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  • Writer's pictureKenneth

Top reads of 2019

At the time of writing, 2019 is on its last heaving gasps, and whether or not this is the end of the decade, (well, I will let smarter people than me discuss that into oblivion). Then this is the perfect time to go through my favourite reads of this year! Was planning the best 19 of 2019, but why limit myself? This year was filled with fantastic books, and I have trouble choosing my top 19, it’s like choosing one’s favourite child, Like, does my mother have a favourite son? yes, its my brother, but that is beside the point…. So, without further ado, and in no particular order or category or rhyme or reason, here is my top reads of 2019 (not all were released in 2019):

1. The Last by Hanna Jameson: Well written nuclear post-apocalyptic story seasoned with a bit of crime in it, what more do you want?

2. Dogs of War by Adrian Tchaikovsky: A story from the point of view of a sentient genetically modified dog, bred for battle and warfare. Good dog!

3. Gateway by Frederik Pohl: Classic Sci-fi story that have influenced many a contemporary creation, like the Mass Effect videogame series and The Expanse books.

4. Six books by Joe Abercrombie: It is impossible to only take one of Joe Abercrombie’s First Law books as a favourite, so I just put the six I read on here (which is, The Blade Itself, Before They are Hanged, Last Argument of kings, The Heroes, Red Country, Sharp Ends. Read Best Served Cold on my honeymoon in 2018, and have the first in the new trilogy sitting on my shelf waiting to be read soon!) Grimdark fantasy at its best!

5. Three books by Jane Harper: I read all of Jane Harper’s crime books in a short time span, engaging and puzzling crime that keeps you guessing until the end and you can almost feel the Australian heat emanating from the pages,

6. High Cross by Paul Melhuish: Horrific Tales Publishing is one of my got to publishers, when they release a book, I buy, quality stuff all around, High Cross is no exception! In the village of Highcross, an old evil has awakened, filled with horror, sex and violence.

7. The Cold by Rich Hawkins: surprisingly, here is another Horrific Tales Publishing book, this one is a bleak, claustrophobic and oppressive cosmic horror story! Another home run from the publisher!

8. Kings of the Wyld by Nicholas Eames: Fantasy where roaming mercenary bands act and is treated like old rock bands, yes please!! Just a fun fantasy read!

9. The Butchering Art by Lindsey Fitzharris: Suddenly a non-fiction book, this medical history book shows how truly horrible life where back in the mid-1800s, and how much things changed with the discovery of antiseptic and antibacterial treatment.

10. The Loosening Skin and The Arrival of Missives by Aliya Whiteley: Aliya Whiteley is quickly becoming my go to author for whenever I crave some literary speculative fiction! Mind-blowingly great writing!

11. Slugs by Shaun Hutson: The classical tale of humans vs killer slugs! One of the better killer animal books from the 1980s. Just a fun read!

That is technically 19 books there, but I am not anywhere near done with this list, so we go on!

12. McGlue by Ottessa Moshfegh: A novella about a sailor in the late 1800s, slowly dying from a head injury and accused of murdering his best friend, dark, depressing and filled with self-loathing!

13. Semiosis by Sue Burke: Science fiction where we follow a group of colonists surviving on a planet filled with somewhat sentient plants.

14. Rosewater by Tade Thompson: Winner of the 2019 Clarke award. If you are after new and exiting Sci-fi set in near future Africa, read this book!

15. Growing Things and Other Stories by Paul Tremblay: First foray into Paul Tremblay’s writing, this short story collection did not disappoint!

16. Ferocious, Sick House and My Pretties by Jeff Strand: Jeff Strand’s writing makes me laugh and cringe with horror and slight disgust, that man writes slapstick horror like no other!

17. The Influence by Ramsey Campbell: A timeless classic by a writer that knows his craft. Just need to see the Netflix adaptation now.

18. Empire of Sand by Tasha Suri: Mughal inspired Fantasy, yes please. I do love it when reading any book really set in a different setting than what one is used to!

19. Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo: Yes, I do read YA occasionally, this is one hell of a read that deserves to be on many of a best book list!

20. The Mouth of the Dark by Tim Waggoner: Tim Waggoner is one of my go to guys whenever I need some weird quality horror, and this book does not disappoint!

21. Cruel Works of Nature by Gemma Amor: Short story collection from one of the most exiting writers out there now. After reading this book, I had to go and order everything that is available from the writer!

22. Gwendy’s Magic Feather by Richard Chizmar: Sequel to Gwendy’s Button Box that Stephen King and Richard Chizmar wrote together. Great sequel.

23. Embers of War by Gareth L. Powell: Space opera featuring a retired sentient war ship. Just a great read, went and bought the sequel as soon as I had finished this one.

24. Grind Your Bones to Dust by Nicholas Day: Nihilistic, bleak and oppressive. Just a fantastic read. Featuring a herd of donkeys, everybody loves donkeys, right?

25. True Crime by Samantha Kolesnik: Last book I read in 2019, and what a book to end the year on! Blog post to come when I have had time to breathe first.

26. The Reddening by Adam Nevill: and last but not least, The Reddening, the best book (in my opinion) that have come from Adam Nevill, a man who knows how to write great horror. Had high hopes for the book and I was not disappointed!!

So, that’s it, my top 36 of 2019, And judging by my TBR pile 2020 is going to be just as good or even better!

Thank you for reading my ramblings and I hope 2020 is going to be a fantastic year for you reading wise!



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