I’m not finished reading for the year, but I thought this might be a good time to share some of the best books I’ve read so far. These are in the order in which I read them, not in order of “the best.” I keep lists every year. I write brief reviews for each book as well.
Dark Corners by Ruth Rendell. Her last book, and she does not disappoint. She kept me guessing what would happen to the murderer until the last moment.
In a Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware. Good debut thriller. Ending is a bit weak, but on the whole, it’s quite suspenseful, with blood, memory loss, confusion.
Deadline for Murder by Val McDermid, the third in the Lindsay Gordon series. Another good lesbian detective story, maybe better than the first two. But Val came into her own with the Tony/Carol series.
No Night is Too Long by Barbara Vine (Rendell). Somehow I either missed reading this one back in 1994, or I have completely forgotten it. What a pleasant surprise to find one of her books I didn’t remember reading. Excellent suspense novel. Couldn’t be better.
Tender at the Bone by Ruth Reichl. A wonderful memoir of her coming of age, how she learned to cook, what she cooked, how she traveled in exotic places as a young adult, how she became a professional cook, then food critic, and recipes are included. I loved this book so much I placed a hold on her new cookbook/memoir about how she survived getting fired from Gourmet at the age of 62.
The Narrow Bed by Sophie Hannah. I picked up this book in the Copenhagen airport book shop. I hadn’t heard of Hannah before, but she has written a ton of thrillers, and she is good at it. The Narrow Bed had a structure I haven’t seen before. It opens with email from a publisher to an editor (I think I have their jobs right). Then a portion of a book by the protagonist, called Origami. Then more traditional narrative, and back and forth. It ends with another email between the two who opened the book. This is one of the most feminist thrillers I’ve ever seen. And the thrill is psychological. Well done, Sophie Hannah!