Tony Ballantyne, author of (amongst other things) Dream London, posted about ten books he couldn’t put down and I have shamelessly used his idea. Feel free to list the ten books you couldn’t put down.
Note: this may not be the list of my ten favourite books ever (though some are) but they are all books that gripped me and made me keep turning pages to the exclusion of other things I should have been doing at the time. They are not in any particular order.
1) Joe Abercrombie: Half a King
Read a few weeks ago. I only intended to read the first chapter in bed on a Sunday morning. I read the whole thing straight through and got out of bed (finally) at 4.00 p.m. without even taking a break for a cup of coffee.
2) Peter O’Donnell: Modesty Blaise
One that I read in my teens. Who-hoo, a female James Bond only better and with added Willie Garvin. I read this one so many times that my copy has almost disintegrated.
3) Lois McMaster Bujold: Curse of Chalion
Not only could I not put this book down, but it is also on my top ten books of all time list. Possibly at the top of it.
4) Lois McMaster Bujold: Warrior’s Apprentice
The first Miles Vorkosigan book. Any one of the Vorkosigan books could go on this list, but this was the first I read and have re-read many times. Superb characterisation.
5) Andre Norton: Year of the Unicorn
Not the first Norton I read (Moon of Three Rings is also a favourite), not even the dirst Witch World I read, but this one really grabbed me.
6) John Wyndham: Day of the Triffids
When a day that you happen to know is Wednesday starts off by sounding like Sunday, there’s something seriously wrong somewhere. Possibly one of the best opeing lines ever. This was the first adult SF book I read, age 12 and it started me off down a path of searching out everything I could find.
7) Terry Pratchett: Night Watch
I’m a big Pratchett fan but I think this is probably his best. It’s economically written, but the pacing is superb and the dramatic tension is stretched almost to breaking point before it twangs back!
8) Elizabeth Chadwick: A Place Beyond Courage
A historical novel based on the life of the father of the knight William Marshal which kicks off William’s own story (continued in The Greatest Knight).
9) Patricia Briggs: Moon Called
The first of Briggs’ Mercy Thompson books about garage mechanic / Coyote shapechanger who was brought up in a pack of werewolves.
10) Scott Lynch: The Lies of Locke Lamora
Fascinating interweaving of past and present in a fantasy version of Venice. Locke is a brilliant character.