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The Best Books I’ve Read This Year

I’ve probably already read about 15 books this year. I do enjoy a good read – and my two week holiday to the Philippines was a brilliant opportunity to crunch through some books. I thought you might like a shortlist of the ones I enjoyed the most.

Oh My God, What a Complete Aisling – by Emer McLysaght and Sarah Breen. I’m not a big chick lit reader as books like that remind me of junk food – good at the time but leave you feel a bit wanting after. But this book is a whole new take on chick lit – it’s an intelligent, optimistic, fast, funny and quietly meaningful book. Aisling is 28, from the countryside near Dublin and works in the big city. She’s is a little old fashioned, but is hilarious and has a heart of gold. She’s waiting for her boyfriend of seven years to propose, but it just isn’t happening. I started reading it and I couldn’t stop.

The Importance of Being Aisling – by Emer McLysaght and Sarah Breen. More of the same fast paced hilarity from Aisling. I felt a bit sad at the end of the novel though as there’s no more Aisling books right now to keep me occupied.

A Man Called Ove – by Fredrik Backman. The premise of this book sounds a little dull – ‘grumpy widowed 60 year old man comes to terms with wife’s death’. But it’s wonderful. Once the new neighbours and their kids get involved, Ove’s peace and routine along with his plans to kill himself are completely ruined. Beautifully observed, tragic and comic all at once, this is a really heartwarming read.

Everybody Died So I Got a Dog – Emily Dean. I’ll admit Emily had me at dog. I love dogs so was intrigued by the title of this memoir. Unfortunately the title is heartbreakingly true. In the past few years Emily has lost her sister and her parents. This book recounts her eccentric and theatrical upbringing and the sad sequence of events when all her close family die in the space of about 6 years. Despite the tough subject matter, it was an entertaining, addictive and emotionally astute read. In fact, half way through reading I realised I’d actually been listening to and enjoying Emily Dean’s podcast ‘Walking the Dog’ where she interviews celebs over a dog walk (it’s ace). I just hadn’t connected the dots that it was the same person.

Hashtag Authentic – by Sara Tasker – Insta Queen Sara Tasker has written a beautiful book filled with smartphone photography tips and Instagram advice. But it’s more than an Instagram guide book – it’s full of brilliant stories and gorgeous photography. Sara’s managed to tick the boxes of escapism, inspiration and teaching us loads of stuff all at once.

Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang – I’d describe this as 50 Shades of Grey meets Eleanor Oliphant – it’s the unlikely romance of a male escort who falls in love with a Silicon Valley bright spark called Stella. But it’s tricky because Stella has Asperger’s syndrome and finds it difficult to allow people to get close to her. Rather surprisingly most of the book involves shagging. It’s also a very thoughtful book that explores Asperger’s syndrome in a really positive light.

If you enjoyed reading this, you might like to try 6 Books To Lose Yourself In

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