson
- India Black (two titles) - Carol K Carr
- Caroline - Cornelius Medvei*
- The Last Telegram - Liz Trenow
If you click on the titles you should, fingers crossed, be linked to my original review on Random Jottings. Those marked with * are included in a round up and do not have an individual post named after the book. No slight intended by this, I just needed to catch up that is all!
These are my fiction choices, My non-fiction titles will go up by the end of the week. This list is not final until the end of the year and, as in 2011, a book may pop up before 31 December which will beg to be included so we shall see.
There are three detective/thriller novels on this list. I have been reading the DCI Banks books of Peter Robinson for the whole year and am now, sadly, nearing the end of them. All read wildly out of order, I have found myself enjoying the later ones more than the first titles as by reading them in this haphazard way it is easier to spot the expansion of the characters more easily which not sure I would spotted quite so quickly otherwise. The Gianfranco Carofiglio is translated from the Italian and I thought it was masterly with a 24 page defence in a court case which was totally fascinating and enthralling and held my attention throughout. The third in this genre is the first in a promised series of books about Sidney Chambers, a country vicar who gets mixed up in solving crime. Loved every word of this and looking forward to the next one.
The rest are a wonderful mixture, Gods of Gotham set in New York and a story of the setting up of the NYPD; lush, evocative and beautifully written; Waiting for Sunrise by William Boyd a writer I do not know very well as yet but this was terrific and set in Vienna; Lucia on Holiday by Guy Fraser-Sampson, anything to do with Mapp and Lucia is a must for me and this sparkles; two hilariously wonderfully funny and beautifully written books about India Black, a madame turned agent in the time of Queen Victoria which I simply adored; The Good Wive's Castle by Roland Vernon which I found chilling and a bit scary; Carole by Cornelius Medvedi whimsical and sweet and touching and the Last telegram by Liz Trenow who I realised was a local author and who I knew very well. I include this on my list not for this reason, you know me better than that, but because it was simply a terrific read. I gather she has already delivered her second to her publishers so that is a treat already in store in 2013.
A good reading year and difficult to choose from the books I have delved into but think I have got it right. If any of you have read any of the above, I would be delighted to hear your thoughts on any of the titles.