I had a great reading year: 91 books, 25536 pages (You bet, there’s a spreadsheet somewhere in the background.) 64 keepers. How on earth to distill them down to the best of 2012.
I have deliberated and deliberated and then, I deliberated some more. Finally I asked myself this question, which baker’s dozen would you take with you if you ever had to downsize? Suddenly, it became easy.
Best Debut Novel : The Lighthouse – Alison Moore
Best Hommage: Tom All-Alone’s – Lynn Shepherd
Best Non-Fiction: Reading the Pre-Raphaelites – Tim Barringer
Best Novella: The Brothers – Asko Sahlberg
Best Poetry Collection: The Musicians of Edinburgh – Ron Butlin
Best Short Story Collection: Drifting House – Krys Lee
Best Suspense Novel: Alone in Berlin: Hans Fallada
Favourite Anglophone Literary Novel: The Garden of Evening Mists – Tan Twan Eng
Favourite Translated Novel: The Scent of Lemon Leaves – Clara Sánchez
The Most Charming: Sydney Chalmers and The Shadows of Death – James Runcie
The Most Technically Accomplished Novel: Bring Up the Bodies – Hilary Mantel
The Most Irreverent: Reading Shakespeare’s Sonnets – Don Paterson
The One I Should Have Read Sooner: Oscar and Lucinda – Peter Carey
To pick my book of the year, I asked, if you had room for only one book, which would it be? My answer is (and really, how could it be otherwise given my nom-de-net…).
What would your answer be?