Well this year seems to have whipped by and so, as we gear up for Christmas, it’s time to remember the good (and not so good) books of 2012.
It was a really strong field this year (or, alternatively, I made some good reading choices) and places in the top 20 were hard-fought.
So without further ado, I present the Fourth Annual Westies Award - “My Best Fiction Reads Of The Year” - and the top 20 looks like this:
Last Days, by Adam Nevill
Whitstable, by Stephen Volk (not actually published until next year)
3: Silent Voices, by Gary McMahon
4: Dream A Little Dream, by Sue Moorcroft
5: Reaping The Dark (not published yet), by Gary McMahon
6: A Cold Season, by Alison Littlewood
7: Ceremony, by Robert B Parker
8: Beyond Here Lies Nothing, by Gary McMahon
9: Darcie’s Dilemma, by Sue Moorcroft
10: The 9 Deaths Of Dr Valentine, by John Llewellyn Probert
11: Into The Penny Arcade, by Claire Massey
12: Eyepennies, by Mike O’Driscoll
13: The Widening Gyre, by Robert B Parker
14: The Way Of The Leaves, by David Tallerman
15: Taming A Sea-Horse, by Robert B Parker
16: Marionettes, by Claire Massey
17: Joe & Me, by David Moody
18: Videodrome, by Jack Martin (Dennis Etchison)
19: The Eyes Of Water, by Alison Littlewood
20: Valediction, by Robert B Parker
The next ten, in no particular order, were:
One Summer In Malta and Where The Heart Is, by Sue Moorcroft, Thin Men With Yellow Faces by Bestwick & McMahon, Hell’s Ditch (critique) by Simon Bestwick, The Butterfly Waltz by Lisa McCarthy, Small Animals by Alison Moore, Black Mirrors by Paul Edwards, The Respectable Face Of Tyranny by Gary Fry, Vampire Circus by Mark Morris and The Howling 2 by Gary Brandner.
Nothing was spectacularly bad this year, though The Plague Pit by Mark Ronson and The Cartoonist by Sean Costello were both a bit ropey and only garnered 2 stars.
Stats wise, I’ve read 59 books - 35 fiction, 14 non-fiction and 10 comics/nostalgia. Having not read any Three Investigator books last year - and missing the series - I’m just about to start The Mystery Of The Invisible Dog as my Christmas read and I’m really looking forward to it
Of the 59 books, the breakdown is thus:
25 horror novels
5 drama (includes chick-lit)
9 humour (including the first two Adrian Moles)
Just in case you’re interested, the previous awards are linked to from here: