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30. Mark Bowden – Black Hawk Down: A Story of Modern War (1999)      

BlackHawkDown

Despite the film adaption being quite good, I actually didn’t like this book that much. I found it quite difficult to read as there were a lot of characters making it a struggle to read on (I didn’t attach to any of them.) Towards the end it got a bit easier but all round not the best book I’ve read this year.

31. Bret Easton Ellis – Less Than Zero (1985)     

Less-Than-Zero

I thought I’d have a read of another Bret Easton Ellis book. Apparently this was one of the first books he wrote. Whilst I didn’t enjoy it as much as American Psycho it wasn’t too bad. The storyline didn’t really go anywhere, but I guess that was the point. Its a very surreal read, as the main guy essentially drifts through like in dream like state after coming back from uni.

32. Chuck Palahniuk – Fight Club (1996)       

FightClub

I really enjoyed the film of this book and it turns out the book is very similar to it. It was a great book and I’d recommend it to anyone, even if they have seen the film already. No need to describe it further as most people have seen it!

33. Philip K. Dick – We Can Remember It for You Wholesale (1966)        

RememberForYouWholesale

A short story which felt like Philip K. Dick was just having a bit of fun with his imagination. The concept is very interesting and I like the way he goes about the idea within so few pages. One thing I was surprised about (having seen the original film before) was that no part of the story actually occurs on Mars!

34. Margaret Atwood – Oryx and Crake (2003)     

OryxAndCrake

This book was a bit slow at the beginning but as the story of Oryx and Crake and Snowman slowly unfolded I found myself really getting into it! Its set in a post apocalyptic future in which Snowman is the only man left alive, despite him being the only real character alive (there are the Crakes who arn’t quite human..) the story was still great. Turns out this book is the first of a trilogy, which I hadn’t known, but I’m looking forward to the rest.

35. Nick Hornby – High Fidelity (1995)       

high-fidelity

This was interesting to read, and essentially about a pedantic guy making lists about his top 5 breakups and many other lists. I guess not too much actually happens, but the story revolves around the main characters life not really going anywhere so that makes sense.

36. John Christopher – The Death of Grass (1956)       

DeathOfGrass

Somebody at work recommended this book. It was a really great book and I couldn’t put it down. Its another post-apocalyptic style book about a man getting him and his family out of London to his brothers safe haven in the north. I really connected with the characters and was rooting them the whole way. Very high up there on the best books I’ve read this year.

37. Mike Resnick – The 43 Antarean Dynasties (1997)  

A short sci-fi story which won the 1998 Hugo Award for Best Short Story. Essentially its about an alien (or you might say native) tour guide showing some humans around a city on his planet that has been conquered by humans and others repeatedly. He thinks back on the vast history of his planet and the humans don’t really care too much. Makes you think about colonisation and how the conquerors really don’t care about the history of the conquered.

38. Richard Paul Evans – The Christmas Box (1995)       

christmas_box

Not my sort of book but its good to branch out every now and then. There was a lot of emotional aspects to the book and it was a bit too religious for my liking, but I can see why it was a number 1 book when it was released.

39. J. G. Ballard – The Drowned World (1962)     

DrownedWorld

Post apocalyptic. Bit odd, but quite interesting, not quite sure when it was meant to be based but the world was overrun like a swamp pretty quickly. There was strange talk of shared dreams of prehistoric times which didn’t really work for me.

40. Patrick Suskind – Perfume (1985)       

Perfume

Good book. Like the film apart from some extra stuff in the middle (the main character stays in a cave for some time). I can see why the made it into a film, and they did a very good job. Amazing how the premise is the killer cant describe the smells he can smell but the author and the director of the movies did a pretty good job in my mind!

41. Algis Budrys – The Burning Word (1957)

Accidentally got this book when I thought I was getting “J. G. Ballard – The Burning World”.  Interesting about regimes taking over from one another. Short story. Could have done with being a bit more filled out.

42. Mitch Albom – The Five People You Meet in Heaven (2003)       

five-people

Again this isn’t my usual sort of book. I did actually enjoy reading this book though, the premise was interesting and it kept me wanting to see what happened. It was a nice touching read.

43. Christopher Priest – The Prestige (1995)       

Prestige

Yet another book where I liked the film so decided to read the book. The book adds and is different to the film in a number of ways. Its a very good book, some of the intrigue my have been lost by having seen the film first, but one of the big twists of the film is revealed quite easily early on in the book.

44. Hugh Howey – I, Zombie (2012)   

IZombie

The premise is essentially that Zombies still have there human minds locked inside, they just have no control over their body. Its written from the zombies point of view which is interesting at first but the book soon becomes chapter after chapter of boring monologues. I’d recommend just enjoying the idea, not reading the book.

45. Neil Strauss – Emergency (2009)   

Emergency_Cover

A book about a man learning how to survive so he’s prepared if shit hits the fan. It was a very interesting read and I enjoyed following Neil on his journey of learning about how to be a survivalist. In fact its made me think that maybe rather than reading 50 books next year I should learn some practical skills instead! (e.g. first aid.)