2016 Wrap-Up & My favourite books of the year


Happy new year, everyone! I’m slightly behind the times but I thought I’d take a look back at my year in reading.

2016 was the second year I set myself a Goodreads challenge. After beating my target of 60 in 2015 I got cocky and upped it – and unfortunately I completely failed! I set myself a target of 70 and ended on around 53 (and a half!) I think there’s a few reasons for this, part of it is that I did read some longer books, but mainly I just got busy. I’ve also recently got a new job which means I no longer have a train commute each day to get in some precious reading time, which is definitely making an impact on my reading. Taking that into account, I’m setting my goal for 2017 a little lower, at 55. Fingers crossed for this one!

I read some great books in 2016, and most of my favourites of the year were actually ARCs. This is something I want to watch a bit more in 2017 as I can’t seem to resist requesting new ARCs, but I can’t resist buying new books either! The pressure to read books for review is always too great, so my own books get left sitting on the shelf. I’m aiming to read more books I own this year.

Here’s my top ten reads of 2016 (covers link to my review or Goodreads).


This was one of the most-hyped releases of the summer and, to me, it completely lived up to that hype. Telling the story of a teenager in the 1960s who falls in with a group loosely based upon the Manson family, this was a fascinating twist on the classic coming-of-age story. It’s not a comfortable read, but there’s something special about it.


This bold, epic, emotional dystopian novel was completely unique. Weaving emotional drama and relationships against the backdrop of a stark, post-pandemic future complete with a self-combustion disease, it’s sheer genius.


This is a book that I’ve been wanting to read for years. I finally got around to it earlier this year, and it didn’t disappoint. This was an engrossing, intelligent slow-burn of a thriller, one I won’t forget in time. I have Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch sitting on my shelf so aiming to try that one this year!

A Darker Shade final for Irene

I had high hopes for this as the premise of a magical London is so intriguing and it had received so much hype. By the time I finally got around to reading it, it didn’t disappoint! This fantasy novel is escapism at its best, and I’ve got the second in the series ready to read on my Kindle.


I read a lot of psychological thrillers but this one really stood out. Written in the second person, You invites the reader into the mind of a psychopath, and it’s a gripping, entertaining read.


This one seems very underrated but I absolutely fell in love with it. Just the cover alone is gorgeous, but there’s a story in there which lives up to it. A powerful romance set against the backdrop of of an asylum in the early 1900s, this book combines heart-wrenching drama with a fascinating look at the history of mental illness.


This evocative, elegant story was a surprise hit for me this year, and I’ll be looking out for more from this author.


I enjoyed this tale of art, history and romance immensely and actually preferred it to Jessie Burton’s hit debut last year. Plus, the cover is beautiful!


One of my long-time favourite authors, I’ve become a bit disillusioned with Jodi Picoult over recent years. But this book was saw the author return to form – a clever, emotional story exploring a powerful and important subject.


I know, I should have read this years ago! But it is a stand-out psychological thriller which I thought was worth the hype, I’m glad I finally got around to it in 2016.

And that’s a wrap! Here’s to lots more reading in 2017 🙂



Filed under Book Lists, General Book Musings

10 responses to “2016 Wrap-Up & My favourite books of the year

  1. Yvo

    Great list of favorites! ADSOM is probably one of my all time favorites and most of the others are on my TBR. I hope you will have an excellent 2017!

  2. ADSOM is on my TBR for the year

  3. Ana

    Loved your post, I relate so much to everything you wrote. And your picks are right up my alley. I am really tempted to get some of these but I have too many ARC and paperbacks waiting to be read…

    • I feel your pain there, there’s so many older books I want to get round to but I have a huge amount of ARCs which are due out in the next couple of months!

  4. Ana

    Well, you inspired me so much I went ahead and created my own post.
    You can find it here if curious: https://anaslair.wordpress.com/2017/01/08/2016-yearly-wrap-up/
    Thank you for posting this!

  5. Great list! You have some books I’ve wanted to read for ages now, but due to lack of time I haven’t been able to pick them up yet. The Secret History, A Darker Shade of Magic, The Muse and The Ballroom are definitely on my TBR this year! Happy reading!

  6. Books 'n' Reviews Oh My

    You was one of my favorite reads in 2016, made me never want to talk to strangers again. I tried so many times to read My Sisters Keeper by Jodi Picoult and can’t seem to get into it, not sure if I should try another book from her instead. Great list by the way! And good luck on your Goodreads challenge 🙂

    • Thank you! Yep You was such a clever psychological thriller – very unique and definitely creepy! I enjoyed My Sister’s Keeper when I read it but that was quite a few years ago – I think it’s definitely worth giving her a try, she covers a lot of different topics so one may strike a cord with you. Thanks for visiting! 🙂

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