Best of 2016

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Here were the reads that gripped up this year.
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The Sellout had been widely turned down by UK publishers – until Oneworld Publishing's Juliet Mabey was alerted to it. Today, the satirical novel is the 2016 Man Booker Prize for Fiction.
The Sellout tackles the difficult topics of race, history and politics. And through a young, black watermelon grower, we see the changing racial landscape of a fictional American town. And Paul Beatty's witty, satire lends the entire situation an air of hilarity without making light of these serious topics.
The Sellout, Paul Beatty
Paul Beatty
The Sellout
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His Bloody Project was on the shortlist of the Man Booker prize this year. Though it lost out to The Sellout, let's just say this was also a phenomenal book.
The year is 1869. A brutal triple murder in a remote community in the Scottish Highlands leads to the arrest of a young man by the name of Roderick Macrae. A memoir written by the accused makes it clear that he is guilty, but it falls to the country’s finest legal and psychiatric minds to uncover what drove him to commit such merciless acts of violence.
It's a brilliant tale of power and justice, and the arbitrariness of it all.
His Bloody Project, Graeme Macrae Burnet
Graeme Macrae Burnet
His Bloody Project
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In Cameron Diaz's latest inspirational title, the actress discovers that learning how to feed herself right was the way best ways to care for her body. That doesn't mean you have to stave off the pie or eggnog during your year-end feasts, or go on rigorous diets. Diaz ain't about the short-term goals, but about that long-term happy life through great nutrition and movement.
The Body Book, Cameron Diaz
Cameron Diaz
The Body Book
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Where else are you going to get some of the best thinkers in one place? Alain de Botton, Malcom Gladwell, Matt Ridley and Steven Pinker band together to question: is humanity approaching a Golden Age, or is the notion of progress an illusion born in the West?
Do Humankind's Best Days Lie Ahead, Matt Ridley, Alain de Botton, Steven Pinker, Malcolm Gladwell
Matt Ridley, Alain de Botton, Steven Pinker, Malcolm Gladwell
Do Humankind's Best Days Lie Ahead
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This was one of our most popular books of 2016, and you have to read it to see why, really.
Tanya DuBois doesn’t exist. At least not after an accident leaves her husband dead and makes her Suspect No. 1. She has one choice: Run. Tanya isn’t real, and neither is Amelia Keen, Debra Maze, or any of her other aliases. She is “Amelia” when she meets Blue, another woman with a life she’d rather not discuss, and thinks she’s found her kindred spirit. But their pasts and futures clash as the body count rises around them…
Passenger, Lisa Lutz
Lisa Lutz
Passenger
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A car is found on a deserted beach on the Spanish island of Fuerteventura. On the back seat lies a cardboard box containing the body of a small boy buried in newspaper cuttings. No one knows his name, and there is no trace of a driver. The last thing an ailing tourist resort needs is a murder, and the police are desperate to close the case.

Thomas Rydahl presents to us a gripping thriller fraught with lies and plenty of tension and dilemma. Can an old man cut off from the modern world solve this crime and restore order within this community?
Hermit, Thomas Rydahl
Thomas Rydahl
Hermit
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What are the roots of the global jihad movement? What is ISIS? What threats does it pose for Australia? What does its rise say about the effectiveness of the War on Terror since 9/11, and what does a coherent strategy look like after a disastrous year?

Blood Year is a vivid, urgent account of the War on Terror by a thinker who helped shape its strategy and witnessed its evolution on the ground.
Blood Year, David Kilcullen
David Kilcullen
Blood Year
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When Isabel meets Edward, both are at a crossroads: he wants to follow his late wife to the grave, and she is ready to give up on love. But when Isabel has to accompany him for a bit, Isabel has no idea that the man in the kitchen baking the sublime roast chicken and light-as-air apricot soufflé will end up changing her life.
Dinner with Edward is a book about sorrow and joy, love and nourishment, and about how dinner with a friend can, in the words of M. F. K. Fisher, “sustain us against the hungers of the world.”
Dinner with Edward, Isabel Vincent
Isabel Vincent
Dinner with Edward
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The Atomic Weight of Love is more than a love story spanning from WWII to 1970s. It's also about the ever-changing roles of women and the spaces that they take up. From being a supportive partner, to forging it out on her own, Meridien Wallace's scientific dreams were simply too big for the world at that time.
Atomic Weight of Love, Elizabeth J. Church
Elizabeth J. Church
Atomic Weight of Love
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99 Stories About God is not a devotional text, neither is it religious so before you're like "SKIP", read on. The 99 super short flash fiction pieces are fictional vignettes exploring the relationship with a "god" - whatever that may be. And the darkness and absurdity of everyday life in random moments.
99 Stories of God, Joy Williams
Joy Williams
99 Stories of God
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Told with vibrant, lush detail and a wicked sense of humor, The Diver’s Clothes Lie Empty is part literary mystery, part psychological thriller—an unforgettable novel that explores free will, power, and a woman’s right to choose not her past, perhaps not her present, but certainly her future.
The Diver's Clothes Lie Empty, Vendela Vida
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In 1966, at just twenty-two, Richard Goldstein approached the Village Voice with a novel idea. 'I want to be a rock critic,' he said. And so, Goldstein became the first person to write regularly in a major publication about the music that was changing everyone's lives.
Another Little Piece of My Heart is Goldstein's insight into the rock scene starting from the 60s. He records the rock revolution, lives through the deaths of icons, and tours with some of the best. It's a music read not to be missed.
Another Little Piece of My Heart, Richard Goldstein
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I Am No One is a great look into voyeurism, observation and self. Because when a history professor is being shadowed and watched by a mysterious figure, everything starts to fall apart. Is he being paranoid, and does he even have anything to worry about in the first place?
I Am No One, Patrick Flanery
Patrick Flanery
I Am No One
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Journey to Munich is a riveting WWII-era tale of deceit, espionage and secrets. And boy this was exciting.
It’s early 1938, and Maisie Dobbs is back in England. On a fine yet chilly morning, as she walks towards Fitzroy Square – a place of many memories – she is intercepted by Brian Huntley and Robert MacFarlane of the Secret Service. Traveling into the heart of Nazi Germany, Maisie encounters unexpected dangers – and finds herself questioning whether it’s time to return to the work she loved. But the Secret Service may have other ideas . . .
Journey to Munich, Jacqueline Winspear
Jacqueline Winspear
Journey to Munich
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Looks like 2016 was the year of thrillers, and CJ Box's one is really off the charts.
Off the Grid, C.J.Box
C.J.Box
Off the Grid
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Ken Liu's The Paper Menagerie is one of the best sci-fi short stories to come out in the recent past. The short story is a mash up of love, paper tigers, mail order bride and culture clash, and so wonderfully moulded into a tear-jerking story. Mark our words, Ken Liu will be a name to be remembered in the sci-fi circles.
The Paper Menagerie, Ken Liu
Ken Liu
The Paper Menagerie
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Bone by Bone is a one heartbreaking tale of a fierce motherly love. And we love it for its suspense and thrill, and yet for its themes of family.
Laura is making a fresh start, and she's carving a new life for herself and her nine-year-old daughter, Autumn. But when Autumn fails to return home from school one day, Laura finds a crowd of older children taunting her little girl. In the heat of the moment, Laura is overcome with rage and makes one terrible mistake. A mistake that will have devastating consequences for her and her daughter…
Bone by Bone, Sanjida Kay
Sanjida Kay
Bone by Bone
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Bookmateadded a book to the bookshelfBest of 2016last year
Beneath the Ashes is Jane Isaac's much-anticipated second book in her trilogy crime series (last book out next year!). It may be cold as 2016 draws to an end, but it's perfect for plowing through this fiery disaster of murder, kidnap and secrets.
Beneath the Ashes, Jane Isaac
Jane Isaac
Beneath the Ashes
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Bookmateadded a book to the bookshelfBest of 2016last year
Death is the one thing that we all confront, that we know is inevitable. Yet why have we come to fear it so much? Death's Summer Coat explores the rituals of the past and how the death of a loved one might not have been such a distant, detached thing that we've come to know today. This is one great look into mortality throughout time and space.
Death's Summer Coat, Brandy Schillace
Brandy Schillace
Death's Summer Coat
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