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Old 01-01-2016, 08:04 AM   #31
pdurrant
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What an excellent idea. Let me look through my list and see. I'll split my likes into two parts.

First: stand-alone or first in series books:
Catweazle by Richard Carpenter. A nostalgia trip, as I remember the TV series fondly.
The Golem and the Djinni by Helene Wecker. An excellent fantastical realism novel.
Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie. A new SF writer (& series) to watch.
Sharpe's Tiger by Bernard Cornwell. An excellent starting point for the Sharpe series.
A Brother's Price by Wen Spencer. A fantasy re-read, and as good the second time around.
Ann of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery. A most enjoyable classic that I hadn't read before.
The Steerswoman by Rosemary Kirstein. An excellent SF series, sadly uncompleted so far.
The World of Jeeves by P. G. Wodehouse. All the Jeeves short stories. Splendid!
Anathem by Neal Stephenson. A very interesting SF world.
Poldark by Winston Graham. A wonderful start to the historical series
Dodger by Terry Pratchett. An excellent stand-alone novel.
Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch. Another excellent first novel in a fantasical reality series.
The Big Book of Christmas Mysteries by Otto Penzler. Wonderful high quality short stories.

Second: on-going series that I read or re-read in 2015:
Lost Fleet and subsequent series by Jack Campbell
Brother Cadfael mysteries by Ellis Peters
The Rabbi novels by Harry Kemelman
The Young Wizard novels by Diane Duane
Liaden Universe stories by Lee and Miller
Grantville Gazettee and the 1632 novels by Eric Flint et al.
The Xenowealth series by Tobias Buckell
The Craft Sequence by Max Gladstone
The Paksenarrion series by Elizabeth Moon
The Amelia Peabody series by Elizabeth Peters
The Farseer books by Robin Hobb
Five Gods stories by Lois McMaster Bujold
Agatha Christie's books


Some of the series I'm eagerly waiting for the next one. Some I'm still reading through as the whim takes me, some I'm deliberately savouring by not rushing through them too quickly. All the above series are excellent.

I'm really looking forward to reading more by all the above authors in 2016, and finding some new authors too.
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Old 01-02-2016, 02:42 AM   #32
doubleshuffle
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No list, just quickly because nobody has mentioned them yet:

I can only recommend Flex and its sequel The Flux by Ferrett Steinmetz for anyone who likes fantasy/magicians/supernatural thrillers/alternative reality. Found Flex via John Scalzi's blog, and if you can resist the author's Big Idea article about it there, it probably isn't for you.
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Old 01-02-2016, 02:11 PM   #33
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I happened to end up with exactly ten 5-star books in 2016 so that's what I'll list, in the order read:

Spring Snow by Yukio Mishima
The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton
Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
Lost Horizon by James Hilton
The Broken Road by Patrick Leigh Fermor
Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh
Night by Elie Wiesel
Tirra Lirra by the River by Jessica Anderson
Les Misérables by Victor Hugo
Memoirs of Hadrian by Marguerite Yourcenar
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Old 01-14-2016, 08:57 AM   #34
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Hmm.

The Man in the High Castle by Philip K. Dick
All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven (which is a YA book)
Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson (nonfiction about people who are on death row but are not guilty)
We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson
Seraphina by Rachel Hartman (YA fantasy about a girl who is half human/half dragon)

I guess those were my favorites. I have a teenage daughter and we trade book recommendations so I do end up reading some YA.
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Old 01-15-2016, 02:50 AM   #35
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The two best books I read this year (rated both 4.5/5)
The Hours Before Dawn, by Celia Fremlin
The Golden Age of Murder, by Martin Edwards

These were 4/5:
Through a glass, darkly, by Helen McCloy
Mary Russell's War: A Journal of the Great War, by Laurie King,
Hidden Depths (Vera Stanhope 3), by Ann Cleeves
Silent Voices (Vera Stanhope 4), by Ann Cleeves
The Glass Room (Vera Stanhope 5), by Ann Cleeves
Everyone Lies (DI Kate Simms Book 1), by A. D. Garrett
The Sudden Departure of the Frasers, by Louise Candlish,
Jane and the Madness of Lord Byron: Being A Jane Austen Mystery, by Stephanie Barron
The Soul of Discretion: Simon Serrailler Book 8, by Susan Hill
Elizabeth is Missing, by Emma Healey
Bryant & May - The Burning Man, by Christopher Fowler
The Third Sin (DI Marjory Fleming Series), by Aline Templeton
The Boys in the Boat, by Daniel James Brown
A Year in Provence, by Peter Mayle
Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania, by Erik Larson
Tulipomania: The Story of the World's Most Coveted Flower and the Extraordinary Passions it Aroused, by Mike Dash
The Spectrum of English Murder: The Detective Fiction of Henry Lancelot Aubrey-Fletcher and G. D. H. and Margaret Cole by Curtis Evans
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Old 01-15-2016, 04:41 AM   #36
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In no particular order, my top ten of 2015:

The Amulet of Samarkand by Jonathan Stroud

The Golem's Eye by Jonathan Stroud

Ptolemy's Gate by Jonathan Stroud

The West End Horror by Nicholas Meyer

Clariel: The Lost Abhorsen by Garth Nix

The Poisoned House by Michael Ford

Hyperbole and a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem, and Other Things That Happened by Allie Brosh

Jesus Land by Julia Scheeres

Fun Home by Alison Bechdel

Pretending to Be Normal by Liane Holliday Willey
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Old 01-15-2016, 09:06 AM   #37
WT Sharpe
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The two I enjoyed most were both non-fiction; one of which was a golden oldie written over 18 centuries ago:
Meditations by the Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius was a re-read, but the first time as an audiobook. Audio is not the best medium for a book of this type, if only for the fact that you can't stop every few minutes and underline another one of his pearls of wisdom, and it's the last time I'll read it in that format.
Jesus, Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible (And Why We Don't Know About Them) was another wonderful and well-researched book by Bart D. Ehrman. I've never been disappointed with any book written by this eminent U.S. Bible scholar.
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Old 01-15-2016, 07:28 PM   #38
astrangerhere
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WT Sharpe View Post
The two I enjoyed most were both non-fiction; one of which was a golden oldie written over 18 centuries ago:
Meditations by the Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius was a re-read, but the first time as an audiobook. Audio is not the best medium for a book of this type, if only for the fact that you can't stop every few minutes and underline another one of his pearls of wisdom, and it's the last time I'll read it in that format.
Jesus, Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible (And Why We Don't Know About Them) was another wonderful and well-researched book by Bart D. Ehrman. I've never been disappointed with any book written by this eminent U.S. Bible scholar.
Of an amusing note, I went to UNC-Chapel Hill when Ehrman was the faculty chair of the religion department. He alienated almost his entire faculty and it resulted in the department and degree program almost being shut down. My wife was majoring in religion at the time and she had to drop the major because there were so few classes to take. He lost the chair and the department has since recovered. Many freshman felt like he felt joy in trying to destroy faith. I am indifferent to the man and his writing, but I can tell you that he is a hurricane in the classroom - in every sense of the word: incredible to watch from afar, but somewhat destructive in person.
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Old 01-18-2016, 12:20 AM   #39
WT Sharpe
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What Were Your Favorite Books Read in 2015

It's always easier to be more accepting of differing viewpoints in books, I suppose. Then again, such an attitude is not surprising given his personal history. These days he seems to stress in his writings and public pronouncements that a critical approach to religion is not incompatible with personal faith, although he readily admits it was in his case. I'm afraid if I say anything more on this topic it would cross the line into religious discussion, so let me just say he may well be a hurricane, but he's a fascinating and knowledgeable author.

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Old 01-21-2016, 03:55 PM   #40
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Thanks for sharing all these lists. I'm reading the Mapp and Lucia books now, thanks to the multiple recommendations. And I love them

For some reason. I struggled a bit last year to find new books to read and ended up re-reading quite a few. But here were the new ones (to me) I did read and enjoyed a lot:

The Martian by Andy Weir
The Custom of the Country by Edith Wharton
The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton

and the best re-read:

Lord of the Flies by William Golding

Mapp and Lucia fans -- take note of the Edith Wharton novels. They aren't quite as light and fun, but have the same ironic viewpoint on social mores.
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