It is that time of the year again when we all start writing lists… So here are my Best Books of 2019.
At the bottom of each review I publish, I include a relative rating for The Story and The Writing. This makes pulling these end of year lists together so much easier, and I think ensures quality titles released (or read) earlier in the year are not overlooked.
This was an exceptionally good year of reading for me, in respect to quality, if not quantity.
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Best Books of 2019
These are the best of the books I read this year, and many of those just happen to be new releases. There is no expiry date on stories that strike a chord and are skilfully written though.
5 Star Read
I continue to be a notoriously tough marker… it taking something truly special to gain my full 5 Stars rating. I only awarded one title that honour this year – The Rosie Result by Graeme Simsion.
Graeme Simsion’s The Rosie Project was an international bestseller. His follow-up, The Rosie Effect, even better in my humble opinion, cemented the loyalty of his lead character’s legions of fans worldwide. What an enviable platform from which to release this much anticipated final instalment in The Rosie trilogy, The Rosie Result.
But as they say, with great power comes great responsibility. But boy, Simsion sure delivered. I thought The Rosie Result was a pitch-perfect conclusion to this much loved, and groundbreaking, fictional series. Find out why >>
But only one 5 Star Read does not make a bad reading year.
Quite the opposite actually, with highly anticipated releases from several of my favourite authors in the latter half.
In 2019 a record number, nine (9) titles, jostled for my 4.5 and 4.75 Star ratings. Clicking on either the book covers or title links will open up our full review of that book in a separate window.
4.75 Star Reads
Here and Now and Then by Mike Chen is a time travel tale a cut above the rest — at times heartrending but ultimately uplifting. This debut is a page-turner brimming with heart.
Animal People by Charlotte Wood is about animals and car crashes — literal and metaphorical, big and small. It is darkly comedic and confronting, with life lessons for us all. Poignancy with bite.
Dead Man Switch (aka The War Widow) by Tara Moss introduces a fantastic new female lead, PI Billie Walker, in a fast-paced, action-packed historical crime adventure that tackles serious societal issues; variants on which are equally topical today.
Darkness for Light by Emma Viskic is the third book is the worldwide bestselling series featuring deaf PI Caleb Zelic. With this taut and compelling instalment, Viskic continues to impress with her engaging brand of thought-provoking crime fiction.
4.5 Star Reads
The Promised Land by Barry Maitland is the 13th title in the bestselling Brock and Kolla Series. This novel’s skilfully crafted crime mysteries are layered and interwoven, the misdirects nuanced and the literary subplot (and subtext) an added treat for avid readers.
The Comedy Club Mystery by Peter Bartram (Deadline Murder Series #3) featuring journalist Colin Crampton. A narrative filled with charmingly corny quips, vividly drawn characters, whimsical descriptors and one of the most complex cosy mystery plots I have read.
The Returns by Philip Salom is delightful in its capacity to beguile with the commonplace. It was hard not to be charmed by these characters brought to life by Salom’s insightful literary narrative peppered with dry wit.
Bruny by Heather Rose is an intelligent and timely literary, political thriller — another highly thought-provoking read from the very talented author.
The Weekend by Charlotte Wood is a quietly confronting read. A mature female friendship character study brimming with symbolism, compelling and cathartic.
Interested in more highly entertaining fiction, that just missed out on making the list above? Browse our 4+ Star Reads in 2019.
How many of my Favourite Books of 2019 have you read?
Note: As the year is not finished yet, I reserve the right to add to this Best Books of 2019 list should I read a title that is worthy.