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As 2020 approaches, the whitefox team have been trying to narrow down the books that stuck with them over the course of 2019. After a year of endlessly inspiring publications, it was hard to pick just one each, but we had a go – take a look at the 10 best books of 2019, as chosen by the whitefox team.
1. Julia Koppitz, Editorial Director – Trick Mirror: Reflections on Self-Delusion by Jia Tolentino
The Times Literary Non-Fiction Book of the year, Trick Mirror explores the self in all of its social, cultural and political forms – from the rise of the Internet and its effects to the power of extravagant weddings, Jia Tolentino’s collection of coming-of-age-in-a-confusing-time essays will make you think, re-think and laugh out loud.
2. Chris Wold, Sales & Business Development Director – The Offing by Benjamin Myers
The Offing’s strong characters, lyricism and natural history will have you turning all of the pages in one sitting. Telling the story of sixteen-year-old Robert Appleyard as he journeys to Robin Hood’s Bay and forms a life-shaping relationship, this is a classic coming-of-age tale which will break your heart, but in the best of ways.
3. George Edgeller, Editorial Project Manager – Sweet Sorrow by David Nicholls
When discussing coming-of-age books publishing in 2019, Sweet Sorrow can’t be ignored. David Nicholls’ latest heart-breaking book will fill you with nostalgia and potentially give you whiplash as it throws you between sobs and hysterics – this book will be read and re-read on beaches, airplanes and in reading nooks for generations to come.
4. Caroline McArthur, Editorial Project Manager – The Book You Wish Your Parents Had Read by Philippa Perry
Psychotherapist Philippa Perry knows that it’s not possible to be a perfect parent, and doesn’t try to offer you a map to becoming one. Instead, she encourages the reader to try the absolute best they can, and gives them the tools to understand what might get in their way, why it might and how to overcome it.
5. John Bond, Founder and CEO – It Gets Me Home, This Curving Track by Ian Penman
The ultimate gift for any music lover, music critic Ian Penman explores a history of innovation and cultural collaboration in music. For Ian Penman, and for many others, music is the guiding force in life, something which connects us all and gives us direction.
6. Gabrielle Johnson, Content Marketing Executive – Her Body and Other Parties by Carmen Maria Machado
Somewhere between Angela Carter and Jeanette Winterson sits Carmen Maria Machado and her debut collection of short stories which perfectly combine the mundane and the magical. It is our world with our hates and our desires and our prejudices, transformed by horror and fantasy. A perfect introduction to her work, don’t miss this book.
7. Becca Allen, Editorial Project Manager – Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams
A book that’s sure to hit a chord with every reader, Queenie’s honesty and humour on subjects such as mental health, heartbreak and race set it apart from any book of its genre published not just in 2019 but in the last decade.
8. Hannah Bickerton, Head of Marketing – My Sister the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite
A meditation on family and sacrifice, never has there been a more accessible book about murder. My Sister the Serial Killer follows Korede as she struggles between protecting her sister’s dark secret and penchant for stabbing and making sure no one else she loves gets hurt.
9. Silvia Crompton, Editorial Director – Milkman by Anna Burns
Although published slightly before the beginning of 2019, Milkman continues to wreak literary havoc in the best way possible. From the novel’s nameless characters to the complex familial relationships, Milkman will stay with you for a long time.
10. The Black Flamingo by Dean Atta
Not assigned to a particular team member, but impossible to leave out, is The Black Flamingo! Dean Atta’s tale of discovering drag at university celebrates identity, uniqueness and self-love – a perfect book for anyone struggling to celebrate their identity, young or old.