I had to look back at what I'd read last year, I'd read more than 120 books and unfortunately, many had slipped my mind. I blame the inconvenience of having to work, but thank goodness for goodreads! As I'd been really poor at doing reviews or making any notes during most of last year, it was a bit of a struggle to remember what I'd really been impressed with.
5 star reads included amongst others, a Milly Johnson and a Trisha Ashley, both truly fabulous romantic reads from authors I really love. There were several by Terry Pratchett (including a few re-reads) which I always enjoy. The Chanson de l'Ange trilogy fed my phantom obsession for several weeks and although the ending wasn't what I'd envisioned I thoroughly wallowed in my Erik obsession. I really loved The Rosie Project on audiobook too.
However, (slightly off tune fanfare) my winner for best book of last year is rather predictably Les Miserables! I've not chosen it to be clever, or pretentious (honestly!) or simply because it is my second favourite musical...but it was one of those books that I'd promised myself that I'd read at some point and when I finally did, (after the big push of the film and planning to see the musical again) I loved it. No, it's not perfect, it does ramble on and there were a few sections that I found really hard work and irrelevant to the story, but I never skipped over (no matter how tempted on the Napoleonic War bit) and although I took it steady over several months alongside lighter reads, I found it a fulfilling read. I admit I am still biased and found Cossette was even more irritating and unworthy of the attentions she receives than in the musical (and let's be honest she's pretty "meh" for most of that too!) the story of Jean Valjean's redemption was engrossing and very moving. I'll admit it...I sobbed several times before I got to the end.