I’m disappointed by the number of books I read last year. I have to remember it doesn’t include short stories, articles and the large sections of books I’ve read to my father (speaking of which, I think Pride and Prejudice should be on here – I’m fairly sure we read the whole thing, if not in order). But most of them were very good, so this is a close-run thing.

Today I choose:

Fiction: The Orphan Tales – Valente

Non-Fiction: My Family and other Animals – Durrell

Graphic: Tales from Outer Suburbia – Shaun Tan

FICTION

  1. Bellwether – Connie Willis.
  2. Vanishing Acts – Jodi Picoult. Least integrated supernatural elements.
  3. The Rum Diary – Hunter S. Thompson. Most accurate representation of journalistic rum intake.
  4. The Sunday Philosophy Club – Alexander McCall Smith.
  5. The Princess Diaries – Meg Cabot.
  6. The Morning Gift – Eva Ibbotson.
  7. They’re a Wierd Mob – Nino Culotta.
  8. The Orphan Tales: In the Night Garden – Catherynne Valente. Most stories in one & best-deserved win.
  9. The Fourth Bear – Jasper Fforde.
  10. The Pinhoe Egg – Diana Wynne Jones.
  11. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay – Michael Chabon. Most informative fiction.
  12. Labyrinths – Borges.
  13. The Game – Diana Wynne Jones.
  14. The Orphan’s Tales: In the Cities of Coin and Spice – Valente. See #8.
  15. Little Brother – Cory Doctorow. Most blistering read.
  16. The Yiddish Policeman’s Union – Michael Chabon.
  17. Redeeming Love – Francine Rivers. Most like Da Vinci Code.
  18. Murder Must Advertise – Dorothy Sayers. Longest passage about a cricket match.
  19. Dealing with Dragons – Patricia C Wrede.
  20. Harry Potter und der Stein der Weisen – Joanne K. Rowling. Only book I’ve read again for the first time.
  21. The Ladies of Grace Adieu – Susannah Clarke. Most enchanting.
  22. The House of Many Ways – Dianne Wynne Jones.
  23. The Explosionist – Jenny Davidson. Most responsible for me spending more money on books.
  24. The Grand Sophy – Georgette Heyer.
  25. Holes – Louis Sachar.
  26. Sylvester, or The Wicked Uncle – Georgette Heyer.
  27. Lady of Quality – Georgette Heyer. Most surprisingly likeable heroine.
  28. Faro’s Daughter – Georgette Heyer.
  29. April Lady – Georgette Heyer.
  30. Angel Rising – Dirk Flinthart.
  31. Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine #37.
  32. The Grinding House – Kaaron Warren. Most lingerling disturbing.
  33. Magic for Beginners – Kelly Link. Easiest to get lost in.
  34. Canterbury 2100 – Flinthart (ed).
  35. The Graveyard Book – Neil Gaiman.
  36. Size Twelve is not Fat – Meg Cabot.
  37. Cryptonomicon – Neal Stephenson. Most exercising my comparative faculties.

NON-FICTION

  1. The Fantasy Artist’s Reference File – Peter Evans. Funniest book this year.
  2. The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat – Oliver Sacks.
  3. Sociolinguistics – Peter Trudgill. Most conversation starters (did you know…)
  4. The Puffin Book of Nursery Rhymes – Iona and Peter Opie.
  5. History of the Kings of England (Historia Regum Britanniae)- Geoffrey of Monmouth.
  6. My Family and other Animals – Gerald Durrell. Most copies bought to give other people (6? I think?)
  7. Unbeaten Tracks in Japan – Isabella Bird. Best example of how to write a fantasy epic (without the fantasy)
  8. Bachelor Girls – Betty Israel.

GRAPHIC NOVELS

  1. Persepolis – Marjane Satrapi. Most compelling.
  2. March of the Wooden Soldiers (Fables Vol. 4).
  3. Return to Labyrinth, vol. 1. Most disappointing.
  4. The Mean Seasons: Fables Vol. 5 – Willingham et. al.
  5. Batman – A Death in the Family .
  6. Assorted short comics acquired at Supanova
  7. Homelands: Fables Volume 6 – Willingham, et al.
  8. Batman: Black and White – Miller, Gaiman, Lee, Kubert et al. Best presentation of uses of the medium.
  9. Arabian Nights (and Days): Fables Volume 7 – Willingham, et al.
  10. Batman: Black and White volume 2 – Dini, Ellis, Claremont, Azzarello et al.
  11. Tales from Outer Suburbia – Shaun Tan. The only one to make me cry on the bus (I think).
  12. Fables volume 8: Wolves – Willingham et. al. (graphic novel).
  13. Hellblazer: Joyride (graphic novel). Best to read near strangers on planes (heheh).
  14. Rapunzel’s Revenge – Hale, Hale and Hale. Best hair.
  15. Fables 9: Sons of Empire – Willingham et al.

All books are reviewed somewhere on this blog by the relevant month: