This is the part of my book shelves where some of my all time favourites live.
Telegraph Avenue, Michael Chabon
Michael Chabon can do no wrong as far as I'm concerned. This isn't my favourite - that honour goes to The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, if you haven't read it, what are you waiting for? - but this US edition has the most beautiful cover.
- Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, Susanna Clarke
In the days Before Kindle, books being too huge to lug around everyday was a big first world problem, so finding this box set split into three volumes was the answer to my book nerd prayers. I was worried when I heard this epic magical fantasy set in an alternate early 19th century was being adapted into a seven part series (BBC1, Sunday nights) - how could it possibly live up to my fantasies? - but happily, it has.
- Nights at the Circus, Angela Carter
I discovered Angela Carter when I was at university and devoured everything she wrote until she died in 1992. (I'm not ashamed to admit I cried.) Nights At The Circus is my favourite. I have several copies, but Jon gave me this signed first edition paperback last Christmas. He found it in a Canadian second hand bookshop.
- Heartburn, Nora Ephron
Nora Ephron is one of my icons. She manages to combine being super smart with being super accessible. I literally don't know any woman of any age who doesn't love her. In Heartburn, her lone, highly autobiographical, novel, she proves revenge is a dish best served piping hot.
- The Glass Castle, Jeanette Walls
I wasn't much of a non-fiction reader until I discovered this astonishing memoir. It starts with Walls' itinerant childhood and ends with her living on Park Avenue covering the Oscars while her parents squat on Manhattan's Lower East Side. I read the whole thing slack-jawed with awe.