The Reading Room Elects the Best Fiction Books for Holiday Gift-giving

If you love books like we do, you get excited about the coming Holiday Season. The feast of new books available between September and November each year is so large that bedside tables have been heard to groan under the weight.  Not so for those readers who read eBooks,  but equally challenging with so little time and so many great books.  Here is our pick of the best fiction books to give friends and family this gift-giving season.

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For those looking for l
iterary fiction, there is a smorgasbord of highly acclaimed and well-known authors releasing new titles this season, some after a long break. MaddAddam by Margaret Atwood is the final volume in the dystopian trilogy that Atwood started almost 10 years ago. It is a very satisfying end to the kind of satire that only Margaret Atwood can produce. Atwood fans will not be disappointed. Watch the video.
The Lowland by Jhumpa Lahiri – Already long listed for the Man Booker Prize Lahiri is an absolutely exquisite storyteller and a keen observer of human nature. Her books are not always uplifting but are always enlightening. Check the 2103 Man Booker Longlist.
The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt is arguably the most anticipated literary novel of the year. It’s been 11 years since Tartt’s last book, so it will be curious to see what this creator of “a murder mystery in reverse” has up her sleeve.
Cartwheel by Jennifer DuBois – A young writer to watch, DuBois’ debut novel, A Partial History of Lost Causes , was named one of the top ten books of last year by O: The Oprah Magazine.
From the award-winning Spanish writer Javier Marías comes an extraordinary new book, his fifth novel The Infatuations which has been a literary sensation around the world. Beautifully translated by Margaret Jull Costa, this book explores the classic themes of love, death and fate in a way that won’t let you put it down!
Burial Rites by Hannah Kent – This young Aussie author has been making waves around the world. Mentored by Geraldine Brooks, we think this book is one of the best books for 2013. Burial Rites is everything that you want in a great book: a haunting story, unforgettable characters, captivating atmosphere and great storytelling. Watch the video.

best of popular fiction fall 2013 Us For Popular Fiction fans, we recommend Stephen King’s Doctor Sleep, the much awaited follow up to one of King’s most iconic novels, The Shining, which he published in 1977. Now, more than 30 years later, he is revisiting the original story and by the looks of the book trailer Doctor Sleep promises to be just as frightening.
The Wolves of Midwinter by Anne Rice – For all those who love some fantasy and romance, this next instalment of The Wolf Gift Chronicles delivers both in spades.
Mad About the Boy by Helen Fielding – It would be hard to find readers who have never heard of Fielding’s lovable character Bridget Jones; this next book promises to share the “challenges of maintaining sex appeal in later life.”
Elizabeth Gilbert’s The Signature of All Things ventures into historical fiction, new territory for this bestselling author.  Tracing the life of a 19th century female botanist, this is a story of love, adventure and discovery.  Beautifully packaged, it will make a wonderful gift for many readers. Watch the trailer.
If you are obsessed with books about books, then you are probably familiar with a novel called The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield. Bellman & Black, her next book, is not about books but is another great story to keep you reading until dawn

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For our Crime fans, particularly fans of Stieg Larsson’s  character Lisbeth SalanderAlex by Pierre Lemaitre is a must read. It has already won the 2013 International Dagger Award.
If you are slightly skeptical about franchise projects, then seeing the name of William Boyd attached to the latest James Bond novel Solo may just change your mind. If you haven’t already devoured his last two spy novels, Restless and Waiting for Sunrise, now may be the time to do so.
John Grisham does not need any introduction for all those who enjoy courtroom drama. Sycamore Row returns to the themes of his bestselling Time to Kill.
The Queen of Tartan Noir and dark mysteries, Val McDermid is back with her new novel, Cross and Burn. Expect the usual twisted and dark tale that will enthral but also give you nightmares.
If you are after more dark mysteries watch out for Death of a Nightingale by the Scandinavian duo Lene Kaaberbøl and Agnete Friis. If their names sound vaguely familiar, it’s probably because you’ve heard of their nail-biting blockbuster The Boy in the Suitcase.