Here is the first list, in no special order, with a few comments:
- The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins starts out slowly, but pulls you in as you go deeper into the story. The amazing twists and surprises are well worth the ride with this novel.
- Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell has been made into a movie, but I am not sure if any movie could do justice to the book. This book is a series of stories or tales that begin with Adam Ewing, an American lawyer, crossing the Pacific in 1850. Then a subsequent series of stories are told, each reaching a certain point, but not concluded. The author then goes back and finishes each of the stories. His unique method of telling a story is well worth it.
- The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt is a fine work of literature that begins with a mother and her son, Theo Decker, visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art on the way to an appointment. A terrorist explosion kills his mother and changes the course of Theo's life. His future becomes linked to a famous Dutch painting, an antiques dealer, a friend's wealthy family, and his father who abandoned Theo and his mother several years before. This novel won the Pulitzer and is being made into a movie. I believe it is one of the best novels in recent years.