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  • Celia Jenkins

My 2017 Reading List

Every year my new years resolution is to try and read more books than the year before. I've managed this every year since 2012, and hope to do the same again this year, though with 53 now being the total to beat, it's more of a challenge.

I also vow each year to read more widely. I read pretty much anything, but particularly like children's books (in the 5-7, 7-9, 10-12 and YA age groups, particularly), literary fiction, classics, poetry (particularly haiku, even better if it has both the English and Japanese translation), non-fiction on interesting subjects, and a bit of romantic chick lit when I'm feeling lazy and want to relax.

So here are the 53 books I conquered in 2017. I don't recommend all of them, but I do recommend most of them. I enjoyed almost every children's book on the list, and managed to read a number of brilliant established authors as well as some up-and-coming stars. I read an excellent collection of short stories, from which I drew up a Christmas list of my favourites and have since received many more short story collections. I also received the first 5 of Morris Gleitzman's 'Once' series, which I'm getting stuck into now.

Other favourites from last year: 'A Tale for the Time Being' by Ruth Ozeki is completely excellent. It's one of those books where I want to recommend it to everyone, but it's also really raw, horrible and harrowing and I get nervous about telling people to read it because of the brutally honest scenes. I was living in Japan at the time of reading, and this book is so spot-on, so honest of Japanese culture, the worst parts of it. But it's also brilliant in many other ways. Do read it, despite the gritty bits.

Speaking of Grit, Angela Duckworth also features as one of my 2017 favourites. I adored her book, I found it inspiring, motivating... but it's not for everyone. I think it stuck a chord with me, but if you aren't that sort of person, it probably won't make you feel that good about yourself. Read the blurb - if it appeals, go for it. Duckworth is a genius.

If I list all my other favourites I'll pretty much just be re-typing the list, so I'll just let you dive right in. If my list inspires you, leave a comment and let me know what you'll be reading in 2018!

Celia's 2017 Reading List

1. 'Leaving My Beloved Children Behind'

- Takashi Nagai

2. 'Leaves of Grass'

- Walt Whitman

3. 'White Teeth'

- Zadie Smith

4. 'Lady Susan'

- Jane Austin

5. 'Ballads'

- Robert Louis Stevenson

6. 'A Tale for the Time Being'

- Ruth Ozeki

7.' Pamela' or 'Virtue Rewarded'

- Samuel Richardson

8. 'Swing Time'

- Zadie Smith

9. 'Beauty and the Beast'

- Marie Le Prince de Beaumont

10. 'The Narrow Road to the Deep North and Other Travel Sketches'

- Matsuo Basho

11.'The Classic Tradition of Haiku: An Anthology'

- Faubion Bowers

12. 'Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance'

- Angela Duckworth

13. 'To The Lighthouse'

- Virginia Woolf

14. 'My Name is Victoria'

- Lucy Worsley

15. 'Art History: A Very Short Introduction'

- Dana Arnold

16. 'The Centurion's Wife'

- Janette Oke and David Bunn

17. 'South of the Border, West of the Sun'

- Haruki Murakami

18. 'I Let You Go'

- Clare Mackintosh

19. 'tuesdays with Morrie'

- Mitch Albom

20. 'Scarlet and Ivy – The Lost Twin'

- Sophie Cleverly

21. 'Scarlet and Ivy – The Whispers in the Walls'

- Sophie Cleverly

22. 'i was here'

- Gayle Forman

23. 'The Travelling Tea Shop'

- Belinda Jones

24. 'Elf Girl and Raven Boy: Scream Sea'

- Marcus Sedgwick

25. 'Scarlet and Ivy – The Dance in the Dark'

- Sophie Cleverly

26. 'Billionaire Boy'

- David Walliams

27. 'Hooey Higgins Goes for Gold'

- Steve Voake

28. 'Adventures of the Islanders'

- M. J. Vermeulen

29. 'The Midnight Gang'

- David Walliams

30. 'A Winter Book'

- Tove Jansson

31. 'The Art of Hygge'

- Jonny Jackson and Elias Larsen

32. 'The Midnight Kittens'

- Dodie Smith

33. 'Sark Folkelore'

- Martin Remphry

34. 'The World's Worst Children'

- David Walliams

35. 'Scarlet and Ivy: The Lights Under the Lake'

- Sophie Cleverly

36. 'Running on the Roof of the World'

- Jess Butterworth

37. 'Animals in School'

- Julia Donaldson

38. 'Walking on Gold'

- Janine Amos

39. 'Mr Majeika and the Ghost Train'

- Humphrey Carpenter

40. 'The Penguin Book of the British Short Story: 2: From P.G. Wodehouse to Zadie Smith'

- Philip Hesher (editor)

41. 'Island'

- David Almond

42. 'Diary of a Wimpy Kid – Hard Luck'

- Jeff Kinney

43. 'Waiting for Anya'

- Micheal Morpurgo

44. 'The BBC National Short Story Award 2015'

- Various

45. 'The Ingo Chronicles - Stormswept'

- Helen Dunmore

46. 'The Graveyard Book'

- Neil Gaiman

47. 'Mary'

- Vladimir Nabokov

48. 'Deep France: A Writer's Year in the Bearn'

- Celia Brayfield

49. 'Midnight'

- Jacqueline Wilson

50. 'Judy Moody Saves the World!'

- Megan McDonald

51: 'Don't Juggle Bees! And Other Useless Advice For Silly Children: A Silly Rhyming Picture Books for Kids '

- Gerald Hawksley

52. 'Feeling Sorry for Celia'

- Jaclyn Moriarty

53. 'God Moments: A Year in the Word'

- The Writers of

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