In a very belated response to my colleague, ImageNations, asking for our Favourite reads of 2011, here are
- The city and the city, by China Mieville. From one of the best contemporary SF/fantasy authors – a “noir” mystery set in two parallel but intersecting universes that seem to be somewhere in Eastern Europe
- The boy in the striped pyjamas, by John Boyne. I read this story set in wartime Germany/Poland before watching the film, and found it very moving. I know the main character is supposed to be nine years old, but many of us can be naive about what is really going around us.
- Alice in wonderland, by Lewis Carroll. The classic, which I re-read again, and still loved, and still found something different to appreciate. I read it on my Kindle, and did admit that I found the lack of illustrations a little disconcerting. I guess that shows my age!
- The historian, by Elizabeth Kostova. Normally I am not into horror/vampire lit, but this tale of Dracula was pretty good. It is long though.
- Drive, by Daniel Pink. Someone ordered this for work, and I did find it interesting.
- State of wonder, by Ann Patchett. Read this for Accra Book Club.
- Imperial life in the Emerald City, by Rajiv Chandrasekaran. I bought a couple of years ago, and was prompted to read it after watching the film Green Zone and noting that it was based on Chandrasekaran’s book. The film was enjoyable but in my opinion its relationship to the book is somewhat tenuous. And I thought the book was really good, one of the best reads of 2011.
- The education of a British-protected child, by Chinua Achebe. A wonderful set of essays from the master of Nigerian literature.
- Hallelujah! the welcome table, by Maya Angelou. Although I suspect I bought this because of its recipes, the stories behind the food were much more interesting.
The above are the books I gave the highest ratings to during the year – a mixture I do admit of the serious, and not-so serious, but then this is a reflection of the type of reading which I do.
Thanks Nana Fredua Agyeman for taking the initiative, so others could follow!