I read so many books this year that I thought it would be fun to rank my top five of all I read this year in the two major categories: fiction and non-fiction. Check out my top five non-fiction reads post as well. Below are my favorite fiction reads in 2016.
1. Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty
I have read five of Liane Moriarty's books and this one has been my favorite of them all (I haven't read The Last Anniversary or Truly Madly Guilty yet but I plan to). They have all been very engaging.
In Big Little Lies we learn that there has someone has been killed and there is an investigation and lots of speculation from parents of an elementary school. The book then rewinds six months and introduces us to the three main women in the book. We learn about their friendship, their lives and their secrets.
As I read the book I was constantly guessing who might have died and who the murder might have been. I became so enamored with the characters that I hoped none of them was the victim nor the culprit. I was surprised by the actual sequence of events which I appreciated as the reader. It was quite an enjoyable ride that I think others would enjoy taking as well.
2. The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion
I don't remember how I heard about this book. I feel like I had heard that it was a book about a character similar to Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory, which is a show I thoroughly enjoy.
In The Rosie Project, we meet Don Tillman, a geneticist at a local university who has decided that he would like to try to find a wife. He creates a lengthy questionnaire to find the perfect candidate for "The Wife Project" and enlists the help of his good friend, and fellow university professor, Gene in reading the questionnaires and selecting women. Gene lets him know that he is sending a woman to his office indicating that she is a candidate for his wife project.
Don soon learns that she is not a seemingly suitable candidate but she asks for help in locating her biological father and he agrees. He soon begins to enjoy his time with Rosie even though she knocks his seemingly perfect and scheduled life completely out of whack. We see Don wrestle with what he really wants or needs in his life and try to figure out if he can truly understand and experience love. If you like The Big Bang Theory, I think you would enjoy this book.
3. At Home in Mitford by Jan Karon
I was introduced to this series (and have now read three of the thirteen books) by a good friend. The book takes place in a small town called Mitford, NC and follows Episcopalian priest Tim Kavanaugh through his everyday life - his experiences with the people and parishioners in this quaint mountain town.
All of the characters are endearing and I was drawn into their lives and the town's happenings. I was especially intrigued when Father Tim received a new neighbor who was quirky, spontaneous and whom he found attractive. Can a 50-something bachelor change his routine and life to allow another soul entrance and home? This question won't be completely answered in the first book, but, if you're like me, you'll soon be entrenched in finding out what continues to happen in this little town of Mitford.
4. The Girl in the Spider's Web by David Lagercrantz
This is the fourth book in Stieg Larsson's series that started with The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. I really enjoyed reading all of those books - they were fast paced and action-packed. I was curious to see how the series continued with a new author. I was not disappointed.
In this one, a well-known computer programmer who mysteriously left his company in California and returned to Sweden contacts Mikael Blomkvist and asks to meet him so that he can share some information he received from a young female hacker. Mikael is intrigued because he thinks Lisbeth Salander might be involved. As he reaches the contact's house, an assassin emerges having just killed the person in question. The only witness is the victim's autistic son. Mikael begins looking into the events, eliciting Lisbeth's assistance.
Who is behind the murder? What was the information important enough to kill and be killed for? What is Lisbeth's role in everything? If you enjoyed the previous ones, as I did, you will also enjoy this thrill ride with lots of twists and turns.
5. Inferno by Dan Brown
This is the fourth book in the Robert Langdon series. I did not read the third book but I don't seem to have missed any vital information needed for this one. It was another face-paced adventure through several European countries (I always enjoy the history, architectural and art information each book contains), mainly Italy.
When the story begins Robert wakes up in a hospital with a head wound and no memory of the last few days. He believes he was shot in the head. As he's trying to gain his bearings, an assassin comes after him in the hospital and one of the doctor's assisting him helps him escape. When they are briefly safely in the doctor's apartment, she shares with him what she knows and they discover an object he was hiding in his coat. It becomes a clue they follow to try to gain back his memory and discover what is so threatening that his life is in danger. He fears he is responsible for something terrible because he can only remember mumbling "I'm sorry".
It was a fast-paced, exciting ride. There were unexpected revelations and discoveries throughout the story. I rooted for Lagndon and his partner, Doctor Sienna Brooks to discover and thwart the threat. If you have enjoyed Dan Brown's other Robert Langdon novels, this one won't disappoint.
These were my five favorite fiction reads from last year. What is one you read that you would recommend? Have you read any of the above? If so, please share your thoughts with me as well. To see my favorite non-fiction books of 2016, click here.