My Favourite Books This Year (So Far)

I have struggled to get into a reading groove this year but there are still some great books that I would recommend checking out. These are in no particular order.

  1. The Anglo Saxons – Marc Morris

The period of time between the Roman Empire leaving Britain and the Norman invasion isn’t something that is written about a lot. It was a time when Britain had multiple kingdoms and has always fascinated me. I’ve read a few books on the subject, but this is one of the best. Well written and captivating. I ended up buying it for the Kindle, as an audiobook and also as a paper book so I could see the pictures clearly.

  1. The Way of Kings – Brandon Sanderson

I’ll be honest, it took me a while to get into this. I think I started it last year and then put it down for a few months before returning to it in April. I’m glad that I did. Enough has been written about these books that if you’re interested then you’ve probably read them already. But, if like me, you gave up on this one, maybe it’s worth another try? As soon as I finished this I read the next three books in the series.

  1. The Warlord of the Air – Michael Moorcock

The book I am currently writing is set in a steampunk world, so I thought it was a good idea to go back and read one of the first to be released. Very glad that I did because not only is it steampunk, but there is some travel to alternative realities, which is something I really enjoy. A very quick read.

  1. Out of Sight – Elmore Leonard

I picked this up in a charity shop purely because I liked the cover and have enjoyed some of Leonard’s books in the past. It’s another quick read and an enjoyable change of scenery from the fantasy and sci-fi books that I had been reading up to this point in the year. Although there are some parts of it that are almost as unbelievable as magic swords.

  1. The Time Traveller’s Guide to Regency Britain – Ian Mortimer

Another book that has been highly influential. The Time Traveller’s Guide books are excellent and I have enjoyed the whole series. This one is going to be particularly interesting if you have enjoyed Bridgerton. There are some really interesting insights into that world. 

  1. The Old Man’s War – John Scalzi

Not the first time I have read this, but somehow I enjoyed it a lot more this time. Possibly because I came to it off the back of watching the excellent Starship Troopers film, so I was more primed to see the satire of the story. I am currently reading my way through the other books in the series and enjoying them.

So there you go, six books that won’t be a waste of your time if you decide to check them out. Let me know what you think if you do read them, or if there are others that you would recommend I read.

Recommended: The Space Between Worlds

by Micaiah Johnson


Cara works in the wealthy Wiley City but she grew up in the wasteland beyond the city walls. Her job is travelling to different worlds where other versions of her have been killed, because no one can survive in a world where their counterpart is still alive.


The premise caught my attention. I’m a sucker for alternative reality stories. There is something different about this one though. Although there are likely an infinite number of alternative realities, people are only able to travel to those within a range of similarity to the base reality, which in this case is 380. So the realities they visit aren’t very different to the original.

The differences are more about the people, which means the main character is able to learn more about the people on Earth-Zero (the base reality) by talking to their counterparts. Which is a much more subtle thing than I’m used to seeing in this type of story.

Earth-Zero, by the way, isn’t our Earth. It is metaphorically similar in the differences between the wealthy and the poor, but is not the same.

The characters are interesting and feel fully-realised. The differences between them and their counterparts are situational. Something different happened to them in their history, but in most cases they are essentially the same person.

The story itself takes a little while to get going, but that time allows the reader to learn more about the characters and start caring about them. Which, given how complex Cara is, probably couldn’t be done any quicker. At first she isn’t an easy person to like, but by the end I really wanted her to succeed.

Along the way there are a lot of twists and turns. More than one chapter ends with a revelation that changes how you view the characters.

Overall I really enjoyed the book and would recommend it to anyone who wants a story with alternative realities, but isn’t really about alternate realities.