Our Books of the Year 2016

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At The Reading Agency we love a good book, as our name suggests; we are passionate readers because we know first-hand the difference that reading can make to our lives. 2016 has been a year of some brilliant new books, so as the year draws to a close, we’ve been looking back over last 12 months and picking out our favourites. The decision wasn’t easy, but we’ve come up with our definitive list for 2016, and wanted to share it with you.

The highlights

Here are a couple of examples of the books most beloved by the team:

Sharon’s pick – The Portable Veblen

“I loved this quirky, squirrelsome novel…It mixes humour with deep, philosophical insight about human relationships. I was especially intrigued about the two main characters, Veblen, a woman who is so eager to please and iron out any lumps in anyone’s life (except her own) that you almost despair. She loves squirrels. She can talk to squirrels. Her fiancé, Paul, is a desperately ambitious neurologist who hates squirrels and isn’t too keen on hippies. It’s light and funny and then suddenly profound. You will look at squirrels in a different light. And it will make you question your way of life, too.”

Rosie’s pick – The Sellout

“This book couldn’t be more perfect for the 2016 political climate. The cutting satire is something that few writers can achieve, let alone this well. It was both thought provoking and challenging and I would recommend it to anyone and everyone.”

Genevieve’s pick – The Outrun

“It was a combination of searing honesty and wonderful observation about humanity and nature. The story takes you from remote landscape to inner-city life and back again as Amy describes her struggle with alcoholism and mental health in the hothouse atmosphere of London and how she rises above it in the wildness of the Orkneys.”


Click through to any book to find our more or leave a review.

The Lonely City by Olivia Laing

What’s a Girl Gotta Do? by Holly Bourne

The Last Days of Jack Sparks by Jason Arnopp

The Sellout by Paul Beatty

A Child of Books by Oliver Jeffers and Sam Winston

The Good Immigrant by Nikesh Shukla

The Essex Serpent by Sarah Perry

Animal by Sara Pascoe

The New Odyssey by Patrick Kingsley

The Optician of Lampedusa by Emma-Jane Kirby

The Portable Veblen by Elizabeth McKenzie

My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout

Augustown by Kei Miller

The Outrun by Amy Liptrot

Get involved

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Sarah Davis

I loved 'the outrun' for its beautiful writing and the Essex serpent was really well written and gripping. I also love the a child of books

Sarah Davis - Greenwich Libraries


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