Sunday Salon: Favourite books from A to Z

The Sunday

I came across this meme on the Musings of a Bookshop Girl blog: for each letter of the alphabet, name your favourite book whose title starts with that letter. I’m not much of a one for naming definitive favourites, so instead I’ll list a favourite book for each letter (with links to where I’ve written about them. Here goes:

A  An A-Z of Possible Worlds – A.C. Tillyer

B  Beside the Sea – Véronique Olmi

C  Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell

D  Diving Belles – Lucy Wood

E  Everyone’s Just So So Special – Robert Shearman

F  The Facts of Life – Graham Joyce

G  The Godless Boys – Naomi Wood

H  How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe – Charles Yu

I  The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks – Rebecca Skloot

J  Jasper Jones – Craig Silvey

K  The Knife of Never Letting Go – Patrick Ness

L  Legend of a Suicide – David Vann

M  Mr Shivers – Robert Jackson Bennett

N  Notes from a Small Island – Bill Bryson

O  On Roads: a Hidden History – Joe Moran

P  The Prestige – Christopher Priest

Q  The Quiddity of Will Self – Sam Mills

R  The Rehearsal – Eleanor Catton

S  Solo – Rana Dasgupta

T  Tender Morsels – Margo Lanagan

U  Under the Sun – Hanne Marie Svendsen

V  Vellum – Hal Duncan

W  We Had It So Good – Linda Grant

X  Xenogenesis – Octavia E. Butler

Y  Yellow Blue Tibia – Adam Roberts

Z  Zoo City – Lauren Beukes

I wasn’t sure whether I’d find something for each letter, but, luckily, The Quiddity of Will Self (which is the last book I read) turned out to be really good, and gave me the Q. (The X is a slight cheat, as it’s the omnibus of a series which I only read as individual volumes, but I think I can be allowed a little leeway.)

Let me know if you decide to do this meme yourself, as I’d love to see how our lists compare.


  1. Hmm there’s quite a few there I’d need to read. I’ll print this list and try a few. Thanks for the pointers.

  2. Nice list! I ALMOST went for ‘Notes on a Small Island’, but ‘Big Country’ is the one I keep dipping into when I need a pick-me-up so it won by a whisker. I have a few of the other books on my TBR shelves – ‘Cloud Atlas’, ‘Henrietta Lacks’, ‘The Prestige’ and ‘The Knife of Never Letting Go’ – so maybe eventually they’ll topple their predecessors and make it onto my list, who knows? I reckon this might be a yearly meme for me now!

  3. I’ve only just come across this. Thank you. It’s a great list and I’m proud to be on it. I am honoured, truly.

  4. I have yet to read any of the books on your list, though I have heard of most of them. I think I’m going to have to expand my reading horizons =]

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