I have two main sources of book recommendations: Book Twitter and my mum. This list is mostly a mixture of the two, with some other people thrown in for good measure.
All The Light We Cannot See – Anthony Doerr
A recommendation from my mother. Didn’t do a huge amount for me, but she enjoyed it.
Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine – Gail Honeyman
My mum’s friend insisted she read this and loaned her a copy, and my mum loved it so much she went out and bought her own. Then insisted I read it as well.
Fair play Maw, it was EXCELLENT.
Fault Lines – Doug Johnstone
I put a call out on Twitter before a trip to Waterstones one day looking for recs and then used a random number generator to pick one. Fault Lines was the winner. I enjoyed it so much I gave it to my mum. Our recommending relationship goes two ways.
On The Road – Jack Kerouac
Fun fact: my auntie teaches American Literature and Beat Poetry in the US, did her PhD thesis on Kerouac and is a pretty well-known voice on the subject. My granny famously called the Beats “hippy muck”. Between them they got me to read On The Road.
Magician – Raymond E. Feist
This is one of my husband’s favourite books (he’s a huge high fantasy dork) and he kept suggesting it to me. I’ve read it in bits and pieces because…high fantasy usually isn’t my thing. When I have the time and inclination I will go back and read it all, in order, properly.
A Quiet Kind of Thunder – Sara Barnard
I think Sara Barnard must be one of the most beloved UKYA authors, so when I was just getting into the scene her books were among the first I went looking for. AQKOT is so sweet and relatable and relevant, and I can see why people love her so much.
The Fandom – Anna Day
The Fandom is a book that came highly, highly recommended from Twitter before it was even released, so obviously I got a copy pretty soon after it was released.
Bit of a lesson in tempering my expectations because I feel like the hype let it down – it was good, but the hype combined with the premise (I love a bit of fandom) meant I was expecting it to change my world, and it didn’t.
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas – Hunter S. Thompson
Fear and Loathing came to me via my Advanced Higher English teacher. I wanted to write my dissertation on On The Road but I had to pick at least two novels, and when I was stumped for a second choice this was her suggestion.
I can’t remember her name but shout out to you, teacher-who-wasn’t-the-one-obsessed-with-Shakespeare.
Lion – Saloo Brierly
Lion was another rec from my mum, and the little quote on the front got me. Once I’d started reading it got me even more. By the end I didn’t know whether to punch the air or cry.
The Loneliest Girl in the Universe – Lauren James
Another one Book Twitter got me all excited about (although if it hadn’t, the cover would have sold me on it). Also taught me an important lesson: nothing ruins a good twist like everyone talking about how good the twist was.
While we’re at it, REC ME A BOOK. I have an outlandishly large TBR and it needs to be bigger.