This year is almost over and it’s that time of the year to draw the line and take a look at some of the best books I read in 2015. From the 80+ books counted by Goodreads, around 60% were of some real quality and impact on my life and general knowledge. Sure, I read for fun Mindy Kaling, Felicia Day, and a rather addictive YA series, but I don’t feel guilty at all 🙂
Here are 2015’s best books( according to my agenda, in no particular order):
- The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie – a lovely and fresh book, something between Salinger’s ‘Catcher in the Rye’ and Curtis Sittenfeld ‘Prep’ . Happy, sad, and witty. A tale of friendship, distrust, love, beauty, and art.
- The Memoirs of a 90-something. My travels. My Writers – written like a journal, this book by Romanian translator Antoaneta Ralian, tells the author’s stories, sometimes real adventures, in Europe and the US in Communism, and her conversations with Iris Murdoch, Saul Bellow, Amos Oz, Ted Hughes, Kurt Vonnegut, or Salman Rushdie. This book is perfect for anyone that loves reading or traveling, or both 🙂
- Man’s Search for Meaning – this book tells the real story about how an Austrian psychiatrist, Victor Frankl, lived through concentration camps in the World War II. I can come up with one quote that describes the entire book and experience for that matter: ‘Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t–you’re right'(Henry Ford).
- Ernest Hemingway on Writing – this is a collection of letters, journal entries, and even work parts(A Movable Feast, By-Line). About this book and its, oh so many good advice, I wrote earlier. One of the greatest books on writing, without a doubt.
- A Literate Passion – a wonderful collection of letters exchanged by Anais Nin and Henry Miller between 1942 and 1953. Books, writing, love, sex, and everyday life in Paris were debated.
- A Little Life – probably one of the best book I have read my whole life. It’s a story of love, friendship, suffering, and mostly sadness. But, I believe, the parts on love and friendship, and even family, compensate, at least a little, for the sad parts.
- Love Poems – a short and lovely book by the well known, Chilean artist Pablo Neruda. On love and sea, and their almost perfect symbiosis.
- Boy: Tales of Childhood – from the author of Matilda, comes one of the funniest and most interesting biographies I have read this year. The title, ‘Tales of Childhood’ is fit and revealing of the adventures you can read inside. Family, friendship, and childhood.
- Flow – The psychology of optimal experience – Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi wrote a complex book on the benefits and the state of flow – when you write, paint, or work so passionately that you forget about time passing.
- The Death of Ivan Ilyich – Tolstoy’s genius is shown once again in this story. The meaning of life, superficiality, and kindness are just a few themes explored by this story. And, if you liked this book, you can also read Eugen Ionesco’s The King Dies, another masterpiece of literature.
- White Fang– read as a child long time ago, this book impressed me one again, this time thorough the language used, the characters, and the setting. This is first a story of friendship and kindness.
- Bradbury Speaks – a lovely little book written by the author of Fahrenheit 451. Dwelling on themes like writing, SF, personal life, and childhood(when he used to watch movies in old Hollywood countless times), Bradbury Speaks is a conversation with the readers.
What are the best books you’ve read in 2015?