Yup, it’s that time of year again: here’s my 2010 books wrap-up!
I’ve made a photo of some (not all!), of the books I particularly liked!
Two of the books read this year were comics, five graphic novels, meaning 22 were either novels, novella’s or collections of short stories.
It took me a while to decide on my favourite read of the year. There were two candidates but I finally figured it out. So… let’s hear the drumroll!
Best Book of 2010
The Very Best Book I read in 2010 is The Wasted Vigil, by Nadeem Aslam. It’s absolutely gorgeous and I hate myself for not picking it up earlier, since I’ve had in on the shelf from the moment it came out in 2008. I had equally loved Maps for Lost Lovers when I read it so Aslam now deserves to be listed among my (few) favourite authors! That’s a spot right along David Mitchell, Barbara Gowdy and Haruki Murakami: novelists of whom I’ve read, or will read, each and every book. So I’m waiting for Aslam’s 1993 début to arrive in my mailbox: Season of the Rainbirds. Don’t you just love that title? ;)
Second Best Book of 2010
Close upon the heels of The wasted Vigil is (not surprisingly) The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet, the latest novel by my all-time favourite David Mitchell. It was a real tiebreak but I figured I was probably a teeny weeny bit unfairly favoured to Mitchell just because I love his work so much and had been looking forward to his new book since Black Swan Green, in 2006. Then again, that might speak in favour of ‘Jacob de Zoet’ because novels eagerly anticipated often disappoint.
List of books I read in 2010
For those of you who are curious, or just plain addicted to lists (like me), here’s the complete pile of books I read in 2010. The ones that particularly stand out looking back on my reading adventures, I’ve given a bold title.
- Trespass, Valerie Martin (2007)
- The Best of Mutts, Patrick McDonnell (2004)
- The Housekeeper and the Professor (Hakase no aishi ta sūshiki 博士の愛した数式, translated by Stephen Snyder), Yoko Ogawa (2003/2008)
- De avonden (1) (The Evenings), Gerard Reve; Dick Matena (1947/2004)
- The Rapture, Liz Jensen (2009)
- In the Shadow of No Towers, Art Spiegelman (2004)
- Careless in Red, Elizabeth George (2008)
- I Am a Cat III (Wagahai wa neko de aru 吾輩は猫である, translated by Aiko Ito; Graeme Wilson), Natsume Sōseki (1907)
- Een stoomfluit midden in de nacht (Yonaka no kiteki ni tsuite / ‘A Steam Whistle in the Night‘, translated by Jaques van Westerhoven), Haruki Murakami (2003 (2006))
- Het Hoofdkussenboek van Sei Shōnagon (Makura no Sōshi 枕草子 / The Pillow Book, translated by Paul Heijman), Sei Shōnagon (1002/1986)
- Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman (Mekurayanagi to, nemuru onna, translated by Philip Gabriel; Jay Rubin), Haruki Murakami (2005)
- Her Fearful Symmetry, Audrey Niffenegger (2009)
- The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet, David Mitchell (2010)
- Silence (Chinmoku 沈黙 , translated by William Johnston (?)), Shusaku Endo (1966)
- The Sea, The Sea, Iris Murdoch (1978)
- Affinity, Sarah Waters (1999)
- The Poisonwood Bible, Barbara Kingsolver (1998)
- The Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger (1951)
- Persepolis (translated byMattias Ripa), Marjane Satrapi (2003)
- Persepolis 2 (translated by Blake Ferris), Marjane Satrapi (2004)
- Remainder, Tom McCarthy (2007)
- Mutts: Dog-eared, Patrick McDonnell (2004)
- Het volgende verhaal (The Following Story), Cees Nooteboom (1991)
- Isabelle Avondrood: Isabelle en het beest (Adèle et le bête, translated by René van de Weijer (?)), Jacques Tardi (1976)
- Isabelle Avondrood: Allemaal monsters! (Tous des monstres, translated by René van de Weijer), Jacques Tardi (1994)
- Soulless, Gail Carriger (2009)
- Het Gouden Paviljoen (Kinkakuji, translated by C. Ouwehand), Yukio Mishima (1966)
- The Wasted Vigil, Nadeem Aslam (2008)
- The Christmas Quilt, Thomas J. Davis (2000)
Which of these books have you read? Did you like them?
There are several classics in the list, including Japanese. Graphic novels and comics were a new adventure in 2010; although I tried my first during the October 2009 read-a-thon, I read many more this year — upgrading my level from Beginner to Intermediate in the Graphic Novel Challenge.
Other genres outside my usual reading nook: Apocalyptic (The Rapture), GLBT (Affinity), paranormal romance (urban fantasy) / ghost stories (Soulless, Her Fearful Symmetry).
All of these I particularly enjoyed!
Read in translation or the original language?
Century of publication
Except for a challenge wrap-up post, that’s about it for 2010. Book-wise I mean: I’ll need to work on my list of movies next! How are you doing evaluating last year?