It is not quite the end of the year but with the next few weeks looking quite hectic I am not sure if I will be reading as much, so I thought I would do a wrap up of what I have enjoyed reading in 2015.
This year, not unlike many years, books have been my saviour. It has been a year of change and growth, personally and professionally and it hasn’t been all smooth sailing. In fact there have been times where I have felt flat out drained. So much so that the idea of sinking into a book and losing myself there at the end of the day is almost as comforting as the act itself.
Time spent reading is like meditation, my mind can’t wander, nor does it want to. It just stays focused on the page in front of it.
So without further rambling here are some of my favs:
My Struggle: A Man in Love, Karl Ove Knausgaard
This is the second book in Knausgaard’s series of autobiographical novels. In essence this book is just Knausgaard describing his marriage and his experience of raising children. However he describes everything in minute detail. A lot happens, yet also not a lot happens. I have repeatedly tried to explained the appeal of this book to my boyfriend and he remains skeptical.This book gave me evidence that even the most seemingly creative free spirited people are also slaves to the everyday monotony of the routine tasks that occupy most of their lives. It provided an antidote to social media and its endless real of people showing very polished lives and for that it was worth the read.
Never Let Me Go, Kazuo Ishiguro
This one has been on my to read list for a little while now, if I am honest, since the film version was released. I didn’t know the premise of this dystopian novel before starting and its best not to know much as the slow release of information makes it more chilling. Ishiguro develops characters beautifully and I think that’s what made this book so good and so heartbreaking as you get to know the characters really well before you learn their fate.
A Sense of an Ending, Julian Barnes
This book is simple but ingrossing. It is a very interesting take on memory and perspective and how our memories of feelings and events can alter from someone else memories of that same event or how they can even differ from reality. His writing is exquisite and with his lovely prose I was hooked from the first page.
Station Eleven, Emily St. John Mandel
I devoured this book in a day and a half. I was on a trip down in the south of Argentina alone so I did have a lot of time for reading, but even if I had been travelling with people I don’t think I would have been able to put this book down. The book moves between the present day and a future post apocalyptic world where civilisation as we know it has been destroyed. Mandel manages to create a world that is incredibly eery and very believable. When I put this book down I wanted more and after reading some ideas stuck with me and began thinking of the fragility of our world. If you are looking for something to read over the holiday season, this would be my pick.
All the Light We Cannot See, Anthony Doerr
Lastly I have my favourite book of 2015. I have recommended this book to many people. It is set in the second world war and follows a young blind French girl and a young German boy as they move through the war and eventually see their paths intertwine. I am sometimes skeptical about second world war fiction but this book is far superior to many of the books I have read that are share the same setting. Doerr is such a beautiful writer, his sentences dance on the page and they make you want to read them over and over again. This is a bit of a sad book but so worth it.