I know at this time of year, many people, newspapers and magazines put together their lists:
The Best Books of 2017, Books I loved, Books I Hated, Books You Should Have Read, Books You Shouldn’t Have Read and Books that Everyone Pretends They Have Read when They Couldn’t Get Past the First Page – you know what I mean.
2017 was the year where I finally plucked up the courage to start to blog about how much I love reading and books.
More importantly, it was the year I finally fell in love with reading again.
Quite simply, life had got in the way, and the draw of my mobile phone was too much.
I had forgotten how much I love reading. I also decided that instead of trying to bravely battle through a book I wasn’t enjoying, I would put it down and move on to the next one- and that is how this blog, My Years of Reading Selfishly came about.
Too often today, we see people pulling each other down, looking down on them for the choices they make or the opinions they voice.
My final blog post of 2017 is my Thank You to all the people who have inspired me, supported me and helped me love books again.
This list is in no particular order, other than from the start of my reading in 2017 to the end.
Each of these books stood out in 2017 as they were simply fantastic reads.
They challenged me, often pushed me out of my reading comfort zone, and more importantly were books I fell in love with and told everyone else about.
These authors helped me realise that there was still a whole new world of literature waiting for me to explore, and that there were so many amazing new genres and styles for me to discover as I began to read again.
Often when I tweeted how much I had enjoyed reading the books, the author in question replied, always kindly, and I absolutely believe that it is so important to let people know when you have enjoyed their book, so they know that all their stresses, deadlines and edits are not in vain!
To each and every one of you below, thank you for your amazing books this year – please don’t ever underestimate how appreciated you are by your readers. More importantly, please don’t stop writing!
So, thank you to:
Kate Eberlen (@KateEberlen) – Miss You
Ali Land (@byAliLand) – Good Me, Bad Me
Gail Honeyman (@GailHoneyman) – Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine
Susie Steiner (@SusieSteiner1) – Missing, Presumed
Julie Buntin (@juliebuntin) – Marlena
Sam Hepburn (@Sam_Osman_Books) – Her Perfect Life
Flynn Berry (@flynnberry_) – Under The Harrow
Clare Mackintosh (@claremackint0sh) – I See You
Rowan Coleman (@rowancoleman) – The Summer of Impossible Things
Julie Cohen (@julie_cohen) – Together
Laura Barnett (@laura_jbarnett) – Greatest Hits
Katherine Heiny (@katherine_heiny) – Standard Deviation
Maggie O’Farrell – I Am, I Am, I Am
Sarah Hilary (@sarah_hilary) – Someone Else’s Skin
Laura Purcell (@spookypurcell) – The Silent Companions
Fiona Barton (@figbarton) – The Child
Jon McGregor (@jon_mcgregor) – Reservoir 13
Laura Wilson (@LWilsonCrime) – The Other Woman
Sarah Stovell (@Sarahlovescrime) – Exquisite
John Boyne (@john_boyne) – The Heart’s Invisible Furies
Alice Hoffman (@ahoffmanwriter) – The Rules of Magic
Elizabeth Day (@elizabday) – The Party
Rebecca F John (@RebeccaWriter) – The Haunting of Henry Twist
Fiona Mozley (@FJMoz) – Elmet
My Instagram and Twitter Friends
It’s a truly scary thing when you decide to take the plunge and start talking about your love of books on social media. Initially I worried whether I was smart enough, funny enough or even coherent enough to communicate what I loved about reading.
However, as soon I started blogging, posting on Twitter and Instagram, I realised that there were so many other people who felt the same.
When I posted, people talked to me and started conversations – a whole new world opened up for me, and as a 47-year-old stay at home mum, I felt that my opinions finally counted for something!
I had found a way of connecting with other like-minded people who offered nothing except support, laughter and a thousand other reading suggestions – Heaven!
I have been really lucky to connect with lots of fantastic people – so thank you to all you amazing book lovers on Twitter and Instagram.
I am really honoured to know you and here’s to even more reading and book chatting in 2018!
Friends and Family
They know me best, and those who absolutely know me understand how much reading and my blog means to me.
From a ‘what if’ chat with some of my best friends over coffee, cake and maybe a little wine, the idea of Years of Reading Selfishly grew, and they have been my biggest supporters – especially when I didn’t think anyone would be bothered what I thought about books! Thank you for all your advice and for pushing me to do it – you were right!
Finally, to my Husband and two boys, who have always completely supported me as I started out on this new chapter, and not said anything as yet another pile of books makes its way into our home, or as I swore because I couldn’t understand my blog scribbles -thank you!
You mean the world to me, and I would be lost without you.
I wish you all a very Happy 2018, and here’s to even more Years of Reading Selfishly!