Being as it’s World Book Day we decided to quiz some off the staff in the office about their favourite books… Sadly no one has dressed up today (but to be honest Will looks a bit like Hagrid all the time anyway). There are some classic choices in here, and a few surprises too…
The Harry Potter Series – JK Rowling
Is it even possible to talk about World Book Day without mentioning JK Rowling’s incredible series? Undoubtedly responsible for introducing generations of kids (and adults) to the joys of reading you just can’t argue with the strong characterisation, perfectly paced storytelling and surprisingly complex issues and themes.
The Hunger Games Series – Suzanne Collins
Not only is The Hunger Games a powerful, fast paced adventure story, it also explores some pretty hard-hitting themes that are sometimes a little bit close to the bone. Like the greatest dystopian science fiction novels it’s set in another world and time but actually it’s really about the here and now.
The Girl on the Train – Paula Hawkins
At the heart of The Girl on the Train is a satisfying mystery story, with plot twists and turns that will keep you guessing to the end just like any classic detective novel. But what really sets it apart is the way that we can all identify with the way the central character watches the world going by her, wondering just what might be going on behind closed doors and windows.
The Year of Living Danishly – Helen Russell
A genuinely interesting look at how people live in Denmark, the happiest place in the world – despite the long winters and the short days. The author spends a year living Danishly and reports back on what she believes the Danes get right, what they get wrong and what we could learn from them.
Blood Meridian – Cormac McCarthy
It’s difficult to single out one of McCarthy’s novels – The Road and No Country for Old Men tend to get most of the attention, but it’s this tale of a character known only as the kid’s experiences with the notorious Glanton Gang and a terrifying figure known only as The Judge in the mid 1800s that we grips us the most. McCarthy’s unconventional use of prose takes some getting used to but the power of his words is undeniable.
The Sandman Saga – Neil Gaiman
If ever there was an argument for comics as literature this is it right here. You can read each collected arc individually, but as a whole it’s like an epic tragedy, telling the tale of Dream of the Endless. Gaiman’s storytelling (as in his prose novels) is excellent and his appropriation and reweaving of strands of mythology is masterful. Combined with Dave McKean’s cover art there really is still little to touch it.
So that’s (some of) our favourites – we could write or talk about books all day, but sadly work gets in the way. What do you think? What are your favourite books? We would love to hear! Leave a comment below or tweet us.