The bookseller, Waterstones, released their shortlist of the Best Book of 2019 and I am so glad to say that three books that I read this year (and also one of my favorites) has made the list:
The Testaments by Margaret Atwood
Was this sequel necessary? Probably not. However, that doesn’t stop it from being a well-written and innovative story about a world that can chill anyone to their core. Just like with The Handmaid’s Tale, I was engrossed by this haunting story. Atwood still instills worldly ideas that will make any reader think not only about the world around them but outside their sphere. Instead of focusing on whether or not this sequel was necessary, readers need to focus on the message that Atwood is trying to convey, a message, in my opinion, is different with every reader of this novel. Some say it is just rehashing of the first book, but I think that is the point. History always has a chance of repeating itself if we don’t learn from it and with Atwood’s compelling storytelling and engrossing writing style, Atwood showed just that in this epic conclusion.
The Binding by Bridget Collins
Amazing! Such an inventive and creative novel! I am completely astonished at how creative and intricate this plot was. It takes such a beloved object and makes it so forbidden. Memories are such beautiful but fragile things and I love how this book interpreted it. I was so engrossed into the story from beginning to end. Such a great read! One of my favorites this year!
Queenie by Canice Carty-Williams
This book is having an amazing year! Not only was this nominated for a Foyles Book of the Year but a Waterstones award! Another favorite of the year, this book figuratively blown me away with its realistic protagonist and thought-provoking themes. If you haven’t read it still, please do! You are missing out!
Underland by Robert Macfarlane
Global in its geography and written with great lyricism and power, Underland speaks powerfully to our present moment. Taking a deep-time view of our planet, Macfarlane here asks a vital and unsettling question: “Are we being good ancestors to the future Earth?” Underland marks a new turn in Macfarlane’s long-term mapping of the relations of landscape and the human heart. From its remarkable opening pages to its deeply moving conclusion, it is a journey into wonder, loss, fear, and hope. At once ancient and urgent, this is a book that will change the way you see the world. (Credit: W. W. Norton & Company)
The Boy, The Mole, The Fox and The Horse by Charlie Mackesy
Enter the world of Charlie’s four unlikely friends, discover their story and their most important life lessons.
The conversations of the boy, the mole, the fox and the horse have been shared thousands of times online, recreated in school art classes, hung on hospital walls and turned into tattoos. In Charlie’s first book, you will find his most-loved illustrations and some new ones too. (Credit: Ebury Press)
Prisoners of Geography: Our World Explained in 12 Simple Maps by Tim Marshall
Find the answers to these questions and many more in this eye-opening book, which uses maps to explain how geography has shaped the history of our world. Discover how the choices of world leaders are swayed by mountains, rivers and seas – and why geography means that history is always repeating itself. This remarkable, unique introduction to world affairs will inspire curious minds everywhere.
A stunning abridged and illustrated edition of the international bestseller Prisoners of Geography, by acclaimed author Tim Marshall. (Credit: Elliott & Thompson Ltd)
Lanny by Max Porter
There’s a village sixty miles outside London. It’s no different from many other villages in England: one pub, one church, red-brick cottages, council cottages and a few bigger houses dotted about. Voices rise up, as they might do anywhere, speaking of loving and needing and working and dying and walking the dogs.
This village belongs to the people who live in it and to the people who lived in it hundreds of years ago. It belongs to England’s mysterious past and its confounding present. But it also belongs to Dead Papa Toothwort, a figure schoolchildren used to draw green and leafy, choked by tendrils growing out of his mouth.
Dead Papa Toothwort is awake. He is listening to this twenty-first-century village, to his English symphony. He is listening, intently, for a mischievous, enchanting boy whose parents have recently made the village their home. Lanny. (Credit: Faber & Faber)
On The Origin of Species illustrated Sabina Radeva
The first ever picture-book retelling of Charles Darwin’s On The Origin of Species.
‘A long, long time ago, before humans even existed, the living world looked very different from how it looks today.’
For most of human history, people believed that everything in the world was created at once. But scientists started to challenge that idea and in 1859 Charles Darwin, a naturalist and biologist, wrote a famous book called On the Origin of Species that revolutionised the way that we have understood evolution ever since.
Now molecular biologist and illustrator Sabina Radeva has recreated Darwin’s most famous work as a beautifully illustrated book. The stunning pictures bring the theory of evolution to life for young readers, and anyone who wants to learn about evolution.
Pulling together Darwin’s observations from his travels around the world and his ground-breaking explanation of how species form, develop, and change over hundreds of thousands of years, On The Origin of Species is as relevant and important now as it ever was. (Credit: Puffin)
Dishoom: From Bombay with Love by Shamil Thakrar , Kavi Thakrar and Naved Nasir
Since the first restaurant launched in 2010, Dishoom has become a byword for the best in authentic, inventive and inviting Indian cuisine. Founded by cousins Shamil and Kavi Thakrar and brothers Adarsh and Amar Radia and inspired by the style and ethos of the Irani cafés of 1900’s Bombay, Dishoom blends nostalgia and innovation to create Indian food that is unforgettable.
Now Dishoom: From Bombay with Love brings together ‘almost everything’ from the restaurant’s menu in one beautifully produced volume. Including recipes for customer favourites – including Black Daal, Jackfruit Biryani, signature coolers and their bestselling brunch–time Bacon Naan Roll – alongside a stunningly illustrated day-to-night tour of the bustling streets of Mumbai, it’s a love letter to the very best in Indian comfort food. (Credit: Bloomsbury Publishing)
No One Is Too Small to Make a Difference by Greta Thunberg
‘Everything needs to change. And it has to start today’
In August 2018 a fifteen-year-old Swedish girl, Greta Thunberg, decided not to go to school one day. Her actions ended up sparking a global movement for action against the climate crisis, inspiring millions of pupils to go on strike for our planet, forcing governments to listen, and earning her a Nobel Peace Prize nomination.
This book brings you Greta in her own words, for the first time. Collecting her speeches that have made history across Europe, from the UN to mass street protests, No One Is Too Small to Make A Difference is a rallying cry for why we must all wake up and fight to protect the living planet, no matter how powerless we feel. Our future depends upon it. (Credit: Penguin)