what? I didn’t post them?

I guess not. 2010, you are a blur to me. Busy busy busy. But I did read some books, and these were tops of the year that was.


Adrian Hyland / GUNSHOT ROAD
Fantastic and touching. Really, really, really good. Review here.


Timothy Hallinan / THE QUEEN OF PATPONG
Blow your socks off excellence. Review here.

Jess Walter / THE FINANCIAL LIVES OF THE POETS
What can I say? It worked for me. YMMV. Review here.


Tana French / FAITHFUL PLACE
I liked this much more than her first two books. Really good x 3. Review here.

Johan Theorin /THE DARKEST ROOM
Pensive, enjoyable, with tolerable woo-woo. Review here.

Charlie Huston / THE MYSTIC ARTS OF ERASING ALL SIGNS OF DEATH
A noir setup is trumped by an optimistic ending.  Review here.

Steve Hamilton / THE LOCK ARTIST
A potentially too-clever concept is rescued by a charming narrator. Review here.

Peter Temple / TRUTH
Hard to follow at times, but with a strange poetry. Review here.

Reggie Nadelson / BLOOD COUNT
I love the voice of this completely implausible detective. Review here.

Arnaldur Indridason / HYPOTHERMIA
Haven’t hit a dud in this series yet. Review here.

4 Responses to what? I didn’t post them?

  1. Maxine says:

    Great selection, Barbara (or at least, the ones on it that I have read). I will check out the couple that I have not, in view of your recommendation, thanks.

  2. Ditto – the ones I have read (Indridason, Temple, Theorin, Hyland) I concur that they are well deseriving of a spot in a discerning top ten – I have the Huston awaiting on my TBR and am behind on the Hallinans but will get to this one eventually. The Ireland Reading Challenge is having a readalong of the Tana French next month so I may just have to take part – if I can find it in eBook format – 700 pages just feels to daunting in physical format, especially as I was only partly won over by In the Woods

  3. Barbara says:

    Bernadette, I was not sold at all on In the Woods. I thought she had great talent, but I disliked the characters, who seemed childish, thought it was far too wordy, wasting gorgeous language on trivia which muted the effect where it could have mattered, and felt manipulated by the Big Secret. (It was good enough that I got quite cross about it!) Faithful Place was much more straightforward and involving. (And my copy was 300 some pages, I think? It flew past.)

    Reggie Nadelson is someone who also may or may not appeal. I love her series, but people who share my tastes have not always had the same reaction. If you don’t buy into the main character, it won’t fly.

  4. […] Tim Hallinan continues to coast in the aftermath of his Edgar nomination, and was just thrilled to see a really wonderful review of that book, The Queen of Patpong, in a wrap-up of the best of 2010 on the site of the novelist Barbara Fister.  I’m putting it up because it’s not every day I get a review with language like, “This is an amazing book: an honest and utterly absorbing depiction of women’s lives in Bangkok, showing their strength in the face of huge odds. And the writing is just lovely on every page.”  And also because you could find a much worse reading list than Fister’s choices for best of the year.  I’ve read many of them and loved them all.  Here’s Barbara’s page. […]

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