Tuesday, 12 January 2016

My Top Five Reads of 2015

Last year, I looked back at my top five reads in 2014 and as it was a pretty fun experience to relive some of the highlights of that year, I see no reason not to try the same thing again. It was not easy this time either, since there were quite a few books that I had given the same ratings, but one must be ruthless sometimes and make decisions.

I had to leave some of my favourites outside this list, however, such as Patrick O'Brian's Wine Dark Sea, which was a great (re-)read over the holidays. I also read the last few parts of the d'Artagnan Romances this year and they were very close to having got a mention on this list. But, here we go with my five favourites from last year, in no specific order.

The Club Dumas by Arturo Pérez-Reverte

This novel was a perfect fit with me. Like me, the author is a clear fan of Alexandre Dumas and this novel is pretty much dedicated to this author with numerous details about Dumas, his working style, the real history inspirations of his stories and Pérez-Reverte even made some of his own characters clear parallels of the ones found in the Three Musketeers. It has its faults, but it is definitely worth a read to anyone who enjoys any of the old classics.

My original review can be found here

The Hour of the Dragon adaptation by Timothy Truman, Thomas Giorello and Jose Villarrubia

Robert E. Howard's The Hour of the Dragon is one of his most impressive tales of Conan the Cimmerian in his later life as the king of Aquilonia. It has been reinterpreted in comic form before, but this adaptation by Timothy Truman, Tomas Giorello and Jose Villarruba published by Dark Horse is undoubtedly the definitive edition of the tale in comic form - and it even improves upon some aspects of the original.

My original review can be found here

The Wild by Whitley Strieber

This is definitely not your typical werewolf story - there are no bloody murders, full moons or even that much action in it. Rather, it is a journey of a man's mystical rediscovery of himself and his part in the world, a cry out for wildlife and wilderness. It is a commentary on humanity as much as it is a story of the strange fate of a single family. A definite must-read to any fan of werewolves, as long as they are willing to entertain the idea that werewolves need not be blood-thirsty monsters.

My original review can be found here

The Sword of Destiny by Andrzej Sapkowski

I rarely pick up a work of fantasy these days, but Sapkowski is one author with whom I make an exception. His characters are complex, his stories multilayered with lighthearted moments mixed with a darker look at humanity. In fact, many of his short stories are reinterpretations old classics, with a twist, but somehow Sapkowski also manages to turn them into commentaries on humanity in general.

My original review can be found here

Blue Moon by Pol McShane

This was one of the definite surprises of this year. Taking place largely in a mental hospital, the author delves into a curious case of a man who believes he is a werewolf - and another man who is destined to become one. Overall, it is a compelling read and it mixes a hefty dose of human drama with classic werewolf horror. It is a must-read for any genre enthusiast.

My original review can be found here